HH Sir Godfrey Gregg D.Div
The party in the king’s palace in Babylon ran late into the night. The food was abundant and the wine flowed freely. Drunkenness and lack of judgment reigned. Just like how the world is today and in the smallest of the nation, the same overflow is taking place. Many churches, groups and organizations have banquets under the disguise of Christianity with the same effect as in those days of Babalon.
Out of nowhere the fingers of a man’s hand appeared and began writing on the wall of the room. Intoxicated by the splendour of the king’s palace, the lords and ladies present had no idea of the danger of the moment. Yes, the many members of the church present and the Christians at the behest of the king saw the writings but didn’t understand.
Look around at today’s world. Are we big enough or great enough to rise to the challenges of our time? I doubt this very much unless Christ is the center of this operation and the Master of the house.
The king and all those present became so frightened they broke out in a sweat and staggered at the sight of a disembodied floating hand that was writing out a coded message on the plastered wall. When finished, the words Mene Mene Tekel Upharsin stood in stark relief before the eyes of the astonished guests.
What was this strange message? What did it mean for the king of Babylon? What does it mean for our world today? What does it mean for St. Vincent and the Grenadines? What does it mean for America? Or for the wider Caribbean Islands? What does it mean for the Spiritual Baptist Faith or for any other church?
A world in confusion
Look around at today’s world. Are we big enough or great enough to rise to the challenges of our time? Consider what is facing the nations. Dictators are on the rise in every form, fashion and size. In politics, the church and in countries one never thought it would happen. Yes, they come in many different forms and fashions.
The Middle East is aflame. Iran is developing nuclear weapons. Their goal will continue in spite of a recent treaty promising that “Iran’s nuclear program will be exclusively peaceful” and that “Iran will under no circumstances seek, develop, or acquire nuclear weapons.” With all the sanctions in place, the continue to work underground to enhance their programs. So in my opinion, what is peaceful?
This is the same nation whose leaders incite its people to chant “Death to Israel” and “death to America.” Its fundamentalist Shiite Muslim leadership sponsors terrorism throughout the Middle East in Syria, Iraq and Yemen. It is not only confined there in the Middle East but has spread its wings even in the Caribbean as a dead seed planted and waiting for the right opportunity to surface. I warn you that it will be too late, for sudden destruction will be on the steps of the leaders.
No leader in the Middle East believes this recent agreement with Iran will lessen the tensions of the region. Clear-thinking leaders believe Iran will continue plans to develop weapons of mass destruction—and when successful, it will use them to further its apocalyptic mission. It is not a matter of if but when. Brethren the handwriting is on the wall. “Some see and some saw”. In other words, who have eyes to see will see. It brings me to the question as to where the watchman is standing? Is he awake and watching, or is he asleep? If he is not watching I believe the pleasures of this world have blinded his vision and has failed to perform his duties while the women have usurped the authority and there are much crisis and confusion in and around the churches.
Europe is going through a very rough period. The European Union has faltered in its plan to grow an ever-closer utopian union among the nations of Europe, a region that has seen so much war and strife in the last century. The goal of peace through economic and social cooperation has fallen on a critical moment with the economic instability of Greece. EU leaders will be forced to correct this flaw—if not now, then at some point in the future. We have seen the breakaway of the United Kingdom from the Union and I am wondering what next for her? England is trying to spread its tentacles in the West Indies recruiting young men for their military and I believe that they are preparing something that is kept secret, but we will soon have the interpretation of that secret memo. It is time for us to open our eyes and watch for ourselves. We are not sure where the watchmen in the Spiritual Baptist faith are located, but there is no warning? This voice through http://www.mysticalorderinc.org is being sounded and I urge you to take heed.
The world is under threat from the Coronavirus known as (Covid 19) and has reached to the level of a pandemic declared by the World Health Organization (WHO). It is still uncertain where this virus started or they do not want to share the information with the public. It will appear that no country will escape this scourge. The handwriting is truly on the wall and God is in charge.
