|Hugging the Cactus / Milestones
|Beauty Comes From Within…
|This Week in the News
|How to Survive in This Day and Age!
|Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
Hugging the Cactus / Milestones
On August 19, 2023, Frank Bruno will present the sermonette, titled, “Hugging the Cactus,” and Eric Rank will present the sermon, titled, “Milestones.”
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
Beauty Comes From Within…
by Thilo Hanstein
Some time ago, I found myself in the middle of a debate on how to behave towards other people. I mentioned the need for respect towards other people and that one should express oneself well and carefully by choosing one’s words without being hurtful.
My counterpart responded: “I just am who I am.”
This statement was very disappointing to me at that moment, showing a lack of respect and making it clear that there was a complete unwillingness to make a necessary change.
Unwillingness to change also means that one is not prepared to look at one’s reflection in the mirror to examine oneself, and to alter existing faults.
Conducting one’s life in such a way shows an utter indifference to other fellow human beings and a lack of concern for the behavior towards them, and such a person has no place in the Kingdom of God, for he literally would stop at nothing, thus making himself hideous. His heart is cold, and he will not find true peace in this cruel world; something that Christ wants to give us.
In Romans 12:2, Paul wrote: “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
This is precisely what we are to do as true Christians: We must critically examine ourselves to see if there is not some bad characteristic clinging to or in us that needs to be banned from our lives. It does not matter how long we have been part of the Body of Christ, regardless of whether we have been converted Christians for 10, 20, 40 or even more than 50 years.
Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians, chapter 13 and verse 5: “Examine yourselves as to whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Do you not know yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? – unless indeed you are disqualified.” There is simply no age limit for this since self-examination is a lifelong process.
Being respectful to our fellow human beings, and showing kindness and helpfulness, is a huge responsibility that God bestows upon us, especially among true Christians. If we develop such respect for others, God will be very pleased with us. And how to cultivate such respect is explained by David in his Psalms: “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; A good understanding have all those who do His commandments. His praise endures forever” (Psalm 111:10).
Christ expects us to interact properly with our fellow human beings, and He is the supreme role model for us that ever walked the earth as a human being, for He set an example of what is good and had it written down for the end time, for He was the light of the world (compare John 8:12). He also taught several times, that “[n]o one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a secret place or under a basket, but on a lampstand, that those who come in may see the light” (Luke 11:33). And He also tells us: “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden” (Matthew 5:14).
It is everyone’s own decision, how bright and beautiful this light is radiating from us; however, we must ensure that it glows powerfully both within and out of us. When it does shine brightly within us and people recognize this, then we will be beautiful to look at, for this beauty does indeed come from within us!
Initial Translation: Daniel Blasinger
by Norbert Link
We begin with another appalling attempt in the ongoing witch-hunt against Trump to prevent him from successfully running for the US Presidency, in that the state of Georgia indicted Trump and 18 “co-conspirators” for criminal conduct regarding the 2020 election. This indictment has been described as hypocritical and ridiculous by “a cult of Democrats”; and prosecutor and Trump hater Fani Willis has been described as “basically a terrorist in a prosecutor’s uniform” who has “disgraced the legal profession.”
Please view our new StandingWatch program in this regard, titled, “WHY God Condemns Trump’s Indictments and Biden’s Protection!”
We continue with the willful ignorance or intentional lies of the White House regarding President Biden’s denial of knowledge and involvement in his son’s business dealings; four articles of impeachment having been filed on President Joe Biden, accusing him of “high crimes and misdemeanors,” which, if successful, would remove him from office; and we report on the appointment of controversial prosecutor David Weiss as “special counsel” in the Hunter Biden scandal which has been described as another dirty trick by Attorney General Merrick Garland in his further attempts to protect Joe Biden. Even CNN finds this appointment rather “odd,” prompting some “significant questions about the whole situation.”
In light of these developments, it should not come as much of a surprise that the majority of Republican voters in Iowa believe “the pursuit of former President Donald Trump by the FBI and the Department of Justice smacks of Nazi rule in 1930s Germany.”
In other news, we report on the highly problematic deal between Iran and the USA, apparently “buying the release of jailed Americans in Iran for billions of US dollars”; quote articles pointing out that the US Army and Ukraine are in deep trouble; speak about a “manufactured” overwhelming scientific consensus on climate change; and conclude with the terrible disaster in Maui, Hawaii, and the US government’s pitiful reaction.
In this context, please view our new message, titled, Alarming Developments in the USA, Germany and the Ukraine—Comments on News and Prophecy – YouTube
Throughout this section, we have underlined pertinent statements in the quoted articles, for the convenience and quick overview of the reader.
This Week in the News
Trump Indicted in Georgia by “Hypocritical Democrats”
Breitbart wrote on August 15:
“Harvard Law School professor emeritus Alan Dershowitz said Monday that District Attorney Fani Willis had indicted former President Donald Trump and 18 others for a ‘conspiracy’ that was exactly what Democrats did in challenging the 2000 election. ‘The tactics of the Trump team, including claims of fraud, were neither more nor less than what Democrats had done in claiming that the election had been stolen from then-Vice President Al Gore by Republicans pushing for then-Governor George W. Bush… ‘You cannot start making crimes out of things that the Democrats did…’
“Dershowitz added that the indictments against Trump, both federal and state, were the ‘weakest’ he had ever seen against any candidate… The indictment against Trump and others claims that acts as mundane as tweeting to turn on the TV, reserving a meeting room, and asking for a phone number were part of the overall criminal conspiracy.”
Such incompetent and concocted charges are truly mind boggling.
Breitbart added on August 15:
“… more than 150 examples show Democrats denying election results, including President Joe Biden; two-time failed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton; House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY); Reps. Barbara Lee, Maxine Waters… and failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams.
“In fact, every single Democrat president since 1977 has questioned the legitimacy of U.S. elections…”
What hypocrisy! But this is not about justice, it is about the political motive by Democrats to interfere in the upcoming election. In trying to silence the leading candidate, they use methods of a dictatorship, reminiscent of a Banana Republic. With the approval and collaboration of the Presidency, the Biden Administration and numerous governmental agencies, the USA has ceased to be a Democracy.
