Weekly World Watch Andy Walton’s Aug 11 - 17, 2019 “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) PRESS SPACE BAR TO CONTINUE To skip the introductory slides and go straight to this weeks developments click here.
What is a Weekly World Watch? 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: • Israel: The continuing conflict in the Middle East and focus on Jerusalem. • Europe: Its developing union, both political and religious. • Russia: Its return to anti-Western ways as Bible prophecy’s “king of the north.” • The UK and the US: Bible prophecy’s “king of the south.” • Moral standards in decline and violence on the increase. • Increasing natural disasters: including earthquake, famine etc 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.
BIBLE QUOTE 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. News Photo This is straight from a news report that caught my eye because it looked significant from a Biblical perspective, usually that of prophecy. HEADLINE 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. EVENT 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). Please note that these are personal thoughts and the aim is purely to stimulate Bible study. COMMENT 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)
This Week’s Developments Aug 11 - 17, 2019 • 'Military strikes next’: US & Israel could soon blitz Iran • Deadly nuclear explosion in Russia • Protests in Russia: Putin’s Choice • Palestinian & Israeli police clash at Jerusalem holy site • Russia lets Iranian forces redeploy opposite Israel • 2019: Why are there so many music films? To print any of the event slides that follow, click the picture on the upper right PRESS SPACE BAR TO CONTINUE
For, lo, thine enemies make a tumult: and they that hate thee have lifted up the head. They have taken crafty counsel against thy people, and consulted against thy hidden ones. They have said, Come, and let us cut them off from being a nation; that the name of Israel may be no more in remembrance. 'Military strikes next' War fears as official reveals US and Israel could soon blitz Iran The Express, August 12, 2019 The next step for Israel and the US to take against Iran would be military strikes, according to a shock admission from a US official. Washington Strategy Group leader Joel Rubin made the stunning remarks after Israel confirmed it would be joining a US-led military alliance in the Gulf. In response to Israel’s role, Iran said it has the right to counter Israel’s role in the alliance, describing the move as a “clear threat”. Speaking to Fox News, Joel Rubin, who worked under George W Bush and Barack Obama in the White House, warned that the next step to take for the US would be “military strikes” against Tehran. He said: “Our policy of a maximum pressure again may be punishing them economically but we are not achieving anything at the table. “Right now we are self-isolating. Iran still has the capability of restarting its nuclear programme.” “So, well, what is next? Does it mean military strikes? …..That is where we are heading.” EVENT COMMENT Joel Rubin continued to say “The danger we have with Iran is that right now we are heading into a military confrontation with them.” This week the Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Abbas Mousavi stressed that any Israeli role in a maritime alliance in the Gulf was a “clear threat” to Tehran. He added that Iran has the right to counter it. Israeli Foreign Minister Yisrael Katz had earlier confirmed that the Israeli government is “contributing” to the US mission with intelligence and other “important capabilities”. With Bible in hand we know that Iran will help people hostile to Israel to launch an attack on Israel. We are told this in Psalm 83. If Israel does begin to help the US / UK in the Gulf, Iran may well want to stir up trouble for Israel on its own borders. The situation in the Gulf could be a spark that ignites the Middle East ….and the world… BIBLE QUOTE (Psalm 83:2-4)
Proclaim ye this among the Gentiles; Prepare war, wake up the mighty men, let all the men of war draw near; let them come up: Beat your plowshares into swords, and your pruninghooks into spears: let the weak say, I am strong…..Let the heathen be wakened, and come up to the valley of Jehoshaphat:[Armageddon] What a Deadly Nuclear Explosion In Russia Tells Us About the World's New Arms Race Time Magazine, August 14, 2018 News of the nuclear explosion at a military base in the far north of Russia trickled out slowly. First came the bulletins on state media of at least two people killed in a mysterious accident. Then came news of a spike in radiation in the area, and footage reportedly showing doctors in hazmat suits treating the victims. Finally, on Aug. 13 – five days after the blast – the Kremlin appeared to come