The World Tomorrow

Jacob's Trouble and Jeremiah 31

by Herbert W Armstrong


Again now, continuing what's going to happen to the United States. Well, let's continue right on now where we were in the preceding program in that amazing, that vital prophecy, about the United States, about our future, and what's going to happen to us. The thirty-first chapter of Jeremiah. Now, we've been going through the thirtieth chapter of Jeremiah, and there you remember how we saw that it is speaking of the time of our national trouble. Jacob's national trouble and that is the United States and the British people. It was a time of war and not of peace. It was a time that was so great, a time of trouble so great that none was like it, the same time that Jesus Christ spoke of in His prophecy on the Mount of Olives, recorded in Matthew twenty four. That a tribulation greater than anything that has ever come upon the earth or ever should be;

"And except those days should be flesh [should] be saved [alive]" (Matthew 24:22)

In other words, it is a time of when human life would be annihilated from off the face of this earth if God Almighty doesn't intervene to stop it and to save humanity from itself. It is also the time that we read of in the twelfth chapter of Daniel's prophecy. At the time when Michael is going to stand up, and at that very time, the time of trouble, greater than anything that had ever happened since there was a nation - same time of trouble exactly - and then at that time it said [many of] "thy people shall be delivered [we're going to be in slavery and captivity] ...And many of them that sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life..." (Daniel 12:1-2)

It is the time of the resurrection and it also is the time when David is to be resurrected. And of course Daniel too because all of the holy prophets who are to be in the Kingdom of God at that time. It is the time then just before the resurrection, just before the second coming of Christ and Christ at His coming is to rescue us. Now it's the time of our national trouble. It's a time of war and not of peace. But we're going to be saved out of that time of trouble because, as we read in the eighth verse of this thirtieth chapter;

" shall come to pass [on] that day, says the [Eternal], that I will break the yoke from off their neck [that's off our nation's neck], and will burst their bonds, and strangers shall no more make servants of them [I'm reading this in the Revised Standard Translation just now]. But they shall serve the [Eternal] their God and David their king, whom I will raise up for them." (Jeremiah 30:8-9 RSV)

David will even come forward in the resurrection. Now furthermore, at the second coming of Christ, He says;

"...Fear not, O Jacob, my servant [saith] the [Eternal], nor be dismayed, O Israel [that is America today]; for lo, I will save you from afar, and your offspring from the land of their captivity [when Christ comes and saves our people, when He breaks that yoke off of our neck, when He delivers us out of this time of trouble which is our national trouble, we shall be saved from the land of our national captivity]. Jacob shall return and have quiet and ease and none shall make him afraid." (Jeremiah 30:10 RSV)

Because Abraham Obeyed God (Play from 3:55)

Now my friends, I've been telling you, that we are destined, not only to be in the position in which we find ourselves now, the top of all the nations. We are not the tail, we are the head. We are the top, not the bottom of the nations of the world. We have prosperity, we have riches, and we have luxuries, and we have national power and resources such as no other nation, no other people or nationality has ever had in all the history of this world. And I've been showing you, my friends, that we have these things as the Bible explains because our forefather Abraham obeyed God. Once again let me read this as I've read it so many times - it's in the twenty-sixth chapter of Genesis, and in verse five, and it was re-promised to Isaac and later to Jacob. Why?

"Because that Abraham obeyed my voice [says God], and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my laws." (Genesis 26:5)

That was 430 years before the Law of Moses, 430 years before the Levitical Priesthood or the Old Covenant, and Abraham obeyed God's voice, kept His charge, His commandments, His statutes - God's laws. So they existed 430 years before Moses. This isn't speaking of the rituals, of the sacrifices for sin, the meat and drink offerings, the carnal ordinances, the burning of candles, the church rituals, the ordeals and the ordinances of the Levitical Priesthood. This is speaking of those things that were way back under the Priesthood of Melchisedec. The Priesthood that now is restored - the same Priesthood that we are under today. It's the Priesthood today of Jesus Christ, who is the High Priest of the same rank, after the same order as Melchisedec. Restored now, once again.

