The Dreamer Dreamed (PART THREE)
The Dreamer Dreamed
(A Story that Contains Prophetic Words from God) (PART THREE)
This is a short story about a young man named Steven who was given dreams
from God that reveal truth God has shown me (the writer) that His Church needs
to hear. Though this is written as fiction, the words spoken by Jesus are actual words
that God showed me. So, this is not just a fictional work. It applies to our current
world and to the Church. I encourage you to seek God about this to find out what He
would show you about this story.
[Note: Russians are not the enemy, neither are the Chinese. Both are people just like you and me. But, God will use Russia and China to judge wicked nations, which will not repent from their rebellion against Him.]
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The Decline Leading to the Collapse
“My son,” Jesus said to Steve, “I will now show you some events that will lead up to the nuclear attacks on your nation. These events will shake your nation to the core, but your nation will not repent from its wicked ways, nor will your nation turn from its wickedness and pride. We will leave this concentration camp and move to another location.”
With that, Jesus took Steve’s hand and the formation of men, standing at attention, vanished from Steve’s eyes to be replaced, the next moment, with the sparkling interior of a mall concourse. People flowed through the corridor, going from shop to shop, visiting with each other, and enjoying the social interaction of friends and the pleasure of purchasing merchandise. Women with strollers, college students with iphones, cliques of teenagers, husbands with their wives, and children moved about in a sea of faces.
Steve and his Lord were about fifteen feet above the white, glossy floor, facing a large fountain that once bubbled up water over its descending troughs. But, the water had been shut off and a sign nearby read “Out of order”. Banners hung from the ceiling on long cables, proclaiming that store space was open at lower rates than before. Other banners some distance away indicated that new space would soon be available for any business or organization, regardless of political or religious association. Steve could tell that the mall ownership was desperate for attracting businesses or enterprises to lease floor space.
But, beside the advertisements, Steve didn’t notice anything different about the mall. Jesus touched him gently and pointed toward a shop in the mall just fifty feet away. Steve looked and his eyes opened wider. Nestled between a coffee shop and a footwear store lay a shop that sold Bibles and Christians books. He hadn’t expected to find a Christian establishment in the mall. Jesus touched his shoulder and they moved closer. Now, Steve could see that some people were inside, looking at the Bibles, thumbing through the pages. Both Steve and the Lord descended, and Jesus led the way into the shop. Once inside, Steve approached a black man who was reading from a King James Bible, just a few feet from the entrance. The man seemed to be very curious about what he was reading.
“Excuse me, sir,” Steve said, “may I ask you if you know how much that costs?”
The man looked up and turned to the back cover. He glanced over it quickly and then said, “The blood of Tyndale and the saints before and after him. That was the price to translate this Bible.”
Steve frowned, confused at the cryptic words. “What do you mean?”
“William Tyndale translated the Bible into the English language. And, the translators of the King James Bible based much of their work on his earlier translation, improving it in some areas. The saints before Tyndale suffered persecution at the hands of Catholics and others who despised the Bible, and who did not want it to be translated into the common language of the people. These poor saints had to go in hiding, copying earlier texts that they had with them.”
“How did William Tyndale’s blood get spilled?” Steve asked.
“He was martyred by being burned at the stake,” the man replied gravely.
He looked at Steve for a few moments. “You seem to be interested in the King James Bible. Would you like to have it?”
Steve was curious about the King James Version (KJV). He had read from it occasionally when visiting a friend’s house, but his own Bible was an Amplified Bible. He had heard some tell him that the KJV was hard to understand and old-fashioned. But, Steve was curious after hearing the man mention that someone had to die so that the KJV would be able to exist.
“I don’t have any money with me,” Steve said. “I left my wallet behind.”
The black man extended the King James Bible toward Steve and said, “You may have it. I have money with me to pay for it at the checkout.”
Steve took it and thanked the kind man.
“Steve, My son,” Jesus said as he appeared beside him, “I will now show you three months later. We will see this same mall, and you will see something that will surprise you.”
Jesus led Steve out into the main concourse. As they walked, Steve felt some sweat irritate his eyes, and he wiped his eyes with his fingers. When they were clear, he saw the same mall, but there were now more “Space Available” signs in vacant shops. There were fewer people bustling about. And, as Steve scanned over their faces, he noticed that most of them looked somewhat grim and sad. Gone were the laughter, the taking of photos, the jovial hubbub, and the profusion of open shops.
A man a few yards away was sitting on a bench, reading a newspaper. He wore a business suit and had nicely trimmed, dark hair. A large backpack was parked beside him on the polished floor. Every so often he would pull out his smart phone to check it before putting it back in his pocket. The man looked somewhat nervous and fairly depressed. He appeared to be in his forties. Somehow, Steve felt prompted to talk to him.
“Excuse me, sir, may I ask you a question?”
The man looked up at Steve, somewhat confuse. “Yes?”
“I don’t wish to be nosy, but I noticed you seemed to be anxious about something. Have you read something in the news that alarmed you?”
The man was somewhat taken aback by Steve’s question, but he said, “Oh, you’re fine. I’ve been following the stock market. It looks a little shaky. It dropped a hundred points--the S&P 500 dropped by that much. It was down by thirty points a couple days ago. I think the men on Wall Street are mistaken about their predictions. Certainly, the mainstream news is wrong.”
Steve thanked him and started to leave, but the man stood up and folded the newspaper quickly. Stepping forward, he said, “By the way, sir, may I ask a favor of you?”
“Sure,” Steve said, curious what he wanted.
“You seem to be a thoughtful person. Do you have any money to spare? I know it sounds strange for someone like me to ask for money. I would never have dreamed of doing that before my company failed. It went bust and I lost all my shares in the company. After the collapse, I couldn’t afford to pay the mortgage on my house, and it was foreclosed. Now, I’m homeless and in debt. I used up all my savings trying to search for a job and in paying off as much debt as I could, which is substantial. My phone bills are graciously paid for by my ex-wife, but she won’t let me stay at her apartment. We’re divorced.”
Steve felt sorry for the man. He was homeless and in debt. Steve didn’t know what to do or say. “I, I don’t have any dollar bills, but--” Steve stopped in mid-sentence and noticed something felt different about his right pocket. Something had suddenly dropped into his pocket. He reached in and felt metal coins. Pulling them out, Steve saw two gold coins in his fingers. They were nondescript and shiny. No serial numbers or features could be seen in their gleaming faces. “Where did these come from?” Steve wondered to himself.
“You may give them to the man, My son,” Jesus’s voice came to Steve.
Steve opened his hand and extended the coins. When the man saw them, a look of surprise appeared on his face.
“These are for you. They are a gift from God,” Steve said as he handed the homeless man the coins.
“Where did you get these from?” the man said as he handled the gold coins, turning them over in his fingers.
