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Preaching by: John J. Malone, Sr - JABSBG*

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Oil Shortage? No Way! - Comments (2)

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Author: John Malone
Date: 20th January, 2006 @ 04:25:50 AM

If we are paying attention, we can hardly miss the 30 years of daily hand-wringing concerning the “energy crisis” and “fossil-fuel shortage” complaints and alarms that are in our ears (and wallets) every day.

Some of the impressive attributes of these alarms we hear are the contradictions and ironies – and the ignorance – that are implicit in them.

I do not think we will be on earth for the fulfillment of the book of Revelation.

I believe that God will commence the {Judgment Seat of Christ|2Cor 5:10} in the heavenly places for the church which is His body before or while He takes up the nation of Israel once again on earth, and deals with their disbelief as they {embrace|Jo 5:43} the {Man of Sin|2Th 2:3} during the {time of Jacob’s trouble|Jer 30:7}.

This belief is orthodox among dispensational Bible students. That still leaves wide enough berth for disagreement and distinction in eschatological study. Perhaps the main controversy has to do with whether or not this dispensation somehow overlaps {Daniel’s 70th seven(“week”)|Dan 9:24-27} or not.

But even though the prophecies of the Revelation will not be fulfilled in the present day, the coming of the Lord draws near, and the underlying tendencies of the departure of man line up in some noticeable geometry to the conditions and events about which we read in the final book of the Scriptures, which holds such special blessing for {those who read and keep the words found therein|Rev 1:3}.

Perhaps much of that special blessing has to do with understanding the times we are in, and digesting accurately the issues and harbingers that arise. After all, David said he understood better than his teachers, because he {paid attention to God’s Word.|Psa 119:99}

For instance, we can take the “energy shortage” itself. It is predicated upon the same underlying faulty principle that other large-scale scares – such as over-population – rest: that there is no gracious and merciful God tending to His creation. These are the {classic fools described in Romans|Rom 1:21} among whom I was once in good standing prior to faith in Jesus Christ. These are self-appointed intelligentsia who, in their hardened blindness, bring us conflicting messages with equal conviction.

We learn in Newtonian physics that “matter cannot be created or destroyed.” Then we learn in Einstein’s additions that energy and matter – just as time and space – are part of a continuum, and so are circumstantially the same stuff. The entire idea of “running out of it” is either irrelevant or ridiculous: take your pick.

This same “intelligentsia” points out to us that these are “fossil fuels” that are scarce because they have been developed from “millions of years” of geological pressures on organic materials accumulated (somehow) in earth’s crust by generations of dead animals and other forms of life. The proposition has always been non-sensical – albeit, extremely valuable for many years to those who control the supply of crude oil – for this is admittedly the most mechanically useful form of naturally formed hydrocarbons.

People do ask me, “Well, how do you think crude oil is formed?” I am inclined to believe those who suggest that itis formed by intense heat below the earth’s crust, and then finds it’s way into crust reservoirs through apertures into the heart of the earth. I believe this may be correct because as far as I have explored it, it is consistent with the Bible.

I believe in a superabundance of crude oil, and that we can probably never even draw down the earth’s reserves, let alone run them out.

So let me get to a Scripture that has, for about 25 years, been stuck in my mind:

Revelation 6:5-6
And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, Come and see. And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand. 6 And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say, A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.

This Scripture first became controversial in my life when I was listening to a blowhard posing as a preacher while he was pilfering his “ministry” nearly verbatim from G.H. Lang, a notable (and largely rejected) Plymouth Brethren commentator. The occasion of the blowhard was in late 1970’s: in fact, it was during the (perhaps traitorous) prolonged “hostage crisis” of the Carter Administration. He was trying to sell the Ayatollah Komeini as possibly the “Man of Sin” and was proclaiming the “oil crisis” as somehow bringing in the time of the Great Tribulation.

I told a few of my fellow-church members that I didn’t think that was true, based on the passage above. Well, they laughed me to scorn – after checking in with the blowhard (that’s “Brother Blowhard”) – because, as BB said, “that passage is about olive oil, which is cooking oil.”

Well, I guess I didn’t then want to say that “oil is oil,” but oil IS oil. My son-in-law is tinkering with his diesel vehicle as I write. He has 11 children and a brother who manages a restaurant that has to pay to get rid of their used vegetable oil. Not any more. That vegetable oil runs that diesel engine just fine. It just smells like french fries when he drives.

It’s all about hydrocarbons, whether vegetable or mineral based.

Around these parts (Nebraska/Iowa), the rage is all about ethanol and ethanol plants. Call it a counter temperance movement, because the booze distillers that were the bogeymen of prohibition are the heralded heroes of the new century. They will deliver us from dependence on “foreign oil.”

Now let’s just see what this Scripture above says. I won’t be exhaustive by any means.

{Rev 6:5-6|Rev 6:5-6} is about the third seal. That means means that the time reference is the 70th week of Daniel’s great prophecy from the 9th Chapter of the book carrying his name, and that two seals have already been opened. The “four horsemen of the apocalypse” are detailed in the 1st four seals. The first, a crowned beast upon a white horse, conquers with a bow (distant combat?) bringing peace. The second, an uncrowned beast upon a red horse, takes that peace from the earth with a sword (close combat?).

