Why ‘the Britain Issue’
Why would the Trumpet devote an issue to Britain?
Much of the world seems to have largely forgotten about this once great world power. But it shouldn’t. Even many British people have lost sight of their own inspiring past. It was only a few generations ago that Britain ruled the greatest empire in human history—far greater than most people realize!
That history has everything to do with Britain’s future, which is going to have a dramatic impact on many nations, especially America. The better you know that history, the better you can understand the position Britain is in today and what it means for the world.
The British people are at a crossroads. Relations with the European Union are terrible and getting worse. Anti-Europe political parties in Britain are enjoying their greatest-ever success—so much so that even mainstream politicians are having to shift in order to accommodate and appease the euroskeptical British public.
Some people believe that if Britain leaves the EU, its problems will be solved. But meanwhile, many people in Scotland believe that if they leave the United Kingdom, their problems will be solved! That alone proves the problems are bigger than most people will admit.
The reality is that Britain is very sick today. Believe it or not, Bible prophecy actually describes modern-day Britain as a sick people! It suffers from rampant immigration problems; an unsustainable welfare system that is destroying the character of its citizens; social problems that are swallowing the populace in drunkenness and immorality; and other ills.
The fact that it has largely forgotten its own history, and even despises what little it still remembers, is a big part of what is causing many of these disasters.
We have devoted a big part of this Trumpet issue to reminding all of our readers—especially our British readers—of the stirring, inspiring story of the British people—in hopes that it will awaken you! You need to know that past so you can understand what is about to happen and why it is of such consequence to the rest of the world.
Britain in the Bible
Did you know that Britain’s history traces right back to the biblical book of Genesis? It actually started with Abraham, the patriarch of Israel.
God gave marvelous promises to Abraham and his descendants. He made these promises unconditional when Abraham proved his obedience in the most difficult test of his life (Genesis 22:15-18). Those promises were passed down through his son Isaac, then Isaac’s son Jacob, and then Jacob’s sons. Tremendous national, physical promises were aimed particularly at the birthright nations, which descended from Jacob’s son Joseph, Abraham’s great-grandson (1 Chronicles 5:2). These Josephite nations would receive great material wealth and would rule over other nations (Genesis 27:28-29).
This prophecy was fulfilled in modern-day America and Britain. The modern people descended from biblical Ephraim are the British. Herbert W. Armstrong gave detailed proof of this important point in his book The United States and Britain in Prophecy. We will be glad to send you a free copy of this book so you can prove this to yourself.
It is astounding to recognize the detail with which Britain’s history fulfills the Bible’s prophecies—especially its rise to become the greatest empire in human history in the 19th century! You can read more about this history in our article on page 4 of this issue.
The better you understand this, the more your Bible will come alive! It is a living book that is extremely relevant to our day!
The British people need to recognize that their great national blessings were not a result of chance or luck. They weren’t a product of British ingenuity. They were gifts from God because of the spectacular obedience of Abraham! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Britons understood this and gave God credit?
And just as astounding as Britain’s rise to power was its loss of that power during the 20th century! This too was prophesied!
This fact has tremendous significance for the British people today. Why? Because the Bible contains many more prophecies of what is going to befall Britain in the time just ahead. God foretold exactly what would happen to this nation, and we are seeing those things begin to unfold before our eyes!
Knowing the identity of modern-day Britain in biblical prophecy is the key to understanding those prophecies. Notice what Mr. Armstrong said about this in The United States and Britain in Prophecy: “This very eye-opening, astounding identity is the strongest proof of the inspiration and authority of the Holy Bible! It is, at the same time, the strongest proof of the very active existence of the living God!”
What a powerful statement! Do you believe God inspired the prophecies of the Bible? If so, how well do you understand those prophecies? Can you see them being fulfilled, and recognize them as proof of the authority and divine inspiration of the Bible and of God’s active existence? You should!
God put those prophecies in the Bible intending that they be understood. He wants them to serve as a warning to the British people in this end time! Think about that! God’s Word contains many details of what is going to happen to Britain—and He wants you to know that!
