Help for Today — Hope for Tomorrow
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[Darris McNeely] There is a little-noticed prophecy that tells us a prosperous nation can be brought to its knees in as short a time as one month.
Your Bible shows that nations can collapse in as little as 30 days. That’s one month. We’re living in a time where we can see how this could happen. Is it possible God is working in the moments of the present crisis to prepare us for larger times of trials to come? Listen for a moment to these words from the biblical prophet Amos. It says this, “If a trumpet is blown in a city, will not the people be afraid? If there is a calamity in a city, will not the Lord have done it? Surely the Lord does nothing unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets. A lion has roared. Who will not fear? The Lord God has spoken. Who can but prophesy?”
2020 has been a year when God has been doing a lot of talking. The world has been shaken by big events that will shape the coming years in ways that can only be understood by a firm understanding of Bible prophecy. This prophecy from Amos, it speaks through the ages to events happening in today’s world. We’ve endured a global pandemic. We have dealt with an economic crisis, and America was hit with another round of racial unrest highlighting the great divide of injustice, lawlessness, and moral corruption.
Amos and all the Bible’s prophets do have something to say about events like these that have convulsed the world. Amos talks to people who thought they were immune to decay and collapse because of deep moral, spiritual problems. He showed them what to do to correct their ways and to create a fair and an equitable society. Let me ask you, do you think that you as a Christian that you’re special or that America, Canada, or Australia are so special as nations that nothing would cause it to stop and no longer exist because of big, deep problems?
Consider, you may not be as Christian as you think. And our nations are great. We do not think we are so great that nothing could bring us down. God has spoken and God says He does nothing unless He first reveals His secrets to His prophets. So who are those prophets today? Where would you hear the clear sound of God’s message breaking through today’s many voices? How can you be sure what you hear is of God? These are serious questions that should challenge your thinking.
“Beyond Today” takes these questions very seriously. We on “Beyond Today” are bringing you the warning from God like the prophets of old did. And now is the time for the readers of “Beyond Today,” for those of you that are viewing “Beyond Today” on a regular basis to think soberly about the message that we have been sounding for decades. It is a time to listen to the message of a warning that God sends to us by the hand of what He calls a watchman. God has sent a warning in our time and we would all do very well to listen to what God does say in His Word.
We on “Beyond Today” are speaking these words from God today. Will you listen? Well stay with us. We’re going to examine the question today, are you prepared for the ultimate crisis? Let’s go back and let’s look at this COVID-19 pandemic of 2020. It was a wake-up call for this world, for all of us. By all accounts, there was little preparation for what did come. The world was caught unaware. Let me quickly look at what in America we have is two agencies whose duties are to keep America safe from infectious disease, calamities like this.
The first one to look at is the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, what is called the CDC. It was blamed for failing to have widespread testing kits available to help identify those who had the COVID virus. Now the CDC is America’s primary department for fighting, controlling communicable disease. It has a budget every year of billions of dollars that they use and only in that one department alone, but it wasn’t ready.
There’s a second department to look at, it’s called the National Institute of Health, whose face during the pandemics became very famous was Dr. Anthony Fauci. Now initially Dr. Fauci like a lot of the other experts, did not see the severity of what was coming out of China in early 2020. In an interview on January 26th Dr. Fauci said that the American public should not worry about the coronavirus. He said it’s a very, very low risk to the United States. It isn’t something the American public needs to worry about or to be frightened about.
Now experts who knew the likelihood of global disease spreading were not fully prepared in some very basic areas, as we found out. We did find out that experts can make miscalculations and projections. Experts will not always keep us safe is one of the big lessons that I think we did learn, nor will they teach us what needs to be done in every case. A lot of this responsibility we have to take on ourselves. What will happen when something larger comes?
Now physical preparation is one part which we should do as best we can, but your Bible speaks out, really, about being spiritually prepared for crises that come and the crisis that we’re talking about. You can know and you can understand how to be spiritually prepared. How? Well one way is to understand where these events fit into God’s prophetic plan.
For today’s program we have a Bible study guide that has been prepared. It’s a very informative study to help you understand the question, the answer to the question, “Are We Living in the Time of the End?” How does the Bible use this term “time of the end?” And what exactly does it mean? You think you might know, but don’t be too sure. Are we in that time, the time of the end, right now, or is there even a way to know? All of these questions they’re answered in this informative free guide. You can get your copy immediately by going to beyondtoday.tv or you can get a full-color hard copy like this by calling the number or writing the address on your screen. You’re going to want that booklet. It’s really going to help answer a lot of questions for you.
