chapter  20
8 Pages

Looking into the Future: Why Prophecies Will Persist

ByJ. Gordon Melton

During 2011, Evangelical Christians in the United States were alternately embarrassed and entertained by the series of remarks made by Christian radio owner, Harold Camping, relative to his predictions that the climatic events of history – the destruction of the world, the rapture of Christians to the heavens and Judgment Day – would occur first in May and then in October (see DuffBrown 2011). The wealthy Camping also was able to spend several million dollars to publicise the prediction as well as advertise it on the radio station he owned. A small cadre of the embarrassed also appeared outside his establishment in the San Francisco area to protest his date-setting activity and a modest number of Christian media attacked him for ignoring Jesus’ admonition, ‘It is not for you to know the times or the seasons …’ (Acts 1:7).