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The End Times Bible Prophecy Newsletter, Issue #007
January 16, 2011
What a joy it is to study bible prophecy and gain insight into the Lord's Word. Thanks for joining us!
This month's newsletter is about "Things to Watch in 2011." Below are the headline topics I think we should keep an eye on in the year ahead:
1) The EU Sovereign Debt Crisis
In the year ahead, look for the European Union sovereign debt crisis to continue.
Bailouts of Greece and Ireland will become bailouts of Portugal, Spain, and Italy.
But how many nations can the EU as a whole reasonably afford to bailout?
So far, France and Germany have been in a strong enough position to bailout the weaker nations without ruining their own credit worthiness in the bond market.
But can Germany bailout the entire Eurozone?
The answer is clear. It can not.
So what does this have to do with prophecy?
Well, long ago, the prophet Daniel interpreted a dream for Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon. His interpretation involved a dream the king had about a statue, which represented the world empires throughout history:
Notice Daniel's description of the final empire:
Daniel says some parts of this kingdom will be strong (like Germany), while others will be weak (like Greece). These nations will try to strengthen themselves by forming alliances (the European Union). But according to Daniel this will not work.
Now, does this mean that today's European Union is definitively the last world empire spoken of by Daniel?
But today's European Union does fit this description, and it has several characteristics of the final world empire just before Christ's return as outlined in the Bible. And given the signs of the times, the European Union should be considered the leading candidate for the Antichrist's nefarious world empire.
2) Syria, Iran, and Israel
While yet another year has passed with relative peace and stability in the Middle East, the risks continue to linger.
Such risks include war between Israel and Iran, or between Israel and Syria, with the threat of the conflict errupting into a wider regional war.
The Bible warns of such conflicts just prior to the return of Jesus Christ.
One such conflict involves the destruction of Damascus. As Isaiah explains, the world's longest continuously inhabited city will cease to exist:
And Psalm 83 describes Israel's enemies and their desire to "wipe out Israel as a nation" and "destroy the very memory of its existence":
Each new year brings the possibility of seeing one of these end times prophecies fulfilled.
Could 2011 be the year?
As Vladimir Putin continues to consolidate his power in Russia, 2011 raises the prospect of another bible prophecy fulfillment: the prophecy of Gog.
Could Vladimir Putin be the "Gog" spoken of by Ezekiel?
The coming year brings us closer to finding out.
4) A Second Global Downturn
While the media heralds the great "economic recovery," 2011 will expose many structural problems and risks within the global economy.
Below are some of the most problematic issues, which are likely to spark a second credit crisis in the near future:
EU Sovereign Debt - As the debt crisis spreads from Greece and Ireland to other nations within the EU, it could spark another credit crisis. Most of the debt issuance of these troubled nations is held on the books of European banks.
As creditors begin to worry about counterparty risk (the ability of those banks to pay their own debts), then interbank lending will grind to a halt, creating another credit crisis and global economic meltdown.
Municipal and State Finances - Due to large pension obligations, bloated bureaucracies, declining tax revenue, and increasing demand for food stamps and unemployment, states and municipalities within the United States are not much better off than some of the troubled European nations.
With the election of a fiscal conservative House of Representatives, it's highly likely that the stimulus measures and federal aid which propped up the states in the municipalities in the previous two years will disappear.
If so, look for either massive layoffs at the state and local level or increased borrowing costs which result in default. Either event is bad news for the economy. The former will add to the unemployment rolls and depress consumer spending even further, while the latter will likely spark another credit crisis as the "safe" state and municipal bond markets get pummeled.
Depressed Housing Market - With the disappearance of the federal housing credit for home purchases, sales of homes in the United States have declined considerably. With record inventory levels already on the market, look for 2011 to add to it.
Too few news stories have focused on the massive "shadow inventory" in the housing (bank owned properties not yet for sale). As these foreclosures reach market, the housing supply will increase dramatically. And given the economic headwinds, it's unlikely demand will keep pace.
As a result, look for a continuing decline in housing prices, more homeowners in negative equity situations, and more foreclosures.
The housing decline has yet to run its course.
China Overheating - While the mainstream media remains enthralled by China and its economic growth, a quick look underneath the hood reveals a country trapped at the top of credit bubble which may have already popped.
China has built entire cities which no one lives in, real estate prices ballooned to unaffordable levels long ago, and imports are not what they used to be given the state of global economy.
If the global financial community senses an economic contraction is on the way, foreign capital will flow out of the country just as quickly as it flowed in - making economic contraction in China all the more certain.
If demand in China declines, look for huge drops in commodity prices which will negatively effect commodity producing nations such as Canada and Austrailia - two nations in the midst of their own housing bubbles.
Continued Unemployment - Expect unemployment in the U.S. to remain at an elevated level for 2011, with structurally high unemployment for the rest of the decade.
Baby boomers are cutting back. A lot of their children purchased overpriced houses which will weigh on their consumer spending for years.
If consumers don't spend, where do the jobs come from? And with no driver for jobs, how does the economy expand?
Japanese Debt - For years, Japan has been a nation of savers. And these savers purchased Japanese debt obligations to fund massive deficit spending by the Japanese government.
But now, with an aging population, Japanese savers have turned into Japanese retirees who need to draw off of their savings in order to live.
If Japan is forced to sell its debt to foreigners, it's doubtful those foreign investors will accept the lows rates Japan is used to paying.
If this happens, look for Japan to move to the forefront of the sovereign debt crisis.
So what does a return of the global credit crisis have to do with bible prophecy?
Well, if a global credit crisis strikes for the second time in three years, many people who are ignorant of economics will look for someone to solve the problem.
Calls will be made for global financial regulations, and some nations will willingly cede their sovereignty to anyone who offers a solution.
Financial crises historically serve as incubators for political change, and it's quite possible we could see the rise of the Antichrist from a global financial crisis.
According to the bible, the Antichrist will eventually control the global economic system, wielding control over the ability to purchase or sell anything.
And this control will merely be a byproduct of greater political control. The Antichrist will rule over all of the world's people.
So be on the alert for dramatic changes in the world political and economic landscape as 2011 unfolds, for the Coming of Jesus Christ is nearer each day.
Remember, the Lord Himself expected his disciples to carefully examine the Word of God so as to be prepared for His return:
Thanks for joining us, and may the Lord bless you in the coming month.
Your friend in Christ,
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