The Trumpet Herald

Giving the trumpet a certain sound

June 2010

Iceland volcano

The Eyjafjallajokul volcano in Iceland is sending up another air-travel-endangering cloud of ash according to a May 4, 2010 report.

Iceland’s Institute of Earth Sciences said Eyjafjallajokul — which erupted April 13 after a 177-year slumber — has experienced increased seismic activity since Sunday and its ash plume has risen to nearly 18,000 feet in altitude. The last time it erupted, in 1821, its emissions ebbed and flowed for two years (“Volcano Could Stall More European Flights,”, May 4, 2010).

The major eruption was on April 14.

As volcanic eruptions go, Iceland’s Eyjafjallajokull won’t break the records. Icelanders dismiss the normally sleepy Eyjafjallajokull as a “weary old man,” and in fact few people outside the volcanology community — or the 800 or so Icelandic farmers who needed to be evacuated — noticed when the volcano began spewing lava on March 20. Most likely it would have remained that way — a brief tourist attraction and a footnote in a few grad students’ dissertations — before the earth quieted again.

But that’s not quite what happened. Instead, on April 14, a new and stronger eruption on Eyjafjallajokull exploded through a glacial ice cap, throwing a vast plume of volcanic ash around 7 miles (11 km) into the atmosphere, high enough to be carried for thousands of miles. And then, as if on cue, the winds shifted, blowing to the east and south, sending the tower of ash toward northern Europe and some of the most crowded airspace on the planet. “It was an eruption at the right place at the right time,” says Marcus Bursik, a volcanologist at the University at Buffalo. “Or, I guess, really, the other way around” (“The Cloud That Closed A Continent,”, May 3, 2010).

Inspired commentary

There have been greater volcanic eruptions in the past, and there are likely to be greater ones in the future, but one must be impressed with the size of the plume from this one and the effect on air travelers. Perhaps the voices of nature call us to listen for the voice of God.

How frequently we hear of earthquakes and tornadoes, of destruction by fire and flood, with great loss of life and property! Apparently these calamities are capricious outbreaks of disorganized, unregulated forces of nature, wholly beyond the control of man; but in them all, God’s purpose may be read. They are among the agencies by which He seeks to arouse men and women to a sense of their danger (Prophets and Kings, 277).

Labor union factor in Greece

One commentator noted recently that labor unions have been a significant factor in civil disturbances in Greece:

As Rasmussen reports – “New Jersey and California are just two of the states that are wrestling with high numbers of well-compensated unionized public employees as they try to reduce growing budget deficits. But a new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that Americans are generally favorable toward these unions…”

Dow Jones Newswire reports – “Greek Police Clash With Protesters As March Turns Violent - police have fired tear gas and stun grenades as groups of angry youths rampaged through the city center smashing shop windows, overturning garbage bins, and setting fire to at least two businesses.”

The Greek protests are led by government employee labor unions. In the states, we know SEIU (Service Employees International Union) under the AFL-CIO. And as the New York Times reported back in January, most U.S. union members now work for the government.

“The clashes come as tens of thousands of protesters gathered to protest the government’s recently announced austerity measures in one of the largest protests in recent years, and coinciding with a nationwide general strike that has paralyzed the country” (“Greece Today – USA Tomorrow – Under Obama,”

Inspired commentary

There are undoubtedly several different analyzes of the reasons for the economic problems and recent rioting in Greece, however we note an inspired comment about labor unions in the last days:

The trades unions will be one of the agencies that will bring upon this earth a time of trouble such as has not been since the world began (Selected Messages, p. 142).

The work of the people of God is to prepare for the events of the future, which will soon come upon them with blinding force. In the world gigantic monopolies will be formed. Men will bind themselves together in unions that will wrap them in the folds of the enemy. A few men will combine to grasp all the means to be obtained in certain lines of business. Trades unions will be formed, and those who refuse to join these unions will be marked men (Ibid.).

Christian preacher arrested in England

A British street preacher (on a step ladder) wound up in jail for saying (in response to a woman that engaged him in debate) that homosexuality goes against the word of God.

Dale McAlpine was charged with causing “harassment, alarm or distress” after a homosexual police community support officer (PCSO) overheard him reciting a number of “sins” referred to in the Bible, including blasphemy, drunkenness and same sex relationships. ...

During the exchange, he says he quietly listed homosexuality among a number of sins referred to in 1 Corinthians, including blasphemy, fornication, adultery and drunkenness.

After the woman walked away, she was approached by a PCSO who spoke with her briefly and then walked over to Mr. McAlpine and told him a complaint had been made, and that he could be arrested for using racist or homophobic language.

The street preacher said he told the PCSO: “I am not homophobic but sometimes I do say that the Bible says homosexuality is a crime against the Creator”.

He claims that the PCSO then said he was homosexual and identified himself as the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender liaison officer for Cumbria police. Mr McAlpine replied: “It’s still a sin” (“Christian preacher arrested for saying homosexuality is a sin,”, May 2, 2010).

Inspired commentary

Evidently calling sin by its right name is offensive to those who like sin.

And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet (Romans 1:27).

Page created:05/12/2010. Updated: 05/12/2010
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