Let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith. The COVID pandemic and others yet to come have stricken the world with fear.
The powers that be want tight control of everyone's life as the great reset takes place. Today, a final discussion of why, in the face of darkness on every hand, there is still no reason to hide. From the Moody Church in Chicago, this is Running to Win with Dr. Erwin Lutzer, whose clear teaching helps us make it across the finish line. With Larry McCarthy, here is Pastor Lutzer to discuss further his new book, No Reason to Hide. Stand for Christ in a Collapsing Culture. Well, this is Pastor Lutzer and welcome to another special edition of Running to Win. We're discussing my new book, No Reason to Hide, Standing for Christ in a Collapsing Culture. In the studio with me is Larry McCarthy, one of our pastors here at the Moody Church, and if you've been with us, you know that we are discussing many of the issues, the pressure points, that Christians are facing in today's society. Now, Larry, today we have a long agenda, don't we?
No kidding. We're looking at chapters 10 and 11, and Pastor, I've been able to distill it down to six topics, so to speak. The pandemic, globalization, immigration, the death of money, surveillance, and this whole issue of Christian suffering. So let's just jump in and you talk about resetting during this pandemic. What does that mean?
Well, you know, a number of months ago I read Klaus Schwab's book, COVID-19, The Great Reset, and in that book, which I quote quite extensively in this chapter, he points out that we have to reset the whole economy of the world. But you know, Larry, before we even get there, there's a passage in the book of Revelation chapter 13. It says that Antichrist, the beast, was given a loud mouth, uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for 42 months. It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, against his name, against his dwelling. But now we get to this chilling statement, and also it was allowed to make war on the saints. There are going to be saints in the tribulation period to conquer them, and authority was given it over every tribe and people and language and nation, and all who dwell on the earth will worship it.
Everyone whose name has not been written before the foundation of the world in the book of life, of the Lamb who was slain, he who has an ear to hear, let him hear. Now, when we talk about globalization, which we're going to be speaking about briefly here, we have to recognize that that actually I think is a future to which the world is moving. Now, I want to be very careful because many people have made predictions that have turned out to be wrong. So my goal is not to answer all the questions about prophecy, but I do need to emphasize this, that oftentimes in the scriptures what we find is that prophetic events are foreshadowed. And you know, Larry, when I look around today, I see so many ways in which all of this can be brought about.
Now, every generation has said that. So maybe God's agenda and how he plans to do it is quite different from what I've laid out here. But isn't it interesting that it's so easy for us to see today how this can be brought about? Because in the last part of the chapter, it says that nobody can buy or sell without the mark of the beast.
And of course, throughout history there's been a lot of discussion as to what that mark of the beast is. But back to Klaus Schwab, his book COVID-19 The Great Reset, what he is arguing for is that when we have another pandemic and there's no doubt we are going to have one, the nations of the earth, what they need to do is basically surrender their sovereignty to a larger body such as the world economic forum, which he began, but also the World Health Organization. And they need to be the ones, these globalists, who lay out policies as to how this pandemic can be brought under control. But more than that, he says very clearly that the wealthy nations need to be able to chip in more than other nations. And he says every nation on earth needs to participate in this.
And the wealthy need to help those that are less wealthy as we think about the future. Now, you talk about globalization. That's what it sounds like to me, Larry. You know, when you talk about this whole pandemic reset and now under this umbrella, so to speak, of globalization and the participation that everybody has to be unified in their approach on how we deal with it, one of the things that we've seen as a result of this pandemic is that people aren't coming to church. So it was certainly mandated initially, but now, pastor, I think the church is struggling with people have become comfortable with church being I turn on my computer, I watch five minutes of the sermon, I pause it, have another cup of coffee and a croissant, and I went to church.
How do we reset from that? Larry, it's all based on a misunderstanding of what the church is. You can see a sermon on the computer as I have, and when our church even was closed, we watched at home. Yes. But that's not really the church.
Yes. In a church, you need fellowship. You need interaction. You need the activity and the use of gifts. And it's not the same as staying home in your pajamas and drinking a cup of coffee and saying, isn't this wonderful? We've been to church.
There is a fellowship of the body that takes place in the church. Yes. Thank you for making that point. Very important. But also, getting back to this issue of immigration, for example, because now we're talking about globalization.
I want to get something off of my heart. One of the issues of globalization is to have a borderless world, and this is said expressly that what we need is a borderless world. And I think that what we have happening today in America when our policy seems to be catch, release, and reward, we are not doing ourselves a favor and we are not doing the nations of the earth a favor. Now, the point to be made, and I don't want to argue this in any way, but what we find is that across the border, in addition to needy people, you've got a lot of criminal elements coming. You have drugs coming.
And what we need to do is to remember this. Our borders are the front door to our country. And people who enact ideas such as a borderless world, they probably live in gated communities. They probably live with guards.
