Written the week of July 4, 2011
Posted on July 22, 2011
On the morning of June 25, I had a very disturbing and vivid dream. In this full-color dream I was standing on our driveway with close friends when I noticed the wind picking up. I looked up toward the sky to my left and saw a massive whirlwind descending from heaven. This tornado-like mass was brownish-gray with multi-colored dark clouds swirling in various directions all around it. It was an ominous, terrifying sight and invoked an instant sense of awe among those of us watching.
We were suddenly compelled to look toward the right. We were astonished at the sight of three more raging whirlwinds moving toward the ground. None of them had yet touched down, but they were moving lower and were about to strike. These whirlwinds were enormous and their intensity worse than anything I had ever seen. Aware of the approaching storm we began to scramble for cover. This is when I woke up.
I rarely remember my dreams, but this one was so real that it took me a while to recognize that I was actually lying in the safety of my own bed. It was around 4:30 in the morning, but I awakened my wife to share my dream with her. I tried to go back to sleep but couldn’t; so I finally got up, took my Bible and devotional book and went downstairs. I asked the Lord to show me if there was anything I was to understand from this dream.
Disasters occurring in America
A short while later I viewed the morning headlines on our television to see if anything of significance had happened overnight. CNN’s lead story reported that New York had just become the sixth state to sign same-sex marriage into law. The state’s Senate, a majority of which is Republican, approved the measure late on the previous day to the delight of the Democratic governor Andrew Cuomo. The news segment showed the New York Senate chamber erupting in loud applause from the balcony as spectators celebrated the outcome of the vote – one day before NYC’s annual Gay Pride parade.
The reporter covering the story explained that this new law does not require that homosexual couples be residents of New York in order to be married there. In other words, the floodgates have been opened. Homosexuals from anywhere in the country will now be able to travel to New York, get married, and then return to their home state claiming to be a legal couple – thereby challenging existing laws forbidding such unions in other states. This new law will do more to accelerate and legitimize immoral behavior than anything preceding it.
A majority of Americans now support same-sex marriage. Our citizens are increasingly throwing caution to the wind, doing whatever they please to gratify their selfish desires without regard for the consequences of their sins. In some parts of the country one-half of all babies are born out of wedlock. The use of pornography is pandemic and marriages are crumbling because of infidelity. These are just the “sex sins.” Never mind all the others – abortion, greed, gluttony, drug abuse, deception, murder, theft, self-centered pride, the pursuit of occult practices/demon spirits, outright hatred for God or the denial of His existence, to name just a few. Our nation, it seems, is racing toward sin rather than away from it. In spite of this reality, it remains fashionable and almost second-nature for us to say “God bless America.” But how can He?
Our President, who claims to be a Christian, stands opposed to the biblical position on many, if not most, of the moral and spiritual issues facing our nation. Americans were aware of where he stood on these issues and that he had the most liberal, anti-Christian voting record in the US Senate. Yet, enough people voted for him to make him President. Aren’t we getting what we deserve?
On the matter of Israel, our President is defying the Lord and is thereby putting the United States at risk. He is trying to carve up this tiny Jewish nation in a way that would make it indefensible against its enemies. He is currently applying enormous pressure on Israel’s leaders to finalize an agreement with the Palestinian Authority this fall. No nation has ever persecuted God’s chosen people without suffering the consequences of His judgment. Make no mistake, God will not be mocked!
Within the past few months nearly every part of the United States has experienced a major crisis. Most have been of epic proportions. From the massive fires in Arizona and New Mexico and extreme drought in areas of the South to unprecedented tornadoes and historic flooding in the nation’s heartland, old records are being shattered as quickly as the news can be reported. We are only halfway through the year and the hurricane season is just beginning. It seems as if the crises are getting progressively worse and affecting more and more people. Could a major hurricane, earthquake, or tsunami be next?
