As a fledgling believer about four decades ago I began to have dreams. They were like movie previews of events to come usually personal but at times more universal in nature. It was spooky enough having the dreams but even more unsettling was the fact that of several thousand dreams over the years not one was ever wrong.
Always checking the dreams against the Bible to make sure there were no inconsistencies was my first rule of interpretation. But often my dreams needed no interpretation; they came on a “what you see is what you get” basis. I saw the events exactly as they happened; no interpretation needed.
I’ve never accepted the ability to view the future as merely novel or interesting but have approached it all with the deepest sense of responsibility. The Bible strictly warns that if someone purports to have heard from God when they have not they will be totally responsible for that error, or lie if they are mistaken or just being presumptuous.
Very few dreams had to do with world events for which I have always been thankful. I believe I will see more as the need arises. In one dream I did see the return of the Lord and in another message I was warned of an economic collapse in America that will dwarf the stock market crash and the dust bowl days combined. I can see the future but I can’t predict what God may show me about the future.
What has guided me over the years has been the definition of a prophet I found in the Bible and one other source. The biblical definition says “And he said, hear now my words: If there be a prophet among you, I the LORD will make myself known unto him in a vision, and will speak unto him in a dream.” (Nu 12:6)
The other definition was that a prophet is one who “tells forth the will and counsel of God.” This definition implies that prophecy is not relegated to only speaking about the future and is in perfect harmony with a verse from the book of Revelation that says “the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” (Rev 19:10)
Today more Bible prophecy is being fulfilled than in any other time in history. The two major events having to do with Jesus Christ are his first coming (Messianic prophecies) and then his second coming (pre-millennial prophecies.) Obviously the bulk of prophecies yet to unfold are pre-millennial. Up to about one quarter of the Bible is made up of pre-millennial prophecies.
As a boy I watched my grandfather load himself and a few of my uncles into an old flatbed truck and travel 35 miles to a nearby city to consult with a Portuguese Feiteceira (witch) who would tell him why his poultry business was not doing so well at times. He would slay a few chickens and throw them on his neighbor’s front yard to break the curse and go on with business as usual.
This is not prophecy as the Bible sees it. In fact this book that speaks so much about future events has serious warnings about seeking the future or pretending to know the future. Prophesying for money, prognosticating, witchcraft, necromancy, (reading the liver) astrology, stargazing, psychic reading and soothsaying are all strictly prohibited by the scriptures. If God has something to say he alone picks his mouthpieces and he alone certifies them. The most unique thing about these oracles is this; they never prophesy anything that conflicts with or denies the “prior” revelation…the Bible.
Many people are studying the prophetic side of the scriptures today. That study is referred to most often as “eschatology.” Unfortunately not everyone doing these studies is qualified. Those who are Biblically grounded and who shun liberal interpretation are seen to be the most reliable. These matters are not for the novice or the person who is just dabbling.
Many certified eschatologists are also good at making predictions or accurate forecasts about the future because they compare current events against the prophecies in a responsible and balanced fashion. You won’t hear a lot of “thus saith the Lord” from these kinds of people. They will research, analyze, and speculate in a learned and biblically grounded manner and their view of things can generally be trusted. It behooves the hearer to pick your prophets with care.
One thing you will never hear from a real prophet is the naming of a specific date or time for the return of the Lord. Christ strictly warned that no man would know the exact time of his return. (Mt 24:36) What Christ did say was that we would be able to see the season or the generation in which his return was imminent (Mt 24:32) and not to see it would be our folly. Refusing to see it is even worse and even that was prophesied to come as well.
It is in the spirit of the aforementioned that I make my predictions for America for 2008. They are “soft predictions” so don’t get nervous. But do watch carefully because you will lose most of the bets against their accuracy if you are a gambling person.
If a liberal democrat of the top contender variety is chosen to lead this county in the upcoming election all bets are off. My forecast for America if that happens is far too bleak. That eventuation would produce the fastest and most severe downward social and moral trend this country has ever experienced. I am speaking here of a Clinton or Obama win in the race for president as if I really needed to say that.
Keeping in mind that the President represents only one part of our three branches of government and the social trends of the population can often outweigh all three branches of government. We can’t hold a single leader up to more than they can produce. If a conservative values based individual like Alan Keyes or Mike Huckabee is chosen the difference will be large but the will of the people must never be left out of the equation.
In fact it is the “will of the people” that is my next prediction. Government by representation has severely faltered in America over the last decade. Our reps are not voting our will like they used to. In the EU failure to get the remaining countries into the EU block of nations has resulted in the abandonment of popular votes and referendums. Now the parliamentary decisions are being counted on more than ever rather than the will of the people. Enter America.
