This is your first language lesson in Modern Ecclesian. (Dialectical Eglisais and Kirchendeutsch are available also.) You may supplement these exercises by attending selected churches and by reading journals written in Ecclesian.

1. Translate from the Ecclesian:

a. By developing new perspectives in creative tension we shall gain fresh insights into the dialectic of our situation.

b. Our fundamental concern must always be the existential expression of our common solidarity in the ambiguity of the human condition.

c. Openness in history to the judgment upon history from beyond history when the historic becomes historical demands a meaningful encounter with mythological symbolization.

d. This is deep. This is big. This is man in his predicament. Today. Here. This is you. Now.

2. Render these in simple Ecclesian:

a. I have a headache.

b. You can’t get there from here.

c. Peace, it’s unbearable!

d. Fairy-tales are really true.

3. Vocabulary

Develop: to rarefy ambiguities in thought or discussion. Loan-word from Business Eng.; used especially for committee reports.

Perspective: the horizontal structure from a given viewpoint. An invaluable term for reconciling contradictions. The plurality of perspectives is the structuring figure for unitive prose.

Dimension: see perspective. To give further perspective to all perspectives, add another dimension.

Insight, invaluable: the force of the prefix seems to be without, as in the term income.

The Human Condition: the mess we take pride in being in.

4. Notes

a. Observe the shift in style in 1. d. above. This is Low Ecclesian. The staccato rhythm of this dialect gives it the relevance and immediacy of a dentist’s drill.

b. To enter into competition for the Babel Medal in High Ecclesian, send your completed lesson to this magazine, addressed to the undersigned.



“What’s Right With the Billy Graham New York Crusade” by Dr. Jesse M. Bader is being published in Protestant Church Life. Permission is hereby granted for reprint usage in full or in part. Protestant Council HUBERT A. ELLIOTT New York City Executive Secretary

• CHRISTIANITY TODAY is happy to print generous excerpts from Dr. Bader’s article in the interest of objective coverage of the New York campaign. Dr. Bader served as Secretary of Evangelism for his own communion (Disciples of Christ) for 12 years and as Executive Secretary of Evangelism of the Federal Council and National Councils of Churches for 23 years. During the Billy Graham New York Crusade he served as Chairman of the Visitation Evangelism Program.—ED.

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What Is Right with the Billy Graham New York Crusade?

One of the most significant religious events of this year is going on at the present time in the New York area of 15,000,000 people. This event is known throughout the Metropolitan community and even throughout much of the Christian world as the “Billy Graham New York Crusade.” It began on May 15 this year and will close on Reformation Sunday afternoon, Oct. 27, in a closing climactic mass meeting at the New York Polo Grounds.

I have lived in New York … for 25 years. I feel that I know something about my city and its tragic need for the redemption that is found in Christ and the Christian gospel. I know of nothing that has happened religiously during the past 25 years in New York which has so stirred the city and captured the interest of so many thousands as this Crusade has done.

Because of my wide experience in evangelism … I feel impelled to point out some things about the New York Crusade which are very important. Others have been pointing out what is wrong with the New York Crusade. I desire to point out what is right with the New York Crusade.

Some of the articles appearing in a few religious journals have been highly critical of the Billy Graham New York Crusade. There is another side to the Crusade which has not had the attention it deserves. I speak as one who has been present many nights during the Crusade and who has served on two important committees. In other words, I am speaking as one on the inside looking out, rather than one on the outside looking in.

Some of the critics of this Crusade have attended, in some instances, only once or twice. Others have not attended even one service. To criticize the Crusade without attending even one meeting is much like a theater critic who stays home on the opening night of a New York play on Broadway and then attempts to write a review of the play he has not seen.

I would like also to state that I know something of the weaknesses in the various methods of evangelism. These need to be corrected as rapidly as possible, for the sake of the churches and the Kingdom of God. In speaking of that which is right in the New York Crusade, I do not want to be understood as one whose eyes are closed to that which needs changing and adjusting in the Crusade. Nothing human in this world of ours is perfect. If perfection is expected in evangelistic methods, we are expecting the impossible. In the New York Crusade the good things that are happening far outnumber the objectionable things. I presume that no one of us will ever live to see the day when someone has discovered a perfect method that will commend itself to everyone alike. Billy Graham is eager to refine, strengthen and perfect his Crusades. I have never worked with any evangelist in my time who is more open to constructive suggestions than he is.