Here’s another question. Have we lived through events that tell us we’re living in the time of the end? Well the short answer is yes, we are. What the world lived through in the spring of 2020 within a space of about one month was a massive collapse of a prosperous world economy. The United States was at nearly full employment, the stock market went to an all-time high of over 29,000 and the economy was producing higher wages and an improved standard of living for virtually everyone in the United States. And then suddenly within one month we were looking out our windows at a completely different world.
The economic toll that that period of time took translates into a lot of different costs, severe social costs, such as suicide, severe depression, and even disease that was left untreated in hospitals. The human toll is incalculable and yet to be known. There is a little-noticed prophecy that we want to bring to your attention that tells us something we should all take heed to. It tells us that a prosperous nation can be brought to its knees in as short a time as one month.
It’s from another prophet, the prophet Hosea. Hosea was prophesying to the kingdom of Israel, the ancient kingdom, and it describes the fall not just of that period of time but of the end-time Israel. Those who are descendants of the northern lost 10 tribes and inheritors of the promises to Abraham, as well as the speaking about the nation of Judah which in the biblical prophecies there speak to the Jewish state that we have in this particular time.
What Hosea’s prophecy talks about is that apparently, together, they could fall in one month. Now historically that didn’t happen in the ancient story of Israel, but it says something that’s notable for us to look at. Let’s read what’s recorded in Hosea 5. It says, “The pride of Israel testifies to his face, therefore, Israel and Ephraim…” And together that’s speaking of the end-time Israel, today’s English-speaking nations led by America and Great Britain. It says, going on, that they stumble in their inequity. Judah, which is a reference to the present State of Israel in the Middle East, Judah also stumbles with them, together.
The prophecy continues, “They have dealt treacherously with the Lord, for they have begotten pagan children. Now a new moon shall devour them and their heritage.” Now this phrase “a new moon” here, devouring them would seem to mean that what is going to happen will be within a 30-day period, in other words, that they will fall together within a month. And again that didn’t happen anciently. This prophecy here describes a history that has not yet occurred.
The ancient nations of Israel and Judah, they fell more than a hundred years apart from one another. Every student of Bible history clearly understands this fact. So here’s a prophecy in Hosea 5 showing us the final collapse of today’s state of Israel and the major English-speaking nations that can occur quickly within a 30-day period, within one month. Here’s the lesson that we should take from God. A nation can collapse quickly in as little as 30 days.
Now with what we have lived through in this time we’ve seen this happen, come to a point, with an example, before our own eyes. Let me take you back to April of 2020. Within a month the United States saw trillions of dollars of wealth disappear and a prosperous world economy seize up. There was a paragraph, an opening paragraph in an article in “The Wall Street Journal” that took place at that time in April, talking about the April unemployment rate. And it says this, “The April unemployment rate surged to a record 14.7%, and payroll’s dropped by a historic 20.5 million workers as the coronavirus pandemic hit the economy, wiping out a decade of jobs gains in a single month.” One month. That’s a quote from “The Wall Street Journal” of May 8th, 2020. One month.
The nations of this world have been shaken by two big events in recent times. At the beginning of our program I read to you from the prophet Amos where God reveals His secrets, it says, through His prophets. Do you think God is speaking to us today through those same prophets, through the words of His scripture? He is. He’s speaking to us. We have to hear and consider what He says as a wake-up call. Could it be God is giving us a warning of bigger events to come? Events that are foretold in the Bible described as the time of the end when great trial will come upon the world?
Amos spoke to those in his day who thought they were so great, so powerful, so righteous as a people that they were immune to collapse. They were going to go on forever. Amos was sent by God as a spokesman to tell the leaders of Israel that they had created not just a powerful and a wealthy nation but one that did not promote social justice to all segments of the population, and he spoke truth to that power. A wealthy elite class held power and wealth. Their policies did not adequately care for the poor and the dispossessed in the nation. What they did was create a system that did not effectively provide opportunity for economic and social advancement. The result, social breakdown was occurring where the people lost heart, were angry, and became very bitter.
