World poverty is a problem that can be altered by simple acts by simple people. This world problem is defined as a lack of sufficient income and resources, inevitably causing a lack of basic needs such as food and shelter. The causes of poverty vary from society to society and even individual to individual, but the effects are wide-spread and troubling. There are many things anyone can do to help this situation. Research into the causes and needs of these people is imperative to helping successfully. The first step is to ask "What is poverty?"
This is caused by a number of factors. Overpopulation can play a major part because if there are too many people and not enough food and resources to go around, the number of poor will naturally rise. In countries like America, where there is a large population and in some opinions, overpopulation, the deficiency level is low because there is such an abundance of food. New technologies and techniques in farming and animal husbandry have resulted in mass production to keep up, even exceed the needs of our growing population. Another cause is the distribution of these foods and other resources. Resources are not evenly distributed throughout the globe. Many developing countries just can't afford to import necessary resources for their populations. World poverty is also caused by high costs and standards of living. A lifestyle that might be considered adequate in a developing nation is considered poor in another.
In any poor community, one can usually find a lack of educational and employment opportunities. Because the government is unable to afford the costs of school and teachers, many children in poor societies grow up illiterate. Thus, they are only able to obtain jobs that pay minimal wages just to keep food on the table. If a community has a shortage of literate workers, a company requiring literate employees would find little reason to stay in that community. Overpopulation can not only result in poor conditions, but it can also result in poor environments. Poor or degraded natural environments are also considered to be causes of poverty. Polluted waterways, dead soil and chemical pollution cut resources down considerably. Changing trends in the economy and job markets can also result in poor societies. If industries change due to new technologies and inventions, workers are expected to adjust to these changes. In some societies, the changes come as a shock to the system and people lose their jobs rather than adjust to changing trends. Welfare dependency has been a major issue, especially in America. Many argue that destitution is high because welfare systems actually encourage people to avoid better paying jobs and even marriage. Click the Bible Resources link for more information on issues like poverty.
This epidemic affects everyone in any society. It's easy to ignore the problem, but the effects can be seen if looked at closely. People see the commercials for organizations trying to help poor children in other countries. Many of these children are undernourished because their community is poor and lacks enough food to go around. Poor conditions also causes disease and exposure which therefore causes world poverty. People in poor communities don't have the medical care necessary to prevent and treat diseases. They also lack the resources needed to build adequate shelter from the elements. In poor countries, there is often a lack of high morale. People find themselves trapped in situations they can't seem to break out of. This can result in depression. To fight depression, some poor people try to avoid reality by taking drugs or drinking alcohol. Thus, world poverty also causes drug dependence. In order to get what they need or to make money, poor people will steal or sell illegal drugs to get by. All of these effects can be life-long. Crime leads to incarceration. Malnutrition leads to health problems. Disease can lead to permanent, debilitating conditions. Each of these can be considered a definition of poverty as well as the ever growing causes of poverty.
Every effort counts and God sees what everyone succeeds in and fails in. Remember the words of Jesus: "Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me." (Matthew 25:45) The causes of poverty are real and part of everyday life. In order to change this many actions need to be taken. A good place to start when wanting to find out how to help is contacting local shelters and other similar organizations that help these people.
Mystery BabylonMystery Babylon is synonymous with the Whore of Babylon and is believed to be a prediction for the precursor to the end of days, or the end of the present world. The Mystery is described in the prophetical book of Revelations, which consists of accounts of John the Apostle. The book of Revelations is heaped in symbolism and allegory with the Whore of Babylon being no exception. Many scholars believe this prophetic account to be a representation of the affects when God's people turn from Him; the Children of Israel forsaking the Lord and choosing instead a life of idol worship. Discerning the meaning of this prophetic mystery can be difficult due to fact that there are almost as many differing interpretations as there are religions of the world.
