Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Does America Appear In Bible Prophecy II

I had one professor in Bible College define a 'cult' as a 'religion fashioned around one person or one groups particular interpretation of usually a single Bible passage.' Of course he was referring to those cults that use the Bible as their base.
I merely say that as a caution whenever I speculate with different passages of the Bible because I'm a believer that likes to study those Bible passages which possibly have some bearing on the current events of our day. I don't believe it's wrong to do so, though you may disagree.

Concerning this topic (America In Bible Prophecy) I began last week with a look at a passage in Obadiah where the prophet speaks of a land who has set it's nest among the stars just before God's judgment falls. Those people were identified with an eagle, which some have taken to mean America's National Bird. They were a proud people, though greatly despised by other nations. Some have taken this to mean America; others that it is talking about the Edomites who were said to have built their cities on the mountain tops.

Today I want to look at another chapter in the Bible and check out some different translations. The passage is the entire chapter of Isaiah 18. Since it is the whole chapter I want to break it down as I go. At the conclusion of this entry I will post the entire chapter.

Right from the start there is a woe pronounced.

[1] "Woe to the land shadowed with buzzing wings, which is beyond the
rivers of Ethiopia,"
(NKJV) In every major city of America the buzzing wings of helicopters and small aircraft can be heard. In Todays New International Version (TNIV) it says "Woe to the land of whirring wings which accurately describe helicopters.
"Beyond the rivers of Ethiopia" is not taken as a compass direction but rather to describe the boundaries of known civilization as recognized by a Jewish prophet who lived seven centuries before Christ. He then goes on to describe this nations ambassadors traveling swiftly over the sea in vessels made of reeds.

[2] "Which sends ambassadors by sea, Even in
vessels of reed on the waters, saying, “ Go,
swift messengers, to a nation tall and smooth of
skin, To a people terrible from their
beginning onward, A nation powerful and
treading down, Whose land the rivers
divide.” - NKJV

To reach countries on five continents US ambassadors must travel over sea. They travel swiftly. Today they don't use ships, but travel in aircraft. Aircraft are constructed of aluminum tubing. The central structure of the aircraft itself is the fuselage which is basically a closed tube - like a reed. And it is swift!

" a nation tall and smooth of skin, To a people terrible from their beginning onward..."

From America's founding she took on the mightiest military in the world and won.

"A nation powerful and treading down, Whose land the rivers divide.

Todays New International Version reads it this way: " a people feared far and wide, an aggressive nation of strange speech, whose land is divided by rivers."

Young's Literal Translation renders it thus: "...Unto a people fearful from its beginning and onwards, A nation meeting out by line, and treading down, Whose land floods have spoiled."

The meeting out by line in today's language would be "measured out." The next phrase says, "and treading down." Measured out and treading down could be a direct reference to a highway system in the minds of those who believe this is America.

[3] " All you people of the world, you who live on the earth, when a banner is raised on the mountains, you will see it, and when a trumpet sounds, you will hear it. (NKJV)

The world recognizes the American flag which is backed up by the most advanced military on earth. But even the most powerful nation is only a 'drop in the bucket' to God Almighty, and He is watching.

[4] "This is what the LORD says to me: "I
will remain quiet and will look on from my dwelling place,
like shimmering heat in the sunshine,
like a cloud of dew in the heat of
[5] For, before the harvest, when the blossom is
gone and the flower becomes a ripening
grape, he will cut off the shoots with
pruning knives, and cut down and take away
the spreading branches.
[6] They will all be left to the
mountain birds of prey and to the wild
animals; the birds will feed on them all
summer, the wild animals all winter."

Disaster now hits this nation and it is reduced to a shell of its former self. God prunes her to clear away the deadness so that she might once again be fruitful. In the end she is fruitful and is shown presenting gifts to the Lord God Almighty in Mount Zion - a reference to Jerusalem when all nations are ruled by Christ.

[7] "At that time gifts will be brought to the LORD Almighty from a people tall and smooth-skinned,
from a people feared far and wide,
an aggressive nation of strange speech,
whose land is divided by rivers—
the gifts will be brought to Mount Zion,
the place of the Name of the LORD Almighty."

I don't know if this is a reference to America. I've presented here a viewpoint that Most Bible scholars, even the ones I look to the most say it is a reference to Egypt and has nothing to do with America. Yet there are some amazing paralells to America here, don't you think so?

