Will TIMES get better?
Plain Truth Magazine
March 1938
Volume: Vol III, No.3
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Will TIMES get better?

The real meaning of the DEPRESSION, and the present RECESSION, according to BIBLE Prophecies!

   WHY have we gone thru the terrible depression of 1929-36? WHAT CAUSED it? What do BIBLE PROPHECIES say about it? — for make no mistake, every phase of it is fully described in the prophecies, as well as the CERTAIN UNTIMATE OUTCOME!
   What about this present slump they are calling a "recession"? Will we come out of it, and start again on the upward march toward prosperity, or has that march been halted, and are we now tumbling rapidly toward total doom?
   To the scoffing Pharisees and Sadducees — the learned men of the time — Jesus said,
   "O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?" (Mat. 16:3).
   Look about you. SOMETHING IS WRONG in the world today! We all know it. Why dodge the facts? Why not look them squarely in the face, and learn what we may do about it?
   We have seen fourteen millions — more than one-fourth — of our workers unemployed! And in the present slump the roll of unemployed has risen again to TEN MILLION!
   We have been — and still are — burdened under a colossal ever-increasing debt, and soaring taxes. We have gone thru a period of years when MILLIONS were in want and dire need, in the midst of the greatest PLENTY ever known! We had OVERPRODUCTION, yet a vast portion of our population in this richest nation on earth WENT HUNGRY. Why was this?


   Some say, "O well, haven't we always had these depressions?"
   Listen to the hard cold FACTS! Never in all history has there been a depression anything like that of 1929-36! Never has the world seen anything like it! Business activity tumbled to a depth twice as far below normal as the most severe previous depression. And it lasted far longer that any severe depression ever lasted before. Again, former depressions were localized. When one nation suffered, others basked in the sunshine of prosperity. This one was WORLD-WIDE! All other nations went down with us, — with one startling exception — PALESTINE!
   Whether we look alone to Uncle Sam, or view the whole world as a unit, we view a very sick man, indeed! The financial and economic structure of every nation has CRASHED! Viewed politically, every major government in the world, with four exceptions, has been overthrown in revolution since the world war! Socially the whole world has fallen into the gutter. Religiously we have degenerated to a Babylon of confusion, contradicting creeds and sects. And in the midst of all this chaos, with two cruel wars raging already, the whole world has started a frenzied race of arming for the WORLD WAR that everyone knows is coming!
   Never before has any generation of men witnessed such a condition! The world today is a very sick patient, indeed!


   But now let us center our attention on the economic phase. We want to know whether times will get better for US, here in the United States.
   First we must look briefly into the real causes for the terrific depression on 1929-36. What happened? What caused it? There have been guesses — many opinions — most of them considering only a few of the minor factors involved. Let us, now, clear away the smoke-screen of confusion, and clearly view the fundamental facts.
   A tremendous political and economic earthquake rumbled thru 40 nations — the aftermath of the world war. These terrific shocks ran from Vienna to Berlin, to London, to Asia, to South America — shaking FORTY other nations into financial and economic collapse before, in 1929, they finally brought acute distress to us.
   And so ONE of two major factors which brought on the depression in our country was this international collapse resulting from the world war. It was the natural result of suspicion, resentment, lust and hatred — wholesale bloodshed on the battlefield — an armistice treaty dictated on motives of greed and selfishness — and the general disarrangement of economic, social and political conditions resulting from four years of world war.
   But there is one other major cause — also a violation of the great fundamental laws of God.


   The outstanding aspect of the Depression has been the unemployment situation — coupled with the lack of money in circulation. And BOTH these phases were strikingly foretold in the prophecies of the Bible.
   In the 8th chapter of Zechariah, the first nine verses give us a picture of the beginning of the next age, when Christ shall have returned in Person to earth, shall have smashed into oblivion the present order, and shall have established peace and prosperity upon earth. Then, in the 10th verse, we read:
   "For before these days" — just before the Second Coming of Christ! — "there is no hire for man, nor any hire for beast; neither was there any peace to him that went out or came in because of the affliction:" — (affliction means TRIBULATION, — "for I set all men every one against his neighbor."
   No hire for man or beast! The man out of a job could find none! Everyone against his neighbor! No peace! What a true description of these end-time conditions we have been witnessing with our own eyes! And, mark it! — this was prophesied to happed just before the Second Coming of Christ! God help us to discern the signs of the times!
   Never before has there been unemployment to match that since 1929. This prophecy can apply to no past time or age. It describes precisely the condition since 1929. But WHY all this unemployment? WHY was money not circulating? WHY such want in the midst of the greatest plenty of all time?


