Though the past year has been replete with troubling news items that include a pandemic and hotly contested US Presidential election, the earth shaking beneath our feet seems to have gone unnoticed.
42 Major Earthquakes in 65 Days
In the first 65 days of this year, 42 major quakes, magnitude 6 or higher, have shaken the planet. The year with the largest total was 2010, with 24 major earthquakes greater than or equal to magnitude 7.0. In 2011, a total of 207 earthquakes of magnitude 6.0 or higher shook the earth, culminating in a 6.6 magnitude earthquake that caused the catastrophic meltdown of the Fukushima nuclear reactor and the concurrent 9.1 magnitude earthquake in Tohuka, Japan that killed over 20,000 people.
WATCH: Indonesia’s Mount Sinabung spewed hot ash up to nearly two miles in the air on Tuesday. No casualties has been reported, though the alert for the volcano in northern Sumatra province has been placed at the second-highest level. pic.twitter.com/oTnbbJ0JXT
— CBS News (@CBSNews) March 2, 2021
Powerful earthquakes shook the Kermadec Islands region of New Zealand on Thursday, setting off tsunami warnings.
But attention should be paid to less dramatic geologic rumblings as well. Iceland was hit by more than 18,000 earthquakes in the past week including a magnitude 7.3 earthquake, a magnitude 7.4 earthquake, and a magnitude 8.1 earthquake. In addition, authorities are warning that two volcanoes in a densely populated region of the country could erupt at literally any moment.
The number of earthquakes is increasing. In the first 65 days of 1921, exactly one century ago, only seven major quakes, magnitude 6 or higher were recorded globally according to the USGS DataBase. In the same period last year, a total of 24 major quakes, magnitude 6 or higher were recorded around the globe. Back in 2019, just 20 major quakes had been reported up to March the 6th, just 50% of this year’s total. In 2018, a total of 24 major quakes were reported in the first 65 days of the year and in 2017 just 15. 24 major earthquakes were recorded in the beginning of 2016 and in 2015, just 18.
While acknowledging that there is a marked increase in seismic activity, the authorities claim there is nothing to worry about.
“A temporary increase or decrease in seismicity is part of the normal fluctuation of earthquake rates,” The United States Geological Survey (USGS) wrote. “Neither an increase or decrease worldwide is a positive indication that a large earthquake is imminent. The ComCat earthquake catalog contains an increasing number of earthquakes in recent years–not because there are more earthquakes, but because there are more seismic instruments and they are able to record more earthquakes.”
“According to long-term records (since about 1900), we expect about 16 major earthquakes in any given year. That includes 15 earthquakes in the magnitude 7 range and one earthquake magnitude 8.0 or greater. In the past 40-50 years, our records show that we have exceeded the long-term average number of major earthquakes about a dozen times.”
Volcanoes Also Increasing
But earthquakes aren’t the only concern. Europe’s most active volcano, Mount Etna in Sicily, erupted seven times in the past two weeks. A large eruption started at Sangay volcano, Ecuador on Saturday. An earthquake swarm shook Mount Hood, a potentially active stratovolcano near Portland, Oregon for 45 minutes last week, raising concerns that the volcano was beginning to awake. Mount Sinabung in Indonesia’s North Sumatra province began erupting last Tuesday, sending volcanic materials as high as 16,400 feet into the sky with authorities recording 13 times when it released ash clouds. Three weeks ago, Fuego volcano, located 50 kilometers away from the capital city of Guatemala, started to erupt. As of yesterday 43 volcanoes around were erupting or showing signs of activity.
It should be noted that bursts of tremors similar to what was felt in Iceland last week have been observed ahead of previous volcanic eruptions in the region.
Since January 20, 2021, 1,722 weak earthquakes were detected under the Pinatubo Volcano in the Philippines.
Purification Through Destruction
Earthquakes are prophesied to accompany the end-of-days. Earthquakes and volcanoes are explicitly mentioned by the prophets as playing a role in the end of days, preparing the world by burning away impurities as a crucible is used in metallurgy to purify metal.
But Hashem God is the true God, He is the living God, and the everlasting King; at His wrath the earth trembleth, and the nations are not able to abide His indignation. Jeremiah 10:10
This multifaceted natural catastrophe scenario facing that region of the country conforms to the prophet’s description of the period preceding Messiah in which volcanoes will serve as a means to purify the inhabitants of the earth for the Messianic period to follow.
“And I will bring the third part through the fire and will refine them as silver is refined and will try them as gold is tried; they shall call on My name and I will answer them; I will say: ‘It is My people’ and they shall say: ‘Hashem is my God.’” Zechariah 13:9
The Prophet Ezekiel specifically described earthquakes as preceding the War of Gog and Magog.
Mountains shall be overthrown, cliffs shall topple, and every wall shall crumble to the ground. Ezekiel 38:20
Some rabbis have attributed this pre-Magog shake-up as God entering into the fray, using the forces of nature as his weapons of choice.