But when these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is near!” (Luke 21:28)
The last few months have seen a deluge of natural catastrophes, from an unprecedented heat wave in Europe to devastating floods in Kentucky. For insurance companies, the rise of extreme weather is a mixed blessing. Higher risk means higher premiums, so some insurers are actually looking to increase their disaster coverage. But climate disasters tend to be expensive, and this year has taken an especially hard toll.
Natural disasters caused global $72 billion loss in first half of 2022 / The Times of Israel, August 2, 2022
Total economic losses caused by natural disasters hit an estimated $72 billion in the first half of 2022, fueled by storms and floods, Swiss reinsurance giant Swiss Re estimated Tuesday.
Though the figure is lower than the $91 billion estimate for the first six months of 2021, it is close to the 10-year average of $74 billion, and the weight is shifting toward weather-induced catastrophes.
“The effects of climate change are evident in increasingly extreme weather events, such as the unprecedented floods in Australia and South Africa,” said Martin Bertogg, Swiss Re’s head of catastrophe perils.
The Zurich-based group, which acts as an insurer for insurers, said the losses were also propelled by winter storms in Europe as well as heavy thunderstorms on the continent and in the United States.
So-called secondary natural disasters like floods and storms — as opposed to major disasters such as earthquakes — are happening more frequently, the reinsurer said.
“This confirms the trend we have observed over the last five years: that secondary perils are driving insured losses in every corner of the world,” Bertogg said.
“Unlike hurricanes or earthquakes, these perils are ubiquitous and exacerbated by rapid urbanization in particularly vulnerable areas,” he said.
“Given the scale of the devastation across the globe, secondary perils require the same disciplined risk assessment as primary perils such as hurricanes.”
Swiss Re said floods in India, China and Bangladesh confirm the growing loss potential from flooding in urban areas.
A warming climate is likely to exacerbate droughts and thereby the likelihood of wildfires, causing greater damage where urban sprawl grows into the countryside, Swiss Re said.
“Climate change is one of the biggest risks our society and the global economy is facing,” said the group’s chief economist Jerome Jean Haegeli.
“With 75 percent of all natural catastrophes still uninsured, we see large protection gaps globally exacerbated by today’s cost-of-living crisis.”
The big picture:
On our planet, mass extinction has happened five times in life’s four-billion-year history.
The last time it happened was the event that brought the end of the age of the dinosaurs. A meteorite impact triggered a catastrophic change in the earth’s conditions. 75% of all species were wiped out. Life had no option but to rebuild. For 65 million years, it’s been at work reconstructing the living world… until we come to the world we know… our time. Scientists call it the Holocene. The Holocene has been one of the most stable periods in our planet’s great history.
For 10,000 years, the average temperature has not wavered up or down by more than one degree Celsius. And the rich and thriving living world around us has been key to this stability. Phytoplankton at the ocean’s surface and immense forests straddling the north have helped to balance the atmosphere by locking away carbon.
Huge herds on the plains have kept the grasslands rich and productive by fertilizing the soils. Mangroves and coral reefs along thousands of miles of coast have harbored nurseries of fish species that, when mature, then range into open waters. A thick belt of jungles around the equator has piled plant on plant to capture as much of the sun’s energy as possible, adding moisture and oxygen to the global air currents. And the extent of the polar ice has been critical, reflecting sunlight back off its white surface, cooling the whole earth. The biodiversity of the Holocene helped to bring stability, and the entire living world settled into a gentle, reliable rhythm… the seasons.
On the tropical plains, the dry and rainy seasons would switch every year like clockwork. In Asia, the winds would create the monsoon on cue.
In the northern regions, the temperatures would lift in March, triggering spring, and stay high until they dipped in October and brought about autumn.
The Holocene was our Garden of Eden. Its rhythm of seasons was so reliable that it gave our own species a unique opportunity.
We invented farming. We learnt how to exploit the seasons to produce food crops. The history of all human civilization followed. Each generation able to develop and progress only because the living world could be relied upon to deliver us the conditions we needed. The pace of progress was unlike anything to be found in the fossil record.
