Two Opposing World Views
Herbert Armstrong commented on Otto von Habsburg and Franz Josef Strauss in a letter on July 24, 1983: “[T]here 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 ‘strongman 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.”
Mr. Strauss was stirred as never before when he visited Mr. Armstrong at the beautiful Ambassador College campus. He said it was the “greatest spiritual uplift” he had ever had—the happiest day of his life.
What caused him to have his greatest spiritual uplift ever? Why was he happier that day than any other? Mr. Armstrong proclaimed a message of how the whole world was going to experience that happiness. Not just for a day, but for all eternity. He had answers to all of life’s biggest questions. He explained why men could not find peace and happiness.
Winston Churchill said, “Men occasionally stumble over the truth, but most of them pick themselves up and hurry off as if nothing had happened.” And so it has been, throughout man’s history.
Mr. Strauss also related, “When you see Ambassador College, you see what you can do for the world.” What could cause him to make such riveting statements? What caused these profound insights? There was a powerful spirit behind Ambassador College under Mr. Armstrong. The students were unlike any others in the world! They had a vision that colleges like Ambassador would soon to fill the Earth. Mr. Strauss felt the impact of this vision in the leaders and students he met.
The people who produce this magazine have that same spirit and vision. Mr. Armstrong was a spiritual father to me and most of the supporters of this work, either directly or indirectly (as Paul was to the Corinthians; i Cor. 4:15). He was used by God to deliver this message for the whole world. We just follow in his footsteps.
Franz Josef Strauss was a political father to Edmund Stoiber and his followers. He proclaimed a message that is being taught today by Stoiber and his supporters.
So, was there a meeting that day between two fathers? Those two men represented two world views that will soon clash. But only one can succeed in the long run. Our message is destined to prevail. But the other message will prevail in this world until Christ Himself destroys it!
Strauss said “you see what you can do for the world.” He had a world view, and so does Edmund Stoiber. However, it is a dangerous global vision.
Mr. Armstrong also had a global vision. He was used by God to deliver His message to the world (Mal. 3:1; Matt. 24:14; 17:10-11). He had the responsibility of preaching the gospel to America, Britain, the little nation called Israel, and the world. This was prophecy about one specific man.
Would God also use that man to give us insights about the man who would punish America, Britain and the Middle East Jews for their sins? (see Dan. 8; Rev. 13 and 17).
Mr. Strauss was invited into Mr. Armstrong’s home for dinner. At the end of the evening, Mr. Armstrong grabbed Strauss by both shoulders and said, “Hitler was a great man, but he misused and abused his power. You may also receive great power—be very careful you don’t abuse it.”
At the time, he believed Strauss could be the last prophesied political leader of the Holy Roman Empire.
Strauss was not that man. But he was the political father of a man who could be!
God uses His messenger to prepare the way for Christ’s Second Coming (Mal. 3:1). The Strauss experience could be a small part of that preparation, if Stoiber becomes chancellor.
God prophesied that He would raise up a nation and a man (Isa. 10:5-7; Dan. 8:23-25). This takes time. Did God begin preparing with “father” Strauss? God always plans far ahead and in intricate detail.
This history could help us put more emphasis on the most dominant ruler in the end time. This understanding could deepen our grasp of the Holy Roman Empire’s philosophy.
God’s view of living is much different than man’s. When the Strauss entourage returned from Ambassador College to Germany, they said, “We have just returned from paradise.” They were given a tiny taste of what the world is soon going to be like.
Mr. Strauss’s philosophy will lead the world into its worst disaster ever. Regardless, much or most of his political philosophy will prevail. But that also means Christ’s return is imminent. This world is about to be full of good news.
This reasoning may seem bizarre to some people. But consider this. The Prophet Habakkuk prophesied that there would be a deadly Church crisis just before the Holy Roman Empire rose to power in this end time (Hab. 1:1-11). The crisis in spiritual Israel (God’s Church) paves the way for the worst crisis ever in the nations of Israel.
So there is a significant tie between God’s true Church and the Holy Roman Empire. But the association soon will become violent (Rev. 12:14-17).