For the most part, however, fundamentalist did not acknowledge how much they had erred. Because they had carefully avoided setting specific dates for Christ's return, and because they routinely acknowledged that their speculations was just that, they left themselves an out. They could keep expectations of an immanent rapture high high without pinned down as false prophets. If the return of Christ was not around the next corner, it was always behind the corner after that. This was the genius of premillennialism. Like the faithful virgins in Jesus's time parable in Mathew 25 who had properly prepared for the return of the bridegroom, fundamentalists were always ready.
American Apocalypse, Mathew A. Sutton, The Belknap Press, 2014, pgs. 282-3