USA, EU, and NATO ‘not bluffing either,’ EU foreign affairs chief say, pushing back on Putin’s nuclear threats.
The European Union’s foreign affairs chief warned Russia that any use of nuclear weapons against Ukraine would result in the complete destruction of the Russian army.
EU High Representative Josep Borrell spoke at a diplomatic academy in Brussels Thursday morning, pushing back on recent comments made by Russian President Vladimir Putin hinting at the possible use of tactical nuclear weapons in the ongoing war with Ukraine.
On Thursday, Borrell responded to Putin’s recent comments, vowing the West would destroy Russia’s military if nuclear weapons are used against Ukraine.
“There is the nuclear threat and Putin is saying he is not bluffing. Well, he cannot afford bluffing. And it has to be clear that the people supporting Ukraine and the European Union and the Member States, and the United Stated and NATO are not bluffing neither.”
“And any nuclear attack against Ukraine will create an answer, not a nuclear answer but such a powerful answer from the military side that the Russian Army will be annihilated, and Putin should not be bluffing.”
“This is a serious moment in history, and we have to show our unity, our strength, and our determination. Complete determination.”
Further evidence, if you need it,that we are living in the prophesied “last days” when Jesus gave us the prophecy of “wars and rumours of wars” as just one of the many signs of what we will see just before He returns first to rapture the Saints and second to pour out His wrath upon the unrepentant.
“And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.” Matthew 24:6-8
“And when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be alarmed. This must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. These are but the beginning of the birth pains.” Mark 13:7-8
The global food shortage is hitting persecuted Christians hard. In many countries, Open Doors field teams are now operating with a “FOOD FIRST” mission.
Displacement, drought, discrimination, rising food prices, and lack of resources have made persecuted Christians more vulnerable, insecure, and desperate—especially in remote areas where resources are few.
Open Doors is fighting to provide critical supplies to believers on the brink of survival in countries like Burkina Faso, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Nigeria, and many others.
“Persecuted believers can’t … worship or serve one another if they’re too weak and starving.”
— Field Partner in Burkina Faso
“Food inflation in Sri Lanka has surged to 80 percent … The needs are urgent.”
—Field Partner in Sri Lanka
The following Scriptures remind us that we have been warned by Jesus that persecution, tribulation, and disasters on earth and in the cosmos will precede His second coming, to first rescue the Saints and to pour out His wrath on the unrepentant.
“There will be earthquakes in various places; there will be famines. These are but the beginning of the birth pains.” Mark 13:8
“For then there will be great tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, no, and never will be... See, I have told you beforehand.” Matthew 24:21, 25
Source: Angela Rodriguez, Contributing Writer for Intercessors for America
When the Covid crisis began, supply chain problems popped up around the globe, leading to outbreaks of fear-based irrational behaviour. The supply chain issues have intensified since the war in Ukraine. When you walk into a supermarket, you notice your favorite cereal is missing. You also start to notice that the milk or other item you bought in 2021 is now costing you almost a dollar more. Many of us notice 30% or more increases in our favorite food items, well above the published inflation rate.
While the supply chain issues are multi-faceted, there are some specific reasons for the problems at hand. Ukraine and Russia are both major exporters of wheat, corn, and sunflower products, but that is just the tip of the harvest sickle. Back in mid-May, economist James Rickards posted an article where he laid out the reasons why we could see more food supply issues in the near future. He wrote, “In the Northern Hemisphere, the planting season for 2022 is well underway. Crops were planted in March and April. Based on that, you can already form estimates of output for next September and October during the harvest season. Plantings have been far below normal in 2022, either due to lack of fertilizer or much higher costs for fertilizer where farmers simply chose to plant less. This predictable shortage is added to the fact that Russian output is sanctioned, and Ukrainian output is non-existent because it’s at war.”
Rickards explains that Russia and Ukraine account for 29% of the global wheat exports and 19% of corn. But he stresses that this doesn’t mean they grow 29% of the wheat in the world–they grow 29% of the exports. There are some countries, such as Egypt, Lebanon, Jordan, Kenya, Sudan, Somalia, and other African and Middle Eastern nations, that receive a large percentage of their grain supply from Ukraine, Russia, or both. Rickards says the situation could become dire because many of the Ukrainian exports have shut down. To make matters worse, the planting season is almost over. Rickards concludes, “And you’re not going to get any grain in October if you didn’t plant it in April or May.” Projecting ahead to October–December of 2022, this means that the countries that rely the most on importing grain will not be able to get the amount they need.
