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The Good News – October/November 1980
The Good News – October/November 1980
How Christ Chose And Educated His Apostle

from Herbert W. Armstrong

LIKE THE AD said of the Volkswagen – I am, after all, ONLY HUMAN! At times I have wondered, in retrospect, WHY did the mighty living Jesus Christ call and choose a worm like me as His apostle, to lead His people in our present end time?

King David likewise felt he was unworthy to be God’s leader. David cried out, “But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people” (Ps. 22:6). David remained small in his own eyes. MEN would never have chosen him to be king (see I Sam. 16:1-12), but God did.

Men would never have chosen me. I was most certainly NOT born with a silver spoon in my mouth, of wealthy or notable parents. I was born of ordinary but solid and upstanding middle-class parents. My father never had much money – but he never owed much, and kept his bills paid.

My father had an inventive mind. He invented the hot-air furnace about the turn of the century. It would have made him wealthy, had not he gone to the wrong patent lawyer to patent that very useful, later almost universally used means of modern home heating. I had no allowance from parents. I had to earn my own spending money, and work summer school vacations.

But at age 16 ambition for achievement was aroused, and at 18 I had to make a momentous decision. Should I continue on in this world’s educational system toward college and university degrees or choose the “school of hard knocks” and determined SELF-education?

I didn’t know it then, but the living Christ did not want me to have this world’s materialistic education, swayed and developed from Satan’s materialistic approach. I had learned in school the bare BASICS on which to BUILD an education. That is, I had learned to read, to write and figure. But the HEAD of God’s Church was planning later to use me, and He couldn’t use, as His human leader, one in whose mind had been injected THIS WORLD’S HIGHER EDUCATION!

In the year of 1927, weeks after my conversion, I wrote for the future magazine God had put in my mind, The Plain Truth, an article on THIS WORLD’S EDUCATION. It is primarily a process of memory training – the injecting into unsuspecting plastic young minds ready-made and largely false propaganda.

I even had an artist sketch an illustration to go with the article – five years before the first issue of The Plain Truth was ever printed. This illustration showed a schoolroom, with children sitting at their desks. Into the heads of each was stuck a funnel. The teacher, with a pitcher filled with “ready-made false propaganda,” was pouring this false knowledge into each child’s head through the funnel.

As I have written before, the child, or the more advanced student, is expected to accept, memorize and BELIEVE whatever is taught – either from the textbook, or teacher or professorial lecturer.

One illustration of this should suffice. A grandson of mine, in an elementary grade, was asked in class to answer the question, “Who discovered America?”

“The Indians,” answered my grandson promptly.

“Why Larry!” ejaculated the teacher indignantly. “You know well that Columbus discovered America.”

“No, ma’am, I don’t,” answered Larry meekly. “Weren’t the Indians already here to welcome Columbus when he arrived?”

Larry was FLUNKED for his truthful reply.

This world’s education is based on a false premise – the unprovable and false theory of evolution. Evolution – the atheist’s attempted explanation of the presence of a creation without a Creator – is the CONCEPT that forms the APPROACH to the KNOWLEDGE taught in this world’s educational system.

But there is a serious, basic and fatal MISSING DIMENSION in knowledge as injected by this world’s educational system. That missing dimension is the REVEALED knowledge from GOD. Revelation is the basic FOUNDATION of all knowledge. And when revelation (and GOD) is ignored the world of Satan is propagating knowledge WITH A FALSE FOUNDATION. The true basic FOUNDATION of the structure of human knowledge is missing. A FALSE foundation has been substituted!

GOD COULD NOT USE, as the human spiritual LEADER over His people in His CHURCH, one whose mind was first stuffed with this false materialistic and worldly KNOWLEDGE, ATTITUDE AND PSYCHOLOGICAL APPROACH TO WHAT IS BELIEVED AND UNDERSTOOD!

As soon as my mind had been instilled with the basic TOOLS for an APPROACH to knowledge – that is, ability to read, write and figure – God directed me in the development of knowledge and understanding through a GOD-directed SELF-education.

For example, I had to learn psychology, NOT as mistaught from theoretical textbooks and impractical and unworkable teaching of theoretical college professors, but from actual EXPERIENCE in dealing with the human and public mind! That practical and workable knowledge of psychology is utilized in the full-page advertising campaign presently carried in the New York Times and other leading mass-circulation high-prestige newspapers.

