Thursday, May 19, 2011

Uh, I Had Plans For Next Week

Seriously, I have tickets to River Dance next week. I'd never have bought them if I'd known the world was going to end this weekend. At least, it's all coming to an end according to Harold Camping, 89 year old Bible scholar, and president of the religious non-profit Family Radio based in Oakland, California.

Camping, claims to have decoded Biblical clues which point to May 21, 2011 as the scheduled date of The Holy Rapture, when believers will be taken bodily into Heaven and the rest of us will be subjected to an Apocalyptic nightmare. While the abundance of reality TV programs lends credence to Apocalyptic nightmare prediction, I'm not going to put my tickets on Ebay just yet for the simple reason that global doom has been divined many times before.

Early Christians expected Jesus to return, and final judgement to occur, within a generation of his death. Montanus, was sure all Christians would gather in Turkey, for The Rapture, in the 5th century. Minister William Miller, convinced his Millerites the second coming would take place sometime between March 21, 1843 and March 21, 1844. More recently, Pat Robertson bought a Middle Eastern TV station so he could broadcast the second coming in the year 2000. Camping himself, originally predicted the second coming would occur in 1994, but has since admitted that forecast had been based on incomplete research.

None of the aforementioned end of days predictions have come true, and I don't expect this one to be any different. Yes, we've seen an admittedly long string of natural disasters recently. Plus, we've witnessed increased turmoil in The Middle East recently. Granted. However, every generation has suffered its share of calamities.

The Black Death of 1348, the Smallpox epidemic of the 15th century, and the Dust Bowl of the 1930s must have all felt like God's hand exacting final retribution upon the Earth. Similarly, mankind has always been plagued by wars and rumors of wars. Thus, scholars and theologians have been able to apply apocalyptic revelations to whatever era they were living in, but mankind endured.

I may have to eat a ton of crow on Saturday, but I believe humanity will continue to survive and progress beyond this week, this month, this year, this decade, this century, and even this millennium. There will be disasters, diseases, oppression, massacres, and wars. We'll deal with them, learn from them, and eventually overcome each hardship, just as we always have.

At least, that's my prediction.

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