The Trumpet Herald is a commentary on certain current events in the light of inspired prophecy.
"Peace and Safety"
"The good old days are today," proclaims Mort Zuckerman, editor-in-chief of U.S. News & World Report, in his magazine's lead editorial in the July 12, 1999 issue (p. 68). "Millions of Americans are benefiting from our historic boom. America is delivering on its promise of the American dream" (Ibid.).
He exults, in closing;
"We have become an increasingly universalist nation that welcomes all and includes all, in the context of a fluid, mobile, and bountiful society.
"The Constitution is not just a piece of paper. It lives. We have given life to that document by becoming an increasingly just and humane society. As broader and broader segments of our population have participated in America's expansion and growth, the American dream joins us all" (Ibid.).
Would that it were so!
Zuckerman's editorial can't help but bring to our minds the following verse of Scripture; "For when they shall say, Peace and safety; than sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child, and they shall not escape" (I Thess. 5:3).
Surely there has been some social progress in the past hundred years, in areas of civil rights, social justice, and equal opportunity. But the growth of technology has simultaneously opened new vistas for the expression of the evil that remains in human hearts. The "dream society" Zuckerman exults in has become more vulnerable to extreme violence, terrorism, and moral fluidity than any society in history.
Perhaps in some ways the "good old days" are today, as Zuckerman claims. But the modern prophet warns that when a future crisis brings about the destruction of American liberties, ruination will be the result:
"When Protestant churches shall unite with the secular power to sustain a false religion, for opposing which their ancestors endured the fiercest persecution, then will that papal sabbath be enforced by the combined authority of church and state. There will be a national apostasy, which will end only in national ruin" (Evangelism, p. 235).
The "Clone Rangers"
"Human cloning is going to happenfaster than you could ever imagine," proclaimed Dr. Richard Seed of Chicago on the July 11, 1999 edition of "CNN Perspectives." Such science will supposedly make it possible for human beings to be indefinitely duplicated in succeeding generations. In one reporter's words: "The closest you'll ever get to immortality."
The report insisted repeatedly that neither governments nor other instruments of social pressure or taboo will be able to stop cloning from taking place. And while the various scientists interviewed spoke of the perceived advantages of cloning, such as using a person's DNA to produce "spare" limbs and organs for one who might lose the use of his own, the report nevertheless acknowledged, "The final legacy of cloning could be more hideous than the myth."
One scientist observed, "I met a woman who wanted to give birth to her father. What kind of world are we going to live in?"
"I'm an optimist," says one scientist. Despite possible abuses of such technology, he assures us in words which makes us wonder what planet he's been living on: "On the whole this is a moral species."
In Dr. Seed's words, "We will become one with God. God made us in His own image, and He made it possible for us to be one with God."
Again we think of the warning of Christ: "As it was in the days of Noah, so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man" (Luke 17:26). We likewise recall inspiration's observations about the biological tampering which occurred in Noah's day:
"But if there was one sin above another which called for the destruction of the race by the flood,. it was the base crime of the amalgamation of man and beast which defaced the image of God, and caused confusion everywhere. God purposed to destroy by a flood that powerful, long-lived race that had corrupted their ways before Him" (Spiritual Gifts, vol. 3, p. 64).
"For once it's not El Niño or La Niña: it's just windy, wet, and wild." So reported the "Weather Watch" segment of the July 14 broadcast of the CBS Evening News, a new report segment designed to track the country's increasingly violent, bizarre weather.
The June 24 broadcast of the CBS Evening News reported that according to the U.S. Weather Bureau, 1998 saw the largest number of natural disasters of any year in recorded history.
Violent weather patterns raged through early July, from the deadly floods in Las Vegas (as much rain in one hour as the city receives in a year) to a similar tragedy in Southern California, to torrential rains and tornadoes in Minnesota. On July 4, a devastating 100-mile-an-hour wind lashed at northern Minnesota, turning a centuries-old forest to what CBS anchorman Dan Rather described as a "strike zone from a bowling alley in hell." The wind left a twenty-by-thirty-mile swath of destruction, causing a veteran nature photographer to observe that he'd "never seen anything like it." A meteorologist, interviewed for the July 16 CBS Evening News broadcast, remarked that if such a wind were to strike a large city, the destruction could be unimaginable.
As if the savage weather wasn't enough, an earthquake measuring 6.6 on the Richter scale struck Guatemala July 12, leaving more death and devastation in its path.
Again we see the truth and relevance of inspiration:
"Even now he [Satan] is at work. 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. . . . These visitations are to become more and more frequent and disastrous" (The Great Controversy, pp. 589, 590).
"The day of God is hastening on apace. The world is full of crime and anguish and sorrow. There are calamities by land and by sea. Storm and tempest make it unsafe for us to be separated from God for one single moment. Only those who live by faith in this probationary life, will be able to stand in the day of test, when everything that can be shaken will be shaken, but they shall dwell in safety and be unmoved" (Our High Calling, p. 354).