King's Business - 1966-11

Since 1908, Biola has been the Christian education center of the West. Over 15,000 former students are serving in places of spiritual leadership around the world, not only in the ministry but also in the business and professional society.

Stewart Hall houses 260 men. The second 'phase of this building has now been completed. It is one of several residence halls that provide Campus housing for 850 students.

The Psychology Department at Biola is staffed with Christian scholars who are thoroughly familiar with both the experimental and clinical school of thought. Biola annually graduates outstand­ ing psychology students who pursue graduate work in the leading universities of the country. Biola College is accredited with the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. In addition, with accreditation through the Collegiate Division of the Accrediting Association of Bible Col­ leges, Biola students receive from two to three times more Bible and doctrine than other comparable Christian liberal arts col­ leges require.

WallaceEmerson, Ph.D., Universityof Southern California, is chairman and seniormember of Biola's Dept, of Psychology. Author, counselorand edu­ cator, Dr. Emersonrenders invaluable service to Biola College.

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Dedicated to the spiritual development of the Christian home T h e K i n g © B u s i n e s s APUBLICATIONOFBIOLASCHOOLSANDCOLLEGES Louis T. Talbot, Chancellor • S. H. Sutherland, President • Ray A. Myers, Board Chairman Vol. 57, No. 11 • NOVEMBER, in the year of our Lord 1966 • Established 1910 A r t i c l e s STRANGERS IN BABYLON — Vance Havner ............................ 10 THE FUNERAL — Louis Paul Lehman ..................................... 12 JUST HOW DEAD IS GOD? — Charles L. Feinberg ..................... 14 BORN TO RAISE HELL — Don W. Hillis ................................ 22 THE PROMISE OF LIFE ........................................................... 24 THE COURAGE TO CORRECT — George Keck .......... 27 SEX, AN UNMANAGABLE URGE? — Henry R. Brandt ............. 30 THE SCALPER'S TICKET — Cutler B. Whitwell ...................... 44 THE SICK SOCIETY — Lt. Robert L. Vernon ............................ 50 FAM ILY DEVOTIONS: ARE THEY BEING HINDERED? — Ruth Stoltzfus ......................................................... 52 F e a t u r e s MESSAGE FROM THE EDITOR — Samuel H. Sutherland ............ 6 OVER A CUP OF COFFEE — Joyce Landorf ............................ 8 DR. TALBOT'S QUESTION BOX — Louis T. Talbot ................. 32 SCIENCE A N D THE BIBLE — Bolton Davidheiser ..................... 34 BOOK REVIEWS — Arnold D. Ehlert ....................................... 35 TALK ING IT OVER — Clyde M. Narramore .......... .................. 40 CHR ISTIAN WORKERS C L IN IC ---- Chester Larson .................... 44 C o l u m n s CULTS CRITIQUE — Betty Bruechert ..................................... 45 PEOPLE IN THE NEWS .................................................... 4 READER REACTION ................................................................ 9 PRESENTING THE MESSAGE .................................................... 43 JUNIOR K ING 'S BUSINESS .......................................... 48 C o v e r Oscar and Jolois DeVries of Artesia, California, and their four adopted children: Kurt Jeffery, six; Gina Windy, four; Oren Henry, two and a half; and Arlene Joy, ten months. A special feature article on the work of Evangelical Welfare Agency, Whittier, California, begins on page 24. — All Rights Reserved —

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you should know about MOODY ANNUITIES Christiartxmon and women are often concerned about the matter o f investing their funds. Some do not wish to becom e involved in stocks and bonds because o f the fluctuation and uncertainty o f econom ic conditions. But they are interested in s e cu rity and an a s ­ su re d in c o m e . M ood y Annuities meet both o f these requirements. This is what you should know about M ood y Annuities: (1) . . . they assure an incom e up to 9.09 per­ cent (depending on your age) and this for as long as you live. T o support this guarantee are the resources o f M ood y Bible Institute. Since plan’s inception alm ost 60 years ago, the Institute has never missed an annuity dividend payment. A nd in addition , th is extra d ividend . .. (2) your annuity funds are carefully put to work in the great program o f M oody Bible Institute, and thus you share directly in the blessings o f this world-wide gospel ministry. WOULD YOU LIK E TO R EC EIV E DOUBLE D IVIDENDS ON YOUR MONEY? We’ll be happy to .send you the frkb Ixjoklet, Double Dividends, which

