When The Rivers Run Dry

“The beasts of the field cry also unto thee: for the rivers of waters are dried up, and the fire hath devoured the pastures of the wilderness” (Joel 1:20).

After the Flood of Noah, God set a boundary for the waters, “that they turn not again to cover the earth” (Psalm 104:9). There is a time coming, however, when even such a mighty river as “the great river Euphrates” will run dry, and “the water thereof (will be) dried up” (Revelation 16:12). Instead of covering the earth, the life-giving waters will be withheld, as one of God’s coming judgments on the rebellious world of the last days. His prophetic witnesses will be given power to “shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy” (Revelation 11:6). Furthermore, the atmosphere will be so restrained that “the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any tree” (Revelation 7:1), yet the sun will burn so intensely that “men (will be) scorched with great heat” (Revelation 16:9).

All of this will generate great fires and famine around the world. The prophet Joel places all this in the context of the coming “day of the LORD . . . as a destruction from the Almighty” (Joel 1:15). The pastures will burn up, and the rivers will dry up, “for the day of the LORD is great and very terrible; and who can abide it?” (Joel 2:11). “Therefore hath the curse devoured the earth, and they that dwell therein are desolate: therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, and few men left” (Isaiah 24:6).

Yet there is also a time coming when the judgments are past and “the parched ground shall become a pool, and the thirsty land springs of water: . . . And the ransomed of the LORD shall return. . . : They shall obtain joy and gladness, and sorrow and sighing shall flee away” (Isaiah 35:7,10). In that day—as in this—it is all-important to be among the ransomed. HMM

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