- A Timeless article that can be applied today.
An END to Natural Disasters!
The Bible predicts that earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and weather upsets will continue to increase in the time just ahead. But there is good news beyond!
By Norman L. Shoaf
The Good News, April 1986
Never before have nature’s powerful forces exacted such high tolls in terms of destruction and human suffering!
Certainly, scattered calamities have occurred down through history. But now, the facts show that great disasters are actually increasing in number and in severity.
Bible prophecy reveals that the time is fast approaching when natural calamities will combine with man-made troubles and the actions of Satan the devil himself to threaten human life with extinction!
Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions and weather upsets are pouring out unprecedented fury on this planet.
Did you know that from 1901 to 1944, during more than four decades, only three earthquakes measured magnitude 7 or over? Magnitude 7 can be defined as a major earthquake that causes widespread, heavy damage. Then, in just 10 years from 1945 to 1954, the number leaped to 21 quakes measuring 7 or over.
From then on, large earthquakes have increased dramatically. From 1955 to 1964 — in just one decade — 87 earthquakes measured 7 or over; from 1965 to 1974, 136; from 1975 to 1984, 133. In just one year, 1980, 14 earthquakes measured magnitude 7 or over. Thirteen earthquakes magnitude 7 or over were recorded in 1981, 10 in 1982, 12 in 1983, 8 in 1984.
People in general, without a historical overview, assume that the times in which we live are no different from any other period in history. But the facts — including the absolutely reliable predictions of Bible prophecy — show otherwise.
According to the U.S. Geological Survey, some three to five million lives were lost in the past 1,000 years from earthquakes and volcanoes. But during this 20th century alone, more than one million people have died, with untold monetary losses. That’s in addition to the deaths and destruction caused by modern wars and events such as industrial disasters caused by man’s carelessness.
The year 1985
1985 in particular was filled with natural catastrophes — earthquakes in Chile and Mexico, a cyclone that claimed 10,000 lives in Bangladesh, a typhoon in the Philippines, widespread famine in Africa, flooding in the United States and a volcanic eruption in Colombia.
The eruption ranked among the three leading killer volcanoes of all time, all of which have occurred during the past 103 years (Indonesia’s Krakatoa, which killed 36,000 in 1883, and Martinique’s Mont Pelee, which killed 30,000 in 1902, were the other two).
The Colombian disaster followed by only a few weeks a Mexico City earthquake that claimed more than 7,000 lives — the worst quake in recorded North American history.
The Red Cross, the world’s largest disaster-relief organization, reported that 1985 was its busiest year since the Red Cross began in 1919. And the monetary costs of natural calamities are unimaginable.
This age is ending
Speaking of this end time in which we live, Jesus Himself said, “Unless those days were shortened, no flesh would be saved; but for the elect’s sake those days will be shortened” (Matthew 24:22).
Why are such tragedies proliferating now? Why volcanic eruptions, earthquakes, weather upsets? They mark the closing years of this age!
The rest of Matthew 24, the pivotal prophetic chapter in all the Bible, details the specific events that will lead up to the return of Jesus Christ and the establishment of the Kingdom of God on earth.
Humanity as a whole has rejected its loving Creator. We have discarded His laws, which, if kept, would produce every good anyone could desire. Now God must intervene in the world to shake and awaken man from spiritual ignorance.
Prophecy shows that continuing and worsening natural disasters will play a part in God’s correction of this world.
The ancient prophet Isaiah recorded this warning for our modern day: “You will be punished by the Lord of hosts with thunder and earthquake and great noise, with storm and tempest and the flame of devouring fire” (Isaiah 29:6). Revelation 16:18 foretells that the cataclysmic chain of events in this age will culminate in “a great earthquake, such a mighty and great earthquake as had not occurred since men were on the earth.”
Notice what God says: “They have provoked Me to jealousy by what is not God; they have moved Me to anger by their foolish idols…. For a fire is kindled in My anger… it shall consume the earth with her increase, and set on fire the foundations of the mountains” (Deuteronomy 32:21-22). More volcanic eruptions are on the way! Notice also Revelation 8:8.
