Friday, November 9, 2012

News updates from around the US and the world

I haven't done a news update for a while. Here are some news excerpts I feel are interesting in these times, which I believe are the last moments of the last days.

This is an interesting essay on the correlation between elections and earthquakes

What Earthquakes Can Teach Us About Elections
"Political historian Allan Lichtman says he sees elections the way geophysicists see earthquakes -- as events fundamentally driven by structural factors deep beneath the surface, rather than by superficial events at the surface. ... Lichtman says he sees elections the way geophysicists see earthquakes — as events fundamentally driven by structural factors deep beneath the surface, rather than by superficial events at the surface.

That thought dovetails with an essay I read earlier today, that "Elections are the fruit, not the root, of morality."

Now on to news of real earthquakes-

Magnitude 5.2 earthquake near Honshu Japan
"The US Geological Survey (USGS) is reporting that an earthquake with an initial magnitude of 5.5, occurred off the coast of Honshu, northern Japan, early on Friday. ... The last major seismic incident in Japan was a magnitude 9.0 earthquake in March 2011, that set off a tsunami that left over 20,000 dead or missing and caused a nuclear accident at the Fukushima-Daiichi nuclear power plant, the worst since the Chernobyl catastrophe in 1986."

Powerful quake hits Guatemala, killing at least 48
"A 7.4-magnitude earthquake rocked Guatemala on Wednesday, killing at least 48 people in two states as it toppled thick adobe walls, shook huge landslides down onto highways, and sent terrified villagers streaming into the streets of this idyllic mountain town near the border with Mexico. One hundred people were missing, and hundreds were injured. The quake, which hit at 10:35 a.m. in the midst of the work day, caused terror over an unusually wide area, with damage reported in all but one of Guatemala's 22 states and shaking felt as far away as Mexico City, 600 miles (965 kilometers) to the northwest."

‘Perfect storm’ of geological factors make the Eastern U.S. more susceptible to strong earthquakes than previously thought
"As if the folks out on America's east coast don't already have enough to worry about after the onslaught of Hurricane Sandy, it now looks like last year's magnitude-5.8 earthquake in Virginia was no anomaly. According to a report presented this week at the Geological Society of America's annual meeting, the highly populated area around Washington, D.C. features a kind of 'perfect storm' of geological factors, that could amplify the effects of seismic activity. And worse still, the area also appears to be susceptible to landslides."

Who'd a thunk it? Jesus did! "For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places." (Matthew 24:7)

Earthquakes this week: USGS

Large quakes:
6.3 Vancouver island, Canada
7.4 Offshore Guatemala

Diverse places, unexpected or unusual, at least to the populace-at-large:

3.7 Ontario-Quebec border region, Canada.
3.1 Utah
2.6 Arkansas

Volcano update- good satellite images of volcanoes, including Kilimanjaro, Shasta, Bezymianny, Toba and more:

Volcanoes Seen From Space for November 9, 2012
"[I]t seemed like it was time to take a look down on some of volcanoes from the eyes sitting in space. Some are volcanoes that are currently erupting, some haven't erupted in thousands of years, but they've all left their mark on the landscape. As always, if you want to keep up with all the activity each week, be sure to read the Smithsonian/USGS Global Volcanism Program's Weekly Volcanic Activity Report."

~~~~~~~~One World Economy~~~~~~~~

"Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name." (Revelation 13:16-17)

How will the antichrist monitor who has the mark at the point of sale, and who does not? Heavy surveillance and invasive monitoring via technology, one surmises. All over the world we have seen in these last years a huge growth of the Big Brother and government with eyes everywhere. It has increased with rapidity in the UK and the US. Now this news from Florida, United States:

Armored trucks with cameras in FL
"Coming soon to a St. Petersburg neighborhood near you: an armored truck that you cannot miss and that cannot miss you, at least not with the four cameras mounted behind bullet-resistant glass, pointed in all four directions."

Next is a good Christian essay about the decline of culture. Keep the progression of Romans 1 in mind. A culture without God never ascends, it always descends.

Psalm 12:8 Illustrated Yet Once Again
"The light Tuesday's election cast on the degradation of Western culture's expression in the United States should not have surprised us. But we still hope for some restraint, some sign that God will restrain the madness of men rushing to destroy everything that is good and holy and just. But what did we see? An open lesbian elected to the United States Senate. A trans-sexual elected to office in the Northeast. A bisexual here in my own state of Arizona. The profaning of marriage in multiple states, for the first time by popular vote. It was truly an amazing revelation. I have avoided watching much media since Tuesday evening. I know too well that Psalm 12:8 is being played out repeatedly: The wicked freely strut about when what is vile is honored among men."