In the Work of God carried on by the Church it became necessary to establish GOD’S OWN COLLEGE for training personnel for various operations and administrations of the Work (I Cor. 12:5-6). It of necessity had to be GOD’S college.

But where, back in 1947, was Christ’s human leader to go for teachers – for faculty? We had no members in the Church capable of teaching at a level higher than high school. It was a dilemma. God led me in the only way then possible – to employ professors and faculty members trained in THIS WORLD’S higher education – BUT TO TEACH ALL BIBLICAL AND THEOLOGICAL COURSES MYSELF. I had to go further! I enforced a one-hour weekly FORUM, attended by students and faculty alike, at which I myself, with CHRIST’S HELP, taught the true BASIC FOUNDATION of education – the REVEALED knowledge of GOD!

Faculty members, already indoctrinated with this world’s “higher education,” didn’t like my forums in which I constantly taught that MISSING DIMENSION of knowledge – the REVEALED basic knowledge from God’s Word! In fact, they resented it – they chafed under it – but to receive salaries had to sweat it out.

Of course my purpose was NOT to convert or reeducate that original faculty. The purpose was to COUNTERACT any false teaching from them finding lodging in student minds! Meanwhile I, myself, had to keep student minds open to the BASIC knowledge of GOD. I had to see that students were PROTECTED FROM this world’s false knowledge – but made aware of that MISSING DIMENSION from the knowledge of this world’s “higher education.”

In due time the Ambassador faculty was composed of Ambassador graduates.

But as I said at the beginning, I am only HUMAN. After the first few years we began to receive as students some who had studied variously from one or two years as students in this world’s colleges or universities, up to some who held degrees – even up to masters degrees from large universities. They entered Ambassador as freshmen – but usually sufficient of their university credits were accepted to graduate them from Ambassador after three – and sometimes even after two – years with us.

That was the START of Satan injecting into GOD’S college some of this world’s false education. It was some of these who brought an unfortunate influence on my son. He was rising to executive leadership in the Church and Work. In due time even some of our graduates enrolled in outside universities to earn higher degrees in the educational system of Satan in his world. These began bringing pressure on me to apply for and gain “accreditation” from the educational system in Satan’s deceived world.

Satan has a way of making WRONG seem RIGHT. Of making his deceived world’s ways seem SUPERIOR and more desirable. As God’s Word says, the truth of GOD appears as FOOLISHNESS to the wise in this world. Their wisdom and false knowledge is FOOLISHNESS in God’s eyes – but is far SUPERIOR in worldly carnal eyes. Satan has succeeded in deceiving this world into a FALSE SENSE OF VALUES.

I chose as the motto of Ambassador College, “RECAPTURE THE TRUE VALUES.” By persistence, hard work and determination I had begun to see that done in the early years of Ambassador College. But, during the 1960s, Satan was working subtly to make the TRUE VALUES seem inferior. Some, indoctrinated with “higher education” from this world’s universities, were moving into chief executive positions at headquarters in Pasadena. Some coveted POWER at the top of what CHRIST had built, through His chosen apostle. It had become a major WORLDWIDE WORK, employing many hundreds of men, handling many MILLIONS of dollars of GOD’S MONEY.

During the 1960s POLITICS began to be played at headquarters in Pasadena. By 1968 Christ was OPENING DOORS for me to be invited to private meetings with kings, emperors, presidents and prime ministers of nations. Doors were being opened to carry Christ’s message of the Kingdom of God to those high up under these heads of state, and then to the grass roots of their peoples. I began to be away from Pasadena more and more – until finally I was away up to 300 out of the 365 days in the year. Orders went out, “Keep what we are doing at headquarters away from Mr. Armstrong.” Anyone who got to me with what was going on was threatened with loss of his job!

Looking back, I say again, I have been only human! I have to admit this was allowed to go on – though mostly without my knowledge.

But in His due time, the living HEAD of God’s Church awakened me to what Satan had so adroitly, subtly and craftily done.

