There are a couple of things we should be aware of in our world. They are not necessarily encouraging things, unless you are looking for the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. The reason it is an encouraging thing for the return of Christ is because what is happening will help to usher in the kind of world systems that will be around in the time of the antichrist. This is especially the case when it comes to the financial systems that rule our world.
Remember this acrostic - P.I.I.G.S. This is an easy way to identify the five nation states that will soon be imploding because of their debt crises. The letters stand for Portugal, Italy, Ireland, Greece, and Spain. These five countries are all drowning in debt that has been growing due to their penchant for socialism and all that a government can buy before their spending binges come to an end. Currently, Italy seems to be leading the pack, with an interest payment of over 200 billion dollars due soon - which it cannot pay. This is causing a panic in the European financial world because either someone bails Italy out of their mess - or they default on their loan and the nation basically goes bankrupt. The problem grows worse when you learn that all the other nations in this acrostic are in the same boat. They have accumulated debt to such a level that they cannot pay it back. Thus when one of these nations falls - the others are not far behind. It is a house of cards - and when one falls - the others will eventually follow suit. This brings us to see other problems as well.
The nations who hold the loans for these countries will suffer financial devastation as well. When Italy, Greece, or Spain (these three seem to be leading the pack for who defaults on their loans first) fails - these nations will be on the hook for their debt. They will lose billions of dollars. In Europe - Germany is the fall guy for most of this debt currently. But, there are also other players - the United States and China. Both of these countries will pay dearly for the defaults in Europe. China will fare much better because their economy is solvent. Our economy will most likely either collapse entirely or, will be pushed into another recession or depression.
What does this mean for all of us? I would like a comment on a couple of things. First - it means that this current financial world is bankrupt and is headed for a worldwide crash. Currently there is a situation that merits watching on this front. It is the fact that bank screens are reading 00.000 both for buying and selling all major currencies around the world. This is costing banks billions as they cannot do international transfers of money. Some believe that we are on the verge of a currency re-set that may pump potential trillions of dollars into the financial systems of the world. The problem is that this will not solve the financial problems the world is currently experiencing. The countries who are in deep debt are continuing on a path of socialism - where all problems are supposedly solved by the government spending their way out of them. All this had led to is governments spending themselves into financial crisis and ruin. The problem is spending - and unless socialism is renounced as a way of governing - we will simply spend through this infusion of cash - and wind up in the same situation again in a year or two - possibly even less.
The second thing I see is that this situation is building for a possible scenario that would fit the end-times. When there is worldwide financial crisis - it leads to worldwide political crisis as well. The source of wars according to James 4 is that we want and cannot get - so we fight and kill one another. It is easy to see that all the things that describe the great Tribulation period can be aided by a worldwide financial collapse. This will lead to wars, famines, and tumultuous times worldwide. Thus, we may be being set up for a time unlike any other in history.
The third thing I see is the rise of totalitarianism in the United States. When a country has financial devastation - it leads to political unrest. We already see some of this with the Occupy Wall Street movement. Currently, this group would have ceased unless the Democrat Party and the Mainstream Media had not propped it up and supported it. Amazing to me is the lack of reporting about rapes, murder, general lawlessness that runs rampant in this movement. Yet useful idiots are always helpful when a political overthrow is in the making. Already this current administration has trashed the Constitution as a governing document. The number of impeachment proceedings that should have already happened surpass all those previously carried out in history - yet they are not even being mentioned. The reason is because we are no longer a people governed by law - and we are also a people grossly ignorant of our own Constitution. This lack of knowledge is destroying our government as those who hold office routinely trample the Constitution without rebuke govern our land however they choose. What this will lead to is an eventual decent into totalitarian rule. I have begun to seriously wonder if we will vote again in a national election. All the laws are passed to prevent one from happening this fall. All that is necessary is an act of terrorism that leads our ruling class to decide that marshal law is needed. I do believe that if this happens - we will not recognize our nation as what she was previously (a Constitutional Republic) again.