And Abraham obeyed God, and my friends, God made him the unconditional promise that his descendants should have the very wealth that we have. The children of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the children of Israel were promised these national blessings in the time of Moses, but conditionally - IF they would obey Him and keep His commandments - but they didn't. And if not, God said He would take these things away from them and they would be taken into captivity and slavery, and these promises withheld for 2520 years. They were withheld 2520 years. And the House of Israel was taken into it's national captivity in 721 BC. That period ended in 1800 AD - 2520 years that those promises were withheld, and my friends, today if we are not modern Israel, we have all the promises that God made to modern Israel. How did we get them? We have everything, all of the national wealth, all of the national power that God promised to Israel.

But how are we doing? We are going the way of ancient Israel. We are living in paganized religion calling it Christianity, my friends, in more ways than one. In so many ways that you don't realize. Many things that we have today, we don't know where we got them. Do you know where we got Christmas, my friends? Do where we got Easter? Do you know where we got many of the things that we call Christian today? You can go to your public library and find out - it's there in your public library, the history of where they came from. Go get the article on Christmas, just look it up in any encyclopedia, a Protestant encyclopedia, a Catholic encyclopedia, in any kind of encyclopedia, the Encyclopedia Britannica. Look up the word Easter and see what it is and where it came from. Go look it up for yourself! Of course if you would like to get the truth a little easier and save yourself the trouble, we've looked it up, it's in our booklets - the one on 'Christmas', the one on 'Easter'. If you want the plain truth write in for those booklets there is no charge. And you'd better write in for the booklet about 'The United States' and where we are mentioned in prophecy once again so that you'll know who were are, our identity in prophecy, that we are modern Israel so when you see this you know that it's speaking of us and not the Jewish people - they are descended from Judah.

The twelve tribes of Israel were divided into two nations - and the one was called Judah with it's capital at Jerusalem, but the big nation was called Israel. The ten tribes and their capital was not Jerusalem at all. Their capital was Samaria, way north of Jerusalem, up in the land of Palestine in the northern kingdom. We are their descendents, the Jewish people are the descendents of Judah. If you want that made clear get our booklet on 'The United States in Prophecy', there's no charge at all, and you will have the key that will open up prophecy and make it the most astounding, the most fascinating, the most thrilling thing that you have ever read in all your life. Do you know that one third of your Bible is prophecy and you can't understand it until you have that key?

We Have Lost the Way of Happiness (Play from 9:02)

Well now I said, my friends, that we are destined to become, not only what we are now - we are great now physically and materially - my friends, but we don't know the way of life. We have lost our way. And we're going the way of ancient Rome, and we are going the way that is dissipating our bodies, that is ruining our minds, and we are even getting a new kind of insanity and mental diseases today. And our hospital are crowded to overflowing. We're full of sickness, we're full of disease, our jails and prisons are full of criminals. And we're not happy, our lives are empty. You know, most of us are like sheep, we have to go along the way we were brought up in whatever's been taught us and we don't know where our fathers got it. And you can, well, you can go to an encyclopedia, as I say, and find out where they got a lot of these things, if you aren't afraid of the truth. It's rather shocking, you're going to be disillusioned, but it's in your public library if you don't have these books in your own personal library at home. You can find it or write for our booklets; 'Christmas', and 'Easter'. and 'The United States in Prophecy'.

Now, listen my friends. We have lost the way of happiness, the way of peace, the way of prosperity, the way of every good thing. God has given it to us because our forefather Abraham kept His commandments. But we're not doing the things to preserve those very values. We are not getting the real satisfying spiritual happiness, and peace and joy and the full abundant lives that we ought to out of the material prosperity and the national greatness that has come to be ours, that God has blessed us with. Listen, God has given us every great national blessing that could possibly come to a people so far as material national things are concerned. But what have we done with it? What are we doing with it? When will we wake up and face the fact, my friends?

Look at the way we are living - we don't know the way of peace! We don't know how to have world peace. We're defying the things that God says of our people because we don't to whom He is talking. He tells us to rely on Him and not foreign allies, as an example. He says that all our allies will forsake us, well let's go on and read it. Now listen, God is going to have to punish. God sent to ancient Israel His prophets and what did Israel do? They stoned the prophets. God sent His own Son with a message to straighten the people out and get them on the right track that would make them happy, right here and now, as well as through all eternity. God not only gives you eternal life, He wants to give you happiness now. Jesus Christ not only came to give you life eternal, but He said;

"I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." (John 10:10)

God wants you to live abundantly, way above anything that you can anticipate. Of course you want to be happy, of course you want to enjoy every passing moment. Of course you want just pleasing sensations and listen, my friends, actually God wants you to have it. Every pleasing sensation isn't lust of the flesh. There is a right and a wrong way. You know, actually in the Bible, God tells us to cultivate even our senses, that we call sensual appetites. They are only sensual, or lustful if they are turned in the wrong direction.

