By Nathan Jones
Is today, October 21, 2011, the end of the world?
On Saturday, October 8, 2011, I was interviewed by host Brian Thomas of Blessings to Israel Ministries on their "God First" program. During the hour long interview we discussed the many failed attempts of date-setters to declare an accurate date for the Lord's return, especially concerning Harold Camping as his October 21, 2011, end of the world deadline approaches.
End of the World: October 21, 2011
Brian Thomas: We looked at Camping's prediction of the May 21st date for Christ's return and it came and went and nothing happened. Camping now has October 21st circled, and again some people out there who are deceived are looking at that date and thinking that something is going to happen. Who knows when this date comes and goes if there will again be more suicides or attempted suicides.
Harold Camping also has a lot of propaganda out there. From my understanding his Family Radio organization had actually created a cartoon back before the May 21st prediction that explains to little children what is going to happen as far as life ending as we know it. So, they are deceiving people on all levels. Now there are some who are nervously sitting and waiting for October 21st to end the world.
What comments or advice could you give to those people concerning the way we should approach this October 21st end of the world deadline?
Nathan Jones: I remember after May 21st the one of the things that bothered me the most was the number of Atheist parties where they celebrated Christ not returning. Jesus returning was a huge joke to them. Atheists are the perfect example of 2 Peter 3:3 where says, "First of all you must understand in the last days scoffers will come, scoffing and following their own evil desires. They will say, 'Where is this coming He has promised? Ever since our fathers have died everything has gone the same as the beginning of creation.'"
The Bible also says in verse 5, "But they deliberately forgot that long ago by God's Word the heavens existed and the earth was formed out of water and by water." In other words, they say the Creation didn't happen, so this prophecy points to Evolutionists, to Atheists, and to these scoffers. Peter also says in verse 10 about the destinies of these scoffers, "the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire being kept for the Day of Judgment and destruction for ungodly men."
What Christian hasn't at some point asked, "Why, Lord, haven't you come? Why is it taking so long?" Well, 2 Peter 3:9 goes on to tell us, "The Lord is not slow in keeping His promises as some understand slowness," (you know, as we humans do), "He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." So, for those who are scoffing out there, well they're going to have a party about this no matter what. They have refused the truth, or as the Bible says they themselves have decided to become willfully ignorant by deliberately forgetting about God and about His Creation.
The scoffers will scoff about anything related to Bible prophecy. The media will love to have a party when Camping's October 21st day comes and goes. I can be pretty sure this October 21st they won't have as big of a party as they did on May 21st where the celebrating was in all the media and all the news was just bashing the Bible. It was so sad to see those people out there laughing as if they had escaped.
We can be sure when the Bible says that the present heavens and earth are reserved for fire for those who do not believe Jesus is coming that He will indeed come. Jesus will come in His own time and not the time of Harold Camping, nor the time of other men. Only God knows when and the Bible tells us that Jesus will come. The earth is reserved for tribulation after Jesus finally comes and takes His Church out of here. The scoffers will then endure the Tribulation, that awful seven years of judgment that will come on the world. During that time men will surely know there is a God and they will need to decide one way or another. The choice will be crystal clear as to whether to side with God or not.
Nathan Jones: If there are folks out there who haven't accepted Jesus as Savior, my advice is please don't listen to these nuts like Harold Camping. Obviously they are false prophets, and obviously they mean to lead you astray. The Lord has a purpose for you. He died on the cross for your sins. He loves you so much that He was willing to sacrifice His Son. Jesus then beat death by coming back to life. If we put our faith in Him, we can be saved.
We might not know the date for when the Lord comes back, but we can prepared for it. This is the number one thing you should prepare for — if you are not a believer in Christ you can prepare for the Lord's return by accepting Jesus as your Savior. Jesus will return, the Bible promises. Prepare by giving your heart and your life to Jesus Christ.
Nathan Jones: For those of us who are already saved, don't listen to false teachers like Harold Camping. Obviously, don't put all your money and your efforts and your faith in a man who according to Deuteronomy 18 is a proven false prophet. He is not a real prophet. There is no reason to put you faith in that man. Instead, put you faith in the Bible. Put your faith in Jesus Christ.
You don't have to know all the in's and out's Bible prophecy. Guys like Brian and I love to understand more about the Lord's return, but even we have to admit that we don't have all the answers. The Lord didn't give us all the dates and times and settings. So, we just have to trust that the Lord will come back and not beat ourselves up trying to find the exact date or moment.
Live your lives holy. Live your lives right before God. I have kids and I don't know how many times I've walk in and they were doing something they know they shouldn't have been doing and they give you this guilty look. You know that look. Oops, they are doing something wrong. We don't want to be looking like that when Jesus returns.
When our Heavenly Father comes for us, what will you be doing? Will we be serving Him as the Bible says we're to be doing, doing those good works which He prepared for us to do, or are we just living for ourselves?
We have to devote ourselves not only to holy living, but in sharing the Gospel as well. There are so many people out there who need to know the Lord. The Lord is actually waiting for the last of those who will accept Him as Savior in this Church Age to accept Him. Again, as 2 Peter 3 said, "He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance." When everyone who is to be saved in the Church Age accepts Jesus' salvation, then He will come. That is what we are waiting for. And really, thank goodness for that, otherwise if he came even 40 or 50 years ago I wouldn't even exist today, so thank the Lord for His patience!
So, give your heart to the Lord. Devote yourself to holiness. And, devote yourself to evangelizing and sharing the Gospel with others.
Brian Thomas: For the believers, the truth seekers out there who believe in Bible prophecy and study and are looking for the return of Jesus Christ, do not allow this kind of deception with Harold Camping and the fallout from the media to cause you to stray away from proclaiming the soon return of Jesus Christ. He is coming back soon. Many who are out there would just throw us all in the same category as Harold Camping and say we are just fanatics and are crazy. Don't allow them to deter you.
I'm concerned that a lot of pastors will choose to stay solid against the message of the Lord's soon return and not preach about it in churches because they don't want to be categorized as a lunatic. But, Jesus Christ is coming again. You have to just stand on the truth of His Word and not listen to these date setters like Harold Camping.
To all of you out there, Jesus Christ is coming soon. So, be hopeful, be watchful, keep looking up for His soon return is drawing near. Many blessings to you all!