The nation of Israel that Amos spoke to did not have the proper structure in place economically, socially, morally, spiritually to self-correct for poverty and the generational poverty that leads to moral and spiritual decay. They had abandoned the true God, they had abandoned His laws. They wanted nothing to do with the God of Abraham who had brought them into that land and given them all that they had. That was their problem and it led to their downfall. That society, Israel of old to which Amos prophesied, was a mirror image of the United States of America today.
And now is the time for you and for all of us together to understand our time in our world today and what these events that we have lived through mean, not just from what we would read in the news or from our own ideas but from God’s point of view. There’s one more event that we’re going to talk about but before we get to that, I want to again offer you a study guide about prophecy that will give you some basic tools of understanding.
Again let me ask you, you think you may be a student to prophesy, you know a bit about prophesy. That’s great but do you really know all the facts? The booklet that we are providing for you today, a free booklet, “Are We Living in the Time of the End?” it will help you. Have you ever wondered about a statement that Jesus made where he warned that the times of the end would be like those at the time of Noah when people laughed and mocked Noah as he built the Ark, that it will be the same in the time of the end of the age and people will come and they will not be fully prepared?
We have a chapter in this booklet that talks about that very statement that Jesus made and helps you to understand how it applies to our world today and how we can avoid being in that category of people who don’t pay attention. The study guide is going to help you understand what that means. Now you can get your free copy by going to beyondtoday.tv, downloading it right away and begin reading it and studying it with your Bible or you can call the number on your screen and get a free copy. Nobody’s going to follow up with you, totally free. It’s one of our helpful booklets on this vital topic of Bible prophecy.
Now there’s one more big event that we should consider. It’s the eruption of protests and destructive riots in American cities when a man named George Floyd was brutally killed by police in Minneapolis. Once again the problem of racism has been brought out into the great national debate. Now if we’re to understand this awful human problem of racism we have to go to the Word of God. If we’re to understand how it leads to events and scenes like this of destruction, of anger, we’re going to have to go to the Word of God and understand a lot about human nature but also about the times in which we live.
So let me take you again back to the prophecies of Amos. Amos was outraged at similar scenes that he saw in his time, and God moved him to speak directly to those who were responsible with the only words that can make a difference if we listen and if we let them sink into our hearts. The prophet Amos walked into the seat of power in Israel and he had in his hand indictments from God, and he began handing them out to the leaders, the king, to his cabinet, to the people who were creating a culture that perpetuated poverty and ignorance, who didn’t know what to do.
He called out the rich movers of society and the religious leaders who failed to teach the law of God and uphold righteous morality. He pointed the finger at the courts, the king and his advisors and the priests, the religious leaders, all who had a responsibility for a nation that allowed the rich to exploit the system to their benefit while leaving whole classes of citizens marginalized. The result was class envy and anger. All were at work on the streets of the nation.
Amos took God’s words of judgment to the political class who held the power. Let’s notice a couple of those prophecies, the words of Amos from God. “ ‘Assemble on the mountains of Samaria, see great tumults in her midst and the oppressed within her, for they do not know to do right,’ says the Lord, ‘who store up violence and robbery in their palaces.’” Amos did not leave out the religious leaders as well. He tackled the political class but he had also something very direct to say to the religious leaders. He said, “In the day that I punish Israel for their transgressions, I will also visit destruction on altars of Bethel, and the horns of the altar shall be cut off and fall to the ground.” The religious places, the churches, the cathedrals, the places of worship.
You see false religion was at the heart of the moral and spiritual decay of the land of Israel and God spoke. God lays heavy blame on failed religion. False religious teaching is a part of America’s problem today. Now no one really wants to acknowledge that fact and tackle it directly. Watered-down Christianity and outright false teaching and practice has blinded America and the world to the face of the true God and what God commands us, what God speaks, what God says. We don’t want to hear about the 10 Commandments. We’ve taken those out of the public places. We don’t even want to refer to them. We don’t want to admit religion, prayer, and godly morality into our culture. In fact it’s been driven out in so many places in our world today in America. And America is reaping the whirlwind of ignorance and defiance of Almighty God.
The prophet Amos goes on, “I hate, I despise your feast days, and I do not savor your sacred assemblies. Though you offer me burnt offerings and your grain offerings, I will not accept them, nor will I regard your fattened peace offerings. Take away from me the noise of your songs, for I will not hear the melody of your stringed instruments, but let justice run down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.” Did you get that last verse? That last statement? Let justice run down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream. You will hear that from time to time, but unless it is backed up and followed by righteousness, godly obedience to the Word of God, they’re empty words. Righteousness doesn’t run like water in the streets. Instead terror and fear does.
