Nearing
Midnight

Commentary on world events that relate to Bible prophecy and on Rapture Ready issues world events.




Prior Updates

  • Oct 20, 2014
  • Oct 13, 2014
  • Oct 6, 2014
  • Sep 29, 2014
  • Sep 22, 2014
  • Sep 15, 2014
  • Sep 8, 2014
  • Sep 1, 2014
  • Aug 25, 2014
  • Aug 18, 2014
  • Aug 11, 2014
  • Aug 4, 2014
  • Jul 28, 2014
  • Jul 21, 2014
  • Jul 14, 2014
  • Jul 7, 2014
  • Jun 30, 2014
  • Jun 23, 2014
  • Jun 16, 2014
  • Jun 9, 2014
  • Jun 2, 2014
  • May 26, 2014
  • May 19, 2014
  • May 12, 2014
  • May 5, 2014
  • Apr 28, 2014
  • Apr 21, 2014
  • Apr 14, 2014
  • Apr 7, 2014
  • Mar 31, 2014
  • Mar 24, 2014
  • Mar 17, 2014
  • Mar 10, 2014
  • Mar 3, 2014
  • Feb 24, 2014
  • Feb 17, 2014
  • Feb 10, 2014
  • Feb 3, 2014
  • Jan 27, 2014
  • Jan 20, 2014
  • Jan 13, 2014
  • Jan 6, 2014
  • Dec 30, 2013
  • Dec 23, 2013
  • Dec 16, 2013
  • Dec 9, 2013
  • Dec 2, 2013
  • Nov 25, 2013
  • Nov 18, 2013
  • Nov 11, 2013
  • Nov 4, 2013
  • Oct 28, 2013
  • Oct 21, 2013
  • Oct 14, 2013
  • Oct 7, 2013
  • Sep 30, 2013
  • Sep 23, 2013
  • Sep 16, 2013
  • Sep 9, 2013
  • Sep 2, 2013
  • Aug 26, 2013
  • Aug 19, 2013
  • Aug 12, 2013
  • Aug 5, 2013
  • Jul 29, 2013
  • Jul 22, 2013
  • Jul 15, 2013
  • Jul 8, 2013
  • Jul 1, 2013
  • Jun 24, 2013
  • Jun 17, 2013
  • Jun 10, 2013
  • Jun 3, 2013
  • May 27, 2013
  • May 20, 2013
  • May 13, 2013
  • May 6, 2013
  • Apr 29, 2013
  • Apr 22, 2013
  • Apr 15, 2013
  • Apr 8, 2013
  • Apr 1, 2013
  • Mar 25, 2013
  • Mar 18, 2013
  • Mar 11, 2013
  • Mar 4, 2013
  • Feb 25, 2013
  • Feb 18, 2013
  • Feb 11, 2013
  • Feb 4, 2013
  • Jan 28, 2013
  • Jan 21, 2013
  • Jan 14, 2013
  • Jan 7, 2013
  • Dec 31, 2012
  • Dec 24, 2012
  • Dec 17, 2012
  • Dec 10, 2012
  • Dec 3, 2012
  • Nov 26, 2012
  • Nov 19, 2012
  • Nov 12, 2012
  • Nov 5, 2012
  • Oct 29, 2012
  • Oct 22, 2012
  • Oct 15, 2012
  • Oct 8, 2012
  • Oct 1, 2012
  • Sep 24, 2012
  • Sep 17, 2012
  • Sep 10, 2012
  • Sep 3, 2012
  • Aug 27, 2012
  • Aug 20, 2012
  • Aug 13, 2012
  • Aug 6, 2012
  • Jul 30, 2012
  • Jul 23, 2012
  • Jul 16, 2012
  • Jul 9, 2012
  • Jul 2, 2012
  • Jun 25, 2012
  • Jun 18, 2012
  • Jun 11, 2012
  • Jun 4, 2012
  • May 28, 2012
  • May 21, 2012
  • May 14, 2012
  • May 7, 2012
  • Apr 30, 2012
  • Apr 23, 2012
  • Apr 16, 2012
  • Apr 9, 2012
  • Apr 2, 2012
  • Mar 26, 2012
  • Mar 19, 2012
  • Mar 12, 2012
  • Mar 5, 2012
  • Feb 27, 2012
  • Feb 19, 2012
  • Feb 13, 2012
  • Feb 6, 2012
  • Jan 30, 2012
  • Jan 23, 2012
  • Jan 16, 2012
  • Jan 9, 2012
  • Jan 2, 2012
  • Dec 26, 2011
  • Dec 19, 2011
  • Dec 12, 2011
  • Dec 5, 2011
  • Nov 28, 2011
  • Nov 21, 2011
  • Nov 14, 2011
  • Nov 7, 2011
  • Oct 31, 2011
  • Oct 24, 2011
  • Oct 17, 2011
  • Oct 10, 2011
  • Oct 3, 2011
  • Sep 26, 2011
  • Sep 19, 2011
  • Sep 12, 2011
  • Sep 5, 2011
  • Aug 29, 2011
  • Aug 22, 2011
  • Aug 15, 2011
  • Aug 8, 2011
  • Aug 1, 2011
  • Jul 25, 2011
  • Jul 18, 2011
  •  


