Posted in earthquakes, eruption, supervolcano, volcano, yellowstone

Earthquake and volcano news: OK swarm continues, volcano discovered in ME, Yellowstone magma lake larger than thought

I’ve chronicled that earthquakes (up until this year) had been been on the rise. For a steady number of years, using the United States Geological Survey’s own benchmark, the number of quakes had been increasing.

As far as 2013 data, we still have 8 weeks to go, but this is the running tally of number of quakes in the world in each of the four magnitudes I track. Data as always from USGS. The red means the number of quakes have met or exceeded USGS averages.

5.0-5.9 – 1169
6.0-6.9 – 110
7.0-7.9 – 15
8.0-9.9 – 2

The type and location of the quakes had also been diverse from times in the past. There were earthquakes at a deeper level than ever, or large quakes in places there had never been one (Svalbard, Norway).

USGS reported last week,

Earthquake Swarm Continues in Central Oklahoma
“Since January 2009, more than 200 magnitude 3.0 or greater earthquakes have rattled Central Oklahoma, marking a significant rise in the frequency of these seismic events. “We’ve statistically analyzed the recent earthquake rate changes and found that they do not seem to be due to typical, random fluctuations in natural seismicity rates,” said Bill Leith, USGS seismologist. “These results suggest that significant changes in both the background rate of events and earthquake triggering properties needed to have occurred in order to explain the increases in seismicity. This is in contrast to what is typically observed when modeling natural earthquake swarms.”

What they are saying there, is that there was a sudden and inexplicable change in at least two variables, presenting an unaccountable statistical anomaly, and that they dunno why.

As far as volcanic eruptions go, the Smithsonian Global Volcanism Program counts them. I searched the database from January 1, 1930 to December 31, 1939, and did the same for each decade through December 31, 2010. The plain number of eruptions is up. Click to enlarge.

Raw data here
1930s – 312
1940s – 269
1950s – 467
1960s – 537
1970s – 562
1980s – 703
1990s – 574
00-10 -950

In some volcano news, KURL8 out of Montana reports today that the lava pool under the supervolcano at Yellowstone is much bigger than thought.

“The lava pool beneath Yellowstone National Park is more than twice as big as scientists previously believed, that’s according to new research from the Geological Society of America. Scientists from the University of Utah say the lake of molten lava is nearly 50 miles long and 12 miles wide.”

For all that, scientists say that the real danger in that area is not from an eruption, since the geysers let off steam and pressure. It’s from the earthquakes.

“Researchers analyzed, get this, 4,500 earthquakes in and around Yellowstone from 1985 to 2013. … The last major earthquake in the area measured 7.3 and was in 1959. It was the most destructive earthquake ever recorded in the Rocky Mountains.”

In other interesting volcano news, it was reported at a geology conference this week that remnants of a supervolcano have been found in Maine.

Maine’s volcanoes (yes, Maine) among world’s biggest
“Maine has supervolcanoes. Wait, Maine has volcanoes? Yes, and their eruptions could have been among the biggest ever on Earth, geoscientist Sheila Seaman reported here Tuesday (Oct. 29) at the Geological Society of America’s annual meeting. … Since they formed, the ancient volcanic layers have been tilted up by tectonic forces, providing a top-to-bottom slice through a supervolcano. For example, Isle au Haut, part of Acadia National Park, exposes the heart of a volcano. “The whole magma chamber is lying on its side,” Seaman said.”

The Most Active Volcano You’ve Never Heard Of
“In the extreme northeast region of Russia is the Kamchatka Peninsula. Familiar to people who play the board game Risk, Kamchatka is a huge mass of land sticking out into the north Pacific, and sitting on the peninsula is a cluster of volcanoes, some of them among the most active on the planet. The biggest of these is Klyuchevskaya Sopka, a monster stratovolcano towering over 4750 meters (15,500 feet) high. It’s also the most active, having been more-or-less erupting continuously since the late 1600s. It’s erupted a dozen times just since 2000! On Oct. 20, 2013, the Landsat 8 Earth-observing satellite flew over Klyuchevskaya, capturing a tremendously long plume of ash as well as two separate lava flows moving down the volcano’s flanks:

Isn’t earth so interesting!!
I can’t wait until we see it from that vantage point!

Ever since the fall of man and the curse that was given by God over man, beast, and earth, the creation has been groaning. Though the dates in this scientific article are no doubt off, it is interesting to see that man has been living with a restless earth since the beginning of the curse

9,000-year-old painting of volcano linked to a  real eruption
“A 9,000-year-old painting of an exploding volcano, the oldest ever found, can now be linked to a real-life eruption in Turkey. The towering Hasan Dag volcano erupted 8,970 years ago, plus or minus 640 years, according to a new dating technique that analyzes zircon crystals in volcanic rock, geochemist Axel Schmitt of the University of California, Los Angeles, reported here Wednesday at the Geological Society of America’s annual meeting. Turkish scientists long suspected Hasan Dag was the source of the painting’s dramatic scene, but never had a precise date for its volcanic rocks, Schmitt told LiveScience. The volcano is about 80 miles (130 kilometers) from the ancient village of Çatalhöyük, where the painting was discovered in 1964 during an archaeological dig.”

(FMI on the painting itself, here is the article from Daily Mail)

Daily Mail Caption: “A mural, pictured, found on a wall in the Turkish settlement of Catalhoyuk depicts a village in front of a volcano. The painting is thought to be a warning about the danger of nearby stratovolcano Mount Hasan, located 70 miles northeast from where the mural was found.

Turkey is interesting. The world’s most mysterious and stunning archaeological site is there, Gobekli Tepe. I wrote about it in 2011 here.

