Back in the 1920s and many years to follow, our two authors would never have thought of digital books. As you read what they wrote about the power of the printed page, include ebooks in all of their points. 

Direct quote from The Church Library Manual by Leona Lavender Althoff and Arthur Flake (1934) pages 15-16.

Here we can simply suggest the power of the printed page in the work of the churches. Set primarily to the tasks of winnning the lost and building Christlike character, the churches must not overlook this dynamic medium. Let the reader think into the evangelistic power of books and of how books on evangelism would strengthen the soul-winning fires of a church if a library were used to get them read. Consider the extension of soul-winning powers in to all missionary endeavors.

Think, then, into the practical value of books as a means of enlisting and training workers for service in the churches. Again, think of the spiritual character-building values of books that broaden Bible knowledge, deepen devotional life, heighten spiritual vision through inspiration, and strengthen the sinews of service in innumerable ways.

Surely, failure to appropriate the power of good books for the life of churches and of Christians is blindness more tragic in the realm of the spirit than failure to harness the power of a mighty waterfall in the realm of the material. Books can lift their readers to the heights or plunge them to the depths, and it is most arresting to consider that every civilized human being is affected by the fruits of the hearts and minds of those who have dared to express themselves in print. Like the ripple of the pebble dropped into a lake, thoughts are set in motion that spread to many another mind beforer they are spent. 

Even the hater of reading is influenced by what another reads. Printing presses are daily pouring out thousands of books and magazines. At some time in the past they have turned out word-pictures of crime and evil, of "isms" and false teachings, and today there is a harvest of the sowings. 

They have also turned out word-pictures of beauty and goodness, and there are, likewise, fruits from them. 

What a blessing it would be to have some part in saving readers from that which will harm them, and substitute in its place that which will strengthen and beautify their lives! How important it is for churches to grasp the idea of utilizing the printed page in the building of red-blooded Christian characters.

What jumps out to you as implications for our churches today?



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