April 28th, 2022
Greetings from Charlotte,
A week ago Tuesday, we posted a new French-language YouTube whiteboard titled “The Three Heavens Explained.” It has already generated over 19,000 views in nine days, and our Le Monde de Demain YouTube Page has gained more than 600 new subscribers from it! We have also seen an increase in requests for the French Armageddon and Beyond booklet after an ad on Facebook. While the numbers are small, the increase is most encouraging. January and February averaged only 15 requests for this booklet, but March saw an increase to 48 and April 108. The reason for the increase is that we released a 15-second promotional video on March 16, asking “Will War Erupt in Europe?” The in-person Council of Elders meetings scheduled for this coming week have been postponed due to several recent COVID cases among Council members. We will instead hold online meetings this coming week and plan to have in-person meetings June 20–22. Be sure to check out this week’s video update, as it gives a report on the worst flooding in Kwazulu-Natal’s recorded history. The South African government has moved up its provincial State of Emergency to a National State of Emergency. Mr. Rod McNair’s telecast this week is “Malachi’s Prophetic Message for Today.”—Gerald Weston
Upcoming Council of Elders Meetings
As Mr. Weston mentions in his opening comments, the in-person Council of Elders meetings next week will be held online. Meetings will be conducted on Monday and Tuesday, May 2 and 3. Mr. Weston plans to hear reports from the International Directors as well as guide discussions on needs in the Work, growth in the Church, and other matters. Plans are being made for the next in-person meetings. Your prayers for next week’s meetings would be much appreciated. For your information, here are the current Council members:
- Mr. Gerald Weston
- Mr. Richard Ames
- Dr. Douglas Winnail
- Dr. Jeffrey Fall
- Mr. Lambert Greer
- Mr. Daniel Hall
- Mr. Mario Hernandez
- Mr. Jonathan McNair
- Mr. Rod McNair
- Mr. Rand Millich
- Mr. Peter Nathan
- Mr. Wallace Smith
- Mr. Rick Stafford
- Mr. John Strain
- Mr. Rob Tyler
- Mr. Stuart Wachowicz
- Mr. Dexter Wakefield
- Mr. Adam West
L4T Begins Again
Registration for Living 4 Tomorrow–Blowing Rock is now open! If you are a young single adult, aged 18–30, who would like to spend a weekend learning more about living a Godly life with other like-minded people, then make your plans to come to the mountains! From Friday, May 27, to Sunday, May 29, the Blowing Rock Conference Center will host our program. Register right away to reserve your place at this event! Just log into your MyLCG account for more information, to register, and to pay.—Jonathan McNair
Second Passover—Repeat Announcement
The Second Passover this year is on Sunday, May 15, which means that it will be observed on Saturday evening, May 14, shortly after sunset. This Passover is for those baptized members who were unable to take the first Passover due to unavoidable circumstances, as instructed in Numbers 9:1–14. If you have any questions, please contact your pastor.
Feast of Tabernacles
Feast Websites Now Live
The 2022 Festival websites are now live! All LCG brethren and Feast guests can access the Feast write-ups at the following website: https://fot2022.lcg.org. If you do not have Internet access and need help getting Feast information, contact your local congregation’s Festival Advisor. If you don’t know who your Festival Advisor is, please contact your local Pastor. Feast registration begins Sunday, May 15, at 12:00 noon (Eastern Daylight Time, USA).
Festival Advisors: Over the next two Sabbaths, please print out and distribute to brethren who need them the site descriptions and registration forms, in preparation for Feast registration. You can find these Festival Advisor documents by going to https://cogl.org, signing in to your MyLCG account, and clicking on the “Advisor Access” button under the “Feast of Tabernacles 2022” banner.
Feast Transfers: If you are planning to transfer this year, please read important Travel/Transfer Information on the Festival webpage. Go to https://fot2022.lcg.org and click on “COVID-19 Health, Safety and Transfer/Travel Guidelines.”—Festival Office
Living Youth Program
Registration for Living Youth Adventure Program Opens Sunday!
Registration for our Living Youth Adventure Program will open Sunday, May 1, at https://camp.livingyouth.org!
This year there will be two Living Youth Adventure backpacking trips, one in the Ouachita National Forest in northern Arkansas and another in the Pisgah National Forest in the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Arrival day for both trips will be Sunday, June 26, and we will be on the trails from June 27 through June 29, with additional activities on June 30. Participants will travel home on July 1. The adventure trips are geared for teens and young adults who want to rise to the challenge of adventure in the great outdoors and make lifelong friends in the process. Just go to https://camp.livingyouth.org to learn more and to register beginning on Sunday. Hurry, as space is limited!
