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Who caused the World Trade Center disasters?

September 11, 2001

Dear Christian friend,
    I write this with a heavy heart.  Like you, I have been in shock over today's horrifying news of the senseless attacks against tens of thousands of civilians in New York City. 
    My day began somewhat normally, as I tried to catch up on some of the Internet duties I have been behind on.  An e-mail message from my mother alerted me to the attacks.  So I hurried to the TV (which Our 1999 visit with our Chinese friends at the World Trade Center.we rarely use; the signals are so poor up here in Tehachapi), and sat for hours in stunned disbelief, watching again and again the video of the airliner crashing into the World Trade Center tower, and the collapses of these huge buildings.
    At the time, my thoughts were centered on our dear friends in New York, former Chinese refugees who were imprisoned unjustly by our government for years in Kern County's Lerdo Detention Facility.  I thought of our wonderful visit to the World Trade Center with these friends, less than two years ago (it was around Halloween, in case you wonder about the bats, etc., in the picture).
    Several times I heard the TV reporter say "this may look like a movie, but it isn't."  It seems that our nation's senses have become so dulled that we need such reminders nowadays just to recognize what is reality and what isn't.  (This isn't entertainment... thousands of real people were dying at that very moment.)
    It was finally British Prime Minister Tony Blair who jolted me out of my state of shock.   "The people who perpetrated this act had no regard for the sanctity of human life," Blair proclaimed from his powerful pedestal.
    Maybe I should have applauded, but hearing Blair speak these words just made me want to cry.  Maybe it's natural to take refuge in the concept of the "sanctity of human life" on a day when so many were senselessly killed; maybe Blair said this to show that the "civilized" nations of the world have the moral high ground in this battle against these nameless, faceless, terrorists.
    Would that it were true.
    Sadly, we have lost the moral high ground.  Our society has lost our right to speak against the lack of regard for the sanctity of human life demonstrated by these criminals.  "Judge not, or you too will be judged," Jesus said in Matthew 7:1.  Yes, there is a time to proclaim God's judgment against evildoers (Matthew 7:5; Ezekiel 33:1-20; Romans 2:1-4; 1 Corinthians 5:13; 1 Corinthians 6:2; John 3:16-21; etc.) but we must first examine ourselves, to ask ourselves whether or not we are guilty of the same evil deeds.  If we will not recognize the disregard for the sanctity of human life which has been demonstrated by ourselves, our churches, and our nation, we have no business in pointing out the disregard for human life shown by these terrorists.
    As Tony Blair's words shocked me into reality, I sensed that this burning, imploding mass of people in one of our nation's greatest landmarks was a sign of God's judgment against our nation.  I began to search the scriptures, starting with Isaiah, asking the Lord to show me how he looks at today's acts of terrorism.  I saw several examples of God saying that He was using a particular evil nation (for example, Assyria; see Isaiah 10) to come against His people to punish them for their evil deeds.  (We can take a little comfort in the fact that God also said He would eventually punish the evil nation which attacked His people; see for example Isaiah 10:12.)
    But does that necessarily mean that God used these terrorists today to punish our nation?  Maybe not...  I kept searching the scriptures.  After several hours of searching and meditating, I came upon Amos 3:6-7:
    "When a trumpet sounds in a city, do not the people tremble?
    When disaster comes to a city has not the LORD caused it?
    Surely the Sovereign LORD does nothing
    without revealing his plan to his servants the prophets."
    Well, there it is, in plain black-and-white.  Either we recognize this disaster as coming from the Lord, or we deny His inspired Word. 
    But why?  If God caused these terrorist attacks today, why did He do it?  Amos 3:7 assures us that God would not do such a thing without revealing His plan to His servants.  Did God's servants know about today's attacks, and did they warn us about it?
    Yes, you may not have known about it, due to our media's usual efforts to censor anything which promotes the sanctity of human life, but just three days ago (Saturday, 9/8/01), a group of Christians gathered in Washington DC to proclaim God's truth to our nation, and to call our government to account for disregarding the sanctity of human life, using our tax dollars to "play god" with stem cells from murdered human embryos (while our pro-life leaders wash their hands like Pilate, claiming innocence by saying "we didn't kill them ourselves").
    Rev. Flip Benham of Operation Save America led a group of Christians who knelt in prayer in front of the White House, preaching on our nation's need for repentance for shedding innocent blood, and proclaiming that without repentance, God would certainly bring judgment on our nation"America, this is your third and final warning!"  Flip declared, as an officer from the National Park Service warned him for the third time to stop preaching.   Rev. Pat Mahoney preached on God's imminent judgment upon a nation which rebels against the God who created each of us in His image.  Michigan missionary Cal Zastrow prophesied publicly that God would send crushing judgment on this nation for the shedding of innocent blood.  Cal preached to hundreds of watching tourists that the judgment of God would soon smite this nation because we have sinned and violated His Law, and Cal cried out that the innocent blood which has been shed in our land will be avenged by Almighty God.  Cal prophesied that God would send down fire on our country like He did on Sodom, and that horror, terror, and death would come upon our nation because of our national sins including pride, greed, and abortion.