As depicted in the Scriptures, there are two main kingdoms that arise as precursors to the Second Coming of Christ; the kingdom of Babylon and the kingdom of the beast. The kingdom of Babylon is represented by a harlot who is lavishly arrayed and sitting upon a beast. John's vision depicts the beast as having seven heads and ten horns. The harlot and the beast are expected to co-exist for a time with the Mystery of Babylon being the supreme ruler. According to prophetic accounts, the beast will eventually rise against the whore and contribute to her downfall while simultaneously taking over as supreme ruler and paving the way for the Antichrist, and eventually the Second Coming of the Lord. Considering that the book of Revelations is full of allegory, one must realize the meanings behind the symbolic language.
The harlot is not meant to represent the city of ancient times, but rather the present world. She is described as being clothed in scarlet and lavender, bedecked in precious stones and pearls. She is depicted as drinking out of a golden cup that is said to be filled with the abominations of whoredom, and drunk by the blood of Christian martyrs and saints. The name, Mystery, Babylon the Great, Mother of Harlots and Abominations is said to be written on her forehead. John goes on to describe the harlot as sitting upon the beast with seven heads and ten horns. These images are symbolical representations of which there are a plethora of interpretations.
Considering that Mystery Babylon is depicted as an adulterous woman brilliantly arrayed leads many scholars to believe that she represents a spiritual adultery. This would involve a turning away of God's people from worshiping Him to worshiping and following after false idols; idolatry, in the form of worldly materialism, as the whore is arrayed in jewels, purple, and scarlet. Purple has long been a symbol of royalty, and as she possess great riches, these represent a love for materialism and earthly gain and cause the focus of worship to be turned from God towards material possessions. Throughout the Bible adultery in the form of an unfaithful bride has been likened to one turning from the Lord. According to John's description, the whore will lead nations into adulteress acts, spreading her fornications over the world.
The beast that the whore is sitting upon is symbolic of her ruling over all the kingdoms of the earth. The beast is believed to represent a united kingdom, with the seven heads representing seven kings, and the beast itself representing an eighth. The ten horns could represent mountains, and as many believe, represent the ten mountains of Jerusalem. The Mystery of Babylon being an account of the end times stands to reason as final events are foretold throughout the prophetical books of the Bible. The harlot is depicted as sitting upon the beast and partially standing in water, an image which places her in a position of dominance. Some believe the harlot is a representation of an international power as she is described as 'sitting on many waters' The waters represent many nations John describes part of his vision," And he [God] saith unto me, The waters which thou sawest, where the whore sitteth, are peoples, and multitudes, and nations and tongues" (Revelation 17:15). This means that the whore could very well be a major political power and source of commerce worldwide.
Many Biblical scholars believe that Mystery of Babylon is allegorical with Rome. According to said scholars, Rome supposedly represents a possible location for the Babylon described by John in Revelation. Others believe that Rome is not the location, but rather Jerusalem. This can be seen especially considering when contrasted with New Jerusalem which represents the Holy bride of Christ, a symbol of purity. This view is also supported by the belief that the seven heads of the beast represent the seven mountains in Jerusalem. Jerusalem was referred to as the City of Zion the city of God, but become corrupt by the sins of the people. They turned from the Lord and forsook the covenant made with God, by taking up the worship of false gods.
The leaders of the Reformation believed that the Whore of Babylon represented the Roman Catholic Church, as they believed that the Catholic Church was corrupt and would lead the world into destruction. However, Catholics believe that the Whore of Babylon cannot possibly represent the Catholic Church for a number of reasons. Part of their reasoning is that if the seven heads of the beast in part represent five kings who had fallen, means that the whore would have existed at the same time as John, yet Christian Rome did not exist in John's time. However, Catholics believe that the heads could refer to ancient Rome, by representing the emperors who ruled in that time.
Regardless of the many differing opinions as to where Mystery Babylon will be located, a fact universally agreed upon is that these events are prophesied to occur. A popular interpretation of John's visions is that the whore will seek to destroy the Church and possess the earth while the beast, or Satan, will seek to rule the world. The whore will eventually be overtaken by the beast, having been weakened previously by judgments from the Lord. Her destruction will come, the Mystery of Babylon being overthrown by the kingdom of the beast, which will set up the world for the rise of the Antichrist and eventually the Second Coming of the Lord.