Here is the chapter, in it's entirety from the New King James Version:

1 Woe to the land shadowed with buzzing wings, which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia, 2 Which sends ambassadors by sea, even in vessels of reed on the waters, saying,“ Go, swift messengers, to a nation tall and smooth of skin, To a people terrible from their beginning onward, A nation powerful and treading down, Whose land the rivers divide.” 3 All inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth: When he lifts up a banner on the mountains, you see it; And when he blows a trumpet, you hear it. 4 For so the LORD said to me,“ I will take My rest, And I will look from My dwelling place Like clear heat in sunshine, Like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.” 5 For before the harvest, when the bud is perfect And the sour grape is ripening in the flower, He will both cut off the sprigs with pruning hooks And take away and cut down the branches. 6 They will be left together for the mountain birds of prey And for the beasts of the earth; The birds of prey will summer on them, And all the beasts of the earth will winter on them. 7 In that time a present will be brought to the LORD of hosts From a people tall and smooth of skin, And from a people terrible from their beginning onward, A nation powerful and treading down, Whose land the rivers divide— To the place of the name of the LORD of hosts, To Mount Zion.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Does America Appear In Bible Prophecy?

To those who study scripture with an eye on current events, there are references that have been interpreted as referring to America. Though I personally don't interpret the following scripture as anything that points to the United States, its worth bringing up.
In the tiny Biblical book of Obadiah there is this prophecy in verses 4 -
Though thou exalt thyself as the eagle, and though thou set thy nest among the stars, thence will I bring thee down, saith the LORD." (KJV)
The New Century Version of the Bible renders verses 1-6: "Soon I will make you the smallest of nations. You will be greatly hated by everyone. Your pride has fooled you, you who live in the hollow places of the cliff. Your home is up high, you who say to yourself, 'No one can bring me down to the ground.' Even if you fly high like the eagle and make your nest among the stars, I will bring you down from there," says the Lord. "You will really be ruined! If thieves came to you, if robbers came by night, they would steal only enough for themselves. If workers came and picked the grapes from your vines, they would leave a few behind. But you, Edom, will really lose everything! People will find all your hidden treasures! All the people who are your friends will force you out of the land. The people who are at peace with you will trick you and defeat you. Those who eat your bread with you now are planning a trap for you, and you will not notice it."
The context of the reference is to Edom (actually the descendants of Esau) but because of the reference to the eagle, and the nest among the stars some have by interpretation equated Edom to America. That's a big stretch, in my humble opinion but the symbolism is further enhanced by the parallel of "Edom's" inaccessability as cliff dwellers to America's as flanked by great oceans.

The reference to pride is another parallel some see to America whose national symbol is the Bald Eagle. In this scenario the International Space Station (ISS) is viewed as perhaps being a literal nest among the stars which God will bring down. The problem with this interpretation is that it's an International Space Station, not exclusively American.

Rabbi Nosson Slifkin equates the fulfillment of this verse on the Challenger disaster of 1986.

Most Bible scholars espouse no such interpretations but regard Obadiah's prophecy as having been fulfilled within it's historical context.

So why do I put stuff like this on my blog?

Simply - its interesting!

Some of my friends have asked me about the predictions I referred to in my May 29th blog; (doomsday - December 21, 2012) whether or not I thought that Jesus would return on that date. My answer is this: Since that date is one where many will be expecting something to happen, I will state with authority that Jesus will not return on 12/21/12. He's coming when people are not expecting him (Matthew 24:44) and nobody knows that day (Matthew 25:13). I merely posted it because the secular world is now making it's own doomsday predictions, complete with dates. It seems there is a universal 'feeling' that something huge is soon going to happen that will forever change life on planet earth--that history itself is winding down to an inescapable climax. Whether it's an eruption of a Super Volcano, an asteroid strike, Armageddon or other ELE, it seems we are consumed with earth's end as we know it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Evolutionist-Creationist Debate

I was impressed. Dr. 'Fuz' Fazale takes on evolutionist John Rennie in this debate which aired on NPR's Glenn Mitchell Show. The transcript is a must read for evolutionists and creationists alike, if you really want to get down to the issues that are relevant today.

Hear another biologist v. biologist debate @

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

What Last Days Society Will Look Like

In Paul's letter to Timothy (2 Timothy 3:1-5 NLV) Paul presents a thumbnail picture of what last days society will generally look like.

"You should know this, Timothy, that in the last days there will be very difficult times. For people will love only themselves and their money. They will be boastful and proud, scoffing at God, disobedient to their parents, and ungrateful. They will consider nothing sacred. They will be unloving and unforgiving; they will slander others and have no self-control. They will be cruel and hate what is good. They will betray their friends, be reckless, be puffed up with pride, and love pleasure rather than God. They will act religious, but they will reject the power that could make them godly."

Jesus likened the times to the days of Noah (Matthew 24:37-44) when violence filled the land, and to the days of Lot (Luke 17:28-32) when homosexuality (Genesis 19) was a welcomed life style.

