Global Situation Update :: by Howard Green

God knows everything. Past, present, and future. When we step back and view current events through the lens of Scripture, the things taking place in recent weeks and months seem less random and more like they belong to the end-time scenario. I will cover several topics and focus on two that are certainly prophetic in scope.

Many global issues are becoming a reality here in North America.

ISIS (The Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) has unfortunately made huge gains in the Middle East and North Africa. They are making inroads into Egypt’s Sinai and they are the de facto authority in Libya. ISIS is capable of launching terrorist attacks thousands of miles from where it’s based in northern Iraq and Syria.

The Charlie Hebdo attack and the recent attack by its operatives in Garland Texas are a poignant reminder of just how real the threat of Islamic extremism is. This threat has officials here in the U.S. scrambling to get the word out to be vigilant and prepared for attacks by ISIS and other jihadists. Just this week Adm. Gortney who leads U.S. Northern Command, raised the threat level on all domestic military installations, citing concerns about ISIS:

“Military bases and installations in the United States have been ordered to raise their force protection condition status to Bravo (FPCON Bravo), due to general concerns about ISIS related threats, but not because of any specific threat or plot.” —Adm. Gortney

FBI Director James Comey gave a stark assessment of the domestic terror threat and about the potential number of ISIS sympathizers and operatives here on our soil:

“There are hundreds, maybe thousands of people across the country who are receiving recruitment overtures from the terrorist group or directives to attack the U.S.”

“The Islamic State, also known as ISIL, is leveraging social media in unprecedented ways through Twitter and other platforms, directing messages to the smartphones of ‘disturbed people’ who could be pushed to launch assaults on U.S. targets.”

“’like the devil sitting on their shoulders, saying ‘kill, kill, kill.’” —FBI Director Comey

There has been much debate about certain media entities ‘provoking’ attacks by extremists, and that’s not the direction I want to go here. In reality, there are literally thousands of unprovoked attacks committed by Islamic extremists all over the world. Boko Haram is only one; kidnapping, raping, and killing innocent women and girls. They are used as sex slaves…then discarded and killed by these barbarians.

Last week, as the Nigerian army closed in to rescue some groups of girls held by Boko Haram. Many of the girls were stoned to death before the terrorists retreated. That is an act of pure evil propelled demon worship (worshipping a false god.) In ISIS controlled parts of Iraq and Syria, Christians are tortured, beheaded, and crucified because they won’t convert to Islam and for their unwavering faith in Jesus.

The only “provocation” evil Islamists need to justify acts of terror on innocent women, children, and Christians is for people not to bow the knee and convert to Islam.

Over the last month or so, we have seen countless numbers of Christians being marched to their death along the coast of Libya at the hands of ISIS. Then there has been the boat loads of migrants fleeing the violence in Libya by crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Skirmishes have broken out on the vessels and Islamists have thrown many Christians overboard to drown.

One group of believers was saved only by locking arms to form a human chain while they prayed. These are actions fueled by demonic hatred for God’s people and freedom. Colleges and shopping malls in Kenya, schools in Russia, churches in many parts of the world, and other public places once considered “safe”… have been targeted by Islamists.

I believe it is just a short matter of time before we begin to see these acts of violence multiply here in North America. In light of the warnings by the FBI and other federal agencies, people need to wake-up and be prepared for the weeks, months, and years ahead. The most unbelievable thing about this Islamic extremism is the fact that they truly believe they are serving and following (god) by killing Christians.

John 16:2-4a: “Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. And they will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor me. But I have said these things to you, that when their hour comes you may remember that I told them to you.”

Matthew 24:37 “For as were the days of Noah, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.”

We live in perilous times and while being prudent, careful, and prepared are all good things, there is only one way to be completely secure. True security comes only through Jesus Christ. He didn’t promise us a pass on earthly trials and hardships, but He promised to never leave us or forsake us. Even in the middle of worldwide or domestic upheaval, He is our peace.

Matthew 28:20 “And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Now we will turn our attention to China and North Korea

The Chinese military continues to modernize and is in the midst of a rapid military build-up. Reports have recently come out that China continues to prepare for space warfare. The PLA (People’s Liberation Army) has been testing and launching ASAT (anti satellite missiles) weapons into space.