And death-dealing weather upsets and famines will occur, particularly affecting the modern nations of Israel (Deuteronomy 28:23-24).
Deuteronomy 28:20 says: “The Lord will send on you cursing, confusion, and rebuke in all that you set your hand to do, until you are destroyed and until you perish quickly, because of the wickedness of your doings in which you have forsaken Me.”
You need to know where the nations of Israel are found today! Request a copy of our free book The United States and Britain in Prophecy. Just mail the request card in this issue or write to our address nearest you.
Tremendous natural upheavals are set to occur in the near future, in addition to the horrifying warfare, famine and pestilence that God will allow man to bring on himself (Matthew 24:7).
But then — a new world
There is, however, good news beyond the bad! That good news — the Gospel of Jesus Christ — is what this Good News magazine focuses on.
God does everything for our good. This coming period of world trouble will finally bring man to his senses. Then God will set up on earth a sparkling new society, ruled by His law and His government.
Jesus Christ will be the supreme ruler. He will be assisted by the then spirit-born children of God. God’s future Family will be made up of those who are now preparing for the responsibility to teach and judge, under Christ, in the world tomorrow. They are the members of God’s true Church today.
Bible prophecy also provides many facts about God’s coming Kingdom. In contrast to the human suffering and world troubles of today, these Bible predictions and promises are comforting and inspiring:
“They shall not hurt nor destroy in all My holy mountain, for the earth shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord as the waters cover the sea” (Isaiah 11:9).
“And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying; and there shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away” (Revelation 21:4).
“Everyone shall sit under his vine and under his fig tree, and no one shall make them afraid; for the mouth of the Lord of hosts has spoken” (Micah 4:4).
No more will natural or manmade disasters regularly ravage this earth. No more will humans need to fear the calamities that this world’s way of life produces. People will obey God and reap the benefits.
Would you like to know more about how the world under Christ’s rule will be? You can by sending for our free book The Wonderful World Tomorrow What It Will Be Like.
You can be spared
You are at this moment reading the announcement of the coming world tomorrow. That is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. That this announcement is being made proves we are in the last days!
Jesus pointed out that this announcement would signal His imminent return, in Matthew 24:14: “And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.”
You are also being made aware of the horrible cataclysms that must, unless humanity repents, precede the establishment of that world.
If only our peoples today would follow the example of ancient Nineveh! When the prophet Jonah warned that Nineveh was about to be destroyed because of its sins, the people there instituted sweeping reforms in their lives, and God spared the city (Jonah 3:5-10).
God could do the same with this civilization today, if we would sincerely repent on an international scale and begin to keep God’s laws. God derives no pleasure from the suffering humans bring on themselves through sin. He wants us all to change and qualify for eternal salvation (II Peter 3:9).
But even if the society around you refuses to repent, you can be spared from coming troubles! God has shown you the way out. If you turn to Him in repentance and ask for His mercy, He will hear you. Notice God’s promise:
“A thousand may fall at your side, and ten thousand at your right hand; but it shall not come near you. Only with your eyes shall you look, and see the reward of the wicked. Because you have made the Lord… your habitation, no evil shall befall you, nor shall any plague come near your dwelling” (Psalm 91:7-10).
Keep reading The Good News and The Plain Truth. Act on what you learn from them and from the Bible. Practice keeping God’s commandments. Look more deeply into the unique knowledge offered by God’s true Church. Pray for the welfare of others who are suffering in troubles around the world. Write for and study our free booklet Are We in the Last Days?
Bible prophecy shows that, before God’s Kingdom is finally set up, this world must experience a time of trouble “such as has not been since the beginning of the world until this time, no, nor ever shall be” (Matthew 24:21). More disasters — natural, man-made and caused by Satan the devil himself — are coming.
But you can be spared. What will you do?