Presentation on theme: "November 9 - 15, 2008 “If the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes the life of."— Presentation transcript:
November 9 - 15, 2008 “If the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes the life of one of them, that man will be taken away because of his sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for his blood.” (Ezekiel 33:6, New International Version) Weekly World Watch Andy Walton’s To skip the introductory slides and go straight to this weeks developments click here.
What is a Weekly World Watch? Israel: The continuing conflict in the Middle East and focus on Jerusalem. Europe: Its developing union, both political and religious. Russia: Its return to anti-Western ways as Bible prophecy’s “king of the north.” The UK and the US: Bible prophecy’s “king of the south.” Moral standards in decline and violence on the increase. WWW presentations in PowerPoint can be ordered as audio/visual CDs by clicking here. Move your mouse to place the cursor on the blue link and click.clicking here The idea is simple. It is to look at current events and compare them to events spoken of in the Bible.. I hope to build up a picture of God’s hand working in the affairs of this world. God is bringing about a day when all nations will be gathered to Jerusalem to battle. At that time God will send His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, back to this earth. Jesus will then establish God’s kingdom on earth. This kingdom will last for ever. This is our hope and the reason we watch. Increasing natural disasters: including earthquake, famine etc The following six themes will appear repeatedly in WWW:
HEADLINE EVENT COMMENT News Photo The source of the headline and the date are included. Each WWW looks at a few key developments that have happened during the past week. It is in no way meant to be exhaustive – just a look at those events I saw as significant from a Biblical point of view. What is in a Weekly World Watch? BIBLE QUOTE This is normally one verse which backs up why the event that has occurred is interesting from a Biblical perspective. Please read in its context. Unless stated otherwise, all quotes are from the King James Version. (Book, chapter, and verse) This is straight from a news report that caught my eye because it looked significant from a Biblical perspective, usually that of prophecy. Every WWW event slide has the following format. To reveal each block of text just left click your mouse or press the space bar. You control when it appears. This is the reporter’s description of the event. It is always a direct quotation from the news report and reflects the understanding of the reporter and editors. This is my comment on why the event is interesting to a Bible student. The intention of the WWW is to offer brief Biblical perspectives without going into detail. If more detail is desired, please e-mail me: (firstname.lastname@example.org).
This Week’s Developments To print any of the event slides that follow, click the picture on the upper right Blair urges Obama to sort out Middle East Vladimir Putin closes in on presidency Iran tests missile, Israel in easy reach US accuses Russia of ‘Cold War’ intimidation Russia calls in police as rouble crisis escalates November 9 - 15, 2008 Human frailty caused this crisis
Blair urges Obama to sort out Middle East Early indications from the Obama camp are that the administration intends to make a lasting peace settlement one of its top priorities. The last two American presidents also made a peace settlement between Israel and the Palestinians a top priority as well. They both failed. President Clinton devoted much of his presidency to trying to negotiate a deal that foundered when Yasser Arafat, the PLO leader, refused to sign the final draft negotiated at Camp David. Mr Bush was determined not to suffer a similar fate and established a “roadmap for peace”. This roadmap was supposed to bring peace in 2004/5! Following a peace conference in November 2007 a final date for a final peace deal was set for the end of President Bush’s term in office. The collapse of Ehud Barak’s government because of corruption allegations have prevented this happening. The next summit is to be held in Moscow! The only leader that will ever bring true peace to Israel and the world - is Jesus Christ. Tony Blair led public pleas yesterday for Barack Obama, the incoming US president, to take a strong role in the Middle East peace process as soon as he enters office in January. Mr Blair and other mediators between Israel and the Palestinians were attending a summit at Sharm el-Sheikh. The former British prime minister revealed that he had spoken ‘regularly’ with Mr Obama in the past three months about the peace efforts. Mr Blair, the envoy of the Quartet (the European Union, Russia, the US and the United Nations) to the Middle East, urged Mr Obama’s new administration to make peace talks a top priority as officials revealed a follow-up summit is set to take place in Moscow in spring. Daily Telegraph, November 10, 2008 EVENT COMMENT Of the increase of his [Jesus Christ’s] government and peace there shall be no end. He will reign on David’s throne, and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and for ever. BIBLE QUOTE (Isaiah 9:7)
