Volume XXXIII Issue III March 2014
Last Trumpet Ministries, PO Box 806, Beaver Dam, WI 53916
Fax: 920-887-2626 Internet: http://www.lasttrumpetministries.org
The Dangers And Challenges Of This Present Age!
"And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth. And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of men builded. And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech."Genesis 11:4-7
"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches."Revelation 3:20-22
"And he said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death."Revelation 21:6-8
"These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."John 16:33
In this issue of the Last Trumpet Newsletter, we will thoughtfully examine many of the challenges now facing the people of God in this present age. At the very outset, I want to make it clear that I do not write this newsletter with the intent to overwhelm or discourage any of you who may be reading it. I do believe that we are all far better off knowing what is happening in this world even if the facts are not particularly pleasant. In fact, the words of Jesus recorded in John 8:32 tell us, "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." By embracing the truth and putting our faith and hope in God, we are given the strength to overcome the difficulties of this present time. For as it tells us in Revelation 21:7, "He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son." If you have not yet fully given your heart to God, I urge you to do so now. Through Him we can overcome this world, even as Jesus Christ overcame this world.
The Backbone Of A One World Government!
In the first book of the Bible, which is known as Genesis, we find an interesting story in the eleventh chapter. This chapter tells us of a time in human history when there was only one nation in the entire world, and every inhabitant of the earth spoke the same language. While this type of unity seems idealistic to many people in this modern age, the Scriptures tell us that this unity sorely displeased the Lord. For although the people were united, they were united in defiance against Almighty God. These obstinate people determined in their hearts that rather than obey God they could simply outsmart Him. Knowing full well that God had sent a flood in earlier days to judge the wickedness of the earth's inhabitants, they purposed in their hearts to build a tower which would reach unto heaven, thinking that in so doing they would survive any flood that might occur in the future. In Genesis 11:6-8, we can read about God's response to this development. These verses tell us, "And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do. Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another's speech. So the Lord scattered them abroad from thence upon the face of all the earth: and they left off to build the city." Although this early form of a one world government was disbanded by God when He confounded the languages of man and later split apart the landmass of earth to form continents, the efforts of mankind to establish a new global government have never ceased. It is for this reason that organizations such as the United Nations exist today.
We now live in a time period wherein the nations of the world have been reunited by way of a massive and elaborate communications system known as the Internet or the World Wide Web. Not only does this system allow the people of the earth to communicate instantaneously regardless of their geographic location, but it can also translate the native tongue of each user and thus circumvent most language barriers as well. The Internet also makes an unfathomable amount of information available with a few clicks of a mouse and allows for financial transactions between citizens of different countries to be conducted with ease. I believe this system, which has already captured so many hearts and minds, is being developed to serve as the backbone of a forthcoming beast system, which will attempt to unite all the people of the earth under one government, one monetary system, and one religion.
At this present time, only 60 percent of the world's population has access to the Internet. However, an organization known as the Media Development Investment Fund, or MDIF, is hoping to make the Internet even more accessible. In fact, the group is planning to launch hundreds of miniature satellites into space, which would then use radio waves to provide free global Internet access to every person in the world. (1) Thus for the first time ever, the entire planet earth would be enveloped in this so-called "net" or "web."
