Without power, how long does it take to turn back into barbarians?

This week's super derechos are still wreaking havoc over a large portion of the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic states. Though derechos are not common but do occur once per year in the Midwest, in the Mid Atlantic states and northern states they do not. In those areas, what happened is an extremely rare occurrence, as this meteorological story says: "Derecho’s are pretty rare in this area to begin with; a “Super” Derecho is almost unheard of. And, they are even harder to forecast than tornadoes because they are so rare." (Left, birth of the super derecho that affected millions this week.)

The Duluth Weekly's headline tells the story pretty starkly: " Super Derecho "The Land Hurricane" Slams 700 Miles of the US". "AccuWeather.com reports a "super derecho" of violent thunderstorms left a more than 700-mile trail of destruction across the Midwest and mid-Atlantic on Friday, cutting power to millions and killing thirteen people. ... States of emergencies have been declared in Virginia, West Virginia and Ohio. With 2.5 million in the dark, Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell stated that his state experienced its largest non-hurricane power outage in history." (Above right, derecho in Nebraska).

Power outage. Now there's a problem. Just a few weeks ago I posted a blog essay titled "Our fragile electrical grid." I've published several articles in the past about how God is stripping away our infrastructure to reveal our helpless condition in the face of the Creator.

For example, in this essay from February 2012 I wrote about the futility of prepping for Armageddon in the way the secular media presents it, and the only secure location is in Jesus. I mentioned the book, One Second After by William Forschten. The blurb summarizes:

"New York Times best selling author William R. Forstchen now brings us a story which can be all too terrifyingly real...a story in which one man struggles to save his family and his small North Carolina town after America loses a war, in one second, a war that will send America back to the Dark Ages...A war based upon a weapon, an Electro Magnetic Pulse (EMP). A weapon that may already be in the hands of our enemies. Months before publication, One Second After has already been cited on the floor of Congress as a book all Americans should read, a book already being discussed in the corridors of the Pentagon as a truly realistic look at a weapon and its awesome power to destroy the entire United States, literally within one second."

An EMP fries every electronic chip within its pulse. That means no banking or ATM machine so no access to money, no gas pumps, no lights, no heating, no cooling, no refrigerator, no working vehicles, tractors, combines, or harvesters, no elevators, no cooking, no business transactions, no stock market, no traffic lights, no water pumps, etc. No nothing. Nada.

The novel was written in 2009 and is realistic in the scenarios it depicts. The end of the book talked about the likelihood of a given population's survival after an EMP with all the societal collapses. The Wiki on this book states, "Refugees from the cities show up looking for food and shelter and the fight over scarce resources leads to confrontation, home invasion, and more violence-related die-offs. The community becomes an inviting target for free prisoners and organized gangs and more violence-related die-off. Ration cards are issued to conserve the little remaining food; regardless, the community slowly starves with the elderly the first to die off. Next parents starve themselves to save their children. Throughout this period suicides are common. After a year, approximately 20% of the initial population has "survived". It was stated in the epilogue section from actual sociologists and scientists that such a die-off rate (80%) in the aftermath of an EMP is likely....but also optimistic due to the favorable location of the 'lucky' survivors. Some scientists put the survival rate at a mere 5%.

The super derechos downed power lines, blew transformers, and greatly impacted the electrical grid itself. Our favorite doomsayer, Michael T. Snyder at the Economic Collapse blog asked the question yesterday:

If One Storm Can Turn D.C. Dark For Several Days, What Would A Massive EMP Burst Do?

Our "civilized" world is relatively new. The industrial revolution's impact was not felt for the average American until the early part of the 1900s, when the 'labor saving' gadgets started becoming available. Automobiles, telephones, cross-country train travel and freight delivery, canned and frozen goods transported mass distances, electricity...all new. Only the last one hundred years, really, have been one of 'civilization' and 'ease'. It takes relatively little to turn us back to barbarians. (Illustration source- Wikipedia)

But in the industrial age, we relinquished that tie to the land for what was believed to be a superior way of life, and in that supposed superior way of life, there was no need for a higher power, because it seemed like we had tamed the earth.

We haven't.