I’d posted from the article, “The elegant bas-reliefs of vultures, scorpions, and other creatures found on the T-shaped pillars had to have been created by skilled artisans, evidence that hunter-gatherers were capable of a complex social structure. Pillars at the temple of Göbekli Tepe—11,600 years old and up to 18 feet tall—may represent priestly dancers at a gathering. Note the hands above the loincloth-draped belt on the figure in the foreground.”

Some believe that the area of the Garden of Eden was in southern Turkey. Here is a map showing the nearby village of Catalhoyuk  to the Turkish volcano Mount Hasan, and Gobekli Tepe’s location. They are about 250 km apart or about 158 miles.

Horatio said, 
O day and night, but this is wondrous strange!

Hamlet replied,
There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio,
Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.

Volcanoes being discovered, restless earth, unknown paintings of long ago eruptions, and mysterious monoliths by disappeared rivers…there is so much we do not know but even as we partially know now, later we will fully know, by His grace. (1 Corinthians 13:12).

“How great is God–beyond our understanding! The number of his years is past finding out.” (Job 36:26)

Posted in earthquakes, iran, israel, strange fire

Strange Fire defense; Indian seer sees gold; Israel quakes; Nomadic pursuits of beautiful earth; Bad real estate photos. More

Here are a few links for you to enjoy on various topics:

A measured and reasonable response to Strange Fire, a conference organized to reject the claims of Charismatics that prophecy, healing and tongues are a legitimate part of the church today. And truthful. It starts like this

In Defense of John MacArthur, Strange Fire Conference and the Challenge to the Charismatic Mov’t
“A lot of people seem to be angry with John MacArthur; it would be more comforting to me, and a greater testimony to American sensibility, if Christians were more concerned about Pat Robertson. That the former can openly state his opposition to what he believes the falsified expression of spiritual power, is far less offensive than a man who has openly and repeatedly claimed to be speaking the words of God, but whose failed prophesies have proven him heretical. Yet the former man is almost universally condemned as hateful and divisive, while the latter maintains his audience for what? Not one, but multiple generations, despite a televised broadcast in which he said that Jesus told him President Obama would lose the last election.”

I’m very conflicted about Halloween. Our church does a large and popular outreach. Yet it is the devil’s night. This essay settled some things for me.
Halloween: Trick, Treat or Missional? – Jo Saxton

Monumentally bad real estate photos that will make you laugh The captions make it.
Like this one:

Presumably the idea being conveyed here is that if you don’t buy the house, the agent can arrange for you come to significant harm when you least expect it. Submitted by Jaques LeHommes, for which merci.

Joel C Rosenberg posted the following about Israel:

Netanyahu makes case for a preemptive strike during major speech on the 40th anniversary of the Yom Kippur War.
“Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu offered a thinly veiled defense of a possible Israeli preemptive strike on Iran during a Knesset commemoration Tuesday of the 40th anniversary of the Yom Kippur War,” reports the Times of Israel.”

Speaking of Israel, there were several earthquakes there this week.

Two earthquakes in one day shake northern Israel
“Head of Geophysical Institute: Still no explanation for temblors; no reports of injuries or damage. While no injuries or significant damages afflicted surrounding areas, a string of minor earthquakes have rattled Israel’s North over the past few days – including two on Sunday alone.”

Jiro dreamed of sushi but this India seer dreams of gold- and everyone started digging
“NEW DELHI: Archaeologists began excavating an abandoned palace in Daudiakala village, Uttar Pradesh on Friday after a popular Hindu holy man said he dreamt 1,000 tonnes of gold were buried underneath. The dig at the fort of Raja Rao Ram Bux Singh in Daudiakala village, Uttar Pradesh, started after Swami Shobhan Sarkar relayed his vision of the treasure to a federal government minister three months ago.”

Jim Nix at Nomadic Pursuits has a slew of gorgeous HDR photos to feast your eyes on, like this one

“This is one beautiful cathedral, and I am very happy to have found it on my recent trip to Brussels. I passed through Brussels last year and despite shooting quite a bit of the town, I never actually saw this cathedral (or knew about it, honestly). I’m not sure how I missed it, but am glad that I corrected it when I was there a couple of weeks back.”

Posted in earthquakes, end time, prophecy

Magnitude 6.6 quake at Columbia today, an earthquake’s lessons

After a seeming period of quiet there have suddenly been a spate of major earthquakes. USGS lists a quake as major if it exceeds 6.0 magnitude or those others with a red background have been identified as “significant”, based on a combination of magnitude, PAGER alert level, and the number of Did You Feel It? responses. Here is the list of quakes in the last week the USGS deems significant.

Mag 6.6 102km WSW of Mutis, Colombia
Mag 6.1 90km WSW of Paita, Peru
Mag 6.0 112km NW of L’Esperance Rock, New Zealand
Mag 6.0 189km WNW of Saumlaki, Indonesia

Significant: 4.9 9km SSW of Volcano, Hawaii

The Guardian UK reported on today’s 6.6 quake in Columbia
“According the U.S. Geological Survey, a severe earthquake has occurred in the Pacific Ocean near Columbia. The earthquake is 6.7 magnitudes and hit about 10:43, local time, this morning. It landed approximately 59 miles west southwest of Mutis, Colombia. No immediate reports of damage and according to the Alaska Tsunami Warning Center, no tsunami warning was issued.”

God has used earthquakes to speak to His people in the past and will again in the future. In Acts 16:26, He used a quake to release Paul from prison. When Jesus died on the cross, a quake occurred, recorded in Matthew 27:54, “When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son of God!” The quake was God speaking to humans … and they understood. A few days later as Jesus rose from the grave there was another earthquake. Matthew 28:2 records it. “There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it.” In Ezekiel 38:19 God promises to show Himself through an earthquake (among other things). “In My zeal and in My blazing wrath I declare that on that day there will surely be a great earthquake in the land of Israel.”

