‘The greatest gift that God can give you is to see yourself as others see you’ was a Scottish saying that my Scottish mother often quoted. It is not strictly true (it is not the greatest gift) but it is often helpful to hear another person’s point of view. So, it is interesting to read an observation from someone outside of America about America. Here is one from a respected spiritual leader in Germany – Wolfgang Simpson, part of his commentary on the recent election results.
A DIFFERENT LOOK AT AMERICA
“Can we, as foreigners who dearly love you as a people, say a few words into this situation? Because it is evident to us that God has a clear plan with your nation. But many don t seem to see it, and therefore run the danger of fighting the wrong fight, wasting precious time and resources, and even endlessly call upon God to do what he just will not do.”
“The German weekly Der Spiegel, kind of a German Time Magazine, has a cover picture of Uncle Sam in bed, titled, ‘The American Patient: The decline of a Great Nation.‘
“We think this is a prophetic picture. As your friends, we know, acknowledge and admire that America has had a great past. But how will your future look like?
“God chastises whom he loves because he knows: pride will come before the fall, and humbleness and brokenness is the only condition he responds to. . . . . Did you ever allow the thought that God in his sovereignty is using Obama like a pawn on his chessboard to humble the US as a nation because he wants to show his grace to a nation gone completely self-sufficient? A nation that is so full of independence, individualism, nationalism and trusting a greed- and fear-based economy that there may be only one way open to heal it from its idolatry and re-align itself with the Kingdom of God: a crisis beyond anything that America has ever seen?
“America, where do you go from here? What does this mean for you? The future is going to be very, very rough. Your securities will vanish, the economy will go down, the education system will become even worse, the streets more dangerous, the churches even more divided, the youth even more disillusioned – unless there is a true movement that abandons all those idols mentioned above, and radically repents, makes a radical alignment with the King of the Kingdom of God and his constitution, live the Law of Christ in all areas of life, first and foremost in the areas of sex, money, power and how we “do church”. This is a defining moment for you as a nation. You could go down, as the German journalist of `Der Spiegel´ predicted. Or, America could be literally re-invented by Kingdom people who are ready to implode the prevailing myths about America’s greatness, and replace it by God´s greatness.”
THIS IS A DEFINING MOMENT FOR YOU AS A NATION
I believe what Wolfgang Simpson said is right. Before the November elections I penned a Langstaff Letter entitled ‘Unless’ in which I wrote similar things, namely, that no matter who won the election unless we as a nation turned back to God, judgement awaited us. I believe this last election is a water shed moment in American history. Bill O’Reilly of Fox News summed it up succinctly on election night when he said, ‘We’re in a different country.’
Bill Johnson, pastor of Bethel Church in Redding is reported to have stated, “Yesterday (November 6th) the US voters said yes to the immoral slaughter of the unborn, and the immoral redefinition of the family. They revealed an addiction to big government fixing their problems, and a jealousy over those who succeed. They chose a position of dishonor towards Israel. These choices carry consequences. I pray for mercy. Can God heal our nation? Yes. Does He need godliness in the White House to accomplish it? No. Is it time for us to pray? More than ever.”
CHOICES CARRY CONSEQUENCES
Notice those words ‘these choices carry consequences’ Well what are some of consequences?
Simply put, when a nation rejects its spiritual and moral foundations it goes into decline as was the case with ancient Israel. Firstly there will be an increasing decline in the spiritual and moral state of the nation that will impact all of life, including our schools and eventually our churches. More about this in the next Langstaff Letter.
Secondly, it also carries over into America’s place in the world. C. Peter Wagner points out that America will be ‘no longer number one.’ So we need to recognize the dramatic changes that have taken place and pray accordingly.
Just after the November elections C. Peter Wagner wrote a highly significant article entitled, ‘The America of Tomorrow – How shall we pray?’ It is too long to summarize but I will note some of it in regard to America’s place in the world.
“This election provided us with the strongest statement on record so far that the America of Yesterday is a thing of the past. I believe it would be good for us to agree that God is not looking for yesterday’s America, but rather for tomorrow’s America.”
He points to an article in the Wall Street Journal dated April 25, 2011.
“The International Monetary Fund has just dropped a bombshell, and nobody noticed. For the first time, the international organization has set a date for the moment when the ‘Age of America’ will end and the U.S. economy will be overtaken by that of China. And it’s a lot closer than you may think. According to the latest IMF official forecasts, China’s economy will surpass that of America in real terms in 2016-just five years from now.”
C. Peter Wagner goes on to write – “Yes, this is a stunning surprise to many Americans, including some American prayer leaders. But let me point out that it is not a surprise to God. The knee-jerk reaction of some will be to cry out to energize the intercessors to a new level so that this does not happen and that America remains as Number One. They yearn for the America of Yesterday! I don’t think that is realistic. Instead, let’s believe the prophets and pray that God will allow America to develop into a Number Two that advances the kingdom of God in every way.”
Now it may be later than 2016, but it is not far away.
There is an interesting verse in Job 12:23 which gives a biblical and historical perspective on the rise and fall of nations.
He enlarges nations and guides them.’
Jonathan Kann, the author of the Harbinger gives further insight regarding end time prophecies with the question ‘Where is America?’
“Where is America in all these prophecies? The answer is that there is no clear reference to America in end-time prophecy. More over, not a word is said in these end-times prophecies about Israel’s most powerful human ally rescuing Israel. It is God who literally does so in the end.
Thus between where we are now and where the world is at the end of the age, there is a gap and a question: How do we go from the American age where America stands preeminent among nations, to a post-American age as revealed in end-time prophecy? Something has to happen.
The Harbinger fills in the gaps between where we are and what is yet to come. At the same time, even through the overall direction of American culture points to a continued progression of moral descent, apostasy, shaking and judgment, we cannot underestimate the power of prayer and the Lord’s Spirit. And even amid apostasy, shaking and judgement there can be true revival among those who seek Him. That alone means there is still hope.”
God is still in control and he is working His purposes out in the midst of the events of this time, so we should not despair even though America is in decline.
SO HOW SHALL WE THEN LIVE?
Some thoughts on this –
- Face the reality of what is happening. America has changed. Things are different.
- Reaffirm our belief that God is still in control. He is Lord of Lord s and the King of Kings.
- Pray for this new situation and that a new awaking may take place in America and beyond, bearing in mind it will probably come in ways that we may not expect.
- Remember that we live in the days of Isaiah 60:1-2. The world is getting darker but God’s light and glory will be seen in His people.
God bless America.
- Wolfgang Simson, “Our Dear America-Where do you go from Here?, November 7, 2012, emailed from email@example.com.
- Bill Johnson, posted on Facebook on November 9th, 2012
- C. Peter Wagner, ‘A Word from Peter,’ November 9th, 2012, emailed from firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Jonathan Cahn, Article ‘What Lies Ahead for America’ Charisma, February, 2013