Welcome to Calvary Chapel on this New Years Eve 2001 and please turn with me in your Bibles to II Peter chapter 3, as we are going to be looking at this evening Biblical prophecy and how it relates to world events. This is our seventh annual prophecy update, and I think you can see, as you look at things happening in the world today, that what God has said in His Word is coming to pass right before our eyes. Now as you are turning to II Peter, listen to this true story that took place many years ago. It goes like this:
I was in the north of England in 1881, when a fearful storm swept over that part of the country. A friend of mine, who was a minister at Evemouth, had a great many of the fishermen of the place in his congregation. It had been very stormy weather, and the fishermen had been detained in the harbor for a week. One day, however, the sun shone out in a clear blue sky; it seemed as if the storm had passed away, and the boats started out for the fishing ground. Forty-one boats left the harbor that day. Before they started, the harbor-master hoisted the storm signal, and warned them of the coming tempest. He begged of them not to go; but they disregarded his warning, and away they went. They saw no sign of the coming storm.
In a few hours, however, it swept down the coast, and very few of those fishermen returned. There were five or six men in each boat, and nearly all were lost in that dreadful gale. In the church of which my friend was pastor, I believe there were three male members left. Those men were ushered into eternity because they did not give heed to the warning. I lift up the storm signal now, and warn you to escape from the coming judgment!
- Moodys Anecdotes, p. 115-116
As I look at the Rapture of the church and then the Second coming of Jesus Christ, I feel many people, even in the church, do not heed the warning, they dont know what time it is on Gods prophetic time clock! In saying that, lets look at Peters warning beginning in verse 3 of II Peter chapter 3.
Peter tells us that in the last days people will mock us for believing in the Lords coming, they will scoff at us, for they believe in the law of uniformitarism. This law states that things just continue on in a natural process, there is no supernatural intervention. I disagree.
There are many incidents that go beyond natural process, like creation, the incarnation, the resurrection of Jesus, and His coming again. And Peters point is this, you may deny it, but it still is going to happen, thus, dont miss out. Look for His return. Wait for His return. The Jews of Jesus day were rebuked for not knowing what time it was, and man today is traveling down that same path in regards to the Lords coming.
How close are we? Has the countdown begun? I cant give you the day or the year but I can tell you that the signs are everywhere, the season is here, and we will look at some of these things this evening to help shed some light on where we are at on Gods prophetic time clock. We are going to cover five areas this evening: MORAL DISTRESS, ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT, ONE WORLD RELIGION, THE MARK OF THE BEAST, and ISRAEL! And by the time we are done you will see that what God has said in His Word is coming to pass right before our eyes, we are living in the last days the prophets spoke about!
1. MORAL DISTRESS
I dont believe people realize how dangerous this can be, the lack of morality in a society. You see, people feel that what may be right for you may not be right for them, and that is fine, we can all live with that. We call that MORAL RELATIVISM. But think about it, if that is true, then everyone will do what is right in their own eyes, and that, my friends, is called ANARCHY!
Some of you see the changes that have taken place, others have missed it, or dont want to see it. But let me give you a vivid example of how much has changed in just some 60 years. Back in the 1940's they took a survey of the problems teachers faced with their students, and this is what came back:
B. CHEWING GUM
C. MAKING NOISE
D. RUNNING IN THE HALLS
E. GETTING OUT OF LINE
F. IMPROPER CLOTHING
G. NOT PUTTING PAPER IN THE WASTEBASKET
Now, in the 1980's, just 40 years after this first survey, and just some 20 years ago, listen to what the teachers had to deal with, listen to the change that took place in just some 40 years:
What happened? We moved away from Gods moral absolutes, and have adopted our own, and these are the consequences. Without Gods standards we see abortion, sexual promiscuity, violence, drug abuse, homosexuality, and the list goes on and will change as we adopt the so-called freer morals to do whatever we want. And let me say this, even though it is not politically correct, every nation that has exalted homosexuality, has fallen. It seems that this is the last step in a society who has fallen into moral depravity, before it falls. As Americans, I wish we would wake up to these things and return to the morals that God has given to us, morals that truly set us free and not place us in bondage!
