In Revelation 7:1 an important paradigm is given that is a key to understanding world history, as well as the present:
"After this I saw four angels standing at the four corners of the earth, holding back the four winds of the earth..."
Understanding these "four winds of the earth" can make clear the forces that have shaped the development of civilization, as well as those impacting our own times. We will briefly look at these and how they apply to what is now unfolding in the world today, including the coronavirus crisis.
Winds often speak of change in literature and Scripture, as in "the winds of change." We have heard much recently about how the coronavirus has brought about a radical change to the world. No doubt it has, but little has been defined about how. History testifies that those who grasp the impact of change are those who will control the future.
Battles for the Ages
The "four winds of the earth" in Revelation 7:1 are the four great powers that shaped civilization. These are worldly powers, "winds of the earth," not Heaven. Each of these winds dominated one of the four major epochs of world history. They are military, religious, political, and economic powers. The sequence in which these became dominant saw the construction of civilization in that order.
Military power led to the first epoch of recorded history—the age of the conquerors. This period extended from the beginning of recorded history to shortly after the time of Christ. During this age, military leaders were the most powerful men in the world, and military conquests brought about the greatest changes to civilization.
The next major epoch was dominated by religion. Again, this is a "wind of the earth," not of Heaven, and speaks more of the religions that emerged from men, the earth, and not from above. These would include institutional Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, etc. This age extended from about the third century A.D. into the 1500s. During this period, religious leaders were the most powerful men in the world, and the military became subservient to the religious powers. Most wars were religious conflicts during this time.
The next major epoch emerged when politics became the most powerful force for change. This began when The Magna Carta was signed that began limiting imperial power and continued into the 20th century. During this period, political changes became the primary change agent in civilization as new forms of government emerged with the social upheavals like the French, American, and Bolshevik revolutions. During this period, the most powerful people were political leaders, and both the religious and military powers became subservient to political power.
In this age there were still some religious wars, but the major conflicts during this time were political. The transitions between these ages were gradual, but in the late 19th century through the middle of the 20th century, we began to shift into the 4th major civilizational epoch—the time that would be dominated by economic power. (Photo via Pixabay)
The Battle of Our Time
The Bolshevik Revolution was both a political and an economic revolution, as Marxism is both a political and economic philosophy. World War II was both a political and an economic war, as Japan attacked America because they considered the U.S. economic embargo to be an "act of war." This conflict was the last major repositioning of the nations in preparation for the coming age of economic power.
The "Cold War" was a very real war and the first Economic World War. It only had sporadic and relatively minor military actions. Though political, religious, and the military forces remained major powers, the Cold War was different than any previous conflict because it was primarily fought with economic weapons such as banks, currencies, sanctions, and trade policies. Even so, the geopolitical changes brought about by this conflict was as great as any physical war.
Winston Churchill foresaw this clash of civilizations based on economics. He also foresaw that it could be won by the West "without having to fire a shot," because Marxist economics cannot compete with the Free Market. President Reagan embraced Churchill's strategy of economic confrontation, and the Iron Curtain did collapse without a shot being fired.
Clausewitz, an officer in the Napoleonic Wars, wrote in his classic book, On War, that wars were fought by nations seeking to impose their political will on other nations. This was true at that time because he wrote this in the middle of the age of politics. If he had written this a couple of centuries before, he would likely have said that war was an attempt for a nation to impose its religious will on others. If he were writing now, he would say that wars were a nation's attempt to impose its economic will on others.
Each of these basic "winds of the earth" are still the major powers changing our world, but the dominant one now is economic power, and the most powerful leaders today are economic leaders. Understanding this is crucial for understanding our times. As we begin to understand the times, we begin to see that we are already well into another Economic World War.
You can have an economy without a government, but you cannot have a government without an economy. An economy is built on basic human transactions, and a basic purpose of government is to protect the integrity, fairness, and efficiency of business, as well as their overall defense. Because the resources for a government to exist is dependent on the strength of its economy, it is a basic strategy of aggressive nations to first attack and weaken the economy of a targeted nation. The boldness of this attack on an economy can reflect the boldness of the follow up aggression.
Just as the Cold War brought about some of the biggest geopolitical changes in history, this present Economic World War has the potential to bring about very radical change as well. You cannot defeat an enemy you do not see, so the ultimate defense of our nation also requires comprehending who our enemies are and their strategy.
A threat assessment is the first requirement for sound battle plans. This is to know the capabilities of our foe, which in these times are economic as well as military and political weapons. The Coronavirus Crisis has turned bright lights back on the enemies of freedom. As painful as this has been, it will help the free world to finally mobilize for this struggle that will determine if we will stay free or not.
