X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

x-men: days of future past (2014)

X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

 

MOVIE SUMMARY

The X-Men join forces with their younger selves in order to change the past and save mankind’s future as well as their own. Wolverine is sent into the past to help prevent the development of Sentinels, robots designed to destroy the mutants. Magneto and Professor Xavier must work together to change history.

MOVIE THEMES

Fear of Differences

The plot surrounds around humanity’s fear of people who are different. In this case, mutants are the people who are different. The Bible teaches that man has always been against each other. Genocide has occurred because one group did not like other people who were different than themselves. The Bible teaches that because God’s people are different, many people will hate them for it. In essence, the Christian people are like the mutants. We are different than people in the world. We are called to be in the world but not of the world. We are called to be different. Unlike the movie, we show that we are different by the way we love one another as Christians (John 13:34-35).

Teamwork

The mutants must unite to prevent their own destruction. In this case, Magneto must team up with Dr. Xavier (who are against each other) to prevent the destruction of people like themselves. All of the mutants must work together in both the past and the future to save their kind from the Sentinels sent to destroy them.

As Christians, the Bible teaches very clearly that we should work in unity to build each other up (Ephesians 4:16). There are going to be times when we help one another. The Bible teaches that we are called to help each other as co-workers to spread the Gospel to the world. Jesus had many disciples who worked together. The apostle Paul had many co-workers when he went around planting new churches. The best way to get God’s work done is through teamwork.

Even though the world may hate Christians and fear the message, God has called each Christian to work together to further expand His kingdom.

x-men days of future past (2014)

Hope

Hope is a constant theme in this film. Professor Xavier needs hope in order to participate and help save the future. The Bible teaches that Jesus is our hope. He will help save our future (Colossians 1:27, Titus 2:13, 1 Peter 1:13).

QUESTIONS:

  1. How do you deal with differences? How does Christ’s command to love one another help us with our fear of other people?
  2. Jesus used a team of disciples. The church is made to build one another up. How does teamwork accomplish what the church is supposed to do? How does this teamwork tie into the command of Jesus to love one another?
  3. In the film, the future Dr. Xavier encourages the younger Dr. Xavier to have hope. Who is our hope? How will our hope save the future?

Acts 10:1-48 Five Keys to Making a Difference

Five Keys to Making a Difference

Acts 10:1-48 Five Keys to Making a Difference

“Once upon a time, there was a wise man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work.

One day, as he was walking along the shore, he looked down the beach and saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself at the thought of someone who would dance to the day, and so, he walked faster to catch up.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, and that what he was doing was not dancing at all. The young man was reaching down to the shore, picking up small objects, and throwing them into the ocean.

He came closer still and called out “Good morning! May I ask what it is that you are doing?”

The young man paused, looked up, and replied “Throwing starfish into the ocean.”

“I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?” asked the somewhat startled wise man.

To this, the young man replied, “The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them in, they’ll die.”

Upon hearing this, the wise man commented, “But, young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can’t possibly make a difference!”

At this, the young man bent down, picked up yet another starfish, and threw it into the ocean. As it met the water, he said,

“It made a difference for that one.”

Loren Eiseley

The first key to making a difference in the world is to walk closely with God. Each starts with the letters that form the word WORLD.

Walk closely with God (Acts 10:1-4, Acts 10:9)

There was a man in Caesarea named Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment. He was a devout man and feared God along with his whole household. He did many charitable deeds for the Jewish people and always prayed to God. About three in the afternoon he distinctly saw in a vision an angel of God who came in and said to him, “Cornelius!” Looking intently at him, he became afraid and said, “What is it, lord?” The angel told him, “Your prayers and your acts of charity have come up as a memorial offering before God.” (Acts 10:1–4, HCSB)

The next day, as they were traveling and nearing the city, Peter went up to pray on the housetop about noon.” (Acts 10:9, HCSB)

The text carefully reports on the quality of the spiritual life of Cornelius and the explicit time of prayer of both Cornelius and Peter. Both were devout men, apparently with a regular, consistent habit of walking with God, praying to God, and expecting God to work in their lives. The reason they both were involved in the work of God – Cornelius as the first genuine Gentile convert; Peter as the human instrument in opening the door to the Gentiles – was that they were both in the habit of walking with, talking to, and hearing from God on a regular basis.

The second key to making a difference in the world is to obey God.