According to Rickards, “The combined population of countries that get between 70%-100% of their imports from Russia or Ukraine is 700 million people. That’s 10% of the population… you’re looking at a humanitarian crisis of unprecedented proportions, probably the worst since the Black Death of the 14th century.” The fertilizer issue is perhaps the biggest nail in the coffin when it comes to the price of future supplies of food. With some farmers paying two to three times last year’s price, it’s inevitable that the consumer will absorb much of this cost. Farmers in North Carolina (USA) say they are feeling the impact of inflation and that increased input costs are not sustainable. One farmer said that fertilizer cost is “up three to four times what it was a year ago.” The farmer also added that “a 275-gallon tote of generic Roundup, which is a weed killer, a year ago was $1400; now it’s over $10,000…everything has risen out of sight.”
Add in higher prices at the pump and you get a recipe for rampant inflation. In places like the United Kingdom, farmers can’t afford to plant crops for the next season because of skyrocketing fuel and fertilizer costs. Bank of England governor Andrew Bailey declared that food prices are rising at the fastest rate in 30 years, causing “a huge income shock.” He described food price increases as “apocalyptic.” He warns that the UK may see a double-digit inflation rate by the end of the year.
In response to the shortages, the United States wants its companies to “ramp up” their purchases of Russian fertilizer, especially as inflation continues to increase. According to a Bloomberg report, “The challenge the US faces is that it must balance putting more pressure on Moscow, while also limiting repercussions for the global economy and the world’s food supply, which relies on a wide range of products from Russia.” At this point, however, over 25 million tons of grain, sunflower oil, and other goods are stuck in Ukraine.
While the grain supply is one concern, another issue is the outbreak of diseases among animal populations. In the United States, a bacterial outbreak occurred in two hatcheries in California, which could lead to the deaths of hundreds of thousands of fish. Additionally, the American poultry industry is getting slammed by what’s being dubbed the bird flu. An egg factory in Iowa slaughtered over 5 million chickens because of the virus in March 2022. Earlier that month 50,000 turkeys were euthanized at a different facility. Other states such as Nebraska, Maryland, and South Dakota have experienced outbreaks as well. Adding fuel to the fire, there’s also been a mysterious outbreak of fires in major food processing facilities across the country. One such facility, known as Azure Standard, was destroyed overnight, affecting liquid products such as honey, oil, and vinegar. A week before this, a fire erupted at Taylor Farms, where the main processing facility was destroyed. Known as a “major player” in the food supply chain for both Canada and the U.S., this loss did not go unnoticed.
Another fire occurred in March at the Maricopa Food Pantry in Arizona, resulting in the loss of 50,000 pounds of food. If that weren’t enough, in Minnesota, thousands of chickens died in a devastating blaze. Additional fires have flared up in Texas, Indiana, New Hampshire, Oregon and more. As these incidents and shortages play out, one can’t help but wonder what the globalists are saying, or more appropriately, what’s their role in all of this? It’s no surprise that one world organization like the United Nations is talking about food shortages. David Beasley, the current head of the UN’s world food program, is predicting a “perfect storm” of global agricultural collapse. The biggest problem this year is food prices, but he warns that next year, it will morph into a food availability problem as supplies run dry. In 2023 there will be a food shortage problem.”
In China, the power crisis in the world’s second-biggest economy came at a time when supply chains were already strained by the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, China’s strict lockdowns, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. It threatens supplies of everything from metals such as aluminum to automotive parts, as well as food commodities.
Ye Tan, an economist and founder of the consulting group Ye Tan Finance, told DW that the current crisis has also hit the agriculture sector hard. She said the provinces affected were the “food basket” of China — accounting for over 20% of the national agricultural output.
Poor autumn harvests in China will have a huge impact on the global market for agricultural commodities, causing already high prices to surge further, she said. The investment bank Goldman Sachs issued a similar warning, saying rice harvests would be at the greatest risk should the severe weather continue. China’s Agriculture Ministry also said over the weekend that high temperatures and unusually low rains since July have posed “a severe challenge” to fall grain production, Bloomberg reported.
