Posted in bible, china

"The Chinese MacArthur Study Bible: 1,000 Chinese pastors receive translated MacArthur Study Bible"

On this day of Thanksgiving to our Lord for the blessings He has bestowed on us, allow me to share what I am thankful for today.

Yesterday I read of a tremendous achievement by the Holy Spirit through the men at Grace To You. I was aware that Dr MacArthur and his team had been laboring to translate the bible into Chinese. They have concluded their efforts. The Master’s College website posted the results on October 1:


About 1,000 Chinese home church pastors received the MacArthur Study Bible, newly translated into Mandarin, at the Expository Conference in Hong Kong on Sept. 23-26.

The goal of the conference, a cooperative effort of The Master’s College, Grace to You and Grace Bible Fellowship in Singapore, was to get John MacArthur’s material, both the study Bible and his New Testament commentaries, into the hands of as many Chinese pastors as possible, said TMC Marketing Director Kirk Linahan, who attended the conference.

This unique event was organized by Roger Ng, a graduate of The Master’s Seminary (’08) and pastor of Grace Bible Fellowship. Through Ng’s pastoral contacts in China, news about the conference spread by word of mouth.

The pastors, their wives and other church leaders gathered in Hong Kong to hear from MacArthur and TMC Biblical Studies Professor Dr. Daniel Wong via livestream, in addition to local pastors and Grace to You staff.

The need for for expository preaching and training in China is great, Dr. Wong said.

“The church in China—they have the zeal, they have the devotion, but all of this needs to be adjusted, needs to be corrected and…governed and guided by the Word of God,” he said. “They do believe; they’re willing to give their life, but they need to be accurately guided by the Word.”

Indeed, the church in China is continuing to grow. As of 2010, there were more than 59 million Protestant Christians in China, based on a study by the Pew Research Project.

But, the government’s opposition to Christianity makes it difficult for pastors and church leaders to receive training or Bible study resources.

“When they hear the expositional teaching, the Scripture all of a sudden becomes extremely clear,” Linahan said. “It’s no longer mystical or a mystery, and people just latch on to expositional teaching. They finally know what the Bible is saying. So, there’s a great hunger and a great need and a great desire on their part to want these resources and to want that style of teaching.”

The pastors at the conference were also given a copy of Dr. Wong’s new book “The Prospects of Salvation,” the first in a series that he is writing in Chinese to explore the “central theme that runs from the Old Testament to the New Testament,” he said.

Dr. Wong addressed the attendees twice during the conference, introducing MacArthur and encouraging them to attend The Master’s College and Seminary for a solid biblical education.

“I told them that the best place to study like John MacArthur and to preach like him is The Master’s College and The Master’s Seminary, and that they are to come,” he said.

The children of Chinese Christians, who are homeschooled or attend private schools instead of state-run schools, are not eligible for Chinese universities, Linahan said. Many seek higher education outside the country, often in the U.S.

Linahan attended the conference to get the word out about TMC and to help Christian families explore both the College and Seminary as an option for them or their children.

“We were just there to say, ‘…we’re an option for you, not just biblically but also academically.’ Obviously they’re going to get solid biblical instruction (at The Master’s College), campus-wide, every professor, not just in certain departments or certain professors. But secondly, …they’re going to get a solid academic foundation, which will well prepare them for the next level of graduate school.”

In bringing sound biblical materials to the Chinese church and welcoming their students to the U.S., Grace to You and The Master’s College strive to help these believers better understand the God they love and faithfully serve.

“The future of the church, the hope of the church in China is in the Word of God and in knowing the God of the Word,” Dr. Wong said.

For more information about Grace Bible Fellowship in Singapore, visit their Facebook page, here.

Learn more about TMC’s international student community by clicking here.

It brings my heart great joy to see the Word go out to thirsty pastors. It is an incredible work of the Holy Spirit to raise up under-shepherds as He is doing. Just think of the multiplying possibilities, when we see all those men who will stream out across the nation of China, to share the Gospel word with lost souls! To think of the discipling opportunities in the crags and the mountains of China, God’s word edifying them in a great unbroken chain of sacred life that has been going on since Calvary! I am so thankful for the Spirit to come into the hearts and minds of men who brave the hostilities of the government to share an eternal word. I’m grateful to men like Dr MacArthur and his team who labor tirelessly to make these scenes happen. And for the many anonymous donations that were sent to the team in support of their eternal and blessed work.

Thanks to all these, I may well be sitting next to a Brother or a Sister in faith at the greatest thanksgiving feast of all eternity, the Marriage Supper of the Lamb!

I’m thankful for Jesus, the Holy Spirit and Father God. I’m grateful for His angels that guard us and visit us and help us. I’m thankful for scenes like in the photo above, 1000 men, an army of the Lord, standing at the ready to wield His sword the Word. I’m thankful for the cross.

I hope you have many things to be thankful for today as well.

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.
(Colossians 3:17)

Posted in china, prophecy, revelation, river turns blood red

River in China runs blood red

In 2012 there was a spate of bodies of water turning blood red, and interest in the phenomenon was high.

February 2012: Beirut River runs red.  (a factory had illegally dumped red dye.)

August 2012: A lake in France turned red. (“Scientists say the blood red lakes in southern France are actually a natural phenomenon. Camargue, France is a river delta where the Rhône meets the sea. The picturesque area is home to numerous salt flats, and it is this concentration of salt that will occasionally stain red the region’s normally blue water.”)

September 2012: Yangze River in China runs red (“officials have no idea why, or officials say it may have been caused by recent floods stirring up silt upstream. The Environmental Protection Bureau is also looking into potential industrial pollution or sewage breaches.”)

The other day a river in China turned red and interest is again high. I can only guess this is because Revelation says that rivers shall run with blood.

The third angel poured out his bowl on the rivers and springs of water, and they became blood. (Revelation 16:4).


River In China Mysteriously Turns Bloody Red Overnight

Residents in Zhejiang province said the river looked normal at 5 a.m. Beijing time on Thursday morning. Within an hour, the entire river turned crimson. Residents also said a strange smell wafted through the air. … Inspectors from the Wenzhou Environmental Protection Bureau said they have not found the cause of the incident, although water samples seem to indicate the suspicious color was a result of illegal dumping in the river….  “We suspect that somebody dumped artificial coloring in the water because he thought the typhoon yesterday would cause heavy rain, and nobody would notice [the color],” Jianfeng Xiao, Chief of the bureau told China News.  “It turned out there wasn’t heavy rainfall yesterday, so the evidence is left behind,” Xiao said.  Xiao said there is a paper manufacturer, a food coloring company and clothing-maker a long the river.

Cases like these are usually due to illegal dumping.

But whenever something like this happens, hits on the blog go way up. On the one hand, I’m glad that people are so interested in prophecy! The bible speaks of future things almost a third of the time.