They are believed to have the capability to knock out enemy “command and control” satellites. It’s easy to conjecture that these weapons are being prepared for a possible future confrontation with the West, should hostilities break out. Here is what Stratcom Commander Adm. Cecil Haney had to say about the real threat posed by the PLA space warfare program:

Additionally, we see things that have also been put in orbit; that also is of concern, as well as things on land that are also being used to threaten our assets such as lasers, such as jamming capability and what have you — that threatens communications, GPS, Strategic modernization extends to naval capabilities as China continues testing and integration of new ballistic missile submarines, their first sea-based strategic nuclear deterrent. China is also developing multi-dimensional space capabilities supporting their access-denial campaign. —Adm. Haney

North Korea continues its path toward confrontation with the West. In years past, the military threat from North Korea was primarily limited to neighboring countries such as our allies, Japan and South Korea. Now, North Korea is believed to have produced capable ICBMs. USNI News and a Janes Intelligence Review from April 8th reported that NORAD’s chief said his command views North Korean ICBMs Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles) as “operational today.”

This news, along with a report from just this week stating in less than five years, North Korea will have a submarine capable of nuclear warfare, is reason enough to see that the global situation is tumultuous.

The final flashpoint I want to mention in this global situation update is Russia.

I could dedicate entire articles to Russian military aggression …let alone the incursion into sovereign Ukraine territory. I will address Russia exclusively in a future article, but now let’s look at recent incursions into NATO airspace by Russian nuclear bombers. Over the past year there have numerous flights by Russian bombers near NATO countries.

This has been viewed as a response to U.S. and other western nations supporting Ukrainian efforts and the recent movements of U.S. military assets to various parts of Eastern Europe.

Russian nuclear bombers have made incursions over the English Channel and Sweden. Then there are the numerous flights in and around the U.S. air defense identification zones. These flights to be certain …have been a part of the geopolitical chess match both the US. and Russia have played since the days of the cold war. There is one major difference now: Frequency and aggressiveness.

The number of flights by Russian strategic nuclear bombers near the U.S. has greatly increased over the past year. Then there is the fact that these bombers have flown their transponders off and this has lead to several close calls with civilian aircraft over Northern Europe. Earlier last year, several Russian bombers practiced cruise missile attacks on the U.S. as they neared the Northeast Canadian coast.

Just two weeks ago, two Russian nuclear bombers crossed into Alaskan airspace while on a simulated mission. Here is the thing: The U.S. certainly conducts reconnaissance missions near Russian territory, but can you imagine how President Vladimir Putin would respond if we crossed into their sovereign airspace?

The Bible tells us that a day is coming when a coalition of nations will come down to invade Israel from the north and Russia will be in the lead. As we see mounting Russian military aggression in Ukraine, Eastern Europe, in the skies over other NATO territory, and it’s proxy control in parts of the Middle East via Syria and Iran, it’s easy to see how one day the Russian military machine will attempt to make its ultimate land grab in Israel.

This will prove to be very ill-fated and disastrous for Russia and its allies as the God of Israel responds in righteous judgment.

Friends, as we look together at all of the violence, wars and rumors of war, and geopolitical turmoil, it can be disturbing and lead to a sense of hopelessness. Please remember that nothing happens outside of God’s sovereignty. He knows the end from the beginning and is aware of every horrible thing that is taking place on the earth.

One day, every evil act that was committed will be brought into the light of His holy righteous judgment. The frequency and severity of these birth pains will increase as the Day of the Lord approaches.

What can Christians do? We can spend time in the Bible and in prayer because there is where we will find true security. We can pray for the needs around us, in the nation and in the world. We can give to ministries who meet the needs of the “least of these” and we can tell others about the gospel, because as this world continues to grow darker, people are looking for real hope. Politicians can’t give it. Entertainment can’t offer it. Money cannot purchase it. Hope is only found in one place: At the feet of Jesus.

Matthew 11:28 “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

If you are reading this article and don’t know Jesus as your Lord, please visit the Are You Saved page for more information about what it means to follow Jesus. You may also contact me and I would be happy to talk with you about Jesus.