Food Production: God is Closing the Window
Unless you live in Death Valley or another country, you’ve probably noticed that the US has had an abundance of rainfall. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s National Centers for Environmental Information, May 2018 to April 2019 was the wettest year on record in the contiguous United States.
This year’s corn crop is a little over a month old and it has already been negatively impacted by all this moisture. In fact, it is one for the record books, with planting at the slowest pace in 40 years. There comes a point where there just may not be enough days for the plants to mature before a hard frost, so millions of acres will now have to wait until the 2020 growing season.
Last week, the USDA lowered the projected total yield to 13.68 billion bushels (last year’s corn yield was 14.3 billion bushels). The anticipation of an impending shortage has sent corn futures to trade at their highest level since June 2014.
The total yield may have to be lowered several times because of the endless precipitation. In southern South Dakota, 30 to 40 percent of corn that has been planted has been flooded from new rains. Seedlings left in standing water will be stunted and unlikely to produce any yield. Some portions of Ohio and Indiana have gotten 10 more inches from a storm system, and then three days later, the same area got another 10 inches of rainfall.
In the past few months, we have had one Agriculture disaster after another. An April blizzard killed thousands of cattle in Nebraska. In June, it was reported that the total number of honey bee colonies across Europe plunged 16% over the winter of 2017–18, according to COLOSS (Prevention of honey bee COlony LOSSes), an international, non-profit organization based in Switzerland, tasked with the goals of protecting honey bees. Also, in Europe, a series of hail storms destroyed crops in France and Italy.
Chinese farmers are also very perplexed over why 2019 has become such a disastrous year for food producers. While their weather has been normal, China faces a biological threat on three fronts:
1. Some 30% of pig farms in mainland China are rumored to have been hit by African swine fever. China’s population of pigs will shrink by 134 million heads, which is equal to all the hogs raised in the US. Since China is the #1 consumer of pork, global hog prices may rise sharply as Beijing imports heavily to meet demand. Average prices may jump by 70% to record levels in the second half of 2019, according to Chinese forecasts.
2. The fall armyworm, native to North America, was first detected in China five months ago after wreaking havoc in Africa over the past two years where it infested up to at least half of the continent’s crops. A United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) report published at the end of April said the pest, which entered Yunnan province from the neighboring country of Myanmar, would spread to all of China’s grain producing regions within 12 months.
3. China has confirmed an outbreak of highly pathogenic H5N6 bird flu in Horgos in the far western Xinjiang region. The outbreak killed nearly half the birds raised by farmers in that city, according to a notice on the website of the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs.
I chose the title of this week’s article from a remark Terry’s wife received from a rice farmer here in Arkansas. He said he has only been able to plant 1,400 of his 6,000 acres. He said, “In previous years, God has always provided a window to plant. This year, the window was closed.”
Bible prophecy may be the explanation for why food production is experiencing so many difficulties. If the tribulation hour is near, the earth is going to go from a time when food is generally plentiful to a time when a loaf of bread will cost a day’s wage. Since 2019 is now certain to be a shortfall year, we may be seeing the beginning of the predicted end-time famine.
“And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand. And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny…” (Rev 6:5-6).
Anti-Semitism a Sure Signal
Sometime ago, I wrote the following in an article that had the title “Israelicide”:
Forewarning of the fate that the nations of earth face leaps from Bible prophecy. Those who make Jerusalem and Israel the object of hatred will pay a terrible price. And make no mistake, the city and nation (Jewish people) are inextricably linked: “And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth are gathered together against it” (Zechariah 12:3).
To “burden themselves” with Jerusalem and with Israel (Judah) in this case means to come against the city and people in a hostile sense. God is saying through Zechariah that at the end of the age, near the consummation of His dealing with this earth system, all nations of earth will make Jerusalem and His chosen people the center of their anger and aggression. The aggressors against God’s city (Jerusalem, the apple of his eye–see Zechariah 2:8) and the Jewish people will result in devastation for those attackers.
Perhaps it’s just the old advertising guy in me, but I want to coin a new word–“Israelicide”–for what the nations of the world are doing. The word means two things in my thinking: 1) to commit satanically inspired genocide against the Jewish race; and 2) the collective suicide of Israel’s enemies whose coalescing unity of mind curses Israel.
Since the time I wrote that article, a new presidential administration has come to power. President Donald J. Trump has formed a close relationship with our strongest ally in the Middle East–or anywhere else for that matter. Whereas Mr. Obama made the statement right off the bat after coming to power following the 2008 election that he would put “daylight” between America and Israel.
Obama, indeed, proceeded to do exactly that. We remember that upon Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s visit to the White House, President Obama treated him shabbily. He left the prime minister after a very short visit and went to have dinner in the White House private quarters. it was a deliberate snub that set the tone for the entire Obama presidency.