Before Steve could answer, the man said, “They have no inscriptions, but I would guess they are at least one troy ounce apiece.” Looking up, the homeless man said, “You don’t have to give me these. You should sell them.”
“I want you to have them,” Steve said, warmly.
“These will help me a lot,” the man said as he reached out to shake Steve’s hand. “Thank you for your generosity. My name is Paul.”
“I’m Steve,” he said, shaking Paul’s hand.
“Would you like to correspond by email?” Paul asked. “This gift really will help me out.”
“I would like to, but I need to ask God about that,” Steve said. “Please don’t take offense. I just want to follow God’s guidance.”
“I understand,” Paul said. “I am a Christian, but I got very weak in my faith. I was pursuing financial investment and my career. I didn’t put much time into God, but I want to.”
“God will help you, but God always tells me to rest in Him. God doesn’t want us to work for Him, only rest in Him.”
“I’ll try to do that,” Paul said with more cheerfulness than before. “Thank you very much.”
“You’re welcome. But, thank God more than you thank Me. He provided it for you when you needed it. He will provide for all your needs,” Steve said. “Didn’t Jesus say, ‘But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.’ ?”
Paul looked thoughtful. “I haven’t read the Gospels in awhile. I’ll read that. Where is that verse?”
“It’s Matthew 6:33,” Steve said. “Jesus was speaking to His disciples about not worrying about tomorrow, but just trusting in God for daily food, clothing, and all concerns.”
After a few more parting words, Steve left Paul and walked just a few yards before Jesus suddenly appeared beside Steve. The people walking nearby paid no attention to Jesus, or they didn’t see Him.
“My son,” Jesus said, “let us go to another location. There, I will show you a scene that will unleash chaos in your country. This chaos will usher in martial law, and the martial law will provoke great turmoil and unrest in areas not policed by soldiers. Let us go to New Orleans. There, you will witness something that will shock you, like I have spoken of earlier.”
Steve was instantly taken to a street in New Orleans surrounding a tall monument, which was illuminated by some base lights. At the top of a large pillar a statue stood with a posture that gave the impression he thought he owned the city. Steve and the Lord hovered about twelve feet above the street. Below them, surrounding the hill on which the monument was built, glow-sticks, flares, cell-phone lights, and flashlights formed a sea of lights surrounding the monument. Crowds of people spread out from the monument and into adjoining streets, going as far as Steve could see. A forest of protest signs swayed back and forth and hopped up and down, among the crowds. People were chanting various slogans, in unison. Some shouted, “Raise our pay!” Others shouted, “Liberty from the Fed!” Another group shouted, “Stop the U.N.!”
Police were among them, arranged in lines. Other police, wearing riot gear, were starting to assemble nearby.
“What is happening here?” Steve asked Jesus.
“My son,” Jesus said, “these people are protesting the policies of the current administration. They are also expressing their anger over what they perceive to be unfair and unjust treatment, and the poor economy that will exist in America in the near future. They are blaming the current administration for all their problems, and want to get the president out of office. They will seek to protest until their voices are heard, and then, they will get violent when they see that the government can do nothing for them. I will now show you this same area a few months later.”
Steve and Jesus were now in a different part of the same meeting place for the protesters. Below them, Steve could see thousands of protesters throwing down their signs and rushing en masse toward the police. Many were equipped with baseball bats and chunks of concrete. They began throwing the heavy objects at close range, and some of the officers fell over. Police and protesters clashed violently. Bats swung and contacted with shields and helmets. Police truncheons connected with muscles and heads. Tear gas and pepper spray filled the air. Fists flew, and legs kicked, and Molotov cocktails burst into flame, causing people to scatter near the blazes.
As the violence intensified, some men wearing Halloween masks entered the fray and pulled out machine pistols from their belts. Bullets sprayed into the police lines and scores of officers collapsed to the ground, gasping in pain. Blood started to flow in to the streets. Steve was utterly shocked. He didn’t expect to see such violence. As he watched, thousands of people began screaming and running for their lives, creating a stampede. Many were trampled underfoot. Sirens began wailing.
The police opened fire on the armed men, but more officers were gunned down by rooftop assassins and thugs hidden within the crowds. The fight was going poorly for the law enforcement. Armed gangs were now entering the scene and were killing people left and right, both protesters and police. Men began breaking into businesses and looting valuables inside. In the mayhem, hundreds of people died, and many more were wounded.
The scene suddenly changed and Steven found himself in a coffee shop beside a table. Subdued lights in decorative cones cast buttery light on the glossy surface of the wood-textured table. People chatted in the background from nearby tables, but what drew his attention came from a flat screen TV mounted on the wall. It displayed helicopter footage of mayhem, the very mayhem he had just witnessed. Lines of text appeared at the bottom of the screen.
A news anchor was explaining the situation, some hours after the chaos first erupted. The anchor spoke of police officers being gunned down by armed men, who apparently had machine pistols, which had high rates of fire and could be easily concealed. They might have been part of gangs or criminal organizations. SWAT teams sought to take them out, but most had hurried off into alleys, side streets, and some escaped into the sewer. Their identities were unknown, except for two individuals who had been arrested. One was a member of a street gang. The other came from Mexico. Both refused to talk to the police or FBI.
“What is going on here?” Steve asked Jesus.
“My son, you are seeing the situation that began as a protest against the government, and against certain unfair or unjust practices, turn into violent and unruly mobs. The people were filled with demons to do what they did. The group of mask-wearing individuals were members of various gangs that agreed to work together to fight the police.
“They were sick of their lives and poor living conditions, and wanted to get vengeance or take matters into their own hands. But, they committed murder because they desire to cause suffering to others due to their fear, bitterness, and pride. They were bitter at Me and at their mothers and fathers, who abandoned them. I did not abandon them. But, they felt that I had. And, because they were very hurt and angry about it, they decided they would take their pain out on other people.
“By way of their actions of murder, pride, and bitterness, these people are sending a message to America that the reign of relative ease for most Americans is over. From here on, America will experience calamity after calamity, as I warn America and plead with her. Judgment shall be unleashed in stronger doses on America because it is resisting Me, and following after falsehoods and lies. Very few Christians in this country are truly humble over their sins, and very few want to know Me personally. I am grieved with this. I shall show them the truth that they are lacking, and bring to their spirits, hearts, and minds what I want them to do about this. I love you very much, My son. Now, we will go to a different location.”
The Concentration Camp
Steve was taken to the outskirts of a city near the countryside. Maple, Chestnut, and Beech trees dotted the landscape in clusters or patches. The farm fields appeared barren after a harvest. Two conjoined diesel locomotives sped down some tracks, pulling a long train of shipping containers on flatbed cars. They looked like a normal shipment being transported by rail. But, Steve wondered, ‘Where are they headed?’