God sent Amos with a strong message condemning injustice where the poor, the disenfranchised, and the minority were not treated with dignity and respect. The rich were shielded by their wealth and privilege from the harsh impact of economic recession or shut down. Their pay, the pay of the rich of a particular class, their pay continued while others stood in line for food handouts. The rich and the powerful and the elite of this ancient nation called Israel made the laws and created policy that perpetuated their status and privilege while making it difficult for the poor to attain a greater measure of security and prosperity.
Now understand, this scene from ancient Israel that Amos that Hosea talks about, it mirrors America in 2020. But God’s words through the prophet Amos show that justice cannot thrive in a society dominated by civil disorder. Reforms will hopefully be made in the wake of these violent and disturbing events, but human nature will stay the same. And a system led by human nature will always be a broken system. True justice and order can only thrive in a society built on the law of God, the 10 Commandments. This is the missing element of the discussion in America right now.
So again I ask us to consider where are we now in the timeline of Bible prophecy? The free study guide that we are offering on this program, “Are We Living in the Time of the End?” can help you answer the question. In a remarkable prophecy shortly before his death Jesus described the signs that would precede His return. What do those signs reveal? Well that’s covered in one of the chapters of this study guide, which is why you need to get a copy of it and begin reading it. You can do that right now by downloading a copy of this at beyondtoday.tv, beyondtoday.tv, or you can call the number that is on your screen.
If God is speaking to us through His prophets, and we’ve read two of them today, are we listening? 2020 has been a year when God has been doing a lot of talking. We’ve seen a lot but we have not seen the worst. There’s a prophecy in the book of Daniel 12 that describes the final age-ending crisis, the ultimate crisis that we’re talking about today. We haven’t got there yet. It describes it in these terms, so consider. It says, Daniel 12:1, “And at that time, Michael shall stand up, the great prince who stands for the children of your people, and there shall be a time of trouble such as never was since there was a nation, even to that same time. And at that time, your people shall be delivered, everyone who is found written in the book.” We haven’t come to the point in prophecy where Daniel talks about. Not yet. But when we do, will you be ready? The world has been shaken by big events that will shape the coming years in ways that only can be understood by a firm understanding of Bible prophecy. God has spoken. Now’s the time to listen and to act on God’s warning and change.
[Narrator] Please call for the booklet offered on today’s program, “Are We Living in the Time of the End?” Just what are the signs of the coming end of this age? Are we close to that time now? This freestudy aid will point you to the key Biblical signs leading up to Jesus Christ’s return. For thousands of years, people have been fascinated by Bible prophecies about “the end of the age.” Many over the centuries thought it was coming in their own time. Is there anything unique about the time we live in now? It may surprise you to learn the answer is yes! In this booklet, you’ll learn how some prophesied events have only become possible to fulfill during our lifetimes. Most importantly, you’ll find out what you can do to prepare yourself for the troubling times ahead. Call us 1-888-886-8632 to order your copy of “Are We Living in the Time of the End?” or go online to beyondtoday.tv to download or request it by mail. There is hope in the knowledge God provides—and on this topic you need some Biblically accurate, responsible and balanced perspective. This booklet provides Biblical answers. When you order this free study aid, we’ll also send you a complimentary one-year subscription to Beyond Today magazine. Beyond Today magazine brings you understanding of today’s world—and hope for the future! Six times a year, you’ll read about current world events in the light of Bible prophecy, as well as practical knowledge to improve your marriage and family and godly principles to guide you toward a life that leads to peace. Call today to receive your free booklet, “Are We Living in the Time of the End?” and your free, one-year subscription to Beyond Today magazine. 1-888-886-8632 or go online to beyondtoday.tv.
[Gary Petty] Hi, I’m Gary Petty, a pastor with the United Church of God. If you’re looking for a church that encourages living what the Word of God really teaches, you’ve found the right place. We’re a community of believers dedicated to seeking the truth and preaching the good news of the coming Kingdom of God. We’d like to welcome you to come and join us on this spiritual journey. We have hundreds of congregations around the United States and across the world. Visit ucg.org to find a church near you. We’re looking forward to meeting you soon.