Volume XXXVI Issue III March 2017
Last Trumpet Ministries, PO Box 806, Beaver Dam, WI 53916
Phone: 920-887-2626 Internet: http://www.lasttrumpetministries.org
A Struggling Mass Of Humanity!
"Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry. The face of the Lord is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth."Psalm 34:13-16
"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."John 14:27
"And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet."Matthew 24:6
In this issue of the Last Trumpet Newsletter, we will consider the current events of our day even as masses of humanity struggle to come to grips with reality. As I study the headlines of recent weeks, I cannot help but marvel. Traditionally, it has always been the Christian people who preached that we are getting closer and closer to the end of the world. It is a belief that is firmly rooted in the Bible. Yet, the Christian people were often maligned by an increasingly secular society for holding such a belief. It seems that the tables have turned.
According to a report published by Bloomberg News in February 2016, the anxiety level of the American people has reached new heights since the election of Donald Trump as President of the United States in November 2016 and his inauguration in January 2017. This assessment is based on research conducted by the American Psychological Association, or APA, which released the results of a survey in January 2017. "The results of the January 2017 poll show a statistically significant increase in stress for the first time since the survey was first conducted in 2007," a statement from the APA said. A great deal of this anxiety has been caused by uncertainty of the future, and it is affecting both Democrats and Republicans. "I don't think it can be just boiled down to the side that won versus the side that didn't. There is something going on across the aisle," stated Vaile Wright of the APA. The results of the study indicate that 76 percent of Democrats and 59 percent of Republicans are stressed about the future of the United States of America. (1)
Meanwhile, a group known as the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists have again advanced their symbolic doomsday clock. This clock, which is supposed to indicate how close the human race is to complete destruction, now reads just two minutes and 30 seconds from midnight. Their decision to advance the clock was largely based on the election of President Trump. "This year's Clock deliberations felt more urgent than usual… as trusted sources of information came under attack, fake news was on the rise, and words were used by a President-elect of the United States in cavalier and often reckless ways to address the twin threats of nuclear weapons and climate change," declared Rachel Bronson, the director of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists. Other members of the group shared her sentiments. "Never before has the Bulletin decided to advance the clock largely because of the statements of a single person. But when that person is the President of the United States, his words matter," wrote Bulletin members David Titley and Lawrence M. Krauss. (2)
It has become evident that the thin veneer of tolerance in leftist America is wearing thinner. On February 1, 2017, the perverted comedienne, Sarah Silverman, posted on the social networking website known as Twitter and called for a military coup of the United States government. "Wake up and join the resistance. Once the military is w[ith] us fascists get overthrown. Mad king and his handlers go bye bye," Silverman wrote. She then wrote again the next day, "FEAR can motivate even peacenik snowflakes to incite violence and last night I felt it hard," as she attempted to explain her earlier remark. (3) This is the mentality of many American people today. Not so long ago, an acquaintance of mine confessed that she thinks about how much she hates Donald Trump hundreds of times each day. Regardless of one's feelings about the current President of the United States, such obsessions are not mentally or spiritually healthy. Nevertheless, the widening rift in America has strained even familial relationships. According to recent news reports, numerous families have members who are no longer speaking to each other, while some married couples are divorcing because of political disagreements. (4) Time Magazine even published an article in September 2016 which urged women to break up with their Trump-supporting boyfriends. (5) The current tension in the United States prompted famous musician Charlie Daniels to write, "The pot is boiling and it's only a matter of time before there will be blood in the streets." (6) I pray to God that Mr. Daniels' prediction proves to be incorrect, but as noted in last month's issue of this newsletter, even the mainstream media has likened the present condition of our country to the time of the American Civil War. (7)
Wars And Rumors Of Wars In A Contentious World!
The twenty-fourth chapter of Matthew has long been studied by avid students of Scripture. In this chapter, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, specifically answers questions from his disciples regarding the end of the world. It can be accurately stated that every example of end-time conditions given by Jesus describes our world today. Of course, no one knows the day or the hour when our Saviour will return, but we do know for certain, that each passing day brings us closer to that reality. In Matthew 24:6 we are told by Jesus, "And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet."
