Torch, Fall 1979

Dr. Paul Dixon, President TAE BOCK CF BOCKS S ale of Christian books, according to George Gallup, is the second fastest growing industry in America. In 1977, 2752 religious bookstores operated in this country. One new Christian bookstore opens every day. Sales of Christian books now total $600 million annually, states John Bass, executive vice president of the Christian Booksellers Association. These facts are most encouraging and exciting. If leaders are readers, then I add that so are maturing Christians. We as parents must be lovers of books. We also have a responsibility to influence our children to read good Christian literature. Note the emphasis on good. I agree with John Ruskin, who said, "Life being very short, and the quiet hours of it few, we ought to waste none of them in reading valueless books." I can personally testify that, as a new Christian in my freshman year of college, my life was challenged and changed through profitable reading. I am grateful for that early exposure to R. A Torrey's The Power of Prayer, An Autobiography by Charles G. Finney, Through Gates of Splendor and Shadow of the Almighty by Elizabeth Elliot, Borden of Yale by Mary G. Taylor, Hudson Taylor's Spiritual Secret and many others. This issue of Torch is designed to help you with your knowledge of books and the building of a personal library. I must add a note of warning. No book by any author can replace the Bible, the Book of Books. We must beware lest we allow our commentaries, devotional guides and Bible story books to take the place of our direct meditation on the Scriptures. This is a very real danger for all of us. It is usually much easier to read a book about the Bible than to study it for ourselves. John Ruskin said, "All books are divisible into two classes: the books of the hour, and the books of all time." That being true, then, the Bible is the one Book for eternity. At Cedarville College we stand on the foundational principle of the inerrancy of the Scriptures. This is supported without apology by all our trustees, administrators, faculty and staff. Our goal is to instill in our students the desire to be readers and lovers of books-especially the Book of Books. We have truly an outstanding Christian bookstore. We would be happy to be of service to you, your family and your church in providing Bibles and books. 3