Fully 17 of the Old Testament’s 39 books are classified as prophetic: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah and Malachi. All of the other 22 books are also filled with prophecy. Source

It’s a significant topic and one that is definitely worthy of study and attention. On the other hand though, too many people are willing to proclaim it a sign, and overlook the obvious.

For example, a river turning red is NOT a fulfillment of Revelation 16:4, because we have not been in the Tribulation for ten chapters. We are not in the Tribulation now, and none of the other signs have happened.

Even in Revelation 8:10 which prophesies a third of the rivers on earth turning to blood, happen because of a star falling from heaven.

The third angel blew his trumpet, and a great star fell from heaven, blazing like a torch, and it fell on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water. (Revelation 8:10)

And at that time, also a third of the seas will turn to blood as well. One cannot pick and choose which prophesies are fulfilled. Either it happens the way the bible says, or it is not a prophecy. It’s some food coloring manufacturer dumping dye.

Secondly when it does happen, a third of all the earth’s rivers will turn to blood. And the verse says what it says, the waters will become blood. Not salt making it look like blood, not illegally dumped dye, not silt from a typhoon, but actual blood.

I’m so grateful that people become so interested in biblical prophecy when these strange things happen. I’m personally fascinated with the sky sounds of the apocalypse, myself. Others are fascinated with the large bird and fish die-offs that had occurred a few years ago. Yet it’s our responsibility to rightly teach how to study prophecy, and not become hand-wringing, pickers and chooser bell ringers when they happen.

The most important thing is to always point to the certainty and safety of life in Christ. Once we repent and are justified by faith in Jesus as Resurrected Savior, He will always hold us in His hand. We become legal heirs and sons of God. Our life changes from one of despair to one of hope and joy. Our future is also spoken of. It does not include rivers running with blood or fish die-offs or starvation or other prophetic wrathful things. Our future is one of hopeful prophecy, like this:

Then he led me back to the bank of the river. As I went back, I saw on the bank of the river very many trees on the one side and on the other. And he said to me, “This water flows toward the eastern region and goes down into the Arabah, and enters the sea; when the water flows into the sea, the water will become fresh. And wherever the river goes, every living creature that swarms will live, and there will be very many fish. For this water goes there, that the waters of the sea may become fresh; so everything will live where the river goes. Fishermen will stand beside the sea. From Engedi to Eneglaim it will be a place for the spreading of nets. Its fish will be of very many kinds, like the fish of the Great Sea. But its swamps and marshes will not become fresh; they are to be left for salt. And on the banks, on both sides of the river, there will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither, nor their fruit fail, but they will bear fresh fruit every month, because the water for them flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for healing.” (Ezekiel 47:6-12)

Or this prophecy:

He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’ (Revelation 23:7)

Or this:

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. (Revelation 21:4)

So when you come across someone who is interested in a strange phenomena, and connects it with bits of prophecy they have heard, teach them the true prophecy from the bible, show them why it can’t be happening now. Connect their interest in prophecy with Jesus and His Gospel. It is one reason He gave us prophecy, to warn of judgements to come for the ungodly- and ultimately to educate about the One who spoke it, Jesus Christ.

Posted in china, one world economy

The words "USA" and "default" beginning to appear in news headlines: big changes ahead?

The words “USA” and “debt” and the dreaded word “default” are starting to be used in the same headline. The Congressional-Presidential standoff on the budget and the Federal government shutdown has rattled the world. As the dollar is currently the world’s reserve currency this is making everyone else very nervous. The problem is, as USA Today explains,


“Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, who shuttled between the global finance talks and negotiations with Congress over the debt ceiling, has warned that he will exhaust his borrowing authority Thursday and the government will face the prospect of defaulting on its debt unless Congress raises the current $16.7 trillion borrowing limit.”

CNBC explainsDebt is not the only method to finance overspending”
“When our government spends more money than it takes in, as it has been doing both consistently and at an accelerating pace for the past 30 years, it has to find a way to pay for that overspending. As any individual or business knows, there are choices you face when you need more money than you have at hand. You have to find a way to bring in more capital through making more money, selling some assets or securing financing.”

With the current climate of government strangulation of the entrepreneurial spirit and small business death, it’s not likely we will make more money. On a larger scale, we have no assets to sell, except land. Would Russia like Alaska back? The scenario for raising money is unlikely. And as for securing financing, China has already gone to their limit for us in buying our debt and has warned us they are loathe to buy ore. They are also making moves to remove the US dollar as global currency reserve. So that scenario is unlikely too.

CNBC says, “Debt cannot be used as a continual financing solution without dire consequences.”

One dire consequence that is likely with the US and the Chinese is this: invasion. Don’t laugh. Wikipedia explains sovereign default:

Since a sovereign government, by definition, controls its own affairs, it cannot be obliged to pay back its debt. Nonetheless, governments may face severe pressure from lending countries. In the most extreme cases, a creditor nation may declare war on a debtor nation for failing to pay back debt, in order to enforce creditor’s rights. For example, Britain routinely invaded countries that failed to repay foreign debts, invading Egypt in 1882.”

Members of a Chinese Military Honor Guard. Source Wikipedia

If we can’t pay China back, do you think they will hesitate to come get what is owed them? Something to think about. Even if they do not invade our mainland, they may seize overseas assets.

Other examples include the United States’ “gunboat diplomacy” in Venezuela in the mid-1890s and the United States occupation of Haiti beginning in 1915. A government which defaults may also be excluded from further credit and some of its overseas assets may be seized

I think that we think the world is civilized and that finances and war are further apart than they really are. And remember, the second horse of the apocalypse if the fiery red horse of war. “Peace will be taken from the earth.” (Rev 6:4).

Here are three snippets of current news headlines remarking on the US potential for default.


World top bankers warn of dire consequences if U.S. defaults
Three of the world’s most powerful bankers warned of terrible consequences if the United States defaults on its debt, with Deutsche Bank chief executive Anshu Jain claiming default would be “utterly catastrophic. This would be a very rapidly spreading, fatal disease,” Jain said on Saturday at a conference hosted by the Institute of International Finance in Washington. “I have no recommendations for this audience…about putting band aids on a gaping wound,” he said.


Get your fiscal house in order: China warns US as Asia expresses concern for $1.3tn of investments
“China, the biggest foreign creditor of the United States, has waded into the American budget crisis, warning Congress that it must resolve the political impasse over the debt ceiling without further delay. The Chinese Vice Foreign Minister, Zhu Guangyao, told America’s deadlocked politicians on Monday that “the clock is ticking” and called on them to approve an extension of the national borrowing limit before the federal government is projected to run out of cash on 17 October. We ask that the United States earnestly takes steps to resolve in a timely way the political issues around the debt ceiling and prevent a US debt default to ensure the safety of Chinese investments in the United States,” Mr Zhu told reporters in Beijing. “This is the United States’ responsibility,” he added.”


