Jerusalem has been the longing for Diaspora Jews who traditionally reflect that they might celebrate the Passover, “next year in Jerusalem.” Likewise with the beginning of a new year, Christians who are watching for the return of Christ long for this to be the year of our “blessed hope” (Titus 2:13). It sure seems it could be with all the stage setting for the Tribulation going on.
It is only by the grace of God that the world economy has not imploded. It wouldn’t take much to set it off. The rapid drop in the price of oil is an indicator that the world is already in recession. The low oil prices are also putting pressure on financial institutions to raise interest rates but this would crater the huge derivative and bond markets. I’m no economics expert but I have observed our market swings enough to know that those economics experts in charge are more often wrong then they are right. How else can you explain why our smart economics wizards allowed us to get in the position we’re in? It is enough to make you become a conspiracy theorist thinking that some cabal of global government elitists are trying to crash the world economy so that they may foist changes on us that we would otherwise resist. As the leftist change agents love to say, “you have to break a few eggs to make an omelet.”
Another thing the low oil prices are doing is causing significant pain for Russia because oil is their primary export. Russia has been testing NATO’s resolve to keep them in check and has found that we don’t much care beyond imposing sanctions. But lower oil prices are having a greater economic impact on Russia than the sanctions. This may well be the hook of Ezekiel 38 that is being set to cause Russia to invade the Mid-East under the guise of helping their Arab partners with their Israeli problem. Whoever controls the oil controls the world.
And of course we have wars and rumors of wars in the Mid-East. The United States President appears to be hell-bent to allow Iran to get nuclear weapons threatening Congress to not impose any more sanctions on them. We can only surmise that he must think there is some benefit to a nuclear-armed Iran like being able to use it to pressure Israel to make more concessions in the endless pursuit of peace. Meanwhile, the Islamic State which suddenly emerged out of no where continues to win hearts, minds and real estate in Iraq and Syria with designs on Lebanon as they bring Sharia Law to the region beheading their opponents.
In Europe, growing anti-Semitism is causing more of their Jews to immigrate to Israel. At the same time they have opened their doors to Muslim immigrants who will not be assimilated because “iron does not mix with clay” (Daniel 2:43). What the European nations are just now starting to realize is that with Islamic immigrants come Islamic terrorism. Europe has traded a peace-loving creative people for Jihadists who only use their creativity to tear down Western Civilization. As the Islamic Clay Kingdom of Daniel 2 emerges, we can expect to see more terrorism in the world this year.
I also expect something spectacular to happen in the history of the United States, and by extension, the world this year. On September 11, 2001, Islamic Jihadists attacked the United States announcing to the world their desire to replace Western Civilization with Islam. On September 29, 2008 the Dow dropped 777 points or 7% kicking off a world-wide recession. Both of these events happened seven years apart within a week of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year. Was that coincidence or God trying to get our attention? This has only resonated with the spiritually discerning who are watching for Jesus to return. Seven years from 2008 is this year with Rosh Hashanah beginning on September 13th.
I’ve always thought that Rosh Hashanah would be a great time for the Rapture of the Church. Even so, come soon Lord Jesus, this world sorely needs You.