When, in all of history, have young people had such opportunity (opportunities at their doorsteps), as they have right now? By that I mean the opportunity that God offers the youngsters sitting in this room. If Christ were to come in the year 2010—it is not a prediction; I just throw it out as an example—five year olds in this room would be fifteen (if I did my math correctly). A ten year old would be twenty, and would have lived much of his or her teenage life in the turnaround of civilization—a time of the destruction of the city of Babylon and the incipient creation of the Millennium, by God.
If Christ were to come in the year 2010, a fifteen year old boy or girl would be twenty-five. If [this young person] were protected by God, and God says that He will do that, he would be twenty-five. He would be physically mature. The boys would be vigorous and the girls, if I could use Martin's term, would be dazzling. What a wonderful world of opportunities they will have at their doorstep.
Today I want to address and ask a question. What should our response be, as members in God's church, given the fact that our children will be on the ground floor of the greatest civilization that the world will ever see? What can we do to prepare them, or to help them to prepare? And what should the response of our youngsters be [based upon] the fact that they face so much opportunity in just a few years?
Today I want to scratch the surface of those questions. They are big questions, and I am only going to scratch the surface. When we start talking about the protection that God provides (and will provide for our children) and the opportunities that they will have in the world to come—it is a gigantic topic.
But, I will approach this question from the "back door" and then conclude with a look at the opportunities that God will afford them and discuss the response (the proper response) that we should all have to those opportunities.
We will start in Acts 3. I will not ask you to turn there. I am just going to read it very quickly, because here Peter speaks of Christ:
Acts 3:21 Whom the heaven must receive until the times of restitution of all things,
Peter describes a complete restoration (as we will see later on)—a thorough-going regeneration of all things—spiritually, physically, every aspect of life. The word "times" is kronos. It is in the plural in the Greek. It Is not always in the plural, but it is here. "Times" is more than one time of restoration. There are two, at least. One is called—"the Millennium;" the other—the "White Throne period." Christ probably combined these two periods of time under one term, "the world to come." He uses that term in Matthew 12:32 and also in Mark 10:30 (we will not turn there). "The world to come. . ."
In the next thirty minutes, I want to speak about the opportunities presented by God—presented, rather, by the population growth—which God prophesied will characterize "the World Tomorrow." That particular population growth will take place in prosperity. It will not take place in poverty as at all. That growth will take place in prosperity.
What will God do to make this level of population growth and prosperity—at the same time—possible? What will we do, as priests and kings in this new world, to make sure that people do not blow away the opportunities that God has given them? And what will "the family of men" do in the face of this kind of opportunity that we will be talking about?
I submit to you that the "family of God" will collaborate with the "family of man." They will work together. They will be co-workers, and they will work throughout the Millennium (for those thousand years). And, by doing so, they will position the planet to carry the load of population that it will have to carry in "the White Throne period" (which we will be talking about tomorrow), when the population of the earth will suddenly balloon. It will just explode to almost astronomical levels because of the second resurrection.
In Isaiah 51, the prophet tells us to what condition God will restore the earth. God provides an important benchmark of the restitution here.
Isaiah 51:3 For the LORD will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD.
God will move to change the ecosystem, to restore the environment such that it will be like Eden. It does not say it is going to be Eden exactly. It is going to be like Eden, similar to it. Now Eden was very limited. If you would read Genesis it was just a small section of land somewhere eastward. But Eden is going to be a prototype of what the World Tomorrow is like. Ultimately, it will be worldwide. So as Eden was, so shall the world become.
Notice Ezekiel 36. Here, again, God makes reference to Eden in the context of the Millennium in a millennial setting.
Ezekiel 36:33-35 Thus says the Lord GOD: "On the day that I cleanse you from all your iniquities, I will also enable you to dwell in the cities, and the ruins shall be rebuilt. The desolate land shall be tilled instead of lying desolate in the sight of all who pass by. So they will say, 'This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden; and the wasted, desolate, and ruined cities are now fortified and inhabited.'"