Finance officials press U.S. on default risk
“World finance officials pledged on Saturday to deal with new risks to the global recovery while they kept up pressure on the United States to address the biggest threat of all — a market-rattling default on U.S. debt.”


CNBC further explains,

UK Telegraph

“However, a default is hardly the only threat to our credit standing. We lost our AAA credit rating for the first time ever from S&P in 2011 based not on a default (which was threatened but never happened), but instead on our overall accumulation of debt, lack of a credible plan to reduce it and overall problematic policymaking governance. All of those issues have gotten worse. We have more debt than two years ago and there has been no improvement in our political discord, the financial savvy of our lawmakers, or in our governance in general.”

The economy plays a major role in the Tribulation. As a matter of fact, an entire chapter of Revelation is devoted to the Lord’s destruction of the global economy. (Revelation 18).

Revelation’s third horseman, the Black Horse of the Apocalypse, is unleashed by Jesus to wreak economic havoc on the world (Revelation 6:5-6). This happens at the beginning of the Tribulation. The world economy fails, and is restructured as seen in Revelation 13 into a one world economy with one currency. (Revelation 13:16-18)

The world economy picks up and reforms and apparently successfully too, given the luxuries that the merchants lament when it collapses for the final time in Revelation 18. This last, restructured economy is the worst one of all, given that satan has been allowed to thoroughly pollute it to its final length of sin.


“Come out of her, my people,
lest you take part in her sins,
lest you share in her plagues;
for her sins are heaped high as heaven,
and God has remembered her iniquities.” (Revelation 18:4-5)

What I am saying is that there are several characters who play a major role in the final days. There’s the antichrist, the false prophet, satan, his unholy angels, the holy angels and of course Jesus. The final religion and the final economy are major players too. Those last two become judgments upon the people of the earth, vehicles for the pursuing of the length of sin and two of the means by which Jesus judges humanity. Remember, the participating in the economy or not participating in the economy is tied to whether you will worship the beast or not worship the beast. The economy is the tempting fruit and the ultimate dividing line. Those who wish to participate in the final economy will accept the mark of the Beast which is a mark of worship and allegiance to him. Christians who refuse will die of starvation or be hunted down and martyred. (Revelation 13:16).

Drastic, catastrophic changes for the global economy are ahead. You know, it seems that we have always had an economy like this one, but there have always been eras in finance as well. In Mesopotamia archaeologists discovered 5,500 year old clay balls that indicate a record keeping for a thriving economy. This is amazing because they predate the time before writing was invented. (source).

For a long time, bartering was the means by which men traded. Then modern banking was invented in 14th century Florence, Italy. Then we invented bar codes and checks were born and then credit cards and ATMs all the rest we know in this generation. And all along, countries default and hyperinflation comes and goes.

Unveiling of the Statue of Liberty
Enlightening the World
(1886) by Edward Moran.
Museum of the City of New York.

Since 1800, 91 countries have defaulted or had major debt restructuring. The United Kingdom defaulted four times. Twenty have defaulted in this century, since 2000. It’s not an unknown thing and is actually more common than we think. That it can’t happen to the US is ridiculous to even entertain. Of course it can. We are not above the laws of finance and the rules of sound economy. That is is likely to happen to the US is more logical to entertain.

Such huge changes are ahead for us. Keep looking for Jesus, since we are not appointed to wrath (1 Thess 5:9) and will not be present here for any of these devastating earthly changes. I’m looking forward to the wonderful changes in the plan Jesus has for those who love Him: rapture, (1 Cor 15:52) glorification, (1 Cor 15:53) and eternal rest and dwelling in heaven with Him. (1 Thess 4:17). Even so, come soon, Lord Jesus!

Posted in asia, china, japan, obamacare, palestine

The photo that was used to "prove" right wing bias AND left wing bias, and other news

Here is a news roundup of articles I believe are of interest culturally and prophetically.

South Portland doctor stops accepting insurance, posts prices online
“The family physician stopped accepting all forms of health insurance. In early 2013, Ciampi sent a letter to his patients informing them that he would no longer accept any kind of health coverage, both private and government-sponsored. Given that he was now asking patients to pay for his services out of pocket, he posted his prices on the practice’s website. … But the decision to do away with insurance allows Ciampi to practice medicine the way he sees fit, he said. Insurance companies no longer dictate how much he charges. He can offer discounts to patients struggling with their medical bills. He can make house calls.”

“I’m freed up to do what I think is right for the patients,” Ciampi said. “If I’m providing them a service that they value, they can pay me, and we cut the insurance out as the middleman and cut out a lot of the expense.” Ciampi expects more doctors will follow suit. Some may choose to run “concierge practices” in which patients pay to keep a doctor on retainer, he said.”

It seems to me that the unintended consequences of Obamacare may indeed re-define the practice of medicine as we have known it in this generation. Those options listed in just this one excerpt are radical- but I like the notion of house calls and a concierge practice. Also, any way we can cut out the government middleman seems good to me.

Israel’s History in Pictures
“A 110-year-old trove of pictures taken by the Christian photographers of the American Colony in Jerusalem provides dramatic proof of thriving Jewish communities in what was then called Palestine, the name given to the area by the Romans hundreds of years before Islam came into existence and Arab hordes attacked the land to spread the word of Muhammed by the sword. Hundreds of pictures show the ancient Jewish community of Jerusalem’s Old City and the Jewish pioneers and builders of new towns and settlements in the Galilee and along the Mediterranean coastline. The American Colony photographers recorded Jewish holy sites, holiday scenes and customs…”

The link to the site where the photos are is Like this one-“Plowing with a cow and a camel (circa 1900)”

Photos can not only be proof, as they are above, but in these days they can be used for manipulation of the truth. This is an interesting story from Israel-

The infamous Haaretz photo that was never actually printed in Haaretz
A photograph cropped in two ways, captioned with two newspapers, Haaretz and Makor Rishon, purported to show left-wing vs. right-wing photojournalism. The only problem: Neither newspaper actually published the photo in question.
For some weeks, upset subscribers and other Haaretz readers have been asking the newspaper for clarifications about the “cropped photograph” being shared on social networks with the caption, “Who hit whom?” Everyone was convinced that Haaretz ran that photograph recently and that someone caught us red-handed.”

The investigation into this libel found that the “accusatory” photo was actually an Associated Press picture from 7 years ago. The internet, with all its instant social media, has been a boon to humankind, but also a cautionary tale. It is increasingly used for manipulation hoaxes and outright libel. In the Tribulation, media will be used to allow peoples from every tongue, tribe, and nation to gaze at the dead bodies of the two witnesses on the street of Jerusalem. How will manipulations such as the photo cropping be extended to its worst facets in the Tribulation? undoubtedly to promote the antichrist and all his ‘good works’ such as forming a peace treaty, his “miraculous” signs and wonders, his “resurrection” from the wound he is prophesied to receive, and to make the image of the beast come alive. (Daniel 9:27, Revelation 13:3, 2 Thessalonians 2:9, Revelation 13:5)

The US is neglecting maritime Asia just as tensions are at highest level. See this story from The Diplomat. Remember that in end time prophecy fulfillment there will be a large army marching from Asia. (Revelation 9:13-16). Asia will figure prominently in the final wars.

