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SCIENCE
& BIBLE AGREE
An Asteroid Will Hit!
Can You Imagine This News Story?

This morning, at 7:48 AM eastern daylight time an asteroid estimated to be 11/2 miles in diameter struck the South Pacific Ocean. Although details remain sketchy, seismographs at University of California, Berkley registered the impact at 8.4 on the Richter scale. A tidal wave approximately 600 feet high has hit Japan, New Zealand, and Australia. Scientists estimate the tsunami will reach the West Coast of the United States at 4:00 PM (EDT). A wave this size will destroy the cities of Los Angeles and San Francisco and may cause flooding as far as Las Vegas.   

This disaster is the third in a series of cataclysmic events that have occurred in the past four months. The first event was the worldwide earthquake followed by a meteoric firestorm. These natural disasters have caused such devastation that the federal government and private organizations no longer have resources to respond. The President has declared a state of emergency and martial law will continue indefinitely…

Does this story seem to be far-fetched? Then it may surprise you to learn that scientists to expect the Earth to be hit by an asteroid in the future. Clark Chapman, from the Planetary Institute in Tucson, Az, and Dr. David Morrison, NASA’s chief for Deep Space Research, stated in a co-authored article that they calculated a one in 10,000 chance of a 2 kilometer wide comet or asteroid hitting the Earth in the next century (Nature, January 6, 1994). In an interview on National Public Radio after this article was published, Dr. Morrison said that it now appears that Earth could have a major asteroid impact with the next 10 years.

If you are one of those people who believe this has never happened to Earth before, consider this statement: “When I sat down to have my breakfast beside my plow, I heard sudden bangs, as if from gunfire. My horse fell to its knees. From the north side above the forest a flame shot up. Then I saw that the fir forest had been bent over by the wind, and I thought of a hurricane. I seized hold of my plow with both hands so that I would not be carried away. The wind was so strong it carried the soil from the surface of the ground and then the hurricane drove a wall of water up the Angora.” (The Maine Telegram, October 25, 1992) Scientists have now confirmed that what this Siberian farmer experienced on June 30, 1908, was the results of a small asteroid (approximately 200 feet in diameter) exploding in the Siberian atmosphere just before impact with energy equal to several nuclear warheads. The explosion leveled every tree within a 50-mile radius and the destruction covered an 800 square mile area. The Siberian farmer was fortunate enough to be 125 miles away from the impact site.

Satellite photography has now helped scientists identify numerous impact sites on earth and recent discoveries have led scientists to believe that an asteroid impact off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula caused the extinction of the dinosaurs. (NASA Spacelink, Comet Impact ’94) This information has prompted scientists to study what the consequences might be form a major asteroid impact on Earth. The results are startling. If a one-mile wide asteroid impacts a landmass, everything with a 200-mile radius would be eliminated or decimated. A series of firestorms would follow. Trees and vegetation would be destroyed for hundreds of miles by fires and windstorms. The impact would shift the tectonic plates and earthquakes and volcanic eruptions would send ejecta, ash and soot into the atmosphere that would darken the sky for months. (Astronomy, September 1991)

During the early space exploration of the 70’s, the moon’s surface was electronically mapped, which helps astronomers easily detect the formation of new craters caused by asteroid impacts. During the past decade, astronomers have identified a number of new craters on the face of the moon. In addition to new impact craters, astronomers have recorded more than 200 telescope sightings of asteroids blazing through our atmosphere. Recently, astronomers worldwide watched as a comet named Shoemaker-Levy 9 broke up and impacted the surface of Jupiter. Few people realize that since 1985, astronomers have known that Earth is drifting toward a well-known asteroid belt. (Science News, February 1994)

What’s Happening?

Earth’s citizens have survived hurricanes, blizzards, fires, floods and earthquakes. The disasters are frightening and life changing for the people who are directly affected by them. However, the Bible predicts a series of events that make these disasters seem of little consequence and further, the Bible states that every person on planet earth will be affected. “Men will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken.” (Luke 21:26)

The last book in the Bible begins with these words: “The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place…because the time is near.” (Revelation 1:1-3) It seems hard to believe, but the events John saw in vision and then recorded in Revelation nearly 1900 years ago, scientists are now warning could happen soon. As you read the following passage of Scripture, imagine what a huge asteroid might look like coming towards planet Earth. Keep in mind that a small asteroid is approximately one mile in diameter, which is over 5,000 feet high – about the size of a mountain!

Asteroid Impact!

Revelation 8:8 reads: “…something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turns into blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.

