“Beware of false prophets”, wrote Saint Matthew, “which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.”
If you don’t know who’s name I’m about to mention, you should by now. It’s recently been on television, billboards and newspapers all across North America as the name of the man who claimed to have the key to the bottomless pit; Harold Camping. In 1988, Camping decided to announce Judgment Day, on the 21st of May. After recalculating his mistakes, he corrected his hypothesis to become the 6th of September, 1994. You would think that by now he would keep his mouth shut and simply apologize for the tremendous damage he had done to both his ministry and the reputation of all Christians worldwide, but despite his good intentions, something in him refused to step down, and at the age of 90, he said, once again, that May 21st of this year carried both the wrath of God and the end of time all in one day, an interpretation of the book of Revelation that I think most would agree has been brutally misread. Many of those who followed after his teachings sold everything they had and donated millions, only to read later in Jeremiah 14:14, “Then the LORD said to me, “The prophets are prophesying lies in my name. I have not sent them or appointed them or spoken to them. They are prophesying to you false visions, divinations, idolatries and the delusions of their own minds.” The most honorable thing Camping could’ve done at this point is put an end to this embarrassment and admit that he forgot to take into account that “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (Matthew 24:36), the very word of God wasn’t enough to satisfy him. He claimed once more that yesterday, October 21st, would be the end of the world, and once more, his prophecy was false. I’m not sure what I find more unsettling, the fact that he’s running around like a fool in the name of God, or that the higher-ups in society keep allowing, dare I say encouraging him to continue putting up billboards in this reckless ridicule on Christianity. It all lines up quite nicely with that recent heckler who raved the name of Jesus Christ like a lunatic at President Obama in the middle of a fundraiser, which I believe might very well have been a staged set-up by the Obama administration to silence Christians after reviewing rumors that had been spreading about Barack Obama being the antichrist. Also, just weeks ago, a Christian pastor in Iran was facing the death sentence and being martyred for his beliefs, all up until the headlines made a drastic last-minute rewrite pinning some rape charges on him so that we’d all feel better about the execution. It seems like the social paradigm has already begun its shift, where the true face of God becomes diluted with images like that which you might see in the Simpsons, the classic big bearded man in the clouds, which is in fact the Greek god, Zeus, but no one can tell the difference anymore. We always forget to take into account that our computers and television sets are pretty standard and affordable mind manipulators. The screen itself actually sedates your mind into a dormant state that opens a door to your subconscious so that it can implant messages in your mind that you’ll never even be aware of. This is how Ned Flanders became the face of every Christian alive. Mix him with Harold Camping and all of those middle-American picketers wrapping tin foil around their heads with signs saying “Hell For Homos”, and you should have a pretty accurate portrait of how the world is going to view you if you’re a Christian in the 21st century. I remember when Time Magazine announced the 2006 Person of the Year with a reflective Mylar paper surface so that it would actually mirror a reflection of yourself inside of a Youtube video window. In the past 5 years, Youtube, I’ll break it down even further and say the ability to “comment” on something in a public domain, really did prove to be this generation’s greatest mirror, which can be a both sad and revealing truth about us, especially when the target interest of this generation seems to be mindless pseudo-comedies and music videos for all those talentless foster kids of fame. Reading the comments some people have the nerve to leave on these Youtube videos or news articles really gives you a firsthand glimpse into that “immaturity and ignorance” I keep talking about. Now, it seems that Christians are not only religious extremists who seek to bring upon the destruction of the world, as ExcaliburClan and SuicideBoner8IIIIID would put it, but they are also homophobes, racists, rapists and pedophiles who secretly fantasize about people burning in hellfire. As ridiculous as it is, there comes a point when I can’t really blame some of them for thinking this way after seeing how some of these self-proclaimed Christians use the face of God to justify their own personal anguish and hatred, which actually contradicts the very meaning of the word Christian, which is Christ, who taught, “Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these” (Mark 12:31).
At first, I thought that these vicious misrepresentations and misconceptions about Christianity were just a bad case of human evil going around, but knowing how careful the media and entertainment industries are about what they publish, I can only be forced to question whether or not this too is an intentional part of some bigger plan. I think it’s worth recognizing that if Satan really is in this world trying to drag us all down with him, this is exactly how he’d be doing it. I’d probably be angry with the world if I weren’t so heartbroken by it.
“Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold.” (Matthew 24:12)