BEGINNING OF THE END!
billion people killed before the mushroom cloud begins to blow away—an
equal number doomed to slow, agonizing death by radiation.
the story of what some believe is coming to Planet Earth if a major atomic
war is started by either of the two great powers—Russia or the United
“As a scientist, I tell you: There must never be another war!”—Dr. Harold C. Urey, atomic scientist, “I’m a Frightened Man,” The Saturday Review of Literature, August 7, 1948.
“Bidden or unbidden, the atomic bomb sits in on all the councils of nations; in its light all other problems of international relations are dwarfed.”—Henry L. Stimson, former U.S. Secretary of War, Harper’s Magazine, March 1946, p. 204.
believe that there is no power on earth—other than that of God
Himself—that can save man from destroying himself within the next few
And then, after the bombs have been quickly sent back and forth by the two powers—and others that may wish to join in,—the darkness of nuclear winter will settle over the planet.
scientific conference in Washington, D.C., held the first week in November
1983, presented all this and more—as the result of a single nuclear
clash between the two super powers.
“We are on our way towards removing the last barrier that prevents man from converting the earth into a planetary crematorium.”—Norman Cousins, Saturday Review of Literature, August 7, 1948, pp. 7-8.
cannot save himself by armament moratoriums and test bans—for we are
already loaded with thousands of nuclear warhead missiles on both sides.
Only a return to God can save us—individually or as a race.
The new name coined at the Washington conference for this impenetrable darkness that will last for months, “nuclear winter,” will be brought on by the detonation of less than one-half the megatonnage in U.S. and Soviet arsenals.
Sagan, well-known TV personality, and Cornell University astronomer, Paul
Ehrlich, Stanford University biologist, together with a team of elite
scientists from all over the world, spent two years of research—before
coming up with this in-depth report on what one major atomic attack and
counterattack will bring to us all.
“What is new in the present situation is not the possibility of a last generation but the possibility—sobering enough I grant—that OURS may be the last generation!”—Ernest Fremont Tittle, The Christian Century, May 1, 1946, p. 556.
is no man that can stand in the breach of today’s crisis and deliver us.
Only God can do it—and He will deliver those that will pray to Him for
The intense heat from the blasts will set off firestorms, in which the very air will become so hot that everything flammable will ignite. Sweeping over large areas of the world, the storms will burn both stored chemicals and those used in construction and manufactured products. The air will become filled with the poisonous fumes of carbon monoxide, dioxins, and cyanides—that will threaten the existence of the people who have somehow survived the initial blasts.
This Conference on the Long-term, Worldwide Biological Consequences of Nuclear War, attended by top scientists from around the world, was the outgrowth of two years of research by a cooperative team that included 100 physicists, biologists, and atmospheric scientists from several continents.
“The inexorable ‘either-or’ of the atomic bomb, upon which hangs the fate of life on this planet, leaves the pride of man no means by which to save itself. The only alternative to Armageddon is repentance and regeneration.”—Richard M. Fagley, Secretary of the Peace Commission, Federal Council of Churches, in The Chaplain, November 1945, p. 5.
cannot wait for others to take hold of this work. We must do it
individually. We must pray for ourselves and our loved ones. We must
return to God. We must read His messages to us in the Bible. We must obey
The chemicals burning in the air
from the blasts will produce an acid rain that will burn the skin upon
contact. The intense heat will also super-heat the soils and destroy the
dormant seeds within them. With the plants and trees gone and the seeds
destroyed, what future will the few survivors of an atomic holocaust
conference, revealing the chemical and climatic effects that nuclear war
would have on plants, animals, and man, was based on computer models of
nuclear exchanges ranging from 100 megatons to 5,000 megatons. The
examples of destruction, described here, are based on a 5,000 megaton
interchange bombing—and this is less than half the megatonnage of atomic
weapons now ready for blast-off by nations around the world!
“The present level of human behavior is so low that man is more likely to use control of unlimited natural forces for destruction rather than constructive purposes . . Gadgets and machines are getting better and better, and man is getting worse and worse.”—E.A. Hooton, Harvard University Anthropologist, United Press dispatch, in Washington Times-Herald, August 10, 1945.
individually return to God’s way of living—and that way is obedience
to the Ten Commandments through faith in Jesus Christ, His Son. We cannot
reclaim ourselves; we have repeatedly found this impossible. God’s way
is the only way that will work. We must ask Him to forgive our sins and
help us obey His Written Word. Only through self-control, by the help of
God, can our planet survive.
