Russia may be ahead of us in space, but American research has not been idle. From a great laboratory comes the discovery of the century: non-food has been found at last! In a special report, Life magazine describes it as a “tasteless, odorless, harmless white cousin of common sawdust.” It contains no nutrition and no calories.

The new Life is dedicated to winning the cold war and creating a better America. I don’t see how non-food will help to win the cold war—I can’t picture sending shipments of it in SPARE packages to the overweight millions of the world. I’ve studied the pictures of rioting South American peasants in the same issue of Life, and I don’t believe they are calorie-conscious in the same way that we are.

Non-food is plainly our dish, the ideal diet for the flabby American. It was first created in a food blender as a kind of cellulose milkshake. In powder form it can be used in almost every kind of mix. Breads and spreads, soup and candy: our vast commercial kitchens are hitting the sawdust trail. “Let them eat cake!” is the cry of freedom for our overstuffed citizens. No moderation or weight-watching will be necessary: a man can become an emaciated ascetic on five full meals a day. Pile on the meringue: if it’s cellulose, the snowy spire won’t droop. Perhaps non-food cookies won’t even crumble.

I can’t wait for this weightless diet. Ever since I gave up chewing gum (it sticks to my plate) I have fought a losing battle of the bulge.

Pastor Peterson, predictably, does not share my enthusiasm. He thinks we should eat for nourishment, and stop eating before we are full. “Would you return thanks for a non-food dinner? Do you plan to give your children all the cellulose candy they can eat?” In his day, only dolls and toy animals were stuffed with sawdust.

If filler could be kept in the kitchen, the pastor would not protest, however. Filler in the pulpit is his particular peeve. “Padded sermons are no more deceptive than padded shoulders,” he says. “But today’s discovery is the ‘comforter’ sermon: all padding and no shape.”

If the prodigal son had filled his belly with those cellulose husks, he would have remained hungry—and lost.



I believe that article by Harold John Ockenga, “The Communist Issue Today” (May 22 issue), is the finest on that subject that I have read.


Pauma Valley, Calif.

So Dr. Ockenga has been captured by American nationalism! A perusal of his address … certainly gives one the impression that the vertical dimension of Scripture has been replaced by the lateral dimension of the State Department’s current foreign policy. It is most uncongenial for me, a missionary, to challenge a missionary promoter of the stature of Dr. Ockenga. But where in this address is there the missionary perspective?

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… Even at missionary conferences the literature for sale and chit-chat among Christians has revolved more often than not around Schwarz and Welch, “Operation Abolition” and Castro. While it is granted that one dare not shirk political responsibility, the Christian needs to guard against becoming absorbed in politics. Yet in America today the reproach of the Cross, with its top priority of evangelism at home and missions overseas, is being eclipsed by a worldly preoccupation with a Crossless nationalism.

Has it not occurred to our evangelical leaders that the Antichrist, when he finally appears, may probably gain his prominence, influence, and the adulation of the Western world because he is the great, successful Anti-Communist?… Let us not forget that even the Plymouth Brethren (along with not a few other evangelical groups) helped bring Hitler to power in Germany! Captured by nationalism—indeed!


Home Director for North America

China Inland Mission

Overseas Missionary Fellowship

Philadelphia, Pa.

It is alarming to me that men can believe so completely in the power of the Cross to give victory over sin, and then repudiate that Cross by saying we will take the way of violence.…

I believe communism is very bad; I also believe in the gospel of Christ enough to be convinced that it is stronger than communism. It is my prayer that more evangelical Christians will join the ranks of those who believe in the power of non-violent resistance.


First Church of the Brethren

Lansing, Mich.

This is the best, all-inclusive article on this subject I’ve ever read …; it should be widely publicized and gotten into the hands of the people.


Inglewood, Calif.

We now live in an era of some type of quasi-Christian capitalism. Thus we answer the Marxian menace by holding high the Cross, which we have allowed to be molded into one huge, ugly dollar sign.… Christianity in America seems to be a mere facade for economic exploitation and “progress”.… One would suggest that Marxism is a threat because we continue to give more and more adoration to the dollar and its acquisition.


Nanuet, N. Y.

As clear and forceful a statement as I have ever read.

