Today, my friends, most of you realize that the majority of people have virtually no fear or profound respect for the God of the Bible! They seem not to care about what His inspired word says—about abortion, same-sex marriage, sex outside of marriage or practically anything else! Yet the God of the Bible tells us, “For I am the Lord, I do not change” (Malachi 3:6). As Almighty God severely punished ancient Israel, so He will punish us unless our peoples truly repent and turn to Him!
Yet, how shall they know to repent if they are not warned (Romans 10:14)? That is the very reason for this Work. God is using us to warn the world of God’s coming intervention in human affairs, and show them the way to escape God’s wrath in the years just ahead. God commands His true servants, “Cry aloud, spare not; lift up your voice like a trumpet; tell My people their transgression, and the house of Jacob their sins. Yet they seek Me daily, and delight to know My ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and did not forsake the ordinance of their God. They ask of Me the ordinances of justice; they take delight in approaching God” (Isaiah 58:1–2).
The Creator God commands His true ministers to “cry aloud!” How many actually have the courage and commitment to do this? Very few, indeed!
So it was in Jesus’ day. For the Apostle John tells us: “Nevertheless even among the rulers many believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue; for they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God” (John 12:42–43).
My friends, we at Tomorrow’s World are doing the Work of Almighty God at the end of an age. We really do “tell it like it is.” And we really do understand biblical prophecy and are constantly proclaiming the truth about what lies just ahead for your very life. The God who gives us life and breath proclaims in His inspired word: “If a trumpet is blown in a city, will not the people be afraid? If there is calamity in a city, will not the Lord have done it? Surely the Lord God does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets. A lion has roared! Who will not fear? The Lord God has spoken! Who can but prophesy?” (Amos 3:6–8).
To blow the trumpet and proclaim this message, for more than 75 years, the modern revival of the Work of God has been announced by this magazine and its predecessors. I, personally, have been active full-time in the Work for 61 years as of this summer.
When Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong, who ordained me as an evangelist in 1952, began his ministry more than 75 years ago, he typed his magazine articles with an old manual typewriter, and he drew charts by hand with a ruler and a pen or pencil. He “printed” his first magazines by hand using a mimeograph machine. But when radio and then television became available, Mr. Armstrong saw the potential of modern technology and used it as best he could to preach the message of the Gospel of the Kingdom of God.
Today, we have at our disposal a vast amount of computing power that goes into the design and printing of this magazine. Even right here in our offices, one of the “computer experts” on our staff tells me that the computers we use to publish this magazine are at least 30 times more powerful than when we published our first Tomorrow’s World magazine 14 years ago. As God makes possible, we want to use the best of technology, in a right way, to proclaim the Truth in a way that will reach increasing millions of people as the end of this age approaches.
I know that for most of you reading this, the “message” is what is important. One man on our accounting staff likes to say that he would read our magazines even if they were printed “on a brown paper bag.” In a way, he is absolutely correct. For if we do not have the right message, no amount of computer power can make up for what is missing. And you will see that the message in our pages has not changed, despite the new format and design. The writers are the same as before, and the columns are the same. However, we want this magazine to continue to “look and feel” like the best magazines of our day, keeping our design fresh and contemporary and attractive to as many readers as possible, so they will “take notice” of the warning message we proclaim. So, while we do not sell the Tomorrow’s World magazine, and we never will, we want it to look every bit as professional, in its own way, as other quality magazines you might read, such as The Economist or Newsweek.
Speaking of Newsweek, some of you may recall that, after nearly 80 years of publication, Newsweek last December went to an “all-digital” format and stopped publishing a print edition. As a paid subscription magazine, relying on paid advertising and subscriber fees, Newsweek’s publishers could not afford to continue printing their magazine. This is yet another way in which Tomorrow’s World is “different.” For we practice the “way of give” of which Jesus Christ spoke in Matthew 10:8. We are deeply grateful to those who choose to donate to support this Work, but we do not require donations from those who receive this magazine. Thankfully, we know that God inspires His people to give as they are able, and He shows by example that the way of give is truly a way of life that works!
That way of life is also exemplified by hard-working members of our staff who put this magazine together. Although I do not often mention in this column the names of the people who work so hard to make this magazine what it is, I was pleased in January to mention our writer Dexter Wakefield because of his excellent article in the previous issue (“Unnatural Disasters,” November-December 2012). This issue, I would like to take a moment to personally thank two members of our Editorial staff. First, I will mention the longest-serving member of our Editorial team, Donna Prejean. When we started Tomorrow’s World magazine 14 years ago, Mrs. Prejean had basically no other help in designing and laying out each issue. Over the years, she has worked tirelessly to improve the magazine in many ways, while at the same time preparing our booklets and several other ongoing publications. I deeply appreciate her loyal and faithful service to this Work, and look forward to God’s continuing blessings on all she does for this Work’s publications. Next, I will mention our newest Editorial employee, John Robinson. Mr. Robinson has spearheaded the redesign of this magazine, and I know he will work hard to ensure its continuing excellence, and to encourage and help our other Editorial staff members to do the same. Each of these two loyal and valued workers is a key part of our team “behind the scenes.”
As a side-note, I notice that, the last time we embarked on a redesign of this magazine (for our May-June 2005 issue), Pope Benedict XVI was elected just a few days after the redesigned issue went to press. This year, while we were preparing this redesigned May-June 2013 issue, Pope Francis I was elected. One of our editors has joked that, if we decide to redesign the magazine again in a few years, whoever is then the Pope ought to become very nervous! Seriously, though, we should all be watching world events, as Christ commands (Matthew 25:13). Will Francis I be the final Pope before Christ returns? We do not yet know, but—because we do know the history and the end-time prophetic sequence—there is much we can know about this man and his office (see Dr. Douglas S. Winnail’s article on page 10). My friends, I hope that you will follow Christ’s command to “watch”—so you will be ready when the time comes. The world around us is changing, but Christ’s command—and our mission—remains the same as ever!