Weekly World Watch. Andy Walton’s. October 12 - 18, 2008.
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October 12 - 18, 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)
To skip the introductory slides and go straight to this weeks developments click 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.
The following six themes will appear repeatedly in WWW:
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.
What is in a Weekly World Watch?
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.
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 straight from a news report that caught my eye because it looked significant from a Biblical perspective, usually that of prophecy.
The source of the headline and the date are included.
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 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)
October 12 - 18, 2008
To print any of the event slides that follow, click the picture on the upper right
the merchants of Tarshish, with all the young lions…
Britain leads fight to stop EU-Russia talks
David Miliband, the British Foreign Secretary, warned his Italian, German and French colleagues, over Russian trade talks
Daily Telegraph, October 16, 2008
Britain, in alliance with Poland, Sweden and the Baltic States, has narrowly prevented the European Union from reopening trade and aid talks with Moscow, frozen because of Russia's occupation of Georgia.
EU "partnership and co-operation" negotiations were halted last month following the Russian invasion of Georgia in August and Moscow's occupation of the breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
After Russia pulled back some troops last week, Italy and Germany have pressed for the resumption of "business as usual" on building trade, energy and political ties with Moscow.
Britain, already at odds with Russia over the 2006 murder of the ex-KGB defector Alexander Litvinenko, is taking a hawkish line towards Moscow along with former Soviet countries.
Britain is not as dependent on Russian oil and gas as other European nations are.
Therefore the UK can afford to take a far tougher line with Russia than say Germany.
Heavily dependent on Russian oil and gas, Germany has been traditionally reluctant to risk offending the Kremlin even though Miss Merkel has been slightly more willing to tackle Moscow than her Social Democrat predecessor Gerhard Schroeder.
On Wednesday the Italian Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, even went as far as calling for Russia to be given EU membership!
With Bible in hand we can see how these events fit Bible prophecy very accurately.
Ezekiel 38 speaks of Russia (Gog) and Europe (Gomer) on the one side (fighting against Israel) with Britain (Tarshish) and America (young lion) on the other.
(Ezekiel 38:6 & 13)
Iranian Air force exercise simulates attack on Israel
Debkafile, October 15, 2008
DEBKAfile’s military sources report that the drill beginning Thursday, Oct. 16 in northern Iran, is Tehran’s rejoinder to Israel’s big aerial manoeuvre last June.
Then, more than 100 Israeli fighter-bombers went through their paces over the Mediterranean and Aegean Seas, roughly the same distance from Israel as Iran.
Tehran’s media claim the exercise will test its air force’s ability to fly to Israel and back without refuelling.
The exercise will also test the US-made FBX-T band anti-missile radar system delivered in September and installed at the IAF Nevatim air base in the Negev. The Iranians say they will be practicing their “state-of-the-art military equipment and flight tactics,” meaning an attempt to jam US and Israeli electronics and radar.
According to Iranian media, the entire range of Iran's fighter fleet will take part, including US-made F-4, F-5, F-7 and F-14 fighters and domestic Saegheh fighters. Mid-air refuelling will be provided by Boeing 707 aerial tankers.
We are watching the nations practising for the final war. Israel last year had a dry run in simulating a massive attack on Iran. This week Iran has begun a dry run in simulating a massive attack on Israel.
These so called “war games” are not games at all. They are needed to prepare for war.
It helps military planners increase their understanding and knowledge and test their equipment. It also enables them to see how their enemy reacts. Finally it increases the tensions and the nations take another step forward towards conflict.
This is precisely what God says will happen. The verse below speaks of Gentile nations preparing for war. The preparation will soon lead to action.
Cold shoulder for Iceland allows rival to court new ally
The Times, October 10, 2008
Declining to offer Iceland a quick €4 billion loan is one of the worst decisions the US and European countries have made in the financial turmoil. It is a false economy that will prove diplomatically expensive.
Not that Iceland is the world’s most attractive credit risk, it hardly needs saying. The chance that it will lack resources to repay a foreign currency loan would be a conventional reason for saying no (although its Government says firmly that it will be able to meet the terms). But the collective refusal, including, it seems, a rebuff by other Nordic countries, has allowed Russia to offer the deal.
It doesn’t take much to work out what Russia is thinking. A former superpower, in search of territory and allies, which planted its own flag last year on the seabed of the North Pole – what better prize could it want than a Nato member that has just been rebuffed by fellow allies?
Russia is taking advantage of the financial turmoil.
Iceland is in huge financial trouble as a nation. It needs cash and quickly.
America and Europe refused to give a a quick loan and so Russia stepped into the breach. Not because it is generous and likes Iceland but because it can extend its sphere of influence into a Nato nation.
Note the sentence above that says that Russia is “in search of territory and allies”.
