Is the Bible RELEVANT in the Space Age? Can it REALLY be understood? This article reveals how scores of thousands are discovering they CAN UNDERSTAND the Bible!
Is THE BIBLE out of date in the Space Age? Most people seem to think so. Yet the Bible seemed very up-to-date to the crew of Apollo 8 as they began their last swing around the moon. Awestruck by what they saw, astronauts Borman, Lovell and Anders were moved to read the Biblical account of creation to the entire world! Meanwhile, back on earth, an incensed atheist couldn't bear to hear these brave men read God's Word from the moon. She even tried to legally BAN prayer and Bible reading from outer space!
Ignored by Most Christians
But paradoxically, most people — including professing Christians — have already voluntarily banned all personal Bible reading here on earth. Here is an eye-opening example of the appalling ignorance of the Bible among professing Christians today, as related by a startled newspaper reporter: "Some months ago, a Protestant pastor administered a Bible quiz to members of his congregation. The questions were very simple. Anyone with a general knowledge of the Bible should have been able to answer all of them easily. "The results staggered the pastor! "Only five percent of his flock made a commendable grade on the test. Fifteen percent failed to give a single correct answer. Sixty percent were unable to name the four Gospels. Seventy-five percent could not identify Calvary as the place where Jesus was crucified. "Some congregations might do better than that. But not many. The vast majority of Americans today are Bible illiterates! They simply have never read the book which they profess to regard as the 'Word of God.'" (By Louis Cassels, Courier-Times, Tyler, Texas)
"Can't Understand It"
This same newspaper reporter continued to explain why most professing Christians do not read or study the Bible. "A great many people have turned away from the Bible because, when they do try to read it, they find they cannot understand it.... To the modern reader, it has a remote and antiquarian flavor. It is likely to leave him with the impression the Bible is an ancient history book that has no real relevance to his life here and now." Another survey made a few years ago by the Canadian Council of Churches asked 6,500 ministers to name the chief reason for this failure to read the Bible. Almost 30 percent thought non-readers consider the Bible irrelevant; 26 percent thought that the people could not understand it; 24 percent felt people find the Bible uninteresting. Paradoxically, this Biblical ignorance is considered "respectable" today. "It is one of the curious phenomena of modern times," reports J. B. Phillips in The Young Church in Action, page six, "that it is considered perfectly respectable to be ABYSMALLY IGNORANT of the Christian Faith. Men and women who would be deeply ashamed of having their ignorance exposed in matters of poetry, music, or painting, for example, are not in the least perturbed to be found ignorant of the New Testament." (Emphasis ours) And so the Bible has become little more than an obsolete "sacred book" to which most of its devotees pay lip-service, but which they practically never read, study, or understand! The true reasons for such widespread Biblical ignorance and lack of understanding will astound you.
How Theologians View the Bible
You would expect atheists and agnostics to deny the divine origin of the Bible. But today leading ministers and theologians are foremost among the critics of the Bible! One such minister of a very large church denomination said recently: "No mainstream Christian Church accepts the Bible as the literal interpretation of the Word of God. Some of it is folklore, some legend, some tribal history." How does he know? Answer: He doesn't! He has accepted as true the theories and hypotheses taught in the graduate schools of theology. Now listen to these words of another well-known minister: "We know now that every idea in the Bible started from primitive and child-like origin..." and that it is an "impossible attempt to harmonize the Bible with itself, to make it speak with unanimous voice, to resolve its conflicts and contradictions...." What a PARADOX! This man was looked up to as a minister of God. Yet he attempted to discredit the very Book he was supposed to uphold and teach. Branding the Bible as the vain efforts of men, he called it a book of fables and myths, instead of the INSPIRED TRUTH OF GOD ALMIGHTY! In the introduction to a well-known modern translation of the Bible, the author summarizes his ideas in the claim that many books of the Bible are "notes by disciples, worked up into literary papers which have been repeatedly edited, sometimes by pious collectors." This very learned scholar thought that the earlier portions of the Bible stem from "the natural desire to gather up the primitive traditions of the people." He took for granted, and without proof, the false assumption that God had nothing to do with its inspiration! Another theologian summed up the modern trend this way: "We must take the Bible seriously, but not literally"! With statements such as these ringing in their ears, is there any wonder why hundreds of ministers publicly confess — and thousands privately admit — that they themselves can't understand or believe the Bible? Statements such as these by well-known ministers, theologians and Bible scholars are DIRECTLY RESPONSIBLE for discouraging the average person from trying to understand, or even read the Bible!
