On March 16, 2013, I was interviewed by Jan Markell, Founder and President of Olive Tree Ministries. Jan has written eight major books with prominent Christian publishing houses. She has produced a dozen DVDs, some featured on Sky Angel. At one time she traveled full time across America as a speaker. Since 2000, Jan has been broadcasting her nationally syndicated "Understanding the Times" radio program over the airwaves and Internet. It is a great source of news and commentary-driven information.
Jan and I spent the one hour radio program discussing the characteristics and heritage of the Antichrist, called The Man of Lawlessness, and the False Prophet. We remind people that the catastrophic calamities happening today are setting the stage for the Tribulation when all this mystery unfolds.
Decline of Society
Jan Markell: David, I'm looking at your March-April Lamplighter magazine. People can go to your website at lamblion.com to sign up for a hard copy, or to read it online. I happen to read it online. You've got an article in there under the headline of school shootings where you say, "After the recent school shooting tragedy in Connecticut, I noticed that the TV news programs focused on interviewing psychologists and psychiatrists as they sought an explanation for the senseless rampage. Most of what I heard in response to their questions was what I would call psychobabble. But, their questions got me thinking. It occurred to me that during the time that I was in public school from the first grade in 1945 to my senior year in 1956, there were no such massacres, and that caused me to wonder, 'What has changed?'."
David, you went on in this article to list some of the things that have changed. I think it would be a great perspective to hear your perception of how things have changed.
Dr. Reagan: Society has changed very radically, and it's changed very fast. The pace is just breath-taking.
One of society's dramatic changes is the way in which the court has reinterpreted the First Amendment. The First Amendment never put up a barrier between the State and religion. All it did was put up a barrier between the State creating, supporting, or establishing a church. People in recent years have taken the First Amendment and said, "Oh, what that really means is a separation of the State and religion, and we can't have any type of religious influence." That is not what our Constitution says!
When I was going to school, we had Easter plays. We had Christmas plays. We had Bible readings every day. We had prayer every day. Our English readers were made up of Bible stories with a moral at the end. This was true throughout American history. It's been true since the very beginning. And then, suddenly, it all began to change in 1962 when the court outlawed prayer in the public schools, and again in 1980 when the courts outlawed even the 10 Commandments being shown on the wall behind the Supreme Court justices. Detractors say, "Oh, no, we can't have the 10 Commandments seen."
Another dramatic change to society was the closing of the Evolution debate. When I was growing up, we heard both sides in class. The Evolutionists then said, "All we want is equal time." Today they say, "No, we want all the time. We don't even want people to be introduced to the very concept that there could be a Creator God." We are teaching our children that they are simply evolved from some sort of primeval mud and that they are on the same level as an animal. Then we wonder why they act like animals!
Next would be the transformation of the entertainment industry, which has probably been one of the greatest factors of them all. When I was growing up, entertainment was the movies, and movies had a right and wrong; they had a moral to them. They did not have filthy language. They were wholesome and they always talked about good triumphing over evil. Today, when you go to see a movie, you can't tell who the good guys are and who the bad guys are. The bad guys usually end up winning one way or the other.
Of course, I didn't have TV when I was growing up. I didn't see my first television until 1952, and television started off very wholesome. We watched programs like The Life of Riley, I Love Lucy, Father Knows Best, the Nelson Family. They were wonderful programs. Today, if you put the Nelson family on, people would die laughing. Our model today in the Osbourne family, a totally dysfunctional family.
Then there's the computer revolution. Today, a little child can get on the computer and type a few keys, and low and behold, they are watching pornography. It happened to my wife who was a first grade teacher. She asked her first graders to write an essay about an animal. One boy picked the cheetah. So, he goes to the computer and types in "cheetah" and the first thing that pops up is a topless woman who goes by the name of Cheetah. He's on a porn site — just unbelievable!
Then there's the evolution of the Church. When I was a kid, we went to church on Sunday morning, Sunday night, Wednesday night, Vacation Bible School, and Gospel meetings. Today, most people go to church once a week on Sunday morning, and their kids are exposed to the Word of God for one hour. Then, the rest of the week, they are in a classroom where they are exposed to pagan ideas. It's no wonder that we have the problems that we have!
To give you a drastic contrast, when I graduated from High School in 1956, our parking lot always had about 100 pick-up trucks every day. In those pick-up trucks were gun racks, and on those gun racks were a deer rifle, a .22, and a shotgun. Often they had a pistol in the glove compartment, and nobody worried about those guns. Nobody was concerned about them, because we had grown up with Christian morality. Today, we have a whole generation who doesn't even know what Christian morality is. As I end the article I say, "The answer to why there is so much violence today is that we have put the guns in the hands of moral pigmies — people who simply don't know what morality is all about."
In the sixth and last segment of Jan Markell's interview of Dr. David Reagan about his book The Man of Lawlessness: The Antichrist in the Tribulation, they will ponder whether it is too late for America morally to turn around.