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Liberté, or austerity?

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France and Germany continue to vie for European leadership.  Who will triumph?  What will become of the cherished French ideals of liberté, égalité, and fraternité?  Will liberté or austerity prevail in Europe?

Europe is embroiled in a debt crisis, and there are fears that all of Europe is at risk of sliding back into recession (CNNMoney.com, "Stocks slump as fear spikes," May 20, 2010). Consequently, in an attempt to stabilize the euro, "stark austerity measures" have already been enacted in Greece, Spain, Portugal and Romania. However, many are very unhappy with these policies, and riots in such nations as Greece and Romania are becoming commonplace

In the middle of this turmoil, the two largest continental European economies have become embroiled in a serious disagreement over governance. In a move that "stunned France and showed how the euro zone's two largest economies are struggling to coordinate policy during the debt crisis," it was Germany that made bold, unilateral moves to place strict rules on financial governance. It is clear that there are "core contradictions between France and Germany over economic development, with no easy solutions in sight" (Reuters, "Economic governance divides France and Germany," May 19, 2010).

Providing insight into Germany's aggressive strategic vision, German Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble recently stated, "coordination between the euro members must be more far-reaching and they must take an active part in each other's policymaking." The Wall Street Journal article further states that Germany intends to "enforce fiscal discipline" within the E.U. ("Germany: Euro zone must enhance political dimension of EMU," May 20, 2010).

Addressing alarm at Germany's abrupt, unilateral moves and bold language, Schäuble, defended his government's decisiveness by saying, "If you want to drain a swamp, you don't ask the frogs for an objective assessment of the situation" (Financial Times, "Markets take fright at politicians," May 20, 2010).

These "core contradictions" must be somehow resolved if the imperial European dream is to be realized. And, France is deceived if it thinks that the République française will be in the leadership position as prophecy continues to unfold! Already, it is Germany that is the most powerful nation in the European Union, and the most bold. It is Germany that is taking the leadership position in driving economic and political unification. And Bible prophecy foretells that it is "under the aegis of a powerful German-dominated European Union" that the final resurrection of the ancient "Holy Roman Empire" will occur (The Beast of Revelation: Myth, Metaphor or Soon-Coming Reality?, p. 1).

France's fate within the final resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire is not to experience liberté, égalité, and fraternité. Modern France is a descendant of ancient Jacob through his firstborn son, Reuben (Genesis 49:3). The United States and Britain are descendents of ancient Jacob through Joseph. And the Great Tribulation spoken of by Jesus Christ in Matthew 24 will be upon the entire "house of Jacob." It is called "the time of Jacob's trouble" (Jeremiah 30:7).

Sadly, without heartfelt repentance, France and the rest of "modern Jacob" are destined to partake of the "time of Jacob's trouble." In the coming years, France and the rest of modern Jacob will exchange their liberté for austerity.

But, the wonderful truth is that after the terrible Great Tribulation and the Day of the Lord, not only France and all of modern Jacob, but the entire world will experience true liberté, égalité, and fraternité in the coming Kingdom of God! Then, all the nations will learn the way of peace! All nations will live by God's righteous laws (Isaiah 11:9).

For much on this wonderful future, please read The World Ahead: What Will It Be Like? and watch the Tomorrow's World telecast "Hope for the Future." For more on the identity of the United States, Great Britain, France, Canada and other descendants of ancient Jacob, please study The United States and Great Britain in Prophecy.