Volume XXXII Issue VIII August 2013
Last Trumpet Ministries, PO Box 806, Beaver Dam, WI 53916
Fax: 920-887-2626 Internet: http://www.lasttrumpetministries.org
The Sufferings Of This Present Time!
"Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good."Romans 12:17-21
"Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God."James 1:19-20
"The shew of their countenance doth witness against them; and they declare their sin as Sodom, they hide it not. Woe unto their soul! for they have rewarded evil unto themselves."Isaiah 3:9
"And he cried mightily with a strong voice, saying, Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen, and is become the habitation of devils, and the hold of every foul spirit, and a cage of every unclean and hateful bird. For all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and the merchants of the earth are waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies. And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues."Revelation 18:2-4
In this issue of the Last Trumpet Newsletter, we will examine the current events of our day which reveal that much of the activities of mankind are being driven by unseen spiritual forces. In this present year of 2013, we live in what is supposed to be a civilized and advanced era. Yet, a steady stream of horrendous events continue to occur as the depravity of man takes center stage in a world stricken by sin and wickedness. In recent weeks the seething rage of the masses has boiled over in the nations of Brazil, Turkey, Egypt, and the United States with numerous incidents of shocking brutality and violence erupting. Meanwhile, the governments of the United States and Great Britain have wholeheartedly embraced homosexuality and have proclaimed that same-sex marriage is acceptable. The Middle East also remains in a volatile state with a persistent civil war in Syria, which threatens to extend to other nations in the region as well. I have no doubt in my mind that a flood of evil has been unleashed on this world and will only grow more severe as we progress through time. It is my hope and prayer that this newsletter will help you realize that we must turn to our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, if we are to seek shelter from this spiritual storm which has wreaked havoc on so many lives. I urge every reader of this newsletter to fully put your faith and trust in God and yield your hearts to Him.
The Masses Driven By A Wave Of Anger!
In the months of June and July of this year, we have seen numerous examples of social distemper sweeping various parts of the world. In one incident after another, the masses have grown angry and sometimes violent as they rise up to protest against the authorities. The nation of Brazil is a primary example of such unrest, which reached a highpoint in June 2013. The protests, which were organized on social media websites such as Facebook, were originally formed in response to a small increase in bus and mass-transit fares within the nation. On June 18th it was reported that 200,000 people, including 65,000 in São Paulo, were protesting on the streets in cities across Brazil. (1) By the 20th day of June, the massive protests had swelled to over one million participants. (2) In an effort to explain the impetus behind the protests, one demonstrator was quoted as saying, "What am I protesting for? You should ask what I'm not protesting for! We need political reform, tax reform, an end to corruption, better schools, better transportation." (3)
Similar protests have also been ongoing in the nation of Turkey. The controversy started in late May 2013 when protestors began occupying Gezi Park on Taksim Square in the city of Istanbul. Those who gathered originally did so in opposition to a plan to build a shopping centre in Gezi Park along with a replica of an old military barracks. (4) Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has not been swayed by the protests. "They can do whatever they want. We've made our decision and we will do as we have decided," Erdogan declared. (5) By mid-June, thousands of Turkish citizens had taken to the streets, and riot police were called up to quell the unrest. "This is an illegal act, this is our last warning to you - evacuate," police officers warned as they closed in on the protestors shortly before unleashing teargas and firing rubber bullets at the crowd. (6) The protests in Turkey have continued into the month of July. According to reports, over one thousand people were detained by Turkish police on July 16, 2013, with about thirty of them ultimately being arrested. (7)
In 2011 an uprising by the people of Egypt caused the ouster of former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarek. Since that day, the nation of Egypt has remained in a state of turmoil, and despite the fact that Mubarek's successor, Mohammed Morsi, was democratically elected, the people of Egypt have once again brought about the overthrow of a sitting president. Unhappy with what was deemed to be an authoritarian regime, protestors in Egypt staged demonstrations demanding that Morsi resign in July 2013. Fearing the will of the people, the military of Egypt gave Mohammed Morsi an ultimatum demanding that he resign by July 3, 2013, and threatened to remove him if he did not capitulate. (8) Upon reaching the deadline, President Morsi was removed from power and placed under house arrest by the head of Egypt's armed forces, General Abdel-Fateh el-Sissi. "The armed forces have tried in recent months, both directly and indirectly, to contain the internal situation and to foster national reconciliation between the political powers, including the presidency. But those efforts have failed," Sissi stated as he announced the removal of Morsi from office. (9)