What is a Christian to do in the midst of all this mess? Let me give you a list of things below that I would suggest in light of the current place we are in history.
1) Draw near to God - This is always the first thing on any REAL biblical list. Repent if necessary - return to the Lord with all your heart - and seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. Scripture reminds us of this in 2 Chronicles 7:14 and Matthew 6:33-34. We are told not to worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow has enough trouble of its own. The question is this - have you sought the Lord and walked with Jesus today? Are you filled with the Holy Spirit? Are you living for eternity and the glory of God?
2) Move toward getting out of debt - If you can, be debt free (except the debt of loving one another). We are about to enter into a time where it will be very difficult to maintain much debt.
3) Cultivate relationships in the body of Christ - When push comes to shove - people are going to turn on one another in this world. That is why we need to have intimate relationships with the rest of the church. Build these relationships and seek to have them founded on biblical principles. You will need your brothers and sisters in Christ to make it through this time (geez, you'll need them to make it through ANY time in history). If you do not meet with a small group of believers in a local setting - START NOW! We may be facing a world in which movement over long distances will be restricted. You may need brothers and sisters nearby to fellowship with to maintain fellowship at all with fellow Christians.
4) Prepare for a financial collapse - Here is where some may think I've lost my mind. If a financial collapse of national proportion happens - you will see banks close left and right. Even though your money is insured by the FDIC - know this - even the FDIC will be bankrupt. That is why I would encourage you to eventually build up a week or two worth of funds to have on hand in such a situation. Some even counsel that we get physical gold and silver for this purpose. Another thing to do is to have a weeks worth of food in some kind of "freeze-dried" or other preserved kind of state. It also would not be too unwise of a thing to have some kind of tablets where you can purify water as well. I am not advising hoarding. This is just an emergency supply. (In all honesty such a kit is wise for no other reason than we live in a major earthquake zone).
5) Build Your Trust in the Lord / Prayer - Ultimately God is the One we will turn to if the world begins to crumble financially. I had the honor and joy of pastoring a small group of farmers who were in their 70-80's when I started being a pastor. I would talk with them and hear stories of the Great Depression of the 1930's. Their stories would focus on extreme need - and how God met their need. The one common theme in all this was that they knew the Lord - trusted in Him - and prayed for His provision. Are you living such a life now? Are you ready to lead your family in this way? Too many of us (myself included) are living more like the "American dream" than we are the "Bible Reality." We live a consumer lifestyle where we are living to consume - and do so often beyond our means. We need to return to a "biblical" lifestyle where our greatest teacher and example is Scripture. The life we live needs to be based on biblical principles - which will focus us on a life that trusts God - and seeks Him in prayer. This, more than anything else I've said previously, is what will prepare us to live in ANY TIME in history.
May God give us wisdom to see the writing on the wall - without Him having to write it in the midst of a party that precedes our downfall. These things ARE COMING. The true question therefore is are we ready for them - and ready to take the gospel to our culture in the midst of them?
It is once again that time of year . . . when the leaves are falling from the trees . . . when it is getting colder . . . and when I begin in earnest to study for what will be the Prophecy Update message(s) for 2012. This is going to be a year unlike any I've ever seen before. The reason for this is because there is more worldwide unrest and upheaval than in any I've known in my lifetime. Soooo . . . I thought I'd give a little preview of where I'm going in regard to my early studies and reading.
First, there is the financial upheaval that is going on everywhere in the world. The uncontrolled spending that has dominated the western world is coming to a close. The experiment with various aspects of Socialism is coming home to roost. Our governing officials are running out of other people's money to spend - and that is making for some very interesting developments now - and even more fascinating ones that are coming possibly as early as next year. What I want to explore though, is how these events may be working toward scenarios put forth for us in the prophecy writings of the Bible.