During the Tribulation, an earthquake will occur in Jerusalem as described in Rev 11:13 where 7000 people will be killed. Later, in Rev 16:18, “Then there came flashes of lightning, rumblings, peals of thunder and a severe earthquake. No earthquake like it has ever occurred since man has been on earth, so tremendous was the quake.” Every mountain will crumble and every island will flee away.

Earthquakes are important events. After a major quake in CA in 1994, John MacArthur preached this:

“My sixth point is this: God uses calamity to call people to repentance. I believe this is intended by God to warn people of what is coming when he destroys the earth. I believe it is to call people to repentance.

And then one last point. Time is limited to heed the warning. Time is limited to heed the warning. Jesus tells a story in verse 6. “A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard, came looking for fruit on it and didn’t find it. Said to the vineyard keeper, ‘Behold, for three years I came looking for fruit.” By the way, three years was the limit. That’s how long they let a fig tree go before they cut it down because it would show its fruit by the third year.

“‘I waited three years, I come looking for fruit on the tree, don’t find any. Cut it down. Why does it even use up the ground?’ And he answered and said to him, ‘Let it alone, sir. For this year too, until I dig around it and put in fertilizer. If it bears fruit next year, fine. If not, cut it down.'”

What does that say? God is patient, but his patience has a limit, right? Give it another year. No fruit, cut it down. The LORD is compassionate, gracious slow to anger, abounding in loving kindness, but he will not always strive with man.

Sinners live on borrowed time. Sinners have a temporary reprieve. What a profound teacher is an earthquake. Life is fragile, there are limits to self-protection, death is inevitable, the world is cursed, temporal disasters are only previews of what is coming, God uses these frightening calamities to call people to repentance, and you better repent because time is limited.

Further reading

Greatest earthquakes of the bible

Earthquake verses in the bible

Why does God allow natural disasters, i.e. earthquakes, hurricanes, and tsunamis?

Posted in earthquakes

Four Major earthquakes this week, looking at some earthquake data

United States Geological Society (USGS) rates a quake major if it is over 6.0 in magnitude. Each year, the average number of 6.0-6.9 quakes occurring in that range for the entire year is 134. So far this year (2013) there have been 60 in the 6.0+ range. There have been four this week.

The breakdown goes like this: (Data from USGS)

Comparing last year at this same time, the number of quakes in the 6.0-6.9 range was 59.

Let’s compare this half-year to last year’s half-year.
The number of quakes in the year 2012 between magnitude 4.0-9.9 from Jan 1- June 15 are 4,266.

The number of quakes in the year 2013 between magnitude 4.0-9.9 from Jan 1- June 15 were 6,130.

Looking at a longer term trend for quakes between 4.0-9.9 magnitude, from Jan-June for the last 7 years:

Now, looking at only half a year is not the best way to look at data for this data set, because earthquakes don’t occur in a predictable or proportional way over the course of a year. But if wanting to use this year’s data at all, it is important to look at apples-to-apples, so I compared it that way for the previous years.

As a note, USGS changed their pages. The search page is still functional, but one critical piece is missing from the way they offered the search results before: the total count. If I want to get a total count for any search data on earthquakes, I have to copy the USGS result into Word, manually delete the extraneous information, copy all, press the number button, and look at the last line to see how many there are. It is cumbersome. As with any data gathering, the more you introduce humans monkeying with the data, the more chances there will be to introduce human error. In addition, I can’t find out how many quakes there are for the entire year because the sheer volume of copied information will crash or freeze Word.

Come on, USGS, give us the total number of quakes for our search function again. Please?

So there ya go, just FYI, some information for you at the half-way point in 2013. Does it feel like half the year is gone already? It is going so fast. Maybe July-December will be the time frame the Savior will come! One can hope for the Blessed Hope, and pray too. :). Maybe tomorrow will be the Day.

Posted in damascus, earthquakes, explosion, nuke

Did Israel use a nuke at Damascus (likely not). And other news

Here are a few things I thought were interesting. First, the USGS list of earthquakes over the last 7 days. I know the disclaimer at the top of their page says they are going to stop updating the page at some point, but I keep using it until they do, because it is easier to read, has larger print, and has the major quakes in red so you can spot them easier. The new page has none of that. I noticed a cluster of smaller quakes in unusual places, occurring close in time. I list them here


The Australian reports ‘Lost continent’ found off Africa
“SCIENTISTS believe they’ve discovered the remains of a lost continent on the floor of the Indian Ocean off Africa. The research team from Norway, South Africa, Germany and the UK identified the ancient “microcontinent” after analysing beach sands from the island of Mauritius. They believe Mauritius was split from the larger island of Madagascar, 900 kilometres to the west, by volcanic eruptions between 61 and 84 million years ago. The beach sands were deposited by subsequent eruptions within the last nine million years. But the analysis found a smattering of zircon grains up to 2 billion years old, suggesting the recent volcanoes had spewed out fragments of an ancient continental crust.”

OK, this has the geological world pretty excited. They love anything that they believe supports an old earth construct. The earth is not billions of years old, despite what scientists and Jack Kelley say.

It seems likely that at some point however, the continents were joined, and during the flood the massive geological upheaval separated them. (source). That event was tremendously stressful to the earth. Remember the 9.0 quake at Japan two years ago. A short amount of shaking during that earthquake moved the earth’s axis and shortened the day! What did the Flood do to the lands? Peter says that the earth at that time was deluged with water and perished. (2 Peter 3:6). And as Gill’s Exposition says, ‘whatever alteration there might be in its form and position.’ Not that the earth passed away, but everything on it and in it died. One can only wonder at God’s power. Therefore though the earth is not billions of years old, it is interesting to wonder about a lost continent or two!