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Honeoye Falls, N. Y.

Our attention has been drawn to the May 22 issue … which quotes this statement by Dr. William Sanford LaSor: “I am waiting to see whether the American Civil Liberties Union will now rise to the defense of Robert Welch and the members of the John Birch Society” (News).… The ACLU did rise to the defense of the civil liberties of the John Birch Society by opposing any governmental investigation into the Society. We believe that the government has no right to probe the private political opinions of individuals or groups regardless of the nature of the individual or groups involved.…


Associate Director American Civil Liberties Union

New York, N. Y.

In your May 22 issue … an editorial includes the following words: “We have no sympathy with wild generalizations, whether made by the McIntires.…”

I assume you are referring to Dr. Carl McIntire, President of the International Council of Christian Churches. I had the privilege recently of hearing Dr. McIntire speak to about 200 Church leaders and workers on the subject of “Communism in the Churches.” It was a masterful presentation, fully documented and about as far removed from “wild generalizations” as a public address can be.



Baptist News

Scarborough, Ont.

He’s giving more facts to the general listening public regarding the church and world situations than any other one person that can daily be heard on the radio.


Calvary Baptist Church

Muskegon, Mich.


Your editorial “Where Is Evangelical Initiative?” (May 22 issue) has been on my mind for several days.… Perhaps we should consider where evangelical initiative is not found.… [It] is not found: in the “practical” sermon, which attempts to stir to action rather than to fill hearts with that vigor which is found only at the root of firm Christian doctrine; … in the adult Bible class where vital biblical discussion is reduced to a drowsy hum; … in the prayer meeting … where the loudest voice is that of an embarrassing silence; … in those “Bible helps” that make all the deep things of Scripture so simple and easy that the illuminating ministry of the Holy Spirit is largely displaced; … in the quick proof-text answers to problems of Christian doctrine and practice which perplex the heart in every age; … in those Christian homes where the parents are so busy doing the Lord’s work outside the home that there is little or no time to spend with those to whom the Lord has joined us; … among Christian people who equate acquaintance with friendship and programs with fellowship; and where Bible verses are memorized to win prizes.

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Utica, N. Y.

The alleged failure of the Church to deal with world crises, the subordinate position of the ministry in the minds of some “thinkers,” even “my passion for the world and lost souls” are not scriptural factors in finding my life’s work.

The Apostle Paul with one or two partners was used of God to spearhead evangelical initiative in an unrivalled missionary campaign.… His submission enabled God to direct a program that turned the world upside down. The God of Paul still lives today and is waiting to call, prepare and then send 18,000 additional missionaries to over a billion people who have never heard of Christ.


Scarborough, Ont.


Concerning “Russian Orthodox Bid for WCC Membership” (May 22 issue), I find no real problem with such a membership inclusion in the WCC since that body seems so devoid of standards that inclusion apparently is the only absolute. That testimony before duly constituted governmental committees has indicated a more than subversive character to some of the leaders of this “Holy Synod” is of little moment to the leaders of the WCC.… The problem which is posed by such further inclusion in this world philosophical forum is “How can those groups claiming to be orthodox and (pardon the expression) fundamental continue to contribute to such an amalgamation?”


Prof. of N. T. Literature and Exegesis

Lutheran Brethren Schools

Fergus Falls, Minn.


Your magazine, I observe, consistently refers to those who base their religious faith in the Koran as “Mohammedans.” Justification for this is to be found, no doubt, in current dictionaries and in the fact that the term is used in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, especially as an adjective to describe art and architecture of the Near East variety. Nevertheless, it should be noted that this use of the term is unwarranted and is repugnant to those who look to Muhammad as their primary prophet.

The term originally grew from the analogy with our word “Christian,” a description that was, at first, one of ridicule. But there is this difference: in the case of “Christian” it is implied and firmly accepted by those who now gladly use the term that Christ was indeed divine and worthy in his own right to be heard, followed and obeyed. The case of Muhammad is quite different. It was one of his main objectives to retain his strictly human character and to appear merely as a vehicle for what he considered to be divine truth. The perpetual reminder of undiluted monotheism is the daily affirmations that “there is no other God but Allah.”

