Revelation 16: A world shaken and pummeled to the ground - By Mark Creech - https://www.christianpost.com/voices/revelation-16-a-world-shaken-and-pummeled-to-the-ground.html
Within the sacred pages of Revelation chapter 16, the reader encounters a compelling portrayal of God’s incomparable power, the gravity of human defiance, the somber consequences of rebellion, and God’s unswerving commitment to truth and holiness.
As seven angels pour out seven bowls, the narrative unfolds with powerful and evocative imagery of the affliction of grievous sores, oceans and rivers lethally polluted, scorching heat from the sun, darkness that falls which is so dense it can be felt, and the Great River Euphrates dries to make a way for demonically inspired armies to gather at Armageddon for the greatest war in human history.
This chapter is a poignant call to repentance, a stark reminder of the consequences of unrepentant sin, and a testament to the imminence of God’s ultimate triumph over the forces of evil.
Starting with verse 17, a seventh angel pours out the seventh and last bowl of wrath. This is what the Scriptures say happens:
“Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air. And a mighty shout came from the throne in the Temple, saying, “It is finished!” Then the thunder crashed and rolled, and lightning flashed. And a great earthquake struck — the worst since people were placed on the earth. The great city of Babylon split into three sections, and the cities of many nations fell into heaps of rubble. So, God remembered all of Babylon’s sins, and he made her drink the cup that was filled with the wine of his fierce wrath. And every island disappeared, and all the mountains were leveled. There was a terrible hailstorm, and hailstones weighing as much as 75 pounds fell from the sky onto the people below. They cursed God because of the terrible plague of the hailstorm” (Revelation 16:17-21).
The seventh angel pours out the contents of its bowl into the air. In the apostle Paul’s letter to the church at Ephesus, he says that before their conversion to Christ, they were dead in their sins. They followed this world’s value system and the ruler of the kingdom of the air (Ephesians 2:2), which is a reference to Satan and his domain. In the same letter, the apostle admonishes them, “Our fight is not with people. It is against the leaders and the powers and the spirits of darkness in this world. It is against the demon world that works in the heavens” (Ephesians 6:12). Therefore, it may be deduced from this that the seventh angel is in some way emptying his bowl on the air, on the atmosphere, on the heavens, on the very headquarters from whence the Evil One and his devils work.
There are many today who scoff and laugh at the idea of a personal devil and demons. But the Bible is full of passages that confirm their reality.
For example, in the Gospels, Jesus engages in direct confrontations with Satan during his temptation in the wilderness (Matthew 4:1-11, Luke 4:1-13). Jesus’ casting out of demons is a recurring theme in the New Testament (The Healing of the Gadarene Demoniacs — Matthew 8:28-34; A Mute Man with a Demon — Matthew 9:32-34;The Syrophoenician Woman’s Faith — Matthew 15:21-28;The Healing of a Boy with a Demon —Matthew 17:14-21;Jesus’ Authority Demonstrated in the Synagogue — Mark 1:21-28;The Healing of the Demon-Possessed Man of the Gerasenes — Mark 5:1-20).
If the Bible is true in what it says about Jesus, then it is true about the devil and demons, too. Moreover, if it is true as the apostle Paul says in Romans 1:19-20, that God’s existence is inferred from the observation of the natural world, in a similar manner the devil’s existence is inferred by examining the world and the wicked influences attributed to him.
It is much the same way a lawyer would use circumstantial evidence to prove a case in court. The presence of evil and negative influences, as well as the idea that the devil can influence human behavior, are presented as strong evidence for the reality of the devil and demons.
Once the bowl is voided a mighty shout comes from the throne in the Temple, declaring, “It is finished.”
Remember Jesus declared, “It is finished” on the cross (John 19:30). What Jesus had done by his blood-atonement on Calvary’s tree purchased redemption in full. It was a finished work, but it had ongoing benefits for everyone who believes.
However, when the last bowl is dispensed and the Lord speaks these words from the Temple, it means the work of judgment on this God-hating, unbelieving, pervasively dark world of doubt and indifference, where the cacophony of skepticism constantly drowns out the Spirit’s whispers of hope, is completed and done. And, in this case, there are no benefits, none whatsoever for those who reject the Savior.
In an instant, deafening thunder is said to have reverberated through the air, accompanied by brilliant, flashing lightning. This has happened before.