So Eden provides a benchmark. It is a model. It is a standard. And to see what the restored planet will be like, we need to go back to Eden—to the beginning. We need to go back to Genesis. So please turn to Genesis 1, and I want you to notice one very important aspect of God's creation (the emphasis that God places on His creation): It is one of fertility. It is one of abundance, of fecundity.
Genesis 1:20-22 Then God said, "Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens." So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. And God blessed them, saying, "Be fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth."
I do not know whether you have thought about it, but Genesis 1 is more fertile than the "begets." It is probably the most fertile chapter, I think, of the entire Bible. There is pollen blowing in the air everywhere. There are beasts and fowl and fish fruitfully multiplying right and left, in obedience to God's command to multiply, to be fruitful.
The same theme carries on in verses 24 and 25—"Let the earth bring forth." Let us take a look at verse 28, for God issues His very first command to Adam and Eve, newly created.
Genesis 1:28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, "Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth."
Now mankind was to replenish the earth. The verb, "replenish," means "to fill" or "to build up again." It is related to the word "full." Just a few days before God spoke those words to Adam and Eve, the earth was dark and it was void and it was empty. It was tohu and bohu, as we well know. One of mankind's responsibilities was to "fill the earth." Little, localized Eden was to expand—as animal life and mankind filled the planet, replenishing it (just as it had been filled with life earlier).
You may want to turn to Matthew 19 because here Christ, addressing His disciples, uses an interesting term when He refers to the first period of the two restitutions. In Matthew 19, let us take a look at verse 28. Christ says,
Matthew 19:28 Verily I say to you, that you who have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of His glory, you also shall sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
In describing the role of His disciples in the Millennium, and presumably beyond, Christ uses the term "regeneration." The Greek word means "rebirth." The derivation of our English word or verb regenerate comes from the Latin verb generare—to beget. The dictionary definition of the word, regeneration biologically means, "the re-growth of lost or destroyed ... organs." Now in a more general sense, we use the verb regenerate when we speak of, "reform spiritually or morally" (quoting from the dictionary). It means "to form, construct, or create anew, especially in an improved state," and "to give new life or energy to; revitalize."
So, God is going to build a New Eden (I will use that term, "New Eden" several times). It will be restored, revitalized. It will be regenerated. And, among other things, this "New Eden" will be characterized by: abundance, growth, and an expanding population of animals and people.
In Jeremiah 4, the prophet tells us just why the population growth is not going to be a big problem; it is not going to be a challenge on the earth at the very beginning—at the start of the Millennium. Here, God reveals to us what He sees as He surveys the landscape of the planet at the start of the Millennium—just before He has started to build the "New Eden."
Jeremiah 4:23-27 I beheld the earth, and, lo, it was without form, and void [that is tohu and bohu], and the heavens, and they had no light. I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. I beheld, and, lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens were fled. I beheld, and, lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the Lord, and by His fierce anger. For thus has the Lord said, "The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end."
Now this is the ghastly tohu and bohu landscape all over again—a planet essentially empty, devoid of life. It is certainly not the environment that God spoke of, that He wanted in Genesis 1. Not at all. It does not have the abundance. It is not characterized by that kind of growth.
But, it is a landscape of hope, where the Creator will again set about to build Eden. As God's Spirit moved "on the face of the waters," in the days just before Adam, so shall He pour out His Spirit at the start of the Millennium. People will begin to respond to God; they will begin to obey His commands, and that will include His first command—to "be fruitful ... multiply, and to replenish the earth."
We all recognize that population growth of animals, crops, or people is one of the blessings of obedience. Martin brought this out when he quoted Deuteronomy 28:11. "And the Lord shall make you plenteous ... in the fruit of your body ..."
Growth is a blessing. It is a result—I suppose we could say—of obedience. Notice Ezekiel 36:11. The New Eden will be characterized by growth. God is speaking.
Ezekiel 36:11 And I will multiply upon you man and beast; and they shall increase and bring fruit.
Ezekiel 36:37-38 Thus says the Lord God; "I will yet for this be inquired of by the house of Israel, to do it for them; I will increase them with men like a flock. As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men [not just with men but with lots of men]: and they shall know that I am the Lord."