Deleterious Neglect: Will the U.S. Navy Surrender Maritime Asia?
“The Chinese navy’s surface forces are on the march. Destroyers, frigates, corvettes, fast-attack craft, and, most recently, the newly commissioned aircraft carrier comprise the surface fleet. Over the past two decades, the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLA Navy) has put to sea four Sovremenny-class guided-missile destroyers procured from Russia, along with ten new classes of indigenously built destroyers and frigates. Some of the latter ship types have entered serial production, adding mass to the fleet. This is an impressive feat by any standard. The PLA Navy’s metamorphosis from a coastal defense force into a modern naval service has riveted the attention of the U.S. defense community. In 2009 the Office of Naval Intelligence — a body not known for hyperbole — described the advances of China’s surface fleet as “remarkable.”

Steve Herman is a reporter for Voice of America in Asia. He tweeted this week, “#ROK foreign minister warns #jejuforum that growing historical, territorial & maritime tension in E. Asia could lead to “physical conflict.”

Island dispute continues to test Japan-China-US relations
“Three Chinese maritime surveillance ships entered Japanese-claimed waters near the Senkaku islands in the East China Sea on Sunday. These incursions are becoming commonplace and they test not just China’s relationship with Japan but also the long-running security relationship Japan has with the US.  At what point would the US step in to help its ally?”

On a personal note, today is the last day of school for teachers. Starting tomorrow I have all the time in the world to read, study, and write. Happy summer!

Posted in china, freak dust storm

Freak weather all over the globe

Here is a bit of news for you on the weather beat:

Snow & driving rains hit Israel
Biggest storm in 20 years. Floods malls, shuts roads, closes schools.
“Jews and Christians often pray for the Lord to give Israel more rain. In recent years, there hasn’t nearly been enough precipitation and the Sea of Galilee’s water levels have been dropping. But this week, Israel is getting more snow and driving rain than it has in two decades. It’s come so fast and furious that the Land isn’t able to quickly absorb it all. As a result, malls are being flooded. Roads are being shut down. Schools and government offices are being closed. The IDF and Navy have even been deployed repeatedly in the last few days to rescue Israelis in danger.”

The Jerusalem Post ran this headline: “Tel Aviv underwater: Rain brings city to halt

Jerusalem got quite a bit of snow.

Heavy snow leaves Jerusalem in unfamiliar territory
“The first thing I thought when I looked out the window this morning was, “‘Where do you buy a snow shovel in Jerusalem?'” But the typically Canadian heavy snowfall that Israelis woke up to this morning has had serious consequences as the storm hits the Middle East. In many parts of the country Thursday morning, 10 to 15 centimetres of snow fell. Jerusalem, which is nestled among hills, received a good blanketing – enough to shut down schools and many businesses. Police closed the main highway between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv.”

The weather in Australia has been catastrophic. That’s not hyperbole. They really listed it as catastrophic. It has been so hot they had to create a new level to show how hot it is. Like 11 out of 10 or something. The predicted high temp was going to be 125 F. You heard me.

It ended up being “only” 116F (47C) in Oodnadatta.

Here is ABC news:

Record temperatures across southern Australia
“Australia had its hottest day on record on Monday with a nationwide average of 40.33 degrees Celsius (104.59 degrees Fahrenheit), narrowly breaking a 1972 record of 40.17C (104.31F). Tuesday was the third hottest day at 40.11C (104.20F). Four of Australia’s hottest 10 days on record have been in 2013. “There’s little doubt that this is a very, very extreme heat wave event,” Bureau of Meteorology manager of climate monitoring and prediction David Jones said. “If you look at its extent, its duration, its intensity, it is arguably the most significant in Australia’s history,” he added.”

Freakish dust storm sweeps over western Australia
“Western Australians witnessed a freakish dust storm off the coast of Onslow on Wednesday.  The stunning views were created as wind and rain caused the storm to dump the sand and dust it had ingested while passing Onslow, Bureau of Meteorology duty forecaster Austen Watkins told Australian Yahoo!. … Jonathan Erdman, meteorologist for The Weather Channel, was amazed by the images created by the Australian dust storm.   “In 18 years of meteorology, I’ve never seen a white shelf cloud capping the brownish dirt from the haboob.  If there was a hall of fame for weather photos, this one would get in on the first ballot.”

Record Heat Fuels Widespread Fires in Australia
“Bush fires raging across some of the most populous parts of Australia — feeding off widespread drought conditions and high winds — pushed firefighters to their limits and residents to their wits’ end on Wednesday as meteorologists tracked the country’s hottest spring and summer on record into uncharted territory. Firefighters battled a grass fire in Oura, near Wagga Wagga, Australia, on Tuesday. On Monday, Australia’s hottest day on record, the national average was 104.59 degrees.  Four months of record-breaking temperatures stretching back to September 2012 have produced what the government says are “catastrophic” fire conditions along the eastern and southeastern coasts of the country, where the majority of Australians live.”

And who wasn’t moved by the compelling photo and story of the family hiding under a dock as their world was reduced to cinders around them?

Australian family hides under dock to escape wildfire

Australia Wildfires 

In China, they are having the opposite problem of fire and heat: cold. About 420,000 are affected by a cold snap.

Cold wave affects 420,000 in SW China
“GUIYANG – About 420,000 people are in a state of disaster in Southwest China’s Guizhou province, as the freezing weather has been worsened by a new round of cold air, said local authorities on Thursday. … Lingering cold along with freezing rain and snowfall have affected 425,300 people in 17 counties and forced local governments to relocate 5,044 people, according to the provincial civil affairs authorities.  The province’s direct economic losses to the cold are estimated to be over 73.6 million yuan ($11.8 million ), mostly coming in agricultural fields.”

Posted in azores, china, fajr-5, gaza, israel, kuril, prophecy

China eyes US base, sun’s humongous eruption, Israel prepares for 7 weeks of war

Some random news:

Humongous Eruption: 

A truly gigantic explosion happened on the sun yesterday. On Nov. 16th, magnetic fields snaking halfway across the sun’s southern hemisphere erupted in tandem, producing a prominence so big, it doesn’t fit inside this image from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). has the photo and video

Israel told to prepare for 7 weeks of war: 

Joel Rosenberg wrote today that “Israeli PM Netanyahu and his Security Cabinet have just concluded their classified meeting, which has lasted for hours. Only a few details have been released concerning their conclusions. But the main two are ominous:
* Israel’s Home Front Command has been ordered to tell the nation to prepare for 7 weeks of war.
* 75,000 IDF reserve soldiers are definitely being called up for action — up from 30,000 on Thursday, and 16,000 on Wednesday.”