    Oct 20, 2014

    Oil and End-Time Prophecy

    The world currently has a glut of oil. An economic slowdown in key industrial nations has reduced demand, and the new method of fracking drilling has increased supply. After staying above $95 per barrel for most of the past three years, the price is now around the $80 level.

    The U.S. has had the most dramatic increase in production. Thanks to the ability to extract energy from shale rock, this year we’ve reclaimed the title as the world’s biggest oil producer, after overtaking Saudi Arabia and Russia. Our oil production has jumped from 5.0 million barrels per day in 2008 to 7.4 million last year and is expected to average 8.5 million this year and 9.3 million next year, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

    We’ve had an oversupply for several months but a series of world events has kept the price of oil from collapsing. The breaking point came when Saudi Arabia decided to cut prices instead of cutting production, setting off a scramble on world markets.

    The Saudis clearly don’t want to repeat their actions of the 1980s, where they slashed production from more than 10 million barrels per day in 1980 to less than 2.5 million bpd to try to stabilize the price. Because of cheating from fellow OPEC members, the price kept falling like a rock; with crude oil going from $35 to below $10 per barrel. The cut backs left Saudi Arabia with huge deficits that took years to overcome.

    Some political analysts have wondered if this price decline has been engineered by the U.S. government to put pressure on Russia over the crisis in Ukraine. Moscow has already based its budget for 2015 on the assumption that oil sales would run at $100 a barrel. Russian President Vladimir Putin is starting to feel the pressure and is slamming the West for an economic policy that he sees as an attempt to blackmail his nation:

    “Russia’s partners should remember the risks involved in disputes between nuclear powers. We hope that our partners will realize the futility of attempts to blackmail Russia and remember what consequences discord between major nuclear powers could bring for strategic stability,” Putin told Serbia’s Politika newspaper on the eve of his visit to the Balkan nation.

    Two other foes of America are also at risk from low oil prices. Venezuela is in an outright panic calling for emergency OPEC action to stem the slide in oil prices. Iran is heavily reliant on oil sales for income. It is also on shaky economic ground. Both of these nations have already been weakened by Western sanctions. Prolonged low oil prices would implode their economies.

    Another victim of low oil prices may be the entire U.S. fracking industry. This type of drilling would not be possible if not for the cheap money policy by the Federal Reserve. The industry has debts that total nearly half a trillion dollars. If rates were normalized, it would cost at least $110 per barrel to produce oil from fracking methods.

    The Saudis know they can win a price war with fracking companies. To maintain production of one million barrels of oil a day from Saudi Arabia one needs to drill around 50 new wells a year. Extracting the same amount from the Bakken shale deposit would require 2,500 new wells. A typical fracked well that came online in 2009 had output of about 1,200 barrels of oil per day. Just four years later, however, output from the same well has fallen to just 100 barrels of oil per day.

    Even if fracking firms survive a prolonged decline in the price of oil, they may not be around much longer. In the next few years we are likely to reach the peak production from fracking fields. Once the boom turns to a bust, America will have to turn back to the Persian Gulf for its energy needs.

    It’s not going to be easy for us return to the Middle East oil trough. China has largely taken our place. In 1980, Chinese oil consumption was at 2 million barrels per day (bpd). Today, it consumes over 10 million bpd. By 2020, its daily usage is expected to rise to the 18 million bpd.

    In 1974, John Walvoord wrote the book, Armageddon, Oil and the Middle East Crisis. The book made the simple observation that the world’s dependence on oil would be a driving force in Bible prophecy. His prediction has remained true because it is based on Scripture.

