Skip to comments.Failed Doomsday Has Real Deadly Consequences
Posted on 05/25/2011 6:50:21 AM PDT by Borges
Harold Camping, the 89-year-old leader whose study of the Bible convinced him and his followers that the world would end, has been described by his wife as "flabbergasted" that the apocalypse didnt start over the weekend. There are some red faces out there. And if that's all it had been, then one could argue no great harm had been done.
But while Camping and his followers try to figure out what went wrong (or right) with news Monday night that he now says Judgment Day will come on Oct. 21 the failed prophecy did more than just damage Camping's credibility: It also appears to have caused death and serious injury to true believers.
A California woman named Lyn Benedetto was one of millions who heard Camping's message, and became concerned that her daughters would suffer terribly in the coming apocalypse. She allegedly forced her daughters, 11 and 14, to lie on a bed and then cut their throats with a box cutter. She then tried to kill herself, though police arrested Benedetto and all three survived.
Others were not so lucky. An elderly man in Taiwan reportedly killed himself on May 5 ahead of the Rapture by jumping out of a building. He had heard that doomsday was imminent, and had taken recent earthquakes and tsunamis as early warning signs.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Camping is a fool, but the writer offers virtually no evidence for his charge in this article.
Camping is a loon. there will always be loons. And those who believed him are too.
Still, I can see where this is going: a “law” for our own protection. The best protection is knowing how to think critically.
This Camping loon had a First Amendment right to say these loony things. I can insist the sky will turn green on a certain date, and people can choose to believe it or not.
I have never understood suicide but especially in cases like this. Jesus is returning so kill yourself? Is that a way for the less than Holy to avoid punishment ? Doesn’t work.
Okay Lucy, looks like Charlie Brown wants another wack at kicking that football! This fool never learns.
I said on another thread that I feared there would be suicides because of this Camping idiot.
Too bad I was right!
Recall the little boy who cried “wolf”?
Only in this case he will never be right.
The article doesn’t actually document a single person dying because of the 5-21 doomsday scenario. Thus, more people died riding as a passenger with Ted Kennedy than died as a result of Camping’s false prophecies.
” Still, I can see where this is going: a law for our own protection. “
Gee - if we were to outlaw predictions, promises, and reports that turn out to be not exactly true — that would pretty much put politicians and the Media out of business...
I don’t understand your statement. The author doesn’t offer specifics on the alleged Taiwanese suicide, but the Lyn Benedetto story is all over the news. Furthermore, this is standard operating procedure for well-publicized end of the world fake outs. My dad told me that when Orson Wells did his War of the Worlds radio program there were people then who thought it was really happening and did dreadful things, including, he told me, suicides.
So I dont think the author is bringing any unjustified charges. I do wish that those who claim to believe in Jesus would also believe what he said about no one knowing the time of his return. I think he knew what panic and badness it would cause if people could know that moment with precision.
Someone once asked DL Moody what he would do if he knew with certainty that Jesus was coming tomorrow. His answer? Plant a tree. I love it. I wish there were more like him and fewer like Camping. I think some people just get a high out of making themselves into the prophet of doom. But that’s a very bad place to be if God Himself didn’t authorize it. And in Camping’s case, we can be certain he didn’t.
Maybe you disagree, but I don't think that merits notice.
That’s because the rapture theory is just an escapist fantasy that’s only been around since the late 1800s. It’s a good way to disarm the Christians into doing nothing while evil grows.
And why kill yourself if you think you are going to die anyway.
Some failed to learn from the Heaven’s Gate wackos.
It’s going to happen anyways (or desired to happen):
People will cry out for the mountain to Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! (Rev. 6:13-17)
There should be a law against false prophets and they should be put to death.
Good thing you reminded us.
I see your point. There may be no statistical correlation. It would make some sociology doctoral candidate a nice thesis. I agree that anyone of normal mental health is unlikely to mortally harm themselves no matter what they’re told. But avoiding misdirection is a central part of what Jesus warned against in that whole teaching on his return. He did not want his followers being misled by panic-mongers, because irrational fear does make you do stupid things you later regret. I suspect our doctoral candidate would find that such events serve as magnets to the already unstable and tend to push them over the threshold from passive dysfunction to actively self-destructive behaviors. So perhaps no net increase in looniness, but a definite increase in harm to the already weak-minded, as Paul puts it.
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