The World Economic Forum (WEF) talked about food shortages at their annual meeting in Davos which was held May 22-26, 2022. Ahead of the meeting, World Economic Forum Founder Klaus Schwab said, “The return of war, epidemics, and the climate crisis, all those disruptive forces have derailed the global recovery. Those issues must be confronted in Davos, and the global food crisis in particular needs our immediate attention.” An article that is part of the Davos agenda lays out the food crisis initiatives. It begins by saying that the food system has been knocked off its axis and “stabilizing the global food system requires collaboration and partnerships among key players in agriculture. Climate resilience must be built into agriculture, including carbon-smart solutions and biological alternatives to artificial fertilizers.”
In this case, is it a stretch to ponder the idea that the globalists have their climate-friendly solution for world hunger already in hand? After all, they claim to be sustainable food supply experts who must act swiftly to save the world. At the 2022 meeting, they parroted all the answers and so did their stakeholders and partners. Speaking of the WEF and its supporters, the Rockefeller Foundation had a lot to say about the global food crisis in their guide titled Reset the Table: Transforming the U.S. Food System.
The objective is clearly stated on page 3: “One of the consistent needs we’ve heard expressed by those seeking to transform the food system is a SHARED NARRATIVE to motivate the needed changes in the system. We articulated a narrative and a message framework focused on the long-term transformation needed in the food system.” Further investigation of this guide reveals some common themes which are: racial justice, equity, fairness, sustainability, and shared prosperity. Additionally, while the consumption of healthier food is suggested, emphasis is placed on the use of government programs and subsidies, which are outlined in the guide.
The guide suggests immediate actions that need to be taken to produce “equitable prosperity throughout the supply chain” such as “Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA) must set and enforce mandatory guidelines to keep workers and the food supply safe,” as well as “provide credit, loan servicing and debt relief for farmers and ranchers.” This whole narrative the globalists are creating is likely part of a greater plan–one which will have many strings attached, such as global ID’s and carbon footprint trackers. As J. Michael Evans of the Alibaba group declared at the World Economic Forum’s 2022 annual meeting: “We are developing through technology the ability for consumers to measure their own carbon footprint. What does that mean? That is where they are traveling, how they are traveling, WHAT THEY ARE EATING, what they are consuming on the platform.”
Other hints of this same agenda come from the World Bank Group. They, along with the United Nations, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the Secure Identity Alliance, Mastercard, the World Food Program and others have big plans for their universal ID program that is built upon sustainable goals. The World Banks states, “The alliance will therefore also work together to help countries build stronger food systems and gradually transition to a sustainable agricultural production base.” Hmm, here are a few questions for the Rockefeller Foundation, Alibaba, and the World Bank.
Will this universal ID be mandatory in order to receive the benefits of these food systems? Will our trackable carbon footprint affect what and how much we can eat? If we defy the approved narrative, will we be locked out of the program? How will food wealth be shared from one nation to another in order to provide “equity”?
“Also, it (False Prophet) causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name. This calls for wisdom: let the one who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his number is 666.” Revelation 13:16-18
The truth is that food can be used as a weapon. So, what do we do about it? Of course, we must take this issue to our Great Provider, Jesus Christ, who is very aware of the true narrative surrounding this issue. No matter what happens, we must remember that God is more than able to provide for all our needs. Like the story of Elijah and the ravens, God can use the most unique ways to sustain us. The ravens brought Elijah bread and meat twice a day. In our times of need, God will not fail us.
Prayer Point: Lord Jesus, please intervene for the nations of the world who may be on the brink of a food crisis. Like Joseph, who supplied grain during a famine, please provide security and sustenance to everyone in need. Above all, keep our eyes fixed on you.
Three of the end times signs given by Jesus before He returns to rescue the saints and to pour out His wrath on an unrepentant world are:
Wars and rumours of wars – Russia, China, North Korea
Famines – The ECONOMIST report in this post
Pestilences – Covid 19 is just the beginning
“For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, andthere will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.” Matthew 24:7-8
“When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” And I looked, and behold, a pale horse! And its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed him. And they were given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and withfamine and with pestilence and by wild beasts of the earth.” Revelation 6:8
The following report is from THE ECONOMIST on May 20th 2022.
