HERBERT W. ARMSTRONG
PASADENA, CALIFORNIA, 91123
July 24, 1983
Dear Brethren and Co-Workers with Christ:
A staggering turn in world events may occur suddenly at any day from now on. God has been holding back these world- shaking events. But now they may strike suddenly while the world least expects it.
The very first issue of The PLAIN TRUTH magazine appeared February 1934 -- just 50 years ago lacking about 6 months. The article starting on the cover page warned of a coming sudden appearance of a resurrected "Holy Roman Empire" in Europe -- a union of 10 nations in Europe under one government, with one united military force. For 50 years I have been crying out to the world the Bible prophecies of this coming "United States of Europe" -- a NEW UNITED SUPERPOWER PERHAPS MORE POWERFUL THAN EITHER THE SOVIET UNION OR THE UNITED STATES!
No one believed me then. But since then the European Common Market has appeared, with 10 nations cooperating commercially in a tariff-free common market.
Also there have arisen in Europe two outstanding political leaders, both writing and speaking out and writing books, saying "EUROPE MUST UNITE POLITICALLY." One of those was called the "Strong Man of Europe," Dr. Franz Josef Strauss. Some 12 years ago I entertained him at dinner in my home in Pasadena, and he spoke to the faculty and students of Ambassador College. I have maintained contact with him. He wrote the book The Grand Design.
The other arrived two weeks ago from Munich, West Germany, to have a meeting with me. He is Dr. Otto von Habsburg, head of the 700-year-old House of Habsburg, which ruled the Holy Roman Empire in the dynasty prior to Napoleon, and one of the most prestigious royal families in Europe. Dr. Habsburg was born the Archduke of Austria. His family was exiled during World War II, and he rejected Nazism and sided with the Allies during the war. He has since renounced his title. He very probably has a more clear grasp of international affairs than any man today. He is author of the famous book The Social Order of Tomorrow, giving a design for reunification of Europe startlingly close to the biblical description of this prophesied resurrected Europe to occur just prior to the Second Coming of Christ.
I had long wanted to meet Otto von Habsburg personally. I missed meeting him in Athens, Greece, last November, returning from my visit to our churches in South Africa and in Nairobi. However, Ellis La Ravia, vice president of the Ambassador Foundation, had arrived in Athens a couple days ahead of me from Pasadena. He attended a meeting there of the European Parliament, of which a leading member is Dr. Habsburg, who expressed regret at missing a meeting with me. He said then he would be so occupied with the then coming West German elections and sessions of the European Parliament, the very first date he could be free would be July 10 of this year. He said that on that day he would fly to Pasadena for a meeting with me. He kept his word and arrived on schedule in Pasadena two weeks ago this afternoon.
Dr. Habsburg addressed students and campus employees on Monday at 11 a.m. Mr. La Ravia and I took him on a brief visit through the Auditorium and then to luncheon in the faculty dining room. That evening he was guest at a formal dinner in my home with other Church officials and their wives. I also had a private meeting with him, as did Mr. Gene H. Hogberg, chief of our world news staff. While here he stayed in a guest apartment on campus. Tuesday night he addressed the Los Angeles World Affairs Council in Beverly Hills.
Wednesday morning he flew with me and some of our staff in our G-II jet to Washington, D.C. There he addressed the John Davis Lodge Center for International Studies at the University club.
In my private meeting with him, Dr. Habsburg expressed disappointment that progress on the European reunification had moved so slowly. I expressed the conviction that some totally unexpected world-shocking event could occur suddenly at any time that would high pressure European nations to go together overnight, adopting the constitution already prepared by the European Parliament. This Parliament, although without substantial power, is composed of leaders who are framing the constitution in advance. He mentioned that there are madmen such as Kadafi and Khomeini who could pull off some startlingly unexpected international act that would press the panic button in Europe.
Incidentally, Drs. Habsburg and Strauss are close friends, and for some reason I do not understand -- but may be of God's designing -- both are very friendly to me and to Ambassador College.
Now let me tell you WHY I know God has HELD BACK end-time world events -- and WHY he will cause things to snap together suddenly when least expected and bring this world suddenly to its END, and the coming of Christ in supreme power and glory to rule ALL NATIONS, ushering in the KINGDOM OF GOD and the WORLD TOMORROW!
In Revelation 7, God suddenly holds up the plagues of the Day of the Lord, UNTIL certain events happen -- the sealing of the 144,000 and the emergence of the Laodicean Church. He has held events back before. Yet he says that, when HIS time comes, he will make a speedy work in the end time and cut his work short.
In Matthew 24:32-35 Jesus said that when we see world events now occurring, we are to KNOW that this END is very near - - within this generation. Yet of the day and hour (verse 36) we cannot know. Yet when it strikes it will strike suddenly, unexpectedly, like a trap that springs shut on a hapless rat without warning. If one knew at what hour a thief would come in the night to burglarize his house, he would have watched and been ready to resist him.
We have been seeing these end-time world events coming for several years now. God has delayed -- held up world events. Yet he will SUDDENLY cut his work short, and END things, as unexpectedly and suddenly as when the trap springs on a rat before he can move.
When Europe suddenly unites, our work, which Christ is doing with and through us, will quickly be over, and Christ's coming very soon thereafter.
Brethren, THANK YOU for the generous response to my last month's request for special funds for needed construction at the Orr, Minn., camp for the Summer Educational Program (SEP), for youths between ages 12 and 18. These camps are SO VERY important. These youths will be LEADERS in the World Tomorrow! We must all PRAY all the more as we see end events coming to pass. Pray for one another. And, please, also for me. I do need your prayers. The WORK needs our support.
With deep love, in Jesus' name,
Herbert W. Armstrong