The Third World War?
at 8:45 a.m., September 11, 2001 American Airlines flight #11 from
Boston, scheduled to land in Los Angeles with 92 passengers and crew,
and carrying 30 tons of jet fuel, was deliberately aimed at the north
tower of the World Trade Center in New York.
That impact caused violent destruction between the
96th and 103rd floors of the 110-story tower. The destruction of the
floors above the site of impact could have been anticipated even by
those with little or no engineering knowledge, but that virtually the
entire tower collapsed an hour and three quarters after the crash came
as a surprise to laypeople. At 9:03 a.m. on the same day United Airlines
flight #175, carrying 65 people on board, also en route to Los Angeles
from Boston, was deliberately flown into the south tower of the World
Trade Center between the 80th and 91st floors. The tower collapsed at
The collapse resulted when the fireballs generated
heat beyond 1000 degrees Celsius. Such heat approached the melting point
of steel, causing both towers to collapse upon themselves. Two other
planes hijacked by terrorists were on similar missions. American
Airlines flight #77 hit the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. after diverting
from its planned flight path from Washington Dulles to Los Angeles.
United Airlines flight #93 traveling from Newark to San Francisco
crashed in Pennsylvania after an apparent failed attempt to disarm the
terrorists. All 64 on board the American Airlines plane and 45 on the
United Airlines plane perished.
That unprecedented terrorist attack shook far more
than the buildings targeted. The shock waves extended throughout America
and beyond, to shake the entire world. The coordinated attacks upon both
towers of the World Trade Center and the Pentagon in Washington D.C.,
together with a fourth planned attack on an unknown target, which ended
in the crash of United flight #93 from Newark in rural Pennsylvania,
were an augury of worldwide preparation for war, economic ruin,
unprecedented security measures, massive grief, growing fear, and doubt
that this world would ever be the same again.
These evil terrorist attacks were carefully planned
and orchestrated. There is little doubt that neither the suicidal
terrorists nor the masterminds behind them envisaged the wider
implications of their action. If "success" is the correct word, then we
suspect that these killers achieved "success" far beyond their
The dedicated student of Scripture will not rush into
judgment as to the end-time implications of these terrorist attacks. For
the authors, writing this chapter two weeks after the event, it is quite
impossible to present a thorough historical perspective. Further, we
possess no prophetic gift, and thus the full consequences and
implications of this tragic event remain beyond our scope. Nevertheless,
such defects of knowledge do not prevent some considered conclusions
being drawn. In this effort Scripture can assist.
With certainty we can know that those 75 minutes of
terrorism will be recited over and over again. They will stain the pages
of history books as long as earth lasts. They will repeatedly be
analyzed in magazine articles. Such articles will be read avidly, even
by generations yet unborn, should God extend the period of probation for
this old earth. Book after book will be written on the subject.
Television and radio programs will capture huge viewing and listening
audiences, even among those who proclaim that they hated the study of
history at school. This event was of the greatest historical importance.
Our hearts go out to the bereaved. Many families have
been shattered by this vile act. No doubt many good people died, for
evil does not discriminate. We have seen heartache of massive
In this work we have sought to place historical
events in the context of Bible prophecy. We make some tentative comments
relevant to this objective in respect of the events of September 11,
2001 and the few days which have ensued.
Media reports around the world have echoed and
re-echoed. Armageddon-type language has freely punctuated newspaper
headlines. We refer to the coverage in our homeland, Australia.
The Weekend Australian newspaper, one of our
homeland’s most respected, in its September 22 edition included no less
than 31 articles related to the events of September 11, 2001. This was
typical of the coverage of this terrorist attack by news media in the
nation. Not only the United States but the whole world was consumed with
this event and the issues which it generated.
What is chilling is the rapidity with which the
United States has been able to form a worldwide coalition of nations
against a foe—terrorism—which is as elusive as it is terrifying. Usually
such decisions require careful governmental analysis and discussion,
considerations of popular sentiment, national interests, economic
impact, diplomatic issues, national consequences, and a plethora of
matters impacting the welfare and interests of the nation.
