News and Prophecy—August 18, 2011
Arab States in Key UN Positions in September. In a potentially significant sequence of events, “Arab states will be chairing the United Nations Security Council and General Assembly in September as the Palestinian Authority makes its statehood bid. Lebanon is slated to preside over the Security Council in September while Qatar will head the General Assembly.” Currently, Israel is developing oil fields off its northern coast—an area that “the Hizbullah-backed government in Lebanon has made a counter-claim to.” Some fear that Lebanon may use its new position to also move for control over the oil fields (www.IsraelNationalNews.com, August 9, 2011). Bible prophecy reveals continued upheaval in the Holy Land up to the time of Christ’s return. It also indicates that an Arab-dominated movement, or “king of the South,” will continually “push against” not only Israel, but ultimately the European “king of the North.” Daniel 11 describes this struggle—one that will eventually result in the king of the South being destroyed by the king of the North (verses 40-43). Bible prophecies are certain (Daniel 2:45), and we are now witnessing events that God will use to fulfill His purpose. For decades this Work has warned people to “watch the Middle East” and this warning grows more relevant daily. Prophecy is marching on! To learn more about this vital topic, please review our free and insightful booklet, The Middle East in Prophecy.
Violence and Corruption in the Philippines. “A car bomb in the southern Philippines killed one person and wounded seven Monday in an attack targeting a governor who took office after many of his relatives were slain in the country’s worst political massacre in 2009.” Among the suspects in the 2009 massacre are a “powerful family patriarch and former governor, Andal Ampatuan Sr., and a number of his sons…,” and almost 200 others! One official noted that there are many “people associated with the main massacre [and] suspects still roam the province. We know that many remnants of the suspects are still around, they’re in the thousands.” These suspects are also thought to be involved with the politically-motivated car bombing this week (Associated Press, August 15, 2011). While similar events occur worldwide almost daily, this event in the Philippines is sobering and saddening, because it illustrates the corruption, greed, and covetousness that lead to wars and strife (James 4:1). Today, the earth is filled with leaders who exist to serve themselves and will stop at nothing to achieve their desires (Ezekiel 34:3-4). Although warring and fighting is a “sign of the times” (Matthew 24:6-7), the warring and strife of the world today will soon become the “history” of Tomorrow’s World. For more information on this encouraging topic, review our exciting booklet,The World Ahead: What Will It Be Like?
Dutch Military Joins “Gay Pride” Parade for First Time. Three weeks ago, “A balloon-festooned barge bearing the standards of the service branches sponsored by the Defense Ministry sailed among about 80 other floats, with music blaring from most of them and dancers dressed in flamboyant costumes—or very little….” The parade in Amsterdam “capped a weeklong festival of around 300 parties and events. It included the popular ‘Drag Queen Olympics’….” One spokesman for the Dutch army’s Foundation for Homosexuals in the Armed Forces, commented enthusiastically, “This shows everyone that the climate is changing.” A former U.S. Army lieutenant and parade spectator, discharged for violating the U.S.’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, commented, “It’s so amazing to be here. This country got it right… The Dutch have been the leaders, and Americans look up to that” (Associated Press, August 6, 2011). Thousands of years ago, God prophesied about the Israelite-descended nations at the end of the age: “But this people has a defiant and rebellious heart; they have revolted and departed. They do not say in their heart, ‘Let us now fear the Lord our God’… Your iniquities have turned these things away and your sins have withheld good from you” (Jeremiah 5:23-25). Today, so much of society “refuses to be ashamed” of behaviors that God clearly states are wrong (Jeremiah 3:3). They have forgotten God for “days without number” (Jeremiah 2:32). One day soon, Jesus Christ—the Savior—will return and “right” this sinful and suffering world. Confusion over right and wrong will cease, and people everywhere will seek God and learn His ways saying, “let us go up to the mountain of the Lord…” (Isaiah 2:2-4)!—Scott Winnail