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The Coming End of the Earth’s Water World: Part 1 & II

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By Wilfred Hahn  /  Rapture Ready

(Shipshapewaters Part I)

Part I

From outer space, the most differentiable feature of planet earth is its blue color. No other planet has such wonderful hues of blue and green.

Water. It covers 75% of the surface of the earth. No other planet has ever been discovered to date that has liquid surface water. Earth has just the right amount of water … not too much; not too little. Too much, and the mountains would be covered; too little, and the earth would be an equally uninhabitable desert.

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Yes, water is essential for life. However, there are probably trillions of other essential conditions required for life on earth. God has created an earth that has water … and, spectacularly, life. The fact that water molecules might be found on other planetary bodies, is no more significant than finding iron or carbon or any other element or compound.

Crucially, not only did God create water as a necessity for life, but also that it might play a very significant role in the cosmological story of mankind. He has used this unique feature of His earth—water—to carry out His plan for mankind. How so?

The Bible tells us that God will intercede in the geological structures of the world with respect to water at least four times (if not more). To begin, as already intimated, He created the seas on the second day … this after having separated the water to below and above the “expanse” (atmosphere).

Then, when mankind became utterly godless (only some 1,650 years after Creation)—when “the Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time” Genesis 6:5)—He intervened again, allowing a great worldwide flood that extinguished all mankind save for eight.

The next and third time that the Lord will intervene with a global impact (with respect to water) is the Tribulation period. God, in wrath, destroys seas and rivers, decimating the marine networks of mankind … these being the proud, smug achievements of mankind’s rich elites.

The tribulational decimation happens in several steps. First, Revelation tells us that “a third of the living creatures in the sea died […]” (Revelation 8:9). This is after the second trumpet sounded by the angels.

Then, finally, the great trading colossus, whose great men were merchants and sea captains, is completely destroyed, never to be restored (Revelation 18). And, to make sure of that, God wipes out all of the world’s seas. This is the 4th intervention. Says the Bible, “Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea” (Revelation 21:1).

This is where we will pick up the thread from our recent series, which focused on the endtime resurgence of the spirit of Tyre … this being the same spirit that inhabits Babylon, the Great City. These are both shown to be seafaring entities that amass great wealth. And, in each case God intervenes, Tyre being the foreshadowing of the annihilation of Babylon the Great City.

Ship-shape for the End-times

Ship-shape is an old saying originating in the 1600s, meaning orderly or organized. To be ship-shape was to be ready and fitted for a journey. In this sense, the world is rapidly becoming “ship-shape” for the last days. But, you may be surprised to learn that the shape of the times also has to do with ships … yes, seafaring vessels. It is an interesting development of our day that is prophetically significant.

In Revelation 18, we read the account of one of the last epic events on earth before the Millennium begins—the sudden destruction of Babylon the Great:

‘In one hour such great wealth has been brought to ruin!’ Every sea captain, and all who travel by ship, the sailors, and all who earn their living from the sea, will stand far off. When they see the smoke of her burning, they will exclaim, ‘Was there ever a city like this great city?’ They will throw dust on their heads, and with weeping and mourning cry out: ‘Woe! Woe, O great city, where all who had ships on the sea became rich through her wealth! In one hour she has been brought to ruin’ (verses 17-19).

This account is somewhat puzzling. It is the end of days—supposedly a modern time—and a world-impacting destruction is taking place, where seemingly only people engaged in seafaring trade are weeping and mourning. We envision sea captains, and those who make their living from trade, standing afar off throwing dust on their heads. This is strange. What about the rest of the people of the world? Why is it that ships are mentioned so prominently?

Ships are referred to one additional time in the book of Revelation, this at the time after the second trumpet, as mentioned. “The second angel sounded his trumpet, and something like a huge mountain, all ablaze, was thrown into the sea. A third of the sea turned into blood, a third of the living creatures in the sea died, and a third of the ships were destroyed” (Revelation 8:8-9).

