Saturday, 12 April 2008

Babylon is Falling

I don't feel as comfortable as some confident 'prophets' in predicting what is to come, but for quite some time I have been imagining the decline of our own western society and the ascendency of the East, notably China. I don't say this with any sense of panic, or even any great distress. I just believe this is the way things are headed. The universe is unfolding as it must, I suppose.

An article from the Daily Mail:
Just as the 19th century was the British century, and the 20th century was the American century, the 21st century is the Asian century. But the handover of global power from the UK to the U.S. was trivial compared to what is happening now.

The U.S. was Britain's offspring, based on the same values and the same language. It, too, was an Anglo-Saxon country, and passing the baton across the Atlantic ensured the continuation of the Anglo-Saxon world order, based on democracy, free trade and a belief in human rights, upheld through international institutions that both powers supported.

But the world order we have grown used to - and comfortable with - over the last century is coming to an end.

Read it all here...

One thing the article doesn't mention, but which is, I think, the 800 pound gorilla in the room, is the presence in both Great Britain and North America, during their times of affluence, of the Christian faith, and more specifically, the Protestant Christian faith. Now, I am not a word-faith apologist, or a "name-it-and-claim-it" believer. But I do believe that it was people of faith who built these societies, and the prosperity associated with them would seem somehow tied to the Christian worldview. After all, many of the early scientists were Christian believers who believed that God created the universe and whose intellectual curiosity led them to attempt to discover how God had done it and how it all worked. Much of our present social order came out of Christianity, from hospitals, to charities, to the abolition of slavery.

Not the least factor in the former strength of our society and the current decline in it, is the changing model of the nuclear family. I envision a set of stairs leading down to a pit of quicksand, and we, as a society, have opened the door and started descending the steps. Each step follows the previous one as a natural consequence. One step is the abandonment of our faith. Another is the resulting decline in morality. There is licentiousness, self-centeredness, drug abuse. There is the breakdown in the family, leading to an increase in single parent and child poverty. There is more substance abuse. There is crime and violence.

I believe that as the morals of a society decay, the society itself will necessarily do the same. The results are not necessarily immediate. We are still living on "borrowed capital," but I believe that unless there is some kind of incredible turning back, the consequences are inevitable.

Yet I don't see all this as all bad. The universe is still in the hands of a sovereign God and is not unfolding outside His will. The Christian church is growing by leaps and bounds in China, and I have said it before, but must say it again, that China will not only be a great nation, it will be a Christian nation. And the pattern of God's blessing on those who honour Him will not be broken.

Take Care
h/t T19


The Nicky said...

I must say, I had never before considered the possibility of China as a Christian nation. What an image: nearly 1 billion people, all praising God! It reels the mind...

John K said...

The church there is still very much underground, but is growing, I have heard, by as many as 35,000 new believers a day.

By TSPM estimates, China currently has 16 million Protestants and 3 million Catholics. But Ye Xiaowen, Director of China’s State Administration for Religious Affairs (SARA), claimed behind closed doors in 2006 that the combined total is closer to 130 million.

Because members of unregistered churches must meet secretly in abandoned buildings, woods, even caves “and because their numbers grow exponentially (some estimate 35,000 daily)” their need for prayer, Bibles and training is desperate and virtually insatiable.

Read more Here...
I can imagine it being like a vast pool, bubbling just beneath the ground. Eventually it will not be contained and will erupt like volcanos. I am not predicting right away. Maybe a generation or two, maybe sooner.

But I believe eventually it is inevitable. Praise God for that day.