Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
June 15, 1961
NUMBER 7, PAGE 8,12c-13

News And Views

Charles A. Holt, 4662 University Dr., Wichita Falls, Texas

Preachers, Churches, Etc.

Harvey J. Williams will begin work with the Glen Park church in Gary, Indiana, about the first of July. He has been with the Grand Avenue church in Chicago for nearly three years .... Vestal Chaffin will move from Charleston, West Virginia, to work with the Grand Avenue church in Chicago, following Williams .... I recently quoted a statement in this column from Lawrence L. Smith, Bursar at ACC, denying that a single contribution has been made by a church to ACC during the 34 years he has been there. I asked the readers of this column if they knew of any instance where ACC has either solicited or accepted a contribution from a church. So far I have only heard from Robert L. McDonald, of Tyler, Texas. He called my attention to the following statement from the pen of the late G. C .Brewer, which appeared in the Gospel Advocate, August 1, 1935.

"At Cleburne and at Sherman also we put Abilene Christian College in our budget for $1,000 a year. We put two orphan homes in our budget at each place for a definite amount.... We were supporting all three regularly with a definite amount."

Apparently either Smith or Brewer have misled us — one of them is certainly wrong. Brewer claimed that both of these churches actually did send to ACC "regularly." Smith needs to set the record straight in some way. I expect that what took place at Cleburne and Sherman has been (and probably still is) practiced in many other instances. However, it is only a matter of time till such will be a common practice all over the country .... Bible Truth is the name of a neat, printed paper edited by James P. Needham, 5121 23rd Ave., North, St. Petersburg, Florida. It is published mainly for members of the church. It is more or less a "revival" of a similar work by Needham in days gone by. It is a good paper. I suppose it is free to those who desire it .... From Bible Truth I lift the following quotation from James D. Bales: "It is a difficult job to criticize anything without being misunderstood, or without people applying the criticism far beyond what is set forth in the article." Certainly this is a true 'observation. I have recently seen it demonstrated as a result of my "criticisms" of FCC. Such has ever been the case, and I have seen it happen time and time again. As a result of my "observations" concerning this "touchy subject," I have had some brethren (only five or six) accuse me of nearly everything. I have been accused of "jumping on FCC and trying to find something to use to destroy the school." Another said that I was trying to introduce another issue to the brotherhood before we have settled all the others. And one or two more even worse. Well, such was more or less expected. I shall have more to say along this line, as time passes, in further effort to study this matter fully and try to make clear to all what I was trying to get at. I am grateful for the large number who have written me of their commendation of these articles and urging that more be said about it. More about this later.

Florida Christian College Bulletin

In the FCC Bulletin of April, 1961, we see some things that do not make us at all happy. On the front page we see, "Chorus Tours the South."

This "Chorus" is not unlike the others touring the country-side. Although the article did not say so, we are confident they sang for varied churches. I would like to think they did not, but who else would afford them an audience? It simply is not healthy for the colleges to seek favors from congregations of the Lord. We have criticized this thing because we have seen the ugly fruits of such. Now, FCC is following the same errant pattern in this "Chorus" business.

We have affirmed that spiritual songs have a singular design: to worship God. Can such be successfully denied? Whence cometh the entertaining aspect? We quote from the FCC bulletin: "The programs varied somewhat according to the type of audience and the music desired. Always in the religious section of the program the audience thrills to the singing of such masterpieces as 'A Mighty Fortress is Our God!' This part of the program is followed by the secular section with its special numbers and groups .... One of the parts of the program that is received enthusiastically wherever it is givens is the Western and Folk Music section with 'Cool Water,' 'Oklahoma; 'Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair,' and others. It is always a well-balanced and properly executed program."

Will there ever be a school that will leave the church of the Lord alone? Let the college be the college! We are in favor of such. But, let the college leave the church to her business of preaching the gospel! — M. W. Chaffin.

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"The Apostle Paul".

"On March 24, 1961, the faculty, staff, and student body of Florida Christian presented the life story of the Apostle Paul in dramatic form. The background material was taken from the book of Acts of the Apostles WITH A FEW ADDITIONAL SCENES THAT SEEMED TO BE IN KEEPING WITH WHAT INSPIRATION HAD REVEALED. AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE THE SCRIPT WAS A REPRODUCTION OF THE TEXT. Of course in some places quotations from Ephesians, Hebrews, 1 Corinthians, and other books supplied the wording, and occasionally supplementary materials had to be used."

The cast consisted of: James R. Cope as Luke, Homer Hailey as Apostle Peter, Edgar Srygley as Apostle James, Clinton D. Hamilton as Apostle Paul, Mrs. Bobbie Miller as Bernice, "wife of Agrippa." (She MAY have been his "Wife" but she WAS his sister, MWC)

The above is taken from Florida Christian College Bulletin. The emphasis in the above quotes is mine.

We have read a great deal of criticism of the Herald of Truth in its dramatizing of the gospel. Here is some real meat for those critics. "A few ADDITIONAL scenes that SEEMED to be in keeping with what INSPIRATION had REVEALED."

