Have You Noticed? The Nations Are Shaking
In 2009, Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry wrote a landmark booklet called Haggai: God Has Begun to Shake the Nations. In this book, Mr. Flurry explained God’s promise in Haggai 2:7: “And I will shake all nations.”
In Haggai 2, God makes it plain that the shaking of the nations is tied directly to a specific sign. God calls this physical sign His “house,” a magnificent physical structure designed to declare the glory of God, and from which God’s truth flows. In his booklet, Mr. Flurry explains how God begins to “shake all nations” at the same time as this “house for God” is constructed. God intends for this house, Mr. Flurry wrote, to be “a dreadful warning sign to the world,” and “a sign of world upheaval.”
In September 2010, the Philadelphia Church of God opened Armstrong Auditorium, a majestic building created specifically to declare the glory of God and from which the truth of God now flows. Looking at world events since then, there is no refuting that the intensity of this shaking has dramatically increased!
Brace yourself and take a look at events since last September.
Practically the whole of the Middle East and North Africa is violently convulsing. In December, the West-friendly government of Tunisia was shaken from office by a popular uprising. This revolution caused far more consequential aftershocks in Egypt, toppling an American ally, Hosni Mubarak, and creating a vacuum that radical Islamic forces have already begun to fill.
Bahrain has also been rocked with major protests, supported by Iran. Iran has also scored significant victories in Iraq and Lebanon. In December, Iraq finally formed a coalition government, but only after Iranian-supported anti-American Moqtada al-Sadr agreed to support Shiite Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki. In January, Hezbollah brought down the Saad Hariri government in Lebanon when its ministers and allies withdrew from the cabinet. The new prime minister, Najib Mikati, is Hezbollah’s man—amounting to a soft coup by the Iranian-backed terrorist group.
In Syria, more than a thousand people have been killed by security forces loyal to Bashar Assad. Libya is trembling amid a civil war that erupted when dictator Muammar Ghadafi responded to protesters with brutal force. Yemen is on the verge of civil war. Tremors of popular unrest have also been felt in Mauritania, Morocco, Djibouti, Jordan, Iraq, Algeria and Iran.
Since the wave of Arab protests began last year, tension between Muslims and Christians in the Middle East and North Africa has greatly intensified. Hundreds of Christians have been killed and thousands have been displaced, creating a trend that presages a prophesied Catholic-Muslim clash.
In Israel, in March terrorists knifed to death five members of a Jewish family in the West Bank, Hamas resumed rocket attacks, and a terrorist bomb shook Jerusalem. In May, the “moderate” Palestinian organization Fatah forged an alliance with Hamas, another Iran-backed terrorist group. Then, despite this provocative decision, U.S. President Barack Obama heaped pressure on Israel to negotiate with the Palestinians. His “encouragement” didn’t sit well with Israel and seriously damaged U.S.-Israel relations.
God Has Begun to Shake the Nations, the booklet says. Indeed. And that’s only in one region of the world.
The European Union has been convulsing from a massive economic quake that is altering the landscape of the Continent—mostly to Germany’s benefit. Since last September, Europe has created several new regulatory bodies, two of which are hosted by Germany. On November 21, Ireland caved in to EU elites’ demands to accept a bailout, handing over its national sovereignty to the EU’s central bankers in the process. In May, Portugal was bailed out too. Meanwhile Greece, which was bailed out in the spring of last year, once again sits on the precipice of bankruptcy. By the end of May, there was talk of Greece leaving the euro, a decision that would necessitate reconstituting the whole European unification project.
Economic troubles shook Britain on March 26 in the form of over a quarter-million demonstrators marching London’s streets to protest government spending cuts. A similar scenario played out in Wisconsin in the U.S., highlighting the reality that several states face bankruptcy—and inevitable social turmoil. Amid all the unrest, oil prices have steadily risen, jeopardizing global economic recovery. All the while, the dollar’s value is dropping, provoking other nations and international bodies to actively look for a replacement reserve currency.
All this shaking of the nations—and we haven’t even yet looked at all the “natural” disasters. December saw wildfires in Israel that were considered the worst natural disaster in the young nation’s history. In December and January, Australia experienced the worst flooding in that nation’s history. A month later, the still-flood-shocked Australian state of Queensland was hit by a massive cyclone. In January, floods in Brazil caused mudslides that left tens of thousands homeless and killed more than 700 people. More recently, the worst drought in over a century wiped out wheat crops and cattle herds in Texas—at the same time that flooding destroyed homes and farms all up and down the Mississippi River. The U.S. also saw the most active, most lethal tornado season in its history by a considerable margin—and it’s only halfway over.
And there has been the literal shaking of nations. A magnitude-7.5 earthquake off Indonesia killed 343 people on October 25. January saw four huge quakes, in Argentina, Japan, Pakistan and Chile. Then on February 22, an exceptionally violent trembler (scientists say once-in-a-thousand-years severe) leveled much of Christchurch, New Zealand. Less than three weeks later came the 9.0 quake near Japan that created a killer tsunami, which killed tens of thousands and caused a nuclear disaster.
Are you paying attention? Our world is rattling, and the intensity of the tremors is growing.
“If you want to know where we are in Bible prophecy,you’d better understand why God is shaking the nations,” Mr. Flurry wrote in the Haggai booklet. “That means you must obey God, watch world news and pray for understanding.”