To conclude, both references to the prominence of ships mentioned in Revelation concern the time of the Great Tribulation. While that time is yet future, it is already possible to see the shadows of that time reflected in worldwide trends. So it is with ships. In fact, reviewing the developments within the world’s marine industry over the past half-century, it would not be unreasonable to conclude that future events spoken of in Revelation are fast approaching.

Shipping in Biblical Times

Shipping developments in the world today are unprecedented and fascinating. But before we investigate this global industry, let’s first examine what the Bible has to say about ships. We find that several types are mentioned in the Bible—for example, smaller boats of the size that might ply the Sea of Galilee, or papyrus boats.

In the Old Testament, we find another type mentioned, which in Hebrew roughly means “transporter of Tarshish.” Many Bible versions simply translate this phrase as the word ship. However, in doing so, something is lost in the translation.

The ships of Tarshish were the transport ships of the Mediterranean, the Red Sea area, and possibly the Indian oceans. One could consider this term as a class of ship such as we today use the classification of Panamax (ocean-going vessels sized to pass through the Panama Canal)[1] or Great Lakes freighter (the ship size that can navigate the North American Great Lakes, the Welland Canal and the St. Lawrence River). There are numerous other classes.

The ships of Tarshish were the trading ships of ancient times. For example, King Solomon had “a fleet of trading ships [navy of Tarshish] at sea along with the ships of Hiram. Once every three years it returned, carrying gold, silver and ivory, and apes and baboons” (1 Kings 10:22).

In the New Testament, however, Tarshish is never associated with the word ship. Of course, by this time, the world trading empire of Tyre (which was associated with Tarshish) had disappeared many centuries before. Besides, the Greeks themselves were a seafaring nation. Therefore, a trading ship would not be referred to as a “ship of Tarshish.”

To the Greeks, a ship was a trading ship. The key to see is that ships are generally associated with the notion of goods trade—in other words, the import and export of merchandise. The two times that ships are mentioned in Revelation, we should consider that the text is referring to this type of sea vessel—the trading ship. Clearly, trade is a big preoccupation of the world at that future time. Is that time near?

In Part II, we will lay out the evidence for the answer to that question. Global shipping has been completely transformed over the last six decades. In our view, its trend represents another one of those fast-moving, exponential time pieces of the last days that mark the “season” of our times.

About the Author: Wilfred J. Hahn is a global economist/strategist. Formerly a top-ranked global analyst, research director for a major Wall Street investment bank, and head of Canada’s largest global investment operation, his writings focus on the endtime roles of money, economics and globalization. He has been quoted around the world and his writings reproduced in numerous other publications and languages. You can contact him at

[1] Ships classified as Panamax are of the maximum dimensions that will fit through the locks of the Panama Canal, each of which is 1000 ft long by 110 ft wide and 85 ft deep.


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(Shipshapewaters Part II)

Part II

We closed Part I of this series with the statement that Bible prophecy speaks of a future time where the world will be deeply preoccupied with trade and commercialism, and that the “trading ship” played an irreplaceable facilitating role.

The world of ocean-going cargo ships may seem mundane … so slow and ancient. Therefore, it may seem reasonable to assume that things were always as they are today, especially as it applies to trans-oceanic shipping—the second oldest form of transport in world history. That perception couldn’t be farther from the truth.

Shipping has been a hotbed of activity and change. In fact, global shipping has been completely transformed over the last six decades. It represents another one of those fast-moving, exponential time pieces of the last days that mark the “season” of our times.

Endtime Shipping Trends

The volume of marine shipping has exploded over past decades, at least doubling every decade since 1945 (at least, up to the point that the Global Financial Crisis struck). Yes, this is a characteristic of a fast-globalizing world. But the globalization of the world’s economies couldn’t have happened so quickly, if it weren’t for the advancements of the 20th century taking place in marine cargo shipping.