Vladimir Putin closes in on presidency By the end of next week the Russian constitution will have been changed to allow the Russian president to stand for 2 consecutive terms of 6 years not 4 years. The Russian press (controlled by the Kremlin) have been saying all week that Mr Putin is likely to return to office as president - soon! A leading Russian political analyst believes that a “crisis” will have to be engineered to create a pretext under which power can be transferred. This crisis will then enable Mr Putin to return to power. In Ezekiel 38:4 we are told that God will “turn THEE back”. “Thee” is speaking of Gog. Gog was the ancient leader of the Magogites (people living in southern Russia!). The word “turn back” in the Hebrew means to “return”, “to bring back”, “to be restored”. Genesis 20:7 “now therefore RESTORE the man”, Genesis 40:7 “He RESTORED the chief butler”. Etc. We now see that Putin may soon be RESTORED – brought back – returned to power! Some say this could be just weeks away. Following the restoration to power God then puts hooks in his jaws and the Russian armies invade Israel. Russia's parliament announced it would rush through a constitutional amendment that could see Vladimir Putin return to the presidency within weeks. Amid growing signs of panic in the Kremlin, the State Duma said it would meet on Friday to pass legislation that could allow Mr Putin to return to the Kremlin for 12 years. Giving short shrift to the supposed inviolability of Russia's 1993 constitution, all three readings of the bill will be compressed into a single sitting, rather than dragged out over several weeks or months as convention normally dictates. The proposal to extend the length of time a president can serve from two consecutive terms of four years to two consecutive terms of six was made by Dmitry Medvedev, the Russian leader, just last week. Daily Telegraph, November 13, 2008 EVENT COMMENT And I will turn thee back [RESTORE YOU], and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army BIBLE QUOTE (Ezekiel 38:13)
Iran tests missile, Israel in easy reach The ancient Medes brought the empire of Babylon to an end in about 538BC. One encyclopaedia says “The Medes were an Iranian people of Aryan origin who lived in the western and north-western portion of present-day Iran. During the 8th century BC they were dominated by the nomadic group of the Scythians.” The Bible speaks of a latter day invasion of the area of Babylon (Isaiah 13) and at the same time the spirit of the Medes is raised up. The verse below could also have a latter day fulfilment. Here we have the Medes (Iranians) making “bright arrows”. A bright arrow could well refer to modern day missiles. These Medes are “raised up”. See also Isaiah 13:17. These Iranians then bring great destruction to Babylon (modern day Iraq). Iran at some point may well bring great destruction on Iraq and the US troops there. Associated Press, November 12, 2008 EVENT COMMENT Make bright the arrows; gather the shields: the LORD hath raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes: for his device is against Babylon, to destroy it BIBLE QUOTE (Jeremiah 51:11) Iran said it successfully test-fired a new generation of long range surface-to-surface missile on Wednesday — one that could easily strike Israel and as far away as southeastern Europe with greater precision than earlier models. The Sajjil is a solid fuel high-speed missile with a range of about 1,200 miles, Defence Minister Mostafa Mohammed Najjar said on state television. Solid-fuel missiles are more accurate than the liquid fuel missiles of similar range currently possessed by Iran. The country has had a solid-fuel missile with a shorter range — the Fateh, able to fly 120 miles — for several years. The defence minister, quoted by Iran state television, said the two-stage missile with two solid-fuel engines has "an extraordinary high capability" but gave no further details. He did not say whether it was capable of carrying a nuclear warhead. With its range, the missile could easily strike Iran's arch-foe Israel and go as far as southeastern Europe.
US accuses Russia of Cold War intimidation over missile threats The American Defence Secretary has launched a furious attack on Russia accusing it of Cold War brinkmanship in its threats to position nuclear weapons on its European border. Robert Gates claimed the Kremlin was trying to intimidate President-elect Barack Obama into dropping American plans for a new missile defence system based in eastern Europe. The row overshadowed a European Union summit designed to improve relations with Russia. Mr Gates, who is tipped to keep his job in Mr Obama's new cabinet, said: "Within hours of the conclusion of the American election, Russian President Medvedev responded by threatening to place missiles in Kaliningrad – hardly the welcome a new American administration deserves. "Such provocative remarks are unnecessary and misguided. Rather than engaging in the kind of rhetoric associated with a bygone era, the US would prefer that Russia works with us to combat mutual security threats." Daily Telegraph, November 14, 2008 EVENT COMMENT And at the time of the end shall the king of the south push at him: and the king of the north shall come against him like a whirlwind BIBLE QUOTE (Daniel 11:40) The Cold War rhetoric continues. Russia is seeking to influence the new president elect – Barack Obama. Russia wants him to back down from the proposed missile defence system in eastern Europe which they see as pointed at them. Also this week President Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus confirmed that he is in talks with Moscow to place Russian missiles on his country's border with Europe. Mr Lukashenko's admission comes almost exactly a year after Russian generals first raised the possibility of stationing Iskander missiles in Belarus as well as in Kaliningrad. Belarus remains heavily dependent on Russia to meet its own energy needs and a large proportion of Russian oil and gas exports to Europe pass through it. The conflict between the king of the north (Russia) and king of the south (US) gets ever closer.
