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Greatest Time Of World Trouble In History!
by Garner Ted Armstrong [printer-friendly] [pdf format]
For decades, I have shouted a witness and a warning to our nations that a time of “GREAT TRIBULATION” is prophesied to strike our people! Daniel was told “And at that time shall Michael stand up, the great prince which standeth for the children of thy people: and there shall be a time of trouble, such as never was since there was a nation even to that same time: and at that time thy people shall be delivered, every one that shall be found written in the book.
“And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.
“And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever” (Daniel 12:1-3).
Jesus Christ prophesied, “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
“And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Matthew 24:21, 22). These descriptions of world trouble are mutually exclusive! They both describe the same time! It is the time into which this world now enters!
Today, there are “WARS AND RUMORS OF WARS” as Jesus said! There is PESTILENCE stalking the world, deliberately unleashed by terrorists! There is the potential for massive PLAGUES striking our people. WEATHER is on a rampage! Israel is experiencing a prolonged, terrible DROUGHT! The Sea of Galilee is one thousand feet from its normal shore line! Over one billion three hundred million Moslems are filled with HATRED against the U.S. and Britain, and any who ally themselves with us!
Surely, there can be no doubt in the mind of any thinking human being that this world has now entered a time of WORLD TROUBLE such as has never occurred in the history of mankind! Today, WAR rages in Afghanistan! Hundreds of millions are frightened to the point of paranoia over anthrax, or other biological or chemical attacks! The Muslim world seethes and boils with hatred, violent anti-U.S. demonstrations, and threats of Jihad (“Holy War”) against the U.S. and Britain!
Restive countries here and there see this as an opportunity to unleash their wrath on neighbors! U.S. officials are concerned that the only U.S. aircraft carrier in the Pacific was sent to the Arabian Sea and that China may take advantage of the fact and launch an attack against Taiwan.
South Korea fears an attack from the North Koreans. India and Pakistan are exchanging gunfire over the disputed Kashmir province.
Meanwhile, violent anti-war demonstrations in Germany take place as tens of thousands of young Germans boil into the streets of Berlin, shouting anti-American slogans. The German government says it stands ready now to extend its military power to any point in the world; that it must use its military force commensurate with its economic and political strength! I have predicted just that, in just those words, for decades!
Following the attacks on the twin Trade Towers and the Pentagon, I have been writing many commentaries, along with brochures, and publishing them on our web site at “www.garnertedarmstrong.org/.” Many thousands have read them there. But for the thousands more who do not have access to a personal computer, or are not on the World Wide Web, I now publish five of the most recent seven. If you have not received the important brochure “WHY DID GOD LET IT HAPPEN?” by all means call, or write for it immediately. Here are those commentaries, with the dates written and published on our web site:
Posted September 12:
Tuesday, September 11th, 2001, a “day which will live in infamy,” I was aboard a McDonnell-Douglas 800, American Airlines jet, at 37,000 feet over eastern Arkansas, enroute to Norfolk, Virginia, from Dallas/Fort Worth. I was headed to Norfolk to join old shipmates I had not seen in 50 years for our 50th reunion of the USS Antietam (CV 36), and our nine-month’s long cruise off the shore of Korea during the Korean war. It was to be my first reunion. Then, I was (and still am, as I write) scheduled to speak at 12:00 Noon near Norfolk and Virginia Beach, in the Quality Suites, at a “Personal Appearance Campaign.”
As I was reading a book, looking out now and then at the landscape far below, our plane suddenly slowed down and began a descent. Having been a pilot for decades, I knew something was wrong. The Captain came on the intercom and said, “Ladies and Gentlemen, we are going to have to interrupt your trip to Norfolk, and land at Little Rock. There is nothing wrong with this airplane; the airplane is perfectly safe, but there has been a threat concerning aircraft headed toward the New York area, and since we are enroute to the general vicinity, we are being required to land.” He then apologized for any inconvenience, and we continued a rapid descent.
A few minutes later, he came back on to say that we were not the only airplane being required to land; that there were “about a thousand aircraft being asked to land immediately.” At that point, I knew something big was happening. As we landed, I could see that four or five other large jets had arrived before us. As we taxied in another American Airlines jet landed, and I could see yet another one in the landing pattern.
We had to wait for a ramp, for the airport was rapidly becoming crowded. Eventually, when I exited the plane, I saw people gathered around a TV monitor to my left, beside the entry gate. Many were crying; some with eyes and mouths wide open; some sitting on the floor, faces in their hands. I looked in amazement as I saw the two twin Trade Towers in New York; one of them in flames. It was as I watched that the first huge building began to collapse from the top – floor after floor smashing into the floor below, slowly disintegrating before my eyes, with huge billowing clouds of smoke and dust rising into the air. Apparently, the camera I was watching had not yet caught the sight of the SECOND airplane smashing into the other tower.
I was shocked, stunned; it was a mind-numbing experience! Immediately, I thought “Bin Laden!” Or SOME terrorist group! At the moment, I was sickened, stricken with grief for the awesome sight of mass death before me - yet, I remembered that only days before, during a sermon in Tyler, I had repeated the statement that I had seen from some of the lesser-known news sources, that “something big was going to happen, which would make the destruction of the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City look like a walk in the park.”
The airport was a scene of utter chaos. Someone said about 15 to 17 jets had suddenly landed at Little Rock; the gates, ground handlers and baggage crews were overwhelmed. I knew I needed to get back to Headquarters as soon as possible! But how? I quickly canvassed the rental car agencies, only to find all of them except Hertz completely sold out – with a line of about 150 people waiting in front of Hertz. The copilot of our flight came up to me and asked about cars, and I told him the situation. I then decided to go back to the gate – a long walk – and see if they were going to offload the baggage here, or continue on to Norfolk. I was not permitted to pass back through security – they had closed down the airport. It was later I learned no flights were going to be allowed into the air for perhaps two days!
By the time I finally managed to find a Taxi, and go to a nearby motel (the main ones were full), I found a line of about 7 to 10 people waiting at the desk of the “Days’ Inn.” The harried young lady was checking them in, with apologies that the rooms were not made up. I found I could obtain a room, and, in about a half hour, did so. I quickly called home; called the office; let them know where I was, gave them my telephone number. Time and again (for it took many calls) all circuits were busy, and it took me quite a while to get through. Meanwhile, the television set was tuned to CNN, and I was watching in horror as I learned that the Pentagon had also been attacked; that another aircraft had plunged into the ground in Pennsylvania!
It was then that a different camera angle showed the second aircraft flying straight into the second building and exploding in a huge orange ball of flames! Adjectives cannot describe what I saw; what I felt. Outrage. Anger. Rage. Shock. Pity. My mind balked at recreating the scene aboard those aircraft; the screaming, begging, crying, praying people, knowing that their plane was in the hands of a madman who was going to crash it – the victims who were suddenly crushed as thousands of tons of concrete came collapsing upon them as those gigantic buildings disintegrated into clouds of smoke and rubble. One thing I know: No airline pilot would have been at the controls of those airplanes and flown them straight into those buildings, or into the Pentagon!