clean, confirming that five nuclear scientists and at least two others had died while testing one of the newest weapons in President Vladimir Putin’s arsenal. One lesson from last week’s explosion may be that any country, be it Russia, the U.S. or China, can pursue such weapons without violating any rules. That’s because, over the past few years, the system of treaties that supports the world’s security architecture has been unravelling along with the diplomatic ties between Russia and the West. EVENT COMMENT Many analysts believe that Putin is testing a new nuclear missile which was the cause of the explosion at a military base in Russia which produced a radiation leak. The missile is code named “Skyfall”. It isn’t just a missile carrying a nuclear warhead it is a nuclear powered missile. This means it can almost fly forever. Conventional intercontinental ballistic missiles fly high into the upper atmosphere then drop down onto their target – this gives time for a nation to respond. This new missile could fly close to the ground at immense speed potentially going round the world many times before it ran out of fuel. The Bible says nations would prepare for Armageddon – they are! BIBLE QUOTE (Joel 3:9-12)
Protests in Russia: Putin’s Choice The Times, August 14, 2019 It was the biggest protest held in Moscow in years. An estimated 60,000 people attended. Many who marched through the capital on Saturday chanted “We are not afraid”. The protests began in July when the authorities banned opposition candidates from standing in Moscow’s council election next month. The unrest has been escalating since: Saturday’s rally was attended by almost three times more people than a previous protest. The worry for President Putin is that the protests could proliferate all over Russia. Mr Putin must hope that the demonstrations burn out, as they did in 2012. Yet with Russia’s economy struggling, that is far from assured. Wages are tumbling. A substantial rise in the pension age last year and an increase in value added tax this year has fuelled the sentiment that the country’s economy only works for the wealthy few. EVENT COMMENT This was the biggest protest against Putin for 8 years. Demonstrators shouted “down with the tsar!” and waved the national flag as they took to the streets of Moscow to demand free elections to the city legislature. At the end of the rally the crowd surged towards the presidential administration building while chanting ”Putin is a thief”. None of these protests can remove Putin though – he controls everything. Unlike democracies in the West he controls who can stand in opposition to him. That is not to say he is totally unconcerned about these protests. Hundreds are detained and the draconian measures on free speech are increased again. But Putin likes to be a Tsar that is worshipped. He knows his popularity soars when he has successful military conquests like Crimea. He may soon divert attention with another military conquest. BIBLE QUOTE And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against thee, O Gog, the chief prince of Meshech and Tubal: And I will turn thee back, and put hooks into thy jaws, and I will bring thee forth, and all thine army, horses and horsemen, all of them clothed with all sorts of armour, even a great company with bucklers and shields, all of them handling swords: (Ezekiel 38:2-3)
Russia lets Iranian forces redeploy opposite Israel Debkafile, August 14, 2019 EVENT Exclusive: Deep apprehension in Israel over a Russian U-turn, which is letting small Iranian Al Qods and Hizballah units regain former positions 10-15km from the Israeli and Jordanian borders. They are coming back after Russian forces drove them out last year and established a safe zone at those border districts in their stead.Reporting this turn of events, DEBKAfile’s military and intelligence sources add that the Russian forces, not content with allowing this Iranian-Hizballah comeback, have also evacuated their own positions, leaving the local population under the control of the Al Qods and Hizballah invaders. These actions violate Russian President Vladimir Putin’s commitment last year to US President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu to purge S. Syrian borders of the hostile elements ruled from Tehran and provide monitors for a safe zone. The situation in Syria remains volatile with the 2 superpowers still jockeying for position over the war torn country. This week, a large American unit landed in southern Turkey to start activating the joint US-Turkish safe zone, which aims to separate the Turkish army from the pro-US SDF militia which is dominated by Syrian Kurds. Moscow may have opened the door to Iran in southern Syria to counter expanding US involvement in the north. Israel showed first resistance to the new hostile