Ignoring such a careful, wise, considered approach to
decision-making, nation after nation has rallied behind the American
banner in its call for a prolonged war on terrorism, a war declared so
rapidly that it cannot be doubted that American decision makers
possessed minimal information upon which to develop that course which
would best serve its aim to defeat terrorism.
The Melbourne Herald Sun reported in its
September 15, 2001 edition that in the—
US and NATO [an organization of 19 nations]
military planners make ready for what US President George Bush calls
the first war of the 21st century.
Australia was among a great number of nations which
offered military or other forms of assistance. On September 21, Lord
George Robertson, the Secretary General of NATO, stated that all the
other eighteen nations of the NATO alliance supported the United States.
(The Australian, September 22, 2001.)
It is probable that, apart from a few history buffs
in the Bush administration, knowledge of the Afghan nation’s
centuries-old ability to repel armed attacks was scant.
Understandably, many in the West associate Islamic
people with Arabs. But, the overwhelming number of adherents to the
faith of Islam are not Arabs. Indeed, most Muslims live in Indonesia,
Bangladesh, Pakistan, and other Asian countries such as Malaysia and
Philippines as well as in Western and Eastern Africa. Westerners recall
the Six-Day War of 1967 when Israel defeated a coalition of Arab nations
in that many days. It may be thought, What resistance then, can this
relatively small nation of Afghanistan, with its population of 25-plus
million, mount against the might of the United States, NATO and the rest
of the world? History testifies that the short answer is:
Afghans are not Arabs! They are men and women of
mixed ethnic origins, raised in a daunting landscape. They are
courageous, fierce defenders of their sovereignty, and well grounded in
bearing hardship. Two-thirds of the nation consists of 39 per cent
Pathans (Pushtun) of Iranian origin, 25 per cent Tajiks and 6 per cent
Uzbeks. These latter two races are named from the nations to
Afghanistan’s north, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, both formerly republics
of the Soviet Union. The remaining Afghans are spread among other races,
chiefly the Hazaras (Mongols, 19 per cent). The Tajiks are related to
Iranians and the Uzbeks to the Turks.
In recent times the Afghans have repulsed Iranian
invasions backed by Russia in 1837. Then in the First Afghan War
(1838—1842) the British were decimated by sickness, hardship and
persistent guerrilla attacks—a form of encounter in which the Afghans
excel. The British did not learn their lesson, for in 1878 they launched
the Second Afghan War, the consequences of which were no less dire.
In recent times the Soviet Union attacked Afghanistan
(1979—1989); they left, utterly defeated. Reported in the Brisbane
Sunday Mail, September 23, 2001, Colonel Uri Malishev, a Soviet
military commander during the Soviet-Afghan War stated that, "the enemy
and the unforgiving landscape made it an impossible battlefield."
Malishev concluded that "The Afghans are an enemy that you rarely see
and have little hope of beating. No invading force has ever tamed
The question is, Can the military might of the rest
of the world quell the fierce spirit of this warrior nation?
This threat of war focused on Afghanistan many days
before that country claimed, on September 30, 2001 to have taken bin
Ladin into protective custody. (Melbourne Age, October 1, 2001)
It was also declared, and preparation for military conflict made, before
evidence of bin Ladin’s complicity was established. Words such as
suspicion and chief suspect were freely used. Certainly bin
Ladin made no confession of guilt. In fact, he sent a denial to
Pakistan. (Australian, September 16, 2001) While the word of a
terrorist is unreliable, nevertheless, in this case, his guilt cannot be
established on the basis of his own admission.
It is remarkable that Americans have so soon
forgotten the lesson of Vietnam. Polls suggest that more than 70 per
cent have expressed support for war. (Sydney Daily Telegraph,
September 19, 2001) Congress supported the president with but one
dissenting vote, that of a California congresswoman. In outlining his
plans before the joint sitting of Congress, President Bush received an
incredible twenty-four standing ovations. (Weekend Australian,
September 22, 2001) Such bipartisan support will embolden his
administration in their plans.