We can gain great insight into what these major world events mean by understanding the story of the handwriting on the wall. Just as God was moving among the nations to rearrange the power structure 25 centuries ago, so He is moving to accomplish His purpose in history among the nations today. There is a higher, spiritual purpose behind today’s headlines.
But are we—you and I—big enough people to rise to the challenge of the day? Are we big enough to see the handwriting on the wall of our times and listen to its meaning? We live in very serious times. We have to be able to read the handwriting on the wall just like Daniel did on that night in Babylon so long ago.
Are we willing enough to stand up and say that right is right and the wrong is wrong? Are you willing to stand up to bullies and invoke the Name of Jesus? Are you willing to say to those in authority that they have failed us? You can but is a decent way that will not further erode the fabric of our society.
The night the lights went out in Babylon
The biblical book of Daniel is a story of kingdoms at war during one of the most crucial periods of world history. The prophet Daniel lived at a moment of great change and upheaval. He was an intelligent young Jew taken captive to Babylon during one of Nebuchadnezzar’s invasions. He found himself promoted to a key role in the court of the king of Babylon, capital of the Chaldean Neo-Babylonian Empire that spread across the Middle East.
Daniel spent his adult life working in the courts of the power of two kingdoms—the kingdom of Babylon and later the kingdom of Persia. God gave Daniel the gift of understanding to interpret dreams and prophecies and even the strangest of sights—the handwriting of a floating hand that appeared in the banquet room of Belshazzar, the last Chaldean king of Babylon. I want you to notice the writing on the wall was during the banquet. With all the manifestations in the banquet, none of them understood what was taking place in the very room they were earlier performing.
When we look at the events of that night we witness God’s gift to this devout and righteous prophet, a man who stood before great kings and testified of the glory and majesty of the God of heaven. Daniel’s example shows us what kind of person it takes to rise to the challenge of great moments in history. Here we see the power of the Spirit of God moving not only on the face of the earth, directing the course of nations, but in the noble life of one who humbly seeks to do God’s will.
On that fateful night, a hand appeared from nowhere and wrote on the wall of the king’s banquet room in front of hundreds of drunken guests. When the king saw this, Hear what Daniel had to say about that moment observing the king. “Then the king’s countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another.” (Daniel 5:6).
He cried out for fear and lack of understanding, he needed an answer immediately: “The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. And the king spake, and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whosoever shall read this writing, and shew me the interpretation thereof, shall be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about his neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom.” (Daniel 5:7)—third because Belshazzar was second, coregent with his father Nabonidus, who was away.
None of Belshazzar’s trusted counsellors was able to interpret the handwriting on the wall. None of the banquet operators was ready to reveal the mystery handwriting on the wall. When God is at work the enemy is
Then in walked the queen—this being evidently either his mother (wife of Nabonidus and daughter of Nebuchadnezzar) or his grandmother (the widow of Nebuchadnezzar). She said to him: “There is a man in your kingdom who has within him the spirit of the holy gods. During Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, this man was found to have insight, understanding, and wisdom like that of the gods. Your predecessor, the king—your predecessor King Nebuchadnezzar—made him chief over all the magicians, enchanters, astrologers, and fortune-tellers of Babylon.
“This man’s name is Daniel … he has exceptional ability and is filled with divine knowledge and understanding. He can interpret dreams, explain riddles, and solve difficult problems. Call for Daniel, and he will tell you what the writing means” (Daniel 5:11-12).
Daniel interprets the vision
Daniel was called in. He was offered a great reward of honour, wealth and status for interpreting the handwriting. What Belshazzar did not understand was that Daniel was not a man who could be flattered or influenced by these symbols of power.
