Education Filled With Hope


Education today leaves young people without hope. It might teach them how to earn a living, but it fails to show them how to live. We have written about this educational paradox many times before. Our universities have graduated brilliant scientists and engineers—experts in their fields. Meanwhile, nations war against nations, marriages are splitting apart, children are raised without discipline, families are disintegrating.

There is a crisis in education.

I plan to start a small college in 2001, perhaps 2002. In June, the Philadelphia Church of God purchased 38 acres of land with a beautiful three-acre lake. Our short-term goal is to use that land to build a college that will better educate our youth today. But that is just a small beginning of a process that will one day fill the whole Earth with hope-filled education!

We are resurrecting an educational system established by Herbert W. Armstrong. Since his death in 1986, his own followers have obliterated some or all of what he taught. But the world needs his teachings now more than ever! Here is what Mr. Armstrong wrote in the Plain Truth, September 1978:”I was never called to engage in the college business. But by 1947 the need had become imperative to establish an educational arm of the Church on the college level. It definitely was not because this world needed another college. There were too many of this world’s institutions of higher education already!

“But the living God had caused me to realize the serious need for a college to educate a ministry for His Church and to train other personnel to fill the increasing number of administrative offices. For this purpose it had to be God’s kind of college—utterly unique in the world. No college or theological seminary extant filled this purpose.”

Mr. Armstrong went on to explain what was lacking in educational institutions today. He quoted from a section of Ambassador College’s annual catalog, titled “The Missing Dimension in Education”: “It is generally recognized by educators that dangerous evils have leavened the educational system. Curricula, generally, have become wholly materialistic. Demands in scientific, technological, industrial, commercial and professional fields have put the emphasis on the purely technical and intellectual, at sacrifice of spiritual, moral and cultural development; on curriculum rather than on character; on earning a living at the neglect of learning how to live!

“Universities have grown so large, students lose their identity, moving along a huge academic conveyor belt. Personality development is sacrificed. Personal contact between student and instructor becomes nonexistent.

“The most essential knowledge is the purpose and meaning of life—the true values as distinguished from the false—and the way to peace, happiness and abundant well-being. But this basic and most important dimension in education is entirely missing from traditional curricula.”

What is wrong with the education of this world? Where have educators gone wrong? Mr. Armstrong gave us the big overview that Ihave never read from any other source. I hope you will think deeply about what he wrote.

In last month’s Trumpet, we explained the origin of present civilization in the Garden of Eden incident, described in Genesis 2 and 3. There the parents of humankind, Adam and Eve, under the influence of Satan, chose to reject God’s education on proper and right living, and began to look only to themselves as the source of knowledge on how to live. God did give them that choice, and the free moral agency to make up their own minds. But when they rejected Him, He then sentenced them and their descendants—all of mankind, but for a few specially called and chosen from among them by God—to being cut off from Him and His revealed spiritual knowledge. He left mankind to develop his own governments, his own religions—his own system of education.

That is exactly what man has done. The unhappy results are proof that man, cut off from God, does not know how to educate himself.

Ambassador College

Mr. Armstrong founded Ambassador College (AC) on the spiritual foundation every other college lacks.

We will do the same. At our college, we will prove to our young people that evolution is a fable. We will prove the existence of God. Our college students will learn the Bible as they could in no other institution.

Mr. Armstrong continued in the article quoted above, “The only truly scientific method is to prove a proposition before accepting it as scientific fact. But has either science or education proved the evolutionary theory? Emphatically they have not! By its very nature it is a theory not subject to proof. Has either science or education proved the nonexistence of a personal Supreme God, of supreme intelligence, wisdom, and power to create? Emphatically they have not! Why, then, do so many great minds who profess knowledge and wisdom doubt or deny God’s existence? Simply because of something inherent in human nature—something of which they are ignorant—a spirit of vanity, coupled with hostility and rebellion against their Maker and His authority!

“Is it, after all, rational or intellectual to willfully assume fables, unproved and unprovable, to be fact, while ridiculing provable truth, branding it folklore?”

That kind of education leaves young people without hope.

“If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable” (i Cor. 15:19). This verse reveals the fundamental flaw in education today. Whether it is religious or secular education, young people are only taught a hope that causes misery. Educators are giving our youth hope only in this life, and our young people are miserable!

You can see that just by examining the fruits of their lives.

Colleges and universities rush headlong into assuring that our youth have no hope in a future life. They feverishly work to teach fables like evolution, while they can prove none of these fables true! But they seem so convincing, religion follows along! That reveals how bankrupt religion is!

How can men and women made in the image of God have hope if they close their minds to the God who created them?

“For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them” (Matt. 13:15). Educators have closed their minds to God and to real hope. They scorn anyone who would dare prove the existence of God and build hope in our incredible human potential. (Write for our free book on that subject, Incredible Human Potential.)

Imagine this bizarre fact. Educators should spend their main effort in opening young people’s minds to the truth. Instead, they work extremely hard to close young people’s minds to the truth of God. That is not true education—it is inexcusable ignorance!