If you fully obey the LORD... the LORD your God will set you high above all the nations... If you do not obey the LORD your God... The LORD will send on you curses... until you are destroyed... because of the evil you have done in forsaking him... The LORD will bring a nation against you from far away, from the ends of the earth, like an eagle swooping down... They will lay siege to all the cities... until the high fortified walls in which you trust fall down...

Deuteronomy 28:1-68
King James Bible paraphrase
(With thanks to The Covenant News)

    Ultimately Flip, Pat, and 17 others were arrested for preaching and praying on the public sidewalk outside the White House.  Did our nation listen?  No, just as Israel rebelled against the message God sent through His prophet Ezekiel (Ezekiel 3:7), our nation ignored these modern-day prophets.  But the word God sent through them did not return void.  God will not be mocked.
    It can be a horrible, awful thing to be a part of a prophetic ministry, especially on a day like today.  I wish I could just bury my head in the sand and pretend today's atrocities never happened, or at least pretend I didn't know why they happened.
    I pictured myself as a gatekeeper at the Boston airport early this morning, suspecting that a certain individual was a terrorist, but allowing him to board the flight anyway.  Now I see the fiery holocaust which resulted from my neglect.  It is a horrible thing to be a part of a prophetic ministry.  The responsibility I feel from God to proclaim His truth is more than I can bear.  Quite frankly, I have sensed God calling me to proclaim His message to the pastors of Bakersfield in recent weeks (focusing on Isaiah 1), but somehow the mundane, everyday priorities of caring for a family and paying the bills have prevented me from doing so.  (Or is it just that I'm afraid?)  In either case, I can deeply sense today the bloody consequences of failing to follow through with what God has called me to do.  May God have mercy!
    Can I really believe that our loving God would bring such devastation upon our great nation?  Not unless I read His Word: "The sin of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great; the land is full of bloodshed and the city is full of injustice....   So I will not look on them with pity or spare them, but I will bring down on their own heads what they have done"  (Ezekiel 9:9-10).   Sometimes it's hard to hear God speaking over the "don't worry, be happy" message which prevails in Christendom today, but I believe if you join me in spending some serious time focusing on what His Word says about what happened today, you will come to the same conclusion.  God has allowed our nation's disregard for the sanctity of human life to lead to this act, in hope that we will see in today's carnage our need to come back to Him, and to restore our commitment to reestablishing a respect for the sanctity of human life in our nation.
    Do you grieve over the lives lost today?  I join you in that grief, and in praying to God to comfort those who are bereaved.
    But do you grieve over thousands of little lives, the innocent, helpless children (without any way to escape the hands of the bloody abortion-terrorist) who were sacrificed today in our nation's temples of sexual indulgence (including dozens here in Bakersfield, though Terri reports that at least three were saved)?  Do you grieve over this vast holocaust which, within the course of just a few days, eclipses the devastation of today's attacks?  Do you really?  If so, your grief is a mark from God, to guard you from the terror which is to come.  (Ezekiel 9:4-6)  If not, it's time to ask God to change your heart of stone to a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 11:19), or to tremble in fear for your own future (Hebrews 10:31).