Obey God (Acts 10:8, Acts 10:23-25, Acts 10:28-29)

After explaining everything to them, he sent them to Joppa.” (Acts 10:8, HCSB)

Peter then invited them in and gave them lodging. The next day he got up and set out with them, and some of the brothers from Joppa went with him. The following day he entered Caesarea. Now Cornelius was expecting them and had called together his relatives and close friends. When Peter entered, Cornelius met him, fell at his feet, and worshiped him.” (Acts 10:23–25, HCSB)

Peter said to them, “You know it’s forbidden for a Jewish man to associate with or visit a foreigner. But God has shown me that I must not call any person common or unclean. That’s why I came without any objection when I was sent for. So I ask: Why did you send for me?”” (Acts 10:28–29, HCSB)

A predisposition to obedience that comes from the deep relationship with God marked both these men. Cornelius got “found,” and Peter had the privilege of finding him because they responded positively to God’s command. We will not be involved in real world change if we have a predisposition to disobey. To be habitually disobedient is to be habitually useless for the real work of God

At this point, one must see that you have to spend time with God in order to reach out to others. You see, the world is going to try to reach out to you and change you. This is what Paul says:

Do not be conformed to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may discern what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2, HCSB)

You have to discern from God first what it is He wants. In the meantime, the world as a system is trying to conform you. They will tell you that what the Bible says is not true. Give in to peer pressure. Do what we think is right. Be tolerant of other beliefs. Don’t listen to the hypocrites in the church.

In order to reach others and make a difference, you have to let God lead you. You won’t make a significant, eternal difference all on your own. You need God’s help. And He is there to help you. Out of the relationship well which God nourishes you, then you reach out to other people. If you don’t have that ongoing personal devotional intimate time with God, the world will influence you. However, if you are walking with God and obeying Him, then you will see that He will give you the strength to reach out to those who need God. He will use you to make a difference in other peoples’ lives.

So we transition from the influence God has in our lives to how He uses us to make a difference in the lives of others. The third key to making a difference is to reach out to people outside your comfort zone.

Reach out to people outside your comfort zone (Acts 10:5-6, Acts 10:20,25, Acts 10:28)

Now send men to Joppa and call for Simon, who is also named Peter. He is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea.”” (Acts 10:5–6, HCSB)

Get up, go downstairs, and accompany them with no doubts at all, because I have sent them.”” (Acts 10:20, HCSB)

When Peter entered, Cornelius met him, fell at his feet, and worshiped him.” (Acts 10:25, HCSB)

Peter said to them, “You know it’s forbidden for a Jewish man to associate with or visit a foreigner. But God has shown me that I must not call any person common or unclean.” (Acts 10:28, HCSB)

It is hard to feel what Peter would have felt about moving into the Gentile world. He was going against that with his move to Lydda, then Joppa, then to the leatherworker’s house, and certainly with Cornelius. The Jewish part of him would balk at every turn, every doorstep, every meal. But Per understood the Great Commission and was committed to spreading the Word to whomever God was calling. How ready do you move outside of the confines of your safe relationships? That’s where the lost are and where God wants us to be. The fourth key to making a difference is to look for those God is reaching or softening.

Look for those God is reaching or softening (Acts 10:19, Acts 10:22-23)

While Peter was thinking about the vision, the Spirit told him, “Three men are here looking for you.” (Acts 10:19, HCSB)

They said, “Cornelius, a centurion, an upright and God-fearing man, who has a good reputation with the whole Jewish nation, was divinely directed by a holy angel to call you to his house and to hear a message from you.” Peter then invited them in and gave them lodging. The next day he got up and set out with them, and some of the brothers from Joppa went with him.” (Acts 10:22–23, HCSB)

This constant theme in Acts shows that God is working, and we must find out where and with whom, and get in on it. God sends people our way. God leads us to people whom He wants us to share the Gospel. God can also give us divine appointments when He will use us personally as His vessels to share the Gospel. The fifth key to making a difference is to disregard the criticism.

Disregard the criticism (Acts 10:13-14, Acts 10:20, Acts 10:28)

Then a voice said to him, “Get up, Peter; kill and eat!” “No, Lord!” Peter said. “For I have never eaten anything common and ritually unclean!”” (Acts 10:13–14, HCSB)

Get up, go downstairs, and accompany them with no doubts at all, because I have sent them.”” (Acts 10:20, HCSB)

Peter said to them, “You know it’s forbidden for a Jewish man to associate with or visit a foreigner. But God has shown me that I must not call any person common or unclean.” (Acts 10:28, HCSB)

Look at this quote: Don’t mind the criticism. If it is untrue, disregard it. If it unfair, keep from irritation. If it is ignorant, smile. If it is justified, learn from it.