Indictment Excessive and Dangerous
Fox News wrote on August 15:
“[Law Professor] Jonathan Turley argued the indictment is ‘excessive’ and ‘dangerous’… ‘It essentially criminalizes challenges to elections… They are charging things like the president saying publicly, we need to have a recount. Democrats and Republicans challenge these elections routinely… What’s concerning, particularly about this is that [Fani] Willis didn’t really show any semblance of restraint. She indicted everyone for everything she could think of…
“‘But having said that, I think that the Trump team has to realize that this is a serious threat, not because of the merits, but because, as a racketeering case, it’s very hard to take these cases up on appeal before trial… Also, this is not a case that can be dismissed with a federal pardon, whether by Trump himself or by an elected Republican.”
The claimed reason being, this is a state, not a federal case. Fox News explained that “The power to pardon in Georgia does not fall to the governor, but rather a five-member board… Felons who are seeking pardon by the board must serve their sentence for five years before doing so.”
This view is not uncontested. Famous attorney and litigator Mark Levin “argued that Trump can pardon himself from state charges if he wins the presidency, under existing Department of Justice policy and the U.S. Constitution’s Supremacy Clause” (Breitbart, dated August 16).
Of course, Trump could and probably will try to remove the case to federal court because it involves presidential powers. Trump attorney Alina Habba stated that “as a deliberate ploy, the state of Georgia is bringing charges against former President Donald Trump that should be in federal court… ‘Anything having to do with … election issues at this level with a president should 100% be in federal court,’ Abba said, adding that this was all done ‘by design’” (Newsmax, dated August 15).
Of course it was. That should be obvious to any objective observer.
Trump: The Whole World Is Laughing At the USA
Fox News wrote on August 15:
“‘Nineteen people were indicted, and the whole world is laughing at the United States as they see how corrupt and horrible a place it has turned out to be under the leadership of Crooked Joe Biden,’ Trump told Fox News Digital during an exclusive interview late Monday night. Trump and more than a dozen others were charged, including his former White House chief of staff Mark Meadows, his former attorneys Rudy Giuliani, Sidney Powell, Jenna Ellis, Kenneth Chesebro, Jeff Clark, John Eastman, among others.
“‘The racist and corrupt district attorney of Fulton County, which has turned out to be a murder capital of the world with among the highest violent crime levels anywhere in our country, just opened a fundraising site in order to benefit [she launched her reelection fundraising site days before the grand jury indicted Trump] off the things she most campaigned on, “I will get Donald Trump,”’ he said… [He] blasted Willis, saying that it is ‘not even conceivable that a person with such a record of failure could be allowed to interrupt perhaps the most important election in the history of our country… Trump said that Willis ‘should focus on the people that rigged the 2020 presidential election, not those who demand an answer as to what happened.’”
This Is Not Justice
Breitbart wrote on August 15:
“… conservative talker Mark Levin criticized the Fulton County, GA indictment against former President Donald Trump… ‘Well, Stalin would be proud. I’m sure Putin is proud. I’m sure enemies are celebrating, and our allies are appalled at what’s going on here… We’re going through the motions of justice here, like autocratic regimes… the Democrat Party has become so radicalized and such a tool of its radical base, they are tonight, most of them, celebrating. They don’t come out and say a… thing about Hunter Biden… they don’t even have a curiosity about anything related to Joe Biden despite the fact there are predicates all over the place for a special counsel and they are excited…
“‘Ladies and gentlemen, the people of America, you know what’s going on here… this is not justice. Just because you have a judge, just because you have grand juries, just because you have a fake media, that doesn’t mean things are going right… People vote for tyranny, and then it’s too late.
“‘You got people who are self-righteously saying how wonderful the system is, nobody’s above the law. Are you kidding me?… This is a grave time in American history…’”
According to Deutsche Welle, dated August 15, “former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who lost to Trump in the 2016 presidential election, told broadcaster MSNBC the indictment showed that justice in the US was working.”
Clinton is one to talk! IF justice in the USA was working, she would be in jail for illegally destroying over 30,000 emails, including sensitive and classified documents.
District Attorney Fani Willis a Disgrace for the Legal Profession
Newsmax wrote on August 15:
“Former federal prosecutor Joe diGenova told Newsmax on Tuesday that Democrat Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis has brought disgrace to the legal profession…
“Willis, 52, was raised by her single father, John Clifford Floyd III, a onetime Black Panther with a criminal record who became a defense lawyer in Washington, D.C… ‘Apparently that pedigree has worn well,’ diGenova said. ‘She has conducted herself unprofessionally. She has become basically a terrorist in a prosecutor’s uniform…’
“‘The truth is, Fani Willis, Bragg in New York, Jack Smith; there’s the cult because what they’ve decided to do is gather together like a bunch of witches and to bring their brew together to take down one man,’ diGenova said… ‘This is 250 years of jurisprudence being destroyed by a cult called the Democratic Party. This is disgraceful.’’
It surely is. The case against Trump should be dismissed for the reason alone that the prosecution posted on their website and thereby leaked a draft of the indictment to the press BEFORE the grand jury had even rendered a verdict, thereby violating Trump’s right to a fair trial. The methods which the prosecution in Georgia are using are truly unbelievable.
Willful Ignorance or Intentional Lies?
Breitbart wrote on August 14:
“White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters at a briefing Monday that there was ‘zero evidence’ that President Joe Biden had ‘discussed,’ or was ‘involved with,’ his son Hunter’s business dealings… That response is different from Jean-Pierre’s effort in recent weeks to claim that ‘[t]he president was never in business with his son,’ which she denied was a change from Biden’s own earlier response that he had ‘never discussed’ his family’s businesses.
