Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Not Prophecy

Over the weekend, I mentioned to someone that I have read the Book of Revelation about thirty times during my life. I may have exaggerated, but not by much (3 fold). When I was really young, and mean like 10, I was one of those Bible Wonks who read the weird stuff in Revelation, and in Jonah, and in Daniel.

In all this prophetic story telling, there is some pretty interesting stuff.

One of the ideas that you hear of is the prophecy of "food for oil". But actually, Revelations 6:6 doesn't really talk about that, even if the Christianoids of the day do. It does talk about a denarius for a cup of wheat though. And that's about a days wages, not a penny.

Nevertheless, whether or not the" oil for food" idea is predicted, it's now becoming a reality. Here's the story from Planet Ark:

Food Supply Fears Mirror Oil Worries at Saudi Summit

DUBAI - Saudi Arabia's emergency energy meeting next week brings together Western consumer countries threatened by soaring oil prices with Arab producers worried about scarce food supplies.

Record oil prices and their impact on the industrialised world will no doubt dominate the agenda, but food security could also feature as arid Middle East states worry about affordably feeding their rapidly growing populations.

Poor harvests, low stocks and rising demand have sent food prices to record highs, stoking protests, strikes and violence in Africa, Latin America, Asia and the Middle East. Dwindling water makes the issue more dramatic for the Gulf Arab region.

"We are entering a new arena here," said chief economist John Sfakianakis at Saudi-based SABB bank.

"Just as Saudi Arabia is saying to the world, we will supply you with enough oil, they want the world to say to them, we will supply you with enough food."

United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, in Jeddah on Sunday ahead of the summit, linked the issues seamlessly and called on participants to address the issues together. "The issues of food prices, fuel prices and climate change should be addressed in a comprehensive manner," Ban said.

While the pursuit of food security is nothing new to the Middle East -- a region that enjoys less rainfall and imports more food than anywhere on earth -- the stakes are higher this time because of the role of oil. (more)

It is rather remarkable that the places with oil can't grow food, and the places which tend to be able to grow food, don't have much oil. (Texas and Russia are big exceptions)

And even though that sounds like a perfect recipe for peaceful, healthy cooperation, it is also the necessary ingredients for a face off in a world gone crazy with competition and control. Moreover, as Americans convert more food into fuel for their SUV's, that competition grows even more twisted and complex.

There are a lot people who believe the Bible depicts an "end time" and that we are in it. And whether or not you know anything about the rapture or the seventh seal, it doesn't take a degree in the predictive sciences, expertise with the Mayan calender, or a session with your favorite psychic to know that the world we know today, will likely not be the world of tomorrow pretty dang soon.

And that is not prophesy, that is a prediction.

Which leads me to another point.

I think that most prophecies are just that... predictions.

If you see someone traveling at a high speed in a SUV

on a highway towards a brick wall,

you can predict that he will hit the wall,

and that it will be the "end of the SUV". (maybe the wall too)

Call it a prophecy if you want.

But if the person driving has been given a map,

and it clearly shows a brick wall around the corner,

he just might use that map, that prediction, the prophecy,

to change his course.

That's what the Book of Jonah is about.

but that's another story.

cartoon courtesy of cartoon stock

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

<< Home