No, this attack was carried out by persons who knew how to fly those planes. Either they had been airline or military pilots from some Middle Eastern country, or private pilots who knew enough to steer the aircraft! Any pilot, knowing he was going to die in any event, would refuse, even at the cost of his own life, to do such a thing! To me, the crash in Pennsylvania was the outcome of just such a scenario. The pilot of that aircraft must have fought the terrorists; managed to plunge the airplane into the ground, instead of proceeding – (in my opinion) either to the White House or the Capitol building – most probably the White House.
Think about it! These filthy, bestial, insane, hateful terrorists struck at the largest, most imposing symbols of American power, wealth, and military might! For decades, those huge towers amazed millions of visitors from all over the world. The Pentagon, built during the second World War, is known to house the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and is the chief nerve center of America’s command and control for our military forces all over the world; in communication with all our ships at sea; all overseas bases; all troops, deployed wherever they are. Obviously the airplane sent plunging into the Pentagon was trying to cripple our military, world-wide!
The most significant target left would be the White House! We will never know the things that took place in that plane which crashed in Pennsylvania, but I cannot help but think of it as a desperate struggle between a wounded pilot and crew – either a crash which occurred during that struggle, or a brave, self-sacrificing pilot who determined he would NOT obey those filthy terrorists, and crash his plane into the White House!
Now, what will be the impact of this massive attack? Several times yesterday, as I waited around a TV set in the lobby, I remarked to people that “more people have died today than were killed in the Korean War!” This morning, while it is yet dark outside (I arose at 5:00 AM, after a very brief, and very restive, disturbed sleep), I called our minister in the New York City area, whose son works in Manhattan, Mr. Larry Summerville. I was very relieved to hear that Larry, his wife and son are all right; his son was “about fifty blocks” from the building, and was among those who took to the streets, evacuating the area, as he saw the gigantic clouds of dust and smoke billowing up into the air. I have asked them to contribute their own eyewitness experiences, and will publish them in our next newspaper. Mrs. Summerville saw, out of her own window, the second aircraft fly straight into the building, which is clearly visible from their home! One can only imagine the trauma, the shock, at seeing this horrific tragedy in real time, with one’s own eyes, instead of on television!
For decades, I have been warning that a GLOBAL ECONOMIC COLLAPSE would occur; that a GREAT DEPRESSION will strike this earth! This will rapidly give rise to dictatorships! Autocrats; military governors will oust inept civilian rulerships in countries here and there! The United States of Europe will NOT result from a gradual, peaceful, slow-moving coalition, but from NECESSITY, from the result of WARS which give impetus to the need for a superpowerful MILITARY, capable of intervening in world events.
For years, I have emphasized that the flash point for the beginning of the Great Tribulation is JERUSALEM! God has said, “Behold, I will make JERUSALEM a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in siege both against Judah [the Jews] and Jerusalem. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: ALL THAT BURDEN THEMSELVES WITH IT SHALL BE CUT IN PIECES, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it!” (Zechariah 12:2, 3).
Yesterday, Palestinians in Jerusalem, Ramallah, Hebron, Bethlehem – all over Gaza and in the West Bank CELEBRATED!! Their children danced in the streets, waving Palestinian flags, gleefully shouting out their happiness that the United States, which they call “The Great Satan” had received such a massive blow! What kind of a religion is it which promises “heaven” or their version of it for MASS MURDER? Surely, Satan the devil is pleased and proud over the terror, the shock, the death of tens of thousands of helpless civilians!
It is because of OUR SUPPORT FOR ISRAEL that these bestial, murdering terrorists have mounted such a massive attack against us! The MOTIVES for such hate-filled killing are those of RELIGION! And, behind the scenes, from an economic and political point of view, it is also about OIL!
I knew, the moment I saw those buildings go down, that this would deal a MASSIVE blow to the global economy! Already, stock markets are plunging! Our U.S. market has (wisely) been SHUT DOWN! They knew that PANIC would set in; knew that the hundreds of major corporations and businesses which maintained offices in the World Trade Center would be plunged into chaos! TENS OF BILLIONS of dollars have been lost! Thousands of computers, with their hard drives chock full of financial and corporate data; contracts, insurance documents, legal documents – all gone in a massive destructive fire and collapse! The shocks will (and are now) reverberate all over the world!
As a symbol of the greed, avarice, and thoughtless, calloused cynicism of mankind, as I was leaving Little Rock, when a kind and thoughtful church member drove all the way from Tyler to Little Rock to pick me up and bring me home yesterday, we saw that gas stations had taken down their price signs; had pasted a hasty sign on the pump - ALREADY THREE DOLLARS per gallon! May God reward them according to their works! There are always, like vultures waiting for prey, those who will gouge, and take advantage of the suffering of others! As we left Little Rock, we found some stations within only about 30 miles whose prices were still at the dollar thirty-nine level!
Now, watch oil prices. Watch the stock markets. Watch what happens if and when the U.S. government determines WHO masterminded this huge attack! IS THIS THE BEGINNING OF WORLD WAR III? Remember, World War II did not begin all at once! It began SLOWLY, with Hitler scrapping the Treat of Versailles, and marching his troops into the Rhineland. It was two years BEFORE America was bombed at Pearl Harbor that Europe was plunged into war!
IS THIS THE BEGINNING OF THE PROPHESIED GREAT TRIBULATION? All of you who are a part of this WORK of the Watchman, are most probably, just like me, SHOCKED at this – BUT YOU ARE NOT SURPRISED!! Just how important, now, are the little, petty grievances among and between brethren? How important are “hurt feelings” when TENS OF THOUSANDS ARE DEAD AND DYING? Just as the President has called upon Americans to COME TOGETHER in this time of terrible national tragedy, so I call upon God’s divided people to COME TOGETHER in their most determined, spiritual resolve to DO THE WORK OF GOD; to let the peoples of our country, and nations all over the world, know that these mind-numbing events are but a prelude to GREAT TRIBULATION which is surely coming upon our people!
Christ said the time is ahead when NOT ONE STONE will be left atop another in Jerusalem! Will a massive WAR now break out in the Mideast? Will the U.S. attack Afghanistan, or Iraq, or Iran, or other Gulf states? Will Israel join in? Will Europe respond?
I cannot know each daily event in advance, but I DO KNOW the overall picture, according to the prophecies of the Bible! I know that GREAT EVENTS are now beginning to take place, as I have warned, and warned, and warned! It is time, and past time, for God’s people to JOIN TOGETHER AND DO THE WORK!
Jesus Christ, the LIVING HEAD of this church is waiting to see how HIS people will respond in such a time! Will we respond by HELPING those who are so stricken as best we can? Will we PRAY for those shattered lives; those horribly injured; those children without parents; those who leapt from hundred-story windows to their deaths, screaming in terror? Will we COME TOGETHER as the people of God, with our eyes on these events as Christ commands us?
For those of you who are fairly new to our web site - by all means read all I have written about the Middle East, including the booklet [Mideast Strife: Will It Lead To Armageddon?] posted in the literature section! I will TRY to get out another letter, and another newspaper as soon as I can! THANK you, to all who are helping support this work! I need to do a special TV program right away this morning, and try to FedEx it up to Chicago - if the planes will fly! God bless all those whose hearts are right!
With love, and in haste,
What is BEHIND the News? What May Happen Happen Next?
