As we venture into a new year, our nation and world are continuing to spiral downward in almost every area of significance. Whether on the economic, political, or religious front, there seems to be a mounting tidal wave of bad news – warnings of impending disasters, a global financial meltdown, and the very real threat of war on the Korean Peninsula and in the Middle East. If not for the security found in the shelter of God’s presence, it would be natural for even the bravest of men to panic. Consider the following facts.
First, on the economy. In spite of forecasts by prominent economists telling us that home prices had bottomed out and wouldn’t go much lower, according to CNN, home values in the US tumbled another $1.7 trillion in 2010. In some cities, upwards of 70 percent of homes are now “underwater” (people owing more on their homes than they are worth). The housing market is being pulled down by a number of underlying factors, not the least of which is the erosion of the US manufacturing base:
● The United States has lost a staggering 32 percent of its manufacturing jobs since the year 2000. [Over 40,000 US factories have closed during this same period of time.]
● Even high technology industries are leaving America. Manufacturing employment in the US computer industry is actually lower in 2010 than it was in 1975.
● In 1959, manufacturing represented 29 percent of all US economic output. In 2008, it represented only 11.5 percent.
● As of the end of 2009, less than 12 million Americans worked in manufacturing. The last time that less than 12 million Americans were employed in manufacturing was in 1941.
● With so much manufacturing leaving the United States, is it any wonder why people can’t find jobs? The “official” unemployment rate in the United States has been at nine and a half percent or above for 14 consecutive months.
● Today, there are at least 1.5 million “99ers” – those Americans that have completely exhausted all 99 weeks of unemployment benefits and that still do not have jobs.
● Americans end up paying to support American workers one way or another. Either they buy American-made products and services that provide jobs for American workers, or they pay to support unemployed American workers on welfare. Today, over 42 million Americans are on food stamps. A record number of Americans are receiving long-term unemployment benefits.
● [Because of these and other disturbing trends...] one prominent economist now says that the Chinese economy will be three times larger than the US economy by the year 2040. According to one recent study, China could become the global leader in patent filings [in 2011].
● China has been accumulating a gigantic mountain of dollars from all of the wealth we have been sending them each month, and they have been lending massive amounts of money back to us. Over the past few decades, the communist Chinese have been able to accumulate approximately $2.5 trillion in foreign currency reserves, and the US government now owes them close to 900 billion dollars.
(Source: “Barack Obama: We Must Embrace Globalism And The Emerging One World Economy,” The Trading Report, The Economic Collapse Blog, November 10, 2010.)
As a result of our massive indebtedness and the deteriorating US economic situation, China and Russia have renounced the US dollar as their chief trading currency, opting instead to begin using their own currencies. This announcement came on November 23rd from Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin at a joint news conference in St. Petersburg.
During their press conference Wen stated that the partnership between Beijing and Moscow has “reached an unprecedented level” and vowed that the two countries will “never become each other’s enemy.” “China will…support the renaissance of Russia as a great power,” he said. He added that his country is willing to boost cooperation with Moscow in pursuit of a “fair and reasonable new order” in international politics and the economy.
Meanwhile, here at home the Federal Reserve is now resorting to “quantitative easing,” a fancy term which simply means the Fed is printing money in an attempt to offset the mounting debt – as fewer countries are willing to loan the US the money it needs to stay afloat. Along with the $600 billion already committed toward this effort, the Fed announced it will be implementing another $600 billion in quantitative easing by the end of June. Historically, such practices have been known to trigger hyperinflation and are typically employed only as a last resort when all other efforts to restore the economy have failed. These types of monetary policies have the eventual effect of putting downward pressure on the value of a nation’s currency. The bottom line: If America continues down this path the US dollar could be worthless within a few years.
In recognition of this probability, leaders from China and most of the other industrialized nations of Asia and Europe are breathing down our necks, claiming that US inflationary policies could jeopardize their economies as well. Europe already has its back to the wall, dealing with its own liquidity crisis. Greece and Ireland are bankrupt; Portugal and Spain could soon join them, and Italy isn’t far behind. With Europe and the US both headed toward the brink, world leaders are looking for someone with answers to the looming global financial crisis.
War & Peace
As the global economy threatens to unravel, so does the fragile peace in Korea and the Middle East. Rumors of war abound. The tense stand-off between North and South Korea, if not diffused quickly, could plunge the world into its next major war. Unbeknownst to many, North Korea is closely allied with China and also Iran, and has been exporting military hardware and technology to Ahmadinejad’s regime. Meanwhile, Pakistan’s government is barely hanging on and could easily fall prey to more extreme Muslim elements closely allied with Iran. This would give radical Islam direct access to Pakistan’s nuclear arsenal.
While Israel is nervously looking on – assessing the unfolding scenario – they continue to receive threatening signals from Iran’s regional ally, Syria. Syria has been supplying Hizbullah and almost every other terrorist group with Chinese and North Korean weapons being funneled its way through Iran. We haven’t even taken into account the strong Russian presence in Syria. Syria is known to have more Russian troops and advisors within its borders than any other middle-eastern country. All of this makes for an explosive situation that could flare up in a moment.