Hovering above the ground with his Lord, both began moving with the train, accelerating. Soon, they passed by the two locomotives at the front and continued flying down the tracks. In little time, Steve caught sight of a fenced enclosure below. He and Jesus slowed to hover over the enclosure. Long brown buildings, or barracks, were arranged in rows, side by side, below. Square buildings and other structures occupied a central grassy field that divided the formations of barracks into two sections. A high fence about fifteen feet tall, covered with razor wire, formed a large, square border around these structures. Watching the activities below like eagles, sentries in guard towers lifted binoculars to their eyes from time to time.
About a mile away sat a mining operation. Tall silos, sloping conveyor belts, and other buildings for processing coal identified it as a coal mine. Steve had seen pictures online, but he knew very little about coal mining. In addition to the mining structures, dozens of other buildings sat outside the fifteen-foot-tall fence and its perimeter of guard towers. A corridor, lined on either side with razor wire-topped chain link fences, connected the camp to a group of buildings which were situated inside a fenced-in boundary. Guard towers also monitored this enclosure.
Jesus brought Steve closer to the camp until they were hovering twenty feet above the ground. Tall gates were opened in a narrow, rectangular enclosure adjoining the base on the south side of the large enclosure. Train tracks passed under the gates and through this narrow strip of enclosed grass. In a few seconds, a loud horn could be heard blaring as the conjoined diesel locomotives steamed down a railroad siding that passed through these gates. Soon, the train slowly crawled to a stop before a large gate that opened directly into the larger enclosure where the barracks were located.
Soldiers came out through the gates and began detaching locking bars that held the containers to the flatbeds. A heavy-duty forklift reached for the first container and carefully brought it into the camp. Russian soldiers surrounded it, tightening their grip on their rifles. Once the forklift had set the container down, the guards unbolted the doors and flung them open. Immediately, they started shouting and motioning with their hands. Reluctantly, men wearing orange jump suits walk out of the container. They appear to tired after having a long journey shut up in the container. Then, Steve noticed small holes that had been cut into the sides of the containers for air and ventilation.
The soldiers started shouting at them to stand in formation. Some commotion followed, and a few fights suddenly broke out between guards and prisoners. The guards slammed their rifles into the angry prisoners that had attacked them and knocked the prisoners to the ground. The guards shouted at them to stand. Some stood, but a few remained on the ground. Some medics were sent for to attend to the wounded.
A man who looked like a professional wrestler cursed the guards and suddenly went into attack mode. His three-hundred pound body slammed into a guard nearby and knocked him off balance. He ripped the guard’s rifle from his hands and grabbed the man by the throat, choking him with a vice-like grip.
Gunshots erupted and Steve turned away. When he looked down again, he saw the soldiers shouting at the prisoners to stand back as two soldiers brought a tarp from a nearby building. Steve could see that the large man was lying motionless on the ground, but he couldn’t see the body clearly because the soldiers blocked his view. Soon, the body was covered by the tarp and soldiers hauled it away to a flatbed truck.
“There will be no more of this insurrection or revolt!” a Russian lieutenant shouted. “If you misbehave, we will handle it with force.”
He stared coldly at the men who were standing before him.
“You Americans will be able to enjoy the safety and protection of this establishment for as long as is necessary,” the lieutenant said with perfect English, “but anyone who tries to resist our authority will be dealt with severely. Any questions?”
The men were silent for a few seconds until one man bravely asked, “Why did you Russians pull us from our homes and say we were going to a safe haven?”
“Your country is falling apart. It is collapsing due to its failure to stand on moral ground and acknowledge Russia as a partner in the world. It has lapsed into moral depravity and it is reaping what it has sown. We had to place you under our custody for your own good. After all, your dollar has cease to have any value. You cannot survive in that world that you used to inhabit. Violence was rampant. Crime was at high levels in most cities and towns. We are here to help you Americans learn to respect Russia and to enjoy the benefits of working as a team. That is all.”
“My son,” Jesus said, “we will now visit the mining camp where the prisoners will labor. You will get to see what the work is like for them, so that you can share with your family My warning to them to repent and forsake sin, before it is too late. If people will turn to Me and repent, they will be delivered, and I will place them in places of safety. But, if they will not repent, judgment will fall on them. Now, we will go to the coal mine.”
The scene changed before Steve’s eyes to a dim, rocky corridor through which narrow-gage metal rails ran. Electric lights, along the ceiling, revealed a tunnel through what appeared to be black rock. Men with hardhats and pickaxes labored, swinging their tools into the black tunnel walls. Their faces and clothes were covered with black dust. Then, Steve realized that they were coal miners, but their equipment and methods were antiquated. Some men pushed a mining cart down the rails, while others pulled on chains that were fastened to its front. All the while, it squeaked and groaned, due to being poorly lubricated. In a short time, the cart stopped before a group of miners that were picking away at the coal walls.
Setting down their pickaxes, the miners reached for shovels nearby and scooped the lumps of coal and loose rocks into the cart. A few guards armed with machine guns and air filter masks watched the men work. Their postures told Steve that they meant business. They were not young recruits, but seasoned, battle-hardened soldiers.
“You, get back to work!” a soldier shouted to a miner who had dropped his shovel and leaned against the tunnel wall.
The man slowly reached for his shovel, but the guard pulled out a metal baton and hit him in the shoulder. The man screamed, “Stop, stop I’ll work.”
“You don’t tell me to stop, prisoner,” the guard said, hitting the man again. The man groaned in pain and clutched his shoulder. He winced.
“Get back to work!” the guard commanded.
The prisoner picked up the shovel and began scooping up coal. Steve could tell that he was cursing under his breath. Suddenly, a man armed with a pick swung it at the same soldier and the guard ducked his head. The pickaxe nearly missed the guard’s head. In a split second, another guard opened fire on the attacker, giving him an automatic burst from his machine gun, and the man dropped dead. The gunshots echoed through the tunnel, causing many prisoners to flinch.
Once the echoes died down, the first guard coldly eyed the prisoners loading the cart.
“Just for that,” the he said, “all of you will have smaller rations today. If you behave, we will give you some comforts, such as slightly larger rations and longer breaks. But, if you continue misbehaving, you will have to suffer, and serve as a lesson to the rest of the inmates. The men who continue misbehaving will be publicly whipped. We also may have them stand at attention for five straight hours during the night, without any breaks. They will be expected to work the same amount of time the next day. Also, anyone who reports suspicious activity will be given one day off per week, if the report is accurate. If the report is not accurate, they will be beaten.”
The men remained silent, but some groaned.
“Now, get back to work,” the other guard ordered sharply.
