The mighty and glorious WORK OF GOD races on! Even though we met tragedy and sorrow—even though we face the fierce and wrathful opposition of Satan and his supernatural organization of spirit principalities and powers—even though we encounter temporary affliction, personal adversities, apparent set-backs, nevertheless WE HAVE BEEN CALLED TO THE MIGHTY CLOSING WORK OF GOD HERE AT THE END OF THIS WORLD, and we must yield ourselves fully and completely into the hand of GOD, and press forward in and through HIS almighty POWER, as HE guides and directs!
With Jesus, our HEAD and LEADER and MASTER, we say: "We must work the work of Him that sent us while it is DAY: for the night is soon coming, when no man can work." Time is growing shorter and shorter! The task ahead of us in Christ's GREAT COMMISSION remains huge.
Right now, dear Co-Workers, it is my unpleasant duty to have to tell you that we are temporarily running many thousand dollars behind with some three or four of our MOST IMPORTANT radio stations—the very ones to which some two-thirds of all our listeners tune for The WORLD TOMORROW program. Unless this is caught up in the next week or two, we face being cut off the air—for the first time since 1948! Some of you Co-Workers who have been hearing the program since 1948 will remember that we were cut off the air in March of that year, and did not get back on until October.
IS COULD HAPPEN AGAIN!!—and will, unless you who are Co-Workers with me—and all of us Co-Workers with CHRIST—unless you respond as quickly as possible with more than ordinary offerings, besides tithes!
It is very unpleasant to have to tell you, when many of you have sacrificed so generously and unselfishly for the WORK OF GOD, but the income for HIS work last month—during July—fell off almost $2,000 a day under June. And so far in August it has not picked up yet as it MUST to avert disaster to this great work.
This year God is blessing us with the BIGGEST harvest in modern history. One of our coast-to-coast baptizing tours is completed, with almost 200 baptized. Another team, still out, is driving on toward its second hundred. As I have had to report to you, one team which included my elder son, Richard D. Armstrong, met with tragedy which cost us the life of my son who had developed into one of our most valuable men in God's Work. We need not only to PRAY for angels to go along with us and protect us when we travel, but also to pray earnestly that God will STAY the hand of Satan and his demons from striking at us, for God can restrain him. This is a terrible loss to the work, a major set-back—but I know it has spurred me on to far more sober realization of the seriousness of this time, and to greatly increased DRIVE and ZEAL for God's precious work—and I hope and trust it has had a terrific AWAKENING effect on thousands of you Co-Workers!
GOD HELP US to WAKE up and realize that there is absolutely nothing in this world worth living for, except our part in the precious WORK OF GOD, and the building of spiritual and Godly CHARACTER in our lives, through complete surrender and submission to God, FAITH in Christ, OVERCOMING the self, the world and the devil, GROWING in grace and the knowledge of our Lord and Christ, and ENDURING unto the end, so that we may achieve our only worthwhile GOAL, to be BORN OF GOD in Christ's glorious KINGDOM at His Coming!
Co-Workers, it is a supreme comfort and source of gratification to Mrs. Armstrong and me, and to our daughter-in-law Lois, to know (by the many and abundant fruits) that our son Dick, even in his short life-time, HAS ALREADY ACCOMPLISHED the PURPOSE for which he and all of us were put here on earth—as stated by the Apostle PAUL in Philippians 3:11-14—to attain the resurrection of the dead, in the FIRST resurrection to ETERNAL LIFE IN THE KINGDOM OF GOD! Dick had grown and developed spiritually, in these last two years especially, and even more especially during the past six months. He had acknowledged faults and shortcomings, fought the good fight with God's power from earnest prayer in OVERCOMING. Many lives were changed and started toward everlasting life in God's Kingdom by his labors and his faith. A cripple was healed in a miracle as great as that of Peter and John recorded in Acts 3—as a result of his prayer and the faith Christ gave him, proving again that Christ and His healing power is still the SAME today as He was yesterday and will be forever! A mother and a baby were saved from certain death by his faith and prayers and refusal to doubt or give up, even after the physician said there was absolutely NO HOPE, but certain death! Yes, my son, who was God's gift and actually born as a result of a miracle, did yield and surrender himself to allow God to develop him and train him for an important responsibility in GOD'S KINGDOM, and the far GREATER work we shall be called on to do during the millennium under Christ's world-wide RULE! We are now deprived of one of our top-most ministers—but in his next second of consciousness he will be raised immortal, GLORIFIED even as Christ is now glorified, his eyes as flames of fire, his face shining as the sun, in great POWER in the work of God's KINGDOM!
So it is rather for us to spur ourselves on with INCREASED EFFORT, RENEWED CONSECRATION, MORE COMPLETE DEDICATION to the WORK God has given us to do NOW! Life is unsure. THIS life is but for a little while at best. Let us spend every minute of it furthering the glorious work for this time, to which God has called us all!
We shall not be able to reach more than a portion of those awaiting baptism this summer; some 2,500 have requested baptism. But we are now preparing to have baptizing teams out in the field the year around.
My other son, Garner Ted Armstrong, has finished his evangelistic campaign in Springfield, Missouri, the most successful campaign so far conducted. God granted a big harvest. God's TRUTH, and the Gospel of Christ was declared in great power as a witness against many in and around Springfield—but as a joyous and welcome TRUTH accepted by many others.
Plans are all laid to send you a still larger PLAIN TRUTH for November. It will be 8 pages larger—now to be 32 pages. All 8 additional pages will be filled with the first installment of the forthcoming BIBLE-STORY BOOK for children. It will be profusely illustrated with the drawings of Basil Wolverton, nationally known artist. I am becoming more and more enthusiastic about this.
