Two Mountains—Only One Choice / A Broken Spirit
On May 7, 2022, Frank Bruno will present a spit-sermon, titled, “Two Mountains—Only One Choice,” and Eric Rank will present a split-sermon, titled, “A Broken Spirit.”
The live services are available, over video and audio, at http://eternalgod.org/live-services/ (12:30 pm Pacific Time; 1:30 pm Mountain Time; 2:30 pm Central Time; 3:30 pm Eastern Time; 8:30 pm Greenwich Mean Time; 9:30 pm Central European Time). Just click on Connect to Live Stream.
The Practice of Kindness
by Dave Harris
The war in Ukraine, along with so many other conflicts, is revealing horrible and inhumane things. News reports are prefaced with a warning that “what we are about to see may be disturbing!”
How easily, it seems, people are driven to invade and mercilessly kill those from another nation. Human compassion appears to have been lost. However, incredible kindness has surfaced even in the mindless destruction occurring in Ukraine, and that is in the way other nations, notably, Poland—along with Romania, Moldova, Hungary, Slovakia and Germany—have taken in Ukrainian refugees numbering into multiple millions of displaced persons!
The practice of kindness appears to be the exception, though. Watching the daily news in the so-called democratic nations has become nearly unbearable, because what we see displayed are oftentimes terrible examples of vicious brutality. Only occasionally do we see a story in which tenderness, compassion or love of our fellow man is featured.
All of this should bring us to a bit of self-examination. Are we, as Christians, shining “as lights in the world” (Philippians 2:15)? One way in which we can do that is to practice kindness when it falls to us to do so.
Kindness within our families (including our church family) is so absolutely foundational in this regard.
Husbands are told to “love [their] wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her” (Ephesians 5:25). Wives are told to “submit to [their] own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord” (Colossians 3:18). Children are told to “obey [their] parents in the Lord, for this is right” (Ephesians 6:1). Brethren are told to “be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another” (Romans 12:10).
How is our family life? Are husbands kind to their wives and children? Are wives kind to their husbands and children? Are children kind to their parents? Do we treat our brethren with kindness?
Finally, consider the practice of kindness as it is presented in the following context:
“Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection” (Colossians 3:12-14).
We begin with the leak of a draft majority opinion of the US Supreme Court, overturning the landmark Roe v. Wade decision which had legalized abortion across the country.
We continue with controversial comments by Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, stating, among other things, that Hitler had “Jewish blood,” causing strong condemnation from Israel which had been very careful, up to this point, not to upset Russia. Please view in this regard our new StandingWatch program, titled, “Did Hitler Have Jewish Blood?”
We also report on Hamas’ threats against Israel and Iran’s international terrorist activities.
We report on Putin’s alleged forthcoming operation and threats from Russia to destroy major cities in Europe, including London, Berlin and Paris, through the use of nuclear weapons and a “radioactive tsunami.”
We continue with the growing dissatisfaction and criticism against Germany’s chancellor Olaf Scholz—and the entire German elite—claiming, among many charges, that Scholz is acting due to pressure and not because of conviction, and asking whether Germany has a true leader. In this regard, please view our recent StandingWatch program, titled, “Weak German Government under Attack” . We also report on another “change of heart” by Germany regarding an embargo on Russian oil imports, while Hungary, Slovakia and other European nations are strongly opposed to such action.
We speak on Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Ukraine, while Joe Biden is being told not to visit, apparently because of his many unpredictable and embarrassing blunders. We also speak on Putin’s allies around the world, who, to a large extent, will ultimately be part of the prophesied “kings of the East.”
We conclude with further evidence of the godlessness of Canada and the terrible American school system.
This Week in the News
Leaked Draft—Roe v. Wade to be Overturned?
Deutsche Welle wrote on May 5:
“Protesters gathered outside the US Supreme Court late on Monday after news outlet Politico released what it said was a draft majority opinion from the court overturning the landmark abortion judgment known as Roe v. Wade. Written by Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, the initial draft [which was drafted in February of 2022, without any information as to whether the initial draft was subsequently revised] is his opinion and what he believes reflects the opinion of at least four other conservative members of the top court. It does not reflect comments or reactions from other members of the nine-member court. It is also not the final decision, since the Supreme Court has not ruled on the case yet, and judges can also change their final vote.
“In the reported draft opinion, Alito said he believes that ‘Roe was egregiously wrong from the start… It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives,’ the opinion reportedly adds.
“Roe v. Wade is the landmark US Supreme Court judgment of 1973 that legalized the right to abortion across the country. It was once again upheld in a 1992 ruling, which said states could not place an ‘undue burden’ on women seeking abortions before a fetus could survive outside the womb, at around 24 week…
“It is typical court procedure for a member of the court to write a draft of the court’s opinion after holding a preliminary vote on a case privately, but it is exceptional for the draft opinion to be leaked to the public as a case remains pending before it…. The Supreme Court is expected to rule on the case in June…”
Fox News added on May 4:
“Chief Justice John Roberts confirmed that Alito’s draft opinion… was genuine – although the draft dates back to February, and it does not represent the current or final opinion of the court.”
If Roe v. Wade is overturned, then each state is allowed to decide whether to allow, restrict or ban abortions within its own borders. It is estimated that 26 states would be certain or likely to restrict abortion procedures. In some cases, prosecutions could be brought against anyone aiding in obtaining an abortion. Practicing Catholic politicians like Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi or Chuck Schumer strongly opposed the proposed decision, saying that the woman’s right to choose must be upheld and that the decision would be “one of the worst and most damaging decisions in modern history,” even though the Catholic Church prohibits most cases of abortion, focusing thereby on the killing of an innocent unborn child. Many conservatives surmise that the leak occurred to sway the court’s decision by a left-liberal outcry. The leak has been described as an “original sin for judicial ethics,” and “one of the greatest breaches of security in the history of the Court.”
