Speaking of Ishmael and his descendants: “and he is a wild-ass man, his hand against every one, and every one’s hand against him — and before the face of all his brethren he dwelleth”.
We sometimes forget that the prophecy in Genesis 16:12, speaking of Ishmael’s hand against others applies most often to the Arab world’s hatred of Israel. Remember, it also applies to Arab hostility aimed at other Arab tribes. We see this in the mounting tensions between Saudi Arabia and Qatar. Why the tension? The Saudis are anti-Muslim brotherhood, while the tiny, but wealthy nation of Qatar is pro Muslim brotherhood. Also, Qatar has a friendlier relationship with Iran; Saudi Arabia views Iran as the great enemy of the Saudi Royal family.
Qatar occupies a strategically important position in the Persian Gulf. A tiny peninsula jutting out from Saudi Arabia’s eastern coast– it is the world’s leader when in comes to exporting LNG (liquefied natural gas).
Doha’s (capital of Qatar) strategic outlook is based on two driving motivations: It does not want to accept Saudi hegemony of the Sunni Arab world, and Qatar wants to be seen as a political force in the Middle East, no longer overshadowed by its bigger “brother” Saudi Arabia.
A major disagreement exists between Qatar and the Saudi leadership over Qatar’s financial support of the Muslim Brotherhood elements in the Middle East, including its support of Hamas in Gaza. The Muslim Brotherhood and other terrorist Sunni organizations such as Al-Nusra Front want to overthrow the Saudi Royal family—this does not sit well with Saudi princes. Another bone of contention revolves around the increasingly popular Al Jazeera television network, which often produces news stories that are slanted against Saudi Arabia. The government of Qatar owns Al Jazeera, arguably the most respected media outlet in the region and the one with the largest global audience (260 million). Al Jazeera television offers Qatar a very powerful “bully pulpit”.
I am watching this Arab versus Arab quarrel, which is escalating. And now a brief look at tiny but very wealthy Qatar:
Qatar [local population Ishmaelite]
• Population 2.18 million [Sunni]
Al Jazeera Television out of Doha, Qatar now claims it reaches 260 million households in more than 130 countries. It is aiming to become the next “CNN”. The importance of Al Jazeera to Qatar’s foreign policy ambitions cannot be overstated. Al Jazeera TV helped shape popular opinion in the Arab world through its critical coverage of the Mubarak regime in Egypt and the Gadhafi regime in Libya during the so-called Arab Spring, which compelled countries like Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and others to send delegates to Doha to push for less negative coverage of their sensitive political situations.--Stratfor.com
• The richest per capita country in the world–Qatar has the world’s 3rd largest natural gas reserves. Qatar will host the 2022 FIFA World Cup, becoming the First Arab Country to host the event!
• A supporter of Hamas in Gaza, and a (rumored supporter of ISIS)
• Friction between Qatar and Saudi Arabia: Qatar supports the Muslim Brotherhood worldwide, the Brotherhood would like to overthrow the Saudi Royal family. Qatar has a friendly relationship with Iran—the great rival to Saudi Arabia.
• Local media report that 40% of Qatari marriages now end in divorce. More than two-thirds of Qataris, adults and children, are obese—BBC World Service
• Qatar has been steadily buying up much of the UK. It owns a vast amount of the Canary Wharf financial district. During the banking crisis, it stepped in to become the biggest shareholder in Barclays. It owns the Olympic Village, Harrods and the world’s most expensive apartment block at No 1 Hyde Park. It owns Camden Market, the Shard and 20 per cent of the London Stock Exchange. It has also become Britain’s biggest supplier of imported liquefied natural gas.—Melanie Phillips
Later in the week we will look at Saudi Arabia—the great Ishmaelite nation of the Middle East.
What is a pandemic? It is a plague, a pestilence (disease) that impacts millions of people and may spread over continents or a multitude of continents.
Black Death (Bubonic plague 1346–1400)
This pandemic exploded onto the world stage in year 1346, and spread quickly throughout Europe and Asia. It killed an estimated 43 million people worldwide, including 25 million in Europe, or 1/3 of the population on the European continent. It used to be thought that the Black Death originated in China, but new research shows that it began in the spring of 1346 in the steppe region, where a plague reservoir stretches from the north-western shores of the Caspian Sea into southern Russia—(Historytoday.com).