A few days ago, Israel carried out two strikes in Damascus. Foreign Policy magazine reports,
“Top news: The Syrian government charged Sunday that an overnight airstrike that targeted what is believed to be a military research center in Damascus was carried out by Israel, a development that marks the most significant international military action in the ongoing Syrian conflict and raises the specter that the conflict will spread beyond Syrian borders.”

The enemies of Israel are claiming that the massive explosion at Damascus the other night was in fact a nuclear blast. In viewing the video posted of the explosion from different angels, they say that the cloud that arise from the massive fireball looked like a mushroom cloud. The explosion happened at night and Israel is mum on the entire operation, so due to the fog of war it will likely be impossible to nail down whether a nuclear missile, a nuclear-type missile, or simply a powerful rocket destroyed the facility atop the Damascus mountain.

However that doesn’t matter a bit. Whether or not Israel used a low-level nuke (and I think that they did not) the enemies of Israel will simply claim that they did and run with it. This will provide them grounds to call for a retaliation, and also obscure the fact that there is evidence that the rebels used sarin gas (a deadly poison).

John McTernan wonders if WWIII has broken out, and though sometimes he gets a bit over-excited, I admit I wondered the same thing myself when I saw that blast. You can view the Youtube eyewitness video of the massive explosion, here, and/or search Youtube for other angles to view. When I saw how large that explosion was, like McTernan, I wondered, “Is this it?”

I was reading Zechariah last night, tears coming to my eyes at the sweep and scope of the LORD’S work upon the earth. We often settle into reading the same chapters which point to last days prophecy- Matthew 24, Revelation, Psalm 83, Ezekiel 38 & 39, and Isaiah 17 and 19. But the bible holds so much more, of course. Obadiah is interesting, if difficult. Zechariah enhances Revelation, being an almost parallel. Ezekiel 40-48 gloriously describe the Millennium kingdom. The last third of Isaiah points to Israel’s restoration. And so on. Don’t be afraid to branch out in reading Old Testament passages from the major and minor prophets. The Lord is great to behold, no matter what passage you read and no matter how much or how little one understands it at the time. Continual reading opens the passageways of understanding. And don’t forget Peter, Paul, Jude and other NT writers had stuff to say about the last days, too. So don’t get stuck in a rut, read, read, read- widely and often!

Posted in chemical weapons Syria, earthquakes, north korea

USA bad, puppies good: two postcards for sale in North Korea; earthquakes, Syria chemical weapons

Don’t forget about North Korea. They still hate us.

Photo by David Guttenfelder, National Geographic

The scare of earlier this month seems to have died down. Only it hasn’t, it just isn’t being reported all that much. Goodness, the US media has the attention span of a gnat. Look, North Korea! Over there, Lindsey Lohan! Wait, the White House Correspondent’s Dinner! Oy.

North Korea is still busy moving missiles, reports the UK Guardian.

“North Korea has moved two short-range missile launchers to its east coast, apparently indicating it is going ahead with preparations for a test launch, a South Korean news agency reported. Seoul and its allies have been expecting some sort of missile launch during weeks of heightened hostility on the Korean peninsula.”

Sooo, China ordered more troops to the border of North Korea.

“China is reportedly beefing up its military presence on the North Korean border amid heightening tensions in the region. The troop mobilisation is said to be taking place along with deployment of dozens of tanks in the strategically important border region with North Korea, which is separated by the Yalu River. The Chinese military is on high alert over the ongoing tensions in the Korean Peninsula.”

Just thought I’d let you all know that it is still going on over there. Lindsey Lohan notwithstanding.


This week there has been some reporting from main stream news outlets that Syria has used chemical weapons. However, those reports started leaking out a month ago. I reported on Israel’s claim that chemical weapons were used in Syria back on March 19. Israel’s claim got a huge ho-hum from the world. But now that a defected Syrian General is telling the world that he was ordered to use them, the world is being forced to face it. So the UN dips a toe and cautiously investigates. The US and UK are “treading cautiously.

Ignoring it, is my opinion. They went into Libya pretty fast, as I recall.

Joel C. Rosenberg reports that Israel is closing in on the end of their patience with Iran and their nuclear program. He wrote this week, “Close confidante of Netanyahu warns “it’s now or never” for military strike on Iran: Analysis.” The article opens this way:

“Tzachi Hanegbi — a close, trusted, long-time personal friend and confidante of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu – made remarks on Tuesday at a security conference in Tel Aviv that did not make news in the U.S. But they should have. Hanegbi explained that the time for sanctions and diplomacy and covert options to neutralize the Iranian nuclear threat is over, and the time for Israel to use its military option has come. “It’s now or never,” said Hanegbi, ”and the option of never does not exist.”

However later, the guy was told to stay mum on all that. And that is the news from the ‘epicenter’.


Speaking of earthquakes, I’d noticed that in previous years there had been a huge increase in quakes in the 6.0-6.9 magnitude. Then this year a severe drop-off. Since 2003, quakes in that magnitude had exceeded the United States Geological Survey’s own annual average. See here:

The dearth of 6.0+ quakes has continued into 2013. I had wondered what was up. Apparently I was not the only one who wondered. This article’s title poses quite the interesting conundrum:

A global murmur, then unusual silence
“In the global aftershock zone that followed the major April 2012 Indian Ocean earthquake, seismologists noticed an unusual pattern. The magnitude (M) 8.6 earthquake, a strike-slip event at intraoceanic tectonic plates, caused global seismic rates of M=4.5 to rise for several days, even at distances thousands of kilometers from the mainshock site. However, the rate of M=6.5 seismic activity subsequently dropped to zero for the next 95 days. This period of quiet, without a large quake, has been a rare event in the past century. So why did this period of quiet occur? In his research presentation, Fred Pollitz of the U.S. Geological Survey suggests that the Indian Ocean earthquake caused short-term dynamic stressing of a global faulting system. Across the planet, there are faults that are “close to failure” and ready to rupture. It may be, suggests Pollitz and his colleagues, that a large quake encourages short-term triggering of these close-to-failure faults but also relieves some of the stress that has built up along these faults.”