On Feast days, there were lots and lots and lots of sheep in Jerusalem for the various sacrifices. And God says that He will turn the population of Israel into flocks of men.
We all understand that poverty will not accompany this particular growth in human population. And that has been the model that we see in our world now. Notice Amos 9. The New Eden of tomorrow will not look like the New Delhi of today—that is, lots of people amidst lots of poverty. That is not going to be the case. We will just take a look at a scripture we know very well:
Amos 9:13 "Behold, the days come," says the Lord, "that the plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the treader of grapes, him that sows seed; and the mountains shall drop sweet wine, and all the hills shall melt."
Now we could go on with that scripture, or with any other number of scriptures, which tell of the prosperity that will characterize the "New Eden."
As time goes on (remember we said that there is not going to be a big population problem at the outset), the land will get full—not enough bedrooms for the kids. (This is the problem that Richard has probably encountered already). The garden is not going to be big enough to produce the food, so the pressure on the land will increase.
We are not going to turn to Isaiah 49:20. This is a somewhat controversial scripture and I am going to leave it to the ministry to discuss it—if they ever want to. They will, I am sure, some day. But, on one level this particular scripture certainly describes physical Israelites, national Israelites—bereft of children in the times of trouble; in "the Day of the Lord;" in the tribulation.
God says that these very same Israelites now return to the land, prosperous and fertile. And they hear their children "say . . . in their ears, 'the place is too straight for me: give a place to me that I may dwell.'" The land of Israel will eventually come to feel population pressures. Not all at once, not at first. It will be a gradual situation as the returning Israelites start having children.
God will be ready for them because, you see, He has already answered their prayer. He has heard their prayer before they called out, and He has taken action to provide them with space, with a place to live. He will have done that because He has already started to increase the planet's "carrying capacity."
Some of you probably know what that term "carrying capacity" means. It is a measure of a planet's ability to support life. For example, ecologists speak of the atmosphere or of the seas as having "carrying capacities"—the amount of life it can support.
By the middle of the last century, Mr. Herbert W. Armstrong came to recognize that the current carrying capacity of the planet (today's carrying capacity) would not permit billions of people to live there in prosperity. That is, as the planet is currently configured, earth lacks enough arable land to permit the level of prosperity that God tells us will exist in the Millennium for the number of people that will exist then.
In his booklet, The Wonderful World Tomorrow: What Will It Be Like, Mr. Armstrong tells us briefly, just what God is going to do to increase the planet's carrying capacity. "God ... will reshape the surface of this earth!" This is, of course, what Richard was speaking about—the terraforming that God is going to do.
Now how is He going to actually do this? We do not know. There are no specifics, but there are several general points that He brings forth. (Richard spoke of some of them.) "Flattening mountains and raising valleys" (Isaiah 40:4). God says, "every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low." This has a physical application. It has a spiritual application too, I am sure. But it certainly has a physical application.
He will increase the carrying capacity by providing more fresh water. Isaiah 41:18 says that God will create "rivers in high places and fountains in the midst of the valleys." The great continental aquifers flowing beneath our continents will provide readily accessible fresh water.
The capacity will also be restored as God restores the hundreds (thousands) of square miles of land that is now dedicated to swamplands, to deserts, and to tundra. He is going to restore them so that they become tillable. We read this earlier in Ezekiel 36:34, where God said, "the desolate land shall be tilled.”
I came to the Feast this year by train and I could not help but be struck by the vast amount of land that is simply not productive. Some of it is ugly land; it is just desert. Some of it is scrub, and some of it is really quite majestic; it is mountainous. But, it really is not agriculturally productive. God is going to change all of that. In doing so, He will increase the carrying capacity of the land, so that there can be an increased population living in prosperity.
God will also act by reclaiming land from the sea. God does not reveal either the rate or the extent of the water's retreat. We know that, in the Third Resurrection, "the sea [will give] up the dead which were in it." So, at the time of the Third Resurrection, there is going to be apparently some seas.