In the aftermath of the coup d'état, the nation of Egypt was rocked by brutal violence. According to a report by CNN, at least 26 people were killed and 850 more were injured as supporters of Morsi, a group known as the Muslim Brotherhood, clashed with those who brought about the humiliated leader's removal. (10) Morsi's supporters promised to press on in their fight to have him restored to office. "The coup is illegal and we will never accept its results. We sacrificed so dearly to reach this point, and we will never return to the past again," declared Mohamed Badie, the supreme guide of the Muslim Brotherhood. (11)
In the United States, protests, riots, and acts of extreme violence have been reported in the wake of a jury decision which found George Zimmerman, a Hispanic man, not guilty of the murder of 17 year-old Trayvon Martin, who was black. As word of the verdict spread, protests began to form at various locations around the country. Reports indicate that thousands of enraged protestors assembled in New York City on July 15, 2013, and effectively shut down Times Square. (12) On the same day, hundreds of angry protestors gathered in Newark, New Jersey, and shut down one of the city's busiest intersections. (13) In Los Angeles, California, one hundred police officers, dressed in riot gear, were called up to contain angry demonstrators. (14) In the Crenshaw District of Los Angeles, an angry mob reportedly stomped on cars, chased bystanders, and stormed a Walmart store, which prompted the police to declare a tactical alert. In response to the disturbance, Commander Andy Smith of the Los Angeles Police Department was quoted as saying, "We want to support everyone's First Amendment right to protest, but we also want to ensure public safety and not allow people to commit violent acts." (15) Participants in this angry mob were again active the following night of July 16. In a report from the Los Angeles Times, the mob was described as "a band of robbers" who tore through Hollywood, wreaking havoc as they went and terrorizing people on the street. This small mob was estimated to have about 50 participants, and the Los Angeles Police Department called in 110 officers in an effort to catch them. (16)
Numerous racially motivated attacks on individuals were also reported in recent days. On July 14, 2013, a group of black youths attacked a Hispanic man at a park in Baltimore, Maryland. An eyewitness described the incident as follows: "They were just yelling and calling him names as they ran after him, but once they were hitting him and after that they started yelling 'This is for Trayvon.'" (17) Another incident occurred in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on July 15, 2013. "This man was just walking through the park and they just all jumped on him and they were just beating him," stated a witness to the attack. The witness further went on to say that the assailants were heard to say "This is for Trayvon Martin." The victim also described the attack, stating, "At first it was one guy on me pummeling me. And then it's two and then it's three, and then a whole bunch of them just came out of nowhere and I was just really in bad shape." (18) A similar incident was also reported in Senatobia, Mississippi. (19)
Sadly, certain public figures seem determined to further stoke the racial tension now manifesting in the United States. One such individual is Al Sharpton, a television anchor who works for MSNBC. Sharpton has announced plans to mobilize protests in one hundred cities throughout America in the coming days. (20) Meanwhile, Malik Zulu Shabazz, who is chairman of the racist hate group known as the New Black Panthers, has urged his followers, "Take to the streets and stay there." Shabbazz further went on to write in an online message, "We're at war. It's silly and immoral to call for peace when war has been declared." (21)
At this present time, much of the world's population is simmering with anger. The spirit behind such anger can often be captivating, and it sometimes leads people to behave in a manner that would be unthinkable under normal circumstances. As Christians we must be careful to not let such anger dictate our actions. For as the Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 12:17-19, "Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord." In like manner, James 1:19-20 declares, "Wherefore, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath: For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God."
They Declare Their Sin As Sodom!
These days, it seems as though the homosexual lifestyle is growing increasingly pervasive as we progress through time. Although the tide has been shifting in favor of same-sex marriage for quite some time, the month of June 2013, which had been declared "Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month" by Barack Obama, ushered in a time of great acceptance of homosexuality in the United States and an embracement of same-sex marriage by the federal government. On June 26, 2013, the Supreme Court of the United States struck down a law known as the Defense of Marriage Act, or DOMA, which had been in place since 1996. (22) This decision had an immediate effect on numerous government policies, and upon hearing of the high court's decision, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced that same-sex spouses of U.S. military members would begin receiving federal benefits as soon as possible. (23) The repeal of DOMA will also allow same-sex partners from other countries to immigrate to the United States to be with their American partners in states where same-sex marriage is legal. Proponents of same-sex marriage were thrilled to hear of this development. "This is a huge day, not only for the LGBT movement, but also for the immigrant rights' movement. This Supreme Court decision affirms that all families and individuals should be treated fairly and with justice," stated Jorge Gutierrez, leader of a group known as the Queer Undocumented Immigrant Project. (24)