Aha! We know from the bible that the earth will shake and totter continuously throughout the Tribulation. (Isaiah 24:20, Matthew 24:7). Upcoming earthquakes of increasing magnitude are prophesied to occur. For example, there will be one in Jerusalem that will kill 7,000. (Rev 11:13). A huge one will occur that is predicted in Revelation 6:12 that will submerge all islands and crumble all mountains. In between the earthquakes will continue in diverse places. (Luke 21:11).

All this speaks to the scientist’s notion that the earth’s quake faults are about to fail. It’s because they are.

Pray, live for Christ, and look up, for our Redemption draweth nigh.

Posted in earthquakes, signs of the times

Earthquakes this week (UPDATED)

Update, adding one more that happened overnight.
Between April 13 and April 21st there have been 8 9 major quakes (as defined by USGS, quakes above 6.0 magnitude)

2013/04/21 Mag 6.1 IZU ISLANDS, JAPAN REGION
2013/04/20 Mag 6.1 KURIL ISLANDS
2013/04/20 Mag 6.6 WESTERN SICHUAN, CHINA
2013/04/19 Mag 6.0 EAST OF THE KURIL ISLANDS
2013/04/19 Mag 7.2 KURIL ISLANDS
2013/04/13 Mag 6.0 VANUATU

Note- I didn’t put all the Kuril Islands quakes marked as a dot because some overlaid each other. I just wanted you to get a rough idea as to where these quakes occurred.

Posted in earthquakes

7.2 Earthquake at Kuril Islands, Oklahoma fault line discovered

There was another major earthquake overnight. It was located at Russia’s Kuril Islands, 155 miles ENE of Kuril’sk, Russia and 323 miles NE of Nemuro, Japan.

The average number per year for occurrence of quakes in the 7.0-7.9 magnitude range is 15. Three of the quakes in the 7-point range have occurred during this month of April.

So with the year less than half over we are halfway to the yearly average of quakes in that range. It is hard to make statements on data that has more than half the year still to be gathered, and earthquakes seem not to occur on a steady trajectory so making projections is useless, however it is still interesting to look at the numbers.

In other earthquake news, I’ve been reporting on the number of quakes at Oklahoma. For several years there have been occurring clusters of quake swarms. Initially the scientists and officials thought they were due to fracking, a method of extracting oil from shale underground.

However this news article reveals the answer:

Oklahoma earthquake surge reveals previously unknown fault line, state agency trying to connect dots
A day after 10 mid-scale earthquakes rocked central Oklahoma, a series of smaller quakes shook the area Wednesday, with more likely to come. Five earthquakes ranging from magnitudes 2.5 to 4.4 occurred in a concentrated region of the state, just northwest of Oklahoma City. In the past 72 hours, 14 earthquakes of 2.5 or greater have originated in the town of Luther. The largest quake, registering a magnitude 4.4, was “felt throughout large portions of Oklahoma and into Kansas and Missouri,” according to the Oklahoma Geological Survey. Austin Holland, with the agency, says there have likely been many more that were small enough to go largely undetected. According to the survey, the swarm of earthquakes that have occurred since Monday is in the “few hundreds.” The survey reports the earthquakes have occurred along a previously unknown fault. The agency also predicts the quakes aren’t over.”

More at link.

The one thing the officials and scientists got right is that the quakes are not over.

I have written a series called The Language of God. In it, I explore ways that God used to speak to the population in various “natural disaster’ ways, such as hail, earthquakes, fire, brimstone, etc. The writer of Hebrews wrote in verses 1:1-2, “Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the world.”

The bible shows that God has done mighty things through earthquakes. He has promised to speak to us again via earthquakes. The article below explores the ways the LORD shakes us when He wants our attention-

The language of God: earthquakes

It is worth a look-see, in my opinion.

Posted in earthquakes, end time, ring of fire, warning

Ring of Fire earthquakes increasing

After a bit of a lull in earthquakes over 6.0 in 2012, this year has started with a bang. So far this week there have been ten quakes in the 6.0-6.9 rang and 13 major quakes overall.

The average amount of quakes in the 6.0-6.9 magnitude range typically average 134 per year. Last year was the first year the average was not met or exceeded. Click to enlarge.

So far this week, there have been what USGS categorizes as “major quakes” (higher than 5.9 mag) in the following places. The most recent is at the top-


There was also a 7.5mag near Craig, Alaska on January 5th, 2013. There have been 13 major quakes so far this year.

The Santa Cruz Islands look like they are getting the most action. So where are these islands?

globe showing location of 10-degree map

Many of these major quakes of late are along the “Ring of Fire.”

According to Wikipedia, “the Pacific Ring of Fire, or just Ring of Fire for short, is an area where a large number of earthquakes and volcanic eruptions occur in the basin of the Pacific Ocean. In a 40,000 km (25,000 mi) horseshoe shape, it is associated with a nearly continuous series of oceanic trenches, volcanic arcs, and volcanic belts and/or plate movements. The Ring of Fire has 452 volcanoes and is home to over 75% of the world’s active and dormant volcanoes.It is sometimes called the circum-Pacific belt or the circum-Pacific seismic belt. Eruption of Mount St. Helens on July 22, 1980. About 90% of the world’s earthquakes and 81% of the world’s largest earthquakes occur along the Ring of Fire. Also, many of the world’s volcanoes are located here.”