However, it appears that some former sea beds, rich in agriculture and mining potential, will become readily available for use by land animals and by man. The topography of terra firma will change a bit. When you stop to think about it, the geography we have come to know is going to be quite different from the geography that our grandchildren will learn. I do not have any grandchildren and [probably] will not have any grandchildren, I guess. But some of you will, and do. The geography is going to change.
God is also going to act by changing the climate. This is, in fact, both a cause and a result of the other changes we have already talked about. Mountain ranges will no longer be present to inhibit rainfall. Richard talked about the Himalayas and the other mountains which have an effect on the climate in the area.
Perhaps God will transfer some of the water in the oceans to the upper atmosphere, thereby broadening the width of the planet's temperate zones. Perhaps there will be a mantle of water around the earth which could act as a lens and make the sun shine seven times brighter and the moon shine as the sun. I am not sure, but God may do this. There are some people who feel that this mantle existed before the Flood.
Indeed, God will act to meet the needs of a growing population so that when they say, "give us a place," there will be a place for them. They will be able to expand. They will be able to travel out and to carry the gospel with them to the Gentiles. And God will act in such a way that this expanding population will be able to move and to live in prosperity.
But, I still think it is a fair question to ask. Will more arable land, wider temperate zones, more widespread climate (conducive to efficient agriculture) be enough to support the "abundant" growth God speaks of in Genesis 1, and of what His prophets speak of over and over again? I suggest that something else will increasingly become necessary to answer the challenges presented by the abundant growth that will take place.
I do not know what the population will grow to 500 years into the Millennium. But we know that people have a lot of children and we know that there will not be the wars and the famines and this kind of thing that destroy life. So there will not be these negative aspects. The population will just be able to grow, and grow very quickly.
To see exactly what this "something else" is, let us look ahead with our minds' eye to the "White Throne period." We are going to go beyond the Millennium now, and look to the "White Throne period." This is a time of a real population explosion! It is not the fake explosion that our socialist environmentalists seem to never tire telling us about.
At this time—the time after the Second Resurrection—there is going to be a real population explosion. Let us project our mind to that time. And we are going to have to make three assumptions. I am not sure whether they are all warranted, but we will talk about that. You can tell me afterwards whether you think they are all warranted.
Number one, we will assume that the population of the planet at that time is 48 billion individuals. Now that is a guess. Richard guessed around 50 billion, but as you will see in just a few minutes, that would force me to use long division and I would come out with very inelegant repeating decimals and irrational numbers. So we are going to say 48 rather than 50 billion people. This is a guess. We obviously do not know.
All that we really know is that we cannot trust our scientists in this. You know what the scientists do when they talk about the aggregate number of human beings that have ever lived? They base their numbers upon evolutionary models and, of course, they forget all about what they do not believe in; that is, the pre-flood population, which was probably substantial. So we cannot trust the world's scientists. We will just make a guess—48 billion.
Secondly we will assume, for the purpose of this illustration, that God did not permit the advance of technology during the previous 1,000 years, that is, during the Millennium. Of course, we recognize that the technology we have today will not exist in the Millennium. It will have been destroyed in the great tribulation and the Day of the Lord. So we will assume that God does not allow much technology to become reestablished after those troubles. I am not saying that that is going to happen, but we are going to make that assumption. I really do not believe that will happen.
We will assume that He has determined that the people in the White Throne period, for instance, will have to study their Bibles in the evenings, or have to sit around and talk in the evenings, under candlelight. This is very old technology. Admittedly, oil-burning lamps, with efficient lens, produce more light. But, for the sake of illustration, we are going to say—candlelight.
Third assumption: We will say that God allocates one candle, per person, per night. Now, this is a minimalist allocation of light when you consider the need to light streets and buildings at night. Richard reminded me, as he spoke of the passage about the moon shining so brightly at night, that the moon will simply remain phased. I cannot imagine that it would be a synchronous orbit around the planets. So there will still be some times in the month, when the moon will be dark and the night will be dark (because of the position of the moon).