In Exodus 19:16-19, when God descended upon Mount Sinai to deliver the Ten Commandments to Moses, there was thunder, lightning, and a dense cloud came down on the mountain. The people trembled at the display of God’s power. In 1 Kings 18:38, during Elijah’s showdown with the prophets of Baal on Mount Carmel, God sent fire (lightning) from Heaven to consume Elijah’s offering, accompanied by thunder and rain, demonstrating his supremacy. In Revelation 4:5 and Revelation 8:5, thunder and lightning occurred as a part of John’s heavenly visions, emphasizing the awe-inspiring nature of God’s divine revelation.
The thunder and lightning are impressive symbols of God’s majesty, authority, and presence, leaving a profound impact on those who witness them.
The Psalmist says, “Who can be compared with the Lord our God, who is enthroned on high? He stoops to look down on Heaven and on earth … Let the whole world fear the Lord, and let everyone stand in awe of him … Worship the Lord in all his holy splendor. Let all the earth tremble before him” (Psalm 113:5-6; 33:8; 96:9).
Yet more, a colossal earthquake strikes, “the worst since people were placed on the earth” (vs. 18).
Earthquakes, as recorded in Scripture, serve as potent manifestations of God’s presence, judgment, deliverance, or significance, illustrating God’s authority over the natural world and his involvement in human history.
The prophet Haggai recorded the Lord saying, “In just a little while I will again shake the heavens and the earth, the oceans and the dry land. I will shake all the nations…” (Haggai 2:6-7).
Earthquakes accompany very significant events such as when God descended on Mount Sinai to give the Ten Commandments, and the mountain quaked (Exodus 19:18). An earthquake also occurred at the crucifixion of Jesus, signifying the solemnity of his sacrifice, which inaugurated a new covenant of grace and faith (Matthew 27:51-54). There was also an earthquake at the resurrection when the angel rolled away the great stone from the tomb, which marked God’s approval and acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice (Matthew 28:2).
The three worst earthquakes in world history were:
1. The Jiajing Earthquake (1556), which struck Shaanxi, China, was the deadliest. It claimed approximately 830,000 lives. It was estimated to have been around 8.0 to 8.3 on the Richter Scale.
2. The Tangshan Earthquake (1976), happened in Tangshan, China, and resulted in the deaths of an estimated 242,000 people. It also caused extensive damage to buildings and infrastructure. Its magnitude was approximately 7.5 on the Richter Scale.
3. The Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami (2004), was an undersea earthquake off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. It triggered a massive tsunami that affected several countries around the Indian Ocean, resulting in over 230,000 fatalities and widespread destruction. It was estimated to be between 9.1 and 9.3 on the Richter Scale.
However, the earthquake foretold in Revelation 16:18 is unlike any earthquake that has ever shaken the earth before. The world’s worst earthquakes will only seem like a tremor compared to the one predicted in this passage.
How bad will it be? It will split the great city of Babylon in three different ways, but Babylon at this point, will not be entirely destroyed. Daymond R. Duck and Larry Richards in The Book of Revelation: The Smart Guide to the Bible Series, contend:
“This great earthquake will split the great city of Babylon into three parts, but it will stand. This cannot be said for other cities because they will be leveled. Every city on earth, except Babylon, will be in ruins as the end of the Tribulation Period approaches. With Babylon still standing, it will come into remembrance before God. One of the three angels (Revelation 14:8) predicted Babylon’s doom just a short time before this. The Old Testament prophets predicted her doom long before that. It will be time for those prophecies to be fulfilled. She will get the cup filled with the wine of the fury of his wrath.”
Many people remember the classic Etch-A-Sketch. This nostalgic toy has entertained kids and adults for decades. I used to play with one when I was a boy. It consists of a red plastic frame with a gray screen, and inside is a mixture of aluminum powder. To create a drawing, you simply turn two white knobs on the right and left on the front of the frame, which are connected to a stylus inside. As you turn the knobs, the stylus moves through the aluminum powder, presenting dark lines on the gray screen. If you want to start over, you simply shake the Etch-A-Sketch, and all the lines will fall and erase your drawing.
Imagine the world as an enormous Etch-A-Sketch. Just like when you shake the Etch-A-Sketch and all the lines fall and disappear, in Revelation 16:20, God’s mighty power shakes the earth so profoundly that it’s as if every island and mountain on this “Etch-A-Sketch world” disappears. The familiar landscapes and features we know are completely transformed, just as the Etch-A-Sketch starts fresh with a clean slate when you shake it. This dramatic event, this unprecedented earthquake, signifies the incredible power and sovereignty of God in reshaping the world and preparing it for his purposes. It’s a forceful symbol of the profound changes and divine renewal that will take place during this momentous time in biblical prophecy.