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The correct collective term for this religion is Islam. As applied to individuals or to cultural products the correct term is Muslim (sometimes Anglicized as Moslem). Thus one should say “the Muslim faith or Muslim mosques,” etc. Apart from questions of exactitude it would seem our duty not to use a word that is irritating to those described. We ought not to injure the feelings or wound the sensitivities of those who happen not to adhere to our faith. It seems to me that your journal might well be among those which should seek to re-introduce correct terminology.


Montreal, Que.


May I offer a few suggestions to help improve the present deplorable situation?

1. The home and the Church should begin to teach children, at an early age, the fundamentals of the Christian faith, and its moral principles, including the Ten Commandments and the even higher moral teachings of Jesus and the apostles, as well as decent modern standards of dress. Sex education must be related at all times to these absolute moral values, and the dangers of premarital petting stressed.

2. Misconduct in children and adolescents should be punished, not excused.

3. Adults should set a good example.

4. Children should be encouraged to enjoy their childhood and not be pushed prematurely into dating. Social activities involving both boys and girls should be better supervised.

5. I do not advocate censorship of indecent entertainment (unless it should get too objectionable), but I do think that Christians should simply refuse to patronize it. Conversely, wholesome entertainment and true art should be encouraged.

If there is not a return to Christian morals soon, our Western civilization will go the way of the ancient Roman Empire, but it is not only our civilization that is at stake. It is also our immortal souls.


Washington, D. C.


Converted to Christ and called to the sacred ministry through confirmation classes, and the spiritual power of the biblically-centered Book of Common Prayer, I quickly drifted to “liberal” Christianity. Dazzled by the S.C.M.’s “Christiandity,” I was so busy making Christianity relevant to politics, science, culture, that I had only the haziest idea of what we were making relevant. At theological college I was initially fascinated by the intellectual jigsaw puzzles of dissecting J. E. D. & P. and Q. L. & M., of deciding which of Jesus’ sayings were “genuine,” which of the Epistles were Pauline, and which “non-Pauline.” My positive theology was so vague that the Principal pronounced upon my first sermon, “Could well have been preached by a liberal Jew.” We maintained an attitude of intellectual superiority to “Evangelicalism.” The Evangelicals I had met in Australia had maintained a ‘wowser’ ethic with a nauseatingly priggish self-righteousness. Their worship seemed individualistic and emotional, drowning the gospel in sentimental tears. Their members seemed so absorbed in sect activities that they took no active beneficent interest in the community. Within my own Church, I found them negative, critical, disloyal members. Their attitude to Church history and tradition assumed that the Holy Spirit had slept for 17 centuries, except for a brief awakening to cause the Reformation.

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So I was a smug liberal, intoxicated with intellectual superiority. But one day the question fatal to “liberalism” was forced upon me: “so what?????” I had been studying Vincent Taylor’s commentary on St. Mark, and some laborious work disentangling the truly Pauline parts of the Pastoral Epistles. It was, for Cambridge, a hot afternoon, so I took a stroll around the “backs” relaxing in enjoying the soft summer greens. Alone, my mind was still occupied with my studies; then the thought flashed “What positive interpretation of the Bible for yourself or for your future flock have those two learned books given you?” I faced the futility of such studies. At that time the new College chaplain was urging us for a while to put aside the commentaries, and read and reread the books of the Bible and let them make their impression, and work out for ourselves their doctrine. He spoke of the “almost magical power of the Bible.” From him I learned to read the books of the Bible both in large hunks, and verse analysis comparing text with text, and since then I have aimed to be reading one book of the Bible working steadily through it, and then going on to the next.

I served my first curacy in Lancashire under an Anglo-Catholic vicar. Bibles were handed out to the congregation arriving for Evensong (a most unusual happening in the Church of England), and the Vicar taught his people to read their Bibles. “This is the Word of God. He speaks directly to you through the words of the Bible. You must read, listen and obey.” And his was an evangelistic parish. A great mission planned and prayed towards for many years doubled the congregation, and it stayed doubled. He presented Jesus Christ and worked hard to bring his flock to know and serve Him. There I learned a new respect for the Evangelicals. Our Bishop combined a pastoral concern for his clergy and people with an evangelical concern and leadership, encouraging and often initiating and leading evangelistic missions. At that time I holidayed with the Lee Abbey Community in Devon, an evangelical community endeavouring to draw people to Christ by sharing in their corporate life, and also by undertaking missions. Their zeal in studying and obeying the Word made a great impression on me, and also that they were loyal to their Church and sufficiently sure of their own position to engage in frank, charitable fellowship and discussion with those of “High” and “Broad” outlook within the Church of England.