By invading Ukraine, Vladimir Putin will destroy the lives of people far from the battlefield — and on a scale, that even he may regret. The war is battering a global food system weakened by Covid-19, climate change, and an energy shock. Ukraine’s exports of grain and oilseeds have mostly stopped and Russia’s are threatened. Together, the two countries supply 12 percent of traded calories. Wheat prices, up 53 per cent since the start of the year, jumped a further 6 six per cent on May 16th, after India said it would suspend exports because of an alarming heatwave.
The widely accepted idea of a cost-of-living crisis does not begin to capture the gravity of what may lie ahead. António Guterres, the UN secretary-general, warned on May 18th that the coming months threaten “the spectre of a global food shortage” that could last for years. The high cost of staple foods has already raised the number of people who cannot be sure of getting enough to eat by 440m, to 1.6bn. Nearly 250m are on the brink of famine. If, as is likely, the war drags on and supplies from Russia and Ukraine are limited, hundreds of millions more people could fall into poverty. Political unrest will spread, children will be stunted and people will starve.
Mr Putin must not use food as a weapon. Shortages are not the inevitable outcome of war. World leaders should see hunger as a global problem urgently requiring a global solution
Russia and Ukraine supply 28 per cent of globally traded wheat, 29 per cent of barley, 15 per cent of maize, and 75 per cent of the sunflower oil. Russia and Ukraine contribute about half the cereals imported by Lebanon and Tunisia; for Libya and Egypt, the figure is two-thirds. Ukraine’s food exports provide the calories to feed 400m people. The war is disrupting these supplies because Ukraine has mined its waters to deter an assault, and Russia is blockading the port of Odesa.
Even before the invasion, the World Food Programme had warned that 2022 would be a terrible year. China, the largest wheat producer, has said that, after rains delayed planting last year, this crop may be its worst ever. Now, in addition to the extreme temperatures in India, the world’s second-largest producer, a lack of rain threatens to sap yields in other breadbaskets, from America’s wheat belt to the Beauce region of France. The Horn of Africa is being ravaged by its worst drought in four decades. Welcome to the era of climate change.
All this will have a grievous effect on the poor. Households in emerging economies spend 25 per cent of their budgets on food — and in sub-Saharan Africa as much as 40 per cent. In Egypt bread provides 30 per cent of all calories. In many importing countries, governments cannot afford subsidies to increase the help to the poor, especially if they also import energy — another market in turmoil.
The crisis threatens to get worse. Ukraine had already shipped much of last summer’s crop before the war. Russia is still managing to sell its grain, despite added costs and risks for shippers. However, those Ukrainian silos that are undamaged by the fighting are full of corn and barley. Farmers have nowhere to store their next harvest, due to start in late June, which may therefore rot. And they lack the fuel and labour to plant the one after that. Russia, for its part, may lack some supplies of the seeds and pesticides it usually buys from the European Union.
In spite of soaring grain prices, farmers elsewhere in the world may not make up the shortfall. One reason is that prices are volatile. Worse, profit margins are shrinking, because of the surging prices of fertiliser and energy. These are farmers’ main costs and both markets are disrupted by sanctions and the scramble for natural gas. If farmers cut back on fertiliser, global yields will be lower at just the wrong time.
The response by worried politicians could make a bad situation worse. Since the war started, 23 countries from Kazakhstan to Kuwait have declared severe restrictions on food exports that cover 10 per cent of globally traded calories. More than one-fifth of all fertiliser exports are restricted. If trade stops, famine will ensue.
Jesus warns us that at the time of His second coming to earth the world will be like it was during the time Noah lived.
“For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day when Noah entered the ark, and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” Matthew 24:37-39
What was it like in Noah’s day? It was much like it is becoming today as God’s values and God’s Word are being trashed. It is leading up to the prophesied time when God will once again pour out His wrath upon the earth with the Trumpet and Bowl judgements.
“Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence. And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh, for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth.” Genesis 6:11-13
In Revelation 6, when Jesus opens the sixth seal around the scroll containing the Trumpet and Bowl judgements He reveals He is about to release the wrath of God on the earth. It is at the trumpet blast when the seventh seal is opened that the Saints are raptured to meet Jesus in the sky and only then are the trumpet and bowl judgements released consecutively.
