According to one group, Family Radio, last Saturday was supposed to be Judgment Day and the beginning of the Rapture. Actually, it was just one man since many of his employees didn’t actually believe him and schedule appointments for well after this date. Lots of people joked about this, others were concerned and worried because they weren’t sure, still others barely even noticed this prediction had been made.
This is not the first time someone has predicted the end of the world. It probably won’t be the last. So what is the Godly response to hearing a prediction like this? First, we need to look at the basis for the prediction. Has the person making the prediction based it on scripture? In the case of the prediction that last Saturday, May 21, 2011, was going to be Judgment Day, it was based on a complicated mathematical computations. You can see those calculations here. You will note that there is no mention of any specific scriptures in this post.
UPDATE: It was pointed out to me by a fellow blogger that the site I linked to is a hoax. I thought I had checked it out carefully, but had not read to the bottom of the “About” page where the web administrator admits it’s a hoax. But at any rate, I still think the points I make in this post, that we don’t know the day and hour, and when Jesus returns all will see Him, are valid. So I’m leaving this posted with this note.
Next, we need to look to scripture to see what God says and determine whether the “prediction” is consistent with God’s Word. About the Judgement Day, Jesus said:
No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. . . . Therefore keep watch, because you do not know on what day your Lord will come. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what time of night the thief was coming, he would have kept watch and would not have let his house be broken into. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him. Matthew 24:36, 42-44.
So basically Jesus said we will not know, He will return when we do not expect Him to. Our response to the knowledge that He will return, but that we don’t know when, is to always be ready. To be ready, we must always trust in Him and we must live our lives loving others as He did.
When Jesus does come back, everyone will know. The web page for the group that claimed last Saturday was going to be the Judgment Day posted on Saturday that the Rapture had, in fact, happened. But again, let’s look at what scripture says. Jesus said:
“So if anyone tells you, ‘There he is, out in the wilderness,’ do not go out; or, ‘Here he is, in the inner rooms,’ do not believe it. For as lightning that comes from the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” Matthew 24:26-27 (NIV).
The fact that this group now claims Jesus came back, but it was not obvious to everyone, suggests to me that their predictions are not worth spending any more time focusing on. They claim that now October 21, 2011 will be the end of the world, following five months of tribulation. But I haven’t seen the Son of Man coming in the sky, and I’ve spent a fair amount of time outside today.
There is a great song by Third Day called “Sky Falls Down” about how we should react to end times predictions and Judgment Day. I found this great live video of it on YouTube.
I’m not afraid of Judgment Day. If Jesus had returned today, that would have been fine with me, because I’m ready. How about you?