Daniel had stood before this king’s predecessor, Nebuchadnezzar. Daniel had actually warned that prior king—a powerful and temperamental dictator—that if he did not humble himself before the God of heaven he would become like an ignorant beast of the field, reduced to eating grass with the barest scraps of clothing on his body. This happened, and Belshazzar knew it did. But Belshazzar had not learned the lesson.
Daniel told Belshazzar: “But hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou, and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not glorified:” (Daniel 5:23)
Belshazzar was not big enough for the challenging times of his day. That very night the armies of his enemies captured mighty Babylon. A new empire replaced Babylon at the top of the nations. This was foretold by God through the prophet Isaiah about 150 years earlier. Daniel was at this moment announcing to the Babylonian king that the God of heaven was in charge of history and was setting a new kingdom at the head of all the others.
What did the handwriting on the wall say? What should we learn from its message? And what is the message we need to take with us today?
We are living in a period of great change in today’s world. Nations and power structures are realigning. Weaknesses are being exposed. Cultural shifts are taking place that is shocking to many. Where is it leading, and what does it mean? Brethren look at our political systems and understand what is happening in our countries. There is a great shift or movement taking place before our very eyes and in our times. Brethren, the Lord is not joking and we are to watch unto prayer. In our church the message is clear and the fight for power is very evident in some congregation. I stand firm and I will not be shaken, firm as a Rock the Truth will stand. You may think that you have overthrown someone, but your behaviour tells another story.
An ancient message for today’s world
In the night’s drunken revelry, Belshazzar had ordered the gold and silver vessels once used for a holy purpose in God’s temple in Jerusalem brought into the room. These cups and bowls were then used as props in a mockery and affront to God. There is a point where God determines a culture has gone too far to allow it to go on. Oh hallelujah, brethren before your very eyes in the church that you call the “House of God” you are desecrating the place of worship.
When the hand appeared, it wrote the following words on the wall of the banquet room:
Mene, Mene, Tekel, Upharsin.
Daniel turned to the king and gave the interpretation of the inscription:
- “MENE: God has numbered your kingdom, and finished it;
- TEKEL: You have been weighed in the balances, and found wanting;
- PERES [peres is the singular form of upharsin ]: Your kingdom has been divided, and given to the Medes and Persians.”
These words were a listing of weights and monetary units. God was numbering, weighing and dividing out units of money in a graphic display of displeasure with the greatest empire of the time. Babylon, the great city and kingdom, a fierce and violent nation, had been examined by God and found unworthy of continuing. It was brought down and given to a new kingdom, that of the Medes and Persians. Is there another Babylon or Mystery Babalon on earth today and is in a similar situation? Maybe we should look into the affairs of the countries we are living in these days.
Have you noticed what was taking place within the halls of the banquet room? There was a division, numbering, weighing and dividing of units. Who will get what and where you will go. So like today gifts are given out within the church and on the “mourning ground”. What purpose is it serving and who are the beneficiaries? Serving God becomes a family affair and decisions are to benefit the family and God is excluded.
Why was money used here as a symbol of examination and judgment? It was appropriate. Babylon was a wealthy nation that traded across the world of its day. Wealth and money had flowed into the city, making it the centre of international finance. Babylon was a city that saw money flow into it like great gushing streams of water. The prophet Jeremiah described it as a city “ O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come, and the measure of thy covetousness.” (Jeremiah 51:13). I am urging my fellow countrymen to pay particular attention to this passage and see where God is leading you. Something is happening and soon it will unfold itself in our midst. The handwriting is on the wall and God is not going to hold back His judgement.
The Babylonian Empire was finished as a world power. Its influence would continue to flow through history and remains very much with us today. But at this moment there was a change of power. Understand what God is doing when the messenger comes forth and look for the shift. Look for the movement and know that God is working according to His word for this hour.
Even then the king did not understand. Belshazzar commanded Daniel be clothed with purple, the symbol of royalty, and a chain of gold be put around his neck and to be proclaimed the third ruler in the kingdom. It was an empty gesture by a king who was completely out of touch with reality.