Throughout the annals of history, there have been many wars, and since its inception 240 years ago, the United States of America has been involved in numerous wars and conflicts. In the Twentieth Century, the world was engulfed in two global wars that eventually came to be known as World War I and World War II. These horrifying wars claimed millions upon millions of lives, and there is a very real danger that the world we live in today could experience a third world war. On January 26, 2017, Time Magazine published an article written by none other than Mikhail Gorbachev. In this article, the former President of the Soviet Union writes: "More troops, tanks, and armored personnel carriers are being brought to Europe. NATO and Russian forces and weapons that used to be deployed at a distance are now placed closer to each other, as if to shoot point-blank." He later went on to write, "It all looks as if the world is preparing for war." (8) For its part, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, or NATO, seems to be preparing for a potential conflict with Russia. According to Petr Pavel, the 28-nation alliance has been "increasing the readiness of the troops in all member nations, as well as the assets that are owned by the alliance." Elaborating further, Pavel was quoted as saying, "Since we are aware of our primary task - the protection of our allies' territory and populations - we have to take the measures that correspond to the security situation." Finally, Pavel attempted to downplay the potential for a conflict with Russia. "I believe that Russia doesn't have a serious intent to attack NATO - we have to be realistic. But there are significant capabilities and military build-up and modernizations that make it necessary for us to be ready for any contingency," Pavel said. (9)
Since Donald Trump began his term as President of the United States in January 2017, it seems that the countries of Russia, Iran, North Korea, and China are testing the waters to see what the American response will be to an assortment of provocations. Despite allegations from Democratic politicians that President Trump has ties to Vladimir Putin and the Russian government, the United States military has rejected suggestions from Russia that the militaries of the two nations collaborate. "We are not in a position right now to collaborate on a military level. But our political leaders will engage and try to find common ground or a way forward where Russia, living up to its commitments, will return to a partnership of sorts here with NATO," said U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis. (10) This rejection of collaboration comes even as Russia has reportedly deployed advanced new cruise missiles, which violates an arms treaty dating back to the administration of former American President Ronald Reagan. (11) Additionally, it was reported in mid-February 2017 that a Russian spy ship was spotted off the coast of the United States, just 70 miles from the state of Delaware. (12) Further complicating matters, multiple Russian jets buzzed an American destroyer ship known as the U.S.S. Porter on February 10, 2017. "There were several incidents involving multiple Russian aircraft. They were assessed by the commanding officer as unsafe and unprofessional," stated U.S. Navy Captain Danny Hernandez. Requests from Navy personnel to stop these operations were ignored by the Russian pilots flying the jets. The incident occurred over the Black Sea near the country of Romania. (13)
Meanwhile, recent ballistic missile tests in Iran have further strained relations between the Iranian government and the United States. (14) The missile tests raised the ire of President Trump who quickly punished Iran with a new round of economic sanctions. In a bizarre twist, the Supreme Leader of Iran, Ayatollah Khamenei, and American President Donald Trump have been waging a war of words on the social networking website known as Twitter. In an entry dated February 3, 2017, Trump wrote, "Iran is playing with fire - they don't appreciate how 'kind' President Obama was to them. Not me!" In response, Khamenei wrote, "New POTUS (President of the United States) says Iran should've appreciated Obama! How come? Appreciate him for Daesh (Islamic State), war in Iraq and Syria, or public support for 2009 unrest?" Shortly thereafter, Khamenei posted to Twitter again. "Trump says be scared of me! No, Iranians will respond to such words with Feb. 10 rallies and will show what is their position toward threats," the Iranian leader wrote on February 7, 2017. (15) As promised, rallies on February 10, 2017, were well attended by the Iranian people. According to reports, hundreds of thousands of people turned out to burn American flags and chant the customary slogan, "Death to America!" (16)
Relations between the United States and China are not exactly on solid ground right now either. Much of the contention between the two countries has arisen because the United States has routinely performed military operations in contested regions of the South China Sea. On February 15, 2017, Reuters News Service reported that China had issued a new warning to the United States. "We urge the U.S. not to take any actions that challenge China's sovereignty and security," said Geng Shuang, the spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry. (17) Geng was also quoted by USA Today as saying, "China has indisputable sovereignty over the South China Sea islands and their adjacent waters. China respects and upholds the freedom of navigation and overflight in the South China Sea which countries enjoy under international law, but firmly opposes any country's attempt to undermine China's sovereignty and security in the name of the freedom of navigation and overflight." (18) China clearly does not like the presence of United States Navy vessels in the South China Sea. However, an American ship, the U.S.S. Carl Vinson, was deployed in the region on February 18, 2017. (19) It should be noted that the People's Liberation Army in China issued a statement in late January 2017, which suggested that war with the United States is not outside the realm of possibility. "'A war within the president's term' or 'war breaking out tonight' are not just slogans, they are becoming a practical reality," the statement declared. (20)
Even as other nations test and develop new weapons, the United States has co-developed a new missile defense system with Japan. On February 3, 2017, the United States Navy tested the new system off the coast of Hawaii. "Today's test demonstrates a critical milestone in the cooperative development of the SM-3 Block IIA missile and will ultimately improve our ability to defend against increasing ballistic missile threats around the world," said Vice Admiral Jim Syring of the Missile Defense Agency. (21)
I am not going to make any predictions about where or when World War III might start. It is, however, undeniable that there is great tension around the world. Bold statements are being made, and nations around the world are flexing their military might. It is like a powder keg that could blow at any time. I strongly suspect that our world has been on the brink of a global war on numerous occasions in recent decades. It seems that we are once again close to that horrifying possibility. Without a doubt, we have much to pray about.