I thought this quote was appropriate for today’s sermon. People are going to be resistant to what God wants you to do. Jewish culture was resistant. Peter himself was resistant. The church was resistant, critical, skeptical. But Peter, Cornelius, Peter’s traveling companions, and ultimately the church itself overcame the resistance to be a part of what God wanted to do. God was moving, spreading his message by softening and wooing hearts, by awakening souls.

You might even be resistant to what God wants you to do. It may take God working in your heart just as He did in Peter’s heart to help see how He wanted to make a difference in his life. In Peter’s case, Peter had to overcome prejudice so that God could  use him to reach more people. In your case, there may be something that is hindering you from reaching the people God wants you to reach.

“I have one life and one chance to make it count for something… My faith demands that I do whatever I can, wherever I am, whenever I can, for as long as I can with whatever I have to try to make a difference.”

―Form United States President Jimmy Carter

 

2 Kings 2:13-25 Developing Godly Leadership

2 Kings 2:13-25 Developing Godly Leadership

 

In every stage of my life, I am being influenced by leaders. God placed people around me who challenge me, help me, teach me, and encourage me to the be the person I am called to be. At times, I learned other lessons from people I watched, whether on television or in real life. In either case, I took what I learned and I applied it to my life. The same is true with you. Every single person in this room is an influencer. Therefore, every person in this room has the opportunity to lead others.

If you are a manager of a company or organization, you are a leader.

If you are a teacher, you are a leader.

If you have a ministry in this church, you are a leader.

If you are married, you are a leader to your family.

If you received people into your home, by foster or adoption, by divorce, or by some other means, you are a leader.

If you are in sports, in school, or some other activity, you are a leader.

Why is this true? Because God has called Christians to be influencers. Christians are leaders to the world. Jesus Christ has called us to lead others to Him. If you are going to influence others, then you are by definition a leader.

John Maxwell - Leadership Is Influence

 

John Maxwell: Leadership is influence, nothing more and nothing less.

In order to exert that influence as a leader, you are going to go through tests. The Bible shows us here that every leader will go through five tests.

FIVE TESTS EVERY NEW LEADER WILL FACE

LEADERSHIP TEST #1: CALLING

The first test of leadership is calling. You see, God is always raising up new leaders. Every person goes through transitions. We change leaders every four years as a country. People change jobs. New managers come. The church changes as new generations come along.

In this case, God led Elijah to mentor Elisha as the new leader. Elisha asked for a double portion of God’s Spirit – like a double portion of a family inheritance to prove to the people that he is now God’s man.

“Elisha picked up the mantle that had fallen off Elijah and went back and stood on the bank of the Jordan.” (2 Kings 2:13, HCSB)

“Then he took the mantle Elijah had dropped and struck the waters. “Where is the Lord God of Elijah?” he asked. He struck the waters himself, and they parted to the right and the left, and Elisha crossed over.” (2 Kings 2:14, HCSB)

Elisha answers the question everyone is asking. Is God with Elisha just as much as he was with Elijah? Is God still here among us? Has God called another leader to lead us? Elisha answers that call. By striking the waters himself, the prophets watched as God parted the waters. In parting the waters, God showed the prophets that this was God’s man to lead the prophets.

Streiker - orchestra crowd

Lowell D. Streiker: If you want to lead the orchestra, you must turn your back on the crowd. 

When a leader is called to lead, it means a change in the life of that person’s relationship with other people. If you are a mother, then you are called to be a mother, not a best friend. If you are called to be a manager, then you manage, not use people. If you are called to lead, it does change your relationship and it requires that you take more maturity in the relationship.

So we learn from this test two things:

(1) If you are a leader, you need to be mentoring. God has called for you to invest in other peoples’ lives. In this case, you are like Elijah who trains Elisha.

And what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, commit to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” (2 Timothy 2:2, HCSB)

(2) If you are not leading, you will be soon. God may be preparing you to lead other people. In this case, you are like Elisha – a man who has been mentored and now is taking the place of leadership.

LEADERSHIP TEST #2: CONFIRMATION

The second test of leadership is confirmation. Confirmation always comes after the calling. You prove yourself a leader after you have been called to be one. In this case, Elisha takes over the ministry of Elijah. There is a transition from one generation to the next. Elisha has completed his first test of leadership when he parts the water of Jericho with the mantel given to him by Elijah. The people watch it and confirm his call that he is the leader by submitting to him.