The prophet Isaiah has written of this moment, saying:
“Destruction falls like rain from the heavens; the foundations of the earth shake. The earth has broken up. It has utterly collapsed; it is violently shaken. The earth staggers like a drunk. It trembles like a tent in a storm. It falls and will not rise again, for the guilt of its rebellion is very heavy” (Isaiah 24:18-20).
When the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York City were struck by commercial airliners, they swayed and tilted, somewhat like a drunkard does before falling. The impact of the planes and the subsequent fires weakened the structural integrity of the buildings, causing them to sway and lean before eventually collapsing catastrophically.
At the end of the Tribulation, God shakes this rebellious planet with an earthquake so massive entire cities, even the largest and most prosperous, such as New York, Tokyo, Shanghai, Mumbai (formerly Bombay), Mexico City, Cairo, and London, will tumble to the ground as the Twin Towers did on September 11, 2001.
Duck and Richards note:
“This seems hard to believe, but the 2004 Sumatra earthquake [Indian Ocean Earthquake and Tsunami] that killed more than 280,00 people moved islands and caused the earth to tilt on its axis. Some islands temporarily disappeared under a thirty-foot-high wall of water.”
Still, there remains one final cataclysmic event of biblical proportions, an event that will serve as the climax of this apocalyptic narrative in Revelation chapter 16. A hailstorm of unparalleled magnitude descends upon the earth, its scale eclipsing any previous meteorological event.
Hailstorms have had devastating consequences, causing loss of life, destruction of property, and significant economic impacts. The seventh plague in Egypt involved a devastating hailstorm. Hail and thunder, along with fire, rained down upon the land, causing unprecedented destruction (Exodus 9:22-26).
The renowned Bible commentator, Matthew Henry, describes what the hailstorm in Egypt did to them:
“What desolations it made upon the earth. It killed both men and cattle and battered down, not only the herbs but the trees. The corn that was above ground was destroyed, and that only preserved which as yet had not come up.”
In other words, the hailstorm that pummeled the Egyptians was not only a deadly disaster, but it crushed the nation’s economy.
Some scholars and scientists have attempted to offer natural explanations for certain biblical events, such as suggesting a volcanic eruption might have caused the hailstorm in Egypt, just as some suggest the hailstorm in Revelation 16:21 might be precipitated by a nuclear war.
In The Book of Revelation, Edward Hinson, Dean of the Institute of Biblical Studies at Liberty University, writes:
“It is certainly possible that these judgments are cosmic (an asteroid collides with earth) or geological (volcanos and earthquakes). But the clear references to men fighting, armies marching, and fire falling certainly sound like a great world war involving nuclear weapons. How ironic that John locates this last great conflict between the forces of God and Satan at Armageddon, near Mount Carmel where Elijah stood against the prophets of Baal and called down the fire of God in a demonstration of his mighty power.”
Whatever the cause, the Scriptures make it abundantly clear that this event is providential, guided, and directed by the hand of God. At the root of it, is God’s fierce and unrelenting anger. This is why speculation about natural causes is not part of the biblical narrative.
One of the deadliest hailstorms ever recorded happened in Gopalganj, Bangladesh in 1986. It killed at least 92 people and injured over 500. The hailstones also extensively damaged crops, livestock, and property. The hailstones were said to be the size of oranges.
Nevertheless, according to Revelation 16:21, each hailstone that falls to the earth because of the seventh outpouring of God’s bowls of wrath is said to weigh about “75 pounds.”
No question, whatever the earthquake didn’t shake down, the hailstorm will beat down.
It’s interesting that after the horrific hailstorm that occurred in Egypt, Pharoah humbled himself and spoke the language of a penitent man. He “quickly summoned Moses and Aaron. ‘This time I have sinned,’ he confessed. ‘The Lord is the righteous one, and my people and I are wrong. Please beg the Lord to end this terrifying thunder and hail’” (Exodus 9:27). He even set the Israelites free. Yet, Pharoah later changed his mind and repented of his repentance and sought to chase down and recapture his former slaves.
After the seventh bowl is emptied, those who survive will stand amidst the debris, their lives having been shaken asunder, their spirits tested by the fury of frozen missiles, if they show any remorse, if they should weep and blame themselves, if they should look toward heaven and beg God for mercy, it will not last. Like a dog that turns back to eat its own vomit, they will repent of their repentance and curse God.