Confusion Begins With the Pulpit
A minister of one respected large church denomination told his congregation one Sunday that the Genesis account of creation "should not be taken literally." Yet the account was very real to Astronauts Borman, Lovell and Anders while in lunar orbit. Perhaps this minister would change his "views" if he were sent to the moon someday! After the service about 200 parishioners gathered in a basement hall to talk with this minister about his sermon. One of them commented: "I don't know what to read and what trot to read in the Bible. I'm confused. I DON'T KNOW what to believe and what not to believe. What part of the book is true and what part is just a story? If one Bible story is a fairy tale, what about the next story?" [Emphasis ours] Little wonder the average man-on the-street is soured against the Bible! What else would you expect the average person to believe about the Bible when men, looked up to as Biblical "specialists" and "experts," declare it to be a PIOUS FRAUD? The trouble with most people is that they take for GRANTED what other people say about the Bible. Most people — including church laymen and the clergy — have not taken the time to really look into the Bible for themselves! They simply have NEVER PROVED what they have come to believe. And so most people continue to carelessly assume the Bible teaches hundreds of conflicting ideas — that it is irrational and irrelevant in our scientific age — and that the Bible is responsible for the hundreds of differing sects and denominations we find in the world today!
What Is the Bible?
There is a statement in the Bible which says: "All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching..." (II Tim. 3:16, R.S.V.). The Bible is God's revelation to man of basic knowledge — laws and principles which man is unable to discover for himself — knowledge which is otherwise utterly inaccessible to the mind of man. For example: God did not directly reveal the law of gravity in the Bible. He equipped man with the powers and abilities to discover gravity for himself. But man has never been able to discover what he is, and why he was put here on earth — whether there is a real purpose for human life, or what that purpose is. Man has not been able to discover the true way to peace, happiness, abundant well-being and real success. Colleges and universities do teach students how to earn a living — but they fail to teach them how to live. The Bible reveals all this — and more! Nowhere but in the Bible can one find this basic necessary knowledge. God inspired the Bible to be the very BASIS of all true education. The Bible, then, is the FOUNDATION OF ALL KNOWLEDGE! It gives the true approach to the acquisition of knowledge in the fields of history, education, psychology, home economics, sociology and the health sciences. It reveals basic principles concerning business, commerce, science, the arts, law, government, philosophy and religion. The Bible also explains the meaning of the Space Age. And it shows us how peace, prosperity, success and happiness are coming to all the world within just a few years! People could understand the Bible if they were really willing. The Bible is plain and simple. It means exactly what it says! If we take it as it is, without trying to interpret its meaning, it does make sense.
How You Can Understand
If you really want to begin understanding the Bible, you should enroll immediately in the Ambassador College Correspondence Course. This absolutely Free educational service for all peoples at all levels is published as part of the worldwide educational program of Ambassador College. This course is totally new and different method of study. It makes the Bible plain and simple to understand - and RELEVANT in the Space Age! This dynamic, down-to-earth course of Understanding pulls no punches. It tells the truth straight from the shoulder - from the Bible! It also draws from our world sources of information. You've never seen any course like it Before! The Ambassador College Correspondence Course is regular, monthly course designed to guide you through a systematic study of your Bible. It is not a study of men's ideas about the Bible, but a study of the Bible itself. The Bible is the only textbook! Literally dozens of different subjects of vital interest to you in this pulsating Space Age are thoroughly gone into and made clear with each monthly lesson of this unique course. And you are directed to the clear, plain, simple answers in your Bible! The Ambassador College Correspondence Course helps you find the answers to the really BIG QUESTIONS of life you have always wondered about. It is designed to show the real meaning behind today's world chaos, and it helps you to see the very PURPOSE for your existence — the reason why you are breathing air and experiencing life itself. This exciting Course has opened the Bible to the understanding of tens of thousands because it is an "in-depth" study of God's Word. It shows, in detail, the keys to understanding Bible prophecy — making the Bible meaningful today! The Correspondence Course is fully illustrated and is presently composed of 58 sixteen-page lessons — with more on the way. Upwards of 130,000 enthusiastic students around the world are enrolled in the Ambassador College Correspondence Course — now printed in the English, French, German and Spanish languages. These students are from all walks of life. And they are learning for the first time there is HOPE for the future — that there are solutions to the absolutely terrifying and seemingly insoluble problems of today. They are learning the principles which lead to success, financial security and a happy, abundant life.