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SUBSCRIPTION INFORMATION — "The King's Business" is published monthly. U.S., its possessions, and Canada, $3.00 one year; $1.50 six months, 30 cents, single copy. Clubs of three or more at special rates. Write for details. Foreign subscription 75 cents extra. It requires one month for a change of address to become effective. Please send both old and new addresses. REMITTANCES — Should be made by bank draft, express, or post office money order payable to "The King's Business/'

ADVERTISING — for information address the Advertising Manager, The King's Business, 13800 Biola Ave., La Mirada, California 90638. MANUSCRIPTS — "The King's Business" cannot accept responsibility for loss or damage to manuscripts mailed to us for consideration. Second-class postage paid in La Mirada, Calif. Additional entry offices in Los Angeles, California. Printed in U.S.A. by Church Press, Glendale, California. ADDRESS: The King's Business, 13800 Biola Ave., La Mirada, California 90638.



People/a Double-sixteen Company of Whea­ ton, Illinois has produced an entirely new method of presenting Bible sto­ ries for children in the Sunday school, children’s church and Bible clubs. Thirty of the most-used Bible stories come to life in both sight and sound with the new canon Bible pro­ grams. Produced in full-color film­

MeIfewe the United States, Latin America, Japan, Formosa, Nigeria and the Congo, to study the “ in-depth” evan­ gelistic concepts pioneered by the Latin America Mission in seven na­ tionwide efforts held thus far in Cen­ tral and South America. More than a hundred members of the Am e ric an Scientific Affiliation gathered at North Park College in Chicago during the latter part of August to celebrate the 25th anni­ versary of the organization. Current tensions between science and theolo­ gy were analyzed by the group. Ac­ cording to Dr. Harold Hartzler, execu­ tive secretary of the organization, evangelical Christians trained in science, including the social sciences, are actively sought as ASA members. Government schools in the capital city, Accra, Ghana, closed to Chris­ tian literature distribution since 1962, have been re-opened to repre­ sentatives of African Challenge, Gos­ pel news magazine published by the Sudan Interior Mission. School prin­ cipals are reported to be welcoming the magazine back, “ like an old friend.” Schools in the Cape Cod district which were also closed for a short period have likewise re-opened as a result of the lifting of the restric­ tions. African Challenge representa­ tives predict an increase in circula­ tion of at least 10,000 copies month­ ly.

presenting 3 C O M B IN A T IO N 1967^ S i P TOURS U SIN G MAJOR JET AIR LINES HOLYLAN D-RUSSIA - 20-day tour conducted by Rev. Don Lyon. $ 1015.00 HOLYLAND-EUROPE - 22-day tour conducted by Dr. Gordon Beck and Mr. Mel Johnson. __________________ $995.00 22-day tour including Europe, Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Jordan, Israel, Baghdad, Babylon, UR of the Chaldees, Istanbul, Ephasus and Pergamus, Con­ ducted by Dr. W. Morton, Archeologist, Rev. D. Dillow and Rev. W. Bennett, Jr. $ 1145.00 PASTORS, EDUCATORS You now can con­ ct a tour to places YOU are interested in. special tour arrangements, can be ged. For information mail coupon. Suite 1230 33 N. LaSalle St. Chicago, III. 60602

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strip and seven-inch records, Bible narratives for youngsters fohr to nine are presented in words children understand without interpretation or application. The record and filmstrip are designed for use with the Gener­ al Electric “ Show and Tell“ phono- viewer, which can be operated safely and easily by children. The National Association of Chris­ tian Schools, in co-operation with Harcourt, Brace and World Publish­ ing Company, is prepared to supply standardized tests to teachers of missionary children in the exact quantities required for these over­ seas classes. With their state-side norms these tests will enable mis­ sionary teachers to strengthen class­ room training as needed, and will insure missionary parents of the ade­ quacy of their children’s prepara­ tion for enrollment in stateside schools at furlough time. Rev. Heini Germann-Edey, veteran Swiss missionary with 17 years of work in Indonesia, began duties October 1 as director of World Vi­ sion of Canada in Toronto, an­ nounced Dr. Bob Pierce, president of World Vision, Inc. Rev. Germann- Edey replaces the Rev. Bernard Barron who has held the position since 1959. Rev. Barron was transferred to Mel­ bourne as director for World Vision of Australia, organized early in 1966. More than 200 Christian leaders from 20 nations gathered in San Jose, Costa Rica, for two weeks of intensive training at an Evangelism- in-Depth Institute sponsored by the Latin American Mission during Au­ gust of this year. Parallel Spanish and English sessions enabled dele­ gates from churches and missions in

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Gikita M. Komi and Yaeti K. Kimo (left to right), holding blow guns and poison darts, are shown talking to Miss Rachel Saint of the Wycliffe Bible Translators. They are near their village on the Tiwaeno River in the Ecuadorian jungle. Komi and Kimo are Auca Indians who have been converted to Christianity after five missionaries were slain by their tribe more than a decade ago. Miss Saint, whose brother was one of the missionaries killed, along with Komi and Kimo, will attend the World Congress on Evangelism, October 26- November 4, 1966, in the Kongress- halle, Berlin, Germany.

