A classic article from July 1985

The citizens chafe impatiently at the least touch of authority, and at length, they cease to care even for the laws, written or unwritten. And this is the fair and glorious beginning out of which springs tyranny.

“The excessive increase of anything causes a reaction in the opposite direction. Dictatorship naturally arises out of democracy, and the most aggravated form of tyranny and slavery out of the most extreme form of liberty.”

Does that sound like our society today? It was written by Socrates 2,000 years ago. But, alas, human nature has not changed through all these centuries. According to Socrates, dictators come into power through national emergencies.

In the past, the wrong kind of leader has often risen to power through the misguided hopes of desperate people. It does not take a large political organization to catapult the men with the answers into power.

For example, Hitler started with only a handful of men. He skillfully and deceitfully set the stage for his own rise to power. Does this look and sound familiar?

Each of history’s dictators has been a champion of some particular cause that was popular with the people then. A dictatorship in its extreme form is total government. All freedoms are removed from the people, and every aspect of life comes under the scrutiny of some bureaucracy.

Some dictators have been placed in elected offices only to illegally seize and hold on by force to additional power and authority. Then their own decree and elections become a thing of the past.

Now the question: Has this happened in the United States of America? We have seen these possibilities fall into the hands of a dictator.

We know that one day, soon, a world leader will rise to power whom the Bible calls the Antichrist. His prestige and political power will be worldwide, and he will seek to establish a world government. According to Daniel 11:21, he will not be elected to his office:

“And in his estate shall stand up a vile person, to whom they shall not give the honour of the kingdom: but he shall come in peaceably, and obtain the kingdom by flatteries.”

Is it possible to imagine that the office of the president of the United States could be filled by one who will usurp the authority of the office? Well, it is possible to have both a president and a vice president whom the American people do not elect. It happened in the mid-1970s. Can it and will it happen again without the consent of the American people?


The following is an editorial comment that appeared in newspapers across America just a few years ago: “We are overpopulated, uncivilized, divided, corrupted, and bewildered. Destitute of faith and terrified of skepticism. War, crime, pollution, racial tension, political cynicism, and pessimism are our companions.”

The spectacle of this great nation that does not know its own mind is as humiliating as it is dangerous. America’s allies worldwide are deeply concerned about what is happening to this country and curiously question the ability of the United States to deal effectively with its significant problems. Many years ago, the image America projected to the world was one of a colossally powerful, vibrantly alive, fantastically rich and benevolent giant who could confidently be trusted to lead the world through future challenges.

However, in the process of time, that image has become tarnished, dented, chipped, smashed and broken. Our new image around the world is one of a lumbering, stumbling, bumbling, grumbling dolt who staggers from one crisis to another through a blinding haze of fear and indecision. It is one of a dissipated giant who throws crumbs (bought with borrowed money) to his neighbors in order to keep them out of his hair while he engages in a mammoth orgy of crime and violence.

It is the image of a terribly sick giant who, having exchanged his God-given Christian heritage for a bowl of atheistic, socialistic pottage, has lost his sense of destiny and purged his mind of any trace of morality.

J. Edgar Hoover once said: “Whether we like it or not, the morals to which we subscribe as a people are vital for our survival as a free nation. Concerned citizens are beginning to wonder if we may not be in grave danger of rejecting those things which are the source of our nation’s strength.

“Are we entering an age that must end in anarchy? Are we rearing a generation almost wholly lacking in self-discipline? In short, do we deserve our magnificent inheritance? Are we good enough to preserve the great republic we have pledged our allegiance to? Will we retain the capacity to do our duty as Americans?”

President Lincoln also clearly understood that the only real danger facing the American nation as it marched on into the future was the corrupting of its people, or what has been called “the subverting of the American spirit.”

When the American nation entered the 20th century, it was basically sound. It throbbed with life and vitality. Most people were deeply patriotic, loved their country and lived by a definite standard of morality. They respected their neighbor, and their family was held in high esteem. Men were masculine, women were feminine, and both sexes were content with their natural roles and God-given responsibilities.