Hizbullah, acting on behalf of Syria, has gained complete control of southern Lebanon and has an estimated 10,000 operatives (trained terrorists) manning 40,000 missiles along the border with Israel. Hamas, likewise, is being armed to the hilt and has fired numerous rockets into Israel from Gaza in an attempt to provoke the Jewish state. These attacks are virtually never reported by the Western media for the simple reason that it would make Hamas look bad and Israel appear as the victim. Thus far, Israel has remained patient; but if she waits much longer, the radical forces bent on her destruction will gain the upper hand. For this reason, a number of Israel’s top defense officials are pushing for a preemptive strike against their enemies.
President Obama’s “solution” to the dilemma involves Israel giving up more of its land in exchange for peace. His latest proposal, put forth in November, calls on Israel to hand over most of historic Judea and Samaria to the Palestinians. As a consolation, Israeli Jews would be allowed to lease back these lands – located in today’s West Bank – from the Palestinian Authority. This proposal involves a “seven-year agreement” during which time Israel would be permitted to lease the lands in question.
Joseph Farah of WorldNetDaily, who is himself a Christian of Arabic descent asks,
If Israel agrees that the land legitimately belongs to the Palestinians, how will it morally and legally defend the rest of its land? The concession would represent an implicit admission that so-called Palestinians have a legitimate right of ownership to all lands under the control of Israel – including Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, which are contested by the same people.
Farah goes on to accurately surmise,
This proposal from Barack Obama represents nothing but a reward for six decades of anti-Semitic hatred and intimidation by Arabs – recently cheered on by Western leaders under the economic thumb of Middle Eastern oil interests.
The Religious Angle
While some diplomats are looking for a political solution to global tensions, others are seeking answers in religion. If only the world’s religions could get along, tensions would be reduced. Better yet, if they could somehow be united, there would finally be peace, right?
With this goal in mind, religious leaders and many political powerbrokers alike, are scrambling to support efforts aimed at uniting the world’s religions. For the month of February alone, at least five major interfaith events are being planned. Four of the five will target Americans, while the fifth event will have a global audience. Here’s a summary.
February 3: World Interfaith Harmony Breakfasts
Where: Locations in the United States and India
Leading up to the UN-sponsored World Interfaith Harmony Week (see the next posting), a series of interfaith breakfasts will take place in the US, and to a lesser extent in India. US locations include: Washington DC, Murfreesboro TN, Nashville TN, Long Island NY, Columbus OH, and Sedona AZ.
According to organizers, “These events bring together those of different faiths or no faith path to share one meal on the same day around the world. Attendees at every event also share prayers, meditations, chants, intentions or music from different spiritual traditions. This spirituality is focused on a common concern at the world, the national and the local levels. The goal of this breakfast program is to recognize and create greater understanding and cooperation between those practicing the many different forms of human faith around the world.”
February 6-12: United Nations World Interfaith Harmony Week
On October 20, 2010 the United Nations passed a resolution establishing an interfaith harmony week, to be celebrated during the first full week of February. This initiative, which was kick-started by Jordan’s King Abdullah and Jordan’s Prince Ghazi, was founded on prior UN interfaith activities and the Common Word program – a Muslim call to bridge-building with the Christian community. Christian leaders, in turn, responded with a document calling for greater connections with Islam and equated the God of the Old and New Testaments with the Koran. Signers to the Christian response, titled Loving God and Neighbor Together, included Rick Warren, Bill Hybels and Jim Wallis. Leaders from many seminaries and Christian-based organizations also signed, including members of the National Association of Evangelicals, World Vision, and the Mennonite Central Committee.
Prince Ghazi’s speech announcing this Harmony Week included recognition of the interfaith role of the Second Vatican Council. Ghazi’s speech also included the UN resolution, and called on “Churches, Mosques, Synagogues, Temples and other places of Worship” to engage in interfaith cooperation for world peace.
February 11-13: National Preach-In on Global Warming
Where: United States of America
Initiated by the organization, Interfaith Power & Light, the weekend of February 11-13 is to be set aside as a Global Warming “preach-in.” Hence, clergy connected to local affiliates of Interfaith Power & Light will preach sermons on global warming, the need to change lifestyles, and the quest to find “global solutions for global problems.”
February 18-21: PantheaCon
Where: San Jose, California
PantheaCon is the largest pagan conference west of the Mississippi. Occult rituals, witchcraft seminars, classes on environmental paganism and divination, and sessions on witchcraft-pagan ethics are expected for 2011. Last year, one of the sessions was titled “Pagans in Global Interfaith Work.” Over 2000 attendees are expected, and more than 200 presentations, workshops, and seminars will be held.