What Will Your Job Be In The Future?
Have you ever wondered what life might be like in the future? Will robots become common? How will people be employed? What will people do? It turns out this is a topic that the world's wealthy and elite class often like to discuss. This includes the ambitious and eccentric billionaire Elon Musk. The former CEO of the online financial services company known as PayPal now owns Tesla Motors and SpaceX, which is a company specializing in outer space exploration. In November 2016, Musk, as he has done in the past, once again warned the human race that the robots are coming, and they are going to steal many jobs. As a solution to the widespread loss of employment, Musk has suggested that the world embrace a universal basic income. "There's a pretty good chance we end up with a universal basic income, or something like that, due to automation. Yeah, I am not sure what else one would do. I think that is what would happen," Musk opined. (22) For those who are unfamiliar with the concept, universal basic income would mean that everyone is paid by the government each month regardless of what they do or do not do. In other words, people would no longer have to work. "People will have time to do other things, more complex things, more interesting things. Certainly more leisure time," Musk stated. (23) As strange as it sounds, universal income is a concept that is rapidly gaining attention today. Between January 17, 2017, and January 20, 2017, representatives of the world's most elite class descended on the small ski-town of Davos, Switzerland, for the World Economic Forum. This event was attended by kings, queens, heads of state, world leaders, and other notable figures, who gathered once again to discuss their future plans for humanity. (24) Universal basic income was a major topic at this exclusive gathering. "The machine learning revolution has really kicked in: machines can see better than humans can, diagnose cancer from medical images, understand speech almost as well, and do more and more analytical reasoning," said Erik Brynjolfsson of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. (25) Experts believe that 47 percent of the jobs performed by humans today could be lost to automation over the course of the next twenty years." (26) While many proponents of basic income were present at Davos, philosopher Michael Sandel was less enthusiastic about the idea. "We'd essentially be saying: 'We're going to pay you off in exchange for you accepting a world in which your contribution to the common good isn't really required, and what you do with your time, that's your business. I think that would be corrosive," Sandel said. (27)
It is important to note that they are talking about universal basic income. The word universal implies that such a system would be implemented on a global level. It would likely be entirely cashless and could possibly require the user to receive a microchip in their right hand or forehead. It is essentially an allowance from the one world government. What better way to entice the people than with the promise of free money?
While this new system would certainly give people much more free time, it would also likely lead to a widespread lack of direction and purpose for the human race. The aforementioned Elon Musk has a solution for this problem, too. Speaking at the World Government Summit in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, in February 2017, Musk suggested that the human race will need to merge with machines to stay relevant in a world dominated by robots and artificial intelligence. "Some high bandwidth interface to the brain will be something that helps achieve a symbiosis between human and machine intelligence and maybe solves the control problem and the usefulness problem," Musk detailed. (28) While Musk and others of his ilk may desire a world where mankind is merged with machine, I do not believe that this is a reality that God will ever allow to come to fruition. Nevertheless, we live in a strange period of time where science fiction may soon not be fiction anymore.
Will You Soon Be Offered A Microchip Implant?
In recent years it has become increasingly common for animals and pets to be implanted with radio frequency identification (RFID) microchips. Encapsulated in glass and about the size of a grain of rice, these chips are often touted as an effective tool against the loss of runaway pets. It has become so commonplace that most people do not even blink when they hear of a cat or dog being implanted with a chip. In some areas of the world, these microchips are mandatory. For example, a new law requiring all dogs in the United Kingdom to be implanted with a microchip went into effect in April 2016. (29)
Implanting animals is one thing, but will it ever become common for human beings to receive microchips? It is already happening. A marketing company in Belgium, known as NewFusion, is providing its employees with microchips, presenting them as a more convenient alternative to traditional identification badges. (30) Meanwhile, tenants and employees at an office complex in Sweden, known as Epicenter, have been receiving microchip implants since 2015. "We already interact with technology all the time. Today it's a bit messy - we need pin codes and passwords. Wouldn't it be easier to just touch with your hand? That's really intuitive," said Hannes Sjoblad, who holds the strange title of "chief disruption officer" at the complex. Although human chipping is uncommon today, Sjoblad believes his company is doing important work preparing people for the day when such chips become government mandated. "We want to be able to understand this technology before big corporates and big government come to us and say everyone should get chipped - the tax authority chip, the Google or Facebook chip," Sjoblad said. (31) This is a startling admission, and it makes it clear the direction our world is heading. Could we soon be facing a world where human beings are branded and chipped like cattle by an overbearing global government?