After knowing who our enemy is, it is crucial to understand the battlefield. Geography can be a major factor in a battle as it can augment or neutralize the effect of your forces and weapons, or those of your foe. Looking back in history we can now see the religious and political battlefields those forces struggled on, but now we must comprehend the economic geography of our time. When understood, it gives us a great advantage, and if not understood, it will have us at a great disadvantage.
The two major sides in this Economic World War are the globalists who are seeking a world conformity to their ideals, and those who seek freedom and independence for self-determination. The two main globalist forces are Marxism and Islam. Both of these forces have global conquest as a basic doctrine, which the free world has tried to ignore to our great peril.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Western leaders wrongly assumed Marxism was dead as a threat to the world. It did not die, but changed its strategy while it regrouped and rebuilt its capabilities. Instead of Soviet-style, continual confrontation, Marxists redoubled their strategy of weakening free nations from within. They have been very successful at this, with some considering that 44 of the Marxists' 45-point plan published in the 1930s are nearly accomplished (these will be covered in some depth in the Heritage Briefs).
Both Islam and Marxism have become very effective in using all four of the powers, or "winds of the earth," we are covering here. We may think of Marxism as not religious, or as being anti-religious, but it makes the worship of the state its religion. Islam is a religion, but it has been estimated that only about 15% of the teachings of Islam are religious, and the rest are economic, political, and military. Even though we are now in the age in which the economic power is dominant, the battle we are in is on all of these fields.
Both radical Islam and Marxism are committed to total world domination, and the counter to both of these globalist powers are those who believe in freedom and self-determination. These gravitate toward patriotism and nationalism, wanting to preserve their culture, heritage, and above all, their liberty. This tendency toward liberty and independence sometimes makes it hard for them to unite against a common threat until it is almost too late, such as it was with World War II when the Allies did not start to seriously arm themselves and mobilize for the fight until the Nazis had overrun most of Europe. The Coronavirus Crisis has painfully begun to wake the free world up again to what is a serious threat to our continued existence as free nations.
Again, we are in the time when economic power is preeminent. To win the present unfolding Economic World War, we must understand the economic weapons and the economic battlefield we are fighting on. In both, the free world still has a great advantage, if we will use them. There are economic physics. Civilization has been built on these laws and principles. If we know them, we can use them to our advantage. If we do not know them, we will be used by those who do. This is why understanding the Coronavirus Crisis is so important. (Photo via Free Great Picture)
After the fall of the Soviet Union, the capital of Marxism moved to China. The Chinese leadership has a much longer-term vision than the Soviet Union did. Instead of continual confrontation with the West seeking a quick advantage and victory, the Chinese had a strategy of gradually wearing down America with constant conflicts with their proxies. At the same time, they worked at taking over our industries and manufacturing, stealing our technology and intellectual property until they displaced America as the dominant economic power. It was an effective strategy that was very close to shifting the world's economic poles until the election of 2016.
Another basic military principle is that to win in battle or war you must seize the initiative and keep it. If you have the initiative your foe must react to you, and so you control the battle. It is right to hope and pray for nations to be able to trade without entering into an economic war, and most do. However, when one has a doctrine of world domination we must understand it and learn to decisively counter it.
When the Chinese began to allow some basic free market principles into their economy, and gradually opened up to the West, they enjoyed immediate and explosive economic growth. The nations came running to the opportunity of such a huge market and believed that with their new-found prosperity, the Chinese government would drop its ultimate goal of world domination. That will not happen as long as they have a Marxist government.
Karl Marx himself stated that it was not possible for his theory of government and economy to work if there was even a single free market economy left. That may have been the one true thing Marx believed.
It was free market fundamentals that so powerfully turned China into the economic powerhouse it became, not Marxism. Yet they are still trying to keep their Marxist doctrine too, and this cannot last much longer. Even so, they brilliantly started taking economic initiative, and shrewdly outmaneuvered America and the other free market nations in virtually every trade agreement. This had to seem like the fulfillment of Lenin's prediction that the capitalists would pay for the rope the Marxists would hang them on.
China's long-term strategy for world economic dominance, followed by political and military dominance, was working beautifully until the Trump administration took office. An immediate and bold push back began, and this quickly revealed the economic and social fault lines in China created by trying to mix free market principles with Marxist totalitarian control.
President Trump built the core of his administration with smart, accomplished business leaders. His administration understood the economic battlefield better than any American administration in history. They used powerful economic weapons such as tariffs and sanctions against all of our political and military opponents, and against our chief economic challenge, China. By these moves, America quickly reacquired the initiative in the Economic World War—until the coronavirus pandemic.