Israel Upset Over Lavrov’s Comments About Hitler
Times of Israel wrote on May 2:
“Israeli leaders on Monday demanded an apology and denounced Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov for saying Nazi leader Adolf Hitler ‘had Jewish blood’ and that Jews are among the worst antisemites. Lavrov made the remarks during an interview with Italian television, in which he claimed Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky’s Jewishness did not undercut Russia’s claims that its invasion of Ukraine was meant to ‘denazify’ the country.
“‘The aim of such lies is to blame the Jews themselves for the most terrible crimes in history that were committed against them, thus freeing from responsibility the oppressors of Israel,’ Prime Minister Naftali Bennett said in a statement from his office.
“Bennett’s denunciation followed stronger condemnation from Foreign Minister Yair Lapid and other Israeli ministers. ‘This is an unforgivable and scandalous comment, a terrible historical error and we expect an apology,’ Lapid said. ‘Hitler was not of Jewish origin and the Jews did not murder themselves in the Holocaust. The lowest form of racism against Jews is blaming the Jews themselves for antisemitism.’ Added Lapid: ‘We are making every effort to maintain good relations with Russia, but there is a line, and this time the line has been crossed. The Russian government must apologize to us and to the Jewish people.’”
Breitbart added on May 2:
“Despite Israel’s ambivalent stance regarding the Russia-Ukraine war – the result of being a rare ally of both countries — its language has taken a stronger tone in recent weeks…”
Axios wrote on May 2:
“It’s the first time Israel has publicly condemned the Russian claim that Zelensky is a ‘Nazi.’… The condemnation is the latest example of how Israeli policy toward the Russian invasion of Ukraine has slowly shifted, with the Israeli government voicing more criticism of Russian action and showing more willingness to give aid to Ukraine. While Israel condemned the Russian invasion and recently accused Russia of committing war crimes, it has for many weeks taken a careful approach to the Ukraine crisis to ensure military cooperation with Russia in Syria continues.”
The “good” relationship between Russia and Israel will end.
The Daily Mail wrote on May 3:
“Russia has doubled down and accused Israel of supporting neo-Nazis in Ukraine in a bitter row sparked by Sergei Lavrov’s comments that Adolf Hitler had ‘Jewish blood’…. in a statement today, the Russian foreign ministry said Lapid’s comments were ‘anti-historical’ and ‘explaining to a large extent why the current Israeli government supports the neo-Nazi regime in Kyiv’… Moscow reiterated Lavrov’s point that Zelensky’s Jewish origins did not preclude Ukraine from being run by neo-Nazis.”
Hamas Threatens Israel
Times of Israel wrote on May 2:
“In a speech Saturday night filled with murderous threats and denunciations of Israel, Hamas’s Gaza leader Yahya Sinwar said the terror group ‘will not hesitate to take any steps’ if Israel ‘violates’ the Al-Aqsa Mosque… ‘Violating Al-Aqsa and Jerusalem means a regional, religious war,’ he said…
“Sinwar praised the recent terror wave against Israelis that has left 15 dead; encouraged Palestinians in the West Bank and Arab Israelis to commit more attacks; hailed a ‘global shift’ in favor of the Palestinian cause; and urged the Islamist Ra’am party to withdraw from Israel’s governing coalition… Ra’am suspended its membership in the coalition after the recent clashes between Palestinians and police at the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Although tensions have not escalated further, Ra’am has yet to officially rejoin the government…
“Sinwar further accused Israel of seeking to partition the Temple Mount as a ‘first step’ to ‘destroy the Al-Aqsa Mosque and build a temple’ in its place… ‘Al-Aqsa is indeed in danger,’ Sinwar said…
“As for Arabs living in Israel, he urged them, too, to kill Israelis: ‘Our people living inside the occupier state — in the Negev, in the [northern] Triangle, in Haifa, in Acre, in Jaffa and in Lod — everybody who has a gun should take it, and those who don’t have a gun should take a butcher’s knife or any knife he can get,’ he said…”
Iran’s International Terrorist Activities
The Jerusalem Post wrote on April 30:
“[Israel’s] Mossad – operating in Iran – apprehended and interrogated an Iranian national who was leading a plot to kill an Israeli diplomat and a US general, sources have confirmed. An audio recording released on Saturday showed a photo of Mansour Rasouli admitting he had been ordered to establish a cell to assassinate a worker at the Israeli Consulate in Istanbul, a US general stationed in Germany and a journalist in France…
“The Quds Force, the IRGC branch responsible for overseas operations, planned to carry out the assassinations via drug cartels, with the Islamic Republic reportedly willing to pay over $1 million for the targets. The planned hits were organized by a member of Quds Force’s Unit 840 stationed in Europe, who was paid $150,000 to ‘prepare for the assassinations’ by using his connections to various European drug lords.
“Unit 840 is a relatively secretive operational unit that organizes terrorist infrastructure outside Iran against Western targets and opposition groups… Defense officials said the failed assassinations join a long list of similar plots, including recent ones in Kenya and Colombia. Turkish, British and American reports over the last few years have accused Iran of using major international crime organizations to help advance its goals abroad, which include carrying out terrorist plots.”
