The G-20 Summit in Buenos Aires

Fredy Winkler

As the year 2018 ended, the great powers of the world gathered for the G-20 Summit in Buenos Aires. An important topic at all of these summits is global trade and cooperation. While worldwide cooperation should certainly be valued positively, it is questionable whether well-functioning and prosperous world trade should become the standard by which all things are measured.

When Jesus talked about the coming kingdom of God and His return to earth, He compared that time to the time of Lot (Luke 17:28-30). Surprisingly, He didn’t mention the moral decay that held sway in Sodom, but instead He said, “People were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building.”

Aren’t all these things necessary for life, and not evil? Fatefully, we find a parallel verse in Matthew, in connection to the time of Noah, where Jesus said, “…people were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, up to the day Noah entered the ark; and they knew nothing about what would happen until the flood came and took them all away. That is how it will be at the coming of the Son of Man” (Matt 24:38-39). At the end, though, it actually was mankind’s lack of attention to the moral circumstances at the time of Noah, and particularly at the time of Lot, that brought God’s judgment upon them.

At the fashionable gatherings of the great powers of the world, there is never any discussion about moral behavior based on the values found in the Word of God. Today, those values are being ignored and pushed aside, while so-called “Human Rights” or “International Rights” are being established that increasingly contradict God’s Word.

Some topics can’t even be discussed anymore, unless one is willing to commit a criminally- punishable offense or be ridiculed as hopelessly old-fashioned and backward. International rights are not based on biblical values, but rather on the collective values of modern mankind, which are becoming ever more distant from biblical values. However, as long as the economy is flourishing and the Gross National Product is rising, everything appears to be just fine.

God looks at things differently, though. Superficial economic success isn’t the standard by which all things are to be measured, but rather the deep moral values that arise from a God-fearing attitude toward life.

When you look at the industrialized nations today, which mostly comprise the G-20 countries, you’ll see almost unbelievable economic growth. At the beginning of each year, various lists are published where the countries are ranked in order by the highest standards of living. Israel is proud to be climbing higher up those lists. Unfortunately, as the standard of living increases, de-Christianization and forgetting about God mostly increases in those nations, too.

When Jesus talked about how the days before His return would be, He was describing exactly the condition of our present times. That should cause us to be thoughtful and to remember the things that are really important; namely, the things of God’s kingdom. Jesus Himself told us that these things should be of the highest concern to us for our own welfare, as we walk with Him. In Matthew 6:33 He said, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”

With these thoughts in mind, I send you heartfelt greetings for the New Year and wish God’s rich blessings for you. At the same time, I thank you for your support of the work that we’re allowed to do for our Lord.

News from Israel - 01/2019

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