Instagram: The Vanguard of Vanity
The first king of social media was Myspace, then came Twitter and Facebook, and now a new site is taking over the reins. Instagram is a site primarily used for posting pictures and short videos.
Originally launched for iOS in October 2010, Instagram rapidly gained popularity, with one million registered users in two months, 10 million in a year, and 1 billion as of June 2018.
Instagram is owned by Facebook, which bought the company for $1 billion in 2012. With the firm now said to be worth $100 billion, Mark Zuckerberg did quite well on his investment.
As of June 2021, the most followed person is Portuguese professional soccer player Cristiano Ronaldo, with over 300 million followers. The most followed woman is American singer Ariana Grande, with 251 followers. I found a list of the top 50 accounts on Instagram, and over 90% of the list is dominated by people who are known for their looks.
I’ve spent a couple of weeks trying to understand the platform. Because I normally work with PC, I quickly realized this domain is meant to be run on a smartphone. I also made the determination that Instagram sets a new low in self-worship. I would call the site the Vanguard of Vanity. If you are considered to be eye-candy, you can join the club. If you have no talent or looks, you can go somewhere else.
The primary goal on Instagram is to get the highest number of people to follow you. You post pictures and hope for a large number of likes. People can also post comments, and these can lead into the thousands. The average comment is not in any language. People mostly post symbols of hearts, fire, and an assortment of smiley faces.
On Kylie Jenner’s account, she has images that have been viewed millions of times, and there might be 30,000 comments to her post. There is almost zero chance that Jenner is going to see the posts. I looked on dozens of posts and couldn’t find any comment that Jenner gave any response.
I probably lost a few IQ points skimming through Instagram pages. On 4 January 2019, someone posted an image of a bird egg with the caption, “Let’s set a world record together and get the most liked post on Instagram.” Within days, the egg photo got 54 million likes.
For every Justin Bieber with 183 million followers, there are millions with hardly any followers. I found one guy who works as a model who had one million followers. I did some test inputs by responding to some of his posts. At first, I was amazed that he liked my comments, but I quickly learned that he likes everyone’s comments. He and millions of other people are wasting huge amounts of time on this site.
I read a few articles that said this model was having mental health issues. I posted my concern on his Instagram account about his mental well-being, and not a single person shared my concern. One woman said he was “thriving,” and I should check on my own mental health. He may be thriving at age 24, but where will he be at age 34? At some point, the phone is going to stop ringing because his looks have faded, and younger models have taken his place on the catwalks.
You don’t get to be a star on Instagram for very long. The singer Madonna only has 16 million Instagram followers. If this were 1985, she would likely have over 200 million followers. Instagram fame only lasts as long as you remain very attractive.
If social media had existed in the 1800s, the top accounts would be by authors, ministers, and politicians. Today, you can have an IQ of 70 and be a star on Instagram.
Social media sites like Instagram have driven people to levels of self-promotion that God never intended. Many people have become slaves to what the public thinks of them. It’s nice to be famous, but it doesn’t guarantee happiness. God’s word says that pride generally results in a negative outcome:
“Pride leads to destruction; a proud attitude brings ruin” (Proverbs 16:18).
Anyone who tries to promote their own greatness does not deserve any respect. Greatness can only come from the praise of other people. The only lasting praise is what God thinks of our lives.
“Don’t praise yourself. Let someone else do it. Let the praise come from a stranger and not your own mouth” (Proverbs 27:2).
God’s Weather Warnings
There is, at first glance, perhaps a paradox in our take on the matter of climate change. When I say “our,” I mean those of us in Bible prophecy circles who examine the climate-change matter, which is considered by the Biden administration people to be the greatest crisis faced by mankind today.
The seeming incongruity in our thought process comes by considering the following. While we believe that there is no climate change in terms of the definition given by those on the ideological left, we acknowledge that climate change indeed does exist. And it is becoming exponentially more manifest.
Those who are in the man is destroying the planet camp proclaim all who disagree with that premise to be climate-change deniers. They vehemently declare the same about anyone who disagrees with their dire assessments on any crisis as they delve, in full rage, into whatever problem they believe they must strive to control in their insatiable quest for ever-increasing power. For example, anyone who opposes their claims that COVID-19 is the deadliest virus in modern times is a pandemic denier, and, no doubt, an anti-vaxxer.