The hundreds of nuclear fireballs would heat the surrounding air to a temperature of more than 3,000 degrees Fahrenheit and would, in the process, form a photochemical smog that would gradually drift around the world in the stratosphere. It would destroy about 50 percent of the irreplaceable ozone layer, that thin band of gas encircling the earth high in the sky that absorbs the ultraviolet light that would otherwise induce mutations and cancer.
megaton war is equal to the devastation that would be produced by 12,500
Pershing extra-continental ballistic missiles. (But this is only
one-half of the missiles armed with nuclear warheads that are ready for
immediate action right now.)
“Against the atomic bomb there is no defense. Just below the surface lurks the diplomat’s fear. If we give away the atomic power secret we will lose our bargaining power. But there is no longer an atomic power secret! This new power is a discovery at least as great as man’s discovery of fire. Who can predict what will come of it?”—H.M. Davis, editorial, Chemistry, November 1945.
come to a time in human history when men are turning their backs on the
Ten Commandments, when scientists say it cannot be obeyed and preachers
say it need not be obeyed. But the Bible says it must be obeyed. By his
disobedience to the laws of nature and the laws of God, man is on the
verge of destroying himself.
Following the initial blasts, all will be silent, as months of twilight settle over the world and temperatures plunge 55 degrees, killing nearly all plant life by the intense and continued cold.
two-day conference was attended by some 600 American and foreign
scientists and environmentalists, and was addressed by satellite by four
Soviet scientists in Moscow (including Evgeni Velikhov, Vice President
of the U.S.S.R. Academy of Sciences). The Soviets said they had already
completed parallel research in this field and had arrived at approximately
the same conclusions as the Sagan-Ehrlich teams.
“The devastation that could be wrought by an Atomic Age war is too appalling to be fully realized. The vision stuns our imagination. But if the present trends continue it is only a question of time before such a war will come. Time is short. Looking at . . the increasing bitterness and unrest throughout the world, at the tremendous power of our latest weapons, a realist might well conclude that many of us now living will see the start of a war which will end in more dark ages.”—Charles A. Lindbergh, Reader’s Digest, September 1948, pp. 134, 138.
did not die so men could disobey God as they are doing today; He died to
enable men to do all that God asks of them in His Word. Both the Old
Testament and the New Testament are important. Both come from God and both
need to be read today by men and women who want to go to heaven. It is too
late to rely on technology to save us and television to tranquilize us. We
must return to Bible religion and obedience to the God of heaven.
amazing, but true, that some ministers of the gospel today preach from
pulpits that men need no longer obey the moral law of God. But it is such
teaching echoed by educators, psychologists, and scientists that has led
us to the point in history where we are approaching the brink of
Within a week after the missile attacks, some 200 million tons of sooty smoke will blanket the earth. Stephen Schneider of the National Center for Atmospheric Research described it as “a blacktop highway—three miles up.” This smoke will absorb so much of the sun’s rays that less than 5 percent of the normal amount of light will reach the ground. This will result in a constant gloom that will make breathing difficult. It will also be ruinous to the plants still alive. Photosynthesis, that process whereby green plants convert sunshine and water into carbohydrates—food needed by animals and man—will be stopped.
yet all this from only a limited 5,000 megaton war! One megaton equals 1
million tons of nuclear warhead material. Russia and the United States
combined already have over 12,000 megatons stockpiled. Proponents of a
nuclear weapons freeze want the nuclear warheads in both super powers
reduced from the present 17,000 to less than 1,000.
“Despair is creeping up on us—on the best of us most of all. The stars of promise have all but faded from our sky. We are on a road that leads to destruction, and destruction is drawing close.” —Editorial, Christian Century, November 19, 1947, p. 1391.
warned men, in His Word, that He would “destroy them which destroy the
earth” (Revelation 11:18—and that Word reads like tomorrow’s
newspaper. How long dare you wait before taking hold of this work for
yourself? God is as near as your own private room. Go alone and fall on
your knees and ask Him to forgive your past. Tell Him that there is no
hope or help apart from Him. Plead with Him to do for you that which you
cannot do for yourself. Dedicate the remainder of your frail life to Him,
to use in His service. And then begin reading the Bible every day and
obeying what you find there.
