A FAMINE? What kind of famine? Of course, many persons see little evidence of a literal famine in their own countries. However, throughout the world there is a serious food shortage, a famine as regards spiritual food. More than 2,700 years ago an ancient inspired Hebrew prophet foretold this famine: “‘Look! There are days coming,’ is the utterance of the Lord Jehovah, ‘and I will send a famine into the land, a famine, not for bread, and a thirst, not for water, but for hearing the words of Jehovah.’”—Amos 8:11.
Why should such a famine afflict also Christendom, where year after year the Word of Jehovah, the Bible, is a best seller? A prominent factor is the attitude of so many of its religious leaders toward the Bible. Typical is Lutheran professor Robert H. Smith, who holds that every Christian is as much inspired as is the Bible. And according to a professor of Christian ethics, J. C. Hough, Jr., “The Ten Commandments were not given as direct pronouncements from God Almighty; they were the deliberations of a very brilliant man,” Moses.—The Christian Century, January 29, 1969.
That such opinions are typical and widespread is recognized by other leaders of Christendom. Thus the executive editor of Christianity Today (June 6, 1969) complained: “In looking over the advertisements of major theological seminaries in America, one observes that with few exceptions theological education today might be said to major in the world’s secular and material needs. Who will enter in to help the spiritual needs of the people?” In a like vein a New York editor lamented the fact that the World Council of Churches at a recent gathering had been preoccupied with mundane “issues of the day rather than with a far greater human hunger—the spiritual starvation of mankind.”
But perhaps someone will ask, If the famine is due to the teachings of such men, why does the Bible say that God is sending this famine? He can be said to send it in that he does not permit these faithless religious leaders to understand and appreciate the truths of the Bible. As Jesus told such men in his day: “How can you believe, when you are accepting glory from one another and you are not seeking the glory that is from the only God?”—John 5:44.
In the midst of this spiritual famine Jehovah has provided plenty. Where? Among his faithful Christian . This is even as he foretold: “Look! My own servants will eat, but you yourselves will go hungry. Look! My own servants will drink, but you yourselves will go thirsty.”—Isa. 65:13.