The Deserter by Boardman Robinson. Anti-war cartoon depicting Jesus facing a firing squad made up of soldiers from five different European countries (at that time the US had not yet entered the war). First published in The Masses in 1916. Public domain.
Was there ever a moment in the history of mankind when something so esoteric, so volatile, ambivalent, dark and mysterious occurred as in the summer of 1914? The simple answer is no! Sure we had wars, death, cruelty, poverty and disease long before but... what happened in the summer of 1914 elevated all of the above onto a new unprecedented scale, wars, death, cruelty, poverty and disease were no longer to be considered a country wide problem, or even a continental problem, oh no, overnight it became global! A “paradigm shift” in sociology and human behaviour, a time of unparalleled hatred a time when darkness mysteriously took over the world. A seismic shift stole from the people their up-to-then sedentary pace of an old nineteenth century lifestyle. An old world of rigid tradition was suddenly swept away, gone and replaced by a rapidly evolving twentieth century, the old ways, changed forever and replaced by a new and appalling one, driven by machines and a totalitarian ideology which, not only became unmistakably entwined with the prophecies of Jesus Christ, who had specifically warned us of this terrible change 2,000 years earlier, but also the sudden degrading way we treated our fellow human beings. It was as if, the devil himself had arrived and of course, he had. One insane moment caused an unprecedented global implosion which set off a chain of events that had never occurred in the history of mankind before or since and is still reverberating around the world today. An escalation that our world has never fully recovered from and which set the trend of hopelessness in which we find ourselves today, where nearly 8 billion people living on a dying planet don't have enough food to feed everyone, with a society hellbent and on the verge of destroying itself. The trigger which released this chain of events and led us to our "brave new world," was but a brief moment in time, on a sunny afternoon in Eastern Europe but which is now embroiled deep in conspiracy, just as Pearl Harbour, the assassination of JFK, 9/11 and Covid-19.
Did He Jump Or Was He Pushed?
Our western history books will tell us that on the morning of Sunday, June the 28, 1914, Archduke Franz Ferdinand, heir presumptive to the Austrian - Hungarian Empire accompanied by his wife Sophie had planned to travel in a motorcade driven through the obviously hostile streets of Sarajevo which was the capital of the Austro - Hungarian province of Bosnia Herzegovina and had recently been annexed by the Austrian - Hungarian Empire. Why they had decided to do this can only be described at best as suicide, at worst insane, because, earlier in the day, the heir presumptive to the "Austrian - Hungarian Empire" and his wife had suffered an "assassination attempt" by Nedeljko Čabrinović, a Serb who had thrown a grenade at their motorcade in their first attempt of a ceremonial drive through the city. However, the bomb detonated behind them, injuring the occupants in the following car. Now here is where the story morphs into a fantasy of fairy-tale proportions. After a short rest at the Governor's residence, the royal couple insisted on seeing all those who had been injured by the bomb earlier and who by now were being treated at the local hospital. However, the heir presumptive insisted on continuing to the hospital in the "motorcade" along with his wife Sophie. As the motorcade made slow progress through the packed crowds on the way to the hospital, the “local driver” somehow made a "wrong turn?" As the cars backed down the street and onto a side street, the line of cars stalled. Seizing his opportunity and not believing his luck, a Serbian student called "Princip," who was waiting across the street with a handgun assassinated the Duke and his wife Sophie.
How could this happen?
Thousands of people lined the streets of Sarajevo to see the Duke and his wife, yet only 36 policemen were on duty that day. The local Sarajevo police had been given the day off to celebrate St Vitus, a local holiday, they were not trusted by the Austro - Hungarian military anyway. No soldiers of the empire were present as they were on "manoeuvres." (Is this beginning to sound familiar?) The consequent investigation discovered ten assassins lined the route of the motorcade and there was much speculation the local driver had been paid to make a wrong turn on the way to the hospital. Why was Archduke Ferdinand even allowed to carry on with the motorcade after the attempt on his life earlier with the hand grenade, when so few police were there to protect them? It is a popular belief the Germans and the Austrians planned the entire episode to start WWI which is exactly what transpired. Exactly one month later WWI began and plunged the world into a whole new darkness.
Many influential people have since claimed the world changed forever in the year 1914. One of my favourite writers, George Orwell, wrote in his book, Coming Up For Air:
"People living up to 1914 had something never prevalent again, ever, after 1914.” "Before 1914 people didn't think of the future as something to be terrified of as we do now, and life was “not” softer then, on the contrary, life was much harsher." "Yes, people, on the whole, worked much harder, more people were living in poverty but life was much better somehow." "It's like they had a peace of mind, a feeling of security, they didn't know “the order of things could ever be changed” and nearly everyone had a religious belief and went to church." "And then boom, something changes the world, everything, forever.”