According to scientists at the University of California, an asteroid entering Earth’s atmosphere would be so hot that when it hit an ocean, a large part of the ocean would become anoxic (oxygen deficient) by simple boiling the oxygen out of the water. An impact of this magnitude would also bring the deeper water of the ocean (which contains a smaller concentration of oxygen) to the surface. The temperature of the water would rise dramatically; killing whatever marine life was left. This warm, anoxic water would provide a perfect environment for the growth of red algae or the red tide. John said, “the sea turned into blood” which appropriately describes the appearance of red algae! It also states that “one third of the ships were destroyed,” probably resulting from giant tsunamis created by the impact.  There are approximately 5,000 oil tankers navigating the ocean – imagine one thousand tankers breaking apart at the same time and spilling their contents into the ocean! The effect on islands and coastal communities caused by these oil spills and giant waves would be beyond description.

Verses 10 describe a second impact on a landmass: “and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky.” Scientists predict that if an asteroid or comet hit a landmass, earthquakes would occur for many days. Ground waves would shear water wells and sewer lines for hundreds of miles in all directions, mixing waste and pollution with water supplies causing many people to die.

Revelation 8 portrays a series of earth-shattering events beginning with a global earthquake that is accompanied by peals of thunder, rumblings and flashes of lightening. A meteoric shower that will burn up 1/3 of the trees and all the green grass, followed by two asteroid impacts, follows these.

So What?

These events are life ending and life changing for the entire world. Consider the most recent earthquake around the world and how disruptive life became for the people affected. Now, think of what effects caused by a global earthquake, which is followed by three events that are more horrific. “Disaster will come upon you, and you will not know how to conjure it away. A calamity will fall upon you that you cannot ward off with a ransom; a catastrophe you cannot foresee will suddenly come upon you.” (Isaiah 47:11) Life as we know it will be totally disrupted.

Why?

God is about to break His silence. Earth’s cup of iniquity is almost full. Today, many people interpret God’s silence or passiveness with evil to mean that He will not hold them responsible for their actions. The truth is that we may not realize the strict accountability we must each give to God for every action! Isaiah explains, “See, the Lord is going to lay waste the earth and devastate it; he will ruin its face and scatter its inhabitants…The earth will be completely laid waste and totally plundered. The LORD has spoken this word….The earth is defiled by its people; they have disobeyed the laws, violated the statutes and broken the everlasting covenant. Therefore a curse consumes the earth; its people must bear their guilt. Therefore earth’s inhabitants are burned up, and very few are left.” (Isaiah 24:1-6) God is using astronomical events to get our attention and to warn us of what is about to happen. Decisions of eternal consequences are before us. “Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision! For the day of the LORD is near.” (Joel 3:14)

Who Cares?

God cares! He has revealed to us in Daniel and Revelation what is soon to take place and why “I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe.” (John 14:29) God also declares: “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come.” (Isaiah 46:10) God wants us to have faith in Him.

These events mark the beginning of “…a time of distress such as not happened from the beginning of nations until then.” (Daniel 12:1) You may not believe a word you have just read, but that will not stop these events from occurring very soon. Remember this: God has already told you these things are going to happen. Revelation’s story contains much more information about end-time events. Now is the time to build a relationship with Jesus that will carry us through to the time when He returns.

(All Scripture quotations are taken from the New International Version)

Compare Science and the Bible for Yourself!

“The scenario is straight out of a science-fiction movie: Giant meteoric strikes earth, setting the planet afire (T1). Volcanoes erupt; tsunamis crash into the continents (T2).  The sky grows dark for months, perhaps years (T4).

“Yet that is the apocalyptic scene scientists suggest, as evidence grows that comets or meteorites may be agents of mass destruction on the earth (T3).

“In the moments following the impact of an object ten kilometers in diameter, experts believe, a blast wave similar to that of a nuclear explosion would destroy everything within several hundred kilometers, its intense heat and winds combining to set wildfires, perhaps even a global inferno (T1). If the impact occurred on land, earthquakes would rock the continent for days. If at sea, huge tsunamis could destroy coastal habitats across the globe (T2)…ejected into the stratosphere above the impact crater – the fine particles eventually darkening skies around the world (T4).”

“…Most [scientists] agree that an era of strong acid rain would ensue. (T3).”

National Geographic, June 1989, page 686

The Bible speaks for itself!

“Then the seven angels who had the seven trumpets prepared to sound them.”

Trumpet 1: “…there came hail and fire mixed with blood, and it was hurled down to earth. A third of the earth was burned up, a third of the trees were burned up, and all the green grass was burned up.” (T1)

Trumpet 2: “…something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned into blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed.” (T2)

Trumpet 3: …a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of their rivers and on the springs of water – the name of the star is Wormwood. A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter.” (T3)

Trumpet 4: “…a third of the sun was struck, a third of the moon, and a third of the stars, so that a third of them turned dark. A third of the day was without light, and also a third of the night.” (T4)

“Woe! Woe! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth, because of the trumpet blasts about to be sounded by the other three angels!” Revelation 8:6-13 NIV


   
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