Putin to Be Operated and His Powers Transferred?
The Sun wrote on April 30:
“[Putin] has been source of considerable speculation amid reports that he is battling both abdominal cancer and Parkinson’s Disease. But now it has been reported that 69-year-old Putin could soon vanish as he goes under the knife, with power transferred to Nikolai Patrushev.
“Shadowy Patrushev, 70, is seen as a key architect of the Ukraine war strategy and the man who convinced Putin that Kyiv was awash with neo-Nazis. The claim was reported on Russian media outlet General SVR, which first raised issues of Putin’s health around 18-months ago…
“When exactly Putin will go into hospital is unclear but it is unlikely to [be] before May 9, when he presides over the grandiose Red Victory Day commemoration of the defeat of Hitler…
“An all-out war [against Ukraine] would allow Moscow to draft in more conscripts, impose martial law and also bid for support from its international allies – such as Belarus.”
The Sun wrote on May 2:
“RUSSIAN state TV has threatened to drown the UK under a radioactive tsunami in a bizarre new propaganda video. In the chilling broadcast the presenter also showed how the Kremlin’s latest world-ending Satan 2 nuclear missile could also annihilate Britain. The warning comes as the Kremlin raised the prospect of devastating military strikes on Britain over its deal to supply weapons to Ukraine… host Dmitry Kiselyov heralded Russia’s second option to ‘plunge Britain into the depths of the sea’ with its ‘underwater robotic drone Poseidon.’ In a chilling graphic he warned the missile would raise a giant tsunami wave up to 1,640ft high…
“Putin himself last week darkly warned of using nuclear weapons against the UK and its European allies as devastating nuke maps were broadcast across Russian TV. It gleefully warned Berlin can be nuked in 106 seconds, Paris in 200 seconds and London in 202 seconds. The Sarmat hypersonic 208-ton ’Satan-2’ intercontinental ballistic missile has a speed of 15,880mph and is claimed by the Kremlin leader to be ‘unstoppable’…
“Sergei Lavrov said the risk of World War 3 is now ‘considerable’ – saying the West is essentially fighting a proxy war against Moscow via its support for Kyiv…
The Mirror added April 30:
“Russian state TV simulated a terrifying nuclear strike on Europe, declaring there would be ‘no survivors’… The terrifying claims… were made on the popular TV show which is one of the country’s most watched.”
This will not happen now, but nuclear war, involving Russia and Europe, WILL happen in the future.
Criticism Against Scholz
The Daily Mail wrote on April 29:
“After two months of prevarication and excuses, the German government at last agreed this week to send some heavy armour to Ukraine… Better late than never, you might think. Except that the 50 Gepard (German for cheetah) anti-aircraft vehicles it has approved first saw service in the 1960s and, despite several upgrades, haven’t been part of the German army’s arsenal for over a decade… Military experts say it’s a complicated weapon that requires months of training (five months, for example, when the Romanian army acquired it), a constant stream of spare parts — and ammunition from Switzerland, which the Swiss have not yet agreed to send.
“No wonder Ukrainians feel Germany’s heart is not quite in its efforts to arm them with the weapons it desperately and quickly needs.
“Yet it’s only just over two months since Scholz made an historic speech to the German parliament which was hailed at the time as a watershed. In an address which lasted just under an hour, as Russian armour and troops poured across the border in an unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, the recently elected chancellor laid waste to Germany’s long-standing policy of cosying up to the Kremlin. He promised billions more for defence to end the hollowing out of Germany’s military, support for sanctions against Moscow and even weapons for Ukraine. When he sat down, 16 years of Merkelism — the pro-Russian approach of his predecessor, Angela Merkel — lay in tatters.
“It was all the more remarkable coming from a chancellor whose Social Democrat party had always been in the vanguard of rapprochement with Russia — a policy known as Ostpolitik, which dates back to the early 1960s.Yet in the aftermath of this supposed watershed, Scholz was nowhere to be seen. It was almost as if he’d gone into hiding…
“Sympathetic commentators reminded us that Scholz was in coalition with the Greens, who dabbled in pacifism, and had to accommodate the Left of his own party, which still had a soft spot for Ostpolitik despite Russian barbarities in Ukraine. But the Greens let it be known they were in favour of sending heavy weapons and the Left kept their heads down. Another pathetic excuse bit the dust…
“Die Welt, one of Germany’s most respected newspapers, calls Scholz’s failure to follow through after his watershed speech as ‘the most dangerous miscalculation in the history of the Federal Republic’. It’s a crisis for the whole German political establishment, since all of it — Left, Right and centre plus big business and trade unions — has been implicated in the sorry mess that Germany’s long-standing complicity with the Kremlin has become.
“As perhaps Germany’s most egregious Putin puppet, former chancellor Gerhard Schroder, recently confessed: ‘We were all at it for 30 years.’ As chairman of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline, and board director of oil giant Rosneft, he has been filling his boots with Russian energy company treasure for years — and still is.
“The German establishment has been more vociferously critical of Brexit Britain than of Putin’s Russia. Now it’s paying the price for its Kremlin complicity. Schroder’s great mate, Frank-Walter Steinmeier, is Germany’s head of state. His ties with Moscow are so extensive that Kyiv has declared him persona non grata. Ukraine’s ambassador to Berlin refuses to be in the same room as him.