Listen carefully to what Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan wrote in the American Scholar back in 1993. He said:
The amount of deviant behavior in American society has increased beyond the levels the community can afford to recognize and that, accordingly, we have been re-defining deviancy so as to accept much conduct previously stigmatized, and also quietly raising the normal level in categories where behavior is now abnormal by any earlier standards.
- Daniel Patrick Moynihan, Defining Deviancy Down, American Scholar, Winter 1993, p. 17
Paul warned us of this kind of activity, moral decay, in II Timothy chapter 3, beginning in verse 1, But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without selfcontrol, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away! II Timothy 3:1-5.
This is just the tip of the iceberg, for it is this lawlessness, in this state of moral relativism, we will see the government clamp down upon our freedoms to control society. We have seen this begin since the terrorist attacks on September 11 of this year, some of our freedoms have been taken away to protect us, and many Americans are embracing this. My friends, it will only get worse as time goes on. And that is going to led us into our next section, a one world government!
2. ONE WORLD GOVERNMENT
The Bible speaks of the coming together of a one world government, a revived Roman empire with its leader in the last days, especially the books of Daniel and Revelation. Now, just some 30 or 40 years ago, if someone spoke on this subject, they would have been laughed at. But, today, we hear that phrase being spoken by leaders from around the world, and please understand that this is not a new idea.
Way back on December 15, 1922, the Council on Foreign Relations, (CFR) was endorsing a world government in its magazine Foreign Affairs. Author Philip Kerr stated:
Obviously there is going to be no peace or prosperity for mankind as long as [the earth] remains divided into 50 or 60 independent sates until some kind of international system is created.
The first Humanist Manifesto was published in 1933 and its co-author, John Dewey, called for a synthesizing of all religions and a socialized and cooperative economic order. Co-signer C.F. Potter said in 1930:
Education is thus a most powerful ally of humanism, and every American public school is a school of humanism. What can the theistic Sunday schools, meeting for an hour once a week, teaching only a fraction of the children, do to stem the tide of a five-day program of humanistic teaching?
In 1942 the leftist Institute of Pacific Relations published Post War Worlds by P.E. Corbett:
World government is the ultimate aim...It must be recognized that the law of nations takes precedence over national law...The process will have to be assisted by the deletion of the nationalistic material employed in educational textbooks and its replacement by material explaining the benefits of wiser association.
On June 28, 1945, President Truman endorses world government in a speech as he says:
It will be just as easy for nations to get along in a republic of the world as it is for us to get along in a republic of the United States.
And then on October 24, 1945, the United Nations Charter became effective and Senator Glen Taylor (D-Idaho) introduced Senate Resolution 183 calling upon the U.S. Senate to go on record as favoring the creation of a world republic including a international police force.
Joy Elmer Morgan, former editor of the NEA Journal (National Education Association), back in 1946 said in his book The Teacher and World Government:
In the struggle to establish an adequate world government, the teacher...can do much to prepare the hearts and minds of children for global understanding and cooperation...At the very heart of all the agencies which will assure the coming of world government must stand the school, the teacher, and the organized profession.
In 1948 the preliminary draft for a World Constitution is published by U.S. educators advocating regional federation on the way toward world federation or government.
On February 9, 1950 the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee introduced Senate Concurrent Resolution 66 which begins by saying:
Whereas, in order to achieve universal peace and justice, the present Charter of the United Nations should be changed to provide a true world government constitution.
In 1961 the U.S. State Department issued a plan to disarm all nations and arm the United Nations. State Department Document Number 7277 is entitled Freedom From War: The U.S. Program for General and Complete Disarmament in a Peaceful World. It details a three-stage plan to disarm all nations and arm the U.N. with the final stage in which no state would have the military power to challenge the progressively strengthened U.N. Peace Force.
