Geological fault lines are fissure/cracks formed in the earth's crust by movement of subsurface structural masses against one
another. When two opposing tectonic forces of similar or unequal mass make powerful contact, upheaval occurs.  Earth
sciences and meteorology are admittedly inaccurate disciplines, yet are improving in their predictions with each horrific event
e.g., Mount St.  Helen's and Katrina.  The United States, by sheer size, is expectedly subject to natural upheavals and forceful
climatic changes.  America is also facing unprecedented fault lines in the national political arena, financial markets and
religious strongholds across this great nation. These powerful forces are beginning to move in uncoordinated, if not
oppositional, ways seemingly without regard for the far-reaching consequences. Upheaval is becoming the rule, and not the
exception, throughout our governmental infrastructure, as well as in religious bastions held sacrosanct for generations.
As set out in our recent commentary, Where, Oh Where has "Truth" Gone?(1) ...  "America is clearly re-polarizing along new/old
fault lines. Examples of such divisions include: Red vs. Blue States, Republican vs. Democratic, liberals vs. conservatives,
religious vs. secular, economically advantaged vs. disadvantaged, social relativism vs. moral absolutists," etc.  "Relativism"
defined here as a philosophy where concepts of truth and moral values are not absolute, but are relative to the persons or
groups holding them. [Heritage]  In the polarity examples cited above, the one characterized as 'relativism' vs.'absolutes' is the
most confrontational to the body-of-Christ.  Social Justice/Rights issues, immigration, the economy, and military adventurism
dominate the political polarities. National HealthCare, manufacturing outsourcing, and government entitlements are close
behind in public priorities. On so many of these seminal issues, the difference has been 49/51%± (2008), particularly between
partisan political parties.  We read in Matt. 12:25, "Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household
divided against itself will not stand."  There seems to be little or no serious movement to bridge the gap between the 49/51%
disparity on critical-mass issues facing America. Obstinacy seems to be the choice of preference in order to maintain a type of
status quo, of  "them against us". With that in mind, what is waiting for America just over the near-future horizon, barring a 911²
type terrorist or natural catastrophe?
In major cities across America, activist groups are engaging in reoccurring public protests and dissent, especially since the
"illegal" immigration issue became a national sore bone-of-contention.  Racial and gang related fractious confrontations are
also on the upsurge throughout major population centers.  Social/racial/cultural unrest is not new to America, yet the intensity
and frequency may very well be a harbinger of things to come.  If America should most regrettably experience a 911² type
event(s), the antagonistic social/political polarities could become major fracture-points in our society.  Add to that, an
increasingly tipsy economy along with a forecast four-dollar-per-gal. gasoline and we may be on the front-end of some chaotic
times.  From America's beginning, it has relied on its Judeo-Christian heritage for moral/legal/social constructs to govern and
guide both cultural and societal norms.  The obvious assault on the Judeo-Christian value system has resulted in an
unprecedented confrontation between the liberal left and conservative right.  America is not alone in this 21st C. phenomenon of
secularism aggressively advancing against Christianity.  We see as well, non-Christian religious persuasions demanding
increased recognition and accommodations, especially throughout the EU.  Islam is on the rise throughout Europe.
Today's Christian landscape seems to be morphing into at least four identifiable havens: a) Mega-type church settings
(Kingdom Now), b) Ecumenical (blended religious persuasions), c) Non-Denominational (Spirit-welcoming), and d) liberated
Evangelical (outreach friendly). There are as well, the longstanding television ministry offerings along with traditional
denominational churches.  The "Religious Right" (conservative) has been fracturing along the lines of moral/justice issues vs.
social conservative 'redirections'.  'Dominion' (à la  Kingdom Now) orientated religious centers often lean noticeably to the left on
"greening" issues in their ministry outreach, as well as directly incorporating "works" centered projects which address cultural
consternations and societal ills.  Some critical observers are saying that with the Ecumenical, Dominion and Mega-church
movements, Christianity is/has become a platform for advancing social agendas vs. spreading the Gospel and introducing the
unsaved into the Kingdom of God, as it exists on earth at this point in dispensational time.  The non-denominational Christian
venue is attempting to redefine 'the Church' as denominational strongholds are loosing membership and finding their
congregations rapidly graying.  Without a new influx of younger members, traditional denominational churches seem destined
for a not-to-distant downsizing, as we are seeing in much of the Anglican and Roman Catholic Churches in Europe
RELIGION is at a new crossroads on a global scale, especially since aspects of radicalized Islam foisted themselves into the
arena of Western culture and 3
rd world civilizations.  During the 20th C., figures such as Mussolini, Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Hitler held
great sway by way of their political/military powers and the degradation of religion, in all of its aspects.  Today, we see examples
of dictatorships, which operate within religiously dominated governments, and even antagonistic religious sects vying for
dominance within the same governmental system.  The religious landscape and future is not what it used to be.  Europe is
contending, in a number of its states, with the consequences of longstanding laissez-faire forms of social governance
concerning unregulated immigration.  Recent fault/fracture lines are an early sign of coming earth tremors, followed by major
geologic disruptions.  The Christian Church in America sits upon (straddles) such a religious fissure.  There are those euphoric
optimists who declare, "things can only get better", and a great revival is coming to America to further God's Kingdom here on
earth, as we know it.  Yet another view comes right out of scripture that warns that in the latter-days, things will only wax worse
and worse, the Church will come under great persecution and Evil will run rampant across all horizons.  Oddly enough, both of
these perspectives may yet occur, manifesting side-by-side with the latter overshadowing the former.