As rescue workers search through the rubble of two of the world’s largest and tallest buildings, now but ugly heaps of shattered concrete, officials say upwards of 20,000 may be dead. The actual count may soar much, much higher, perhaps above 30,000!
You can receive the news elsewhere - I have received massive amounts of news from our own news bureau (which receives news from all over the world), and, of course, have spent many hours between writing and doing television, watching the various news channels, principally Fox and CNN, along with others.
But what is BEHIND the news; what may happen next; and what Bible Prophecy says about global events will not be a part of your daily fare.
First, will the U.S. retaliate, and if so, against whom, where, and when?
The answers are difficult, speculative, and it is impossible to claim any accuracy. HOWEVER, Israeli intelligence believes that IRAQ may have financed the terrorists. They say that a multi-national group of terrorists such as those which carried out the attack; the sophistication of it, the timing, the logistical planning, seems far beyond even the capabilities of Osama bin Laden, even though they believe he could have been the mastermind.
If the U.S. government believes Iraq was complicit (buried in the avalanche of news was the alleged shootdown of a U.S. aircraft enforcing the “No-fly zone” in Iraq), and if both Iraq and Afghanistan become targets in the next days or weeks, what will be the likely outcome?
Such an attack may well be exactly what Saddam Hussein wants. He is no doubt, at this moment, moving about by night from one or another of his dozens of hiding places, just as are the cowardly “Taliban” leaders, the religious fanatics who rule Afghanistan. Should cruise missiles begin impacting Iraqi military and government installations once more, Saddam might use this as a pretext to launch SCUD missile attacks against ISRAEL! Certainly, the U.S. military planners, and the Israeli government understands that this would be the logical fallout.
But if the SCUDS contain chemical or biological warheads, the outcome would be FAR DIFFERENT than during the Gulf war! This time, there would be no holding back of the Israeli Air Force, and it is not beyond the realm of possibility that they would drop nuclear weapons on Baghdad, and other cities in Iraq, or on Kabul, or all of the above.
In such a widening war, SYRIA might start sending missiles (she possesses dozens of Chinese-made “Silkworm” missiles and many Russian-made weapons) against Israel.
There is a prophecy about Damascus, which, while it had an earlier “typical” fulfillment, is nevertheless set in the time frame of the time of the end. God says, “The burden [the prophecy concerning] of Damascus [Capital of Syria]. Behold, Damascus is taken away from being a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap.
“The cities of Aroer are forsaken: they shall be for flocks, which shall lie down, and none shall make them afraid. The fortress also shall cease from Ephraim [Britain], and the kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria: they shall be as the glory of the children of Israel [which is prophesied to be completely despoiled], saith the LORD of hosts.
“And in that day it shall come to pass, that the glory of Jacob shall be made thin [both Ephraim and Manasseh], and the fatness of his flesh shall wax lean” (Isaiah 17:1-4). A little later in this intriguing chapter, God says, “Woe to the multitude of many people, which make a noise like the noise of the seas; and to the rushing of nations, that make a rushing like the rushing of mighty waters!
“The nations shall rush like the rushing of many waters [the sounds of many airplanes, tanks, trucks, missiles being launched; a “rushing” to battle]: but God shall rebuke them, and they shall flee far off, and shall be chased as the chaff of the mountains before the wind, and like a rolling thing before the whirlwind.
“And behold at eveningtide trouble; and before the morning he is not. This is the portion of them that spoil us, and the lot of them that rob us” (Isaiah 17:12-14).
Is this a prophecy that Damascus will be reduced to rubble? It is difficult to come to any other conclusion! IF the United States should attack BOTH Kabul and Baghdad, you may see just such a scenario develop, for Israel would no longer use the incredible restraint she used when SCUDS fell on Tel Aviv during the Gulf War. In such a scenario (which is, remember, only speculative), ALL of the Arab states would be involved, as would be their supporters and clients. A widening war in the Mideast would ultimately involve RUSSIA and EUROPE!
America’s Incredible Self-Deception
For decades, Americans have been led down the primrose path of insisting upon foisting upon third world countries OUR “values.” Commencing with Jimmy Carter’s attempt to insist upon a Bible-belt, fundamentalist “human rights” agenda; lecturing third world countries from the point of view of CHRISTIAN values, America has attempted to view the world through the rose-colored glasses of “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”
In our much-vaunted “open” society; our open borders, our freedoms; our suspicion of any kind of “takeover” by a military government; our dozens of conspiracy theories; the continual harping about the “New World Order” can be found the paranoia which tends to reject any interference with freedom whatsoever. In this, the terrorists find their Mecca of opportunity. Because America has rapidly become a melting pot, as has Britain over the centuries, and because our nation is now host to MILLIONS of people from hundreds of countries; Afghans, Pakistanis, Algerians, Palestinians, Syrians, Iranians, Saudis, Yemenis, Indians, Koreans, Chinese, Vietnamese, Laotians, Russians, – the list is virtually endless – nations bent on our destruction can send “seed” against future terrorist operations as much as ten, fifteen, or twenty years in advance.
These people, feeding daily (on my machine on which I am typing, I can instantly tie in with web sites in Iraq if I choose) on virulent propaganda against “The Great Satan,” are groomed, prepared, trained, and made ready for the time when they are called upon to strike.
We are not necessarily being assaulted by those who penetrate our borders only days prior to their attack, as in the case of the terrorists who were intercepted many months ago, attempting to enter from Canada, and who had bomb-making materials in their possession.
Now, the terrorist may live just down the street; perhaps he is a cab driver in Boston (as were some of Osama Bin Laden’s relatives), or a policeman, or an airline pilot.
In a sense, our very freedoms are a threat; we are hoist by our own petard; we are in the catch-22 situation of being unwilling to give up our freedoms; of being terribly paranoid and suspicious of any kind of a “national identity card,” or of fingerprinting, or even, in many cases, of giving out our Social Security card numbers, or home addresses, and yet, we want the FBI, CIA, and local law enforcement authorities to instantly find and arrest those who commit acts of terrorism.
We simply cannot have it both ways.
Much of our hand-wringing over our lack of HUMINT (human intelligence) stems from the Iran-Contra days when a self-righteous, breast-beating Congressmen sternly chastised Colonel Ollie North, and tried to tie President Reagan into the “arms for hostages” deal with Iran and the Contras. I remember shouting at my television set: “Can anyone tell me why the Congress of the United States WANTS TO SEE A COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT IN NICARAGUA?” Because, by its very nature, covert intelligence operations include lining up informants, and include penetrating illegal cells, whether drug-runners or terrorists, and because such people are inevitably “unsavory characters” like the man Ollie North paid (Gorbanifar, an Iranian) and because of the Bible-belt fundamentalist, self-righteous concept of ethics and fair play (how can we dare to “dirty our hands with people like this?), America has, by default, been stripped of covert operations, and then wrings its hands when we cannot accomplish a seemingly simple act, such as GOING INTO AFGHANISTAN AND BRINGING BIN LADEN OUT!
The Israelis had no such compunctions when they arrested Adolf Eichman in Argentina; operating inside a sovereign country, spiriting a legal citizen out, returning him to Israel, and the hangman’s noose. Americans simply cannot apply their Christian philosophies to GEOPOLITICS!
