Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 13, 1955
NUMBER 23, PAGE 5,6b

Browsing Through Old Papers -- No. 3

Wm. E. Wallace, Akron, Ohio

Guy N. Woods: "A growing tendency to recede from the principles which formerly motivate us, and an ever increasing willingness to be satisfied with a modified message of the cause we plead is becoming more and more observable in the churches of Christ. That this is so should be an occasion of regret to every loyal disciple of the Lord. More, it should be a call to arms, the beginning of a campaign which should know no ending until every apologist has been driven from the ranks. If it is true that history repeats itself, we may know assuredly that it is only thus the primitive purity of the church may be preserved and protected to succeeding generations. The study of the events of the past in their relation to mankind has ever been one of the richest and most fruitful sources of information. 'Coming events' have a way of 'casting their shadows before,' and we may learn much from those who blazed the trail before us. This writer has long believed that the best possible preparation for a young man aspiring to preach; aside from the study of the Bible itself, is to steep oneself, as it were, in the writings of the early pioneers. In no other manner may one so effectively imbibe the spirit of the movement and catch a vision of its possibilities. If our young men would depend less on 'our Bible Colleges' to make 'preachers' out of them, and look deeply into this rich heritage to which we have fallen heir, while they likely would be deficient in the knowledge of the intricacies of the 'the proper methods of approach,' it is believed they would be prepared to defend the truth, better, and more effectively to lead the erring from the perplexing mazes of denominationalism. It seems pitifully absurd that some preachers among us have turned to Beecher and Talmadge and Moody, when they could sit if they would at the feet of Hall and Franklin and Lard. That they would choose to stock their libraries with the former instead of the latter, is a lamentable commentary on the times." — Firm Foundation, September 29, 1936 Party Heads In The Church: "It is certainly a distinction not to be coveted, to become the head of a party instead of a plain rank and file member of the body of Christ, and it is just the kind of distinction that Paul refused to accept, which he rather condemned, in his letter to the Corinthians. 'Now this I mean, that each one of you saith, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. Is Christ divided; was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized into the name of Paul? I thank God that I baptized none of you, save Crispus and Gains; lest any man should say that ye were baptized into my name' (I Cor. 1:12-15). And with further emphasis he continued: 'For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you jealousy and strife, are ye not carnal, and do ye not walk after the manner of men? for when one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not men? (I Cor. 3:3,4). It was certainly no distinction in Paul's estimation to be made the head of a party in the church." — Foy E. Wallace, Jr., Firm Foundation, September 29, 1936

Editorial Fairness: "I have tried to publish about one article from any brother who had anything to sayfor or against things as they were being, and are being done, or carried on by the preachers and the churches. With little exception, I have published all that has been written, particularly what has been written in a critical way. If anything is being done by so-called loyal churches of Christ or by evangelists that is contrary to the sound doctrine of Christ, there is no one who would appreciate this knowledge, I think, more than myself." — G. H. P. Showalter, Firm Foundation, October 16, 1951 Purge: "The grapevine is relaying the news from the underworld. Some of the honey boys who never call names seem also to entertain scrutientious scrumples against signing names. They think all things ought to be done 'in love' and show what they mean by talking sweetly to the Lord in public while they prowl in darkness for purposes of character assassination. The grapevine has not as yet definitely identified them but some inevitable slips will reveal them in due time. The trouble all started over the fight against future kingdom theories and other threats on the simplicity of the New Testament order. When the Jews could not meet Jesus in debates they decided to kill him. So what the Judaizers and their sympathizers today cannot do in debate, they have decided to accomplish by assassination. Noises in the dark point to Foy E. Wallace, Jr., N. B. Hardeman, C. R. Nichol, E. R. Harper, and R. L. Whiteside as victims of the first big purge. They would like to get F. B. Srygley but he is so strategically situated that he is hard to get at. They will possibly just continue to hate him in a more or less judicious way. I was told several years ago that the cause would score several points when Srygley died. But it looks like the old codger is going to live to be a hundred just for spite. It seems that the prayers of some men are never answered. I feel slighted. I listened eagerly for the grapevine to relay my name in this list of notables. I must be a softie. What have I not done to deserve such a slight? I'd almost be willing to meet one of the honey boys in some dark place, blow pipe smoke in his face and confess to a little Christian devilment, to get in on this. Maybe they mean to include me later but I think I deserve to face the first firing squad along with Brother Foy. Who told anybody that he is worse than I am, anyhow ? If I ever find out who is responsible for leaving me off the list, I'll be tempted to enter suit for slander." — Cled E. Wallace, Bible Banner, November, 1938. (You see this purging, alias quarantine, business is not new — WEW)

SHALL WE HAVE ANOTHER "WHO KILLED COCK ROBIN" AFFAIR? A lot is being said lately about a "segment" of the church that opposes church supported institutions, and the one church receiving-disbursing type of cooperation. We are told by some rather boastful writers and orators that it is truly merely a "segment" of "faction" in the church that stands in opposition to the various brotherhood projects. Was it in Lubbock that they figured 95% for the brotherhood projects and 5% against? Remember when it was reported that a "brotherhood survey" determined that 95% of the preachers and elders were in favor of soft-pedal journalism? Of course the idea was to destroy the influence of the Bible Banner which was waging a great battle against premillennialism. My Dad asked this question in the Bible Banner of April 1939: "As a matter of curiosity, we would like to know more of this '95%' who 'favor their views'." Well, a flood of letters came in. Brethren J. M. Powell, Guy N. Woods and a host of others said they discarded the survey questionnaire. A false claim was exposed.

Cowards: Recently a preacher wrote the following in a letter to me: "I know personally a score or more preachers who believe the things for which we are fighting are sound and scriptural, but it is like one of them told me, 'You fellows go ahead and do the fighting, I'll stay out of it; then when the battle is all over you will not have a place to preach and I will.' No, I didn't hit him, but I'll hold him in contempt for the rest of my life!" And in browsing through New Testament papers I find these words of Christ: "Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell." (Matthew 10:26-28)