Though many people were killed, almost five million lost power, huge regions were flooded and flooding is ongoing, and billions of dollars in damage took place, some curiously bitter people continue to insist that Hurricane Irene was a hyped event. Some are very thankful that the huge storm was not as bad as originally predicted. Some are arrogantly putting forth their opinion that the storm was nothing that couldn’t be handled, and that they handled it quite well.
Did something intervene?
Maybe there was collusion between all the weather boys and girls up and down the coast and the scientific computer geniuses that postulated a storm of nearly Biblical proportions. Maybe they all made a deal with the news media to play it up and make Irene appear as the almost second coming of Rita or Andrew or Isabel grafted onto the upper east coast, New York City, and New England.
Or maybe there are many more powerful Christians in this nation than otherwise thought praying powerful prayers that a very powerful God answered.
Hurricanes are a natural phenomenon like any other natural process such as rain or lightning. They happened eons before any human set foot on the land. They will not stop just because we are here. I will personally, however, believe that the Lord God of all creation can do whatever He wants whenever He wants, and that if He uses natural means to judge humanity it’s His prerogative.
I will also believe that real believers have power over the elements.
And behold, there arose a great storm on the sea, so that the boat was being covered with the waves; but Jesus Himself was asleep. And they came to Him and woke Him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing!” He said to them, “Why are you afraid, you men of little faith?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the sea, and it became perfectly calm. The men were amazed, and said, “What kind of a man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?” [Matthew 8:24-27]
The Greek word for “storm” in the above verse is seismos. It means, “A commotion, a shaking, AN EARTHQUAKE.” In fact, this Greek word appears 14 times in the New Testament and every other time it is translated as “earthquake.” Along with the earthquake was a great wind. Mark and Luke called it “a fierce gale of wind,” which Strong labeled “a hurricane.” In other words, the storm on the Sea of Galilee was not a rain event or a thunderstorm. It was the result of an earthquake and wind. Great roiling waves had resulted which were swamping the boat. The apostles rightly feared for their lives. This was no mere storm but something much more out of the ordinary.
What did the Lord do? He did two things:
First, He jumped their case for being cowards, and for having so little faith.
Second, He rebuked the winds and the sea.
Now, the Sea of Galilee was notorious for having freak wind events. The rushing winds would often form great waves. But on this particular occasion an earthquake was apparently also involved. Did the Lord allow this as a test? Was it a surprise to Him? It was certainly a great surprise to them and if He had not acted to rebuke the wind and waves the apostles would have all ended up at the bottom of that crazy, violent sea. It was a life and death situation and they had no means whatsoever to save themselves because they—
(1) Were a bunch of chickens, and
(2) Had far too little faith to affect any change.
From watching the Lord perform the miracle, the apostles learned that even the winds and the sea obey Him! Who is this guy?!
And they eventually received the power to do the same thing.
“Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do, he will do also; and greater works than these he will do; because I go to the Father.” [John 14:12]
Thus, real Christians have power with God through prayer to rebuke the wind and sea. Thus, it is quite possible that all the experts were right but that some other force acted upon Hurricane Irene, which just happened to follow on the heels of a very rare 5.8 Virginia earthquake.
And this means this country is not populated with a single Elijah holding the fort but millions of dedicated followers of the Lord Jesus that are increasingly making their presence felt.
Or do you not know what the Scripture says in the passage about Elijah, how he pleads with God against Israel? “Lord, THEY HAVE KILLED YOUR PROPHETS, THEY HAVE TORN DOWN YOUR ALTARS, AND I ALONE AM LEFT, AND THEY ARE SEEKING MY LIFE.” But what is the divine response to him? “I HAVE KEPT for Myself SEVEN THOUSAND MEN WHO HAVE NOT BOWED THE KNEE TO BAAL.” [Romans 11:2-4]
Besides, the Lord’s people are salt and light—the preservers of humanity and those who show the way. Many will say that Irene was a bust without ever thinking that they possibly dodged a howitzer through the prayers of God’s people.