Americans would do well to consider the words of a
Russian veteran of the Soviet-Afghan War: "Americans would think Vietnam
was a picnic compared with what they would face on the ground in
Afghanistan." (Ibid.) He could well be correct.
Russell visited Saigon and Long Bin a few weeks after
the Tet offensive in 1968. He toured the American base in Saigon. Never
had he seen such military armaments. He even sat in General
Westmoreland’s helicopter. But all that equipment was no match for
determined Vietnamese guerrillas who were seldom seen, but who
effectively slaughtered more than 50,000 of the young manhood of
To measure the near impossibility of stamping out
terrorism by military means, simply look at Israel—a nation occupying
territory 3.5 per cent of the area of Afghanistan. The United States
leaders are no doubt now measuring the lack of success of a first-class
army such as Israel’s in an arena of relatively easy terrain. In its
efforts to prevent acts of suicide terrorism, it has failed. Would the
United States and its allies succeed in far more daunting circumstances?
Israel easily prevailed in a set war in 1967, but it is almost impotent
to stem the tide of suicide terrorism.
Even more instructive is the war waged against
terrorism by the British army—a first-class force—and the British police
force in Northern Ireland. This territory is relatively small, about 2
per cent of the size of that covered by Afghanistan. It is a part of
British sovereign territory, its terrain is relatively easy to
encompass, and the IRA do not make a practice of the use of suicide
terrorism. Yet after three decades the British have still to win the war
against the terrorists. Similar comments could be offered concerning
Spain and its Basque terrorists. America and the rest of the world
must learn the lessons available in the histories of other nations.
We believe that every effort should be made to
counter the vile terrorism which is now part and parcel of this world.
But it makes little sense to shed the life-blood of the youth of America
and its allies, and that of innocent citizens of Afghanistan, with
little hope of success. The US administration was fearing retaliatory
terrorist strikes (Melbourne Herald-Sun, October 1, 2001) before
a shot had been fired in this war. Such a course will almost certainly
be judged by some as degrading the United States and its supporters to
the status of the terrorist nations. Already slogans are appearing in
many lands, "Americans leaders in world terrorism."
This perception could not have been lessened by the
statement of the US Secretary of State, General Colin Powell. He
declared that "everything including the ban on killing foreign
leaders would be reviewed." (Australian, September 18, 2001)
In this thought there were bipartisan cries in Congress. "We must
have the authority to assassinate people before they can assassinate us,"
said Senator Graham [Democrat, Florida]. (Australian, September
18, 2001) In this call Senator Graham was joined by Republican Senator
President Bush’s words to the other nations of the
world, "Either you are with us or you are with the terrorists," brooks
no neutrality. Does the United States have such a worldwide right to
make this implied demand, having warned non-compliant nations of the
consequences, should they be judged terrorist by the United States and
its allies? Is there no place for conscientious neutrality? Such nations
who eschew a potentially futile and bloody war may be in a position to
achieve far more in curbing the rise of terrorism than the belligerents.
We stated that it is a chilling fact that the great
majority of the world’s nations, Islamic and non-Islamic, have rushed,
we would suggest, with indecent haste to the American call to arms.
Ill-considered commitments have been made.
