Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 2, 1961
NUMBER 26, PAGE 8-9,13c

News And Views

Chas. A. Holt, 4662 University, Wichita Falls, Texas


This (October 13) finds me in the midst of a meeting with the Country Club (and that is merely the name of the street on which the building is located and not a description of the church!) church in Tucson, Arizona. We are having good interest and attendance; yet neither is what it ought to be by any means. Is either the interest or attendance even on the part of the members ever what it ought to be? It has been several years since I have seen or been in a meeting where either was anything like what we could expect. The Floral Heights church in Wichita Falls will be engaged in a series of meetings (October 15-22) with Yater Tant preaching, and I am sure that neither the interest or the attendance even of the members will be what it ought to be. L. L. Stout is the faithful evangelist working with the Country Club church here in Tucson. He is doing a good work. This church has had its problems (and which one has not?), but the prospects look bright for the future. This congregation has one of the finest buildings to be found anywhere, and if they can just build a church of spiritual character and quality to equal their physical property, this will be one of the best churches to be found anywhere. I verily believe that such is the intention of these brethren L. B. Clayton, formerly a bishop in the Tenth and Francis church in Oklahoma City, lives here now and is doing a splendid job directing the song services. A new congregation has recently been formed in Tucson by several from the Country Club church. The new congregation numbers about fifty and will be known as the Northside church. Bob Clayton a son of the L. B. Clayton's, is presently preaching for the new group. Bob lives in Tucson and is associated with his father in a radio station. Tucson is a very lovely and prosperous city.

The church in Rose Hill, Kansas, where Lloyd L. Hatfield is the preacher, is now publishing a bulletin which is unique in its field. The bulletin mainly contains "community news" of all sorts — baseball tournaments, lndustrial Arts displays, track meets, PTA meetings, Home Demonstration Club activities, wedding anniversaries, and other "News and announcements of civic interest in our community." What next? This church publishes a community newspaper! Well: perhaps they are doing some good in the community but what- they are attempting is a poor substitute for preaching and living the gospel of Christ! This unscriptural function of this church is but another of the many, many evidences of digression and apostasy sweeping the churches today.

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From the bulletins of the Canoga Park (California) church, I lift some religious news items of general interest, upon which I offer some comments: "Neil Wyrick, of Miami's Presbyterian church takes pictures of all visitors so he will know them when they return to church.' This might be a "good practice" for some of the "on the march" churches among us, where the brethren and sisters run around before, during and after services, pinning a button or a ribbon on the visitors! It gets amusing at times to see all the schemes and efforts employed along this line. It becomes quite a show in itself.

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"The countryside people of England seem to be turning against the New English Version of the Bible even though it has sold by the millions. 'If I had to swear an oath on this book, I would not feel bound to tell the truth,' a spokesman declared." This statement tells more about the "spokesman" and reflects more on him personally than it does on the thing to which he objects. However, there are some things to consider about this NE Version. It has really sold in this country also, and I really can't figure out why unless people still are interested in something new. While I have not examined this so-called Version at length, it appears to me to be more of an effort to explain than it is to translate. The attempt is seemingly made to reduce the Bible to a simple and simply-understood book — in every passage! They do not hesitate to give their interpretation of certain passages rather than a correct translation thereof. They want to tell the reader what it both says and means! It has a superficiality about it that destroys the real depths of the text. It reads like a light novel and takes away the initiative of the student to "dig deeper" into the passages for a fuller and more complete meaning. Of course, some passages are made clearer in some respects, but as a whole this Version is not really a "version" or translation, but more correctly should be labeled, a commentary. Have you observed the unlicensed use these "translators" made of the word "Christian?" They employ the word as an adjective over and over again without any justification for either its appearance in these places nor such an improper use of the term. While the NE Version may prove its worth as far as comparative reading is concerned, it can never take a place beside the King James or the American Standard as an accurate and trustworthy translation.

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Did you read where divorced Adlai Stevenson was named "National Father of the Year?" This makes one wonder if any of these titles are given because they are deserving or really belong.

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"The Jesuit Order of San Francisco has approved six laymen (the first such) to teach Catholic doctrine. The six took no vows of the priesthood nor will they dress like priests. The beginning salary, $500 per month, is to be increased to $12,000 per year within 36 months."

A sign outside a church in London, England, reads: "Not everyone who enters this church is converted. Please watch your handbags." At least they do give fair warning along that line. Perhaps a similar warning needs to be placed in many of "our" church buildings over the country — "Not everyone who enters this pulpit is converted. Please watch for your own soul." At least, this is very needed instruction and it will be a great day when each one fully realizes the importance of such.

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"J. Edgar Hoover reports that he has found no evidence of Communistic encroachments in the Protestant ministry." However, this does not prove that none are really there. And it must be remembered that he is only concerned with the actual Communistic party affiliation, and not with the fact that many Protestant ministers may hold definite basic views shared by the Communistic Party. The similarities in views and concepts between many of these ministers (and thousands of others who are not ministers) and the main tenets of Communism are abundant and definite. In fact, the views and concepts of many Protestant preachers make excellent groundwork and preparation for the acceptance of full-grown communistic views. Unbelief, infidelity, repudiation of the Bible, and the exaltation of human desires and wisdom, will sooner or later be recognized as common ground by all who share such views.

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The Catholic publication, Our Sunday Visitor, has come out against the YMCA. "The YMCA is no place for a Catholic. Forty years ago the Holy Office warned Catholics against joining or supporting the YMCA." The irony of the matter is that there are now 913,331 known Catholics holding membership in the YMCA or YWCA! The Catholics, like the Communists, have infiltrated nearly every organization and realm there is, whether approved or disapproved by the "Holy Office." And it must be remembered that the loyalty and devotion of a Catholic is to this "Holy Office first and foremost, last and always.

