PHILADELPHIA — The leader of a Pennsylvania-based group that followed the late Harold Camping, a radio host who made numerous false predictions about the end of the world, is shrugging off his incorrect prognostication that the Earth would be “annihilated” by fire on Wednesday.
“Since it is now October 8th it is now obvious that we were incorrect regarding the world’s ending on the 7th,” wrote eBible Fellowship leader Chris McCann in an online note on Thursday. “Did we lie? No.”
“The fact is that we consistently told people that October 7th, 2015 (being the end of the world) was a strong likelihood. And according to the good amount of biblical evidence at our disposal it was,” he continued. “Therefore saying it was a ‘strong likelihood’ was a true statement. We also openly acknowledged that there was a small likelihood that it would not happen. There was no lie or deceitfulness involved in any way.”
McCann stated that he does not care what others think about him and his group.
“The church’s opinion is of no significance to us,” he wrote. “The Bible teaches that the church age is over. And the churches of the world are all operating without the presence of the Holy Spirit. The numerous doctrinal errors of all the world’s churches prove the condition of their spiritual darkness. Therefore eBible Fellowship is completely unconcerned with how any church or its members perceive us.”
The end of the “church age” referenced by McCann was first espoused by Camping, who contended that Christians should leave their churches and listen to his radio broadcast.
As previously reported, eBible Fellowship had been taking to the streets in the Philadelphia area for the past year with signs, shirts and literature to proclaim that the world would end on Wednesday.
“According to what the Bible is presenting, it does appear that 7 October will be the day that God has spoken of in which the world will pass away,” McCann told the Guardian on Tuesday.
He said that he came up with the date after utilizing a previous date predicted by Camping, which he asserts wasn’t completely false. McCann states that May 21, 2011 was really Judgment Day, and that God took 1,600 days after that time to decide which non-believers would be saved before destroying the Earth with fire.
“When we go 1600 days from the beginning of Judgment Day on May 21, 2011 we come to a day (October 7, 2015) that is the last day of harvest in the biblical (Hebrew) calendar,” he told reporters. “Therefore we dare to say that on that day there is a strong likelihood that God will gather into Heaven the precious fruit of all those He has saved and complete the destruction of all of those He did not save.”
But Camping apologized for his predictions in 2012 before his death the following year, remarking that it was sinful of him to do so.
“We realize that many people are hoping they will know the date of Christ’s return. In fact, for a time Family Radio fell into that kind of thinking,” he wrote. “But we now realize that those people who were calling our attention to the Bible’s statement that ‘of that day and hour knoweth no man,’ were right in their understanding of those verses and Family Radio was wrong.”
While Christians agree that a day is coming when God will judge the earth as the Bible warns, they also note that Jesus outlined in Matthew 24:36 that only the Father in Heaven knows the exact date.