The Trumpet Herald is a commentary on certain current events in the light of inspired prophecy.
American Global Dominance
Two issues ago this newsletter addressed the prophetic significance of the air strike on Yugoslavia, in light of the dominance America continues to exercise over the world in the post-Cold War era. The recent triumph of the NATO air campaign, and the peacekeeping mission now in progress, offer further evidence that the global alignment depicted in Revelation 13 is still in progress.
As we noted before, this newsletter takes no position on issues of a political nature. We only seek to draw attention to events which bespeak the fulfillment of inspired predictions.
Revelation 13 describes a power, symbolized by the lamb-like beast, which "causeth the earth and them which dwell therein to worship the first beast, whose deadly wound was healed" (Rev. 13:21). Evidence from both Scripture and the modern prophet points to this symbol as representing the United States of America (see The Great Controversy, pp. 440-443). NATO's American-led victory over Serbia demonstrates again the growing influence of The United States to effect its will on situations around the world, and to direct other nations to do its bidding.
The month of May witnessed some major breakthroughs in the ecumenical movement, and in a manner whichas usualenhances the authority of the Roman Catholic Church.
The Pope's three-day visit to Romania May 7-9 focused, according to an Associated Press article, on "the healing of divisions within Christianity" (Chico [CA] Enterprise-Record, May 9, 1999, p. 9A). According to the article, Pope John Paul II "has made reconciliation a principal goal of the Vatican's millennial celebrations," and is "encouraging efforts for greater cooperation 'among all those who call themselves Christians'" (Ibid.).
Three times in this article, the Pope and Romania's Orthodox patriarch were quoted as saying the Pope's visit was intended to "heal the wounds" caused by the persecution of Catholics under Romania's communist regime, and to thus bring Catholic and Orthodox Christianity together.
Shortly thereafter the papacy scored another ecumenical triumph, this time with the Anglican Church. In a report titled, "The Gift of Authority," a joint Anglican-Roman Catholic commission recommended that the Pope be acknowledged as the "universal primate" of the Christian world, that his leadership is "a gift to be received by all the churches" (General Conference News Release, May 18, 1999, available on the web at www.adventist.org).
Speaking of the papacy, Revelation 13:3 states; "And I saw one of its heads as it were wounded to death: and his deadly wound was healed: and all the world wondered after the beast." This wound was inflicted on the papacy by Napoleon in 1798 when Pope Pius VI was forced into exile by the French army (see The Great Controversy, p. 439).
The healing of this wound began in earnest when Mussolini signed the Lateran Treaty with the papacy in 1929, making the Vatican an independent state. Interestingly, one newspaper headline which announced this agreement stated: "Mussolini, Gasparri Sign Roman Pact: Heal Wound of Many Years" (San Francisco Chronicle, Feb. 12, 1929).
The principles of the French Revolution, which Napoleon represented, were continued a century later by international Communism. It is thus significant for the Pope and the Orthodox patriarch to speak of "healing the wounds" caused by communist oppression of the Catholic Church.
Regarding the Pope's "gift of authority," the Bible is clear that it doesn't come from God. Revelation 13 states concerning the papacy: "The dragon gave him his power, and his seat, and great authority" (verse 2). Elsewhere Revelation identifies this dragon as Satan (Rev. 12:9, 20:2). This Pope, like his predecessors, has repeatedly exalted tradition over the Bible. Those Christians now choosing to accept papal authority had best consider the words of Jesus:
"In vain they do worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men" (Matt. 15:9).
More Unnatural Weather
The month of June witnessed a barrage of strange weather throughout the United States, from scorching temperatures in regions with mild climates to unseasonable cold, including snow and hailstorms,. on the West Coast.
The June 4 broadcast of the CBS Evening News described these bizarre weather patterns, with one scientist claiming that the phenomena known as El Niño and La Niña have been what he called "convenient scapegoats" for all that has happened. In reality, he went on to say, "there are a lot of mysteries out there that need to be solved."
The United States Weather Bureau, according to a subsequent CBS broadcast, has even formed what they call an "Extreme Weather Committee," for the purpose of charting these strange developments and hopefully finding some explanation for them.
Again, what does Inspiration say science will seek to do as the signs of Jesus' coming multiply?
"The restraining Spirit of God is even now being withdrawn from the world. Hurricanes, storms, tempests, fire and flood, disasters by sea and land, follow each other in quick succession. Science seeks to explain all these. The signs thickening about us, telling of the near approach of the Son of God, are attributed to any other than the true cause" (Testimonies, vol. 6, p. 408).
The recent unseasonable hailstorms in California remind us of the following inspired prediction of end-time calamities:
"In accidents and calamities by sea and by land, in great conflagrations, in fierce tornadoes and terrific hailstorms, in tempests, floods, cyclones, tidal waves, and earthquakes, in every place and in a thousand forms, Satan is exercising his power" (The Great Controversy, pp. 589-590).