By William C. Sexton
Good books are valuable, but many children of God do not read as many good books as they could and/or should; many who would read and do, often do not have knowledge of some good books which would contribute to their growth and help them be prepared to help others to know Christ and His saving power. After these many years, I have come to realize that making known the value that I have received from my reading of good books may be helpful to others. I have read a book recently which I think should have wide use among faithful members of the Lord’s church. It is the fruit of a man’s experience who has lived a long life (nearly 85 years); he is Loren N. Raines of Bedford, Indiana.
The book is divided into two parts. Five chapters deal with “God’s Right to Make Requirements,” covering one hundred thirty nine (139) pages. Another five chapters deal with “What the Lord Requires.” The book has 269 pages, and it is paper back, selling for $4.95.
The first part covers, in what I believe a good way, the fact that God, the Creator, has the right to make requirements on man, His creatures. His wisdom and goodness is manifest in the gift of His Son, to be “Our Savior.” The Holy Spirit has been active in “Revealing His will,” providing us with “God’s “Word” as “Our Guide.” Consequently, Our Creator has provided us with “God’s Church” as “Our Refuge.” When one reads this part, he will be impressed with the writer’s knowledge, insight, and conviction as to God’s existence, Man’s need, and man’s responsibility – to serve God and prepare for eternity, by being realistic now!
If one reads the first part, and uses his ability to reason and understand, he will be ready then to accept what is required by the Lord in his and other’s lives. This section points to the specifies of the alien sinner and the sins of the child of God, too. The writer challenges the person to see himself in the light of God’s universe and to respond for his good and that of the community – living the word and telling it to others.
I am convinced that if each child of God will read this book through and take notes on it, then hand it to a person in whose soul’s salvation one has an interest and invite them to read it and relate their reaction to it, each will be helped and serving a useful purpose.
Brother Raines, although I have never met him, has been an educator in secular (teaching school) and spiritual matters (preaching the gospel). It appears that he uses his knowledge of secular and natural forces enough to let the reader see that he knows whereof he speaks, but then he points to the rational and useful aspects of the Divine revelation of God in the lives and behavior of humanity.
This is one of those books which I feel should be used by members of the Lord’s family to try to reach and motivate the neighbor to become a child of God and grow in His service.
Recently in a meeting, I was told by a member of the church that she had been trying to get a friend to attend services with her to find that she was not all that interested. But, then she had given her a book on how we got the Bible and to her surprise, she has related that she “never had thought” of the idea that the Bible was the type of Book that it was. This indicates that we may be able to stir interest and quicken one toward the truth by handing them a book – that is fitting for their situation. I challenge the readers to purchase a copy of this and then to read it and pass it on to a friend – whose soul you are concerned about.
Truth Magazine XXIV: 40, pp. 642
October 9, 1980