Time Line - Signs of the Times - Storm Warning
Falling Short of Glory
Moral Decay & Being Deceived
The problem in the world today is that people do not do what they know to be right. They seek after their own wills, contrary to the will of God, and in the words of the prophet Hosea, "They sow the wind and reap the whirlwind" (Hosea 8:7). Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans, "For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3: 23). The other half of this equation, Paul says, is that "the wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23). The cause is our willfulness; the price is separation from of God for all eternity. Graham, Storm Warning, page 134
Photo of storm by Mike Hollingshead, copyrighted image used here with permission granted by Mr. Hollingshead and by www.extremeinstability.com.
We've hinted, even stated, how human activity exhibits a collective (corporate) sin. Just because so many people do the same thing does not make sin a norm nor acceptable; not to God—nor even to fellow humans! And the 'signs of the times' reveal an erosive effect on the human condition. This is a product of the corporate sin we illustrate here in the 'signs' and elsewhere in considering how the timeline's direction (our future) is driven by human events and global change.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
A dying planet or the eternal death to a person's soul ... what is the price tag for sin? What is the nature to human thinking? Certainly beliefs drive behaviors, we see evidence for this everyday on the news. Many of humanity's behaviors are drivers for global change. Yet, how is it we have not benefited by the past's biggest lessons? Memories of wars are short lived. What do we retain generation to generation? So, what do humans believe and how does that influence the future?
One of the biggest problems confronting our world is the fact that, through years of manipulation and deceit, morality and traditional values are no longer in vogue. The deceiver has betrayed our culture and convinced leaders in government, the media, the universities, and even in the churches that black is white and wrong is right. A 1985 Gallup survey reported that 90 percent of all Americans claim some religious affiliation, and all but 2 percent of those claim to be in the Judeo-Christian tradition. But the reality of daily life in America and throughout the West shows that biblical morality has little place in the lives of most people. By and large, the secular culture will accept any set of values or beliefs and any sort of behavior, so long as it is not noticeably Christian. Graham, Storm Warning, page 136
The numbers above, admittedly, are dated. Recent growth in Islam, Mormonism, and the New Age movement, as several examples, pushes down the percent identifying themselves as Judeo-Christian. And still, no matter what affiliation, faith based systems that offer the concept of righteous or self-centered living, all have adherents that struggle in the flesh. Sin sticks to and pulls down on the flesh—that is, our earthly being. Sin honors no system, temptation abounds, as the biblical text notes sin comes with the human condition at birth. And even as the window is opened to reveal the Jewish root to Messianic belief, the conditions out in the world reveal humans still searching every conceivable avenue of belief.
In her informative and perceptive article entitled " Naming Good and Evil " in the journal, First Things, Professor Joyce A. Little writes:
Unwilling to be God's image in the world and unable, whatever claims some may make to the contrary, to become God in any serious sense of the word, modern man seeks high and low for something, almost anything, to inform him, to give him an identity; the cosmic consciousness of the New Age, the magic and witchcraft of goddess mythology, the archetypes of Jungian psychology, Joseph Campbell's hero of a thousand faces, Carl Sagan's voyage through the Cosmos, the cults of Elvis, Marilyn, and Madonna, Robin Leach's visits with the rich and famous, 1-900 psychic counselors and personal astrologers, even in alarming numbers the demonic powers promised by satanic cults. Virtually no stone is left unturned in this frenetic search for some hint or clue as to where to go from here. (First Things, May 1992, 29.) Graham, Storm Warning, page 137
The New Age
The age of technology has no end to avenues of other faith alternatives. From the vantage point of the God of Israel, humanity is depraved (morally corrupt) and deceived:
... The rise of the so-called New Age movement over the past twenty-five or thirty years is the best modern example. The New Age is, in fact, another storm warning indicating man's search for "transcendence" without regard for righteousness. Whether it's Dianetics, est, Unity, Gaea, Transcendental Meditation, Taoism, ufology, crystalology, goddess worship, reincarnation, harmonics, numerology, astrology, holistic healing, positive thinking, or any of a hundred "consciousness raising" techniques of our day, the modern age is on a search for some mystical "divine unity," a search which actually testifies to the failure of modern secular humanism to satisfy the spiritual hunger of the soul. Graham, Storm Warning, page 148
The WindowView Science Area stands as a testimonial that scientific evidence (from hard data, numbers, observations) considered freely and objectively gives us 'other doors' to discussion. Here is the fodder for discernment. If evolution is based on both fact and assumptions, then what part of evolution theory stands after the assumptions are gone? What is at the root of our origin?
Evidence for design in nature arises through the 'other doors' of discussion. If design, then what is the intelligence behind design in the universe?