In 1964 listen to the attack against what our children believe. Author Benjamin Bloom in is book, Taxonomy of Educational Objectives, Handbook II, stated ...a large part of what we call good teaching is the teachers ability to attain affective objectives through challenging the students fixed beliefs. Also, in Visions of Order by Richard Weaver, he said, progressive educators as a revolutionary cabal (a secret group of plotters or political conspirators) in a systematic attempt to undermine societys traditions and beliefs.
On May 18, 1972, Roy M. Ash, director of the Office of Management and Budget, speaks of the coming world government and declares:
within two decades the institutional framework for a world economic community will be in place...[and] aspects of individual sovereignty will be given over to a supernational authority.
In 1973 we had the Humanist Manifesto II published:
The next century can be and should be the humanistic century...we stand at the dawn of a new age...a secular society on a planetary scale...As non-theists we begin with humans not God, nature not deity...we deplore the division of humankind on nationalistic grounds...Thus we look to the development of a system of world law and a world order based upon transnational federal government..the true revolution is occurring.
In April of 1974, former U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, Trilateralist and CFR member Richard Gardners article The Hard Road to World Order is published in CFRs Foreign Affairs where he states that:
the house of world order will have to be built from the bottom up rather than from the top down...but an end run around national sovereignty, eroding it piece by piece, will accomplish much more than the old-fashioned frontal assault.
In 1975 we see Congress, 32 Senators and 92 Representatives sign A Declaration of Interdependence, written by historian Henry Steele Commager. The Declaration states that:
we must join with others to bring forth a new world order...Narrow notions of national sovereignty must not be permitted to curtail that obligation.
But, Congresswoman Marjorie Holt refuses to sign the Declaration saying:
It calls for the surrender of our national sovereignty to international organizations. It declares that our economy should be regulated by international authorities. It proposes that we enter a new world order that would redistribute the wealth created by the American people.
In 1984 the Power to Lead is published by James McGregor Burns and he admits:
The framers of the U.S. constitution have simply been too shrewd for us. They have outwitted us. They designed separate institutions that cannot be unified by mechanical linkages, frail bridges, tinkering. If we are to turn the Founders upside down we must directly confront the constitutional structure they erected.
In 1985, Norman Cousins, the honorary chairman of Planetary Citizens for the World We Chose, is quoted in Human Events: World government is coming, in fact , it is inevitable. No arguments for or against it can change that fact.
In 1987 The Secret Constitution and the Need for Constitutional Change is sponsored in part by the Rockefeller Foundation. Some thoughts of author Arthur S. Miller are:
...a pervasive system of thought control exists in the United States...the citizenry is indoctrinated by employment of the mass media and the system of public education....people are told what to think about...the old order is crumbling...Nationalism should be seen as a dangerous social disease..A new vision is required to plan and manage the future, a global vision that will transcend national boundaries and eliminate the poison of nationalistic solutions...a new Constitution is necessary.
On September 11, 1990, President Bush calls the Gulf War an opportunity for the New World Order. In an address to Congress entitled Toward a New World Order, President Bush said:
The crisis in the Persian Gulf offers a rare opportunity to move toward an historic period of cooperation. Out of these troubled times...a new world order can emerge in which the nations of the world, east and west, north and south, can prosper and live in harmony...Today the new world is struggling to be born.
In 1991 President Bush praised the new world order in a State of the Union Message:
What is a stake is more than one small country, it is a big idea - - a new world order...to achieve the universal aspirations of mankind..based on shared principles and the rule of law...The illumination of a thousand points of light...The winds of change are with us now.
Late in July of 1991, on a Cable News Network Program, CFR member and former CIA director Stansfield Turner, a Rhodes scholar, when asked about Iraq, he responded by saying:
We have a much bigger objective. Weve got to look at the long run here. This is an example - - the situation between the United Nations and Iraq - - where the United Nations is deliberately intruding into the sovereignty of a sovereign nation...Now this is a marvelous precedent (to be used in) all countries of the world...
