Well, nice to be back again, but this is my second time this year with you already, and it still isn't Thanksgiving. I haven't appeared before the students in a forum or assembly that many times in a whole year for several years.
Now, over in post-World War II Britain, the United States, France and so on — the Allies — won the war. We lost the peace. We have not won the peace. We're still, to our sorrow, going to find that out, and I think it may be rather soon. Incidentally, things have been going on down at the Vatican in Rome, we really should keep our eyes on it, because it may be something that's going to affect every one of our lives rather drastically.
I have now been, for forty-four years, proclaiming that Europe will unite. Now forty-four years ago we weren't past World War II yet, but even during World War III thought they would unite very soon after the war was over. The nations in Europe all want to unite. They want a common currency.
You know, you go from one nation to another, it's like going from one state to another here in the United States. You're going from one nation to another, and they all speak different languages. You get in the next nation, the first thing you have to do is go to the bank, usually right at the airport, and transfer some of your money into their money, because you can't use your money there. You've got to get their money to spend. In France you have to get the French franc, in Germany, the German mark, and in Switzerland, the Swiss franc. And so it goes. They want a common currency. Now, I understand they 're working on it now to try to get it, but I don't know what kind of progress they 'remaking.
Also they would like to be politically united. Now, they did work out the Common Market as you know, a good many years ago, and while we were still operating the college in England. And, of course, for a while it was quite a big political question in England, as to whether England should go in on it or not. I said all the time that, whether they should or not is not for me to decide, but that they won't stay in it. When the United Europe comes up, or the United States of Europe, what it will really be is a resurrection of the Holy Roman Empire, the medieval Holy Roman Empire from 554 to 1814 A.D. And if and when they get it, there's only one way they can and that is the way it was all through those years, where the papacy sat on top and ruled over the kings. You'll find it described in the seventeenth chapter of Revelation.
Anyway, we know they've had this in mind. We know, also, that at the Vatican they've had it in mind. Every political move of that kind, of course, is an extremely complicated thing, and ąt takes an awful lot of planning and maneuvering and manipulating and everything else before they bring it about. I expected it back in the time of Pope Pius. When he died and Pope John XXIII was elected, I thought surely he would be the pope that would do this. But when I saw who they had selected and saw his picture, I thought, why he doesn't look like the man that I looked for to fill this role in the world's "progress" here, or lack of it. And he tried the ecumenical movement of getting the churches together, that is, the Eastern Orthodox Catholic Church and then the Protestants, or as many as possible. The Protestants organized in a world association of Protestants. They've been making overtures back and forth, but they never got together.
There's only one way the Roman Catholic Church will get together, and that is the pope must sit on top, but the Protestants don't want him to be on top. They would like him to just have his share of the leadership. And of course, the Catholics aren't going to do that.
Now, there's a cardinal, Benelli, who really had been running the Curia. And Benelli has been working on this very idea for a long time. Pope Paul died finally; that's when I thought that maybe Benelli would get in. Benelli maneuvered the voting in the Sistine Chapel. They elected this man who took the name of John Paul I, names of the two preceding popes put together. And then he died suddenly.
Now again, they elect a man who is not an Italian and who came from behind the Iron Curtain — Poland. A Polish Pope. As I understand it, from what information does leak out, Benelli was really trying to get it this time for himself. And he got within two votes. In the meantime, this man was elected the present pope and took the name of John Paul II. But there are things about him. He is capable of springing very sudden surprises, for one thing. He is a stickler for the old traditional Roman religion. There're several things that indicate he might be the man.
Now, apparently Benelli did not manipulate this election to put him in, but Benelli might have, when he saw he wasn't making it himself, tipped the scale over to and thrown his votes to the pope who did get it.
There are two plans that have been made in Europe outside of the Vatican. Dr. Otto von Habsburg of the Habsburg tradition in Austria also has one. Actually, Dr. Habsburg's plan, in my judgment, comes the nearest of being what they will adopt because we have biblical prophecy to go on it. And we understand a little bit of what's going to happen from what is revealed in the prophecies, especially in the seventeenth chapter of Revelation. I felt that probably the plan, as it will finally mature, would be that of Dr. Habsburg. The man put at the helm might be Franz Josef Strauss.
One of the strongest leaders in Europe — they call him the "Strong Man of Europe" — Franz Josef Strauss who has written his "grand design" of uniting Europe. Now Strauss is not too old for the job. And, of course, if we delay another ten years, he will be. If they should go ahead with it and complete the union, or the resurrection of the so-called Holy Roman Empire, he would probably be the — they might call him the emperor, or whatever they call him — he would be over all ten nations.
But, of course, they know those things are in the Bible, but they shove it to one side and it doesn't mean them, it means somebody else. That's just the way it is when I say anything that is corrective in a sermon, everybody sitting out there thinks, "Well, they didn't mean me. They meant the person next to me... And of course, I don't. I mean that person right there because I mean everybody. People don't like to take it to themselves.
Well, we are just waiting to see, but all these things... we know it's coming. Now, I find that God will, on occasion when it's necessary, just hold back the trend of world events until a certain thing that he wants done is taken care of. For example, we come up to the sixth seal in Revelation 6, and the signs in the sun and moon and stars have already happened (at the end of the sixth chapter of Revelation}. That is the sixth seal.
