Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
April 12, 1956

"Show Us A Better Way To Do It"

Cecil B. Douthitt, Brownwood, Texas

Chapter VIII.

Personal observation, secular history and the Bible all unite in the declaration that a lack of faith in God is a chief cause of apostasy. "Take heed, brethren, lest haply there shall be in any one of you an evil heart of unbelief, in falling away from the living God." (Heb. 3:12.) Then in verse 19, "And we see that they were not able to enter in because of unbelief."

Many people have lost faith in God and do not know it. They continue to believe in the existence of God, and that the Bible is the word of God; but they do not believe God. Many today do not know that to lose faith in God's wisdom or God's way of doing things is to lose faith in God.

People who lose faith in God think that their own wisdom and ways of doing things are wiser and better than the Lord's wisdom and ways. When their pernicious ways are attacked, they often cry out: "Show us a better way to do it." Showing them the Lord's way of doing it does not settle the matter with them, because they do not believe that the Lord's way is better than their own. They declare openly that the Bible way of doing some things is "unwise," and that they "know it is wiser today to" do it their way. How can any man convince such unbelievers that 'God's way is "a better way to do it"?


To show an affusionist that "they both went down into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him" (Acts 8:38), is an easy assignment; many of them admit frankly that was the apostolic way of doing it. But to convince them that their way of bringing a little water to the candidate, and sprinkling a little on the candidate is not "a better way to do it" than the apostolic way, is difficult indeed. How can one comply with the affusionist's demand, "Show us a better way to do it," when he does not believe that the Bible way is "a better way to do it"?


God told Eve to abstain totally from the fruit of a certain tree in Eden. She understood God's way, and repeated it to Satan, and stated the penalty of disobedience. (Gen. 3:1-3.) But she was told of another way which was not God's way. She then believed no longer that God's way was "a better way to do it." She lost faith in God when she lost faith in the wisdom of God's plan for her. She apostatized; she died. Unbelief was the cause.

The Israelites.

Samuel had no trouble in showing the unbelieving Israelites that government by judges was God's way; but he could not convince them that he was showing them a "better way to do it" than their own way, because they had lost faith in the wisdom of God. (1 Sam. 8:4-22.) And when they rejected God's wisdom, they rejected God's plan of government; when they rejected God's plan, they rejected God. (1 Sam. 8:7.) How could Samuel show them "a better way to do it," while they were arguing that their kingly form of government was "a better way to do it" than God's way? (1 Sam. 8:19-20.)

Sponsoring Church "Joint Action" Advocates.

When the advocates of the sponsoring church hobby say, "Show us a better way to do it," they do not mean, "Show us the Bible way to do it," in either the field of evangelism or benevolence.

In the field of evangelism they understand clearly that New Testament churches sent wages directly to the preachers in distant places, and that no intermediary controlling agency existed between the preacher and the churches that contributed to his support. Paul said, "I robbed other churches, taking wages of them that I might minister unto you" (2 Cor. 11:8); again, "For even in Thessalonica ye sent once and again unto my need." (Phil. 4:16.) But our "joint action" brethren state frankly and publicly that the way that the apostles and the New Testament churches did it "is unwise," and they say that they "know it is wiser today" to do it another way; therefore they do not believe that they have been shown "a better way to do it," when they are shown the Bible way.

In the Gospel Advocate of October 6, 1955, one of the staff writers of that journal wrote the following:

"I say that is unwise because brethren have found it so in the past when certain preachers collected from so many such churches amounts which far exceeded a reasonable salary for the work done. I know Philippi sent to Paul, and I know there are preachers today as worthy and as trustworthy as Paul; but I also know it is wiser today to support the man by joint action, cooperation, so there will be no temptation put in the way of the man and there will be no chance for unworthy men to hurt the cause of our Lord and the churches sending him money."

The Gospel Advocate is controlled by men who hold the same views as that staff writer, and they will not permit any man on earth to reply to that Modernistic teaching, or to make any correction whatever of it in that journal.

Therefore, when men connected with the Gospel Advocate say, "Show us a better way to do it," they certainly do not mean, "Show us the Bible way to do it," for they say they already know that. Here is what they say they know already: (1) they know how "Philippi sent to Paul"; (2) they know that the "joint action, cooperation" for which they contend did not exist then; (3) they "know it is wiser today" to do it another way, the "joint action" way; (4) they know it is "unwise" to do it today like Paul and the New Testament churches did it.

Like the Israelites in the days of Samuel, their trouble is not a lack of understanding of the way of God; it is a lack of faith in the wisdom of God.

The three distinct segments into which the centralized control defenders are divided on "a better way to do it" in caring for homeless children will be discussed in the next chapter.