After several months of relentless disasters, we should be asking ourselves, “Is God sending a message?” But instead, “experts” are trying to blame the unusual ferocity of weather on climate change, which they claim is being brought on by man’s disregard for the environment. Some atheists/agnostics even go so far as saying that our intelligence agencies are behind these catastrophes. Although some manipulation of weather may be taking place (we know that the US, Russia, and several other countries are developing technology which can affect weather), it is completely over-the-top to suggest that all of these disasters are manmade. Carnal man is quick to offer any explanations detracting attention from God while putting the emphasis on man. I’m sure there are those who would even attempt to explain away the significance of an asteroid suddenly hitting the earth.
Personally, I am convinced that God is in the process of lifting His hand of protection from America – as well as other nations that defy Him. His judgment against certain nations has begun. It will only intensify the rest of the way. The magnitude of disasters will increase to such a scale that what we have seen thus far will seem small by comparison. I believe this was the symbolic message of my dream.
God is slow to anger and full of love and compassion, ever willing to forgive if people repent of their sins (Jonah 4:2, Exodus 34:6, and Numbers 14:18). However, when a people persistently choose to sin and reject God’s patient efforts to correct them, eventually His judgment falls. The greater the sins of a nation, the greater His punishment will be when it finally occurs.
A Lesson from History
No nation in recorded history has fallen from the truth and its favored position with God more quickly than America – except possibly Israel during ancient times. Within a short time of their miraculous exodus from Egypt – complete with God’s supernatural parting of the Red Sea and destruction of Pharaoh’s army – the Israelites built an idol representing a foreign god of demonic origin and began to worship it. When Moses came down from Mt. Sinai and saw his people worshipping and offering sacrifices to a golden calf, he was in disbelief. That day three thousand people were put to death because of their grave sin; and the Lord struck the remaining Israelites with a plague because of what they had done (Exodus 32, Deuteronomy 9:7-21). He referred to them as a rebellious and stiff-necked people. Yet, in response to Moses’ humble plea for mercy on their behalf and because of the Lord’s covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, He relented and spared a majority of the people.
On another occasion, during the time of the prophet Hosea, the Israelites had once again turned away from God. In spite of Hosea’s repeated warnings and calls to repentance, Jeroboam – the king ruling over the northern kingdom of Israel – led his people in an all-out rebellion against the Lord. His actions are recorded throughout the book of Hosea and in I Kings 12:25-33, also chapters 13 and 14. According to these passages, Jeroboam erected idols to other gods for his people to worship. Being led by pagan-turned priests, their worship included temple prostitution along with occult ceremonies and festivals. Hosea lamented,
Hear the word of the LORD, you Israelites, because the LORD has a charge to bring against you who live in the land: “There is no faithfulness, no love, no acknowledgment of God in the land. There is only cursing, lying and murder, stealing and adultery; they break all bounds, and bloodshed follows bloodshed. Because of this, the land mourns, and all who live in it waste away; the beasts of the field and the birds of the air and the fish of the sea are dying….my people are destroyed from lack of knowledge….The more the priests increased, the more they sinned against me; they exchanged their Glory for something disgraceful. They feed on the sins of my people and relish their wickedness. And it will be: Like people, like priests. I will punish both of them for their ways and repay them for their deeds.” (Hosea 4:1-3, 6a, 7-9)
Another prophet of the Lord by the name of Ahijah pronounced the following judgment against Jeroboam and his people:
Go, tell Jeroboam that this is what the LORD, the God of Israel says: “I raised you up from among the people and made you a leader over my people Israel. I tore the kingdom away from the house of David and gave it to you, but you have not been like my servant David, who kept my commands and followed me with all his heart, doing only what was right in my eyes. You have done more evil than all who lived before you. You have made for yourself other gods, idols made of metal; you have provoked me to anger and thrust me behind your back. Because of this, I am going to bring disaster on the house of Jeroboam. I will cut off from Jeroboam every last male in Israel – slave or free. I will burn up the house of Jeroboam as one burns dung, until it is all gone. Dogs will eat those belonging to Jeroboam who die in the city, and the birds of the air will feed on those who die in the country. The LORD has spoken!”…And the LORD will strike Israel, so that it will be like a reed swaying in the water. He will uproot Israel from this good land that he gave to their forefathers and scatter them beyond the River, because they provoked the LORD to anger by making Asherah poles. And he will give Israel up because of the sins Jeroboam has committed and has caused Israel to commit. (I Kings 14:7-11, 15-16)
These are strong and sobering words for a people who only a generation earlier had enjoyed God’s favor – being led by King David, the man after God’s own heart! Why was the Lord’s punishment of His own people so extreme? One reason may be because of the severe nature and depravity of their sins. However, I believe another reason for God’s seemingly harsh judgment was because of how quickly and easily they were led astray and were willing to turn their backs on Him.