   This is the age of the machine. During the decade, 1920 to 1929, wages increased very little — that is, REAL wages — hours remained the same, but, thru increased use of machines PRODUCTION INCREASED FOUR TIMES AS FAST as during the previous twenty years. We came to a time of PLENTY! There was a great deal more of everything being produced. A man with a machine produces more than a man without it.
   But WHO was to buy more? The workers couldn't — there had not been sufficient increase in wages. Neither could the farmers, as our farmer-readers know too well. The independent business men found competition getting keener, profits smaller — they did not have increased incomes to buy surplus goods produced. Office employes, clerks, "white-collar" workers — they could not buy more, either. Foreign demand was decreasing, and so the surpluses kept accumulating!
   Do you see now what happened? The increased production of things we all wanted, resulting from machines, should have placed increased purchasing power in the hands of consumers to buy what was being produced. Why didn't it? Because — notice carefully! — here's the real CAUSE of much of our troubles — because almost all the gain which accrued went into corporation treasuries! Into the hands of a FEW, instead of the pockets of the vast consuming public! It went to make more rich men than the world ever saw, and to make rich men richer!


   In eight years dividends increased 150%; incomes over $100,000 a year almost 400%; corporate surpluses piled up at a rate of $2,500,000,000 annually: and each year saw the issue of more than one billion dollars in "stock dividends," on which stock it then became necessary to show PROFITS! While grasping nearly ALL of the increased income from mass machine production, and withholding from the laborer's their rightful PORTION of the increase, business leaders urged upon workers THRIFT and SAVING!
   Big business executives were too greedy, too shortsighted, to see that mass production can succeed only if _______ FOR the ____ ______ ______ productions _____ ____ MARKET, and the ______ _____ always from that _____ _______ economics and common sense. Mass production, made possible by the advent of the machine, must also manufacture BUYING POWER, in the hands of the masses. More than five-sixths of all goods and services bought and consumed in the United States are bought by those having wages and incomes UNDER $2,000 per year!
   And so our industrial magnates gathered in the gold created by increasing machine production, failing to realize that their own employes also were their customers. Only the RICH man had the increased income to consume the mounting surpluses — and there were not enough of him!
   Meanwhile, the run of financial collapses abroad threw fear into American capitalists. Then came the stock-market crash of 1929! American investors were thrown into panic. They became afraid to finance new industries, which might have supplied employment to those men being thrown out of work by machines.
   This rising tide of unemployment, brought on at first by installation of machines, then enhanced by withdrawal of capital for financing, reduced buying power. This, and the tightening of credit, in turn sent prices tumbling and reduced the valuations of real property stocks, and business enterprises. And so the rich man's wealth — which, after all, is merely the valuation placed on what he owns — began to shrink. These conditions, in turn, made competition still keener, forcing the installation of still more labor-saving machines in order to lower production costs, throwing still more men out of work. Business concerns, small and large, began to fail and these failures swelled the roll of the unemployed. Round and round in this vicious circle things kept on going — business and industry retrenched more and more, and increasing numbers of businesses failed.
   And so we came into the period of our greatest general WANT, in the midst of our greatest PLENTY! Some even blamed it all on overproduction! But the REAL CAUSE, as the facts make plain, was an inadequate apportioning of the rising income from modern mass machine production! And because our rich men, and business executives, withheld from the workers their rightful portion of the gains from increased production, they finally brought misery and woe upon themselves!
   In the early days of the depression, capitalists became frightened and withdrew their silver and gold from circulation. They took the letter "L" out of the word GOLD, and made it their GOD. And this very god of gold in which they trusted turned upon them! In stark fear they kept it in hoarding. It became rusted and cankered from disuse. And more millionaires committed suicide between 1929 and 1934 than in all previous years combined!


   Now notice how accurately Almighty God was able to paint in THAT detail of this end-time crash of modern Gentile civilization, nineteen hundred years ago.
   The prophecy is in James 5:1-8:
   "Now, come on, you rich! Weep and howl over your hastening miseries! Your hoarded wealth is rotten: and your mantles have become motheaten. Your gold and your silver are rusted through; and their rust shall become an evidence against you, and will consume your flesh. You have heaped up as for a fire for the last days. Listen! The wages of the workmen who have cultivated your estates, fraudulently detained by you, cries; and the complaints of the reapers have entered the ears of the Lord of Hosts." (verses 1-4). This is quoted from the Fenton translation in modern English. Read it also in your own translation of the Bible.
   Never in all history, until after 1929, has the condition described in this prophecy taken place in the world. Here is a vivid picture of the true CAUSE of the unemployment which Zechariah said would come just before the Second Coming of Christ!
   James says it was caused by the rich withholding from the laborers their rightful share of the profits from their labors. And he said it would act, as it did act, as a BOOMERANG, until the rich men would withdraw their gold and silver from circulation, and it became rusty from hoarding! He pictured the calamity that came to many a millionaire — and the numerous millionaire suicides! And, — mark it carefully! He said this would happen in THE LAST DAYS! And, according to verse 8, it was to happen JUST BEFOE THE SECOND COMING OF CHRIST!
   Now this prophecy pictures the Gentile civilization today as a very sick man. Does it tell us the sick man will recover, or will he die? What is the advice to those defrauded laborers among "the BRETHREN?" Listen!
   "Be PATIENT, therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord . . . Be ye also patient: stablish your hearts: for the COMING OF THE LORD DRAWETH NIGH." (v. 6-8).
   This prophecy — the SURE word of prophecy — absolutely CERTAIN to happen exactly as it says — gives no hope for the solution of these troubles and injustices under the present order of civilization! Instead it says the Coming of the LORD is drawing nigh, and warns us to be PATIENT, not to grumble and complain, but wait for the coming of Christ!