It doesn’t work! Millions resent the “Old Testament” God, Who obviously told His people Israel to WIPE CERTAIN SOCIETIES OFF THE FACE OF THE EARTH! God told Israel, “But thou shalt utterly destroy them; namely, the Hittites, and the Amorites, the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee:
“That they teach you not to do after all their abominations, which they have done unto their gods; so should ye sin against the LORD your God” (Deuteronomy 20:17,18). In self-righteous judgement of God Himself, millions of church-going, professing “Christians” ABHOR such a command! They have no idea that the member of divine Elohim who GAVE the command is the One they call Jesus Christ (John 1; Hebrews 1)! When you see little children capering in the streets of Gaza, Hebron, and other Palestinian towns, waving Palestinian flags, handing out candies, shouting with glee, clapping – children from 6 to 10; from 13 to 19 – what comes into your mind? Have these children been completely PROGRAMMED by their parents, teachers, imams and “holy men”? Have their LEADERS deliberately shaped their minds, until their minds are SO PERVERTED with hatred that they have no regard whatsoever for human life? Are they INCAPABLE of feeling remorse for upwards of THIRTY THOUSAND men, women and children being crushed, burnt, blasted, suffocated to death?
Today, there are many, many hair-shirted hand-wringing Americans who will be OUTRAGED if the U.S. military bombs Kabul or Baghdad, or other towns and cities, if any civilians are hurt! “Why should we stoop to the level of those terrorists?” they cry.
Yet, the polls also indicate that there is enough outrage in our country just now that a large number, perhaps even a majority, would not vote (if a plebiscite were held today) to stay the government’s hand, but let the bombs begin to fall.
The bottom line is that unless America were truly a GODLY country; unless we were also GOD’S country; a commandment-keeping, law-abiding, truly Christian society, (which we are not) then it makes no sense for those in government to attempt to apply Christian values in dealing with non-Christian, hate-filled, vicious killers who want to see all of us dead!
Another poignant example is the utter stupidity of our government openly committing itself to refraining from trying to assassinate an evil leader or head of state. Telling the likes of Bin Laden, or Maomar Kadaffi, or Saddam Hussein, or the Taliban in Afghanistan that they HAVE IMMUNITY is utterly ridiculous!
Now we know (as I strongly suspected, and said so yesterday) that the aircraft which went down in Pennsylvania was intended to target the White House! Now, we know that the terrorists also targeted Air Force One, and George W. Bush, the President of the United States. These vicious killers are not motivated by any Bible-belt mentality! It is utterly stupid, at the national level, and in the sense of geopolitics, to give vicious killers like Saddam Hussein immunity from a possible assassination! WILL the government have the guts; the courage, even clandestinely, to change this ridiculous policy? Read 1 Samuel 15, and see how God commanded Saul, the leader of the government to kill Agag, king of the Amalakites. Saul felt sorry for Agag, and spared him, contrary to God’s commands. Notice what God’s prophet, Samuel did (verses 32, 33). It was this transgression of Saul’s which caused God to remove him from his office.
Do Not Underestimate Them
Surely, now that America has been shocked to the roots of its very being we will no longer underestimate our enemies. There are those, among them “Newsmax’s” national security expert, Colonel Stanislav Lunev, a Russian, who believe there will be even greater attacks; perhaps featuring chemical, biological, and even nuclear weapons. “Newsmax” said Lunev called them and mentioned that Russia is still the number one sponsor of training for terrorist nations; that this horrific attack on America may be but the first in a wave of attacks.
I have written in the past about those missing “suitcase-sized” nuclear bombs which allegedly disappeared from Russia’s nuclear arsenal. I have also written how a terrorist, overflying a large city on a small airplane or helicopter, could dump only one small vial of virulent disease-carrying germs into the air, and cause the death of literally hundreds of thousands! I do not remind you of these warnings to make you paranoid, or cause any kind of panic! After all, God’s people are told that, when we see the Great Tribulation about to occur, we are to lift up our heads, because we know our redemption draws nigh!
Christ said it all revolves around JERUSALEM: “And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh.
“Then let them which are in Judaea [not Oregon, or Mississippi, or Australia!] flee to the mountains; and let them which are in the midst of it depart out; and let not them that are in the countries enter thereinto.
“For these be the days of vengeance, that all things which are written may be fulfilled.
“But woe unto them that are with child, and to them that give suck, in those days! for there shall be great distress in the land, and wrath upon this people.
“And they shall fall by the edge of the sword, and shall be led away captive into all nations: and Jerusalem shall be trodden down of the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.
“And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;
“Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
“And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
“And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh” (Luke 21:20-28).
One thing is sure. Your life and mine are going to be very DIFFERENT from now on. And, while it may be well and good to proclaim “I will not let these terrorists deter me from living a normal life” it is also nonsensical to ignore the possibility of yet even more horrible attacks, or to resent the imposition of greater restrictions on air travel, or the clampdown on security measures!
As I can, you may be sure I will be posting yet additional “Word From” messages here.
Meanwhile, I know millions are now beginning, at long last to WAKE UP! I know many are now, at long last PRAYING more than before! I HOPE that many will truly turn to God, repent of their sins, become CONVERTED (Acts 2:38), and be a part of God’s true church, and His WORK which is going out in this end time!
Posted on the 18th of September:
Events of the Past Week
I am writing to you just after 5:00 AM on Monday morning, September 17, 6 days after the massive terrorist attack on America. I hope those of you who have your own PCs will print off the various “Word From” messages I have sent, and send them to others who do not have computer access.
I was stranded in Little Rock, as most of you know, having been aboard an MD80 at 37,000 feet over eastern Arkansas when the terrorists struck. Mr. Earl Timmons, who was visiting in Tyler, volunteered to come to pick me up, arriving at the motel where I had found lodging at about 5:00 PM. It is about a 4 and half to 5 hour drive each way. I got to bed about midnight, and, after a very restive night, got up at 5:00 AM. I worked on my “Word From” article, as well as answering a host of emails, and then did a television program on that Wednesday morning, hoping that we could put it on FedEx, get it to Chicago in time, and that they would substitute this new program – a program which dealt with all the prophetic significance of the attack – for the standard, doctrinal kind of program I had done on Monday. Since I was to be gone, I also did about a 40 minute address to our local Tyler church, which was played here, together with my TV tape, in my absence.
Much to my embarrassment, chagrin, frustration – the planes were not flying, and it seemed impossible to get the tape to Chicago on time! How FRUSTRATING it is, not to be able to communicate INSTANTLY with our viewers when such a huge, unprecedented thing occurs!
As I write, my program has just been shown on WGN – a standard, “doctrinal” program, and not the one I did immediately following the disaster! How I hope we can eventually have the wherewithal to correct this frustrating situation!
I kept trying to resume my trip to Norfolk in the next few days; was finally re-booked on the same American Airlines flight out of Tyler at 6:18 AM on Friday. I arrived at the airport at 5:00, after getting up at 3:30 AM., only to be told the flight had been canceled. They re-booked me on a Delta flight which was supposed to leave at 9:00 AM, and go to Houston instead of Dallas, and then connect to Norfolk. The Delta flight was an hour late, so I finally left Tyler’s airport (after having to completely unpack my bag and have it searched; even down to taking sox out of shoes, feeling them, looking into the shoes; having my Bible opened, and making sure there was no compartment inside – there were three Tyler police there, and the entry to the airport had been barricaded, so I had to carry my bags from a distant parking lot) at 10:00 AM. The flight was late out of Houston, and I did not arrive in Norfolk until 8:30 Eastern time – a long, tiring day.
