On the 21st of December 2020 the planet Jupiter and Saturnus will cross each other and as a result a light will shine brightly along the sky visible to us on earth at the 21st.
Can we compare this bright light with the light seen by the three wise men from the east, about 2020 years ago? To them it was a sign of the birth of a new King. They travelled a very long road with one mission: to honor the new King. Their journey brought them to Bethlehem in Israel. During that time Israel was overruled by the Romans. The new born King meant ‘Joy’ and ‘Hope’ to the world and the three wise men knew it and they worshipped him when found. King Herod heard about he baby and saw him as a threat to his power and he tried to kill him.
What is the meaning of this bright star on the 21st of December during our Christmas days?
Is it a sign of hope to the 79,5 million refugees worldwide? Is it a sign of a new beginning with mankind? A new worldwide economy? We live in a crucial decade because as we continue to live as we use to live, our planet and her habitants will have to suffer tremendously.
We live in a transition era in which our economic activities will no longer continue to take place in a linear but we move towards a circular economy. There is a power shift in the US and between China and the US. In addition, the power of technology and perception sows discord between groups of people. And the global debt mountain will be around 3.65 times higher than the global Gross Domestic Product by the end of 2020.
This article tries to explore some of these crucial geo-political economic developments and aims to identify a potential answer to the question: “What is the meaning of this bright star on the 21st of December 2020?”Let us firstly take a closer look at some actual major developments.
Moving from linear to circular
According to David Attenborough, the untouched wilderness is increasingly scarce. By 1950, 2/3 of the planet was covered in untouched wilderness. Today it is only 1/3. The linear economy is reaching its limits because the stock of raw materials is not inexhaustible and production is accompanied by too many CO2 emissions and waste mountains. This insight will lead to production processes being transformed from linear to circular. This will have major consequences for the business models of companies. We are currently living in the Anthropocene, the era in which man is in control. Never before have there been so many people on the earth. This, combined with the focus on increasingly wanting to produce and consume more, has so much influence on the earth and the climate, that this linear economy cannot survive. In order to limit CO2 emissions and achieve a healthier economic system we have to: limit economic growth; raise tax on emissions; create a circular economy and bring production centers closer to consumption centers.
At the time of writing, US President Donald Trump still didn’t admit he lost the election, stating that his defeat is the result of fraud. His opponents, on the other hand, argue that Trump’s claim cannot stand in court due to lack of evidence. However, Trump continues to accuse others of fraud. On the basis of what values does he do this? How important is the democratic order to this president and what drives him?
What drives you and me and based on what values do we make decisions? King Herod 2020 years ago simply wanted to control his power and therefore killed where ever it was necessary in his eyes. The aim to control power is a very old mechanism. We have seen it all over again and again during the time of mankind.
Back to the USA. Now, suppose that Trump supporters place more value on Trump’s opinion than on the actual election results, despite investigations showing that no fraud took place. Then Trump retains some power over the group that continues to follow him. What purpose does it serve? The division in the US will only increase in this way. But it could be beneficial for Trump if he aims for President in 2024.
Internally, the US is divided to the bone and as a world power, if current developments continue, it will have to recognize China as its superior. It is the strength of this collective culture and immense population that makes their economy grow so fast. Besides that, their technological developments continue at a rapid speed. Much has been ‘copied’ from the West but now it seems like they found their own innovation path of development. The fact that America is starting to lose its grip is also evident from the loss of Intel’s monopoly position to its Taiwanese rival. Those who rule as an economic superpower are also able to spend a higher percentage of GDP on defense, with all the dire consequences that entails. However, as always, ‘kingdoms come and go’.
The influence of perception and technology on the cohesion of society
There are currently two developments that are misleading groups of people. The recent broadcasts that Lubach (from Netherlands) has devoted to this have caused quite a stir. The first is Algorithm and the second is Deepfake. Because we continuously continue our journey on the internet with cookies on our pants, they learn everything about us. Then we are presented with all kinds of political, commercial and cultural expressions that fit in with the image of the world that we already have. This only increases the dichotomy between groups because both sides do not hear any opposing views. In short, a good recipe for division. In addition, Deepfake ensures that we can hardly separate fake from reality. Who has done and said what exactly? Each camp can now explain it as it suits him / her best. As each group supports his own views, who is still looking for truth and an honest dialogue? These techniques can seriously disrupt a society.
The large global debt burden
According to an article in the Financial Times (Dutch edition) of 19 November 2020, the global debt mountain will be 3.65 times the size of global GDP by the end of 2020. How can a debt that has grown so high be paid off? To where does such a debt lead? How do financial markets anticipate on events coming? Are we heading for global inflation? Should we aim for more higher economic growth of GDP worldwide? That will surely push Earth Overshoot Day for all nations over the limits. Taxes will be raised to pay the debts of the corona crisis but by who? According to Thomas Piketty, in recent years the rich have only gotten richer and the poor poorer. Whether the corona crisis will further widen this gap will depend on the political policy that will be unleashed on this issue. If the gap continues to grow, it will further erode social stability.
The meaning of this bright star on the 21st of December’2020
The star of 2020 years ago pronounced a new beginning of God with the world. The baby once born in Bethlehem became a man. He died on the cross for our sins, rose from the death after three days. He has promised to return to earth. Is He coming back soon? What should we do with our lives and how should we invest our time and money for the time being?
About 2020 years before our era, Jesus already said (freely translated): “Do not store up treasures here on earth because it can be stolen or perish from you, but store up treasures in heaven. Because where your treasure is, there your heart will be too ”. (Matthew 6: 19-21). In the meantime we are called in the Bible to do the right thing. To do justice to the oppressed, widows and the less fortunate (Micha 6:1-8). Does it included take care for nature? Yes it does. Reverence for God automatically implicate handle with care with His creation.
And what does the star of the 21st of December mean in 2020? It means for sure light in the darkness! The greatest Light God Himself displayed in Jesus Christus here on earth 2020 years ago. He didn’t abandon us! The current developments are a reason to support people who are in need for justice. Support peaceful truth-finding and cooperate in realizing a cleaner environment with space for the wilderness with all it’s beautiful flora and fauna. Let’s become part of the economy of the star of Bethlehem! It’s a society based on values that are lasting. Let that light of the 21st of December enlighten and encourage your heart to put your trust in Jesus Christ and follow Him. He will come back but nobody knows exactly when, apart God, the Father.
If you have found peace in God in this turbulent world full of cunning and deceit then you can be extremely happy with it. How do you find that peace? Discover it on Search4Truth.eu
Picture of the New York Public Library
Author: Dick Bos (MSc)
Economist (graduated from Wageningen University, General economics)
Theologian (certificate of Biblical Theology, Evangelical Theological Academy)
Inspirator at Search4Truth.eu (leader of management survival expeditions at Your Progress.nl).