Monthly Archives: December 2012

2013

2013…what an ominous sounding year! I’m not given to pointless superstitions, but the negative attributes alleged to belong to the number 13 have pretty much been inculcated in us since we were all small children. So, on this New Year’s Eve in North America I have decided to look ahead at the coming year and see what can be seen.

As we enter the new year things are looking rather doubtful here on planet Earth. We have two major comets due to pass us by this year, and comets have always been seen as harbingers of doom; it’s not the comets’ fault, they are just balls of ice and dust trundling along through space, but at some point in time someone decided that they were ill portents, and throughout history that opinion has been borne out by events during or shortly after their passage. Astronomers tell us that we have a comet passing us this March, and then the big one should – assuming they are right – put on quite a show near the end of the year.

Then we have the increasing frequency of strong to severe earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. Yes, I know, the experts or semi-experts have been saying that this is just an illusion due to the increased global population, more scientific recording equipment and more news coverage. But to those of us who keep track of such things, it’s been pretty apparent that they are getting stronger and more frequent, and now the scientists are starting to talk about this increase openly. We also have to bear in mind that science, for all it’s assumptions of mastery, doesn’t know everything nor have all of the answers; let’s not forget that it wasn’t until the mid-late 60s that the notion of plate tectonics was finally accepted by mainstream science! So for whatever reason, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions are getting stronger and more frequent, and that’s never good news for the people who are affected by them.

Then we have the global economy staggering along, barely keeping itself on its feet. Whether or not Washington is able to avert a plunge over the much discussed fiscal cliff, the global economy is barely keeping its head above the sea of debt that has become the norm. The precarious state of the economy around the world won’t be able to withstand much of a bump, and there are numerous potential bumps coming over the horizon.

And finally, there is all of unrest and war happening in the world. Beyond the bloody civil war in Syria, we have the growing conflict in Mali, unrest throughout the Arab world, violence throughout much of Africa, violence in India, potential violence in the Far East…the list goes on. The probability of a major war erupting this year is pretty high, and the only people who seem to want it to never happen are the poor buggers who will suffer the most from it. Even the current President of the U.S., the man who received a Nobel peace prize before he had a chance to actually earn one, has expanded U.S. military operations – combat via drones – into several new countries. And now we are being pushed toward a Constitutional crisis here in America over gun rights, the new paradigm of ruling by decree, and even attacks on free speech and freedom of religion. The more Washington tries to widen its already expansive control over the American people the more they will push back, just as we’ve always done, only now the office of the president has given itself the means to use the already stretched military against the people they are supposed to protect. No, 2013 isn’t looking very peaceful.

So, in the face of all the doom and the gloom and all of the challenges that lie ahead in the coming year, I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year: may God bless you with wisdom and understanding, with joy and peace in the face of adversity. And may He get us all through the coming year with a minimum of personal turmoil and heartache.

A happy, safe and blessed New Year to you all!

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Merry Christmas to All…

As I write it is Christmas Day, at least here on the West Coast of the U.S. In keeping with the day I have decided to write a post about Christmas, and to extend Christmas greetings to all of my friends around the world; some of you may celebrate this holiday and some may not, but I wish everyone a very Merry Christmas all the same.

As is usual at this time of year, I have run across a number of postings on various sites wherein the posters have heaped derision and scorn on the religious aspects of this holiday, and part of what I want to do today is reply to some of those posts. (Of course, there are very few of those people who will ever see what I am writing today since they would never do anything so rash as to follow my blog, but perhaps by voicing my opinion it will give some people food for thought, and that is always what I want to accomplish – to make people think.) I have read many posts attacking Christmas as nothing more than a mutated version of the old pagan winter solstice celebrations. I will never try to say that Christmas is not the religion of Christianity’s replacement for the old pagan holidays, because the choice of December 25th as the day to celebrate Christ’s birth was largely chosen for that very reason. The Church in Rome has always either changed pagan holidays into Christian ones or at least tolerated the pagan holidays, all in the name of expanding the Church. Yes, Christmas can be seen as nothing more than a pagan holiday dressed up in Christian trappings, but even that origin cannot detract from what Christmas was and is meant to be, and that is a celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ, the Son of God and the chosen savior of the universe.

