It was a time when the Cold War continued with fresh memories of the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962. Filmmakers stimulated the theater-going public with offerings of dark humor steeped in fears of thermonuclear war.
The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming! was the title of a 1960s movie—a comedy—in which there was panic in a New England village on the Atlantic Coast. A Soviet submarine had run aground because of its commander sightseeing the American coastline. The crew was sent from the sub to find a boat that could dislodge the sub and free it to continue its cruise.
There was great angst for a time, as the New Englanders thought they were being invaded by the Russkis. The movie was hilarious, with the people and the sub occupants coming close to conflict. But there was a meeting of two young people—the woman an American, the man a Russian submariner.
I took a year or so of Russian in college, but viewing this movie was where I learned to say “I love you” in Russian.
The story ended just right, as any good love story should, with the Russian sub threatened for destruction by US Air Force fighter jets flying overhead, but the pilots, seeing the New Englanders all around the sub, didn’t attack. The people were protecting the Russians, and soon the sub slipped back into the Atlantic deep.
I can’t remember what happened to the two young folks who were in love, but I presume all, too, was well in that department.
At this moment, the Ukrainian people find nothing funny about their experience. Yet there is a love story within its unfolding that can be discerned. While reports that hundreds, even thousands, on both sides of Putin’s aggression are being killed or maimed, there are reports of human interaction that unveils compassion of biblical proportion.
The Ukrainian people have, it is said, taken wounded Russian soldiers into their homes or to facilities and cared for them, even as the Russian forces continue their assault. On the other side, there are reports of Russian troops laying down their weapons and returning to their homes, because they haven’t the heart to continue killing people who are basically the same as the people they left back home.
I don’t know the degree of veracity of these stories, but give some credence to them because they are being reported across the entire spectrum of news forums—mainstream and alternative.
One wonders the fate of the troops who defect in this manner. Vladimir Putin is reported to be, like one-time dictator Joseph Stalin, executing generals who fail to accomplish their missions. Thus the four or five generals are reported to have been killed, with their deaths blamed on Ukrainian resistance fighters. What is the truth? Who knows. Well, only our God.
The troops who have a change of heart surely are meeting fates at least as bad as the generals rumored to have felt Putin’s wrath.
And it is Putin’s unknowns that have pundits and ordinary people worrying alike. Will there be World War III? As a matter of fact, has World War III already begun—has Putin now set out on a course that will end up involving all of Europe and eventually the entire world in a global conflict? Is Putin another Hitler, whose trajectory the Russian dictator seems to be following?
Some within Bible prophecy circles are wondering the same things. Is the world now seeing the beginning of the earth’s third global conflict? Are we about to get into nuclear combat one on one with the Russkis, as Slim Pickens, who played the captain of a hydrogen bomb-armed B-52 in the movie Dr. Strangelove, once said?
One acknowledged “expert” weighed in with the following assessment.
Author and former DIA intelligence officer Rebekah Koffler told Fox News Digital Thursday that a no-fly zone presents the most risk among known scenarios, but currently-unknown actions could inadvertently cause an escalation during the “fog of war.”
“Usually the path of the escalation is difficult to predict, it can come out of nowhere in the fog of war,” Koffler said.
Koffler argued that the current conflict in Ukraine is a “proxy war” between the U.S. and Russia that could easily escalate into a “shooting war.” (“The largest risk to an escalation of the conflict would be a no-fly zone enforced by NATO, experts say,” by Michael Lee, Fox News)
Diplomatic sources believe some within the US and Europe are poking the Russian bear by embracing the idea of no-fly zones over Ukraine—and by the introduction of MiG-29 fighter jets to the Ukrainian military to enforce that no-fly zone.
Such action, they believe, would bring about the shoot-down of Russian planes. A no-fly zone, plus such US-approved introduction of weaponry, would, Vladimir Putin has said, be considered an act of war.
The Russian tyrant has instructed his forces to fire a hypersonic missile into a Ukrainian underground military facility. The missile wasn’t nuclear-tipped, but the plain message analysts are saying Putin wanted to send is that Russia can, with the new, Mach 5 missile technology, reach not only the near points of Ukrainian territory, but all of Europe. The hypersonic missiles have a vastly larger range than the mid-range missiles heretofore used by the Russians.
Putin has said he is not averse to using tactical nukes to accomplish the Russian military mission of subduing parts of that nation the dictator believes belong to Russia.
All of this has the world of diplomats and even Christian prophecy pundits wondering whether there is about to be World War III, which will end in nuclear exchanges that will completely disrupt the world carrying on as we have known.
Well, we can interject that, with the way things have been carried on as of late, a heavenly disruption might be warranted. We’ve seen wickedness arise at levels that, as Ruth Graham might have concluded, rival the evil of the days of Sodom and Gomorrah. Only God’s divine patience and mercy can explain why nuclear combat, one on one with the Russkis, hasn’t already broken out into WW III.
Diplomats of the world, many of whom are Christians and even Bible prophecy students, would adamantly disagree with my assessment about the prospects for World War III and nuclear annihilation.
I say without reservation that I have no fear of an all-out, global war at this juncture in human history. And that is the salient point—the words, “at this juncture in human history.”
For the current war waged upon Ukraine—or any other war—to explode or even gradually grow to all-out World War III would be contrary to what the Word of God foretells. As a matter of fact, Jesus Christ Himself, who is the very Word of God who holds together even the elements of the atom, foretold the following. (Again, remember that “the day when the Son of man is revealed” refers to the Rapture of the Church.)
Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. Even thus shall it be in the day when the Son of man is revealed. (Luke 17:27–30)
It would not be business as usual if the planet had just been ravished by nuclear devastation, just as it wouldn’t be business as usual if Christ was “revealed” at the end of the most horrific time imaginable—the end of the Tribulation.
There will be World War III, and there will be nuclear devastation, I have absolutely no doubt. But it will be after the Rapture, when all believers are in the only safe harbor there is—in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ when He calls us to Himself.
There is only one way to go to this assurance and safe harbor.
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. (Romans 10:9–10)