Sunday, June 5, 2011

Prophetic Disasters

... and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
Matthew 24:7

Jesus prophesied and intricately described the rapid increase of global disasters that will take place ‘in divers places’, areas that never experienced any major cataclysms. He forewarned His Church of these things so that His people are not ignorant of what is taking place on the earth and so they can always be alert and be ready for when He makes His glorious appearing to collect His flock and take them home.  The following information will give us a picture of where we are in prophetic time.

2011: With the Japanese tsunami, the earthquake in Spain, tornadoes in the US and the flood in Australia, describing 2011 as 'a year of disasters' hardly seems out of place.  Add in uprisings in the Middle East, civil war in the Ivory Coast and many other countries teetering on the brink of revolution and financial collapse, and the description becomes even more apt. (1) Even those who deny the existence of global climate change are having trouble dismissing the evidence of the last year. In the U.S. alone, nearly 1,000 tornadoes have ripped  across the heartland, killing more than 500 people and inflicting $9 billion in damage. The Midwest suffered the wettest April in 116 years, forcing the Mississippi to flood thousands of square miles, even as drought-plagued Texas suffered the driest month in a century.  Worldwide, the Litany of weather's extremes has reached biblical proportions. The 2010 heat wave in Russia killed an estimated 15,000 people. 2010 was the hottest year on earth since weather records began. (2)

2007: The number of disasters has soared by 60 per cent worldwide in the past decade, it has been revealed.  Some 6,806 were recorded between 1997 and last year, compared with 4,241 over the previous ten years – with the number of deaths doubling from 600,000 to 1.2 million.  The number of people affected per year rose by 17 per cent, from 230million to 270million, the International Red Cross and Red Cross Societies added.  And the cost of damage has jumped by 12 per cent.  The statistics included floods, earthquakes and other weather-related events as well as plane and train crashes.  The statistics were compiled by the Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters in Belgium. (3)

How will the world react and how should Christ faithful react when these cataclysms hit the earth in such rapidity.  Many of the inhabitants of the world will be scared when they see the rapid increase of cataclysms and will be puzzled and confused as to why the earth is being hit with so many disasters.

... distress of nations, with perplexity ... Men's heart failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
Luke 21:25, 26

Jesus instructs His faithful saints not to worry nor be alarmed when they see an increase of disastrous cataclysms coming upon the earth.  Though many scenes will be horrific to see and we may still experience a sense of shock, He instructs us to stay calm in the storm and to be aware that prophetic history is coming to a close.

Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that the summer is nigh: so likewise ye, when ye shall see these things, know that it is near, even at the doors.  Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.
Matthew 24:32-34

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.
Luke 21:28

... earthquakes ...

Out of the 10 worst recorded earthquakes in just under 2000 years, over half of them took place place in the 20th and the 21st century.

·      Damghan, Persia, 856 – Magnitude: 8.0; Death toll: 200,000

·      Ardabil, Persia, 893 – Magnitude: unknown; Death toll: 150,00

·      Aleppo, Syria, 1138 – Magnitude: unknown; Death toll: 230,000

·      Shaanxi province, China, 1556 – Magnitude: about 8.0; Death toll: 830,000

·      Haiyuon, Ningxia, Cina, 1920 – Magnitude: 7.8; Death toll: 200,000

·      Kanto, Japan, 1923 – Magnitude:7.9; Death toll: 142,800

·      Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, 1948 – Magnitude: 7.3; Death toll: 110,000

·      Tangshan, China, 1976 – Magnitude: 7.5; Death toll: at least 255,000

·      Sumatra, Indonesia, 2004 – Magnitude: 9.1; Death toll: 230,000

·       Sichuan, China, 2008 – Magnitude: 7.9; Death toll: 87,587  (4)

Earth seems to be at the heart of an earthquake storm. In little more than eleven years, serious seismic events in Indonesia, Pakistan, Chile, Haiti and, most recently, Japan, have caused unimaginable destruction and taken more than three-quarters of a million lives. Over the same period, smaller, but still lethal, quakes have rocked places as far apart as Christchurch in New Zealand, Abruzzo in Italy and the Congo in Africa. Most extraordinary of all, three colossal megaquakes, registering magnitudes of 8.8 and above, have shaken the planet in just the last seven years. This compares to just four comparably sized events during the whole of the last century. What's going on?
Interestingly though, the number of quakes greater than magnitude 5 occurring around the world seems to be following a steady, upward trend.