It is important to note that it is not just people who interface with the Internet today but also things. For example, General Electric has a line of household appliances which connect to the Internet and can be controlled by the owners from anywhere using their smartphones. (2) Additionally, some new Chevrolet vehicles are now equipped with a system known as OnStar Remote Link, which allows the users to start or unlock their vehicles from anywhere with a program on their phones. (3) The concept of household appliances, vehicles, and other objects being connected to the Internet is sometimes known as "the Internet of things" or "the Internet of Everything." According to a report issued in May 2013 by a group known as ABI Research, an estimated 30 billion devices will interface with the Internet by the year 2020. "The year of 2013 is seen by many as the year of the Internet of Everything, but it will still be many years until it reaches its full potential. The next five years will be pivotal in its growth and establishment as a tangible concept to the consumer," said Peter Cooney, practice director at ABI Research. (4)
Amazingly enough, a technology company known as Cisco, in a joint venture with Swiss security firm AGT, is hoping to eventually connect the very roads we drive on to the Internet as well. By use of Internet-enabled sensors in the pavement, this new system would be able to read license plate numbers, identify and respond to traffic incidents, and interface with social media feeds. (5) In a press release announcing this project, the executive vice president, Wim Elfrink of Cisco, was quoted as saying, "Today 99 percent of the physical world is not connected to the Internet. However, cities are the epicenter of the Internet of Everything where people, things, data and processes can be connected to deliver new and amazing value. Think about the possibilities. It is a vision we can realize today through the unique combination of Cisco's unparalleled networking and computing technology and AGT's cutting-edge smart cities platform." (6)
As the world becomes increasingly connected through the use of the Internet and mobile phones, users are finding it more and more difficult to step back and disconnect from the technology which may eventually invade nearly every aspect of their lives. In fact, according to a story published in December 2013, a female tourist in Australia became so engrossed with the social networking website known as Facebook that she actually walked off a pier at Port Philip Bay in Melbourne. The woman was reportedly still clutching her phone when she was rescued from the water. (7) Regarding the captivating nature of modern technology, Edward Vogel, a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the University of Oregon, was quoted as saying, "People love technology and having this constant connectedness to the rest of the world. We are never going to put that genie back in the bottle." (8)
This desire for a constant connection to the world could eventually lead to an integration of the human body with technology, especially if Google gets its way. In fact, Scott Huffman, who is the engineering director at Google, gave an interview in December 2013 in which he suggested there may someday be microphones in our ceilings and microchips in our heads. "Imagine I can say to a microphone in the ceiling of the room 'Can you bring up a video of the highlights of yesterday's Pittsburgh Steelers game and play it on a TV in the living room?' and it works because the Cloud means everything is connected," Huffman said. He further went on to say, "I could ask my Google 'assistant' where we should have lunch, that serves French food and isn't too expensive. Google will go 'Ok, we'll go to that place' and when I get in my car it should already be navigating to the restaurant. We're really excited by the idea of multiple devices being able to talk to each other." One of the devices to which he was referring could be the human body itself. In another portion of the interview, Huffman was quoted as saying, "I don't have a microchip in my head - yet." (9)
It is not a far-fetched notion to think that microchips implanted in the heads or hands of people could someday become a common occurrence. In fact, the British Broadcasting Corporation, or BBC, published an article in February 2014 entitled, "Why I Want a Microchip Implant." In this article, the author relishes the thought of being given a microchip implant because it would give his body the ability to interface with machines and serve as a "universal identity token." (10) The article also tells the story of Amal Graafstra, a man who has been implanted with RFID microchips in each of his hands. Graafstra dismissed those who are critical of such implants when he declared, "Every Hollywood movie has told them that implants are for tracking people. People don't get that it's the same exact technology as the card in your wallet. When someone uses a credit card, wireless or not, they are tracked because several other corporations know who they are, when they purchased, how much they spent, and where they spent it." (11) The article then declares that such implants are beneficial because they're more secure than external devices and cannot be lost or stolen.
I can recall numerous occasions when my father warned that many people would eventually embrace such technology and accept microchip implants voluntarily. The fact that this is already happening in our world is just another indicator of where we are in time. Now is the time for the children of God to watch and pray like never before and to keep looking up, for our redemption draweth nigh!
A Drought For The Ages In California!