You see, that is what Christmas really is and always has been, a celebration of the birth of Christ. But why pick a major pagan holiday as the time to celebrate such a great event? Why not? Do we really know when Jesus was born? Not exactly. Unfortunately, the majority of the scanty records that were kept in Judaea 2,000 years ago have been lost, most likely in the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans in 70 AD. So even if the event of his birth had been recorded, it would have been just one more brief entry marking the birth of a Jew during the Roman occupation. Tradition holds that he was born in winter, which lends some circumstantial evidence supporting a December birth. But it could also have been in January or even February. Recorded history gives very little support to this cause.

But what is really important is not the precision of the date chosen, but the fact that His birth is celebrated. Without any written proof one way or another, the early Church could have chosen a date in November or March or even August. What is important is that humanity in the West chose to celebrate the birth of the Messiah. The date is irrelevant, but the event itself is crucial, for it is the birth into this bloody vale of tears of the chosen savior of humanity and all of Creation that is celebrated.

The critics love to point out that Christmas has become a holiday tainted by materialism and pagan symbology, and they are correct: it has been. From the Yule log to the Christmas tree to dear old St. Nick (which is little more than a furtherance of the veneration of the saints), much has been added to Christmas which has nothing to do with the birth of Christ. And the rampant materialism was added as an expression of humanity’s obsession with money and possessions; why else would the business world trumpet sales and products we can’t live without except to enhance their monetary bottom line? Sadly, most people don’t even see how badly we have been suckered into this cheapening practice. The giving of gifts is a generous practice, but the feeding frenzy of holiday shopping that leads people into going deeper in debt, bad tempers and even violence is a deplorable creation of the business world (this is a tale best told on another date, for once I get started on the rampant materialism of our world it’s hard for me to stop!)

So on this Christmas Day let’s all try to forget about presents and credit card bills and petty bickering over unimportant questions and even the hate and avarice so present today. Instead, let us remember why we celebrate the holiday called Christmas in the first place. Let us instead focus on the fact that God so loved the world and everyone in it that He sent His son into to the world to redeem us from our own weaknesses and sins. That is what is important about Christmas.

So I wish a merry Christmas to all. May peace and blessings be yours every day of your lives.

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What Will Happen on Friday?

Well, here we go…

Tomorrow is the much dreaded day, Friday, December 21st, 2012. “Doomsday” as it’s been called. The day that the Mayas supposedly predicted would mark the end of the world. So what can we expect to happen on this last Friday before Christmas? Will the world truly end tomorrow? Is that what the Mayas predicted? If it doesn’t end tomorrow, what will happen then? These are some of the questions that I want to examine as I write these words, with two hours and twenty-one minutes left until midnight.

Speaking of the time left until THE DAY, that brings to mind the first question I have, which is when on the 21st this is all supposed to happen. Technically speaking, as I write these words it is already the 21st of December from the International dateline to at least the Middle East. So why hasn’t anything happened yet that we know of? My hunch is that since the Mayas made all of their astronomical calculations from Central America, any predictions they may have made regarding a certain date would take effect in that time zone, particularly at dawn in Central America as their calculations called for things to happen at dawn. Okay, that buys us a few extra hours, anyway…

I have already written an article about the Mayan predictions here on It’s a Weird, Weird World (listed under “It’s the End of the World as We Know It”) so I won’t go into all of the details again – I dislike being repetitive! So, let’s cut to the chase: did the Mayas really predict that the world will end on this date? No. Not just “no”, but an emphatic NO! The Mayas never said that the world will end on this date. What they did predict was that the world would enter a period of upheaval, both geologic and societal, that will soon usher in a new age for the human race. So, if you are trembling in fear waiting for the sun to explode or the earth to burn up or any other planet-killing event to happen tomorrow, tremble no more, for it’s not going to happen. There will be a December 22nd. The world will continue on, although things are going to deteriorate even quicker the further past tomorrow we get.