    The Antichrist’s primary role in the final peace agreement may have a more practical purpose. Instead of seeking after the Noble Peace Prize as some prophecy writers have predicted, the real reason for his involvement may be to simply create a stable environment for the flow of oil.

    --Todd


    Peace Polemics

    While the world is afire with signals that threaten at many points to erupt into biblically prophesied fulfillment, the single most significant issue of all is again lifted from the flames to be set on the front burner of our times.

    ISIS (ISIL or Islamic State, if you prefer) is literally grinding up land and humanity in its drive to establish its desired satanic caliphate. Ebola threatens to break into global pandemic. The Israeli/Iranian collision over development of nuclear weaponry–for the expressed purpose of erasing the Jewish state from the Middle East--is one peremptory strike away from perhaps initiating conflict that will result in world war.

    All the while, Secretary of State John Kerry would have us believe that if we can take care of environmental change issues–for which, he informed assembled Islamist thugs recently, the United States is mostly responsible for causing—the world will again be a tranquil, loving place. America is mostly responsible for the mess, he bluntly stated, so the US must take the lead in paying for the clean-up (as if we don’t perpetually pay the lion’s share for UN.operations and for the propping up of many of those very thugs to whom he spoke). He received copious applause for that remark–one of the few times an American at that podium has received such agreement and approval.

    Do you get it? With all the tremendously volatile, actual things about to explode upon this tension-filled planet, John Kerry–sent by his president to do so—is speaking on the ludicrous, specious claim of “climate change”! His own military leaders and some diplomats are forewarning dire consequences all over the world if attention isn’t paid to taking care of business in terms of using American power and influence to check the bad guys --the same bad guys, in some cases, sitting right in front of him while he declared climate change is America’s fault.

    But, Mr. Kerry is a multi-tasker. He also managed to bring up again a most crucial issue, even though he did so for polemical purposes of blaming another guilty party, as he and his president see it. He brought the number-one issue of biblically prophetic significance again into the spotlight.

    One thing I’ve always observed is that no matter which way the cameras and microphones turn, one issue will inevitably return to front and center on the stage of human affairs. Jerusalem and the issue of the peace that the world diplomats demand be man-made will always surface at some point. Mr. Kerry, after the sophistry of addressing nonexistent global warming before the tyrants and dictators that make up the UN, reached into his diplomatic brief bag of issues and, without even realizing it, I believe, addressed exactly the matter that will bring the whole world to truly disastrous conflagration.

    US Secretary of State John Kerry called on Sunday for a renewed commitment to achieving Middle East peace, saying a lasting deal between Israel, the Palestinians and all their neighbors could be achieved. ("Kerry calls for renewed peace push, slams 'unacceptable and unstable status quo,'" http://www.jpost.com/Arab-Israeli-Conflict/Kerry-calls-for-renewed-peace-push-slams-)

    Although he promised the full influence of the United States in bringing all to the table of peace, Kerry did little to hide whose fault the holdup is–in his opinion and that of Mr. Obama--in saying nothing in defense of Israel while addressing the Islamists, who made their own complaint unmistakable in placing blame.

    Kerry also announced an additional $212 million in aid to the Palestinian people at the Cairo conference, saying, "The people of Gaza do need our help desperately, not tomorrow, not next week, but they need it now."

    Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas spoke at the international donors conference as well, saying that Gaza needs four billion dollars in aid to rehabilitate the coastal territory following 50 days of fighting between Hamas and Israel.

    He said he believed the international community would rise to the occasion and provide much-needed funds for reconstruction, reiterating the need to adopt a resolution that imposes a time frame on Israel's withdrawal from the West Bank. (Ibid.)

    It is just a matter of time until the peace of Jerusalem becomes the hottest issue on the planet. The white-hot rage of ISIS is all about the taking of Jerusalem. That is what all of Islam wants–the Jews forever out of the Middle East, and off the earth. Jerusalem and Israel constitute the nucleus of the dastardly plan around which Satan’s hatred revolves.

    When you watch the increasingly oppressive, depressing, even frightening news coming from around the world, remember that this is how God’s Word says it will be at the time just before His Son returns to make all things new. First, though, the polemics of peace will result in the worst world war of history. The peace this condemned, rebellious world needs will come not from man trying to argue and debate and battle over the issues of war and peace. It will come from the Prince of Peace.

    This is what is meant by “Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee” (Psalm 122:6).

    -- Terry