Dissatisfaction breeds movement. A dissatisfied person is always on the move. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence, and all. Isaiah 17:12 likens the sinful and the restless to tides and seas and rushing waters. "Alas, the uproar of many peoples Who roar like the roaring of the seas, And the rumbling of nations Who rush on like the rumbling of mighty waters!" He is even more succinct in verse 57:20: "But the wicked are like the tossing sea, For it cannot be quiet, And its waters toss up refuse and mud."
In the ten years before I was saved, I spent it traveling over a large part of the world. I traveled in every kind of conveyance; car, Volkswagen camper, ice breaker ferry, yacht, plane, train, motorcycle. I went to nations in the north and south and east and west. I was looking for something, because my spirit was not quite settled. That is because I didn't have Jesus.
One of the ideas I'd had while traveling was to look for another place to live. Maine wasn't cutting it anymore. It was expensive, it was cold, it was unfriendly. To quote an old ballad, I wanted to be where the weather suited my clothes. Florida of course, was a possibility, as well as Texas. I also went to Canada, Mexico, Ecuador, Italy, France, England, Scotland, Bahamas, Monaco, and San Marino. I was looking, looking, searching for a place to call home. Ecuador offered possibilities, as well as the Bahamas and Italy. For a long time, the grass was greener.
In times of severe economic hardship, the tendency to search out another country to call home is compelling. The more people are dissatisfied here they want to go there. To and fro. ( "But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the book until the end of time; many will go back and forth, and knowledge will increase." Daniel 12:4) People looking to escape government intrusion, or for a better exchange rate, or a rural or seaside peacefulness they don't find in America are all quoted reasons I've heard to ditch America. Since times have been sooooo hard, the number of people looking to become expatriates, or expats for short, has increased tremendously, according to this news article:
Americans leaving US in record numbers
"Ever dream of leaving it all behind and heading out of America? You’re not the only one. A new study shows that more US citizens than ever before are living outside of the country. According to statistics from the US State Department, around 6.4 million Americans are either working or studying overseas, which Gallup says is the largest number ever for such statistic. The polling organization came across the number after conducting surveys in 135 outside nations and the information behind the numbers reveal that this isn’t exactly a longtime coming either — numbers have skyrocketed only in recent years."
Apparently choosing to become an expatriate is on a lot of peoples' minds. Michael T. Snyder asked the following question on his Economic blog:
What Is The Best Country In The World For Americans To Relocate To In Order To Avoid The Coming Economic Collapse?
"Millions of American citizens have already left the United States in search of a better life. As the economy continues to crumble and as our society slowly falls apart, millions of others are thinking about it. [T]hings have gone downhill so dramatically in the United States that picking up and moving to a foreign nation is being increasingly viewed as a viable alternative by millions of Americans. A lot of people have decided that they simply do not want to be in the United States when the excrement hits the fan. So what is the best country in the world for Americans to relocate to in order to avoid the coming economic collapse?"
The internet forums are abuzz with queries like these. Not just the conspiracy forums, but the vacation boards, and the financial forums are all talking about bug out bags, stocking up, and relocating. In normal times, these are valid bases from which to make a life change. But these are not normal times. Nor will they ever be again.
We are on the downward slide to decidedly NOT normal, but the people seeking relocation and expatriation don't know that. A person can stock up, move, and hunker down all they want, but the times ahead are times where God will be directly intervening in the world. His eye misses nothing and no matter where you hide, He will find you, and His tribulation will find you. Amos 8:12 comes to mind also. "Men will stagger from sea to sea and wander from north to east, searching for the word of the LORD, but they will not find it." Right now they are looking for a better exchange rate, but when the rubber really hits the road, they will finally wake up to the fact that they need the Word of the Lord. They will search everywhere but not be able to find it.
In Revelation 6:15-17 we read of the reaction of the peoples after the world's greatest earthquake.
"Then the kings of the earth, the princes, the generals, the rich, the mighty, and every slave and every free man hid in caves and among the rocks of the mountains. They called to the mountains and the rocks, “Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?”
They know it is the LORD. The understand that it is His wrath. The perceive that there is nowhere they can hide, not even the deepest cave or under the rocks. There will be no bank account, no currency exchange, no stocked up basement that will save them. His wrath will fall on America, and Ecuador, Italy, Canada, Mexico, everywhere. There is no fleeing from the justice of God.
In Amos 9:2-3 we have a wrathful God pronouncing judgment on Israel, promising its destruction (but as always, not without blessing by the end).
"Though they dig down to the depths of the grave, from there my hand will take them. Though they climb up to the heavens, from there I will bring them down. And though they hide themselves in the top of Carmel, I will search and take them out thence; and though they be hid from my sight in the bottom of the sea, thence will I command the serpent, and he shall bite them:"
Barnes Notes explains, "Through its caves (some say 1,000, some 2,000) with which it is perforated, whose entrance sometimes scarcely admits a single man; so close to each other, that a pursuer would not discern into which the fugitive had vanished; so serpentine within, that, "10 steps apart," says a traveler, "we could hear each others' voices, but could not see each other." "Carmel is perforated by a hundredfold greater or lesser clefts. Even in the garb of loveliness and richness, the majestic Mount, by its clefts, caves, and rocky battlements, excites in the wanderer who sees them for the first time, a feeling of mingled wonder and fear. A whole army of enemies, as of nature's terrors, could hide themselves in these rock-clefts." (photo source)
The caves have long been known to be a preferred location for robbers and fugitives. Perhaps it is these very caves the Revelation verse is alluding. In the time of the Tribulation, after the church is raptured, every person on earth until or unless they are saved, is a fugitive. They will be hunted by Jesus in His great wrath and zeal for punishment. No cave, no matter how serpentine or deep, will allow any fugitive to escape.
In the Tribulation, there will be no such thing as an expatriate.
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