So, we would have to face that the amount of lumens provided by one candle, per person, per night is far, far below the standards of our lighting today. To demonstrate this would be very easy. All we would have to do is give every one of you in this room a burning candle and then shut down the house lights. The result would be impressive. But, I need to tell you that the amount of light produced would not hold a candle—forgive the pun—to the amount of light generated by the lights overhead.
So we are not talking about a vast amount of lights when we are talking about one person having one candle, per night.
With a population of 48 billion people, one candle per person per night means 48 billion candles per night, in aggregate. What would it take to fabricate that many candles? I did some research. You can make candles from a number of different materials—beeswax, bayberries, paraffin, spermaceti (from the head cavity of sperm whales). You can also make it from suet, "the hard fatty tissues around the kidneys of cattle and sheep, used for making tallow."
Now, an ox produces "80 pounds of suet, which in turn [would] make 300 candles." So, one ox produces enough suet to produce 300 candles. Dividing 300 into the 48 billion candles needed each night yields a remarkable figure. In the "White Throne period" people will need to slaughter a total of 160 million oxen per day simply to provide the minimalist lighting of one candle, per person, per night.
Those figures are kind of shocking but they come from the fact that we are talking about a population that is eight times the current population of the earth. Now, that is a heap of oxen—160 million oxen. The people in the "White Throne period," are not likely going to be vegetarians. Along with all of the sheep and fowl and the fish that they eat, they will be eating a lot of beef, and, I might add, wearing a lot of leather.
Considering the long gestation period that an oxen has—I believe that the female bears just one or two calves at a time—you understand that there would need to be literally billions of these creatures on the planet to provide this continuous supply of one candle, per person, per night through out the "White Throne Period." This would require the dedication of millions of acres of grazing land.
I am not saying this is impossible. This may be possible. But as an aside, I really do not believe for a minute that God intends for people then to be living [with such limited light]. The real enlightenment was not in the 17th Century, which some of you may learn from your history books. The real enlightenment is going to come in the "White Throne Period," when God will enlighten civilization through His Spirit. That is the period of enlightenment. It is inconceivable to me that God would characterize a period of such spiritual light with such physical darkness.
Clearly, God has something else in mind, something more practical than candlelight as a source of lighting in the "White Throne Period." What could that be? Coal? Oil? Kerosene? Or, maybe electricity generated by nuclear power plants. I do not think so. When you run the numbers of any of these power sources, against the projected population of 48 billion people—eight times the current population of the planet—you will arrive at equally staggering figures.
In a word, our past and our current technologies are not capable of providing the power necessary to support such a vast population in an environment of prosperity; in an environment of total poverty and deprivation, maybe. But, not in an environment of prosperity. We could develop the same type of astounding figures whether we looked at food generation and distribution, waste disposal, water distribution—any infrastructure. Just having more arable land, a more widely temperate climate, and the like, is not answer [enough]—as I tried to illustrate.
We will need more advanced distribution, communication, and power systems than we presently have. Who is going to develop those systems? Well, as an answer, we can certainly rule out man acting by himself. Mankind's own technology is misdirected, and it is inefficient.
Genesis 3:7 describes man's first attempt at technology, and sets the course of all future development. When Adam and Eve discovered they were naked, they "sewed figs leaves together, and made themselves aprons." Now, a while back in August, I was picking some figs from a neighbor's tree. I was not doing this at night, when she was not there. She was right there. She was too old to get up in her tree.
So, I was standing up there and I was pulling out these figs. I had my hand above my head and there was fig milk dripping from the tree. It dripped down my arm, down my back and on to my rib cage. I knew what would happen in just a few minutes. And sure enough it did. I began itching intensely. And, as I repented of my lack of forethought for not wearing a shirt (that particular August day), I thought of Adam and his fig leaves. Poor Adam! That must have been quite a loincloth!
I cannot even get close to fig leafs without them having an effect on me like that. And many people are that way. It was only when God, acting on behalf of man, intervened and "clothed them" with animal skins (you will read about that in verse 21) that they apparently got some comfortable and long lasting clothing.
You see, brethren, mankind cannot even adequately clothe himself without the direction of God. Mankind just is not able to build a technology that is effective without God's direction.