In light of the recent megaquake cluster, some geophysicists are now beginning to consider seriously whether a comparable mechanism can lead to a major quake in one part of the world provoking others years later and thousands of kilometres apart. At least one seismologist has speculated that the huge quakes that struck Chile in 2019 and Japan earlier this year might be thought of as 'aftershocks' of the great Sumatran earthquake of 2004. At present this remains pure conjecture, but it is an idea that's attracting further research.

With geological turbulent times ahead, we have no choice but to maximise our knowledge of megaquakes and the ways in which they might interact. Failure to do so may leave us exposed to a future catastrophe on a scale that dwarfs that of Japan. (5)

(Note: This article was written in a secular journal in July 2011)

At the opening of 2010, an earthquake shook the French-speaking Caribbean island of Haiti with a serious devastation that had impacted the world.  Its effects were felt throughout the Caribbean where other islands experienced the tremors.  Many have their own speculations why the earthquake shook this part of the earth.  Some say it was because it was plagued by the religion of Voodoo and others say it was an act of God.  We honestly can’t give a reason why and it is down to the individual to come to their own conclusions, but the disaster was very horrific and one of the first cataclysms that made the global community instantly reach into their pockets and support this economically deprived country.  For the Christians who are in tune with last day events, they know that it was an exact fulfilment of Bible Prophecy.

Haiti has suffered the devastation of being hit by the worst earthquake in the Caribbean for some 200 years.  The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, has described the catastrophe as being “one of the worst humanitarian crises in decades…The damage, destruction, loss of life is just overwhelming. (6)
The 7.0 magnitude earthquake is the latest catastrophe in two centuries of brutal dictatorships, natural disaster and ruthless exploitation that have reduced Haiti to abject misery.  Haiti has claims to historical distinction.  Having won a slave revolt against Napoleonic France, Haiti became the world’s first black governed republic.  But the lists that Haiti now heads are altogether more depressing.  With 80 per cent of Haitians living below the poverty line, it is the poorest country in the Western hemisphere.  It also has the highest rates of infant, under-5 and maternal mortality.  The country’s worst earthquake in 240 years…the people gathered in squares and outside churches to pray, sing hymns and begged God for deliverance.  The presidential palace, the cathedral, at least four ministries, embassies, schools and tens of thousands of homes have been severely destroyed.  The electricity, water and telephone services collapsed.  Aid agencies that will be spearheading the emergency relief effort had their headquarters wrecked and staff disabled or killed.  In a country where Roman Catholicism and voodoo are both strong, people were also looking to the supernatural for relief.  “Haiti needs to pray,” said Louis-Gerard Giles, a former senator.  “We all need to pray.”  The earthquake was caused by a type of movement similar to that on the Sea Andreas fault: a sideways slip occurred on a fault that makes part of the northern edge of the Caribbean Plate and the North American Plate.  When the land known for its voodoo religion has tried to pick itself up, nature has hammered it down again – most recently in 2008 when hurricanes and landslides killed 1,000 and made 800,000 homeless.  In 2004 5,000 people died in winds and floods.  “Some countries just have no luck.  Haiti is one of these places, where disaster follows on disaster,” Joel Dreyfuss, a Haitian journalist, wrote Haiti has a glorious past, a brutal present and a dark future.  While struggling to survive, the Hatians have to contend with corruption and industrial – scale murder and kidnapping by gangs and, it is said, their own security sources. (7) 

Though Haiti is the poorest country in the Western Hemisphere, where it is ranked the 149th place out of 182 countries as the most economically deprived, the journalists in the London Times failed to report with their unfortunate corporate bias, that the country has been in debt to France ever since its independence and ‘the decade-long CIA involvement with sundry Haitian dictatorships, armed forces, death squads, torturers, drug traffickers and miscellaneous corruption’ (8) is why the infrastructure of the country is absolutely abysmal and in ruins.