Not too many months ago, I have to admit, I was somewhat of a climate-change skeptic, to say the least. And I yet hold that, regarding those earlier times, I still can’t point back to them and see changes in the planet’s weather patterns as being extreme to the point of representing changes of the profound sort.
The evidence is now compounding, however. Reports from around the world of drastic weather events, especially involving flooding and at the same time droughts, continue to erase the skepticism.
Some of the reports just in recent days blazed across our Rapture Ready News headlines. I’ve put a few of these here to display the compiling evidence.
- Europe floods: Rescuers race to find survivors as hundreds remain missing
Rescue crews have been racing to find survivors of floods that have wreaked havoc across western Europe, killing more than 150 people. Hundreds are still missing after record rainfall triggered severe floods in Germany and Belgium. Heavy rains also hit Switzerland, Luxembourg and the Netherlands – where PM Mark Rutte has declared a national disaster in one southern province.
- Flagstaff declares state of emergency as Arizona hit by devastating floods
Parts of Arizona have been hit with devastating flooding, with the city of Flagstaff declaring a state of emergency after being inundated with torrents of water that turned streets into murky, fast-running streams.
- Amid a mega drought, federal water shortage limits loom for the Colorado River
The Colorado River is tapped out. Another dry year has left the watershed that supplies 40 million people in the Southwest parched. A prolonged 21-year warming and drying trend is pushing the nation’s two largest reservoirs to record lows.
- “Wither away and die”: U.S. Pacific Northwest heat wave bakes wheat, fruit crops
An unprecedented heat wave and ongoing drought in the U.S. Pacific Northwest is damaging white wheat coveted by Asian buyers and forcing fruit farm workers to harvest in the middle of the night to salvage crops and avoid deadly heat.
- Extreme flooding hits multiple provinces of China, capital Beijing brought to standstill
Prolonged heavy rainfall affecting parts of China over the past couple of days caused extreme flooding in several provinces, including Sichuan, Hebei, Shaanxi, Henan, and Shandong. Severe thunderstorms also affected the capital Beijing, bringing the entire city to a standstill. On July 12, authorities have issued an orange alert, the 2nd highest in the country’s 4-tier weather warning system.
- Flash floods cause travel chaos in parts of London
Heavy rain has caused flash floods in various parts of London. Cars have been submerged as roads filled with water while train services have also been cancelled. Photos on social media showed parts of south-west London including Barnes, Raynes Park and Richmond had been affected, as had areas of north London including Golders Green and Highgate.
- Shandong hit by largest tornado outbreak in more than a decade, China
Eastern China’s Shandong Province was hit by its largest tornado outbreak in more than 10 years on July 11, 2021. At least 10 tornadoes were reported, with at least 3 of them [reported as] violent. The reports are still coming in and the number of reported tornadoes is rising.
- Extremely heavy rains hit Kyushu, JMA issues year’s first Level 5 torrential rain alert, Japan
The Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA) has issued its highest level rain alert for parts of Kyushu, southwestern Japan on Saturday, July 10, 2021, leading local authorities to instruct hundreds of thousands to take immediate safety measures. Reports of river flooding and landslides are coming in.
The floods and droughts are not merely seasonal occurrences. They are indeed phenomenal weather events, and they are in unprecedented, multiple numbers—occurring almost simultaneously in most every part of the planet.
So this prophecy watcher, at least, fully recognizes that something of last-days significance is taking place almost daily. The way I and others who are likewise watchers differ from the leftists who claim there is climate change is they see it as man-made, while we see it as God-induced.
It is a foreboding weather warning from on high. The storm that’s coming is the Tribulation. The Lord, we sense, is warning of things to come by way of His judgment and wrath.
He wants all to come to repentance. He wants no one to be caught in that final great, destructive storm.
The rebellious, progressive mindset declares that man alone can fix the climate. They are making a globalists-elite-engendered, Mother Earth worship system to do exactly that, they think. We know, on the other hand, that only God can either break or fix the planet He, alone, controls.
The earth is the Lord’s, and the fullness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein. For he hath founded it upon the seas, and established it upon the floods. Who shall ascend into the hill of the Lord? or who shall stand in his holy place? (Psalms 24: 1–3)