Government that Ronald Reagan tried so hard to make less lumbering and unwieldy has re-fattened in the last decade. The fed will tell us how we are going to live; it’s easier than wading through millions of opinions and cumbersome referendums. Top reps are streamlining much legislation on local, state and federal levels with or without regarding the “will of the people” to wit California’s twisted and almost unbelievable passing of SB777. Lest we forget the other brazen example of the slaughter of “for the people and by the people” the NAFTA derived Mexamerica superhighway controversy looms large as a perfect example of leaving out the “will of the people.”
As for sharing pulpits with candidates who think babies have no rights and gays should have even more rights, this is all part of the well defined “apostasy” of the church promised in Biblical prophecy. Preachers with mega-churches who refuse to call men to repentance and salvation through Christ’s sacrifice on the cross are also part of the predicted “falling away.” Prosperity gospel, cotton candy religion and feel good theologies are all elements that will leave the church divided and impotent more in 2008 than ever before. I predict that apostate churches will flourish in 2008. I can add that these churches will be the first to be struck down by the Antichrist and the most severely dealt with by secular forces in the not too distant future.
Conversions to Christianity will continue to flourish in third world countries as they are now in parts of Africa, Central America and South America. China will continue to see the Christian faith grow in spite of fierce resistance and persecution. This must not be read as proof that the apostasy is not underway. God is able to keep both promise and prophecy fulfilled and moving forward at the same time. One of the last day’s signs is that the gospel will be preached throughout the world at the very same time that whole nations will be tearing up the roots of the church and eventually directly opposing and persecuting the church worldwide.
I believe that natural disasters will occur with greater frequency than ever before in 2008. Perhaps some serious earthquakes in the western US and some deadly weather conditions around the rest of the country. As always no one in the secular world will acknowledge that any of this has to do with Gods direct influence. Increased frequencies of any natural phenomena will be noticed but attributed to natural causes and glibly explained away by scientists and other “experts.”
On the positive side many wandering stars will be re-gathered in 2008. Thousands of people who have been straddling the fence for years will return to the faith they were once tutored in. Additionally new converts will sweep across every age group and the intensity of their conversions will be notable. They will be accompanied by dreams, visions and even some miracles. An entire generation of Joel 2:28 Christians will begin to emerge in 2008. If you know the scripture this promise has probably just lifted your heart and maybe produced a smile on your face, if you do not know what Joel 2:28 says nothing said here will make any difference anyway.
Finally events in the rest of the world will catapult America into some sudden foreign policy changes. Iran will prove to be the peskiest and ultimately the most dangerous influence in the Middle East. Europe will flex new muscle politically, militarily and the Euro will push the dollar down to new lows before a worldwide economy emerges. 2008 will see upheavals in the economies of several countries and Canada will be among them.
Hollywood, TV and media in general will plunge to new depths of prurient immorality and the government will have little effectiveness in curbing it. It will be a year of giving the people “what they really want” even if it is choking them to death.
2008 could be said to be the year of the sinking ship. An old analogy used by evangelists years ago now will take on new meaning in 08. A large ship stranded at sea with no power or ability to communicate is sinking fast as the Captain comes down to the grand ballroom to announce what looks like the greatest act of benevolence ever seen at sea. He announces that the ships stores are open to all and they can have anything they desire and they can do anything they want to do. The passengers are gleefully delighted and begin to indulge themselves without reservation.
A few sailors and passengers who know what is really going on try to warn the rest that the ship is taking on water from below and is sinking. These doomsayers are mocked, scorned and ridiculed. The analogy is simple the ship sinks! The more personal license and uninhibited behavior that is encouraged in any society is directly linked to the amount of time to the final plunge to the bottom. 2008 will be taking on water at an alarming rate and a few sailors will be trying to herald the warning against a backdrop of self assured collective solipsism and the deep blindness caused by self indulgence. God help us in 2008.
As I move down the one way road toward the end of my walk in this old world two things grow stronger everyday. One is the love I have for my God and his son the Lord Jesus Christ, the other is the love I have for America. It is because of both that I can say that with prophetic fulfillment comes a dark night upon the whole earth. I can say with Christ that if your going to work some good with your life you had better do it now because “the night cometh, when no man can work.” John 9:4
If you are a conservative American don’t be discouraged because a few names have fallen off the wagon. Remember the alternatives and that most of the liberals were not ever on the wagon to begin with. Fight the good fight.
As for faith in God remember as the ball drops this year in Times Square there is also a door closing to a countdown of God’s prophetic timetable. Don’t bother with a New Years resolution and don’t insult God by bringing in the New Year with a drunk and a midnight kiss. Its not about resolutions or reformations it’s about repentance. Pause as the New Year comes in and get right with God.
With a simple and heartfelt prayer in the privacy of your home, office or car you can call upon Christ to forgive all your sins and invite him to come into your life. He won’t refuse anyone and that always included you. Happy New Year America!