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a message from the editor A

Sermons America Wants to Hear

he would seek that material that reveals sin for what it is and points the sinner to the remedy. Who would know better than David what sin can do to a family? He would desire a whole-counsel curriculum based upon the re­ vealed truth o f God, one that is designed to glorify the Son of God. David is teaching today! You will discover how he is teaching today in Regular Baptist Press Sunday School Literature.

C o m e t i m e a g o , a popular national weekly magazine conducted a poll under the intriguing title: "Pick the Sermon You Would Like to Hear.” Several thousand people replied and their response was quite revealing. It should serve as a guide to ministers who preach the Word o f God and as a warning to those who are pre­ senting nothing but sociological and political issues o f the day. Out o f thirteen suggested topics, the number one choice was, "H ow Can I Make Prayer More Effective?” A second choice was, "H ow to Increase Religious Faith.” The third most popular topic was, "H ow Can I Make the Greatest Contribution in Life?” Other sermon subjects included, "Death, Judgment, Heaven and Hell” ; "Getting More Religion Through Bible Reading” ; "Immortality.” In addition to the subjects listed, space was left in the ques­ tionnaire for people to write in subjects they would like to hear discussed from the pulpit. Among them were such topics as, "Ways to Keep from Backsliding in Religion” ; "H ow to Find Peace within Ourselves” ; “ How Can I Discover God’s Will for My Life?” and "What the Word Almighty Really Means.” Quite a distance down the list, from a preferential point o f view, appeared subjects like, "What Can the Individual Do for World Peace?” and "Religious Approach to International Problems.” The significant fact that emerges from this poll is that when people go to church, they want to learn what God has to say to them through His Word. There are many gifted speakers engaged in the political life o f our country. Through years o f experience, they are far more cognizant o f politics and government trends than any busy minister. There is always the opportunity o f hear­ ing such a politician on some phase o f the subject. There are well- qualified military men who are glad to talk on some aspect o f our country’s military commitments. But there is absolutely no group o f individuals in the country who ought to be as well qualified to deal with spiritual matters as are the ministers o f the Gospel. It is a tragic situation when a minister descends from the high calling wherewith he has been called, stooping to the relatively low level

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o f mundane affairs as he stands behind the sacred desk. When men o f the cloth take their ordination vows, almost without exception, they promise to proclaim the eternal truths o f God’s Word. It is tragic indeed that many have violated this sacred vow, speaking on almost every subject except that which they pledged God and themselves to deliver to a lost world. It is a pathetic commentary on modern-day life to read o f ministers o f the Gospel engaging in civil rights demonstrations, anti-poverty programs, organized efforts to thwart the program o f our country in its foreign policies by means o f protest meet­ ings, sit-in demonstrations, and other futile attempts to change the course o f governmental activities. While it is readily granted that these are problem areas in the life o f our country today, they are being handled by religious leaders in such a manner as to imply that if these questions were solved, all would be well. The simple facts are, however, that these are merely symptoms o f a root problem. As is the case when disease strikes the human body, if only symptoms are treated, the disease merely breaks out in another place. One must deal with the cause. The real difficulty in the country today can be described by one word: SIN in the human heart. The tragic fact is that in so many places the Protestant clergy refuse to recognize this fact and to deal with sin as such. It is described in many high-sounding terms, which have been taken from the psychologist’s notebook, the philosopher’s mental meanderings or the sociologist’s technical language. An aura o f respectability has been wrapped around this ugly word in all o f its ramifications until the average layman ceases to understand the stark horror o f the fact o f sin in the human heart. The sins o f society are an accepted way o f life today. Thoughts and conduct, which in the Word o f God are called iniquity, today are referred to as merely emotional disturbances. For instance, the rapidly-growing and utterly-degrading sin o f homosexuality is spoken o f in respectable society as being merely a deviation from normal sex. On the other hand, the strongest possible language to describe this filthy condition is employed in the Word o f God in the latter part o f the first chapter o f Romans. But instead o f naming such degradation for what it is, sociologists, physicians and all too many theologians treat the situation flip­ pantly. So individuals go merrily on their way to moral and spir­ itual ruin. The sin o f adultery is likewise referred to and con­ demned in unmistakable language in the Bible, but condemnation o f this soul-destroying sin is largely ignored by preachers so that it is becoming more and more an accepted evil today. Then there are the sins o f drinking, gambling and all manner o f wickedness found in the nefarious motion picture industry. These and many other types o f sin are acceptable in so-called respectable circles. The only sin acknowledged today is that o f condemning wrong-doing! Alas, the voices o f the ministers o f the Gospel are silenced all too frequently so far as preaching about these things are concerned. In the first place, this is con- Continued on p. 54