THERE HAD TO BE A HOUSECLEANING! Most of those who had maneuvered into positions of executive power in so large a worldwide Work are no longer members of God’s Church! I had to completely KILL the college Satan had turned Ambassador into. I began the college ALL OVER AGAIN FROM SCRATCH – a freshman class ONLY. Ambassador College is now BACK ON GOD’S TRACK. Once again it has THE HIGHEST ACCREDITATION – that of almighty GOD! I never did want the accreditation of Satan’s system of “higher education.” But, on continued pressure assuring me we could have “accreditation” and still be GOD’S college, I acquiesced in allowing those under me to go ahead. But never again shall we seek this world’s “accreditation.” Not as long as Christ keeps me in charge!

God has not used a SUPERman as His instrument and servant in building and developing His Church and His Work. But He has chosen and used one who can REPENT of mistakes and sins, CORRECT what has been wrong and SET IT BACK ON THE TRACK.

Satan has succeeded in leading nearly all people to think that “education” is something one goes to college or university to obtain. It is like buying a loaf of bread. One goes to the grocery store. He pays for the loaf, it is handed to him and he takes it home. I remember my wife of 50 years used to say to me: “Don’t ever let people know you didn’t go to college. They will think you are ignorant and uneducated. They will think you are INFERIOR!”

During my early advertising years before conversion, I had an office in Chicago’s downtown “loop” seven years – 1915 to 1922. I had contact with presidents and vice-presidents of the nation’s largest banks in Wall Street, New York and in Chicago. Actually FEW of them had been college educated. Few of the presidents and board chairmen of the nation’s great industrial corporations at that time were university educated! That’s hard to believe today!

Through the years in God’s Church, I have learned that GOD could not use as Christ’s chosen apostle, to LEAD His Church and Work, a man whose early training and education had been in the universities of Satan’s world! Christ has had to purge out of chief positions in His Church those steeped in such education.

True, as for architects, engineers and specialized professions, the Church has had to employ and use the specialized services of those so trained and having expertise in such particular professional fields – but not as apostle or chief human leader under Christ in the chief spiritual direction of God’s CHURCH!

But WHY was Ambassador College founded? God had educated His chosen human leader for our time OUTSIDE of SATAN’S SYSTEM OF HIGHER EDUCATION. He had shown me that He could not use LEADERS in different phases of His Work who were educated in SATAN’S EDUCATIONAL SYSTEM! Ambassador College was founded to educate and train needed personnel for the present AS WELL AS CHURCH LEADERS FOR THE FUTURE, in GOD’S EDUCATION. He gave me the motto, “Recapture the TRUE VALUES”! That is, ELIMINATE THE EVIL and the knowledge of FALSE VALUES and INCLUDE THE TRUE VALUES – RESTORE THE MISSING SPIRITUAL DIMENSION IN KNOWLEDGE! Ambassador College – UNLIKE ANY OTHER ON EARTH – had to be BASED ON the REVEALED KNOWLEDGE OF GOD FROM HIS WORD, THE BIBLE! All who should be given LEADERSHIP in God’s Church and Work – even in operational and administrative departmental leadership – MUST BE BROUGHT UP IN ALL ADVANCED EDUCATION IN THIS GOD-KIND OF EDUCATION. But WHY was this so vitally important to the future of God’s Church and Work?


Satan has deceived this world at two levels: 1) Starting in the very first year of the life of a child, as soon as the MIND begins to drink in knowledge and to think, Satan, through the “human” spirit, subtly injects the ATTITUDE of carnality – selfishness, vanity, coveting, jealousy, envy, resentment of authority. Then, 2) in later education, Satan injects into unsuspecting minds his system of materialistic education – with the anti-God approach of evolution (in the modern world of the 19th and 20th centuries). This “HIGHER” education is a spiritual DRUG that renders one hopelessly ADDICTED! He is as one hooked on heroin. Withdrawal is more difficult than withdrawal from such hard drugs. It is withdrawal from a spiritual addiction!

I have said before, in the Millennium, ruled by the Kingdom of God, one of the greatest problems will be a system of REeducation – a system of UNlearning what has been taught in modern “higher education” of this world’s universities! I have said it is 10 times more difficult to UNlearn a false untruth than it is to first LEARN a NEW TRUTH!