These educators have become the most ignorant people of all. They have closed their minds to God and called this ignorance “education”!

Millions of hopeless young people are their fruits.

At our college, we will teach our young people to open their minds to all truth and “prove all things.” And I mean proof that anybody should be able to see. We will give them hope—based on proof.

Like Mr. Armstrong, our aim will be to provide students with a well-rounded, liberal arts education. We plan to have strong classes in history, journalism, music, nutrition, computers, television production, speech and leadership.

We will have a class on news analysis, where students will be taught the true meaning behind world news. They will see how world news is fulfilling Bible prophecy. Their Bibles will come alive as they never imagined!

We also have the capacity to teach accounting, agriculture, English, Spanish and some other basic classes.

It will obviously start small, just like Ambassador College did. Mr. Armstrong began AC in 1947 with only eight instructors and four students. But Ambassador grew into three different campuses, educating several hundred students each year. God tells us to not despise the day of small beginnings (Zech. 4:10). We must see where that small beginning leads.

Education With Vision

Here is another visionary comment from Mr. Armstrong: “I have traveled into all parts of the world. In China and India millions are starving. The filth, squalor and wretchedness is simply indescribable. This same degenerate condition of degradation and suffering fills many parts of Central and South America, and of Egypt and other parts of Africa. Two thirds of the people on Earth live in such destitution. I thought of the joyous World Tomorrow that is coming, and immediately the question came to mind: How can abundant well-being be brought to these teeming impoverished millions?

“And the answer was obvious. Correct the cause—lack of right education.

“On the other hand, I have known many of the world’s leading men—heads of state, industrialists, bankers, scientists, educators. And most of them—the highly educated—were not happy. Some committed suicide. Their minds were of high caliber; their IQs were high. They had learned much in material knowledge—they had learned how to earn a living—but they had not learned the true values, nor how to live. It will require a right education, available to all, to correct all the world’s ills.

“Very soon, today’s decadent education will be replaced by the educational system of the World Tomorrow. This already has been introduced in Ambassador College. And like the proverbial grain of mustard seed, it is already beginning to spread around the world.

“Ambassador College knows, and teaches, the purpose and true meaning of life—the true values that pay off—and the way to peace, happiness, and abundant well-being. How do we know? We don’t guess, or theorize, or express unfounded opinions—we have it on authority! The Bible is that authority, and it is proved to be the revelation of the almighty living God to humankind. The Bible is the world’s biggest seller, but also the book almost nobody knows. Few even know what it is.

“When you purchase a gadget or mechanism, you receive an instruction book which the maker sends along with his product. The most complicated mechanism ever produced is the human mind and body. The Bible is our Maker’s instruction book which He sent along with His product. It is the authoritative revelation of the most necessary basic knowledge otherwise inaccessible to the mind of man—even the great minds! It is the foundation of all knowledge and the approach to humanly acquirable knowledge.

“Here is what modern education doesn’t know, and fails to teach:

“What isman?Why is man? What are the true values? What is the way to the most necessary

objectives—peace, happiness, abundant well-being? This basic knowledge cannot be acquired by all the mental, inventive, mechanical, exploratory, observational or philosophical powers of man. This kind of necessary knowledge is received only by revelation! It has always been accessible. Yet science and modern education grope hopelessly in the dark, searching, researching, speculating and philosophizing in vain for the acquisition of knowledge that can come only through the very source they reject! Astonishing? Yes. Intelligent? Well, hardly!”

Land Purchase

Purchasing our 38 acres with its spring-fed, glittering lake is only the beginning. Now we must start a building program, which will be backed by enthusiastic supporters.

Our members and co-workers have a vision of where this is leading. We fully understand that time is running out fast in this world. This Earth is about to experience its worst catastrophe ever. We are going to use this land to build two, three or four major buildings—depending on the time we have to do so.

We fully expect these new facilities to accelerate our work in a short amount of time. The first building should be finished in early 2001. It will be a 22,000-square-foot field house. Inside will be an elegant gymnasium with a raised stage at one end. At the other end, there will be locker rooms and a cafeteria with a commercial-sized kitchen. There will also be several offices in the building.

In addition to being the hub of activity for college life, the field house will serve as an excellent summer camp facility for many of our teenagers before they are old enough to attend college. We canceled our camp this summer—the first time we have not had a camp in nine years. To this point, we have always rented a camp facility. Next year, we will be thrilled to offer our young people an even better camp experience—on our own property!

The field house will serve other needs as well, giving us room to expand our headquarters facilities here in Edmond and providing a weekly meeting hall for our local congregation as well as for special conferences and festivals. It will truly serve as a “multi-purpose” center.

Herbert W. Armstrong’s Ambassador College won several awards as the most beautiful college campus in America. We will follow in that tradition, on a much smaller scale. We follow the same God. When Franz Josef Strauss, called the strong man of Germany, visited the school, he said, “When you see Ambassador College, you see what you can do for this world.”He saw the potential of beautifying this entire Earth. But why can’t man ever achieve that goal? We see degeneration accelerate in most areas, and events move towards catastrophe.

