News for April 22, 2005

| Bookmark at Delicious | Print This Page | |

Search Watchman Bible Study

Horrific Scenario: NYC Hit by Terrorist Nuke (April 20, 2005) - 1 second after detonation
Within the first second, a shock wave with an overpressure of 20 psi (pounds per square inch) extends four-tenths of a mile from ground zero. This destroys the Empire State Building and all other buildings within that radius, including Madison Square Garden, Penn Station and the New York Public Library. The reinforced steel in the skyscrapers does nothing to support them. Everything within the first four-tenths of a mile from ground zero is reduced to a pile of debris hundreds of feet deep in places. No one in this area survives or even knows what happened to them. The blast kills somewhere between 75,000 and 100,000 people instantly. Those outside in direct line with the blast are vaporized from the heat. Those inside the buildings who survive the blast are killed as the buildings collapse.

A mushroom cloud and fireball expand upward. Instantly, all communications that depend on this area for broadcast stop. National television stations and hundreds of radio channels are instantly off the air. Cell phones throughout the region malfunction. New York City drops off the world communication map. It is not like 9-11, where the rest of the world could switch on their televisions and watch live what was happening.

4 seconds after detonation

The shock wave extends for at least a mile with an overpressure of 10 psi at the periphery of this radius. Out to the edge of this ring, all concrete and steel-reinforced commercial buildings are destroyed or so severely damaged that they begin to collapse. The few buildings at the edge of this ring that remain standing have their interiors destroyed. Many of those within still-standing buildings are protected enough to survive the initial blast but are killed by flying debris. As the shock wave spreads out, an additional 300,000 people are killed and 100,000 more are injured. Almost no one in this ring escapes injury. Those below ground in the subways will escape this first blast with few injuries, though the loss of electricity may shock the cars to a stop. Blocked exits may trap all subway passengers underground indefinitely.

All power in New York City goes out or experiences difficulty. Telephone service stops. There is no radio or television from New York City and no information passing to the outside world about the damage or casualties. more...

The Emerging Church — Commentary - History reveals that Christian fads and trends come and go. It seems that it is common for many pastors and church leaders to constantly look for some new methodology, “new wave” or “new thing” God is doing, “right now.” We live at a period in church history that is characterized by enthusiasm for methods and means that facilitate church growth. Large churches are commonly equated with successful pastors and successful church growth methods. Whatever it takes to reach that objective, is acceptable, we are told. Church growth has become the measuring stick for successful Christianity.

Purpose-Driven Christianity

It is true that some of the largest and fastest growing churches and church movements in the world today promote a concept called “purpose-driven.” No matter where you go these days anywhere around the world, purpose-driven is being proclaimed as the latest church growth method. But stop for a moment and think. What is it that defines success from a biblical perspective? While we are accustomed to accepting numbers or quantity as the yardstick for measuring success, when it comes to Christianity, quantity without quality can be misleading. According to the Bible, Christian faith must be directly related to God’s Word. Faith comes by hearing what God has said and then acting accordingly. With regard to church growth, if the growth is the product of some technique authored by some man, and this technique is not based on God’s Word, the results may actually be deceptive. With this in mind, we will consider this current common trend known as the “purpose-driven” church growth movement. Before we do, let’s review the biblical premise that we are to test the teachings of men as the Bereans did (Acts chapter 17) and search the Scriptures diligently. more...

Iran Hid Nuclear Plans for Nearly 2 Decades - It was in the summer of 2001 when a top secret message was delivered to Farid Solemani. “We received news from a very valuable source within the Iranian regime,” said Solemani, who worked for more than a decade to expose Iran’s nuclear program. That message, if true, was explosive in more ways than one. It was either “the biggest breakthrough that we have had in terms of opening up the secret of the Iranian nuclear program … or it's a hoax,” said Solemani, who runs the Paris-based National Council of Resistance in Iran (NCRI). It wasn’t a hoax. His secret sources identified two sites — one in the town of Arak and one in Natanz — that were massive plants, disguised as anti-erosion facilities. Instead, the sources said, the two facilities were the heart of an advanced, clandestine nuclear weapons program.