The global air temperature had been relatively stable till the 1990s. But it now appeared this was only because the ocean was absorbing much of the excess heat, masking our impact.
It was the first indication to me that the earth was beginning to lose its balance.
Right now, we’re facing a man-made disaster of global scale. Our greatest threat in thousands of years: climate change. The collapse of our civilizations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizon.
This is the situation in the near future:
The Amazon Rainforest, cut down until it can no longer produce enough moisture, degrades into a dry savannah, bringing catastrophic species loss… and altering the global water cycle.
At the same time, the Arctic becomes ice-free in the summer. Without the white ice cap, less of the sun’s energy is reflected back out to space. And the speed of global warming increases.
Throughout the north, frozen soils thaw, releasing methane, a greenhouse gas many times more potent than carbon dioxide, accelerating the rate of climate change dramatically.
As the ocean continues to heat and becomes more acidic, coral reefs around the world die. Fish populations crash.
Global food production enters a crisis as soils become exhausted by overuse. Pollinating insects disappear. And the weather is more and more unpredictable.
Our planet becomes four degrees Celsius warmer. Large parts of the earth are uninhabitable. Millions of people rendered homeless. A sixth mass extinction event… is well underway. This is a series of one-way doors… bringing irreversible change. Within the span of the our lifetime, the security and stability of the Holocene, our Garden of Eden… will be lost.
1 big thing:
The Holy Bible refers to these disasters as part of the “birth pains” that will accelerate in the Last Days:
While He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples approached Him privately and said, “Tell us, when will these things happen? And what is the sign of Your coming and of the end of the age?”
Then Jesus replied to them: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Messiah,’ and they will deceive many. You are going to hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, because these things must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise up against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these events are the beginning of birth pains. (Matthew 24:3-8)
“Then there will be signs in the sun, moon, and stars; and there will be anguish on the earth among nations bewildered by the roaring sea and waves. People will faint from fear and expectation of the things that are coming on the world, because the celestial powers will be shaken. Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. But when these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is near!” (Luke 21:25-28)
I will display wonders in the heaven above
and signs on the earth below:
blood and fire and a cloud of smoke.
The sun will be turned to darkness
and the moon to blood
before the great and remarkable Day of the Lord comes.
Then everyone who calls
on the name of the Lord will be saved. (Acts 2:14-21)
The birthing example in Revelation 12 can help us to understand what is happening right now.
Now a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a garland of twelve stars. Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth… She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne. (Revelation 12:1-2,5)
We have seen the incredible hardship on millions of people, including Christians, just in the last few years, with non-stop wars, natural disasters, global social upheavals, and economic devastation.
What to watch:
World Scientists’ Warning of a Climate Emergency 2021 / BioScience, July 28, 2021
In 2019, Ripple and colleagues (2020) warned of untold suffering and declared a climate emergency together with more than 11,000 scientist signatories from 153 countries. They presented graphs of planetary vital signs indicating very troubling trends, along with little progress by humanity to address climate change. On the basis of these data and scientists’ moral obligation to “clearly warn humanity of any catastrophic threat,” they called for transformative change.
Since the article’s publication, more than 2,800 additional scientists have signed that declaration of a climate emergency; in addition, 1,990 jurisdictions in 34 countries have now formally declared or recognized a climate emergency.
But, at the same time, there has been an unprecedented surge in climate-related disasters since 2019, including devastating flooding in South America and Southeast Asia, record shattering heat waves and wildfires in Australia and the Western United States, an extraordinary Atlantic hurricane season, and devastating cyclones in Africa, South Asia, and the West Pacific. There is also mounting evidence that we are nearing or have already crossed tipping points associated with critical parts of the Earth system, including the West Antarctic and Greenland ice sheets, warm-water coral reefs, and the Amazon rainforest.
Given these alarming developments, we need short, frequent, and easily accessible updates on the climate emergency.
Study warns of ‘irreversible transition’ in ocean currents that could rapidly freeze parts of North America / Yahoo! News, August 5, 2021
A large system of ocean currents in the Atlantic – which includes the Gulf Stream – has been disrupted due to human-caused climate change, scientists reported in a new study published Thursday. If that system collapses, it would lead to dramatic changes in worldwide weather patterns.