I tried to call Mr. George Trent, who had come to Norfolk for the personal appearance campaign, but he was out to dinner, having waited a long time for me, and finally thinking I was delayed (true); left him a message, and began meeting some of my old shipmates who had been aboard the USS ANTIETAM (CV 36), an aircraft carrier, during the Korean War. Mr. Trent called me the next morning, and we went to breakfast together. Neither of us had any idea whatsoever how many people to expect at the meeting, for we had no group meeting in the area; no local host, and no TV coverage. I was very pleased that 77 people showed up! I spoke about the attack, of course, and outlined many scenarios which could occur as a result; among them a global economic slump; greater recession, or even a global depression; an attack against various Arab nations from the U.S., which might result in Saddam Hussein attacking Israel with chemical or biological weapons; the possibility that Israel might retaliate with nuclear weapons; that Russia and Europe would become involved; and how the events portrayed in Daniel 11:40-45 might eventually occur. It was very sobering, and the people were extremely responsive. As a result of the meeting, we raised up two hosted fellowship groups; quite a number of families indicated they wished to begin meeting on a regular basis in Norfolk, and several others wanted a group started in Richmond. I visited with many of those who attended; almost half of them were meeting me in person for the first time – many told me they had listened to the program for many years; some, for decades! There was a couple present who I had met before, at the Feast in Florida, I believe, and who told me that the wife was a piano player, and the husband was a song leader! We were very pleased with that!
That evening, I had the opportunity to attend the final banquet of the Antietam reunion - the 50th reunion of the ship, but my very first. President Bush had sent a letter of congratulations to all of those attending – I have a copy of it with me. I met the outgoing and incoming presidents; and many others. In conversation with one man, who had been among the Marine group aboard, he told me of how a hung bomb had come loose, and caromed down the flight deck, coming to rest not far from the 40mm quad. anti-aircraft gun tub where he was, and how he had run out, together with a buddy, physically picked up that 250 pound bomb, and ran to the deck edge elevator, and thrown it overside! In amazement, I told him, “I SAW YOU DO THAT!” I had been “Captain’s talker” on the bridge, and was looking over the parapet high on the “Island” of the ship when the bomb came loose (we had been warned that a plane was landing with a hung bomb aboard; the pilot had tried steep dives and sudden pullouts many times, trying to jettison the bomb into the sea) – we were at battle stations. I had seen the plane land; the bomb come loose, and skid toward me; saw the fellows grab it, and hustle it over the side. In my “cruise book” (like a journal of our nine month cruise off the shore of Korea) is a clear picture of the plane landing, the bomb already skipping along well forward of the aircraft! There is a circle drawn around the bomb, to point it out. I said to him, “Let me shake your hand again! You may have saved my life!” I was surprised at how many of those present (there were 250 of us) who knew me – not from my having been a shipmate, but from my more than 45 years on radio and television!
I was very honored when the two presidents asked me if I would speak to them that night at the banquet. We were seated in a large ballroom with crystal chandeliers, and a band stand. A long dais flanked the front wall. The Mayor of Norfolk gave a short speech about the attack; presented a plaque to us which included the history of the Battle of Antietam Creek in Virginia, and commented that the losses in that, one of the bloodiest battles of the Civil Wars were about the same as the loss of life in the attack on the twin Trade Towers. I was introduced, and spoke for about 7 to 10 minutes. I characterized September 11th as a “day which will live in infamy”; told them where I had been – how I had tried to join them on the first day of their reunion. I told them that “any religion which promises instant entry into their version of heaven by murdering helpless, innocent civilians; men, women, and children, is a hateful, satanic religion!” I was interrupted three times by applause. At the end, I said “I know that all of us in this room, were we young again, like we were aboard our ship, would be standing at the gangplank, with our sea bags packed, wanting to go aboard, and go over there, and get those guys!” I was given a standing ovation. Seated at my table was a couple who came in late; somber, with their cell phone in hand. They, and another couple there were from New York. Both of them had sons-in-law who were NYC firemen, and who were missing. As I looked at the deep grief and distress playing over their faces; saw the woman toying with her food, I expressed my deep empathy toward them both. The incoming president read a lengthy prayer for the victims and loved ones, and there was not a dry eye in the room. Of course, these were all former military, and World War II and Korean war veterans, and all were united in their deep outrage and anger; their sorrow for the victims. I was certainly one of the lesser known sailors aboard my ship. But I was deeply honored to be asked to speak to them. I knew they represented the Catholic as well as many different Protestant religions, and so, though I did not go into any doctrinal discussion, I did say that our God is a God who gives us the love of life; that Christ said “I am the resurrection and the life,” and that “He that believeth in me, though he die, yet shall he be made alive.” It was an unforgettable experience for me, and I am very glad I was able to attend.
As I arrive back home, I find that the casualty list is far, far below what I had originally thought. I had thought that perhaps 20, 30, or 50 thousand may have died. Now, it appears the total casualty toll will be under 10,000, counting those aboard all the aircraft, the Pentagon, and the Trade Towers. Yet, a HORRIBLE death toll – THOUSANDS of helpless victims, suddenly killed by the most vicious, Satanic murderers known to mankind. As I write, I hear the economic loss is a staggering FOUR HUNDRED BILLION dollars; that the IMF and World Bank have postponed their meeting; that the interest rate has been lowered by another half point, and that, even though global stock markets are down, many are urging restraint.
I hear this morning that ninety-one percent approve of the way President Bush is handling the situation; that there are huge anti-American demonstrations in cities all over the Islamic world; that the Taliban in Afghanistan has amassed 20,000 troops near the Pakistan border; that U.S. Embassy personnel have been ordered out of Pakistan. Of course, I know all of us are WATCHING as never before; wondering when, and where, and with what force the U.S. will strike, and what will be the fallout when vicious, hate-filled fanatics “retaliate for the retaliation!” Arrests are being made. The identity of all the hijackers is now known. I must tell you of how I learned a bit more about the aircraft which plunged into the ground in Pennsylvania: I was reading the Norfolk newspaper as I waited for my plane to depart yesterday, and learned that famous golf pro Arnold Palmer was in the region; he had flown his private jet to Norfolk to dedicate a golf course. He commented that the plane had gone down only a few miles from his home, and that a friend or family member had said they saw it; that “it was rolling, and all over the sky.” This confirms what we all suspected; that those brave passengers and crew were STRUGGLING with those vicious killers; that they knew they were going to die anyway, and were able to thwart the terrorist’s plans to proceed to Washington, and perhaps crash into the White House or the Capitol building!
As I am able, I will be continually updating this “Word From” column with additional comments.
THANKS to all of those who are standing with us in this “Work of the Watchman!” By all means, COME TO THE FEAST this year – it will be the most meaningful ever – of that I have no doubt!