To those who would say that these are earmarks of many societies throughout history and that nothing has changed, the Bible has this to say:

2 Peter 3:3-8 "First of all, I want you to know that in the last days men will laugh at the truth. They will follow their own sinful desires. They will say, "He promised to come again. Where is He? Since our early fathers died, everything is the same from the beginning of the world." But they want to forget that God spoke and the heavens were made long ago. The earth was made out of water and water was all around it. Long ago the earth was covered with water and it was destroyed. But the heaven we see now and the earth we live on now have been kept by His word. They will be kept until they are to be destroyed by fire. They will be kept until the day men stand before God and sinners will be destroyed. Dear friends, remember this one thing, with the Lord one day is as 1,000 years, and 1,000 years are as one day."

False Teaching is another sign: "The Holy Spirit tells us in plain words that in the last days some people will turn away from the faith. They will listen to what is said about spirits and follow the teaching about demons. Those who teach this tell it as the truth when they know it is a lie. They do it so much that their own hearts no longer say it is wrong."

Some of these prophecies look like they could have been taken out of our newspapers.
picture is from Kings Creek in Lassen National Park

Friday, June 8, 2007

A Bible Sign of the Last Days

The Big Question:


Now don't get excited my Christian friend, history is littered with the wrecks of "prophets" whose predictions failed to happen on the dates they predicted. I'm not of that ilk, but what do we know that really defines the times we're living in? There is one prophecy that seems key to me as the defining prophecy--and the prophet is none other than Jesus himself:
"And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come." - Matthew 24:14

Today the gospel is reaching all the world. So even in the most remote places on earth the gospel can be heard over radio or television. There's no doubt that we're in that time frame or season. Following the statement made by Jesus in verse 14, Jesus said this: When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:)
Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains:

Here Jesus is referring to a specific prophecy in the Old Testament book of Daniel. Daniel 9:27-
"And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the oblation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consummation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate."

The fact that 'he' shall cause the sacrifice and oblation to cease is a reference to the sacrificial offerings of the Jewish religion. This won't happen until there is a Jewish temple. And Daniel said that 'he' will make a covenant (with the Jews) for one week. This individual will make a seven year peace treaty with the Jews who will at this time be living in safety. They will have re-established their Levitical sacrificial laws in their temple. After precisely three and a half years this treaty will be broken when 'he' will stand in the the Jewish temple and demand worship from the Jews. That act is called the 'abomination of desolation' according to Jesus. But there is no Jewish temple. There hasn't been one since AD 70! But if the Bible is true, and I believe with everything in me it is, the Jews will build their temple. Look for the Mosque of Oman to come down. It is sitting on the Temple Mount.
The 'he' who causes the abomination is known to believers as the Antichrist--Satan incarnate. I will elaborate on that in the future, since the Bible gives us a lot of information on him and his reign as world leader.
Since these prophecies come together, there's no doubt we're getting close.

Thursday, June 7, 2007

Darwin Speaks! Quote of the Week

"Why then is not every geological formation and every stratum full of such intermediate links? Geology assuredly does not reveal any such finely graduated organic chain; and this, perhaps is the most obvious and gravest objection which can be urged against my theory." -- Charles Robert Darwin, The Origin of Species, 1st edition reprint. Avenel Books, 1979; p. 292

Finding Fossils That Speak To Us

The following quote comes from an inciteful article from Dr. David Menton, Ph.D. (Click on the link to view the paper).

"To be consistent with evolution, the fossil record should show how organisms slowly transformed one into another through countless intermediate or transitional stages. Evolutionists, for example, claim that over one hundred million years were required for the gradual transformation of invertebrates into vertebrates; thus we would expect that the fossil record should show at least some of the progressive stages of this large-scale transformation.

To be consistent with creation, on the other hand, the fossil record should show no obvious transitional stages between distinctly different kinds of organisms, but rather each kind of organism should appear all at once and fully formed." - David N. Menton, Ph.D.

What the fossil record seems to show is there are no obvious transitional stages between distinctly different kinds of organisms, but rather each kind of organism appears all at once and fully formed.

Hmmm, now what does that indicate??
As recently as my high school days it was taught that "Eohippus" known today as Hyracotherium, (which evolutionists assumed was the first horse) was a direct line ancestor of today's modern horse, "Equus." Soon after becoming a Christian and comparing the science I was being taught in School with the science in books by scientists who are Christians, I learned that fossils of both Eohippus and Equus were found in the same strata, proving that both were in existence at the same time.
Recently I've learned that some textbooks still perpetuate that story but with a few modifications, one of which states "There's no discernable "straight line" of horse evolution..." God forbid that the Bible should make such changes--they'd throw the whole thing out!

To show how evolution's pathway is illustrated we high schoolers were also exposed to Haekels Drawings:

Those drawings supposedly revealed the development of the human fetus as it passed through, and demonstrated various evolutionary stages. It's since been shown that Haekel was intentionally misleading. There is an attempt today by certain individuals to "whitewash" Haekels hoax and redeem it as 'science.' I also understand that Haekels drawings still appear (with modification) in some of today's high school textbooks--though I've not personally seen them.
*picture of me in Death Valley, obviously mining quotes.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Archaeopteryx or giving Creationists the Bird!

