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Saturday, October 20 2012
The Parched Ground Shall Become A Pool
The English word "desert," meaning "an arid region with little or no vegetation," originated from an Anglo-Saxon word which meant to forsake. Notice that the definition of desert identifies the key factor as arid - very low precipitation. Deserts can occur anywhere on earth, hence the reason that they are classified as either "hot" or "cold" i.e. there are deserts in northern Canada, just as there are deserts in the southern U.S. - while there are also seasonally cold deserts in the U.S. (e.g. in Montana) and seasonally hot deserts in Canada (e.g. the Alberta Badlands, that have cactus, scorpions and rattlesnakes).
The common illusion known as the "mirage" is often thought of as occurring in deserts, however they can occur anywhere that it gets hot, even for a few hours. The English word "mirage" originated from a French word meaning to be reflected, as in a mirror. A mirage, such as an illusion of a pool of water in a desert, or on a summertime highway, is just that - a mirror image. The phenomenon is caused by the refraction (bending) of the rays of the sun on a hot surface; what appears as a pool of water is actually just a reflection of the blue sky.
As is so often the case, a single English word, in this case "desert," is used to translate many different Hebrew words of the actual Holy Scriptures (keep in mind that the Word of God is the Word of God, translations are translations; see also Translation Of Translations). Examples:
"The parched ground shall become a pool and the thirsty land springs of water"
The defining-fact that deserts are dry because they receive little precipitation doesn't mean that water can't be found in a desert. As recorded in the Scriptures, water was and is available from an oasis, or from underground supplies, as in these examples in the Sinai.
"2:15 Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian [see Moses Of Midian]: and he sat down by a well. 2:16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters: and they came and drew water, and filled the troughs to water their father's flock. 2:17 And the shepherds came and drove them away: but Moses stood up and helped them, and watered their flock." (Exodus 2:15-17 KJV)
Interestingly, the Commandment against idolatry includes not making an idol out of "the water under the earth."
"20:4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth: 20:5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; 20:6 And showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments." (Exodus 20:4-6 KJV)
The return of the Messiah (see What Happens After The Messiah Returns?; also Could Christ Return Tonight?) is going to produce a new world in which all of the "dry places," geographically ("the parched ground shall become a pool and the thirsty land springs of water") and spiritually ("the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped") will be abundantly watered.
"35:1 The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose. 35:2 It shall blossom abundantly, and rejoice even with joy and singing: the glory of Lebanon shall be given unto it, the excellency of Carmel and Sharon, they shall see the glory of the LORD, and the excellency of our God.
Fact Finder: Are there vast amounts of underground water that may one day turn the dry deserts into well-watered pools?
This Day In History, October 20
480 BC: Greek naval forces defeated the Persian forces in the battle of Salamis (see The Prophet Daniel: The Ram and The He Goat).
1632: Sir Christopher Wren was born. He became one of Britain's most outstanding architects.
1740: Charles V, Holy Roman emperor (see The Holy Roman Empire) and head of the house of Habsburg, died. Two of the Wars of the Spanish Succession developed directly from his death.
1921: The Treaty of Ankara between France and the Grand National Assembly of Turkey was signed. It formalized the French recognition of the Assembly rather than the government of Ottoman sultan Mehmed VI, as the sovereign power in Turkey (listen also to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).
1822: Andrew Bonar Law became the first Canadian-born Prime Minister of Britain.
1827: In the Greek War of Independence, the Turkish and Egyptian fleets were devastated by the British, French and Russians at the Battle of Navarino.
1867: Ottawa was proclaimed the capital of Canada. Founded in 1827 by Col. John By, Ottawa was first named Bytown. It was renamed after the Ottawa Indians in 1854. In 1858 Ottawa was chosen by Queen Victoria to be the capital of the "United Provinces of Canada," and in 1867 it became the capital of the sovereign nation of Canada.
1911: Roald Amundsen set off with 4 others on his journey to the South Pole. They arrived on December 14.
1930: Jews in "Palestine" ("Palestine" is an English-language rendering of "Philistine") were banned from purchasing Arab land by the British authorities. After the fall of the Ottoman Empire, Britain controlled Palestine from the end of World War 1 in 1918 to Israeli independence in 1948 (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Balfour Declaration).
1935: The "Long March" of Chinese communists led by Mao Zedong ended. Of the 80,000 who set out, only 9,000 completed the 6,000 miles (9,700 kilometers) to Yanan.
1944: Aachen became the first large German city to fall to the advancing allied forces near the end of the Second World War.
1971: West German Chancellor Willy Brandt was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
1973: During their Watergate investigations of Nixon himself, President Nixon fired Watergate Prosecutor Archibald Cox and Deputy Attorney General William Ruckelshaus.
2011: Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi was captured and killed by rebel forces after the Battle of Sirte (see also Libya In History And Prophecy).