Editor’s Note from the Jerusalem Channel’s Christine Darg:  When the new moon for the Jewish New Yeark, Rosh HaShanah, could not be sighted on the predicted day due to atmospheric dust, I had the same reaction as this Jerusalem meteorological report:  God is demonstrating that He is God in the region. Either The Lord was providing some sort of storm of biblical proportions for security purposes. Or perhaps God was saying– Rosh HaShanah should be likened to the day or hour that no man knows– Messiah will come suddenly, God IS is the one in control, and only HE is the One who truly knows the times and seasons!  As the apostle Paul said, believers are not in the dark that the day of the Lord should catch us unawares as a thief, but a covering dust storm does keep us on our toes and prevents us from seeing and predicting everything! Selah!

David Decker

David Decker

By Pastor / Meteorologist David N. Decker in Jerusalem

A heavy dust cloud covered Israel for four days last week, Tuesday to Friday, September 8-11, totally unheard of for September. (We sometimes have a dusty day or two in late winter or spring) and it was the thickest dust ever seen in Israel for such a long period.

Levels of fine particulate matter-dust- were 500 times above average (dangerously unhealthy), with visibility as low as 100-200 yards for many hours, in many places, on Tuesday and Wednesday.

The dust cloud originated over Northeast Syria on Sunday and spread to Turkey, Lebanon and Syria on Monday, then came to Israel and Jordan starting Tuesday. There is still no good theory for what generated the freak dust cloud in Syria. It was a bit windy there on Sunday but not enough, normally, to stir up something this bad. Unusually persistent light winds from the northeast at low levels, VERY rare for September, finally brought the dusts to us, from the ground to about 3,000 feet. If you rose above 3,000 feet, it was clear. This was all concentrated very near to the ground. It came with very hot and dry air, 95 to 105 F by day in most places and stifling heat at night.

Tuesday night was the warmest night ever recorded in the history of modern Israel since 1948, and also the dustiest, with lows of 85 or above all over the country. One place by the Dead Sea famous for being hot- Sodom- had a low of about 100 F !! That’s also the lowest area on the face of planet earth (about 1,300 feet BELOW sea level).

The fine choking dust slowly settled from Friday into Sunday so by the time the Jewish New Year arrived at sunset on Sunday the 13th, it was still hot and dry but MUCH less dusty. Praise God !! It had become very hard even to breath in most of Israel on Tuesday and Wednesday and many people stayed indoors almost all the time, it was a choking thick cloud of dust. Car washes were busy on Sunday with very long lines– the dust accumulation was about 1/4 inch thick on everything in Jerusalem by the end– benches, cars, plants, everything.

The heavy dust cloud was totally 100% NOT predicted by any weather model or weather person, to my knowledge.

Then the Lord did another surprise for all of us. On Monday afternoon ( 2 days ago) some locally heavy rain developed over the deserts of southern Jordan. On Tuesday, very local heavy thunderstorms developed over Israel-yesterday, in parts of the southern Negev and near the Golan heights in the afternoon and evening. We even had some lightning with sprinkles reach Jerusalem last night at about 9:30 p.m. In the areas that got the very local but very heavy storms, 2-4 inches of rain fell with flashfloods, hail the size of golf balls, almost zero visibility in the downpours and winds of probably over 50 mph, all very local. Amazingly, no hikers were injured or killed, as far as I know. A nature reserve ranger, Israeli, who was caught in one of these freak violent and very heavy thunderstorms said it felt like the end of the world. Ten lightning flashes per second were reported. The Lord was putting on a TOTALLY AMAZING AND PHENOMENAL show. Mercifully, it will be less hot now for the rest of this week, but still above normal heat here until about Sunday, when a noticeable temperature drop is finally expected to arrive from Greece and Turkey. The news media had great pictures this morning of streams in the desert places of Israel – Hallelujah ! I love the Lord’s SUDDENLIES !!

Without any connection to the 4th lunar eclipse coming up later this month, the last in the series of so called “blood moons,” I personally feel the dramatic weather here so far this month was the Lord saying something like this: ” I am Sovereign, I rule over all. I am totally in control of what is happening here in the Middle East, not man. Your best efforts to figure out what I am about to do are vain and futile, I will surprise you all, every last self -described ‘wise-man’ among you, and I will do this exactly when and how I please. Your only truly wise plan is to constantly trust in me. Be ready for rapid changes ahead. Buckle up, and hold on tight to ME. I’m the Lord Your Savior, look to me and LIVE. ”

The eruptions of violence on the Temple Mount since Sunday seem to be intensifying, after three days. Israel is going to start cracking down on it more severely from now on. It bears watching and we need to intensify our prayers for the Peace of Jerusalem.

And the mass migration of hundreds of thousands of refugees from the Middle East into Europe in recent days and weeks is a BIG story that is going to likely have some BIG consequences for Europe, and eventually maybe America. European countries that have been very unfair and unkind to Israel in recent years, while treating despotic Arab rulers and radical Islam with kid gloves have been sowing to the wind, in the face of God, I would say, and may be about to reap a terrible whirlwind of chaos and trouble now.

Europe is obsessed with slamming sanctions on Israel while they will be releasing billions now to the tyrants of Iran, for example. But God is Sovereign and Just. The lack of righteous leadership in Europe and America over the last six years is mainly responsible for this terrible situation– millions are fleeing the chaos created by wicked Muslim leaders, who have been left untouched by the international powers, who decided to withdraw just when they were needed most (for example in Iraq, and in Libya) DIRECTLY leading to the formation of ISIS, which the same powers refuse to really deal with.

By the way, if Israel did not take out the nuclear facility of Assad in Northern Syria seven years ago, imagine what would have happened! That ruined facility is now in the hands of ISIS! Israel, as usual was roundly condemned for taking that brave action, but it turns out, again, that Israel did the free world another BIG favor.