Many have tried and failed to predict the end of the world. Is this fruitless, or do you think it’s possible to find out the date by searching the scriptures?

It’s fruitless, as history shows and, more important, as the scriptures teach. Those who predict the end of the world should be disregarded (but let's keep the biblical message of being prepared for the end). If a would-be prophet ever “gets it right,” that will be out of sheer luck. (Eventually, one of these annual doomsday prophecies is bound to coincide with the falling of the final curtain, just as someone will win the lottery—though not through any skill of his own.)