Here, several crucial developments have occurred. For one, the size and capacity of container of ships has become larger … now more than 25 times the capacity of ships in the early 1950s. As well, computerization has greatly improved the efficiency of shipping. But by far the greatest development has been containerization. It is a trend that has revolutionized cargo shipping.

As recently as 60 years ago, docks would load ships with nets dangling from the end of a grappling hook, and lashing items one by one into the ship’s hold. It was a sweaty business relying upon heavy labor (stevedores). It could take as much as two weeks to unload a ship. The shipping of merchandise around the world was slow, cumbersome and relatively expensive. But that world has disappeared.

The shirtless longshoremen of Singapore are long gone. Shipping rates are commoditized, quoted over exchanges. Shipping ports are characterized by high-rise gantry cranes that move containers between trucks and ship deck. These containers, for the most part, are standardized “boxes” that are 20 or 40 feet long (called TEUs, for “twenty-foot equivalent units”). You see them stacked on truck trailers, railcars and ships. This form of cargo shipping was invented only recently—in the 1950s.

Today, approximately 90% of cargo moves by containers stacked on transport ships. Now, most ships can be unloaded overnight. The time and cost to ship cargo overseas is only a fraction of what it once was.

Over 200 million containers are now moved between ports each year. The world’s container fleets have continued to increase despite slowing world economic growth. Over the past six decades, world shipping cargo volumes have boomed, growing two to three times faster than world economic growth. Nations are now more linked and unified through trade than ever before in world history.

Why are these trends significant? It aligns with the type of conditions that the Bible describes in the end times. More than ever before, conditions in world trade fit the description of the endtime events depicted in Revelation 18, where ship captains are shown as the cornerstone of a worldwide trading colossus.

Yes, despite the modernity of our age, over 90% of world trade is still carried in the hulls and on the decks of ships—the modern-day world equivalent of the “ships of Tarshish.” No matter the advancements of modern transportation (motorized trucks, trains, and aircraft), ships are still the backbone of world commerce.

What’s Shaping Up for the Future?

The Bible says that the spirit of Tyre, that ancient city whose name was synonymous with Tarshish, shipping, trade and idolatry, will again re-appear on the world stage. “At the end of seventy years, the LORD will deal with Tyre. She will return to her hire as a prostitute and will ply her trade with all the kingdoms on the face of the earth” (Isaiah 23:17). Tyre has never re-emerged upon the world scene in any literal sense.

Likely, the Bible is referring to the spirit behind Tyre—a greed-infused emphasis upon materialism and commerce as the raison d’êtrefor mankind’s existence. In fact, Ezekiel identifies this very spirit as being Satan himself (see Ezekiel 28:12-19). Assuming that this interpretation is correct, we can anticipate that the “spirit of Tyre” will be a mark of the endtime world. The very same spirit is clearly identified in Revelation 18, which describes a worldwide colossus dependent upon trading ships.

Is that time in the near future? Based on the evidence of trends of just this past half century—even just the past few decades—we would be unwise to not recognize the signs of the times. Even shipping trends cry out their message.

It would not be sensationalist to conclude that the time described in Revelation 18 is already in clear view. As we have shown, world trading activity has literally boomed unlike any other period ever before in history. And, moreover, the world trading system is as dependent as ever upon ships, despite the emergence of other advanced forms of transport.

Rocking the Boat

A large part—a third—of the world’s trade network is destroyed at the time of the second trumpet (Revelations 8:9). Later, the entire trading system—at least its central hub, Babylon the Great—is destroyed in one hour.

That same time is depicted in this Old Testament prophecy:

The LORD Almighty has a day in store for all the proud and lofty, for all that is exalted (and they will be humbled), for all the cedars of Lebanon, tall and lofty, and all the oaks of Bashan, for all the towering mountains and all the high hills, for every lofty tower and every fortified wall, for every trading ship (ship of Tarshish) and every stately vessel. The arrogance of man will be brought low and the pride of men humbled; the LORD alone will be exalted in that day, and the idols will totally disappear (Isaiah 2:12-18).

