Frightening scenes of the earth shaking in the Himalayan region, bringing death and destruction to Kathmandu while trapping climbers in an avalanche, are stark reminders of our insecurity on this planet.
I believe this is another prophetic sign from heaven as the mountain range known as the ‘rooftop of the world’ threatens to bring the ‘house’ down – that is, everything we have held safe and dear during our temporary stay on terra firma. It actually caused centuries-old temples to collapse.
The tetrad of blood-red moons falling on the key Jewish festivals of Pesach and Sukkot this year and last has certainly sparked much introspection. I have heard via the net of a so-called mystic rabbi who is urging Jews to repent in light of the coming judgment he says is being flagged up by this rare sequence of lunar eclipses, three of which have already been witnessed somewhere in the world. It is scheduled to be completed this autumn during the Feast of Tabernacles. This rabbi apparently predicts that U.S. President Barack Obama will be the instrument of judgment on Israel, but that Jews should be praying for the Messiah to rescue them.
I have also just heard from a friend in Jerusalem of how an Orthodox Jewish community there feels that the timing of a very unusual storm on the morning of Yom HaShoah, accompanied by lightning and much noisy thunder, was a warning from God to the whole nation to return to Him speedily in repentance and faith.
An end-time apocalyptic scenario is rapidly shaping up as Iran threatens to finish off the job started by Hitler with apparent support from Israel’s long-time ally led by a President naively believing promises of nuclear development are for peaceful purposes. Meanwhile Russia, which we were led to believe had thawed out from its Cold War stance, is once more raising its ugly head, even intimidating our own nation of Britain as RAF jets are scrambled to intercept potential spy planes.
Against such a scary backdrop, British politicians – faced with an election next week – choose to focus on ‘domestic’ issues, although I use that word advisedly as the main parties have already agreed, in a sort of ‘cover-up cartel’, that the breakdown of family life that has led to social chaos is not up for discussion.
Yet in a recent poll nearly half of Israelis believe another Holocaust could happen!
We have also heard in recent years of how the Messiah is reported to have appeared to a famous rabbi, Yitzhak Keduri, shortly before he died, revealing his name as Yeshua. Make of that what you will, but Jesus (Yeshua in Hebrew), whom Christians (and a growing number of Jews) worship as Messiah, predicted the shocking events we are witnessing today.
Quoting from Isaiah, when asked for signs of the end of the age, he said “the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light… nation will rise against nation… there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth-pains (i.e. they will become increasingly frequent and severe as the time for His coming draws near). Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me.” (Matthew 24, verses 7, 8 & 29)
A 15-year-old Pakistani Christian boy, beaten and set on fire by two Muslim men after acknowledging his faith in Jesus, was able to forgive his attackers before he died of his burns just days later – following in the footsteps of his Master who, as he hung in agony on a cruel Roman cross in Jerusalem, prayed: “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they are doing.”
In the same way, Christians in Niger, West Africa, have offered forgiveness to the Muslim fanatics who destroyed their homes and churches.
The prophet Haggai reports the Lord Almighty as saying: “In a little while I will once more shake the heavens and the earth, the sea and the dry land. I will shake all nations, and the desired of all nations will come, and I will fill this house with glory.” (Haggai 2.6, 7)
The New Testament Letter to the Hebrews reminds its hearers of this word, adding: “The words ‘once more’ indicate the removing of what can be shaken – that is, created things – so that what cannot be shaken may remain.” (Hebrews 12. 26, 27)
The world around us is tottering. But are we secure? Are we living in a world which cannot be shaken because of our absolute trust in the Lord?