Christian happy talk proclaims and broadcasts prosperity, peace, and spiritual self-actualization, while at the same time
papering over most all latter day-type scriptural scenarios.  We can deduce from recent diplomatic machinations that Israel is on
the precipice of inking a False Peace Accord with the Arab/Palestinian factions. This coming Accord is the long awaited elixir to
settle the Middle East's contentiousness over Israeli land disputes, denial of Israel's right to exist, and supposed religious parity
between Islam and Judaism.  The fracture lines here are more religious in nature, than territorial imperative ... even though the
justifications presented for their resolution, are just the opposite.  America seems to be living in the religious moment of
transition while Israel is grappling with a sixty-year old (1948) conundrum with Arab/Islam
enigma.  America's religious fault
lines are less obvious that those exposed in the Middle East, yet they all foreshadow crisis-points yet to be resolved, if
resolvable at all by secular means.
Secular forces continue to erode away Christian-centered tenants in our society.  Such erosion has contributed greatly in the
removal of Ten Commandments from courthouse walls, exclusion of bible studies in public schools, denial of Creationism as
an alternative explanation for the origin of mankind (viz., Darwinism), prohibitions against prayer in public/government venues,
gender-rights litigation, unceasing contentious right-to-life obstructionism etc.  Dumbing-down of the Christian Gospel, by
numerous contemporary religious "ministries", powerful secular influences and politically correct public policies results in
America being maneuvered into a place where religious absolutes are giving way to commonplace expedient-relativism.  The
two questions progressive secularists attempt to avoid at all cost are, "without religious absolutes, from what source does one
credit concepts of right and wrong?  Secondly, without absolutes are there any other touchstones for moral determination
(equivalency) other than situational relativism?" Unless the answers are "none" and "no", then by extension, man must operate
by way of experientially based judgment.  History clearly records that individual and collective judgments solely based on past
behavior, contemporary social-consensus and/or circumstantial choice points are notoriously inconsistent, and as such
unreliable.  Relativism always presents its best defense as "all for the common good".  However, the common good in this
context, is ever changing, morphing and subject most often to a majority rule vs. God's Commandments.
Religious fault lines are a foreshadowing of seismic (great shaking) events to come and only the most brazen will deny their
existence, with such cavalier disregard as we see operating today.  The scripturally unread quite often hold to a Hollywood-type
depiction for the beginning of endtime events, e.g., a snarling and vicious appearance of evil which will be easily discernible and
thus, avoidable.  Au contraire, we learn from scripture that the endtime manifestation of evil will come with a beguiling
feigned-charismata, lying signs and wonders and a type of deceptiveness which could very likely deceive, even the elect. God
always gives forewarning of great calamities to come, throughout the religious/spiritual landscape, by way of prophetic voices
and watchmen on the walls.  Again, newly formed fault lines and fissures are signs of great unseen forces at work which will at
some point erupt and catch the unsuspecting (spiritually insensitive) off guard, in their unpreparedness. Such fracture-points
are beginning to evidence themselves in the "Church" (body-of-Christ) while prophetic voices and watchmen are proclaiming
and declaring God's coming judgments. Counterfeit  'church ministries'  have been causing religious fracturing since the late
20th C. The Jesus Seminar, Universal Ecumenical conference enclaves and now the "Re-Think" Christianity movement have all
compromised The Gospel, diluted Christian Absolutes, and assailed God's scriptural assurances (Promises).  Certain
Mega-churches are clearly embracing a psychosocial gospel, self-actualization curricula, and numerous works-type ministry
outreaches. Newly hatched Pied Pipers
(2) are abounding, piping their melodic refrains to itching ears(3) which no longer desire
to hear about The Cross, The Blood, His Sacrifice, Repentance from Sin, and The Good News Gospel message.
As 21st C., mankind continues to forfeit trust in and reliance upon the Judeo-Christian absolutes, in order to embrace
progressive secular reasoning and existential thought, we see humanity slipping further and further into the abyss of
moral-relativism and secular modernity.  The good news is, there are no fault lines along or down Christ's pathway of
righteousness. It is when our feet veer to the left or right, off His Pathway of Righteousness
(4), that we encounter the fault lines of
the world. There are parts of some cities, if not the cities themselves, which are deep fissures of unrighteousness,
waywardness, and incipient carnality.  It is vital that we know and recognize the spiritual strongholds operating in the cities, in
which we live.  As a frog in a slow boiling pot notices not that he is being cooked alive, so then does mankind not readily
perceive its own entrapment and captivity, by the snares of the world.  In this day and age, many of the pitfalls, entrapments, and
popular unrighteous indulgences are so sophisticated and alluring that they now seem all but commonplace, and no longer as
seducing enticements. We live in a time of the coming suddenlies (á  la 9-11) and for those who are unprepared for what may
be just over the near horizon, prefigured turbulent events could be most unsettling without the assurances of Christ fully
operating in our lives.  Let no pox come upon our houses and no fissures snag our feet, as we walk out these remaining days,
waiting upon The Lord.
Jon D. Hannum, Ph.D.
Amen Ministries of Austin
1. Where Has Truth Gone? -
2. Another Pied Piper -
3. 2 Tim. 4:3-4
4. Prov. 4:27