Sunday, November 18, 2007

Things That Go BOOM! - Nov 18

Alaska, Yellowstone and an Extreme Weather Quiz

Alaska, a sensitive area to our north, is warming up at a rate five times faster than the rest of the world. This has proven to be a boon to ecotourism as park personnel have to be retrained to answer visitor's questions. Glaciers are indeed melting and signs of warming appear everywhere. This old earth has gone through many cycles of warming and cooling. The fact that we are indeed going through one of these warming cycles is no reason for hysteria.

Did you know that Yellowstone Park is one of the most active geothermal places in the world? The entire place is a huge ancient supervolcano. Here are some interesting facts about this unique place:

1) The caldera floor is rising three inches (7 centimeters) per year over the past three years — more than three times faster since observations began in 1923.

2) The magma pushing up on the caldera is likely about 38 miles long and 13 miles wide, approximately the size of Los Angeles.

Here's an interesting Bible passage from Revelation 6:12-14

I beheld when he had opened the sixth seal, and, lo, there was a great earthquake; and the sun became black as sackcloth of hair, and the moon became as blood. The stars of heaven fell unto the earth, even as a fig tree casteth her untimely figs, when she is shaken of a mighty wind. The heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.

Does this not sound like a massive eruption is taking place? 'The heaven departing as a scroll' sounds very much a major explosion is taking place. An argument could be made that it could be a nuclear blast but from this description volcanic activity cannot be ruled out. The sun becoming black as a sackcloth of hair and the moon became as blood would frighten anyone. The amount of detritus in the atmosphere would block out the sunlight and discolor the sight of the moon. The 'stars of heaven falling to the earth' and being 'shaken of a mighty wind' sounds like pyroclastic flow. As well, earthquakes (and lightning) often accompany eruptions. Mountains and islands would be moved out of their places if the earthquake was large enough (though the actual displacement measured wouldn't have to be that large to fulfill this prophecy). Consider the Boxing Day tsunami of '04. A 9.0 earthquake that struck the Indian Ocean literally rang the earth like a bell for days afterward. And this wasn't even the largest earthquake ever recorded! A 9.5 was recorded at Chile on May 22, 1960.

So am I off track here? Only time will tell. If there is one point I'd like to make is this: The Bible is an unfailing prophetic lens through which we can see the future. It is both literal and trustworthy. Until this comes to pass, we'll have to wait and see. Mind you, I have no intention of actually being here when it happens. Hope that's true for you too.

Johnny Cash

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