America finds itself in a similar position today. Only a generation ago our nation, although not perfect, operated under the strong influence of a Judeo-Christian ethic which caused us to prosper. This moral, Christ-centered foundation was put in place by the early Pilgrims who made their way to our shores. In spite of Satan’s best efforts to erode this godly foundation through secret societies and their encroaching occult-based beliefs, it remained largely intact until the 1960s. This is when the on-going hidden rebellion became public. Since then, in less than fifty years time, our nation has literally been turned upside down. What was once good is now considered evil; and what was once evil is being celebrated as good.
God has continued to bless us, undeserving though we are, while patiently calling us to repentance. However, His merciful pleas have gone largely ignored by a proud and defiant people who believe, “It can’t happen here; this is America.” Rather than learning the lessons of history, we have chosen not to heed God’s warnings – bringing us to the current state of affairs.
When God Judges a Nation
God can carry out His judgment on a nation in a variety of ways, depending on the severity of its rebellion. He may choose to affect its livelihood by bringing down its economy; He may allow it to be attacked and overtaken by its adversaries; or, He may choose to completely destroy a nation so it will never rise again (read Isaiah 45:6b-7). Destruction can occur through natural disasters, seemingly random accidents, or through acts of war and terror. Depending on the pervasiveness of the rebellion, and whether it is centered in or limited to a particular location within a nation, God may choose to destroy just one of its cities or perhaps a region or a group of cities. Regardless of how a nation is judged by the Lord, all of its inhabitants are impacted to some degree – this includes Christians.
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NOTE: We must not make the mistake of thinking that Christians living in areas currently facing disasters deserve what they are getting or are more deserving of calamity than those of us who have not yet experienced a major crisis. We have more than a few Christian friends living in the areas affected. Our hearts go out to them and we have been praying that the Lord would help them recover quickly and draw them close to His side. As we are witnessing what I believe is the beginning of “national” judgment intended to get our attention, our turn could come next. Any part of the country could be hit at any time. God usually reserves His greatest judgment for last.
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When God could tolerate no more of Nazi Germany’s crimes, His judgment fell. It was carried out through the United States and its allies. The destruction was extensive. In some cities the devastation was so complete that hardly a building was left standing. Dresden was particularly hard hit; many Christians living in that city perished. There had been warnings to get out. Some left while they could, but most stayed, not wanting to leave their homes and friends behind.
Judgment against a nation should not be confused with God’s eternal judgment of individuals. One day each of us will stand before the living God to give an account of our lives. Thankfully, those of us who have accepted Jesus as Savior are under the covering of His blood which paid the penalty for our sins. We will receive glorified bodies and spend eternity with Him as our reward; while those who rejected the Son of God will be subjected to everlasting punishment in hell.
When God’s judgment falls on a nation, believers in Christ who die as a result will still spend eternity with the Lord. Their death occurs because they happened to be living in the judged nation – not because they were enemies of God. This is an important point to understand. Here’s why.
Some American Christians mistakenly assume that because they are under the protective covering of the Lamb (in an eternal sense) they are somehow invincible in the physical realm as well. But this is not the case. For example, if New York City were to be destroyed by a nuclear weapon, there is a very high probability that you would not survive physically if you are within close proximity of the detonation. Unless God supernaturally protects you, you would die like everyone else, regardless of whether you are a Christian. Perhaps God is communicating this point in Revelation 18:4-5 when speaking of a wicked city He says, “Come out of her, my people, so that you will not share in her sins, so that you will not receive any of her plagues; for her sins are piled up to heaven, and God has remembered her crimes.”