Mr. Trump, on the other hand, has warmly embraced his friend Bibi and the Jewish nation. A majority in Israel have reciprocated with warm friendship upon the president’s actions. There are many places within Israel being named after Donald Trump. Some religionists consider him the second coming of Cyrus, who befriended Israel’s people millennia ago.
This indicates that all is improved in regard to Israel’s welcome into the world community, right? Wrong… Not at all.
Statistics show anti-Israel bias is on the rise–even in America. It seems to follow the pattern of the insane rage against Israel’s close friend, Donald J. Trump.
As reported earlier, New York City, where the heaviest Jewish population in the U.S. resides, saw a massive 82 percent rise in anti-Semitic hatred in the first three months of 2018 alone, according to the New York Police Department. The Anti-Defamation League’s 2018 audit of anti-Semitic incidents found that there was an even bigger rise of anti-Semitic hate crime in New York State– an increase of 170 percent from the third to the fourth quarter of 2018.
Perhaps the most troubling aspect of growing anti-Semitism in America is that taking place on American college campuses. Again, in my view, this seems to closely follow the hellish course of anti-Trump hatred, fomented, I believe, by radical leftist professors, aided and abetted by the Democrat Party and the main stream news and entertainment media.
The so-called conservative voice continues to be completely muzzled by colleges and universities for the most part. We have heard time after time of even well known speakers who put forth the conservative viewpoint being prevented from carrying out previously agreed-to speaking events. The conservative voices almost all advocate for Israel as the national entity that is legitimately a nation being accosted. The left–in my opinion now a victim of a collective reprobate mind as forewarned in Romans chapter 1–see Israel as the “occupier” of land belonging to the Palestinians. Thus, although there was never such a people known as Palestinians before the end of World War I.
It is dumbfounding that even some self-acclaimed evangelicals join the chorus of Israel illegitimately occupying territory belonging to the Palestinian pretenders.
The young who have no understanding of truth about the Israel-vs-Palestinian issues because they have been grossly under educated or lied to by their leftist professors are suffering an increasing, collective anxiety. They fear Israel will precipitate a conflict that will morph into worldwide nuclear war. This, they are taught in many cases.
Such deliberately spawned hatred for Israel among the colleges and universities has been among other factors bringing about a forum to address these things. A brief news excerpt follows.
Moderating a panel in Jerusalem this week titled “The Mainstreaming of Anti-Semitism: The Media, BDS and Celebrated Bigotry,” David Hazony, executive director of the Israel Innovation Fund, analyzed the issue right off the bat: “What you are seeing on [North American college] campuses is only a thin slice of the anti-Semitic beast that has emerged in our public life around the world in the last six months, in the last year.”
The event was hosted by the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting and Analysis (CAMERA), in partnership with the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA) and Hazony’s organization.
Hazony added, “All of a sudden, The New York Times’ editorial-page cartoons; all of a sudden, columns; all of a sudden, valedictory addresses, commencement speeches, congressional convocations, politicians—all of a sudden in America, you’ve got synagogues being shot up, synagogues being torched. All of a sudden, what we thought had been hidden, gone away, has come roaring back.”
He went on to ask: “Is it possible that anti-Semitism and assimilation—the two great crises facing the Diaspora today—are really two sides of the same coin?”
“At a time when the next generation of Jews feels less connection, has less knowledge, has less commitment to our collective than any generation in the past,” he continued, “is it any wonder that this monster that’s been lurking in the deep smells blood, smells weakness and chooses this time to rear its head?”. (Jerusalem Conference Addresses Recent Spike of Jew-Hatred in US, Breaking Israel News | Latest News. Biblical Perspective By JNS, June 14, 2019)
The growing anti-Semitic hatred in the US–supposedly Israel’s ally and best friend–indicates the level of hatred Satan is ratcheting up around the world. I believe it is a global hatred against God’s chosen nation, around which those who ultimately will follow Antichrist will rally.
Israel and America are almost alone as major national players that stand against a ravenous, globalist hunger to bring down all national boundaries. The hatred for this president by the one-world, no-national-boundaries collective, makes it obvious how near Christ’s call must be to the Church.
With the Church removed to Heaven, God’s program for again dealing with Israel in order to bring about a remnant of the Jewish people for Christ’s Millennial kingdom, will then get underway. Most all the world will come against Israel and Jerusalem at the time of Armageddon. They will all be destroyed, just as the Gog-Magog forces of Ezekiel 38-39 that will have attacked Israel earlier. Israel will be the last nation standing.
“And I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you. And I will give to you and to your descendants after you, the land of your sojourning, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession; and I will be their God.” (Genesis 17:7-8)