Yes, God has a strong message for you! In the short term, it is actually a powerful warning of terrible suffering that is about to befall the British. You cannot afford to ignore these warnings. Your life literally depends on paying attention and heeding!
‘I Have Made Known’
Prophecies for Britain are contained throughout the Bible. Perhaps the greatest concentration of them is in the biblical book of Hosea. This short prophetic book specifically mentions Ephraim 37 times! The name Hosea means salvation, so even though it contains a lot of bad news for Britain, ultimately it is very positive. It shows how God wants to save the British people.
You can clearly see God’s determination to publicize this message in Hosea 5:8-9. There He commands: “Blow ye the cornet in Gibeah, and the trumpet in Ramah: cry aloud at Bethaven …. Ephraim shall be desolate in the day of rebuke: among the tribes of Israel have I made known that which shall surely be.” Blow the cornet and the trumpet—cry aloud this warning, God says.
And what is the warning? That the time is coming when Britain will be desolate! That is a strong message! But it is backed up and amplified by many other biblical passages.
Notice, God says, I have made known what will happen. In this end time, God is going to make sure people know this message! The expression made known is very strong in the original Hebrew. People will know these prophecies—as if by personal experience! The Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament says it refers to “the prophetic concept of ‘knowledge of God.’” Yes, people will come to know the knowledge of God!
That has yet to happen within the confines of Ephraim—certainly to the degree this passage describes. In other words, God has a much more significant work yet to do in Britain. He is going to ensure that His prophetic warning is made known! He commands that it be publicized powerfully, like a mighty trumpet blast!
One wonderful sign of God’s intent is that He has just given the Philadelphia Church of God, which publishes this newsmagazine, a beautiful estate in England from which to do His work. You can read about this in our article “Introducing Edstone,” on page 14 of this issue. We believe this strongly indicates God’s desire to amplify His message in the British Isles.
A Kingly Line
Not very long ago, many people in Britain were aware of their biblical roots. For example, a great many English, Scottish and Irish monarchs—including the present queen—have been crowned over a stone, called the stone of destiny. Why this unusual practice? A generation ago, that stone was labeled “Jacob’s pillar-stone.” The British knew that stone was actually the very same stone that their forefather Jacob set up as a memorial after God appeared to him in Genesis 28:10-22! (You can read about this in Chapter 6 of my booklet The Key of David by ordering a free copy, or by reading that chapter, called “A Stone of Destiny.”)
For years, that stone sat under the coronation chair in Westminster Abbey. But in 1996, English officials removed it and sent it to Scotland. They no longer believe in the stone’s origins—and have lost the knowledge of their identity as Ephraim!
The English monarchy remains the world’s oldest, most prestigious throne—a throne that has been the envy of every other nation. That throne reminds the world that England was once a far more powerful country. Its roots also trace back to the Bible.
God promised Abraham in Genesis 22:18, “And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed ….” That is a specific reference to Jesus Christ—who descended from Abraham—and how God will offer salvation to all nations through Him! That is a beautiful message!
The Bible calls this the “scepter” promise, referring to a kingly office or line. Genesis 49:10 prophesies, “The sceptre shall not depart from Judah”—another of Abraham’s descendants, who fathered the Jewish people. That kingly line was realized in King David and the kings of Judah. It later included Jesus Christ, who was born of the house of David and the tribe of Judah.
God promised that this kingly line would remain in existence until Jesus Christ’s Second Coming (“until Shiloh come” in verse 10). If this promise is broken, you can’t believe in any promise in the Bible!
But God has kept that promise—and you can prove it! Do you know where that royal family is, and who is sitting on that throne today? Until fairly recent times, the British people did know.
God later confirmed and strengthened that promise by making this covenant with King David: “And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever” (2 Samuel 7:12-13). God told David that his throne would be established forever! You see this promise powerfully reinforced in Jeremiah 33:17-22.