“When the sons of the prophets from Jericho who were facing him saw him, they said, “The spirit of Elijah rests on Elisha.” They came to meet him and bowed down to the ground in front of him.” (2 Kings 2:15, HCSB)

The sons of the prophets who saw the event confirmed the calling of Elisha by bowing down before him. They recognized that God had called Elisha as the new leader. However, not everyone saw this event. Only the sons of the prophets who were facing Elisha confirmed him.

The fallen cloak of Elijah was symbolic of Elisha’s spiritual inheritance. With the cloak he duplicated Elijah’s miracle of crossing the Jordan River on dry ground. This proved that Elisha had received his ministry.1

Elisha was now their teacher, the president of that ancient seminary for prophets. That they still needed a teacher is evident from the account in verse 16. Although they saw the whirlwind, they did not perceive it as the miraculous vehicle for Elijah’s translation. It appeared to them that a mighty “dust devil,” a natural whirlwind, had picked up Elijah and no doubt had dropped him as a helpless victim on the side of a rugged mountain or a hidden canyon.2

LEADERSHIP TEST #3: COOPERATION

The third test for every leader is cooperation. At some point in the life of a leader, you are going to deal with people who want to do things their way. There will be people who think they know how something should be done. Although God has clearly shown people who a transition has been made, some people will resist. They will long for the previous leader. That is what is going here. These same sons of the prophets who confirmed that Elisha was the leader were still nostalgic about their previous leader. These sons of the prophets were clearly men who followed Elijah. They loved him. They wanted to continue following Elijah. But God sent him somewhere else. These prophets didn’t want to believe that. They were willing not to listen to the change in leadership so that they could seek their previous leader.

“Then the sons of the prophets said to Elisha, “Since there are 50 strong men here with your servants, please let them go and search for your master. Maybe the Spirit of the Lord has carried him away and put him on one of the mountains or into one of the valleys.” He answered, “Don’t send them.”” (2 Kings 2:16, HCSB)

“However, they urged him to the point of embarrassment, so he said, “Send them.” They sent 50 men, who looked for three days but did not find him.” (2 Kings 2:17, HCSB)

“When they returned to him in Jericho where he was staying, he said to them, “Didn’t I tell you not to go?”” (2 Kings 2:18, HCSB)

They didn’t find Elijah. Of course Elisha knew this. He saw Elijah go in a chariot of fire. Yet these prophets persisted. They had to be proved wrong in order to finally fall in line and cooperate with Elijah.

Maintaining cooperation is one of the hardest tests for leaders. Some people won’t like that you are the leader. They won’t like that you are not the previous leader. They won’t like your style, your words, your vision, your ideas. Eventually, they will either come around or leave. If people leave, that says more about them than your leadership. Yet, you have to deal with it. Dealing with them takes humility.

Sanders - Humility in Leadership

J. Oswald Sanders has said: Humility of the leader, as his spirituality, will be an ever-increasing quality.

If you are going to build cooperation, you have to be humble. Why is that? Because while people love to see their leaders be confident, the people also want a voice in what is happening. If you are going to build cooperation, Christians need to show humility. Arrogance only leads to bullying other people. Leaders are not supposed to be bullies. They are called to be servants by leading. You need to be humble if you are going to build cooperation.

LEADERSHIP TEST #4: CONFIDENCE

A fourth test every leader will face is the test of confidence. First, Elijah had sons of the prophets against him. Now, the men of the city were not confident in his abilities. The men say that the place is good, but the water is bad and the land can’t produce. They have doubts that God would provide to heal their water and land.

God uses Elijah in healing the waters and land. How did Elijah know to use salt to heal the water. The only explanation Elijah gives is that God said that He healed the water and made the land fruitful again. This event was a test the people’s confidence in the leadership of Elijah.

Hobbs - people need time to develop confidence in the new leader

Herschel Hobbs once said: The people need time to develop confidence in the new leader.

That is what is happening here. This is not like the previous test when Elijah slapped the mantle on the water to part it. In that case, the audience was made of people who had seen Elijah transfer his leadership to Elisha. In this case, the audience was made of people in the city – people who did not yet know what to expect.

“Then the men of the city said to Elisha, “Even though our lord can see that the city’s location is good, the water is bad and the land unfruitful.”” (2 Kings 2:19, HCSB)

“He replied, “Bring me a new bowl and put salt in it.” After they had brought him one,” (2 Kings 2:20, HCSB)

“Elisha went out to the spring of water, threw salt in it, and said, “This is what the Lord says: ‘I have healed this water. No longer will death or unfruitfulness result from it.’ ”” (2 Kings 2:21, HCSB)

“Therefore, the water remains healthy to this very day according to the word that Elisha spoke.” (2 Kings 2:22, HCSB)

The waters were unhealthy. It couldn’t be used for drinking or for irrigation for plants. The most basic nutrient in life was contaminated. How were the people going to make it? There seemed to be no way out.

