Jesus did not return on the 21st of May 2011

Matteüs 24:36 "But of that hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, not the Son, but the Father only."

Saturday, the 21st of May, is passed and Jesus Christ did not return to rapture His Church and the judgment of God did not begin with a great earthquake. That all this would surely take place on that date was predicted – I say with emphasis not ‘prophesied’ by the 89 years old American preacher of the ‘Family Radio Church’ in Oakland, California. This was in fact not the first date that he predicted for his first date for the rapture of the Church was 6 September 1994. He admitted that both these dates were wrong. He said that perhaps it should be understood in a spiritual way. But a few days after the 21st of May he already announced a new date, the 21st of September 2011. And then ‘it will all surely happen.’ His followers have already changed the date on big advertisements boards in the cities. They believe that his predictions are ‘based on the Bible.’ but this must be questioned, for the Bible does not mention these dates. They are purely his own theories, interpretations and constructions of data and numbers in Biblical texts.

Camping his not the first preacher to make such mistakes. The American Baptist farmer William Miller set dates on which he predicted that Jesus would return. The first date he predicted was the 21st of March 1843, the second one was the 21st of March 1844 and the third one 22 October 1844. After the three wrong predictions with many dramatic results in the lives of people in the U.S.A. that had believed them, he admitted that a date for the return of Christ and the beginning of Gods judgement on the world cannot be predicted. William Miller wrote: “I confess my errors and admit my disappointments, but nevertheless I believe that the day of the Lord is very close, and I admonish, you, my brothers and sisters to be watchful, be alert so that that day will not take you by surprise.” Miller’s predictions about the date for the return of Jesus became the beginning of the emphasis on the return of Christ by the Seventh Day Adventists, though he did not join this movement. But a first leader of this movement, Hiram Edson, discussed a day after the wrong date with a friend, the predictions and gave them the meaning that Jesus went to a sanctuary in heaven to begin there a new heavenly endtime-ministry.

The Jehovah Witnesses have also predicted dates about the return of Christ. For instance, they predicted that He would return in 1914. But it became the year in which the First World War started in Europe. Later they said about their prediction that He had returned as an ‘invisible spiritual person.’

In Holland we have had the ‘prophet’ van Geene, who had predicted that the return of Christ and the judgement of the world would happen in the year 2000. Also in our country, people that had believed in him and his prediction had sold their homes and firms, marriages were ruined by it and the money from sales was donated to him.

It saddens me that this has happened again. We observe that a convincing, charismatic preacher and teacher with his hand on the Bible can so easily win believers for his insights and believes, while the Bible tells plainly that nobody knows the date of the return except the Father in heaven. But many seem to take a personal so called revelation or interpretation above a plain statement. I close with Matthew 24:42, that still has in these days, its divine authority: “Watch therefore, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming.”


On the 5th of March 2012 was published that Harold Camping has sincerely repented of his sin - as he called it himself - of predicting the return of Christ and the end of the world. In 2011 he had predicted this for two dates (first in May and later in October). He also deeply regrets all the trouble he as caused in the lives op people. He will never again make such predictions. I notice the remarkable similarity with what happened in the 19th century when WIlliam Miller, a farmer, had predicted the return of Jesus. After three predictions had also confessed to having been wrong and having sinned in doing that.

Pastor T. J. de Ruiter, 26th of May 2011, Holland,  revised 9th of March 2012


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