The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation, or AMOC, transports warm, salty water from the tropics northward at the ocean surface and cold water southward at the ocean bottom.
“The Atlantic Meridional Overturning really is one of our planet’s key circulation systems,” said the author of the study, Niklas Boers from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany.
Findings from a similar 2018 study drew comparisons to the scientifically inaccurate 2004 disaster movie “The Day After Tomorrow,” which used such an ocean current shutdown as the premise of the film. At the time, study authors said a collapse was at least decades away but would be a catastrophe.
A potential collapse of this ocean current system would have severe consequences around the globe, authors of the new study said.
If this circulation shuts down, it could bring extreme cold to Europe and parts of North America, raise sea levels along the U.S. East Coast and disrupt seasonal monsoons that provide water to much of the world, the Washington Post said.
It would also further endanger the Amazon rainforest and Antarctic ice sheets, according to the Guardian.
Researchers who study ancient climate change have also uncovered evidence that the AMOC can turn off abruptly, causing wild temperature swings and other dramatic shifts in global weather systems, the Post said.
She bore a male Child who was to rule all nations with a rod of iron. And her Child was caught up to God and His throne.
The “male Child” represents all Christians who will be “caught up” (I Thess. 4:16-17) at the time of the Rapture.
Why it matters:
We must be ready for the Lord to rescue us at any time, but we must also be prepared to take necessary actions when faced with disasters such as hurricanes, floods and wildfires. 95% of all survival situations are resolved within 72 hours, but the first 72 hours are extremely critical.
In any disaster, it’s a good idea to plan to have what you need during a period where you might get stuck in your home. Good advice is to treat today as though this is your last day to get what you need and be where you want to be.
There are many natural disaster preparedness measures you can take to get yourself and your family ready for a natural disaster, including tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, flash floods, and wildfires. You want to be prepared for any and all emergencies so you can stay safe if and when something unprecedented happens.
Put together a natural disaster preparedness kit to be used for emergencies. You’ll need basic necessities like food, water, first aid supplies, and other emergency equipment that you might already have around the house – think flashlights and duct tape. Having all of this together in one place instead of scattered around your home will help you feel organized and ready if anything dangerous happens.
A disaster can easily disrupt the food supply at any time, so plan to have at least a 3-day supply of food on hand.
Keep foods that:
- Have a long storage life
- Require little or no cooking, water, or refrigeration, in case utilities are disrupted
- Meet the needs of babies or other family members who are on special diets
- Meet pets’ needs
- Are not very salty or spicy, as these foods increase the need for drinking water, which may be in short supply
A sensible grocery list can include:
Dry grains: Rice, quinoa, oats, cornmeal (for polenta).
Beans: dried or canned.
Tinned fish: tuna, tasty cans of smoked sardines, or mackerel.
A couple varieties of nut butter and tahini.
Flour (you can add water, salt, and a leavening agent like baking soda or powder to make biscuits, tortillas, and crackers).
Onions (they keep for weeks when stored in a cool, dark place).
Hardy veggies: broccoli, celery, carrots, and kale (they stay fresh for a long time in your fridge).
Bananas (when they start to turn, freeze for smoothies or bake into banana bread).
Frozen peas (add to soups and pastas).
Frozen sausage (just one link can go a long way in adding flavor to a dish).
Bag of frozen shrimp.
Sliced bread (pop it in your freezer, will last a long time).
Taste boosters: soy sauce, mayo, ketchup, fruit jam, Dijon mustard, Parmesan cheese, olives, capers.
He was praying in a certain place, and when He finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John also taught his disciples.”
He said to them, “Whenever you pray, say:
Your name be honored as holy.
Your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,
for we ourselves also forgive everyone
in debt to us.
And do not bring us into temptation.
