Nearing
Midnight

Commentary on world events that relate to Bible prophecy and on Rapture Ready issues world events.




September 12, 2016

The World Has Lost Respect for the U.S.

The world’s opinion of the United States as a serious world power has eroded markedly under the Obama Administration. America’s overall image around the world remains largely positive. But when it comes to political and economic might, more people rank Russia and China ahead of the U.S.

Obama acts like America is some type of giant candy store. He thinks if he gives out enough free lollipops to all the other nations, they will repay his generosity with respect. This appeasement approach always fails because it never satisfies aggressor nations.

Last year, the White House headed a deal that gave Iran $100 billion in economic sanctions relief. A few months ago, the U.S. gave payments to Iran, totaling $1.3 billion. The money was said to be for the settlement of old deals from the 70s, but anyone with common sense knows it was for the release of five hostages.

All this money has not turned the mullah’s of Iran into our friends. It has given them more impetus to flex their collective muscles. Currently they are working to capture a fresh batch of hostages. They are also harassing our ships in the Persian Gulf; four such incidents have been reported in less than a month.

In the most recent incident, the USS Firebolt was shadowed by seven Iranian vessels. Three of the vessels came within 500 yards and shadowed Firebolt for eight minutes. Then one of the Iranian vessels broke off and raced in front of Firebolt and “came to a stop directly in front of the ship” at a range of 100 yards, according to the official.

The most embarrassing encounter we’ve had with Iran is the January detainment of our American sailors. One of our ship’s boats inadvertently entered Iranian waters due to navigational errors. The Obama Administration tried to claim that when Iran detained American sailors to just help them out.

A most precarious and demeaning situation emerged when the Iranians forced the sailors—at gun point, to make statements on camera which violated articles 13 and 17 of the Geneva Convention. The Iranians think this was such memorable event that they are building a statue of American sailors groveling on their knees.

The Russians have also been harassing our military forces. Last week a Russian fighter jet carried out an intercept of U.S. spy plane flying over the Black Sea. A U.S. Defense official said that there were multiple interactions between the two aircraft, and called the intercept by the Russian jet “unsafe and unprofessional.” The incident lasted about 19 minutes and the Russian Sukhoi Su-27 fighter came within 10 feet of the US Navy P-8 surveillance plane.

While Russian jets are doing barrel rolls over our recon jets, we have the Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter nagging Moscow; telling them to not “interfere with our democratic processes.” This was a reference to the FBI investigation into allegations that Russia hacked into computer systems of the Democratic National Committee. Russian President Vladimir Putin knows that it’s difficult to be absolute about hacking so he has been able to mockingly deny that his government had any involvement in the hacks. In one interview Putin said, “It’s important” the contents of the DNC emails were made public.

The level of disrespect for America has risen to the point that Obama himself is having to deal with it. On his trip to the Group of 20 summit, Obama had a very awkward start to the meeting. The Chinese would not allow a staircase to be driven to the main doorway on Air Force One, forcing him to exit from a door in the plane’s belly.

White House officials attributed the dispute to inexperienced, overzealous security officials rather than any premeditated effort to humiliate Mr. Obama. But the images of Chinese guards shouting at reporters and hassling the president’s national security adviser, Susan E. Rice, are hard to explain away.

The chaotic arrival ceremony in China was a minor blip when compared to the verbal abuse Obama received from Rodrigo Duterte, the Philippines’ president, Duterte, said Obama was the “son of a whore”—when he learned that the American president was going to asking him about the killing of drug dealers. The ugly personal outburst forced Obama to cancel the meeting.

The status of America has fallen so far that people don’t even realize the greatness of our past. After World War II, the U.S. had an economy that was larger than all other nations combined. Even though Bible prophecy made no clear mention of the U.S., many end-time writers find the need to include Uncle Sam in prophecy.

Thanks partly to Obama, there is no need to wonder about America’s prophetic role. After the Rapture, the president will have the well-earned privilege of standing with those left behind to experience hell on earth. He can then stand in the front row of a group photo op at a future Group of 20 (G20) meeting, and own all of what he has purchased when he sold out America.

“Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein; and he that rolleth a stone, it shall return upon him. Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap” (Prov. 26:27; Gal. 6:7).

--Todd


Doomsday: The Truth

Doomsday talk is on the rise. It brings to mind the 1964 movie filmed in stark black and white on the topic of nuclear war, entitled Dr. Strangelove. This was a darkly humorous film that captured the fearful times at the height of the Cold War involving America and the Soviet Union.

A U.S. general, in this fictional account, went a bit nutso and ordered a strike on the Soviet Union by the B-52 bombers under his command. (Yes, Hollywood was liberal and saw the U.S. as more evil than the Communist world in those days, too.)

The president, played by Peter Sellers--who also played Dr. Strangelove, the former Nazi scientist in the employ of the U.S. Department of Defense--did all he could to direct the Soviets to bring down the final B-52 as it began its assault. But, alas, the bomber, although crippled by a nearby anti-aircraft missile strike, managed to unleash a multi-megaton hydrogen bomb.

