Hurricane Katrina has just struck the Gulf Coast with fury! News reports already are telling us that at least 1,000 people are dead. And the death toll may greatly increase when all the bodies are counted! The authorities have also stated that Katrina will definitely become one of the worst natural disasters in American history in financial terms. The damages will mount up into the tens of billions. .
As the New York Times reported, "A day after New Orleans thought it had narrowly escaped the worst of Hurricane Katrina's wrath, water broke through two levees on Tuesday and virtually submerged and isolated the city, causing incalculable destruction and rendering it uninhabitable for weeks to come…. As rising water and widespread devastation hobbled rescue and recovery efforts, the authorities could only guess at the death toll in New Orleans and across the Gulf Coast. In Mississippi alone, officials raised the official count of the dead to at least 100. 'It looks like Hiroshima is what it looks like,' Gov. Haley Barbour said, describing parts of Harrison County, Miss. Across the region, rescue workers were not even trying to gather up and count the dead, officials said, but pushed them aside for the time being as they tried to find the living" (August 31, 2005).
As we update this commentary, we note that today's New York Times (September 1, 2005) states the following, "For the first time, a New Orleans official suggested the scope of the death toll. Mayor C. Ray Nagin said the hurricane might have killed thousands in his city alone, an estimate that, if correct, would make it the nation's deadliest natural disaster since the 1906 San Francisco earthquake and fire, which killed up to 6,000 people. 'We know there is a significant number of dead bodies in the water,' and others hidden from view in attics and other places, Mayor Nagin told reporters. Asked how many, he said: 'Minimum, hundreds. Most likely, thousands.'"
Why is the Creator God allowing what authorities are now saying may be the "worst natural disaster in American history" to occur at this time? If there is a real, God, why has He allowed this and what is His purpose?
Of course, all of us need to pray fervently that God will have mercy on those involved. We must have compassion when we hear of the suffering, the deprivation and the mounting death toll involved in this horrible tragedy. However, if we just are "concerned" and "pray about it" is that enough? Isn't it much better to ask ourselves why the Creator God allows these things to occur? Are we willing to learn every lesson which the great God wants us to learn as these things occur? Is this Hurricane Katrina just a separated tragedy? Or is this part of a pattern of more and more and more such "natural" disasters to come from our Creator as part of His corrective chastening of our peoples for our mounting sins?
When savage storms or other weather-related catastrophes occur, they are usually blamed on "Mother Nature." Weathermen are quick to cite statistics of similar storms that may have occurred 30, 60, or even 100 years ago. But what they often do not say is that such storms—as well as violent earthquakes—are becoming more frequent and more forceful.
And the "experts" are seemingly in total ignorance of the fact that there is a Great God who ultimately controls natural events—who blesses nations that obey Him with "rain in its season" (Leviticus 26:4), and who can (and often will) punish a rebellious people with drought and famine (v. 19). Jesus Christ predicted that natural disasters would be one of the signs preceding His return to this earth as King of kings: "For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences [i.e. disease epidemics], and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows" (Matthew 24:7-8).
Of course, not every thunderstorm is from God's direct intervention. For natural laws guide such weather patterns. And sometimes God allows Satan to control the weather (cf. Job 1:12, 19). But the Bible reveals that there are definite times when God Himself intervenes in the weather to either bless or curse certain nations.
When ancient Israel turned aside from God, how did He respond? "'I blasted you with blight and mildew [from too much rain]. When your gardens increased, your vineyards, your fig trees, and your olive trees, the locust devoured them; yet you have not returned to Me,' says the LORD" (Amos 4:9). And the same God who chastened entire nations and empires in centuries past is still very much in charge! He says, "For I am the Lord, I do not change" (Malachi 3:6).
The Word of God makes it clear that if the British Commonwealth and American peoples do not repent of our personal and national sins and return to God, He will punish us with floods, drought, famine, earthquakes and disease epidemics such as we have never known nor even imagined! Each of us, individually, needs to seek God in a way we have never done before.
The Bible tells us that, "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever" (Heb. 13:8). The great God of the Universe will always punish nations for their sins—especially those nations who should "know better," and who have and who profess to believe in His inspired Word! America claims to be a "Christian" nation. But our mounting rates of crime and violence, and our horrible problems with illicit sex, perverted sex, mounting drug addiction and drunkenness certainly belie this fact.
In a prophecy for ancient Israel which certainly applies, in type, to us today, God says, "But if you do not obey Me, and do not observe all these commandments, and if you despise My statutes, or if your soul abhors My judgments, so that you do not perform all My commandments, but break My covenant, I also will do this to you: I will even appoint terror over you, wasting disease and fever which shall consume the eyes and cause sorrow of heart. And you shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it. I will set My face against you, and you shall be defeated by your enemies. Those who hate you shall reign over you, and you shall flee when no one pursues you. And after all this, if you do not obey Me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins. I will break the pride of your power; I will make your heavens like iron and your earth like bronze. And your strength shall be spent in vain; for your land shall not yield its produce, nor shall the trees of the land yield their fruit" (Lev. 26:14-20).
If you understand, you will grasp the fact that increasing "terror"—including natural disasters and terrorist attacks—will continue to plague our peoples as never before. The great God of heaven will get our "attention" one way or the other!
Many of you reading this may dismiss this warning as coming from an "old fashioned" preacher who does not understand. But as these events increase and begin to greatly impact this nation—coming one after the other—you may begin to realize that these times are not "normal!" You will perhaps begin to realize that there is a great God who is giving our peoples the loving correction that they need. He does this in hope that those of us who are willing may sincerely repent and wake up before the ultimate disaster occurs.
In prophecy after prophecy in the Bible, God indicates that He is the one who controls the weather. He states, "When I shut up heaven and there is no rain, or command the locusts to devour the land, or send pestilence among My people, if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land" (II Chron. 7:13-14).
All of us need to truly humble ourselves, sincerely try to understand why the Creator is allowing these things to occur, and be willing to repent and "turn" from our own selfishness, vanity and being so involved with this society that we are not willing to obey our Creator. If you wish to understand many important details about this whole matter, please write us or e-mail us at tomorrowsworld.org and request a free copy of our truly eye-opening booklet entitled, Who Controls the Weather? This booklet goes far beyond what I can cover in this brief commentary to help you understand what the Creator truly says about His intervention in the weather—and how it is all going to turn out in the end. So order this free booklet immediately from this website, or call or write immediately and request this free booklet if you wish to understand.