The whole world knows that Ukraine has been in turmoil for several months, and recently the Crimea region of Ukraine was occupied and annexed by Russia. Many Ukrainians have criticized other nations, because they have “helped” with only criticism and mild sanctions against Russia.
The pattern of aggression from Russia resembles Nazi Germany’s expansion at the beginning of World War II and there is real potential for the crisis to become a serious war. The situation is scary, and some Christians have wondered if this is the beginning of the end and if Vladimir Putin is the Antichrist.
So should we be afraid?
There are at least two things we should know:
- War is a project and successful projects always have deep roots in planning. The plans for this Russian conquest project are probably larger than the seizure of Crimea. Much more is planned and this is not a good time to be living near Russia.
- The Bible predicts where this project will go. Bible prophecy often predicts the future by showing how humans always behave. The past is the future in the Bible. For example, we were told 2000 years ago that there were already many antichrists among us (1 John 2:18) and “many deceivers are entered into the world … this is … an antichrist” (2 John 1:7). The final great Antichrist will be nothing new. He (or she) will be corrupt like all the others, but with the power to dominate the whole world.
God shows the common pattern for all rulers, including Vladimir Putin, who begin “conquering and to conquer” (Rev ch 6). Wars of expansion happen in four stages, and the same pattern applies to Russia.
- The White Horse: Nations begin to conquer. In 1938 the Nazis did something amazing, they balanced the German budget. Moderate taxes paid the annual expenses of the nation, and the Nazis were heroes. But they also developed weapons and armies, and the cost of military expansion was outside the balanced budget. The problem was easily fixed by conquering others and stealing from them, and so World War II began. In our time, the recent Olympic games in Sochi cost Russia 50 billion dollars, the conquest of Crimea cost about three billion, and investor losses to the Russian economy are in the tens of billions and growing. Putin’s glorification of Russia is too expensive for the Russians.
- The Red Horse: Nations fight back. Napoleon dominated Europe in his time, and then he attacked Imperial Russia ‘because it was there.’ The Russian army, and the Russian winter took a terrible toll on Napoleon’s forces, and he retreated in defeat. Push-back always happens. In our time the Ukrainians are building their army so they can fight back. Others are using economic pressure, and Russia is beginning to suffer.
- The Black Horse: National economies run out of resources. War is always too expensive. When France constructed Fortress Louisbourg in Acadia (Nova Scotia) the king of France learned the cost and ran to his balcony and said, ‘at that price I should see it from here!’ Later France lost the war, and surrendered the overpriced fortress. Soon after that the French people suffered a lack of food, and their queen said ‘if they don’t have bread, let them eat cake.’ They chopped her head off. In our time, if Russian conquest becomes war, resources will become scarce. Gasoline prices are already rising.
- The Pale Horse: Death and hell dominate the Earth. The Bible says one quarter of the Earth will die in the final war. If the Ukraine crisis is not stopped by intervention, we know where it will end. We don’t know if this will be the final great war, but human behavior is consistent. Almost 50 million died in World War II.
Even those who don’t believe in God know this pattern is always true. It’s a popular theme in movies. Our nations, corporations, denominations, organizations, projects and Boy Scout troops are always close to corruption and failure. The study of business failures is called Darwinian Economics.
We know who we really are, and I know who I am. It’s easy to identify the corruption in this world, because we are experts on the subject. The greatest project in my life started when I saw the corruption of the world, in me. I eventually decided to step off the ride and start a new life, my personal Jesus project. I am a Christian because I didn’t like the corruption in me. If you are not convinced to follow Jesus, I recommend that you follow the news and read Revelation chapter six, near the end of the Bible. The truth can set you free. And the truth may be coming down on us soon.