California nutcase preacher Harold Camping has predicted that Judgement Day is coming May 21st 2011.  What should we do?  Plant a tree.

Allegedly when Martin Luther was asked some 500 years ago what he would do if he knew the world was ending tomorrow, he said, “I would still plant a tree today.”  The simple point he was trying to make was the importance of always living with a mind for tomorrow.  It is not easy especially when overwhelmed by the needs of today.  We just had a team return from Haiti where we helped build an orphanage.  (That’s a cool story in itself. Last year Hollywood producers asked us if they could use our church parking lot to shoot a movie about a murder at an ATM.  We said they could if they gave us $20,000 to build an orphanage in the 3rd world.  They did and we did.)  The country has of course been devastated by last year’s earthquake, but that only compounds an already desperate situation.  The forest has been slashed and burned to produce charcoal for resale.  The exposed soil has eroded and blown or washed into the sea where it killed the coral.  Not only have they destroyed their farm land but also their fishery.  The sense of hopelessness and distress is palpable on the streets.  Yet in the midst of it the gospel is advancing like no other time in history.  Our team visited an outdoor church with over 10,000 members. Some believe that as many as 50% of Haitians are now Christians.  Their Voodoo religion has not been kind to them holding them in fear and bondage.  Christ is the only hope in a country that has literally lost everything.

The kids have distended stomachs from malnutrition and you rarely see them smile.  All kids should be able to at least smile.  With so much work to be done in the world to tell people about Jesus it actually annoys me that any self-righteous preacher would even propose that they know when the world is ending.  Harold Camping’s group has put up 20,000 billboards across North America with 85 of the them in Canada.  At an average cost of $1500 each that would be $30 million.  That money could have built 20,000 churches or orphanages in the 3rd world but instead it is wasted because the world is not going to end on May 21st.  How do you know Pastor Mark?  Well for one thing I am scheduled to take the weekend off, my first in months and months, and I pretty sure God would not deny me my day off.  But seriously, the scripture is quite clear on the matter.  “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.” (Matt 24:36)  Let’s see, if the angels don’t know, and Jesus Himself doesn’t know, I am pretty sure Harold Camping doesn’t know.  He even says he knows the hour…  6 PM.  Although I am not sure of the time zone.

The 90 year old Camping is the founder of a ministry called Family Radio.  This isn’t the first time he has predicted the end of the world.  He said it was supposed to end September 6th 1994.  The day came and went and now he is at it again.  In the Old Testament they used to stone false prophets.  Unfortunately, many of his followers have sold all their goods and have given the money to him to buy billboards.  I wonder what they are going to do Monday May 22nd?  I hope McDonald’s is hiring.  Apparently Camping himself has not liquidated all his  assets and Family Radio will still be in business the next day.

We actually have a sure fire marker as to when Jesus will return.  He said “And this gospel of the Kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” (Matt 24:14)  There are still at least 2 billion people on the planet that have not heard the gospel.  We should not even be wasting our time debating the subject.  We have a huge job to do.  Want to know what I am doing on my weekend off?  First I am going to put in the garden and then… plant a tree.

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  1. TJ says:


    …I love this article!
    (it’s debatable about know the week/month/year/decade/century/millenium…but it’s not debatable about the day/hour, so this guy is a doofus, unless he’s trying to get rich quick before his life ends, which is still doofus material but in the ethics realm 😉

  2. kim says:

    Great Blog Pastor Mark

  3. Betty says:

    There was time, when I wished for the END of the world to come, because there was so much pain and hatred going on, in this world, I wanted it all to end, but I have learned, very much since then and think different now.
    There are so many people, who have never heard, who Jesus is, I wish they heard about, how much Jesus loves them, before it’s to late.
    I am very thankful, that honestly, no person knows the day and hour, when Jesus will return, so we can concentrate on sharing the Gospel, with others, who have never heard of who Jesus is and not on the day, when people say the end of the world, will be.

    And by the way, Pastor Mark, great plans for the weekend off.

  4. Jesus is coming soon but not on Harold Camping's time says:

    I had a dream a while ago. It was about the rapture. Now I never really knew whether the rapture was taking place before the tribulation or after for sure. I know Pastor Mark that you believe it will take place after the tribulation.
    Anyways, in this dream I was in the sky behind Jesus who was in the sky as well. He was looking away from me and was rapturing the saints from the earth. I was standing there in amazement because this was before the great tribulation. I said to Jesus,” You are really taking your people now?”
    He looked at me and said something like, “What did you think?” and then He went back to His business. The end of the dream.
    I am not a pretrib or post trib guy. I never really knew. But I had this dream and thought maybe I was supposed to tell people.
    Not trying to dis your theology Pastor Mark, just telling my dream. All post tribbers, don’t hate on me, it’s just a dream.
    And yes Harold camping is out to lunch.

  5. Jesiah says:

    You have to admit, the “The Bible guarantees it” stamp is pretty convincing.

  6. Sally says:

    I have heard so many theroy’s about the timing of the rapture too and I am leaving it all up to Father God. He has the final word. I am prepared to go through whatever He wants me to go through but if there is a such a thing as a first load going up, I am on it! And yes I believe He is coming soon too so continue to look up for our redemption is nigh!