Some of my Christian friends who understand this principle are taking action. Believing that America will not repent and has gone beyond the point of return, they are choosing to exit the country. While they do not fear their eternal destiny (being secure in Christ), nor fear physical death (realizing they will die at some point unless Christ returns first), they do not want to be in the path of God’s “national” judgment which they believe is certain to come. Some of these individuals are leaving (or have already left) for entirely pure motives. By leaving the US they believe they will be able to carry out the work they’ve been called to do by God for a longer period of time – perhaps for several more years until the emerging one-world system is fully implemented and limits their freedom to share the Gospel.
One of these individuals recently moved to Costa Rica. He happens to be very intelligent and level-headed, loves the Lord with all his heart, and is one of the best teachers of the Word I’ve ever known. Whatever you may think of people who are leaving the United States, I believe God would have me caution you against mocking them for doing so. Their actions, in the end, may have been very wise. We must each prayerfully seek God’s direction and then pursue His will for our lives on this matter.
The Clock is Ticking
Only God knows how much longer America has to repent of her sins. But every indication points to the fact that time is running out. If not for the Lord’s exceptional mercy and grace our nation would already have been destroyed. He has intervened repeatedly to hold back our enemies. However, through natural disasters and a faltering economy He is now turning up the heat hoping Americans will get the message and respond accordingly. If we don’t, the calamities He brings our way will continue to intensify.
We should understand that in Christ all things hold together (Colossians 1:17). Without His presence or protection, our nation would quickly deteriorate in every imaginable way. We as a nation have been successful only because God has blessed us. Our influence over the past century has been great because He has allowed it. Without God we are nothing. We would do well to recognize and acknowledge this fact so that He does not have to “prove” it to us.
Another possible sign indicating God’s time of patient warning may be nearing an end is that He is taking some of His most faithful servants and “watchmen” home. Several godly men whom I have respected and admired have gone to be with the Lord unexpectedly in the last few weeks (i.e. David Wilkerson, Ron Carlson, J.R. Church). They were each strong contenders for the faith and had been calling America to repentance for many years.
Will America Repent?
At this late hour, there are only three ways for America’s Christians to avoid God’s judgment of our nation. The first is to leave the country, as some have already done. The second is to pray that God would supernaturally lead us out of harm’s way to safe zones He has prepared somewhere within our borders – where people could flee before the worst disasters strike. Such a scenario would require the Lord to miraculously communicate these details to His people. The third option, which should be our foremost desire, is for America to repent of its sins on a scale like that of ancient Nineveh, crying out to God to forgive our defiance and to restore our people and land.
I believe that God greatly loves the people of this nation and is desperately trying to reach through to our hardened hearts. He only sends all-out judgment as a last resort. In the words of Peter, “He is patient with you [us], not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (II Peter 3:9b) Will we continue trying His patience until He brings “last resort” judgment? Or, will we repent?
Any serious repentance (turning away from sin and submitting to God) must begin with the church. More than 70 percent of Americans identify themselves as Christians; yet, many if not most of these professing believers are living more like the Devil than the Lord Jesus Christ. In most cases one can tell little difference between those in the church and those in the secular world. Therein lies the problem.
The secular world – including those involved in other religions – no longer respect most Christians and, as a result, do not want to be like us. To many, the term “Christian” has become synonymous with Hypocrite. The fact is, unless we practice what we preach, no one will listen. On the other hand, if we truly put our beliefs into practice, while the world may or may not accept our beliefs, many will at least listen and respect our position. For there to be any possibility of a genuine spiritual revival in America, Christians must lead the way by example. If this were to occur, non-Christians would take notice and surrender their hearts to Christ in growing numbers, and our situation could turn around.
God understands that none of us will ever be perfect on this side of eternity. Rather, He looks at the overall attitude of our hearts toward Him. Is our spiritual condition one of surrender to Him and His will for our lives, or are we trying to get away with as much as we possibly can while hoping God will look the other way when we sin? Are we aiming to please God or ourselves?