They would never open their front door to anyone even if they purported to be needy. But they want to open our country. Now, our country should accept people from other countries. That, of course, is how America was built. But we have a process for that.
Yes. I was born in Canada. I am now a naturalized American citizen. But when I became a citizen, I had to learn certain things about the United States. Believe it or not, I had to pass an exam about the Congress. It was very basic. But what it was doing is introducing me to the Constitution to how our government worked. That should be a requirement.
But we have today people saying that you shouldn't even have to be a citizen in order to vote. And so while I'm on the subject of borders, let me say this, Larry, that the Bible is very clear about borders. When God spoke to Abraham, he gave the exact borders of the land. He said the land is going to go from this direction to that direction this far.
These are the markers. Paul says in Acts 17 verse 26 that God determined the allotted places for the world and the periods and the boundaries of their dwelling places of the nations of the world. Now, that doesn't mean that people from one nation can't go to another. Obviously, they do.
I did. But at the same time, God is saying that borders are legitimate. But if you have such a thing as a world government, then of course you have world citizenship and a borderless world. So people push back and they say, well, look how much God has blessed America. You have so much and so much abundance and so much of everything. It is your responsibility to share that with those that don't have it. Well, my response to that is can we share it with the whole world if the whole world comes to us? I'm saying let's be compassionate.
But Larry, this is critical. Many pastors even don't understand something and that is there is a difference between the government and the church. For example, I heard one pastor say, well, the gospel is whosoever will may come, so America should say whosoever will may come.
Good point, Pastor. Two different things. Yes.
The symbol of the church is the cross. Yes. You have the story of the Good Samaritan and what you find is the Good Samaritan didn't say to the wounded man, now, are you here legally or illegally?
What ethnicity are you? He found someone to help. Yes. That's the role of the church. But the role of the state is very different.
The symbol of the state is the sword. Yes. And so it's the responsibility of the state to keep us safe, to recognize that we can be compassionate when compassion is possible, but not to have the idea that somehow we should open our borders to the world.
I don't believe that borders are racist. Yes. No. And I love the way it's illustrated here in some of your examples that immigration has to also incorporate responsibility.
Yes. You can't just come for the blessings and not have responsibility. But I know you got to keep moving. We can't linger there. You talk about the death of money. Well, wait a minute. Death of money? Well, the death of money that you and I carry in our wallets. Oh, OK.
I can breathe again. OK. But I think that I say the death of money as we know it, at least that was my intention. Yes. And that is because clearly we're already there. My children don't carry cash.
Now I do because I'm old school. But there are ATMs. There are different ways that they can access funds. And so most of the transactions that we do today are electronic. I challenge you to go to Europe and come to a hotel and say, I'm going to pay for all this with American money. They might accept it, but they might not.
What they want is your credit card and they want it electronically. And the whole world is being globalized in this way. And just think, I mentioned earlier that the mark of the beast, if you don't have it, you can't buy or sell. Think of what happened to the truckers in Canada. OK. Yeah. You remember they were there. No monuments were torn down. No buildings were burned. No police cars were overthrown. But they were there protesting the mandates of the prime minister. And what did he do? He had some of their assets frozen. So you can see how easy it is that if you do not bow to the beast – and the beast here in Revelation chapter 13 is of course anti-Christ – if you don't bow to him, we can make sure that you cannot eat or you cannot rent.
You can't do anything. As a matter of fact, the example – and here I talk about the surveillance of China, for example – face recognition. Yes. We have that today on our phones. And I have an experience that I will not go into detail about, but when we were doing some face recognition at the airport, my wife and I were surprised at what they knew about us. You see, they were trying to make sure that our identification was legitimate and they pull up things.
How in the world did you know this? Larry, there's a whole world out there that knows so much about us that if we knew how much was known, I think we'd be shocked. And China, face recognition, put up in churches, cameras.
You can't go anywhere. And then they have a credit score, a social credit score, as you well know. And if you don't score high, if you contribute money to the system, for example, to the communist government, your score will go up a little bit.
If you associate with someone who is questionable, your score might go down. And what happens to people whose score is low, they can't travel, they can't rent, they can't buy food, just exactly as the Bible here predicts. Now, whether or not it's going to be exactly this way, I am not prepared to say, but it's so easy for us to understand how it could be that way. And in my book, I give an illustration of a couple that lives in a country. And in this country, under COVID, they had strict rules. You could not go into a store unless you were vaxxed and they were opposed to the vaccine and they couldn't do anything. They had to quit their jobs. They were able to find food on an open market, but they couldn't do commerce, as you and I think of it.
Why? Because they didn't meet the requirement. Now, what if the World Health Organization were to say that unless you have a card that shows that you've had the vaccine, you can't travel, you can't do this, you can't do that? All of that power is in their hands if we submit to it. Now, at this point, America still has some independence and we hope that it will be that way, but the push toward globalization is powerful.