NEVER has there been anything like it. It is TOTALLY different from the kind of Bible-story books the world has been offering. It is not a series of disconnected blood-and-thunder stories without real meaning or connection or relation to the Gospel or God's Purpose. Rather, it is the simple, truthful, yet excitingly interesting Message of the BIBLE ITSELF, starting with the first chapter and first verse of Genesis, and continuing right on through the whole Bible.
I think I explained before, it is written in such language that ADULTS will greatly enjoy it, and come to really UNDERSTAND and grasp the true PURPOSE of God in placing mankind on earth, and of His PLAN for working it out, and of redemption, in a way you never quite fully grasped it before. Children of 9 to 12 can read its thrills and exciting sequences for themselves. Children as young as three or four can understand it and enjoy it, if their parents read it to them and explain to them some parts which such young children might not understand in the language written.
It starts with the very creation of the heavens and the earth. It explains about the devil, where he came from, how there came to be a devil. It explains about Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, and their sin, and being driven out. It explains about Cain and Abel—and why God accepted Abel's offering and rejected Cain's. It pictures the flood in the most exciting, thrilling, realistic language you ever read, with many drawings picturing it in true realism as only Basil Wolverton can sketch them! Children will come to see what salvation is, and why we need it—all in language they can understand. It is all so interesting, that those of us who have read the manuscript simply can't lay it down until we have finished it! Personally, I think this is the finest and most interesting and most valuable thing that has ever been produced in our time for children of ALL AGES, from about three up to ninety-nine! Not only children—YOU will enjoy it, too.
It is going to appear, an 8-page section each month, in The PLAIN TRUTH, beginning the November number. I can't tell you how enthusiastic I am about it! I feel it will be as valuable a contribution to God's great Work as the Bible Correspondence Course—and that is saying about as much as could possibly be said! Then, after sufficient installments have appeared, it will be reprinted in BOOK form. We have never yet had anything to sell, yet we cannot give these books away free, for they are going to be too expensive to publish. I think we shall solve the problem by allowing someone else to sell the books for a nominal price—but everybody can have every bit of this, FREE, and first, in The PLAIN TRUTH. Yet I know many thousands will want this in permanent book form, even though they must pay the cost of publishing.
Now finally, dear Co-Workers—remember LIFE IS UNCERTAIN —BE CAREFUL when you drive a car, or even walking in your own home! Drive within speed limits—and even more important, KEEP ALERT every second you drive! Never pass a car on a two-way single highway unless you can see so far ahead you KNOW you can get past at least 6 seconds or more before you meet a car. Start to count seconds until you meet a car about a half mile away, and you'll be SURPRISED! A few years ago I did this, and found I was passing cars and getting back into my lane with only one or two seconds to spare. This always APPEARED to be safe—until I realized I was actually within one or two seconds of a head-on collision! Since, I have never tried to pass a car or truck unless I can get past and back in my lane while the other car is more than an eighth of a mile—or a quarter mile, away. If you are doing 60, and the on- coming car is doing 60, and he is a half mile away, you are going to meet him in 15 seconds! Better be sure he is a mile or more away before you try to go around a car or truck. Most people drive TOO CLOSE to the car in front of them. This is MIGHTY DANGEROUS! Stay back a good distance! ALWAYS SLOW DOWN as you approach the top of a hill. Another car might be coming toward you at high speed in the wrong lane—YOUR lane, and you couldn't see him for the hill. Slow down at intersections. OBSERVE AND OBEY ALL ROAD SIGNS! BE ESPECIALLY ALERT when on a four-lane or a divided highway. In some places in some states the signs are not adequate to make you see that you are about to narrow down to a two-way highway. This is what cost us my son Dick's life. They had been on a divided highway. There was only one small sign to notify them it was becoming a two-way highway. They did not see it! At this particular point there was another highway about the same distance to their left as a divided highway would have been. They did not realize they were on a narrow two-way highway, and pulled over in the left lane to pass a small car going rather slow, when a big Cadillac suddenly loomed up from nowhere at high speed directly in front of them. Mr. Billingsley, driving, had only a flash to think: "What's he doing on this highway?"—Dick shouted: "Turn LEFT! Turn LEFT!" out onto the left shoulder—they could not turn right because they were not far enough in front of the car they were passing. There simply was not time enough to veer left far enough to miss the on-coming car, but they did miss a full head-on collision.
AND ABOVE ALL—on long cross-country trips, NEVER DRIVE WHEN YOU ARE GETTING TIRED OR SLEEPY. NEVER drive more than eight hours a day—and take rest stops frequently in between. You THINK you are still alert and all right, but after several hours' driving you ARE NOT!! No matter what you think!!! It is not only your own life you are endangering, but others you may crash into, or that may pile up in a wreck! Automobile driving is a DANGEROUS BUSINESS! I've had to lose a son as the price paid for WARNING YOU of this!! It COULD HAPPEN to you!
More than ever, now, dear Co-Workers, WE MUST PRESS ON WITH RENEWED DEDICATION AND ZEAL. WE must sacrifice more than ever! GOD'S WORK is more important than our lives!! It IS my life—I hope it is YOURS!
REMEMBER the WORK OF THE ETERNAL GOD is in desperate NEED! Supplying this need is YOUR part in this greatest activity on earth! God bless you, I know you'll PRAY as never before—KEEP CLOSE TO GOD as never before!—study your Bible as never before!!— turn away from THIS WORLD—its movies, television, and other worldly interests—as NEVER BEFORE! Put these things out of your life. GET YOUR AFFECTIONS ON THE THINGS ABOVE!! Nothing else is worth anything!! Let's all get back of it, now, and get the INCOME FOR GOD'S WORK BACK UP!!