Russia calls in police as rouble crisis escalates What is it that motivates Russia to invade Israel? Many ask this question and some find it hard to see what would make Russia launch such a massive invasion. The answer is given to us clearly in the Bible. The verse below says that Gog (leader of the Russian people) will want to invade Israel “to take a spoil”. A spoil can mean plunder, loot or any ill gotten gain. With the Russian financial crisis getting worse by the day they may be forced to get a spoil from elsewhere. In fact Russia would have little to lose. The subsequent increase in oil price would actually help them. Russia's central bank has raised interest rates a full percentage point to 12pc to prevent a collapse of the rouble following a day of mayhem on the Moscow markets, prompting concerns that the financial crisis may be spiralling out of control. The surprise move last night came after the authorities had spent $7bn of foreign reserves in a matter of hours trying to defend the currency, at a lower level. The central bank has now spent $84bn of its reserves over the last month. "The devaluation has begun," said Lars Christensen, Russia strategist at Danske Bank. "The rouble has fallen out of its basket against the euro and the dollar. Russia is facing a serious confidence crisis and this could set off a self-fulfilling panic. What is clear is that economy is slowing drastically." Chris Weafer, strategist at UralSib, said there were echoes of the 1998 crisis. "If people lose confidence, we could have a massive run on the banks as we saw twice in the nineties: then the game is up,'' he told Bloomberg. Russia is battening down the hatches for a deep slump. It has downgraded is oil forecast to $50 a barrel next year, a level that will play havoc with the state finances. Expecting trouble, the Kremlin has mobilised the police to crush dissent. BBConline, November 4, 2008 EVENT COMMENT To take a spoil, and to take a prey; to turn thine hand upon the desolate places that are now inhabited, and upon the people that are gathered out of the nations, BIBLE QUOTE (Ezekiel 38:12)
Human frailty caused this crisis It is understanding our own frailty and our own sinfulness that is the first step in coming to understand that we need God and his grace. It is understanding our human nature. Our own natural instincts are not moral or righteous. And often we succumb to them. When we fail we sin. As Jeremiah 17:9 says “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked”. Those who do not believe in God would never acknowledge this. They believe that man is good and man will eventually find the answers to everything. The fact is EVERYONE has sinned and come short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23 The Bible says our ONLY hope is to trust in God and to repent and seek forgiveness.. It is both noteworthy and commendable that Alan Greenspan, the former US Federal Reserve chairman, confessed that he had failed to anticipate the financial crisis. Why did Mr Greenspan, along with the rest of the world’s regulators, fail to foresee that this could happen? We think their mistake was to neglect the role of human nature. To prevent future catastrophes, regulators should focus explicitly on how to provide safeguards against two all-too-human frailties explored by decades of work in behavioural economics: bounded rationality and limited self-control. Economists do not suffer from self-control problems and so “temptation” is not a word that exists in their lexicon. As a result, regulators have not thought much about the problem. But when the dessert cart comes by, we humans often cave in. The next thing we know, we are fat. This crisis was fuelled by the seemingly irresistible temptation to refinance the mortgage rather than pay it off. Falling interest rates, rising home prices and aggressive mortgage brokers made refinancing (and second mortgages) seem like the apple in the Garden of Eden. When home prices fell and interest rates increased, the party ended. Financial Times, November 11, 2008 EVENT COMMENT From the least to the greatest, all are greedy for gain; prophets and priests alike, all practice deceit. BIBLE QUOTE (Jeremiah 6:13 NIV)
E-MAIL ANDY Click here (Move the mouse until the cursor appears.) To watch again, click here. WWW will be e-mailed to you each week. Please forward the e-mail addresses of others who may be interested. I will include them in the list of recipients. Comments and suggestions for improvement are welcome. Weekly World Watch The end of this week’s