Have you heard? We only have until Saturday to live. That's according to a group called Family Radio. They believe that the Bible warns us that the world will end on May 21st, 2011. Many think they are crazy, but they are dead serious.
"May 21st 2011, God will judge you!" one man yelled at South Carolina's Capitol. The Family Radio followers take their message very seriously, for passerbys, not so much. "It's the end of the world, man," laughed Bill Klasinski.
You can chuckle, but for these people...Saturday, May 21st, will be anything but funny.
"To let people know that on May 21st, 2011 God is going to bring judgement on this world," said Gary Sutton. Sutton and the rest of these followers, marched on the capitol of South Carolina to warn the people. They caravan in decked out cars and put up billboards spreading their beliefs. They think that in 1988, God released secret information through the Bible...cracked the code, if you will. "Throughout the Bible we can find the biblical time line of history," said Sutton.
Here's how they figure it:
In Genesis, God told Noah that he had seven days until the flood. Using the language of the book of 2nd Peter, one day is 1,000 years. They believe that since the Flood happened in 4990 B.C., the day of rapture will be 7,000 years after, 2011, A.D. Through some more complicated math, they came up with the date...May 21st. "We didn't know, no one knew, but the Bible has been opened up and we know," said follower Oscar Moultrie.
"I wouldn't use the word hocus pocus, but I don't agree with them," said Reverend Dan Brown, who is the pastor of Trinity on the Hill United Methodist Church, in Augusta. He says he reads scripture very differently. "He says we're not to know the times of the seasons, that not even the angels in Heaven or the Son knows...but the Father only," explained Brown.
The Family Radio members disagree. "Our jobs as Christians are to warn the world, sound the trumpet, sound the alarm, warn the people," said Sutton.
They will do anything to get their message out...know matter what it costs them.
Jillian Benfield, reporting: "Have they given up everything to do this?"
"Most have them have," said Sutton.
Most of the followers don't have jobs and spending time spreading the word puts a strain on their relationships. "My family thinks I'm crazy, that's about it," said one member. "This word is the sword that has separated me from my family," said Sutton.
So, is it worth it?
We asked the people the group preached to what they think of May 21st, 2011.
"I think they're misguided," said Eric McClellan.
"I did not believe I was important enough for the world to end when I turn 60," joked Klasinski.
"We're going to be here, I'll be working, you too," said John Kaiggans.
"I don't believe that's going to happen, but we'll see on May 22nd, won't we?" said another passerby.
That's the question we wanted to ask Gary Sutton and the others...
Jillian Benfield: "What if May 22nd rolls around and nothing happens?"
"We don't even think about that," said Moultrie.
I asked Gary if I could call him on May 22nd. "I haven't made any plans past May 21st, because I believe in the Bible. I believe it's going to happen because it's the word of God," answered Sutton.
This group believes that Judgement Day will be on Saturday, May 21st, then there will be 5 months of hell on Earth before the world ends on October 21st, 2011. The founder of Family Radio, Harold Camping, predicted once before that the world would end in 1994.