Here we are, already well into the year 1966! I have IMPORTANT NEWS for you — the most important news in the world today. In newspapers, on radio or TV newscasts, you get only bad news — conditions getting worse and worse.
But the most IMPORTANT news is GOOD NEWS! We are very near, now, to the happy, joyful WORLD TOMORROW — and the living Jesus Christ is already shouting out the BIG NEWS to more than 30 million people every week, on every inhabited continent AROUND THE EARTH — PREPARING THE WAY FOR HIS SOON COMING to put an END to all the bad news!
But Jesus Christ is not doing this great Work of ADVANCE PREPARATION all alone by Himself. This is SERIOUS BUSINESS — the most serious on earth today — and He has DRAFTED YOU AND ME as His advance peace army, preparing the way for the coming Great Day! The living Christ is working today through human instruments. THIS is the VERY WORK OF GOD!
Let me tell you the inside facts about the status of this tremendous Work! We recently closed the most fruitful year of this Work, BY FAR! THOUSANDS of precious lives were brought to Jesus Christ — converted — begotten as children of GOD — to be born into God's immortal Kingdom! No other harvest compares! No other activity of men is as great! One single life converted into God's Kingdom is worth more than all the money in the world!
Years ago there was one minister in this Work — then small, just beginning. Usually there were from one to a few dozen precious lives won for God's Kingdom each year. But today it is multiple THOUSANDS — actually in excess of SEVEN THOUSAND. And I do not mean people who, under the emotional spell of an evangelistic sermon follow the crowd to the altar to "profess Christ," — and then perhaps wake up the next morning to wonder why they had done it. I don't mean people who make a profession now, and then forget it a little later. I MEAN PEOPLE WHOSE WHOLE LIVES HAVE BEEN CHANGED — really CONVERTED!
And that precious number is increasing by 30% every year. That great harvest is DOUBLING in size every two and two-thirds years!
And YOU — yes, Y O U ! — are having a tremendous part in it!
But what's the DIFFERENCE? WHY are thousands being led into the glorious Kingdom of God now, whereas only single individuals and dozens were, 19 to 32 years ago? Ambassador College has made all the difference.
Christ was working through one ordained minister (myself) and a handful of loyal and faithful Co-Workers then. Today there are scores and scores of consecrated, well-trained ordained ministers — beside hundreds of other full time staff members and executives — more than a thousand in all — giving concentrated and dedicated service.
Ambassador College has made this difference.
Ambassador College is not a theological seminary — except in its Graduate School of Theology. It is a Liberal Arts Co-Ed college. Only a small minority of all students become ordained ministers. Yet more than 90% actually — close to 100% — of all graduates do thereafter serve FULL TIME in some highly important phase of this great and growing Work!
As the College has grown, GOD'S WORK HAS GROWN. Today there are more than 800 students on our three campuses. If this Work is to grow, that number needs to be increased to 1,000 this coming September. Yet that is impossible UNLESS our building expansion program keeps right on schedule!
THIS IS THE VERY LIFE-LINE OF THE WHOLE GOSPEL WORK!
So read these FACTS carefully!
Every week, more than 300 people are now requesting personal counsel about being converted — letting the living God come into their lives to live HIS life within them. And today we do have the ordained ministers, in all parts of the world, to visit them, counsel with them, answer their questions, help them surrender fully to Christ and come to Him in living FAITH for salvation.
Tomorrow — that is, in four or five years — there will be a thousand such all-important requests EVERY WEEK! But will we then have enough competent ministers to help them?
Co-Workers, you must realize that the WORLD TOMORROW broadcast, great and powerful as it is — heard by more than 30 million people every week — IS NOT ENOUGH, BY ITSELF!
You must realize that the broadcast — most powerful on earth today — and The PLAIN TRUTH together, ARE NOT ENOUGH!
The final REAL harvest of precious lives for all eternity need PERSONAL help — the PERSONAL ministry of consecrated, dedicated, properly educated and trained men!
The three Ambassador Colleges have far outgrown their facilities! We are now in the midst of a MOST NECESSARY, direly needed building expansion program! Unless these colleges grow, the Work of God can't grow. And these colleges can't grow without additional buildings for classrooms, laboratories, assembly halls, dormitories, dining halls, and administration offices!
But EVERY CENT of your tithes and regular offerings is needed to expand the broadcasts — to print more thousands of PLAIN TRUTH magazines — to purchase advertising space in big-circulation magazines and put Christ's Message in that space — to GO ON TELEVISION again, which we are hoping to do in a BIG way in the next year or two.
We simply can't continue this new building program UNLESS there is a substantial increase in the special Building Fund. And unless we can continue the building program, the colleges can't accept additional students. And unless the colleges grow, THE WORK CAN'T GROW!
