DOING THE LORD'S WORK
DOING THE LORD'S WORK
As some of you readers who are Catholic may recall, the Old Testament reading at Mass this weekend was the beginning of the story of the prophet Elijah and the Widow of Zarephath. Briefly, Elijah had been living by a brook, where God sent ravens to feed him. Because of the massive and prolonged drought that Elijah himself had foretold, the brook eventually dried up and God told Elijah to go to Zarephath and seek out a widow who would feed him. He finds the widow, who tells him:
As the LORD, your God, lives,
I have nothing baked; there is only a handful of flour in my jar
and a little oil in my jug.
Just now I was collecting a couple of sticks,
to go in and prepare something for myself and my son;
when we have eaten it, we shall die.
Elijah asks her to make him a little cake first, telling her not to be afraid, that God will ensure that her flour jar will not go empty nor her oil jug run dry until the drought is over. Actually, regarding this last bit, he says specifically, “until the day when the LORD sends rain upon the earth.”
The story of the Widow of Zarephath has many lessons. It’s about the faith and generosity of spirit the Widow showed, sharing her very last bit of flour and oil with Elijah. Later in the story, it becomes a story about hospitality, the responsibilities of those who have been shown kindness, and the power of faith in God (who, through Elijah, raises the Widow’s son from the dead).
As we listened yesterday, however, the thing that struck us was this: Elijah is fed by ravens. He is able to keep the flour jar from going empty and the oil jug from going dry for an entire year. He even is able to pray a dead boy back to life. He does all of these things in God’s name and with God’s power, of course, but he still does them. But do you know what he doesn’t do, what he can’t do, and what only the Lord can do?” End the drought, i.e. “send rain upon the earth.”
Last week, as we listened to and read about the brilliant and gripping and heart-wrenching and “scientific” speeches at the COP26 climate-change jamboree in Glasgow, we heard over and over (and over) about how droughts are caused by climate change. And if we’d all just put on sweaters and ride the subway and eat more vegetables, we could end droughts forever and ever. Consider, for example, the following:
Madagascar is in the grips of drought and famine, and failing to act to stop climate change will have disastrous consequences for the country, Andry Rajoelina, the president of the African island, has warned.
People in the country's south are living through the worst drought in 40 years, according to the UN World Food Programme, and more than 1.3 million people in Madagascar are experiencing food distress….
He also urged global leaders to act. “I call on leaders from around the world to accelerate the mobilization of $100 billion for the Paris agreement so that we can fund energy transition policy in Africa,” Rajoelina added.
Reading this made us think. First, it made us think that life in Madagascar must be pretty awful right now. Seriously. Droughts are terrible things, even in developed nations. We can only imagine how terrible – and devastating – they are in developing countries. We truly feel awful for the people of Madagascar hope that their drought and their misery are both relieved soon.
The second thing that this made us think is that while the drought will certainly end eventually, the suffering likely will not. These people – the leaders of Madagascar, the global financial community, the United Nations, etc. – are promising an end to droughts through the transition to alternative energy sources. That’s…uhh…dishonest AT BEST:
Linking climate change to a temporary weather event, which this drought is, equates to a false comparison. Also, the U.N.’s own data show Madagascar has been setting records in recent decades for crop production, so any food supply shortages are due to political or economic factors not declining crop production….
The UN and CNN should check their premises and data. History shows back to back droughts are not unprecedented in Madagascar’s history. Indeed, CNN’s own coverage notes the current drought is the worst in forty years….
Peer reviewed research shows Madagascar’s large megafauna declined sharply, with many species going extinct during previous extended droughts. Research indicates Madagascar suffered extended droughts nearly 6,000 and again nearly 1,000 years ago. A drought, approximately 950 years before present, triggered a large transformation in vegetation, an increase in wildfires, and a sharp decline in the island’s megafauna.
It may be true that some people in Madagascar face potential starvation, but, contrary to UN Food Programme’s claims it can’t be due to more than a very recent decline in food supplies, because data from the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization, show Madagascar’s food production has set repeated records since 1980….
Droughts are pretty common, in other words. They’ve occurred throughout history in Madagascar. They happened in the time of Elijah in Zarephath of Sidon. They happened in the MENA region (for seven years!) when Joseph, son of Jacob, was vizier to the Pharoah. They have been a constant feature of life on earth for as long as there has been life on earth.
And that brings us to the last thing that the speeches and proclamations on droughts made us think: who the heck do these people think they are?
We have written before about the Gnostic nature of the climate change movement, specifically noting how perfectly Greta Thunberg fits the canonical description of a prophetess of the Gnostic heresy. And the howling about droughts just reinforces all of this.
Elijah couldn’t bring rain upon the earth, but Joe Biden and Boris Johnson are going to. The Lord ended the drought in Elijah’s time. But the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Economic Forum are going to do so now. All of this is possible because droughts are, it would seem, manmade climatic phenomena – history, SCIENCE, and common sense notwithstanding. The Masters of the Political Universe, with help from the Masters of the Financial Universe, are going to do what previously only God could do.
We’d warn these people that there is usually a cost to proclaiming equality with God, but they could just ask this guy, who is in need of some restraint, apparently.
Even if you strip out the religious language, strip out the Biblical references, and assume (just for the time being) that the “scientific” consensus is 100% accurate and that man is causing ALL climate change and is therefore capable of reversing it, it is still manifestly stupid, arrogant, and downright cruel to tell starving people in Madagascar that you’re going to fix all their problems and teach the world to sing in perfect harmony by making Soukup and Melcher give up their pick-up trucks. The very idea is preposterous.
Of course, preposterousness isn’t really that big of a concern if you happen to be the leader of a developing nation, eagerly awaiting the “mobilization of $100 billion for the Paris agreement so that we can fund energy transition policy in Africa.” If we were Madagascar’s Andry Rajoelina, for examle – one of the most corrupt and violent leaders in Africa – we’d be counting on that too. And we’d also be hoping it arrives in time for us to take our cut before escaping to Argentina.
C’est la vie, we suppose. That’s the way things go when you’re doing God’s work.