How We 'Know' the World Will End on May 21

Pastor Harold Camping explains his totally logical theory
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 23, 2011 11:34 AM CDT
How We 'Know' the World Will End on May 21
Allison Warden, a believer in Harold Camping's prophesied May 21 apocalypse, poses with her car in Raleigh, N.C., Dec. 17, 2010.   (AP Photo/Gerry Broome, File)

As you may have heard, the rapture is coming on May 21, 2011. Self-taught radio and Internet preacher Harold Camping is sure of it, and he’s got iron-clad logic on his side. See, by examining carbon dating, tree rings, and other highly scientific data, he’s concluded that Noah started loading his ark in 4990 BC, he tells USA Today. It took him seven days to do it. But in 2 Peter, it says that “one day is with the Lord as a thousand years.”

So it must have actually taken Noah 7,000 years to load the ark. Add that to 4990, add one for the year zero and presto: 2011! Genesis also says the flood started on the 17th day of the second month—which, according to the Jewish calendar, would be May 21st. “I am telling you, that gets pretty heavy when you see this coming right out of the Bible,” Camping says. Of course, Camping also once predicted the world would end in 1994. What happened when it, um, didn’t? “It just was a cudgel to keep studying,” he says. (More Harold Camping stories.)

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