Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
February 14, 1952

Reply To Orville Brittell

J. C. Reed, Stanton, Texas

I have already answered most of the points that Orville brings up in his article in my earlier articles but I will notice some of them again for the benefit of some who may not have read the other articles.

Orville declares that I did not discuss premillennialism with him personally. Perhaps he means that I did not call him to one side and discuss it with him. I did discuss it in a group of which he was a part. The others present were I. C. Shewmaker, Foy Short, and Eldred Echols and this was on the first Sunday that I was in N. Rhodesia. Orville expressed himself that day about like this, "I don't know what all the fuss is over anyway." However, this matters little because Orville's present article proves that I have correctly stated his position.

Ever since this controversy over the "attitude and position" of certain brethren in Africa began different ones have tried to drag me into a discussion of premillennialism but let us remember that that is not the present issue. The issue is over whether they fellowship such men. If these brethren want a discussion on the kingdom issue then let them so state and just as soon as this present discussion comes to a close we will find someone to discuss it with them or do it ourselves.

Something of brother Brittell's attitude toward the premillennial brethren is shown in his statement that he gave God thanks for the arrival of such men as Phillips and Vernon Lawyer. If we are going to give such men as these Godspeed then why not do so for the sectarians? (Sectarians have been given Godspeed in Africa by some of the brethren still on the field.) Right here let us ask Orville did you help get permits for A.T. Phillips and J. A. Brittell to come to N. Rhodesia?

Brother Caskey said in his article that Orville did not know that Phillips was a premillennialist, but Orville says that he knew that he was an extremist and worked with him to try to clear up misunderstanding. Now brother Caskey, where did you get your information?

Orville's hazy conception of the kingdom issue is shown by his charge against me that I am a "postmillennialist." I deny the charge of being either a "pre" or a "post." Now who is misrepresenting whom?

Orville does not like the present trend of branding yet he makes a second attempt to brand me by calling me an extremist. I was such in his eyes and others because I opposed the entry into N. Rhodesia of a known premillennialist (Phillips, who later caused a great deal of trouble).

Orville in a private letter to me states that it was reported to him that some of the boys at Namwianga had told that I had said that the book of Revelation ought to be torn out of the Bible. I do not know how such a vicious charge could have been started but I DENY it. THE TRUTH: I accept the entire Bible as the inspired word of God including Revelation. I do not however accept some of the theories that have been taught about this book. In fact I find the 20th chapter of Revelation one of the strongest passages for refuting the doctrine of premillennialism. But why is Orville so upset about the "postmillennialist" tearing out the book of Revelation if he is not in sympathy with something that demands that book for its very life, according to the way the premillennialists teach?

Orville not only fellowships the premillennialists but when he is forced to make a choice in groups he chose the premillennialists. When he went to Louisville recently, why did he go only to the premillennial groups if he is not in sympathy with them?

Orville makes a big plea that he is only trying to please God. If that be so why this edition that he has written? God doesn't need to have an article to know his position; but the brethren do.

Orville brings up the case of the weak brother. Certainly I am to bear with a weak brother, but does this apply to the situation we are discussing? These men have been sent out as public teachers, not a one of them is supposed to be a weak brother. I will have to admit that some of them are pretty weak. A missionary to Africa would not expect to have to convert the other missionaries, but some of them need it.

Orville's imaginary case of the Bible class in which Phillips and I get into an argument is ridiculous. I had better judgment than to try to work with Phillips. This is the sort of thing that befogs the issue.

Orville makes a great emotional appeal for the 140 million souls in Africa. I too spent some time in Africa. After three and one-half years I saw that I had little chance of planting the pure gospel while working with the group that was already there.

I gave up much more to leave Africa than I gave up to go there. I am still paying for the stand I have taken. I have counted the cost and I believe that in the end my efforts will be worth more to the cause of truth in Africa than that of some of the weak brethren. I have reported the truth on the situation in Africa and if the brethren there want the confidence and backing of the brotherhood to be renewed then I suggest that you clean up the situation so that it will be possible for loyal brethren to work with you in a united front. But don't condemn us for reporting what every supporter has a right to know. And don't condemn us because we do not stand idly by and let you flood the field with premillennialists.


After reading Orville's report the reader can see that I have correctly stated that Orville does not "oppose those who are teaching premillennialism."

Maybe brother Caskey would like to comment on Orville's article.