NM

Commentary on world events that relate to Bible prophecy and on Rapture Ready issues world events.


 

Jan 25, 2010

The Haiti Earthquake

The earthquake that struck the nation of Haiti was so destructive that it has taken several days for the world to get a grasp of what has happened. The trembler was a monster by historic standards. The quake killed an estimated 200,000 people. So far, 150,000 bodies have been buried in mass graves by a UN recovery operation. The total does not account for corpses buried by relatives or bodies yet to be found.

I could tell right away that it would be a major event.. The seismic event hit a perfect bull’s eye, with a 7.0 magnitude, a depth of only three miles, and a location only nine miles from the Haitian capital.

In the book of Mark, Jesus warned that the last days would be the tail end of an exponential surge of activity. The Lord mentioned a great variety of signs, then He said these signs will be like "birth pangs."

As the birth of a baby approaches, the birth pangs increase two ways: They increase in frequency and intensity. Thus, Jesus was saying that the closer we get to the time of His return, the more frequent and intense the signs will become. There will be more earthquakes, and more intense ones. Likewise, things like famine, pestilence, and war will increase in frequency and intensity.

"For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be earthquakes in various places, there will be famines; this is but the beginning of the birth-pangs" (Mark 13:8 RVS).

I strongly believe the Haitian disaster is part of the end-times birth pangs. We are now at a point of seeing many earthquakes at record-high levels. Just look at the last ten years:

 

Jan. 26, 2001

India

20,000

7.9

Dec.. 23, 2003

Bam, Iran

30,000

6.6

Dec. 26, 2004

Indonesia

270,000

9.6

Oct. 8, 2005

Kashmir, Pakistan

55,000

7.6

May 12, 2008

Sichuan, China

70,000

7.9

Sept. 30, 2009

Sumatra

1100

7.6

Jan. 12, 2010

Haiti

200,000+

7.0


It was just few years ago that a great quake struck Indonesia. That event generated a tsunami that killed 270,000 people. The last time we had a death toll of 200,000 was in 1976. The one previous to that was in 1927. The time gap shows the birth pang increase. Working backwards, we have a time gap of 5, 29, and 49 for those three events.

Normally, we could say by the frequency of earthquakes in the past that it will be many years before we suffer another super quake. There have been times when there weren’t ever major quakes. The Rapture Ready Earthquakes Timeline shows that between 1950 and 1960, there was no major loss of life from seismic activity. There was another gap between 1960 and 1970.

Some people might say the death toll is going up because the population has increased over the years. That is a factor, but you can’t account for a rapid increase in deadly quakes. The one that caused greatest loss of life actually occurred 454 years ago. In 1556, a quake in Shansi, China, killed 830,000 people.

I don’t think we are going to see any let-up in the number of destructive earthquakes. We have reached the point at which every year is visited by some form military conflict, economic unrest, or natural disaster.

Last week, Pat Robertson generated an uproar after he said the Haiti earthquake was the result of the Haitian people making a pact with the devil. I tend to agree with Robertson that there is a demonic reason for why Haiti has been hopelessly linked to calamity; however, it was very poor timing to blame people while they are suffering. One of the most fundamental rules of any organization is to do no harm to your own cause. Robertson has repeatedly violated this common-sense principle. His remarks have given plenty of fuel to anti-Christian liberals and late-night comedians.

Jesus was told about some worshipers from Galilee who were killed by Pilate and how Pilate put their blood in with the blood of their sacrifice. Jesus didn’t say, "They were pagans, so they got what they deserved." He said, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were worse sinners than all other Galileans, because they suffered such things?…I tell you no…but unless you repent you will all likewise perish.. Or those 18 on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem ? I tell you no…but unless you repent you will all likewise perish” (Lk.. 13:2-5).

We should look at the Haiti earthquake as a warning of our own need to be ready for eternity. The hour is late; the rapture is imminent. It could literally take place at any moment. As we see the birth pangs occurring, we need to be focused on the “now.”

“We then, as workers together with him, beseech you also that ye receive not the grace of God in vain. (For he saith, I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation)” (2 Cor. 6:1-2).

-- Todd


Israel Betrayed by U.S.?

Part II

Refusal of the current American presidential administration to acknowledge that God has any say one way or the other in the affairs of man, much less any business meddling in the conduct of the American state department's dealing with Israel and its antagonists, is a foregone conclusion. After all, Mr. Obama has himself stated that America is not a Christian nation.

