Pastor Greg Laurie of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, California, has shared how the threat of nuclear war between the United States and North Korea "fits into" the End Times prophecy in the Bible.
"As you know, the conflict with this rogue nation has escalated dramatically in recent days and even hours," Laurie said in a Facebook video on Monday, explaining that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un's threat to strike the U.S. with nuclear weapons "can't be dismissed or taken lightly."
"How does this fit into the prophetic puzzle? Well, in the last days there is no mention of any nation that would resemble North Korea," the pastor said. However, he explained that Iran, which is mentioned in the End Times scenario, could potentially acquire weapons from North Korea.
"Here is what concerns me. We do not find the reigning superpower on the face of the Earth anywhere in the Last Days scenario. Other nations emerge. So where is America? I pray we are not out of the picture, because we have been in some kind of nuclear conflict," Laurie added.
The pastor, who will take part in several White House initiatives surrouding the upcoming National Day of Prayer, encouraged Americans to pray for President Donald Trump, whether they voted for him or not, and for the nation, "That God helps us to make the right decisions in the days and the hour ahead."
To drive home his point, Laurie referenced Timothy Chapter 2 in the Bible, which reads: "Therefore, I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence."
The passage continues: "For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth."
Tensions between the U.S. and North Korea have escalated in recent weeks, and on Tuesday, North Korea's state-controlled media warned that America's "military provocations" risked triggering nuclear conflict and said the isolated country was "waiting for the moment it will reduce the whole of the U.S. mainland to ruins."
In early April, a North Korean spokesman threatened "catastrophic consequences" for the U.S. maneuvers and said the country is "ready" for "any mode" of war.
"We will hold the U.S. wholly accountable for the catastrophic consequences to be entailed by its outrageous actions," a North Korean foreign ministry spokesman said in a report published by the state-run Korean Central News Agency. North Korea "is ready to react to any mode of war desired by the U.S.," the statement said.
In turn, President Trump said last week that a "major, major conflict" conflict with North Korea was possible, and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has suggested that military action is "on the table."
Another prominent religious leader, Pope Francis, has urged the two countries to use diplomacy to prevent the escalating military crisis, warning on Saturday that "a good part of humanity" is at stake.
"I call on them, and I will call on them, as I have on leaders of different places, to work to resolve their problems through diplomatic avenues," the pope said.
He added that tension between the two countries have gotten "too hot" and warned it could destroy "a good part of humanity and culture."
"We are talking about the future of humanity. Today, a widespread war would destroy - I would not say half of humanity - but a good part of humanity, and of culture, everything, everything," the pontiff continued. "It would be terrible. I don't think that humanity today would be able to withstand it."
Meanwhile, on June 11, Laurie will "present a clear gospel message" and "deliver the Good News to a nation desperately in need of hope" at the annual Harvest America, a live nationwide free event broadcast live from the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale, Arizona. The event will feature NEEDTOBREATHE, MercyMe, and Trip Lee, along with worship from Phil Wickham.
"The Good News of Jesus Christ is the most important message there is. That's why we're declaring 2017 the Year of Good News and proclaiming the gospel to a world in need through Harvest America," reads the event description.
The pastor is encouraging those who cannot physically attend the event to host Harvest America in their homes: "Our greatest danger in life is permitting the urgent things to crowd out the important things," he wrote in an email to supporters. "So I encourage you to pray and think about being a part of this evangelistic outreach on June 11, and see what the Lord shows you as you sit at His feet."
To learn how you can host, visit https://harvestamerica.com/r?id=12530