Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 1, 1951
NUMBER 26, PAGE 8-9b

A Persistent Misrepresentation

Guy V. Caskey, Johannesburg, South Africa

In recent issues of the Gospel Guardian (July 19th and 26th), brother J. C. Reed has accused me of endeavoring to defend or apologize for Orville Brittell, and other brethren, whom he has inferred is a premillennialist. I have not, at any time, made any apology for false doctrine, or for anyone who believes and practices it. Furthermore, I have no patience at all with premillennialism or with those who teach it. I simply stated some time ago through the pages of the Guardian that Orville Brittell is not a premillennialist, and I did it because J. C. had misrepresented him in leaving the impression that he is. Brother Reed did not reply to this, the subject under consideration in my article, nor did he apologize to Orville for his false accusation. Instead, he further implies that brother Brittell is a premillennialist and that I am trying to cover up for him. It may be remembered that J. C. made a similar charge against Bennie Lee Fudge for which he later apologized. Let us hope that he will pursue the same course in our case.

Brother Echols and I have discussed premillennialism with brother Brittell thoroughly, from every angle, upon different occasions, and I KNOW THAT HE IS NOT A PREMILLENNIALIST. He thinks the doctrine is downright foolishness. Now, what is brother Reed going to do about this damaging inference against him? It is not a question just here who among Orville's relatives and acquaintances is a premillennialist. Orville himself is not a premillennialist. J. C. Reed has inferred that he is. He has left that impression on the brotherhood. Will he be gentleman enough to retract it and apologize? J. C. boasts of having a great amount of information on this situation, much more than I. He says, "I have first hand information relative to the matters and I believe that I can speak with more authority than brother Caskey " But let us see how much "first-hand" information he has. During the three and one half years that he lived in Northern Rhodesia, he never one time asked Orville his position or discussed with him the subject of premillennialism, and yet, he possesses such vast information that he rushes into print to let the brotherhood know the stand of a man with whom he has never talked on the proposition! Marvelous information, this!

J. C. charges me with making "a statement which is not true..., " "a statement which I believe and know to be false," when I said that Orville "opposes anyone teaching premillennialism." And he uses as one of his proofs the example of Orville's mother, who, he says, is a premillennialist, taught it while she lived in California and now lives at Sinde in Northern Rhodesia, the home of Orville. Of course, J C. does not know what sister Brittell believes; he has heard, and that is enough for him to go to print. But all of that time (three and a half years) that he lived in the same part of the country with her, he never ONCE talked with her on the subject of premillennialism. Sister Brittell wrote me a letter a few days ago (incidentally I had not written her or asked her to answer any questions) in which she said: "I am also sorry that he (J. C. Reed) never talked with me about my faults while he was in Africa—although he accepted money from me, used our stove while here, visited us, ate at our table slept in our bed, yet, didn't love me enough to try to show me my error." If brother Reed had given the facts in the case, brethren in America would not now believe that Orville Brittell is a premillennialist and that Guy Caskey is trying to cover up for him. The facts are these:

1. Orville says that his mother is a premillennialist.

2. At the time she taught premillennialism in California, Orville was in Africa, and has been here for twelve years.

3. Orville has stated publicly and privately that when his mother landed in Africa he told her she was not to teach ONE WORD OF HER DOCTRINE at Sinde, that he would not tolerate it for a minute.

4. Orville says that, according to his knowledge, his mother has not so much as mentioned premillennialism since she has been in Africa.

5. Orville says that if his mother believed (1) that the church and the kingdom are not the same, or that the kingdom was not established on the first Pentecost after the resurrection of Christ (2) that any provision beyond the preaching of the gospel will ever be employed for the salvation of any lost, Jew or Gentile (3) in any system that embodies a "second chance" for sinners, HE COULD NOT AND WOULD NOT FELLOWSHIP HER.

This is not said to defend any brand of premillennialism. I have never seen any of it that is not rubbish; but I say it to show that brother Reed had little excuse for accusing me of falsifying when I said that Orville "opposes those teaching premillennialism." Why did not J. C. reveal these facts in his article, since he has so much information? If he did not have these facts, he could have obtained them by merely discussing the subject with Orville. But if he did not intend to write on the matter except by "hearsay," good judgment would have decreed that he refrain from speaking at all.

Brother Reed's second proof that Orville does not oppose premillennialism is that he wanted to leave Phillips, a premillennialist, in charge of Sinde while Orville was in the States. Again, facts should be made to known the brotherhood:

1. Two men were proposed in the meeting in which they were trying to decide who should be left in charge of Sinde while Orville was away—Phillips and Orville's father. The elder brother Brittell had been very seriously ill, having had a nervous breakdown a short while before coming to Africa. J. C. knew all this.

2. Orville did not know that Phillips was a premillennialist, though he had likely heard that lie was. When brother Echols told him that Phillips had confessed to us that he was a premillennialist, Orville replied: "This is the first definite proof that I have had."

3. Orville opposed Phillips the one time he taught premillennialism at Sinde. He believes he taught it so that Orville would kick him off" Sinde and then he could yell "persecution to his supporters in the States.

4. Orville does not fellowship Phillips.

5. Phillips would not be welcome in Orville's home today, nor anywhere else at Sinde.

Why did not brother Reed mention these facts, if he had them, and he boasted of having them, instead of leaving the impression that Orville is in full fellowship with Arthur Phillips. While J. C. is extremely critical of Orville for having shown Phillips around Northern Rhodesia when the latter first went there, he does not tell how he himself invited Phillips into his home for tea and showed him around the premises of Namwianga.

J. C.'s third proof that Orville does not oppose premillennialism is that he went to Louisville and showed his pictures of Africa to the premillennialists there. I know nothing about this. If Orville fellowshipped these people he needs to be rebuked. This is not a defense of him in any mistake he has made or any poor judgment he may have exercised. I deplore any softness on premillennialism or any overtures made toward premillennialists. But let it be remembered that the issue is whether or not Orville is a premillennialist. Eldred Echols, Waymon Miller, John Hardin, Boyd Reese, A. B. Reese, Guy Caskey, all, say that he is not. In fact, every man on the African field who has talked with Orville on the subject says that he is not. J. C. Reed, the only man amongst these who has not discussed the issue with Orville, has led brethren throughout the States to believe that he is. Waymon Miller, who has known Orville many years said to me only a few days ago: "I roomed with Orville in college, and I have discussed this subject thoroughly with him since I have been in Africa, and I KNOW THAT HE IS NOT A PREMILLENNIALIST."

I regret that such an article as this is necessary; it is not the kind of writing I like to do, and I am sure it is not the kind brethren like to read. But in as much as the brethren here felt that brother Brittell has been misrepresented repeatedly, and he himself asked that I write the first article setting forth his position, I have written this in the hope that brethren might remove any false impressions they have had about him.