Thursday, January 23, 2020

Trump Embraces Environmental Initiatives While Rejecting Stifling Climate Alarmism

In a speech at the World Economic Forum at Davos on January 21st 2020, just minutes before teenage activist Greta Thunberg addressed a session called Averting a Climate Apocalypse in which she bemoaned that the earth "is on fire", President Donald Trump warned there were forces at work that aimed to "destroy our economy and wreck our country or eradicate our liberty", and that "we must reject the perennial prophets of doom and their predictions of the apocalypse."

Here is what he said on these issues in full:

"We’ve been so successful that the United States no longer needs to import energy from hostile nations. With an abundance of American natural gas now available, our European allies no longer have to be vulnerable to unfriendly energy suppliers either. We urge our friends in Europe to use America’s vast supply and achieve true energy security.

With U.S. companies and researchers leading the way, we are on the threshold of virtually unlimited reserves of energy, including from traditional fuels, LNG, clean coal, next-generation nuclear power, and gas hydrate technologies.

At the same time, I’m proud to report the United States has among the cleanest air and drinking water on Earth — and we’re going to keep it that way. And we just came out with a report that, at this moment, it’s the cleanest it’s been in the last 40 years. We’re committed to conserving the majesty of God’s creation and the natural beauty of our world.

Today, I’m pleased to announce the United States will join One Trillion Trees Initiative being launched here at the World Economic Forum. One Trillion Trees. (Applause.) And in doing so, we will continue to show strong leadership in restoring, growing, and better managing our trees and our forests.

This is not a time for pessimism; this is a time for optimism. Fear and doubt is not a good thought process because this is a time for tremendous hope and joy and optimism and action.

But to embrace the possibilities of tomorrow, we must reject the perennial prophets of doom and their predictions of the apocalypse. They are the heirs of yesterday’s foolish fortune-tellers — and I have them and you have them, and we all have them, and they want to see us do badly, but we don’t let that happen. They predicted an overpopulation crisis in the 1960s, mass starvation in the ’70s, and an end of oil in the 1990s. These alarmists always demand the same thing: absolute power to dominate, transform, and control every aspect of our lives.

We will never let radical socialists destroy our economy, wreck our country, or eradicate our liberty. America will always be the proud, strong, and unyielding bastion of freedom.

In America, we understand what the pessimists refuse to see: that a growing and vibrant market economy focused on the future lifts the human spirit and excites creativity strong enough to overcome any challenge — any challenge by far.

The great scientific breakthroughs of the 20th century — from penicillin, to high-yield wheat, to modern transportation, and breakthrough vaccines — have lifted living standards and saved billions of lives around the world. And we’re continuing to work on things that you’ll be hearing about in the near future that, even today, sitting here right now, you wouldn’t believe it’s possible that we have found the answers. You’ll be hearing about it. But we have found answers to things that people said would not be possible — certainly not in a very short period of time.

But the wonders of the last century will pale in comparison to what today’s young innovators will achieve because they are doing things that nobody thought even feasible to begin. We continue to embrace technology, not to shun it. When people are free to innovate, millions will live longer, happier, healthier lives.

For three years now, America has shown the world that the path to a prosperous future begins with putting workers first, choosing growth, and freeing entrepreneurs to bring their dreams to life."

Friday, December 20, 2019

The Enochites: An Early 20th-Century Russian Apocalyptic Cult That Worshiped St. John of Kronstadt

In 1902-03 there were reports in The New York Times of a Russian sect emerging that revolved around the worship of St. John of Kronstadt - while he was still alive. Of course, he condemned this movement, yet this did not stop the fanaticism of the people, who misinterpreted his unique miraculous powers as a sign that the end of the world was near. Could this cult be behind the alleged prophecy of St. John of Kronstadt regarding the end of the world from 1901? It's interesting this movement began the very next year after this alleged vision. Below are the articles which describe this movement further:

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Was Jesus Ignorant of the Time of His Second Coming?

By John Sanidopoulos

Mark 13:32 and Matthew 24:36 seem to indicate that not only are all men and angels ignorant of the time of the Second Coming of Christ, but that Jesus also is ignorant of the time of His imminent return. In fact, Jesus says that only the Father knows the day and the hour of the Second Coming of Christ. Therefore, was Jesus indeed ignorant of the day and hour of His Second Coming?

Two Church Fathers, St. Basil the Great and St. John Chrysostom, specifically addressed this issue.

St. Basil's response can be read in a letter to St. Amphilochios of Iconium (Letter 236), where he adamantly states that Jesus was in fact not ignorant of His Second Coming. First, he states that the opinion that Jesus was ignorant of His Second Coming has its origins from the heretics, and that the tradition he received from his youth and by all Orthodox Christians is that Jesus was in fact not ignorant. Second, he shows how to properly interpret these passages of Scripture. He puts forward Mark 10:18 where Jesus says that "there is none good but one, that is, God." He explains that this does not exclude that Jesus is good, but rather indicates that God the Father is the first good. Also in Matthew 11:27, where Jesus says, "No one knows the Son but the Father", we are not to believe that the Holy Spirit is ignorant of the Son, but rather that to the Father naturally belongs the first knowledge. St. Basil also puts forward other passages of Scripture where Jesus talks about knowing when His Second Coming will be, such as Matthew 24:6. He further brings forward the fact that Jesus as man often spoke of Himself in human terms and weaknesses, but that as God He possessed the "wisdom and power of God" (1 Cor. 1:24).