But Jesus said we should live by every word of God (Luke 4:4). It is written in your Bible and we don't do that. We read something in the Bible that says we should do this, well, we don't quite agree with that. The Bible doesn't seem to be authority in our lives anymore. And we say, 'Here's the way I look at it.' And so we reason our own way, and we go on and do our own way, contrary to the way of God. God tells us not to do anything, but we we go ahead and do it. We don't see any harm in it 'I think that's a good way, beside, all the people are doing it.' We all do it. Yes, that's the way we're living.

Now listen, the people have not heeded the true ministers of God. God's word, the Bible, is available - it's in nearly every home in the United States. What are we doing? Well, I tell you, most of us are too busy being entertained in the news, passing away the fleeting moments. Whatever way it is, whether it going to a movie, or going to some athletic contest, looking at TV, listening to the radio, whatever it is, we want to be amused and entertained. We don't want to think. We don't want to realize where we're wrong, we don't want to straighten out and get right so that we can be really happy, and live abundantly and fully like we should. And so, God is going to punish and this is coming on us and it's about time to wake up. And we're not taking seriously the times that we live in, the world that we live in and what's going to happen. And these things are absolutely sure, as certain as the rising and the setting of tomorrow's sun.

Now, here it is, here is what is going to come immediately, now I want to show you what's going to come afterwards. After we learn our lesson, and we're going to learn our lesson! You see, God has preached, God has sent ministers. But people are, like a man said to me night before last, he said, 'People don't want to be preached at'. All right my friends, take your choice, be preached at, learn the truth, get right with God. Not only in a sort of a superstitious sense, it isn't anything like that at all, it's just common sense. It's getting right with the laws that exist, the laws that are in motion, the inexorable laws that God created, that He set in motion by which He controls and rules the universe. Get right or be punished and suffer. As you sow, so shall you reap!

Now, we are going to have do a little reaping till we learn our lessons. So, He is going to remove that yoke from our neck and; "...they shall serve the [Eternal] their God, and David their king whom I'll raise up unto them. Therefore fear not, O my servant Jacob, says the [Eternal]; neither be dismayed, O Israel...I will save your seed from afar, from the land of their captivity [there it is, and in verse fourteen]; All your [allies] have forsaken you [and again, in verse 11, let me repeat it again. In the thirtieth chapter of Jeremiah], ...but I [God says] will correct thee in measure [or the marginal reference, the better translation 'correct thee with judgment'], and will not leave thee altogether unpunished." (Jeremiah 30:9-10,14,11)

Lessons to Learn (Play from 15:19)

We've got to be punished first to learn a lesson so we can be happy. And, my friends, we're going to have greater material prosperity than we have now. And we're going to know how to enjoy it. And we're going to have health, and we're going to feel good all the time. We're going to do those things that keep our minds clear, and our bodies healthy, and oh, how good it's going to be, to be alive. Well now, I've been showing you that in the beginning of the last verse of this thirtieth chapter, shows that it is a prophecy for our time now. It's the remnant, the last generation of our people today in this twentieth century, that this is speaking of.

And in the thirty-first chapter, as it begins, when our people are in a captivity, that I've been reading to you about, that I've been telling you about - which I know that most of you don't believe, you think it can't happen here, but my friends, I just want you to store it up in your memory, that God's minister has spoken to you and that you have heard it. And when it happens, and when you are in this thing then you are going to repent! Then you are going to turn to God. And He says He will hear, if you will. Maybe you won't listen now. I don't expect you too. But it's going to happen as certainly as the rising and the setting of tomorrow's sun. I'm speaking, my friends, by the authority of Jesus Christ. This is certain, you are going to live into it and you are going to see it. Whether you believe it or not, makes no difference. I don't expect you to believe it.

