End Times Issues 1: America in Bible Prophecy—Or Not? :: By David Gravollom
I was saved in the 1970s and have spent decades in ministry after being taught by some of the best. I pastored churches, evangelized, taught, and wrote. I have seen a lot of fads, deceptions, victories, and defeats come and go in that time. I feel it is time for me to speak out about something that I fear has led to some unfortunate consequences. This is the belief that because America does not appear in any readily identifiable way in Bible Prophecy, this means America must decline and even vanish before the Tribulation.
The Bible has rules for why a nation is mentioned in prophecy. As far as nations mentioned in End Times and Tribulation prophecy, nations appear in direct connection with Israel. Pretty much only if America invaded Israel or in some other form warred against Israel at the end times would the clear identification appear. And not appearing only means America doesn’t do that. It could be the strongest nation in the world but isolationist, for instance. Certainly, the Lord is not required to mention a nation just because it is “great” since, from God’s perspective, all are dust.
The belief that “America is not in Bible prophecy so must decline” is a legitimate opinion, carefully considered by knowledgeable people, and logical. But it is Biblically unprovable. So it is disturbing to hear many Bible teachers say definitively and with no room for an alternative that “America has to decline according to Bible Prophecy” when they cannot point to a verse saying that. This may be the only major belief that is, weirdly, based specifically on what the Bible DOESN’T say! And every belief begins a process of “if that is true, then A” “And if A is true, then B” and so on. And we must watch the effects of what we believe and preach. It is a sacred trust.
Thus, many people believe that America’s decline is specifically prophesied IN the Bible and so believe that the trouble in America is strong evidence the Rapture is close. But there is not one Scripture that says that the world is in chaos at the Rapture (or that it isn’t). There is not one Scripture that even hints that the Rapture cannot come when America is at a prosperous height and everything is good (or everything is bad). The whole issue is incidental to Bible Prophecy.
Read Matthew 24 and understand that Jesus said that there would be birth pains. Although the trend is always toward “birth,” the travail comes AND GOES. It has since Christ ascended. But then came what might be called the water breaking in this pregnancy—Israel becoming a nation on May 14, 1948. Israel is represented by the fig tree in Scripture, and Jesus said that the generation that saw the fig tree budding simultaneous with all the other signs would not pass.
There is a small dispute over whether the fig tree was dead for 1,900 years and budded in 1948, or was planted in 1948 and budded in 1967 when Israel took Jerusalem. But it’s undeniable that between those two milestone years, every major sign began to come to pass. Europe began to come together, television began its march to where the whole world could view an event like the slaying and resurrection of the Two Witnesses, etc. And we are told that generation will not pass until all these things take place; that is the ONLY time sign we have.
“All these things” could have come early or later. But there IS a definite expiration date—that generation will not live forever. And they are getting rather long in the tooth. I lived through a large percentage of that period and watched over and over a rather unfortunate thing—that during a birth pain, multitudes of articles and programs whipped up the idea that the Rapture was just around the corner. Then the birth pain faded, and things got better. Eventually, many people became whiplashed and dismissed the issue, and many ministers became reluctant to preach prophecy at all.
New people were born, and new people became Christians, and eventually, they learn about prophecy; and the process repeats. When you add the idea that America’s decline is actually IN Bible Prophecy, you add a new layer. America has been weakened and even largely apostatized many times and came back. It may or may not come back again. But we have Prophecy teachers claiming unequivocally that “things will not go back to pre-covid normal (one actually said that if you think things will go back to normal, you are ignorant of Bible Prophecy). So, if things DO go back to normal, America rebounds in many ways, many freedoms are returned, what have they done?
Many prophecy teachers and other ministers are saying, absolutely with no wiggle room, that there will be no revival, that it is too late. The young are lost because of the educational system. Will people exposed to that stop evangelizing? And if revival DOES come, will everyone then figure the Rapture must be far away since they were told it was too close to the Tribulation for revival to happen, and then it DID happen? What if America does come back? The birth pain fades? What will people who believe those teachers think? What happens to those teachers’ credibility?
I love these teachers; I don’t want to see that. I’m concerned. Even if evangelism continues, will it be halfhearted now because it’s “probably all over”? I wonder if part of this is that these teachers have lost a certain touch, especially during covid, with ordinary people, and don’t really know how they feel and think. I wonder if what the MEDIA says about what people think is where they get the picture they have because they haven’t engaged, especially with the young out there.
But I and others have found that people are ready for the Gospel like maybe never before. In my own evangelism, I’ve seen hearts softer toward the Gospel than ever. Included are the young and the educated Left. The combination of fear and now disillusionment with the current administration for whom they had such high hopes is presenting a huge opportunity. People like Charlie Kirk and others have had amazing successes, and a conservative revival among the young is taking place. And that alone makes them more open to the Gospel.
Every soul won is worth ten thousand worlds and whatever effort we can make. The work and the fight are over at the Rapture, but not before. Let us labor for the Master from the dawn until the setting sun.
Certainly, there are no permanent political solutions. All recoveries and spiritual revivals by all countries are temporary, no matter how many times they happen. There will come the last recovery and revival, and then the Tribulation comes. The Rapture will come, today or years from now, but until then, you have work, Godly work.
Will we have America, or will we be Venezuela? Will we have freedom to preach the Gospel or not until then?
If you stop praying for things because you’re convinced that America isn’t in Bible Prophecy, God has no reason to answer prayers you don’t pray. Giving up the fight in any way is the one and only thing with a guaranteed outcome. Will you have to account to God because you had a belief like this, and thus the country went to Venezuela-like conditions, and old people were homeless and starved in the streets?
The ironic thing is that the Lord is moving, and Biblical and conservative values have had more victories in the last 180 days than I have seen in my entire 56 years. Court cases galore are filed against the federal government by the states, election audits and integrity bills are multiplying like Kudzu, parents are invading – with extreme vehemence – school board meetings against transgender and CRT agendas. Court rulings in favor of Christians and religious freedom galore. Bills proposed to make vaccine passports, sanctuary for illegal migrants, and CRT illegal in the state are proliferating. A Constitutional Convention is gaining steam. Hidden things exposed like never before.
Everything they try to hide is bursting out. Yet I have heard so little about this from many Prophecy teachers. They don’t seem to know it is happening. They seem to just be looking for America to disappear. Some are almost gleeful about judgment because of America’s sins. But ALL nations will be judged and turned to ashes in the Tribulation. Are they abandoning the fight right at the moment victory, however temporary, looms because of a belief that not seeing America in Bible Prophecy means something terrible has to take us out before the Tribulation?
Paul says that faith, hope, and love abide, and the greatest of these is love. But hope and faith are still to abide, not be given up on. I will admit that I was terrified to write this article. I pray my inadequate words are ministered by the Holy Spirit and my love is clear.
More parts elaborating this and others things to come.