In Jesus’ name,
P. S. Something has just been brought to my attention. On the 18th of August I was speaking before a group in Lexington, Kentucky. At one point I was recounting the time Jesus was talking to the disciples about the temple and how “the days will come, in the which there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down (Luke 21:6, Mat. 24:2, Mark 13:2).” I then went on to describe what this would be like for us in the “here and now”. I then stated...
“That would be tatamount to saying; driving down Wall Street in New York, you are going to see the day when it is a pile of rubble. There will not be the Twin Trade Towers, there will not be the Chrysler building; there will not be the Empire State Building .... it will be GROUND LEVEL.”
An astounding analogy, given the events of the past week!
Posted 23 September:
They Are Not Cooperating, But “We Are Happy With Their Cooperation”
As U.S. forces speed toward the Persian Gulf region in anticipation of retaliatory strikes against nations which sponsor terrorism, word comes from the Saudi Arabian government that they will not allow the U.S. to use Saudi air bases (many of which we built with American tax dollars) for attacks against terrorist bases! The U.S. government has said it is happy with their “cooperation.”
Of course, this means that, because the Saudis have agreed to “share information” in the American attempts to track down terrorists, that our government is presumably happy with what little cooperation they are receiving. Which is practically none at all.
Remember, Osama Bin Laden is a Saudi Arabian. His great hatred toward the U.S. stems from his fundamental (and extreme) Islamic outrage that our military forces (the infidels) are on “holy Saudi soil,” thus defiling the “most sacred soil on earth.” Bin Laden hates the “corrupt” Saudi Government.
Bin Laden returned to his native Saudi Arabia following the protracted Soviet-Afghan war, where he was active among the mujahadeen. As the son of a billionaire, Bin Laden’s voice was raised in outrage against the “corrupt” government, especially because the royal family had allowed the U.S. to use Saudi bases in the war against Iraq. Eventually, Bin Laden was briefly placed under arrest for his strident accusations against the government, and he later fled to Sudan.
Bin Laden’s financial empire extends to communications, aerospace, agriculture, pharmaceuticals, aviation, and dozens of other business interests. It is known that one major company which has launched spy satellites has ties to Bin Laden, and that information obtained from just such sources may well have been used in following the movements of Air Force One during the September 11th attack. Thus, this Saudi multimillionaire actually is able to command a network of activists from dozens of pursuits; has more power at his fingertips than any number of nations!
The house of Saud finds itself astride an uncomfortable fence. While it covets U.S. dollars, it abhors U.S. support for Israel. Saudi Arabia joined with other Arab states in the wars against Israel in 1948, 1967, and 1973. It has sent hundreds of millions to fellow Arab states such as Egypt, Jordan, Syria, and the Palestinians. King Fahd’s half-brother, Crown Prince Abdullah, is the active head of state. Like so many so-called “moderate” Arab states, Abdullah finds himself ruling over a restive population of 100 percent Muslims, many of which are fanatically devout. The two “holiest” places to the Islamic religion are Mecca and Medina, both within Saudi Arabia.
It is the duty of every Moslem to make at least once in his lifetime a “pilgrimage” (a hejirah, following which the males may attach the name haj to their names, indicating that they have made such a trip). During the month of July in 1990, some 1,426 Islamic pilgrims were trampled to death when panic broke out in a pedestrian tunnel leading to Mecca. As recently as 1997, when hundreds of thousands were encamped in a vast tent city, intent upon making their circuitous course around their famous “kaaba” or black rock, more than 340 were killed when a fire broke out.
The decision recently announced by the Saudi government, preventing the U.S. from using Saudi air bases, must be viewed in the light of the foregoing facts. Abdullah sits astride a potentially unstable throne. His task is equally difficult as the U.S. one; how to appear to help an important friend and customer on the one hand, and not alienate a volatile, potentially dangerous population on the other. The previous king played a leading role in imposing the oil embargo against the U.S. and the West following the 1973 “Yom Kippur” war.
When terrorists killed seven by a truck bomb in Riyadh, the capital, on November 13, 1995, and when 19 Americans were killed in a similar attack at their base in Dhahran in June, 1996, the Saudis were not forthcoming in helping the U.S. track down and punish the terrorists.
The U.S. government has often chided the Saudis for such failure. With such a record, why should they expect the Saudis to cooperate now?
This announcement by the Saudi government shows us how difficult, if not virtually impossible, it will be to wage and ultimately win a war against terrorists! They represent a religion, or the perversion of a religion, and not any nation. They are to be found in Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, Libya, Egypt, Sudan, Indonesia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Syria, Turkey, Crete, Cyprus, and Afghanistan, along with cells operating in the United States, Britain, Germany, Holland, Spain, France, and many other countries. In short, they are here and there around the world, and they are among us!
Hate crimes against those of Middle Eastern origin, or those who “look like” they may be of such origins are equally as evil as the crimes of terrorists against innocent victims! Yet, today in America, many second-generation Arab Americans from many such nations must live in apprehension; aware of glances of suspicion, if not outright hatred; aware that they could be the object of a hate crime, just as was a poor black man in Jasper, Texas, who was dragged to death by white cowards who so brutally murdered him simply because of the color of his skin.
Amid all the hate and fear, it is time for any person laying the slightest claim to being an “American” or being a “Christian” to reject such emotions, and instead turn to the teachings of Jesus Christ!
Can any of His teachings surpass His famous “Sermon on the Mount”? He said, “ Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.”
Millions of us deeply MOURN the victims and their families; mourn for the brave firemen and policemen who rushed to help, and lost their lives as a result! God hears our cries, and he sees our tears of sorrow. Jesus Christ said, “Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
“Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
“Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
“Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
“Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
“Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
“Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
“Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you” (Matthew 5:3-12).
As never before, God Almighty is holding open a “window of opportunity” for our peoples to turn to HIM in our hour of need! God KNOWS where Bin Laden is. He KNOWS each and every one of the terrorists! He knows who they are, and where they are; what they are thinking; what they plan to do. We can know almost NONE of these things, and we certainly cannot lean on a “broken reed” like some of our so-called “allies” in the Middle East.
God says, “Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near:
“Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:6-9).
In a time of uncertainty, God’s people must not respond to fear. They certainly must not hand the terrorists a win, by giving in to terror!
Coming soon: an article answering the question: “What should we do?”
Posted on October 16,2001:
Growing Rage - NOT AGAINST THE TERRORISTS, BUT AGAINST THE U.S.!
Remember when some far out conspiracy theorists accused the U.S. government of bombing the Murrah building in Oklahoma City? Now, there are those who believe the U.S. staged the terrorist attacks upon itself with the complicity of Jews in order to create a “new enemy,” and that we did it because we “need the money and the oil.” Sound insane?
It is. And it is coming out of Germany!
In a massive anti-war protest against the United States, students from all over Germany some 20,000 strong rallied in Berlin to noisily condemn the bombing of Afghanistan. They represented, however, the leftist leanings of many parties, including the Marxist-Leninists and the “greens.” Many an idiotic statement was heard, such as one young lad who said, “The American tradition is just to go in and bomb everything.” This, coming from a young German is perhaps understandable, since his grandparents and parents no doubt informed him of how dozens of Germany’s major cities were bombed into rubble during World War II. But the statement came despite continual statements from the U.S. military forces that they are doing everything possible to bomb only military and Taliban targets, and are not targeting civilians.