We stand amazed that nations such as China, Libya,
United Arab Emirates, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Pakistan and vast numbers of
the world’s sovereign states have supported America’s cause. This
includes the four most populous nations of the world—China, India, the
United States and Indonesia. In these four nations reside almost 50 per
cent of the citizens of the world. Indonesia is the largest Islamic
nation upon earth. Should this war erupt, it will truly be a world war,
exceeding both the First and the Second World Wars in the numbers of
national participants. It could rightly be designated the Third World
War, for every continent would be a participant in one manner or
General Colin Powell, US Secretary of State, did
state on the day following the terrorist attacks that "the
administration intended a campaign of military action—rather
than short-term retaliation—against the terrorists and their
perpetrators." (Australian, Sepbember
13, 2001) Speaking on September 16, President Bush stated, "We’re at
war. There’s been a war declared. . . ." He urged his troops and the
nation to be prepared for a long and difficult fight. "You will be
asked for your patience for the conflict will not be short . . . the
course of victory may be long." (Ibid., September 17, 2001)
Fortunately, as the shock of the terrorist strikes slowly abated, the
administrators saw the fuller picture and the rhetoric became more
Could it be that Revelation 13 is on the verge of
fulfillment? We have shown in this book that the Bible plainly sets
forth that the two great powers at the end of time, the Vatican and the
United States, will lead the nations of the world—Afghanistan, Iraq and
Sudan not excepted—into enforcing a universal death decree. This death
decree will be aimed not against terrorists, but against humble
followers of Scripture who desire to worship God in the beauty of
holiness on His holy seventh-day Sabbath. This fact bears the
credentials of Scripture.
We dare not predict whether Revelation 13 is on the
verge of fulfillment. There is a sound reason—we do not know! But it is
now demonstrated that it has been a simple matter, when economic ruin
and massive loss of life threatened, for America to command the support
of the weaker nations of the earth; nations of all religious
persuasions; some nations it formerly saw as its deadly enemies.
While Pope John Paul II has been uncharacteristically
silent, there are no grounds to conclude that he has not been consulted
and his approval sought every step of the way. This was seen confirmed
in a statement made by a senior Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls:
It is certain that, if someone has done great harm
to society, and there is a danger that if he remains free he may be
able to do it again, you have the right to apply self-defense for the
society which you lead, even though the means you may choose may be
aggressive." —Washington Post, September 25, 2001.
The Brisbane Courier Mail, September 24, 2001
headlined an article setting forth the Pope’s move at this time to form
a worldwide coalition of the religions of the world. Such a move will
merit close attention in view of divine prophecy. And yet, in this time
of peril, to what source are people looking for prophetic guidance? The
Sydney Sunday Telegraph, September 16, 2001 reported that one of
the most searched-for words on the Internet since the disaster was
"Nostradamus." How tragic!
But scriptural prophecy is to be examined. We have
shown that one nineteenth century woman, Ellen Harmon-White, by
searching the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation, outlined with great
accuracy the events now taking place in the religio-political arena. We
are, in general, quite skeptical of the myriad claims predicting future
events from a study of the Bible, but her uncannily accurate conclusions
have been so remarkably confirmed in the twentieth and twenty-first
centuries that they have attracted our interest.
Thus we searched, in retrospect, in order to
determine if Ellen Harmon-White could possibly have concluded any event
even vaguely approaching that of Tuesday, September 11, 2001. To our
astonishment, we discovered a statement which she wrote in 1904, eleven
years prior to her death in 1915. The first New York skyscraper
had been built in 1887. It was considered such a marvel that it was
termed, The Tower. That building was ten stories high. By
1904 a building of over twenty stories was erected in that city.
It was not until 1931 that the Empire State building was erected and we
truly entered the era of skyscrapers.
We quote from Ellen Harmon-White’s 1909 work,
Testimonies to the Church, Volume 9, pages 12, 13.
On one occasion, when in New York City, I was in
the night season called upon to behold buildings rising story after
story toward heaven. These buildings were warranted to be fireproof,
and they were erected to glorify their owners and builders. Higher and
still higher these buildings rose, and in them the most costly
material was used. . . .
As these lofty buildings went up, the owners
rejoiced with ambitious pride that they had money to use in gratifying
self. . . . The time is coming when in their fraud and insolence men
will reach a point that the Lord will not permit them to pass, and
they will learn that there is a limit to the forbearance of Jehovah.
