A moment ago, someone shared this story from the San Francisco Chronicle. Here's the key excerpt:
By Camping's understanding, the Bible was dictated by God and every word and number carries a spiritual significance. He noticed that particular numbers appeared in the Bible at the same time particular themes are discussed.The number 5, Camping concluded, equals "atonement." Ten is "completeness." Seventeen means "heaven." Camping patiently explained how he reached his conclusion for May 21, 2011. "Christ hung on the cross April 1, 33 A.D.," he began. "Now go to April 1 of 2011 A.D., and that's 1,978 years."Camping then multiplied 1,978 by 365.2422 days - the number of days in each solar year, not to be confused with a calendar year. Next, Camping noted that April 1 to May 21 encompasses 51 days. Add 51 to the sum of previous multiplication total, and it equals 722,500.Camping realized that (5 x 10 x 17) x (5 x 10 x 17) = 722,500.Or put into words: (Atonement x Completeness x Heaven), squared."Five times 10 times 17 is telling you a story," Camping said. "It's the story from the time Christ made payment for your sins until you're completely saved."I tell ya, I just about fell off my chair when I realized that," Camping said.
Now, I've found that if you count the number of raisins in two scoops of Kellog's Raisin Bran, that figure corresponds to the number of times religious zealots have been wrong about their end of the world predictions, despite their best efforts to substitute faith for reason and science and thus accelerate that end.
Here's a satirical talk I gave on the subject of the Left Behind series many years ago in Boston. Something about this rapture math article made me think of it. Enjoy.