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Continued from July Reporter Front page A July 2008 report by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) says that by end of 2007, foreigners had acquired about $20 trillion in assets in the U.S., while the overseas assets of U.S. residents totaled about $17 trillion. “As a result,” the report said, “the U.S. net international investment position was about $2.6 trillion in the negative.” Someone might argue that these figures are not that much out of proportion. But it should be noted, “foreign investors now own nearly 50% of total U.S. Federal debt and more than half of the outstanding publicly traded U.S. Treasury securities.” China owns more U. S. Treasuries than any other country, followed closely by Japan. In violation of God’s warning, we have placed ourselves in the position where they are the head, and we are the tail. While both the Chinese and Japanese people place a high value on individual savings, Americans largely exchanged this value for a lifestyle funded by consumer debt. Thus, we have the double jeopardy of

both the government and its citizens living beyond their means. In addition to causing economic consequences and enslavement, wrong attitudes about money are lead indicators of the approach of the end times. Regarding these days, Paul instructed Timothy to be watchful by these signs: “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power” (2 Timothy 3:1-5 NIV). Because they love themselves, money, and pleasure, these people will accept the mark of the beast, Satan’s representative on earth, in order to avoid suffering loss. The apostle John says that the beast will force everyone, “small and great, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on his right hand or on his forehead, so that no one could buy or sell unless he had the

mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name” (Revelation 13:1617 NIV). The implications here are that a day will come when everything to do with financial transactions will be impossible without entry into the system controlled by the Antichrist. There is so much emphasis today around regaining and protecting assets. Isn’t it just like Satan to use an economic crisis to unify the world around the desire for prosperity? But for Christians who are not in love with self, money, and pleasure, we need to be even more prepared to lose all assets for the cause of Christ. These days call for great wisdom. Please do not hear me incorrectly. I don’t know if we’re in the end times. However, I do know that when those times come, money will play a tremendous role in the events that unfold. I also know that throughout history, God’s people have often experienced financial losses as a result of not following Him. Our security needs to remain steadfast in Him, because we may be called upon to

choose between suffering and comfort, hunger and food, and unemployment and having a job. Such choices may be required of us at some point in our lives although our Lord’s return may be hundreds or thousands of years away. Even if we only witness small steps toward fulfillment of prophecy in our time, we should be concerned and be on the watch as God tells us: “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come. It’s like a man going away: He leaves his house and puts his servants in charge, each with his assigned task, and tells the one at the door to keep watch. Therefore keep watch because you do not know when the owner of the house will come back— whether in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or at dawn. If he comes suddenly do not let him find you sleeping. What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’ ” (Mark 13:32-37 NIV). Follow the money.

follow the money to the end times article