Facts straight from IDF:

Israel Defense Force has a twitter stream. It is called @IDFSpokeperson. It is good to get the news directly from the IDF. He wrote today,
“This morning, the IDF targeted Mohammed Kaleb, a senior member of Hamas’ air defense unit in Gaza.
“A short while ago, the IDF targeted a senior #Hamas operative in Gaza who was in charge of the group’s weapons smuggling operations.”
“Some numbers from the last 3 days: 492 rockets fired from Gaza hit Israel + 245 Iron Dome interceptions = 737 rockets fired at us”

Fajr-5 Rockets:

The rocket that almost reached Jerusalem was a Fajr-R. Fajr 5 rockets can be fired from the back of a 6×6 truck to hit targets up to 75 kilometres (46 miles) away. These rockets are new to the Hamas arsenal. The Fajr 5 rocket has a far greater range than the home-produced Qassam rockets normally used by Palestinian militants in Gaza to target Israel, but neither are very accurate, defence analysts say. ” It is suspected that because Iran is the proxy behind Hamas that it was Iran who supplied the Fajr-5 to Hamas. Of course, they deny it.

“The flow of arms to Gaza has not ceased despite Israel’s massive airstrikes in the Hamas-ruled territory, the Lebanese newspaper Al-Akhbar reported Saturday. According to the Hezbollah-affiliated newspaper, a “considerable” amount of long-range missiles have been transferred to Gaza over the past 24 hours. Al-Akhbar also said Hezbollah and the Iranian Revolutionary Guards have declared a state of alert.”

“Located almost halfway between the Kamchatka Peninsula’s southern end and the northern tip of Hokkaido, Chirpoi is an isolated volcanic complex on its own island. Chirpoi actually refers to a cluster of volcanic features, including an 9-km-wide caldera and a series of smaller cones, including the active Snow Cone (I chuckled a bit at that). Two eruptions (that we know of) occurred at Snow over the 20th century, the most recent being a VEI 2 in 1962. However, the volcano did produce an eruption that was at least a VEI 4 back in 1712/3.”

“Now, as many of you know, trying to find a clear picture of the Kuril Islands via satellite can be tricky. Fabrice provided me with a small image of what looks like a plume seen on November 16. I looked back through some of the Terra and Aqua images and found a clear picture of the plume on November 11 in the Terra imagery (see above), drifting off to the southeast (towards bottom right). I’ve labeled the plume and some nearby islands and volcanoes to help get your bearings. The plume looks mainly white, which might suggest it is many a steam plume right now, but it is hard to tell from this image alone. KVERT doesn’t tend provide information about the Kuril Islands other than the northernmost, and Chirpoi’s remote location just might mean no one has been out there to notice the activity. However, this image and a MODIS thermal anomaly (as reported by Volcano Discovery and Fabrice) suggest that something is going on at Chirpoi, but so far, there isn’t any evidence of a full eruption, but rather a vigorous steam plume.”

“A leaked report by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said there were 2,784 centrifuges at Fordo, and that Iran could soon double the number operating from 700 to 1,400. The development is likely to fuel Western suspicions that Iran is seeking to develop nuclear weapons.”

The National Review reports this week that while we’re all looking at the economy or the Middle East, there is a Red Flag Over the Atlantic. They write:

“On June 27, a plane carrying Wen Jiabao made a “technical” stop on the island of Terceira, in the Azores. Following an official greeting by Alamo Meneses, the regional secretary of environment of the sea, the Chinese premier spent four hours touring the remote Portuguese outpost in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean.”

“Wen’s Terceira walkabout, which followed a four-nation visit to South America, largely escaped notice at the time, but alarm bells should have immediately gone off in Washington and in European capitals. For one thing, Wen’s last official stop on the trip was Santiago, the capital of Chile. Flights from Chile to China normally cross the Pacific, not the Atlantic, so there was no reason for his plane to be near the Azores. Moreover, those who visit the Azores generally favor other islands in the out-of-the-way chain.”

“Terceira, however, has one big attraction for Beijing: Air Base No. 4. Better known as Lajes Field, the facility where Premier Wen’s 747 landed in June is jointly operated by the U.S. Air Force and its Portuguese counterpart. If China controlled the base, the Atlantic would no longer be secure. From the 10,865-foot runway on the northeast edge of the island, Chinese planes could patrol the northern and central portions of the Atlantic and thereby cut air and sea traffic between the U.S. and Europe. Beijing would also be able to deny access to the nearby Mediterranean Sea.”

It is a good article. You should read it. Remember, the Russians crept in to close territorial waters not once, but twice undetected recently. Once in the Gulf of Mexico, and they hung out there a while, and the other was off the eastern seaboard near Kings Bay GA where we maintain a huge submarine base.

The Kings of the East rise up, according to prophecy. (Revelation 16:12).

From the heights of the sun, to the depths under the volcano, to the humans on the earth from east to west, things are active.

Posted in australia, china, ebola, israel, jordan, panetta, prophecy

News roundup: Russia sends ships to Syria, Israel, Jordan, Ebola, China, squirrel head

What’s going on in the world world, anyway? Here is a news synopsis for you-

Never has so much been stated in an article and so little has been said. It is all vapors and platitudes. The only concrete news I got from this article in the Jordan Times is that Panetta is out of the country.

King warns of ‘dangerous ramifications’ of Syrian crisis
“US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta’s six-hour stop in Jordan — his first visit to the Kingdom as defence secretary — is part of a regional tour that he began earlier this week, making stops in Tunisia, Egypt and Israel. … His Majesty King Abdullah on Thursday voiced Jordan’s concern over the escalating situation in Syria and its “dangerous” ramification on the region, calling for a peaceful resolution of the crisis. The King reiterated the need for a solution that would put an end to the bloodshed and spare the Syrians more suffering, a Royal Court statement said.”

UN Peace Envoy to Syria Kofi Annan quit this week. Syria’s ally Russia has something to say about that.

Annan’s Exit ‘Opens Gates’ for Intervention – Russian Ministry
“Annan’s decision against extending his mandate as the UN envoy to Syria raises loads of questions regarding the future of this country. He is an honest international mediator but someone wants to push him out of the game to open the gates for forceful actions. This is obvious,” Gatilov wrote in his Twitter account.”

Note how Russia sees the situation, this next paragraph is through their eyes:

“The West is pushing for President Bashar al-Assad’s ouster, while Russia and China are trying to prevent outside interference in Syria saying the Assad regime and the opposition are both to blame for the bloodshed.”

Methinks Russia doth protest too much. Because meanwhile, the Lebanon Daily Star reports,

Russia sends navy vessels to Tartus: agencies
“Moscow is sending three large landing ships with marines aboard to a Russian naval facility in the Syrian port of Tartus, Russian news agencies quoted a source in the general staff as saying on Friday. The source said each ship would have up to 120 marines on board and that the vessels, already in the Mediterranean, would arrive in Tartus by the end of this week or early next week. The source said the ships’ mission was to replenish supplies at the small Russian maintenance and repair facility, manned by fewer than 100 personnel, according to analysts.”