There have been many countries that have been shaken by earthquakes in the 21st century

The Islamic Republic of Pakistan in South Asia has been hit by countless earthquakes from the opening of the 21st century

The People's Republic of China in East Asia, the highest populated state on earth has been hit by major earthquakes.  The two most devastating were on May 12, 2008 and April 16, 2010

Since 2004 the Republic of Indonesia in South-East Asia has been constantly hit by devastating earthquakes

The Spanish-speaking Republic of Chile in South America was hit by an earthquake on February 27, 2010.  It has been ranked as the sixth largest earthquake ever to be recorded by a seismograph 

New Zealand, one of the English-speaking Anzac islands in the Pacific Ocean was the least likely place to get struck by an earthquake, but the prophecy is clear that these events will happen in 'divers places' which it did when it struck by surprise on February 22, 2011

The most unreported earthquake was on March 24, 2011 in Myamar, Burma in Southeast Asia which also affected the surrounding countries of China and Thailand 

Japan in East Asia, probably the most technically advanced nation on earth was hit by one of the most devastating earthquakes of modern times on March 9, 2011 with a tsunami and fear of a nuclear outburst as well as a few aftershocks 

... and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring.
Luke 21:25

2004 Asian Tsunami and its after effects

The People' Republic of Bangladesh in South Asia has been struck with many cyclones

The southern States of the US are being hit by the worst disasters in years from the Tornado in Alabama on April 27th, 2011, the floods in Mississippi and the worst cyclone in 60 years in Missouri 

… famines …

Somalian famine crisis in East Africa

The system of the global village is so strategically designed that the rich get richer and the poor remain poorer.  We cannot ignore the natural disasters that hit different sections of the earth without warning and the famines that plague many strategic parts of the earth, leaving different regions terribly scarred and where the inhabitants are suffering terribly, but governments and debt-imposing systems like the World Bank and the IMF are to blame for the huge poverty on earth.

Poverty stricken whites in south Africa

·   The number of people living in poverty around the world – that is less than one U.S. dollar a day – increased from 1.1 billion in 1985 to 1.3 billion in 2000.  A World Bank study has also confirmed that the absolute number of people living in poverty rose in the 1990s in Eastern Europe, South Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and sub-Saharan Africa. (9)

·      900 million farming families in the developing world struggle to survive on less than $1 a day while developed countries spend nearly $900 million protecting their agriculture through tariffs and subsidies.  Ninety-six per cent of the world’s farmers live in developing countries.  Agricultural protectionism by rich countries costs poor countries $20 billion a year directly and up to $75 billion indirectly, twice the amount of development aid they receive.  The level of agricultural subsidy that members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) give to their farmers is greater than the national income of sub-Saharan Africa, and six times the amount that developing countries receive in aid. (10)

·      2008: Prices for almost every staple food – rice, wheat, maize, sugar, milk – are soaring at rates of inflation not seen on such a global scale in a generation, resulting in hoarding, widespread food shortages and outright famine in the world’s poorest countries…a “silent tsunami” that could have dire consequences for more than 100 million of the world’s poor in countries as varied as Somalia and North Korea. (11)


Every now and then leaked reports come out that many of the vaccines that are meant to protect the immune system against diseases (e.g. flu jab) either fuels the system or makes it worse

'So far, more than 20 people are dead and hundreds are seriously ill with a nasty kidney disease.  From the probable source of the outbreak, in northern Germany, the virulent E. Coli 0104:H4 strain has spread to more than a dozen countries.
Now the public and doctors are alike are wondering how such a common - and normally manageable - bacterium could have mutated into this deadly strain: a drug-resistant superbug.
Escherchia coli is by no means a rare or new species of bacterium.  Found in the gut of warm-blooded animals, from chickens to pigs, cattle and people, E. Coli and humans have coexisted for millennia.
Ironically, the fact that E. Coli 0104: H4 is resistant to almost all commonly prescribed antibiotics is, in clinical terms, not important.
Even if antibiotics worked perfectly against this germ, doctors would never prescribe them because because, in destroying the microbes, the drag would hasten the release of the Shiga toxin as the bacterial cells burst.
All over the world doctors are massively overprescribing antibiotics (and in many countries you do not need a prescription), often for diseases caused by viruses, such as the common cold and flu, against which antibiotics do not work. (12)