Eerdmans invites you to read excerpts from the preface of Marianne Radius' new book lol Withus: aincOfJesus Firfoiai Readers

GOT) CJOith CIS A Life o f Jesus fon Young Reddens ByMarianneRadius

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plGHT now the angels of heaven are rushing th rou gh those golden corridors, shouting, “Ma­ rion is here, Marion is here!” In my mind’s eye I can see all of heaven assembling in the great hall. Angels, saints o f the Old and New Testament, our Lord, and of course, the new one, Marion. Marion, born in 1909 o f such humble beginnings in a little vil­ lage, east of Budapest, Hungary, brought to this country as a lit­ tle girl, now stands in heaven! I imagine she is impatient a lit­ tle as she wants to join the choir. And join she will! It may take a few days for the director to figure it out, but soon he will complain to his superior music master that, “Marion sings off key.” The com­ plaint will reach the higher-ups and then the word will come back, “ She must stay in the choir and yes, on the front row, even though she can’t carry a tune.” “Why?” comes the gentle ques­ tion o f the director. “Well, it seems for most of her 57 years on earth she has sung her praises to the Lord,” is the reply. She has introduced hundreds o f children to the Master by her loving work in Sunday school, daily vacation Bible school, Child Evangelism classes and many summer weeks at “Good News” camps. She has w orked physically, mentally and spiritually side by side with her minister husband for almost 38 years, sharing all the joys and all the heartaches of the ministry. She has been a mother whose three children “ rise up and call her blessed.” By her exciting Bible classes and her chaplaincy in the Chris­ tian sorority, Lammba Theta Chi, she has helped countless women to trust in Christ. By her every­ day living she has inspired even more men and women to give God only their very best. Always she has sung her song of praise. (Yes, “ off key.” Some­ times she has changed keys nine times in one chorus of “ In My •

Heart There Rings a Melody.” ) The Master, however, says it was the sweetest sound He heard coming from earth so she is to continue her song in the choir as before. Heaven wouldn’t be right w ith ou t that sweet “ off-key” voice. The great hall is filled now, all of heaven has gathered, and the angels have finished their mag­ nificent songs of praise and all are standing quietly, with folded wings, for they are listening to Marion. What are the words to that beautiful song? “Holy, Holy is what the angels sing, And I exp e c t to help them make the courts of heaven ring. But when I tell redemption’s story They will fold their wings. For angels never felt the joys That our salvation brings.” So with her gentle humor and her exciting way of talking she is telling them how she went from “ sinner” to “ saved” and all about

the “ joys of salvation brought.” Heaven glistens a little bright­ er today because Marion Miller, my mother, is there.

Mrs. Marion Miller, mother of Joyce Landorf, who passed away Septem­ ber 22. We thank the Lord for the faithful witness of this dear saint now home in the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. THE KING'S BUSINESS

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. . . a talented performer, experi­ enced in dramatics, as a composer, pianist-vocalist, and as a recording artist. Joyce Landorf also finds com­ plete satisfaction in her role as an enterprising housekeeper, mother, and wife of a successful business­ man.