This strike set in motion all-out nuclear war because the Soviets had developed a doomsday machine nobody within the U.S. Defense Department knew about. It became at that point a final war that could not be controlled or stopped.

Back to reality... President Ronald Reagan's peaceful defeat of Soviet designs for world domination was believed to bring the Cold War to an end. Immediately the cries by the "progressives" went up to convert all of the Cold War military spending to social, do-good causes.

This call for ever-decreasing spending in America's military roared during the Clinton years and again during the Obama administrations so that the U.S. military, in many of its aspects is now said to be at pre-World War II levels.

But, it is obvious to those who view things through the lens of reality that America's old, Cold War foes--Russia and China--are building military war-making machinery. They are doing so technologically, if not in war-capable hardware, and now are reaching out to achieve super-power status. Other diabolist states are doing their best to establish their niches in the world's nuclear power structure.

We know all about Iran wanting to develop nuclear weaponry and the missile capability to deliver them. The Ayatollahs have even forewarned time after time just who these weapons when completed will be used against. North Korea makes no bones about wanting to hit any target they can when they achieve the capability to accurately launch them.

All of this has brought the world to renewed fears of the world possibly meeting its end in fiery, nuclear doom within a decade or sooner.

European doomsday worry-warts are ginning up ultra-Cold War fears by warning citizens to prepare for disaster. With the prospect of the influx of millions of hostile militants migrating to Europe, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban, as I reported last week, said, “We must give priority to security, so let’s start setting up a joint European army.”

The German government has instructed its people to prepare for disaster by stockpiling ten days' worth of food and five days' worth of water. Berlin is also considering re-instituting conscription (a military draft) in view of the tremendous surge of Muslims entering Europe.

One thing we haven't heard much about in this volatile political season is that President Obama is also speaking in such terms. In June he said that Americans must be "prepared “--by having an evacuation plan,” as well as “having a fully-stocked disaster supply kit.”

All of this comes with increasing alarm by some military analysts who report that Russia is developing and testing new "hyper-weapons." Russian TU-22M3 long-range Backfire bomber aircraft will now be armed with the new Russian Kh-32 cruise missile. The capabilities of this missile are astounding: It can fly at speeds of up to 600 mph to an altitude of almost 25 miles, and when it reaches the proximity of its target, fly downward at a speed of almost 3,000 mph with a total range of almost 600 miles.

There are unsubstantiated reports within some fear-forewarning supposition that "doomsday bunkers" have been prepared for Russian citizenry. Some of the fearful postulation is that many within Russian officialdom are taking to the especially prepared doomsday bunkers in the Yamantau Mountain complex that has been constructed.

Add to this increasing reporting that Russian President Vladimir Putin is in the process of purging all upper-echelon officers within his military that oppose future war with Europe and the U.S. Turkey is said to be making tremendous changes within its military planning, in conjunction with Putin's own maneuverings, as preparations for an eventual war in the Middle East and beyond are becoming more manifest.

Chinese leaders are all but declaring war on China's neighbors in creating islands in the South China Sea--which it now claims for the most part to belong to China. The Chinese navy consistently challenges any commercial and other ships that want to pass through what the world still considers international waters.

China, like Russia, is believed to have produced weapons of a defensive nature that are designed to thwart nuclear missile strikes in retaliation for their own offensive assaults--thus in violation of longstanding agreements against such military technological development.

So, it looks like the old Dr. Strangelove Cold War fears are back. Despite the hyperbole and conspiracy theories, there is enough reality-based concern to be alert to the worries wrought by all this doomsday speculation.

All that said, the bottom line is that the God of Heaven will have the final say about the fate of nations--of planet earth. As a matter of fact, He has already given us all we need to know about that which this generation is now facing so far as the likelihood of doomsday is concerned. This world is not at its end. It won't be at its end until at a minimum 1007 years from now--and that is if the Rapture occurred within the next fifteen minutes.

"Doomsday" is a matter that must be viewed in terms of degree. It is true, biblically, that earth's total obliteration will never take place by human use of the hydrogen bomb or any other device or doomsday machine. It is equally true, prophetically speaking, that earth as we know it will one day be done away with, then remade. That will perhaps take place through nuclear fission or some other phenomenon of natural physics. However it is done, it will be God who remakes the heavens and the earth.

To most all of those who will be left behind and live through the Tribulation era following the Rapture of the Church it will be the time of doom. Most believers (those who accept Christ after the Rapture) will be martyred. Theirs will not be "doom" but severe persecution--and, in most cases, death. But, those who die will go instantly to an eternity of bliss beyond all imagination.

To the reader: You don't have to concern yourself with "Doomsday." Jesus Christ died on the cross at Calvary two thousand years ago to assure that your place of heavenly safety is forever secured. Again, the following is the way God has provided for you to escape the terrors the doomed unbelievers of the ages must face:

"That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation" (Romans 10: 9-10).  

--Terry