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What is right with the Crusade? The larger unity found among the New York area Protestant churches is right. There are over 1,500 ministers and churches cooperating harmoniously in this evangelistic Crusade. However, this number does not tell the whole story, since there are many other ministers and churches attending and working who did not sign enlistment cards. In this Crusade there is more real fellowship among the New York ministers and churches than I have seen in the past 25 years on anything. These are praying and working together for the evangelization of this city. This united effort will be a source of strength to every council of churches in the entire area.

What is right with the Crusade? The Christian witness of the Protestant churches is right. In this vast community of 15,000,000, Protestants are a minority. Because of their smaller numbers, there has developed an inferiority complex among many Protestants. At Yankee Stadium on last July 20 there were over 100,000 Protestants present. It was the largest meeting ever held by them in this area. Because of this and other meetings held during the Crusade, Protestants now have a new sense of solidarity and strength. The attendance at Madison Square Garden night after night has done something also for Protestants. The average evening attendance in the Garden was about 17,000. On many evenings the Garden has been packed with 19,500 present and many turned away for lack of room. The total Garden attendance as of August 28 was 1,742,100. By bringing these large numbers of Protestants together during the Crusade, they now have a new sense of a united witness which they had not experienced before. Most of the Protestant churches in the New York area are small. In fact, there are only about 15 churches with large memberships and with nationally known ministers. This vast New York area is a mission field and one of the greatest in the world. To do evangelistic work in the New York area is very difficult. It is liking digging in flint. The same amount of effort put into any Protestant evangelistic project west and south of the northern half of the Atlantic seaboard would produce many times the results. Even so, the Billy Graham New York Crusade is a “near miracle” in its results thus far. These results have gone far beyond human expectations. God has been in it all. Apart from him and the power of the Holy Spirit, these results cannot be explained. Prayer has had much to do with the results. I suppose that no city in all the world has had so many Christians praying daily in its behalf as New York has had during this Crusade. Christians in 109 countries have been praying for this Crusade since last April 1. Over 20,000 Christians in the New York area have signed prayer partner covenants. These pray personally, and in small groups.

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What is right with the Crusade? The sponsorship is right. Billy Graham and his team were invited by the Protestant Council of the City of New York. They accepted the invitation. Therefore, the Crusade is being conducted within the framework of the churches and not apart from them. The Executive Director of the Protestant Council, Rev. Dan M. Potter, is on the platform every night and is present in all the committee meetings. His guiding hand is on the entire Crusade. The Chairman of the Department of Evangelism of the Council is George Champion. He is one of the best known Christian laymen of the city. He is the President of the Chase Manhattan Bank. The Council’s Department of Evangelism named Mr. Champion as Chairman of the General New York Crusade Committee, and Roger Hull as Chairman of the Executive Committee of the Crusade. Mr. Hull is a consecrated churchman and also he is the Executive Vice-President of the Mutual Life Insurance Company. This Crusade is of the churches, for the churches and by the churches. It is being carried on, not apart from the churches, but as part of their cooperative life and work. It should be noted also that no person has been appointed to any Crusade committee without the approval of the Executive Committee. This Committee has passed on all the details of the Crusade. I have heard some people say that the Billy Graham team comes into a city and takes over. This is not true. It may suggest procedures, but it does not take over.

I have conducted many preaching missions across America since 1936. I feel I know something of what a united, successful, evangelistic program can do for a local Council of Churches in producing a new unity and a larger fellowship of Christians.

What is right with the Crusade? The motives are right. Some of the driving motives of this Crusade are:

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To enlist every possible church in the “fellowship of the concerned” for those outside her life.

To make the entire metropolitan area God conscious.

To win men, women and youth to Jesus Christ as their Saviour and Lord. To bring lukewarm church members to a new commitment to Christ and the church.

To train an army of lay witnesses to share their Christian faith with others in face-to-face evangelism.

To present the message of the redeeming love of Christ to the entire metropolitan area and also, by means of television, to the entire nation.

To lead Christians, new and old, into a deeper understanding of what it means to be a committed follower of Christ within the social order.

To integrate into the local churches all those who make “decisions for Christ” during the Crusade.