“In claiming that there was ‘zero evidence,’ Jean-Pierre ignored a mounting collection of evidence, including the following:
“Travel logs showing that Hunter Biden traveled to China with his father on Air Force Two before a lucrative business deal; E-mails and messages on Hunter Biden’s laptop showing that Joe Biden had met with his son’s business associates; Evidence from Hunter Biden’s laptop showing that he and his father had intermingled their family’s finances and bills; Businessman Tony Bobulinski’s claim that he met with Joe Biden to discuss ‘family business plans with the Chinese’; A voicemail from Joe Biden to his son regarding New York Times coverage of Hunter Biden’s business interests; Bank records showing wire transfers from abroad to Hunter Biden via shell companies for distribution to family members; Testimony from Hunter Biden’s former business partner, Devon Archer, stating that Joe Biden had spoken by speakerphone at least 20 times with Hunter Biden’s business associates, and had attended a dinner meeting with many of them in 2014; Joe Biden’s infamous boast about using the threat of withdrawing $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees to remove a Ukrainian prosecutor, whom Devon Archer confirmed Hunter had been hired by the Ukrainian energy company Burisma to counteract.”
In light of these FACTS, events which took place the next day in Georgia are truly remarkable.
Articles of Impeachment Filed on Joe Biden
Newsmax wrote on August 13:
“Rep. Greg Steube has filed articles of impeachment against President Joe Biden, accusing him of ‘high crimes and misdemeanors’ and commenting that ‘it’s long past time’ to impeach him. ‘He has undermined the integrity of his office, brought disrepute on the presidency, betrayed his trust as president, and acted in a manner subversive of the rule of law and justice at the expense of America’s citizens,’ the Florida Republican said…”
Fox News wrote on August 12:
“While several congressional committees are building a multipronged case to remove Biden from office, Steube… filed [four] articles of impeachment against Biden charging that the president had been complicit in his son Hunter’s alleged crimes and had worked to shield him from justice…
“The first accuses the president of abusing the power of his office by allegedly accepting bribes, committing Hobbs Act extortion and honest services fraud related to use of his official position. These charges arise from Biden’s alleged involvement with his family’s business dealings, including Hunter and James Biden’s (the president’s brother) alleged effort to sell access to then-Vice President Biden between 2009 and 2017 in exchange for ‘payments and business opportunities from foreign and domestic business partners.’ House Oversight Committee Chairman Rep. James Comer, R-Ky, on Wednesday released a memo purporting to show that foreign payments to the Biden family totaled more than $20 million…
“The second article charges that President Biden obstructed justice, citing IRS whistleblower testimony that ‘members of the Biden campaign improperly colluded with Justice Department (DOJ) officials to improperly interfere with investigations into tax crimes alleged to have been committed by Hunter Biden.’…
“The third and fourth articles accuse Biden of ‘fraud’ and paying for Hunter Biden’s illegal drugs and trysts with prostitutes, respectively…
“On the same day, Steube introduced legislation to require the Secret Service chief to write a report on the illicit use of controlled substances in the White House. The move comes after the Secret Service closed its investigation into cocaine found at the White House last month without identifying a person of interest…”
Even though filing articles of impeachment on Joe Biden may have been long overdue, there is little chance that Biden will be removed from office, as Senate Democrats, for example, would not in any way support such a move. And even if Joe Biden would vacate the office, Kamala Harris would take his place, which would constitute the absolute nightmare in the eyes of many observers.
Appointment of “Special Counsel” in Hunter Biden Case Another Cover-Up?
Breitbart reported on August 11:
“Attorney General Merrick Garland appointed U.S. prosecutor David Weiss as a special counsel in the ongoing investigation of Hunter Biden… ‘David Weiss can’t be trusted and this is just a new way to whitewash the Biden family’s corruption,’ Russell Dye, a spokesperson for House Judiciary Committee Chair Jim Jordan (R-OH), told Breitbart News in a statement. ‘Weiss has already signed off on a sweetheart plea deal that was so awful and unfair that a federal judge rejected it,’ he added…
“House Oversight Committee Chair James Comer (R-KY) also was skeptical of the appointment of a special counsel. ‘This move by AG Garland is part of the Justice Department’s efforts to attempt a Biden family coverup in light of GOPoversight‘s mounting evidence of President Biden’s role in his family’s schemes selling “the brand” for millions of dollars to foreign nationals,’ he said in a statement.
“The appointment of a special counsel comes on the same day that news broke that Weiss’ prosecutors acknowledged that the gun and tax charges against Hunter will likely have to be resolved at a trial in California or Washington, DC… The DOJ’s probe into Hunter Biden could implicate Joe Biden. A witness who testified before the jury was reportedly asked to identify the ‘big guy.’…
“George Washington law professor Jonathan Turley said Friday… that Attorney General Merrick Garland appointing David Weiss as special counsel in the Hunter Biden criminal case would make it harder for Congress to ask questions in their probe of Hunter Biden… ‘This new status can slow that process down. Weiss was at the top of the list of Congress to be brought in to explain why did you allow statute of limitations to run? Why were Biden people tipped off about raids? Why was there interference with investigators trying to interview Hunter Biden?
“‘All of those questions are now likely to be delayed before they are answered… The initial concern is whether Weiss is damaged goods. You usually appoint special counsel who will satisfy all sides, that is someone who doesn’t bring baggage to the question and can resolve issues. These whistleblowers were critical of Weiss. Weiss suggested that he always had this authority. The whistleblowers said he said the opposite to staff, suggested he allowed statute of limitations to run…’”
Garland’s appointment of Weiss might indeed have been a “dirty trick” in his attempts to continue the cover-up and protection of Joe Biden, as the next article suggests.
Garland’s Last Dirty Trick
The New York Post wrote on August 11:
“Attorney General Merrick Garland may have just played his last trick card to save Joe Biden: appointing a special counsel to delay prosecution of his son Hunter. With any luck, the official Justice Department final report on Biden family shenanigans will be released in December 2024, one month after the presidential election… Federal agencies and the Justice Department dragged out for five years the investigation of Hunter’s gun, tax and foreign influence peddling. The statute of limitations already expired on several of his crimes, but that was OK because of the spelling of his last name.
