Just over a month ago, the United States signed into law the American Recovery and Re-investment Act. By its own accord, it claims to be “…an unprecedented effort to jumpstart our economy, create or save millions of jobs, and put a down payment on addressing long-neglected challenges so our country can thrive in the 21st century.”
Even though we would like to see financial circumstances around this world improve, we know, as we have taught for decades, that our bad circumstances now are just the tip of the iceberg. Merely jumpstarting an economy will not be effective in the long term. The Bible makes it very clear that the coming circumstances will be much worse than what we experience now. When comparing the prophecies in the Bible with the news reported today around the globe, it seems certain that this will happen sooner than later.
Knowing the clear plan of God stirs up a feeling of fear and anxiety for the impending doom of this world’s future that simply cannot be ignored. The judgment to be meted out and the penalties for disobedience, mentioned in the latter part of Deuteronomy 28, which are especially applicable to these modern United States of America, set an especially trembling tone in these times, culminating in ruin. Deuteronomy 28:63 summarizes quite succinctly: “And it shall be, that just as the LORD rejoiced over you to do you good and multiply you, so the LORD will rejoice over you to destroy you and bring you to nothing; and you shall be plucked from off the land which you go to possess.”
However, even greater than fear, we need to find comfort, and even excitement, in the anticipation of the events to come. We do not look forward to seeing a disobedient world at its knees in a morbid way, but rather, we hope for the arrival of righteousness. God’s plan establishes itself more and more clearly every day, and this is cause for rejoicing — especially as the coming of God’s Kingdom draws closer (compare Luke 21:27-28, 31).
The American Recovery and Re-investment Act stakes a claim at being “unprecedented,” but it is absolutely a joke in comparison to God’s plan for true recovery.
We look forward to a future when a secure and successful society is not measured by gross domestic product, but by the obedience to God. The restoration of God’s way of life will be the goal for the true recovery of this world (compare Acts 3:19-21). We look forward to the day when all people on earth desire a clean heart, and shout out, as reported in Psalm 51:12, “Restore to me the joy of Your salvation, And uphold me by Your generous Spirit.”