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April 25th, 2011
01:41 PM ET

Billboard battle over Judgment Day

(CNN) - We've told you about the caravan of RVs touring the country to warn people about the end of the world, which they say will begin on May 21.

Now, the American Atheists are mounting a counter-campaign.

The group has posted a billboard in Oakland, California - home to Family Radio, which is spreading the "awesome news" that Judgment Day is near - declaring that such messages are "nonsense."

"The Rapture: You KNOW it's Nonsense," the American Atheists' billboard announces. "2000 Years of 'Any Day Now.'"

The billboard - which cost $27,000, according to the group's website - invites passers-by to "Learn the Truth" at the group's "Rapture Party" on May 21-22 in Oakland.

The atheists also plan to hold parties in Houston, Texas, and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the website says.

"This is how religion hurts people, one of the many ways religion hurts people," American Atheists President David Silverman told CNN Oakland, California, affiliate KGO.

"Our hope is that those who are not suckered in will learn from the people who are."

Read the full story at KGO's website.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Atheism • Death • End times

soundoff (2,436 Responses)
  1. Thomas

    I don't believe you either!

    April 25, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
  2. Argle Bargle

    No man knows the day nor the hour. Funny how that always seems to be conveniently forgotten.

    With luck, they'll all drink the kool-aid and quit bothering everyone else.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  3. thefurious

    The group that is posting all the end of the world rapture propaganda are completely taking the Scripture out of context, because the Scripture says that no one will know when Christ will return.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  4. Elaine

    No one knows the day or time or year of Jesus's return. This is stated in the Bible. However, when that time comes, those of us who believe in God, and Jesus Christ, who choose to love one another and try to be a better person,if there is a GOD we have nothing to lose. For those who don't believe you have everything to lose. Very very sad.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
  5. Observer

    Why couldn't God have scheduled this before Tax Day?

    April 25, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • Lettuce Prey

      No! Absolutely not! I'm expecting my refund any day now, and I want to spend it before the world ends! 😉

      April 25, 2011 at 6:01 pm |
    • Watersisland

      Uhm.....TAX day? I hate to tell you this but you missed it by a week. "Tax day" was the 18th this year. They even extended it for three days.....and you STILL missed it? You'd BETTER start praying!

      April 25, 2011 at 10:37 pm |
  6. noname

    Jesus even said himself that the day and hour is unknown and that He will come like a thief in the night. Anyone that claims to know the exact day is nothing more than a wolf in sheep's clothing. We are mere mortals with a finite mind; how can we possibly know and understand God with His omnipotence and infinite mind?

    April 25, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  7. Harleygirlxx91

    It is to bad that athiests are so ignorant when it comes to true religion. Somewhere in their lives they didn't get what they wanted, or had a bad childhood, so now in their world God deosn't exist. Well God lives in mine, and I don't have to show my ignorance over having a party. Guess what, after your dead, and you are standing in front of the Living God, you will sure be wishing you paid attention to the people who Have done thier research. Who KNEW the right answers. So help all of you people who don't believe in God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit!

    April 25, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • Observer

      A recent poll/test showed that the average atheist and average agnostic know more about the Bible than the average Christian and have higher educations.

      So who is going to be right? The religious leader or the atheists on May 22?

      April 25, 2011 at 5:25 pm |
    • Cedar Rapids

      ' Somewhere in their lives they didn't get what they wanted, or had a bad childhood, so now in their world God deosn't exist'
      you know everyone is actually born atheist right? if you believe its usually because what you were brought up to believe. Dont blame us for regaining our senses.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:42 pm |
    • Lettuce Prey

      With billions of people in the world believing ferverntly in so many different versions of god, isn't "true religion" an oxymoron? I'm glad Christianity works for you, but it is prideful to unequivically state that you are right and those who disagree are wrong. Isn't pride one of your seven deadlies?

      April 25, 2011 at 6:00 pm |
  8. Brickell Princess

    All religions are absolute nonsense.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
  9. samurai_lincoln

    Both incredible works of fiction eh?

    April 25, 2011 at 5:18 pm |
  10. Jim

    People can't die being VIRGIN...

    April 25, 2011 at 5:17 pm |
    • Get over here!!!