And life without freedom is very, very difficult. Now, Larry, because the clock is running down, I want to speak very briefly about artificial intelligence. More technology. More technology. And we're all acquainted with Alexa.
We don't have it in our home, but many people do. The amount of information that is known is phenomenal. But think of this. This is what they are working on. They're working on trying to connect the Internet with your brain so that you could sit on a park bench and scroll through the whole Internet. Wouldn't it be something if you could learn Spanish instantly by having all of this information connected to your mind? Now, one of the most scary things is this. Imagine them taking thoughts out of somebody else's mind and putting them into yours. A book that I read that is very scholarly said that you'd be surprised at how far they have come with these kinds of inventions.
Wow. That's why there are many people who are really warning against artificial intelligence. But the question is, will we have the ability to control it once it gets out of the box, so to speak? Now, Revelation chapter 13. And then what we're going to do is to transition to the whole issue of suffering, which is the last chapter in my book.
Yes. That's what I want to say to all of our listeners. How do we counteract all these changes, all these fearful changes? Well, in Revelation chapter 12, when Satan is forced out of heaven, he's thrown out of heaven, he has 42 months. Many of us believe it's the last half of the tribulation period. The Bible says, Larry, and people need to emphasize this, that the believers overcame through the word of their testimony and through the blood of the Lamb. And even though the devil seems to be winning in chapter 13 of Revelation, you get to chapter 15, and the saints that he has destroyed and beheaded are before the throne giving praise to God.
Amen. That brings us right to this whole issue of, you know, throughout your book, you use illustrations of, quote, heroes and examples of people who have stood up for the faith. Chapter 11 talks about the redemptive value of unearned suffering and how we have to now embrace that. Not a message people want to hear, Pastor. No, and here's what I want to say in summary. I give five or six things that we must learn from the New Testament regarding suffering. Yes.
But here's the bottom line. I think we as Americans need to rethink our view of suffering for Christ, because we always think of it in negative terms, right? Yes, yes. But Jesus said, blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and say all manner of evil against you falsely for my sake.
Yes. For great is your reward in heaven. So we've always thought that because we've had governments that have been on our side, in some sense, at least nominally Christian, that we could always depend upon the courts and our government to give us the freedoms that we enjoy. But as we begin to see all of this closing in on us, we must learn from the early church, we must learn from the New Testament that suffering for Jesus Christ is an honor. And I point out how it strategically positions us for special blessing. It's an opportunity for us to witness to the supreme worth of Christ. Yes.
Because we know that we live our lives in terms of eternity and not time. Amen. Larry, it's gone too quickly.
Yes, sir. But we're coming to the end of our times together. And I want to emphasize to all who are listening that our discussions have been based on the book No Reason to Hide, Standing for Christ in a Collapsing Culture.
It can be yours for a gift of any amount. And when you get your copy of No Reason to Hide from Moody Church Media, you'll receive a unique invitation to a live town hall conference call. And I'll have the opportunity to, in a more personal way, share my heart with you about where I see the culture going and how we must be willing to stand against the culture, doing so with joy because we represent Jesus Christ at this pivotal moment. Thanks so much for joining us. And thank you also for your continued support for the ministry of Running to Win. Thanks to people just like you.
We are in 20 different countries in four different languages. And of course, because of the internet, we actually reach around the world. Never forget our desire here at Running to Win is to help you run successfully all the way to the finish line. And in my last chapter, I emphasize how Jesus ran successfully.
And in Hebrews chapter 6, it says he is behind the veil. Our forerunner went ahead of us, and he's waiting for us to arrive in glory. So, from my heart to yours today, be faithful no matter where he has planted you. It is a privilege to belong to him.
And if we suffer in the process, we should rejoice even as those who have gone before us have done so. It's no secret that America is in crisis. Pastors' book, No Reason to Hide, Standing for Christ in a Collapsing Culture, will be sent as our gift to you when you give a gift of any amount to support Running to Win. Just call us at 1-888-218-9337. That's 1-888-218-9337. Online, go to rtwoffer.com.
That's rtwoffer.com. Or, write to Running to Win, Moody Church, 1635 North LaSalle Boulevard, Chicago, Illinois, 60614. Running to Win is all about helping you understand God's roadmap for your race of life.
It has many olive trees, and they are very old. It's Gethsemane, a place, even today, for tears. Here, Jesus asked the disciples to pray with him. They fell asleep, causing the Savior to ask, Could you not watch with me one hour? Today, we need to ask that question anew. Next time on Running to Win, we turn to Matthew chapter 26, Identify with Jesus in a Commitment to Prayer. Make plans to listen, as Pastor Lutzer talks about, Praying with Christ One Hour. Thanks for listening. This is Dave McAllister. Running to Win is sponsored by the Moody Church.
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