Groaning, they began shoveling the black chunks into the mining cart. Once it was loaded to capacity, a team of four men pulled and pushed the large cart down the tracks, straining under its weight and under the resistance of its dry, rusty axles. While they worked, some soldiers walked beside them, telling them, every so often, to keep moving if their pace slowed.
Steve walked a short distance behind them, curious what would happen. One of the men pulling the heavy cart started to slow and a soldier shouted at him, “Keep moving!”
He started walking forward, but he appeared extremely exhausted. He tugged on the chain, but his strength suddenly weakened, and he collapsed to the ground. The other prisoners stopped, looking nervously at the guards. The soldier closest to the exhausted man shouted at him to stand, and kicked him with his boot. But, the prisoner was too exhausted to do anything but move his head side to side and groan in pain. The soldier motioned to another guard and both set the man back on his feet, or tried to. He collapsed onto the ground once more. The soldiers kicked him, telling him to get up. Then, both looked at each other and frowned. The man’s mouth hung open and his eyes remained shut. No movement came from his diaphragm or chest.
They checked his pulse, and one said to the other, in Russian: “He’s dead. Probably from exhaustion.” (Somehow, Steve understood what he said.)
“Let’s have some prisoners take the body away,” the other replied, in Russian.
One reached for a button on a two-way radio clipped to his belt. He spoke into a small microphone that protruded from his helmet. “This is team fox,” he said in Russian. “One man is down. I repeat, one man is down. We need some prisoners to pick up the body.”
Within a three minutes, a soldier escorting three prisoners, arrived. He had one replace the dead man at the cart and the other two carry the corpse in a stretcher.
Steve touched Jesus’s robe and looked up into his loving eyes. “Dear Jesus, could we leave this place? I can’t bear this suffering.”
“My son,” Jesus said, placing His hand on Steve’s shoulder, “I am with you. What you have been seeing and hearing are visions that I am giving you to show you what the future holds.”
While Steve talked with Jesus, the sounds from the prisoners and soldiers faded into silence.
“Lord Jesus,” Steve said, “why are these soldiers so cruel? And, is what I’m seeing before My eyes in this vision exactly what people will experience in real life?”
“Yes, My son, what you are seeing is very much like what they will experience in real life, for they have greatly hardened their hearts against Me, in your country. America is blind and deaf to My calling, because they have plugged their ears and closed their eyes to My pleadings and to My warnings. They love sin and hate righteousness. Therefore, destruction shall be to them and to their children, because even their children hate Me and despise Me.
“I have called out to both men and women, children and young ones, and all people. I plead with them every day, but most refuse to repent and refuse to humble themselves before Me. Even now, in this vision, these people you have seen are not repenting from their sins, nor are they calling out to Me, nor are they realizing that they must forsake sin and trust in Me for salvation. I know that they cannot be saved by their works, but they must be willing to amend their ways and trust only in My blood to save them.
“To amend their ways means to change what they look to. Instead of looking to sin to meet their needs, they must turn to Me, and trust in Me to meet their needs. That is repenting. That is amending one’s ways. The Church must do that too, for you will see in the next vision that My Church is in the concentration camps with those who are of the world. You will see why that is. And, I the LORD your GOD and Abba Father have spoken, because I and My Father are One.” (1.)
“And now, My son,” Jesus said, “I will take you to a different section of this concentration camp.”
[(1.) Note: Jesus, and God the Father, and the Holy Spirit are one God. 1 John 5:7 says: "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one." In John 10:30, Jesus said: "I and my Father are one."]
Life in the Camp
In an instant, Steve was taken to a chow hall filled with many tables. About twelve men sat around each table. He was standing beside a certain table where some men of different ethnic groups were seated, eating soup and bread. A black man was sitting close to Steve, near the end of the table. He chewed slowly and seemed to be pondering over something that troubled him. Beside him, a white man with short, brown hair talked with a red haired man across from him.
“Gary, my wife is probably in a camp like ours, but I don’t know exactly what she is doing. I hope she doesn’t have to do the kind of work the Russians make us do,” the red-haired man said. [See the "Footnote" at the end.]
“I don’t think they treat the women to manual labor like they do us, Mike,” Gary, the brown-haired man, replied.
There was a pause of silence between them as both collected their thoughts. “Mike,” Gary said, “did your pastor ever speak about the calamities that we saw unfold in recent times?”
“Pastor?” Mike, said, squinting, trying to understand.
“You told me you went to a Church some time ago.”
“Oh, yes, yes, I did,” Mike said. “My pastor never taught about destruction or calamity coming to America. I heard some radio show hosts discuss it, and some friends mentioned it, but I never heard my pastor speak of it. And, I don’t think any of the pastors in my town mentioned it either. Why do you ask?”
“My pastor never mentioned it either,” Gary said. “I kind of felt cheated. He gave me sermons that amounted to little or no spiritual benefit when played out in real life. He never spoke of being persecuted or of denying oneself, taking up one’s cross, and following Jesus. He never once mentioned anything that was controversial, such as judgment on the wicked.”
“I want to stop you,” Mike said with some frustration. “You mean to tell me that you think a Hell and brimstone sermon from a Bible-thumping preacher is what I should be listening to? What about grace and love?”
“My pastor only taught about God’s grace and love,” Gary said calmly. “He never spoke of judgment on sin or of a nation being judged for its wickedness, but I remembered reading about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah as a young Christian. I was amazed that God would burn a whole city, but Abraham pleaded with God to spare the city if there were just 10 righteous people in the whole city. God agreed to spare it for the sake of 10 righteous people. Abraham had seen God be very merciful to him. But, the whole city of Sodom was so wicked that only Lot was considered righteous. His wife disobeyed God’s command, which was announced by angels to Lot and his family, not to look back at Sodom. But, she did and was turned to a pillar of salt.”
“That was the Old Testament. God is different today. He doesn’t judge,” Mike said, taking a bite from a small chunk of bread.
“She was turned to a pillar of salt because she refused to repent and forsake Sodom in her heart. America has turned from God, and become like Sodom. That is why this country is being judged--”
“This country is not being judged, Gary,” Mike said, angrily. “This is just the consequences of provoking Russia to anger and making foolish financial decisions. It has nothing to do with God’s judgment! God is not the same as He was in the Old Testament.”
“But, I remember a verse where God says that He doesn’t change. James chapter 1 says that there is no variableness with God. When God judges a nation for its wickedness, such as ancient Israel, you can be sure He will judge America, and He is doing that right now.”
“Shut up,” Mike said in a low, cold voice that throbbed with anger. “I don’t want to hear about God. Frankly, I don’t even know if God exists. If He exists, He’s left us to suffer, even though we are Christians. He’s forgotten us.”