  7. Evelyn Bennett says:

    To tell you the honest truth when I passed the billboard at Grant and Pembina I did not give it a second glance.

    In anticipation I have been waiting for the Lord to speak to me the past 2 months.

    I guess you could say I love to pick my battles first before being presented with new ways to scare the world into submission.

    I know the word of God is true. We have not had an impressive revival in many years in this province.

    That will change knowing we have a majority government.

    As for Family Radio I hope the prayers have been persistent as to restoring the finances he spent on those billboards.

    With this poor judgment call I hope that God is compassionate enough to touch those who are in dire need.

  8. Andre V. says:

    This guy is off his rocker! I can’t think of any likely motivation he would have had to spend millions on these crazy billboards – certainly not get rich quick….certainly not notoriety since if he is right, we’d all be dead and gone! It boils down to misguiding people and false prophecy perpetrated by the author of lies. I’ll be praying for those who have fallen victim to this nonsense.

  9. Steve says:

    Whether it was Martin Luther or St. Francis of Assisi who said it, we all still have ‘trees’ to ‘plant’. The world will end when God wills it, not because the third Hardy Boy thinks he figured it out. Enjoy your day off!

  10. Jusuf says:

    I thought the billboard ‘Judgement Day’ on Grant @ Pembina was just a paid advertisement to listen to the ‘Family Radio’ on that date and time, and nothing to do with the end time of that particular date.

    Sad reality is the followers who never bother to cross-check what the leader said, always become victims to satisfy the leader’s desires ………… (the bottom line as usual is ‘money’).

  11. Sandi says:

    Alright, seriously?! My first reaction to that seeing that big cheesy billboard sign as I was driving down Pembina? Traumatic Van Impe flashbacks…

  12. Jake says:

    Yeah plant a tree. Preferably in Slave Lake AB.

  13. Holly Stensrud says:

    Love this Pastor Mark! Love your church and broadcasts. I actually got a link on Facebook that there is a group of Atheists who believe the Rapture will occur on May 21 and they have set up a way for those being taken to have their pets looked after. If you pay a certain amount of money your pet will be looked after by a family who is left behind! Poor people really don’t know they’ve been “suckered” yet again!

  14. Jenel says:

    Thanks for this! Great post

  15. Harold's gone Camping says:

    Seriously, I can’t say I’ve seen much difference in Harold Camping’s followers and many Christians I’ve run into here in Winnipeg.
    There is so many people telling you, you have to be like this if you want to be one of the crowd or you have to act like this or you have to agree with this even though your conscience tells you not to. And many people out there fall for it because they want to be accepted and become part of the crowd.
    Jesus on the other hand went against the flow. If someone said something that was against te truth, Jesus would tell them straight. And that’s why so many hated Him because they couldn’t handle being told the truth.

    • PatriciaC says:

      Hi Harold…. I know what you mean. I would like to recommend a book for you to read. It is called “Kissing the Leppar” I got it, I think, through “It’s a New Day” But do not quote me on that. It could have been another show on television evangelical show that I got the book from.

      Anyways, it is finding Jesus even in the Unbeliever that you are to help. I would like to suggest you read it. I think you would enjoy just by what you wrote here.

  16. Chris says:

    Haha! All of this is like a funny gag. I know the world will end one day when God chooses it to. But if he had planned it to end on Saturday (or Sunday whatever)he probably would’ve added a definitive footnote in The Bible.

    “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone.” (Matt 24:36)

  17. Christina says:

    Mark, your blog is great, always is!! Love attending Church of the Rock. It is so clear in the Bible that GOD only knows the endtime.

    So much work remains to be done to preach the gospel. You are very inspiring and a great teacher and preacher!!

  18. Sally says:

    Well the dreaded day has arrived and we are still here!.. Praise God! For every day here is a good day to spend more time to sharing the Love of God with someone..My heart goes out to all those deceived peoole who were led astray. May they seek the truth for themselves in the Word of God!

  19. Yes,& there’s people,languages,& their dialects we haven’t even begun to communicate with yet. Perhaps haven’t found yet???????

  20. PatriciaC says:

    Pastor Mark, I am so happy to hear that your Church chose to do that with the money you were offered for the film company to use your parking lot. That is true Christianity. True love of God the Father, the Son and Holy Ghost.

    With all the movies of doom and gloom, the scientists, and WACO Texus and the Y2K events. People that are in our midst that are non-believers in Canada are harder to bring up the word to…. Don’t you think? We just had a group of people asking and pushing us to not believe, but finding themselves frustrated and angry at us that we found our God to be so wonderful. They said why did he spare you and not the other person? We told them that God is a wonderful God. Because you can wait to your last waking hour to ask for forgiveness. Ask him to accept you and he will. That is awesomeness of God. And he is not our God. He is everyones God. And he is waiting to love you the way he shows his love to me each day.

    And just because I am a Christian does not mean God will keep me from suffering, but he does have a way of making the worst things become useful in our lives for his greater good and to bring out our purpose here on Earth. I am to be his hands, his feet and his heart while I am here. Each day I pray for what I am and ask him to continue work on who he wants me to be and to become.

    I know he is not finished with me yet, and for that I am thankful.

  21. Paul says:

    great blog pastor mark if you ever retire i don’t know what the earth will without you! but I Know that god will plant a tree with you!

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