When he opened the sixth seal, I looked, and behold, there was a great earthquake, and the sun became black as sackcloth, the full moon became like blood, and the stars of the sky fell to the earth as the fig tree sheds its winter fruit when shaken by a gale. The sky vanished like a scroll that is being rolled up, and every mountain and island was removed from its place. Then the kings of the earth and the great ones and the generals and the rich and the powerful, and everyone, slave and free, hid themselves in the caves and among the rocks of the mountains, calling to the mountains and rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who is seated on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb, for the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?” Revelation 6:12-17
We know that at the fifth seal the Saints have not been raised from the dead or raptured because John sees the souls of the martyred under the altar asking God how long will it be before He judges the wicked.
“When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne. They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”Revelation 6:9-10
Moreover, it is shortly after the seventh seal has been opened with a trumpet blast that John now sees resurrected and raptured saints clothed in white robes from every tribe and nation standing before the throne praising God the Father and the Son.
“After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”Revelation 7:9-10
The timing of the rapture is important: God allows the Saints to be tested when Satan is allowed to persecute the Saints during the time of tribulation but God does not pour out His wrath upon the Saints with the Trumpet and Bowl judgements.
A perfect storm of several problems is decimating the world food supply. It’s been called the biggest food crisis since World War Two. The World Food Program estimates that 285 million people face starvation. The head of the World Food Program, former South Carolina Governor David Beasley, says the world food supply already faced a catastrophe before the war in Ukraine. “We’re so short of funds already, and now with Ukraine, we’ve got 50% rations for people in Yemen. I’ve just cut 50% rations for eight million people. Niger, 50% rations, Chad 50% rations. And 50% don’t have anything, those who are in extreme need.”
The war in Ukraine is only the latest of many problems to hit the world food supply. Food costs were already high from soaring inflation and fuel costs. Fertilizer prices were 40 percent higher than before the invasion of Ukraine, which, along with high fuel prices, makes it too expensive for some farmers to plant crops this year. Beasley said.
In the U.S., Americans have seen food costs rise 10 percent over last year, the steepest increase in 40 years, which experts say will lead to an increase in malnutrition among America’s poor. In the developing world, however, it’s become a matter of life and death. War in Ukraine Takes One-Third of the World’s Wheat Off the Table. Russia and Ukraine together produce almost one-third of the world’s wheat. But Ukrainian farmers have been sidelined and Russian exports have been sanctioned. Beasley says.
Rev. Eugene Cho, president, and CEO of Bread For the World says the U.S. needs to do more to fight global hunger, asking Congress to approve $3.8 billion in supplemental emergency funding. Cho said, “Let’s just talk about Afghanistan, 98% of the population does not have enough food to eat. One million children under the age of five could die from malnutrition by the end of this year. In Yemen, eight million people are in dire need of food.”
Even Africa’s wealthiest nation faces a food crisis, according to Nigerian Agri-investor Imal Silva, who told us a majority of Nigerians are facing malnutrition. “Those that are most affected are the majority in the lower and middle class of society. Those that were living below a particular level of income would feel the pinch and that’s quite a large majority,” Silva said. Beasley warns that the world’s food crisis could spiral into a political crisis. “You’ve got catastrophe coming to catastrophe,” Beasley said. “So don’t be surprised if you don’t see destabilization in several nations over the next six to nine months.”
When the disciples asked Jesus when He would return to earth to put things right, He gave them many signs and warnings. Famines and pestilences (Covid and its many variants) were among these signs.
“Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” Matthew 24:3
“Then He said to them, Nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes and in various places famines and pestilences.“Luke 21:10-11
“And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.” Matthew 24:6-8
End times signs given by Jesus include famines and pestilences. Both are occurring in our times along with so many of the other signs such as apostasy and lawlessness.
“Then he (Jesus) said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes and in various places famines and pestilences.“
“And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” Matthew 24:12-13
The Good News is that churches are rising to the occasion providing opportunities to complete the Great Commission.
Extreme poverty and food insecurity are on the rise.
In 2020, Oxfam and The World Food Bank predicted that half a billion people would be pushed into extreme poverty and a “famine of biblical proportions” would be ushered in by the pandemic. Today, we’re seeing those predictions play out:
296 million people worldwide are going without food — a statistic that’s up 111 millionfrom April 2020.
56% of the world’s children now lack access to education or health services (up from 47%).
World Relief President and CEO Myal Greene reflected, “The pandemic is basicallyundoing a decade’s worth of human development around the world in terms of progress in getting people out of poverty. We’re certainly seeing that in many of the communities where we work.”
