Evangelical fear-mongering appears to be a major contributing factor to the susceptibility of millions to Judgment Day hysteria. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, in 2005, Evangelical Christian leaders began suggesting seriously that God sent the Hurricane to punish America for its sins.
Evangelical leaders who saw God's hands in the disaster included Pat Robertson and Hal Lindsey.
Pat Robertson specifically linked Hurricane Katrina to terrorist attacks and legalized abortion. "We have killed 40 million unborn babies in American…But have we have found we are unable to defend ourselves against some of the attacks that are coming against us, either by terrorists or by natural disaster? Could they be connected in some way?…"
Hal Lindsey (yes, the same person whose 1988 date-setting for Judgment Day failed) also commented, "It seems clear that the prophetic times I have been expecting for decades have finally arrived…it appears that the Judgment of America has begun…"
After the September 11 attacks on the United States, Jerry Falwell, who, in 1979, founded the conservative political lobby Moral Majority, Inc., claimed that feminists, homosexuals, abortion-rights supporters and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) had turned God against America, and that God was punishing America by allowing the terrorist attacks.
Central to the conservative Christian propaganda is the message from the evangelical pulpit stoking the flames of Judgment Day hysteria–that God had blessed America in the past when it was a "God fearing" nation but that with the rise of secularism, religious pluralism, Gay Pride, legalized abortion and Civil Rights agitations, America is now ruled by an "evil cabal of greedy, corrupt and totally immoral people," and that is why America is suffering floods, hurricanes and homeland terrorist attacks.
That, it seems, also, is why a wizened 89-year-old-man can catch the attention of millions and mesmerize them with Kabbalah-istic "numerological" evidence that the world will be ripped apart on May 21, 2011 by catastrophic apocalyptic earthquake.