Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
April 19, 1956

A Gospel Advocate "Polyglot"

Roy E. Cogdill

In the pages of the Gospel Advocate — "The Old Reliable" these days one can find a strange admixture of ideas and teaching that indicates some very confused thinking upon the part of its editor as well as among its contributors.

Witness the following excerpts from the same issue:

"In my recent series of articles, I took the position that Paul intended for the equality to be among the giving churches of Achaia, Macedonia, and Galatia. Those who oppose the type of cooperation now being practiced and which has been practiced for nearly one hundred years on a small scale by churches of Christ, to preach the gospel and care for dependents stoutly maintain that the equality Paul mentioned in II Cor. 8:1314 was between the giving churches on the one hand and Jerusalem, the receiving church, on the other hand. They contend that these churches of Asia and Europe were to give money to the Saints in Jerusalem so there could be equality between Jerusalem and the giving churches."

— Roy H. Lanier, G.A. March 1, 1956, pages 198-199.

Brother Lanier goes on to labor hard to justify such a conclusion and criss-crosses back and forth in rapid fashion in his illogical and unscriptural effort to reason us out of the truth.

But in the same issue another writer in discussing the same text said:

"What abundance they had would do and if given, it would supply the wants of many, and, if some day the Corinthians were in need, it might be that the Jerusalem saints should have an abundance then and they could help in return. Thereby bringing about an equality."

— Ernest Clevenger, Jr. — "Bible Lesson for Sunday, March 11, 1966 — G.A., March 1, 1956 — page 196.

Brother Lanier says the equality is between the giving churches. Brother Clevenger says it is between a contributing church, Corinth, and Jerusalem, the receiving church. Is it both? Unless these brethren admit than both ideas are in the text, one or the other is bound to be wrong. These brethren should get together and decide this matter before they have to quarantine each other." It would be tragic if the "Dear Old Reliable" became unreliable enough to teach contradictory doctrines even in the same issue! It is bad enough for it to be so constantly contradicting the Word of God.

Then on another page of the same issue of the Advocate we read:

"There is no other institution that God has ordained to publish the truth of the gospel to the lost races of man: his church is the only God-ordained support of the truth of salvation. We need not hope for any other institution to carry the gospel to the unsaved; neither need we hope for any other institution to edify the membership of the church. This stupendous task is laid heavily upon his church".

— H. Leo Boles — reprint from G.A., 1934, page 757 — appearing in G.A. March 1, 1956, page 198.

These "promotin" brethren, bowing at the shrine of human institutions instead of reverencing divine authority, do not believe Brother Boles' statement. On page 210 of the same issue of the Gospel Advocate appeared an advertisement headed,

"A Thousand Preachers Needed".

This advertisement was sent in by Paul Sherrod, one of the deans of the "promotin' brethren" and an elder in the biggest "promotin" church of all — Broadway in Lubbock. We are favored in the ad with the picture of 5 young men of the Pioneer Park Church in Lubbock, a congregation situated under the shadow (in more ways that one in all probability) of the "Mother Church" in Lubbock. These young men are giving their time — not to the Church of the Lord, mind you — but to "promotin" the "Gospel Press" institution recently organized by a group — the same group — of "Promotin` brethren" and currently asking for unlimited amounts of money "that these gospel messages may be published by the millions." These brethren dream their dreams in a big way. They cannot take notice of anything as small as a congregation expending its every energy and effort to "publish abroad" the gospel under the authority of Christ and in harmony with his will. In their esteem that will not get the job done — not even if every church on the face of the earth were to do all it could in this great task. The "church" is not enough.

This new institution has recently been organized for the purpose exclusively of preaching the gospel. They have no other purpose and engage in no other work. Their preaching is to be done by advertisements or articles in national magazines. It is not a commercial endeavor. It was not set up to engage in any merchandising enterprise. It was not created to do something that the Church as such cannot do, but its sole and only activity is to do what God created the 'Church to do — preach the gospel. It is a competitor of the church in its field and Brother Boles was wrong when he said that God gave such work to but one "organization" or "institution" on earth.

Perhaps the aim of the Advocate owner-editor is to diversify its appeal so that everyone can find something that will please him. This is the "policy" of B. C. Good-pasture. He wants the business. Under his guidance the good "old reliable" has become thoroughly unreliable when it comes to "contending earnestly for the faith once delivered to the Saints." (Jude 3.)