Landing ships. Did you catch that? Landing ships. Wiki– “They are designed for beach landings and can carry a 450 ton cargo. The ships have both bow and stern doors for loading and unloading vehicles, and the 630 m² of vehicle deck stretches the length of the hull. Up to 25 armored personnel carriers can be embarked. They were built for the Soviet Navy during the Cold War, but the current Russian Navy has little need for a long-range amphibious capability and most of them are kept in reserve or are retired.”

Well, some of them just came out of retirement.

Meanwhile in Israel, the talk is of that long spoken of and long prophesied war and rumor of war, a pre-emptive attack by Israel on Iran’s nuclear facilities. Will Israel attack? Won’t they attack? Do it! Don’t do it! (Matthew 24:6)

Israel May Be Preparing for Military Strike on Iran
Don’t attack Iran now, warns ex-IDF intel chief
Israeli General: Israel unlikely to attack Iran right before US presidential elections
Romney respects Israel’s right to attack Iran, aide says

Oy, I think the “rumor of war” is worse than the war.

The US has been on a downward trajectory for some time. The Chinese have been on an upward trajectory. Our economies, world influence, power, and stability have been like a see-saw. We know the US is not a player in any sense in the end times prophetic plan. The US is not mentioned. The ‘Kings of the East”…are. (Daniel 11:44, Revelation 9:13-16, Revelation 16:12-16). In my opinion this article clearly shows the switch. Now, China is the nation not to say no to.

Australia rejects US proposal for nuclear aircraft carrier group near Perth
“Australia, which tries to tread a fine line between supporting its closest ally, the US, and not upsetting China, its biggest trading partner, yesterday rejected a proposal to base a US nuclear aircraft carrier group near Perth, saying it did not want US bases in the country…. “I think they’ll [the Australian government] be very careful not to risk further displeasure from China by doing anything that suggests they’re supporting a US military build-up in Asia,” Hugh White, head of the Australian National University’s Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, told Associated Press.”

I’ve been watching the Uganda ebola case for two weeks now. It has grown into a concern. People are fleeing hospitals for fear of an outbreak

Suspected Ebola cases growing in Uganda
“KAMPALA, Uganda — Six more patients suspected to have Ebola have been admitted to the hospital days after investigators confirmed an outbreak of the highly infectious disease in a remote corner of western Uganda, a health official said on Monday. Stephen Byaruhanga, health secretary of the affected Kibaale district, said possible cases of Ebola, at first concentrated in a single village, are now being reported in more villages. “It’s no longer just one village. There are many villages affected,” Byaruhanga said. This is the fourth occurrence of Ebola in Uganda since 2000, when the disease killed 224 people and left hundreds more traumatized in northern Uganda. At least 42 people were killed in another outbreak in 2007, and there was a lone Ebola case in 2011.”

Uganda Ebola outbreak: patients flee hospital amid contagion fears
“Terrified patients fled from a hospital in western Uganda as soon as news broke that a mysterious illness that killed at least 14 people in the region was Ebola, one of the world’s most virulent diseases.”

Remember, ebola is the disease with the 90% mortality rate because it melts your insides. (pestilences: Matthew 24:7)

The NY Times lead a story on ebola with this: “Of the pathogens that keep worried scientists awake at night, few rival Ebola for ruthless efficiency. The virus contains just seven genes, yet it manages to kill up to 90 percent of the people it infects.’

Which prompted this Virology Professor to investigate if the 90% statistic was true, and found this on the WHO page:

“According to the WHO page on Ebola haemorrhagic fever, “Zaïre, Sudan and Bundibugyo species have been associated with large Ebola haemorrhagic fever (EHF) outbreaks in Africa with high case fatality ratio (25–90%) while Côte d’Ivoire and Reston have not. Reston species can infect humans but no serious illness or death in humans have been reported to date.’

I think the average mortality rate from ebola is an average 65%, but it is pretty well universally acknowledged that the rate increases dramatically during an outbreak. Hence the fear conveyed in the above articles. Just to compare, the 1918 influenza outbreak that killed about 20-100 million people had a mortality rate of 2%.


Health teams face real-life horror in Ebola battle
“When officials in Uganda verified an outbreak of the Ebola virus on Saturday, it set international health workers in motion. The hemorrhagic virus is the stuff of real-life horror — spreading through contact with infected individuals, their bodily fluids and even clothing they have worn. In many cases Ebola leads to a rapid decline marked by fever, diarrhea, vomiting and internal and external bleeding.”

How is this a good idea, I ask?

Aussie Tycoon Wants to Clone Dinosaurs for His Real Life, Resort-Based Jurassic Park
“In other billionaire news today, a controversial and ostentatious Australian is supposedly planning a real-life Jurassic Park, complete with cloned dinosaurs. Clive Palmer, who also wants to build a modern-day Titanic replica, has held talks with the scientists who cloned Dolly the sheep, reports Australia’s Sunshine Coast Daily. Palmer, a mining magnate, owns a luxury resort on the Sunshine Coast, in southern Queensland on Australia’s Pacific side. He would put the dinosaurs in his new resort there, the Daily reports.”

Big head squirrel feeder
“Hang this vinyl 5-1/2″ x 8″ Big Head Squirrel Feeder in front of a window or near a porch, fill it with something squirrels like to eat and when they stick their head up there, the squirrel looks like he has a hilariously huge head with a goofy smile.”

Take that, squirrel! I heap humiliation upon you! Plus, I fart in your general direction!

Posted in china, rapture

Why China is getting tough, and what it means for prophecy

Yesterday I read a good article in The Diplomat, an international current-affairs magazine for the Asia-Pacific region. It offers analysis and commentary on events occurring in Asia and around the world, on Geo-political trends throughout the Asia-Pacific, defense and intelligence, environment, human security and development etc. The title is “Why China is Getting Tough” and offers an incisive analysis of the recent aggressive stance that China has adopted. They report, “In recent months, China has adopted an increasingly aggressive posture across the Asia-Pacific region – from provoking fights with neighbours in the South China Sea, to introducing provocative new military systems, to holding joint military exercises with Pakistan on India’s border. Why now?”

Good question. Why is China getting tough now? Several reasons. Remember, nature abhors a vacuum, and there does exist a vacuum in the Asia-Pacific theater.

“China’s regional environment has grown more accommodating this year as Japan and the United States have become increasingly unable to fulfil their traditional roles of balancing Chinese power in the Asia-Pacific. Tokyo’s troubles began when a number of public scandals led to growing dissatisfaction with the Kan administration.”