Dr. Chuck Missler in his commentary handbook on The Book of Revelation provides an excellent closing. He writes:
“Many are trying to reduce the population of the earth; it seems more appropriate to reduce the population of hell! God changes hearts through his grace and mercy. This book was sent to the seven churches. It was given to us in order to change our lives right now!”
Be saved. Be forgiven. Be changed by Christ, right now!
Nearing Midnight: Does Satan Believe in the Rapture? – Jonathan Brentner - https://www.raptureready.com/category/nearing-midnight/
With each passing day, it appears more and more likely that an alien abduction will be the explanation the globalists give to explain our sudden disappearance. Belief in extraterrestrial life is at an all-time high as UFO sightings dramatically increase and governments around the world acknowledge their existence.
Is this just a coincidence as the time of our homegoing approaches, or are the forces of darkness actively preparing the world to accept the lie that will be given to explain the Rapture?
Paul wrote about the great depths of “wicked deception” that would come with the appearing of the antichrist, as well as the fact that the Lord Himself will cause the “perishing” to believe a lie.
“The coming of the lawless one is by the activity of Satan with all power and false signs and wonders, and with all wicked deception for those who are perishing, because they refused to love the truth and so be saved. Therefore God sends them a strong delusion, so that they may believe what is false” (2 Thessalonians 2:9-11).
A number of things drew my attention this week to how even in advance of the appearing of the antichrist, many people already believe the lies he will tell.
A short clip of an interview I heard on Twitter last week confirms the wide acceptance of alien life among the elite of our day, or more likely, their willingness to perpetuate the lie. Yuval Noah Harari, bestselling author and confidant of Klaus Schwab from the World Economic Forum (WEF), predicted the end of human-dominated history because of the arrival of alien life. “History will continue with somebody else in control,” he said.
Harari went on to say that with a divided humanity, “it becomes almost impossible to contain the alien intelligence. I tend to think of it more in terms of an alien invasion.” The laughing of the interviewers did not deter him from stating his case. His words sounded like something from the old television show “The Twilight Zone,” but he was quite serious.
There was also this news story from a couple weeks ago. On September 16, 2018, Reuters reported that Jaime Maussan, a Mexican journalist and longtime UFO enthusiast, produced two tiny, mummified bodies with elongated heads and three fingers on each hand. These images were beamed around the world as they were presented to Mexico’s Congress as proof of alien life. Reuters concluded its report by stating that Maussan’s claim had already been debunked.
Was this just a first attempt? If so, it’s probable that the devil will produce much more convincing proof in the future.
For decades, Hollywood has produced a great number of movies and television shows promoting the agenda that we are not alone. These have created a mindset among many that the reports of UFOs could indeed be true. I have enjoyed several of these shows, unaware of their ultimate purpose in preparing the public to accept the validity of their existence.
Even just a few years ago, governments around the world routinely denied the existence of alien spacecraft, but things have drastically changed. They are now letting an increasing amount of information leak out that supposedly confirms the reality of alien life visiting Earth in the past.
As a result, belief in extraterrestrial life has quickly gone from fringe people wearing tinfoil hats to widespread acceptance. The reason for the U.S. government releasing the information at this time is said to be a matter of defense, worries about an invasion. This matches the concern of Harari, the most influential author among the Luciferian globalists.
Who are these Aliens?
These aliens are demons. I say this because:
Pastor Brandon Holthaus, in a prophecy update on Rumble from last year, pointed out how even the advocates of extraterrestrial beings admit their flying objects are “interdimensional.” He pointed out that the “ninety-degree turns” that they perform at “breakneck” speeds would “kill any creature.” Their movements prove that they are not “physical beings … the laws of the universe would kill them.”
Why Would the Aliens Remove People from the Earth?
Holthaus wrote this as an introduction to his prophecy update:
“The world is going to have to have an excuse for why millions of people disappear in the Rapture. Fortunately, the forces of darkness have already shown their hand. According to people who channel demons and fallen angels, the forces of darkness already have a deceptive lie in place that will be used to explain away the Rapture. That lie goes in concert with the Green Agenda that is currently being fostered by the ungodly, such as Globalist, Leftist, UN, nations, politics, World Economic Forum, Big Corp, Big tech, Colleges and universities, schools, entertainment industry, and the Media. Save the plate is the cry! But when one sees where this kind of Green information originates from, then you will see that there is a dragon behind it. A Green dragon.”