“The contrast between Germany’s political leaders and the female leaders who have been dubbed the Five Warrior Women of the North could not be starker — or more refreshing. Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Estonia and Lithuania are all led by smart, feisty women who’ve been fiercely critical of Putin from even before the invasion and robustly supportive of Ukraine since…
“The decision to become increasingly reliant on Russian hydrocarbons was entirely of Germany’s own making. It was not forced to go down this route. Important voices at home and abroad warned Germany not to do it. They were ignored. It was a terrible mistake with huge geopolitical consequences that are now tragically unfolding for all to see…”
Germany has messed it up big time for many years.
Deutsche Welle wrote on April 30:
“When it comes to the war in Ukraine, Chancellor Olaf Scholz has insisted that Germany is ‘doing everything’ possible. And yet the gap between his words and actions suggests otherwise… Earlier this week, I blinked, and something that Olaf Scholz had spent weeks insisting was impossible suddenly became possible. Germany will start delivering anti-aircraft tanks to Ukraine. Like so much of German policy on the war in Ukraine, including the initial decision back in late February to send any weapons at all, the announcement came out of the blue: Just hours before, leading members of Scholz’s Social Democratic Party had given interviews saying sending heavy weapons was out of the question. Apparently, they didn’t get the memo — or Scholz left them in the dark, as he reportedly did to some of his ministers when he proposed a major budget hike for the Bundeswehr (Germany’s armed forces) in the days following the Russian invasion.
“In the leadup to the war and ever since, Germany’s default position has been we can’t: We can’t send weapons to a conflict zone, we can’t block Russia from SWIFT, (international payment system), we can’t embargo Russian energy, we can’t send heavy weapons — the list goes on… the fact that so many ‘can’t do’s’ have turned into ‘can do’s’ reveals a discrepancy between the chancellor’s rhetoric and Germany’s feet-dragging actions… Scholz seems to be acting out of pressure rather than conviction… The spontaneous U-turns, where the impossible becomes possible overnight, suggests that ‘can’t’ may really be ‘don’t want to’ in disguise.
“… at the moment, Germans don’t seem keen on making sacrifices. A poll released Thursday showed that only every other German was willing to give things up in daily life to help Ukraine. But public support can shift… Germany has the tools to do much, much more. The question is does it have the leader.”
Of course, the answer is obvious. None right now. But it will change in due time.
The Guardian wrote on May 1:
“The German chancellor, Olaf Scholz, has defended himself against accusations that his approach to Russian aggression has been hesitant and timid, insisting his decisions followed close consultation with Germany’s allies and sought to avoid any suspicion that the country was ‘going it alone’. Scholz has faced fierce criticism even from within his own government and last week came under particular fire from the opposition leader, Friedrich Merz, who accused him of weak leadership and of ‘procrastination, dithering and timidity’…
“Scholz appeared to bow to immense domestic and international pressure last week by announcing that Germany would deliver heavy weaponry to Ukraine, in the form of self-propelled anti-aircraft systems, in what was seen as a sharp policy U-turn. But while the outspoken Ukrainian ambassador to Berlin, Andriy Melnyk, said he welcomed the move, he piled further pressure on Scholz on Sunday by insisting it did not go nearly far enough, and demanding more ‘fantasy and courage’ from Germany… Melnyk… said that the Gepard anti-aircraft guns promised last week were insufficient and too old…
“As debate raged among policymakers in Germany as to when and whether Germany can become independent from Russian gas supplies, the news agency DPA reported that the government was planning to support EU plans for a Russian oil embargo, as part of a sixth round of sanctions about to be announced by the bloc, despite opposition from Hungary, Austria, Slovakia, Spain, Italy and Greece….”
Hungary Opposed to Ban of Russian Oil and Gas
Express wrote on May 2:
“Senior officials in Hungary have warned that Budapest is prepared to block any attempts in the European Union to impose sanctions on Russia’s oil industry… Hungary has warned that if these measures would hinder Budapest’s ability to import energy, the country would be ready to veto it… Hungarian Cabinet Minister Gergely Gulyas told HirTV on Sunday: ‘Since such decisions require unanimity, it makes no sense for the commission to propose sanctions affecting natural gas and crude oil that would restrict Hungarian procurements. ‘We’ve made it clear that we’ll never support.’…
“ An official told Reuters that in order to keep the 27-nation bloc united, the EU Commission might offer Slovakia and Hungary ‘an exemption or a long transition period’… German Vice-Chancellor Robert Habeck warned that there was still no unity among the EU member states on whether to ban Russian oil and gas.”
Germany Suddenly for Oil Embargo?
Deutsche Welle wrote on May 2:
“German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock has said Berlin was ready to support a gradual, EU-wide embargo on Russian oil imports… [Economy and Climate Minister Robert] Habeck admitted that higher prices in Germany were there for the long run, as the state could not cushion all energy price increases… But he said that for a number of firms, the consequences of higher energy costs would not kick in until 2023, as many companies had long-term contracts on fixed terms…
“Habeck said that most of the current energy supplies arriving from Russia go to the Schwedt refinery near Berlin… responding to Habeck’s comments, the city of Schwedt issued a statement calling into question his assurances that an embargo was ‘feasible,’ and accusing the government of ‘dictating terms from afar’ for the city’s main business.”
Breitbart added on May 2:
“Germany’s central bank has warned that should the country entirely cut off Russian energy it could severely increase inflation and damage economic growth, warning that the economic powerhouse of the European Union could experience a two per cent decline in GDP this year. However, despite the move to cut off Russian oil, the government has not made any commitments to cutting off liquid natural gas from Moscow…
“At present, the European Union pays Russia some €780 million ($850/£680 million) per day in exchange for oil and natural gas. Since the invasion of Ukraine began in February, the bloc has sent over €44 billion to Russia, accounting for 71 per cent of Russian energy exports. Germany, the largest single nation buyer [of] Russian gas and oil in the EU, has sent more than €9 billion since the start of the invasion.”
