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Q. I started reading your articles about the coming financial devastation in the United States back in 2005. Could you please explain how you came to know that the housing market would go bust and we would enter into another possible Great Depression? I would appreciate knowing how you did this so that I can become better prepared for events ahead of us. Whom do we listen to for correct information? Thanks for your help.
Thank you for your endorsement and encouragement. But, there is nothing magical we did to understand the coming problems in America. Due to the nature of our online ministry we try to keep abreast of what's going on in the world. Many of the questions our readers ask have to do with news items and how world events fit into biblical prophecy. This keeps us "on our toes" researching and reading several news sources.
In fact, we recommend our readers do the same. Here is some helpful advice:
Use Several News Sources
Try not to confine your understanding of world events to Fox News or any other single news source. Make sure that you daily go online and read general news stories from BBC News (www.bbc.co.uk), CNN News (www.cnn.com), and one or two Christian sources such as Worthy News (www.worthynews.com) or Bos News Life (www.bosnewslife.com).
Commentators not Analysts
We have very few investigative reporters left in the United States. They don't search out the "truth" or the "facts" anymore. Rather, they are just good looking "readers" who report what is placed in front of them.
So we look for good commentary on news stories, too. For example, John Loeffler from Steel on Steel does a weekly commentary about various issues such as home schooling, healthcare, politics, finances and other things. Listeners may receive weekly CDs or tapes or download his programs from his website.
We also like updates from Dr. Chuck Missler from Koinonia House. He is a tremendous Bible teacher - but he is also a high tech wiz with amazing insights into science and economic affairs.
We always try to "think outside the box." So when everyone was buying and flipping properties, these sources warned that this whole mess would end very badly. We decided to heed the advice of qualified authors.
These include people such as John R. Talbott from UCLA's Anderson School of Management, Richard Duncan who worked as a consultant for the International Monetary Fund, Peter Peterson from the Council on Foreign Relations, and Laurence Kotlifoff, Professor of Economics at Boston University and Research Associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research. All of these professors and scholars warned of future economic devastation.
When we read popular books authored by sensationalist writers, we tend to ignore their advice unless - a big "Unless" - they are backed up by authors with superior qualifications such as those listed above. That is why we listed these particular authors - to show you what kinds of people we follow.
Don't Listen to Any with a "Conflict of Interest"
We don't feel most Christians should be listening to and heeding the advice of people who have a conflict of interest - not even if they are Christians. This would include most financial advisors from brokerage firms and banks.
Sadly, they keep most of us misinformed about what is truly going on with the housing market and the stock market. They are trained to sell mutual funds, stocks, bonds, annuities, keep you out of tangible assets, and advise customers to "stay the course" and "stay in the market for the long haul."
In today's economic climate this isn't necessarily sound advice! Agreed? Their advice benefits the financial firms they represent and gives them hefty commissions for selling these products to you.
Being Good Stewards of God's Money
Finally, we feel that all Christians should attempt to be good stewards of what God has given to us. We must become biblically literate - following God's financial plan for His children.
No Prosperity Promises
God never endorses greed or a "prosperity gospel." He tells Christians to stay out of debt and don't co-sign loans for others. We have written about this extensively in other articles.
Remember that God will not necessarily protect us from financial devastation. But, He does say that He will "supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:19).
That doesn't mean "rich" in green dollars…it means spiritual riches. We are told to "do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share" (1 Timothy 6:18).
We are told to scale down our expectations and to be content with having food and clothing (1 Timothy 6:8).
Even when applied to the former "good times" in 2005 there was and is no room in this verse to "flip properties," go into great debt and live in McMansions with upscale cars in six-car garages!
"For we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world" (1 Tim. 6:7).
Stick to the Bible. It will always steer you in the right direction.
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