As smart, as inventive and innovative as people are, they need God to establish the proper direction. What is true about morality is true about technology: God must set the standards! And, by not seeking His leadership for 6,000 years, mankind has developed technologies that "itch." These technologies are an irritant to himself, to the environment, and to his Creator. So I think that we can say that in the "New Eden," God is not going to let mankind develop his own technology. We will put that idea to bed. It is not going to happen.
The technology of the "New Eden" will be the result of a cooperative effort between the God family on one side and the family of man. The building of the Ambassador College (of the old church) is a good example of this kind of cooperation. God led the work. He provided the land. He terraformed, I guess we could say in some sense of the word—at least figuratively.
He led Mr. Armstrong. Then Mr. Armstrong did the work. Even Mr. Armstrong did not do it alone. He had carpenters and architects and engineers and water experts and on and on and on to help him at all levels. The same is probably true with Noah and his ark. I doubt if he built the whole thing by himself.
These examples provide a model for the development that will take place in the New Eden. God will have prepared the land. He will have done the terraforming. And we, as spiritual beings, will bring stupendous knowledge of God's physical creation to the table. Along with that [we will bring] an understanding of how technology needs to be properly applied, properly used.
Human beings, as part of the equation, you see, will implement that technology. They will put it to use. They will be the ones who actually build it. So it will be a cooperative effort. I hope you realize, brethren, that in many cases it will be your children sitting right here in this room, who will develop the technological infrastructure that will be used in the Millennium and beyond into the "White Throne period."
The more sure word of prophecy, we have, tells us that there will be great growth and that it will be with great prosperity. It will happen. Count on it. And if we do not prepare ourselves and our children for that, we are remiss. So I want to conclude by asking the following questions. What should our response be (as adults, as God's children) to the changes that are soon going to come? And what should be the response of our children to these changes?
Let us talk about what we, as adults in God's church, need to do. Certainly we do not need to fret over the reality of this growth, and I am not suggesting that we do [that] at all. No, we can leave the silly fretting to the radical environmentalists. They seem to be the experts at worrying (every time you read the paper).
God will provide for us and He will give us what we need to address the challenge of population growth as it presents itself over the years. We have already seen that God is forethoughtful; God will provide. Certainly, I am not saying that we should go out and get advanced doctorate degrees in chemistry or physics. That would be quite absurd. This is not our priority at this time.
Even if we were mentally equipped to do it, we would be spending a lot of time, a lot of money, a lot of effort, and that could destroy or damage relationships in our family. Or more importantly, it could destroy and damage relationships with God—if we spent that kind of time getting an advanced degree. What it could do is distract us right out of God's Kingdom. That is not what we want.
Certainly we should stay abreast of technological achievements. We should learn to separate the down sides from the up sides of such achievement. There are both sides of technological achievement. However I want to focus on something else, because there is something else we absolutely must do. We have a clear responsibility to our youngsters. It is essential to teach them to live the seven laws of success.
For instance, you might remember very well that Mr. Armstrong took an aptitude test when he was a young boy (he talks about this in his autobiography) to help him determine where his abilities were. We certainly should help our young people choose the right career goals and one that is consonant with their natural talents. We need to help them identify their talents and develop them.
We need to encourage them to acquire the right education. We need to instill in them the drive to finish the job. There is something else that we need to do. It was mentioned earlier in the Feast (just kind of in passing). I want to spend some time talking about that. I think we need to teach our children the value of teamwork.
Individualism—which is a very strong aspect, deeply imbedded in the American consciousness—has its limitations and its pitfalls. The lone individual, determined to go it alone, is not going to cut it in the "New Eden" any more than he will cut it in God's church. It just is not going to happen. If it does not happen today, it is not going to happen then. As we, in God's family, are learning to seek the ideas of others (to be respectful of those ideas, without compromising God's truth), as we learn to share and to work cooperatively in harmony—so should we be training our children to do. It is very important.
The pastor God has given us understands the importance and the usefulness of collaborative effort. That is why, for example, he solicits our thoughts about the calendar, or any number of things; you know, the Feast sites that we want to go to, and so on. He understands the value of it. It is vital that our children learn the value of working together in harmony.