By now most Americans have heard about the widespread drought in the state of California. However, those who are presently far removed from the crisis may not fully realize how dire the situation has become. In January 2014 Governor Jerry Brown declared a drought emergency in California as the state continues to struggle with the most severe drought that has ever been recorded in the region. (12) "We ought to be ready for a long, continued, persistent effort to restrain our water use," Governor Brown urged even as he suggested Californians voluntarily reduce their water usage by at least 20 percent. (13) As of this writing, the U.S. Drought Monitor indicates that over 90 percent of the state of California is suffering from "severe drought." (14)
In response, officials within the state of California have already begun to sound the alarm and warn that the consequences of this drought could have a severe impact on the state's expansive agricultural sector. "We're in a dire situation that we've never been in before," declared Paul Wenger, president of the California Farm Bureau Federation. (15) Mike Wade, executive director of the California Farm Water Coalition, also expressed his concern when he stated, "Some farmers may face bankruptcy because of this [drought.]" (16) It is estimated that 500,000 acres in the state of California will remain fallow in 2014. (17)
Although no one knows how long this drought will persist, some experts warn that it could last for quite some time. One such expert is paleontologist B. Lynn Ingram from the University of California. In fact, Ingram has warned that California could be experiencing the beginning of a megadrought, which has the potential to last for 200 years. "During the medieval period, there was over a century of drought in the Southwest and California. The past repeats itself," Ingram stated. (18)
Sadly, this drought could have a far-reaching impact which extends well beyond the state of California. Such a significant disruption in the food supply could result in drastically higher food costs throughout the United States and other areas of the world according to some experts. "Here in California, we're the breadbasket of the United States, but also we export tremendous volumes of fruits, vegetables, and even cattle overseas. And so when these terrible droughts hit and production drops, this echoes around the globe," said Bill Patzert, a climatologist at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (19) Indeed, the agricultural sector of the state of California is a major supplier of numerous crops in the United States. These crops include over 90 percent of the nation's broccoli, 99 percent of the nation's artichokes, 99 percent of the nation's walnuts, 97 percent of the nation's kiwis, 97 percent of the nation's plums, 95 percent of the nation's celery, 95 percent of the nation's garlic, 89 percent of the nation's cauliflower, 71 percent of the nation's spinach, and 69 percent of the nation's carrots. (20) Amazingly enough, the crops grown in the Central Valley region of California now account for about one third of all produce grown in the United States. (21)
Barack Obama has also expressed concern over this serious drought during a meeting in the state of California on February 14, 2014. "The truth of the matter is that this is going to be a very challenging situation this year, and frankly, the trend lines are such where it's going to be a challenging situation for some time to come," Obama declared. He later went on to say, "We are going to stay on top of this because it has national implications." (22)
The drought in California, which will likely cause increases in the price of food, could not have come at a more inopportune time for the American people. In fact, food prices in the United States have been steadily rising in recent years, having increased 6.4 percent since 2011 according to the government. Meat has seen the sharpest rise in cost with chicken increasing 18.4 percent, ground beef increasing 16.8 percent, and bacon increasing 22.8 percent within that same time period. (23) All of these facts indicate that the American people could be facing very difficult times in the coming days. Thankfully, as Christians we serve a mighty God who is well able to take care of his people. I firmly believe that God will help us, even when things seem dire and hopeless. We must remember to put our faith and trust in Him.
More Damage Caused By Obamacare!
Since its inception, the Affordable Care Act, which is sometimes referred to as Obamacare, has been touted as legislative reform that will repair a broken healthcare system in the United States. Yet, as we learn more about this new program it has become painfully clear that Obamacare has caused significant damage to the country and will likely continue to do so for quite some time. For example, the Congressional Budget Office, or CBO, released a report in February 2014 which indicates that the implementation of the Affordable Care Act will likely result in a significant reduction in working hours for the American people. "CBO estimates that the ACA (Affordable Care Act) will reduce the total number of hours worked, on net, by about 1.5 to 2 percent during the period from 2017 to 2024, almost entirely because workers will choose to supply less labor - given the new taxes and other incentives they will face and the financial benefits some will receive," the report states. It further goes on to say, "The reduction in CBO's projections of hours worked represents a decline in the number of full-time equivalent workers of about 2.0 million in 2017, rising to about 2.5 million 2024." (24)
Sadly, many people who have signed up for Obamacare have found that numerous doctors and hospitals do not accept the health insurance offered by the new program, and as a result, patients have a very narrow selection of doctors they may visit. This issue prompted California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones to say, "There are a lot of economic incentives for health insurers to narrow their networks, but if they go too far, people won't have access to care. Network adequacy will be a big issue in 2014." (25) These narrow insurance networks are especially problematic for people living in rural areas in states, such as Maine and New Hampshire, which do not have access to a wide-range of medical facilities. "If you're in central Maine, you have to go to Portland to find a hospital and some people were kind of upset about that," said Karen Pollitz of the Kaiser Family Foundation. (26)
It is quite obvious that the Affordable Care Act will cause the overall quality of healthcare in the United States to decline significantly. Yet, this program, which is socialist in nature, has been forced upon the American people who are now legally obligated to either buy health insurance or pay a penalty to the Internal Revenue Service. Despite the hardships this has caused the American people, Barack Obama has dismissed concerns about the program and has characterized it as an essential part of life. "We'd like to encourage more young people to sign up, partly because since they're healthier, their premiums are actually generally going to be fairly cheap. They can find good options for less than their cable bill, less than their cell phone bill. And it's just part of growing up…" Obama stated. (27) First Lady Michelle Obama also expressed her belief that young people need to sign up for Obamacare. Speaking on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Michelle Obama declared, "A lot of young people think they're invincible. But the truth is young people are knuckleheads." (28)
Liberal filmmaker Michael Moore, who is known to be a socialist, was a bit more honest about the realities of the Affordable Care Act than Barack and Michelle Obama. In an opinion piece published by the New York Times on December 31st, 2013, Moore candidly admitted, "Obamacare is awful." However, he also praised the program as a stepping stone to "universal quality health care." (29) One thing is poignantly clear, socialism has taken root in America.