Iceland’s mid-Atlantic location makes it a hugely desirable ally. Russia has its eye on oil and gas below the North Pole (the point of the flag-planting stunt). Those will be easier to reach if global warming melts the ice cap.
The Bible says that Russia will be prosperous at the time of the end. It also implies that Russia with use this wealth to further its great ambitions. These ambitions result in war.
Russia calls for Europe to join anti-US pact
Daily Telegraph, October 10, 2008
The Russian president, Dmitry Medvedev, has called on European leaders to create a new world order that minimises the role of the US.
Confident that a spat with Europe prompted by Russia's invasion of Georgia in August was over, Mr Medvedev arrived in the French spa town of Evian determined to woo his fellow leaders into creating an anti-US front.
Gone was the kind of war time rhetoric that saw Mr Medvedev lash out at the West and characterise his Georgian counterpart Mikheil Saakashvili as a "lunatic". Instead Mr Medvedev spoke of a Russia that was "absolutely not interested in confrontation".
Yet there was little doubt that Mr Medvedev was playing the divide-and-rule tactics of his predecessor Vladimir Putin by seeking to pit the United States against its European allies.
We can surely see God’s hand behind this financial crisis. The angels are very busy bringing about the situation required for the final judgement of mankind.
The fallout from this crisis is yet to be fully felt. The ripples of the collapse of capitalist principles are spreading out and beginning to enter the political arena.
Russia is now trying to use this turmoil to create “a new world order”!!
It sees America’s position as being drastically weakened. Suddenly, almost overnight America’s standing in the world has declined and Russia wants to “capitalise” on this.
There is growing concern that Russia could actually destabilise the whole financial system. It is one of only 3 countries (Saudi Arabia and China), that sit on a massive amount of cash that could actually influence the system. So far the cash has been seen in order to stabilize and secure Russia domestically. In fact Russia is holding talks with China later this month to discuss reducing their dollar holdings! The crisis will get worse
Financial crisis dents America's strategic standing
Debkanetweekly, October 17, 2008
Moscow, which has not for a moment halted its military provocations of Washington, is coming round to the conviction that state regulation of market forces, abandoned when the Soviet empire collapsed in the early 1990s, is the right way, compared with the American free market culture which has brought the world to catastrophe.
Beijing, just three months after flaunting its admission to the worldwide global village during its successful Olympic event, is now congratulating itself on applying the brakes to market freedoms and refraining from expanding the Western financial enclaves of Hong Kong and Shanghai.
The most violent reactions have come from the Muslim world. In the Arab Middle East, there is frank talk of the need to break away from the American economy and establishing an international Islamic financial system. Iran's leaders gloat over the Western economic meltdown as indicating the end of capitalism, the failure of liberal democracy, marking the superiority of the Islamic republic's political model.
Continents and nations are going their own way, addressing their troubles and seeking cures without reference to the United States.
This weakening of the world’s only superpower is necessary. When Israel is finally surrounded by armies one might have expected America to come to their aid.
However we know that America (and Britain) will NOT be able to stop Israel from being overrun. Why does God want this to happen?
Ultimately God wants Israel to turn to HIM not to some other “super power”.
When Christ returns Israel will be its knees – two thirds in the land will have been killed.
Their only hope will be to accept him. They will do so… and he will accept them.
Israeli youth seek Judaism
Israel National News, October 12, 2008
A powerful trend has been noted at the Beit El Yeshiva website: Dozens of teenagers tenaciously overcoming family and other obstacles to become religiously observant.
The decade-old Beit El Yeshiva website provides thousands of Torah classes in various formats by leading rabbis, and features a popular "Ask the Rabbi" section. Among the 100,000 monthly visitors are those who are not religiously observant, but who want to learn more about Judaism.
In recent months, the website administrators say, "the wave of requests for spiritual direction - particularly from young readers who have not been formally exposed to Judaism - has been increasingly strong. We sense an undercurrent of a tremendous process of awakening and desire to return to authentic Judaism among young people"
There is an incredible number of Jews that do not believe in God at all. Israel has become a mainly secular nation. HOWEVER, this is beginning to change.
One example is given above. Another example is an organisation called Aish HaTorah ("Fire of the Torah"). Aish HaTorah is an Orthodox organization and yeshiva (Torah study). The organization's stated mission is "providing opportunities for Jews of all backgrounds to discover their heritage." Its headquarters are in Jerusalem. A key Aish HaTorah program is the Discovery Seminar. It explores the authenticity of Judaism and its relevance to modern times. It attempts to answer questions such as, "Why Be Jewish?" "Does God Exist?" and "Is Torah True?“ More than 100,000 people (mainly Jews) worldwide have attended the seminars! They are very similar in approach to the seminars we run as Christadelphians. The Bible speaks of a time BEFORE Christ returns when SOME Jews do look back and believe again. It is the work of Elijah.
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