Antarctic Glaciers Retreat Under Climate Onslaught - Glaciers on the Antarctic Peninsula are shrinking rapidly as a result of climate change, scientists have found. In the most comprehensive study of its kind, researchers measured 244 glaciers on the peninsula, each typically stretching tens of miles from the Antarctic mountains to the surrounding seas. They found 87% had retreated significantly in the past 50 years. The peninsula is the most northern part of Antarctica, and the only part of the continent that extends outside the Antarctic Circle. It lies in the western hemisphere, facing South America.

Strong Earthquake Hits Southern Japan - A strong earthquake struck southern Japan on Wednesday, damaging hundreds of buildings, triggering landslides and injuring at least 58 people, officials said. There was no threat of a tsunami. The quake, with a preliminary magnitude of 5.8, hit at 6:11 a.m. and was centered 9 miles below the seabed in the ocean just west of Fukuoka city on Kyushu island, the Central Meteorological Agency said.

ISRAEL EXPECTS FULL-SCALE MIDEASTERN WAR IN 2006 - Israel has reportedly expressed its belief to Washington that Iran and several of its Arab allies are preparing for a full-scale war against the Jewish state, possibly following the expected United States withdrawal from Iraq in 2006. Unnamed U.S. officials told Middle East Newsline this week that according to Israeli assessments, the departure of most American forces from the region would lead to increased tensions and provide an atmosphere ripe for an escalation of violence. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon “has relayed repeated messages to the administration that Iran and its Arab allies are preparing for war,” one official said.

MASSIVE ANTI-ISRAEL PROTESTS STAGED IN INDONESIAN CITIES - On April 17, tens of thousands of Muslim Indonesians held a peaceful anti-Israel protest and rallied outside the United States Embassy in what police said appeared to be the largest demonstration the city has seen in years. Local radio reported that thousands of others held similar marches in several other cities and towns across the archipelago to protest what they called Israel’s oppression of the Palestinian people and alleged threats to the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound in Jerusalem, a site considered holy for Muslims as well as Jews. (Naharnet, April 17, 2005) Editor’s Note: This report comes from an Arab news source out of Beirut, Lebanon. The number used in reference to the April 10 incident is exaggerated.

PALESTINIAN MINISTER: WE DON’T WANT ABANDONED ISRAELI HOUSING - A Palestinian minister has reiterated that the Palestinian Authority (PA) does not want the houses scheduled to be abandoned by more than 8,000 Israelis when they are evicted from the Gaza Strip this summer. When he first announced his plan to pullout from Gaza, Ariel Sharon said the houses would be destroyed, preventing the nightmare scenario of Israelis seeing Palestinians joyously entering houses that had been home to Israelis for generations. He has since reversed his position and has called for turning over the homes intact in return for Palestinian cooperation with the pullout. On April 16, Muhammad Shtayyeh, the Palestinian Authority’s Housing and Public Works minister, became the latest official to reject the offer, reiterating what others have said: The Israeli communities featuring individual homes do not meet the Palestinian need for housing with greater density. He did, however, welcome other infrastructure.

Temple Mount leaders vow Jewish sovereignty - A group that led a Jewish protest at the Temple Mount last weekend in hopes of reclaiming the site from its Islamic custodians told WorldNetDaily this morning it will hold monthly protests “until Jewish sovereignty is restored,” while more than 100,000 Indonesian Muslims rallied yesterday for continued Islamic dominance over the Mount. “The police blocked most of the people we tried to bring to the Temple Mount last week, so we will continue every month until Jews have a right to pray again at our holiest site,” said David Ha’ivri, director of Revava, a group with the stated mission of “restoring self-esteem to the state of Israel by restoring national pride and values.”