“The most important business in this Nation–or any other nation, for that matter-is raising and training children. If those children have the proper environment at home, and educationally, very, very few of them ever turn out wrong. I don’t think we put enough stress on the necessity of implanting in the child’s mind the moral code under which we live.
The fundamental basis of this Nation’s law was given to Moses on the Mount. The fundamental basis of our Bill of Rights comes from the teachings which we get from Exodus and St. Matthew, from Isaiah and St. Paul. I don’t think we emphasize that enough these days.
If we don’t have the proper fundamental moral background, we will finally wind up with a totalitarian government which does not believe in rights for anybody except the state.” quote President Harry S. Truman February 15, 1950
GREAT enthusiasm was recently aroused by the masterful address delivered at Oyster Bay by President [Theodore] Roosevelt, on the occasion of the anniversary of the Long Island Bible Society. The oration was printed in the form of a leaflet by the American Bible Society, and already sixty thousand copies have been issued in English, and ten thousand in Spanish, besides editions in Arabic, Japanese, and Tagalog. The printing presses of the world are teeming with volumes of the Word of God, translated and printed in more than three hundred different languages and dialects.
In writing to the Pall Mall Gazette John Ruskin once said: “Let me tell you what the Bible is; it is the grandest group of writings existent in the rational world, translated with beauty and felicity into every language of the Christian world, and the guide since so translated of all the arts and acts of that world which have been noble, fortunate, and happy.”
The literature of the whole Bible is a study upon which scholarly minds are directing ever increasing attention. Every conceivable light is thrown upon it, exploration, collateral history, and deep, penetrating scholarship. It was composed by many authors, covering in the years of its composition one third of human history. Authors wrote its inspired pages, numbering prophets and peasants, kings and fishermen, philosophers and poets, lawgivers and prisoners.
Everything great begins with God. God is a poet; creation is his poem. The soul is dead that sheds no light. God is the origin of all originals. The secret of strength is with the Soul. The soul renews its youth when it begins with the â€œAncient of Days.â€? No forward movement is possible to a man till he stands for God. Every enterprise that counts out God begins doubtfully and ends disastrously.
Would you take up the study of history? The Bible is the foundation of all history. It is said that the books of Moses were written eleven hundred years before Herodotus the so-called â€œfather of history,” was born. Would you plunge into the labyrinth of jurisprudence? You will learn that the Decalogue and the Sermon on the Mount are the embodiment of all civil and ecclesiastical law.
The fundamental principles of all good government are taken from the same inspired source, and the only remedy for the social evils which exist in every nation is the practice of the golden rule.
Every department of literature is illustrated in the Holy Scriptures. Seek you biography? â€œhere will you find more interesting characters than those of Abraham, Moses, David, Esther or Paul? Where may you look for more thrilling events than those given in the Old Testament history? Some one has said that â€œJoshua’s subjugation of Canaan was a great military movement, fraught with more far-reaching consequences than the Norman Conquest. Jerusalem, the city of twenty-seven sieges, has as weird a history as any on the globe.” Where in literature is there found finer style than is exemplified in the matchless lines of David or the unparalleled imagery portrayed by the aged divine on the lonely isle of Patmos? In the Psalms we have Hebrew poetry which sweeps through all the ranges of passion. Ecstatic pulsations of delight are expressed with a masterful touch, and the deepest minor chords of sorrow, of abject humiliation, of heartrending bereavement and soul-stirring emotion are all found in the workmanship of inspired poesy. Carlyle says that the book of Job is â€œone of the grandest things ever written with a pen.â€? and adds. â€œWhere can be found a more perfect romance than is found in the book of Ruth, the book which the critical Goethe calls â€˜the loveliest specimen of epic poetry we possess’?”
From this wonderful Bible the master minds of all ages have drawn their inspiration. Without it we would never have had the priceless treasures given to literature by men like Milton, Young. Dante, and Bunyan. Half the beauties of Goldsmith, Whittier, Longfellow, and Tennyson would be lost were they robbed of all the Scriptures have done for them. Where is there a grander piece of oratory than that of Paul before Agrippa. when his denunciations caused the king to tremble on his throne?
Should the student enter the realm of art, he will stand spellbound before the masterpieces which have derived their choicest themes from the â€œBook of books.” Witness Leonardi da Vinci’s â€œLast Supper” Raphaelâ€™s â€œTransfiguration” and the world-renowned paintings of the Madonna.
The lover of music finds his soul stirred to the very depths as he hears the sublime symphonies of Haydn in â€œThe Creationâ€? and of Handel in â€œThe Messiah.â€?
Exploded theories and visionary expositions lie all along the pathway of the worldâ€™s seekers after truth, but the book which should be the supreme text-book for all mankind has stood the test of thirty centuries, and while, in recent years, stupendous explorations and painstaking excavations have been made, the tabulated stone-the monumental history-rises up all over the ancient world to testify to the everlasting truths, which have withstood the iconoclastic blows of opposition and criticism.
With President Roosevelt, â€œWe plead for a closer and wider and deeper study of the Bible so that our people may be in fact, as well as in theory, â€˜doers of the word and not hearers only’.â€?