On Wednesday, March 25, 2020, a 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck just east of Russia’s Kuril Islands, sparking fears of impending tsunamis.1
According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), the earthquake was caused by shallow reverse faulting where the Pacific plate subducts beneath the Okhotsk microplate.2 The quake occurred at a depth of 59 kilometers (37 miles). Due to the magnitude of the quake, the USGS released a tsunami warning stating that “hazardous tsunami waves from this earthquake are possible within 1000 KM of the epicenter along the coasts of Russia.”3 The warning was later cancelled, as new reports showed no legitimate danger.4 According to the USGS, earthquakes of this magnitude are common in this area along the Kuril Trench, which, over the last 120 years, has had four other major quakes within 250 kilometers of the one that occurred last Wednesday.2
Although Christians should be prepared, it is no surprise that the Earth trembles like this. Paul says, “For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.”5 It is waiting for the return of its Creator! Earthquakes, tsunamis, tornadoes, wildfires, and pandemics are all part of this fallen world. But as Peter states, “Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.”6 The new Earth is coming, and it will be free from all the dangers that are now so common in this world plagued by sin.
1. U.S. Tsunami Warning System. Posted on tsunami.gov.
2. M 7.5 – 219km SSE of Severo-Kuril’sk, Russia. United States Geological Survey. Posted on earthquakes.usgs.gov.
3. Tsunami Message Number 1. NWS Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. Posted on tsunami.gov.
4. Tsunami Message Number 3. NWS Pacific Tsunami Warning Center. Posted on tsunami.gov.
5. Romans 8:22.
6. 2 Peter 3:13.
*Trey Bowling is Customer Service Manager for the Institute for Creation Research.
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