“That is not true. God is judging America for not repenting when He called out to it. I remember reading Jeremiah and Ezekiel. We’re seeing those books unfold in America, just as they did in ancient Israel and Judah. Jesus warned Jerusalem about the Romans destroying their temple and persecuting the Jews, and He warned of a future time when the same thing would be repeated by the Antichrist. Jesus said, in Luke 21:20: ‘And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.’ He went on to warn the Jewish people to flee from Jerusalem and Judea. But this applied to both the attacks on Jerusalem in 70 A.D., by Titus, and the future attacks against the Jews by the Antichrist, in the book of Revelation.”
“I’m done with this topic,” Mike said. Leaning forward, he whispered, “Let’s talk about how we can escape this base, but quietly.”
“Mike,” Gary said, “why are you so quick to change topics?”
Mike grimaced. “I don’t want to talk about a God that doesn’t care about our suffering.”
“He does care about us, and He wants us to turn back to Him. I wept when I saw My children and wife taken from me. I wept when I saw this camp. I told God I was sorry for all the sins I did. I was a bad husband and father, who was cheating on his wife. I was very selfish and proud. I didn’t really love God before, but now I desire Him. I want to know Him. He gives me peace even through these sufferings we go through.”
“That’s nice for you, but I don’t see it that way. I did good works for God, giving tithe regularly, giving money to a local orphanage, faithfully attending Church every Sunday. I served God, but God has left me to die. There is no hope for us. If He exists, God has abandoned us. End of story.”
“I’m sorry you see it that way,” Gary said. “I used to think like that too, but My heart changed when I repented and turned to God.”
There was a silence that lasted for a moment before the black man beside Gary looked at him and said, “Excuse me. I overheard your conversation, and I wondered if you could pray for me.”
“I’d be willing to,” Gary said.
“My health is starting to fail me and I don’t think I will be able to make it for another five months of hard labor. I feel weak and tired. I want to know; does your God accept souls like me, who did terrible things?”
“If God can save a man who cheated on his wife, nearly lost his marriage over an affair he had with another woman, stole from a friend, and despised people who loved God, and lied many times, while claiming to be a Christian, he can save anyone. That’s who I used to be.”
“I did worse than that,” the black man said, somberly. “I wonder if it’s too late for me to repent.”
“It is never too late for those who desire God and want to repent. God can save anyone who calls on His Name and who wants to know Him. By the way, what’s your name?”
“Robert. So, how do I call on His Name?”
“First, you recognize your need for Jesus to save you from your sins, and that only He can save you by His blood that He shed at the cross about 2,000 years ago.”
“Okay,” Robert said, nodding.
“The next point is that you ask Jesus to be your personal Savior and Lord, and to save you from your sins by His blood and death on the cross alone [Romans 5:7-10]. Jesus took the penalty for sin, which is death [Roman 6:23], which results in Hell for the sinner [Revelation 21:8]. Jesus Christ died, was buried, and rose from the dead on the third day, just as the Bible said He would [1 Corinthians 15:3-4]. It is only by accepting Him as your personal Savior and Lord that you are saved [Acts 16:31, Romans 10:9-10, Ephesians 2:8-9, James 4:7]. It is not by works of righteousness or by our own effort that we are saved or kept saved [Romans 4:5, Galatians 2:16]. It is only by Jesus Christ that we are saved [Acts 4:12, 1 Timothy 2:5-6, John 14:6]. Christ’s blood alone can make a sinner clean and whole [Romans 5:1-12].”
“I want to do that,” Robert said, bowing his head. “What are points in a nutshell?”
“(1.) You recognize that you cannot get to Heaven by your own works or by any way, but by Jesus Christ and His blood that He shed. (2.) You want to be set free from sin, and cleansed by Jesus Christ’s blood, and be saved from the consequences of sin, which is Hell. (3.) You ask Jesus Christ to be your personal Savior and Lord, and you speak the truth that He died for you and me, was buried, and rose from the dead.”
Robert bowed his head and Steve heard him whisper, “God, I’ve made a mess of my life. I did drugs, slept around, stole from people, and lived in sin. You know that I want to turn from sin and believe on your Son, Jesus Christ. I don’t want to go to Hell, but I also know that you want me to be with you in Heaven. I want that too. So, Jesus, I make you my Lord and Savior. You died and suffered for me, even though I’ve done terrible things. I thank you for that and that you rose from the dead. Without you, I’d have no hope. Amen.”
Gary also had been listening to his prayer. “Amen, brother. You are now a child of God and bound for Heaven.”
“I feel something different in my body,” Robert said, with a surprised look on his face. “It feels strange.”
“That is the Holy Spirit, Robert,” Gary said. “You’ve been born-again, like Jesus spoke of in the Gospel of John, chapter 3.”
Robert raised both hands in the air and said, “Praise God! I’m saved! I’m saved!”
A Russian soldier walked toward them, scowling. “You men will have more work assignments if you don’t keep your mouths shut. Loud sounds are not allowed.”
After the soldier left, Mike grimaced before saying, “You religious nuts are going to get us all in trouble if you keep that up.”
“Robert was just expressing himself, Mike,” Gary said. “He should be free to do that. He’s a new man now.”
Mike scowled. “Just keep this Jesus stuff to yourselves. I don’t want to get in trouble for your enthusiasm.”
“My son,” Jesus said to Steve, “let us now go to another location, where I will reveal to you more of the life in the prison camps, and how the people are treated. This will show your friends and relatives the true nature of the future and what it will likely have for them, unless they repent and seek Me soon. Let us go.”
With that, Jesus placed his hand on Steve’s shoulder, and the room vanished from Steve’s eyes.
A farm field appeared below. It was in the process of being tilled or cultivated. A team of four men were attached, by long chains, to an old-fashioned plow, which had been modified to accompany the attachments. Each prisoner wore wide, leather belts which acted as padding for metal chains that passed through large loops in the belts, and wrapped around the waist of each prisoner. They struggled to pull the plow through the dirt, straining at their chains. Behind them, a man gripping the handles of the old plow, he was chained to, tried to keep the furrows straight, while a Russian soldier snapped a whip not far from his shoulders.
“Keep moving,” a different soldier barked, seeing one of the four chained men stumble.
In another acre-sized plot of land, a different team was hard at work, doing the same task.
A section of land, ten acres in area, was surrounded by double lines of razor wire fence on either side of a ditch. Both sides of the ditch were lined with the menacing razor wire, which tends to snag on clothes like a thorn bush. A small, portable guard tower was stationed at each corner of the enclosure, armed with a heavy machine gun and search lights. The Russians also were equipped with infrared scopes on their rifles.
The man who had stumbled had regained his footing and continued straining at his chain, trying to keep up with the other three pulling the plow, but Steve could tell that he was in pain. He clenched his teeth, trying to help pull the plow through the moist soil, but after a few more minutes, his strength gave out, and he fell to the ground. The guard with the whip began lashing the ground near his body, yelling, “Stand up!”