The Mayas wrote about several ages for humanity, all of which ended in some great catastrophe or another. There was destruction by fire, by wind, and by a global flood, which sounds rather familiar. The Mayas predicted that when their calendar restarts on Saturday we will begin entering the next age, or at least the transition into it. Now that’s not so hard to imagine since we’ve been seeing an increase in volcanic and seismic activity. For that matter, we are also seeing a marked increase in strange weather occurrences that are mostly blamed on “global warming” (that’s a subject I’ll have to tackle sometime after tomorrow as I do have – not surprisingly – a firm opinion on it!), and we still live with the ever-increasing threat of global war some twenty years and more past the collapse of the Soviet Union. So, if you take an objective look at all of the things going on in the world right now, it doesn’t take much of an imagination to see an increase in calamities and disasters. In fact, the odds of our planet going through a period of upheaval increase every day. Maybe the Mayas knew more than anyone has given them credit for.

Which brings me to the most detailed yet concise telling of the events to come near the end of the age that are found anywhere in the Bible, which is the 24th Chapter of the Gospel of Matthew. In the space of 51 verses taking up about one page of the Bible an authority no less than the Son of God, Jesus Christ Himself, list what He calls the signs of the end of the age. Wars and rumors of wars, signs in the heavens, signs in the earth, persecutions and societal upheaval, all were predicted 2,000 years ago. He compares the signs to come to the spring growth of the fig tree, and anyone who wants to read a really excellent piece regarding fig trees and end times prophecies is invited to go to http://unifiedserenity.wordpress.com and look up fig tree on the site search. Jesus also said that these signs will be like birth pangs; in other words, they will build in intensity and frequency as we get closer to the true end of the age (any woman who has ever delivered a child can explain that for you).

I’ve said all of that as a precursor to this: no one will know exactly when the world will end. Right there in Matthew 24:36 the Lord stated that no one except the Almighty Father knows when it will happen; even Jesus did not know the day or the hour. So if someone says that the Mayas predicted that the world will end on December 21st they don’t know what they are talking about. Which, since we’re on the subject of no one knowing the day or the hour, brings up one of my biggest problems with the doctrine of “The Rapture” as it’s known, and that is if the gathering together of the followers of Christ, both living and dead, happened at the very beginning of the Tribulation, which is what most Protestant churches in America teach if they bother themselves with end times prophecies at all, then it wouldn’t take a rocket scientist to calculate within a few days when Christ will return to Earth. The same would be true if December 21st marked the beginning of the Tribulation. So…

What is my guess as to what will happen tomorrow? (Today if you live in Australia or India.) Probably not a whole lot that stands out. Remember, all that the Mayas predicted was the beginning of a transition to the next age, a transition that will be filled with great catastrophes. In fact, I’d say that nothing much will probably happen tomorrow. Why, you ask? It’s simple. If nothing extravagant happens then most people will just laugh a little bit nervously and go on with their lives. Ok, that doesn’t sound so bad. No, it’s not, unless of course you take into consideration that most people will never take any other “end of the world” predictions seriously – remember what happened when the whole Y2K thing fell through. And that is where so many will fall into the very real danger of refusing to see it coming. For make no mistake, the reign of man is about to end on this planet and Christ is coming back to take up His crown and begin His rule of our troubled little rock.

So, my friends, those of you who are giving everything away or partying like there’s no tomorrow are going to wake up in the morning (or perhaps you already have – this whole International Date Line thing messes me up sometimes) and find that your life will continue, at least for a while. The world will not end tomorrow, and to borrow from Mark Twain, rumors of the world’s imminent demise have been greatly exaggerated.

Just don’t make the mistake of spending tomorrow convincing yourself that it will never end. Our time as rulers over the earth is closer to its end than any of us probably realize.

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Filed under Faith in the 21st Century, Future Events and Prophecies, In the News