Second, there is the Arab Spring. We have watched Egypt and Libya go through revolutions that have removed dictators. We are watching Syria presently on the verge of revolution. There is rampant unrest throughout the Middle East in the "street." Who is going to fill the vacuum left by the departure of these leaders and their regimes? Will it be an Arab Spring that will follow - or - something far more sinister resembling an Arab "dark ages" instead?
Third, there is the specter of a nuclear Iran - and what Israel is going to do about that development. This one may happen before January 1st. There are several reports from intelligence gathering groups that point to an Israeli strike that will take out Iran's nuclear capabilities. What will this lead to in the future? Could this event be the "starting line" for a series of events that could lead to the Gog-Magog invasion of Ezekiel 38-39? Could this even be a convergence of events that could be when the rapture of the church takes place?
Fourth, there is Israel. Since the 7 year tribulation period involves God's work with Israel, it is always helpful to see what kind of developments are taking place among God's chosen people. There is always a great deal that swirls around this little nation. We will look at recent developments in the peace process - in the threats that continue to surround Israel - and the way that anti-semitism in on the rise in our nation and around the world.
Fifth, there are the Occupy Wall-Street protesters and the unrest that is growing in our own nation. What is all this protesting about - and where could it lead us? Along with this area of study I am going to address how these events play into America's role in the last days. Where is the United States in all that is going to happen? What can we expect as the day of our Lord's return draws ever nearer?
Finally, I will also be looking into developments concerning hot-button issues like, "Who is the Antichrist?" "What about the mark of the beast?" "What is happening that might factor into the various judgments (Seal, Trumpet, and Bowl) that are going to happen?" All these may have had some kind of development that bears scrutiny as to how they may happen in the future.
I would appreciate your prayers as I dive into the deep-end of these studies. This usually involves reading 100's of pages of information - various updates in the financial realm, the political realm, the military realm, and the spiritual realm. I need God's wisdom to discern truth from error - and fact from hype. As always I want the Scriptures to dominate how I look at things. Honestly, I'm excited about this year because of all the developments going on in the world. But I am also concerned that I not get caught up in any false hype or misinterpretation of the events that are happening today.
There is a test that is happening today that should deeply concern every single citizen of the United States. The concern should not be because of the stated purpose of the test. The concern should be the power grab that it represents – and worse – the power that now is in the hands of an unelected official who serves at the behest of the president of the United States.
The first amendment to the United States Constitution states that there is the freedom of speech and of the press. That is a right that should not be infringed upon by our government. But a test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on November 9th at 1:00 CST will give federal authorities a power that has never existed before in our country. On this day there will be the first ever test of the EAS on a national level. For three minutes this test will allow the Director of FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Authority) to effectively shut down all television, radio, cable television, satellite radio and television and wireline video broadcasters. Why is this viewed as such a serious thing? This is being done to make sure that in an emergency one message can be sent to people about what the emergency is. Why all the fuss?
What this means is that the authority to seize control of all television and civilian communication has been taken by the executive branch of the United States government and handed to a government agency. The problem is that for the first time in history – the government can absolutely control information and speech in our country. They can do so with a simple flip of a switch. Today the switch will only be activated for a 3 minute test. But that power should never be put into the hands of any one branch of government – without serious precautions and limits to their ability to use it. There should be very serious laws governing the use of this – and even more serious penalties should it ever be misused for ANY purpose outside of a BRIEF alert of the populace.
What many are concerned about here is the ability of a partisan entity (of any party or group in existence now or in the future) to suddenly CONTROL the flow of information to the American people. If anyone decided to misuse this power they could have ABSOLUTE CONTROL over all the information the people of the United States received – with no way to rebut false information. The power it gives the presidency was NEVER meant to be wielded except in the most extreme of circumstances. Our founders would be terrified to know that a political entity of any kind, party, or distinction could do this. They would know that such power is what ultimately destroys a nation – not helps it.
