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Times are changing more rapidly than ever.  So vast and sweeping are these changes that John Naisbitt calls them "Mega-trends." These trends of the times impact the whole globe simultaneously.  No longer can single nations  pretend to exist only in their little corner of the world.  To the contrary, we are fast becoming a global village.

Robert Reich, formerly of Harvard University states, "We are living through a transformation that will rearrange the politics and economics of the coming century .... Each nation's primary political task will be to cope with the centrifugal forces of the global economy." Reich sees the coming global economy as an inevitable force that will virtually sweep nationalism away.  The value of a given society or an individual worker will be his ability to contribute to the world economy.

During the 19th Century, closely knit networks of local economies were transformed into national economies.  Today the national economies are being transformed into a global one.  Initially, America led the way toward a global economy modeled on American capitalism.  Today, the New Europe is leading the way to a system that is often viewed as capable of setting the economic standards for the whole world.

Such ideas as "buy American" or "buy Canadian" are becoming less of a reality all the time.  Reich notes that when an American or Canadian buys a Pontiac from General Motors, he or she "engages unwittingly in an international transaction." Of $20,000 paid to GM, approximately $5,600 goes to South Korea for routine labor; $3,500 goes to Japan for advanced components; $1,500 to West Germany for styling and design engineering; $800 to Taiwan, Singapore, and Japan for small electronic components; $500 to Britain for advertising and marketing services; and about $100 to and Barbados for data processing The balance of $8,000 goes to manufacturers in Detroit, bankers and  lawyers in Washington, and General Motors stockholders.

This is a typical example of how the "global web" already works.  In time, it will become even more complex, touching virtually every industry in America.  The interrelations of multinational corporations and the international co-operation of corporations within different nations are not only the trend of the future -- it is here now.

Caught in the Global Web

Gilbert Williamson, president of NCR Corporation, recently said, "We at NCR think of ourselves as a globally competitive company that happens to be headquartered in the United States." Like many American products, American corporations are becoming more and more internationalized.  They are fast becoming part of the global web in which much of what they buy and sell comes from other countries.

For example, 40% of IBM's world employees are non Americans.  Robert Reich notes that IBM Japan employs 18,000 Japanese workers, and with annual sales of- $6 billion, it is one of Japan's leading exporters of computers.  The question is whether it is an American or Japanese company -- or both!

Whirlpool is in an even more complex situation.  It recently cut its American work force by 10%, shifted production to Mexico, bought Dutch owned Phillips appliances, and employs 43,500 people in 45 countries ' ' Is it an American company because it has American headquarters or because the majority of its stockholders are Americans?  Or is it an international company that happens to be head quartered in America?

Who Will Lead the Way?

No country is better positioned to lead the way in the economic boom of the 21st Century than the United States.  John Naisbitt writes: "In the global economic competition of the information economy, the quality and an innovativeness of human resources spell the difference". In this regard no country in the world is better positioned than the United States.

Naisbitt and Pat Aburdene go on  to predict that well educated, skilled  information workers will earn the  highest wages in history, further reinforcing an economic boom in the  years ahead.  He argues that the further the information economy evolves, the better the economy will do in the  future as the middle class moves upward in its mobility.

In the meantime, the European Union is trying to catch up to the United States and Japan.  Naisbitt and Aburdene note that the changes in Europe are economically driven as a response to the global competition.  "Politics is not driving the change," they observe "but being pulled by it."

The philosophy behind the New Europe is to forge one cohesive market in order to compete on a global scale.  In order for this to become a reality, physical barriers, such as customs posts and border controls, will have to be removed.  Technical barriers involving different standards and regulations will have to be unified, And, fiscal barriers, such as taxes, will have to be standardized. 

 When the process is complete, it will mean:

All in all, this means there will be more competition at all levels of the single market, bring a greater choice of goods and services at better prices.  For most Europeans this will be a tremendous step forward economically. The high-speed computer network across Europe will bring the continent together in a manner no military or political action could ever hope to do.  Thus, the political unification of Europe will ride on the shoulders of the economy.

Is Biblical Prophecy Being Fulfilled?.

Evangelicals view the changes in Europe with some concern. While economic co-operation could make for more peaceful relations among the European members. It also seems to link together the basic units of the "Old Roman Empire". Biblical Prophecy warns that in the "End Times", ten nations will emerge out of the old Roman Empire and control Europe politically and economically. Eventually, the Antichrist himself will gain control of the conglomerate and attempt to rule the whole world.

(Daniel 2:31-35) predicts such a development in the prophecy of the great image, in which the two legs represent the East (Greek) and West (Latin) Divisions of the Roman Empire and the ten toes represent the kingdom of the Antichrist. (Revelation 13:17) warns of a coming world ruler, "the beast," who controls the world economy: "No one could buy or sell unless he had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of his name." (666)

There is certainly nothing morally wrong with computers, televisions, satellites, and cashless financial transactions.  But many Christians are concerned where all this might lead.  It appears that we are slowly but surely becoming the victims of our own technological advancements.

We are being swept down the corridor of time to an ominous date with destiny.  We are steadily moving toward the inevitable globalization of our planet.  National identities and interests will continue to be submerged by a global worldview.  In time, America could find herself swept along the tide with everyone else.

Instead of resting on our laurels, America needs a spiritual revival and a reawakening of a vision for world leadership.  We cannot expect the world to follow us if we are not leading the way.

The only real hope to turn our generation away from the mindless pursuit of materialism is to call it back to the spiritual values that give real meaning and purpose to life.  That is what Jesus meant when He said, "Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well" (Matthew 6:33).

Man may conceive new world orders or global economies or international systems, but the only world order destined to survive for eternity will be the kingdom of God.  The Bible resounds with this great promise. "The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign forever and ever" (Revelation 11:15).

You Can Escape these perilous times coming on the Earth simply turn yourself over to the loving Savior our Lord Jesus Christ.

Let Us Pray Together--

 PRAY: "God be merciful to me a sinner. Receive me now for Christ's sake. Cleanse me from my sin by your precious blood, shed on the cross for me; lead me to be Baptized and fill me with your Holy Spirit. Teach me to pray each day; to read Your will for my life from your word, the Bible; and help me to worship and serve You in the fellowship of your church. I thank you Lord Jesus Christ. AMEN! 

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