Then Elisha comes an untested prophet comes claiming that he has inherited the power of his mentor. The people don’t believe him and so they search for the mentor. The mentor prophet is never found. A tension rises as the people (sons of the prophets) have to trust the new prophet.

Elisha tells them to fill a bowl full of salt. They pour the salt into the water. The water is healed. Promise returns to the land. The land returns to fruitfulness.

Application: Trusting God to bring healing is hard. Sometimes, you want to find a trusted person who has helped before. It can be hard trusting a new person who is the instrument of healing. God can use new people to bring about His miracles.3

LEADERSHIP TEST #5: CONFRONTATION

A fifth test that every leader will encounter is confrontation. Leaders will have to confront people who detract from the mission God has called you to lead. In this case, there were some young men who taunted Elisha about his appearance and his work.

“From there Elisha went up to Bethel. As he was walking up the path, some small boys came out of the city and harassed him, chanting, “Go up, baldy! Go up, baldy!”” (2 Kings 2:23, HCSB)

The Hebrew word translated “little children” is nahar. Nahar is used to speak of little children, but also of younger men. In this case, the implication of what these young men were saying was, “Elijah went up, why don’t you? We don’t want you around.”4

“He turned around, looked at them, and cursed them in the name of the Lord. Then two female bears came out of the woods and mauled 42 of the children.” (2 Kings 2:24, HCSB)

“From there Elisha went to Mount Carmel, and then he returned to Samaria.” (2 Kings 2:25, HCSB)

The writer of Hebrews tells people to obey their leaders for positive reasons.

“Remember your leaders who have spoken God’s word to you. As you carefully observe the outcome of their lives, imitate their faith.” (Hebrews 13:7, HCSB)

Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls as those who will give an account, so that they can do this with joy and not with grief, for that would be unprofitable for you.” (Hebrews 13:17, HCSB)

Many people like to taunt leaders and curse them. The Bible states that anyone who makes these claims against Godly leaders will bring more problems among themselves. A leader has to deal with people who taunt them.

The company of prophets doubted Elisha’s credentials. Elisha demonstrated his authority by healing, that is, purifying, the polluted waters of Jericho. Also he invoked a divine curse upon his detractors, who mocked Elisha by urging him to ascend into heaven like Elijah. Two ravenous bears killed the wicked young men.5

Elisha showed his power as a prophet by putting a curse on these insulters. As a leader, there are going to be people who will doubt your credentials, or detract and insult you. While Elisha used a curse to stop these people, we are called to let God take His vengeance on them. Remember, Christian leadership means to develop a Christian influence to the people around you. Some may not listen. Some may throw insults and try to detract you from Christ. We deal with these people through loving confrontation. If they listen to Godly wisdom, then Christ will change them. If they don’t you can let God sort it out.

Leadership is hard work because influencing other for Jesus Christ is our mission. We are pointing people to the one true God. Remember that God will give you the skills you need to influence others for God’s kingdom.

Prayer: God, please help us as Christians to develop into Godly leaders to be used for your kingdom.

1 Kenneth A. Mathews, “The Historical Books,” in Holman Concise Bible Commentary, ed. David S. Dockery (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1998), 146.

2 Russell Dilday and Lloyd J. Ogilvie, 1, 2 Kings, vol. 9, The Preacher’s Commentary Series (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Inc, 1987), 254.

3 Jim Erwin, “2 Kings 2:21-22 Trusting New People Who God Uses.” Lectionary Reflections Year B (2014-2015), Logos Bible Software Notes. 16 December 2014. Accessed 17 April 2015.

4 Jon Courson, Jon Courson’s Application Commentary: Volume One: Genesis–Job (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, 2005), 1032.

5 Kenneth A. Mathews, “The Historical Books,” in Holman Concise Bible Commentary, ed. David S. Dockery (Nashville, TN: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1998), 146.

Isaiah 41:17-20 God Does the Impossible to Provide

Isaiah 41:17-20 God Does the Impossible to Provide

 

The poor and the needy seek water, but there is none; their tongues are parched with thirst. I, Yahweh, will answer them; I, the God of Israel, will not forsake them. (Isaiah 41:17, HCSB)

The verse here describes the condition that many people find themselves in. We need something. Some need the basics like water. Others need help in other ways.

