By Nick Bibile
What does the Bible say about calamities?
Is it from Satan or from God?
Was God surprised of the recent Tsunami?
If God knew, why he didn't stop the Tsunami?
How can a loving God allow thousands to perish?
What about innocent children who died of the disaster?
What is a tsunami? (Tsunami pronounced tsoo-nah-mee) is a Japanese word with the English translation, "harbor wave." Represented by two characters, the top character, "tsu," means harbor, while the bottom character, "nami," means "wave."
Although National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration scientists at the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center in Hawaii issued tsunami warnings as soon as they heard of the huge earthquake off Sumatra, the waves outran communications at jet speeds of 500 mph (804 kph) - catching hundreds of thousands of people unaware.
(Source National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration)
The Result of the Tsunami
On Sunday, December 26th 2004 at 12:59 AM. a huge earthquake erupted in the Indian Ocean off Sumatra, Indonesia, the epicenter more than 5 miles below ocean. The largest earthquake in 40 years causing a massive and sudden displacement of millions of tons of water. It sent huge waves crashing into 11 countries killing over 150, 000 people. The number of dead as per January 1st 2005, Indonesia alone to reach 80,000, based on estimates from U.N. workers in the field. Elsewhere, the death toll in Sri Lanka is above 45,000. India and Thailand account for thousands more deaths. Millions of people are homeless. The whole world is affected by the tsunami.
According to US scientists, the deadly earthquake was forceful enough to accelerate the Earth's rotation, and may have made the planet wobble on its axis.
Richard Gross, a geophysicist with Nasa's Jet Propulsion Laboratory in California, believes a shift of mass toward the Earth's centre during the quake caused the planet to spin three microseconds faster and tilt about an inch on its axis.
The Earth's poles travel a circular path that normally varies by about 33 feet, so an added wobble of an inch is likely to cause long-term effects.
According to CNN, article appeared on Posted on December 29th called Science and Space, I quote the following.
How powerful? By some estimates, it was equal to detonating a million atomic bombs.
Sieh and other scientists said it probably jolted the planet's rotation. "It causes the planet to wobble a little bit, but it's not going to turn Earth upside down," Sieh said.
Effects of the tsunami
Contaminated drinking water, disease and mosquitoes, mass injuries typhoid fever, diarrhea diseases, dermatitis, ear and nose infections, bacterial disease, Dengue fever, malaria, tetanus, and blood clone viruses.
In southern India, a 100-year old Hindu temple
in Kerala state vanished into the sea and a temple in another part of the state
collapsed, killing dozens of devotees who had come to perform prayers.
What does the Bible say?
Before the second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ, Jesus said the following:
Mt 24:7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
Lu 21:25 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;
We have seen all these in our generation and it's not getting better but worse as the days goes by. Just like our bodies are getting old and falling apart so does the earth.
But how can a loving God allow millions to perish?
Many infants, children were among that perished in this great disaster. The question that many people ask, how can a loving God of the Bible allow innocent infants and children to perish?
My dear friends, let me tell you in the sight of the infinitely holy God, there is none innocent. Who said the infants were innocent? Not God but man and false teachers have said children were innocent. We cannot go according to our emotions but according to the word of God only. Only the Bible expose the word sin where no one likes to speak.
Ps 51:5 Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.
We look at a baby and say they are innocent but wait till they can talk and act.
Ps 58:3 The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies.
Ro 3:10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.
Ro 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.
Who deserves salvation?
No one. We all deserve the wrath of God because of sin that is in us.
"If you, O LORD, kept a record of our sins, O LORD who could stand?" (Psalm 130:3)
"All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away." (Isaiah 64:6)
If one is saved it is only because of God's grace.
8 For it is by grace you have been
saved, through faith--and this not from
yourselves, it is the gift of God--
9 not by works, so that no one can boast.
The world and other religions calls the disaster a natural disaster, the false Christian teachers calls it from Satan.
Many Christians use the following scripture to out of context.
Joh 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. (Quoted by Jesus)
According to many Christians teachers, Satan comes but to steal, to kill and destroy but Jesus came to give abundant life.
These teachers take scripture out of context. You need to read the context, scriptures before and after to get the true meaning. In verse 6, Jesus used this as an illustration for us to understand.
Verse 7) Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep.
He is the door, meaning he is the only way. Sheep here are the believers, the church.
Verse 8) All whoever came before Me are thieves and robbers but the sheep did not hear them.
Here we see he is talking of false teachers who came before him but the true believers did not listen to them.
Verse 9) I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.
Here he speaks, he is the only way for salvation. Now go to verse 10 in the same context.
Joh 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
Also see verse 11, Jesus is the good Shepherd, gives his life for the sheep. See verse 12-13 the hireling.
Did Satan bring this destruction without the knowledge of God?
Remember what happened to Job? He was a godly man and a wealthy man. Yet God allowed Satan to destroy all his wealth, his sons and daughters and Job was struck with painful boils from head to foot. (Read Job chapter 1 & 2) At the end of the book of Job, Job said the following of God.
Job 42:1 Then Job answered the LORD, and
2 I know that you can do every thing, and that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You.
What do you mean by the sovereignty of God? It means that God is God. (Psalm 46:10) It means the supremacy, the kingship of God, he is the almighty God. The Psalmist said in Psalm 115:3, "Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him."
Only when a man's pride is broken he realize the sovereignty of God. Remember King Nebuchadnezzar, God brought his pride down to the lowest level as he ate grass like a cow, his hair grew like feathers and nails like birds claws but at the end of the time God gave him the understanding and this is what King Nebuchadnezzar said.
