Hi Steve and Doves,,
I've been looking at this same text recently because the words "flight in winter" keep coming to me. Especially, the verses just before this passage. “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’[a] spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand— 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. 17 Let no one on the housetop go down to take anything out of the house. 18 Let no one in the field go back to get their cloak. 19 How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! 20 Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. 21 For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. 22 “If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened."
First I don't think the days being shortened means it is a reduction in minutes. I could be wrong but I believe its the number of days of destruction that will be lessened to fewer days so people can survive. Second, though it doesn't seem we are seeing the "abomination that causes desolation" at this time, it does seem the Lord's telling the Judeans to flee to the mountains, stay on their housetops and not go back to the fields could be instructions to avoid a tsunami. Seeing the aftermath of the tsunami in Japan and the freezing temperatures there, it is clear that pregnant and nursing women (among others) would certainly have difficulty in winter or the Sabbath in this scenario. Of course, radioactive exposure to pregnant or nursing women is also of concern. It seems from this Scripture (and it is hard to imagine), there are worse things coming to our world than the Japan earthquake. When the abomination of desolation really does happen, "great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world" will really be beyond imagination. I love keeping these verses in mind.
1 Thes 5: "Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night. While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape. But you, brothers, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief. You are all sons of the light and sons of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness. So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-controlled. For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night. But since we belong to the day, let us be self-controlled, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet. For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ. He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him. Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. "
The massive 9.0 quake in Japan effectively "shortened" our days by 1.8 microseconds. That is such a short period of time. Like a blink of an eye. So when the Bible says the following:For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not from the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be. And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect's sake those days shall be shortened. Matthew 24:21-22
Does that mean a more devastating quake or event could shorten the days significantly more? I've always wondered how the days could be shortened to the point of making a difference. Another interesting sign.Steve Mullin