Those sitting on the British throne are descendants of that promised kingly line! This astounding fact is proven in The United States and Britain in Prophecy. Many British monarchs believed it. Queen Victoria, who ruled during some of the British Empire’s greatest years and sat on that throne until 1901, was convinced that the royal family descended from King David. To this day, many of Britain’s coronation traditions stem from this truth—including the use of Jacob’s pillar stone. Choirs perform Handel’s coronation anthem “Zadok the Priest,” which invokes Solomon’s coronation using text from 1 Kings 1. (I describe more parallels with ancient Israel’s coronations in Chapter 5 of The Key of David, called “Zadok and the British Throne.”)
The illustrious lineage of Britain’s royal family is something to be excited about and moved by! This isn’t just an interesting historical fact. One of the Bible’s most inspiring prophecies is that very soon, at the Second Coming, Jesus Christ Himself is going to sit on that throne as King of kings! (Luke 1:31-33).
Jesus Christ is not going to return and sit on a nonexistent throne! He is going to rule from David’s throne—the same throne Queen Elizabeth sits on today. 1 Chronicles 29:23 actually calls it “the throne of the Lord”!
The fact that this throne resides in England today should be a source of tremendous inspiration and hope to the British people. The British throne is actuallyGod’s throne! God originated it—and He will occupy it!
A Message to a King
Considering how important that throne is to God, it makes sense that God is deeply concerned about what happens with the royal family.
It is amazing how much global attention the British royal family still attracts. The royal wedding in 2011 was watched by about 2 billion people—almost one third of humanity! It is difficult to explain that—except for the fact that this is actually David’s throne. God has preserved it and continues to give it a certain amount of prominence and honor.
The Bible has a lot to say about the royal family. God even addresses specific end-time prophecies to that family!
For example, look at Hosea 5:1: “Hear ye this, O priests; and hearken, ye house of Israel; and give ye ear, O house of the king; for judgment is toward you, because ye have been a snare on Mizpah, and a net spread upon Tabor.”
God says, “Hearken, ye house of Israel”! He wants them to know that the throne of God exists in Israel today—in Ephraim, specifically!
Notice: God has a specific warning for the “house of the king.” This is not a message to a queen, but to a king. I believe this means we are about to have a new coronation. This prophecy is for the time just ahead of us, and I believe it specifically dates what God’s work is doing today.
Here God pronounces a stern “judgment”—meaning the sentence of the judge—against this king. Other prophecies make similar warnings. Look, for example, at the message in Jeremiah 22 to the “king of Judah, that sittest upon the throne of David.” Jeremiah is very descriptive of the royal family’s sins and their punishment. When the person on that throne fails to execute judgment as he should, God takes that very seriously!
When you look at these prophecies that were recorded more than 2,500 years ago, you have to acknowledge that God is alive. He is reaching out to this world. God loves every single person on this Earth, and He’s going to do everything He can to bring them to Him. Not many are interested in what He is saying now, but they will be!
The prophecies for Britain’s immediate future are not easy to take. God is going to correct Ephraim severely. However, that is far from being the end of the story. The British have lost a great deal of the blessings He gave them, and they will yet suffer still greater curses. But all that correction represents God trying to turn them back to Himself so He can bless them once again!
“Come, and let us return unto the Lord: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up” (Hosea 6:1). This is just one of many prophecies of how, once the British people have been humbled, God will restore them to greatness. In fact, the Bible prophesies that Britain will be even greater in the future than it ever was in the past!
In Hosea 13:1-3, He describes Ephraim’s sins and warns that as a result, its glory is going to fade just as surely as the morning dew evaporates. But then He promises, “Yet I am the Lord thy God … and thou shalt know no god but me: for there is no savior beside me. … O Israel, thou hast destroyed thyself; but in me is thine help. I will be thy king …” (verses 4, 9-10). Yes, God will be their king. He will rule them and bring peace and prosperity beyond what they have ever had!
Read the inspiring conclusion of Hosea’s prophecy in verses 4-9 of chapter 14. Ultimately, Ephraim will come to its senses, forsake its false gods and turn to the one true God! Then it will truly become Great Britain—a Britain far greater than it has ever been.
This is a picture of the Great Britain of the near future! What a wonderful hope!