But, the man was exhausted. Then, the guard gave him a lash across the back. The man grunted in pain. Another whiplash struck him, and the prisoner cried out in pain. Mustering his strength, he tried to stand, but he was very weak. Slowly, he stood to his feet, and the guard commanded, “Get moving. We must get these furrows done before dark.”
The man made several more feet of progress, pulling the chain, before he collapsed again. He tried to get up, but he could not manage. The guard kicked him, but his body took the impact like a limp noodle. Like blinds in a window being drawn shut, his eyes closed, and his life passed from this earth. The guard lashed the body several times before he stooped down to look at the corpse. He placed his fingers on the neck to check for a pulse.
With a grunt, he stood and reached for his two-way, helmet radio, and said: “We have another flat in the square. We need another hand. Out.”
Steve looked to the right and saw an earthen bridge across the ditch, at the far end of the enclosure. This bridge lay beyond a gate which was watched by a guard tower. About a stone’s throw from that lay another gate connected to a fifteen-foot-tall, razor-wire-topped fence. Within that compound were more barracks structures and other buildings.
After a couple minutes, the gate opened in the barracks enclosure fence, and a military flatbed truck roared through. Soon, it had passed over the earthen bridge and through the gate leading into the 10 acres, bumping over the uneven terrain as it went. Its six wheels soon rolled to a stop before the corpse, and the diesel engine idled, issuing a loud, guttural purr. A door creaked open and a young soldier hopped out. A prisoner was handcuffed to a metal rail in the truck bed. He groaned as he saw the plow with the chained prisoners and thought of the work that lay before him.
A different soldier unlocked the chain on the corpse, while two guards warily watched the prisoners chained to the plow. With a heave, two guards plopped the corpse into the truck bed. A soldier hopped into the truck bed and unlocked the handcuffed prisoner, who would serve as a replacement for the deceased. Taking no chances, the guard snapped the handcuff to the corpse’s left wrist. Once the prisoner was off the truck, a door slammed, and the flatbed headed back, bouncing over the uneven earth.
The fresh prisoner was locked up to the empty harness, and the five men were commanded to keep plowing.
“Get back to work!” a soldier yelled, snapping his whip for emphasis.
Steve touched Jesus Christ’s robe and looked up into his loving, green eyes. “Lord Jesus,” he said, “you’ve shown me people suffering in a coal mine, and now as slaves dragging a plow, but why? Why do these people have to suffer so much?”
Looking at him with love and compassion, the Jesus said:
“My son, these people are very resistant to My Spirit and to My convictions, for they know that I have been calling out to them, but they have been resisting Me more and more, hardening their hearts against Me, and against My Spirit, who has been calling out to them and pleading with them every moment. They have made their foreheads like flint, and their necks like brass, and they refuse to forsake their selfish, stubborn, and defiant ways.
“Some, like Robert, as you have seen, have repented and turned to Me during these trying times, but many others refuse to repent, and will not say ‘yes’ to My Spirit calling out to them. I am grieved with their hearts, and I shall not let them enter into My rest, unless they repent. For, I give all men the equal opportunity to repent from sins and come to Me.
“I call out to each person, and I give them the power to decide if they will repent, or if they will forsake My pleadings, and forsake My ways. I do not force them to repent and come to Me, but I plead with them, that if possible, they will repent, and come to Me. I say ‘if possible’ to show you that it is possible for them to come to Me, but the choice they make to say ‘no’ to Me makes the likelihood that they will repent become less and less. I give men a free will to choose Me or reject Me. That is correct.
“Now, we will visit a city to show you what life will be like during the time just prior to the Russians invading.”
[A Note About Repenting:
To be saved and born-again, one must desire to repent from sin. This means that one wants to turn from his (or her) sins, and trust only in Jesus Christ to save him (or her). One can’t be saved if he (or she) doesn’t even desire to forsake sin. If someone just prays a prayer but doesn’t want to turn from sin, he (or she) is not actually saved.
Question: “Why should we repent from sin?”
We have a human nature that is sinful. Sin will bring damnation in Hell if one doesn’t repent and make Jesus Christ his (or her) personal Savior and Lord. When one repents, he (or she) must realize that he (she) still sins, but there is a desire to turn away from sin, and a regret for sinning. One must realize that only by knowing Jesus Christ as his (her) personal Savior and Lord can one make the choice to actually turn from sin. After being saved, we must look to Jesus to help us, and we must choose to say “no” to temptation, and repent from sin that God is convicting (or showing) us about. The power to do this is found in seeking and having a personal relationship with our loving God and Abba Father, through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, Who is One with God the Father.]
The Financial Collapse
Steve watched the farm fields vanish before his eyes and the interior of an upper middle-class, two-story house appear. He was standing a couple yards away from a dinner table around which sat a small family. The man of the house looked like the average white-collar, upper-middle-class householder. He had well-groomed, dark hair, stylish glasses, and a blue dress shirt tucked into tan slacks. His wife wore stylish clothing and gold jewelry. She kept an eye out for her 4-year-old son, who sat beside her, calmly eating the spaghetti on his plate. Tomato sauce appeared on either side of his mouth and some on the tip of his nose. His mother took a napkin to dab it off. Beside the dad sat a 7-year-old girl and a 10-year-old boy. They ate quietly, sensing anxiety and tension in the atmosphere.
“Patrick,” the wife said, “could we talk about this after supper?”
They must be in the middle of a conversation, Steve thought as he observed.
“The kids need to know too, Jennifer,” the husband said between bites.
“What is it, daddy?” the little girl said, looking up at her dad with concern.
“Our country is facing some hard times, kids,” Patrick said. “My pay has not been going up, but food prices are rapidly climbing. The price of a gallon of milk rose by a dollar in just two weeks. The price of a block of cheese rose by 50 cents in just seven days. Cereal prices have gone up too. A box of my favorite brand of cereal costs a dollar more than it did three weeks ago.
“At this rate, if this continues, we’ll eventually have to start going to the food shelter to supplement my income or, we’ll have to eat beans and rice. The interest on my monthly mortgage payments has gone up too. If the interest continues to rise, I wouldn’t be able to continue living here. We would have to get an apartment or a smaller house. Also, my company announced that it will have to let go, or fire, thirty positions because it is shrinking to save costs. That means that I might be looking for work elsewhere.”
Jennifer looked at her husband with concern. “But, Patrick, you never mentioned this to be before.”
“That’s because I just heard about it today.”
“The kids don’t need to know this right now, do they?” Jennifer said.
“Dear, they will be affected by it sooner or later, when I won’t be able to buy them any more toys or extra things, and when they see the food we eat coming from a food shelter.”
Jesus touched Steve and the words being spoken faded away.
