BILL BERKOWITZ FOR BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
Because they start salivating and can’t seem to keep their mouths shut when ever they sense an opportunity, a handful of evangelical Christians are claiming that Hurricane Sandy is God’s way of showing his wrath on a Godless nation, or as one noted author of apocalyptic fiction wrote; it’s God’s October Surprise.
Here’s what Joel C. Rosenberg, a best selling author and lecturer on all things apocalyptic, recently wrote: “Isn't God trying to get our attention? Just days before one of the most significant and momentous presidential and Congressional elections in American history, I believe God is reminding us that America's fate lies not in the hands of the politicians, but in His hands. Will America listen? Will we realize how fragile our existence is, how desperately we need the Lord's divine love and protection?”
Rosenberg, who is often hypothesizing (in a seemingly hopeful way) as to when Israel might strike at Iran’s nuclear facilities, and spends a great deal of team stirring up visions of the End Times, asked readers to “pray for the Lord God Almighty to dissipate the intensity of the storm and to protect the lives of people and property. Pray, too, that the Lord uses this moment to motivate Americans to repent of our sins and turn to faith in Jesus Christ as our only hope of personal and national salvation and rescue.”
Claiming America’s godlessness results in tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes and other natural disasters has been in the conservative evangelical Christian playbook for eons. The late Rev. Jerry Falwell, however, took that correlation a step further when in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks, he blamed a kitchen sink of his enemies, including gays and lesbians, civil liberties advocates, church-state separationists, for the attacks.
Not surprisingly, Margie Phelps of Topeka, Kansas’ notorious Westboro Baptist Church, tweeted: “Sandy Winds AHEAD! bit.ly/VxC6qu via @GodSmacksU 375,000 evacuated in NYC. Praise God! Stop marrying fags in NYC! #FagsDoomNations.
Jason St. Amand recently reported in edgeboston.com that John McTernan, author, pastor and founder of Defend and Proclaim the Faith ministries, “fired off a blog post on the Defend and Proclaim website that suggested the LGBT community and President Barack Obama’s support for marriage equality are to blame for Hurricane Sandy.”
McTernan, who wrote on his “John McTernan Insights” website, that “God is systematically destroying America,” also used numerology, the U.S.’s relationship with Israel to hammer home his point:
“Hurricane Sandy is hitting 21 years to the day of the Perfect Storm of October 20, 1991… This was the day that President George Bush Sr. initiated the Madrid Peace Process to divide the land of Israel, including Jerusalem. America has been under God’s judgment since this event. Both of these hurricanes were cause by freakish weather patterns that came together to create
“Twenty-one years breaks down to 7 x 3, which is a significant number with God. Three is perfection as the Godhead is three in one while seven is perfection.
“It appears that God gave America 21 years to repent of interfering with His prophetic plan for Israel; however, it has gotten worse under all the presidents and especially Obama. Obama is 100 percent behind the Muslim Brotherhood which has vowed to destroy Israel and take Jerusalem. Both candidates are pro-homosexual and are behind the homosexual agenda. America is under political judgment and the church does not know it!”
Drew Zahn, a former pastor, recently wrote a piece for the conservative WND web site, in which he quotes journalist and White House correspondent William Koenig who argues that Hurricane Sandy is a direct result of acts against Israel. According to Koenig, “Hurricane Sandy is expected to come ashore in the Northeast on the 21st anniversary of the ‘Perfect Storm,’” Koenig related. “That record-setting storm devastated the New England coast as President George H.W. Bush co-sponsored the Madrid Conference from Oct. 30 to Nov. 1, 1991.”
Koenig maintained that the 1938 “Long Island Express” hurricane, which killed more than 600 people and resulted in property damage that in today’s dollars approaches nearly $5 billion, was precipitated by “tremendous persecution of the Jewish people, a build-up to the Holocaust.”
According to Kahn, in Koenig’s book “Eye to Eye: Facing the Consequences of Dividing Israel,” “Koenig points out that nine of the 10 costliest insurance events in U.S. history followed dramatic calls by U.S. officials for Israel to make land concessions in bids for peace with its neighbors.”
How does Hurricane Sandy fit into Koenig’s paradigm? “Both political parties have now accepted, specifically, a two-state solution to peace in the Mideast, dividing Israel’s land between Israel and a Palestinian state,” Koenig told WND. “And now this hurricane story is going to disrupt political campaigning and possibly affect voter turnout for both parties.
“There has been a lot of behind-the-scenes pressure on Israel by the Obama administration, to not act on Iran prior to the election,” Koenig continued, “but the most succinct correlation is that both parties have officially endorsed the two-state solution.”
Evangelicals and Armageddonists gabbing about God using natural disasters to whip people into shape, will continue, pardon the expression, till Kingdom come. As the late Kurt Vonnegut might have ruefully observed: “So it goes.”