With his speech sounding somewhat slurred and labored, Family Radio Stations Inc. founder and chairman Harold Camping sought to address in a recent message why Christ failed to return on Oct. 21 as the Bible teacher had predicted. Camping confessed, after decades of falsely misleading his followers, that he was wrong and regrets his misdeeds.
In addition to attempting to correct his erroneous teachings on the Rapture and God's day of final judgment on the world, Camping, 90, also confessed, "incidentally," that he was wrong to claim that God had stopped saving people after May 21 – the date which God's so-called "spiritual" judgment had begun.
This is undoubtedly a radical shift for Camping, who has staunchly claimed since 1992 that he had discovered a special numerical system in the Bible that allowed him to calculate the exact dates of certain events, such as the Great Flood, the Crucifixion and the day of Jesus Christ's return to Earth.
Camping first falsely predicted that the world would end on Sept. 6, 1994, then again on May 21, 2011, and finally on Oct. 21.
When Camping's final doomsday predication failed to come to pass, Family Radio soon removed its teachings regarding the failed May 21 rapture, which also included the claim that God had stopped saving people after that date and that the world was headed for a final judgment on Oct. 21.
On Oct. 24, 2011, The Christian Post also reported in an exclusive interview with a member of Camping's Bible ministry that the Alameda, Calif., Bible teacher was no longer able to lead Family Radio or his ministry.
A transcript of the audio message, published to Family Radio's website on Oct. 28, 2011, is below:
We're living in a day when one problem follows another. And when it comes to trying to recognize the truth of prophecy, we're finding that it is very very difficult.
Why didn't Christ return on Oct. 21? It seems embarrassing for Family Radio. But God was in charge of everything. We came to that conclusion after quite careful study of the Bible. He allowed everything to happen the way it did without correction. He could have stopped everything if He had wanted to.
I am very encouraged by letters that I have received and [am] receiving at this time concerning this matter. Amongst other things I have been checking my notes more carefully than ever. And I do find that there is other language in the Bible that we still have to look at very carefully and will impinge upon this question very definitely. And we should be very patient about this matter. At least in a minimal way we are learning to walk more and more humble before God.
We're ready to cry out and weep before God: 'Oh Lord, you have the truth, we don't have it. You have the truth.' And this is another place where we have to cry out for... There's one thing that we must remember – God is in charge of this whole business, and we are not. What God wants to tell us is His business. When He wants to tell us is His business. In the meanwhile, God is allowing us to continue to cry to Him for mercy – oh my, how we need His mercy – and continue to wait on Him. God has not left us. God is still God. But we have to be very careful that we don't dictate to God what He should do.
In our search in the Bible, we must continue to look to the Bible, look to the Bible. Because there is where truth comes from. And God in His own timetable and in His own purposes will reveal truth to us when it's His time to do it. In any case, we do not have to have a feeling of calamity or a feeling that God has abandoned us. We are simply learning. And sometimes it's painful to learn. We are learning how God brings His messages to mankind, and my my, we have claimed to be a child of God, and therefore as we search the Bible, we're bound to feel the darts of the Lord. Sometimes He gives us the truth and sometimes He gives us something that causes us to wait further upon Him.
Whatever we do, we must not feel for a moment that we have been abandoned by God – that He is no longer helping us or interested in us. Oh my, what an encouragement it is to go to the Lord again and again – "Oh Lord, I don't know anything. You teach me." And that's the attitude that has to be apart of each one of us. And God will not abandon us, He will provide, but we have to be just very careful that we don't dictate to him when that has to happen.
Incidentally, I have been told that I said back in May that people who did not believe that May 21 should be the rapture date, probably had not been saved. I should not have said that, and I apologize for that. One thing we know for certain, is that God is merciful, merciful beyond anything that we would ever expect. And so, we can pray constantly, and should be praying constantly: "Oh Lord, we look to Thee for Thine mercy, and we're so thankful that we know that Thou art so merciful."
How wonderful to know that God is still on the throne, that He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords and that He hears every one of our prayers. And let's not hesitate, let's be, if anything, let's pray more than ever for God's mercy, and keep praying and God will provide. But God is in charge, and we must always keep that in mind.