“Despite a string of crimes that would have sent average Americans up the river for a decade, Biden’s Justice Department cut a deal in June that permitted Hunter to plead guilty to misdemeanors, not serve a day in jail and dodge any other federal charges. That deal collapsed when federal Judge Maryellen Noreika asked a few questions after she was blindsided by a last-minute sweeping exoneration paragraph added to the plea deal…
“For Joe Biden, Weiss is absolutely trustworthy: He’s the same lawyer who dragged out prosecuting Hunter for years. Former White House correspondent Emerald Robinson quipped, ‘Appointing David Weiss is like appointing a crack pipe to ‘investigate’ Hunter Biden.’
“According to The Federalist’s Sean Davis, “Weiss demonstrated his loyalty to the Biden family by shutting down investigations, tipping off suspects before searches . . . refusing to interview Hunter, hiding FBI documents, firing IRS investigators . . .’ Is there any reason to expect Weiss to be more honest in the future?…
“Coverups have been a key to Biden’s political power for more than three years… Team Biden is teaching Americans that ‘Justice Department’ is often an oxymoron…”
Even CNN is questioning the appointment of David Weiss as a special counsel. Note the next article:
Jake Tapper: Some Concerns Have Merit
Fox News wrote on August 11:
“Many Republicans are wary of U.S. attorney David Weiss overseeing the Hunter Biden probe, and CNN anchor Jake Tapper agreed Friday that some of their concerns ‘have merit.’… ‘I think there are some legitimate questions about this whole situation,’ Tapper said on ‘CNN News Central.’ ‘First of all, I do think it’s fair to question why would U.S. Attorney Weiss be appointed to special counsel. Usually, a special counsel is an outside attorney. Now, it has happened before. Durham came from inside, and the attorney general has the right to do that, but it is odd.’
“Tapper went on to ask why they would stick with the person who was responsible for the ‘colossal failure’ of the Hunter plea deal…
“He also spoke about the mixed messages regarding Weiss’ jurisdiction and whether he already had the necessary power to charge outside of Delaware before he was made a special counsel, recalling that the U.S. attorney had made different claims about his power in private versus in public, according to whistleblowers.
“‘The Justice Department and Weiss denied what the whistleblowers were saying, but this move makes it seem as though, well, maybe the whistleblowers were right. Maybe what they were alleging is true, and he didn’t have the ability to charge whatever he wanted to charge, and now he does. So I do have a lot of questions about that, and I do think some of the political questions being raised by Republicans have merit,’ Tapper said…”
When left-wing CNN begins to ask questions regarding the affairs of Joe and Hunter Biden, as well as the conduct of the Justice Department and the FBI in those matters, then that should tell us something.
USA Like Nazi Germany?
The Daily Mail wrote on August 11:
“A majority of Republican voters in Iowa believe the pursuit of former President Donald Trump by the FBI and the Department of Justice smacks of Nazi rule in 1930s Germany, according to a new poll for DailyMail.com. Some 57 percent of respondents said they agreed with the statement: ‘The lawlessness of the persecutions of President Trump and his supporters is reminiscent of Nazi Germany in the 1930s.’ [73 % of Trump supporters agreed with the statement.] It comes after months of attacks on the FBI and the Department of Justice by Trump and his allies, who say he is the victim of an attempt to end his presidential campaign…
“Republicans in Iowa… will have a crucial say in selecting the party’s 2024 nomination. It is the first state to pick its preferred candidate next year, and the currents of public opinion will be watched closely until then… The DailyMail.com poll shows Trump retains a tight grip on the race. He is in clear first place with 43 percent support in the state… Ron DeSantis has lost nine points, putting him on 17 percent… Meanwhile Sen. Tim Scott has surged to 11 percent.”
When the majority of Republican voters feel that the Justice Department and the FBI act like the Gestapo in Nazi Germany, then any confidence by a vast portion of America’s population in those institutions is gone. And we do not even know how many Independents (and Democrats) have similar opinions. What will the consequence be?
Many propose that the DOJ, the FBI and many other federal agencies must be freed from their internal corruption by reforming them and by getting rid of the bad guys, starting with the very top. Others feel, such as businessman and Republican candidate Vivek Ramaswamy, that these agencies are beyond repair and must be totally shut down.
Really Dangerous US-Iran Deal
Newsmax and The Associated Press wrote on August 13:
“Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blasted the Biden administration for apparently buying the release of jailed Americans in Iran. Pompeo… was asked about the U.S. working to bring home the jailed Americans via a deal that involves billions of dollars in frozen Iranian assets being transferred from banks in South Korea to Qatar. ‘It’s really dangerous… for the Gulf nations, it’s dangerous for … Israel.’
“Pompeo said paying for the Americans’ release ‘will build their [Iran’s] economy’ and encourage more hostage-taking. ‘You now have a situation where we have told the Iranians, For every American you take, the Biden administration will provide you with $1 billion,’ Pompeo [said]…
“The U.S.-Iran deal… was announced on Thursday, when Iran moved four of the five Americans from prison to house arrest. The fifth American had already been under house arrest. U.S. and Iranian officials say they believe the agreement could be finalized by mid- to late-September.
“The cash involved represents money South Korea owed Iran for oil purchased before the Trump administration imposed sanctions on such transactions in 2019.
“The U.S. maintains that, once in Qatar, the money will be held in restricted accounts and will only be able to be used for humanitarian goods, such as medicine and food. Those transactions are currently allowed under American sanctions targeting the Islamic Republic over its advancing nuclear program.
“Some people in Iran have disputed the U.S. claim, saying Tehran will have total control over the funds. Qatar has not commented publicly on how it will monitor the disbursement of the money.”
This deal is clearly an incentive for Iran to continue kidnapping and arresting American citizens.