Second, “The onset of the Arab Spring, meanwhile, forced yet another US administration to turn its attention to the Middle East at the expense of the Asia-Pacific, a trend exacerbated by the decision to intervene militarily in Libya.” So the vacuum deepens…

Further, “Developments elsewhere in the region also seem to be working in China’s favour. For example, the so-called reset in US-Russia relations has steadily deteriorated in recent weeks… Despite stamping out calls for a Jasmine Revolution, the Chinese government continues to face an unsettling domestic situation…” and it is true that oppressive governments that face trying times at home often foment external situations to claim their attention and rally the populace, such as military incursions.

The article goes into good detail in a readable way, so I recommend reading the full article.

All this to say, that in the time of the end (The Tribulation) we know that the Kings of the East become a major military force. As says so well, “One of the significant developments of the twentieth century is the political and military awakening of the Orient. The great nations of Asia east of the Euphrates River, slumbering for centuries, are now beginning to stir and to become a major factor in the international situation. The geographic immensity and the millions of humanity involved make it inevitable that any future development embracing the entire world must take the Orient into consideration.”

Israel and the Orient have had little dealings with each other. In fact, China and Japan and Korea were and still are in some cases very insular. It was quite a surprise in 1941 when Japan attacked us at Pearl Harbor. China, despire having ‘opened’ to the world recently, is still inscrutable. South Korea is a closed country. goes on to say “Two important passages in Revelation, namely, 9:13-21 and 16:12-16 contribute to the conclusion that one of the large armies employed in the final world conflict will be a military force of great power which comes from the Orient. The first intimation of this is found in Revelation 9 where it is recorded that John:

“heard a voice from the four horns of the golden altar which is before God, Saying to the sixth angel which had the trumpet, Loose the four angels which are bound in the great river Euphrates, And the four angels were loosed, which were prepared for an hour, and a day, and a month, and a year, for to slay the third part of men. And the number of the army of the horsemen were two hundred thousand thousand: and I heard the number of them…” (verses 13-16). Though there were not two hundred million people on earth at John’s time, now China has two hundred million in their army.

The passage goes on to describe the character of this army and the conclusion that one-third of the men were killed in the resulting military struggle. “A later development in prophetic fulfillment is portrayed in the sixth vial described in Revelation 16:12-16. There it is recorded, “And the sixth angel poured out his vial upon the great river Euphrates; and the water thereof was dried up, that the way of the kings of the east might be prepared” (Revelation 16:12). Revelation 16:14 reveals that this movement is part of a world-wide gathering of “the kings of the earth and of the whole world” in order that they might participate in “the battle of that great day of God Almighty.”

Grant Phillips asks, “Are We in the Last Days?” “Some prophecies of the last days to consider in answering our question are weather patterns, the economy, society, placement of countries who will come against Israel, modern day technology that provides the means for fulfillment of end-time prophecies, but especially those concerning the State of Israel. In addition to all this though, the beginning Scripture passage of this article should answer this prevailing and burning question. Are we in the last days? If we are now seeing signs that are preparation indicators for the Tribulation, can the Tribulation be that far off? Since the Rapture precedes the Tribulation, then obviously it would be even closer.”

It is the $64,000 question. Actually, it is the priceless question. It is the eternal question. Get ready. He is coming, whether you are ready or not.

Posted in bible jesus, china, demons, prophecy

A Tale of Two UFOs: China and Moscow

A commenter asked me on yesterday’s blog entry if I knew about the UFO over China’s airport. I responded that I did, and that I had written about it when it occurred last year. But then another  person alerted me to the fact that this was a new UFO incident over China’s airport that happened yesterday, not last year. WOW!

I was intrigued by the last year China UFO event over the airport because air traffic controllers had spotted the ‘craft’, or the ‘thing’, whatever it was. ATC’s are trained sky spotters. They are official. They are official enough that the airport was closed, because they feared incoming airplanes would collide with the UFO. In addition, the UFO was showing up on radar.

So when Anonymous said that another incident had occurred, I read up on it. Fox News reports,

UFO Spotted Over Chinese Airport
Published August 18, 2011
“Planes were dramatically diverted away from a major Chinese airport after reports of a UFO circling a runway, the Shanghai Daily reported Thursday. The mysterious object was spotted Wednesday afternoon floating high above Jiangbei International Airport in the city of Chongqing, an important aviation hub for southwestern for southwestern China. Worried officials diverted several flights to other airports before it disappeared about 50 minutes later and air traffic was allowed to return to normal. The Chongqing government has not offered any explanation for the UFO, Shanghai Daily said. However, skeptical airport workers believe it was a sky lantern or a large balloon, the newspaper said.Wednesday’s scare mirrors an incident in July last year when Xiaoshan airport in the eastern city of Hangzhou was closed after baffled air traffic controllers spotted a UFO on their radar screens. The object vanished but footage of a strange glowing orb streaking across the night sky was posted on YouTube, sparking global interest in the supposed close encounter.”

Here is a photo that accompanied the news article:

The instant I saw that photo I remembered another incident. Get a load of this:

Mystery UFO halo over Moscow
Published: 11 Oct 2009
“THIS glowing halo in clouds over Moscow looks like an Independence Day style alien attack. The astonishing ring was spotted over the city and captured on video by stunned locals. It has been described as a “true mystery” by a UFO expert. cores of supernatural enthusiasts have been gripped by the astonishing footage and speculated it could be an ALIEN MOTHERSHIP. The sighting in the clouds is reminiscent of scenes from the 1996 Hollywood blockbuster Independence Day.”

The picture just above is a still from a Youtube video of the incident over Moscow last year. You can click on the ‘Mystery UFO’ link and see a photo of it at the UK Sun. Are the Moscow UFO and yesterday’s China UFO the same photo? Are they the same UFO? Are the demons THAT close to showing themselves? What is going on?

The world we see is not the only world there is. There is another world that is close, but hidden behind the veil that God put up. Sometimes in the bible, He lifts the veil between His world and ours and allows us to glimpse His glorious home. In one example, Elijah in 2 Kings 2:11 was taken up to heaven by a chariot of fire.

In 2 Kings 6:16, Elisha was prophesying over the war with Aram, and when Elisha’s servant admitted fear because of the enemy multitudes that had gathered around them, Elisha prayed for his servant’s eyes to be opened. The servant saw the multitudes upon multitudes from God who were gathered in chariots and horses, ready to fight for God and defeat Aram’s forces.

In Luke 2 on that cold and starry night, when the veil lifted the shepherds saw the heavenly host. As Stephen was dying from his stoning by the angry mob, he looked up and saw the heavens parted, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. (Acts 7:56).

God’s world is real, and it is so close to us. It is only as far away as a thin curtain being lifted. It would not take much more rebellion for the demons to punch through and show themselves. They follow satan who is already god of this world (2 Cor 4:4). In other words, they already roam up and down upon this world seeking whom they may devour. (Job 1:7;  1 Peter 5:8). Are they hovering even now, ready to come through the veil and show themselves?