What Our Students Say
Here are a few excerpts from thousands of letters our students have written to the Editor. See how they are actually UNDERSTANDING the Bible for the first time, and finding that it is relevant to their own lives here and now! Listen to what this student discovered with the help of the Correspondence Course:
"I have been so well pleased with the Ambassador College Correspondence Course; I must let it be known. It was far beyond my imagination that such a course existed at all. In fact, before I started studying this course by mail I was under the impression that no one could learn the Bible by mail. I was wrong: I really am well pleased with the knowledge I've gained from the study of this most wonderful college course." R.C.T., Belva, West Virginia
The one most important fact students have found is that the Bible does interpret itself. These two letters explain it:
"What amazes me is that you ask the questions and tell us which scriptures to read and then the Bible itself explains it. I've heard you say many times on your radio broadcasts, 'Let the Bible interpret itself.' It really can and does, if people would only give it a chance. Thank you so much for letting me be a part of this wonderful course." Mrs. P. L., Youngstown, Ohio
"I just completed the first lesson of the Ambassador College Correspondence Course. There aren't enough words to express my gratitude. I think the only word that can describe my feeling is relief! At last a source with which to really study the Bible and learn from the Bible, instead of just taking someone else's interpretation. All my life I've heard people say: 'The Bible can be interpreted many ways.' I can't say that I believed or disbelieved that statement. I just didn't think about it. To me it was just an impressive book that everyone seemed to have. Now that I have respect for the Bible and am reading it, I feel that no interpretation is needed. It is plainly written. I am really looking forward to my next lesson." W. G., Cincinnati, Ohio
Notice how the following student learned the Bible is relevant in the Space Age:
"Your Correspondence Course really shows one how to study the Bible and what the Bible really says. Most people don't realize that the Bible is a book for our day and age. They have never proved that it is true or that there is a God. You give the proof. I now believe that there really is a God, and that the Bible is His Word. The Bible has become a new book to me. I never realized what the Bible said until now." D.M., Apache Junction, Arizona
"I have just completed my first four lessons of the Correspondence Course. Suddenly I realized the amazing change in my understanding of the Bible as I recalled the days before I ever requested the course. It has helped move me out of complete misunderstanding, myth, guesswork and bewilderment, and into a clear and ever-revealing knowledge of the Bible. The comments in The PLAIN TRUTH magazine about the wonderful course, I used to regard subtly. But now I also share those other people's great enthusiasm." Edward M., Hanford, California
I have found this course such an amazing 'spiritual eye-opener and night cap' that I just can't wait for the answers and the next lesson. It is an eye-opener, as it is my first study in the morning; a night cap, as it is the last thing I study before going to bed. I am a student at college and have a lot of studies to do at times, but from the amazing truth I have discovered from the Bible through the Correspondence Course, I will have to budget my time to continue my search for truth concerning prophecies of our times and spiritual guidance in my every day Christian life." Student, Nassau, Bahamas
From England comes this enthusiastic letter:
"I have just received Lesson 1 of the Correspondence Course. I am delighted, overwhelmed! This is the most interesting and enlightening course of study I have ever undertaken. I can hardly wait for Lesson 2; and if Lesson 1 is any indication of what is to come, then please know that I will be corresponding for a long time to come." J. W. S., London, England
A well-pleased Canadian wrote the following letter:
"Before hearing The WORLD TOMORROW broadcast I had many unanswered questions that were so big that a psychiatrist was unwilling to answer them for $20.00 a visit. The only answer I received from him was that I should take a trip to Europe, go hunting, roam the countryside to get close to nature, take up sail boating, get married, etc. This didn't answer any one of my questions. Through The WORLD TOMORROW broadcasts and the Ambassador College Correspondence Course I have received direct and workable answers to all my questions. I am now learning the real purpose in life and receiving blessings beyond my wildest dreams." Student, Vancouver, B.C., Canada
Don't Delay — Enroll Now
You, too, can begin to share these same experiences. You can begin to UNDERSTAND the knowledge that really counts! The only qualification necessary for taking this course is the ability to read. No prior college training or other advanced education is necessary. These lessons are plainly written so even a child can understand. And remember — the Ambassador College Correspondence Course is absolutely FREE of any tuition cost to you! Your lessons have already been paid for by others who are voluntarily helping to send this course to the world as an educational public service WITHOUT ANY COST whatsoever. You may continue receiving monthly lessons as long as you wish. But you'll never be billed or solicited in any way. Will you let the Ambassador College Correspondence Course make the Bible relevant to your life today? You can begin by writing to the Editor in care of the Correspondence Course Department and requesting your first exciting monthly lesson. (See inside front cover for the addresses) Do it right now — lest you forget! You'll be glad you did.