SERVICEMEN'S CENTER We are building the library of the Tacoma Servicemen’s Center which serves as a “ home away from home” for the thousands o f servicemen in our city, many o f whom are Viet Nam- bound, and also as a recreational facili­ ty fo r the Christian youth o f our com­ munity. We have selected your maga­ zine as one which we would like to have in the Center for the servicemen and youth to read, enjoy, and from which to receive spiritual guidance. Your help in this way in this soul-winning ministry will be greatly appreciated by all concerned. Dick Davis, Tacoma, Washington E ditor ’ s N o t e : I s there some reader who would like to invest the $3.00 nec­ essary so that a gift subscription of THE KING’S BUSINESS can be sent to the Tacoma Servicemen’s Center ? Gifts to our “free fund” are not only tax-deductible, but make it possible for us to send gift subscriptions to mis­ sionaries, national workers, and other deserving individuals. INSPIRAT IONAL I think THE KING’S BUSINESS is the finest Christian magazine I have ever read. Although I do not receive a subscription, a dear friend always shares her copy with me. Please send a year’s subscription to my cousin. Los Angeles, California I take several Christian magazines and have for a long time, but THE KING’S BUSINESS beats all o f them. It is so inspirational; how I do en­ joy reading each issue! The two au­ thors Dr. Sutherland and Dr. Vance Havner alone are worth the price of the magazine, let alone all the other interesting articles by other men of God. Mrs. Vina Knauso, Massillon, Ohio KB PRAYER GROUPS Thank God fo r all His blessings upon us in all o f the ministry. We are all serving Him in different parts o f the world. I appreciate so much your prayer groups as mentioned in THE KING’S BUSINESS. Through your prayers, a change has come about in the lives of the boys and girls here. May God bless your prayer group. Mrs. Sauali F. Sunia, American Samoa E ditor ' s N ote : Readers are encour­ aged to send in prayer requests. Prayer groups meet regularly for this purpose.


International Hebrew Christian Alliance M IN IS T R Y of With the gifts of Christian friends, God has enabled us to minister to the desperate needs of our Hebrew Chris­ tian brethren around the world. Bibles, food, medi­ cines and relief sustain those witnessing for Christ in Is­ rael and elsewhere. Will you share in this ministry? Write: M ERCY

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MARK GOD'S WORD M A R K GOD'S WORD!, a booklet on how to mark God's Word in seven colors for visual- aid, is just off the press (35c) — also the SEVENTH EDITION o f A SYLLABUS FOR PER­ SONAL EVANGELISM ($1) Both for $1 post­ paid, if you mention this ad.) Ray Davenport, 111 S. Washington Acenue, Whittier, Cali­ fornia 90602.

You'll enjoy sharing a few moments daily with Joyce as she opens her notebook to . . . Household tips . . . Favorite Recipes . . . Children . . . Inspirational verse . . . and, of course, MU SIC. LISTEN TO "HERE'S JOYCE" Monday through Fridays Los Angeles 10:30 A M KBBI 107.5 San Diego 10:15 A M KBBW 102.9

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by Dr. Vance Havner

O ftentimes old names are given to new places. Novelist 0. Henry called New York, “Bag­ dad on the Subway.” In a biography of Calvin Coolidge the former president is called “ Puritan in Babylon” . I cannot think of a better name for Coolidge or Washington. The name of Babylon runs throughout the Bible and, in its applications, throughout history. Years ago, a remarkable book, “ The Two Babylons” set out to prove that the mys­ tery religions of ancient Babylon have been per­ petuated through the centuries and appear in Ro­ man Catholicism today. Of course, such a book would, be frowned upon by liberal scholars now. With Rome making advances toward Protestantism and Protestants beginning to fall in love with Rome, to mention such a position would bring down upon our heads the charge that we are with­ out Christian love and holy tolerance. One has only to check with the Bible and his­ tory to discover that the story of Babylon from start to finish — and we have not reached the end — is one of the most astounding records in the annals of mankind. It starts with Bab-el, “ the gate of God,” where men tried to build a tower to heav­ en. You will remember that God had said, “Let us make man” and after the flood man said, “Let us build us a city and a tower and let us make us a name.” Then God said, “Let us go down and there confound their language.” That is history in a nut­ shell. God makes man. Man builds his Babel. God confounds man and we have been living in that confusion ever since. But there is another chapter. Babel was man’s effort at unity and God cursed it with tongues that no one could understand. Pen­ tecost, when God come down again, was God’s plan of unity and He blessed it with tongues that everybody could understand. Babylon began with Babel, founded by Nimrod, the arch-apostate of the patriarchal age. Babylon became one of the most fabulous cities of all time and the mother of pagan religion that persists to this day. There is no more amazing record in all 10