February 25-March 1: The Prophets Conference
Where: Palm Springs, California
This is a gathering of prominent New Agers and occult-based futurists, including Barbara Marx Hubbard, who are seeking a new “vision of the future” and a “new world.” Themes will include the coming “alien visitation,” “Native American prophetic teachings,” and earth changes. The sponsors and speakers hold a predominately interfaith worldview, which they believe is vital to usher in a new world order.
Evangelicals Not Immune
What is most disturbing to me is the growing number of evangelical Christian leaders who are participating in, and in some cases even heading up, interfaith conferences. They are either wolves in sheeps’ clothing who are intentionally misleading their flocks, or they are unwittingly being used by the master deceiver to lay a dangerous trap.
Recently, a major interfaith event was held in Dallas, Texas. This “Global Faith Forum,” as it was called, was strongly influenced by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) which has been pursuing a one-world economic and political agenda since its inception in 1921. By engaging in interfaith activities, the CFR is going the next, and final, step by co-opting religious groups for its purposes. And, the church is increasingly open to it! Consider the list of sponsors on the Global Faith Forum website. They include: World Vision, Leadership Network, Dallas Baptist University – Cook Graduate School of Leadership, The World Affairs Council of Dallas/Ft. Worth, along with the Council on Foreign Relations.
Here is a snapshot of what the forum was all about, spoken in the words of modern Evangelicalism:
The Evangelical Church says they want to reach the world, but do we really understand the world. At the Global Faith Forum, we’re moving from a conversation about others faith, to a conversation with one another. A conversation that allows us to hear from leaders with different faiths, different worldviews and different ideas that shape the way we communicate in the 21st century.
Why should all of this concern us? Simply put, interfaith “peace” summits such as the Global Faith Forum are a smokescreen for a much larger agenda aimed at building the foundation for an occult-based world government. Without the support of the world’s religions – especially the Christian church – this goal of a new world order would be impossible. The greatest challenge for globalists from the beginning has been unifying the world’s religions so they will fit into the new order and global religion that will crown the Antichrist.
The Antichrist will most likely come to power by offering “solutions” to the world’s most complex problems; he will offer an interfaith plan for world peace, a resolution to the global financial dilemma and an answer to the perceived climate crisis – all under the guise of “saving the planet.” His followers will hate those who are unwilling to conform to the new global norm and whose testimony for the Lord troubles their conscience. Tragically, those who oppose God’s truth and succumb to Satan’s deception will spend eternity in Hell, forever separated from God and everything that is good.
The one-world/interfaith movement is becoming increasingly hostile toward biblical Christianity which is being marginalized because of its insistence that “there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) True Christians believe Jesus meant what He said: “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6) Such a view – that Jesus Christ is the summation of all truth and that there is no other pathway to Heaven – flies in the face of everything globalists stand for and everything Satan is trying to accomplish.
So, what does this mean for the loyal followers of Christ around the world? – Expect rejection and growing opposition as the dawn of the new world order draws near. As Christians we must continue to hold out the only hope for mankind which comes through the atoning blood of Jesus alone. However, we know from Scripture and also from practical experience that only a remnant will respond to the truth. Most humans will reject the only one who can save them in exchange for a counterfeit messiah who through deceit will enslave mankind and lead them in rebellion against their Creator.
In whatever time is left, I believe remnant Christians will have moments of opportunity to do “mighty exploits” for the Lord, as there will be those who respond to the truth as the end-of-time scenario unfolds. As disciples of Jesus we must therefore stay focused and not allow ourselves to be distracted by worldly passions and vain pursuits. We must redeem the time by allowing the Holy Spirit to work in and through us.
I personally believe that time is especially short for American Christians. If our days of freedom are in fact numbered, we must do all we can for the Lord while we are able. We must expose deception and proclaim the truth of Christ boldly, but in a spirit of love, remembering that we too are unworthy sinners who’ve been saved by the matchless grace of God.
Above all, it is important that we maintain a close personal walk with the Lord, recognizing that without His presence in our lives, we are powerless against the spiritual forces of this fallen world and ineffective in reaching the lost for Christ. Jesus said, “As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” (John 15:4-5)
As a Christian, are you abiding in Jesus the way you ought? If not, make a decision today to draw near to Him and to give Him your all from this moment forward. Don’t let anyone or anything stand in the way of your relationship with Him.
If you have never accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior, please do so now. Pray the following words in faith, and mean them with all of your heart.
Lord Jesus, I am a sinner and I need you. I believe that you are the perfect son of God and died on the cross to pay the penalty for my sins. I repent of my sins. I receive you now as my Savior. Thank you for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Please give me the desire and strength to love, obey, and serve You. In Your name I pray, Amen.
Be committed and don’t look back. Run the race well, all the way across the finish line – for the honor and glory of the Lord. He is worthy of our allegiance and will, one day soon, reward us abundantly for our faithfulness.
Gary Kah is the former Europe & Middle East Trade Specialist for the Indiana government. While in that position he traveled extensively overseas working closely with the economic staff at American Embassies.