US Army in Trouble
The Hill wrote on August 11:
“… the military, and especially the Army, is now shrinking… A variety of factors have led to the recruiting crisis… Disastrous wars in Iraq and Afghanistan have dented confidence in military leadership…
“President Joe Biden’s recent executive order authorizing the mobilization of up to 3,000 reserve soldiers to augment U.S. forces deployed to Europe highlighted the unending demands of maintaining an expansive U.S. global military presence… Without significant changes to its force structure or missions, the U.S. Army may be stretched to the breaking point, even though America is not at war.
“The active-duty force will soon be at its smallest duty size since the attack on Pearl Harbor. But unlike the pre-World War II force, today’s Army carries out a host of concurrent missions in Europe, the Middle East and East Asia…
“Shrinkage in the force without commensurate cuts in overseas deployments have led to an exceedingly high peacetime operational tempo, with negative effects on the Army’s readiness for war…
“When Hurricane Katrina ravaged Louisiana in 2006, thousands of the state’s Guardsmen were deployed in Iraq — active-duty Marines had to be hastily dispatched to New Orleans to assist with relief efforts and maintain order. In 2020, Oregon could not use six of its Guard helicopters to fight raging wildfires because they were in Afghanistan…
“America’s Army needs either more soldiers or fewer missions. Given the demographic and societal headwinds hitting military recruiting, a larger force is going to be difficult to recruit for the foreseeable future. The alternative is making difficult, overdue decisions about which deployments are truly necessary for American national security. The Pentagon and its political overseers are resistant to such retrenchment… But perpetuating the status quo threatens a descent into a hollow force…”
The Bible shows that America’s Army will not help the country when it is going to be attacked in the near future.
Germany’s Approach Towards Ukraine
Express wrote on August 14:
“Kyiv’s relentless push to secure the Taurus cruise missile, a high-stakes weapon boasting an impressive range of over 500 kilometres (300 miles), has triggered alarm bells in Berlin. These missiles, packed with firepower and launched from formidable fighter jets like the Tornado, F-15, and F-18, have ignited geopolitical tensions that can no longer be ignored.
“In a rare twist, Germany’s reluctance to heed Kyiv’s call stands in stark contrast to the UK and France, who’ve already dispatched Storm Shadow and Scalp cruise missiles… Across the Atlantic, even the United States has chosen to sit this one out, withholding its own Army Tactical Missile System (ATACMS) from Ukraine’s eager grasp…
“According to Der Spiegel, the German Defence Ministry is asking Taurus’ manufacturer to integrate programming safeguards to dictate potential targets for these long-range cruise missiles.
“Scholz, the mastermind behind the manoeuvre, said he envisions a future where Ukrainian offensives on Russian soil are nothing more than a fleeting mirage, as the publication revealed.”
Die Welt Online wondered on August 14 what Germany’s strategy and goal towards Ukraine are; and if there is even a strategy.
Ukraine’s Counteroffensive Unsuccessful
Business Insider wrote on August 11:
“The Ukrainian summer counteroffensive began in June and, despite Western allies supplying advanced tanks and weaponry, the country’s recent moves against Russian combatants have resulted in only modest gains — and heavy casualties.
“The New York Times reported morgues in the country are seeing vastly increased fatalities due to the heightened fighting… The total dead in the local morgues is ‘more or less double since the counteroffensive’ started, added. Though Ukraine doesn’t publicly share the total number of casualties it has sustained, Insider reported General Mark A. Milley, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, estimated in February that Ukraine had lost more than 100,000 soldiers since the war began last year… Ukrainian troops are taking heavy damage from old-fashioned wartime tactics, including mines and booby traps, high-tech drone attacks, and advanced weapons systems.
“While the US and other allies have provided formidable battle tanks, armored fighting vehicles, and massive amounts of ammunition… the modest gains won so far in the summer counteroffensive have prompted Ukrainian troops to abandon Western tactics and strategies in favor of wearing the enemy down with barrages of missiles…”
Ukraine in Trouble
ZeroHedge wrote on August 11:
“It’s long been clear that Ukraine’s armed forces have undergone some significant recruitment problems amid generally low morale as throughout the summer the counteroffensive has stalled and appears failing. There’s also a grim emerging consensus that Ukraine is suffering staggering losses… This week, even one of Kiev’s most ardent supporters and NATO backers – Poland, has said the counteroffensive is likely to fail. Polish President Andrzej Duda said in a fresh Washington Post interview, ‘Does Ukraine have enough weapons to change the balance of the war and get the upper hand?’ And he answered his rhetorical with – ‘Probably, no’…
“A new announcement by President Volodymyr Zelensky on Friday has further confirmed this pessimistic view of Kiev’s prospects, as the government has fired all heads of military recruitment on concerns of rampant corruption… Recruiters have apparently been paid handsomely by those of means to look the other way as they avoid conscription…
“Aside from desperately needing more manpower, also at a time the phenomenon of Western mercenaries flocking to Ukraine is a thing of the past, Kiev is also likely concerned with the prior optics of the brutal mobilization by Ukrainian military recruitment officers. As the Hungarian newspaper Magyar Nemzet recently reported, ‘Many conscripted men are taken straight off the street by uniformed men.’ The paper gave the following example of such: ‘Most recently in Subcarpathia, a surveillance camera recorded the overreach of the authorities as a man trying to go to a store was kidnapped from his bicycle in broad daylight.’”
The victory of Ukraine over Russia, as had been so dogmatically proclaimed in much of the Western press, is more than doubtful.
“Overwhelming Consensus” on Climate Change “Manufactured”
The New York Post wrote on August 9:
“We are told climate change is a crisis, and that there is an ‘overwhelming scientific consensus.’ ‘It’s a manufactured consensus,’ climate scientist Judith Curry tells me. She says scientists have an incentive to exaggerate risk to pursue ‘fame and fortune.’
“She knows about that because she once spread alarm about climate change. The media loved her when she published a study that seemed to show a dramatic increase in hurricane intensity. ‘We found that the percent of Category 4 and 5 hurricanes had doubled,’ says Curry. ‘This was picked up by the media’… ‘I was adopted by the environmental advocacy groups and the alarmists and I was treated like a rock star,’ Curry recounts. ‘Flown all over the place to meet with politicians.’