That very night the king was killed, and the Medo-Persian Empire took over. Babylon had been weighed and found wanting. My God and I hope that those reading this message will understand what God is telling us. O how the mighty have fallen. Luke 1:52-53 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.53 He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.
Can we read the handwriting on the wall for our times? Can we discern what is happening among the nations of today’s world and see God’s hand moving through history? Nations and regions of the world are in turmoil. The danger is on the horizon. The cultural shifts occurring in America and other parts of the world should cause grave concern. Do we have what it takes to stand up—to rise to the occasion and meet these challenges?
I am warning you and that you take note for Russia is no longer sleeping, Iran has awakened and is ready for the challenge. Syria is coming back to life and the whole Middle East is going to face off in battle because some misunderstood leader is setting the trap for him to fall into. Where is Israel in all of this preparation and what will be her role in the aftermath?
The handwriting is on the wall today
In many ways, life is pretty good for most in the Western world. Americans enjoy the highest standard of living ever known. The poorest among us live like kings compared to people in other parts of the developing world. And yet even in the midst of the world’s wealthiest period we have pockets of people who lack the basics and suffer from poverty. The social and economic problems we face in America and other nations are real in how they affect people’s lives.
We see racial strife erupting in the major cities of America, reflecting deep-seated anger stemming from a social structure that is not balanced or in line with the values of godly biblical teaching. The same thing is happening in the small developing nations, even in St. Vincent and the Grenadines it appears that a dynasty is established and the wealth is centralized in certain pockets of the nation. Not forgetting countries like Russia, Canada and the United Kingdom. Yes, we have the poor at all times but the wealth is concentrated in a very small pocket of these economies. God is weary and cannot stand the injustice and soon the entire governmental structures will come to a halt or just collapse. He is God and besides Him, there is no other.
There is a reason for this. We as a society have cut ourselves off from God. We have not wanted to keep God and His laws in the centre of public life. There has been a steady erosion of biblical values and teachings for more than 60 years.
If you want to understand the reason behind the major events of recent times, the breakdown in whole segments of society and the headlong rush into a moral meltdown, look no further than three key events shaped by the United States Supreme Court. America’s highest judicial body has issued landmark rulings in three areas that reflect the country’s decline in the eyes of the God of heaven.
In the early 1960s, the Supreme Court issued two rulings regarding prayer and Bible readings in public schools. In the first, the justices ruled that official prayer had no place in public education. A year later, the court declared school-sponsored Bible reading and recitation of the Lord’s Prayer unconstitutional. However, there is a different picture in the Caribbean because the Islands foundations are built on the backbone of Jesus Christ. Bearing in mind that the Caribbean Islands were a part of the Old Britan whose country is built on the true principles of ONE GOD the creator of this world and it is enshrined in the various constitutions as a protected right. Caribbean people will not sit by and allow any government to take away their religious freedom.
While the decisions didn’t rule for or against personal expressions of faith, they were part of a period of cultural change that continues to this day. The court ruled on a matter of great spiritual importance for a nation blessed with a unique place in the world—a place made possible by the God of heaven.
Then in 1973, the Supreme Court decided another significant landmark case, Roe v. Wade. This case legalized abortion in all 50 states. It sanctioned the taking of an unborn life, labelling murder a right guaranteed by the 14th amendment to the Constitution. In the Caribbean, we do not have this law. In my opinion, it is murder to destroy the life of an unborn child. There are others who will differ with my opinion and I accept their sense of reasoning. The Lord giveth and it is Him alone has the rights to take the life of another. Do you see where the world is heading and the consequences we will eventually face later on in life?
Since 1973 more than 10 million abortions have been legally performed in the United States alone. This is wrong but the laws of the land permit it but in the eyes of God it is sin to take a life. When a government does not protect its unborn life, it deserves the judgment of the God of life. That judgment is coming, and sooner than we might think! Yes the handwriting of God is on the walls of America and the world. Oh, my Caribbean countries, St. Vincent and the Grenadines be prepared and stand ready for the time is at hand and the day of the Lord is nearer than we can ever think.