Pelosi in Ukraine
Axios wrote on May 1:
“House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Sunday led a congressional delegation to meet with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky in Kyiv…
“For the time being, the White House has ruled out sending President Biden, citing security concerns.”
The real reason might very well be that Democrats are concerned about what Biden might say or do during a visit to Ukraine. Note the next article.
Biden’s Embarrassing Blunders
The New York Post wrote on April 29:
“Gaffe-prone President Biden has raised concerns after his latest embarrassing blunder, which saw him repeatedly stumble over the word ‘kleptocracy’ during a Thursday speech asking the US Congress for an additional $33 billion Ukraine aid package… Biden, 79, was talking about his administration’s plans to seize Russian assets when he ran into some linguistic trouble. ‘We’re going to seize their yachts, their luxury homes, and other ill-begotten gains of Putin’s kleptoc- — yeah — kleptocracy and klep- — the guys who are the kleptocracies,’ Biden told reporters with a self-deprecating chuckle…
“Moments earlier, Biden also mistakenly said [twice] that the US will ‘accommodate’ the Russian oligarchs ‘and make sure we take their — take their ill-begotten gains.’”
Express wrote on May 2:
“Putin and his regime is becoming increasingly desperate in Ukraine, where it has struggled to make gains beyond the country’s outskirts while facing international condemnation. Some world leaders have supported the invading regime, breaking from the global consensus… He isn’t without support, as he has scattered allegiances around the world. Most of them come from Eastern Europe, but some surprising officials have warmly welcomed members of the Russian regime in the last few months.
“Chief among them is Alexander Lukashenko, the controversial premier of Belarus, known as the ‘last dictator in Europe’… Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic has also supported the Russian regime… Vucic has boasted about his political ties with his Russian counterpart. He has refused to condemn Russia and participate in the EU’s sanctions regime, despite having applied for membership, undermining the bloc’s work to discourage attacks on Ukraine…
“Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban attained another term this year. Almost immediately after winning his election in April, Orban dropped his attempts to distance himself from his historical backing of Putin and criticised Volodymyr Zelensky. He called Ukraine’s leader an ‘opponent’ of Hungary, and the Kremlin said that Putin sent him a personal message of congratulations after his win…
“Further east, Putin’s regime has found support from the Indian government… India has continued to trade with Russia despite western sanctions and increased oil imports, undercutting efforts from other nations… Earlier this month, officials organised a vote to condemn Russia that 143 nations supported, including the US, UK, France and Germany. But India, Pakistan, Iran and China were among the abstainers, and the vote exposed four other supporters of Putin, whose administration voted against it… Syria, Belarus, North Korea and Eritrea all voted not to condemn the invasion. Belarus was already aiding Putin in Ukraine, while the remaining nations voiced their distaste for western interventionism.”
The Jerusalem Post wrote on April 30:
“Americans… responded negatively to the relationship between Russia and China, which has not denounced Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine… Some 62% saw the relationship as a very serious problem for the US and another 30% saw it as somewhat serious.”
It is interesting that some of the nations mentioned in the quoted articles will ultimately unite and become part of the Far Eastern military alliance, which is described in the Bible as the “kings of the East.”
Russia’s Robot Army
Express wrote on May 4:
“Russian military expert Viktor Murakhovsky warned… ‘there is a myth abroad that Russia lags behind in robotics.’ In reality, he claimed, no other army in the world possesses such a diverse range of unmanned vehicles and drones as the Russian Federation. Given recent investments by Putin’s forces in the arena of robotics, this is a situation that appears unlikely to change any time soon.
“Mr Murakhovsky said: ‘Today’s Russian army is the successor of the Red Army, which created remote-controlled tanks back in the 1930s.’ Mr Murakhovsky told Russia Beyond: ‘After the war, pilotless planes were developed in the USSR… in terms of land and sea robots it has the most extensive program in the world.”
Collaboration Between Ukrainians and Russians
The Washington Post wrote on May 4:
“Rumors about traitors run rife as invading forces have seemed to know in advance which residents have guns and which are said to be wealthy…
“In small towns and villages across Ukraine that fell under Russian occupation in February and March and have since been liberated, the fog of war has been replaced by the fog of conspiracy and suspicion. Weeks later, citizens across the country speak in hushed tones about people who they believe sold out their neighbors and whether they might have done so willingly or under duress.”