It is caused by a bacterium known as Yersinia pestis, which uses the flea as a host and is usually transmitted to humans via rats and animals—the fleas carry the bacterium. The disease causes gangrene in the fingers and feet and large swellings nodules on the groin, armpits and neck. It is called the Black Death because the feet, hands and even parts of the face turn blue black.
Today, it kills up to two thirds of sufferers within just four days if it is not treated. Worldwide, there are 1,000 to 3,000 cases of plague each year. The plague is generally associated with domestic rats but squirrels have been known to carry the plague (fleas) as well. Almost all of the cases reported during the decade were rural. They occurred among people living in small towns and villages or in agricultural areas, rather than in larger, more developed towns and cities.
In 1918 what was to be called the Spanish Flu, engulfed the nations of the world virtually without warning, killing healthy young adults, children and the elderly. Hospitals and morgues were overwhelmed within the week; in Philadelphia, 4,597 people died in one week alone and bodies piled up on the streets to be carted off to mass graves. President Wilson’s determined effort in WWI helped to forge conditions in which the virus thrived, killing more than 50 million worldwide and perhaps as many as 100 million in just a year. Overcrowded military camps and overcrowded transport ships going to Europe became “floating caskets.”
John Barry discusses the devastation of the Spanish Flu in his compelling book THE GREAT INFLUENZA. An abstract claims the following: It [Spanish Flu] killed more people in twenty-four months than AIDS killed in twenty-four years, more in a year than the Black Death killed in a century. But this was not the Middle Ages, and 1918 marked the first collision of science and epidemic disease.
There are other Pandemics that afflict us today, AIDS, TB, Malaria…we will discuss these diseases in a future blog. Remember, the end-time nightmare ahead of us will include horrific pestilences that will kill multiple millions—Why? Because, people refuse to stop breaking the TEN COMMANDMENTS–God will allow great suffering to sweep through the nations–Notice in Revelation 9:20-21—the nations stubbornly continue to violate God’s laws:
The rest of mankind who were not killed by these plagues still did not repent of the work of their hands; they did not stop worshiping demons, and idols of gold, silver, bronze, stone and wood—idols that cannot see or hear or walk. 21 Nor did they repent of their murders, their magic arts, their sexual immorality or their thefts.
Revelation Chapter 6:7-8 describes the fourth seal that involves sickness: “When He opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature saying, ‘Come and see.’ So I looked, and behold, a pale horse. And the name of him who sat on it was Death, and Hades followed with him.” This “‘Pale’ horse (chloros) is defined as yellowish green, the light green of a plant, or the paleness of a sick person in contrast to a healthy appearance. This horse is the color of death and disease. In Jesus’ parallel prophecy in Matthew 24, He explained that in the wake of religious deception, war and famine would come “pestilences” meaning disease epidemics (Matthew 24:7).
More discussion of this subject later…
Fears that Ebola may spread in West Africa and eventually reach Europe and the United States continues.
WHO (World Health Organization) warns of an escalating number of fatal cases in the near future, believing that a possible 10,000 new diagnoses of the virus could be made every week in various locations before the year ends (meaning in West Africa).
There is some good news; outbreaks in Nigeria have been “contained” and WHO has officially declared the outbreak over in Senegal —as there have been no new cases reported since September.
Of great concern is the situation in Sierra Leone, which continues to deteriorate with a significant increase in the number of newly reported cases in the capital, Freetown, and its neighboring districts of Port Loko, Bombali, and Moyamba. Sierra Leone is in lockdown, with more than a third of the population of six million frozen in place—unable to leave their towns.
The great concern is Liberia—there has been a dramatic increase in the number of cases reported in the capital of Monrovia. According to the CDC, there are about 8900 cases of Ebola infection around the world with almost 4,500 deaths as of today. Liberia has lost 2460 people to the virus. But some say many more have died in Liberia.
Sorious Samura, who is making a documentary on the Ebola crisis in Liberia, declared the real death toll is actually much higher. Samura asserts that the Liberian government is underreporting the number of cases in the hopes of blunting a full-blown panic.
Christ said, in Matthew 24:7, “Nation will rise against nation, kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines, pestilences, earthquakes in various places.” We continue to watch closely to see the extent of this Ebola devastation.
The video interview gives a thumbnail insight into the view of Arab leaders regarding the President’s actions in the Middle East. This short video is worth watching. Washington’s “wobbling” is a symptom of our nation’s decline (Leviticus 26:19)—I will break the pride of your power.