The global figures for the number of diseases are quite sad.  Many diseases that afflict humanity can be prevented, especially if people are given a more conscious awareness of their dangers.  If governments and pharmaceutical companies had a duty of care and love for their fellow brothers, disease would be greatly reduced.  Some diseases are specifically confined to certain regions of the earth.  The highest rates of lung cancer are in the United States and the highest cases of Malaria according to WHO (World Health Organisation) figures are in Africa.  Many diseases are brought about by individual’ uncontrolled lifestyles.  Promiscuity, through pre-marital sex and adulteress affairs increases the high number of STD’s (Sexually Transmitted Disease).  Drinking, smoking and out of controlled diets, especially a high intake of unclean meats also increases disease.  Many diseases and many of their so-called antidotes are man-made that are manufactured in labs to reduce a great number of the world’ population.  This is how Jesus described this global pandemic before His return. 

·   About 10.6 m children under five die each year, most from preventable causes, World Health Organisation advisers estimate.  Almost four in ten die within 28 days of birth and more than four in 10 deaths are in southern and western Africa.  Scientists believed their latest estimates, based on analysis of death registrations, long term research and improved models for calculating mortality rates between 2000 and 2003, are the most accurate yet.  The deaths are mainly from pneumonia (19%), diarrhoea (17%), malaria (8%), measles (4%), HIV/Aids (3%) and injuries (3%).  The statistics are still imperfect, the advisers admit, but will act as a benchmark against which progress on WHO initiatives can be measured. (13)

·   The number of people diagnosed with sexually transmitted diseases has risen a quarter in just five years, fuelling fears that a promiscuous generation is ignoring safe sex messages.  NHS clinics in England diagnosed 335,123 sexually transmitted infections in 2006, up from 272,387 in 2001.  Chlamydia has now overtaken genital warts as the nation’s most common sexually transmitted infection.  Even syphilis, often regarded as a disease of past centuries, is on the rise, with 2,515 cases in 2006, an increase of 350 per cent.  The infection figures, compiled by the NHS, were published by the Department of Health in written parliamentary answers. (14)

·   Cancer deaths linked to boozing and smoking are higher in Britain than anywhere else in the EU.  Dr Julie Sharp, of Cancer Research UK, said: “Mortality rates for oesophageal cancer have been increasing since the 1970s in the UK, particularly in men.  Oesophagus cancer kills more than half a million people a year worldwide. (15)

·   Blacks make up more than half of new HIV infections annually in the United States and about two-thirds of new AIDS cases among teens, though they represent less than 15 per cent of the nations population. (16) 70 percent of all new HIV/AIDS cases in America are African-American women. (17)

·   Malaria kills more than a million people a year, 90 per cent of them children.  More than half a billion people suffer from malaria and incidence of the disease is getting worse. (18)

This is the global pandemic that is hitting the earth and it doesn’t seem to be getting any better.  Many may view this as gloom and doom, which is how individuals react when they want to run away from reality and label those who investigate these events as alarmists.  But as seekers of Christ, we have to take heed to the prophecies and rather than being alarmed or fearful, we need to look at our hearts and see where we are with our Saviour.

So likewise ye, when ye see these things come to pass, know ye that the kingdom of God is at hand.
Luke 21:31

Source: (1) BBC FOCUS, Issue 230, July 2011; (2) NEWSWEEK, June 6, 2011; (3) METRO, Thursday, December 13, 2007; (4) THE TIMES, Thursday, January 14, 2010; (5) BBC Science Focus, July 2011; (6) NEW AFRICAN, February 2010; (7) THE TIMES, Thursday, January 14, 2010; (8) Rogue State by William Blum p.213; (9) 10 Reasons to Abolish the IMF & World Bank by Kevin Danaher p.12; (10) Human Rights Annual Report 2004; (11) TIME, June 16, 2008; (12) Daily Mail, Tuesday, June 7, 2011; (13) The Guardian, Friday, March 25, 2005; (14) Daily Mail, Tuesday, June 7, 2011; (15) Daily Mail, Monday 30th November 2009; (16) Daily Nation, Thursday, February 3, 2005 p.14; (17) MINSTRY TODAY, May/June 2007 p.10; (18) The Independent, Tuesday, 25 April, 2006

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