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Returning to Australia, with a zeal for the Word and for evangelism, I found in my parish there, a normal, conventional Anglican parish, that the faithful were waiting and willing for both. A large number of lay men and women were prepared to undertake planned visitation evangelism to draw families into the life and worship of the Church, and these visitors were prepared to be trained and to pray hard to do this work. Further, they asked for Bible study, stipulating that they did not want vague discussion groups, but solid exposition. We studied in detail St. Mark and Philippians. I had expected questions “Did Jesus really say just that?” or “Did it really happen like that?” but the group were prepared to make sense of the text as it stood, and ask the deeper questions on the doctrinal issues and the practical challenge to our life and conduct.

Such is the story of my second conversion, to evangelicalism—to know the power of the Word of God and the call to proclaim the gospel and call men to Christ. One sustaining help through that conversion has been CHRISTIANITY TODAY which presented the evangelical message with learning, breadth, and intellectual competence and integrity. Now, what a joy to “sit under” the Word of God as it speaks to my soul, to my parish situation, as it gives me the words I must speak to my congregation next Sunday—truly the living words of the living God.


The Anglican Rectory

Wongan Hills, Western Australia


I have just finished reading “Were You There?” by L. Nelson Bell (May 22 issue). It is superb, and I wish to give my testimony to the wonderful helpfulness of the devotional articles which you publish from his pen. Mr. Bell speaks the language of one who walks and talks and dwells with the living Christ Jesus.

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San Diego, Calif.


Re your news item “20 Years of USO” (April 24 issue): Having been connected with Salvation Army Services to the Armed Forces, either directly or indirectly, since my first assignment to USO in 1941, I have on numerous occasions registered my personal protest, as well as forwarding to National Headquarters, that of both enlisted and officer personnel, including chaplains, on the smutty and low quality of USO show performances.

Let me assure you and your readers that I have on numerous occasions stepped to the stage and stopped a performance or an M.C. because of smutty material and only permitted the entertainment to proceed if it was kept clean, and, I do mean clean! Such action on my part usually results in a big round of applause by servicemen present indicating their approval.…

As director of a local USO Club, I am responsible, first, to the Operating Agency, which in this case is The Salvation Army, to direct and conduct this operation in harmony with the basic spiritual and religious as well as service philosophy of the agency and, second, to develop and maintain a well-balanced program in harmony with National USO policy, aimed at definitely meeting “the spiritual, religious, social, recreational, welfare and educational needs of those in the armed forces.”


United Service Organizations, Inc. Dir.

Los Angeles, Calif.


A nation disintegrates when it forsakes its spiritual symbols. History has proven over and over again, that that nation or social order falls apart when it forgets and neglects the symbols of her religious, moral and spiritual life.… Symbols represent the unity, the resourcefulness, the power, the drive, the determination, the patriotism, the values, yes, even the gods the people worship.

The strongest, most virtuous symbol of America’s strength, unity, morality, and religion is the observance of the Lord’s Day … as a time for all people to recognize God’s sovereignty and to worship Him. Observance of the Lord’s Day in a spiritual manner is a symbol of America’s spiritual strength. Failure to observe a day of spiritual “re-creation” is evidence of America’s decadence and dissolution.

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In light of the history of Israel and the various civilizations which are familiar only to archaeologists, it is evident that people neglected their symbols when they pursued too diligently their personal interests.

In America, anything that detracts from a day set aside for the worship of Almighty God weakens the moral fiber of our nation and contributes as much to our degeneracy and final dissolution as do the atheistic teachings of Communistic Russia. A Lord’s Day, Sunday, used exclusively for fun, worldliness, so-called recreation, is just as demoralizing, and conducive to atheism as the teachings of the most rabid, God-hating, Christ-denouncing, religious-symbol-destroying Communist.