      Are you 13?

      April 25, 2011 at 5:19 pm |
    • Ed

      the changed that rule according the previews for scream 4

      April 25, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
  11. dszx

    Is that seriously what you think scientists are doing? Searching for the truth to guide us all to a better, safer way of life? I'll tell you what I tell my grad students-never forget to check your references. Do you remember the study about autism and vaccines, or how about the WHO receiving money from pharm companies to push the 'normal' blood pressure standard down? Thank God we have the scientist and the atheists looking out for us (irony intended). Carl Marx, anyone?

    April 25, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • malthust

      So you are an academic– Do you tell your grad students that the autism link is absolute boloney? What about the correct spelling of "Karl Marx?"

      April 25, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      I know that pharma helped to push the normal LDL levels down so they could sell more drugs. The facts are true, big business try's to influence our thinking all the time. Science really only shows you the results of research and testing. After that Science makes "educated" and "tested" considerations regarding all kinds of subjects. It is not until Science is in the drivers seat with overwelming evidence to they start to claim things like Evolution as a "fact". Stick to reading the publications and summarys and you will not be misled. Science is the rule we must measure everthing against after that you can add all the religious mumbo jumbo you want.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:46 pm |
  12. Joe

    Imagine no religion ...

    April 25, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
    • pProf

      Imagine no rain, no crops, no food, no earth, no sun, no anything. That's what there would be if there were no God. If ever there was a time when there was nothing, then there would always be nothing.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:23 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      @ PProf – What if your God is actually a Goddess and provides for us through Air, Water, Tree's, animals, minerals etc? What if that is all there is to your "God"? No heaven, No hell just our brotherhood of man to make a choice for the future of all of us? Would that scare you? Why do you need a GOD/GODDESS? Does it matter if He/she is male or female? Do all Jewish people go to heaven even though they don't believe Jesus is the son of GOD? Why was woman sent to "serve" man instead of herself? After Adam and Eve had Cain and Able.......where did all the other kids come from? Incest? Your holy book has WAY too many holes in it.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:35 pm |
    • Cedar Rapids

      'Imagine no rain, no crops, no food, no earth, no sun, no anything. That's what there would be if there were no God'
      I dont know, we seem have all that here with no god.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:40 pm |
    • jayman419

      Even after all this time
      The sun never says to the earth,
      "You owe Me."

      Look what happens with
      A love like that,
      It lights the Whole Sky.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:41 pm |
    • Saved

      ...which means no salvation! Even those who deny Christ will have to answer to Him on judgment day. Posting ridiculous comments, behind the anonomity of a computer and feeling powerful, and warm and fuzzy about them, does not save you! You have to atone for sins to be forgiven. Christ died so that all who accept this fact are forgiven.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:43 pm |
  13. Lettuce Prey

    I just think the Family Radio people are ever so civilized for scheduling their rapture on a Saturday. I can enjoy it from the comfort of my own home. And the plus for them is that May 22 is a Sunday, and if their rapture doesn't happen, they'll have a whole day to spend at church praying for further enlightenment, and can wait until Monday May 23 to announce their new date.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
    • crucified

      I would of thought a 60 year old would have more to do than hang out in the religious blog section of CNN. Why do you and the other Athiest do this? Why so angry? why do 5 people keep changing their name to make it look like their are more of you? You religion of atheism is full of lies, anger, and bitterness.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • Lettuce Prey

      @crucified, I'm not even a little bit angry, but it sounds like you are. Lighten up. I'm not slamming your beliefs, just putting something out there as food for thought. Feel free to ignore me.

