FORGET NONE OF HIS BENEFITS
volume 19, number 15, April 2, 2020
“They will fling their silver into the streets and their gold will become an abhorrent thing; their silver and their gold will not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord.” -Ezekiel 7:19
The prophet Ezekiel, preaching around 630 B.C. to the rebellious, recalcitrant, and idolatrous nation of Judah, was using vivid imagery and metaphors in his preaching, seeking to garner a spirit of sincere repentance from those whom Zechariah and David called “the apple of His eye” (Zech.2:8, Ps.17:8). In chapter 7 of his prophecy Ezekiel foretells impending judgment on the wicked nation of Judah. He says, “An end! The end is coming to the four corners of the land. Now the end is upon you, and I will send My anger against you. I will judge you according to your ways and bring all your abominations upon you. For My eye will have no pity on you, nor will I spare you, and your abominations will be among you; then you will know that I am the Lord,” (Ezek.7:1-4). The Hebrew word translated abomination is used many times in the Old Testament and it is translated in different ways. The NASB translation uses the word offensive (Lev.7:18) when referring to the wrong use of a sacrifice. It uses detestable (Lev.11:10) when referring to eating animals declared to be unclean. It uses abomination when referring to homosexuality (Lev.18:22). Furthermore, in Proverbs 6:16-19 it uses abomination in referring to the seven things God hates—haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands which shed innocent blood (abortion immediately comes to mind), a heart that devises evil (premeditated crimes), feet that run rapidly to evil (an unrelenting joy in carrying out wicked, perverse, and violent deeds), a false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers in the church (those who break up churches with divisive comments and acts). God hates all these things. They are abominations to Him.
Then in verse nineteen of Ezekiel 7 we are told that the silver and gold in which the people trusted would not help them in the day of the wrath of the Lord. When judgment was realized they would then fling their silver into the streets. When famine would strike, when a man was about to enter exile and be separated from his wife and children, when one was on his death bed, then money would become irrelevant. In fact gold becomes repugnant, disgusting, abhorrent, and revolting to such a man. In such a day of judgment and calamity neither their silver or their gold will deliver them. They are completely exposed to the impending judgment. There is nothing they can do to buy themselves out of their impending judgment and exile.
Last week a record 3.3 million Americans filed for unemployment benefits. The Dow Jones Industrial Average recently fell from 29,568.57 to 18,213.65. The recent $2.2 trillion bail out package apparently is not enough. Congress is already discussing the need for more money to go to our people. This is dire. Let’s look at our current economic situation in the U.S. Let’s make this as simple as we can.
Projected U.S. Tax Revenue for 2020 $3,710,000,000,000. That’s $3.71 trillion
Projected U.S. Federal Budget for 2020 $4,790,000,000,000. That’s $4.71 trillion
Projected Deficit and New Debt for 2020 $1,000,000,000,000. That’s $1 trillion
Add the $2,200,000,000 stimulus debt $3,200,000,000,000. That’s $3.2 trillion for 2020
As of February, 2020 Total National Debt $23,300,000,000,000. That’s $23.3 trillion
Now with $3.2 trillion 2020 debt we are at $26,500,000,000,000. That’s $26.5 trillion. If we remove eight zeros and pretend this is a household budget, here’s what we have:
Annual Family Income $37,100
Annual Family Expenditures. $47,100
New Debt on Credit Cards. $10,000 for the year prior to a major emergency
Another $22,000 for the year due to the emergency
That’s an additional $32,000 in debt for this year alone
Prior to this year the family credit card debt was $233,000
Now the outstanding Balance on Credit Cards is $265,000.
No family could possibly sustain that kind of debt on a salary of $37,100.
My friends, as a nation we were already in a disastrous financial situation. President Bill Clinton wiped out the deficit during his administration and every president after him has run a budget deficit and added to the national debt.
Nobody is talking about this but this is a pending financial disaster.
It’s like this. A family makes $37,100 per year but wants to live large and accumulates about $10,000 per year in credit card debt. They know this is not good but they cannot help themselves. So after a few years they have run up credit card debt of over $200,000 but then a catastrophe strikes and now they have to take on another $22,000 in debt, bringing what they owe to $265,000 while their annual income is $37,100.
This is unsustainable. Our nation is facing a financial catastrophe of monumental proportions. Remember also, businesses are not presently generating much income and so tax revenue to Uncle Sam will probably not meet pre COVID-19 projections. Furthermore, the Internal Revenue Service is giving us another three months to file our income taxes so there will also be a cash flow problem with the government. So, what is our government’s solution? They will print more money which further erodes the value of the dollar. In this scenario hyper-inflation is unavoidable. The government will probably loan money to major corporations and require them to pay it back at interest. This happened in the 2008 government bailout of financial institutions. So, perhaps we can recoup some of this deficit. Remember however, that the federal deficit continued to grow even after financial institutions were paying back their debt to the government.
Due to the sin in the world, God is constantly revealing His wrath (Rom.1:18). COVID-19 is one more example of God’s displeasure with a wicked and perverse people. This is a judgment of God on our nation and we have brought it upon ourselves. How? All the abominations mentioned in Scripture have been rampant for many years—murder, homosexuality, abortion, corruption in business and government, racial bigotry, pride, arrogance, lying, and stealing from our children by living far beyond our means.
The day of reckoning is upon us. Unless you have real silver and real gold then your paper money in your checking account or 401K is not going to be worth much. Hyper- inflation will likely take care of that.
My friends, now is the time to pray earnestly for revival and awakening. While the deaths in the U.S. due to COVID-19 could reach 100,000 to 200,000 in only a few months, and this is nearly unprecedented (we lost 407,000 in four years in World War II), these are only the tip of the iceberg, as painful as this reality is. The government cannot spend its way out of this problem. Keynesian economics has never worked and it will not work this time either. I get it. Congress and the President seemingly had no choice but to give us the $2.2 trillion stimulus. However this, added to the already out of control deficit, will eventually destroy us economically. I hope I am wrong but I don’t see any other alternative.
Let us pray then, asking God to use the devastation we are facing to drive millions of people to the only refuge in times of trouble, our Lord Jesus Christ. There is always hope in Jesus for those who know Him, love Him, and obey Him. There is no hope at all for those who reject Him. If you are not right with God, then you need to get right with Him right now. Repent and believe the gospel.
1 Actually that is not altogether true. The Federal government uses some creative accounting to come to that conclusion. Clinton and Congress chose not to include the $10 trillion in unfunded promises to Social Security. That figure now is well over $83 trillion in unfunded promises to Social Security. “Bill Clinton’s Surplus Miracle, 20 Years Later,” <www.thefiscaltimes.com> June 22, 2018.