A first principle in intelligence analysis is that to understand a cause, you first look at its effect. As America began to retake the economic initiative, the Chinese became increasingly threatened, especially as their own internal problems surfaced. The coronavirus pandemic, which could also be called the coronavirus panic, crippled the free world economies like nothing has since the Great Depression, and China sought immediately to recapture the initiative.
Marxism is contrary to basic human nature and cannot work without totalitarian control. Above anything else, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is about control. When they start losing control, they start becoming desperate and aggressive. Those who know the nature of the CCP were expecting a desperate move on their part, such as an attack on their nemesis, Taiwan, but the world was caught off guard by the coronavirus.
It's still being debated whether the coronavirus was released intentionally or by accident, and convincing arguments are still being made on both sides of this. Whether it originated in their biolab in Wuhan, where there is clear evidence it was being engineered, or naturally, is really not that important at this point because of one indisputable fact: China did engineer its circulation around the world. The Chinese government did this by closing off Wuhan and its province from any travel to the rest of China, but continued allowing international travel to and from Wuhan to the rest of the world.
In the few weeks when this was happening, it is estimated that from a million and a half to as many as five million potential carriers of the coronavirus went to the nations, especially to northern Italy, Spain, and the U.S. One would have to be incoherently naive to consider this not to have been an intentional spreading of this virus to the world.
This action was nothing less than the release of a bio/economic weapon of mass destruction on the world. Within just a few weeks, the U.S. had suffered over fifteen times more casualties from this than it did from the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor or the terrorist attacks on 9-11. The cost in economic devastation wrought by this is already in the multiplied trillions of dollars, and still rising.
There is an increasing chorus of nations demanding that China must pay for this. Bills have been submitted in Congress to allow China to be sued by victims. One state has already filed a lawsuit, and there will no doubt be many more.
The biggest question now is if the CCP is going to continue on this desperate and dangerous strategy, which will make it an increasing threat to become a military conflict. Or will they embrace the change that would have them relax their totalitarian world control ambitions and rebuild the trust of the world after this unprecedented crime against humanity?
At this writing, there is no sign of a change of direction by the CCP, but rather the promulgation of a major disinformation campaign in a ridiculous attempt to blame America for the coronavirus outbreak. We are, therefore, still headed toward a very dangerous conflict with China. As the saying goes, "If you do not change your direction, you will end up where you are headed." Let us all pray that there is a change of direction.
The true nature of the CCP has now been made manifest to the world. The Chinese people are a remarkable and wise people, but the CCP that holds power over them has not been prone toward humility or taking responsibility for their actions. That is consistent with the core philosophy and doctrine of Marxism.
Marxism took on the nature of Karl Marx. He was called by those who knew him the most despicable person they had ever met. If anyone even questioned one of his theories, he was not satisfied to just reject them, but would scorch the earth if he had to in order to destroy them. To this day Marxist governments are incapable of tolerating dissent. They have repeatedly proven willing to scorch the earth in retaliation for any pushback against their bullying, including killing tens of millions of their own people. Using the coronavirus as they did should not have surprised us, but it did. Now, what is the world going to do about it?
As I have been writing for over thirty years now, the great time of trouble we are headed for is the result of mankind thinking we could run this world without God. We are in way over our heads, and many crises that we're facing are beyond human wisdom or remedy. We must turn to God. We must pray for our leaders to receive wisdom from above and the courage to follow it. (Photo via Unsplash)
The Chinese civilization was built on a great respect for wisdom, and we need to pray for their leaders as well. We need to pray that they will be given the wisdom to see a way to pivot and begin to regain the world's trust by being trustworthy. If they do, they deserve a place as one of the important nations of the world. If that does not happen, the Economic World War that we are now just beginning will escalate. If so, the free world must take on the demeanor of a nation at war that must be won.
* Please don't miss our emerging and newly found prophets! Subscribe here.
Rick Joyner¬†is the founder and executive director of MorningStar Ministries and Heritage International Ministries and is the Senior Pastor of MorningStar Fellowship Church. He is the author of more than forty books, including The Final Quest, A Prophetic History, and Church History. He is also the president of The OAK Initiative, an interdenominational movement that is mobilizing thousands of Christians to be engaged in the great issues of our times, being the salt and light that they are called to be. Rick and his wife, Julie, have five children: Anna, Aaryn, Amber, Ben, and Sam.
To receive more words like this in YOUR inbox, subscribe FREE to the Elijah List at this link https://elijahlist.com/subscribe.
Find us on:
* Facebook click here
* XAPiT click here