The Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association

And the Band Played On!!
By John Mitchell

It is an old expression that describes the attitude of a person or group of people that in the face of overwhelming evidence, maintain a blatant, obstinate refusal to accept certain facts that disagree with THEIR concept of reality. One of the most famous illustrations could be that of the Roman Emperor, Nero. In his ambition to build new buildings in the city, all of which were to be a testament to his glory, he had fires started in the old section of Rome. The fires got out of control and engulfed a large part of Rome, and of course Nero could not take responsibility. He therefore looked for a scapegoat, and found it in the newly formed Christian community. Laying the blame on these “Christians,” he instituted the horrible persecution and deaths of many people. The story has it that while witnessing the walls of flame engulfing Rome, he played his violin to distract his mind from what he had done. Thus the expression “He fiddled while Rome burned.”

During the Nazi Holocaust of WWII, as the Jewish and other people, such as the lame, mentally retarded, political prisoners, and other ethnic races were marched to their deaths in the infamous “showers” of Hitler’s death camps, the condemned would pass a bandstand on which a quartet of musicians (usually Jewish) would be playing chamber music. Thus some six million Jews, and untold others, marched to their deaths, and the band played on!

As the great “unsinkable” Titanic filled her compartments with the icy waters of the North Atlantic that fateful night, the ship’s string musicians gathered on the deck and played, “Nearer My God To Thee.” Amid the screams of the drowning and dying passengers and crew, the great ship disappeared beneath the water, and the band played on!

In our nation today, the United States of America, our once mighty and prosperous nation, we too are dancing to a different tune. The high and mighty of finance, the CEOs, the CFOs of industry and commerce, and those who tread the halls of our government and sit in the highest positions of power have struck up a NEW BAND, the sounds of which are becoming each day more discordant. Our lifestyles of greed, envy, the pursuit of hedonistic pleasure, and most severe of all -- the abandonment of the laws of God, which were the foundational values and principles of our founding fathers, have led us to the brink of the abyss of destruction. The description of our day is fully laid out in the Word of God -- that’s right, the Bible. And it is found in 2 Timothy 3:1-4 [see below]. Read it for yourself! What an apt description of our society! Instead of turning to God in national repentance and seeking His solutions and will for our nation, we plunge headlong, full speed ahead, in the blatant, obstinate refusal to accept certain facts that disagree with OUR concept of reality! Our nation reels like a drunkard with his head void of direction and common sense as the leaders of our government pass bills saddling our grandchildren with debt that cannot be repaid. Our leaders pass bills that mock the very God of heaven with “same sex marriage” and “Gay Rights,” all in the name of diversity. See the punishment on those so involved in Romans 1:24-32 [see below]! In the halls of government it is almost impossible to find a congressman or congresswoman that has not gotten a “sweetheart deal” on everything from mortgages to “pay to play,” all the while calling for investigations to divert attention from themselves. We truly are “sick from the top of our head to the sole of our feet.” And the band played on, and we do not know the answers!

General Douglas MacArthur, in his address to the joint session of congress many years ago, stated that it would take a “strong hand from somewhere” to save this nation. Well, that “strong hand” is about to come from “somewhere” as Jesus Christ will soon descend from the heavens to this earth, and establish the Kingdom of God on this earth, and force mankind to live in peace and harmony. Mankind will obey the Word of God and there will be only one reality in that day, and mankind will rejoice to see it!
 

Breaking News Stories
Go here for the latest news stories on this subject. –news stories added 1 May 2009
 
Further reading:
Scriptures used in commentary above
2 Timothy 3:1-4
This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.

Romans 1:24-32
Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.
 
Our Commentary
Without God in the World  –by Jim Josephsen
Having a Form of Godliness  –by Jim Josephsen

A Flood of Warnings  –by Stan Roberts

A House Divided Cannot Stand –by Michael Burkert
The Scourge of Anti-Semitism –by Michael Burkert

Can DEMOCRACY Solve the World's Problems? –by Mark Armstrong 
Has God Given America ANOTHER CHANCE? –by Mark Armstrong

Would GOD Fight Our Battles?   –by Garner Ted Armstrong [see quote below]
"...One Nation, Apart From God?"  –by Garner Ted Armstrong
 
Quote by Garner Ted Armstrong:
"One thing is sure. IF WE WERE A COMMANDMENT-KEEPING PEOPLE, God would both hear our prayers, and HE WOULD ACT! He would bring us SWIFT VICTORY over our enemies.

"But since we are NOT a commandment-keeping people, there are some ominous predictions contained in God’s word about what could happen. God listed a stark warning of the horrifying curses which would befall us if we refused to obey His commandments. He said, 'And if ye shall despise my statutes, or if your soul abhor my judgments, so that ye will not do all my commandments, but that ye break my covenant.' "  ~"Would GOD Fight Our Battles?" - March 2003
 
Resources
 Great Fire of Rome
 The Titanic Disaster.   Who was to blame?
 

Photos:
Left: Nero
Center: Jews captured and forcibly pulled out from dug outs by the Germans during the Warsaw Ghetto uprising.  Part of the H
Right: Sinking of the Titanic