Be Prepared! We are living in an increasingly uncertain world today that is seeing serious disruptions in the daily activities of life: from travel to food shortages to soaring prices—and increasing violence in many places. All this points to the need to plan ahead for unexpected emergencies—advice that is also found in the Scriptures. Solomon advised, “Ponder the path of your feet” (Proverbs 4:26). He also observed, “A prudent man foresees evil [danger] and hides himself [he takes precautions], but the simple pass on and are punished [they face consequences]” (Proverbs 22:3). God’s Church has long encouraged members to prepare for unexpected emergencies—keep a supply of bottled water, non-perishable food items, batteries for flashlights and a radio, extra vitamins, prescribed medications, a camp cooking stove or heating device—things that may be needed if public services are disrupted. While we look to God for our ultimate protection, we must also do our part to be prepared.
Have a profitable Sabbath,
Douglas S. Winnail
News and Prophecy—April 28, 2022
Jerusalem Tensions Increase: Violent clashes have erupted in Jerusalem related to the Temple Mount. While religious tension in Jerusalem is not unusual during Jewish Holy Days, this year Passover, Easter, and Ramadan all coincided (AP, April 17, 2022). Although police accused Palestinians of stockpiling stones in anticipation of violence, and shooting fireworks from inside the Al-Aqsa Mosque, others accused police of using excessive force when arresting Palestinians and clearing people from the area. More than 150 Palestinians were injured by police in these clashes (BBC, April 15, 2022). Earlier in the month, a Palestinian gunman opened fire in a crowded Tel Aviv bar, killing two Israelis and wounding ten others (CBS News, April 8, 2022).
In recent days, Palestinians fired rockets into Israel, prompting Israeli retaliation with military strikes in the Gaza Strip, attacking an empty weapons facility. No injuries were reported at the facility (Deutsche Welle, April 20, 2022). In recent weeks, 14 Israelis and 26 Palestinians have died in violent clashes. In addition, Palestinians vandalized a historic tomb believed by some to be the tomb of Joseph, triggering more Israeli outrage (Times of Israel, April 13, 2022).
Some believe Palestinians and other Arabs are fearful that a greater Israeli presence on the Temple Mount could result in a take-over of the sacred Al-Aqsa Mosque, the start of a new temple, and the resumption of sacrifices by the Jews (Jerusalem Post, April 18, 2022). Bible prophecy indicates that Israel, and particularly Jerusalem, will become an increasingly difficult issue for many nations just before the return of Jesus Christ (Zechariah 12:3). The Bible foretells that eventually non-Israelite nations will surround Jerusalem with armies and control it. To learn more about how the growing unrest in Jerusalem will play into end-time prophecies, be sure to watch “Jerusalem: City of Peace?”
Global Nuclear Threats: In its latest assessment of China’s military capabilities, the U.S. Department of Defense estimated China’s nuclear weapons stockpile will triple by 2030 (The Atlantic, February 16, 2022). According to satellite image analysists, “work has accelerated this year on more than 100 suspected missile silos in China’s remote western region that could be used to house nuclear-tipped missiles capable of reaching the U.S.” (Wall Street Journal, April 9, 2022). “American military officials and security analysts are concerned China’s nuclear acceleration could mean it would be willing to make a surprise nuclear strike.”
Last week, Russia tested a new intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM). Speaking of the missile, President Putin noted, “The new complex [weapon] has the highest tactical and technical characteristics and is capable of overcoming all modern means of anti-missile defence. It has no analogues in the world and won’t have for a long time to come” (Reuters, April 21, 2022).
Since the start of 2022, North Korea has also tested short-range, intermediate-range, long-range (including a nuclear-capable ICBM capable of reaching New York), and hypersonic missiles (BBC, March 24, 2022). It also recently threatened to strike with nuclear weapons if South Korea attacks (Reuters, April 5, 2022). South Korea, with a new, conservative president, houses U.S. military bases and is again discussing nuclear armament (France24, April 14, 2022). And Germany recently decided to upgrade its air force with U.S. F-35 nuclear-capable fighters (Al Jazeera, March 15, 2022).
Jesus Christ warned that “rumors of wars” would precede His return (Matthew 24:6). Wars and threats between nations have always been present, but the scale and magnitude of the current military buildups is unprecedented. When nuclear-armed nations issue threats and other nations arm to counter those threats, students of Bible prophecy should take notice. To learn more end-time prophecies, read or listen to Fourteen Signs Announcing Christ’s Return.—Scott Winnail, Chris Sookdeo, and Francine Prater