The Perspective of Garner Ted Armstrong

Garner Ted Armstrong knew what to WATCH for, what to write about, and speak out about. The trends and world events which occupied many of his chief concerns, which go to the very heart of what lies ahead for these beloved United States, are gathering momentum at a blinding pace! Each of these subjects will get a full treatment, from the perspective that is the GTA legacy in the days and weeks which lie ahead. For now, we will highlight the staggering onslaught of NEWS which validates everything he told us we should expect. His Biblical insight, and his prophetically inspired reactions are ON RECORD in this column and throughout so many of his other writings, television programs, audio and video tapes.

Worst TERROR Since Sept. 11

Islamic terrorists enact murderous attacks in haughty defiance of the United States, our allies, and of course the ultimate target of their hatred, Israel. Civilians are being blasted to bloody rags to send political and religious MESSAGES! What a means of communication!

Did You Get the Message?

Much has been made of the targets and the timing of the current rash of deadly bombings of synagogues, the British Consulate and the high-rise headquarters of a British financial institution, HSBC reputedly the second largest bank in the world. You'd hardly need to be an expert on international terrorism to figure out the "messages" the murdering masterminds intended to convey.

Islam is practiced in a way considered "secular" and moderate in Istanbul, Turkey, a member of the NATO alliance working to preserve cooperation, and more importantly COMPENSATION from the United States. Being friendly with the U.S. makes Turkey a friend of a friend of Israel, so any friend of the United States should take heed according to the "MESSAGE." What deeper meanings were subtly contained in the "choice of targets and timing" to send rock, glass and debris mixed with human blood and body parts flying through the streets of Istanbul?

Simultaneous attacks blasted Sabbath observers in two Istanbul synagogues killing 23. No mystery there. The U.S. is constrained to politically correct war in Iraq, Afghanistan and against terror the world over. Mosques must not be damaged even if they're being used for weapons storage or as guerilla hideouts. But terrorists and their apologists barely merit special notice when they destroy places of worship with civilians inside! The "MESSAGE?" All the rules apply to the victims and their defenders. Terror has NO RULES.

British Prime Minister Tony Blair standing side by side with President Bush in a show of solidarity and resolve to preserve political stability and financial freedom from the ravages of terrorism. Perfect time to bomb a 23 story British bank full of civilians in Turkey! Demonstrators clog the streets of London with messages of their own. “Stop the terror?”, ”Protect innocent people going about their daily lives?”, “Keep the financial markets orderly?”.  Nope. “Bush is unqualified!”, “The U.S. has no business in Iraq!” “Blair has been duped!” “George W. Bush has done more to subvert the international community and advance the cause of terrorism than all the radical mullahs put together!”, “Why, just look at the massive anti-Bush demonstrations!”

Some have pointed out that there are large groups of disenfranchised people who love to be involved in demonstrations! Witness the mindless mayhem first in Seattle, then in Montreal during WTO conferences. What was the message there? Demonstrators marching against... anything. Some fighting the police, destroying property, looting boutiques and shops. Who are they? What do they hope to accomplish? Do they have some deeper understanding we hapless spectators fail to grasp? Or is the motive more to be part of a happening than anything else. Like going to a huge rock concert, it's the "in" thing to do. Something to give meaning to an otherwise empty life?

Have We Fallen Through the Looking Glass?

The mainstream media seems bound and determined to "educate" readers and viewers to a version of conventional wisdom which holds that the U.S. president is illegitimate in the political sense, and furthermore, a dunderhead. He has surrounded himself with self-serving representatives of large corporations and oil interests who are willing to sacrifice the lives of our military personnel not for national security, but for craven political and financial reasons. The whole world is against them, and against the United States because of their botched policies. The elite press, the Hollywood crowd, the music industry, the United Nations, all our former European allies, not to mention the Arab world, is against the current U.S. administration.

But that's only the beginning of modern conventional wisdom. Same sex marriages should be encouraged, according to this emerging dogma. Any other viewpoint would be bigotry! The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court has ruled that "gay couples" have "a fundamental right to marry under the Massachusetts constitution.’ We have now only to wait to see whether this decision will be validated by the state's legislature, and whether it will become the law of the land as other states are called upon to honor this precedent.

When the Supreme Court of the United States moved to strike down Texas' law against sodomy, GTA wrote, "The U.S. Supreme Court is in direct defiance of Almighty God and His inspired word, the Bible! They are in contempt of the Supreme Court of Heaven itself!" He quoted numerous passages which relate directly to the issue, and noted what became of societies that embraced the practice, beginning with Sodom and Gomorrah, going forward to Greece and Rome.

And What About the Fight Over the Ten Commandments?

My Dad was in the hospital during the thick of the initial dispute between the Judge in Alabama and the court ruling requiring the monument to be removed from state property. I couldn't help thinking that he'd be all over it in his column if he were able. The political debate regarding the separation of Church and State notwithstanding, here are a few thoughts overdue in this space, seemingly obvious but as is often the case, not represented anywhere else.

First, it seemed out of the norm to have conservative Christians engaged in civil disobedience! In the past it's has been almost the exclusive domain of liberal movements to stage sit-ins, protests, and defiant marches. Here we had nominal Christians blocking police and state workers in a physical way to keep a monument of the inscribed Ten Commandments in place outside an Alabama courthouse. The thing that hit me squarely between the eyes and has apparently occurred to no one in the media? They don't even believe the commandments are binding! All the major denominations teach that the law is "done away," "nailed to the cross," "bondage" and "legalism!" Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy... Are you kidding? The preachers explain that away every other Sunday. So what's the beef?

To their credit, they see the judicial system busily kicking God out of the picture. Maybe one day history can be rewritten one more time, and the whole thing won't even have to be explained to a future generation. Given the seriousness of the threat from rogue nations and terrorists to fragile economic and political infrastructures, the volatile military mix in the Middle East and the degree to which mankind is being deceived about nearly everything, you have to wonder about the prospects for that future generation.

The legacy of Garner Ted Armstrong will be carried forward.

Mark Armstrong