“My son,” Jesus said, “this family is a typical American family that is experiencing hardships during the days just before the invasion of America. They are suffering from the weak dollar and the poor economic health of your nation. It is weakening and shaking like a top that is wobbling, losing its momentum. Soon, it will fall. I will now show you what it is like for a less-financially-sound family in a lower-income home.”
Instantly, the dining room faded to be replaced with a living room in a small home. The room was decently decorated, but the furniture was second hand and the carpet was stained. A man and his wife were sitting on a couch together, facing an older TV set. The husband clicked it off with a remote and sighed, before setting it on a lamp stand.
He had a mustache and goatee and light brown hair. An older car, a dark green ‘98 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, sat out in the driveway of their two bedroom house, with a small patch of oil beneath it. The sound of children playing and laughing came from the bedroom at the back of the small house.
“John,” the wife said, “so tell me what’s troubling you.”
“Mary,” John said sighing, “I just heard from my boss that he’ll try to keep me employed for four months, but he said he can’t guarantee that he can keep me longer because business is getting slow, since the economy is getting more difficult. There were fewer contracts this year than for any year in the construction company’s history, and it’s been around since 1974. It’s worse now than it’s ever been, Mary. We will probably have to visit the food bank more than before. I just can’t afford to put food on the table anymore, and we’ll have to cancel our cable service this week. And, we’ll need to look for clothes at the thrift store from now on.”
“At least,” Mary said, “I’m still employed. But, my company has been shrinking too. They will keep me on for a while I’m sure. People still need to eat, and the fast-food industry is still alive, but it definitely has suffered from our bad economy.”
Jesus spoke to Steve, and as He did, the sound faded. “My son,” Jesus said, “we will now return to the first family and see their lot in life several months later.”
The scene returned to the upper middle-class family. A self-moving rental van was parked outside the two-story home. Patrick and Mary hefted some cardboard boxes into the back of the moving van and secured them among the multitudes of boxes packed into the space. Patrick looked over the stuff to make sure all was there before he shut the rear gate and locked it with a padlock. The couple reentered the house to check and see if they had got everything. After a few minutes, they emerged from the front door and Patrick locked it.
“Well,” he sighed, “that is the last we’ll see of our nice home. It will be a trailer court from now on.”
There three kids were playing with small toys in the front yard and Mary called out to them, “Okay kids, we’re leaving now, so get in the car with me and we’ll follow daddy to our new home.”
The three children piled into the maroon 2017 Chevrolet Tahoe with excitement on their faces. Steve could tell they actually wanted to see what life would be like living in new surroundings.
Suddenly, the two-story suburban house was replaced by a trailer park. The moving van and the Chevy Tahoe pulled to a stop at the side of the street beside a small trailer. Both idled.
Peeling blue paint covered the trailer, indicating it was in disrepair. A cracked concrete walkway, with long grass pushing through the gaps, led up to a sagging porch and rotting, moss-coated, flaccid, wooden steps. Seeing the property, Steve was surprised that this family had moved there. Juniper bushes ringed the yard for privacy. A short distance from either side of the trailer sat two other trailers in similar disrepair. Weeds filled their yards and sprung up around old, rusty bicycles and weathered, plastic toys.
Patrick planted his feet on the pavement and grimaced at seeing the trailer, and thinking of what he had left behind. He hoped his family would be able to manage having less than they had before. But, seeing the dilapidated condition of the house triggered a deep sense of depression. “Is this all I have after working 12 years at a white collar job?” he whispered to himself.
A frowning face peered out at the new family from a neighboring trailer window, but Patrick turned away, trying to act like he hadn’t seen his new neighbor staring at him.
When the kids piled out of the SUV, they became quiet and curious, looking at their new home. “Daddy, is this where we’re going to live?” the oldest boy asked.
“Yes, Michael,” Patrick said. “Thanks to a lousy economy and hyper-inflating dollar, my company collapsed. Now, this is all I can provide for you with the new part time job I have unloading freight. But, we are better off than some people I know of.”
“What do they have?” Michael asked his father.
“Some are living in camper trailers and tents, son,” Patrick said. “In fact, there is a whole tent city just five miles out of town, and it is growing by the day. Some of my friends live there now. They lost their jobs and couldn’t afford their mortgage payments.”
“Why did they lose their jobs, daddy,” the little girl asked.
“Ashley,” Patrick said, “the economy has become very weak, and because fewer people can afford special things like lawn service, or home improvement, or brand new cars, people who work in those industries cannot make ends meet. So, they lose their jobs, and cannot afford to buy anything but some food. Companies that need people to buy stuff from them cannot sell as much as they sold before.
“So, many companies have to let go of employees so they can save costs. And, because food is so expense, more of my income is going into buying food, and less into other areas of life. Food today is ten times more expensive than it was a year ago. The government is trying to meet this problem by printing more money, but that causes massive inflation which does little to solve the problem.”
“What is the economy, daddy? And, how does it work?” Ashley asked.
“Dear, it is really just the making (or production) and the buying (or consumption) of goods and services (like hair cutting) among a big group of people (or a community). One person builds a house and another person buys the house. If no one buys the house, the builder suffers and ends up with no money.
“Since the builder has no money, his hair-cutter will not get any money from him. The builder cuts his own hair,” Patrick said, pretending to cut his hair with invisible clippers. “And, since the hair-cutter now makes less money, she can’t hire a lawn-mowing company to mow her lawn. They also suffer because fewer people can afford to hire their services. Since fewer people can afford to buy from my company, it gets less business and less income. It’s more complicated than that, but that is essentially what caused our financial problems.”
“Okay. That makes sense, I guess,” the little girl said.
“My son,” Jesus said to Steve, “let’s now go to the second family. We will see how their life is just a few months down the road.”
Instantly, Steve was swept away from the trailer park and placed down in the middle of a large city park. Trash and decaying leaves littered the grass, and tents dotted the park, clustering near hardwood trees. Trees spread their long finger-like twigs, dropping the last autumn leaves against the backdrop of a grey, cloudy sky. People dressed in warm clothing walked about the park and some gathered in small groups to talk or trade small items. It didn’t appear that a medieval fair was in town. This looked like a camp of homeless people, and as he watched, Steve realized that that was the case.
He was standing a short distance from a large camping tent. Blankets were spread over it to insulate it better from the cool weather. A zipping sound came suddenly and the tent door flopped open. It was John, the man who had owned the two-bedroom house. He zipped the flap shut behind him and shuddered, pulling his thin jacket up his neck. Steve couldn’t feel the temperature, but it must have been pretty cool.
Jesus spoke to Steve, “Let’s follow him, son.”