   Now let us come to the present "recession," and see whether times will get better.
   We have covered, above, the conditions and their caused, that brought us to the depths of 1933. But apparently we came out of it, started up the road toward prosperity, and now are in a "recession." What happened since 1933?
   When Franklin Rosevelt assumed office as president, on March 4, 1933, he found Uncle Sam, a fellow grown big and rich under this Gentile principle of civilization, a very sick man indeed. And how did Dr. Roosevelt set about to cure his sick patient? Simply in the usual manner of the medical profession — HE ADMINISTERED STIMULANTS.
   The FLOW OF MONEY is the very life-blood of the nation, economically speaking. It compares to the bloodstream of the human body. And like a body whose circulating bloodstream needs to be replenished by natural blood-making foods, the nation needed an increased CIRCULATION OF MONEY to revive it and bring it back to normal.
   Recovery, such as we had, was built on the financing of PROJECTS, thus putting money into circulation. But this was not NATURAL financing — it was done on borrowed government money! Over and above government income! Borrowed from banks, and therefore inflationary funds, making necessary a general rise in prices. It should be called "government-deficit financing." It was not normal, but rather a temporary STIMULANT.
   The method compared exactly to a doctor of medicine injecting artificial stimulants into the blood-stream of a patient whose real NEED is more rich circulating blood derived from NATURAL FOODS. In this manner, Dr. Roosevelt injected into Uncle Sam's economic blood-stream four to five billion dollars a year.
   Business activity, naturally, revived almost in due proportion as the government financing increased. The flow of these inflationary funds into the economic system reached the peak in the summer of 1936. Buy August 5th, 1936 — the exact day of the final ending of the "Times of the Gentiles" when Bible prophecies indicated the ending of the Depression proper — business activity reached normal. On the surface, the Depression was OVER! Temporarily revived by stimulants, the sick man actually FELT well!
   But from the summer of 1936, this government-deficit financing was, of necessity, gradually withdrawn. Such unnatural methods cannot be long continued. And soon business activity began to decline. The sick man began to feel sick again!
   Now just as a sick human being under the conditions described is in need of additional rich red BLOOD, derived from natural foods, — and must have it, if he is to recover, — so Uncle Sam required a large increase in the natural, legitimate circulation of capital of the nation were to be saved. At the time Mr. Roosevelt assumed office, the frightened capitalists had withdrawn their money from circulation. Under stimulation of government-aid financing, private legitimate capital did return slightly to circulation, but only about ONE-SIXTH as much as was necessary for recovery. And when Mr. Roosevelt began to withdraw the in-flow of such vast sums of government-relief money, natural private financing failed to increase further!


   Now can you see what really has happened to our Uncle Sam? As the inflationary infusions ceased, the amount of natural legitimate capital in circulation increased no further. The patient's economic blood-stream had been replenished by only one-sixth the needed supply. The stimulation has now worn off, and our sick man is suffering a very serious RELAPSE! And back-sets are usually more dangerous than the original sickness.
   Uncle Sam now is suffering, in addition of the blood-deficiency from the injurious effects of the stimulants. His budget is unbalanced. He is in debt almost beyond hope of ever getting out!
   This so-called "recession" is decidedly NOT a temporary "rest" or slackening on the high road to permanent prosperity. It is the RELAPSE of a very sick man! But the question still remains: WILL HE YET RECOVER? Can we come out of this relapse? Will times again get better? What will Mr. Roosevelt do now?