Here let it be noted that a Senator in the American state of Nevada recently introduced a bill to the state legislature that would make it illegal for anyone to mandate microchip implants for human beings. "This is a completely new issue. I just want a safety measure in place until we better understand the technology and the reasoning behind people's desire to require implanting chips," said Republican Senator Becky Harris of Nevada. (32) Harris was also quoted as saying, "As I began to look into the issue, I was surprised with the merit that I believe the issue warrants." (33) Senator Harris also cited a report from the Wall Street Journal which indicates that an estimated 30,000 to 50,000 microchips designed for human implantation have been sold worldwide. "It's done under the idea to unlock doors or use copy machines or maybe pay for lunch, you could use your hand," Harris said. (34) The states of Wisconsin, North Dakota, California, and Oklahoma have all previously passed laws banning compulsory microchipping of humans. (35)
Fake News In An Age Of Deception!
We are truly living in an age of deception, and each month more revelations regarding fake news are revealed. In the previous two issues of this newsletter, I have covered the various types of fake news that are plaguing our world today. Interestingly enough, as more people become aware of this problem, trust in the mainstream media is falling. This development has caused great consternation for those involved in the news industry. This frustration led to an absolutely stunning comment from MSNBC television host Mika Brzezkinski. Bemoaning the lack of trust in the media by a growing faction of the American population and a propensity to trust President Trump's words over what they hear on the news, Brzezkinski said, "Well, I think that the dangerous, you know, edges here are that he is trying to undermine the media and trying to make up his own facts. And it could be that while unemployment and the economy worsens, he could have undermined the messaging so much that he can actually control what people think. And that, that is our job." (36) Perhaps Ms. Brzezkinski is confused. It is not the job of the news media to tell us what to think, at least it is not supposed to be. The job of the news media is supposed to be to report the news. Therein lies the problem. The members of the press, television networks, and news websites have taken it upon themselves to massage, finesse, manipulate, and contort the news in such a way that people believe what they want them to believe. Donald Trump does sometimes get his facts mixed up. He is not always right. However, that should not be entirely surprising since Trump has admitted he gets a lot of his news from television.
In some situations, fake news outlets are launched as social experiments. It has now come to light that the famous movie studio 20th Century Fox has landed in hot water after the company intentionally set up multiple fake news websites. These websites were given realistic sounding names such as The Houston Leader and The Salt Lake City Guardian. The fake news sources featured fabricated stories claiming that Donald Trump had placed a 90 day ban on child vaccinations and that Lady Gaga was planning to perform a tribute to Muslims during the Super Bowl halftime show. In the aftermath of the controversy, 20th Century Fox apologized and explained that the websites were tied to the release of their upcoming movie "A Cure for Wellness." (37) This debacle proves once again that deception is all around us.
In closing, it is obvious that we live in a time of great instability. I know that many folks were hoping that Barack Obama would pack up and leave Washington, D.C., after his presidency ended. However, reports indicate that Obama has set up an office in Washington and continues to work with an organization known as Organizing for Action. This group has organized many of the protests which occurred recently in the United States. Shortly after the election, Obama wrote to members of this group telling them, "It is fine for everybody to feel stressed, sad, discouraged. But get over it." He then told them to "move forward and protect what we've accomplished." (38) It appears that Obama is still trying to work behind the scenes.
As we continue to see distressing headlines and we realize how volatile this world is, it can be easy to fall into despair. Yet, as Christians we can have the peace of God in our hearts today. In Psalm 34:13-16 we read, "Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile. Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace, and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are upon the righteous, and his ears are open unto their cry. The face of the Lord is against them that do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth." We further read in John 14:27 these comforting words of our Saviour, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." If you desire to truly be at peace, I urge you to reach out to God, repent of your sins, and dedicate your life to Him.
Thank you all for your kind support of this ministry. We have faced many challenges over the last few months, including the replacement of two furnaces at our facilities. Yet, we always trust God to supply our every need and He has never let us down. As always, you are welcomed and encouraged to send us your prayer requests. We firmly believe that God hears and answers prayer. Grace and peace be unto you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.