A year ago, and the years before that, I asked our Co-Workers to send me a special STATEMENT OF INTENTION to contribute at least once a month an extra, SPECIAL offering, beside, and over and above your tithes and regular special offerings for the Gospel Work. But these special BUILDING FUND offerings have been dwindling.
Now the time has come when I,must again ask for these special STATEMENT OF INTENTION cards for the coming year.
This is NOT a definite pledge. It is merely a statement that you will undertake, as God makes possible, to send in this stated SPECIAL AMOUNT as a separate offering, for this special Building Fund. If, for any reason your income stops or is reduced, or you are prevented from sending in this special amount month by month, YOU ARE NOT BOUND. It is a statement of intention ONLY — and I will trust you to keep it up, as you are able.
LET ME EMPHASIZE — I realize that some of our Co-Workers may be UNABLE to make this special contribution because they are on some form of public welfare aid, or limited pension, or other reason. I do not expect such people to return this card. I do not want such people to feel badly because they can't. But if you are unable, you ARE able to PRAY, and thus cause others financially able to make up for it! But the very fact that some are not financially able lays the burden that much heavier on us who ARE able to do our part.
This building program is VITALLY IMPORTANT! Our new gymnasium has been in use day and night, literally seven days a week! Besides the complete college athletic program, the gym is used for College chapel services, Bible studies, student Forums and Assemblies, for Chorale recitals and Band presentations. Only days ago, we conducted commencement exercises inside the gym for the Graduate Schools of Theology and Education, conferring two DOCTORATES and one Master's Degree!
And — that big building was partly financed ON MY SIGNATURE ALONE! The United California Bank granted us a loan, based on their knowledge of the way we conduct this great Work; their FAITH IN ME AS AN INDIVIDUAL, without any security, so we could complete the building!
I sometimes MUST PLEDGE to banks, to builders, that we will PAY them when due! THEY WILL HOLD ME TO MY PLEDGE! But this pledge I ask YOU to make I do NOT HOLD YOU TO! It is a statement of your INTENTIONS — a promise of WHAT YOU FEEL YOU ARE ABLE TO DO — NOT a legally BINDING contract.
But it was only YOUR pledges that helped me keep mine — and so helped this great Work of God take one more big step forward!
These banks and lending institutions are not CARELESS with their money! They know this Work is budgeted CAREFULLY, that it is handled WISELY! I wonder if you can realize HOW THANKFUL I am for the kind of helpers God has sent me in this Work? Our business office is MOST efficient! God's money is handled with SAFETY, with CAREFULLY-LAID PLANS! Each PENNY coming in for this Work is placed where it will do the MOST good! And a tremendous GOOD IS BEING DONE!
Meanwhile, the REGULAR, MAIN INCOME of tithes and offerings has been falling off! And that is SERIOUS! In a work of such MASSIVE SCALE as this has grown to be, we dare not fall ONE SINGLE DAY behind! Even PART of ONE DAY'S INCOME might mean radio bills would not be paid on time, or needed literature could not be printed and mailed! We do need your DAILY PRAYERS, and your REGULAR, STEADY, CONTINUAL financial support!
Co-Workers, the need for the very WORK OF GOD for this time is URGENT! Are your HEARTS in it? Are you so completely absorbed in God's Work it is YOUR VERY LIFE? It IS MINE! NOTHING else is remotely so important — EVERYTHING else will soon PERISH — fade away and vanish! We are literally engaged in PREPARING THE WAY for the very real RETURN OF JESUS CHRIST! We are doing HIS Work, not our own! It is HIS commission, HIS BUSINESS we are carrying out.
And it is in HIS name, and as HIS DIRECT REPRESENTATIVE for HIS Work I call upon you to GIVE so the living Christ can continue to GIVE HIS LIFE-GIVING WORD to this sin-ridden world!
And what a real BLESSING it is to know there IS some really LASTING GOOD being accomplished! To know this is NOT a shallow, on-the-surface "religious work" of HUMAN BEINGS — but to know GOD ALMIGHTY and JESUS CHRIST OF NAZARETH are back of it!
The need is so URGENT right now I am sending this letter by FIRST CLASS MAIL. I hope you can send your largest possible offering back AIRMAIL — but if not, then by return regular mail! So JUST NOW, according to what GOD has given you, and BEFORE YOU FORGET, BEFORE you become absorbed in any physical care of THIS life, please sign the enclosed INTENTION card, and fill it in. If you are able to send tithes or offerings NOW (and they're URGENTLY NEEDED NOW!) be sure to enclose those too, marking any offering for the special building fund separately.
And ABOVE ALL — MORE IMPORTANT THAN ANY OTHER THING YOU CAN DO — will you please PRAY EARNESTLY with me, and with ALL of us engaged in this great Work, that God will add MORE and MORE sincere and dedicated CO-WORKERS with CHRIST to help share this really heavy burden? PRAY IN FAITH — BELIEVE He will! THANK you, dear Co-Workers, for holding up my hands — and for your prayers!