I will open rivers on the barren heights, and springs in the middle of the plains. I will turn the desert into a pool of water and dry land into springs of water. (Isaiah 41:18, HCSB)

This passage shares with us four different ways in which God would provide water in an impossible situation.

The literal order of these words explain how God operates. He provides in two different ways:

He takes two places where things don’t exist, and makes something possible.

He opens water where water does not exist.

(He) liberates on a plain, in the middle a stream.
Valley plain headwaters (He) lays desert (mid-bar)

He opens rivers where rivers don’t exist. He opens springs in the middle of the plains, where there are no natural springs. Water moves into place where there was no water before. We do this when we dam rivers to move them in the direction we want. God does them by the act of His will.

God turns dry places into watered places.

Pool-water from the earth,
Dry region exits and comes forth water

He turns deserts into pools of water – these aren’t mirages. God turns deserts into pools.
He turns dry lands into springs of water. Instead of a pool, he brings up springs.
In other words, He changes and manipulates conditions so that things happen His way.

These last two works of God operate the same way when God told Moses to strike the rock and water came out. He makes water comes out of solid rock.

I will plant cedars in the desert, acacias, myrtles, and olive trees. I will put juniper trees in the desert, elms and cypress trees together, (Isaiah 41:19, HCSB)

While a non-profit agency has been making trees bloom in the desert for years, they have claimed that the soil was prepared naturally in such a way for trees to bloom quickly. What took the ingenuity of native Israelis in the last hundred years, God does naturally.

so that all may see and know, consider and understand, that the hand of the Lord has done this, the Holy One of Israel has created it. (Isaiah 41:20, HCSB)

In this passage, the poor and needy seek water and don’t find it. They cry out to God and He helps them. He opens rivers, He turns desert into water, He plants fruitful trees in the desert. He does the impossible to provide for those who need Him.

Why does He do this? God is in the providing for the poor and needy business. He does this so that EVERYONE can see, know, consider, and understand that God provides for those who call upon Him.

Application: Do I want to see God do the impossible in my life? Do I want see Him miraculously provide for me and my family? Then I have to ask. I have to beg like a poor and needy person. My posture is just as important as my petition. God wants me to beg Him for help.

Prayer: Right now, I beg you to provide for me and my family. Yes, I may have taken Your provision for granted. But I confess that sin and I ask You to help me. Help us where we need Your help. Thank You that You do the impossible to provide for me and my family.

PRIORITY + PETITION + POSITION = IMPOSSIBLE PROVISION

Prophecy Watch: Global Trade Agreements

86-INT-trade-treaties-map

Prophecy Watch: Global Trade Agreements

There are two very important trade agreements being negotiated right now – in secret. The Obama administration is trying to “fast track” international global trade agreements between countries on the other side of the Atlantic and the Pacific. The agreements being made with both the countries in Asia (Trans-Pacific Partnership – TPP) and the European Union (Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership – TTIP). You can click the infographic above from an article elsewhere to see the kind of impact these two trade agreements would have on the world.

Do you remember NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement)? These agreements are similar. While NAFTA created free trade zones from Canada to Mexico, these agreements would have a similar effect with countries from the Pacific and the Atlantic who trade with the United States. Because of NAFTA, many people are saying this is a bad deal. Elizabeth Warren has stated her opposition from the left-wing of the Democratic party. Tea Party Republicans have a problem with both the “fast track” process and the trade agreements as well.

There are a variety of dangerous parts to these agreements which one sees will be reflected in the future (which is why I called this a Prophecy Watch.) First, more power will be taken away from democratically elected officials of individual nation-states and placed in regional hands. This jeopardizes the sovereignty of nation-states. It also puts the power of trade agreements in the hands of corporations. (This is what the argument over Investor-State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) is all about.) The fact these agreements have been made secret reinforces this danger.

Second, more countries will be tied together economically. As one watches what is now going on in Greece, the more integrated the economies, the more difficult it becomes to help overcome economic problems. One goes from nation-state leaders, to regional supra-national union leaders (like the G8 and the European Union). In the end, there can be only one (leader). (I wrote about the merging of countries and the consolidation of power elsewhere.)

Where does this lead us? It leads down the path of the Bible has predicted. Combined with other international issues (such as Iran, Iraq, ISIS, and the Israeli-Palestinian problem), one can read the news and see Bible prophecy come to fulfillment.