The scene which next passed before me was an alarm
of fire. Men looked at the lofty and supposedly fireproof buildings
and said: "They are perfectly safe." But these buildings are consumed
as if made of pitch. The fire engines could do nothing to stay the
destruction. The firemen were unable to operate the engines. . . .
No earthly power can stay the hand of God. No
material can be used in the erection of buildings that will preserve
them from destruction when God’s appointed time comes to send
retribution on men for their disregard of His law and for their
We note the emphasis on the claims that the buildings
destroyed were "warranted to be fireproof" and it was claimed that "they
are perfectly safe." After both these claims were shown to be false,
engineering experts appeared on television screens, stating that the
World Trade Center was constructed in such a manner specifically to be
able to withstand an accidental aircraft crash into the body of the
building. It was also stated that the building was made to the highest
standard of fireproofing. These facts add weight to the accuracy of this
In the quoted passage we see some positive measures,
unrelated to war and bloodshed, which can be taken in the war against
terrorism; for surely no war, no assassination of political leaders as
mooted, no schemes of man can stay this terrorist plague. God, and God
alone, can protect us. Until this principle is understood, the measures
that man takes may only worsen terrorism. President Bush in speaking to
Congress stood beneath an engraven promise in the House of
Representatives—"In God We Trust." However, while resorting to biblical
concepts such as "Be ready" and "The hour is coming," the President
promoted material solutions, not divine ones. Therein lies terrible
danger for the future.
The question being asked by many is, Why did God
permit these terrorist acts? The better question would have been, Why
has something like this not happened decades ago? The answer is, God’s
Once more Ellen Harmon-White is helpful in providing
understanding. She had also carefully studied the prophecies of the
end-time presented by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and recorded in
Matthew 24, Mark 13 and Luke 21. We present her work not to uplift
her, but to demonstrate how human beings who seek God can discern
the meaning of the Bible, God’s sure Word. We again quote from her
remarkable 1884 book, Spirit of Prophecy, Volume 4, p. 407.
Satan works through the elements also to garner his
harvest of unprepared souls. He has studied the secrets of the
laboratories of nature, and he uses all his power to control the
elements as far as God allows. When he was suffered to afflict Job,
how quickly flocks and herds, servants, houses, children, were swept
away, one trouble succeeding another as in a moment. It is God that
shields His creatures, and hedges them in from the power of the
America’s sole answer to calamity is in true
dedication to the One who alone can, and has, protected us.
Another question is proper. Why did not the
terrorists use germ or chemical terrorism? This potential source of
devastation has been mentioned in newspapers worldwide. There is only
one rational answer: God in His mighty love and great mercy has held
back this terrible source of destruction. The more than 6000 in New York
so cruelly deprived of life would have been multiplied manyfold had such
methods been employed. Authorities have seen how easily crop-duster
aircraft could have been harnessed for such a purpose. They have already
verified that terrorists were working on such a plan. For a period the
US grounded all such aircraft. Investigators have seen that a
considerable number of likely terrorists were seeking licenses to drive
trucks containing hazardous materials such as could be used in chemical
warfare against major cities.
God in His goodness has provided us with mercy. God
has His angels holding back the worst of these winds of strife until His
saints are sealed. The apostle John revealed this protection.
And after these things I saw four angels standing
on the four corners of the earth, holding the four winds of the earth,
that the wind should not blow on the earth, nor on the sea, nor on any
tree. And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal
of the living God: and he cried with a loud voice to the four angels,
to whom it was given to hurt the earth and the sea, Saying, Hurt not
the earth, neither the sea, nor the trees, till we have sealed the
servants of our God in their foreheads." (Revelation 7:1—3)
But avarice, immorality, hate and frivolity reign in
most large cities around the world. God, now merciful, will not always
forbear. In speaking of a time future to her own, Ellen Harmon-White
. . . he [Satan] will bring disease and disaster
until populous cities are reduced to ruin and desolation. Even now he
is at work. . . . He imparts to the air a deadly taint, and thousands
perish by the pestilence. These visitations are to become more and
more frequent and disastrous. Destruction will be upon the inhabitants
of the world." (Spirit of Prophecy, Volume 4, pp. 407, 408)
Far from creating fear in their hearts, our desire is
to lead our readers to have faith in Jesus and to have the faith
of Jesus. (Revelation 14:12.) The prophecy just quoted could well
foretell the use of biological warfare against the great cities; yet God
has promised protection to all those who have fully surrendered to Him.