The selfish, money-loving business man who opens his business house on Sunday on the pretext that he is serving people who cannot shop at any other time is as much an enemy of America as any foreign agent.… He is destroying the very heartbeat of America’s moral life.

People who love America, even though denying any religious faith or affiliation, should support the symbols of America’s strength by a strict observance of one day of divine worship, recognition of God’s sovereign power, out of every seven. They and their brethren who believe in Christ and the work of his church should refuse to support and patronize the money seekers who would destroy our greatest symbol of faith in God.


Aurora Christian Church

Aurora, Colo.


Thought you might be interested to know that my late grandfather, A. N. Fraser, was a subscriber, and my father F. E. Vogan is at present a subscriber. So this makes it three generations. After a short business career, I am now in seminary, and find your thoughtful writing a great blessing.


Pittsburgh, Pa.

I think CHRISTIANITY TODAY is the best guide in evangelical doctrine we have.


Montgomery, Ala.

The fact is I like CHRISTIANITY TODAY because it so ably upholds ideas that I do not accept. I enjoy its challenge to my own way of thinking, and to a large degree I go along with much of its contents.…


First Methodist Church

Durango, Colo.

It is heartening to see intellectual evangelicals who are neither afraid nor ashamed to continue giving the Bible its rightful place of authority.

It is disturbing to see here and there one time “sound” evangelicals who now consider this view of the Scriptures incompatible with “love.” I believe these true members of the Body of Christ are mistaking love (agape) for what E. P. Schulze (“A Letter to Missouri,” Nov. 21 issue) termed “syncretistic theological latitudinarianism.” It seems to me that truly to love with God’s own love we must be willing to be misunderstood and to be sometimes described as “unloving.”

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Durham, N. C.

It seems that many in our day are wanting a United Church but like thousands of other churchmen, they are not willing to pay the price of Christian unity. Christ prayed for the unity of his followers and the Apostles pleaded for and preached unity.… Accepting nothing as authoritative but the teachings of the Word of God we could see the restoration of the Church of the New Testament.


Rich Acres Christian Church

Martinsville, Va.

I believe your magazine is the proper way for the churches to be joined together, with each of us using different ways and means to reach “everyone” in the highways and byways of life.


Corcoran, Calif.

It is nice for you to be international and interdenominational, because heaven will be like that.


Sierra Madre, Calif.

Only God can truly know the extent of this ministry in uniting Bible-believing people of nearly all denominations, giving to them a sense of their essential oneness in Christ Jesus.…


Vineyard Estates Baptist Church

Oxnard, Calif.

I appreciate very much your publication being a publication of Christianity and not a publication of a denomination.


Maracay, Venezuela

Please discontinue sending this magazine to me. I do not share the views … and do not care to have your “lack of love” attitude crossing my desk so often.… I have done the same to Christian Century as I do not care to have so much of that controversy before me.

As many other pastors, perhaps, I am seeking to spread love and not doctrinal or religious discontent.…


Prestonburg, Ky.

The biblical literalist is self-righteous; the liberalist, an unbearable snob.


Hartford, S. Dak.

We believe it is one of the finest Christian publications available today.


Southwestern Bible Institute

Waxahachie, Tex.

I find very little in your magazine that is congenial or creatively stimulating to me.


Cold Spring-On-Hudson, N. Y.

Great evangelical magazine.…



School of Religion

Seattle Pacific College

Seattle, Wash.

I think it is not true to truth but bears to inaccurate representation of the best biblical scholarship and philosophy.


Ithaca, N. Y.

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Perhaps there are at times temptations, even pressures, to enter the subjectivistic side shows of evangelical Christianity and concomitant peculiarities bearing sectarian labels. You have steadfastly resisted these trends in keeping your magazine in the mainstream of historic, classical Protestant theology. This is the kind of hard-nosed objectivity a Missouri Lutheran understands. It is, in my judgment, the only way to preserve evangelical Christianity.


Editorial Assistant

Com. on College and University Work

The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod Chicago, Ill.

Let me express my appreciation for the finest Christian magazine today. I believe that the influence of CHRISTIANITY TODAY is incalculable. If a revival of biblical Christianity comes to pass in our era, I think that this one publication will have had a very great deal to do with it.


East Glenville Church

Scotia, N. Y.

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