Chris McCann and eBible Fellowship Announce New End Time Date – Why You Should Care
*UPDATE* Many members of eBible Fellowship, the group in question, have weighed in with their thoughts in the comment section below. Scroll down to add your thoughts*
Way back in 2010, I started reporting on the impending judgement day of May 21, 2011 as reported by the late Harold Camping and promoted by the Family Radio network. By way of brief re-cap for those unfamiliar, Camping was the host of a radio show called Open Forum. He believed that he had found evidence in scripture that Judgement Day would take place on May 21, 2011. He and his followers launched a huge campaign that plastered billboards and banners all across the world urging people to repent. They touted this date as a sure thing, and refused to allow for ANY possibility that they could be wrong.
And a LOT of people bought it. The May 2011 rapture/judgement day/end of the world as we know it theory became somewhat of a cultural phenomenon. People all across the globe were selling their possessions and donating large sums of cashola to Family Radio to reportedly help fund the billboard campaign. And again, I stress… in the minds of the Family Radio faithful, there was NO DOUBT that the world would end on that day. END.
One of the affiliates of the Family Radio campaign was http://www.rgsw.org.uk/, headed by a fella named Chris McCann. Chris seemed to be the PR guy for the May 21, 2011 committee, and made several public appearances, including one on Coast to Coast Am during which he refused to accept an invite to be on the program on May 22, 2011… because he was so certain that the world would have ended by then.
In my reporting leading up to that day, I found myself in the polite albeit adamant crosshairs of many Camping followers. They provided with great specificity details about how this last day was going to unfold. One commenter wrote:
On May 21 starting somewhere on the earth, most likely near New Zealand (International Date Line) there will be a great earthquake which will cause the graves to open and the bodies of the saved will rise to meet Christ in the air and be changed and the bodies or what ever is left of the unsaved will lie on the ground as a shameful site in the eyes of God. This event will follow the sunset moving west. So starting lets say in New Zealand, then an hour later it will happen in the next time zone and so on. And it will all happen in a 24 hour period to cover May 21 all over the world. So we in the USA will see the rapture in New Zealand and then the next place and so on.
Obviously, we’re all still here. So, why am I re-introducing this topic?
Over the past couple of days, I’ve noticed in my site analytics a dramatic increase in Google keyword searches for “Chris McCann”, “Judgement Day”, “eBible Fellowship” and the like. I knew right away that something must be going on.
What I discovered is that Chris McCann had made another appearance on Coast to Coast Am, this time on March 8, 2015. I downloaded the show and gave it a listen. Sure enough, McCann is back in the date setting business. Now he is saying that the end of days will land on October 7, 2015.
Here’s how it works. McCann claims that he and Harold Camping were NOT incorrect about May 21, 2011. He says that truly was judgement day. However, it was a “spiritual judgement” rather than the BIG ONE that they had expected. To fully understand this, we need to go back even further.
Prior to the May 21, 2011 hooplah, Harold Camping had declared in his sermons that the “church age” had ended in 1988 and the Great Tribulation began. He urged everyone to depart from their church fellowships lest they be in condemnation. In 1992, Camping published a book called 1994?, predicting the world would end that year… which he later brushed aside by implying that the question mark got him off the hook, and he also put a smidge of blame on God for not releasing the “further information” Camping NOW had access to, prior to 1994?’s release.
Ok, so the 1994 prediction was a dud but nevertheless, the church age FOR SURE ended and the Great Tribulation for sure began in 1988. Camping continued to work his calculations and came up with a FOR SURE Judgement Day on May 21, 2011. On this day, Christ would FOR SURE return and the world was FOR SURE going to end.
Believers and scoffers anxiously awaited the appointed date, and it came and went without so much as a whimper. Camping addressed the media to explain that what had happened was merely a “silent judgement”, and that the real end was to occur on October 21, 2011. Many if not most of Camping’s followers had jumped ship by this point, and I think it is safe to say that not many were holding their breath. Meanwhile, Camping suffered from a stroke that impaired his ability to speak publicly, and soon he retired from the Open Forum, and of course, we’re all still here. Camping passed away in December of 2013.