Dr. Stephen Austin at the Institute for Creation Research has produced an article outlining the history and future prophecy of earthquakes and the bible. It is called Greatest Earthquakes of the Bible. He listed 17 of the major quakes and scientifically and historically as well as prophetically looks at their power. It is an easily readable essay which I’ll excerpt parts of here, and encourage you to read in its entirety.

The Holy Land is a region where earthquakes occur frequently. By one means or another, big earthquakes have been documented in the Holy Land for a period exceeding 4,000 years.1 Many are known from history and literature, especially the Bible. Holy Land earthquakes are also evidenced from archaeological excavations. No other region of the earth has such a long and well-documented chronology of big earthquakes.

1. Day Three of Creation Week

On the third day of the creation week, the waters of the earth were collected into the oceanic basins as continents appeared (Genesis 1:9-10). Before Day Three, the waters had been over the whole earth. Continents seem to have been uplifted and the ocean floor was depressed during a great faulting process that established the “foundations of the earth.” We are told that angels saw and praised the omnipotent God as the earth-shaking process occurred (Job 38:4-7; Psalm 148:1-6; possibly Psalm 104:5-6). Today, the earth’s continental crust (41 percent of the earth’s surface, including the continental shelves) has an average elevation of 2,000 feet above sea level, whereas the oceanic crust (59 percent of the earth’s surface, excluding the continental shelves) has an average elevation of 13,000 feet below sea level. Can anyone properly comprehend the colossal upheaval that formed continental crust on Day Three? Angels must have watched in awe!

2. Noah’s Flood
3. Destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah
4. Moses on Sinai
5. Korah’s Rebellion in the Wilderness
6. The Fall of Jericho
7. Philistine Camp near Geba
8. Elijah on Mount Horeb
9. Amos’ Earthquake of 750 B.C.
10. Qumran Earthquake of 31 B.C.
11. The Crucifixion in Jerusalem, April 3, 33 A.D.
12. The Resurrection in Jerusalem, April 5, 33 A.D.
13. Jerusalem Prayer Meeting, Summer 33 A.D.
14. The Prison at Philippi

15. Today’s Earthquakes
When Jesus was asked by His disciples what the sign of His coming would be, He talked of wars, famine, epidemic disease, and earthquakes. Jesus said, “These are the beginning of sorrows” (Matthew 24:8; Mark 13:8; cf. Luke 21:10-11). The word “sorrows” is the Greek word meaning “birth pangs.” Seismograph analysis reveals that the frequency and energy of large earthquakes was not constant throughout the twentieth century. According to a popular urban legend, big earthquakes have been increasing in both frequency and energy. This legend is not supported by the seismograph data. There appears to be about a 30-year cycle of increasing and decreasing earthquake frequency, suggesting the “beginning of birth pangs” theme. Furthermore, seismographs demonstrate that earthquakes are indeed distributed throughout the globe (the “divers places” as described by Jesus in Matthew 24:7 and Mark 13:8).

[Ed Note: the article to which Austin refers that states big earthquakes are not quantifiably increasing was written in 1999. I think from the data above that I’ve gathered into a chart, we can see by now from the perspective of 14 years later that the cycle of big earthquakes is on the upswing]

16. Gog’s Future Earthquake in Israel
17. Messiah’s Earthquake in the Future (Sixth Seal)


A review of the 17 earthquakes listed above shows that virtually the entire story of the Bible can be summarized by its association with earthquakes. Biblical events emphasized by earthquakes are creation, Noah’s Flood, separation of Abraham and Lot from judgment of the wicked cities, the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai, authentication of the leadership of Moses, God’s provision in the conquest of Canaan, vindication of the messages of Hebrew prophets, the crucifixion of our Lord in Jerusalem, the resurrection of our Lord, the ministry of the apostles and the church, the modern “birth pangs” sign of the end times, the national conversion of Israel, and the Second Coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. History, archaeology, and geology appear to confirm independently many earthquakes mentioned in the Bible.

Earthquakes have been used distinctively by God to highlight some of the most important events of the Bible. The three main purposes for biblical earthquakes are judgment, deliverance, and communication. The lesson is obvious—God does not do anything really big without emphasizing it with an earthquake! In our fast-paced, man-centered, technology-based society of the twenty-first century, God would have us pause and consider His sovereign nature and the program He has been accomplishing in the world.

I love the last paragraph of Austin’s conclusion. “Judgment, deliverance, and communication-The lesson is obvious—God does not do anything really big without emphasizing it with an earthquake!” How interesting! As we watch the major earthquakes come one upon another in our present day, let us definitely pause to consider God’s sovereign nature and the program He has been accomplishing in the world. Austin’s overview of the world’s major earthquakes since the Creation to the Tribulation gives me pause to bow in humility. God’s power and might are surely magnificent, and His love and patience are even more so. We are blessed to be living in the Church Age, a long span of time when His patience restrains His wrath. However, the Day will come when the grace He has extended for so long will end and He will unleash His wrath against sin and sinners.

“For my name’s sake I defer my anger, for the sake of my praise I restrain it for you, that I may not cut you off.” (Isaiah 48:9)

Barnes Notes explains,

“Here it means that God would restrain himself; He would not put forth His anger in order to destroy them. Learn hence:
1. That God acts with reference to his own glory, in order to manifest his own perfections, and to secure his praise.
2. That the reason why the wicked are not cut off sooner in their transgressions is, that He may show his forbearance, and secure praise by long-suffering.
3. That the reason why the righteous are kept amidst their frequent failures in duty, their unfaithfulness, and their many imperfections, is, that God may get glory by showing his covenant fidelity.
4. That it is one evidence of piety – and one that is indispensable – that there should be a willingness that God should secure his own glory in his own way, and that there should be a constant desire that his praise should be promoted, whatever may befall his creatures.”