It has been four days, and yet "Frustration Grows as Heat, Power Outages Persist". The Governor said "recovering from Friday's rare derecho storm is, in some ways, harder than hurricane recovery:"Unlike a polite hurricane that gives you three days of warning, this storm gave us all the impact of a hurricane without the warning of a hurricane," he said." Imagine the suddenness of an EMP.

We ask again, 'If one storm can turn D.C. dark for several days, what would a massive EMP burst do?' The only safe harbor is Jesus.

"The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous man runs into it and is safe." (Proverbs 18:10 ESV).

The Lord is showing us just how foolish we are to depend on our own power.

"The LORD is slow to anger and great in power, and the LORD will by no means clear the guilty. His way is in whirlwind and storm, and the clouds are the dust of his feet." (Nahum 1:3 ESV)

"[God] will drag away [these] mighty men by his power. These people may prosper, but they will never feel secure about life. [God] may let them feel confident and self-reliant, but his eyes are on their ways. [Such people] may be prosperous for a little while, but then they're gone. They are brought down low and disappear like everything else. They wither like heads of grain." (Job 22-24 GWT)

He is coming, The only refuge is to be ready: that means repented, making Jesus your Lord, and living by His rules and ways thereby producing fruit for His name.


  1. Hi Elizabeth, thanks for keeping us up to date. Now that school is out, it´s hard to keep up with your rapid pace of event analysis. I am still 5 posts behind in my comment writing! LoL.

    I hope you can answer a question that I have had for a long time, in fact since I first heard of EMP detonation and the subsequent disatrous effects.

    This scenario always puzzled me in the light of Revelation 11:9, /for 3 and 1/2 days, men from every people, tribe, language and nation will gaze on their bodies and refuse them burial.

    Perhaps the answwer is so simple that I must be the global village idiot having the longest duh moment, Hey, nobody has claimed that title yet... but being a child at heart I don´t mind displaying my ignorance...

    I have always heard that the scene will retransmitted from Jerusalem on every continent through satellite TV. I am not even talking about the major cosmic and earthly upheaval furing the tribulation.

    Have you found any satisfactory answer in your research? Thank you in advance. Grace and peace to you. Jean-Louis.

    1. Hi Jean-Louis,

      You're welcome! Yeah, I'm a writin' fool, during the summer!

      The period of which you speak in Revelation is an interesting one. I think it's pretty interesting too that the whole world will look upon the Two Witnesses' bodies for three and a half days. In order to do my research, I do what you probably do: start with the fact and work backwards.

      It is a fact that Rev 11 says that the whole world sees their bodies, and I take that as fact the way the bible delivers it. No mystery or symbolic language there.

      Prior to the television age and prior to the satellite age that statement WAS a mystery. Now we know, as evidenced by the rapid spread of the news that bin Laden was dead, how the whole world can be clued in almost instantly. With Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, and Youtube, the news comes at us even faster now. So it is a fact, the whole world will see their bodies.

      Note what the verse says, and I looked in every translation:

      "For three and a half days some from the peoples and tribes and languages and nations will gaze at their dead bodies and refuse to let them be placed in a tomb," (Rev 1:9).

      It doesnt' say that they will all see it *at the same time*. I can intuit that when the Two Witnesses are killed the news will spread around the world quickly. I can surmise that Twitter or some such second generation of instant media that instant news will flash the headline, and instagram, youtube, or some such second generation photo and video media will flash their bodies. Even in places where there is no electricity, newspapers will print photos. Even cell phones. I think that even though the world will be in a cataclysmic state, that the news and visuals will get around to all the world within three and a half days. Easy peasy.

      Two other thoughts. Rev 18 is about the fall of Babylon, economic Babylon, the world's evil system of commerce. The chapter graphically and in precise detail lists all the commerce that will cease. So if the commerce of all these things ceases, that means it will have been ongoing! Ships traversed seas, goods were manufactured and sold. Petro-Oil was delivered, olive oil and wine produced. As a matter of fact, Rev 18:23 says "Your merchants were the world’s great men."

      So despite the seal judgment and trumpet judgment catastrophes, things are still going! I would guess that also includes satellite and media. Though probably tightly controlled by the antichrist.