I must say that I agree with this president on that one point. The United States was never a "Christian" nation, in the sense that America turned en masse to total commitment to following Jesus Christ. That has never happened. However, this country, since its earliest stages of planning by the founding fathers, has had woven into its national documents of inception Judeo-Christian principles of God's prescription for conducting life and government.

Based upon that easily provable truth--because all one has to do is to cursorily scan the founding documents to understand biblical influence--it's easy to know that America is a nation under providential watchfulness, to say the very least. God, in starkly plain language, spoke through prophetic omniscience to what will happen when anyone, be it individual or corporate, deals treacherously with His chosen people. Therefore, for anyone--including the president of the United States or any other member of the government of this nation--to ignore what is said about interacting with Israel in the Bible, from which the founding fathers so obviously gleaned wisdom to form this nation, is foolhardiness.

I realize stating that governmental leaders don't recognize God in their governing isn't a profound revelation, because all of humanistic government ignores the Creator of all things. I just wanted to get the fact stated as to the real crux of the problem regarding lack of lasting peace in the Middle East and the world. The administration and the state department, it is obvious, gives God's Word on the matter of Israel no weight whatever in considering policy toward the Jewish state. They forge ahead, setting timelines for producing a two-state solution to the "Palestinian problem" as they see it.

Mideast envoy George Mitchell recently stated that he saw the problem of Israel's making peace with Palestinian leadership as something that must be done within two years. The former senate majority leader, chosen by President Obama to deal with the differences between the Palestinian Authority and Israeli leadership, made it clear how he--thus, how the Obama administration--views the hold-up to peace in the region.

Mitchell said, in an interview with acclaimed broadcaster and interviewer Charlie Rose just prior to Mitchell's departure for Israel, when asked what leverage the U.S. has to get Israel to comply with Arab and international demands, "Under American law, the United States can withhold support on loan guarantees to Israel."

Although a senior state department faux pas fireman, speaking with anonymity, said that Mitchell's remarks were not meant as threats to Israel if compliance with American and international concession demands were not met, Israeli leadership wasn't buying. Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz bluntly let it be known that Obama, Mitchell, and the U.S. State Department could keep their money. He said that Israel wouldn't be needing loan guarantees because Israel wouldn't be borrowing. The Jewish state, he said, had already raised enough money for foreseeable needs.

All of the back-pedaling the Obama Administration can do cannot obfuscate the truth. It is trying to hide its disdain for Israel's perceived obstinacy in preventing this president from having a clear pathway to establishing the desired two-state configuration.

U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton recently praised Israel's decision to unilaterally make a gesture of good will toward the Palestinians by implementing a partial freeze on establishing new settlements. However, Israel is always met with intransigence when dealing with the Palestinian Authority, as with most all among the Islamic community. The Israeli leadership is growing weary of the one-sided abusiveness, and of the pressures from the American and international leaders who insist Israel is the problem in disrupting the "Roadmap to Peace."

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in expressing his feelings on the matter, said, "It is the Palestinian Authority that needs to change its ways--certainly not the Israeli government."

Israel's decision to go ahead with settlements then brought immediate, not-so-veiled threats by envoy Mitchell. There is no doubt that the former senator's tone and remarks reflect the mindset of the president and those around him. They see the Jewish state as the holdup to Obama getting glory from making the perpetually elusive peace the international community seeks.

To answer the question within the article's title--"Israel betrayed by the U.S.?" --it seems for now that substantial influence within the U.S. Congress is saying, "No."

Visiting senior US senators told their Israelis hosts on Sunday that they disapprove of the Obama Administration's attempt to pressure Israel by threatening to withhold aid, and vowed they would never let that happen.

Senator John McCain told a Jerusalem press conference that he expects President Barack Obama to explicitly announce that his administration is not planning to alter America's policy regarding financial aid to Israel.

Senator Joe Lieberman promised that even if Obama did try to use US financial aid as leverage, Congress would never approve such a measure.

McCain and Lieberman were also joined by senators John Thune and John Barrasso. ("Senators Won't Let Obama Freeze Aid to Israel," Headline News, Israel Today staff, 1/11/2010)

If America joins the rest of earth's nations in the gathering against Israel, as prophesied by Zechariah in Zechariah12:1-3, her betrayal will mean America's doom. All nations who come against the Jewish state, God says, will be cut to pieces. Israel, on the other hand, will remain no matter what, the God of heaven declares in the strongest possible terminology.

"This is what the Lord says, 'He who appoints the sun to shine by day, Who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night, Who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar--the Lord Almighty is His Name; Only if these ordinances vanish from My sight,' declares the Lord, 'will the descendants of Israel ever cease to be a nation before Me'" (Jeremiah 31:35-36).

--- Terry