This said, though, we might want to turn the coin over and ask, "What should be the response of our young people to the prophecies that God has of a growing, abundant future and one that is just filled with opportunities?" What should their response be? I want to address that issue, as I speak. We will go over some of these things with the young people.
First and emphatically—we need to understand that such a future is coming. Make no mistake about it. This is not some "airy-fairy, pie-in-the sky utopian notion" of a bunch of old people who are simply disaffected with modern American civilization. What we are speaking about is real. It is going to happen. Do not neglect to prepare for it. I am speaking to the young people. If you do, you may not be there. It is really that simple.
Second—do not let down, slough off, and get caught off guard. Keep up your studies. They are important.
As a third point, do not be misled by inaccurate, often romanticized, visions of the Millennium. I want to elaborate on this third point. There may be some of you, and I am talking about young people in high school or college now, who have some real abilities in science or engineering or in the arts, but who have become discouraged, and doubtful about whether you should take the effort to develop those talents simply because you do not perceive the Millennium correctly. Let us follow along this thinking—the wrong thinking—with [the hypothetical example of] "John," a high school chemistry student.
He might think this: "Why develop my interest in metallurgy when the only job for me in the Millennium will be that of a blacksmith, fitting horseshoes on the millions of horses that people will use during that time? After all, doesn't everyone know that horses will be the only way of transportation then? There won't be any cars. There won't be any wheels; they're too polluting, too dirty. Everybody will be riding around on a horse. So, why should I study molecular chemistry if I'm going to end up being a blacksmith in a few years?"
That kind of reasoning could be used by students of other sciences or the arts, but it is badly informed by a very badly blurred vision of the World Tomorrow. I want to conclude by thinking with you about the occupations of industrious young people in the "New Eden."
Now, you understand that these are going to be occupations for those who are educationally and emotionally prepared. These jobs are not for young people who have fallen for a bunch of silly old myths or who have lazily taken the path of least resistance. These exciting jobs will be for those of you young people who are ready now to reach out and grab the future. Let take a look at opportunities that exist. I have already mentioned some of them. They are implicit in what I have said.
Architects and civil engineers: As we have seen, the "New Eden" will be a place of growth. They are going to build and build and build. I do not think we can envision how much growth and building is going to go on. Stress engineers, architects, artisans in wood and stone are going to be needed. The buildings are not going to sprout up all by themselves. The gardens will not plant themselves; the murals will not paint themselves. It is going to take work. It is going to take planning. It is going to take time.
Martin pointed out that prosperity requires effort. None of us, whether we are young or old, should fall for the image of a bunch of people in the Millennium simply sitting all day under a fig tree with their arms outstretched, and their hands open, just waiting for figs to fall into them. It is not going to happen that way. It is going to take work—a lot of work.
And, as for the idea that horses will be the principal means of transportation, I want you to consider that ultimately a number of people every year (not everybody each year, of course), are going to be traveling to Jerusalem for the Feast. Now eventually these people will be traveling from their homes in: Bandar Seri Begawan, which is in Brunei, Indonesia, or Tombouctou (which is in Mali, Africa) or from Ashgabat, Turkmenistan.
A priority, in the early years of the Millennium, will be the creation of a reliable, fast, and safe transportation system—one that can gradually be integrated to serve the entire planet. That is no small task! You can be sure that Feast-goers will not have to leave home months before the Feast, plodding their way to Jerusalem in a "buckboard" or on "Trigger." That is just not going to happen. We are going to need transportation engineers—a lot of them, worldwide. It is going to be a very big effort.
Oceanography, surveying, and cartography: Now there is quite a bunch of interesting fields. Cartography is map making. Some of you like the outdoors; you like to camp. Mr. Armstrong recognized that, as the result of the geographical and topographical changes in the planet, "multiple millions of acres ... [will become] suddenly available—just waiting to be discovered, and pioneered. . . . God describes a wonderful era of discovery and invention in the World Tomorrow—major portions of the earth reclaimed and put to productive use."