      And by the way, the reason I read articles within the Belief category is purely intellectual curiosity. More than 90% of the world's population believe in god, and I find their thoughts and feelings on the subject to be interesting. Even yours.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
  14. cyberCMDR

    It's funny how these groups who try to promote "the word of God" through these stunts wind up doing far more harm than good to their favorite causes. Case in point, the Westboro Baptist Church has done more to help raise awareness about gay rights than any advocacy group. This "end of the world" church will be justly ridiculed after the deadline (or rapture-line) passes, and make more people question this kind of fundamentalist idiocy. The same should be true for those "young Earthers" who believe the universe is less than 10,000 years old, despite the mountains of easily verifiable data that proves otherwise.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  15. BP

    Oil is the Antichrist — the evil of our times. Oil is death. Fossil fuels are the essence of life that died billions of years ago, and we're sucking that death out of the ground to fuel our oil-burning machines. Cancer. Climate change. No more blue skies. But it won't happen in one day. The world will end with a whimper, not a bang. The first electric cars were available to consumers in the mid-1800s, and the first hybrid was made in 1900. Automakers have had over a century to perfect the electric vehicle and keep our skies clean. But the oil companies make sure that doesn't happen. Dirty greedy crooks. May they one day become fossil fuel and be burned in the dirty machines.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      While your factual points are not only true but important to society they have little bearing on this thread.....btw Hate much?

      April 25, 2011 at 5:38 pm |
  16. Pastafaria

    I feel sorry for the inhabitants of whatever towns the caravans happen to be present in on May 21. Most likely these idiots failed to account for any financial obligations that will come due "post rapture," I'm guessing anyone whose credit card,. gas card, etc., monthly payment is due shortly after the 21st will be sticking around for awhile. Any checks written to unsuspecting local merchants during the week of May 16-20 might bounce high enough to reach heaven, but that will be it.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:13 pm |
  17. dude

    Burning Man MN: I was going to make the same offer. If the world is coming to an end on 5/21, let them go out and borrow all the $ they can and spend it... they won't need to pay it back... or will they? They're idiots and cowards!

    April 25, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
  18. safety girl

    So glad that I got my Bob Seger tickets for the 19th...

    April 25, 2011 at 5:12 pm |
    • Matt S.

      indeed...enjoy the show.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:28 pm |
  19. Atheist

    hey you Rapture kooks:

    I have a question, you write:

    4990 + 2011 = 7001

    Note: When counting from an Old Testament date to a New Testament date, always subtract one year because there is no year zero, resulting in:

    4990 + 2011 – 1 = 7000 years exactly.

    But instead of 2011 you put in 2010, wouldn't that mean you folks missed the rapture? And if you're gone, why have a long-term gift?

    http://www.ebiblefellowship.com/donate/

    BECAUSE IT'S A SCAM!

    April 25, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • Get over here!!!

      Hey you Atheist Kook. We don't actually believe this minister kook!!

      April 25, 2011 at 5:15 pm |
  20. Mark

    So, what are you all going to do when you wake up on May 22nd on Earth? Admit that this was all baloney and convert to Atheism? Nope, you'll do what you do every time; pick another date. And the ministers will continue to get rich off of this.

    Better you than me.

    April 25, 2011 at 5:11 pm |
    • Jesus

      you are so right.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:14 pm |
    • Get over here!!!

      I think you are 891 comments to late on this. Someone already beat you to this comment.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:16 pm |
    • Ed

      very few of us think may 21 is the day only that very small group of people. But thanks for proven you think we're al the same

      April 25, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • ket

      atheism is the dumbest religion of all....

      both these parties need to find something better to do. 27 thousand dollars? use it to feed a family or something.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:21 pm |
    • Dave

      Only Evangelicals and Fundamentalists believe in the rapture. The rest of the religious world laughs at them.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:22 pm |
    • SurelyUjest

      @Dave evidently you haven't noticed who speaks for Chrisitans in America. The fundamentalists and Evangelicals ARE the voice of Christianity in America like it or not. The more rational or moderate believers have been shouted down along side atheists, agnostics and the rest.

      April 25, 2011 at 5:27 pm |
    • PraiseTheLard

      ket wrote: " 27 thousand dollars? use it to feed a family or something. "

      How about trying to educate self-delusional people?

      How much money has been spent in the promotion of these doomsday scenarios?

      April 25, 2011 at 5:29 pm |
    • domrodz

      They are both wrong, because everybody knows the end of the world is December 21, 2012. The Mayans said so!!! LOL

      April 25, 2011 at 5:33 pm |
    • Dave

      Thats unfortunately true and very sad. I can't stand Evangelicals and Fund.. They give all of us a really bad name and make us all look like a bunch of wackos...

      April 25, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.