It is hard to imagine how one destructive action from a poor desperate teenager which the assassin Princip was, could bring the whole world to its knees and change its course forever, causing an unprecedented global chain reaction, a chain reaction of such devastation that Jesus Himself warned us all to prepare for some 2,000 years earlier in Matthew 24, Luke 21 and Mark 13. That one insane (fateful?) moment caused an unprecedented global implosion which set off a chain of events that had never occurred in the history of mankind and is still reverberating around the world today. An escalation which our world never really, fully recovered from and would set the foundations for the desperate mess we find ourselves today. But don't take my word for it! let us examine the many warnings Jesus prophesied to His disciples and us, 2,000 years ago. As Jesus was leaving the temple in Jerusalem His disciples’ questioned Him about the destruction of the temple after Jesus had told them, not one stone here would be left on another, “when will these things occur and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?”
Jesus answered in Mat 24: 6-8
6 You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. These things must happen, but the end is still to come.7Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of birth pains.
In Luke 21:1, we are also warned of pestilences and great signs and fearful sights from heaven, something I will be covering later on in this book. But the question is, how does 1914 link up to Jesus’s specific warning in Matthew 24, Luke 21 and Mark 13? Let’s break it down.
Wars have always happened since the beginning of time, great wars, all history is built on the back of wars from the beginning of time. Great empires have ruled vast areas of the world with an iron fist throughout ancient history and beyond. Pestilence is no stranger either. The Bubonic Plague killed more than 100 million Europeans in the 1300s just years after a great famine wiped out almost 60% of the European population. However, what began on July 28, 1914, and ended on the 11th November 1918 had never before happened on such a scale, no, not even close. For the first time in the history of mankind, a war so great had to be deemed a “World War, or the Great War.” For the first time in history, a “global war” erupted on the scale of what had never before occurred in human history. A war which saw millions of young men cut down by man-made industrial killing machines, chemicals in the form of mustard gas and mega-size (unlimited) bombs. WWI butchered around 40 million people in just 4 years. History had changed forever, the direction of the world’s future had been altered. Man could now kill his fellow man on a production lined industrial scale.
More wars and food shortages
While the world was still at war, one of the bloodiest of all revolts exploded, a war within a war you could say. In 1917 the Russian Revolution began, culminating in 1923. It is thought approximately 12 million people died during the Russian revolution, mostly poor people. Many died from famine. (For nation will rise against nation and kingdom against kingdom and there will be food shortages and earthquakes in one place and another.)
Pestilence became global.
As the end of WWI approached, the whole world began to look forward to better times, but, something similar to what our world is now facing descended on an unsuspecting public who were on the verge of celebrating the end of a devastating war. A new global pandemic systematically caught the world unaware. The Spanish flu, which started in the US killed tens of millions of people. It is thought as many as 500 million people were infected, one-third of the entire world population and it is estimated more than 100 million died, more than double the number of people who died in WWI.
Food shortages became global.
As the world slowly recovered from the unprecedented deaths of millions from wars, famine and pestilence the world took yet another hit, just ten years after WWI ended and seven years after the Spanish flu died-off, the world was once again caught unaware. This time it was ‘The Great Depression.’ The Great Depression started in 1929 in the US but soon reverberated around the world, lasting until the late 1930s. Poverty and famine crippled much of the world's population. Millions of jobs around the world were lost, hunger and starvation were the new killer, it is estimated The Great Depression killed around 120 million people.
Food rationing was so severe during the two World Wars that millions of people died from starvation. During the first World War, the German people were put on severe food rationing. After the First World War the German economy imploded, a wheelbarrow full of money was needed just to buy a loaf of bread. According to " The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivisation and the Terror Famine," around 14.5 million people died of starvation in the Great Famine of 1932-33, also known as Holodomor. During the Second World War the Dutch people were so hungry they resorted to eating tulips. More than 30 million, 10 million of them kids died like savages along the Eastern Front due to incredible cold no human should have to endure never mind fight for their lives but it was the inevitable starvation which claimed both German and Russian soldiers in the end. The German Russian struggle reached a new climax for human savagery and depravation. The British people suffered food rationing well into the 1950s as a result of WWII and lost their treasured empire. The Great Chinese Famine is widely regarded as the deadliest famine of all and one of the greatest man-made disasters in human history, with an estimated death toll due to starvation that ranges in the tens of millions (15 to 55 million). Since 1914, it is thought more than 100 million people have died due to famines during the 20th and 21st centuries.