Discovery and invention: With the receding oceans, yours will be the opportunity to study territory reachable today only with a bathysphere. There will be plenty of demand for explorers, surveying the land, inventorying its virgin features. They will be creating maps of areas that have not been trod upon by human foot since the Flood. That is a fact, I believe.
Furthermore, exploration will be the order of the day as deserts begin to bloom and as tundras flower. As God releases this once-desolate land for use, people—Israelites—will begin to fan out over the world. Remember God gave Abraham the world. Israelites will be all over the world eventually. As they begin to fan out, they will need people to lead the way. They will begin to migrate in droves once God releases the land. And they will need scouts. They will need "trail blazers." They will need the Daniel Boones of the "New Eden." These explorers will be relaying information to geologists so they can make plans for building quarries and mines.
And, by the way, you will be writing down your findings in all kinds of logs and journals. That is what Lewis & Clark did. As I was coming down the train to the Feast I had lunch with a person who had read all the journals of Lewis & Clark. They wrote volumes and volumes of material for the enjoyment and entertainment of others. I think that a whole body of very exciting literature will develop for young people so they can read about the explorations and the ongoing colonization.
What about chemistry? What about physics? We know the sun is the principle source of the planet's physical energy. In the past, we have generated our power from the sun, but we have done so indirectly, by burning wood, coal, oil, etc. This is dirty and inefficient. It is kind of like fig leaves—it itches!
Yours will be the task of perfecting the use of photovoltaic—the generation of electricity directly from the sun. We will need to learn more efficient ways to store that particular energy until it is needed. We have only begun to scratch the surface in this direction; I suspect that biologists—once they abandon their enfeebling, absolutely stultifying notion about evolution—will begin to lead the way. And that is because the human body has so much it can teach us when it is properly understood. It is a highly efficient generator of electricity through chemical action. And it has the ability to store potential energy in the muscles, releasing it as kinetic energy when needed.
Now, your parents, the parents of the young people here, might whisper a formula or an equation in your ear, once in awhile—if you are good—but it will be you who has to carry the ball. It will be the young people who have to develop the technology, perhaps to implement it, who carry it forward. If we had time, we could say so much about the use of chemists and physicists and biologists in the "New Eden."
Teachers: Just very quickly, as early as the third decade of the last century, Herbert Armstrong recognized that the focus of God's work lay in education, and more properly he called it re-educating, in re-orientation, in a change of direction of people's thought. He understood that God's work could not take place among an illiterate people, people "so ignorant, it was impossible for them to comprehend anything about God, or Christ, or salvation." He continues, "People would have to receive at least elementary education before they could be reached with the Gospel."
In the World Tomorrow there will be a great demand for teachers both of children and of adults to break the barriers of ignorance caused by illiteracy, superstition, false science, and of course by pagan tradition.
I will mention very briefly that there will be doctors and nurses for those of you who are interested in that kind of thing. Mr. Armstrong writes, "In God's new World Tomorrow, there will, indeed, probably be a place for doctors." He goes on and he talks about their role. He says, for instance, they will serve as teachers, teaching people how to avoid the causes of diseases, and they also he says they will be researching the causes of medical troubles. So he believed that there would be doctors and nurses in the World Tomorrow.
That is just a quick overview. The opportunities are almost endless and are truly exciting. You know, if there is any young person who, in just these last few minutes (as I was speaking), listlessly slumbered away at my catalog of opportunities—that young person just might not start out in the World Tomorrow at the "top of the heap." He might start out in the backwaters. If he is there at all, he might start out in its breadlines. Christ told us that we would always have the poor always with us. This is something we should think about. We should prepare the young people for a role of success in God's World Tomorrow.
How many other interesting jobs will there be for those "game" enough to take them? I do not think we can even come close to envisioning the shape of things in the World Tomorrow, in the "New Eden." There the Father will build, and we will rule with Christ, and our children will develop and implement. There will be a time of great opportunities for everybody. The glorified God family, working [as partners] with the converted family of Man, will gradually build a wonderful World Tomorrow!
The Berean: Daily Verse and Comment
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