Now that Harold Camping has revised his rapture-and-end-of-the-world prediction by pushing the “visible” end of all things to October 21, you have to wonder why anybody is paying attention to this guy.
There are at least two problems with what Camping is doing. First, his calculations are based on a bizarre idea of biblical numerology, attaching numerical values to things like “heaven.” ( The Washington Post has Camping’s computation here). Apparently, heaven’s biblical number is 17 because that is a combination of 10 (completeness) and 7 (perfection), so heaven is the “complete perfection.” While it is true that heaven is a wonderful place, that doesn’t add up to 17 in any legitimate biblical scholarship.
Secondly, and most disturbingly, Camping is making a mockery of the idea of judgment, the idea that there is a consequence for our actions. That’s the point of Jesus’ story about the sheep and the goats in Matthew 25. It does matter how we live and what we do, and in whom we place our trust and confidence.
So now we have to endure 5 more months of media coverage of this silliness. I for one will be glad when October 21 comes and goes. Until then, don’t sell your house, quit your job, or empty your bank account. Let’s live like followers of Jesus, people who believe that to love God and others sums up God’s command to us. That won’t get any headlines, but will change the world.
Okay, the truth is out. Physicist Michio Kaku says, “Occasionally, physicists like to scare the pants off people.” I am not making this up. So, the big joke for today is the Large Hadron Collider, which many feel will create black holes and suck the entire earth into some other dimension. Hence the name of my post on Monday, “World Ends This Wednesday?”.
But, it gets worse. Professor Kaku says that there is this bizarre theory (if it’s so bizarre, why is he telling us about it?…the truth is out there…) that the LHC will produce strangelets. These are not the same as people who attend your church, although there may be some resemblance. Strangelets are weird hunks of matter that are, well, strange. And, if you touch it, you become a strangelet yourself. Which is just what some people will do. I can hear it now — “Really? This little thing? I’ll just touch it once.” (See what I mean.) Anyway, this sounds a lot like the apple in the Garden of Eden thing all over again. We didn’t do so well on that test the first time around, who’s to say we’ll do any better this time.
So, the next time you’re looking for some rollicking entertainment for your next Halloween party, call a physicist. After all, they like to scare the pants off people.
Okay, Hal Lindsay missed it when he predicted it, too. But, on Wednesday, September 10, the Large Hadron Collider will collide its first particles. Of course, CERN, the group that has waited 20-years for this event, says it’s safe. Which is also what the US government told us about nuclear energy, but hey, who knew? Anyway, a lot of folks are really nervous that the collider will create the first manmade black hole and we’ll all be sucked into it. However, I wouldn’t plan to call in sick in Wednesday, just in case this doesn’t happen. Of course, if it does there will be no need to call in… Anyway, enjoy your week!