Together, they both walked behind John as he walked briskly through the park. At the edge of the park, John turned onto a well-traveled street. After 10 blocks passed by, John turned onto an intersecting street, which was lined with brick buildings, some businesses, and small restaurants. Many of the business entrances were locked and covered with signs declaring they were vacant. John got into a long queue of people and patiently waited. Steve was amazed to see its length. This line was three blocks long. Jesus touched Steve again, and time sped up at 100 times the normal rate.
The long line shuffled forward into a food bank and people quickly emerged from its doors, each carrying a bag of groceries. John finally went in, and in little time came out with a bag of groceries. Now, time returned to its normal rate. John shuffled back down the street, toward the city park where his tent was located.
As he walked, a tall, curly-haired man stopped him. “John,” he said, “I haven’t seen you in a while.”
“It’s been a while, Frank.”
“How have you been? What’s been happening in your life since I last saw you?” Frank said, slapping John on the back.
“Times have been tough,” John said. “Both I and My wife have lost our jobs. Her company closed down half of its fast-food restaurants and let her go shortly after I lost my job. We had to move out of the house, and it was foreclosed, and my car quit working, but we sent our kids to live with my brother’s family because they have an extra bedroom.”
“Why didn’t you stay with them?” Frank asked.
“I couldn’t put that burden on my brother. He already has our parents, some nephews, and my younger sister, and her husband staying with him. He has a full house and it’s a small house.”
“So, where are you staying?”
“We’re just 10 blocks from here in a city park,” John replied, pointing in the general direction of the city park.
Feeling a little guilty, Frank back up a half step and said, “I would have you stay with me, but my house is full. I have three nephews and their families, two of my cousins, my brother’s family, and my parents staying with me. So, 24 people—including my wife and I—live under the same roof. Our house is your average three-bedroom, single-story house. I had to install makeshift walls in the basement to provide temporary bedrooms. It’s like a zoo in there.”
“How do you feed them?” John asked.
“They all visit food pantries in our area. But, I’m glad I got a small raise last month. Really, if you have a large home, expect to use it to house your extended family. Times are tough, but hopefully soon the economy will go into a recovery.”
“I hope so too,” John said, glumly.
“My son,” Jesus said to Steve, “now we will go to another part of this town, and show the collapse of society, and you will never forget the destruction that you see. That way, you will be able to warn your family of the coming judgment which I shall bring on America for all its wickedness and rebellion against Me.
“What you have witnessed with these families is the despair and hopelessness that they experience as they find food prices going through the roof, and housing costs soaring. They will experience financial hardships as their jobs begin to fail them, and as food gets more and more costly to purchase. The hardships they experience during this time of soaring prices and increasing inflation will only get worse, because your country is hardening itself greatly against Me. Judgment shall fall on all the land, for I the LORD your God have spoken it. Now, let us go to another location.”
In a split second, Steve was instantly taken to an alley. It was a wider alley than most, and was filled with litter and smashed wooden pallets, but the next thing he noticed about the alley struck him like a hammer. Dozens of homeless people milled about in the alley, filling it from end to end. Some sat on the ground, leaning against the brick walls on either side of the alley. Others were sleeping on old sleeping bags. A small, blue, single-person tent was set up against one wall. Some of the homeless were smoking, but the majority of them huddled around metal barrels filled with burning flammable garbage which produced small, wispy clouds of smoke. Few of them appeared to be truly comfortable. Most wore thin jackets patched with duct tape, and were shivering from the cold.
Steve wanted to do something to help, but he realized that he was seeing a vision. He approached a bearded man sitting beside the blue tent. He was shivering and was trying to keep warm with sheets of newspaper tucked around his thin, red hooded jacket. A faded logo on the front was crumbling and peeling off, indicating he got it used or had or for a long time.
A short time later, he stood up and walked toward the alley exit. Steve felt that he should follow him. The man walked for a block before he reached a city park where was located a large gazebo with a bathroom. He pushed the door open and vanished inside. A short time later, he stepped out.
Jesus touched Steve’s shoulder and time fast-forwarded. At this time rate, the homeless man zipped back down the street and back into the alley, his legs turning into a blur as he walked. Then, time returned to its normal rate of passage. As he entered the alley, the bearded man gasped, staring at a specific spot in the alley. “My tent,” he shouted, “who stole my tent?”
Several people looked at him, curiously, but they soon turned away. One man with a long black beard and a John Deere hat said, “I saw a young man with a white jacket take a blue tent down.”
“Where did he go?” the red-jacket wearer asked.
“I think he went across the street at the far end of the alley. I think he had the tent folded under his right arm and the poles tucked under his left.”
Without saying another word, the red-jacket wearer charged down the alley and darted across the street on the other side just before a white pickup roared through. People hurried out of his way, surprised at the fierceness of his face. Steve ran after him, and found that he could run faster than he normally was able to. The homeless man ran down an alley on the other side of the street, past more homeless people. He turned a corner and caught sight of the thief. A young man with a white sweater was shoving a blue object into a black duffel bag.
“Stop!” the red-jacket wearer roared. “That’s my tent!”
The man with the white sweater drew an object from the duffel bag and aimed it at the homeless man. It was a snub-nose revolver.
“Don’t come any closer,” he said, menacingly.
“You have a tent in your duffel bag, don’t you?” the red-jacket wearer said.
“Yes, but I need it,” the young man said. “I’m homeless too and I think it’s time you shared with your neighbors.”
“I bought that tent just before being kicked out of my trailer. You don’t have a right to take that from me. It’s so cold at this time of year and the homeless shelter is overcrowded. Please, give me back my tent.”
“I’m going to sell it on the black market,” the young man said. “Try and stop me.”
The red-jacketed homeless man dropped his shoulders, turned around, and slowly walked back the way he had come.
The young man shook his head and finished packing the tent into his black duffel bag. Then, placing a strap over one shoulder, he walked away toward a bus stop.
“What is going on here, Lord Jesus?” Steve asked Jesus, who was standing beside him.
“My son,” Jesus said, lovingly, “the homeless man that you witnessed trying to retrieve his stolen tent represents the desperate and needy people that will live in inner cities and suburbs, where there will be much poverty and crime. Homeless people will steal from homeless people, even if what they steal is not worth that much.
“Because times will be so hard for them, they will steal from anyone they can to make a few dollars, here or there. The darkness in your land will increase, and as it does, so also will the crime and poverty increase. For, destruction comes upon those who refuse to seek Me, and who refuse to repent from sin I convict them about. I don’t wish for this to happen, but it happens because of the wickedness of men’s hearts.
“Now, we will view a scene of great devastation that shall come upon your cities and upon your military bases in the land of America, and in the land of Canada. Let us move from here.”
[Footnote: Russians are not the enemy, neither are the Chinese. Both are people just like you and me. But, God will use Russia and China to judge wicked nations, which will not repent from their rebellion against Him.]