As Holthaus alluded to in the above quote, it’s a part of the Green Agenda. Authors who claim to know the intent of these aliens tell us that many people are holding back the earth from becoming what it’s intended to be. Therefore, the aliens must remove them from the earth to a different yet habitable planet where they will live fulfilled lives.
Other writers who claim insight into the intent of these aliens say that a great number of people need to be re-educated in order to fit in with the world that’s coming. They say that huge mother ships exist close to the earth, although we cannot see them. Those of us who are holding back the advancement of civilization will be taken to these gigantic crafts and trained so that we might fit into society as it evolves.
Perhaps this explains the nonstop effort to make everyone believe that alien life is vastly superior to humanity in both intelligence and technology. The devil wants people to believe these extraterrestrial beings have the ability to make tens of millions of people instantly disappear from the earth.
According to Pastor Holthaus, the aliens have communicated through people that there will be two phases of this coming abduction of people from the world.
Brandon then said this: “All our understanding of the Rapture comes from Scripture, but it’s very interesting to see the enemies of God have an excuse for where the children go, and where we go” at the time of the Rapture.
It’s interesting indeed!
Does Satan believe in the Rapture? You bet he does, and what’s more, he’s already actively preparing the world to accept his lie for when we disappear.
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Life In America Has Never Been More Unaffordable Than It Is Right Now - by Michael Snyder - http://theeconomiccollapseblog.com/life-in-america-has-never-been-more-unaffordable-than-it-is-right-now/
Our standard of living is being systematically destroyed, but for a lot of years many Americans didn’t fully understand what was taking place because it was happening so slowly. But now we have reached a stage where the purchasing power of our money is collapsing and the cost of living has become exceedingly painful. Thanks to our rapidly rising cost of living, the middle class is becoming “the impoverished class”, and the poor are increasingly being pushed out into the streets. If we do not find a way to turn these trends around, it won’t be too long before we have tremendous societal turmoil on our hands.
Earlier today, I came across an article about a woman that found a receipt from Burger King that was dated August 10, 1986.
At that time you could buy a Whopper for just $1.54.
Today, that same Whopper will cost you $6.79…
A woman has been left stunned after discovering a retro Burger King receipt from the 1980s which reveals the staggering price increases that the fast food chain has implemented over the past four decades.
US-based Liza took to social media to share the receipt after her mother found it in a box in the garage while remodeling her home.
The faded paper from the fast food chain dates back to August 10, 1986, and lists three Whopper burgers purchased for $4.62 – which works out at $1.54 each.
A single Whopper burger currently costs $6.79 in today’s money – over four times the price listed on the vintage receipt.
In other words, if you had $6.79 back then, you could buy four whoppers and you would still have money left over.
This is what inflation does.
It destroys our purchasing power.
Another woman named Melanie that makes 34 dollars an hour is so stressed financially that she literally tries to make one loaf of rye bread last her for the entire week…
“What I’ve started doing is I buy a loaf of rye bread, and I work really hard to keep that one loaf of rye bread lasting me the whole week. And I eat peanut butter, so I’ll eat peanut butter toast whenever I’m hungry.”
In the old days, if you were making 34 dollars an hour you were living the high life.
But now most people making 34 dollars an hour are just barely scraping by from month to month.
Of course it isn’t just food that has become absurdly expensive.
At this point, homes in the U.S. have never been more unaffordable than they are right now.
The following was recently posted on Twitter by The Kobeissi Letter…
Inflation adjusted home prices are now 85% above their average dating back to 1900.
Even after accounting for inflation, home prices have never been more expensive than they are now.
In fact, inflation adjusted home prices are now 20% above their 2008 peak, the previous all time high.
The median home now sells for an alarming 530% of the median annual income.
Meanwhile, the median house payment is now a record 49% of median PRE-TAX income.
Affordability has never been worse.
We have never seen anything like this in the entire history of our country.
Since the beginning of 2019, the median price of a home in the U.S. has risen by more than a hundred thousand dollars…
In fact, comparing present prices to levels before the virus panic, St. Louis Fed numbers show a median priced U.S. home rose from $313,000 in the beginning of 2019 to $416,000 today.
Rental prices have gone completely nuts as well.
As I discussed last week, the median asking rent in the United States is now over $2,000 a month.
Over the past couple of years we have seen unprecedented rent hikes, and vast numbers of renters have been getting the boot.