COVID-19 is disproportionately impacting those in already vulnerable situations.
When Mount Nyiragongo erupted in DR Congo earlier this year, coronavirus was not the first concern on anyone’s mind. “When people were fleeing, nobody cared about COVID-19 preventive measures,” said Jean Nyandwi, World Relief DR Congo Country Director.
“After the people who had fled returned back to the city, the government announced the third wave of COVID-19,” he continued. “We believe partly this volcanic eruption may have increased COVID-19 cases.”
While the volcanic eruption may have increased people’s exposure to the virus, a lack of access to vaccines, as well as vaccine hesitancy, is most certainly putting women and men at a greater risk of contracting the virus.
And these stories of increased vulnerability are not unique to DR Congo. Across the globe, those in vulnerable situations are experiencing outsized impacts of the pandemic.
“It’s making the poor poorer,” Nyandwi said. “When people get sick, they have to pay for their hospital bills. Burials also cost money. Many people have lost their jobs. Prices have increased for basic commodities, particularly in the city of Goma, and likely this is true for the rest of the country as well.”
And it’s not just the poorest of the poor who are being affected.
When we talk about the poorest of the poor, we’re referring to those who live on less than $2 a day. That number is increasing by several hundred million people globally, and that is significant.
But, as Greene mentioned in a recent interview, “other tiers of poverty are also increasing as people are moving down the scale of development. We’ve had to do food distributions among middle-income populations where we haven’t typically had to do such activities before.”
This was the case in Cambodia where an April lockdown affected people like Grandma Phyn Phally who lives in Phnom Penh province. Like many small business owners, Phun Phally relies on daily market sales to afford food and basic necessities. Job losses and decreased incomes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have made it harder for people like her to afford these necessities, and this latest round of shutdowns only intensified the fragile situation.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has caused the government to limit travel during this time, so I and my family members are unable to go out and do business and earn money,” Phun Phally said. “Because our family owns a small business, we don’t have as much money to spend over such a lengthy period of time. That is something we are very concerned about.”
Churches and local communities are being equipped to respond.
In Cambodia, World Relief partnered with local churches to supply and distribute food relief packages to the neediest households in Phnom Penh. Grandma Phun Phally was one of the recipients.
“Thank God. He heard our plea and answered it,” she said. “A food shipment from WRC, our church’s partner, was another blessing. This package is extremely beneficial to us in continuing to fight through this difficult period…Pray for everyone to come out on top in this difficult situation.”
In total, World Relief Cambodia gave $20,000 in grants, which funded food relief packages for 1,378 families.
World Relief continues to reach local communities across the globe with accurate COVID-19 prevention messages. Thanks to a $2.3 million grant from USAID,this work is expanding in DR Congo, Kenya, Malawi and Rwanda.
Churches and faith leaders are being equipped and mobilized to rally their congregations and communities around infection prevention efforts including supplying community members with cloth masks, handwashing soap, and other community care supplies while also providing accurate information about COVID-19 vaccines.
Faith leaders, who are often seen as trustworthy authorities in local communities, are playing a key role in accelerating equitable access to and widespread use of COVID-19 vaccinations and prevention measures. God often uses catastrophes for His purposes. Check out my post “God Uses Catastrophes for His Purposes” September 21st, 2020
Over 7 million people across six East African countries are at the cusp of starvation as communities have faced existential threats from violence, flooding, the pandemic and locust infestation, the evangelical humanitarian organization World Vision has warned.
According to the charity, which operates in nearly 100 countries, thousands of children could face death or long-term health consequences if the international community does not respond quickly to East Africa’s worsening crisis.
“The situation is very severe in East Africa, and particularly Ethiopia. Over 2 million people are in need of food assistance,” Debebe Dawit of World Vision told The Christian Post in a Thursday interview. “Among conflict, COVID-19, flooding, locust infestation, all these are adding [an] additional burden to the community.”
Before the pandemic began, several countries in East Africa faced a widespread desert locust infestation that impacted hundreds of thousands of hectares and damaged croplands and pastures. Later in 2020, large-scale floods destroyed crops that were ready to harvest, which impacted the food supply for 4 million people in the region.
