Fear, Confusion and Flooding
Vol: 81 Issue: 30 Monday, June 30, 2008
It s said that when you are up to your, er, armpits in alligators, its hard to remember you’re there to drain the swamp. For those in the Midwest, about the only thing that hasn t been thrown at them is a herd of alligators. Swamps they have plenty of.
The pounding being handed out to the American Midwest is of seemingly apocalyptic proportions particularly if you live in one of the areas devastated by this season s record breaking tornadoes and flooding.
As one person put it, if this isn t global warming, it will do until global warming comes along. I don t disagree that there is, or was, a global warming trend. Neither do I doubt that the catastrophic storms raking the American heartland are somehow related to this warming trend.
But where I split with the Ozone Rangers is where the notion conflicts with Scripture. Or rather, that is where I began to split with them. What they propose as a consequence of global warming fails to line up with Bible prophecy. What they offer as a remedy removes God from the equation altogether.
I realize that is the popular scientific way to approach things of a scientific nature, and mostly, I agree with that approach. If scientists were to approach scientific problems from a theological perspective, next thing you know, science would go all religious on us. (As in evolutionary science )
Theology presupposes the existence of God. Indeed, the word means the study of God s Word. It comes from the Greek combination of Theos, meaning God, and Logos, meaning Word. Literally translated from Greek, it means, to talk about God.
As a theologian, my study has led me to conclude that where scientific thought conflicts with the scientific revelations contained in Scripture, my faith is in the Scripture.
Catastrophic global warming is not in there. At least, not man-made global warming. Revelation 16:9 says the fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and power was given to him to scorch them with fire.
That s the Fourth Bowl Judgment of God. It is a limited event, not the result of decades of global warming. Neither is it man-made. Nor does man have any control over it.
There has been some warming since the mid 1970 s, and there appears to be a cooling trend on the horizon. Warm and cool cause storms and flooding.
The Great 100 Year Flood of 2008 was preceded by the Great 100 Year Flood of 1993.
And it was preceded by the Great 100 Year Mississippi Flood of 1927, which flooded 27,000 square miles or about 16,570,627 acres to a depth of 30 feet. That flood killed 246 people in seven states; Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri and Tennessee.
That isn t to minimize the disaster ongoing in the Midwest. I m just trying to offer some sense of perspective. Global warming wasn t responsible for the 1927 Flood. It wasn t responsible for the 1993 Flood, and it isn t responsible for the Great Flood of 2008. Weather is. And weather is the province of God.
There is no doubt we can affect it, but God has the weather in balance. There are warming trends, followed by cooling trends. When they happen within the time frame of a year, they re called seasons.
One can go back and find it starts cold, warms up, stays warm, begins to cool and ends cold. And it does that, with predictable variations every year (depending on where you happen to live).
When the same thing happens over a period of decades, they re called weather cycles. It starts to cool down, then stays cool, the warms up, then stays warm, then cools again.
These cycles didn t just start recently. They can be tracked back through the 20th century (and beyond) and the weather starts to change just about the time there s a 100 year flood in the Midwest.
It warmed through the 1920s and by the 1930 s, much of the Midwest was parched by drought. It started to cool in the mid 1940 s, then began to warm again in the 70 s.
The warmest years peaked at about the turn of the 21st century, and has trended cooler since. One doesn t need fancy charts or graphs or computer models to determine that the planetary weather cycles between warming and cooling trends.
All it takes to do that is an almanac.
Apart from logic and history, there is also the Testimony of God to consider in the whole man-made global warming scenario.
While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease. (Genesis 8:22)
That doesn t leave room for the perpetual summer predicted by the global warming lobby. The Scriptures say in many places that God CAN change the seasons, but the fact that He can is not the same as a prediction that He will.
Indeed, in Genesis 8:22 He promises that He will not.
Catastrophic weather cycles have been with us for as long as the world has existed. But never, in all recorded human history, has the entire world been in a panic over the weather until this generation.
One can argue that the panic is the result of improved scientific technology, or as a consequence of instant, world-wide media, or any other argument you can think of off hand. What you can t dispute is either the sense of panic — or that it is global.
It is that sense of panic over the weather and not the weather itself that is relevant to Bible prophecy. Nowhere in the prophetic record can one find any Bible prediction resembling what Al Gore is forecasting.
Probably the best way to describe the global warming argument is confused . First, is it warming? Or is it cooling? That was settled by changing its official name to climate change .
Is it man-made? Or is it a natural cycle? Or is it caused by the record-setting solar activity at the turn of the 21st century? Even the scientists who subscribe to global warming theory can t agree on the cause.
Is it dangerous? Yes, yes, a thousand times, yes. Even Barack Obama and John McCain are singing of the dangers posed by global warming in two-part harmony.
The dangers are legion; rising sea levels, catastrophic crop failures, more severe hurricanes and storms, famine, flood . . . last year the UN found a link between global warming and the Islamic genocide being perpetrated on the Sudanese Christians.
Except we don t know if any of that will happen. It didn t happen during the Medieval warming cycle. (But we know that when the Vikings discovered Greenland, it was green.)
It is that fear and confusion that Jesus forecast as a sign of His soon return not the weather itself.
And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars. . . . The signs are there. The solar storms of the past decade are unprecedented.
Every couple of months some scientist warns of an incoming asteroid that may be The Big One, for which, we are solemnly warned, we are overdue. (You know, it s not an issue of if, but when — as if that actually means something.)
. . .and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Distress and perplexity fear and confusion the very definition of the global warming argument.
No amount of evidence to the contrary will convince the True Believers that they shouldn t be scared to death. No price is too high to contemplate paying. (Although $5.00/gal seems to be close)
Men’s hearts 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)
THIS is what is unique about the Lord s prediction. Not that there d be bad weather. But that it would spawn a sense of global fear and confusion unprecedented in human history.
If it weren t unprecedented, it wouldn t be a sign of anything but that history tends to repeat itself. For this to be recognizable to us as a sign of His return, it would, like the restoration of Israel, have to be unique.
It is within THIS context that Jesus said, 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)
Our prayers go out to all those affected, and in particular those members of the OL family living in the danger zone.
May our God bless you and keep you safe. Until He comes.