“But then some researchers pointed out gaps in her research — years with low levels of hurricanes. ‘Like a good scientist, I investigated,’ says Curry. She realized that the critics were right. ‘Part of it was bad data. Part of it is natural climate variability.’
“Curry was the unusual researcher who looked at criticism of her work and actually concluded: ‘They had a point.’ Then the Climategate scandal taught her that other climate researchers weren’t so open-minded. Alarmist scientists’ aggressive attempts to hide data suggesting climate change is not a crisis were revealed in leaked emails… It made Curry realize that there is a ‘climate-change industry’ set up to reward alarmism. ‘The origins go back to the . . . UN environmental program,’ says Curry.
“Some United Nations officials were motivated by ‘anti-capitalism. They hated the oil companies and seized on the climate change issue to move their policies along.’… The researchers quickly figured out that the way to get funded was to make alarmist claims about ‘man-made climate change.’ This is how ‘manufactured consensus’ happens.”
It has been observed for a long time that scientists manufacture and manipulate statistics to prove their case for man-made global warming.
US Money Down the Drain?
Ron Paul wrote in his weekly column in the Ron Paul Institute on August 14:
“I am not a big fan of Federal Government disaster relief. Too much of the time the money never gets to those who need it most, and too often Washington’s armies of disaster ‘experts’ are more interested in pushing people around than helping them.
“Nevertheless, it’s hard to look at recent footage of the devastation in Maui and then hear President Biden tell Congress that he needs another $24 billion for Ukraine. How can this Administration continue to justify tens of billions of dollars for this losing war that is not in our interest while the rest of the United States disintegrates?
“Biden’s new $24 billion request comes on top of well over $120 billion already spent to fight the US proxy war on Russia in Ukraine. Heritage Foundation budget expert Richard Stern has done the math and determined that Biden’s spending on the Ukraine war thus far will cost each and every American household $900. How many Americans would rather have those $900 dollars back in their pocket rather than in the pockets of Lockheed-Martin, Raytheon, and Ukraine’s oligarchs?
“Recent surveys have shown that a majority of Americans could not afford to cover a sudden $1,000 emergency. Will Americans connect the dots and realize that the reason they can’t find that $1,000 for an emergency is because the neocons have already sent it to Ukraine?
“Ukraine has long been known as among the most corrupt countries on earth and not long ago investigative journalist Seymore Hersh wrote that Ukrainian president Vladimir Zelensky has embezzled at least $400 million in aid from the American people. Corruption scandals continue to break in Ukraine. Just last week Zelensky fired the heads of all local draft boards for corruption. Some press reports suggest that sales of luxury cars in Ukraine have broken all previous records. I wonder why.
“No wonder the tide of US public opinion is turning against further involvement in the war. Recently CNN found that among all Americans, more than 55 percent are opposed to continued aid to Ukraine. Among Republicans the number opposing more aid to Ukraine rises to three-out-of-four…
“Yet the Biden Administration persists in backing Ukraine even as the US mainstream media is increasingly pointing out the obvious: Ukraine is not winning and cannot win, and continuing to pour money into a losing cause will just result in bankruptcy at home and more dead Ukrainians overseas.
“Last week Newsweek published an article asking, ‘Does Ukraine Have Kompromat on Joe Biden?’ In the article, Northeastern University Professor Max Abrahms wonders out loud whether Biden’s continued support for Ukraine might be related to compromising information held in Kiev about the many Biden family shady business ventures in Ukraine and the region. It is certainly worth considering.
“Meanwhile, the residents of Maui that survived the recent horrific fire will take little comfort knowing that the Biden Administration is more interested in sending their money to Ukraine than in helping them recover.”
Donald Trump stated in a recent interview that Biden is a compromised President.
Maui Wildfires Deadliest in More Than 100 Years
Deutsche Welle wrote on August 13:
“The newly released [death] figure has exceeded that of the 2018 Camp Fire in northern California… The new death toll Saturday came as search teams with cadaver dogs sifted through the ruins of Lahaina, four days after a fast-moving blaze leveled the historic resort town.
“It is projected to be the second-costliest disaster in Hawaii history, behind only Hurricane Iniki in 1992…
“The cause of the fire is still unknown, but residents are puzzled and angered over the lack of warnings. Sirens stationed around the island — intended to warn of impending natural disasters — never sounded. Alerts were sent via cell phones, TV and radio stations, but the reach was limited due to power and cellular outages…
“Experts say many factors must have contributed to the rapid spread of the inferno, such as a dry summer, unchecked growth of flammable non-native plants, the volcanic topography that creates drying down-slope winds, an unusually parched winter, and a hurricane to the southwest.”
There have been numerous incidents in the past where Hawaii’s warning system had failed miserably. President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris will not visit Maui because they “don’t want to distract” from the relief efforts, Harris said. Finally, Biden spoke out on the disaster in Maui, but apparently forgot the name of the island.
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.
How to Survive in This Day and Age!
Surviving in the present age involves many challenges on several levels and God does not want us to get a hunting rifle or a fishing rod and go live in the wilderness, or to live in a monastery, waiting for the return of Christ. Notice the admonition of Christ in John 17:15: “I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.”
We have to live in this world and since one of our responsibilities is to support the Work of preaching the Gospel of the Kingdom of God to the world, which includes warning the world of impending doom because of sin, we need to do our best to survive ourselves under these conditions now and in the near future.
We all face different challenges, based on age, marital status, raising a family or being retired or widowed. The physical challenges come with aging and we have to learn to do our best in whatever circumstance we find ourselves.
In this Q&A, we will look at our relationship with God, our family, our employers and our neighbors, always with the view to our survival.
1. Our relationship with God
We need to have and maintain a close relationship with God by using the tools He has provided for us, including prayer, bible study, meditation, and occasional fasting.