You haven't heard your preacher tell you this perhaps. You haven't heard anyone else telling you this. This isn't the popular teaching. This is the Word of God. This is the very message of God. This is last message of God through human lips, that is coming at this time and to this world. So, if you have an ear to hear, you'd better open them and hear. If you have a mind to think with, you'd better tear your mind away, from the happy dreamland of being entertained and amused all the time. Perhaps just looking at one thing after another on TV whether it is anything you want or not, you just keep looking, don't you? Why don't you use it intelligently? Why don't you map out in advance what is worthwhile, what is going to really benefit you, mark those and listen to those programs. And then put your time, the rest of the time, don't let it take you away from your study. From the reading and studying of books and the study of your Bible. And to listening to God's Word. And from thinking, but use your head, use your mind. God gave it to you to use, and He is going to hold you accountable for what you are doing with it. How are you using it? How are you using your time? You have got twenty-four hours a day, are you using it?

Listen now then, "those that were left of the sword - that weren't killed by the troubles that are coming, He says here, are going to find grace in this time of captivity" (Jeremiah 31:2 paraphrased)

In some translations it's wilderness, and others it's in the dungeon but it's in the stage of captivity. And our people are going to repent, and you people, even those of you who don't believe what I am telling you now, you'll believe it then because you will see it happen. And you'll know that God did send a true minister that spoke His word and spoke it faithfully, and spoke on His authority. You're going to know it, my friends. Whether you know it now or not. If you don't know it now, it will be a witness against you, God helping you, it will.

A Warning to our People (Play from 18:44)

Listen and; "... I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin Israel [that's really America today, and the British people and the Jewish people too, it includes them, but it doesn't just mean them alone]: ...Thou shalt...plant vine[yards] upon the mountains of Samaria..." (Jeremiah 31:4-5)

That was the capital of Israel, not of the Jewish people. The Jewish people had their capital in Jerusalem, this is speaking of Samaria, the capital of Israel. Now then, in verse seven, remember it said here;

"...Sing with gladness for Jacob...shout among the chief of the nations [or, at the head of the nations, as the margin says, shout at the head of the nations]: publish ye, praise ye, and say, O [Eternal], save thy people, the remnant of Israel." (Jeremiah 31:7)

The last generation. That's speaking of our people now. Our generation, the last generation in this age. Before the resurrection, before the second coming of Christ.

"Behold, I will bring them from the north country... gather them from the coasts of the earth, with them the blind and the lame and the woman with child, her that travaileth with child together [and]: a great company shall return thither. They shall come with weeping, and with supplications ...." (Jeremiah 31:8,9)

My friends, if you survive the terrible times of famine, a national dust bowl that's going to fill the whole nation. And listen, you've heard it's coming, now when it comes, you'll know, that a messenger of God was speaking into your ears, by radio. And you will know that it was the message of God. And maybe then, you'll come with weeping and with supplications if you have survived. And God says, and it is really Christ speaking] "they shall come with weeping and with supplications will I lead them [Christ will be here in person at His second coming, and]: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn." (Jeremiah 31:8-9)

That distinctly is not talking of the Jewish people there. The Jewish people are not Ephraim, and Ephraim was not Jewish and never was. The people of Ephraim, of Israel, were at war with and against the Jews. In the very first place, in your Bible, where the word Jews occurs II Kings 16:6, jot it down, read it after the program, II Kings 16:6, the first place the word Jews occurs. The Jews and Israel are at war against each other. Two separate peoples and nations altogether, because they divided into two nations. Most people don't seem to know that today, because most people today don't understand the Bible.

Now, you read of that also over here in the fiftieth chapter of Jeremiah where it says; "In those days, and in that time..." (Jeremiah 50:4) When a terrible thing is going to happen to this Babylon that is now rising up over in Europe and around the Mediterranean region. It's rising up, you don't see it, it's still underground. It has not emerged above ground yet. But we're going to stand aghast! The people of the world are going to be dumbfounded when this thing comes. All who don't know the Bible and the prophecies and know that it's coming and you're going to see that come. Ten nations will form a United States of Europe. A resurrected Roman Empire, it's coming and this is talking of the doom of that.