Let me here repeat a very significant case in point. On conclusion of my in-depth study of the theory of evolution, in early 1927, I wrote a fairly short paper PROVING evolution a false hypothesis. I showed this paper to the head librarian of the science section of the public library at Portland, Ore. After examining it, this librarian head said she had to admit I had PROVED evolution a false theory. But, she added, she had been so steeped in it having graduate degrees, including Ph.D.s, from great universities such as Columbia and the University of Chicago – that, even on PROOF it was false, she COULD NOT GIVE IT UP! She was hooked on it. She could not UNlearn it!

Now CONSIDER! What IS conversion in this life – the time when one first receives God’s Holy Spirit? How does God’s process of conversion and salvation begin? It STARTS with REPENTANCE (Acts 2:38), which is a “change of mind” in regard to sin. It is followed by FAITH,- a new direction of MIND. Then the repentant believer receives the HOLY SPIRIT, which is the RENEWAL OF THE MIND (Rom. 12:2). It is all a matter of MIND – carnal or spiritual!

How well Satan knows this! So Satan starts working on the human mind from newborn infancy. He injects the SELFISH attitude. Then as the human mind matures toward and in early adulthood, Satan has developed the modern system of education that instills in the human MIND the higher carnal, materialistic, anti-GOD knowledge that POISONS the human mind against the things of GOD.

Once “hooked” on this “higher education,” the human mind must undergo a supremely difficult and painful “WITHDRAWAL” process, or an UNlearning procedure, before the mind can be CHANGED by and filled and led by the Holy Spirit of GOD!

Thus Satan, through organized modern HIGHER education, has rendered human minds INCAPABLE of BECOMING TRUE SPIRITUAL LEADERS OVER THE PEOPLE AND THE WORK OF ALMIGHTY GOD!

How cunning – how diabolically CLEVER is the wily, evil SATAN!

How, in such a world, was CHRIST, the living HEAD of the Church, to raise up a LEADER as His chosen apostle for His END-time Work? How was He to train needed departmental-head personnel and future LEADERS over His Church and His Work?

IT WAS PARAMOUNT – absolutely vital – that such leaders be educated GOD’S WAY – outside of Satan’s modern educational system! That’s why the living almighty CHRIST put me through a different upbringing, and a different GOD-directed means of “SELF-EDUCATION” – UNbrainwashed and “hooked” on modern “higher education!” That’s WHY God raised up Ambassador College as He did! That’s WHY Satan sought desperately and subtly to turn Ambassador into one of Satan’s world colleges, conforming to standards of receiving accreditation of Satan’s “higher education” universities!

That’s WHY Satan tried to maneuver to inject into positions of leadership those under the training and influence of Satan’s brand of “higher education”!

That’s WHY Satan has brainwashed this world to look upon those university-educated as “educated,” “superior” or “leaders,” and those GOD-educated outside this world’s universities as “ignorant,” “inferior,” “uneducated.”

What kind of men did Jesus choose as His first apostles and leaders in founding God’s CHURCH? Men Christ-EDUCATED, yet considered by the public as “unlearned and ignorant men” (Acts 4:13).

One may ask, “But wasn’t the apostle Paul a man educated in this world?” The answer is NO! Paul was privately tutored by Gamaliel, a Jewish Pharisee. Paul had been taught according to the Jewish religious law, and was “zealous toward God” (Acts 22:3). Paul was not indoctrinated in atheistic evolution or anything resembling today’s materialistic “higher education.” When Jesus struck Paul down and later in Arabia taught him in person, Paul had no poisonous mind-addiction to unfit him. Christ could not use one of such 20th-century educational injection as the spiritual leader over His people.

That’s why Jesus Christ had to choose as His apostle for the present time one UNinoculated with this world’s satanic educational poison, but whose SELF-education Christ directed – who was finally educated BY JESUS CHRIST as were the original apostles – except by the SAME Word of God in print instead of the Word of God in Person!

And that’s WHY God raised up AMBASSADOR COLLEGE to disseminate CHRIST’S education for leading personnel in the Work today, and to raise up future leaders for God’s Church and His final end-time Work! Do not let Satan deceive us again in the future! Ambassador College, as well as God’s CHURCH and its Work, is BACK ON GOD’S TRACK. Let’s KEEP IT THAT WAY!