In regard to prayer, we read that Christ often got up early, went to a remote area where there would be no distractions, and prayed there. During the day, He was surrounded by crowds seeking healing and wanting to hear what He was saying, even to the point that at one time it was challenging to eat, as we read in Mark 3:20: “Then the multitude came together again, so that they could not so much as eat bread.” Mark 6:31 records another episode: “And He said to them, ‘Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.’ For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat.’”
There were other times when Christ prayed all night, alone, or when He prayed not too far away from His disciples. So following His example, we need to find a private place to pray without distractions, and depending on our situation, we may have to adjust our schedule to accomplish this. The same is true for your Bible study, and there may be several times during a day when one is able to meditate. David said in Psalm 119:15: “I will meditate on Your precepts, And contemplate Your ways.”
Fasting should be planned in such a manner that it gives us a chance to combine it with prayer, Bible study and meditation.
With this introduction, we want to concentrate on building our relationship with God by keeping God’s commandments which we must do if we want to survive the evil time to come.
We prove our love for God by keeping His commandments. In John 14:15, Christ tells us: “If you love Me, keep My commandments.” To some in the world, obeying God is foreign to them and not on their agenda.
The commandments are not complicated rules to follow, and the first four of the Ten Commandments tell us how to love God.
(a) Exodus 20:1-3 states:
“And God spoke all these words, saying: ‘I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me.’”
This is not complicated. We are not to place anything between us and God; be it another person, job, position, or even our intellectual capacity (which comes from God)—in other words, anything that could become a stumbling block before us. We are to put God first in our lives and utilize the fact that He and His Son dwell in us (when we are converted baptized members of the Church of God) and look to Christ’s perfect example of always giving glory to God the Father. We must give God the credit for what He is able to do through us. We are to put the spotlight on God, not on ourselves.
(b) Exodus 20: 4-6 continues:
“You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.”
Several religions blatantly break this commandment by praying to statues or human figures, and they number in the billions. Such worship is all in vain, as described by these words:
“But they are altogether dull-hearted and foolish; A wooden idol is a worthless doctrine” (Jeremiah 10:8).
“You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led” (1 Corinthians 12:2) .
Today people idolize movie stars and rock stars. One popular competition show is called “American Idol.” But idol worship became a stumbling block for Israel and was one of the reasons why they had to go into captivity.
Idolizing anyone–any man or woman—and any object breaks the second commandment.
(c) Exodus 20:7 continues:
“You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain.”
On any job site in the Western world, God’s name is continuously used in vain. This is also the case in many songs and in movies. It’s hard to find a song or a movie where God’s name is not used in vain.
The third commandment prohibits using God’s name in vain, such as “My God,” but it also includes vain repetitions, as is the custom in some churches and in prayers, or cursing (“God da…”), or using euphemisms which appear harmless like “my goodness”, “gee,” “gosh” or “geez.”
All these are an affront to God and should be avoided by true Christians.
(d) Exodus 20:8-11 reads:
“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the LORD your God. In it you shall do no work: you, nor your son, nor your daughter, nor your male servant, nor your female servant, nor your cattle, nor your stranger who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and hallowed it.”
God says, remember the Sabbath, and man quickly forgets or substitutes other days like Wednesday, Friday or Sunday, and some say, the Sabbath could be every day of the week. But God makes clear that the weekly Sabbath is from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset. We are to refrain from working and doing business, and we are instead to spend time at services or listening in to services if one lives too remote to be able to attend in person. We do not do our own things like attending sports events or watching them on TV. The Sabbath should be dedicated to God. It was a day of rest for God after six days of recreating the surface of the earth, and it should be a day of rest for us. God was of course not tired after His creation, but He kept the Sabbath for us, showing us that we must follow His example. It sets us apart as God’s people, and it is a sign for us that we worship the true God.
Exodus 31:13 tells us: “Speak also to the children of Israel, saying: ‘Surely My Sabbaths you shall keep, for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the LORD who sanctifies you.’”
It points to the God of creation. It sets us apart as His children who worship the God of creation. No other day does that, be it Sunday, Friday or any other day. This also includes the annual Sabbaths and Festival seasons which outline God’s plan for mankind from repentance and baptism to becoming full members of the God Family as God beings which is our ultimate potential.
The tools of prayer, bible study, fasting and meditation are useful for having and maintaining a good relationship with God, and keeping the first four commandments demonstrates our love for God.
2. Our relationship with our family
Husband and wife ought to be on the same page when it comes to following the dictates of the Bible in the relationship between them. Our booklet “The Keys To Happy Marriages and Families” goes into detail about how to achieve this.
One key issue in the raising of children is not to allow a child to create a division between the parents. They must agree on how to deal with requests from their children. Children have to see parents as united for the purpose of keeping harmony in the family.
Parents must be aware of what their children are exposed to at school or by their peers. Schools may propagate the critical race theory which teaches children to hate their country, or promote sex-changing drugs and abortions without the parents’ knowledge and consent. Parents need to stay informed as to what their children learn and must counteract at home any evil teachings their children may be exposed to.
Children need to be taught about God and His ways and to get used to the habit of praying and studying the Bible.
Proverbs 22:6 tells us: “Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.” Proper teachings will carry them a long way, so when they become teens and adults, it will help them to stay on the narrow path of righteousness. However, such an outcome is not automatic, as we explain in our Q&A, “How do you understand Paul’s statement that our children are holy? And what are the practical consequences? (Part 2)” https://www.eternalgod.org/update-1078/#qa , where we said:
“Rightly understood, Proverbs 22:6 does not teach that a child who has been trained by a righteous parent will continue automatically in God’s Way of Life… In light of the fact that the Bible emphasizes individual responsibility, it must be concluded that Proverbs 22:6 does not intend to impress the idea that the righteous teaching of parents will automatically lead to the conversion of a child. It is true, of course, that parents are to teach their children about God and His Way of Life (Deuteronomy 11:18-19). But this does not mean that converted parents can bring about the conversion of their children. They have their own responsibility in the matter. Ultimately, a child who is ‘brought up’ in God’s Church CAN make it into God’s Kingdom. Those who are called today for salvation have been foreknown and predestined by God to be called before they were born.”