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The name of Pilate has been found by archeologists on an island near Italy. This is the first time his name has been found in an official way — other than in the most official document of all — the NT!

A Colombian commenting on the Peace Corp's representatives coming into his country said: "The most important question for a North American going into the back-land is: 'Are you a Roman Catholic?' In our rural society the village priest commands both the body and soul of the peasants." This is but another recognition of how completely that vicious totalitarian system enslaves the masses. Is it any wonder that the Catholic people in general are so hard to reach with the truth? Also, is it any wonder that those who have grown weary of this abject slavery will seize at any seeming ray of hope offering deliverance or betterment, even Communism? Yet in most of the instances where Catholics have turned to something else, it is not because they have really been converted from Catholicism, but merely that they are seeking a better way of life temporarily. In most instances, they still consider themselves Catholics and in the final showdown will likely turn up on that side. It is very difficult to fully break away from a system of domination which has for so long been ingrained into them and their fathers before them. I seriously question that any nation of Catholic people has ever or will ever, really turn from this system to fully embrace anything else. It will not be done as a nation or on any large scale; but only in exceptional cases of individuals.

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During the United Presbyterian Church's 173rd General Assembly, the church went on record as recognizing the right of, individual members to drink alcoholic beverages in moderation. This is another sign of the changing times and the crumbling standards of moral conduct. It demonstrates the increasing ravages of modernism and loss of conviction. However, why shouldn't they "recognize" what the general run of the people are already doing? At least, they want to be consistent; even if it means adjusting their teaching and rules to harmonize with the practice. The practice becomes the standard for determining the teaching.

The Presbyterians are not the only people who have yielded to such pressure and changed their teaching to fit or catch up with their practice. This has happened among us n recent years on more than one point. It can perhaps best be seen in the mad scramble by those of "digressive leanings" to change their teaching to suit their practice as far as human organizations and arrangements are concerned. This attempt to put the teaching in harmony with the practice (which they will not even consider giving up!) is responsible for all the labored efforts to make the NT word "fellowship" include the idea of social activities, recreation, and entertainment sponsored by the church. This also gave birth to the extreme idea that the church is responsible for the "whole man" — his social, physical, moral, mental, and spiritual needs. This same spirit brought about the invention of the idea that physical care of the indigent is the work of the home and not the work of the church," and therefore, such relief or care cannot be provided by the church. Hence, this makes necessary these-benevolent societies which have been formed and made the financial obligation of the churches. The same anti-scriptural attitude is responsible for the relatively new deception being advanced that what the individual can do the church can do. The many other such doctrines and positions invented by the same motivation are almost without number. It is the same old effort to let the desires and will of man rule and determine the teaching done.

CHURCH CONTRIBUTION TO SCHOOL — A letter from Nashville Christian Institute to the Fourth Avenue Church of Christ, Franklin, Tennessee:

"Dear Christian Friends:

"I just wanted to tell you again how much Bro. Keeble and I appreciate your personal gift to our work. We rejoice about the privilege of coming and the immediate gift which we received that evening. We further rejoice when we received your check of $100.

"Thank you so very kindly for your service and interest in the work which we are doing."

(Signed by Willie Cato) * n

Scripture Lessons — Galatians Is The Title Of A Little 70-Page Booklet By Robert C. Welch, 1102 Mound St., Nacogdoches, Texas. As The Name Implies It Is A Class Book Of Questions And Notes On The Book Of Galatians. It Contains Fourteen Studies. It Sells For 25 Per Copy. It Is A Neat Booklet And Would Make A Good Study For Any Class. Order From The Author.

How To Sleep In Church (An Epistle From Thistle)

Dear Down:

You ask how it comes that I can sleep through so many church services. You complain that, when you listen to others preach, you have what could be described in medical jargon, as "Insomnia Ecclesiastics." Several years of delightful drowsing in the quiet of our church, does, I guess qualify me to give advice.

In the first place, don't sit too near the front. If possible get a seat in a rear corner. This way, if you have the right kind of minister who never uses any but well modulated tones, the sermon becomes a distant murmur. It sounds much like a waterfall of words gently cascading over the pulpit and swirling around the front pews. You will find such a gentle rain of sound an excellent soporific.

A fine help is to concentrate on the feather on some distant lady's hat. This, as it gently waves and bobs, will, if you watch it closely, gradually send you into an hypnotic trance which then leads to sleep. Don't think about anything — your soul or your sins or your duties — this is most disturbing and should be avoided at all costs.

Be careful of those preachers who get your interest aroused by some searching question, pointed text of Scripture, or vivid illustration. Make every effort to think of something else when they start, such as a hole in the carpet, a crack in the wall, or which Sunday paper you'll buy after the service. Repeat to yourself, over and over, "I'm tired, I'm tired, I've had a hard week. How sleepy I am!" This will usually get results.

Really, I must warn you, though, that none of these last prescriptions work without fail. Last Lord's day, I myself failed completely. Our preacher spoke on "Asleep in the Pew." I kept wondering what he'd say — he used Scriptures most unfortunately stimulating and even made me feel guilty. You know, I never got even a five-minute nap! So, I don't write with any superior feeling — just to advise you as best I know. Oh, yes, if you snore don't chew gum. Old Zeke Jones almost choked to death last Sunday and he's one of our best sleepers. — Yawningly yours, Thistle. — via Truth, Geary, Oklahoma, Ronny E. Hinda, editor.