If the war broke out in the spring or summer—when plants are the most vulnerable to cold snaps,—virtually all land plants in the Northern Hemisphere would be damaged or killed, said Paul Ehrlich of Stanford University. And even more sobering is the fact that without the plants, every higher organism—including man himself—would face starvation. Need we add that only a novice, in the study of warfare, will not recognize that mankind for thousands of years has preferred springtime—as ideally suited for starting wars. Plant life is most vulnerable then.
George Woodwell of the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole,
Massachusetts, declared that “the potential effects [of such a nuclear
conflict] extend even to the extermination of Homo sapiens—man
“The splitting of the atom, which
represented the furthest reach of the new physics into the mysteries of
matter, also annihilated the last of the nineteenth-century notions of an
inevitable millennium of peace on this earth.”—Fortune Magazine,
October 1948, p. 112.
is pleading with men to return to Him before it is forever too late.
Neither science nor research nor talent nor money can save us. We are
nearing the final hour of man’s history. Only a return to God can now
help any of us.
After the initial blasts has deafened ears, a cloud of dust and smoke weighing 1,200,000,000 tons will rapidly encircle the Northern Hemisphere—the northern half of the world,—and then will swiftly swirl into the Southern Hemisphere as well. Ninety percent or more of the sun’s light will be blocked out. Even if the war is only fought in the summer in the Northern Hemisphere, surface temperatures will plunge to an average of 13 degrees Fahrenheit (13 degrees below zero) and will remain below freezing for at least three months. Surface waters will freeze to a depth of three feet in what the atmospheric scientist, Stephen Schneider, calls “nuclear winter.”
adds that this effect will be much more severe than suggested in earlier
studies; for they previously failed to take into account the great amount
of smoke that will rise from burning cities, towns, and forests.
It is well-known that such a terrible drama in destruction could easily take place if one of the two super powers fired “on warning” of imminent attack—when no attack had really been made. In response to the battery of missiles, the other side would respond with thousands of its own.
expressed their fright at the picture that was presented to them in the
Washington conference. The danger is vivid and it is real. As Randall
Kehler commented, it “cannot be written off as the rhetoric of antinuke
“Unless something can be done to destroy the power of sin in the heart of man, his existence in a scientific world will always remain under the shadow of imminent self-destruction.”—Charles Clayton Morrison.
Word, God promises to give you a new heart—and a peace to match it. And
He will do it if you will give Him your all. Heaven is worth the best you
have, for heaven is better than the best you are. Turn over your life to
Him. Tell Him you are tired of trying and failing on your own.
At best, only small bands of hunters and gatherers will be left in the Southern Hemisphere—no one will be left in the Northern. But could the life renew itself, even after the darkness and bitter cold lifted? Most of the protective layer of ozone in the upper atmosphere would have been burned off by that first torrent of atomic explosions.
National Academy of Sciences, based in Washington, D.C., is preparing an
even more detailed study on what will happen if the long-feared
interchange of nuclear missile blasts takes place. The report, when
completed, is expected to agree closely with the research done by the
“A new era is upon us . . We have had our last chance. If we do not now devise some greater and more equitable system—Armageddon will be at our door.”—General Douglas MacArthur, spoken on the day Japan surrendered, September 2, 1945, half a month after Hiroshima and Nagasaki, New York Times, September 2, 1945, p. 3.
we are seeing that the work that must be done will have to be done, alone,
before God. No one can do it for us, and we cannot do it for any one else.
There is only one escape route out of this world. Only a connection with
God can lead us down that path.
With the ozone layer removed, the surface of the earth would be exposed to the full intensity of solar rays. Powerful ultraviolet radiation would stream in from the sun, paralyzing even the phytoplankton in the oceans. Those one-celled ocean plants form the base of the ocean’s food chain. Without them no animals in the ocean could survive very long.
Washington conference carefully discussed the ozone layer problem and
found no solution. If this protective covering were removed by nuclear
blasts—as it surely would by a 5,000 megatonnage of them—there would
by no way that it could be restored within the indefinite future.