history than the way the mystery cults of that day have permeated the world in countless chang­ ing forms and variations, counterfeits of the true, unto this very hour. God separated Abraham from all this idolatry but God’s people Israel were plagued with it and under Jezebel it was grafted into their religion and brought about their captivity. In Baalism it corrupted Judah as well. Nowadays the minister who preaches on Thyatira is strictly up-to-date, for Jezebel is still with us and Babylon still flour­ ishes. The Book of Revelation tells us of a future and final Babylon, man’s last civic masterpiece, the counterfeit of the heavenly Jerusalem that comes down from above. Some scholars believe that a literal Babylon will be built on the site of the old metropolis. Others hold that Rome is meant. Still others see only a figure for concentrated evil as opposed to God and His “ history within his­ tory.” John on Patmos saw a vision of a harlot riding a scarlet-colored beast. Together they represent the final Babylon in two aspects, the one ecclesiastical, the other political, the final amalgamation o f a col­ lectivized humanity into a world-church and world- state under Antichrist. The harlot is Satan’s coun­ terfeit of the true bride of Christ, His church, and the political Babylon is Satan’s false imitation of the Kingdom of God. Antichrist is also a false Christ, a pseudo-Christ, a false Messiah, whom a deceived humanity will gladly receive. This frightening, monstrous double-deception is growing before our very eyes today and many fine church people are being deceived thereby. This is the beast of Revelation 13 and his number is 666 which Dr. Torrance says is “ the number of so- called Christian civilization without Jesus Christ. It is the number of every attempt to organize the world in a form that appears marvellously Chris­ tian but is in reality anti-Christian.” We are re­ minded today of the unholy mixture of the sons of God with the daughters of men before the flood. THE KING'S BUSINESS

and the patience of the children of God.” We who are citizens of the Heavenly Common­ wealth will not be controlled by Babylon, either ecclesiastical or political. As the age darkens just before the Dawn, it will be a time of fiery testing for all who do not wear the mark of the Beast. We will be the targets of the powers of darkness. Satan will endeavor to disable our bodies, deceive our minds and discourage our spirits. The weird, uncanny brainwashing of demonic forces‘ will put us under severest pressure. We will be disappoint­ ed in men we trusted who will weaken and fall away. We will be sore beset by circumstances and conditions that laugh at our faith. But the strife will not be long and God will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are stayed on Him. Strangers in Babylon, I salute you! Fear not and be not deceived! It may look as though the Devil has taken over but we have not reached the last chapter. Our Lord came in the advent o f grace to an obscure little province of mighty Rome but Christ overcame Caesar. When He comes again in the advent of glory He will find another Roman Empire. Be not misled by modem scholars who make Daniel’s fourth world-power to be Greece. That delusion came late in church history for the early fathers did not so believe. Be not confused with those who can see no further than Antiochus Epiphanes but “whoso readeth (Daniel), let him UNDERSTAND” . Make your way through Rev­ elation 17 and 18 until Babylon is no more and join that innumerable multitude in Chapter 19 singing, “Alleluia: for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth.” Of course God’s people will be caught up before the final chapter of Babylon. But we live now in the darkening shadows just preceding the last act in the drama. To us the voice from Heaven says now, as He will speak again in the hour of Babylon’s destruction, “ Come out of her, my peo­ ple, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not o f her plagues.” I read o f a group o f youngsters marching in a parade. They were keeping pretty good time ex­ cept for one fellow who seemed to have a tempo of his own. Investigation revealed that he was carrying a transistor radio under his coat and his ears were tuned to music a thousand miles away! This generation o f conformists, like sheep on the way to slaughter, follows blind leaders of the blind. But the Christian who knows his Bible is out of step for he marches to the music of another world. Above the din, the wild weird discord of these days, he hears the drumbeats o f another world. He is tuned in on a different parade, God’s his­ tory within history, and he follows an unseen Band­ master. Strangers in Babylon, as a fellow-traveler, I salute you! 11

We think of the mixing of iron and clay in Nebu­ chadnezzar’s image. We see in the United Nations and NATO and the Common Market preliminary blueprints o f the homogenization o f the nations into a world state. The ecumenical movement presages a coming world-church. We are in the midst of Babylon and Christians need to heat’ God’s call to come out of her as both Jeremiah (51:6-9) and John record it (Rev. 18:4). Christians are in this world but not of it. We are pilgrims at the Vanity Fair of this age. Bun- yan pictured it in his immortal prose: “And as they wondered at their apparel, so they did like­ wise at their speech; for few could understand what they said. They naturally spoke the language of Canaan; but they that kept the Fair were men of this world so that from one end of the Fair to the other, they seemed barbarians to each oth­ er.” Bunyan would not see this marked distinc­ tion between the average professed Christian and the worldling nowadays. The modern run-of-the- mill church member is quite at home in Sodom. But we were never meant to be. We are strangers in Babylon and we are never to bear the mark of the Beast. There has been much speculation as to what that mark will be. (I remember that when the Franklin D. Roosevelt admnistration came into power and the National Recovery Act was insti­ tuted, some thought the N.R.A. sign was the mark of the Beast!) One thing is certain: men are being primed for that day when it comes. By now we are getting used to being numbered, tagged and labeled. Every man has not merely one number but a catalogue of them from A to Z, and I mean that literally, for A stands for his automobile license and Z for his Zip Code. Modern man is a Social Security number with a wallet full of credit cards. Surely we are being readied for the stamp of Babylon! But the child of God is an odd number. He has another mark of identification. As a Christian, he bears the name of Christ. He bears the stigmata of iden­ tification with the Saviour, the marks of the Lord Jesus. He awaits the day when he will be given a new name, when God will stamp His name on the foreheads o f His people. Our names are now in His book and one day His Name will be on our brows (Rev. 22:4). That is the one autograph worth seeking! As Babylon shapes up before our eyes, it will not be easy to make our way as a pilgrim and stranger through this unfriendly world. Dr. Tor­ rance says: “A Christian may be a citizen o f no earthly Babylon. He is a citizen o f heaven and belongs to a new heaven and a new earth, the city of God. No doubt, as a member of the Kingdom of God, he may be regarded as an alien in Babylon and will constantly be subjected to persecution and enmity, but that is the tribulation o f the saints NOVEMBER, 1966


