“There will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves, (Luke 21:25 NASB)
From the Weather Underground Blog, we learn that a tropical wave is forming in the Atlantic. Even more interestingly, we learn that it is unusual so early in the season. “An unusually large and well-developed African tropical wave for so early in the season has developed midway between the coast of Africa and South America.” It is called 92L. With the BP Oil leak continuing unabated, actually it’s getting worse, all eyes are upon the weather forecasters who track low pressure systems in the Atlantic and the Gulf. Yesterday low pressure system 92L that popped up was forecasted to have a 20% chance of turning into a tropical depression. Then its chances were upped to 30% in the same day and upped again and again, until by the end of the day yesterday, the system had a high percentage of forming into a hurricane. The forecasted track is straight into the Gulf.
In looking at the signs Jesus said would come upon us in the end time, we look at things that are out of normal cycles. Hurricanes in the Gulf are not abnormal. One forming so early and so well, is. Further, we see additional anomalies in this season’s hurricane cycle. Again from the Wunderground blog,
“[S]ea surface temperatures (SSTs) underneath 92L are an extremely high 28 – 30°C, which is warmer than the temperatures reached during the peak of hurricane season last year, in August – September. In fact, with summer not even here, and three more months of heating remaining until we reach peak SSTs in the Atlantic, ocean temperatures across the entire Caribbean and waters between Africa and the Lesser Antilles are about the same as they were during the peak week for water temperatures in 2009 (mid-September.)”
Grasp that for a moment: sea surface temperatures (which drive hurricane formation) are HOT, hotter than ever before and hotter than they should be at this point in the season.
It is heartbreaking to wonder about the roiling seas churning all that oil, dispersant, hydrogen sulfide and benzene onto the peoples along the Gulf and further inland. It also brings to mind the scripture from Luke 21:25 above, “…dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves,”
First, note that it is nations, plural. Nations are in dismay at the roaring of the sea. The sea is singular. Why would nations around the world be in anguish over roaring waves on a sea??
The word perplexity is known to us. It commonly means trouble or confusion, and it is used throughout the bible. So again we wonder, why should nations be dismayed and confused at the roaring of the sea and waves? Tropical storms, typhoons, tsunamis and hurricanes are known to us and though they do strike terror, why perplexity? However, in looking at the Greek, this particular word for perplexity is “aporia” and it is used only once. Since every word in the bible is carefully chosen by God and inspired to the writer by the Holy Spirit, this one-time use bears closer looking into.
The Greek word origin of perplexity is: aporia, a (state of) quandary — perplexity, impasse; lack of resources; puzzlement; doubt; confusion. This state of being is different from a regular kind of confusion, which typically is individual anyway, “nations” don’t usually display confusion. And the word for dismay is actually anguish. Now, what could whole nations be in a quandary about, totally at a loss over, at an impasse through, and anguished from when the sea roars and tosses?
BP oil spill.
Aporia, the Greek word used in this verse for perplexity, is further defined from the alpha (as a neg. prefix) and poros (a way, resource) and it means to be without resources, to be in straits, to be left wanting, to be embarrassed, to be in doubt, not to know which way to turn. It is a Greek term for a difficulty or puzzle (literally, “with no pathway”).
We’ve watched BP try and try and try and fail to find a way to solve this problem on the sea. We’ve watched Resident Obama appear to try to find a way to solve this in meeting with the British Prime Minister. The State Department confirms there has been an international outreach on the BP oil spill. It is of concern to nations, and they are in perplexity over it and in anguish because of it. This situation affects the many nations, may soon affect a third of the seas, and we know that eventually all the oceans die.
Based on prayer, study and the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, I believe the verse in Luke portending roaring seas and anguish of nations could apply in part or in whole to any and all upcoming storms in the Gulf of Mexico and the BP oil spill, which will further deepen as depicted in Revelation when a third of the seas become poisoned, and at the end of this age when all the seas die. Is the Gulf oil issue the beginning? It seems that it well could be … Lord, come quickly!