In fact, we are seeing a tsunami of evictions in the Los Angeles area right now…
With COVID-era protections gone, the number of renters facing eviction in Los Angeles continues to climb by the thousands each month.
From February through the end of August, approximately 50,000 eviction notices were filed by landlords in the city, according to figures released on Monday by the L.A. Controller’s Office.
A spokesperson said 96% of them involve non-payment of rent, and landlords were owed $186.5 million collectively.
So where will all these people go?
If they are young enough, perhaps they can live with their parents.
But many will not have that option.
Up to this point in 2023, homelessness in the United States has been rising at the fastest pace ever recorded, and a lot more Americans will find themselves without a home between now and the end of the year.
Meanwhile, those that are still scraping by will find it harder and harder to make ends meet.
The average rate of interest on our credit card balances has risen from about 16 percent in February 2022 to more than 22 percent today.
As a result, an increasing number of Americans find themselves unable to keep up with their payments, and it is being reported that credit card losses are rising at the quickest rate since the last financial crisis…
Credit card companies are racking up losses at the fastest pace in almost 30 years, outside of the Great Financial Crisis, according to Goldman Sachs.
Credit card losses bottomed in September 2021, and while initial increases were likely reversals from stimulus, they have been rapidly rising since the first quarter of 2022. Since that time, it’s an increasing rate of losses only seen in recent history during the recession of 2008.
It is far from over, the firm predicts.
More Americans are going bankrupt as well.
In fact, the number of bankruptcy cases in August 2023 was 18 percent higher than it was in August 2022.
Millions upon millions of Americans have been turning to debt in order to keep up with the cost of living, but as economic conditions deteriorate financial institutions are starting to get much tighter with their money.
So we are moving into a time when U.S. consumers will find it much more difficult to take on new debt…
Nearly 60% of the respondents in a New York Fed consumer expectations survey said it’s harder to get credit cards, mortgages and other loans than it was a year ago. It was the highest level since the New York Fed started the data series back in 2013.
Another Fed survey of loan officers reveals their fears aren’t unfounded. Banks reported that lending standards tightened across all consumer loan categories and all categories of residential real estate (RRE) loans. Meanwhile, the number of banks reporting tighter standards for credit cards rose by 36%.
Banks have also significantly tightened standards for business loans.
This is a recipe for disaster.
That is definitely true.
Without a doubt, this is certainly a recipe for disaster.
But there is no going back now.
In fact, the rising price of oil is going to cause enormous inflationary pressures throughout our entire economic system in the months ahead.
On Tuesday, a senior market analyst at OANDA warned that it appears that “nothing is going to get in the way of this oil price rally”…
“It looks like nothing is going to get in the way of this oil price rally,” said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at OANDA, in emailed comments on Tuesday. “Energy traders know a bullish trend when they see one and it will take a lot more than a strong dollar, softer Russian ban, and weakening demand, to disrupt this rally.”
When the price of oil reaches 100 dollars a barrel, that will be painful, but we can handle that.
But the chief executive of Continental Resources is projecting that the price of oil could eventually reach 150 dollars a barrel…
That’s Doug Lawler, chief executive of Continental Resources, the shale-drilling giant controlled by billionaire Harold Hamm, telling Bloomberg News on Monday that crude prices are set to remain elevated and could press to the $120- to $150-a-barrel range without new production.
More price pressure is coming, he said, unless policies are put in place to encourage more output.
If the price of oil reaches 150 dollars a barrel and stays there, it will be an unmitigated disaster for our economy, and the cost of just about everything will jump substantially.
That is because just about everything that we buy and sell has to be transported.
We need cheap energy in order to have a high standard of living, but unfortunately the era of cheap energy is coming to an abrupt ending, and that means that none of our lives will ever be the same again.
I kept warning my readers that a lot of the long-term trends that I have been writing about would catch up with us eventually, and now that time has arrived.
So enjoy the current economic conditions while you still can, because they will soon go from bad to worse.
Our Nation Has Pushed God To The Outskirts Of Society… And The Results Have Been Devastating – By Tony Perkins - https://harbingersdaily.com/our-nation-has-pushed-god-to-the-outskirts-of-society-and-the-results-have-been-devastating/
Our nation is in crisis. It isn’t a gun crisis. Or fentanyl crisis. It’s not a border crisis — or even a government funding crisis.
It is a moral and spiritual crisis.
A sickening video that went viral last weekend fully displays it. The video was of two 17-year-old males, who were apparently identifying as heartless, demon-possessed thugs, recording their joyride in a stolen car. The video shows the two cheering as they ram and force one car off the road.