All across America, those affiliated with the homosexual movement celebrated with vigor. Shortly after the Supreme Court's decision, Dannel P. Malloy, the governor of the state of Connecticut, raised a rainbow flag, which is a common symbol of gay pride, over the governor's residence in Hartford, Connecticut. (25) Governor Malloy also issued a statement urging all states to legalize gay marriage. "With this ruling, I implore every state to give full faith and credit to valid same-sex marriages. Every Connecticut resident deserves to have their marriage recognized as they travel among the states for work, vacation, and family visits. A marriage should not be a right that you gain and lose on a road trip across the country. My wife Cathy and I proudly join with all of our friends, both gay and straight, to celebrate today's ruling and its recognition of justice for all," Malloy stated. (26)
In Washington, D.C., bells rang out at the National Cathedral in honor of the Supreme Court's ruling. The Cathedral's dean, Gary Hall, declared that the bells were being rung "to celebrate the extension of federal marriage equality to all the same-sex couples modeling God's love in lifelong covenants." The cathedral also held a prayer service for gay families on the same day. (27)
Amazingly enough, the homosexual agenda has even found its way onto the breakfast tables of American children. To celebrate Gay Pride month, General Mills added two new rainbow marshmallows to its Lucky Charms cereal. "We're celebrating Pride month with whimsical delight, magical charms, and two new rainbow marshmallows," the cereal company declared in a press release. (28) General Mills also released a short video, which was likely designed to appeal to children, which declared the following: "Being different is not an issue, or a problem. It's lucky. Being unique, and colorful, and expressive, and unapologetic, are all very lucky things to be. So we raise our spoons to the lucky ones, to those living life on their terms and loving every single second of it." (29)
Meanwhile, The New Yorker Magazine featured a cover on a July 2013 issue of its magazine implying that the characters known as Bert and Ernie from the children's television program "Sesame Street" are gay. The image on the cover features Bert and Ernie cuddling on a couch in front of a television depicting the Supreme Court justices in their robes. "It's amazing to witness how attitudes on gay rights have evolved in my lifetime. This is great for our kids, a moment we can all celebrate," said Jack Hunter, the artist behind the magazine's cover. (30)
The social networking website known as Facebook has also emphatically declared their support for the homosexual lifestyle. In fact, over seven hundred employees of the company marched in the gay pride parade held on June 30, 2013, in San Francisco, California. (31) On the other side of the country, the perverse entertainer known as Lady Gaga sang the Star Spangled Banner at the gay pride parade in New York City. The singer made two modifications to the anthem and reportedly sang, "Oh say does that star spangled flag of pride yet wave…" and then finished with the lines "the land of the free and the home for the gay." (32)
Those who hold to Biblical values and stand up in opposition to homosexuality often face bullying by the homosexual community. Although we are told that homosexuals are loving and gentle people who would never hurt a fly, recent events show that they are sometimes militant and cruel. Such was the case at an event known as Pridefest, which took place in Seattle, Washington, on June 30, 2013. At the event, two street preachers carried signs with the words "Repent or Else" and "Jesus Saves From Sin" printed on them. Enraged by the messages printed on the signs, a group of Pridefest attendees attacked the men. After a group of women failed to successfully steal the signs, a group of men pulled the street preachers to the ground as the crowds around them applauded. A man then ran up to the preachers while they were on the ground and punched one of them in the back of the head several times. Another participant was seen to be kicking one of the preachers repeatedly. (33)
Meanwhile, same-sex marriage has also been embraced in Great Britain. In fact, it was announced on July 17, 2013, that Queen Elizabeth II had signed into law a bill that legalizes same-sex marriage in Wales and England. Equalities Minister Maria Miller was thrilled by this new development. "This is a historic moment that will resonate in many people's lives. I am proud that we have made it happen and I look forward to the first same-sex wedding by next summer," Miller stated. (34)
The homosexual lifestyle is now embraced by government figures, politicians, celebrities, and many American citizens. The level of acceptance for this way of life has never been as prevalent as it is right now. When I consider these facts, I cannot help but think of Isaiah 3:9 which reads, "The shew of their countenance doth witness against them; and they declare their sin as Sodom, they hide it not. Woe unto their soul! For they have rewarded evil unto themselves."
The Demonic Nature Of Abortion!