The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them
that fear him, and delivereth them. (Psalm 34:7)
He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most
High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the
Lord, He is my refuge and my fortress: my God; in him will I trust.
Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler, and from
the noisome pestilence. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and
under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and
buckler. Thou shalt not be afraid for the terror by night; nor for the
arrow that flieth by day; nor for the pestilence that walketh in
darkness; nor for the destruction that wasteth at noonday. A thousand
shall fall at thy side, and ten thousand at thy right hand; but it
shall not come nigh thee. (Psalm 91:1—7)
It is worth our consideration that Ellen
Harmon-White, in the context of Revelation 13, perceptively asserted
that these tragic disasters and terrorist acts will not turn the great
majority of the citizens of the world to Christ, but rather will lead
them to an unconverted Christianity. There is no man, no woman so
deceived, so cruel as the individual who turns zealously to religion
without asking God to transform his wicked heart. The terrorists of
September 11, 2001 were full evidence of this dictum. They were moved by
religious zeal, even to the point of being prepared to lay down their
lives for their cause. But their acts demonstrated that they did not
cherish the love of God in their hearts.
Christians fare no better than the followers of Islam
if they possess a religious zeal without a humble yielding of their
lives to God. The Bible must be the guide-book to teach us that Christ
alone can purify our characters. It teaches us that those who seek
virtuous characters will be motivated by the love of God and Christ, who
alone have cared for us and demonstrated infinite love in the plan of
salvation. It is the Holy Spirit who provides power to seek and live
such a life. Christ underlined true love for Him.
If ye love me, keep my commandments. (John 14:15)
Today even most Christians eschew this directive.
Many claim that the Ten Commandments were destroyed at Christ’s death.
Others categorically state that the commandments cannot be obeyed. If
this is correct, then we implicitly charge Christ with mocking us in His
charge to keep His commandments, and we deny His promised power.
Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling,
and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with
exceeding joy (Jude 24)
Either God has such power and is able, or He does not
possess such power and is impotent to provide mankind with strength to
fulfill His commands. Further, to deny this offered power is to imply
that God is a liar. Such is a matter of great peril to our eternal
The large majority of professed Christians do not
obey the fourth commandment, which will become a major issue at the end
of time. (See chapters entitled "The Mark of the Beast" and "The Seal of
Let us quote once more from this book which has
proven to be so helpful to us as we authored this manuscript.
And then the great deceiver will persuade men that
those who serve God are causing these evils. The class that have
provoked the displeasure of Heaven will charge all their troubles upon
the faithful few whom the Lord has sent to them with messages of
warning and reproof. It will be declared that the nation is offending
God by the violation of the Sunday-Sabbath, that this sin has brought
calamities which will not cease until Sunday observance shall be
strictly enforced, and that those who present the claims of the fourth
commandment, thus destroying reverence for Sunday, are troublers of
the nation, preventing its restoration to divine favor and temporal
prosperity. Thus the accusation urged of old against the servant of
God will be repeated, and on grounds equally well established. "And it
came to pass when Ahab saw Elijah, that Ahab said unto him, Art thou
he that troubleth Israel? And he answered, I have not troubled Israel,
but thou and thy father’s house, in that ye have forsaken the
commandments of the Lord, and thou hast followed Baalim." [I Kings
18:17,18] As the wrath of the people shall be excited by false
charges, they will pursue a course toward God’s ambassadors very
similar to that which apostate Israel pursued toward Elijah. -Spirit
of Prophecy, Volume 4, p. 408.