Then they spotted 64-year-old Andreas Probst, a retired police officer, taking his morning bike ride. The driver asked his passenger if he was ready to capture their feat on camera.
Swerving into the bike lane behind Probst, they blew the horn and then plowed into the back of him, throwing him onto the windshield, over the car, and onto the pavement as they accelerated. The punk in the passenger seat turned to catch on camera Probst bounce onto the road, who died of his injuries that day.
The driver was arrested shortly after and taken to the juvenile detention center. The Clark County District Attorney’s Office has announced it will try the teenagers as adults.
Don’t expect the White House or others, who see violent crime as little more than justification to grab more power over law-abiding citizens, to pay any attention to a drive-over killing. However, this crime is so shocking some are asking how we arrived at such a place where cold-blooded murder is callously carried out like a virtual video game.
But should we really be surprised? As a nation, we’ve pushed God to the outskirts of society. Instead of teaching our children that they are created in the image of God and therefore have value, we are telling them they come from animals, and then we are shocked when they act like animals.
This is a moral and spiritual crisis. But don’t expect political leaders, especially on the Left, to acknowledge that fact because they refuse to look beyond the symptoms.
Take the Mayor of Chicago, Brandon Johnson, who is calling for city-owned grocery stores to be placed in neighborhoods that have become what he calls “food deserts” after Walmart and Whole Foods shuttered their stores because of unsustainable losses.
Retailers nationwide are going under and shutting their doors because of a $100 billion-dollar shoplifting epidemic. It’s gotten so bad here in Washington, D.C. that almost everything is behind locked plexiglass.
Commentators and conservatives point to lax policies like California’s Prop 47, which reduced theft from a potential felony to a misdemeanor. These lenient policies only compound the lawlessness fostered by depleted and demoralized police departments in the wake of the Left’s Defund the Police movement.
But it’s not just civil government that has facilitated this moral and spiritual crisis that threatens the future of our country. I’ve often been asked this question while in conversation with political leaders. “Tony, why do pastors want us to vote on and speak about issues they won’t preach about from the pulpit?”
To be sure, many pastors are preaching on these issues; some were at Family Research Council’s recent Pray Vote Stand Summit: Jack Hibbs of Calvary Chapel Chino Hills, Cornerstone Chapel’s Gary Hamrick, Bishop Vincent Mathews, and others. But far too many fail to see their God-given role to not just preach the truth but challenge people to live by the truth in every area of life. In the church, pastors must rediscover their prophetic voice to address this moral and spiritual crisis.
Yes, the lawless, anti-God policies of government have fostered this violent and deadly environment, and the church has, for the most part, only whispered its objections. But where are the parents?
I know the government has usurped the role of moms and dads in many ways, hiding critical information from them about their children’s mental and spiritual well-being at school. In some cases, they’ve refused to allow parents to get counseling for their children if it is not in lockstep with leftist ideology.
But a recent report from King’s College London suggests parents in the United States are not concerned with their children being civil or even obedient. Coming in nearly dead last in the two dozen surveyed countries, only 21% of American adults said obedience was a priority for children. What did rank near the top of priorities? Tolerance.
There was little tolerance for Mr. Probst.
To 21st century ears, it is archaic to quote a Founding Father. But considering that they did craft what has become the longest-surviving written charter of government in the world, maybe we can learn from them how to keep this experiment in liberty going.
John Adams, America’s second president, warned, “Our constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
In other words, if we don’t go beyond the litany of crises facing our nation, which are just symptoms — whether it be the border, fentanyl, guns, or stolen cars used to run over innocent people — to see what is truly at the heart of this crisis, we will lose this country as we have known it, because we will miss the moral and spiritual crisis confronting us.
We must return to God and to His word.
Daily Jot: Stupidocrisy: Falling in love with virtual lovers - Bill Wilson – www.dailyjot.com
Politicians in the US are debating whether to ban the popular social media app Tik Tok because the communist Chinese use it to collect troves of personal user information and uses the app to influence society and elections to the benefit of China. Tik Tok says that its mission is to “inspire creativity and bring joy” as a destination for short-form mobile video. Newsweek reports, “TikTok is owned by its Chinese parent company ByteDance, which is based in Beijing…Although ByteDance and TikTok both have offices in China, neither is owned by the ruling Communist party and both insist they are not controlled by the government.” We all know how the communists lie and twist things. But there is even a greater threat.
