(Photo: Harvest Christian Fellowship via The Christian Post)
Bible prophecy related to the end times mentions many nations, including Libya, Iran, Iraq Ethiopia, and possibly even China and Russia, but not the United States of America. In an article on his blog, Pastor Greg Laurie gives three plausible reasons for the nation's exclusion.
"Where is the United States? Why are we not in the last-days scenario?" asks Laurie, pastor of Harvest Church in Riverside, Calif.
One reason why the United States is not mentioned in Scripture is perhaps because the nation "might be devastated by a nuclear war," the pastor writes. "It is a horrible scenario and one that none of us would want to see, but we cannot rule it out as a possibility."
The threat remains despite the dissolution of the former Soviet Union, Laurie argues. "It could indeed be a rogue terrorist nation with nuclear capabilities, or even a terrorist group that could set off the dominoes falling onto each other. I hope this isn't the case, but we cannot rule it out."
Laurie is for a strong military for that reason. "We need to take seriously any foreign threats. But having said that, what about an internal collapse?"
A second possible reason could be that the U.S. might decline as a world power, Laurie says, quoting Proverbs 14:34, which reads, "Godliness makes a nation great, but sin is a disgrace to any people."
"As our country becomes more and more secular, systematically eliminating God and the Bible from our education system, courts, and the arts, we will begin to reap the inevitable results of sin. We will begin to rot from the inside," the pastor warns. "I think to some degree, we already have [seen that happen] as we have seen the breakdown of the family, rampant crime and so many other problems that have come from disobeying God."
Laurie points out that what once was freedom of religion seems to have now become freedom from religion. "We have succeeded in getting God out of our schools, out of our sporting events, out of our public places and out of our workplaces."
The nation needs to remember that the freedom we enjoy is built on the foundation of absolute truth, he says. "And when you remove that foundation, this freedom actually can turn into anarchy."
A third possibility could be that the U.S. will witness a revival, "which I find a lot more hopeful," Laurie goes on to say. "That is not to say a revival would eliminate us as a world power. But if our nation had a revival, it would affect us. Think about this. Let's say, for example, that one-fourth of all Americans are believers. This would mean that we have approximately 78 million true believers in our country today… When the Rapture of the church takes place, don't you think there would be an impact on the United States…?"
Laurie said we need to, therefore, pray for revival in our country today. "When I say that our nation needs God, I don't mean that we need whatever god everyone happens to believe in," he clarifies. "The only hope for America is when we turn back to the true and living God – the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God who gave us the Bible as the revelation of who he is, the God who loved us so much that he sent his own son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross in our place."