A young Turkish student studying in Germany said, “America wants the money and the oil,” and said, “America needed a new enemy,” thus laying the blame on some kind of “conspiracy” that America murdered thousands of its own citizens, destroyed the two tallest buildings in New York and the world, and took out a wing of the Pentagon, merely as an excuse to “get money and oil.”
Idiotic? Sure. Stupid? Absolutely.
Still another conspiracy theory was heard: “There were no Jews in the World Trade Center,” and that the Jews were in a conspiracy with the U.S. so as to manufacture an excuse to go to war against the Islamic world. This, in spite of the hundreds, perhaps thousands of names which are clearly Jewish, who perished in the attack. No Jews in the financial center of New York City? Where do these idiotic dunces come from?
But do these youngsters who shout and scream anti-U.S. slogans on the streets of Germany’s capital city simply dream up these outlandish and insane charges, or are they learning them elsewhere?
What is not easily seen behind much of world public opinion today is the simple, age-old struggle between the “haves and the have-nots.” Millions the world over hate America because of its wealth; its power. Many continually stress the plight of the common Afghan people; the plight of the “third world” countries which they believe are exploited by the United States.
The excuses being manufactured are many and varied. The most popular one is that America is being held responsible for its “Middle East Policy” which allegedly favors Israel over the Palestinians. The second most popular one is that Osama bin Laden is outraged (and has been since the Gulf War) over U.S. military presence on the “holy soil of Saudi Arabia,” where the two “holiest” cities of Islam, Medina and Mecca, are located.
As if to lend credence to this excuse, and as if an attempt is being made by the Bush administration to deflect it, George W. Bush has twice reiterated his desire to see the creation of a “Palestinian State.” Prime Minister Ariel Sharon reacted in very understandable anger when he said “do not appease them at our expense.”
But aside from all the insane mouthings of empty-headed students or the pronouncements of hate-filled Islamic fundamentalists, the simple fact remains that any nation which is attacked in such a shocking and horrific fashion has, by virtue of its very existence and national sovereignty, to say nothing of international law, the right to respond against those responsible for the attacks.
Some have said the terrorists are only in existence because of U.S. policies, such as sanctions against Iraq, which have allegedly “caused thousands to die in Iraq due to lack of food and medicine.” This view utterly ignores how Saddam Hussein killed thousands of his own people in poison gas attacks, and that the “no fly zones” currently being enforced are to protect the Kurds from similar pogroms.
Perhaps the epitome of stupidity was the apologetic and gratuitous explanation offered by one girl, a 23-year-old student from Leipzig, who carried a banner in the demonstration which asked, “Is that your globalization? Wealth for us, bombs for others?”
She said, “War is the same as terrorism” (this earns the prize for perhaps the grossest stupidity of all) – “[ending terrorism] can only be done by understanding the underlying reasons for terrorism. It is the great inequality, socially and economically, between the poor and the rich.”
This empty-headed young lady seems to know nothing of the underlying reasons for the poverty of dozens of nations; of the ethnic and religious underpinnings of dozens of dictatorships or one-party systems; of why it is that nations such as Afghanistan are forced to endure grinding poverty. Even when some glimmer of reason manages to penetrate a few such thick heads, such as the fact that the Taliban is a cruelly oppressive regime which brutalizes its women, denies education to females and will put to death anyone found proselyting on behalf of the Christian religion (perhaps this idealistic young lady should go to Afghanistan and live there so she can appreciate the joys and pleasures of governments which hate the U.S.), such persons will inevitably point out that the Taliban is only in power because the U.S. backed away from the Mujahadeen following Moscow’s exit from Afghanistan. Ergo: The U.S. is still at fault.
Yet, these same persons will be quick to decry the U.S. “setting up a puppet state” by insisting that the Taliban be replaced by a moderate government.
What should be done is this: Say to the neighbors surrounding the forbidding mountain wastes of Afghanistan that each of them are hereby offered a share of the pie. Say to the Iranians, Turkmenis, Tadzhikis, Uzbekis and Pakistanis that each can occupy a portion of what was Afghanistan in return for the following quid pro quo:
(1) They will immediately cease all research and development of weapons of mass destruction, and sign a 100-year pact agreeing never to seek such weapons, including permission for open inspections by the international community.
(2) Iran and Pakistan will dismantle and destroy any nuclear facilities, and destroy all stockpiles of chemical or biological agents.
(3) Each country will declare war against terrorism; will arrest and hold for trial any and all terrorists or their supporters.
(4) Each country will guarantee human rights, free access to education, free speech, free expression of religion, and will grant to women the right to vote, and, horror of all horrors, even to walk about in public with their faces showing.
(5) Each country will sign a peace treaty with Israel, and guarantee Israel’s right to exist.
Following the dismantlement of the Ottoman Turkish empire after World War I, many “nations” were created in the Middle East. Following the gradual disintegration of the world’s major colonial empires of Britain, France, Germany, Holland, Spain and Portugal, many other nations were created. Nations such as the “Anglo-Egyptian Sudan” became Sudan; “TransJordan” became the “Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan”; Yugoslavia was pieced together from a collection of several ethnic groups, as were nations in the rest of the Balkans. Czechoslovakia was pieced together from the Austro-Hungarian empire, and has since divided into the Czech Republic and Slovenia. There is plenty of precedent for big powers to partition, absorb, or divide up conquered territories. It has taken place virtually from the beginning of time. Clearly, the beleaguered, war-weary, exploited peoples of Afghanistan deserve something better than the governments which have suppressed them for the past many decades.
While no such “solution” will be forthcoming, of course, I offer the thought here merely as a possible solution, since it would not be the U.S. who would be accused of “setting up a puppet government” in what had formerly been Afghanistan, and each nation which benefited from receiving large chunks of landscape could then be judged on its merits and its behavior toward its newfound population and territory.
The trouble is, who believes that Iran is not a repressive regime? Who believes that the plight of the people of Afghanistan would be lessened if they found themselves governed by the Uzbekis, or the Pakistanis?
Many believe it is the feelings of futility, frustration and powerlessness that drive extremist groups. They believe that eliminating a few groups of terrorists will be only tokenism; that it will not even begin to eradicate the basic cause of terrorism against the U.S..
As one human rights activist in Cairo said, “This war on terrorism may eliminate a few terrorists, but without basic reforms, it will be like killing a few mosquitos and leaving the swamp.”
This is why nothing short of the intervention of God Almighty will EVER solve the problems the world now faces.
Every day that passes sees more and more deeply entrenched hatreds toward the U.S., even in our so-called “friends and allies” in Europe and elsewhere! We are “buying lovers” around the world, and those “lovers” are prophesied to BETRAY us! Overcome with sadness at what he saw was coming upon his people, the prophet Jeremiah lamented, “She weepeth sore in the night, and her tears are on her cheeks: among all her lovers she hath none to comfort her: all her friends have dealt treacherously with her, they are become her enemies” (Lamentations 1:2). Later, he said, “Behold, 0 LORD; for I am in distress: my bowels are troubled; mine heart is turned within me; for I have grievously rebelled: abroad the sword bereaveth, at home there is as death.