Wars and rumours of wars
In 1936 the Spanish Civil War began, although half a million people died it was just a sideshow to what was coming. By September 1, 1939, the world was at war again. The Second World War was even more destructive than the first. More sophisticated machines had been developed and on a mighty industrial scale, airplanes provided a new horror, aerial bombardments which could destroy whole areas of cities and kill its innocent occupants, which became morally acceptable. After 6 years of bloody warfare and millions of deaths, a new weapon was introduced, supposedly to bring the war to an early end. It was the next paradigm shift. The US brought an already demoralised and humiliated Japan to its knees with, not one but two “thermal nuclear bombs” which destroyed two major Japanese cities and killed hundreds of thousands of innocent people in just minutes. As he witnessed the first detonation of his invention, the nuclear weapon on July 16, 1945, a piece of ancient Hindu scripture ran through the mind of Robert Oppenheimer: “Now I have become Death, the destroyer of worlds,” quoting an ancient text from the Bhagavad-Gita. It was surely a massive understatement from Oppenheimer, what he didn't realise at the time in just a few years there would be enough nuclear weapons to destroy our world many times over! Our wonderful world was slipping ever deeper into a darkness unimaginable just thirty years earlier.
Some estimates place the total number of deaths, due to wars and armed conflicts since 1914, at nearly 300 million! Others would say 500 million.
Rumours of wars.
After WWII came the Cold War between the US and its allies and the Soviet Union and its Eastern Bloc countries. Almost immediately the US and the Soviets started a nuclear arms race, this nuclear arms race reached a climax in 1962 when the Soviets began secretly installing nuclear ballistic missiles in Cuba just off the American mainland, at the last moment the Soviets withdrew, but, since then, rumours of war between the Soviets and the US have increased frenetically and now in 2021 the rumours have escalated between the new Russian Federation and the US as well as, what many call the new "super-power" in military might, China who are also trying to dominate the US. Proxy wars erupted around the globe when Soviet backed countries took on American backed countries. The Cold War officially ended in 1991 when the USSR collapsed, however, the "rumours of wars" is just as prevalent today as it was back then.
Luke 21:1: Great earthquakes in one place and another, great signs and fearful sights from heaven;
It is well documented and known that recently major quakes have begun to rise to unprecedented levels. Up to March 2021, a total number of 42 major quakes, (mag 6 or higher) shook our planet which is the highest number ever recorded in the first 65 days of a new year, the rest of the year major quakes, mag 6 or higher did drop and finished the year on 160, just over the twenty-first century average. However, when you consider in the year 1900 only 3 major quakes, (mag 6 or higher) were recorded for the whole year, in 1914-10, 1939-43, but just look what happened in 1957-"203" major quakes were recorded for that year, a phenomenal jump and these extreme totals have carried on into the twenty-first century with the record number standing at 207 in 2011, the year of the Japanese tsunami tragedy.
Back to Luke 21
Now, Jesus mentioned, “Earthquakes in one place and another.” Indeed earthquakes did happen back then in the days of Jesus, they always have but He was clearly giving a warning to a future generation of a massive escalation of seismic activity and so clear and precise was His warning that it must be this generation the one we are living in today was His intention. Not only was He clear and precise on the rise of major quakes around the world (remember the known world then was much smaller than it is now but He nailed when He said, "one place and another!" Global!) He also nailed, the wars, the rumours of wars, the pestilence and poverty all of them woes suddenly and unexplainably jumped from local to global.
On January the 17th, 1961, in his Farewell Address to the Nation, the President of the United States, Dwight D. Eisenhower, a five-star general during World War II, tried to warn the world of future dystopian horrors when he first coined the phrase, "military-industrial complex," warning the US citizens and the world of the grave implications and threat from a powerful, out-of-control, military-industrial complex. Here is part of the speech below:
“A vital element in keeping the peace is our military establishment. Our arms must be mighty, ready for instant action, so that no potential aggressor may be tempted to risk his own destruction... This conjunction of an immense military establishment and a large arms industry is new in the American experience. The total influence—economic, political, even spiritual—is felt in every city, every statehouse, every office of the Federal Government. We recognize the imperative need for this development. Yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. Our toil, resources and livelihood are all involved; so is the very structure of our society. In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defence with our peaceful methods and goals so that security and liberty may prosper together.”
I don't know if Dwight D. Eisenhower was a religious man but what his speech implied was exactly what Jesus had warned us of 2,000 years earlier! We are living at the end of our beginning!