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But what about May 22nd?

May 9, 2011

I caught this shocking/fascinating story on NPR while in the car over the weekend.  Apparently, there are some (non-mainstream) Christians who are convinced the Bible states that Judgment Day is not only coming, it’s coming this month:  May 21st (about 6 p.m.).  (Click here if you want to see why they believe this… but be warned that someone decided since the site only has to be up for another 2 weeks or so, no sense in making it look nice and work well.)

This isn’t the first time someone has claimed the end was in site, but this is the first time I’ve heard the financial aspects touched on in the media.

Joel says they’re spending the last of their savings. They don’t see a need for one more dollar.

“You know, you think about retirement and stuff like that,” he says. “What’s the point of having some money just sitting there?”

“We budgeted everything so that, on May 21, we won’t have anything left,” Adrienne adds.

[…] There is no plan B.

I don’t think there has ever been anything in my life I’ve believed in so much that I’d be willing to not even consider what would happen if it didn’t work out.  That kind of faith (is that even the right word?) makes my eyes go wide for all sorts of reasons.

What are they spending every last dollar on anyway?  If Judgment Day is coming, why would you even create a budget that goes to zero?  Why wouldn’t you just abandon keeping track of your finances and spread the word?  I suppose they could be spending on charity and spreading the word, but it still struck me as odd.

What will happen if they wake up on May 22nd and realize someone “miscalculated”, as this same guy apparently did in 1994?

One man states that this revelation has allowed him to stop worrying about things that the rest of the world has to worry about.

“I no longer think about 401(k)s and retirement,” he says. “I’m not stressed about losing my job, which a lot of other people are in this economy. I’m just a lot less stressed, and in a way I’m more carefree.”

Sure, he’s a lot less stressed today…  but… Wow, right?

Anyway, nothing really to see here, I just found this interesting (though admittedly crazy).

11 Comments leave one →
  1. May 9, 2011 6:39 am

    I had the same reaction. I also wonder what will happen to these people once (I assume) the world doesn’t end. Who is going to bail them out when they have no savings, health care, or jobs and have damaged their relationships with their families? What will be the impact on their children? “If I’m here on May 22, and I wake up, I’m going to be in hell,” actually might not be far from the truth – it will at least be a very difficult situation. I would like to see a follow up story.

  2. May 9, 2011 8:33 am

    This is really scary to me. These types of end-day predictions have happened a number of times and the people who stopped planning beyond the day of judgment were left hurting, even to starve in 1844 (they didn’t plant their fields, and had nothing to eat all winter).

    The Bible has a lot of commentary about saving for the future and being responsible with resources, and there’s even a line in there about how no man shall know the day or the hour of the Lord’s return. It boggles my mind that people can ignore all that stuff.

    I hope those people haven’t pre-emptively quit their jobs – I hope that even if they don’t have savings, they have some money coming in after the 21st.

  3. May 9, 2011 10:52 am

    I’ve been hearing about May 21 here and there for ages now, and I’ve often wondered how the people who really, truly, genuinely believe that judgment day will occur then live their day to day lives. Do they do what this family has done and buy into it so completely that they leave absolutely no room for margin of error? Do they believe, but behave otherwise?

    And what do these people do once their so-called judgment day comes and goes and the world is still turning? Do they doubt their faith? Do they flounder? Do they choose to end their own lives because they’ve put literally every egg in a single basket and have nothing left?

    It’s seriously fascinating.

  4. May 9, 2011 11:25 am

    I’ve heard a few things about May 21 being the end of the world but haven’t really looked into the ideas behind it. The quotes you posted from people spending every last cent and not worrying about finances past that day blows. my. mind. I too wonder what the heck they are going to do when May 22 rolls around and the rest of the world is going about their business as usual. Crazy!!

  5. Karen permalink
    May 9, 2011 6:54 pm

    I wanna know if NPR will contact them on My 22? (Too tired to click the link, sorry)

  6. May 9, 2011 11:40 pm

    Yikes. I’m a Christian, and I believe that it’s possible that there will be a judgement day in my lifetime…but I certainly don’t think I can predict when it will be! Aside from the points Little Miss Moneybags already made, it seems like they’re putting a lot of trust in potentially imperfect translations and ONE GUY’s calculations…

    I can’t help but feel for the families of these people…I mean, I guess if judgement day really does come on May 21, then all will be okay for them…but if not…at least one of the couples interviewed have quit their jobs to spend time with their young child, and have another one on the way, but no savings after May21. I hope there is someone available to help their kids if/when May 22 rolls around.

    Wow…this is just fascinating, in a not so great way!

    • May 10, 2011 9:17 am

      Echoing the comment by ILR. I too am a Christian but according to what I’ve read in the bible it says that no man will know the day or hour not even Jesus. I know judgement day will come but I don’t believe we can predict it by any means. The bible says Jesus will come like a thief in the night and I’ve never seen someone know when a thief will make a stop at their house.

      • SP permalink*
        May 10, 2011 9:20 am

        Yes, I definitely agree. I am not under the impression that most (or even very many) Christians believe this idea. I just found the whole thing shocking

  7. May 10, 2011 10:55 am

    …that is just absolutely shocking

  8. May 12, 2011 2:29 pm

    There is always someone who comes up with a date and then gets a bunch of really sad and easily lead folk to follow them. I guess this guy is the latest. I remember one group some years back in Korea and I sure there are others. But like Little Lamb said “no one knows” just show you some christians don’t believe their own Bible.

  9. May 12, 2011 6:18 pm

    There are a bunch of billboards in my area proclaiming this “Judgment Day” — it’s creepy. And it’s insane to think these people are that sure about it that they’re spending all of their money before then.

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