Pope Francis Blames NATO for the War
The Daily Beast wrote on May 3:
“‘I feel that before going to Kyiv, I must go to Moscow,’ [Pope Francis] told Corriere Della Sera in an interview that ran Tuesday. But the meeting would not exactly be to condemn Putin, based on what he told the paper. He said that the real ‘scandal’ of Putin’s war is ‘NATO barking at Russia’s door,’ which he said caused the Kremlin to ‘react badly and unleash the conflict.’…
“Francis repeated comments he has made in general audiences and in other interviews that the war is nothing more than a giant opportunity for a ‘trade in arms’ and that it is still ongoing because of the constant shuttling of weapons to Ukraine…
“Francis veered toward conspiracy theory as he blamed the international community for instigating the war… ‘In Ukraine, it seems that it was others who created the conflict…’”
The Spectator wrote on April 30:
“Since last year, Canadian law… has allowed both the rich as well as the poor to kill themselves if they are too poor to continue living with dignity… [Canada] will even pay for their deaths. What it will not do is spend money to allow them to live instead of killing themselves…
“In 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada reversed 22 years of its own jurisprudence by striking down the country’s ban on assisted suicide as unconstitutional… The next year, Parliament duly enacted legislation allowing euthanasia, but only for those who suffer from a terminal illness whose natural death was ‘reasonably foreseeable’…
“It only took five years for the proverbial slope to come into view, when the Canadian parliament enacted Bill C-7, a sweeping euthanasia law which repealed the ‘reasonably foreseeable’ requirement – and the requirement that the condition should be ‘terminal’… Even before Bill C-7 was enacted, reports of abuse were rife. A man with a neurodegenerative disease testified to Parliament that nurses and a medical ethicist at a hospital tried to coerce him into killing himself by threatening to bankrupt him with extra costs or by kicking him out of the hospital, and by withholding water from him for 20 days. Virtually every disability rights group in the country opposed the new law. To no effect…
“Since then, things have only gotten worse. A woman in Ontario was forced into euthanasia because her housing benefits did not allow her to get better housing which didn’t aggravate her crippling allergies. Another disabled woman applied to die because she ‘simply cannot afford to keep on living’. Another sought euthanasia because Covid-related debt left her unable to pay for the treatment which kept her chronic pain bearable…
“[The media] has expressed remarkably little curiosity about the open social murder of citizens in one of the world’s wealthiest countries. Perhaps, like many doctors, journalists are afraid of being accused of being ‘unprogressive’ for questioning the new culture of death…
“Next year, the floodgates will open even further when those suffering from mental illness … become eligible for assisted suicide, although enthusiastic doctors and nurses have already pre-emptied the law. There is already talk of allowing ‘mature minors’ access to euthanasia too…”
This is terrible. But those responsible will be held accountable by God.
Schools Must Stop Indoctrinating Our Children
Dr. Ron Paul of the Ron Paul Institute wrote on May 2:
“A Florida bill restricting classroom instruction regarding sexuality in kindergarten through third grade has become the latest culture war skirmish. Supporters of the bill say government schools have no business being involved in this type of instruction with young students. They make a good point. The use of government power to indoctrinate children in certain political and social beliefs — regardless of the wishes of parents — is a major problem.
“While the instruction at issue in Florida is associated with efforts of leftists, the temptation to seek to achieve ideological objectives through education policy can be strong among conservatives as well… [Some] conservatives are trying to force schools to adopt a ‘patriotic’ curriculum. This is just as pernicious as leftists’ efforts to force schools to teach critical race theory. Students indoctrinated in critical race theory will graduate believing that white male capitalists are the source of all evil. Students indoctrinated in ‘patriotism’ will graduate believing every bit of propaganda sponsored by the war party and will smear all dissenters from the ‘party line’ as unpatriotic…
“In a free society, parents — not politicians, bureaucrats, or teachers unions — would control education. Parents would decide whether and when their children’s education will include topics like sexuality, race theory, and the evidence for and against Darwinism.”
The school system in the USA is awful.
Acknowledgement and Disclaimer
These Current Events are compiled and commented on by Norbert Link. We gratefully acknowledge the many contributions of news articles from our readership. The publication of articles in this section is not to be viewed as an endorsement or approval as to contents or accuracy of the selected articles, but they are published for the purpose of pointing at worldwide developments in the light of biblical end-time prophecy and godly instruction. Our own comments are provided in italics.
Is the Act of Littering Addressed in the Bible? If not, does it make any difference whether or not we engage in littering?
The literal act of littering is not directly and expressly addressed in the Bible, but neither are such areas as smoking, vaccinations and other matters. But there are many principles that show that we can learn from God’s Word even if a specific area cannot be found in Scripture.
We will find out in this Q&A that littering is something that we must take seriously. There may be those who see this question and think that it is so obvious that it need not be addressed in the Church of God. But it does because we can all fall short in this area even though it may be considered a little thing. After all, Christ said: “He who is faithful in what is least is faithful also in much; and he who is unjust in what is least is unjust also in much” (Luke 16:10). As a spin-off to littering, we will also address neatness and tidiness.
Life is made up of many small things, and we do need to take those small things seriously.
The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines litter as: “trash, wastepaper, or garbage lying scattered about; an untidy accumulation of objects.”
Let us bring to mind how big a problem this can be. It was reported in July 2019 that the “Glastonbury (music) Festival has been left with a sea of litter left to be cleaned up – just hours after Sir David Attenborough appeared on the Pyramid stage to praise the festival’s anti-plastic campaign. But some were left asking about Glastonbury’s ‘Plastic free’ mantra as photos showed the devastating mess left in the wake of the world’s most famous festival.
“Around 1,300 volunteers are taking on the gargantuan task, using bin bags from recycled plastic to hand sort debris left on the ground and across the festival site’s 15,000 bins. The clean-up of the festival takes an estimated six-weeks to complete.”
Mr Armstrong, the late human leader of the now defunct Worldwide Church of God, used to comment on the yearly Rose Parade in Pasadena as one of the most beautiful things this world was able to offer, but also bemoaned the terrible amount of trash and litter being left behind after the event, saying that in this world, even the most beautiful things are being polluted and defiled.