    If you believe that this is an Old Testament message, and that in this Age of Grace the wrath of God will not come against His people, please meditate on 1 Corinthians 10:1-22, especially verse 11God in His eternal love and His desire for a pure and spotless bride has sent warnings throughout the ages to His people, killing His own people for their disobedience.  Killing baptized believers (1 Corinthians 10:2).  Killing those who drank Christ's living water (1 Corinthians 10:4).  Killing those who participated in His body and His blood (1 Corinthians 10:16).   These things are "warnings for us, on whom the fulfillment of the age has come" (1 Corinthians 10:11).  You can choose to continue believing in another "gospel," and another "Jesus" (2 Corinthians 11:4, Galatians 1:6-9), but your choice will leave you with no Jesus, and no good news Yes, our God is a God of mercy, but He is also a God of justice.
    I write these things knowing that they will be misinterpreted by many, and that I will be accused of being "too judgmental."  So be it.  We know from 1 Corinthians 14:3 that "everyone who prophesies speaks to men for their strengthening, encouragement, and comfort" but we also know some will receive prophetic ministry by feeling God's judgment, feeling that their privacy has been violated, and being convicted of their sin (1 Corinthians 14:24-25).  I know that God wants me to send this message to you today to encourage you to repent of your evil deeds, and to stop using the members of your body as agents of sin but to surrender each member of your body to Him to bear fruit for God (Romans 7:4-5).  I know that you will only find true satisfaction in life as you surrender yourself to God to fulfill the purpose for which He made you, and that all other pursuits in life are just vanity.  But those who harbor sin in their hearts will receive this prophetic message as one of judgment.   (Some may even receive this anti-terrorist message as if they had received a terrorist message, according to Proverbs 21:15.)  So be it.  The response reveals what is in the heart of the recipient, not what is in the heart of the sender.  He who has an ear, let him hear.
    God is not an agent of destruction, in spite of what you saw today.   Satan has come to destroy us, but Jesus came that we might have life (John 10:10).  Today's acts of terrorism don't change that fact.  Yes, God lifted His hand of protection from over this nation, but we recognize that it is Satan who filled the hearts of these terrorists and motivated them to seek to destroy thousands of people and fill our nation with fear.  May this act today help us to see how we have been vulnerable to attack all along, but we have been protected by the hand of a loving God.  When God lifts His hand of protection from us, somehow we think we can blame Him, instead of thanking Him for the protection He has mercifully given us for so long.  May this act today help us to turn to God in repentance, instead of continuing to turn away from Him in rebellion.
    God created each of us for a good purpose, and He has us here on this earth during this critical time to be His agents, boldy shining His light in the darkness of this fallen world.  He has called us to be advocates for those who cannot speak for themselves.  If we refuse to use ourselves and our bodies for the purpose He created us for, we are hurting ourselves.  In the end, as we saw today, many other people may be hurt too.
    I'll close with this prophetic admonition I received today from Cal Zastrow: "May God have mercy on us.  May people repent and flee from the wrath to come!  As I pray and seek God, I sense that He warns me that more judgment is forthcoming.  Thus, I will continue to prophesy.  God will continue to show Himself as a holy righteous Judge.  Today can be a day of grace for those who call upon the Lord and turn from all sin.  Tomorrow may not provide time for grace or repentance."
    In Christ's service for those who cannot speak for themselves,
    Tim Palmquist

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