As it was for His people the Israelites, so it is for His Bride today. As Peter reminds us in 1 Peter 1:12, the Gospel is so tremendous a gift that even angels desire to look into these things. What praise and glory He collects to Himself by restraining His wrath so that mercy might be displayed! What honor He heaps to Himself by shaking the world but not destroying it! Though an earthquake may be devastating to a person in terms of injury or destruction of possessions, so far they have truly been as gentle as a shake on the shoulder from a loving Father to a sleeping child. “Wake up, little one!”

Posted in earthquakes, prophecy, rapture

By the numbers: how many earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, & bank failures were there in 2o12?

At the end of each year I like to look at the numbers. I look at what God has said will happen in the last days and check the quantifiable data. Not that we need data to cement the truth of God’s word. God’s word is unique in that it alone IS the barometer for truth. As such it stands alone. But on Christmas vacation, I like something to do. Mentally, it’s a neat exercise, lol. Take it for what it is.


The return to the Holy Land has been a Jewish aspiration since the Babylonian exile. Large scale immigration to Eretz Israel and later Israel began in 1882. (Wikipedia)

Aliyah is the Hebrew word for immigration of Jews to the Land of Israel. It is a difficult and complicated process. It’s not like you pick up your passport and one day decide to emigrate to Israel. It’s rigorous, and not everyone makes it. That is why it is called “making Aliyah”.

The LORD said He will gather them all back to the Land. So we watch the immigration of Jews to Israel because of what he has said, notably in Ezekiel and Micah.

“I will surely assemble all of you, O Jacob; I will gather the remnant of Israel; I will set them together like sheep in a fold, like a flock in its pasture, a noisy multitude of men.” (Micah 2:12)

“Then they shall know that I am the Lord their God, because I sent them into exile among the nations and then assembled them into their own land. I will leave none of them remaining among the nations anymore.” (Ezekiel 39:28)

This has never happened before, that all the Jews are back in the land, so we watch.

In 2011, it was reported, “On Israel’s 63rd anniversary its population stands at 7,746,000 people, a 2% increase (150,000 residents) compared with 2010. In comparison, on the night of its establishment, the State of Israel consisted of only 806,000 residents.”

Aliyah Jumps 20% in 5771 (2011)
“Aliyah to Israel rose by nearly 20% during the Hebrew calendar year of 5771, compared to the previous year, the Immigration and Absorption Ministry announced Thursday. Over 21,000 immigrants settled in the country since last Rosh Hashana, with the majority from the former Soviet Union and North America. Immigrants also arrived from Europe – mostly France and Britain – and South America. The Ministry also said that some 2,800 immigrants came from Ethiopia, double the number in 5770.”

It appears that in 2011, more Jews came to Israel from America than emigrated from Israel to America, a reversal of the long-term trend. That trend kept up this year, 2012.

The year 2010 ended with a 16% increase in the number of new immigrants to Israel.
The year 2011 ended with an almost 20% increase over 2010.
I have not been able to find 2012 statistics for Israel immigration

It makes the fourth year that emigration to Israel from North America is significantly up. It doesn’t take much to see what the catalyst might be.



“When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood,” (Revelation 6:12)

How can an earthquake blot out the sun? If the earthquake is associated with volcanic eruptions it easily can blot out the sun. This has happened before, in Iceland with the eruption of Laki and in 1883 with the eruption of Krakatoa. Both times, global weather was dramatically altered for a period, as huge amounts of ash was spouted into the air. World temperatures dropped when the sun’s light was dimmed. Sunsets were glowingly beautiful for a year after Krakatoa.

Scientists call the phenomenon dry fog. “The sun, at noon, looked as blank as a clouded moon, and shed a rust- coloured ferruginous light on the ground, and floors of rooms; but was particularly lurid and blood-coloured at rising and setting.” (Gilbert White, of the Iceland Laki eruption, 1783).

In North America, the winter of 1784 was the longest and one of the coldest on record. It was the longest period of below-zero temperatures in New England, with the largest accumulation of snow in New Jersey and the longest freezing over of the Chesapeake Bay. A huge snowstorm hit the south, the Mississippi River froze at New Orleans and there was ice in the Gulf of Mexico. (Wiki)

So yes, earthquakes combined with volcanic eruptions will have a devastating effect on the earth, moon, and sun. You can read more about dry fog here.

The Smithsonian Institute has a Global Volcanism Program which keeps track of volcanic eruptions. I plotted their data for every year since 1950. I tallied up each decade’s number of eruptions and averaged them. Then I plotted the results on a chart.

The chart is below. You can see a big jump in the number of volcanic eruptions for the decade of the 2000s.

Data Source- Smithsonian Global Volcanism Program

Raw Data: Average number of eruptions worldwide in the decade of the
1950s – 52
1960s – 56
1970s – 57
1980s – 59
1990s – 58
2000s – 70

Here is some data plotted long-term, using the same source, to view a longer-term trend.

Data Source: Smithsonian Global Volcanism Program

Raw data:
YEAR #eruptions
1850 22
1860 33
1870 24
1880 30
1890 39
1900 34
1910 43
1920 32
1930 38
1940 46
1950 49
1960 57
1970 55
1980 66
1990 55
2000 67
2010 69
2011 56
(*2012 data not available yet)

Here’s the Atlantic’s roundup of 2012 volcanic activity, with cool photos. They said that “Out of an estimated 1,500 active volcanoes around the world, 50 or so erupt every year” but that has not been true since 1998. That was the last year that any year had 50-something eruptions. The only exception was 2011 when 56 erupted. For half of the 2000s, over 70 erupted, and the other half over 60 erupted.