presence at its border on July 24 by firing surface missiles at the intelligence stations Iran was setting up. Russia has continued to move in the south regardless. Russia is supporting sworn enemies of Israel – Iran and Hezbollah. The Bible says that the Russian leader (Putin) will think an evil thought and invade Israel. We can see his true colours by who he supports. COMMENT BIBLE QUOTE Thus saith the Lord GOD; It shall also come to pass, that at the same time shall things come into thy mind, and thou shalt think an evil thought: And thou shalt say, I will go up to the land of unwalled villages; I will go to them that are at rest, that dwell safely, all of them dwelling without walls, and having neither bars nor gates, (Ezekiel 38:10-11)
Palestinian & Israeli police clash at Jerusalem holy site Reuters, August 11, 2019 EVENT Israeli police fired sound grenades to disperse Palestinians during confrontations on Sunday outside Jerusalem’s al-Aqsa mosque where tens of thousands of Muslim worshippers gathered for the Eid al-Adha holiday, witnesses said. A Palestinian ambulance service said that at least 14 Palestinians were taken to hospitals for treatment. Israel’s Kan public radio said four police officers were injured. Facing off with police in the packed compound outside Islam’s third-holiest site, Palestinians chanted “With our soul and blood we will redeem you, Aqsa”. Revered by Jews as Temple Mount, the site of two biblical Jewish temples, and by Muslims as the Noble Sanctuary, the area is one of the most sensitive sites in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. COMMENT The Temple Mount area is the epicentre of the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. It is also the epicentre for the wider Muslim followers as well. It is Muslim's third most holy site. It is Israel’s most holy site. The Dome of the Rock sits on the very site where Abraham “sacrificed” his son Isaac. It is the exact site of the “Most Holy Place” in Solomon’s Temple. It is the future site of the Third Temple – the Temple to be built when Christ returns where all future worship in the kingdom will be centred. At that time peace and righteousness will flow from that exact spot under the kingship of Jesus Christ. At this time it is the polar opposite. Emanating from the Dome of the Rock – the Muslim shrine – is violence, hatred and death. Before Christ returns this very spot – the epicentre of God’s plan and purpose – will become the focal point of Armageddon. God’s eyes are on this place perpetually – ours should be too… And the LORD said unto him, I have heard thy prayer and thy supplication, that thou hast made before me: I have hallowed this house [the Temple in Jerusalem], which thou hast built, to put my name there for ever; and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually. BIBLE QUOTE (1 Kings 9:3)
2019: Why are there so many music films? BBC, August 15, 2018 EVENT For cinema-goers though, 2019 has been the year of the music film. It's not yet September and we've already had movies powered by the sonic might of Sir Elton John, The Beatles, Motley Crue and Bruce Springsteen, as well rockumentaries on Liam Gallagher, Bob Dylan and Leonard Cohen. With Judy Garland, Michael Hutchence, Suzi Quatro and George Michael-flavoured features still to come, by Christmas we'll have seen enough singers at the pictures to fill up an entire 2020 wall calendar. According to the BFI, the musical film enjoyed two early "golden eras": First in the 1930s, with US productions like 42nd Street, as The Great Depression took hold, and then again with the MGM films - like Singin' in the Rain - during and directly after the Second World War. Robin Baker, who's curated their upcoming celebration of The Great Show on Screen, believes it's no coincidence that similar trends are emerging once again. "Both times you're dealing with society under stress, wanting to escape their woes and troubles.” COMMENT Mr Baker went on to say - "To me right now, in an age dominated by international anxiety, whether it's climate change, Trump, or political instability here and a nation divided - people want an escape from that.” Interesting that people use escapism during times of trouble and national anxiety. The world is definitely in a time of anxiety and instability and division. This surely reminds us of Christ’s words in the Olivet prophecy. He said that there would be division – people against people and nation against nation. He said that whole nations would be in anguish and perplexity. He said there would be anxiety with men’s hearts failing them for fear. But he concluded that when we see these things….HE WILL RETURN… People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” BIBLE QUOTE (Luke 21:26-28 NIV)
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