What is right with the Crusade? The finances are right. The Executive Committee adopted a budget at the beginning of the Crusade. No one handles the money received, whether received through the evening offerings or from individuals, except the Executive Committee. Billy Graham and his team members, each and every one of them, are on salary. Not one penny of the Crusade offerings go to them. Their salaries are paid from Billy Graham’s Minneapolis office. By agreement with the Executive Committee, the Sunday night offerings taken during the Crusade go to help pay for the Billy Graham radio program, “The Hour of Decision.” At the end of the Crusade a public accounting firm will audit the financial records of the Crusade, following which a complete report will be sent to the churches of the area. This report will be published also in the local papers. The cost of the Crusade will exceed $1,500,000, exclusive of the television expenses, for the 23 weeks and 4 days of this unprecedented evangelistic program. The evening offerings and gifts from individuals will cover all the expenses of the Crusade. Because of what the Crusade has meant to the New York community, we feel the expense is more than justified.

What is right with the Crusade? The music is right. There is a Crusade choir of 5,000 enlisted from the churches of the area. Of this number, 1,500 are in the choir each night, and at Yankee Stadium 4,000 members were present. Some of the most majestic hymns of the churches are being sung night after night.

What is right with the Crusade? The human relations are right. Many people of many colors of skin are attending. Many languages are represented. There is racial integration everywhere. One can find many races represented in the choir, among the ushers and among the counselors. Each night those of different colors of skin walk down the aisle together during the hymn of invitation to “receive Christ as Lord and Saviour” or to make a new commitment to him. In this Crusade Billy Graham has three or four races represented on his team. It is a great inspiration to see 17,000 people present and integrated in the Madison Square Garden meetings. All this, after the Crusade has closed, may have some implications for a number of local churches in the New York area.

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What is right with the Crusade? The worship services are right. To sit through a Crusade service any night is much like being in a Sunday church service. There is reverence. There is real worship and it is corporate worship. For many, Madison Square Garden has become a cathedral where the presence of Christ is fell and the work of the Holy Spirit is seen, No one, in my humble opinion, will ever need to apologize for the worship part of the Crusade after it closes. This has not always been true of mass evangelism. At no time has the Crusade stooped to claptrap or cheap methods: One of the most moving parts of the evening services is the response to the invitation at the close of the sermon, when hundreds get up quietly out of their seats and come forward to make a rededication of themselves to Christ or to accept him as their Saviour and Lord for the first time. During this time of decision in each service there is emotion, but emotionalism is absent.

What is right with the Crusade? The Crusade has made it easy to talk religion in New York. People talk seriously about Christ, the churches and the Crusade in buses, on subways, in taxicabs, in stores, in offices and homes. This is something new in New York. People of this teeming city now find it the normal thing to talk naturally about things spiritual. Not since the days of the Billy Sunday Crusade 40 years ago has there been so much religious conversation. For the most part, American Christians have lost the art of religious conversation. Anything that helps to restore this lost art is worthwhile.

What is right with the Crusade? The emphasis on the assimilation and conservation of the results is right. In none of his Crusades has Billy Graham and a local committee made such elaborate plans for a follow-up program as in the New York Crusade. As of August 28, more than 53,283 had responded to the public invitation either to make a rededication of themselves to Christ or to “receive Christ as Saviour and Lord” for the first time. Before the final mass meeting at the Polo Grounds on Sunday afternoon, October 27, the probable number of those who will have responded to the invitation will be at least 75,000. This includes those yet to be reached during the week of Visitation Evangelism, October 20–24. To assimilate and conserve this large number is a huge task, the main responsibility for which rests upon local ministers and churches. Not every one of those who have been counted as “converts” will go ahead and take the “next step” in becoming members of some church. Some will fall away and others drop out.

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Some of the things that are now being done during the Crusade itself, to conserve the results are:

Personal attention and counseling with the person on the evening he or she makes a public decision.

Bible classes are held each evening for one week for all those making decisions. The next week another group attends and so on during the entire Crusade meetings in the Garden.

A packet of literature is given to each person making a decision to get him or her started in the Christian life.

The ministers and churches are expected to call on each “convert” within a few days after the name is received. Special meetings will be held in September, emphasizing the importance of the church, Bible study and the devotional life …

What is right with the Crusade? The leadership is right. I know very well all the members of the Protestant Council of the City of New York. Some of the best ministers and laymen are leaders of its work. I know very well the members of the Executive Committee of the Crusade. I know very well the members of the Billy Graham team. I have never seen men and women more dead in earnest about evangelism, more cooperative in spirit or more eager to see the redemption of a city, than these three groups. These represent various shades of Christian thinking and theological beliefs, yet underneath all the differences they belong to the same Christ and they are part of the same Christian family—the Church of Christ Universal.