The most shameful sin committed in the United States in this modern age is the wholesale slaughter of innocent babies through the practice of abortion. This practice, which is demonic in nature, is endorsed by the American government. In fact, the Congressional Budget Office, or CBO, issued a report in July 2013 which touts late-term abortions, or abortions performed 20 weeks or later after conception, as a cost saving measure for the United States government. According to the report, around 11,000 late-term abortions are performed each year, and this reduces the amount of money the government must pay out through the Medicaid system. The report by the CBO was issued in response to a bill known as H.R. 1797 - the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act. (35) The bill, which would ban the practice of aborting babies twenty weeks after conception in most cases, was passed in the House of Representatives on June 18, 2013 by a vote of 228-196. However, it is highly unlikely that the bill would also pass in the Senate, and if it did, Obama has threatened to veto the law. "It's a bill that will go absolutely nowhere," declared Representative Joe Crowley, a Democrat from New York. (36)
Thankfully, some efforts to curtail the practice of abortion have been successful. In Texas, a law known as House Bill 2 was passed on July 12, 2013. The legislation bans abortions twenty weeks after conception, places new restrictions on abortion clinics, and also places restrictions on the usage of abortion inducing pills. (37) As lawmakers in Texas prepared to vote on the measure, a demonic presence was in full force outside the capitol building in Texas. While Christians who had gathered in support of the law sang "Amazing Grace," pro-abortion protestors under demonic influence began chanting "Hail Satan!" The satanic utterances started slowly, and after a few minutes the protestors were heard to be chanting in unison. (38)
Another victory for pro-life advocates recently took place in the state of Virginia. It was announced in July 2013 that NOVA Women's Healthcare of Fairfax County, which was the busiest abortion provider in the region, will be forced to shut down permanently. The facility, which performed 3,066 abortions in 2012, was found to be one parking spot short of city requirements, which resulted in city officials denying the facility their permit. (39) Additionally, four Planned Parenthood facilities have closed in the state Wisconsin this year. These facilities had been operating in the communities of Shawano, Johnson Creek, Chippewa Falls, and Beaver Dam. (40) We at Last Trumpet Ministries are thrilled to know that a Planned Parenthood office is no longer operating in our city of Beaver Dam, Wisconsin!
The City Of Detroit Is Officially Bankrupt!
In the July 2013 issue of the Last Trumpet, I warned that the city of Detroit, Michigan, may soon officially be bankrupt. On July 18, 2013, the city of Detroit filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection, and became the largest city yet to do so in the United States. This bankruptcy came about despite the efforts of emergency manager Kevyn Orr, who had hoped to convince the city's creditors to take about 10 cents for every dollar they were owed. In a written statement, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder declared the following: "Despite Mr. Orr's best efforts, he has been unable to reach a restructuring plan with the city's creditors. I therefore agree that the only feasible path to a stable and solid Detroit is to file for bankruptcy protection." (41) In light of these developments, comments made by Barack Obama have now come back to haunt him. In October 2012, Obama declared, "We refused to throw in the towel and do nothing. We refused to let Detroit go bankrupt. We bet on American workers and American ingenuity, and three years later, that bet is paying off in a big way." (42) Of course, Obama was mainly speaking of the government bailout of U.S. automakers in Detroit; however, those efforts did little to improve the financial crisis within the city itself. Will this trend of entire cities going bankrupt continue in the United States? According to a report by the Wall Street Journal, the mayor of Detroit, Dave Bing, has declared that more than one hundred cities in America "are having the same problems we're having." He then went on to say, "We may be one of the first [to declare bankruptcy.] We are the largest. But we absolutely will not be the last." (43)
Persistent Rumors Of War!
The world in this present age is in an increasingly turbulent state. Because of the great animosity and contempt that certain nations hold against each other, there are always persistent rumors of war. In July 2013 Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu once again warned that the nation of Iran is moving closer to a "red line," which would force Israel to launch an attack against them. "They haven't yet reached it but they're getting closer to it and they have to be stopped," Netanyahu said. He further went on to say, "I think it's important to note that we (Israel) can't allow it to happen. Our clocks are ticking at a different pace. We're closer than the United States, we're more vulnerable, and therefore we'll have to address this question of whether to stop Iran before the United States does." (44)
Meanwhile, it has been reported that Israel launched an attack on a missile shipment being delivered in Syria on July 5, 2013. (45) It has also come to light that the United States is now considering the use of military force in Syria. Regarding the situation, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Martin Dempsey, was quoted as saying, "The issue is under deliberation inside of our agencies of government." Admiral James Winnefeld offered a similar statement. "There are a whole range of options that are out there. We are ready to act if we're called on to act," Admiral Winnefeld stated. (46) It is interesting to note that Russia, which happens to be Syria's most significant ally, recently held war games, which involved 160,000 troops and the deployment of 5000 tanks across Siberia and the eastern region of their country. It was reportedly the largest show of force by the Russian military since the Soviet era. (47)
In closing, I urge every reader of this newsletter to fully put your faith and trust in God. This world is often full of disheartening news, disappointments, and unfairness, but our Saviour has something far better than anything this world has to offer waiting for those who love Him. For as we read in Romans 8:16-18, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us."
Thank you for your generous support of this ministry. We appreciate each and every one of you and fully realize that we could not do what we do without your help. We are here to serve you to the best of our abilities, and please remember that we are always ready and willing to accept your prayer requests and carry your petitions before the throne of the Almighty. Grace and peace be unto you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.