“And the second angel poured out his vial upon the sea: and it became as the blood of a dead man: and every living soul died in the sea.” Revelation 16:3
Revelation, sometimes known as the fourth gospel, is the last book of the Christian Bible. Many scholars believe that John, son of the fisherman Zebedee and Salome, wrote Revelation as he saw it in a vision from God that happened during his imprisonment on the Isle of Patmos.
In Chapter 16 of Revelation, he describes the seven plagues that will fall on men during the last days. They include a plague of sores, pollution of the oceans, poisoning of the inland waters, and killer heat waves, which scorch by fire. There will be darkness on earth with men gnawing their tongues with pain and a blood bath during Armageddon. The Euphrates River will dry up to make a way for Eastern kings to descend on Israel. The earth will tremble with a great earthquake and unleash a plague of punishing hailstones of enormous size.
On the verge of 2012, the end of the Mayan calendar, we see evidence of the beginning of some of these. Earthquakes strike more often and in greater strength. Heat waves kill many every summer and global warming is a consuming interest of many people. Doctors report more cases of skin cancer and strange rashes and sores they know nothing about.
Right now, all eyes turn to the gulf crisis, the disastrous BP Deep Water Horizon oil well that exploded on April 20, 2010 taking eleven lives. Since then, millions of gallons of crude oil have spewed from the hole at the bottom of the Gulf of Mexico, defying all efforts of BP to stop it by capping it or containing it under various domes.
Toxic tar balls wash up on the shores of Louisiana, Florida, and Alabama and creep into the marshes. Thick oil clings to anything it touches, killing or disabling many creatures including sea birds such as pelicans, endangered species of turtles, and other marine and marsh animals. Pockets of escaped natural gas now leave dead zones in the ocean, places where no living thing exists.
Most businesses along the gulf coast already suffer from the effects of the encroaching oil slicks. They include fishing, restaurants, oyster industry, hotels, and other food or hospitality businesses on the Gulf Coast. Tourists hear about oil in the gulf, think it is everywhere, and cancel their vacations and conventions meaning that tourist industries stand to lose billions of dollars. As the crisis continues, there is no way to predict the losses that will unfold.
An army of local volunteers stands by to try to save the shores. They wash the goop from birds and turtles and do what they can to salvage them. Others patrol the beaches or use homemade devices to filter the water, old-fashioned ingenuity at work.
BP company personnel sprayed dispersants, which is controversial because of unknown effects on health. Flotillas of skimmer boats try to filter more oil out of the water but these are too little, too late. Plumes of oil lay deep under the surface and no one knows where these will go. The beginning of hurricane season adds to this mystery, and undoubtedly, the misery of this awful event.
A catastrophe of biblical proportions, oil continues to spew millions of gallons of crude into the ocean despite various efforts made to cap the well. Crews dig two relief wells as of this writing, but whether they will work is another chapter in this awful story.
The oil is as blood and threatens to kill everything living in the sea. Spilled blood will not support life. Without the oceans, the oxygen they provide, and the sea life that nourishes millions of people, we will surely die in a polluted land; the foreshadowing of the judgment of the third vial and as stated in Matthew 24.8 could be “the beginning of sorrows.”
King James Bible
Wilkerson, David “The Vision and Beyond.” World Challenge Publications, 2003
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Checked by Clergy for Biblical accuracy