And then in verse four; "In those days and at that time [it's coming soon, at that time], says the [Eternal], the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together [that's the Jewish people along with us, and our people and the Jewish people], going and weeping: they shall go, and seek the [Eternal] their God." (Jeremiah 50:4)

My friends, if you will heed the warning now, if you can know this is the Word of God, and you'll turn to God with your whole heart, and give yourself over to Him, to let Him rule your life as well as your having faith in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, you'll be protected through all of this. Now, if you won't, the chances are two to one against you that you won't live. The chances are two to one against you that you are going to die of starvation or disease, or you going to be killed in the invasion of World War III that your Bible says is coming. Now if you survive, then God help you to be one of these that will come with weeping and with supplications at that time, the same thing I was reading you about back in the thirty first chapter. The children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together going and weeping shall they go and seek the Eternal their God.

The Way of Salvation (Play from 23:09)

"[And] they shall ask the way to Zion..." (Jeremiah 50:5)

Zion is the church, that is the way to salvation, the way of God. Of the repentance, and the forgiveness, and the remission of your sins, through Jesus Christ and His shed blood. And the way of being reconciled to God and justified of your guilt, your past guilt. Because justification only has to do with the past. And the way of receiving God's Holy Spirit, that you can be led by the Spirit of God, and the Spirit of God is the love of God shed abroad in your hearts. The love that fulfills God's law. So that you can obey Him and know the way of life, that leads to happiness that will make you life full and abundant and joyful.

Now they'll "...ask the way to Zion and with their faces thitherward, saying, Come, and let us join ourselves to the [Eternal] in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten [yes, He's going to make The New Covenant, a perpetual covenant - think of that]. My people [says God] hath been lost sheep: their shepherds have caused them to go astray..." (Jeremiah 50:5-6)

The shepherds are the preachers. I am reading the Word of God, my friends, that's of our time now. God says our people have been lost sheep, that they are now. Their shepherds have caused them to go astray.

"All that found them [verse seven] have devoured them: and their adversaries [have] said, We offend not, because they have sinned against the [Eternal], the habitation of justice, even the [Eternal], the hope of their fathers." (Jeremiah 50:7)

Now then, verse seventeen; "Israel is a scattered sheep; the lions have driven him away: first the king of Assyria hath devoured him; and last this Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon..." (Jeremiah 50:17). That's going back to the ancient captivities but this is also speaking - there's a duality principle of prophecy - of a captivity yet to come.

Listen, verse eighteen; "Therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, I will punish the king of Babylon and his land, as I have punished the king of Assyria. And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon mount Ephraim and Gilead." (Jeremiah 50:18-19)

Your soul will be satisfied. Your life won't be empty any longer. You won't find that your religion doesn't satisfy you, that it's a lot of chaff, you will find that it is something real, and that it goes down deep. My friends, it is for you if you want it, do you want it? Are you satisfied with everything you have now? With a stiff form and the ceremony, and everything, of going to church just once a week on Sunday. Does it really satisfy? Look into that spiritual mirror and answer that question honestly.

And God says here; "In those days, and at that time..." Listen carefully, in those days and at that time, I want to show you that this is not speaking of six hundred years before Christ, but a time yet future, the time now of the second coming of Christ;

In those days and [at] that time, says the Eternal, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none [no iniquity in Israel]; and the sins of Judah [the Jewish people] and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve [or whom I leave as a remnant is the marginal rendering of that]." (Jeremiah 50:20)

Oh, my friends, that's speaking of the future, when Israel and Judah, Jewish people along with our people. We aren't going to hate the Jewish people any longer, there isn't going to be any anti-Semitism or any such thing as that at all. We are not the Jewish people, I don't mean to say that at all. But I do say we should certainly love the Jewish people.

All right, listen; I read to you that they're going to come with weeping. Back in Jeremiah 31 again;

"Hear the word of the [Eternal], O ye nations...declare it in the isles afar off [the Isles and coastlands; all the way along where our people are in northwest Europe and over here in America] and say, he that scattered Israel [we are going to be scattered] will gather him [that's at the second coming of Christ], and keep him as a shepherd doth his flock. For the [Eternal] hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he." (Jeremiah 31:10-11)

We're going to be ransomed at the second coming of Christ from a power that is stronger than we. Let me read that to you in the Moffatt translation, that verse eleven, here it is;

"For the Eternal has set Jacob free, and rescued him from a stronger power." (Jeremiah 31:11 Moffatt)

A power stronger than we is yet rising up. Right now, it is rising up! We're helping to do it. Oh, if we humans only had more wisdom - if we could only know what God has said and what is sure to happen in the future, and could be guided by God Almighty.