As I wrap up the final, final edit of my mystery novel and set off on a new venture into the world of the dystopian (though I prefer the term pre-last days), I find myself wondering if nations are ever given second chances by our Creator. It seems to me that each of the world’s predominant nations has endured long cycles of prosperity and poverty. Government have gone from defending the people to using them as resources to fund their own utopian fantasies.
But even that isn’t quite fair. There are no utopias on Earth. There are no truly free nations left. All of us, no matter where we live, are under some sort of government rule. None of us can simply decide to stop paying taxes, for example. We are forced to do so. While we are still “free” in other aspects, we are only as free as our government determines is acceptable for the well-being of society as a whole.
Perhaps then, this is our judgment. All nations will struggle, continuously it seems, between the acceptable limits of freedom determined by their leadership. All nations have different limits. Truth be know, we operate in a very narrow window of limits established by the whims of government and society. Though the window of freedom drifts over time, the change is hardly noticeable to a single generation. Invariably, I would argue, all windows of freedom drift toward a socialist, even communist society. I’ve yet to hear of a nation that went the other direction, toward limited government and greater freedom for the individual.
We are as a man forever paddling his canoe upstream. He may enjoy moments of progress, but eventually the current will win over. And hasn’t the current always been toward a society that would prefer a chosen few to absorb their risks, make their decisions, level the playing field? I believe it to be so. If anyone can argue otherwise, I’m open to listen.
And there again lies our judgement. God need not cast fire from heaven upon nations who reject His grace. He need only turn His back and allow us to choose our own path. It may be the worst possible judgement He can bestow. Fallible men choosing other fallible men to determine their fate. God help us!
This brings me back to my question: do nations receive second chances after rejecting God? As far as I know, Israel is the only such nation. Second, third, and fourth chances. I don’t believe it is because Israel is deserving of such favor. But God has chosen her as an instrument to achieve His purposes. And no great favor it is. Israel has certainly suffered more over her long history than any nation on Earth.
But what of the rest of us? What of America? It is my opinion that a nation cannot receive a second chance unless she is broken, reduced back to her basic elements. What are those basic elements? Good question. Perhaps a frightening question. And it is one I intend to explore, through my novels, over the next few years.