Depicting truth in drama is one thing, ADDING and PRESUMING are other things. Are not many apt to confuse the REVEALED things and the things "THAT SEEMED TO BE IN KEEPING" with same? It is difficult to be consistent when one "dallys" with truth! In the same vein of consistency, one could not criticize Herald of Truth and not criticize FCC for one and the same thing!

Drama has very little (if any) place in preaching the gospel. We have the facts, why trifle with fiction? We know, why presume and suppose? We have what inspiration has "revealed" and do not need the prolific imaginations of brethren or others. Truth is the word of God. John 17:17. Either produce it EXACTLY or it is not truth!

To say the least, the wisdom of tampering with revelation to any degree or effect is doubtful. We have often been asked if we read varied religious fiction. We read absolutely NO religious fiction. Truth is difficult without fictitious confusion. Why complicate it? — M. W. Chaffin, Canoga Park, California.

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Moving Time

The days are getting longer, the heat is increasing, the school term is about to end, and the air is full of rumors about preachers moving. The Methodist Conference will have its hands full in relocating all the preachers whose year is up. Many of the Baptist denominations will be releasing their preachers by a two thirds majority vote. And the unwritten creed of the church of Christ says, "It's high time for the preacher to move."

Some of women folks are whispering to one another, "Don't you think its time for us to suggest to the elders that our preacher has been here long enough and that we would like to have a change?" The disgruntled members are excusing their miserly ways by saying, "I would do better if we had another preacher." Some of the quitters are telling the personal workers, "I will start back to church when changes are made in the pulpit." Some are saying, "The preacher ought not to preach on such subjects as divorce. Why, the one who conducted our meeting spent his time preaching the gospel: Faith, Repentance, Confession and Baptism."

It would be interesting to know what the average time is that a preacher spends in one church. Some move each year, some stay five years, some ten, and a few never move — they die in their home congregation. I do know what my average is: Just a few days less than two years; the longest time, slightly over four years and the shortest, slightly less than six months.

Why does the preacher have to move so often? Why is he expected to move? Should the church exchange elders each year? How about the deacons? Should the members change each year, or once every two years? How about the song leader? As the Baptist Standard Manual says, "Now It Is Different."

There are several factors that determine the preacher's move. If he has been there long enough to learn the ways of the members, then he has been there too long because it is not ethical for the faults and shortcomings of the members to be spoken of publicly. If he takes the sword against error, it is about time for him to pack his suitcase and look for another place.

For some unknown reason, women have more to do with moving preachers than we men would like to admit. Who took the head of John? Who moved Elijah out of the country? And who caused some of the worst trouble and the most confusion in the public services of the church in Corinth?

If women would tend to their God-given duties, they wouldn't have so much time to meddle in the affairs of men who are supposed to guide the church. And if men had the proper faith and courage, they would not allow women to meddle in their affairs.

I suppose that feelings are about mutual. No doubt many preachers become discouraged, sick and disgusted with some of the members, hoping that they will get up and leave. Perhaps the preacher thinks the church would be much better off if all the social drinkers, card players, oncers and general "No-Gooders" would exchange churches so fast that no preacher would learn about their private lives. Oh, Weill The members at Westside need not get excited. This article is general. I like it here and am happy. I have made no plans for an immediate move. I feel that my work is very successful and that things are just beginning to roll. I would like to break my longest record. — Wilson Coon, Phoenix, Arizona.

About Tobacco

A brother whom I deeply love and who is now in a hospital in serious condition writes as follows:

"Carl, maybe it would be better to quit writing about cigarettes. Like myself, only about one out of every 500 believes it. Instead, urge them to smoke until, like me, they can consume three or four packages per day. Then when their arteries begin to harden from sugar, fat and nicotine, and they suffer every kind of pain known to the human race, let them watch the surgeon as he cleans arteries like a pipe drain before their eyes. Let them hear the doctors tell them to quit smoking or all the surgical work is in vain. Then their eyes will be opened to what fools we be, and it will be easy to quit. I know because I tried it. Perhaps it is too late, but in spite of the fact that I had to scare him I am now master of after allowing him to suck the things for fifty years."

— Mission Messenger

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Strike A Familiar Chord?

Policeman to lost child: "Why did you not hang on to your mother's hand, son?"

Little Lost Boy: "I was afraid I'd get burned." Policeman: "Then why didn't you hang on to her skirt?"

Little Lost Boy: "Mommy didn't have one on."

Bulletin, Valley Station, Ky.

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What Next?

A young friend of mine attended a service in New Orleans recently. The preacher arose and inquired as to who was having a birthday on that date. Several were. The congregation then sang, "Happy Birthday" to these. The young friend had gone there to WORSHIP GOD. He knows what the New Testament teaches in regard to worship. He hasn't gone back to this place where such insipid, unscriptural and unspiritual practices are engaged in. — S. L. Edwards, Dumas, Texas.