One of the things that will happen during the beginning of the seven year tribulation period of Revelation 6 is famine and starvation. As Americans we do not begin to comprehend either of these things because of the abundance that we have in our country. But for the rest of the world, especially the horn of Africa, things have been very difficult. Starvation and famine have been a part of their lifestyle for years. But over the last couple of years things have gone from bad to worse, due to a drought that has struck the area hard of over the past two to three years.
This is not that odd for this region. The horn of Africa is on the edge of the Sahara Desert, which has been expanding for most of the last decade. But what is worse is that two years of horrific drought conditions have brought about the worst water and crop conditions since the great famine of 1950-51. It is estimated that about 10 million people in this region are experiencing severe food and water shortages. If 2012 turns out to be as bad a year agriculturally as the previous two, we will most likely see a famine and food shortage as great as any we’ve known in modern history.
Let me quote Revelation 6:5-6 at this point of this post. “When He broke the third seal, I heard the third living creature saying, ‘Come.’ I looked, and behold, a black horse; and he who sat on it had a pair of scales in his hand. And I heard something like a voice in the center of the four living creatures saying, ‘A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; and do not damage the oil and the wine.’ This passage relates to us a situation in which a black horse is released with its rider. These two represent a time of severe famine and food shortage. The scales represent the unbelievably high prices for food staples like wheat, barley, oil, and wine. It reminds us that the seven year tribulation period will be marked by famine and food shortage.
It is true that as long as the earth has been under the economic and agricultural conditions of the fall of man, there have been famines. But the one that seems to be looming in our near future is not quite like any we’ve ever known before. Currently, global stockpiles of corn, which is the most-consumed grain, are being forecast to fall to 47 days of use. According to the U.S.D.A there have not been numbers that low since 1974. Some might think that this is not too bad – and would be normal under cycles that exist in the agricultural world. The real problem though is that as these inventories continue to decline, demand continues to rise.
Making matters worse is the problems that are occurring all over the world in regard to food production. This past year we have watched the following problems hit all over the world. In Russia a record setting heat wave severely hurt their grain crop moving the government to put restrictions on exporting wheat to other countries. Other countries like China, Brazil, Australia, and Pakistan have had bad flooding in several key agricultural areas. In the United States we watched the state of Texas fry with drought and heat – while areas of Missouri, Kentucky, and Illinois were purposely flooded to avoid unprecedented disaster on the Mississippi River. By the way, those areas were all farm land. Their ability to grow crops in these regions was limited greatly. Worldwide, crop production is either at historic lows – or has been hindered altogether. Even Europe is seeing near record lows in rain, presenting northern Europe with a drought that has dropped forecasts of agricultural production through the floor.
These worldwide events have led to extreme rises in the price of food. The global price of food in general has risen over 35% in the last year. This caps off a recent report by the UN Food and Agricultural Organization that states that the global price of food has risen 240% since 2004. Since over half the population of Africa spends approximately 50% of their annual income on food alone – rising prices like these will quickly outstrip their ability to buy food at all. That is why in Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia, Uganda, and Egypt there have already been “Food Riots.” These are gatherings of people who are rioting because of severe shortages of food.
The United States ships out massive amounts of food each year to the rest of the world. If there is a financial meltdown in our country, these shipments will be interrupted – if not halted altogether. If we think it is bad now, have the U.S. cut back or stop their supplies of food to the rest of the world. That will result in global food shortages – and possibly worldwide famine. For the first time in modern history, it does not look like the statements made in Revelation 6:5-6 are all that difficult to imagine. Prepare your hearts dear saints of God – rough times are indeed ahead of us – but so is the coming of our Lord!
What is the Prophecy/News Update?
At Calvary Chapel of Jonesboro, we believe that history is moving toward fulfilling God's plans and purposes. In an effort to help us be prepared for His appearing - and also to chronicle news items you just won't see in the national media - this page is devoted to sharing those items and their possible significance to
Thank you for visiting our website! Everything on this site is offered for free. If, however, you would like to make a donation to help pay for its continued presence on the internet, you can do that by clicking here. The only thing we ask is that you give first to the local church you attend.