RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - You've likely heard the controversy that the end of days is near. California religious broadcaster Harold Camping says based on calculations from the Bible, the rapture is May 21.
While Camping has a number of devoted followers, the prediction has a lot of people rolling their eyes.
Judgement day, the rapture, the Apocalypse, most people would agree that there are a lot of terms for the end of the world. One thing many people aren't agreeing on right now is whether that time will be tomorrow.
"May 21st, 2011 is the day of judgement."
That's the message from Harold Camping seen on billboards across the nation, including along Interstate 95. The 89-year-old family radio host believes the rapture is coming Saturday evening.
"The rapture really is the picture of the people who are alive being caught up in the air and going to meet judgement day," said Pastor Lee Gallman.
Gallman is the longtime pastor of Ginter Park Baptist Church. He says Camping and his followers are not the first to use a literal interpretation of the Bible to calculate numbers and dates.
While he disagrees with the prediction, he believes Camping's motives are sincere, and everyone is entitled to their own beliefs.
"We don't really have a picture of the end time, and you can interpret it all kinds of different ways," Gallman said. "I think it's a mistake to not take people like that seriously; they are serious about their faith; they are earnest Christian people."
Mot everyone agrees. The church is actually hosting a big yard sale tomorrow in order to raise money for the youth group to attend a North Carolina Summer Camp. Organizers used the headlines in a funny way to promote what they are calling a "Pre-Rapture" sale.
Casey Rodriguez, who's helping with the yard sale says, "Honestly, I think it's rather ridiculous, but this is kind of our way as a church of coming together and doing something for the community while this whole thing is going on tomorrow. It's kind of a celebration of hey, let's do something fun instead of thinking about this whole rapture."
Whatever you believe, here's something to keep in mind, Camping, made a similar prediction in 1994, but he insists that this time around, his calculations are correct.