Abortion - A Reproach Upon The United States Of America!
In previous issues of the Last Trumpet Newsletter, I have written extensively regarding the abortion problem in this present day. I will continue to cover this topic as long as the barbaric practice of abortion is common in the United States because it is such a reprehensible procedure, and it brings shame and reproach upon this country. We know from the Holy Scriptures that God cares deeply for little children. In fact, Jesus told us in Matthew 18:14, "Even so it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven, that one of these little ones should perish." Yet, there is a large segment of the American population that considers abortion to be a virtuous and good practice. One of the strongest proponents of abortion is none other than Cecile Richards, who is president of the despicable organization known as Planned Parenthood. In fact, on February 10th, 2014, Richards sent a repulsive video message to the social networking website known as Twitter in which she held up a sign indicating that women need "safe and legal abortions" for Valentine's Day. (30)
Planned Parenthood is an organization that is often promoted as a resource for women seeking reproductive healthcare. Yet, it is commonly known that their main reason for existence is to provide women with abortions. In a recent article, published in February 2014, we are given some rather unpleasant insight into the inner-workings of the organization's abortion clinics. The article features an interview with a nurse who formerly worked at one of these clinics until she was fired. "It was a money-grubbing, evil, very sad, sad place to work. I was always getting in trouble for talking too long to the girls, asking if they were sure they wanted to do this," Nurse Marianne Anderson said. She further went on to say, "You have to have so many [abortions] a month to stay open. In our meetings they'd tell us, 'If abortions are down, you could get sent home early and not get as many hours." In another portion of the interview, Nurse Anderson described how cold-hearted the abortionists at this clinic were when she worked there. "One doctor, when he was in the POC [products of conception] room, would talk to the aborted baby while looking for all the parts. 'Come on, little arm, I know you're here! Now you stop hiding from me!' It just made me sick to my stomach," Anderson recounted. (31)
Sadly, many women today have been led to believe that they have no alternative but to seek an abortion if they feel they are not ready to welcome a child into the world. This trend is especially common among black women in New York City. In fact, according to the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, there were more black babies aborted in 2012 than those that were allowed to be born alive. (32)
In closing, I know we live in a world fraught with danger, and we are facing more and more new threats as time goes on. In February 2014, it was revealed that Iranian warships entered the Atlantic Ocean, intending to travel near the borders of the United States for the very first time. (33) Meanwhile, it has also come to light in recent days that Saudi Arabia may begin a nuclear enrichment program in response to Iran's nuclear developments. (34) As always, there is much volatility and turmoil in this world. Yet, we should not despair, for despite all the trouble in this present world, we have a Saviour who has already overcome the world. In John 16:33, Jesus tells us, "These things have I spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world."
Thank you all for your generous support of this ministry. We appreciate your donations, news clippings, and kind letters more than we can express with words. It is an honor and a privilege to serve each and every one of you, and we intend to do so for as long as we are able. If you have prayer requests, please remember that we are here and more than willing to carry your petitions before the throne of the Almighty. Grace and peace be unto you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.