BUILDING THE OBJECTIVE VIEW
No objective discussion is bound. But let's be clear, the 'other' considerations (especially for the evidence on design in the universe) have always existed! So here are other facets to science discussions decidedly ignored by a mindset that turns its back on a broader dialog. True science review explores the full range of evidence.
Building numerous perspectives (as is done in the Science Area by presentations in over 40 separate articles) leads one to consider how the materialist or naturalist (i.e., the authoritative science-centric) assumptions have cut short the broader dialog. Even Darwin struggled with the concept of natural evil and God's place in the natural world. Yet such a struggle is not taught along with the class room presentation on evolution. Further, if scientists have no authority to excuse God from existence—in spite of those who state He is not here—then we are back with a classic dilemma. If God, then what is expected of us?
Many people have decided that there is no room for God in their lives, no need of Him. The God of Jacob is too confining. The problem, however, is that denying the existence of God cannot make Him go way any more than denying the existence of the Internal Revenue Service makes the taxman go away. Many people who have imagined a god of their own choosing will be horrified when they have to stand before the true God of heaven. For God is, and His is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. No pious idealism, no New Age fantasy, and no amount of denial can ever change that fact. Graham, Storm Warning, page 149
Humanism, naturalism, materialism, none of these need God but often become a god-centered mentality of their own. If there is a God and not these gods, then someone is certainly being deceived? Consider the effect on you if this is true!
"Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. 1Co 3:18
Think of the word 'fool' more in terms of innocence and childlike. That is, one who is as yet truly unknowing but capable of growing to understand. Seeming to be 'wise,' however, is akin to thinking propped up by ego, having worldly reputation in this day (age), and misguided perceptions based on assumptions that mislead us. To start our learning in innocence is to discern truth along the way and thus gain an enduring wisdom.
A part of the sin nature in all humanity is the tendency to elevate our thinking above that of God. But arrogance and ego fall short and as in the verse above, our sense of wisdom can be built upon a deception. Real wisdom may rest in knowing what we don't know, more so than assuming we know all the answers.
In this age of humanism, man wants to believe he can become his own god. The remark attributed to Protagoras, that "Man is the measure of all things," is the central tenant of the humanist ideology. But it is the ultimate deception of Satan: to rob men of their relationship with the God of the universe through a lie as old as Eden, that "You will be like God" (Genesis 3:5).
Because it springs from false theology, and especially it is inspired by the deceiver himself, the New Age movement will not bow before God. Rather, it tries to manufacture its own infinitely forgiving and fallible god designed on the pantheistic concept of the oneness of man with the universe. When a Hollywood actress claims to be God, she is simply denying that she has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. New Agers are terrified by their own mortality, and they want to believe that somehow the soul will survive. Of course it will, but not as they imagine. Graham, Storm Warning, page 150
Sin in the material world—as in what produces global changes leading to the 'loss' of a sustainable planet—leads to death in a material and temporal sense. Sin in the mind and losing a spiritual framework leads to death in the eternal sense. The task to discern the difference and to respond is a personal choice—you have that choice.
Where are you in the larger scheme of things? Are you seeking answers? Can you identify where you have fallen short of glory? And where do you end up in time future? What is the destiny of mankind? What is your destiny? If you hold the potential to determine the outcome, what should one do?
The importance to global change is in looking at how social, biological, and physical sciences all reveal data and signs for more ominous changes in the near future. This is change in every aspect of human and earthly affairs ... globally. The Window looks further to see change as a backdrop to a biblical timeline. Driving forces for change force us to ask the most important questions about our true origin, who we are, why we are here, and what the Scriptures tell us about the future. Change forces us to look deeper to face choice or crisis. Life is an opportunity to look for the answers.
Billy Graham is well known the world over for his work in spreading the biblical message of salvation.(www.billygraham.org)
Please Note! We are presenting a number of quotations in the "Signs of the Times" series that are taken from their original context. So Be Aware ... the impact of these statements is only heightened and intensified by a reading of the original text cited below. WindowView serves to reflect many original sources and in this case we highly recommend a reading of the entire book used as a source here! The 'Signs' are woefully important to revealing humanity's future, reading these quotations in their original context makes this point all the more clear!
Quotations attributed to Graham are from: Billy Graham. 1992. Storm Warning. Published by: W Publishing Group (formerly Word Publishing)
Time spent looking ... through a window on life and choice ... brings the opportunity to see in a new light. The offer for you to Step Up To Life is presented on many of the web pages at WindowView. Without further explanation we offer you the steps here ... knowing that depending on what you have seen or may yet explore in the window ... these steps will be the most important of your life ...