Matters have also been complicated by military conflicts — most recently the Tigray conflict — and the rise of Islamic extremism. Witnesses who spoke with The Associated Press have detailed killings, looting and other abuses committed by Eritrean soldiers in Tigray, a predominantly-Christian northernmost region of the East African country.
To address the starvation and poverty crisis in East Africa, World Vision launched a multi-country emergency response for Ethiopia, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Kenya and Uganda. The goal is to reach 2.4 million people, which includes 490,000 children.
“One of the critical elements in this one is when famine or drought is happening, we always act after the fact. … Usually, we respond after people have died,” Dawit shared. “We need to be proactive in responding and providing funding to avoid the [deterioration] of the situation. The key thing here is people are dying before the famine of the drought is declared. So that needs to be looked at, and we need to act immediately and prevent further suffering.”
As many of you would be aware the Kenya House Church Movement which LEN supports has requested aid for the House Church Group in Tanzania. They encountered widespread famine in Nyamuzi on their recent visit. Check out my recent post KHC Missions Trip. If you would like to help click on the Donations icon on my LEN Home Page.
The head of the World Food Program (WFP) believes that 2021 could see “famines of biblical proportions” as the economic struggles of COVID-19 may hamper global responses to food shortages caused by military conflicts, the rise of Islamic extremism and locust infestations.
In an interview with the Christian Post WFP Executive Director David Beasley expressed concern for the funding problems that could be in store for 2021. Despite receiving historic levels of funding and leading the food-assistance branch of the United Nations to a Nobel Peace Prize since he took the helm in April 2017, the 63-year-old Beasley warned the fiscal realities of the COVID-19 pandemic could lead to a decrease in funding at a time when as many as 270 million could be pushed to the brink of starvation. “I think it could be much bigger depending on how you define biblical proportions,” Beasley said. “2021 is going to be catastrophic unless we receive extraordinary financial support. I made a comment in late 2019 that 2020 was going to be the worst humanitarian year since World War II. Then before 2020 hit, desert locusts came on top of that, and then COVID came into the scene.” “If we did not get the support we needed and certain international actions were not taken, there would be famines of biblical proportions, destabilization and migration,” he added. “The international community responded significantly in 2020. We were able to avert famine last year.” The director stressed that the problem for 2021 lies in the fact that government budgets for 2020 were largely set in 2019 based on strong economic indicators before the pandemic hit.
A major driver of hunger in 2020 was a record infestation of crop-destroying locusts across several countries in East Africa and the Middle East. “New locust swarms are already forming and threatening to re-invade northern Kenya” while “breeding is also underway on both sides of the Red Sea, posing a new threat to Eritrea, Saudi Arabia, the Sudan, and Yemen.” “There is a lot of work to be done.” Beasley said of the WFP’s locust response. “The locust issue is not resolved and they are now on the move.”
Jesus Foretells “End Times” Wars, Famines and Persecution “Then he said to them, “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be great earthquakes, and in various places famines and pestilences.”Luke 21:10-11
David Beasley is the executive director of the U.N. World Food Program, and he recently stated that we are heading directly into “the worst humanitarian crisis since World War Two.” Hunger is rapidly rising all over the globe, and he believes that if dramatic intervention does not happen quickly we could see an astounding death toll.
According to Beasley, we could soon see 300,000 people around the world starve to death every single day, and that figure doesn’t even factor in the effect of this coronavirus pandemic:
“If we can’t reach these people with the life-saving assistance they need, our analysis shows that 300,000 people could starve to death every single day over a three-month period,” he upheld. “This does not include the increase of starvation due to COVID-19.
Even before COVID-19 became the biggest public health crisis to hit the globe in decades, enormous swarms of locusts the size of major cities were devouring crops throughout eastern Africa, across the Middle East and even in some parts of Asia. Now a new generation that officials are describing as “20 times bigger” has emerged, and the devastation that this new generation of locusts is causing is extremely alarming. These colossal locust swarms can travel up to 90 miles a day, and as you will see below, when they descend upon a field they can literally eat everything there in as little as 30 seconds. This new generation of locusts has been spotted as far south as Congo, as far north as Iran and as far east as India. In other words, the food supplies of billions of people are at risk.
In addition, another plague of “biblical proportions” has been killing off pigs in unprecedented numbers.