~~~~~~~~Israel!~~~~~~~~

 Zechariah 12:1-3 says "The oracle of the word of the Lord concerning Israel: Thus declares the Lord, who stretched out the heavens and founded the earth and formed the spirit of man within him: 2 “Behold, I am about to make Jerusalem a cup of staggering to all the surrounding peoples. The siege of Jerusalem will also be against Judah. 3 On that day I will make Jerusalem a heavy stone for all the peoples. All who lift it will surely hurt themselves. And all the nations of the earth will gather against it."

Times of Israel reports,

At interfaith meet in Jerusalem, a grim picture of Jewish-Protestant relations
"Protestant clergymen painted a largely pessimistic view of the church’s relationship with Israel and the Jewish community during a visit to the Holy Land, suggesting that anti-Semitism is a deep-seated problem based in Christian theology that will be difficult to uproot. Jewish-Protestant relations are currently undergoing a severe crisis after senior leaders of Mainline Protestant churches in the US last month accused Israel of “widespread” human rights violations and urged Congress to reconsider military aid to Jerusalem. ... “I am completely pessimistic in terms of believing that I, we, are going to overturn 2,000 years of erroneous theology that has manifested itself in all kinds of diatribes and anti-Semitic factions,” said the Rev. Paul Wilkinson, the associate minister at Hazel Grove Full Gospel Church, a small pro-Israel congregation in Stockport, England. “I believe we’d be fooling ourselves if we believed that we can overturn and change what I perceive to be a Goliath of theology in the church. The Goliath we face is the Goliath of replacement theology, the Goliath of Christian Palestinianism that taunts Israel, that goads Israel, that accuses Israel, that condemns Israel and those Christians who stand with Israel.”

~~~~~~~~The Tribulation~~~~~~~~

It will be a time of unparalleled terror, strife, and wrath. It literally will be hell on earth. It is hard for the unbelieving world to understand that things will or could change that dramatically. (2 Peter 3:4).

I think that a glimmer of how things can change so quickly was delivered to us this week. Hurricane Sandy, huge quake in Canada & Guatemala, and the election results combined changed the world for a lot of people. Mostly, Hurricane Sandy brought to mind that once infrastructure is stripped away, we revert quickly to living as animals. Because the unregenerated heart has only a veneer of morality, once it is pressed, it disappears fast. It is easy for Jesus to rip away electricity. Child's play to send a storm of any size. Simple to collapse homes under a strong wind or swept away under a rushing flood. These photos reminded me in a small way of the coming sights the unregenerated will be seeing after the rapture- not as an unfortunate anomaly, but as a daily overload.


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Scenes like these are becoming commonplace, absolutely common. Last year's Midwestern drought was terrible but worse were the Joplin tornadoes, but still worse just a few months later, Hurricane Irene came. As each disaster stacked up one on top of another, the previous one, endured only a few months or weeks prior, slipped from minds as the new disaster comes on the scene. Hurricane Irene was terrible, but that faded quickly as coldest-ever winter slammed the northeast, and the spring floods, then hurricane Sandy superstorm...then the nor'easter, then the quakes. These last few, occurring in 2012, all happened in the same month. The same week.

There is so much pain and tragedy in the world, so much that the mind rebels against the notion that it could and will worsen. What used to happen a year apart shrunk in time scale to months apart then weeks apart now there seems to be some horrific thing happening daily. And I don't mean just news, regular ole news, but news that newscasters, scientists, climatologists themselves call first ever ,or worst ever or apocalyptic or horrific. But it will get worse, to a degree that even Jesus said would be hard for us to comprehend:

"For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be. And if those days had not been cut short, no human being would be saved. But for the sake of the elect those days will be cut short." (Matthew 24:21-22)

That was the bad news. Please be mindful of the difficulties people are enduring. Be in prayer for your brethren in the US and around the world who are living in increasingly hostile territory. This is the Good News- always have confidence in the faith Jesus delivered once for all to the saints. (Jude 1:3). These earthly trials will pass and we will be glorified with Him when we meet Him in the air. Therefore bring along as many with you as you can :)

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