Mr. Strauss saw what we want to show everyone who will see. He also saw the smiling, joyful faces of the students. But he failed to see the vision that produced that majestic college. He didn’t see what Mr. Armstrong saw and wrote about so often. That understanding is what the world is about to comprehend—after unparalleled suffering.

There is a cause for every effect. If you can make one small area on this Earth inspiring and uplifting, you can make the whole Earth that way!

Ambassador College was a vision of what could be. So will our college be a vision of the future. I believe the small lake on our property increases the potential beauty ten-fold.

There is a reason why God wants us to build in a way that inspires people to achieve more. The fact is, people perform better in an exquisite environment. That is the way it should be for all humanity. And that is the way it will be!

Our education will begin in an inspiring environment. And the students will be taught to help keep it that way. Those who refuse will be asked to leave our college.

This is how God will start changing the Earth in the World Tomorrow. There is only a small beginning in this world today. Why? Christ is preparing a people so He will have a government in place when He returns very soon.

That is a practical solution. And it is real! But only a few people will comprehend that deep vision before Christ returns. Only a few will have been educated into that awesome hope in this evil world.

God started Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden—an earthly paradise. It was a vision of what God would have done over the entire world if Adam and Eve had led mankind to obey their Creator. But they rejected their Creator by eating from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, rather than the tree of life.

Ambassador College under Mr. Armstrong was different, because the faculty and students ate from the tree of life. They didn’t experiment with different religions of mankind. They lived by every word of God—the tree of life.

We are going to follow that example. Physically, our small college will be a vision of hope. The Earth will still become a Garden of Eden. Our plot of land will help make that magnificent potential clear.

And that’s not all. One day, the whole universe will be made to look like the Garden of Eden.

Preparing Rulers

Humanity has always lived in fear of terrorism and war. Our students will learn how to bring peace to mankind. “Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this” (Isa. 9:7). Peace is about to fill this Earth and universe, because of God’s government. Mankind is about to stop fighting against the rule of its Creator. Abundant peace and hope will be the result. There is going to be “no end.” God’s beauty and peace will continue expanding forever in an endless universe! (Write for our free booklet The Wonderful World Tomorrow.)

That result comes from applying God’s government and law. That is why Ambassador College was a spiritual oasis in a wilderness of political, scientific and religious confusion.

Why do we refuse to see that God wants us in His family to build a Garden of Eden universe? Why won’t we see our potential? Because, as Revelation 12:9 says, Satan has deceived this world. But even religion today doesn’t believe that verse.

“The wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad for them; and the desert shall rejoice, and blossom as the rose” (Isa. 35:1). First the Earth will blossom as a rose! Then the universe will blossom as a rose!

God is calling us to change the Earth and the universe. And it starts here and now!

What we are starting is not an easy undertaking. But oh, how rewarding it will be! Without vision, our 38 acres would be just another plot of land. With vision, it will help people see what God is about to do in this world. Our students will see God’s master plan for the universe! What a mind-galvanizing vision! And it is no fantasy. There is a reason that universe is out there! We must expand our thinking beyond Earth. We were created to be in the God family. You can’t confine God to this Earth.

There is a mountain of hope in God’s educational plan.

“And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen” (Rev. 1:6). God’s people are the Kingdom of God in embryo. They are kings and priests in embryo—“has made” the verse says. God is preparing rulers to fill the world with His knowledge as the waters fill the ocean beds (Isa. 11:9).

Where is education leading us today? Mr. Armstrong had this to say: “True progress is not measured by the false yardstick of gadgetry, mechanical devices, and the fatal concept that labor is a curse and idleness is a blessing. Science, industry and modern education have concentrated on developing the machine while degenerating the man!

“Education—and the world of its creation—has lost all knowledge of the purpose and true meaning of life. It has lost all sense of the true values, while blindly pursuing the false. Education has failed to teach the way to peace, happiness, and abundant well-being. The actual bitter fruits of this modern materialistic ‘progress’ are increased unhappiness, discontent, boredom, and moral, spiritual and educational decadence! The American and British peoples are traveling the identical road that led to the fall of the ‘great’ nations of the past—Egypt, Babylon, Greece and Rome!”

And you don’t even need the Bible to prove that statement. Study your history books. After the Bible, history will be our most important class.

This Earth is about to explode into a nuclear nightmare (Matt. 24:21-22). That is the epitome of man’s education! He is about to destroy all human life off this planet—a product of man’s hopeless education!

Would we destroy all human life off the planet before we heeded Christ’s warning? The answer is yes. But Christ will stop it before all human life becomes extinct. And yet, He will not do so until we have learned a fundamentally critical lesson.

Mankind must come to admit that he cannot rule and educate himself! If it weren’t for Christ’s intervention, we would educate ourselves into oblivion!

Time is now a crucial factor.

It’s time to wake up and learn that only God’s educational plan works. There is no hope in man’s education. Look at the fruits! Christ said, “By their fruits you shall know them.” A true Christian believes Christ.

How long and how intensely must we suffer before we will let God educate us?