There was a series of programmes on British television in 2021 about the workings of Chatsworth House showing all that goes on behind the scenes as well as the facilities that are available. The Church held the annual Feast of Tabernacles at this site for 10 years between 1999-2009 in what is a truly millennial setting. However, one day that it was opened to the public during different lockdowns during 2020, an area was designated for use by those wishing to have a picnic. The amount of waste left was staggering with many staff taking hours just to clean up the area.
We read on the website trashhero.org the following: “Litter is what we call trash when it ends up outside a bin or landfill. Litter is bad for animals and people. Plastic waste suffocates, disables and kills thousands of animals each year. Litter is dirty and spoils our environment.
“Turtles, seals, birds and dolphins often mistake plastic waste for food. Plastic bags floating in the water can look like jellyfish, for example. After animals eat plastic, their intestines get blocked and their normal food can’t be digested properly. If they eat too much plastic, their stomachs always feel full, so they don’t eat anything else. Eventually they can starve to death. Plastic also contains lots of nasty chemicals that can poison animals and cause internal injuries.
“Animals often get entangled in plastic bags. This means they can suffocate, starve or drown. It also makes it easier for predators to catch them. Plastic bags constrict an animal’s movement which means they can get exhausted, or sometimes develop an infection from wounds caused by material wrapped around them. Plastic packaging can sink to the ocean floor, get wrapped around and smother coral reefs. Inland, plastic blocks drains, allowing mosquitoes to breed and spread dengue fever. Litter makes the beach look dirty. Sharp objects like broken glass can cut your feet. Because of this, there may be fewer visitors and local people will have less income from tourism.”
We should be able to see that litter is a real problem which so many seem to treat with disdain or contempt.
In an article by the Los Angeles Times, dated April 14, 2022, the following was stated:
“The Los Angeles City Council passed two motions… to address illegal dumping on the streets and in vacant lots of trash and junk like appliances, furniture, tires and other waste… ‘We live in a very trashy city,’ [Councilmember Kevin] de León said… ‘In terms of a large metropolitan city, we are the trashiest largest city in America.’ The city controller’s office reported last year that illegal dumping of trash, debris and hazardous items in public areas increased 450% between 2016 and 2020.”
Let us review a few Scriptures which reflect the Way of God.
In Genesis 2:15, right at beginning of civilization, we read: “Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.”
In bibleref.com, we read: “One of the most important lessons which jumps out from this verse is that immediately after he was created, the first man had a God-given purpose. God placed him into the paradise of the garden of Eden with a job to do. God had created a world which included work needing to be done; He created man with a mission to do that work. Logically, God didn’t need to structure the world in this way. He could have created a world that was fully self-sustaining. He could have made human beings to simply live in luxury and enjoy all of God’s creation without ever having to contribute anything. That, however, was not God’s design. Even before [human] sin entered the world, human beings were meant to work, to help to accomplish God’s purpose. That is built into us.”
We should note what the angels say to God about those who pollute and destroy the environment: “We give You thanks, O LORD God Almighty… Your wrath has come, And the time… that you… should destroy those who destroy the earth” (Revelation 11:17-18).
Likewise, today we are not to dismiss looking after our gardens, if we have one. To keep it neat, tidy and functional is the way that we are expected to deal with this.
In Matthew 7:12, we read about how we should treat others: “Therefore, whatever you want men to do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” Those who leave litter on someone else’s grounds would probably not appreciate others littering their own place. Therefore, we should treat other people’s property with the respect that we would ourselves expect to receive.
There is a graphic example in Mark 6:38-44 with Jesus and the loaves and fishes as we read: “But He said to them, ‘How many loaves do you have? Go and see.’ And when they found out they said, ‘Five, and two fish.’ Then He commanded them to make them all sit down in groups on the green grass. So they sat down in ranks, in hundreds and in fifties. And when He had taken the five loaves and the two fish, He looked up to heaven, blessed and broke the loaves, and gave them to His disciples to set before them; and the two fish He divided among them all. So they all ate and were filled. And they took up twelve baskets full of fragments and of the fish. Now those who had eaten the loaves were about five thousand men.”
They didn’t leave all the fragments for others to clear up as would probably happen today, but they cleared up after the event. Of course, Christ made clear that He wanted the fragments to be gathered up “so that nothing is lost” (John 6:12). In addition, picking up food from the ground might not have been very hygienic. Perhaps showing the magnitude of the miracle that 5,000 men plus women and children had been fed with five loaves and two fish was astonishing only to be compounded even further by the amount of fragments that had been left. It also showed that littering was not the way it should be and they would have left the area in the same way that they had found it. It is a good principle not to leave a place dirtier than how we found it.
We see the aspect of service that is not in evidence when serving others is not shown. In Galatians 5:13 we read: “For you, brethren, have been called to liberty; only do not use liberty as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.” Loving and serving others is not manifested by selfishly leaving a pile of litter for others to dispose of.
Looking after the interests of others is clearly shown in Philippians 2:3-4: “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better [higher] than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.”
Do we as the people of God engage in littering of any kind? Have we ever carelessly discarded a food wrapper or an empty drink can? If there are no bins for depositing such rubbish, then we are obliged to take these home or to another place where they may be disposed of in the right way. Have we ever thrown a discarded item out of our car window?
Have we ever engaged in some form of fly-tipping which is the illegal dumping of liquid or solid waste on land or in water? The waste is usually dumped to avoid disposal costs and such a mess that is created by such selfishness, has to be dealt with by others.
Do we always pick up after our dog once it has done its “business” on the front yard of somebody else’s property? After all, it isn’t exactly the most enjoyable chore we’ll ever engage in. It can be tempting to skip this task, but doing so may even be illegal in many places.
