Blog note. Jesus indicated that ‘fearful sights’ (various natural disasters) would occur leading up to the time known as the Tribulation and Great Tribulation (a combined seven year period of great destruction on earth). Although these types of things have occurred in the past for centuries and thousands of years, they could be identified as the ‘season of the times’ due to the ferociousness of these events. They would be occurring in greater intensity, severity, frequency, size, duration, scope … just like the pains that a women experiences in labor the farther along she is in the labor process. We are in the ‘season of the times’ that comes just before the seven (7) year Tribulation/Great Tribulation period
… And great earthquakes shall be in diverse places, and famines, and pestilences; and fearful sights and great signs shall there be from heaven. (Luke 21:11).
… And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; (Luke 21:25)
… Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken; (Luke 21:26)
… This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. (2 Timothy 3:1)
Jesus is giving a series of prophecies about what to look for as the age of grace comes to a close. These verses are several of many such prophecies from throughout the Bible. 2017 was the worst year in recorded history for the intensity, frequency, severity, duration and occurrence of a large number of severe natural disasters worldwide. Earthquakes, volcanoes, hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones, torrential flooding, unprecedented wildfires in unusual places, devastating droughts, excessive/scorching heat setting records everywhere, record snowfalls in Europe and Russia. Snow in the Arabia. This list can go on. Most studied Eschatologists believe these ‘fearful sights’ and massive natural disasters are all part of the ‘CONVERGENCE’ of signs that this Biblical and prophetic age is closing. Most people who study prophecy are familiar with the routine reference(s) made that these things will be like a woman having labor pains that occur in greater severity, frequency, size and duration prior to giving birth. End of note.
Past 5 years were Earth’s warmest on record; 2018 was USA’s costliest wildfire season
Doyle Rice. USA TODAY•February 6, 2019
Earth’s fever shows no signs of stopping.
The global temperature in 2018 was the fourth-hottest on record, scientists announced Wednesday. Only 2016 (warmest), 2015 (2nd-warmest) and 2017 (3rd-warmest) were hotter than 2018.
Overall, the past five years have been the five warmest years since records began in the late 1800s, according to a report released Wednesday.
Specifically, NASA said global temperatures in 2018 were 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit above the average from 1951 to 1980.
Here in the U.S., unusual warmth in the West in 2018 contributed to a disastrous wildfire season that killed dozens of people. In monetary cost, the nation endured its costliest wildfire season on record: a whopping $24 billion in damage.
Hurricanes Michael ($25 billion) and Florence ($24 billion) were the other two big weather disasters in 2018.
The cost in human life was tragic: Almost 250 Americans were killed in the disasters in 2018. The total cost of the disasters to the nation was $91 billion.
The global warming trend is strongest in the Arctic, NASA said, where 2018 saw the continued loss of sea ice. In addition, mass loss from the Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets continued to contribute to sea-level rise.
Increasing temperatures can also contribute to longer fire seasons and some extreme weather events, according to Schmidt. “The impacts of long-term global warming are already being felt – in coastal flooding, heat waves, intense precipitation and ecosystem change,” he said.
The planet has now experienced 42 straight years (since 1977) with an above-average global temperature.
What’s noteworthy about the recent warming is how closely it parallels the increasing amount of greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide and methane that are being released into the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans.
“This is yet another reminder that our future will not resemble our past,” said Shaun Martin of the World Wildlife Fund. “Even if we dramatically curb emissions in the coming years, things are going to get a lot worse before they get better. We’ve already locked in certain levels of warming which will continue to harm millions of people and nature in the US and worldwide.”
Another expert, Brenda Ekwurzel, a climate scientist with the Union of Concerned Scientists, said that “18 of the 19 warmest years since record keeping began have occurred since 2001. That means kids graduating from high school have only known a world of record-breaking temperatures. With global emissions rising for the second year in a row, this disastrous trend shows no signs of changing any time soon.”
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), which prepared the report along with NASA, also said the U.S. endured 14 separate weather disasters that each caused at least $1 billion in damage. Eight of those disasters were from tornadoes or severe thunderstorms.
From 1980 to 2013, the U.S. averaged about 6 separate big weather disasters a year, NOAA said. Over the most recent five years, that number has jumped to more than 12.
In the U.S., last year’s weather story was more about rain and snow than heat. Precipitation for the contiguous U.S. averaged 34.63 inches, which was 4.69 inches above average. This made it the USA’s 3rd-wettest year on record and the wettest since 1983.
Nine states – Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey and Massachusetts –slogged through their wettest year on record.
Looking ahead, British meteorologists from the Met Office on Wednesday predicted the next five years will be much hotter than the previous five, potentially even record-breaking.
This annual climate report was prepared by climate scientists from NASA and NOAA. It’s usually released in mid-January but was postponed until February because of the partial shutdown of the federal government.