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Summary: Biblical perspective on the trend of Population explosion...

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SEVEN BILLION AND COUNTING…

“POPULATION EXPLOSION” screamed the Newspaper headlines a day after the Seventh billion baby-Nargis Yadav- arrived into the world at 7.20 a.m. on October 31st , 2011 on a cool Monday morning, at a nondescript community health centre in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India which was besieged by television crews and journalists. Quite predictably many economists cast in the Malthusian mould received the News with mixed emotion. Even as they expressed happiness at the burgeoning human population (a sign of human resilience at a time natural diasasters are the order of the day), they expressed grave concerns about the dimnishing World’s resources to support a booming population. At this stage, it ought to be mentioned that advocacy of birthcontrol measures or its opposition is not the stated intention of this message rather its main intent is to present a Biblical perspective on Scriptural instances where population grew RAPIDLY. Where do we see the instances’ of rapid population growth in the Bible? Besides what does this “Baby Boom” trend mean to a Bible student with eschatological mindset?

In this sermon, I intend to present a few insights under the three headings. Firstly..

Physical…

Exodus 1:7 portrays a Oriental Potentate (Pharoah Thutmose to be more precise - http://www.biblehistory.net/newsletter/moses_pharaoh.htm) with a creased forehead pacing up and down the stairs of an Egyptian palace worried stiff about the booming Israelite population in Egypt. No, he was not worried about having to feed a few extra mouths, rather he foresaw a more damaging threat of a power shift looming in the horizon. In the Land where River Nile flows would “the ruled become the Rulers” was the thought that kept troubling him. So what were his trouble-shooting measures? In the first ever large-scale anti-semitic move of history (now Hitler was not the first nor would he be the last when it comes to anti-semitic propaganda…those who hate God, naturally would hate his people too), he first brutally increased their workload as slaves hoping that the “resultant bad health” would take a heavy toll of the Jewish population. However when that move boomeranged (Exodus 1:12-Hey, greater work, better exercise and consequent improved reproductive health? ), he instigated the mid-wives to slay the Jewish male babies. But the mid-wives, you see, were more keen to remain in the middle of God’s will rather than meddling with it (Exodus 1:15-21). Lo and behold finally emerges the cruel Royal decree “throw Jewish male babies into Crocodile-infested River Nile” (Exodus 1:22). Enter Moses… the “Deliverer” of the Old testament dispensation, just as Christ is of the New Testament one (Deuteronomy 18:15-19, Acts 3:22-23)! That Egypt eventually got its Divine comeuppance from the ONE who has said “It is mine to avenge” (Romans 12:19) for the death of so many innocent male Jewish babies is altogether a different matter (Ten woes culminating with the killing of eldest male of all Egyptian families – Exodus 7-12).

A lesson within a lesson (Hey sermon is like a website with related hyperlinks) ! Just consider some of these startling similarities between the OT Deliverer and the NT Saviour. Advent of Moses’ coincided with baby slaughter, just as that of Christ’s (Matt 2: 16-18). Both Moses’ and Christ as little infants received miraculous deliverance. While for Baby Moses arrived a tender-hearted Egyptian Princess (as per Divine scheme of things) in the nick of time who would “draw him out of water” (thus the name Moses-Exodus 2:10) and later adopt him as her son, for the Christ-child it required an Angelic warning to Jesus’ earthly father Joseph to flee to …EGYPT (Matt 2:13-15)!

Now welcome to one of the Biblical puzzles of the OT era. Let’s revisit Egypt of Moses’ time. If this cruel decree of “throwing male babies into River Nile” had remained in force, then how come 80 years down the line (when Moses led the Jews out of the Egyptian bondage) that the Jewish military population alone zoomed upto 6 lakhs and above (Numbers 1:46) excluding the women folk, children and the aged ones’? Biblical Scholars say that the same compassionate Egyptian princess who “saved” Moses from becoming a meal for the alligators went and pleaded with her father in tears to withdraw his bloody edict. “Yes, I saved this beautiful innocent baby but what about other innocent babies… what have they done to deserve this”- a plaintive cry to this effect melted the heart of even a brutal despot like the Pharoah Thutmose forching him at once to withdraw this savage Law bearing “ethnic cleansing” overtones.

Oh yes, the resources crunch the economists speak about in the wake of arrival of the 7th billion baby? Will not JEHOVAH JIREH PROVIDE (Genesis 22:14)? There are many resources that the Good Lord has “built into” this Planet which are waiting to be tapped. Is not necessity the mother of all inventions? For instance, did we not recently learn to desalinate sea water on a massive scale and consume it as fresh water?

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