Calls for prayer have been made all over the United
States and beyond. The President has called for prayer as have the
Congress, state governors, city mayors, the media and the churches. But
such calls are futile unless we possess purity of heart.
If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not
hear me." (Psalm 66:18)
Not only futile, such prayers will lead to dire
persecution of the righteous.
"And he [the second beast of Revelation 13—the United
States, see the chapter entitled "The Second Beast of Revelation 13"]
had power to give life unto the image of the beast [the first beast of
Revelation 13—the Papacy, see the chapter entitled "The First Beast of
Revelation 13"], that the image of the beast should both speak, and
cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be
killed. And he causeth all, both small and great, rich and poor, free
and bond, to receive a mark in their right hand, or in their foreheads:
and that no man might buy or sell, save he that had the mark, or the
name of the beast, or the number of his name." Revelation 13:15—17
Here the universal death decrees and economic boycott
Finally, let us learn from recent history. In the
1920s and early 1930s, Germany experienced ruinous economic inflation; a
mere postage stamp of the era cost 20 billion marks. In this crisis the
middle class lost their affluence. One man promised to reverse the
national financial ruin at the price of the revocation of liberty. His
name was Adolph Hitler. Many Germans willingly paid that price, and
millions of innocent men, women and children lost liberty and life.
Today around the world there are again cries for
restoration of a departed prosperity. Some are crying that they know
they may have to forfeit some of their liberties in order to restore
security and earthly comforts.
Americans are determined to try [to win the war
against terrorism] if it means sacrifice and loss of civil
liberties. (Melbourne Age, September 19, 2001)
Perilous are such concessions! Liberty must be prized
as an inalienable right accorded us by God. To forfeit it is to ruin all
the very best in our world.
Unless these calls are withdrawn and the citizens of
the world prize liberty as they ought, we will be plotting the course
for the fulfillment of Revelation 13.
Already, as we have seen, there is a thirst for
vengeance, a desire for blood under the guise of "infinite justice." We
would do well to examine the words of the prophet Isaiah:
Justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in
the street, and equity cannot enter. Isaiah 59:14
God may view our cities as pits of injustice. We
would do well to commence our efforts for "infinite justice" among the
poor and helpless. "Operation Infinite Justice" was the name initially
chosen for the war against terrorism; later this war was designated
"Operation Enduring Freedom." The alteration was made because the term
Infinite Freedom offended Islamic people who rightly believe that
infinite justice is provided only by God.
The vast majority of those who will suffer under the
biblically-prophesied death decree will be men, women and children
totally innocent of any act of terrorism. Already the President of the
United States has issued an ultimatum, not to American institutions
alone, but to the financial institutions of the world, that America will
enforce sanctions against any that undertake transactions of which the
United Sates does not approve. (Melbourne Age newspaper,
September 27, 2001)
The Bush administration made a list of terrorists and
terrorist organizations whom they proscribed. The groups were located in
various nations—Afghanistan, Algeria, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania,
Pakistan, Philippines, Saudi Arabia and Uzbekistan. Terrorists such as
the Roman Catholic Irish Republican Army (IRA) and the Hindu Tamil
Tigers in Sri Lanka received no mention, possibly because they were
perceived as no threat to the United States.
Yet the United States surely would have taken a more
noble stand if it had included the IRA which has tremendous financial
support from Irish Americans, especially in the northeastern states. If
it is good for other countries to crack down on financial sources of
terrorism which attacks America, the US would do well to dry up the
source of income from its own country in a sincere effort to quell
terrorism in Britain also.
While President Bush’s clamp-down on terrorist
finances is not a fulfillment of the worldwide economic boycott upon
faithful followers of Christ as foretold in Revelation 13:17 quoted
earlier, it does demonstrate America’s will and authority to implement
such economic boycotts against those of its choosing. The Papacy has
chosen its ally well!
In order for Revelation 13 to be fulfilled, America
and the other nations of the world must be prepared to trample upon the
inalienable rights of civil and religious liberties.