It should also be pointed out that most Byzantine texts of the Gospels do not contain the words "nor the Son" in Matthew 24:36. It seems that this was added to the text of the Gospel of Matthew based on the text that does contain it, in Mark 13:32. This is a debatable issue why this is so, but St. Basil refers to this fact when he shows that though Mark does seem to indicate an ignorance of the Son, Matthew does not. St. John Chrysostom, in a rare exception, adds "nor the Son" in Matthew. For Basil, this indicates that the words "but My Father only" are offered in contradistinction to the angels and men, but not the Son. Rather, Matthew more clearly shows that the Father has first knowledge by nature, whereas the Son has knowledge through the Father. Otherwise there would be a contradiction here with John 16:15, where Jesus says: "“All things that the Father has are Mine." John 10:15 also states clearly: "As the Father knows Me even so know I the Father."

St. Basil clarifies Mark 13:32 when he says that it should be read in the following manner: "Of that day and of that hour no man knows, nor the angels of God; but even the Son would not have known if the Father had not known, for the knowledge naturally His was given by the Father." Keeping in mind that the knowledge and divinity of the Son comes from the Father, this passage is much more clearly understood.

According to St. John Chrysostom in his Homilies on the Gospel of Matthew, the reason Jesus seems to indicate ignorance in this passage was so that the disciples may not even entertain the thought of inquiring into the matter. Though Jesus does know the time of His Second Coming, He is pointing out here a greater mystery, that the source of this knowledge comes from the Father and through the Father is given to the Son. But since the disciples do not yet understand this relationship between the Father and the Son, to them it is merely an indication to not further inquire into the matter. It appeared to them that the Son was ignorant so that they not feel scorned by Jesus or perplexed why they were not given knowledge He possessed. Thus, by Jesus saying "nor the Son", He was indicating to the disciples that He is indeed honoring them and has concealed nothing from them, but that knowledge of the Second Coming would be more harmful to them rather than beneficial. Meanwhile, St. John clearly indicates that the time of the Second Coming is perfectly known by the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit; for the Holy Trinity, Who created heaven and earth, created time as well. Mankind has no need to know neither the time of the judgment, nor how the Son will judge.

St. John Chrysostom puts the following words into the mouth of Jesus to explain this further: "For that indeed I am not ignorant of it [the Second Coming], I have shown by many things; having mentioned intervals, and all the things that are to occur, and how short from this present time until the day itself (for this did the parable of the fig tree indicate), and I lead you to the very vestibule; and if I do not open unto you the doors [of knowledge], this also I do for your good."

St. John even shows how Jesus speaks specifically of knowing the day and hour of His coming when He speaks of His coming suddenly and unexpectedly in the verses following Matthew 24:36.

We can thus conclude that according to the patristic tradition of the Church, Jesus is not nor ever was ignorant of the time of His Second Coming.


Friday, November 15, 2019

Time after Constantinople: Apocalyptic Expectations and the Fall of Constantinople (1453 A.D.)

Time after Constantinople:
Apocalyptic Expectations and the Fall of Constantinople (1453 A.D.)

Research Master Thesis

By Joost van den Oever

Radboud University Nijmegen

(August 2012)


History is full of moments of extreme emotions, either of fear or of hope, during which sudden disasters or outbreaks of war and famine have led to increased speculations about the end times. From Persian, Zoroastrian expectations of a final battle between the forces of good and evil, Ahoera Mazda and Ahriman, up to recent predictions of nuclear warfare, the millennium bug, global warming and Mayan calendar calculations, apocalypticism has never fully receded from the human mind. Especially in the United States, using modern media as a tool for disseminating their message, apocalyptic preachers such as Hall Lindsey have their audiences not merely among the uneducated, lower classes, but also among middle class professionals. Indeed, even though modern man usually disdains the phenomenon as an obsolete idea belonging to the primitive cultures and religions of our ancestors, it is hardly so that only medieval Christian people were affected by it. To be fair, many of the widely circulating stories of today about terrified Christians awaiting the end of times around the year 1000 A.D., are later inventions of Renaissance thinkers trying to portray the Middle Ages as a time of darkness and ignorance.

Monday, November 4, 2019

St. George Karslides and the Apocalyptic Visionary

By Monk Moses the Athonite

There was a village woman who believed that she could see the Panagia and Christ and crying she would speak about future disasters. They asked Elder George (+ 1959) to visit her. The Elder went to her house and convinced her to come to the church of the village.

There he did the Supplication Service to the Panagia. The villagers had become afraid and the small children were panic struck. Everyone prayed and did prostrations. The "prophecies" of this woman, concerning impending destruction, had shaken up the village. The Elder quietly and calmly prayed at the Holy Altar intensely and fervently.