At some point, they WILL irrupt. (Rev 9:2-3). Whether they choose to appear as angels of light (2 Cor 11:14-15) or as terrible demons screaming in the holy places (Luke 4:33), they will return. Jesus said in Matthew 24 that the times just before the end (during the Tribulation) will be as the Days of Noah, and we know from Genesis 6:5-6 that the Days of Noah were totally evil with men thinking evil thoughts continually.

Christians need not fear. Demons, or UFOs, or whatever you want to call them, are not greater than He who is in us. When they do eventually appear, when the veil is lifted and more and more supernatural things begin to take place, as Revelation 6, Matthew 24, and Daniel 2, 7, 11 show, His children will be in heaven. We will be enjoying our awards ceremony and marriage supper. You can be part of THAT supernatural event, by repenting. Please do so soon. It seems that the veil is already starting to be lifted…

Posted in china, end of days, end time, japan, prophecy, rare earth

Stunning rare earth deposits found off Japan, crumbling China’s monopoly

A stunning discovery has been made. Reuters reported this week that “Vast deposits of rare earth minerals, crucial in making high-tech electronics products, have been found on the floor of the Pacific Ocean and can be readily extracted, Japanese scientists said on Monday.”

Here is a great article about it with graphics that clearly show the magnitude of this discovery!

I’m continually stunned at the rolling-out of the unexpected in these end of days. Just as political supremacy has been indicated in one country or another, it suddenly falls. Just as Russia eyed oil supremacy, Israel has become the world’s potentially richest nation in natural gas, oil shale, and oil in the last 18 months, going from an importer to a self-sufficient exporter. Israel is on the cusp of an energy revolution, causing jealousy in Russia. And now this: rare earths, tumbling China from its supreme position to a mere paltry contender.

Let me explain what has been going on in rare earths since the mid 1990s.

China rare earth mine: source

China’s rise in economic power allowed that nation to corner the market in rare earth metals. They literally have a monopoly. By now, the US relies almost completely on a supply of these obscure but critical minerals from China and this fact spooked us big time. This was by China’s design: they deliberately set out to corner the market on rare earth minerals. What happens when rare-earths become scarce? The Chinese have spent the last 25 years amassing them and then in the mid 2000’s they turned the spigot down, causing scarcity.

What are rare earth metals? Most people define them as including the following 17 metals: Cerium Dysprosium Erbium Europium Gadolinium Holmium Lanthanum Lutetium Neodymium Praseodymium Promethium Samarium Scandium Terbium Thulium Ytterbium Yttrium. These rare earth metals are in just about everything that makes current civilization function.

 “Here’s why you should care about them: By the 21st century, rare earths had become essential to global commerce. Take a look around you. There are probably plenty of things that depend on them. Rare earths are used in permanent magnets, which are integral to modern electronics and green technologies. They’re in iPhones, earbuds, cell phones and hard drives. Their use is not exactly new: they were in cathode tube televisions, although they are now in flat screens too. They’re in electric automobile windows, MRI machines, and compact fluorescent bulbs. A Toyota Prius contains at least two pounds of them. Each advanced wind turbine has roughly 660 pounds of the soft silvery metal neodymium. They are also used in guided missiles and other weapons systems. As recently as the 1990s, the world had a geographically diversified supply of rare earth minerals. China produced a lot, but the United States, Brazil, India and Russia also had active mines. However, as getting rich became increasingly glorious, the Chinese smelled an opportunity. In 1992, paramount leader Deng Xiaoping reportedly pronounced China to be the Saudi Arabia of rare earths, reflecting the geologic fact that his country is unusually rich in them. Deng also noted that, given their importance, rare earths are wildly cheap. China began to close the spigot on its supply — adding tariffs and slowly tightening export quotas. As the world became increasingly dependent on rare earths, China had quietly cornered the market and created a shortage. Some analysts believe that 2010 will be the first year when global demand exceeds supply.” And China was sitting on that mountain, gloating.

Now they gloat no more.

The Reuters article about the new rare earths discoveries continues: “The deposits have a heavy concentration of rare earths. Just 0.4 square mile of deposits will be able to provide one-fifth of the current global annual consumption,” said Yasuhiro Kato, an associate professor of earth science at the University of Tokyo. [WOW!!!] The discovery was made by a team led by Kato and including researchers from the Japan Agency for Marine-Earth Science and Technology. They found the minerals in sea mud extracted from depths of 11,500-20,000 ft below the ocean surface at 78 locations. One-third of the sites yielded rich contents of rare earths and the metal yttrium, Kato said in a telephone interview. The deposits are in international waters in an area stretching east and west of Hawaii, as well as east of Tahiti in French Polynesia, he said. He estimated rare earths contained in the deposits amounted to 80 to 100 billion metric tons, compared to global reserves currently confirmed by the U.S. Geological Survey of just 110 million tonnes that have been found mainly in China…”

So suddenly China is out of luck, as this Japanese Business Magazine reports. The “Solution to the rare earth problem could come from the sea” “Huge quantities of rare earth elements exist on the Pacific Ocean floor, researchers say, a development that could end China’s virtual monopoly on the metals but may exacerbate legal wrangling on the high seas. In an encouraging sign for makers of high-tech products that require rare earths from the dwindling supply, the deposits appear to be in seabed conditions that will make it easy to collect and refine them, according to team, which included researchers from the University of Tokyo.”

Everything is increasingly unpredictable. Weather is going crazy. Political ups and downs are surprising. As fast as French Presidential contender Dominique Strauss-Kahn faced sexual assault charges in New York and seemed to lost his bid against Sarkozy, now he is up again. As deliberately as Russia has crafted solidity through pipelines and deals in the oil market within Russia, and in the Baltics and Asia Minor, that supremacy was toppled within 18 months as vast deposits and oil fields were discovered in Israel. Now China’s monopoly in rare earths was lost in one day as rare earth deposits were found near Japan, and easy to reach, too.

In the Tribulation, geo-political shifts and rises and falls of fortunes occur even more quickly and dramatically than they are occurring today. We know that Russia, Iran, Turkey, Armenia, and others attack Israel for “plunder and a spoil”. (Ezekiel 38:13). That great amount of riches they seek could be the treasures Israel has recently discovered under their sand and sea. The ‘Kings of the East‘ collectively march against Israel, and though the Kings are not named, logic deduces that they could be be a united Japan, China, and Korea… and let us not forget India is also east of the Euphrates.

The point is, that nothing is solid except heaven. As we get closer to the Tribulation that solidity will continue to wither. The earth that seems to strong, will crack asunder (Isaiah 24:19). The riches and supremacy one nation has, fall down in one day. (Rev 18:10). The Lord sets up Kings and he takes them down. (Daniel 2:21).

Sorry, China. It seems that Japan won this round. You won’t have long to wait, though, something else is sure to come along in these fast-changing times to change the fortunes of one over the next. As Mark Twain said, “If you don’t like the weather in New England, wait a few minutes,” and in these end of days we can safely modify that saying to: “If you don’t like the world situation, wait a few minutes.”