Time magazine, back on July 20, 1992, published The Birth of the Global Nation by Strobe Talbott, a Rhodes Scholar, a roommate of Bill Clinton at Oxford University, CFR Director, and Trilateralsit, wrote:
All countries are basically social arrangements....No matter how permanent or even sacred they may seem at any one time, in fact they are all artificial and temporary...Perhaps national sovereignty wasnt such a great deal after all...But it has taken the events of our own wondrous and terrible century to clench the case for world government.
In the winter of 1992-1993 the CFRs Foreign Affairs publishes Empowering the Untied Nations by U.N. Secretary General Boutros-Boutros Gahli, who asserts:
It is undeniable that the centuries-old doctrine of absolute and exclusive sovereignty no longer stands...Underlying the rights of the individual and the rights of peoples is a dimension of universal sovereignty that resides in all humanity...It is a sense that increasingly finds expression in the gradual expansion of international law...In this setting the significance of the United Nations should be evident and accepted.
On July 18, 1993 CFR member and Trilateralist Henry Kissinger wrote in the Los Angels Times concerning NAFTA:
What Congress will have before it is not a conventional trade agreement but the architecture of a new international system...a first step toward a new world order.
Do you see what is taking place in this country and the world, the emergence of a one world government. And there is much more. Back in 1968 the Club of Rome had its beginnings with leaders from ten different countries gathering together for solutions to the worlds problems and they claimed to have answers for peace and prosperity for this world. Then, on September 17, 1973 the Club of Rome released a report entitled Regionalized and Adaptive Model of the Global World System. This document divides the world into ten political/economic regions they call kingdoms that seem to follow the free trade agreements that are being made. And this sounds very much like the ten kingdoms that would rise up in the last days, a world government!
On September 27 to October 1, 1995, Mikhail Gorbachev headed an international event called The State of the World Forum that basically focused on a one world government. At that conference Sbigniew Brzezinski (Jimmy Carters National Security Advisor) said in his speech, Finally, I have no illusions about world government emerging in our lifetime...We can not leap into world government though one quick step...A consensual global system is not just a matter of good wishes or good will, but it requires a process...The recondition for eventual and genuine globalization is progressive regionalization. And that is what we are seeing today!
At the fifth annual State of the World Forum held in San Francisco back in 1999, the main theme was the establishment of a planetary government empowered to enforce human rights. To do this they have established the International Criminal Court (ICC) to enforce this law. And we are seeing that idea trying to gain some political power today.
Even though this has not been ratified by the required 60 countries, the globalists have already begun to use it, their victim, Slobodan Milosevic, former head of state who was extradited from his home country to stand before this international tribunal, the International Criminal Court.
The problem comes when who is deciding what is worthy of a crime and what isnt. There is no uniform standard for what constitutes an international criminal or what crimes are deemed serious enough to be addressed in the arena of international justice. Yes, what Milosevic did was horrible, the thousands of people he killed, but far worse crimes involving millions of innocent people have occurred in the Sudan, Indonesia, Iraq, Cuba and yet nothing is done to those responsible. World magazine, November 10, 2001 said of Milosevic, The war-crimes trial of former Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic will begin on Feb. 12, 2002, at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. The trial is set to center on events in Kosovo and will include testimony from more than 200 witnesses. But a new indictment issued last week charges Mr. Milosevic with war crimes during the 1991-1992 conflict in Croatia, and the tribunal announced it also will issue additional charges covering the war in Bosnia. As bad as Milosevic was and is, it is very scarey to see a group of people deciding what is a war crime and what isnt. You hear nothing against the PLO or terrorist organizations that are Arab from the U.N., do you?
And please understand that the ICC will not have guarantees that English-speaking countries have come to take for granted. For example, there are no trials by jury, no presumption of innocence, no right to freedom from self incrimination, no right to a speedy trial, no protection against cruel or unusual punishments, and appeals will be handled internally by the courts appellate judges.
On a more local scale, we are seeing more and more laws passed that make the average citizen a criminal. The big thing here is the Hate Crime laws that have been established. Who decides what is hate and what isnt? And what has happened with our freedom of thought, speech, and religion? Exactly what constitutes hate is virtually impossible to define, and the legal definitions tend to be open-ended and vague. In some cases they can be considered speech that simply offends someone or supposedly incites to hatred. In others it could be inciting to violence or use of intimidating language. In some cases, it can simply be saying something someone else doesnt like.