Part of rebellious mankind’s modus operandi is that man thinks that he can do exactly as he pleases without regard to planet Earth or any of his fellow human beings. It is an attitude that is ugly and uncaring, and we must ensure that we don’t slip into doing the same thing, perhaps even thoughtlessly.
The above examples are a part of being neat and tidy. Are our homes untidy, maybe even scruffy? Of course, for some who have illness or disability problems, this can be a difficult area to keep control of. We know that where there is dirt and litter, vermin can be attracted to such areas, and so it is vital that we eliminate any possibility of this happening in our own homes. And home is where we spend the majority of our time, and so, why shouldn’t it be a delightful place to dwell?
A good question to ask is, are we always prepared for any visitors to enter our home or do we have to specifically prepare well in advance? For those who are always clean, neat and tidy and keep their home that way, there is no such concern for any unexpected visit. Of course, we understand that there might be and oftentimes are valid exceptions, but we are speaking in general terms.
One website wrote about “Messy Home, Messy Life, Messy Saint” and observed: “And, your yard. What do you announce to the neighborhood about yourself if there is trash all around? Hoses wind around like green spaghetti. The flower pots still have desiccated geraniums in them that were killed last fall by freezing weather. Clean it up, and throw away the stupid stuff which you once thought you might use. And, if much of the junk is your kids’ stuff, make them help you. If your kids are too mean spirited to clean up their own trash, you are not raising them– they are raising YOU.” Very straightforward advice but true to those who have eyes to see and ears to hear.
Let us think about heaven, God’s abode. Of course, it is spiritual and not physical, and we really can only wonder about the spiritual realm but would the One who created the universe and everything we see, be dirty, untidy and uncaring about presentation? We should all know the answer to that question and, as we are to be growing in grace and knowledge to become more like God, we would surely want to follow Him in all His ways.
God would surely disapprove of anyone leaving His creation in an untidy mess with trash and general litter marring the beauty that is our planet and it makes unnecessary work for others to do when we should be doing this ourselves. Anything that reduces or inhibits the proper enjoyment and full use of our God-given environment will not be met with God’s approval. Leaving rubbish for others to clear up is selfish and unthinking.
What sort of message does it send out to the young people growing up today when their parents and family just throw rubbish anywhere they want? And when they take little or no interest in keeping their home, clean, tidy and litter-free?
It is interesting that the Singapore project has produced amazing results showing that attacking the littering problem can be very advantageous. We read the following in an article by the BBC::
“Throughout the 1970s and 1980s, there were campaigns that urged Singaporeans to keep toilets, factories and bus stops clean. The 1976 Use Your Hands campaign had students, parents, teachers, principals and civil servants cleaning up schools at the weekend. There were also numerous tree planting initiatives. The aim wasn’t just to make the city more pleasant. A cleaner city, Lee Kuan Yew reasoned, would create a stronger economy. ‘These standards will keep morale high, sickness rate low, and so create the necessary social conditions for higher economic growth in industry and in tourism. This will contribute to the public good, and in the end to everyone’s personal benefit,’ he said.
“On all of these counts, Singapore has done well. Life expectancy has grown from 66 to 83 (which is third best globally). In 1967, tourist arrivals were a little over 200,000 compared to a just shy of 10 million for the first three quarters of 2018. Inward foreign direct investment ballooned from US$93m in 1970 to US$39bn in 2010. It’s now the fifth largest recipient of, foreign direct investment receiving $66bn in 2017.”
Doing the right thing will always produce good results, as we see in the above example. For anyone visiting Singapore, they will see a litter-free environment as littering is very heavily punished. People have been “trained” not to litter and to keep things neat and tidy, and it is a joy to see this actually working, which is in great contrast to the many nations of the world who have little or no control on such matters.
There is no specific command in the Bible not to litter but if there was, it would probably be ignored by most people like all of the other Commandments of God are. We shouldn’t litter because it is not the Way of God, nor is it helpful to man as we have seen. Let us be the best example we can be to all people and do that which is pleasing in His sight.
If you have read this and feel that you have not been guilty or are totally on top of this matter, then congratulations to you. Most will surely be able to identify with being slack in this area at times, and if that is so, then maybe this presentation may be just the nudge that you need!
Let us make ourselves a committee of one to ensure that we are not part of this problem and that we always set the best possible example!
Lead Writer: Brian Gale (United Kingdom)
Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
compiled by Dave Harris
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This message contains some conjecture about the place of safety which is promised to the true church at the time of the Great Tribulation. Scripture is clear about the event but neither the place nor the timing is known, nor are the travel arrangements! Some speculative ideas are reviewed as to how this might happen.
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Is it our destiny to attain equality with God? Or just a certain resemblance? Is Christ equal to God or just similar to Him? What does it mean to inherit the Kingdom of God? What IS the Kingdom of God? Do we have to do something to inherit it? What is meant by “born again”? Who or what is God? IS God a Family, or does He just HAVE a Family? What is the connection between God, the God Family, and the Kingdom of God? What is the gospel of the Kingdom? And finally, what is the most important work of God on earth today?
How This Work is Financed
This Update is an official publication by the ministry of the Church of the Eternal God in the United States of America; the Church of God, a Christian Fellowship in Canada; and the Global Church of God in the United Kingdom.
Editorial Team: Norbert Link, Dave Harris, Rene Messier, Brian Gale, Margaret Adair, Johanna Link, Eric Rank, Michael Link, Anna Link, Kalon Mitchell, Manuela Mitchell, Dawn Thompson
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