In the current crisis American citizens have
demonstrated an alarming preparedness to yield some of their liberties
in the face of challenges to their personal security and prosperity.
The Australian (September 18, 2001) reported that "Attorney-General
John Ashcroft said the Justice Department would ask Congress for greater
power to detain non-US citizens [and] wire-tap telephone calls."
The WorldNetDaily (September 27, 2001)
"With Congress hotly debating whether to grant
sweeping police powers to federal law enforcement agencies in the name
of combating terrorism, two attorneys who have studied presidential
directives in depth are concerned that civil liberties will take a
beating from the executive branch as well as the legislative—and no
one would realize it until it was too late.
On September 14 President Bush, responding to the
terrorist attacks upon the World Trade Center and the Pentagon three
days earlier, issued a proclamation declaring a state of national
emergency and reinforced it the same day with an executive order (EO
13223) calling the Ready Reserves of the Armed Forces to active duty.
For constitutional attorney William J. Olson, alarm
bells started ringing.
"This is just the beginning," he told
WorldNetDaily. "I am certain that the proclamation and executive
order by the president are the first of a series of executive orders
that are likely to be issued as the administration identifies the
powers it wants to invoke."
What is even more serious appears to be the growing
acquiescence of America and its western allies to accept encroachments
upon their liberties as necessary to national survival. Too often we
are hearing the false dictum—we can have liberty without security or
we can yield some of our liberties and have security.
Nations must seek security while maintaining the
liberties of their citizens. Neither aim should be abrogated. As
Attorney James Standish, Director of Legislative Affairs at the World
Headquarters of Seventh-day Adventists stated,
"While calling for the protection of religious
freedom and understanding of minority religious groups during
America’s terrorist crisis . . . in past conflicts, civil liberties in
the United States have sometimes been suspended."
He cited the decision to intern Japanese Americans
during World War II. (Adventist News Network, September 25,
2001) Australia interned newly arrived Italian immigrants during the
What the terrorist crisis has demonstrated is that
three essential conditions necessary for the fulfillment of Revelation
13:15—17 have been in place during this current crisis:
1. A willingness to deprive citizens of some of
their civil and religious liberties.
2. An ability of the United States to marshal
worldwide support, cutting through religious divides, for its policy
against those it deems to be responsible for disasters causing loss of
both lives and economic prosperity. Only thus will its death decree
(Revelation 13:15) become universal (all, both small and great,
rich and poor, free and bond—Revelation 13:16).
3. A worldwide economic boycott (no man might
buy or sell—Revelation 13:17) can only be implemented when other
nations comply with America’s wishes to deprive its enemies of the
means to buy and sell.
In the current crisis, the United States has
demonstrated its capacity to meet these conditions.
We again emphasize that the current crisis is not the
final crisis contemplated in Revelation 13. But we do see that America
is well positioned to fulfill the role which God has foretold. The final
events of this world’s history culminating in Christ’s Second Coming are
May our God provide wisdom to national leaders and to
each citizen of the nations. What the immediate future holds may be
uncertain, but the ultimate outcome is determined, for God revealed
these events for our guidance. May we, each one, in serving Christ
full-heartedly, make no move which will imperil the liberties and rights
of ourselves and others. Let us fully yield our lives to Christ.
Most of all, may we meet in heaven, for God’s grace
is more than sufficient for the coming crisis. Let us be found among
God’s saints, remembering that—
Here is the patience of the saints: here are they
that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus. (Revelation
We commenced this book mentioning three very different individuals of
three separate eras, born in three separate continents and contributing
to our understanding of last day events in three different ways. We have
concluded as we began. In this march toward a Third World War, one of a
very different nature from the First and Second, all three—the Apostle
John, Ellen Harmon-White and Pope John Paul II—play a part. The Apostle
John prophesied of these times, Ellen Harmon-White, studying John’s
prophecies, correctly evaluated them for our day and Pope John Paul II
is playing a major role, albeit discreetly, in their fulfillment.