3. Our relationship with our employers
If someone is self-employed, he or she can determine when to take time off to attend the Feast of Tabernacles and keep the other Holy Days. As an employee, it is sometimes more challenging. A good relationship with our employer is crucial in getting time off for God’s Holy Days. If we are diligent and conscientious workers, employers may not want to fire us for keeping God’s Holy Days at an “inopportune” time, even though they do not like to grant us time off. In any event, it is critical that we pray to God first, before making our request, that God will give us favor in the eyes of our employer.
4. Our relationship with our neighbors
Being friendly to our neighbors without getting involved in their lives is good advice. They will soon find out that we are different in that we don’t swear or use bad language, we are polite and we go out every Saturday dressed up with the family. We don’t have Christmas lights on our property or no pumpkins on Halloween. They will see we don’t do work projects on Saturday, we don’t cut the lawn on Saturday, but they may hear our lawnmower on Sunday (unless it is against the law to mow our lawn on Sunday). We go “on vacation” in the fall for over a week with your children. Our children are polite, non-destructive and help around the yard, and even though we have different practices, we are good neighbors who can be trusted.
At least, that is how it should be, even though we all lack in this to an extent. Still, even though our neighbors see and scoff at our strange behavior, they may respect us for our friendliness and willingness to help when there is a need.
For further study, please read our free booklet, “The Ten Commandments.”
We live in a perverse, corrupt and evil society that is under the influence of Satan the devil—an evil being beyond redemption for his evil deeds. Satan hated God in that he tried in the past to overthrow Him and take possession of ruling over God’s creation, but he was cast down to this earth in failure. He will try again to fight against God in another rebellion, proving he is unwilling and unable to change because attempting the same effort twice, expecting a different result, defines insanity.
He hates God’s Church and people and would like to see us fail in our calling and lose out on our salvation, and he will try to get us to compromise or fall short so that we fail.
If this is unsuccessful, he will try to destroy us physically. That is why we need to seek God’s protection and pray we may be counted worthy to escape the trials and destruction coming on this world in a few years.
Being faithful to death does not take away our salvation. Unfortunately, some having fallen a little short in what is required to maintain a proper relationship with God, may have to go through the tribulation.
Troublesome times are ahead and this Q&A is written to help us to survive what’s coming and to stand before our beloved Saviour at His return. Then, we can truly help change this world to become a better place in the Millennium and beyond, ruling under Christ when Satan’s influence is removed.
We want to ensure we fulfill our destiny to become God beings in the glorious Kingdom of God, which is not too far away.
Lead Writer: Rene Messier (Canada)
Preaching the Gospel and Feeding the Flock
compiled by Dave Harris
“WHY God Condemns Trump’s Indictments and Biden’s Protection!” is the title of a new StandingWatch program, presented by Evangelist Norbert Link. Here is a summary:
Georgia’s District Attorney Fani Willis filed preposterous criminal charges against Trump and 18 codefendants for an alleged conspiracy pertaining to the 2020 election, which, according to legal experts, Democrats have engaged in since at least 1977. It was also pointed out that especially alarming is Willis’ “excessive” and “dangerous” conduct while showing not even a “resemblance of restraint.” Just prior to the indictments in Georgia, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre was ridiculed for incorrectly stating that there was “zero evidence” that Joe Biden had “discussed” or was “involved with” his son’s business dealings, while ignoring a “mounting collection of evidence” proving the opposite. Attorney General Merrick Garland’s appointment of David Weiss as special counsel in the Hunter Biden case, after Weiss’s sweetheart plea deal with Hunter fell apart, may be his “last trick card to save Joe Biden,” according to an opinion piece in the New York Post. Even CNN questioned this “odd” appointment. God has some strong and frightening words to say about the current state of affairs in the USA. Will His warning be heard?
“Unsere Versprechen— sind sie etwas wert?”, last Sabbath’s German sermon presented by Thilo Hanstein, is now posted. Title in English: “Our Promises—Are They Worth Anything?”
“Alarming Developments in the USA, Germany and the Ukraine—Comments on News and Prophecy, August 12, 2023,” last Sabbath’s first message presented by Norbert Link, is now posted. Here is a summary:
Will an allegedly biased judge in the 2020 Election case against Trump recuse herself? Was the “odd” appointment of David Weiss as special counsel in the Hunter Biden case just a trick of Merrick Garland? Why do most Republican voters in Iowa think that the conduct of the Justice Department and the FBI “is reminiscent of Nazi Germany in the 1930s”? Are we facing coming climate and pandemics lockdowns? Is the US Army descending into a “hollow force”? Why do we need to wake up when Germans are extremely unhappy with their entire political system; when the country is in deep financial trouble; and when fear of war is widespread among German soldiers? And while Germany is hesitant to supply more arms to Ukraine, brutal mobilization by Ukraine military recruitment officers; the suffering of staggering losses; and the apparent failure of Ukraine’s counteroffensive give pause for alarm.
“Europe’s War with America, Britain, Israel and Russia,” last Sabbath’s sermon presented by Norbert Link, is now posted. Here is a summary:
The soon-coming Great Tribulation includes the destruction and occupation of America, Great Britain and the State of Israel in a nuclear World War III. What is meant with the “abomination of desolation” which will be placed in the Third Temple? When will the prophesied war between Europe and Russia occur? And what IS the sign of Christ’s coming and the end of the world?
We would like to announce the wedding of Church members Charpantidis Kiriakos and Manuela Young, which took place last Sunday in Germany. The marriage ceremony was performed by Christoph Sperzel.
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
Technical Team: Eric Rank, Shana Rank
Our activities and literature, including booklets, weekly updates, sermons on CD, and video and audio broadcasts, are provided free of charge. They are made possible by the tithes, offerings and contributions of Church members and others who have elected to support this Work.
While we do not solicit the general public for funds, contributions are gratefully welcomed and are tax-deductible in the U.S. and Canada.
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