But deliver us from the evil one” (Luke 11:1-4)
Lord, I bring my requests before your throne, and…
I ask you, Father, in Jesus’ name:
Most assuredly, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in My name He will give you. Until now you have asked nothing in My name. Ask, and you will receive, that your joy may be full. (John 16:23-24)
I ask, believing that I have received the answer to my request:
Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them. (Mark 11:24)
I ask for things that please you:
Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him. (1 John 5:14-15)
I ask while obeying your commands:
And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight. (1 John 3:22)
I ask that the Son may bring glory to the Father:
And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. (John 14:13-14)
I ask, while remaining in Jesus:
If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. (John 15:7)
I ask, because you care for me:
Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:6-7)
I ask, because you will meet all my needs:
And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus.(Philippians 4:19)
I ask, while confessing and repenting of my sin:
If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear. (Psalm 66:18)
I ask, while forgiving all others who have sinned against me:
And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. (Matthew 6:12)
I ask, while offering a sacrifice of praise:
Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name. (Hebrews 13:15)
Love Your Neighbors as Yourself
The prayer of faith will save the sick person, and the Lord will restore him to health; if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to one another and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The urgent request of a righteous person is very powerful in its effect. (James 5:15-16)
For if you forgive people their wrongdoing, your heavenly Father will forgive you as well. But if you don’t forgive people, your Father will not forgive your wrongdoing. (Matthew 6:15)
…if you offer yourself to the hungry,
and satisfy the afflicted one,
then your light will shine in the darkness,
and your night will be like noonday.
The Lord will always lead you,
satisfy you in a parched land,
and strengthen your bones.
You will be like a watered garden
and like a spring whose waters never run dry. (Isaiah 58:10-11)
When praying for the sick, allow the Holy Spirit to guide you. The words we use, the commands we give, and the authoritarian actions we take are infused with much greater power if the Holy Spirit directs them. Seek specific insight from the Holy Spirit on what and how to pray. Perhaps there are ‘hidden’ causes to the person’s condition, and without the Holy Spirit’s insight, those ‘hidden’ causes may never be addressed. If the sick person is an unbeliever, healing can provide you with an evangelistic entry point into their lives.
Forgiveness is not a mystical, unattainable thing. If you are holding a grudge against anyone for anything, then admit that you are hurt or angry. Take your decision to forgive to God, and through the Holy Spirit, let go of the offense. When past offenses come to your mind, say, “No, in the name of Jesus, I forgive that person.” All bitterness, anger and wrath, shouting and slander must be removed from you, along with all malice. And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ. (Ephesians 4:31-32)
Practical acts of charity can include holding open a door for someone, offering assistance, and helping someone trying to get a stroller down the steps. Every small interaction with another is an opportunity to have a positive impact on both of your lives. When you look, you’ll find opportunities to perform random acts of kindness:
- Donating to your favorite charity
- Letting someone else go first in a line
- Giving someone a compliment, and spread encouragement online
- Lending a hand to a neighbor or coworker
- Volunteering at a local charity or church
- Paying for the person behind you
- Giving a big tip to someone who served you
One of the most important and fulfilling parts of being a follower of Christ is leading someone to receive salvation and start a relationship with the Lord. Leading a non-believer towards Christ is an extremely rewarding experience. As you operate in a selfless mode, the ways to help others is endless!
“Lord, reveal to me the end of my life
and the number of my days.
Let me know how short-lived I am.
You, indeed, have made my days short in length,
and my life span as nothing in Your sight.
Yes, every mortal man is only a vapor. (Psalm 39:4-5)
My eager expectation and hope is that I will not be ashamed about anything, but that now as always, with all boldness, Christ will be highly honored in my body, whether by life or by death. For me, living is Christ and dying is gain. (Philippians 1:20-21)
Be ready for service and have your lamps lit. You must be like people waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet so that when he comes and knocks, they can open the door for him at once. (Luke 12:35-36)
Doomscrolling and doomsurfing are new terms referring to the tendency to continue to surf or scroll through bad news, even though that news is saddening, disheartening, or depressing.
It’s been said that 90 percent of the things we worry or become panicked about never happen, and the other 10 percent are outside our control.
But, no matter what happens, we will all face death eventually. Thanks to Jesus, we can come to that day with confidence. Like Paul, we can remember that to live is Christ, but to die is gain (Phil. 1:21).