Now then, according to McCann in his recent interview with George Noory, May 21, 2011 was indeed a silent judgement. On that day, God’s “salvation program” ended. That’s right, McCann is claiming that after May 21, 2011 there is no more salvation. If you weren’t saved prior to that date, you’re out of luck. It’s sort of unclear what he believes has been happening since that time but suffice to say, according to his calculations which he claims to have sourced 100% from the Bible, the world will be NO MORE in October of this year. The math is super confusing, but McCann has created this helpful chart to explain it in detail.
Caveat: This time they are being a wee bit more careful with their language. Seems that they’ve learned from the embarrassment of the May 21 debacle, and now McCann adds disclaimers and qualifiers to his end time prediction. He says October will “likely” be the end. When Noory pushed him about why he was so certain about May 21, 2011 but being a bit more conservative about this date, McCann replied that the reason May 21, 2011 was such a big deal was because salvation was still open. So they could be forgiven for adding an exclamation point to their bold proclamations. They were getting souls saved! McCann even implies that this could have been part of God’s plan all along. Let the people THINK that the world was going to end in 2011 so that they’d hurry up and get saved. Sneaky.
One thing that McCann did not mention in his interview with Noory is that back in 2012… he thought the world was going to end that March. It just so happened that I checked out eBible Fellowship earlier that year to see what they were up to, and I was greeted with a new attempt at date setting. Fortunately, I grabbed a screenshot, as this prediction seems to have been scrubbed from the books.
This is, my friends, is a textbook case of Cognitive Dissonance. (Leon Festinger addressed this in the book When Prophecy Fails: A Social and Psychological Study of A Modern Group that Predicted the Destruction of the World). It happens when the human mind is filled with the uncomfortable feeling of holding two opposing viewpoints at the same time. The only way to ease the uncomfortable feeling is to either change your previous viewpoint (I guess I was wrong), to justify your previous thought by tweaking it (ok I wasn’t wrong, but I didn’t fully understand), or adding new beliefs to the previously mentioned initial belief (I wasn’t wrong, but something has happened in the interim to adjust what was previously the truth). In other words, the cognitive dissonance that arises from a failed prophecy or prediction can be so strong that the believer in said prophecy or prediction is willing to go to unreasonable lengths to justify their incorrect notion and often to reposition it for a later time via “new revelations”.
So, why should we care about all of this? Isn’t this just a cult like any other cult that has ever made a prediction about the end of days?
As I listened to McCann discussing this new end times date, I had to wonder.. what’s the point? If they believe that salvation has ended, then why bother going on radio shows? Why bother having a website and a Twitter feed and a Facebook? Why bother planning mission trips to Africa in the coming months? Why?
McCann claims that this is an effort to inform the saved that the end is coming. To give them comfort. To get the word out. Part of this effort involves sending eBible Fellowship members all over the world to proclaim that the end is coming on October 7. They’re also printing tracts that are being passed out en masse just to let everyone know that salvation is over and that the spiritual judgement of the unsaved had already begun.
To grab as much attention as possible, those volunteers and missionaries who are handing out the tracts are decked out in bright yellow t-shirts and often carrying picket signs proclaiming “Salvation ended on May 21, 2011!” This is the message that eBible Fellowship is sending across the world. Give up. There is no more hope for you.
There is so much missing here that the list feels endless. What about the Mark of the Beast? What about the two witnesses in Revelation 11:3? What about the Antichrist? There is so much that is unaccounted for in this prediction that it cannot be taken seriously. Which probably seems obvious to you, dear reader, but what about those who have less Biblical knowledge? What about those in remote parts of Africa and India and South America who are being told by eBible fellowship that if they have not yet accepted Jesus, that it is too late?
My purpose for writing this article is to make people aware that this is just more false prophecy from a group that is unwilling to admit that they were misled. If you know anyone who is vulnerable to believing these types of predictions, please make them aware of the history of eBible Fellowship and Harold Camping.
Most of all, I strongly urge you to pray for Chris McCann and those who follow his teachings. Pray that they would be broken from this terrible cycle of date setting and that they would repent for all of the damage they’ve done.
Salvation is not over. If you do not know Jesus, you can invite Him into your life right now. Right now. There is nothing scriptural about the “end of a salvation program.” What scripture DOES say is:
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me.” Revelation 3:20
“Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” John 1:12
“That if you confess with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Romans 10:9