It's time now for the seventh seal. So you come to the seventh chapter, which should be the seventh seal, and instead, God sends an angel and says, just hold everything up. We've got something to do that hasn't been done yet. So we're just going to slow world conditions down until we seal the servants of our God in their foreheads. That's when the 144,000 are to be sealed. That hasn't happened yet. And another great innumerable multitude of people that have heard the Gospel over the air, or read it in the Plain Truth or otherwise emanating from this campus, and who have not come into the Church. They might have written in to get more literature or they may not have. We wouldn't know. But I think that many of those are then going to be sealed with the Spirit of God. Now this will be after the Great Tribulation, which is the fifth seal, and a terrible time of trouble. They will be people who have been through that and survived and lived, and they will then be sealed. After all of that, finally, then the seventh seal will be opened. The seventh seal is the seven last plagues. That will take place at the precise time of the second coming of Christ.
Now that's all just ahead of us in the future. It's something that you should all live to see. It's going to be a very important thing in your life. You have no idea what you may have to live through between now and then, and the things we're going to go through.
There are those who want to dispute the idea that the seven churches of Revelation 2 and 3 are successive eras of the church. I have said for fifty-one years that they are not only seven eras, but also seven characteristics that will be in the Church at all times, with the Laodicean condition dominating in the last church. We haven't gotten to the last era yet. But we're in the time when God has opened doors to get the Gospel to the world. We are in the time when, for the first time in 1900 years, the real Gospel that Christ brought is going to the world. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the message Christ brought and preached. That message has not been preached from — oh, we don't know the date, but I'd say the churches had turned to another gospel (many of them) by the late 50's A.D. — but we'll say from 70 A.D., after the invasion of Jerusalem by the Roman armies, that it has not been preached to the world.
I came on the scene myself in the Sardis era. Now we have a lot of people who want to take anything that Christ put into the Church through me, and they want to knock it in the head and say, "That is wrong; that is a false doctrine." We've had a lot of so-called intellects around here on this campus, trying to do that very thing. And very sorrowfully, I've had a son that has aided and abetted in that sort of thing. So we're starting to sort of clean house a little bit around here. It's a good deal like I've said, what had happened here to us is like a cancer. I got the core of the cancer out, but it has other parts. It will start reaching with its tentacles to the whole body if we don't get it out. Believe me, Jesus Christ through me is going to start getting all the other branches out until we get it out of the little twigs all over, all over in all parts of the world. That cancer has got to be removed. This has got to be, once again, the real Church of God, and not the church of Satan. So, as I say, we've been through the wars and have been through the storm.
Well now, we don't know what will happen. At any time something could be launched to unite Europe under the Vatican. It can only come through the Vatican. The nations have already proved they cannot get themselves together. They just can't do it. The Germans are not going to accept the Frenchmen, and De Gaulle would have liked to have done it, but the Germans wouldn't accept him. They were strong enough to keep him out. The French and some other nations in it are not going to accept a German, and there you go. They may have to accept a German when the Vatican enters into it. The Vatican will decide who's going to be there — the real "Beast," so to speak, in biblical language.
That brings us down to this time. This Church, this era, is the only era of the Church that Christ did not find something against. To all the rest He said, "I know your works." In other words, he complimented them, you've done this and that and that's fine. He said, "But I have something against you." He did not say to the philadelphia era "I have something against you." Instead of that, he did say that we will be protected from this great tribulation.
Now, the question is this, and I don't know myself. I would like to discuss this with Dr. Hoeh and one or two others — maybe three, four, or five others, whether this Church will just lapse into the Laodicean condition or will it be another entirely different church with an entirely different leadership, who are not members of this church at all. One thing I do know, it'll be the Church of God. Anyone who has done what my son has done could not start and lead the true Church of God. So what he's doing cannot be the Laodicean Church, but if it is, it's a lukewarm church, and Christ says he's going to spew it out of his mouth. Now, I think it's in the 25th chapter of Matthew that he spews half of it out of his mouth. Maybe the other half gets in, and there are indications, of course, in the 3rd chapter of Revelation that many in that church are going to go into the Kingdom of God. The Church as a whole is in a lukewarm condition, but economically and financially rich. Now, I don't think we could say we are rich after all the financial troubles we've been through all these years. I can't see how that can apply to us. The lukewarmness, yes. We have to fight against that all the time. But at least we're fighting against it. I'm doing everything I can do now to try to stir up the brethren. I've found it has gotten down to a case of lukewarmness in the last two Feasts of Tabernacles. So I began to work with the men that were working on the Feast of Tabernacles and with the ministers. I sent a lot of things out to the ministers who would do the speaking that most of you never heard of. The result is that we did have spiritual revival in this Festival of Tabernacles. It was a thing of joy, as they say, a beauty to behold, at least to experience. A thing of joy forever. And I hope it will be forever, too. So we're, I hope, coming out of that stage of lukewarmness because we are the one who is carrying that Gospel that Christ preached to the world for the first time in 1900 years. Everything fits, and you can't deny it.
Well, I won't take any more of your time now. So I'll hope to be back again after maybe a few weeks. I 'm going to plan to come in and speak to you a few times through the year, which I had not been doing in the past years.