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 woman 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
… 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.
Brazil led world in rainforest losses in 2018.
Reuters. Updated, May 3, 2019
BRASILIA (Reuters) – (This April 26 story corrects first paragraph to show that the decline is for primary deforestation, not overall deforestation; corrects decline to 37 percent, not 70 percent; corrects throughout to show that losses are for primary deforestation, not overall deforestation)
Brazil led the world in rainforest destruction last year, although primary deforestation in South America’s largest country fell by 37 percent compared to 2017, according to an independent forest monitoring network.
Brazil lost 13,471 square kilometers (5,201 square miles) of primary rainforest in 2018, an area nearly the size of the U.S. state of Connecticut, according to annual data from Global Forest Watch, which is run by the U.S.-based World Resources Institute (WRI).
That represents a significant drop from the previous year however, when large-scale forest fires drove higher losses in Brazil.
Losses of primary or old-growth forest, which are key to preserving biodiversity, fell after two years of historic fires, but still remain elevated above levels earlier in the decade, according to the Global Forest Watch data released on Thursday.
“Though some of the 2018 loss can be attributed to fire, most of it appears to be due to clear cutting in the Amazon, putting at risk the declines in deforestation the country achieved in the early 2000s,” researchers wrote on the groups website.
Brazil is home to 60 percent of the Amazon, the world’s largest tropical rainforest that sucks up vast amounts of carbon dioxide and is seen as a vital protection against global warming.
The Democratic Republic of the Congo ranked second in primary forest loss with 4,812 square kilometers cleared.
Brazil said last year that deforestation rose to its highest point in the decade for the 12 months through July. Deforestation spiked 13.7 percent to 7,900 square kilometers, according to the agency.
Activists and non-government organizations fear that deforestation could rise in Brazil under the administration of Jair Bolsonaro, who assumed the presidency on Jan. 1.
Bolsonaro has said that the country must end an “industry of fines” for environmental infractions in Brazil, one of the primary tools for enforcing environmental protections, and created a body earlier this month with the power to pardon fines.
He has also called for mining protected indigenous areas and a major reserve in the Amazon to encourage economic development.