An alert reader noticed that in yesterday's post asking for prayer for the regular listeners to Family Radio's Harold Camping (or is it the other way 'round?), I had neglected to specify that his listeners need to repent.
Those who have broken fellowship with the church do need to repent. Forsaking the fellowship of the brethren and departing from the rule of the elders (without a proper justification, of course) is essentially the sin of schism. It's a serious sin and repentance is needed.
I hope no one took my post as suggesting that those who departed from us should be welcomed back as though nothing had happened. No, they need to repent of their sin. Of course, how this is handled will be the domain of the various churches to which they are restored.
Nevertheless, we hope that churches will be prepared to deal with these folks who have been, for lack of a better word, religiously abused by Mr. Camping. They have been assured by him that the second coming is May 21, 2011. If the Lord tarries, they will hopefully see this and realize that they have been led astray.
My reader thinks that churches will be so eager to have the people back that they will forget to insist on repentance. I hope my reader is mistaken, but apparently something like that happened after September, 1994, when Mr. Camping's prior prediction failed.
In any event, this post is designed both to encourage any Family Radio listeners who are reading to be prepared to repent, as well as to encourage churches to exhort these folks in their communities (many of whom we know, since they were formerly in our churches) to repent. Seize the day, May 22, 2011, to reach out to these people and bring them back to the fold.