As we attentively watch world events with the portent of ushering in the traumatic end-time calamities mentioned throughout the Word of God, several interesting trends continue to subtly nudge themselves into play:
ECONOMIC CONFIDENCE SHIFT
The first one is the economic body blow dealt by United States mega corporations as their corrupt practices have now caused bankruptcies of historic proportions. This week it was WorldCom–a company whose debts are virtually global. German banks in particular were hard hit. The “Humpty-Dumpy” world of U.S. prominence and leadership may never fully rebound. Waiting in the wings is the European, German-led euro which has emerged as a potential option for the badly battered dollar. The corrupt business practices which have toppled–and continue to weaken–so many formerly dominant American industrial giants have caused a perceptible sea-change in global dominance. Watch as these events continue to restructure the centers of economic confidence!
NEW RELIGIOUS LEADER
The second trend is highlighted by the appointment of Rowan Williams as Archbishop of Canterbury. His appointment this week brings to the Church of England’s leadership a man noted for liberal views and strong criticism of U.S. foreign policy. His spiritual voice echoes much of the sentiment of continental Europe. Hand in hand with this change is the current Papal visits–this time to Toronto, Canada, for the Church’s World Youth Day. His frail and failing health gives rise to ongoing speculation about the next Papal appointee. Europe and other Catholic countries are anticipating strong Papal involvement as the Catholic Church seems to have weathered the fading scandals of pedophilia in the U.S. Watch as religious influence becomes more outspoken and dominant in a world that seems on the verge of pulling away from the influence of a United States that has stumbled in its world role!
Earlier this week, the international press reported that the Israeli media and politicians criticized the most recent Israeli military attack on Gaza. During the raid, Hamas leader Salah Schehade was killed, but also 15 Palestinian civilians, including nine children. The United States, the United Nations, and many European and Arab governments condemned the strike as well.
Yahoo News published on Thursday an article, titled, “Sharon goes too far, again.” It stated that Sharon boasted that Thursday’s strike was “‘one of the biggest successes.'” It continued, “The incident is another tragic example of Sharon’s long history of violently overstepping reason in Israel’s struggle with the Palestinians. And his assessment of the attack shows why progress towards a peace settlement has unraveled under his rule. Each time Sharon overreaches, his country pays a heavy price. This time, the terrorist group Hamas… has vowed to kill Israeli children and target bus stops, restaurants and other public places. Before the strike, Hamas had hinted that it might end its attacks on Israeli citizens.”
Shortly thereafter, Yahoo News ran another article, informing its readership that “Palestinians shot dead a rabbi from a Jewish settlement in the West Bank Thursday in what militants called the first response to an Israeli air strike that killed 15 Palestinians.”
When will this world learn that nothing is gained by violence and war, and that war only breeds more war? The history of man has been written in blood. Man has proven that he is totally incapable of bringing peace to this world. But thankfully, man’s misrule over this planet is about to end. Very soon, Jesus Christ will return to establish the Kingdom of God on this earth and bring real and lasting peace to this world.
As if a foretaste of bigger things to come, Reuters reported on July 20 that “a downpour of giant hailstones, some of the size of eggs, killed 15 people and left hospitals overflowing” in central China. “Locals described it as the worst hailstorm in at least half a century.”
This may remind us of the hail that God sent to ancient Egypt, and it may also bring home the warning of a prophecy in the book of Revelation, that “great hail from heaven fell upon men, each hailstone about the weight of a talent. Men blasphemed God because of the plague of the hail, since that plague was exceedingly great.” (Revelation 16:21).
God’s Church is commissioned to preach the gospel in all the world. And we can be thankful, that this can be done from the Western world where we do enjoy relative religious freedom. Imagine we had to operate from India, for example. Zenit News Agency reported on July 24 that a Catholic nun “charged with converting Hindus remains in prison after her arrest in India last week,” as bail was denied her. The nun is accused of converting 94 Hindus to Christianity in 1988 (!), although conversion of people from one religion to another is prohibited without the “administration’s permission.”
The Economist.com ran an article on July 19, titled, “Schröder in trouble.” It pointed out, “Much of the German electorate is still undecided, according to polls, about which way to vote in September’s general election. But Chancellor Gerhard Schröder and his Social Democratic Party [SPD] are in trouble. Like so many other European countries, Germany may be about to move to the right…” It continued, “In no other post-war election have voters found it so hard to make up their minds; one in three still have not done so.” We most certainly need to watch the events taking pace in Germany. The bible prophecies that Germany and continental Europe will play a dominant role in the near future, and the entire world will be affected by it.