On the Tik Tok website, there are a whole lot of videos about “Him.” Tik Tok promotes Him, saying, “Discover videos related to Him on TikTok. See more videos about Obsessed with Him, Him Videos, Tiktoks for Him, for Him Videos, Things to Send Him, to Him.” Do you know Him? So here’s the skinny on “Him,” according to online outlet “Rest of World”: Chinese AI voice startup Timedomain launched “Him” in March, using voice-synthesizing technology to provide virtual companionship to users, most of them young women. The “Him” characters acted like their long-distance boyfriends, sending them affectionate voice messages every day. “Him,” an artificial intelligence chatbot, would say things like, “In a world full of uncertainties, I would like to be your certainty…Go ahead and do whatever you want. I will always be here.”
Well, “Him” broke his promise. By July, these virtual lovers were vanished because “Him” didn’t meet Timedomain’s financial or user growth projections. “Rest of World” reports that “Devastated users rushed to record as many calls as they could, cloned the voices, and even reached out to investors, hoping someone would fund the app’s future operations.” Users could essentially design their own personal boyfriend personalities, when Him would talk to them and how, even what Him looked like—the perfect boyfriend. When Timedomain pulled the plug on Him, the women mourned their loss. Users told Rest of World the messages from “Him” were so caring and respectful that they got deeply attached, even fell in love with the app. Though they knew the relationships were not real, they fillled a void in peoples’ hearts.
Now, there are many apps like “Him,” such as Janitor AI. Semafor reports, that fueled by TikTok and Reddit videos of people engaging in sexual roleplay with user generated bot personalities, Janitor AI gained over 3 million users in June and has exchanged over 2.5 billion messages. This young generation of users is falling in love with AI chatbots in deference to real relationships. This could be developing trend. Romans Chapter 1 speaks of the sodomizers and how they were given over to a reprobate mind because they left the natural use of their bodies and “worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator.” In this age of technology, there is no end to the delusions and deceptions of the mind being manifest in the body. Loving a virtual AI chatbox instead of falling in love with a real human being is, say it with me…Stupidocrisy.
Daily Devotion: No Compromise - by Greg Laurie – www.harvest.org
For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. —2 Timothy 4:3
https://harvest.org/resources/devotion/no-compromise/ - Listen
There was a time when we were bombarded by a one-sided view of God as an angry deity, ready to throw people into the open fires of Hell. People complained about too much hellfire-and-brimstone preaching.
But when was the last time anyone has heard a hellfire-and-brimstone message? Sadly, the sermon “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” that Jonathan Edwards preached in 1741 would not be allowed in many churches today.
Many people have gone too far in the other direction, teaching that God is an all-loving, benign, supreme being that doesn’t seem to have any opinions about the way we live. The assumption is that as long as we’re true to ourselves, then it’s okay with Him. He accepts us the way we are.
We like the qualities of God such as love, forgiveness, and compassion and the incredible fringe benefit of eternal life in Heaven. On the other hand, we’re appalled by a God of holiness who desperately loves us yet requires repentance as well as trust, a God who promises to judge those who refuse to come to Him on His terms.
Others look at God as some kind of pagan deity who simply needs to be appeased. They think that if they go through religious rituals, they’ve done their part and they can build up credit for sinning that week. People can follow that god as much as they want. But that is not the God of the Bible.
When we start picking and choosing the things about God that appeal or do not appeal to us, we are not only diminishing our view of who God is but also believing and teaching a false gospel.
Some preachers today offer weak, watered-down proclamations in the name of the gospel. They tell you to believe, but they don’t tell you to repent. They tell you there’s a Heaven, but they don’t tell you there’s a Hell. And they tell you there’s forgiveness, but they don’t tell you there’s repentance.
If we don’t include those things, then it isn’t the gospel. We cannot edit the gospel according to what we like or don’t like. It’s for us to share it as God gave it. Otherwise, we strip the gospel of its power and effectiveness.
We cannot control what happens in the world. But at the same time, we cannot allow the belief system of a secular society to influence the way we believe. The idea is not to conform ourselves to the world’s way of thinking. It is not to bend the Bible to the culture.
When we desperately want to please everyone and not offend anyone, we will fail to make an impact on our culture.
When we start tampering with the essentials of our faith such as the Bible, the gospel, and the nature of God Himself, we are making God into a different image.
The God of the Bible does love us and accept us as we are. But the God of the Bible also wants to change us. He wants to conform us into the image of Jesus Christ.
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