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I don ’ t really want to attend the funeral, I just want to read the bulletin board in the funeral home to be sure I heard the news correctly. Imagine that! There it is. It’s an elaborate wreath, made of ar­ tificial holly, o f course, for every­ thing has stopped growing. No, the red berries aren’t real either. They are really red buttons cut from the robes of empty religion. There it is, right on the door of the funeral home of atheistic Christianity, next door to the graveyard of hope. It says it: “God is dead.” I am going to wait for the fun­ eral procession across the street from the parlors where theology has embalmed the Almighty, and you are welcome to join me. I ad­ mit, I have to see this funeral. Of course, many men have said that God is dead, but this time it’s some people in the Christian tradition. Did I ever tell you that story? That one about the fellow who cut down the tree? Well, while we’re waiting for the funeral to get started, let me

recall it. I guess Isaiah told it first. Anyhow, this fellow cut down a tree. When it fell, he started using it. He cut up part of the tree and made a house with the lumber. He needed a fire, and he used some of the chips for that, and then added a few logs to the fire. He baked bread and roasted a little meat. Same fire. He even stretched out his hand to the fire and said, “Ah, nice and warm.” Being a handy fellow with tools, he made a bottom for his wagon. Then he made a chair. All from the same tree, mind you. There was a little left over. He whittled the left-over part. It took shape, and he carved it more carefully. It was weird and grotesque, but he liked it. He thought it looked like a god. He stuck it in the ground and bowed himself before it. Now, what do you think? A boy came by later, saw the stick and didn’t know it was a god. The boy threw the stick in the fire. When the workman saw his


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HOW d e a d

IS G o d ?

J u s t

by Charles L. Feinberg, Th.D. Ph.D.

explained how this is to be achieved. The pitfall to avoid, it is claimed, is to treat theology in the spirit and manner in which it is done in theological semi­ naries. Is it equally applicable to inquire whether medicine is to be treated out of the norms o f the medical school, and law without the confines of law schools and courts? It is beside the point at the moment to conceive of the universe as theo- centric. Yet the new approach is applauded for its frank criticism of “ outmoded, inadequate and an­ thropomorphic representations of the Deity” ( “God Without God” by Gabriel Vahanian in The Chris­ tian Century, June 9, 1965, p. 745). Confidently it is affirmed that subsequent to the elimination of God, attempts are developing a “morality without sin” through “modem political philosophy” along with “ atheistic humanism and secularism” (loc. cit.). Conscious effort is supposed to be exerted to avoid atheism, as well as to tone down the undue emphasis on God’s immanence to the detriment of the truth of His transcendence. It would be well at this point to relate present trends to their historical background. The denial o f God results in some strange fellow travelers: Marx, Freud, Camus, Sartre, and Heidegger (the last three being atheistic existenialists). The bald statement “God is dead” is as old as Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche, the Germany philosopher (1844-1900). Nietzsche put his blasphemy in the mouth o f an insane man. The new element injected today is that men are using the same slogan and cliche, but adamantly proclaim themselves Chris­ tian. The words are mouthed by leaders o f the church and those who are training the new gen­ eration of preachers. Altizer, of whom more later, brazenly speaks of God as “ Satan” ( “Whither The­ ology,” Christianity Today, December 17, 1965,

