Apologetics, End times, Main, z72
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US solar eclipse: Sign or coincidence? You decide


Photo from Hurricane Harvey, August 30, 2017 Credit: John Chandler/Flickr/Creative Commons

Photo from Hurricane Harvey, August 30, 2017 Credit: John Chandler/Flickr/Creative Commons

The total eclipse of the sun that cut a swath across the US on August 21, 2017 from Oregon to South Carolina has certainly garnered more than its share of attention in recent weeks with some wondering if it was a sign from God.

The Bible often connects solar eclipses with end times events (Amos 8:9). In the book of Genesis, we are told that the heavens were created to be a sign to people. God would speak to us through solar events:

14 Then God said, “Let there be lights in the expanse of the heavens to separate the day from the night, and let them be for signs and for seasons and for days and years; (Genesis 1:14 NASV)

However, eclipses are not an unusual phenomena. They happen regularly. However, the US has not seen a similar total eclipse fully crossing the country for 99 years.

Are all eclipses a sign? Probably not. But to suggest none of them are is equally wrong.

If this eclipse was God speaking to America, what has happened since:

Hurricane Harvey, Landfall August 24-25, 2017

Of course most are aware of the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey when it hit the US overnight on August 24-25, 2017 dumping a record 51.88 inches of rain.

It was the first major hurricane to hit the US since 2005. It resulted in 71 deaths (70 in the US and one in Guyana) and the rescue of 17,000 people including displacing 30,000 others.

Hurricane Harvey began developing in the Atlantic on August 17, 2017. Perhaps it was just a coincidence that the total solar eclipse passed over Harvey as it was forming.

North Korea fires ballistic missile over Japan, August 29, 2017

In what is described as unprecedented, North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan on August 29, 2017. The rogue nation has been sabre rattling for months, but this alarming move resulted in Japan issuing a warning to its citizens about the launch of the Hwasong-12 medium range ballistic missile capable of carrying a nuclear payload.

Japanese president Shinzo Abe said:

“This reckless act of launching a missile that flies over our country is an unprecedented, serious and important threat.”

Many believe, that North Korea leader Kim Jong-un was backing up a previous threat made to attack the United States’ territory of Guam, if provoked.

Jesus warned that conflicts would mark the end times:

You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes (Matthew 24:6-7 NASV)

And there are passages describing end times events that seem to suggest nuclear weapons:

12 Now this will be the plague with which the Lord will strike all the peoples who have gone to war against Jerusalem; their flesh will rot while they stand on their feet, and their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongue will rot in their mouth. (Zechariah 14:12 NASV)

Of course, the prophets who saw people’s flesh peeling off them while they were still standing would have no understanding of a nuclear attack and simply tried to explain it in words people of the day would understand — a plague.

Idaho earthquake swarm, September 2, 2017

On Saturday, September 2, 2017, Southeast Idaho was hit by nearly 100 small earthquakes and another 41 over the following few days.

Referred to as an earthquake swarm, nearly 20,000 people (as far away as Salt Lake City, Utah) reported feeling the largest tremor that hit 5.3 on the Richter scale on Saturday.

There was no damage or reported deaths, however, experts say these could be a warning that a larger earthquake, maybe as high as 7.0, is looming. It would be 50 times more powerful than a 5.3.

In an interview with the Idaho State Journal, Idaho University Geologist Dr. David Pearson said:

“There is most likely not going to be a larger earthquake, but there is the possibility of a larger one. I don’t want to say everything is fine here because there’s the possibility it won’t be.”

Of course, earthquakes are  one of the signs that Jesus pointed to as marking the end times:

11 and there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. (Luke 21:11 NASV)

UPDATE: In an article posted this morning, the Idaho State Journal reports that the earthquakes are intensifying with 20 more this morning, bringing the total to 200.

Solar Flare, September 6, 2017:

What probably isn’t as well-known is the massive solar flare that hit the world on September 6, 2017. Similar to the Hurricane Harvey, it was the largest solar flare to hit the earth in the last 12 years.

There were actually two X-class solar flares. The first called X2.2 was the largest seen in three years, but three hours later it was followed by a larger X9.3 flare, the largest seen since 2005.

That second flare actually disrupted high frequency radio communications for a full hour and as well low-level navigation communication . Flares are essentially massive explosions on the sun caused by a build up of magnetic energy. It results in a massive ejection of coronal mass.

There is a reference in the Book of Revelation that some wonder could be the result of a similar solar event or explosion:

Men were scorched with fierce heat; and they blasphemed the name of God who has the power over these plagues, and they did not repent so as to give Him glory. (Revelation 16:9 NASV)

 

Financial earthquake, reported September 7, 2017

There was also a tremor in the financial industry when a major credit agency, Equifax, reported one of the largest cyber hacks in American history. Though the hack took place between May and July, it was not reported until September 7, 2017.

Equifax allegedly discovered the hack on July 29th.

Some estimate that personal data from nearly 143 million Americans (half the US population) was stolen in the attack. The information ranged from addresses, credit card numbers, social security numbers and even driver licenses.

In an interview with the Financial Post, cyber security expert Paul Martini said:

“This is massive. This overshadows any breach that we have seen to date – not just in volume, the size, but the type of data that was in that data base.”

Massive Mexico earthquake, September 8, 2017

A massive earthquake registering 8.1 hit the southern coast of Mexico on 12:49 AM Friday, September 8, 2017. The quake occurred about 50 miles off shore and its tremors were felt a thousand miles away in Mexico City.

The quake that even triggered a small tsunami, destroyed a number of major buildings in the town of Juchitan.

To date, over 32 people are reported killed with many injured.  It was the largest earthquake to hit Mexico in the last century and was even larger than the quake that hit Mexico in 1985 that resulted in thousands of deaths.

In the Book of Revelation, severe earthquakes are mentioned five times. Here is one:

13 And in that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city fell; seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the rest were terrified and gave glory to the God of heaven. (Revelation 11:13 NASV)

Hurricane Irma, Landfall September 10, 2017

Classified as a category 4 hurricane with steady winds of 130 miles per hour, Irma made landfall in Florida at 9:10 ET this morning.  The winds are snapping Palm trees in half. Millions of people have already evacuated and we won’t know the full extent of its damage for a few hours.

In a video, posted on Facebook, Actor Kirk Cameron former star of the ABC sitcom Growing Pains said:

“When he puts his power on display, it’s never without reason. There’s a purpose. And we may not always understand what that purpose is, but we know it’s not random and we know that weather is sent to cause us to respond to God in humility, awe and repentance.”

Others are warning that another hurricane, Jose, could be building and may be heading for the US. Potential landing spot would be New York.  America hasn’t been hit by a hurricane for 12 years and now two have hit in one year and a third, Jose, and perhaps even a fourth, Katrina, may be on their way.

CNN reported on what meteorologist Philip Klotzbach had to say about the unusual events taking place in the Atlantic this year:

“This is the first time on record that the Atlantic has had two hurricanes with winds of more than 150 mph at the same time, Colorado State University meteorologist Philip Klotzbach said.”

So was the August 21st total eclipse a sign to America or coincidence? I am not claiming to know the mind of God in this matter. Each of us have to come to our own decision on this.

Whatever the case, God’s intent is not to judge America, but to draw Americans back to Himself.

Sources:

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