UVF Alumnus Publishes Book

by Office of Marketing | Nov 25, 2014
Pilgrim's Future
Dr. Alton Smith '52, a graduate from Eastern Bible Institute (EBI), now University of Valley Forge (UVF), recently published a book titled, "Pilgrim’s Future," in April of 2014. The book borrows the idea of John Bunyan’s "Pilgrim’s Progress" and applies it to the main protagonist, Christian, through a series of events meant to shine light on truths regarding the rapture and eternal life. Just as Bunyan’s work utilized a conversational format to move Christian from place to place and scene to scene, Smith controls the flow of his book in like manner rarely using a narrator to facilitate the flow of the story.
Smith received a bachelor's degree from UVF in ministry and missions. From there, he continued his education, receiving a second bachelor's degree in history, a master's degree in community college administration, and a doctorate degree in  accreditation of overseas institutes of post-secondary education. In the missions field, he served as a missionary educator in West Africa, director of Haiti Bible School and president of a four-year institution in Belize. Currently, he is retired form the missions field but continues to use his skills to spread God's Word. 

When asked about his experience at UVF and how it aided him in his life’s endeavors, Smith promptly answered, “UVF instilled in me a faith in God that withstood the onslaughts of secular education and helped me share my faith with the many leaders I taught.” Smith’s experiences in Pennsylvania also left an encouraging imprint in his memory. When asked what his fondest experience at UVF was, he responded by saying, “I witnessed and participated in a move of God that saw incredible waves of the supernatural. It rocked the surrounding community; it changed my life and the lives of everyone who was there. Instructor Walter Beutler was used by God to lead the revival. I was filled with the Holy Spirit during that event.”

"Pilgrim’s Future" begins with the protagonist, Christian, in his everyday setting. He is raptured with two billion other believers and embarks on a journey that simultaneously seeks to educate the reader regarding the truths of the after-life and the end times. Smith draws heavily from the Book of Revelation, and he uses Daniel, a prophet whose writings are often seen as apocalyptic, to be Christian’s heavenly guide. The book ends by returning to the modern day and presenting the reader with the question, “Are you ready?”
It is clear that Smith has a heart dedicated to furthering the church’s knowledge of God and His word. The UVF mission, "to prepare individuals for a life of service and leadership in the church and in the world," has been fulfilled throughout the course of this alumnus' life. Though UVF was not the sole source of Smith’s education, it is evident that it created in his life a foundation that would have him seek to work for the kingdom of God.