It is hard to believe that African Swine Fever has already killed off half the pigs in China and one-fourth of all the pigs in the entire world but this quote comes directly from New Scientist:
“A quarter of the world’s domestic pigs have died this year as a virus rampages across Eurasia, and that may be just the start. Half the pigs in China – which last year numbered 440 million, some 50 percent of the world’s pigs – have either died of African swine fever (ASF) or been killed to stamp out the virus.
ASF comes from East Africa. In 2007, it reached Georgia in the Caucasus in contaminated meat, and in infected wild boar. Now, it is all over Russia and eastern Europe and infected wild boar have turned up as far west as Belgium. It is also spreading in east Asia, killing many pigs in Vietnam and elsewhere.”
Never before have we seen so many catastrophic threats to the global food supply emerge at the same time. It appears that “the perfect storm” is now upon us, and I anticipate that global events will continue to accelerate in the months ahead.
Even in the West, in countries where famine is inconceivable, we are seeing reports that are of concern: Farmers all over America are seeing their hard work go to waste because broken supply chains have made it impossible to sell what they have produced. One industry expert is actually claiming that “billions” of dollars worth of crops have gone to waste as a result of this crisis:
Crops planted months before based on pre-pandemic demand spoiled without buyers. Billions of dollars’ worth of produce went to waste, much of it tilled back into the soil, said Cathy Burns, CEO of the Produce Marketing Assn., which represents produce companies. She said, I have a feeling that eventually we will greatly regret allowing so much good food to go to waste.
Australia, which made a rare purchase of Canadian wheat in the current marketing year, is expected to continue buying more wheat in the 2019-20 marketing year (October-September), as weather conditions remain difficult in key states, market analysts say.
Australia’s wheat output dropped 45.6% to 17.3 million mt in the 2018-19 marketing year from a record high of 31.8 million mt in 2016-17, owing to prolonged drought conditions, data from the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics shows. This forced the country to import wheat for the first time in 12 years.
We still have quite a way to go before we get to the type of famines described in the Scriptures, but it certainly looks like the stage is being set for severe hunger on a global scale.
But Jesus didn’t warn us about these things so that we would live in fear. God knew about all of this in advance, He is in control and He has a plan.
Unfortunately, most of the world doesn’t want anything to do with the God of the Bible or His plan, and so they will be facing what is to come all by themselves. What about you and your church group?
God wants to involve you in getting the good news of the Gospel to your immediate family, friends and certainly your workplace, maybe even beyond. Are you spending time in the Word and prayer. Scripture clearly tells us, He is at the door knocking, will you let Him in and allow Him to reveal what it is He would like to involve you in, to achieve His plan?
Severe hailstorms strike India destroying homes and crops
In the last days before Jesus returns, God said everything that could be shaken will be shaken so we will understand that neither us nor our governments are in control.
Rounds of hailstorms over the past weeks have wreaked havoc in various parts of India. According to reports from the Watchers, In Mizoram, the hail struck nearly 800 homes as confirmed by disaster management and rehabilitation minister in Lalchamliana on April 29, 2020.
In Haryana, more than 618 thousand acres of crops were leveled by heavy showers and hail over the past weekend. In West Bengal, up to 8 million dollars’ worth of mango was destroyed in Malda as a result of a hailstorm last week.
Meanwhile, In the northeastern state of Mizoram, 46 of the houses were totally destroyed, while 749 others sustained partial damage, according to Lalchamliana’s report, Nine out of 11 districts were affected, including 58 villages.
According to the report, The state government in India will provide all possible help to those who have been impacted by the storms. The worst-affected area is the Hliappui village in east Mizoram’s Saitual district, with a total of 268 residential areas struck, 189 of which were completely damaged.
Covid pandemic, locust plagues and now hail, all severe and causing extreme hardship and damage which will ultimately cause famine across Africa and India. Already, there is an emerging food shortage in Zimbabwe. The Agricultural Minister Perrance Shiri said that there was only enough grain in reserves to last just over a month. There has been little rain and Cyclone Idai’s destruction of soil has not been recovered from, so crops are struggling.
Birth pangs are increasing exactly as prophesied. All can be averted, if we would only repent and turn back to God. He promises to heal/restore the land if we will humble ourselves and pray. Will we? Many Christians are praying as never before but will it cause our leaders and therefore nations to turn from their evil ways. Sadly, most don’t because we already know the outcome from God’s Word. We are fast approaching the time when God will pour out His wrath on an unrepentant world.