David Wilkerson is getting some flak for his urgent message about an impending calamity. A lot of people have written off his warning by likening him to the authors of the Left Behind series. On the same blog there is a link to a book about an impending depression. In it he Wilkerson claims God was the one who brought about the Great Depression. I’ve done a lot of reading and there are lots of economic factors that lead to the Great Depression. I can’t say I ever came away with the impression that God supernaturally intervened to put the whole world in to a depression.
If God were to judge a country does he orchestrate things or does he just choose to give us over to our own deception and greed and watch us bring calamity on ourselves? That might be easier to reconcile with our concept of a loving God. Regardless of how we frame it sometimes societies pay a heavy price for sin, dishonesty and greed. These things erode the foundations of society until everything implodes. This is at the heart of our problems.
We have become blinded to the unsustainable nature of our society. The industrialized world is rich because we have the power and influence to take what we can from the poor in the rest of the world. The nature of this exploitation is more subtle than the empires of the past. There are also room for the formerly poor to get in to the game with us as increasingly larger numbers of Indians, Chinese and others have done. Based on the themes in the Old Testament about the oppression of the poor one could make a pretty good case against us. I don’t believe the God of Jeremiah is anything different from the God of the New Testament.
We are greedy. We use far more resources than can be sustainably developed and supplied.
We lie. Our capital markets and banking system are saturated with dishonesty and manipulation.
Who are the prophetic voices pointing out these things? Left-wing anti-globalization activists, right-wing investment people, geologists, comedians, and environmentalists. Where is the church? Going to the next leadership seminar or hawking the latest monetary blessing from God. There are a few Christians speaking up but they are disregarded as misguided crackpots.
I wouldn’t reject Wilkerson’s warning just because we have trouble reconciling it with our concept of God. I don’t know if God has plans to judge America and the rest of us but as I consider the signs of the times it doesn’t look good. When all the obligations of the American government are considered it is essentially bankrupt. It isn’t technically bankrupt because it can simply forgo meeting obligations such as medicare and social security and focus solely on keeping foreign creditors happy. What is going to happen when millions of Americans who depend on welfare, medicare and social security find out there is next to nothing left for them? Could there be fires and looting in New York? What happened in New Orleans after Katrina?
Governments around the world are putting forth bailouts in a desperate bid to boost confidence in the system. They know that if they do nothing the abyss looms below. We face a self-reinforcing deflation which will forces the price of everything down except debt. They hope that if they can restore confidence and stop the deflation that maybe, just maybe things can stabilize and we can grow our way out the debt problem. The monkey wrench in that plan is there is just too much manipulation and dishonesty in the financial system. The smart money is out of the market and it will stay out until most of the crooks are purged from the system. You can’t purge the system until you force everything out in the open. If we do that we might just find out that underneath all the smoke and mirrors things are worse than we anticipated.
The world economic system hangs on a thread. The following are comments from Rep. Paul Kanjorski. Watch the video here.
“On Thursday [Sept 18th, 2008] at about 11 o’clock in the morning the Federal Reserve noticed a tremendous drawdown of money market accounts in the United States, to the tune of $550 billion was being drawn out in a matter of an hour or two. The Treasury opened up its window to help. It pumped $105 billion in the system and quickly realized that they could not stem the tide; we were having an electronic run on the banks. They decided to close the operation, close down the money accounts and announce a guarantee of $250,000 per account so there wouldn’t be further panic out there.
If they had not done that, their estimation was that by two o’clock that afternoon, five-and-a-half trillion dollars would have been drawn out of the money market system of the United States, would have collapsed the entire economy of the United States, and within 24 hours the world economy would have collapsed. It would have been the end of our economic system and our political system as we know it. We’re really no better off today than we were three months ago because we’ve had a decrease in the equity positions of banks because other assets are going sour by the moment.”
Some people have questioned the validity of Kanjorki’s comments. What is well known is something caused a great panic that week. Watch the PBS special “Inside the Meltdown” for more dimensions on the situation.
In the face of these things there are a lot things that aren’t all that important.