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Extreme weather to be expected in broken world, research says


NASHVILLE (BP) — The late evangelist E.V. Hill famously preached a sermon positing why he didn’t want to go to hell. Among his reasons – it’s hot down there.

The sermon comes to mind as the world experiences its hottest heat wave ever recorded. It’s so hot in Europe, the weather pattern is named for Cerberus, the mythical three-headed dog guarding the gates of hell.

Why is it so hot? Is there a biblical reason?

Answers in Genesis researcher and apologist Bodie Hodge doesn’t find the heat alarming. He points to significant climate changes Scripture communicates after the fall of man, and sees reason to believe the temperature will continue to fluctuate.

“I mean originally Adam and Eve didn’t have to wear any clothes,” he said. “It was probably a much better climate. So after sin things changed.”

Extreme weather has included Noah’s flood, which Hodge said triggered an ice age that covered a third of the world and thereby instigated droughts. In Genesis 41:54, there’s a drought that caused seven years of famine.

Furnace Creek in Death Valley, Calif., considered the hottest place on earth, reached 125.9 degrees July 16, the National Weather Service reported. The world saw its highest average global temperature – 62.62 F – July 6, exceeding the previous 62.456 record in history of the U.S. National Centers for Environmental Prediction dating to 1979, CNN reported.

For Hodge, it’s all about one’s perspective. Hodge takes a biblical worldview.

“When I see these types of little climate issues where things are going up and down by a tenth of a degree per global temperature,” Hodge said, “I expect that to happen. We’re in a sin-cursed and broken world.

Secularists might be alarmed by the fluctuations in temperature because they calculate the last ice age as perhaps 10,000 years ago and believe the weather has been pretty much constant since then.

“All of a sudden they see little fluctuations and they’re like, ‘Oh no, what did we do?’”

Humanity has done nothing to rival biblical truth, Hodge believes. Climate changes are par for the course.

“It’s a worldview issue,” Hodge said. “That’s what we have to get back to.”

Positers of both the secular and biblical worldviews can agree on temperature gauges, Hodge said, and atmospheric temperature measurements are more accurate than they have ever been. Breaking records are a big deal, he said, but it’s difficult to judge historical accuracy.

“For all we know back in the 1930s, this (record-breaking heat) happened 12 days in a row,” he said. “Or 1,500 years ago, we had 50 days like that.”

Hodge points to wind, water cycles and sunspots that also impact temperature.

“The point is there’s a number of factors that can cause little spikes for the temperature of earth to go up and down,” he said. “We just have to be careful and evaluate it in light of a Christian worldview.”

Genesis 8:22 informs readers that cold and heat, summer and winter, and day and night “shall never cease” as long as the earth endures.

“I want people to understand the Bible is trustworthy,” Hodge said, “from the first verse to the last verse. When it’s talking about heaven, when it’s talking about hell, the Bible can be trusted.”

The fact that hell is hot should encourage individuals to choose our Savior Jesus Christ, Hodge said, just as Hill encouraged in his notable sermon.

“I want to see people repent of false worldviews, repent of their sin, and receive Jesus Christ, His death, burial and resurrection,” Hodge said. “I want to see them do that.”