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Flu, Plagues and the Times
By J.L. Robb
So far, it has been a bad flu season in the United States and Canada; and the killer strain this year is the H3N2 virus. This strain is also killing people in Australia. Is this unusual? Not really.
Flu is an every-year occurrence and kills an estimated 23,000 people per year in the U.S. if we go back as far as 1976 in figuring the average. However, if we go back only 10 years, to 2007, the annual average jumps to 32,000 deaths. The 2003-2004 flu season was more deadly with a toll of 48,000. That is a lot of death for a single country, and why is death increasing?
According to Medical News Today, influenza is the 8th leading cause of death in the United States; and most cases occur in the winter, though the cause of this is unknown. It is highly contagious and is airborne. If you hear someone at the grocery store cough or sneeze, you may want to avoid that aisle for 30-minutes or so.
However, one can contract the flu in other ways. Grab a door knob after someone with the flu goes out the door, and you will pick up a few flu germs.
Flu is much more than a really bad cold and can be one of the world’s deadliest diseases. Just last week, a mother of three, a runner of marathons, got H3N2 flu and was dead within 15-hours after going to the Emergency Room.
SAN JOSE, California — Katie Oxley Thomas just celebrated her 40th birthday a few weeks ago, but over the weekend nearly 500 people gathered to mourn her sudden death from the flu.
Katie was the mother of children 17,15 and 8. The 8-year-old daughter hopes to someday hug her mom in Heaven. I hope so too.
The Bible is full of plague, disease and pestilence used as judgements against mankind. In Revelation, it comes upon mankind through the fourth horse of the apocalypse and bowl judgments:
I looked, and there before me was a pale horse! Its rider was named Death, and Hades was following close behind him. They were given power over a fourth of the earth to kill by sword, famine and plague, and by the wild beasts of the earth. Revelation 6:8 NIV
When the angels are called to empty their bowls of judgment, one-by-one, on the earth, the first bowl judgment is disease and sounds a bit like smallpox. It affects only those who have taken the Mark of the Beast in the last days so they could purchase goods and sell their wares, and worship the antichrist.
I am not sure how a virus or disease could be specific enough to affect only those with the mark, but it can happen. The first instance of Passover happened when a plague was so selective it killed the Egyptian firstborn children and animals while passing over the Hebrew people who painted lamb’s blood as a mark on the door, at God’s instruction.
This fatal plague, like the flu, happened in less than a day. Is this a disease that has a part in the final act of Revelation?
The Bowl 1 plague:
The first angel went and poured out his bowl on the land, and ugly, festering sores broke out on the people who had the mark of the beast and worshiped its image. Revelation 16:2 NIV
The Two Witnesses bring plague:
They have power to shut up the heavens so that it will not rain during the time they are prophesying; and they have power to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want. Revelation 11:6 NIV
Could the Black Death revive? The black death killed as many as 200,000,000 in Europe and Asia in the 14th century, 25% of the world population, and then virtually disappeared. Until recently.
A report August, 2017, has the following warning for citizens of New Mexico:
“Take precautions.” Bubonic Plague has been found in insects and rodents.
A Navajo County official posted on Facebook:
“Navajo County Health Department is urging the public to take precautions to reduce their risk of exposure to this serious disease, which can be present in fleas, rodents, rabbits and predators that feed upon these animals.
“The disease can be transmitted to humans and other animals by the bite of an infected flea or by direct contact with an infected animal.”
Madagascar has the most recent resurgence of Black Death, as indicated by an article in The Sun, October 22, 2017.
NO ONE IS SAFE Brits warned as BLACK DEATH plague outbreak intensifies on Madagascar and kills 100 on holiday island
Madagascar currently has 80% of the world’s bubonic plague, and the current breakout is not over. We should not take disease for granted. It can resurge and strike at any moment, and the result can shake your world.
I get flu shots but only in recent years. I have actually had the flu a couple of times in my life, and each time I promised I would never miss another flu shot; but I did anyway. I am fortunate that I never got one of the really bad ones, like H1N1 in 1918-1919.
The flu pandemic of 1918 killed more people than World War I with estimates as high as 50,000,000-100,000,000 dead in a two-year period. Medical researchers have cited the Spanish Flu as the most devastating epidemic in world history. In only one year, more people died from the Spanish Flu than from four years of Black Death in Europe, 1347-1351.
The flu was especially hard on the 15-34 age group, 20-times higher than in previous flus.
There is a story of four women playing bridge late one night. The next morning, three of the four had died. One would get the flu and die within a few hours.
One physician at the time recalled that the influenza patients “died struggling to clear their airways of a blood-tinged froth that sometimes gushed from their nose and mouth.”
In Washington, DC, 1918, William H Sardo, Jr. recalls pine caskets stacked in the family living room of the funeral home. The epidemic in the U.S. was so bad that church services were banned, and most businesses were closed. People would get symptoms in the morning and die by night.
We better pay attention. God is sending plenty of signs our way. The world is sick and in need of a doctor, and the Doctor is on the way. I am sure.
Jesus told the apostles, when telling them about the very last days, that had he not returned at this time in history, everyone would be dead. It just cannot be that long. Hopefully.