Tag Archives: World War I

Observations of the Apocalypse

29 Jan

I was checking the locks before going to bed and saw a slip of paper stuck in the front door. It was a pamphlet, and its haunting title stared back at me.

Will This World Survive?

I usually throw this stuff away, but something made me keep this one. Was it a sudden fascination with the apocalypse? Not really. I thought it might make an interesting blog post. A few minutes ago, I read it and came up with a few observations.End

1. Whoever left the paper in our door is dedicated to the cause. It is cold out there, and they certainly left one at every house. I am not sure about this apocalypse stuff, but I have to admire their dedication to making sure everyone knows about it.

2. Is this something that happens in other parts of the country, or is it a southern thing? We live in the buckle of the Bible Belt and having someone stop by the house to talk religion is not unusual. I wonder if it happens in places that are not as fundamentalist as here.

Now, a break for some apocalyptic trivia. A lot of people know about Nashville’s music industry. However, few people know that Nashville is also home to a large printing industry. In fact, Nashville prints more religious material than any other city. Oh yeah, it also prints more pornography than any other city.

3. The first sentence states the following – “No other generation has heard so much talk about the end of the world.” I guess that is true, but predicting the end of the world is not something new. I think back to the Millerites in the 1840s. They were convinced that the end was near. When it did not happen, some fulfilled the prophecy by committing suicide.

4. The pamphlet lists the ways in which the world may reach its demise. It contains the usual suspects – nuclear holocaust, pollution, economic chaos. However, it did not mention the current apocalyptic fad. Everyone knows that the world will end with a zombie apocalypse. Anything that leaves that out is not considering all of the possibilities.

5. There are passages about Noah and the flood. Humanity went off the rails and a cleansing was needed. The waters covered the wicked, and Noah was left to repopulate the world. It continues by saying something that I have heard in many sermons. The next cleansing will be with fire. That could be a nuclear fire, but I would bet on an issue with the sun. Whether by bomb or sun, that is going to be a cleansing that is hard to survive.

6. At this point, the pamphlet delves into history. There are a few sentences about a sign. Then, there is mention of the First World War. I got from this that the sign and World War I have something in common. In essence, the apocalypse began in 1914. It was supposed to be the “War That Ends All Wars.” Turns out, it was the war that ended everything.

7. What has happened in the last hundred years to prove that the end is near?

War has raged, and hunger has killed millions

Earthquakes have killed more people in the past hundred years than in the centuries before. Of course, there have been large cities built on fault lines.

Diseases, starting with the Spanish Flu, have ravaged populations.

Streets are filled with lawlessness and chaos.

In short, all of the signs are there.

8. The pamphlet was last updated in 2005. Has anything happened in the last 10 years to change course? I guess that is why zombies were left out.

9. This world will surely come to an end. At some point, our sun will die, and the planet will die with it. Hopefully, humanity will be able to escape with technology. However, they may not be the case. We may go the way to the dinosaurs and other creatures that have inhabited this place.

However, people have been looking for the end of the world since there has been people. The Millerites did it, and plenty of others did it before and after them. Sadly, it is a self-fulfilling prophecy for many. Today, I read about a young family that was found dead because the parents had become obsessed with the end of the world. For them and their children, it ended with poison.

The apocalypse cannot be predicted because the signs are always there. Heck, everyone who has ever predicted his has been wrong. War, hunger, natural disasters, disease and crime are tragedies that have always been with us. Instead of looking for signs, we should be looking for ways to fix them.

I avoid writing about religion, and I do not mean for this to be about that subject. I am saying that we should not focus on the world ending. We should focus on fixing it.

The Sixth of April

6 Apr

That is what the date stamp at the left of this post says. What it does not say is that it is also my dad’s birthday. To celebrate, my brother, my nephew, our friend Larry and I spent yesterday with him at the University of Tennessee. We watched football practice and got a  behind-the-scenes tour of the football facilities. That may not seem like fun to a lot of people, but, for crazy fans like us, it was a great day.

To celebrate on this blog, I thought it would be interesting to see what historic events have happened on April 6.April

In 1862, the Battle of Shiloh began.

In 1970, Sam Sheppard passed away. For those who do not know, his story became the fictional story of The Fugitive.

In 1917, the United States officially entered World War I.

In 1841, John Tyler was sworn in as president. It is hard to believe that he has grandchildren who are still living.

In 1808, John Jacob Astor created the American Fur Company. Eventually, he would become America’s first millionaire.

In 1896, the first modern Olympic Games began in Athens, Greece.

In 1929, the Louisiana House of Representatives impeached Governor Huey P. Long.

In 1973, the designated hitter was introduced into the American League.

In 1938, my dad was born.

 

 

The Life and Times of Brother Baker

10 Aug

On August 3rd, our community lost one of its finest citizens. W.L. Baker, a Baptist preacher known to everyone as Brother Baker, passed away on his 105th birthday. He was truly a great man who lived by his convictions and helped everyone who he came across. In fact, he was a pastor who inspired me each time I heard him speak.Brother Baker

Brother Baker’s specialty was reciting the Sermon on the Mount by memory. As he got older, he did it less and less. However, I was lucky enough to hear it. He was a great preacher and a greater man. Everyone who knew Brother Baker will say the same thing. A lot of people also have a favorite story about Brother Baker, but this post isn’t one of the stories.

When I heard about his passing, I thought about all of the things he saw during his lifetime. Imagine how much the world has change since 1908, and Brother Baker witnessed it all. He was born in the latter days of Theodore Roosevelt’s presidency. That means that he lived during the administrations of 19 presidents. Considering that there have been 44, that means Brother Baker was around for 43% of our nation’s leaders.

Some other things that happened during Brother Baker’s lifetime.

He was a few months old when the Chicago Cubs last won the World Series.

The United States entered World War I when Brother Baker was 8 years old.

He was 18 years old when Charles Lindbergh flew solo across the Atlantic Ocean.

Japan attacked Pearl Harbor when Brother Baker was 33 years old.

The United States dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima when he was 37 years old.

Brother Baker was 52 years old when the Berlin Wall went up and was 81 years old when it came down.

He was 55 years old when John F. Kennedy was assassinated.

Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon when Brother Baker was 60 years old.

When Ronald Reagan was shot, Brother Baker was 72 years old.

He was 93 years old on September 11, 2001.

Brother Baker saw a lot of events and a lot of changes in the world. Through it all, he held firm to his beliefs and shared good will with everyone. That’s something that everyone should strive for.