Milwaukee’s East Side:
“A massive sinkhole swallowed up a traffic light and SUV on Milwaukee’s east side Thursday night. The driver was able to get out safely. Police tell FOX6 that the SUV is still running in an effort to burn off the remaining gasoline in the tank. The sinkhole opened up on the corner of Oakland and North Avenues. Police say that the sinkhole could get bigger if the rain continues. Construction crews are working on getting the SUV out of the sinkhole.”
Google trends shows a large increase in interest in the topic of sinkholes. This spike represents the number of searches for that term:
What are sinkholes? USGS explains: “Sinkholes are common where the rock below the land surface is limestone, carbonate rock, salt beds, or rocks that can naturally be dissolved by ground water circulating through them. As the rock dissolves, spaces and caverns develop underground. Sinkholes are dramatic because the land usually stays intact for a while until the underground spaces just get too big. If there is not enough support for the land above the spaces then a sudden collapse of the land surface can occur. These collapses can be small, as this picture shows, or they can be huge and can occur where a house or road is on top. The most damage from sinkholes tends to occur in Florida, Texas, Alabama, Missouri, Kentucky, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania.” Sinkholes occur especially where there has been groundwater depletion.
A sinkhole in San Diego left residents of the 8 apartments without a home two days ago, when was declared uninhabitable yesterday. The ground, being soaked with recent heavy rains, has been undermined in many areas of CA.
In this news story, the reporter explored the topic of just how common are sinkholes, anyway. “There’s quite a hole, a gaping sinkhole, in fact in somebody’s front yard. It is taped off, so nobody falls in. While constructions crews worked to repair the sinkhole in Bethlehem Township, Northampton County, 69News looked into how common of an occurrence sinkholes are in the region. Scientists said sinkholes like this could happen at anytime and anywhere in the Lehigh Valley. For Phillip Turnbach, it was a surprise when the ground opened up right in his front yard. “It’s real scary,” said Turnbach. “If a car was parked or if that street would have caved in the middle of the night somebody could have been hurt or even worse.” “
Acid in ground water eats away the limestone over time creating a crack under the soil and then at any time, that soil can collapse into the crack causing a sinkhole. At least, that is the hazard for Pennsylvanians. In California, the issue usually causing sinkholes are storms. In Florida, there’s ‘that disconcerting feeling’ when suddenly the ground opens up. Extracting ground water is usually the culprit. “All Ben Story can do now is wait. Wait for geologists to visit his property at 3401 Lampp Road, north of downtown Plant City, and tell him whether there’s any chance the large sinkhole in his backyard is going to grow any bigger. Wait for more information on how to fill the 30-foot wide cavity that gobbled four rolls of hay. “It’s kind of a touch-and-go situation,” Story said this morning, adding that he expects scientists from the U.S. Geological Survey to conduct tests in a few days. “I think it’s spreading too. I haven’t looked down there today, but it may be getting bigger.” The sinkhole on Story’s property is the second large cavity to open in eastern Hillsborough County this month.” Also within the last week, sinkholes in Fl opened up due to sewer line break, because of unstable landfill, or waterline breaks. In that last one, a fire truck was swallowed up as it responded to the break.
The issue is not restricted to the United States. South African authorities have begun the relocation of 3,000 families after huge sinkholes appeared close to their homes near Pretoria, according to BBC News. The Hungarian town of Ocna Mures is “in collapse” due to the results of excessive salt mining. A sinkhole there recently swallowed a supermarket and several businesses and homes. China has had their travails with sinkholes, too, in this case from 6 days ago, 800 people were evacuated as a 150′ wide hole opened up in Jiangxi Province. Last June, a UK Telegraph reporter asked if there was any reason for the spate of spectacular sinkholes appearing in China, and noted that the uneasiness of talk of the end of the world rounded out the comments online. The photos are spectacular, they show aerial pictures of really large sinkholes swallowing whole towns. By the way, the reporter never answered the question, only mocked end of the worlders.
The point here is two fold. First, several of the end time warnings indicate geo-physical changes will occur on the earth. (Luke 21:11; Luke 21:25; Mark 13:8). The judgments in Revelation and Isaiah certainly depict massive changes on the earth, and the judgments start right away in Revelation. (Rev 6:12-14; Isaiah 24:19 and etc.). “At that time his voice shook the earth, but now he has promised, “Once more I will shake not only the earth but also the heavens.” 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 12:25-29).
The second issue is that no matter how the sinkholes and other geo-physical changes are occurring, whether happening because of seemingly man-made excesses or through supernatural means, it shows us that nothing is solid – except the Kingdom of God, which is the Unshaken Kingdom. That is what the Lord is showing us. The very ground we walk on is His and through Jesus all things hold together. The corollary to that is through Him all things fall apart if and when He chooses. If you are not of His kingdom you will be shaken, emotionally, physically, mentally. Imagine as these sinkholes increase the unease with which people now look at their streets and cliffs and homes. It could give way at any time! Several of the news articles noted the psychological effects on the affected population of knowing you live on unstable ground.
Christians know the ground they walk on is the Rock that will never be moved. He is Jesus and no matter what is happening in the world, there is no safer place than in His light!