. . ye turned unto God from idols, to serve a (I Thess. 1:9). “But the Spirit saith expressly, that in later times some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of de­ mons . . ” (I Tim. 4 :1 ). I N A generation which has for long majored in superlatives ( “ the most,” “ the greatest” ) and the ridiculous, the pendulum has finally swung to the extreme of the ludicrous and the blasphemous. Men are seriously discussing, debating, and dilat­ ing on “ the death o f God.” Reactions vary from unconcealed wrath to disgust to incriminations and counterincriminations. And yet the play goes on. Some are wondering whether we are to have in the future theological seminaries or necrological ceme­ teries. No one will deny the timeliness of the theme or the widespread interest it has aroused. Recently on a national telecast o f the news viewers were wit­ nesses of a litany and requiem wherein the choir practically shouted the blasphemous catchwords of “ Christian atheism” with repeated and monotonous emphasis on the words “God is dead.” To speak of “ Christian atheism” is equivalent to discussing “ Satanic godliness” or “ godly demonism.” Why should words of known and accepted connotation be emptied without warrant, o f both logic and meaning? Men are speaking now of “God Without God,” a contradiction on the surface of it, also “ the image of a man without image” and even “ a being with­ out being.” All adds up to an admitted theological impasse. Along with the loss of the sense of God has come, of course, the loss of the concept o f sin. Instead of theology the discussions center now on “ atheology.” Final and absolute faith is supposed to be beyond atheism and nihilism. It is not clearly living and true God . .



p. 22). Can blasphemy go farther? It was Algernon Charles Swinburne, English poet (1837-1909), who gave the other side o f the coin. He sang, “ Glory to man in the highest; he is the measure of all things.” The American novelist and Nobel Prize winner John E. Steinbeck (1902--) paraphrased and mis­ quoted the first verse o f the Gospel of John. He declared, “ Fearful and unprepared, we have as­ sumed lordship over life and death o f the whole world of all living things.” Elaborating on the man­ ner in which man is seeking to deify himself, he went on, “We have usurped many of the powers we once ascribed to God. Having taken God-like power, we must seek in ourselves for the repsonsi- bility and the wisdom we once prayed some deity might have. So that today, St. John the Apostle may well be paraphrased. ‘In the end is the word, and the word is man, and the word is with men.’ God is dead, and man is all in fill.” At this point someone is sure to say that we are misunderstanding the erudite theologians. They actually mean that the old categories and formula­ tions are no longer meaningful in speaking of God. That type of God is non-existent. But no, they are explicit in insisting that God is actually and truly dead, as dead as any human being could be. If God fares so ill, it is no surprise that the church is accorded the title of God’s tombstone. Even the secular press is not hesitant in labeling the view

“ a radical new brand of Christian thinking” (Time, October 22, 1965, p. 61). The starting point is un­ deniably Nietzsche’s cry of the last century, “God is dead!” But who has outlived whom? In treating so basic a question as the existence or non-existence of God, it is imperative that we know the chief present exponents o f the view as well as the details of that position. It must be un­ derstood at the outset that these theologians are not caviling at the portrayal of God as being obso­ lete. It is just an insurmountable fact that Chris­ tianity will just have to get along without God. Borrowing from Buddhism in his eclectic sys­ tem, Altizer holds that opposites are finally sus­ ceptible of reconciliation and harmonization. The Christian’s path of duty is clear: strive for the complete secularization of the modem world (as if the unregenerate are not already doing a tre­ mendously successful job of it without “ Christian” help), so that by a rebound process man may again recapture the full import of the sacred. Altizer thinks the death of God is basically a redemptive act. But how? And, pray tell, for whom? Van Buren’s main thesis is that nothing is truth which cannot be verified and substantiated empiri­ cally. He has tasted deeply at the philosophical fount of Comte. With Hamilton the matter of love is all-deter­ mining rather than the concepts o f faith or hope. Since God is dead, this is the opportune time to follow the example and conduct of Jesus in serv­ ing our fellowman. Hamilton speaks of Christ, not as a person, but as “ a place to be,” that is, wher­ ever there is struggle or strife for equality in the world, as well as in the arts and sciences. Vahanian is sure that if there is a God, only God knows Him. Man, in seeking to find God, in­ variably fashions Him according to his own cul­ tural pattern, finally winding up in making God an idol. Dr. Thomas J. J. Altizer of Emory University says bluntly: “ . . . the death of God is a historical event. God has died in our time, in our history, in our existence.” If the professor means that our age has become painfully secularized, even pagan- ized, that God is taken into account in world affairs either little or not at all, that most men act and live as though God were a nonentity, he is eminent­ ly correct. But this is poles apart from postulating the demise, the abdication, or the dismissal of the

Charles Lee

Feinberg, TK.D.

Ph.D., is Dean

of Talbot



La Mirada,




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