Tonight on The Hal Lindsey Report
Last weekend, the people of Greece followed their young Prime Minister's pleadings and voted against accepting Europe's terms for another round of bailout money. They believed him when he promised that Greece would no longer have to follow the austerity measures imposed on them in order to receive more funds from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the European Union's Central Bank.
Well, later in the week, Greece defaulted on the substantial loans it had previously received to remain solvent.
Right now, we don't know if Alexis Tsipras, the Greek PM, was right or wrong. Greece has entered a new round of negotiations with its creditors and various EU leaders.
Offers are being made and considered. The leaders of the industrialized and prosperous EU nations are against continuing to pour money down the drain. That's because they're the ones who are going to have to foot the bill.
Many of the EU's leaders and big banker-types believe it is impossible for Greece to ever repay its massive debt. However, they're concerned about what may happen if they allow a major, first-world nation to go bankrupt.
On the other hand, they're nervous about the precedent that will be set if Greece's communist, anti-capitalist, pro-socialist leader succeeds in getting more money without the nation taking any additional personal responsibility. They believe other at-risk nations will be tempted to elect similar anti-capitalist, pro-socialist leaders who will thumb their noses at the EU and expect similar, no-risk bailouts.
That would spell the end of the EU's hopes for long-term financial prosperity.
All we can do now is sit back and wait to see who will win this tug-of-war. If Europe doesn't relent and come through with some new money, Greece will inevitably start a new program of austerity.
It will be more severe than anything its previous lenders have demanded. It won't be imposed on them from the outside. It will be imposed on them by the simple fact that they will have no money. Welcome to the real world, Greece.
Pardon the simplicity of this assertion, but a blind man could have seen what was coming when the Obama administration pushed for the overthrow of the Middle Eastern establishment during the so-called "Arab Spring" a few years ago. But not only did the President cheerlead for the removal of the leaders of those nations, he did everything he could to secure the rise of organizations like the Muslim Brotherhood.
As Jeremiah Wright might have asserted, now his chickens have come home to roost.
Since the people of Egypt, led by the only stable institution in Egypt, its military, rose up to overthrow the Muslim Brotherhood in the summer of 2013, 600 Egyptian police and military personnel have died in the Sinai peninsula alone. The chaos promoted in that region by America's machinations there since 2009, has opened the door to the alarming rise of groups like ISIS, al-Qaeda, and others.
Last week, the top prosecutor in Egypt, Hisham Barakat (the equivalent to our Attorney General) was murdered by a car bomb in Cairo. He was killed by Islamic radicals most probably associated with the Muslim Brotherhood.
Earlier in the month, Islamic radicals carried out attacks near the pyramids in Giza and at a famous temple in Luxor.
ISIS is now a formidable presence in the Egyptian Sinai -- next door to Israel. Last week, they murdered 50 Egyptian soldiers just 250 miles from vacation resorts visited by more than 10 million tourists each year.
Iraq, Yemen, and Syria are being torn apart by civil war between Islam's two major factions: the Sunnis and the Shiites. In each of these places, the Sunni faction (85% of Muslims are Sunnis) is being led by either al-Qaeda or ISIS. But America has cast its lot with the Shiites (represented by Iran), which comprise only 15% of the world's Muslims.
This has become a recruiting bonanza for ISIS and al-Qaeda. Young Sunni Muslims from all over the world are choosing to join the ranks of ISIS. In just the last few months, federal authorities in the U.S. have arrested more than 50 radicalized young people in the process of either joining or aiding ISIS. Yet fewer than 1% of Americans are Muslim.
If you think it's becoming dangerous here, just think about the threat this represents in places like Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Israel.
And ISIS is ramping up the rhetoric. Its leader, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, has said that it is the "religious duty" of Muslims to destroy Egypt's national monuments, including the pyramids and the Sphinx.
Anjem Choudary, the radical anti-US, anti-UK Muslim imam from the UK, agrees. He said, "When Egypt comes under the auspices of the Khalifa (Caliphate), there will be no more pyramids, no Sphinx, no more idolatry."
Folks, these guys are serious. And they're determined. Unless we match these attributes in our response to them, they will win.
There's a new summer TV series on CBS called, "Zoo." It features deadly lions, tigers, and bears, but also lethal housecats, rampaging horses, and most of the animal kingdom caught up in a murderous rage.
The premise is that "evolution" has suddenly given animals the ability to work together toward eliminating the thing that most threatens their survival: humans. You and me.
Now, that premise seems pretty silly. But with science fiction, even the most far-out story idea usually includes something that feels real -- or plausible -- to us.
This is but another in the flood of films, television shows, and video games depicting some sort of imminent global apocalypse. And these stories are having worldwide, cross-cultural success. People of all nationalities and religions show an unrelenting obsession with doomsday scenarios.
And these stories share a similar moral. They depict an arrogant and evil humanity facing judgment for its sins -- though not by God. They see judgment coming from nature -- either animals, climate, the earth itself, even angry zombies!
I can't help believing that there is a deep "knowing" in the human psyche, a realization that something is horribly askew. The world is not right and the problem is in ourselves. And for our sins, we will be judged.
In "Zoo," one of the lead characters observes that the animals "...are no longer afraid of us."
In Genesis 9, God told Noah and his sons that He had placed the fear and dread of man in every beast of the earth, every bird of the air, all that move on the earth, even on all the fish of the sea. He said, "They are given into your hands." (Genesis 9:2)
When Israel was under God's blessing, He told them that He would "eliminate harmful beasts from the land." (Leviticus 26:6) But when He removed that blessing, He warned, "I will let loose among you the beasts of the field, which shall bereave you of your children and destroy your cattle and reduce your number so that your roads lie deserted." (Leviticus 26:22)
Why should we care? Well, not only in the movies and on television, but in real life we are witnessing an unusual uptick in the number of animal attacks on humans across the world. From coyotes killing two girls in upstate New York to unusual shark attacks on the beaches of North and South Carolina. From feral hogs in Texas to hostile monkeys overwhelming New Delhi, India. From the first death by alligator in Texas to a lioness dragging a prominent special effects editor from her car while on a picture safari in Africa. Bison attacks in Yellowstone to dingo attacks in Australia. The list goes on.
Romans 8:22 says that "the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs...." I believe the world is going through something akin to childbirth. That means that the labor pangs are growing in frequency and intensity as we move toward a specific event. The pains grow stronger and come closer together in time. The whole creation groans and travails. The earth quakes. The land refuses to give its increase. The skies open in flood or hold back in drought. Humans are tossed to and fro. Even the animals are affected.
An increase in animal attacks foreshadows something that will occur in the Great Tribulation. Revelation 6 warns that the rider of the ashen horse, Death, will kill with the sword, famine, pestilence, "and by the wild beasts of the earth." (Revelation 6:8)
That is NOT happening now, but what we're beginning to see may be a small-scale preview of coming horrors.
And it should be enough to motivate us to prepare ourselves to leave this earth before the main feature begins! If you have never received Jesus Christ into your life, now is the time to do so.
Simply acknowledge that you are a sinner and that your sins separate you from God. Believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and came to this earth to die and receive your punishment in your place. Accept and receive His atoning sacrifice as the free gift of pardon that it is. Then turn your back on your old sins and follow Him through the strength and help of His Holy Spirit.
If you will simply speak to God and tell Him that you are doing those things -- in all honesty and sincerity -- then from that moment, you will become a member of God's forever family. And when Jesus returns to snatch away His true followers, you'll be ready to go and escape the horrors that await those who have rejected Him.
Don't put it off. The Bible tells us that "today is the day of salvation."
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Don't miss this week's Report here Sunday.