"Thou hast given a banner to them that fear thee, that it may be displayed because of truth." — (Psalm 60:4)
"Lift ye up a banner upon the high mountain, exalt the voice unto them." — (Isaiah 13:2)
Devoted To The Defense Of The Church Against All Errors And Innovations
Vol.VI No.XIII Pg.69
July/August 1944

Concerning Return To Nashville

(Foy E. Wallace Jr in Gospel Advocate and Firm Foundation -1935)

Casually turning through the Gospel Advocate of the current issue (May 5) my eyes fell upon the article by W. E. Brightwell entitled "The Man Who Came Back." Not knowing that such an article had been, or was being written, it was as unexpected to me as it was to others who have read it. I read it and wept, for my heart strings were pulled not only by the things that were said but by the tenderness and devotion breathed into its every word by its author. We have been life-long friends and have been together in labors abundant during these years. His words overcome me; I could not respond to his article if I should try. This statement is not an attempt to do so but rather an effort to speak of some matters which those most interested in me and in my affairs believe should be mentioned. Yielding to their judgment I am making the first public reference to these matters since I left Nashville three years ago.

In the Gospel Advocate of April 8, 1934, there appeared over my signature an article of resignation as editor of that paper. My reasons for retiring, though personal, were given with frankness, in all sincerity and candor. Some undertakings larger than my resources permitted had been attempted and by a series of circumstances through several trying years the inevitable result of financial ruin overtook me. Though my entire salary was assigned to avoid disaster, it was too late and I left Nashville overwhelmed in debt. The publishers of the Gospel Advocate had full knowledge of all the conditions prevailing and voiced their confidence in my pledge to apply myself to the task of correcting all mistakes and meeting all obligations as consistently as it was reasonably possible to do. It was in this determination that I left the Gospel Advocate and returned to the West, to my original field of labor, where with the people among whom I was reared and who have known me from my youth up, I could serve the Cause to which my life was early dedicated, while at the same time making the effort to accomplish the ends pledged. These were the correct and only reasons for my resignation from the editorial post.

Subsequent to leaving Nashville the increasing pressure and weight of these matters forced me to seek legal relief and I went into voluntary bankruptcy. This was the most painful experience of my life. I knew that my actions would be misunderstood and my motives misconstrued. I knew, too, that enemies would capitalize on these misfortunes and use as a club these circumstances which I could not control. I felt "pressed on every side, yet not straitened; perplexed, yet not unto despair; pursued, yet not forsaken; smitten down, yet not destroyed"-for a legion of loyal friends believed in me and never doubted that I would faithfully strive to right every wrong.

It was never my intention to do anything else, but various emergencies hindered. Other misfortunes and near tragedies such as hospital experiences, several surgical-operations in my family (being myself one of the victims), all of which, causing much expense and loss of time from my work, contrived to delay and thwart my aims: But I never once abandoned the original purpose to ultimately triumph over all handicaps ' and meet every obligation.

The realization of this ardent hope was attained, a few days ago when I returned to Nashville with the means to liquidate this indebtedness, and I went in person to every creditor, whether an individual or a firm, and paid all the debts that had been discharged in bankruptcy. It is through Brother and Sister J. W. Akin, of Longview, Texas, who love the Cause for which we labor and strive, that I have been supplied with the means to pay these debts and restore my affairs to a current basis. Though legally released from these debts, morally I still owed them and I thank God for the means which have enabled me to meet these obligations. If in making the settlements anything has been overlooked, if and when called to my attention the same will be paid.

While making this report it seems necessary that reference be made to some things that have been talked. Naturally, these affairs of mine have been the subject of much talk and shafts of criticism have been directed at me. The just criticisms I have not resented, but rather accepted as the logical consequences of my own mistakes; the severity of certain unjust criticisms I have endeavored to ignore, though the hurt, coming from some sources, has been as poignant as the scorpion's sting.

The extent to which I was involved has been greatly exaggerated. It was bad enough without inflation. But if I had been able to become involved to the extent of the fabulous amounts reported it would have been, to say the least, an unusual range of credit extended to an ordinary preacher like me. Other things beneath the dignity and honor, not to mention veracity, of average men of the world have been peddled by some who claim to be Christians, even preachers. It has even been talked that it was necessary for me to leave Nashville under the cover of ebon's pinions, at the forbidding hour of midnight, just because the time of my departure chanced to be night instead of day. Yet for twenty five years I have come and gone at all hours of the day and night without suspicion. The condescension of these purveyors of low talk in seizing upon a mere incident in order to promote a campaign of calumny, stands self-rebuked in the minds of honest people, and only serves to disclose the improbity of the hearts and characters of the perpetrators. There is no truth at all in what these reports imply. The fact that I returned to Nashville shortly afterward in broad open daylight to conduct two meetings at which time under the auspices of a Nashville church I delivered an address to twenty five hundred people on the issues of Premillennialism apparently meant nothing to these assassinators. In reality, it was the issues of that address, and not the hours of my exit from Nashville, which aggravated them most.

Among other rumors that have no foundation in either fact or fancy, is the hearsay that funds contributed to the Central Church of Christ, Los Angeles, Calif., through my solicitation were diverted and appropriated to personal uses and abuses. I never heard of this until months after the tale was put into circulation. All matters, temporal and spiritual between me and the elders of the church in Los Angeles have at all times been of mutual understanding and common interest. When it reached the ears of these good elders that such things were being talked, the following statement was voluntarily drawn up by them and immediately forwarded to me. (See Original for copy)