We truly have nothing ultimate to fear—not from natural disasters or anything else.
“Whenever you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites, because they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by people. I assure you: They’ve got their reward! But when you pray, go into your private room, shut your door, and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. When you pray, don’t babble like the idolaters, since they imagine they’ll be heard for their many words. Don’t be like them, because your Father knows the things you need before you ask Him.”
For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God.
For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. Not only that, but we also who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.
If you are not sure that you are saved, you can accept Christ into your life right now, by praying:
“Lord Jesus, I believe you are the Son of God. Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins. Please forgive my sins and give me the gift of eternal life. I ask you in to my life and heart to be my Lord and Savior.”
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shortangel, August 7, 2022
Romans 8:19-23 The created universe is waiting with eager expectation for God’s sons to be revealed. It was His choice to subject all things to mortality and decay, with the eventual goal of His people entering into the glorious liberty of immortality and a renewed creation. Up to the present as we know, the whole of creation, in all its parts, groans as if in the pangs of childbirth. What is more, we also, to whom the Spirit is given as first-fruits of the harvest to come, are inwardly groaning in anticipation of our adoption as children of God and our liberation from mortality.
Isaiah 42:13-15 The Lord has kept silence and restrained Himself for all this age, allowing this world to go its own way. But as the appointed time approaches, He is like a woman in labour, prepared and ready to take action. The Lord will go forth as a warrior, roused to a fury in the heat of battle. He will shout His battle cry and will triumph over His enemies. The land will be laid to waste, all the plants and trees will burn and the streams and lakes will become dry. Isaiah 63:4, Habakkuk 2:3, Jeremiah 4:23-28
Matthew 24:3-8 Lord; tell us the signs of the end of this age. Jesus replied: Take care that no-one misleads you, for many false Messiahs and teachers will come and many will be fooled by them. The time is coming when you will hear of wars and rumours of wars, for there will be an increase of wars, earthquakes, diseases and famines. All these things are the birth pangs of the new age. Jeremiah 15:2
As Jesus prophesied, there will be wars, earthquakes, diseases and famines at the end of this age. He likened these things to ‘birth pangs’. When we consider normal childbirth, the labour pangs are separated by periods of relative calm. So if there have been times when clusters of those four disasters have occurred, we can ascertain that time must be very short for this age. Here are the facts:
1/ In 1914-19, World War 1 occurred. There were 7 earthquakes of over 8 magnitude. Smallpox and typhus killed millions, but Spanish flu killed at least 50 million in 1918/19. There were terrible famines in Europe, and Russia.
2/ During 1939-45 there was World War 2 and 8 earthquakes of over 8 magnitude. Typhus again killed millions, in North Africa, in Iran and Europe. Anne Frank died of typhus. A terrible famine in China killed at least 45 million.
3/ The data suggests that the third ‘birth pang’, commenced in Nov. 11, 2001. Wars and rumours of wars are rife. It is considered that the global war on terrorism is a world war. There have been more than 20 earthquakes of 8 and two over 9 magnitude. Diseases such as cancer, AIDs and Covid are of epidemic proportions. Crop failures due to unusual weather and wars result in famines in Asia, Ukraine and Africa.
But the last, most shocking and devastating event of the third birth pang, will be the great Day of the Lord’s vengeance and wrath. This will be the many prophesied ‘fire from heaven’ that describes a huge Coronal Mass Ejection sunstrike, will affect the whole world, killing probably billions. This will enable two things; the establishment of a One World Government and the settling of the Lord’s faithful people into all of the holy Land. Isaiah 35, Ezekiel 34:11-16, Romans 9:24-26, +
The time gap of the Seventh Seal, Revelation 8:1, [1/2 hour in Heaven = 20 years on earth] from this CME until the Great Tribulation is prophesied as a time of peace and prosperity. After the three and a half year G.T. Jesus will Return for His Millennial reign.
4/ The fourth and final ‘birth pang’, will be the Great Tribulation, so vividly described in Revelation, but ending with the Return of Jesus and the birth of the Millennial era.
Keraz, August 7, 2022