All the superlatives have been used. The spine-tingling excitement shared by most of the world as man stepped out upon the moon has begun to diminish, and we have all come back to earth again. For those who were actively involved in Apollo 11’s historic flight to the moon there remains the less glamorous task of debriefing, “decontamination,” and evaluation. For all of us—both great and small, educated and unlearned, famous and unknown—this is a time to meditate and wonder, to reflect and speculate about the significance of man’s first venture to another heavenly body.
As might be expected, reaction has been mixed. Some feel the whole venture was a waste of money that should have been spent in solving earthbound problems. To others, the Apollo mission is only the beginning of man’s conquest of outer space. Still others have expressed the hope that this venture will serve as a catalyst to bring together in peace those who share the planet Earth.
We applaud the successful efforts of all who were a part of this marvelous achievement, and we join with others in thankful praise to God for the safe return of the crew. At the same time we would urge restraint in evaluating the meaning of this episode of human achievement.
Centuries ago King Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon surveyed the great kingdom he had built and saw in it evidence of his own might and majesty: “Is not this great Babylon which I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honor of my majesty?” To make it clear that “the most high ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will,” God changed the mighty monarch into little more than a raging beast. Only ...1
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