      Here is the reason I think that despite catastrophic odds, that these things will still be going: Rev 9 & 13. In that chapter demons are let out of the abyss. Demons are fallen angels, the same ones responsible for the earlier great civilizations like Macchu Pichu, Egypt's pyramids, etc. Angels are extremely powerful beings, and fallen angels who have no ethic will find it child's play to keep the things running that they want to keep running. We are told in 2 Thess 2:9, The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders." Rev 13 institutes the Mark of the Beast so he'd need some sort of instant trackers to know who can buy or sell, likely electrically powered, or another power source the demons invent.

      The whole world will see their bodies. Maybe all at the same time, maybe over the course of 3/5 days. But it will happen, and though Revelation is depicted as a time of utter ruin, the fact that the economy, religion, and farming, planting, burying, and marrying is still going on is a testament to those lying wonders. The poor won't have access to the things of life to sustain life, but the rich will. And everyone will see those bodies. The demons will make sure of it.

  2. Hi, Elizabeth. Having been part of the Derecho and ensuing power outage, I can say that when temps are this high and there is no air moving, you can't rest, you can't get cool and your temper is on auto-drive. With that in mind, I would say it wouldn't take long to turn into barbarians especially those who live in the city and have more people to deal with. I am so thankful with these temps to have our electric back on, but I was very mindful during the outage of what may be coming and I asked the Lord to help me rely on Him for my power!


    1. Hi Kim,

      I'm glad your power is back on! Good comment about the tempers flaring. I can just see if it continued (like it is in other parts) and food starts to get short. So glad you & me have Him to rely on!

  3. It is not a fact that the fallen angels are responsible for Machu Pichu, the pyramids, etc. Man was created perfect, with a perfect mind and a perfect brain. Why do you attribute acts of building at that time to demons when mankind today, in our longer fallen brains and bodies, can build things just as wonderful and even go to the moon! Genesis 11:6 The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them." and God said that AFTER the flood.

    If you look carefully at the world around us today, everything you wrote would happen during those 3 1/2 years is happening right now, everything I was taught would happen during the tribulation is happening right now. Earthquakes, wars, famines, plagues, control. Including all those instant trackers -"they" already know who I am and how often I've written on your comments and others, "they" know what I buy at the grocery store (remember those little cards that give you discounts, and how often do you pay with a check instead of cash?), how much I earn and pay in taxes, where I live, work, play, go to church. Nothing is a secret any more - every action we do is tracked via internet or some other form of information gathering, from birth to procreation to death. Obamacare is just one more means of complete control. We are already living at the very end of the End Time - the next step is the Second Coming of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

    1. Hi Anonymous,

      You're right, it is not a fact that the demons were the builders of those great civilizations, or even responsible for them, as I had stated. However it is true that man today, with all our machines, cannot figure out how the pyramids were built, or what the Nazca Lines are, or how Maccu Pichu was so technically perfect at those altitudes with the tools available then, and add to that the petroglyphs depicting shining beings, and the Genesis 6 statements that the demons were on earth then intermingling with man, and I believe one has a strong case for them being responsible, either through delivering information or directly building.

      I agree, government's intrusion is becoming almost 100% saturate detail every detail of our lives. I think we're at the end of the end too. However I do not agree that the seals are broken and the judgments of Rev 6 are happening now. Despite the catastrophes of today, they are still warnings, the seal judgments are so much MORE terrible.

      For example, Rev 6:4 says peace will be taken from the earth, and while there is more conflict than ever, most of the world is in a peaceful state. Though food is expensive, Rev 6:6 says that bread will cost a day's wages. Rev 6:8 says a quarter of the earth will die, and that is not happening. BUT, we can see how conditions are set up for those passages to come true quite rapidly.

      Paul said we are not appointed to wrath, and Jesus said in Rev 1 we will be rescued from the coming wrath. The wrath begins in Rev 6. (Rev 6:15-17.) So though we are not int he judgment period yet, we can see, as you said that we are at the end of the end. If we can see the revelation judgments making their appearance then how much closer is the rapture? Jesus is coming soon, like as you said.

  4. Amen! Well said Elizabeth. My soul is rejoicing because our hour is near and we will meet our Redeemer our blessed assurance Emmanuel! No disaster or trial on this earth should dismay us, we are His children and oh how He loves us!


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