I believe the data shows that volcanic eruptions are increasing in number and in impact.



Here is a graph of United States Bank Failures, as per the FDIC website. In looking at the raw data and the graph as visually presenting the data, it is clear that events after 2008 were dramatic.

Raw data, number of FDIC bank failures per year: Some of the source was from FDIC,
2000 – 2
2001 – 4
2002 – 11
2003 – 3
2004 – 4
2005 – 0
2006 – 0
2007 – 3
2008 – 25
2009 – 140
2010 – 150
2011 – 92
2012 – 51

The rest was from here
1999 – 8
1998 – 3
1997 – 1
1996 – 6
1995 – 8
1994 – 15
1993 – 50
1992 – 181
1991 – 271
1990 – 382
1989 – 534
1988 – 470
1987 – 262
1986 – 204
1985 – 180
1984 – 106
1983 – 99
1982 – 119
1981 – 40
1980 – 22
1979 – 10
1978 – 7
1977 – 6
1976 – 17
1975 – 13
1974 – 4
1973 – 6
1972 – 2
1971 – 7
1970 – 7
1969 – 9
1968 – 3
1967 – 4
1966 – 7
1965 – 5
1964 – 7
1963 – 2
1962 – 1
1961 – 5
1960 – 1
1959 – 3
1958 – 4
1957 – 1
1956 – 2
1955 – 5
1954 – 2
1953 – 2
1952 – 3
1951 – 2
1950 – 4
1949 – 4
1948 – 3
1947 – 5
1946 – 1
1945 – 1
1944 – 2
1943 – 5
1942 – 20
1941 – 15
1940 – 43
1939 – 60
1938 – 74
1937 – 75
1936 – 69
1935 – 25
1934 – 9

As Dave Manuel wrote at the site I linked to above, he said, “As you can see, the worst single year for bank failures since the introduction of the FDIC came in 1989. This was at the height of the savings and loan crisis in the United States, and was also the same year that the Resolution Trust Corporation (RTC) was formed.”

Even though the failures seem to be subsiding since 2008, in comparing 2000 when 2 banks failed to 2012 when 51 banks failed, it is still a 2,450% increase. Comparing the number of banks failed in year 2000 to year 2010 the percent increase is 7,400%. However we can see that the current recession exceeds the 1930s Depression but is far smaller than the 1980s recession in terms of banks failed. Remember Enron?

Still, it’s hard to be poor…

“A poor man is shunned by all his relatives–how much more do his friends avoid him! Though he pursues them with pleading, they are nowhere to be found.” (Proverbs 19:7)

But sometimes it’s better not to be rich…

“Here now is the man who did not make God his stronghold but trusted in his great wealth and grew strong by destroying others!” (Psalm 52:7)



Jesus said the end time would be characterized by wars and rumors of wars. (Matthew 24:6). While wars have always been among us, beginning with the violence of Cain against Abel and fanning out into tribal and national wars that meet the benchmark of an actual national conflict, the end time is noted to have them in increasing number. (Definition of war: “an armed conflict (interstate or intrastate) with at least 1000 battle related deaths in one year – where a state is one of the belligerents.”

I noted last year in the annual data roundup that “John MacArthur preached on the end time verses in Luke 21. He cited the Encyclopedia of Wars as a source and offered the following numbers. He said that in the 1000 years prior to Christ’s coming, there were 170 recorded wars. This number excludes skirmishes, conflicts, disturbances, etc. In the 1000 years after Jesus, there were 50 wars. In the 500 years after that, 100 wars. In the 300 years after that, 250 wars. In the last 200 years, there have been 500 wars. And in the last four years (not depicted on graph) there have been 20 wars.”

I have not updated the data from last year, as I do not own Riley’s Encyclopedia of War and any other sources are too scattered to be quantifiably credible.



One of my favorite tracking by data variables to follow is the number of earthquakes in any given year. God definitely speaks through earthquakes. It is a constant in His vocabulary. Jesus said that His Second Coming would be presaged by “earthquakes in diverse places” (Matthew 24:7) and Revelation is rife with devastating quakes that are prophesied to be used as a judgment upon the wicked. (Revelation 6, 8, 11, & 16).

I got the data from US Geological Survey (USGS). The “Avg Yrly” column is the average number of quakes the USGS says usually happen in a year. If more quakes happen in the next week I’ll update. Click on any graph to enlarge.


Ultimately, the Lord said He will come at a time unbelievers do not expect. (Luke 12:40). He will come like a thief in the night, when unbelievers are not paying attention. (1 Thess 5:2). However, believers must stay alert. (1 Thess 5:4-8). Joel Rosenberg wrote,

“In describing these “labor pains,” the apostle Paul echoes the words of the Lord Jesus when he explained in Matthew 24 and Luke 21 that the world will be experiencing “birth pangs” in the last days (1 Thessalonians 5:3). Thus, while we don’t know exactly when or how the Rapture will occur, it seems to come not specifically during a time of intense “contraction” (major wars, terrorist attacks, etc.), but during a time of “release,” a time when things seem to the non-Christian world to be relatively more peaceful and safe than they had previously been (1 Thessalonians 5:3).”

I recommend Mr Rosenberg’s essay explaining the rapture. he uses clear language and bible verses. He also addresses many misconceptions, such as the claim that the rapture is a theory, that it isn’t in the bible, or that it will happen after or during the tribulation. (It will happen before).

Keep looking for Him from heaven, keep living for Him on earth. Today may be the day…