Growing up in the United States, we were blessed to have many men of great eloquence and knowledge that regularly presented words of wisdom and sound testament to faith. Billy Graham was regularly on television conducting his Crusades around the world and Paul Harvey was on daily radio providing both entertaining and enlightening prose. In the last few years, Mr. Harvey’s 1965, yes 1965, broadcast of “If I were the Devil” has been featured by many outlets. It’s amazing the perspective that Mr. Harvey had almost 50 years ago. It’s worth hearing or reading and I will share it today as my blog post. You may or may not agree with all that he says, but when you consider that much of this was not happening when it was first broadcast is startling.
PAUL HARVEY’S ‘IF I WERE THE DEVIL’ TRANSCRIPT
“If I were the devil … If I were the Prince of Darkness, I’d want to engulf the whole world in darkness. And I’d have a third of it’s real estate, and four-fifths of its population, but I wouldn’t be happy until I had seized the ripest apple on the tree — Thee. So I’d set about however necessary to take over the United States. I’d subvert the churches first — I’d begin with a campaign of whispers. With the wisdom of a serpent, I would whisper to you as I whispered to Eve: ‘Do as you please.’ “To the young, I would whisper that ‘The Bible is a myth.’ I would convince them that man created God instead of the other way around. I would confide that what’s bad is good, and what’s good is ‘square.’ And the old, I would teach to pray, after me, ‘Our Father, which art in Washington…’”
“And then I’d get organized. I’d educate authors in how to make lurid literature exciting, so that anything else would appear dull and uninteresting. I’d threaten TV with dirtier movies and vice versa. I’d pedal narcotics to whom I could. I’d sell alcohol to ladies and gentlemen of distinction. I’d tranquilize the rest with pills. “If I were the devil I’d soon have families that war with themselves, churches at war with themselves, and nations at war with themselves; until each in its turn was consumed. And with promises of higher ratings I’d have mesmerizing media fanning the flames. If I were the devil I would encourage schools to refine young intellects, but neglect to discipline emotions — just let those run wild, until before you knew it, you’d have to have drug sniffing dogs and metal detectors at every schoolhouse door.”
“Within a decade I’d have prisons overflowing, I’d have judges promoting pornography — soon I could evict God from the courthouse, then from the schoolhouse, and then from the houses of Congress. And in His own churches I would substitute psychology for religion, and deify science. I would lure priests and pastors into misusing boys and girls, and church money. If I were the devil I’d make the symbols of Easter an egg and the symbol of Christmas a bottle.”
“If I were the devil I’d take from those who have, and give to those who wanted until I had killed the incentive of the ambitious. And what do you bet? I couldn’t get whole states to promote gambling as thee way to get rich? I would caution against extremes and hard work, in Patriotism, in moral conduct. I would convince the young that marriage is old-fashioned, that swinging is more fun, that what you see on TV is the way to be. And thus I could undress you in public, and I could lure you into bed with diseases for which there is no cure. In other words, if I were the devil I’d just keep right on doing on what he’s doing.
Paul Harvey………… good day.”
We have been blessed to live on this earth, today, for a reason. What that reason is, I am not about to tell you I know it all. What I will tell you is that God has given us skills, knowledge, and abilities to make an impact on the world around us. Will that task be easy? Absolutely not! No one ever said it would be. We see this very clearly as we battle the horrible Ebola crisis in West Africa. The challenges that lay before our world, country, and society are substantial and it is our calling to try and impact this world in a positive way while we are blessed to be living. It’s not about the challenge that God cares, but about how we handle the challenge that is the most important. We can prevail, not because of our own efforts, but because we are on God’s Team. Your actions, support, and prayers towards His work are what is important to reinforce the team trying to do good in the world and repel the bad. Good can, and will, win over evil. The enemy only wins if we allow it to happen. Paul Harvey was on to something back in 1965, and his message still rings true today. The enemy is at work, who is willing to step up and help thwart his advance?