The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the earth for three years and six months. Then he prayed again, and the sky poured rain and the earth produced its fruit. [James 5:16-18] 
Lieutenant Dan eventually made his peace with God. For all those who did not during the opportunity that was Hurricane Irene, there will be another showdown in the not too distant future, except for those who die and go to hell in the meantime. Mock God all you want, unbelievers. Mock His people. But it is highly likely the ones you mock just saved your keisters.
© 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
 Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible © 1890
 Unless otherwise noted all Scriptures are taken from the New American Standard Bible, © 1960, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.
On September 3, 1783, the Treaty of Paris was signed, in which Great Britain formally recognized the independence of the American Colonies and the establishment of the United States of America.
Almost exactly 114 years later on May 31, 1897, the strongest earthquake ever recorded in Virginia, classified 5.9 in magnitude and VIII in intensity, shook the east coast. Centered about 20 miles east of Blacksburg in Giles County, the massive quake felled chimneys and changed the flow of springs. According to the limited reports of the time, the temblor was felt from the Atlantic coast westward to Kentucky and Indiana, as far south as Georgia and north to Pennsylvania, rocking Washington D.C.
Today, almost exactly 114 years later on August 23, 2011 at 1:51pm EDT, a 5.8 earthquake struck the same area, only about 150 miles away to the ENE, centered near the railroad town of Mineral, Virginia in Louisa County, about 40 miles northwest of Richmond. The quake, less than four miles deep, also rocked the nation’s capital 80 miles away, and was felt as far north as Massachusetts, reaching to the very course where the President was playing golf. Buildings swayed in New York City, and some thought another 9/11 was in the works, still jumpy from a decade earlier. The Pentagon shook violently from what started as a low rumbling felt by occupants, who quickly evacuated. The quake also shook cities as far west as Chicago and Cincinnati, reached south to Georgia, and registered seismically in an incredible 22 states. At least one violent aftershock took place and several more are expected. The damage was generally moderate throughout the Central Virginia Seismic Zone, but served as a rare wake-up call to a region most unfamiliar with earthquakes.
Was the timing of these twin earthquakes just a coincidence? 114 equals the Biblical number of “man” (6), times 19. According to E.W. Bullinger, “19 is a number not without significance. It is a combination of 10 and 9, and would denote the perfection of Divine order connected with judgment. It is the gematria of Eve and Job.” 
Putting the two 114’s together, the exact 228 year period from the formal beginning of this nation until September 3, 2011 is 12 times 19. 12 is the Biblical number of governmental perfection. What follows the number 12 is the very American number of 13. It brings to mind the original 13 colonies upon which this nation was founded, as well as the thirteen red and white stripes of our flag and the original thirteen stars. The number 13 also happens to be the Biblical number of rebellion. Is this just another coincidence? Are we as a nation entering into a new time of reform beginning on September 3 when we honor the 228th anniversary of our formal founding? Many signs have been pointing in that direction.
Another possible coincidence is in the works. The first major Atlantic hurricane is presently rebuilding strength in the Caribbean. It is projected to grow to a Category 4 storm and lessen to a 3 as it strikes the Carolinas, then move directly over Washington D.C. late Saturday night, August 27. On Sunday night it is currently projected to strike New York City as a Category 1. The last time that happened was in 1821. The Norfolk and Long Island hurricane was only the second hurricane to have ever passed directly over New York City. The 1821 storm happened exactly 38 years since the Treaty of Paris, slamming into Long Island on September 3 of that year. 38 is a multiple of 19. The hurricane just happened to have a 13 foot storm surge. Coincidence?
Though the premise of this article can be easily shot down and ridiculed, a simple reminder is in order as we ponder today’s events: “A coincidence is when God wants to remain anonymous.”
© 2011 by RJ Dawson. All Rights Reserved.
 Number in Scripture, E.W. Bullinger. © 1967 by Kregel Publications. All Rights Reserved.