Let me just show you where this is going and how open to interpretation it is. When African-American churches are fire bombed in the U.S., the foul deed is instantly baptized a hate crime in the media. However, when a man stormed into a Ft. Worth, Texas, church and screamed anti-Christian epithets while shooting and killing people, former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno said shed have to think about whether it was a hate crime or not. The double standard is obvious.
And it is getting dangerous also to speak what you feel. The Boy Scouts in the U.S. are under fire for their refusal to allow homosexual scoutmasters, which the U.S. supreme Court defended as a right to freedom of association. An assistant attorney general in West Virginia has been holding seminars and teaching police that anyone espousing homophobia could be put into a hate classification, including groups who have apocalyptic beliefs about the Second Coming of Christ. Folks, that is you and me!
In Sweden, an evangelical pastor recently served a four-week sentence in jail for informing his congregation that God does not sanction sexual perversion, which was a violation of Swedens anti-hate statue protecting groups from verbal violence. In 1997, Canadian Hugh Owens placed an ad quoting Leviticus in a Saskatchewan newspaper for which he was hauled before the provinces Human Rights Commission, which recommended in 1999 that he be forced to pay $200 to the complainants.
I find it interesting that if you go against their thinking, that is hate, no matter how deviant their activity is. On the other hand, they can show hatred towards Christians and what they believe, and that is not a hate crime, I guess it is freedom of speech!
Folks, like it or not, we will have a one world government. That is what James Warburg said back on February 17, 1950, a member of the CFR, and before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee he said these words, We shall have a world government whether or not you like it - by conquest or consent.
3. ONE WORLD RELIGION
In Revelation chapter 17 we see this one world religion spoken of, it is called, ...MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH. Most of you know of George Lucas and his famed Star Wars movies. When The Phantom Menace was released, Bill Moyers interviewed George Lucas for Time magazine, April 26, 1999, and this is one of the things George said:
I remember when I was ten years old, I asked my mother, If there is only one God, why are there so many religions? Ive been pondering that question ever since, and the conclusion I have come to is that all religions are true.
And that is the push today, all paths led to God, you can chose the one you like. In fact, in 1893 and again in 1993 they had the World Parliament of Religion held in Chicago, and the push, that all faiths can worship God together, for it is the same God, just a different way to worship him. How wrong they are, and yet this is being pushed by the church, or should I say the so-called church!
The United Nations has given its blessing to create a United Religions organization to further the cause of a one world government, which is interesting when you think about it, for it is the False Prophet who is helping the one world government and the Antichrists rise to power during the tribulation period. Back on August 28, 2000 the Millennium World Peace Summit of religious and Spiritual Leaders had a conference and they said of this meeting:
The World Peace Summit is being convened to coordinate religious and spiritual leadership as an interfaith ally to the United Nations in its quest for peace, global understanding and international cooperation...The Summits outcome - - a signed Declaration for World Peace and the establishment of an ongoing International Advisory Council of religious and Spiritual leaders - will serve as a resource for the Untied Nations in its conflict prevention and resolution efforts.
Also last year, the Earth Charter Commission announced a comprehensive document of new global ethical guidelines known as the Earth charter. It is the articulation of a spiritual vision that reflects universal and spiritual values...a peoples charter that serves as a universal code of conduct for ordinary citizens, educators, business executives, scientists, religious leaders...
You see, the Earth Charter marks the second phase of a three phase plan to try to integrate humanity into a global whole. The Earth Charter provides pantheistic universal religious values that are fully harmonized with a pantheistic world government whose purpose is to protect the Earth at all costs.