“I have lived seventy-five years . . and I know I am old because the century was once rich in utopias that are now meaningless. What has not remained anywhere is the ‘utopian’ drive and confidence in the future that sparked the early 20th century.”—Alfred Kazin, journalist and author, quoted in John Maddox, The Doomsday Syndrome (1972), p. 3.
shalt call His name Jesus, for He shall save His people from their
sins.”—Matthew 1:21. Christ lived and died to save us from our
sins—not in our sins. And if we will let Him, He will do it. The key is
cooperation. The power of God is made perfect in a weak man that is
surrendered to Him. He can take your weakness and enable you to do all
that He asks in His Inspired Word.
With the bursting of the big bombs from the missiles, there would result a powerful radioactive fallout pattern that would spread out with the winds and rapidly cover large areas. This fallout would be greater than earlier reports have suggested, for the simple reason that new “low-yield” atomic bombs have been developed. These new nuclear weapons do not throw radioactive fission debris very high in the atmosphere; and, as a result, the fallout is not “cooled” to less dangerous radioactive levels before it begins filtering down from the skies and settling on the ground.
Sagan, who worked on the atmospheric models for this massive report,
calculates that 30 percent of North America would be bombarded with
radiation levels that would be greater than 200 rads (about half the
lethal dose) within a very few months.
“I am writing at a dark moment, and it is impossible to know whether the human race will last long enough for what I write to be published, or, if published, to be read.”—Bertrand Russell, Has Man a Future (1961)? p. 120.
said: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets: I am
not come to destroy, but to fulfill.”—Matthew 5:17. “If ye
keep My commandments, ye shall abide in My love; even as I have kept My
Father’s commandments and abide in His love.”—John 15:10.
Jesus can do for us that which we cannot do for ourselves. By His enabling
grace, He can help us live kindly, clean, obedient lives. —And is not
this what you want, just now, in your life?
“We are now asking a narrower question than ‘can man survive?’ We are now asking ‘can scientific man survive?’ ”—Bertrand Russell, ibid, p. 70.
A powerful air turbulence would begin as a result of the explosions; most of these would take place in the Northern Hemisphere, where North America, Europe and Asia are located. These super winds would be set into action by the enormous differences in temperature between the Northern Hemisphere, which has received thousands of bomb blasts, and the cooler Southern Hemisphere which has received relatively few of them.
of this, no region on the planet would be spared from many of the deadly
effects of the nuclear explosions. Scientists had earlier thought that
the southern portion of the globe would be immune from the worst
consequences of nuclear war, because there is normally so little mixing
of air between the two hemispheres. But it is now seen that the large
temperature differential between the Northern and Southern Hemispheres
would shift regular wind patterns toward the south—carrying smoke and
radioactivity into the southern part of the world. A nuclear war,
involving only one-half the total atomic warheads now ready for
deployment, would become a total war destroying, immediately or soon
after, nearly everyone living on this planet.
“After World War II—with its fifty million dead, the debut of nuclear weaponry—scientists found they no longer required God’s judgment to end history. Humankind could get the job done without any help from above.”—Richard A. Swenson, Hurtling toward Oblivion (1999), p. 22.
thousand years ago, the Apostle Peter took a piece of parchment and, under
the inspiration of Heaven, described conditions when Christ returned the
second time for His faithful ones.
“Within the pages of the New Testament, one is forever stumbling upon passages, long ignored, which suddenly speak directly to the mood of the hour. From utter irrelevance they become luminous with meaning. The closing lines of 2 Peter [3:9-14] are a case in point. A year ago they were completely foreign to our thinking, but listen to them today!”—Winthrop S. Hudson, The Christian Century, January 9, 1946, p. 46.
are those remarkable words:
“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
“But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
“Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness. Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
“Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness. Wherefore, beloved, seeing that ye look for such things, be diligent that ye may be found of Him in peace, without spot, and blameless.”—2 Peter 3:9-14.
months after Hiroshima, Sir Richard Gregory stepped to the podium, at a
meeting of the British Association for the Advancement of Science, and
quoted 2 Peter 3:10. He was frightened (Christian Century, May 1, 1946,
It is an old adage of sailors, “Without a destination, there is never a favorable wind.” Something to think about. Where are you headed? Do you know? You only have a few more years and, one way or another, you are going to die.