A New Dark Age is about to Descend
Hold Fast Letter
Dear Brethren and Friends:
Thank you for your contribution to a marvelous Feast of Tabernacles. Such a Feast is only possible through the stirred up, abundance of God's Holy Spirit. It sets the bar high for Tabernacles 2004.
After such a wonderful eight days, we must of necessity return to Satan's dark world in which we need to soldier on until we all meet again next year.
Indeed, 2004 looks to be a momentous year, with a Presidential election in the United States looming large and the war on terror intensifying.
By its very nature, the struggle for the White House can do nothing but encourage the efforts of our enemies against this country. When unity is essential in the nation, we find the democratic hopefuls attacking President Bush for going to war in Iraq and for the way he is executing the war. The 2001 attack on the Twin Towers should have confirmed to the American people that we have entered a war with fanatics who wish to either convert us to Islam, or utterly destroy us. But for many, especially those far away from New York, the strike on 9/11 was an isolated incident in the past.
Yet a similar attack, or one even larger would send the economy of the United States into a tailspin from which it might not recover.
Outside of the United States there is little real support for this war against these fanatics. In fact, most countries are more than willing to appease them because of the large Muslim populations within their borders. Hand in hand with this is an envy of the wealth, freedom and power of the United States, which makes them hope that the Americans will be brought down a peg or two. Communists, socialists and liberals hate this country and want to see it go down.
Within the United States itself, the mainstream media constantly hammers away at the Bush administration on its handling of the war. Biased reporting, which frames the conflict constantly on negative terms, is designed to dishearten the public at home.
These factors combined, weaken the United States and strengthen her enemies.
How does this relate to Biblical prophecy? Quite simply, the Bible reveals that modern Israel (the United States and Great Britain) will suddenly be overcome by their enemies; that a United States of Europe will emerge to threaten the whole world and will attack the Middle East.
This scenario is described in some detail in Daniel 11. Here Europe is led by the king of the North, also known as “the little horn”, “the Assyrian” or “the son of perdition.” According to Daniel 11:40, he is provoked by the king of the South, the prince or leader of Egypt, “at the time of the end.” We have been living in the time of the end since Mr. Armstrong died in January 1986.
In verse 42, it states “the land of Egypt shall not escape” and in verse 43, “He shall have power over the treasures of gold and silver, and over all the precious things of Egypt.”
Today, Egypt is the most powerful Arab nation in the Middle East. Over the last twenty-five years, Egypt has been quietly receiving over two billion dollars annually from the United States, much of which has gone into an extraordinary military, built upon state-of-the-art weaponry bought from America.
Recently the Israeli defense minister commented that Egypt's armament build-up was much more than was required for its defense.
Egypt has, in modern times, considered itself the leading nation in the Arab world. Today it is the most powerful. Should Muslim extremists take over Egypt, all that power would be directed against the United States and Israel. Support for terrorists would then be increased exponentially. Is this possible? Certainly! It was just such a fanatical Muslim group that gunned down Mr. Herbert Armstrong's personal friend, President Anwar Sadat. President Mubarak is his successor. An Arab world united and led by Egypt, with help from Europe, could well help undermine the United States and Great Britain. However, once the United States is destroyed, these extremists would revert to attacks on Catholic Europe, the ancient enemy of Islam. The “push” against Europe would bring on the last crusade, in which Islam and the Muslim nations would be destroyed, and the Europeans would control a line along the Euphrates to the Persian Gulf. This would include Saudi Arabia, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Israel, Egypt, Libya, the Sudan, and Ethiopia. It might well include the rest of North Africa lying along the southern coast of the Mediterranean Sea.
The Bible, along with recent history, shows that the United States should not trust “old Europe.” The French, Germans, and Russians, we now know, helped supply Saddam Hussein with much of his conventional and non-conventional weapons.
Saudi Arabia has provided financial support for the terrorists who flew planes into the Twin Towers, and most of the perpetrators were Saudis.
In Israel the vicious struggle between the Palestinians and Israelis over the sovereignty of Jerusalem and the Temple Mount continues apace and the more people talk of peace the less there is.
Peace can only come from victory and we will have to wait for Christ to bring that victory.
In the meantime, very dark days lie ahead. End-time events are speeding up and there is one sure way you can know that time has to be short. Namely, the terribly weak condition of God's Church right now.
The Worldwide Church of God has become a full-fledged, but tiny, Protestant denomination and the leadership of the majority who broke away from it and established their own religious groups, are also drifting ever faster into Protestantism.
Christ promised His Church would not die out. When the Church of God, Seventh Day rejected the revelation Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong presented them, they died. They are now a Protestant denomination!
So how long can God wait before setting the tribulation on its course?
It has to happen before lukewarm Laodiceans become stone cold Protestants . . . and since nineteen-year time cycles play an important part in God's plan, it is well to remember that Mr. Herbert Armstrong will have been dead nineteen years on January 16, 2005.
In January 2005, the United States will either have a new President, or George Bush will be starting out on his second term.
Brethren, it is time for increased prayer, study, and fasting. As Winston Churchill said at the beginning of World War II, “the lights are going out all over Europe. A new dark age is about to descend.” So it is today, but on a worldwide scale. Let's be sure our lights continue to shine in darkness.
In Christian service,
Robert J. Elliott
Lux lucet in tenebris
A light shines in darkness
Motto of the fourth era, Thyatira.
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