The third of these rulings by the Supreme Court came in June 2015 under the Presidency of the well-beloved Barack Obama with the legalization of same-sex marriage. In this ruling, the court made up a sweeping right that same-sex marriage is guaranteed by the Constitution. Let’s be plain about this highly charged issue: The United States Supreme Court has stepped beyond its temporal bounds into the spiritual realm of defying the God who created man, woman and marriage. I believe that marriage is between a man and a woman from the foundation of the world and God does not change and it is still the same today, as it was yesterday and will be forever after you read this message.
The court decreed that the divine institution of marriage as defined in the Bible as a sacred union between a man and woman—the only biblical definition of marriage—is superseded by its human reasoning and judgment. The human law now sanctions the marriage as a relationship that God never intended—in fact, one that He in fact specifically forbids!
With these rulings, America has crossed a line. We have gone from a ruling against prayer and Bible reading in public schools to sanctioning the killing of the unborn to ruling against the biblical definition of marriage. In a little more than 60 years, these decisions have taken us down a path of open public defiance of God in our most elemental parts of life.
We as a people grope blindly, trying to see our way forward, not knowing that we are poor and blind and miserable and naked. And now we wait, wondering when God will act with a fire of judgment upon us. Make no joke about this because God will act in His own time and woe to those that are found wanting.
Will you read the handwriting on the wall?
I wonder just where God might be in His evaluation of our world today. Does He see our state of affairs and pause in thought, determining it is time to put a stop to this? O, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, where will you stand in that great and dreadful day? Will you be standing alongside these United States of America and her allies? Where will the Caribbean Islands stand in the light of what is happening in our world today?
I don’t know when that might occur, but I do know that you and I must come to a place and time in our lives when we must act to stand in opposition to sinful society, turning toward God and changing our ways.
Are we big enough for the challenge of our times? For you and me, the challenge is to turn away from this world and begin to live by the teachings of the world to come, the Kingdom of God. That in itself determines whether we can face the challenges with the only power that makes a real difference—God’s Spirit and the teachings of the Kingdom of God.
Daniel in his day at Babylon stood for the Kingdom of God in the midst of the raging wars of the kingdoms of Babylon and Persia. For Daniel the choice was clear. God’s Kingdom—along with the way he had known since a child—was the only right choice. The God he served was the one true God who lives, unlike the gods of stone and wood and metal he saw in the temples of Babylon. We have today statues made with cement and wood and given names that people prat to daily. Have we fallen for hard that we cannot see our way to God and His saving grace?
For Daniel, the collapse of his own nation of Judah was done at the will and the hand of his God and served a greater purpose. The gods of Babylon were empty and worthless, unable to hear or see and clearly unable to prevent the demise of Babylon.
The time is now for you to be like Daniel! The time is now to read the handwriting on the wall of our time and seek to understand the will of the God of heaven! Hallelujah, thank God for allowing His sons and daughters to see and understand the hour that we are living in, looking for some miracle but the handwriting. We may not see the writing because we read it daily in the Holy Writ called the Bible. What I do know it is time to lift up our heads and look up for our redemption draweth nigh.
The king and lords and ladies of Babylon were not great enough for their time. Are you up to the challenges of our time? Too many tread endless circles of mediocrity and accept shabby lies and fictions of today’s culture as truth. The result is that we build our lives on shifting sands. When the winds of difficulty blow, they may not stand. It is a sobering thought.
The time is now to take action. The time is now to see the handwriting on the wall and rise to a higher calling and a higher way of life. The time is now to seek the God of heaven and live!
The handwriting is on the wall. Can you read what it says and move to change your life? May Almighty God bless us and open our eyes to read the handwriting.