By Herbert W. Armstrong
The Plain Truth March 1984
The television movie on nuclear war, The Day After, has shaken a world from its complacent indifferent slumber. Too many people were getting used to violence and war and threats of war.
The world was too busy pursuing material goods to be much concerned about the oncoming NUCLEAR World War III that WILL, unless prevented by Almighty God, simply erase human life from this planet!
Soft words and pretty speeches did not arouse people out of this pleasant dream. It took a jolt! When we attempted to warn our readers with words strong enough to arouse, I received letters saying: “Cancel my subscription! That article frightened me.” YES, IF YOU ARE TO CONTINUE TO LIVE, you need to be frightened-enough to take the action that will SAVE YOUR LIFE!
That is what we are trying to make our readers understand!
God Almighty will intervene. He will prevent entire cosmocide! But he will not intervene to stop the carnage until man has come to the very end of his rope! So long as man thinks he can save himself, without God, the Eternal will let him go on trying. God will not intervene” until man’s last hope is gone. God will never allow man to accuse him, saying: “Your intervention was unnecessary and tyrannical! We could have saved ourselves if you had not used your arbitrary God-power to intervene.”
God’s final last-minute intervention will FOLLOW-not prevent-this Great Tribulation that will be World War III.
It is only those who will not heed who must go through its agony. And remember-God is not going to CAUSE it! MAN HIMSELF will bring it on. But God will protect his own from it!
Jesus’ young students-his disciples-came to him privately and asked when the end of the world would come, and what would be the sign of his return IN POWER to rule all the earth, in peace.
These things, Jesus replied, must come first: a false “Christian” religion, whose ministers would falsely claim to be Christ’s ministers, coming in his name, deceiving the MANY. Then wars, climaxing finally into world wars; then famines and disease epidemics and increasing earthquakes. Just before the end, he said, his true Gospel of God’s kingdom would be preached in all the world-not to convert the world, but “for a witness”-AND THEN, he said, shall the END of this world come!
All these things already have occurred-except that we are now in a recess during the world wars-between World Wars II and III; and that we have so far had only the first forerunners of the famine and disease epidemics and earthquakes. These shall increase greatly.
And, although Christ’s own Gospel of the kingdom of God has been going out since 1934, through this very magazine and the World Tomorrow broadcast, this message is just now approaching the climactic world-shaking POWER that evidently is implied by the prophecy.
“Then,” continues Jesus, “shall be GREAT TRIBULATION,” a time of violence, destruction and death greater than anything that ever was, or ever shall be! Jeremiah foretold it (Jeremiah 30). He identified the nations primarily affected. It will be those whom God caused to be named after Jacob-or Israel-the nations descended from the two sons of Joseph. And those are the United States and British peoples of the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
Ezekiel foretells it (chapters 5:12 and 6:6). Moses describes it (Deuteronomy 28-especially verses 20-24, 32-34 and 49-50; also Leviticus 26, especially verses 16-20). Already these prophecies are beginning to be carried out. Already the “pride of our power” (Lev. 26:19) has been broken. Britain, the former world’s number one power, has been reduced to a second-rate power. And the “PRIDE” of America’s power was certainly broken in Vietnam.
The Great Tribulation is to be primarily on the United States and the British peoples! Events leading to it are smoldering under cover now, gradually gaining momentum. And then, suddenly, the WORLD WILL EXPLODE into nuclear World War III.
But let me tell you, I do not expect to be here in its path when it strikes! And YOU need not be one of its multiple-millions of victims!
Jesus Christ gave the warning (Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21). And when he said, in Luke’s version of his warning: “WATCH YE therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to ESCAPE ALL THESE THINGS that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man” (at his coming-Luke 21:36), he was giving you and me a PROMISE of divine protection from these very things he had been describing-IF we do watch world events AS PROPHESIED, and remain obedient and continually in contact with God through prayer.
There is another promise of miraculous protection from this Great Tribulation. It is in the third chapter of Revelation. Beginning verse 7 is a description of how the .living Christ would OPEN A DOOR by which his Gospel may go out to all the world as a witness and a warning. That is the very Work being carried on through the World Tomorrow broadcast, The Plain Truth and related literature.
In verse 10 is Christ’s PROMISE that because we have been faithful WITH HIS WORD, he will also keep us from “the hour of temptation.” But the marginal reading-the correct translation from the original Greek-is “trial” or “Great Tribulation.”
These events are REAL!
This world is hurling itself rapidly to the grand-smash CLIMAX of world trouble. Crime, violence, lawlessness, disrespect for authority, are increasing at a RAPID RATE! God help us not to treat this warning lightly.
Take heed and read in Psalm 91 the further promise of PROTECTION not only through the Great Tribulation, but also the PLAGUES of the Day of the Lord to follow.