Harold Camping, the infamous Doomsday prophet whose May 21, 2011 End of the World prediction has failed, appeared to the public on Monday night and refused to take responsibility for the damage his false prediction caused to many of his followers.
Many of Camping’s followers have quit their jobs and spent all their money as a sign of their absolute trust placed in their leader. Camping, claiming to have his calculations worked out using Bible verses, said he was “without any shadow of a doubt,” that the Doomsday would come on May 21, 2011.
When it became clear that Camping’s prediction was unfolding to be false, the media was not able to trace Camping for a while. He appeared in public on Monday in an Open Forum at Family Radio headquarter in Oakland, Calif. and spoke about the unfulfilled prophecy.
At the Open Forum, Camping said he does not plan to give any money back nor give any financial advice to those who have emptied out their savings to fund the Doomsday campaign.
Camping said Rapture happened just as he has predicted on May 21, 2011, albeit in a spiritual and not in a physical sense. He still maintained that the physical destruction of the world will come about on October 21, 2011.
When asked how will his followers, who took his word literally and gave away their entire life savings to Family Radio, survive till October 21, 2011, Camping responded they should learn how to cope and pray to God.
Below are excerpts taken from the Q&A sessions Monday:
Question: What advice do you give to those who took you literally and gave away all their money or donated to Family Radio and now may not have the funds to survive now until October 21?
Camping: Please understand. We don't advise anybody what to do. We are not in the business of financial advice.
We just had a great recession. A great recession. There are lots of people that lost their jobs. There are lots of people that lost their houses. Lots of people. Not just a few, but lots of people. And somehow they all survived. They all had maybe a cousin helped them, or a sister, or the city helped them, or maybe they lowered their expanse way, way down. Sometimes it was very severe. I will tell you what has happened to the average person that has been faithfully listening to the Family Radio. It is not nearly as grievous as the recent recession where people lost their homes.
People cope. And we are not in a business of giving any financial advice. We are in the business of telling people, “Look, there is someone you can talk to that can maybe guide you, maybe help you. And that’s God. Come boldly to the throne of grace. Pray without ceasing. I will tell you, it is wonderful. It is wonderful when we get to a point in our life where lot of times, the best time is when our back is against the world and we don’t know where to go, and finally you are pleading with God. “Oh God, please have mercy, I don’t know what to do.” And that could be just the time that when you are really drawn to God like you have never had. Believe me, God is very real.
Question: I agree with you, so I think that what they have to do, you are saying is, pray because self reliant and not rely on someone else’s information because it is maybe incorrect? Just to go within and trust themselves, perhaps? Is that the advice, maybe?
Camping: No, that is the point of prayer. You don’t rely on your own understanding. That’s the point of prayer. You are relying on God to help you.
Now look. I am praying to God. I don’t have a job. So I am lying on bed, “Lord have mercy, I need a job. I need a job. Lord have mercy, I need a job. I have a family to support.” But boy, this bed is comfortable, I don’t want to get out of this bed. That is pure hypocrisy. We don’t go to Lord like that.
Question: Is it safe to say that mainstream population that heard about May 21 didn’t believe it. It didn’t happen, and now you are saying is, see this is ridiculous, and at best, misguided prediction or some kind of scam. Does it worry that you have hurt the credibility of religion?
Camping: Excuse me, just like what I have said before. Most pastors would never admit they make a mistake, because they are trying to preserve their own credibility in the eyes of those who are listening, or maybe they insist they are maintaining the credibility of the Bible, but the fact is they are not. And all I can do is to go to the Bible, and very humbly say, “Look, I have done some more studying, or somebody and sent me an idea about this phrase, and I checked it out, and I find that I have to make a change.” That does not hurt the credibility of the Bible at all.
We are not perfect and God has to keep opening our eyes. God says again and again, He resists the pride and shows mercy to humble. Verse after verse in the Bible, God resists those who come in their pride. And there is nothing in the world… There is one thing that should be seen in everyone who claims to be the child of God is humility. Whatever I know or whatever I am doing, I have to pray to God all together. I pray again and again the verse Philippians 2, where it says work out your own salvation, that is salvation that God has provided, you work it out, and it says, “though it is God who causes you to will and do of His good pleasure” So even if we do something well done, I can’t take any credit at all. Lord, I thank you that you have guided me this way.
I am nothing. I will tell you, I can recommend this to anybody. It’s a wonderful way to live, when we walk humbly before God. So you are never trying to show how smart you are or how wise you are. I have given all the credit to God and that’s where it should go.
Watch the video below to watch Harold Camping speaking: