Wise Words

"Wait on the Lord, be strong and of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart...wait on the Lord. Psalms 27:14


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Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Once more, with feeling...

This will be the last part of Part Three of this special series before I go into what the last generation is and in a way, this article I am posting starts to tie in the signs of the End Times and the generation that will witness them. Jack Kinsella, founder and editor of the Omega Letter really hit it out of the park yesterday with his latest briefing on the "Signs of the End Times". I just had to post this for everyone who comes across my blog to read so that they can understand just how close we are to the End Times. This briefing is being posted in its etirity without any edits.
The 'Fear Factor'

I am not much for Stephen King novels, although I admit his talent is enormous. I've read several that I liked, but I've read more that I didn't.

King is a compelling writer; its just that his chosen genre is not my cup of tea.
That said, one of Steven King's novels, "The Stand" was made into a miniseries a few years ago. It was an apocalyptic morality tale that openly pitted good versus evil.

The story begins with the emergence of a strange killer virus simply called "The Flu".

The Flu races through the population, killing all but a handful of survivors with a natural immunity to the strain. King's depiction of the horror associated with such a pandemic certainly earned him his title as King of the Horror Novelists -- one is drawn into the story inexorably, relentlessly. . .

I felt much the same sense of horror as I was researching the new H5N1 'bird flu' virus that I felt reading King's "The Stand".

To summarize, the bird flu known as H5N1 is shaping up to become a global pandemic on a level not seen since the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic that swept the planet in the wake of World War I.

The Spanish Flu killed more people in six months than were killed in the four years of the First World War. It killed more humans than any other disease of similar duration in the history of the world, says Alfred W. Crosby, who wrote a history of the 1918 pandemic.

It killed so quickly that a man could be perfectly healthy one morning and be dead by nightfall. It is estimated that the death toll from the 1918 Spanish Flu was between fifty and one hundred MILLION people.

H5N1 is known to have infected 117 people in Asia so far. It killed sixty people, MORE THAN HALF of those known to be infected. The fear is that the bird flu virus could evolve into a form that is easily spread among humans.

That could happen if a person who had a case of the ordinary human flu became infected with bird flu. The two viruses could recombine inside the victim's body, creating a hybrid transmissible between humans the way ordinary flu virus is transmitted, but with H5N1's destructive capabilities.

H5N1 is a new flu virus strain, which means that humans have no natural immunity to it. An immunity is developed when a person contracts the disease and then fights it off. If the disease never existed before, there is no way to be immune.

Because of that, its effects are more severe and put an even greater number of people at risk of succumbing to the virus.

The World Health Organization announced Friday that H5N1 is showing signs that it can evade what is currently our first line defensive drug, Tamiflu. And that it has found a way to transmit itself from one human to another.

They found so-called resistant strains in a Vietnamese girl who recovered from a bird flu infection after being treated with Tamiflu. They also found evidence she was directly infected by her brother and not by chickens, a rare case of human-to-human transmission of the virus.

At present, the World Health Organization says “the main route of human infection” from birds is direct contact with infected poultry, or surfaces and objects contaminated by their droppings.

The report, to be published in the journal Nature next week, is bad news for doctors who already have precious little in the arsenal against bird flu should it become a human disease.

Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt said Saturday that his tour of Thailand, Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam convinced him that the chances of containing the virus, should it mutate, "are not good."

There is no medicine to cure it. Antibiotics won't work. There is an experimental vaccine for H5N1. But at present, there is nowhere nearly enough to inoculate everyone against the virus -- the US has a contract with Sanofi Pasteur to supply two million doses.

Since the current annual vaccine-production capacity worldwide is about 1 billion doses of the 15 microgram–antigen vaccine, right now we have the ability to produce less than enough vaccine for 100 million people in the first year of a pandemic -- or less than 2% of the 6.5-billion world population.

According to some experts, if avian flu becomes a pandemic, there will be two types of people in the world: those who are exposed to it and die, and those who are exposed to it and live.


One can almost taste the fear. It isn't just The Flu. It's everything. Consider some recent headlines: "2005 Second Hottest on Record", for example.

Within the body of the story we read that the five hottest years on record were the first five years of the 21st century.

This morning, forecasters are warning of a potential Category 3 Hurricane Wilma that, at this moment, is tracking back into the Gulf of Mexico, threatening the already devastated Gulf Coast.

With six weeks left to go in the Atlantic Hurricane season, Wilma is also noteworthy for being the last hurricane on the official names list.

That is another record event. The contingency plan (never used) is to roll over to the Greek alphabet. The storm that follows 'Wilma' will be called 'Alpha'. That has never happened before in the history of meteorology.

The Atlantic Coast was flooded by a series of freak storms that dumped as much as two feet of rain in some places previously stricken by drought. The resulting flooding has caused tens of millions of dollars in damages and a number of deaths.

The death toll from last week's earthquake in Pakistan was revised upward to 54,000 and the Pak government says it expects the final toll to exceed one hundred thousand people.

The devastation is being spoken of in the same terms as were used to describe the Asian tsunami, which claimed a quarter million lives.

In economic terms, there have been only 19 disasters in history that have caused more than $1 billion in damages. Every one of them struck after 1983.

According to the Reinsurance Association of America (RAA), nearly 50 percent of the insured losses from natural catastrophes during the past 40 years have been incurred since 1990. That represents a fifteen-fold increase over the past fifteen years.

When we aren't rolling our eyes in fear at the non-stop natural assault on human civilization, we are looking over our shoulders nervously at strangers carrying back packs, while the government continues to install sniffer-devices designed to detect nuclear and biological weapons on the streets of our cities.

Not just in America, but in Europe, Russia, Australia, the UK and any other nation or region that has caught the attention of Islamic terrorism. In almost every instance, the threat is in some way related to that nation or region's relationship with Israel.

Social scientists the world over bemoan the impending collapse of civilization as we know it, as such basic social building blocks like the family unit become increasingly anachronistic.

Note also that these seemingly unrelated trends coming upon THIS generation, are, according to the virtually unanimous verdict of scientists, economists and sociologists, increasing in both frequency and intensity.

Try to imagine, if you can, what this world will look like after twenty years of annual Katrinas, killer earthquakes, floods, global pandemics and terrorism. New Orleans, one of America's oldest cities, has been destroyed not once, but twice, in a single hurricane season. And it is at risk of being 'destroyed' (if that is possible), yet a third time, should Wilma continue on her forecast path.

Some commentators and pundits have noted a palpable increase of fear, something that is beginning to show up statistically as plummeting consumer confidence levels.
(One can learn a lot about what people fear by watching where they put their money).

A few years ago, these trends were only noticeable if one tracked them carefully. Those who noted the trends were dismissed as 'alarmists'. Those who related the trends to the prophecies of the Bible were dismissed as members of the religious lunatic fringe.

While Bible prophecy may be dismissed as 'doom and gloom' it is actually exactly the opposite. It is really cause for celebration. The fulfillment of Bible prophecy in this generation, on schedule and in precise order, is our assurance that what is going on all around us is controlled chaos.

It is proof positive that God remains on His Throne. It is proof positive that we are not following "cunningly devised fables" (2nd Peter 1:16) but rather, we ourselves are "eyewitnesses of His Majesty."

Jesus warned of earthquakes, famines and wars, all of which He noted, would increase in frequency and intensity as the time approached.

He warned of "signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; 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)

That 'distress of nations' is so palpable that national governments globally are spending billions combing the sky for the Next Killer Asteroid on a par with the one that evolutionists say killed off the dinosaurs 85 million years ago.

The UN is warning of an ever-increasing level of disasters in the years ahead. Wrote UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in September, 1999;

"The tragic earthquake in Greece and the enormous devastation and suffering wrought by the recent earthquake in Turkey are reminders of one of the most pressing challenges of our time: the extraordinary increase in the number and extent of natural disasters."

Note that Annan wrote that column, entitled, "An Increasing Vulnerability to Natural Disasters" more than six years ago.

To argue that the current scenario does not comport to the scenario outlined by Bible prophecy for the last days requires one of two things.

Either a complete ignorance of what Bible prophecy forecasts, or a blind faith in coincidence.

"Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts, And saying, Where is the promise of His coming? for since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of the creation." (2nd Peter 3:3-4)

The Promise of His coming is all around us.

"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)

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