Billy Graham is unquestionably sincere, earnest and humble. I have found no one here in New York who doubts this. He preaches with conviction. He has a high Christology, for without that it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to be an evangelist. In all my experience in evangelism, I have never known a minister or an evangelist who was a successful winner of souls to Christ and membership in the Church, who did not have a high Christology. If man is a sinner, he needs a Saviour and a Saviour who “can save to the uttermost.”

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Billy Graham is only 38 years of age, yet at the present time his voice is heard by more millions of people of the world than that of any other preacher today. He has learned how to use mass media for the proclamation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This man and his associates have been and are a real blessing to New York—to the churches and to the entire community. Protestants in New York owe him a great debt for what he and his team have done and are doing for their community through the leadership and power of the Holy Spirit.



I entirely agree with Dr. Robinson’s emphasis (Aug. 19 issue, p. 25) that Paul experienced an objective theophany when the glorified Lord appeared to him in person. This however was not my point in the article in CHRISTIANITY TODAY. There are two points: 1. Did the translators intend to minimize the deity of Christ by their translation of this passage? 2. This question rests on a second: Is it “specifically stated” that Paul recognized the Lord before he was told it was Jesus? If so, then the translation of RSV misrepresents the text. If it is rather a matter of exegesis and judgment, then the matter is open. Perhaps Paul did so recognize the Lord, and perhaps the translators are wrong. If so, the error is in judgment, not in a minimizing theology.

In my judgment, the text is not clear that Paul realized that God was appearing to him, that he was experiencing a theophany. He saw a great light; he heard a voice. At first he did not know what the light meant or whose was the voice. Only after it was interpreted to him did he understand that he had experienced a theophany of the glorified Lord. The text does not say, nor in my judgment does it intimate that Saul fell to the ground at first in worship. He, and the others journeying with him, were overwhelmed by the brilliance of the light, and their prostration was more a physical reaction than an act of worship. There is surely no evidence that the theophany included Saul’s companions or that they were converted.

My position is, I believe, supported by the OT theophanies. In Genesis 17:3, the form of the theophany is not disclosed. God appeared to Abram; God made himself known; then Abram fell on his face in worship. In Exodus 3, Moses saw a burning bush which was not consumed, and he turned aside, not to worship, but to behold the marvel. Then God spoke to him, yet Moses remained erect. Then God made himself known; only then did Moses realize that it was God and worship. He removed his shoes only upon the express command of God. In Joshua 5:13–17, a man stood before Joshua, and Joshua addressed him as a man, challenging him as to his identity. Only when the man asserted that he was commander of the army of the Lord did Joshua fall on his face.

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This, I believe, was the order of events at Saul’s conversion. He saw a blinding light but did not know its source. He heard a voice but did not thought it was an angelic visitation; we do not know. Only after the Lord identified himself did Saul understand.

I have no zeal, in principle, to defend the RSV per se. I do feel, however, that many attacks against RSV are not factually grounded and I believe the rendition at this point is defensible.


Heidelberg, Germany

In reply to Dr. Ladd’s kind answer, I acknowledge that there is exegesis in my understanding of the Lord’s conversion of Paul. In the three accounts, Paul calls the One Who encounters him, Lord, before he is told that this One is Jesus, Acts 9:5; 22:8; 26:15; cf. also 9:17; 22:14. The whole context, blinding light from heaven, smitten to ground, Hebrew language, familiarity with O.T. theophanies, carry the notion that this address was to the Lord whom Saul had worshipped as a Hebrew child. Here, as elsewhere in the theophanies and in the incarnate Lord, God himself encounters man, and the one so confronted responds by addressing God with an appropriate pronoun.


Columbia Theological Seminary

Decatur, Ga.


The personal experiences recorded in “Preacher in the Red” remind me of an incident referred to in one of Bishop Hensley Henson’s published letters.…

At a celebration of the Thanksgiving for Founders and Benefactors of Durham Cathedral, the special preacher was Dr. Headlam, then Bishop of Gloucester. The services proceeded with due solemnity and order, until the Bishop began his sermon. He was then seized with a fit of coughing, in the course of which he evicted his false teeth with some violence. He managed, however, with very creditable effort, to catch the errant treasure before they fell to the floor, and then coram populo, indulged in the difficult art of replacing them.… The boys of Durham School were present in the large congregation.… The whole episode was indescribably funny.…


Knaresborough, Yorks, England


It has that atmosphere of orthodox Christian sanity which one seeks—but so seldom finds—in religious publications today.


St. Barnabas’ Anglican Church

New Westminster, B. C.

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