These two events preceed the conditions of the third seal, featuring the black horse, the rider of which carries no weapon, but rather a balance scale typically used in trade. Indeed, it comes as no surprise that scarcity attends the inevitable dislocation following war.

So what is the key bit of information here to make us wise? It is that, while there is a scarcity of food staples (grain) for man (wheat) and beast (barley), there appears to be no interruption in the supplies of “oil and wine,” neither of which, despite the most earnest of protestations, are necessities of life.

We can derive a great deal from meditation upon these coming conditions in light of our present circumstances.

First, we are inevitably headed to these conditions. The Scriptures say so, and that settles that.

We may not be headed directly there, and there is no guarantee that we are headed uniformly (in a straight line) in that direction. After all, had I read this passage in 1960, when 200 bushel acres of grain were only in theory or testing farms, I may have suggested that we could see yields per acre drop off uniformly until worldwide famine appeared after a war. I write this so you can know something of my circumspection in this analysis (afterall, I was a 9-year-old in 1960, and the only production I was concerned about was Mickey Mantle’s home run production).

Second, these conditions are anamolous: they should not happen. When war creates dislocations, the supply of EVERYTHING should be disrupted, and priorities are ordinarily given to basic necessities. Today, you will notce that in case of emergency dislocation, we airlift fresh water, food, and other essential supplies. In fact, increasingly, this activity is the day-to-day life of many if not most nominally Christian missions (not that it should be). So, when we see these conditions, and see that while a loaf of bread can’t be baked for many, someone else could still drive around in their Hummer or Rolls, and knock down a bottle of Dom Perignon.

What we see here is a further indicator of the greater stratification of the classes of men: scarce essential goods, luxury goods in abundance. This corresponds not only to the tendency of consolidation of wealth into fewer and fewer hands today, but to the extreme conditions which are notable in the physical description of {future Babylon.|Rev 18:9-19}

Third, these conditions, therefore, cannot be attributed to scarcity of oil. This becomes especially meaningful when considering modern farming. Today as at yet no time in history, food supplies for man and beast both rely extensively on the use of oil and its derivative products. Indeed, nearly the entire rise in productivity in farming can be attributed to the application of energy to the processs of growth.

It’s been a hundred years now, but last century, the hand-wringing was not about lack of oil, but about a lack of NITROGEN. This was an important world economic problem, important enough to influence Bible students to note that the Dead Sea was a substantial repository of precious nitrates so essential to fertilization of countries like Russia, and therefore may form one of the “hooks in the jaws” of the north country to seek it as a spoil according to {Ezekiel’s prophecy|Ezek 38:4}.

One can hardly help but notice that the armies noted in this mysterious prophecy are on horseback, not mechanized, not motorized.

It’s important to know the crises of the former day – the Nitrogen Crisis, if you will – was abated by perhaps the least known important discovery of the 20th century: the Haber-Bosch Process. This process is widely thought to be the first industrial process based on knowledge of chemistry, and it is not yet even 100-years old!

What Haber (scientist) discovered and Bosch (engineer) implemented was a methodology using high temperatures and pressures (two ends of the same thing), with iron as a catalyst, together with massive energy, to formed liquid Ammonia (NH3) from abundant Nitrogen (N) and Hydrogen (H) found in the atmosphere, over which {our enemy is prince|Eph 2:2}.

It is very interesting the resulting ammon-ia is a name derived from the same source that named the children of Ammon: the sun-god worship in Egypt. Equally interesting is the fact that ammonia, while not found naturally occuring in the earth’s atmosphere, is in abundance in Jupiter’s, the name the Romans gave to the Egyptian sun god.

Without digressing too far, we can see that the linkage between cheap abundant energy and abundant food is clear. Therefore, the linkage between expensive – yet abundant – energy, and food shortage is also clear.

Fourth, there will be an increasing disparity in the class structure of men. We see this empirically, and in the formulation of Babylon, and the warnings of {James|Ja 5:1-5}. The rich ARE getting richer, and the poor remain poor. We have already come to a time when a very large class of conspicuous consumers can afford to use a day’s food for someone in order to drive a car {1.5 miles+Method of Calculation+Based on ethanol usage at 15 mpg, 2.5 gallons of ethanol produced per 56 lb. bushel of corn, and 1 days ration of corn at 1 kilogram.}

At some point, upon the arrival and ephiphany of the Man of sin, this structure will be formalized into an aristocracy of those who can buy and sell, and those who cannot.

Interestingly, we can also learn in our own day that it is the psychology – nay FAITH – of people actually determine the dearness of energy costs. In short, though crude oil may be so abundant beneath the earth’ surface that it can know no end, the BELIEF that it is short (see PEAK OIL), can bring to pass the exact scarce food conditions that are evident in Rev. 6, the black horse.

In fact, it is no stretch to understand that all the conditions of the “four horsemen of the apocalypse” are the engineered result of the machinations and motivations of men: a subject I may delve into in another entry.

Comment by Robert Oliver » 9th July, 2007 @ 10:07:51 AM

I found this thread because I wanted to see if anyone else was as ‘crazy’ as me. Apparently there is at least one. This goes much deeper… MUCH deeper. These conditions are not the result of fore-ordained inevitability, per-se. They are the result of the actions of cruel and greedy people, nations and tongues. They are predictable because the nature of civilized man (the children of Cain as it were) is predictable.

Comment by JOHN WOOD » 30th June, 2008 @ 01:48:54 PM



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