Clearly, “every trading ship” will be affected. But before all this can happen, a worldwide trading and shipping colossus must emerge. And, we see that happening before our very eyes today.

Points to Ponder

Why does the Bible prophesy that Babylon the Great—an entity that is identified as being intensely trade-oriented—will come to destruction? Is there something inherently sinful about engaging in trade or shipping? No. It is the spirit of Tyre behind it that God finds offensive. It speaks of an earthbound, materialistic, greedy, idolatrous, self-determined, manmade existence apart from God.

While ships are specifically identified as playing a role in endtime prophecy, they also provide some rich object lessons for Christians. As someone once wrote: “A Christian is to the world as is a ship to the water. Woe to the ship if the water should get inside of it.”

A similar lesson is found in the story of Jonah. Like him, we have all been given a mission greater or smaller. Yet, the call of the world can seem more alluring. We might then choose the ship that leads to the starry lights of Tarshish (and storms) —the commercial culture of our time that seems so prosperous and serves the world’s elites.

Jonah jumped on a ship to Tarshish, traveling in the opposite direction from Nineveh. He chose personal indulgence over the path of obedience. However, his choice led to insecurity, volatility and danger. It is perhaps for a similar reason that many of our vessels face gale winds in our lives. Though children of God, we may be traveling in the wrong direction and on the wrong ship.

It is better to be about the Lord’s business and to sail in the path He has set before us. Events in our lives may not transpire in the way that we might anticipate. We may be exposed to the sweltering heat of the desert, as was Jonah. But, at least we have the privilege of participating in God’s cosmic plans and entering His eternal kingdom.

In Jonah’s case, his mission couldn’t have been more important. The world’s second great empire, Assyria, was being warned. As it turned out, Jonah’s mission deferred God’s final judgment upon this nation for some time. Why? They listened to Jonah’s warnings, repented and received a reprieve.

Unfortunately, before long, Nineveh returned to its former ways … and much worse. The result? This great kingdom disappeared from the world stage virtually overnight, the only one of the Old Testament nation powers that no longer exists today.

As we can see from evidence all around us—even from shipping trends—the world is hurtling toward its chosen destiny. The signs are all around us. Will God tarry in His judgments? The world has already been given its “sign of Jonah” (Matthew 16:4; Luke 11:29).

Someday, there will be no more seas (Revelation 21:1). There will also be no more temptation and the entreaties and deceptions of Mammon, as the New Jerusalem will descend, and His servants will be present with Him forever.

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About the Author: Wilfred J. Hahn is a global economist/strategist. Formerly a top-ranked global analyst, research director for a major Wall Street investment bank, and head of Canada’s largest global investment operation, his writings focus on the endtime roles of money, economics and globalization. He has been quoted around the world and his writings reproduced in numerous other publications and languages. You can contact him at

Read many more great articles at: Rapture Ready

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    Total 3 comments
    • K¡llúḿ¡ńàṫ¡✝☪ ॐ ﷲ ✡

      About 71% percent of the Earth’s surface is water-covered,
      and the oceans hold about 97% percent of all Earth’s water. :lol:
      Your body is made up mostly of water.
      how much of the earth’s water is in the sky :lol:
      Before the Flood (2016) With Leonardo DiCaprio :wink:

      • K¡llúḿ¡ńàṫ¡✝☪ ॐ ﷲ ✡

        have you see it with your own eyes :?: :razz:
        No other planet has such wonderful hues of blue and green. :lol:
        What do fireworks look like from space? Firework from space video? WW1 + WW2 = color!
        First #Moon Landing 1969! no color? do some research… the art of being lazy! :lol:

        • K¡llúḿ¡ńàṫ¡✝☪ ॐ ﷲ ✡

          Neptune: The Other Blue Planet in Our Solar System :lol: seeing is believing :lol:




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