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Is Harold Camping a Christian Stereotype?

Harold Camping in 2008

Image via Wikipedia

On Saturday (one day after Harold Camping’s predicted Day of Judgment) one of my Facebook friends posted the following status update:

The world didn’t end. I never thought it would. Remember not to stereotype Christians for this. Most of us are sane and normal.

On the one hand many Christians ostensibly want to distance themselves from the doomsday speak of Harold Camping because it is pure bat-shit lunacy, yet their faith presupposes that Judgment Day will be upon us some day, so why is it considered insane for someone to believe that said Judgment Day is imminent? Is it just because he pin-pointed Judgment Day it to a specific date that Harold Camping is a misrepresentation of the Christian faith? Is it truly accurate on this basis to categorize Harold Camping as a negative stereotype for believers? A survey conducted by Pew Research last year clearly suggests otherwise.

In its survey, Pew found that by the year 2050, 41% of Americans believe that Jesus Christ definitely (23%) or probably (18%) will have returned to earth. (Not 41% of Christians; 41% of all Americans!) Amongst white Evangelical Christians that 41% figure jumps to 58%, and lest Catholics be tempted to boast of their rational immunity to such fundamentalist views, you can see below that nearly one out of three Catholics shares the same view as their Evangelical counterparts.

What Camping predicted would happen on 5/21/2011 most Protestant Christians believe will happen sometime by the year 2050. So no, Harold Camping is not a negative stereotype of Christianity. To the contrary he’s a prototype for its mainstream faith-based and revelation-derived truth claims.

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. The End is Coming! The End is Coming!! | garyvoysey.ca - May 24, 2011

    […] Is Harold Camping a Christian Stereotype? (enchantednaturalist.com) […]

  2. Evangelical Crazy Guy: “Oops. World’s Ending in October. Really.” | One Blue Stocking - May 26, 2011

    […] Is Harold Camping a Christian Stereotype? (enchantednaturalist.com) […]

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