Some of us have “pet sins” we’ve held on to for years. They are eating us alive from within, while ruining our testimony to others. This must change. We have to get serious about sin!
If you profess Christ but are not living a surrendered life because of the hold that sin has on your heart and mind, then you need to make the overcoming of that sin a life and death matter. Are you serious enough about overcoming your pet sin that you are willing to ask God to take your life if you ever do it again?
I know this sounds radical. However, we in the church have come to redefine grace as “God being tolerant of sin.” But the truth is – He hates sin! It ruins our lives and brings shame to His name. Therefore, repent of your sins and be an overcomer for the sake of Christ!
If you are one who has genuinely been living for Christ but has stumbled in your walk, simply confess your sin to the Lord and turn from it. He will be faithful to forgive you (1 John 1:9, Micah 7:18). Then move on, learn from your mistake and be stronger next time. Draw even closer to Christ and ask Him to fill you and empower you with the Holy Spirit. We are no match for a powerful adversary unless we are clothed with God’s Spirit every day (Ephesians 6:10-18).
It is important as believers in Jesus that we frequently encourage, comfort, and urge each other to live lives worthy of the Lord (I Thessalonians 2:12). Close fellowship with solid, committed Christians is vital to our spiritual walk. Make sure you are in the regular presence of mature, repentant believers who pull you up rather than take you down (Hebrews 10:24-25).
In order to seek God and petition Him at a heightened level, we are asking everyone reading this message to join my wife and me in a one-month period of fasting and prayer. (We are choosing to set aside the month of August.) This can be in the form of a partial fast, especially if you have health issues. The purpose of this time of intense prayer and giving up some foods that we normally enjoy is to focus our attention completely on the Lord and on how we might become more obedient and surrendered to Him. Let us draw near to God and ask Him to show us what in our lives needs to change. Let us also cry out for His mercy on our nation. Perhaps, if enough people sincerely repent and look to the Lord as our only hope, He will withhold additional punishment and restore our nation (II Chronicles 7:14).
[A word from the Author: As long as a people are morally strong and devoted to the truth of God, it is difficult for Satan and his agents to gain a foothold or destroy them. However, if people succumb to the influence, deception, and temptations (plots and schemes) of Satan, they sink into the mires of sin and are weakened. If they do not repent and turn to God, eventually He lifts His protective covering from them allowing the forces of evil to prevail – until such a time that He brings His wrath against these same forces. This is why Scripture says,
He [the Lord] brings princes to naught and reduces the rulers of this world to nothing. No sooner are they planted, no sooner are they sown, no sooner do they take root in the ground, than he blows on them and they wither, and a whirlwind sweeps them away like chaff (Isaiah 40:23-24).
Even though Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world.” (John 18:36), He is referred to by John in Revelation 1:5 as “the ruler of the kings of the earth.” He determines who rises and falls, and when. Regarding the powerful, far-reaching hand of God, the prophet Daniel wrote, “He changes times and seasons; He sets up kings and deposes them.” The fact is, God rewards righteousness and punishes evil. This is the course of history.
At the same time, Satan’s goal – along with deceiving and tempting the masses – is to persecute and wear down the saints of God (Christians). We must therefore resist the Devil vigilantly and remain clothed with the full armor of God at all times. This is the nature of our spiritual battle on this earth. Our purpose is to expose the work and lies of the evil one so that people might not be led astray by his wicked schemes, but might hold fast to the truth and hope we have in Jesus Christ.
If you are one who has never received Jesus Christ as your Savior, there is no better time to do so than now. You must decide to believe in Him – that He alone can, and will, rescue you from the eternal punishment of your sins. In your own words tell the Lord that you are a sinner and are in need of His forgiveness. Confess your sins to Him; then ask Him to strengthen you in every area of your life – to empower you with the Holy Spirit so you will be able to live obediently and submissively before Him from this day forward. Thank the Lord for loving you enough to die in your place in order that you can have everlasting life. Then, make it your daily heartbeat to love and faithfully serve Him.
“So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature…The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.” ― Galatians 5:16, 22-25]