Al Gore, in his book Earth in the Balance; Ecology and the Human Spirit, seems to agree with this kind of logic, even though he is suppose to be a Christian, a Baptist I believe! This is what he says:
The richness and diversity of our religious tradition throughout history is a spiritual resource long ignored by people of faith, who are often afraid to open their minds to teachings first offered outside their own system of belief. But the emergence of a civilization in which knowledge moves freely and almost instantaneously through the world has...spurred a renewed investigation of the wisdom distilled by all faiths. This panreligious perspective may prove especially important where our global civilizations responsibility for the earth is concerned. (pp. 258-259).
We are seeing the demise of Christianity, in a sense, because we are moving away from the truths of Gods Word, and in doing that, we can embrace all the religions of the world. You see, true Biblical Christianity is not just one of the ways to God, it is the only way. Now that may sound very narrow minded, but it is not if it is the truth. Jesus very clearly said in John 14:6,
I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. And yet many in the church today are getting caught up in this ecumenical movement that is not based in the truth of Gods Word, but in mans ideas of what needs to be done. Be careful, even the Pro-Life movement is ecumenical in nature, for you have people praying to Mary, doing the Rosary, and evangelical Christians are joining in, for it is a good cause! Be careful, all roads dont led to God, only Jesus does!
Thus, what we see today is the Pope, along with spiritual leaders from around the world, that gather for prayer, the Buddhist, Muslim, the Witch Doctor, the Swami, the Mormon, and the list goes on, for they are coming together for a good cause, peace! You dont come together with the enemy, for they are not praying to the same God. Listen carefully to what is going on in this country from World magazine, the December 15, 2001 issue, The new multi-faith religion:
Agape International Spiritual Center in suburban Los Angeles has some 7,000 members...But intermixed with the Christian praise songs are the Oms of Eastern meditation. In the obligatory bookstore, the Bible shares space with books by gurus, self-proclaimed goddesses, and mystical pop-psychologists. Agape calls itself a church but it makes no pretension of being Christian at all. Rather, as its pastor, Michael Beckwith, explains, it is new thought combined with ancient wisdom. We dont believe you are born into sin, he explained...We are born into blessings. While some seek salvation, we call it self-elevation.Agape calls itself trans-denominational, but it is really trans-religion. Muslims, Jews, Christians, Buddhists, young, old, rich, poor - we cut across all lines, said Rev. Beckwith, to reach what is true.... The enemy we are told, is not Islam but intolerance. It is that narrow-minded, restrictive view of religion that is to blame for the terrorist attacks and the Taliban oppression. People who think theirs is the only true religion are the real enemy, a charge, of course, that sticks not just to the Taliban but to orthodox Christians....In his new book, The Spiritual Society: What Lurks Beyond Postmodernism, Frederic Baue predicts the rise of a new syncretic religion, based on the premise that all of the Worlds religions must be combined into one. Written before Sept. 11., the book seems eerily prophetic. To say that all religions are true means that no religion is true. The only way to bring them under one umbrella is to deny their distinctive teachings and to construct a totally new religion...
May we heed Jesus warning in Matthew chapter 7 when He said, Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits... Matthew 7:13-16a.
One day the religions of the world will unite as one, but understand this, it is not of God. And understand this, just because you believe that Jesus is the only way to eternal life does not make you intolerant or hateful. You see, not to speak forth the truth makes you unloving, uncaring towards those that dont know the Lord. At the World Peace Summit Ted Turner said to the nearly thousand delegates that he turned away from Christianity when he discovered it was intolerant because it taught we were the only ones going to heaven. That confused the devil out of me since that would have left heaven a very empty place. You see, in his spiritual search, Turner realized that there was one God and multiple ways he manifests himself and that it makes little difference which one is chosen. I dont think Ted Turner thinks of himself as being intolerant to Christians by his views, nor do I think he cares. Christianity is a stumbling block to this one world religion, and thus they are attacking us, what we believe, dont let them win. If he can share what he believes so freely, why cant we as Christians who have the truth? All roads dont led to God, and as we move farther down the road, we are seeing the true church separating from the false church, like oil and water, they just dont mix. Dont get mixed up in this unbiblical ecumenical movement! Jesus is the only thing that unites us together, may we not forget that!