In the years since then, all of these pillars of a sound society have been eroding away, and we have now reached the point where the average person is left without a set of clearly defined principles by which to run his life. They are left floundering on the quicksand of doubt, fear and indecision.

As one person put it, “A nation which stands for nothing will fall for anything.” The result? The fruit is all around us for everyone to see. Look at any phase or facet of society. You will see chronic diseases gnawing away relentlessly at the nation’s vitals.

The true state of a nation is reflected in its leading institutions in education and in the churches, literature and music, government and home. It is also mirrored in the financial mess where the government and most individuals find themselves.


What went wrong? Who has turned the American dream into an American nightmare? What has come over us? What cause for the effects which we see all around us in the world?

Our homes and families are falling apart with blind, shattering rapidity. Our schools and colleges spawn alienated, frustrated, V.D.-infested pill-popping citizens whose lives are wrapped up in doing their own thing.

Our courts force law-abiding citizens to lock themselves up in their homes and businesses while criminals can roam the streets almost at will to terrorize the populace.

Governments grow while they tax and spend, and the nation groans under an extraordinary, mind-boggling national debt. Throughout all strata of society, lying, deceit, graft, corruption and hypocrisy are the order of the day.

Warnings were ignored. Over the past 20 years, some men have tried to warn us of our approaching dilemma, but nobody seemed willing to listen. The politicians certainly would not listen, and the American public wanted to stick their heads in the sand like the proverbial ostrich, hoping the problem would go away. Many preachers during the 1960s cried from their pulpits for national revival. When the Supreme Court in 1964 eliminated prayer and Bible reading from American classrooms, preachers everywhere became alarmed. We tried to warn our nation of the result, but no one would listen. We were accused of being right-wing extremists crying “wolf” when there was no wolf.

Across our nation, preachers began to establish Christian schools while, at the same time, others were becoming involved with conservative political organizations. Bus ministries began to pick up millions of children across America and bring them to Sunday School to salvage our youth’s young minds from the humanistic, socialistic values they were being taught five days a week.

But, alas, the nation would not listen, for most people were too busy going to the lake on Sunday instead of recognizing that there was a God in Heaven who was concerned with the affairs of the human race.


For years conservative organizations have begged our politicians not to overspend our nation’s budget. But their pleas fell on deaf ears. Now the country staggers under the weight of a tremendous national debt.

It is difficult to look back in our history at those who refuse to remove us as Americans from a place of danger to a safer place. They are willing to risk putting us in a very bad result. Here’s just one example. Back in 1973, the Arab nations began to raise the price of oil, which caused long lines at the gas pumps in every major city in America. Gerald Ford assessed the energy crisis at that time. He said. “It is difficult to discuss the energy problem without lapsing into doomsday language. The danger is clear. It is severe. No one can foresee the extent of the damage or the end of the disastrous consequences if nations refuse to share nature’s gifts for the benefit of all mankind.”

At this time, our politicians promised that in the years ahead, our nation would set upon a course to become energy independent of foreign oil.

The Alaska pipeline was finished in 1977, and oil began to flow into the United States from the far regions of the north. Did our leaders follow through with their promises? That oil reaches our west coast from the Alaska pipeline and has been and is being loaded onto ships and exported to other countries. Meanwhile, our nation has been allowed to continue its dependency on foreign oil.

Watch out, America! Get ready! It seems history is doomed to repeat itself. The collapse of our God-given and American freedoms are at stake.

I pray you are a child of God. If not, your time is very short!

J.R. Church

J.R. Church

Prophecy in the News Founder

In November of 1979, Prophecy in the News launched its worldwide ministry from Oklahoma City, founded by J.R. Church, a Texas pastor with a heart and a vision for Bible prophecy, as well as reaching the world with the Gospel.

Church’s colleagues in the ministry, Noah Hutchings and Dr. David Webber at Southwest Radio Church, helped introduce J.R. Church to the fans of their far-reaching radio ministry and provided support as he built his prophecy ministry from its Oklahoma City base.