“They have heard that I sigh: there is none to comfort me: all mine enemies have heard of my trouble; they are glad that thou hast done it [there has been REJOICING in the streets of Palestinian towns, and all over the Islamic world! One man said, “It is like I have won the lottery! This is the happiest day of my life” on September 11th]: thou wilt bring the day that thou hast called, and they shall be like unto me.
“Let all their wickedness come before thee; and do unto them, as thou hast done unto me for all my transgressions: for my sighs are many, and my heart is faint”
(Lamentations 1:20-22). Yes, God says HE will ultimately punish all terrorists, and those who rejoice over His people’s destruction!
Jeremiah continued, “He hath cut off in his fierce anger all the horn of Israel: he hath drawn back his right hand from before the enemy, and he burned against Jacob like a flaming fire, which devoureth round about” (Lamentations 2:3). Clearly, since God COULD HAVE PREVENTED the September 11th attacks, and since He DID NOT do so, then He has ALLOWED these vicious murderers to grievously afflict our nation!
God did not CAUSE the attacks, but neither did He prevent them!
Jeremiah lamented, “Thy prophets have seen vain and foolish things for thee: and they have not discovered thine iniquity, to turn away thy captivity; but have seen for thee false burdens and causes of banishment [Instead of showing our people WHAT SIN IS (1 John 3:4), and calling upon our people to REPENT OF BREAKING GOD’S TEN COMMANDMENTS, the preachers continually tell them the “law has been DONE AWAY!” Iniquity means “lawlessness!”].
“All that pass by clap their hands at thee; they hiss and wag their head at the daughter of Jerusalem, saying, Is this the city that men call The perfection of beauty, The joy of the whole earth? [From the breathtaking majesty of those huge, tall trade towers to a mass of ugly rubble containing the disintegrated bodies of thousands, New York City; “Gotham,” “The Big Apple” now appears as a terrible, wounded battle scene not unlike the cities of London and Berlin during World War II].
“All thine enemies have opened their mouth against thee: they hiss and gnash the teeth: they say, We have swallowed her up: certainly this is the day that we looked for; we have found, we have seen it.
“The LORD hath done that which he had devised; he hath fulfilled his word that he had commanded in the days of old: he hath thrown down, and hath not pitied: and he hath caused thine enemy to rejoice over thee, he hath set up the horn of thin adversaries” (Lamentations 2:14-17).
Study the 26th chapter of Leviticus, and ponder the difference between the great BLESSINGS and benefits for obedience to God in contrast to the horrible CURSES He said would come upon us!
God said, “But if ye will not hearken unto me, and will not do all these commandments [and we have not done so, as a nation, and are not doing so today!];
“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 [MILLIONS of professing “Christians” despise His Sabbaths; His laws!]:
“I also will do this unto you; I will even appoint over you terror, consumption, and the burning ague, that shall consume the eyes, and cause sorrow of heart: and ye shall sow your seed in vain, for your enemies shall eat it.
“And I will set my face against you, and ye shall be slain before your enemies: they that hate you shall reign over you; and ye shall flee when none pursueth you” (Leviticus 26:14-17).
No bombing campaign, no matter how protracted; no intelligence information, no matter how accurate; no prosecution of terrorists, no matter how thorough and successful, will EVER root out the countless hundreds of thousands of virulent, hate-filled, vitriolic Islamic militants who will step up to take the place of each one who falls.
There simply IS NO HUMAN SOLUTION to the horrifying troubles that grip our planet!
We are entering the time of the GREAT TRIBULATION – we are now entering a “time of trouble as never was from the time there was a nation!” Christ said, “For then shall be great tribulation, such as was not since the beginning of the world to this time, no, nor ever shall be.
“And except those days should be shortened, there should no flesh be saved: but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened” (Matthew 24:21, 22). Are you one of God’s ELECT? You can be! You SHOULD be, and you MUST be, if you wish to ESCAPE all the terrible things which are to occur to our peoples!
Read the many booklets and articles published here, and then get on your knees and talk to God about what you have learned; and what you ought to be DOING about it!
I am not chicken little. I am not an alarmist. I am not intending to somehow take advantage of world conditions to frighten anyone! But I would be a fool to ignore what is happening, or to ignore the incredible events which are obviously mentioned in Bible prophecy!
It is the duty of the watchman to CRY OUT when he sees the sword coming upon his land! God says, “Cry aloud, spare not, lift up thy voice like a trumpet, and show my people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins!” (Isaiah 57:1). It is past time for you, or anyone else to “argue” about doctrine! It is past time for those who must be dragged, kicking and screaming, to one point of “truth” after another, until they can become “convinced” about God’s law! It is past time for anyone to put his or her “interpretation” into the word of God, before which we are to TREMBLE!
Instead, it is time for every man and woman to REPENT of his or her sins, and to “SEEK THE ETERNAL WHILE HE MAY BE FOUND” (Isaiah. 55:6). Will you reject this “window of opportunity” your heavenly Father now opens before you? God says a vast number of those who SHOULD KNOW THE TRUTH, and who SHOULD BE BUSILY ENGAGED IN HIS WORK will be SLEEPING when the end comes! Notice what Christ warned: “Then [at the very time of the tribulation: see the preceding chapter) shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins, which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
“And five of them were wise, and five were foolish.
“They that were foolish took their lamps, and took no oil with them:
“But the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.
“While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.
“And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him.
“Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
“And the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps are gone out.
“But the wise answered, saying, Not so; lest there be not enough for us and you: but go ye rather to them that sell, and buy for yourselves.
“And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut.
“Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us.
“But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not.
“Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour wherein the Son of man cometh” (Matthew 25:1-13). Notice that they ALL slept! But the difference was that the wise ones were “prayed up”; they had been praying, studying, overcoming; they had been busily engaged in God’s work! Obviously, the oil is a type of God’s Holy Spirit. Also, the virgins are a type of GOD’S CHURCH!
This is also a reference to the prophecy that the day of the Lord will not come except there be a GREAT FALLING AWAY first! THAT HAS HAPPENED! TENS OF THOUSANDS have already FALLEN AWAY from the truth they once proved to themselves; the truth they believed and practiced! Thousands have turned, like the dog to its vomit and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire, back to this world and its “churchianity.” They have rejected God’s laws; rejected His Sabbath days; rejected His holy days; rejected the truth about God’s very nature, and accepted the “Trinity.” They have adopted the sign of the cross, and now eat unclean things, and practice the pagan holidays!
What about YOU?
Will YOU be sound asleep, and unable to be counted worthy to escape all these horrible things which are coming upon the world, or will you REPENT, and be a part of the very work of God of witness and warning – fulfilling the commission of Christ to preach the good news of His soon-coming intervention in human affairs to the world?
God says, “...they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever” (Daniel 12:3).
Those who are busily engaged in this WORK of God are doing just that! God is BLESSING His work – now growing at the rate of THIRTY PER CENT PER YEAR! Jesus Christ promised, “And he that overcometh, and keepeth my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations:
“And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father” (Revelation 2:26, 27). How would YOU like to be given RULERSHIP over Afghanistan, or Iraq, or Syria, or Saudi Arabia? This is what Jesus Christ promises those who repent of sins, and who are begotten of God’s Holy Spirit!
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The Garner Ted Armstrong Evangelistic Association
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