I came across something to do with massive animal deaths in the Book of Hosea, and it got me thinking…. a dangerous thing sometimes. Other times it can help clear my mind and bring things into a better focus.
Do you ever get fed up with what seem like repetitive stories? You think you may have heard it all before somewhere but you are not quite sure exactly where. And (the big question) does it really matter?
There are media reports telling of massive animal deaths across different continents. Birds, whales, fish, sea turtles, honey bees, butterflies, dolphins and others. Some have been attributed to environmental catastrophes such as the Gulf of Mexico BP Disaster, others blame farming practices and fertilizer runoff. Lack of Oxygen has been blamed also, and don’t forget the possible association with GMO’s.
According to the Book of Ecclesiastes there is nothing new under the sun…. (Ecc 1:9) That kind of seems to say it has all either happened before, or it was known about in advance. But ‘how’ you might ask ‘could it have been known about in advance’? And when pray tell ‘has it happened before’?
Bible prophecy is not only about the return of our Saviour Jesus Christ at the appointed time. There are prophets (sometimes called the Minor Prophets) who wrote rather short tracts, compared to those of the Major Prophets –Isaiah, Jeremiah and Ezekiel, whose writing are more extensive. HOSEA is one such Minor Prophet who foretold of massive die offs of creatures because:
“There is no faithfulness, no love, no acknowledgment of God in the land.
There is only cursing, lying and murder, stealing and adultery; they break all bounds, and bloodshed follows bloodshed.
Because of this the land mourns, and all who live in it waste away; the beasts of the field and the birds of the air and the fish of the sea are dying.” Hosea 4:1-3
I know many people who tell me ‘that was all Old Testament stuff’ and it has no bearings on what we are experiencing today. But are they right?
Can we say today that we are a faithful people who acknowledge God in our Nation? I don’t think so!
Can we say we do not curse, lie, murder? Can we declare there is no theft or adultery in our Nation? I don’t think so!
When you watch the evening news, or read the daily news (paper) on line – is it full of wonderful reports of peace and kindness to humanity, or it is filled with war and vengeance and murder and rape and abortion and homosexuality and child pornography? Are our Nation’s leaders above reproach? Are our prisons empty? Are our churches full? I don’t think so!
Of course the other Prophets also have something to say about our unfaithfulness to God – let’s not mince words, call it what it is – disobedience!
Jeremiah 4:22 “My people are fools; they do not know me. They are senseless children; they have no understanding. They are skilled in doing evil; they know not how to do good.”
Isaiah 59:3 For your hands are stained with blood, your fingers with guilt. Your lips have spoken lies, and your tongue mutters wicked things.
Jeremiah 4:28 Therefore the earth will mourn and the heavens above grow dark, because I have spoken and will not relent, I have decided and will not turn back.”
Ezekiel 38:20 The fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the beasts of the field, every creature that moves along the ground, and all the people on the face of the earth will tremble at my presence. The mountains will be overturned, the cliffs will crumble and every wall will fall to the ground.
Amos 8:8 “Will not the land tremble for this, and all who live in it mourn? The whole land will rise like the Nile; it will be stirred up and then sink like the river of Egypt.
Zephaniah 1:3 “I will sweep away both men and animals; I will sweep away the birds of the air and the fish of the sea. The wicked will have only heaps of rubble when I cut off man from the face of the earth,” declares the LORD.
God always knew we humans would be disobedient, He even prepared for it before Creation. In His time, he allowed His Son Jesus to become one like us (in all things except sin), so that a new path would be laid for us to return to full relationship with God. That is why we were created, so that we could share in full relationship (love) with Our Creator God. That is why Jesus died on the cross at Calvary.
When we sin, we become estranged from God, but that relationship can be redeemed. Not through our own efforts, but ONLY through the saving work of Jesus Christ at Calvary.
Simon Peter once asked Jesus “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. Jn 6:68
To have eternal life means to have a future, forever (that’s what eternity means) with our Loving Triune God. To be separated from God, means no future in eternity. The absence of God for me is unimaginable. I have hope in a future filled with love, and only because of Jesus Christ can I have this hope. He called to me and I answered. I am a sinner who is forgiven. Christ has chosen me and Christ has redeemed me.
In Old Testament times the people turned away from God, and suffered the consequences of their actions. Yet when they repented they were restored to full relationship and granted bounty, wealth and a Kingdom of their own. This situation lasted so long as they remained faithful.
It would seem that the writer of the Book of Ecclesiastes was correct when he wrote there is nothing new under the sun. It has all been done before!
We too have turned from God. We too are paying the consequences of our iniquities. Prophets foretold of many disasters that would eventuate should we decide to turn down the wrong path and wrench ourselves out from loving relationship with Our Creator God.
We know we can return, repent and be restored, but will we? Time maybe running out!
ROBIN MARK SINGS – When it’s all been said and done.