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Monday, March 16, 2009

Rapture

Here's a list of Christian-second-coming-end-of-the-world predictions listed in Wikipedia's Rapture article. I was perusing the list and I burst out laughing when I saw poor Harold Camping's name there. Twice. I hope the other radio evangelists don't say things behind his back.

Some notable rapture predictions include the following:

  • 1792 - Shakers calculated this date.[citation needed]
  • 1844 - William Miller predicted Christ would return between March 21, 1843 and March 21, 1844, then revised his prediction, claiming to have miscalculated Scripture, to October 22, 1844. Miller's theology gave rise to the Advent movement.
  • 1977 - William M. Branham predicted that the Rapture would take place in 1977.[22]
  • 1981 - Chuck Smith undogmatically predicted that Jesus would likely return by 1981.[citation needed]
  • 1988 - Publication of 88 Reasons why the Rapture is in 1988, by Edgar C. Whisenant.
  • 1989 - Publication of The final shout: Rapture report 1989, by Edgar Whisenant. More predictions by this author appeared for 1992, 1995, and other years.
  • 1992 - Korean group "Mission for the Coming Days" predicted October 28, 1992 as the date for the rapture.[23]
  • 1993 - Seven years before the year 2000. The rapture would have to start to allow for seven years of the Tribulation before the Return in 2000. Multiple predictions.
  • 1994 - Pastor John Hinkle of Christ Church in Los Angeles predicted June 9, 1994. Radio evangelist Harold Camping predicted September 27, 1994.[24]
  • 2011 - Harold Camping's revised prediction has May 21, 2011 as the date of the rapture.[25]
  • 2060 - Sir Isaac Newton undogmatically proposed, based upon his calculations using figures from the book of Daniel, that the rapture could happen no earlier than 2060.[26][27]
** Since writing this I have learned that he originally predicted 1994 or 2011. Might seem like a cop out to pick two years but I look up to anyone who goes on the Armageddon record. Unfortunately, this site's scrutiny of his number crunching reveals a shoddy methodology rivaling the Bible Code.

10 comments:

Eric Lyman said...

Ah yes, indeed, people have predicted the end times since time has been around. I've got to say though- from a spiritual and philosophical standpoint I disagree with the concept of a rapture. The underlying idea there is that something or someone is coming to save us from ourselves. It's far more productive to take the position of US saving ourselves... Learning to stand on our own feet as a race of humans, to evolve past violence. Although these ideas seem unattainable at times I don't think they are impossible. We dismiss our potential by sitting idle in wait for the all knowing to bring us home.

Foster said...

I'm glad you had a good couple of belly laughs in your studying of the topic; there's a reason that "rapture" also means ecstatic joy.

Personally I think it a useless exercise to try and predict either joy or the sudden disappearance of a lot of nice people. If you were correct in accomplishing either prediction with any veracity it would sort of defeat the point.

The rapture is always today, be it joy or your removal from tribulation, but aren't those the same thing?

I always appreciate your thoughts.

- Foster

Anonymous said...

The NEWEST Pretrib Calendar

Hal (serial polygamist) Lindsey and other pretrib-rapture-trafficking and Mayan-Calendar-hugging hucksters deserve the following message: "2012 may be YOUR latest date. It isn't MAYAN!" Actually, if it weren't for the 179-year-old, fringe-British-invented, American-merchandised pretribulation rapture bunco scheme, Hal might still be piloting a tugboat on the Mississippi, roly-poly Thomas Ice (Tim LaHaye's No. 1 strong-arm enforcer) might still be in his tiny folding-chair church which shares its firewall with a Texas saloon, Jack Van Impe might still be a jazz band musician, Tim LaHaye might still be titillating California matrons with his "Christian" sex manual, Grant Jeffrey might still be taking care of figures up in Canada, Chuck Missler might still be in mysterious hush-hush stuff that rocket scientists don't dare talk about, John Hagee might be making - and eating - world-record pizzas, and Jimmy ("Bye You" Rapture) Swaggart might still be flying on a Ferriday flatbed! To read more details about the eschatological British import that leading British scholarship never adopted - the import that's created some American multi-millionaires - Google "Pretrib Rapture Diehards" (note LaHaye's hypocrisy under "1992"), "Hal Lindsey's Many Divorces," "Thomas Ice (Bloopers)" and "Thomas Ice (Hired Gun)," "LaHaye's Temperament," "Wily Jeffrey," "Chuck Missler - Copyist," "Open Letter to Todd Strandberg" and "The Rapture Index (Mad Theology)," "X-Raying Margaret," "Humbug Huebner," "Thieves' Marketing," "Appendix F: Thou Shalt Not Steal," "The Unoriginal John Darby," "Pretrib Hypocrisy," "The Real Manuel Lacunza," "Roots of (Warlike) Christian Zionism," "America's Pretrib Rapture Traffickers," "Pretrib Rapture - Hidden Facts," "Dolcino? Duh!" and "Scholars Weigh My Research." Most of the above is written by journalist/historian Dave MacPherson who has focused on long-hidden pretrib rapture history for 35+ years. No one else has focused on it for 35 months or even 35 weeks. MacPherson has been a frequent radio talk show guest and he states that all of his royalties have always gone to a nonprofit group and not to any individual. His No. 1 book on all this is "The Rapture Plot" (see Armageddon Books online, etc.). The amazing thing is how long it has taken the mainstream media to finally notice and expose this unbelievably groundless yet extremely lucrative theological hoax!

Nemo Dally said...

ERIC
I agree. Yet I also find that those working to save ourselves do it on behalf of their all-knowing god.

FOSTER
My interest was on the storytelling level. There's a trend in fiction (I had watched The Mist and Watchmen) to insist that humans bring these end of the world scenarios upon themselves. I haven't read or watched the Left Behind series.

ANON
Either I've been hit with my first SPAM or Thomas Pynchon is commenting on my blog.

Eric Lyman said...

Nemo- Certainly there are many who act to improve humanity on behalf of God, although I don't see how this is a bad thing in of itself. The end result is a good action or deed with the intention of helping humanity.

Although, I would agree if your meaning was people helping others out of fear of damnation (could this be called the anti-rapture?). Certainly this happens also and is not ideal.

But again, this is not exclusively the case. There are lots of god loving people who simply enjoy helping others. Like everything else, it's not a clear cut / black and white situation.

I'm enjoying the discussion. I hope you can post more religious-philosophically oriented thoughts in the future!

Anonymous said...

I came across this blog while surfing around. Might I recommend a website that puts it all together in a nice neat package, easy to understand.

the-latter-rain.com

There's a free online book titled "The Book Has Been Opened" that spells out exactly how that date was arrived at. Just click on the "Woe To the Bloody City" book and the next page you can click on the other book. Chapter 25 is when it is all discussed in detail. There's also a lot of other topics discussed it the previous chapters. I highly recommend checking it out.

hereicomeworld said...

Thanks very much for this, we should make a t-shirt. Maybe just something simple, like the dates with no additional details. Fuck, I'd buy that from you!

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