Whenever the lack of fossil evidence showing a transitional specie comes up, one word commonly drops from the lips of the evolutionary protagonist: Archaeopteryx!

Archaeopteryx is a bird with many unique similarities to certain dinosaurs called Theropods. The fossils of Archaeopteryx date back to the [1]Jurassic period.
Paleo-ornithologists classify Archaeopteryx as a bird because the most unique thing that defines a creature as a bird are its feathers.
Archaeopteryx is said to be a transitional form bridging the gap between dinosaur and bird. In all seven known Archaeopteryx fossils, Archaeopteryx had feathers; feathers which were well developed, and had the ability of flight.
Feathers are very complicated structures of which there are several types. Scientists have promulgated several different theories about why feathers evolved but there has been (until recently) a consensus among them that feathers evolved from reptilian scales. One theory is that thermoregulation is responsible for the original morphing of dino-scales into feathers. Others think that feathers evolved for flight and the most recent theory is that feathers evolved to attract a mate.

The Evidence
The so-called "proof" is a theropod dinosaur (that had a scale that sort of looked feathered). This [2]theropod is called Caudipteryx, (which dates to about 127 million years ago). This goose sized dinosaur is depicted with feathers in every drawing I've seen.

First Problem: Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
Do you see a problem yet? Feather’s are very complex structures of which there are several distinct categories. Certainly something as complex as a feather would have taken a long time to evolve if Archaeopteryx were to be that “transitional” evolutionary link. Yet not only did Archaeopteryx have one kind of feather, he had different kinds of fully developed feathers and was capable of flight. Archaeopteryx always appears fully developed in the fossil record with nothing showing a protoarchaeopteryx type.
Now here’s the problem. Archaeopteryx pre-dates Caudipteryx by a geologic period (or at least 20 million years). Archaeopteryx goes back to the Jurassic Period and Caudipteryx dates to the later [3]Cretaceous period. That’s kind of putting the cart before the horse, don’t you think?

The Second Problem: The Feathered Look
Reptilian scales are vastly different from bird feathers. They originate in different places, they are made of different proteins and they serve totally different functions. Why would reptiles need feathers? They are not warm blooded and they don't fly (some glide). They don't have a problem mating.

The Third Problem: That’s not a gap-that’s an abyss!
The teeth of Archaeopteryx are not serrated as they are in theropods. Other birds had teeth but Archaeopteryx had several other unique features that don't relate to any other known bird--an indication of special creation. As I explained to one commentator, Archaeopteryx is more evidence for Intelligent Design than evolution.
[4]David B. Kitts, Ph.D an evolutionist and paleontologist, said:

"Despite the bright promise that paleontology provides a means of 'seeing'
evolution, it has presented some nasty difficulties for evolutionists the most
notorious of which is the presence of 'gaps' in the fossil record. Evolution
requires intermediate forms between species and paleontology does not provide
And as [5]David Raup, a paleontologist at the Field Museum of Natural History said:

"We are now about 120 years after Darwin and the knowledge of the fossil record
has been greatly expanded. We now have a quarter of a million fossil species
but the situation hasn't changed much -- ironically, we have even fewer
examples of evolutionary transition than we had in Darwin's time. By this I mean that some of the classic cases of Darwinian change in the fossil record
such as the evolution of the horse in North America, have had to be discarded or modified as a result of more detailed information."

Now, lest I'm accused of quote mining, I admit it. I'm not ashamed of it-the words speak for themselves. Not just a sentence-you can see whole paragraphs--they speak for themselves in that context. These quotations are referenced in the footnotes below.

[1] Jurassic Period extends from about 145 million years to 200 million years ago.
[2] Any of various large carnivorous dinosaurs of the suborder Theropoda of the Jurassic and Cretaceous periods, characterized by bipedal locomotion, large jaws, and short forelimbs.
[3] Cretaceous Period follows the Jurassic Period; from about 65 million years to 145 million years ago.

[4] David B. Kitts, PhD (Zoology) Head Curator, Dept of Geology, Stoval Museum. Evolution, vol 28, Sep 1974, p 467
[5] David Raup, Field Museum of Natural History Bulletin, 50:22-29

Saturday, June 2, 2007

Quote of the Week

"The absence of fossil evidence for intermediary stages between major transitions in organic design, indeed our inability, even in our imagination, to construct functional intermediates in many cases, has been a persistent and nagging problem for gradualistic accounts of evolution."

-Stephen Jay Gould, Prof. of Geology and Paleontology, Harvard University "Is a new general theory of evolution emerging?" Paleobiology, vol 6, January 1980, p. 127