In preparation, the sect (or cult, if you’re feeling a bit less kind) has hundreds of trailers of food and water on their 44-acre compound.
The leader and founder, Yisrayl “Buffalo Bill” Hawkins, previously announced Armageddon would occur on September 12, 2006.
(I notice there’s a pseudo-pattern: the months are multiples of three, the dates are both the 12th and multiples of three…)
“You know, the savior himself, told me not to worry about that. He said, ‘They’re going to hate you above all people on the face of the earth,’” Hawkins explained when asked about the incorrect prophecy. In Kenya, hundreds of his followers hid in bomb shelters wearing gas masks on the predicted day.
They went home when there was no war.
Former followers claim he controls people through fear.
Hawkins has also been charged with bigamy.
According to the group’s official site, “The House of Yahweh is known for teaching and practicing the Laws as written in your bible.”
I’ve heard of this group before. I’ve had their flyers and pamphlets stuck under my windshield wipers a few times. It sounds crazy. And I’m not saying that just because they’re a “cult.”
(By the way a cult is defined as “a religion or sect considered to be false, unorthodox, or extremist, with members often living outside of conventional society under the direction of a charismatic leader.” A sect is defined as “a group regarded as heretical or as deviating from a generally accepted religious tradition.” For all intents and purposes, they mean the same thing.)
I can see someone studying geopolitics and weapons sales and military buildups and troop movements and diplomatic situations and saying, “Hey, if this situation and that situation continue or move in this direction, there’s a good chance a war will break out around this time.”
I mean, that makes sense, right?
But prophecies? Maybe I’m too skeptical, but I don’t buy it. I don’t believe that a higher power is going to entrust this guy (or any single person, for that matter) with saving humanity.
From what I can tell, the group/sect/cult interprets passages in the Bible to predict when these wars will begin. I’ll give them this much– It’s a step up from the supposed “Bible Code.”
The problem with all that is everyone’s going to interpret these passages (which, by the way, are from books considered non-canonical by most of Christianity) differently. Kind of like in high school and your English teacher asked you what you thought Moby Dick was about (or as one teacher tried to convince us, wasn’t about). I may think it means one thing, you may think it’s another. Someone else might believe it means a third thing. Or even both.
On the other hand, if the missiles start flying, I’ll have to eat my words.