   What CAN he do? What would a doctor do to a sick patient under the same conditions? In desperation he would finally INJECT MORE STIMULANTS once more reviving the sick man, prolonging his life as long as possible.
   And the president already has begun that. He has just asked Congress for $250,000,000 for emergency relief — another hypodermic-injection of borrowed government money. He has given up his pledge to balance the budget. One more lavish and extravagant infusion of government money will again revive business activity, and money will again circulate, TEMPORARILY! Again more men will find jobs — times will become better for all of us — FOR A WHILE!
   But — and note this very carefully! Unless the blood-stream of the sick man is replenished NATURALLY, before this next stimulation wears off, the patient will suffer another relapse more critical than the present one, in which he will DIE!
   Unless, in other words, the natural private financing of industry, projects, and business is increased five to six times its present flow, before the stimulation of Mr. Roosevelt's next hypodermic-injection wears off, THIS COUNTRY IS DOOMED, so far as its present system of government, business, and society is concerned!
   But is there any hope for sufficient increase in the flow of natural capital, in time to save us? If this capital is released for circulation, the private capitalists — BIG BUSINESS — must release it. But will they? Alfred P. Sloan, Jr., chairman of the General Motors Corporation, says we are now in this present relapse "simply because of FEAR as to the future of American enterprise!" Gerard Swope, president of General Electric, says: "the main disturbance is due to lack of confidence on the part of business and lack of faith in the future." Capital is STILL AFRAID! Afraid of Roosevelt, and afraid of the future!
   Unless confidence can be restored which is not likely; and unless big business now will voluntarily make a tremendous readjustment in the apportioning of the INCOME from business and industry — the capitalists, executives, and men at the top receiving a SMALLER portion, and the laborers a LARGER PORTION than at present — which is still less likely: then we are, economically, staring CERTAIN DOOM in the face!
   It is easy enough to shout "calamity howler!" It is perhaps more comforting to play ostrich and hide our eyes from these facts. But these are the hard, cold facts that exist! And it will be better for us to FACE THEM!


   Now let us UNDERSTAND what it all means, and see what is the prophesied outcome.
   We live today under a GENTILE civilization. It is a civilization based on principles exactly contrary to the fundamental and eternal laws established by Almighty God. God's eternal spiritual law — LOVE TOWARD OTHERS — the principle of "GIVE" — must form the basis of a successful, happy, prosperous civilization. But in its every phrase, our present civilization is built on the opposite principal of "GET" — of self gain. A man's success in life is measured, not by how much he can GIVE, but how much he can GET.
   It is probable we shall once more be revived by another dose of artificial stimulation. Conditions probably will again improve — on the SURFACE! How long these better times will last, we cannot tell — perhaps six months — perhaps two years or more. Then will come another relapse that would prove FATAL, except that by that time the coming WORLD WAR probably shall have arrived. And then will be marshalled up the last ounce of strength for the death-struggle of this whole civilization that will finally end at ARMAGEDDON — with the SECOND COMING OF CHRIST!
   And when He comes, we shall find the entire present order shattered! The Gentile "image" will then be demolished (Dan. 2:35,44). Present systems of government, business and industry, society, religion, will be SMASHED, and blown away.
   This structure of Gentile civilization is pictured by the metallic "image" of Daniel 2. The entire structure is named after its head, "BABYLON." We, God's own people, today ARE IN BABYLON! — and we do not realize it! Even our forms of religion, with our hundreds of conflicting denominations, have emanated out of BABYLON, and are deceived with an infusion of pagan teachings. Is it God's will for us now to attempt to save this pagan wreckage? Here is God's answer and WARNING, to us today:
   "Babylon the great is fallen is fallen . . . Come OUT of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. Alas, alas, that great city Babylon, that mighty city! For in one hour is thy judgment come. And the merchants of the earth shall weep and mourn over her; for no man buyeth their merchandise any more." (Rev. 18:1-12).
   Every phase of Gentile civilization is DOOMED! Its Politics and forms of government — its commercial and industrial system — its social structure — its paganized "Christianity" which, in its Babylon of conflicting creeds and sects turns the truth of the Bible upside down! God cries out to you, "Come OUT OF HER, my people."
   Soon now the DAY OF THE LORD will strike, with its horrible super-natural plagues, and its world war which will destroy the last vestige of the present Gentile civilization. Jesus Christ will then come and set up THE KINGDOM OF GOD upon the earth — a new government with a new and opposite civilization. He will rule all nations with a stern rod of iron. (Dan. 2: 12-14, 37; Rev. 19:15-16). The fundamental principals of the TEN COMMANDMENTS — God's great spiritual law of love to God and love to neighbor — will become the BASIS for a new order. (Micah 4:1-2) War, at last, will be abolished! (Micah 4:3). Love will finally rule. Then, and only then, will happiness, joy, and material prosperity come permanently to the earth!
   There is NO OTHER HOPE! All signs and events shout to us that "THE DAY OF THE LORD IS AT HAND!" "THE COMING OF THE LORD IS DRAWING NIGH!" The question for each of us is, are we prepared? Are "our lamps full of oil?" Better study, and apply, Matthew 25:1-13, before it is too late! In Jesus Christ, and Him alone, is our hope. Let us pray, "THY KINGDOM COME!"

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Plain Truth MagazineMarch 1938Vol III, No.3