All the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing. He does according to His in the army of heaven and among the inhabitants of the earth. No one can restrain His hand or say to Him, "What have you done?"
Job 1:19 Job said: "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD."
Job 38:8 Or who shut in the sea with doors, when it burst forth and issued from the womb.
Ps 89:8-9 O LORD God of hosts, Who is mighty like You, O LORD? Your faithfulness also surrounds You. You rule the raging of the sea; when its waves rise, You still them.
Ephesians 1:11 says that God works all things after the counsel of his will.
Isaiah 46:9-11 Remember the former things of old, For I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like Me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times things that are not yet done, saying, "My counsel shall stand, and I will do all My pleasure,' Calling a bird of prey from the east, the man who executes My counsel, from a far country. Indeed I have spoken it; I will also bring it to pass. I have purposed it; I will also do it.
God governs and determines the most
minute detail of reality. He knows the number of your hair, God does not need a
computer to count the sands of the seashore.
Mat 10:29 Are not two sparrows sold for a cent? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. 30 But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.
2Sa 17:14 Then Absalom and all the men of Israel said, "The counsel of Hushai the Archite is better than the counsel of Ahithophel." For the LORD had ordained to thwart the good counsel of Ahithophel, in order that the LORD might bring calamity on Absalom.
Isaiah 45:7; I form the light and create darkness. I make peace and create calamity; I, the LORD, do all these things.
Amos 3:6 If a trumpet is blown in a city, will not the people be afraid? If there is calamity in a city, will not the LORD have done it?
Jer 15:2 And it shall be that when they say to
you, "Where should we go?" then you are to tell them, "Thus says the LORD: Those
destined for death, to death; and those destined for the sword, to the sword;
and those destined for famine, to famine; and those destined for captivity, to
captivity. 3 And I shall appoint over them four kinds of doom, declares the
LORD: the sword to slay, the dogs to drag off, and the birds of the sky and the
beasts of the earth to devour and destroy. 4 And I shall make them an object of
horror among all the kingdoms of the earth because of Manasseh, the son of
Hezekiah, the king of Judah, for what he did in Jerusalem."
Jeremiah 32:42 "This is what the LORD says: As I have brought all this great calamity on this people, so I will give them all the prosperity I have promised them.
Because of sin. God is angry with the sinner because of his righteousness, his eyes are too pure to look at evil.
Hab 1:13 Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity.
God can bring calamity and can use Satan but God is not the author of sin.
God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. (1 John 1:5) God is infinitely holy. (Isa 6:3)
God hates men, not as his creatures, but as sinners. As his creatures God is good to all.
Mt 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
But God hates sin.
If you look at the nations that were hit by tsunami, they believe the god of Islam, the god of Buddhism and the god of Hinduism. God of the Bible hates idolatry.
Therefore thus says the Lord: "Behold, I will surely bring calamity on them which they will not be able to escape; and though they cry out to Me, I will not listen to them. Then the cities of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem will go and cry out to the gods to whom they offer incense, but they will not save them at all in the time of their trouble. For according to the number of your cities were your gods, O Judah; and according to the number of the streets of Jerusalem you have set up altars to that shameful thing, altars to burn incense to Baal. So do not pray for this people, or lift up a cry or prayer for them; for I will not hear them in the time that they cry out to Me because of their trouble." (Jeremiah 11:11-14; see also Ezekiel 8:15-18).
There are two parties angry God and Man. On man’s part he is angry with God there is enmity due to sin. “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God” (Ro 8:7) And from God’s part he is angry with the sinner. Some say, “God loves the sinner but hates the sin.” It does not say that in scripture but the scripture says just the opposite.
Ps 7:11 God judgeth the righteous, and God is angry with the wicked every day.
During the time of Jesus a tower fell and killed many people. Some asked Jesus this question in Luke 13:4
Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them, do you think that they were worse sinners than all other men who dwelt in Jerusalem? I tell you, no; but unless you repent you will all likewise perish."
God bring calamity to believers for their own good so God will be glorified.
Ro 8:28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
The brothers of Joseph tried to kill him and sold Joseph to Ishmaelites who were on their way to Egypt, but later they repented when they saw Joseph. Then this is what Joseph said.
Ge 50:20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
God brought calamity to Job, to show the sovereignty, the power and the mercy of God.
Jas 5:11 Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord; that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy.
God bring calamity for unbelievers to repent of their sins and turn to God.
Joel 2:13 Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the LORD your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity.
Isaiah 45:22 "Turn to me and be saved, all you ends of the earth; for I am God, and there is no other.
If only the people knew of the terrible tsunami that is going to come upon them, how many would have escaped? The Bible speaks of a greater disaster, the wrath of God his judgment that will come upon all those who does not trust in Jesus Christ.
John 3:36 "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."
There are many who call themselves Christians but in reality they live like the unbelievers. God will bring judgment to all who live in disobedience. Many in the U.S and other rich nations live in comfort and they think no judgment will come to them. But listen to what Jesus said.
Lu 17:26 And as it was in the days of
Noah so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man.
27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all.
28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded;
29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all.
30 Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed.
The sudden disaster of the tsunami shows the power of God and we all should tremble of his holiness and stop playing games with God and come to true repentance.
Here is the opportunity for Christians to pray and help those who are in need, should show our Christian love and use this opportunity to take the gospel of Christ to nations that are lost without Christ. The ultimate questions is:
How can a person flee from the wrath of God? The answer is Christ Jesus! Do not trust in your righteousness, in your merits, in your gods, in saints, in religions, in the bank account, in wealth. But trust only in the righteousness of Christ, his work on the cross that pleased the God, his sacrifice on the cross that satisfied the God. Nothing else satisfies God, only what Jesus did.