Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
June 19, 1958
NUMBER 8, PAGE 11-13

Reading The Bulletins

Charles A. Holt - P. O. Box 80 - Florence, Alabama

News From Here And There

Victor H. Sellers has moved from Jasper, Texas to work with the church in Lewisville, Texas . . . . R. Ervin Driskill, who was with the Lewisville (Texas) church is now with the new congregation in Meridian, Mississippi. B. J. Thomas has moved to Bellaire, Texas, where he will labor with the church. He was with the Southside church in Mt. Pleasant, Texas for over four years . . . . Robert Bolton is moving from Greenville, Texas, to work with the Southside church in Mt. Pleasant . . . . Bill Cavender is moving from Cooper, Texas, where he has labored for several years, to work with the Sixth Street church in Port Arthur, Texas.... Charles G. Caldwell, Jr. has been with the church in Gary Indiana for several years, but has moved to Poteau, Oklahoma, where he will work with the Front Street church . . . . A GOOD TRACT: George T. Jones has published a very good tract on THE WORK OF THE CHURCH. It is a sermon he preached while he lived in Kilgore, Texas. It deals with the current problems relative to the work of the church in a very effective way. It is excellent for general distribution and churches should put it into circulation. Write him for quanity prices at: 1212 Highland, San Antonio, Texas . . . . Martin Lemon has moved to Huntsville, Alabama, where he will labor with the new Jordan Park congregation. He was with the Locust Street church in Mt. Pleasant, Tennessee for nearly five years.... Walden Tarpley is moving to Sparta, Tennessee after several years with the Highland church in Columbia, Tennessee.... B. B. James is moving from Hohenwald to Paris, Tennessee.... Thomas Allen Robertson, who has labored with the good church in San Bernardino, California, for five years, is moving to Tucson, Arizona, where he will work with the Country Club Road church.... Aude McKee has moved from Crawfordsville, Indiana, to Plainfield, Indiana, where he will work with the church.... Glenn Shaver has moved to Gary, Indiana to work with the Glenn Park congregation. Shaver has been in Hammond, Indiana.... W. E. Bingham is moving from West Frankfort, Indiana to work with the church in Hammond. Indiana . . . .

"197 Responses."

I see in the Christian Chronicle, 3-29-58, where Otis Gatewood did the preaching in "one of the most successful gospel meetings ever concluded for the College church (Abilene, Texas)." There were "197 responses, 25 of those baptisms." This report reminds me of some of the reports that come from the Billy Graham meetings — they are always having a large number of what they are pleased to term "responses." Wonder what all this includes? It is a general term that can he used to cover almost any kind of reaction, good or bad to the meeting. Gatewood is getting to be well-known for the large number of "responses" during his meetings. Two or three years ago he conducted one of these high-powered and high-pressuring meetings for the Granny White church in Nashville, Tennessee. He preached (if it can be called preaching!) each morning at the chapel-Service at David Lipscomb College. He really put on the "arousements." He "moaned and groaned;" went up and down the aisles, begged and pleaded for as long as an hour at a time! On one occasion the audience stood and they had about ten or twelve invitation songs with Gatewood "pleading" during and between each one of them! Some of the students told me that they actually timed it and his drive for "responses" lasted a solid hour! They said that they "responded" with being nearly "dead on their feet" and some perhaps would "respond" in order to get to sit down! Some of the young people "responded" for no good reason and certainly not because they needed to do so. They were just "working up" and under the emotional atmosphere that prevailed they went forward for no real reason. Of course, this was heralded as a "great meeting" and there were many "responses." This kind of thing is getting to be very popular and prevalent in some quarters. It makes for a great show and to those who are more interested in QUANITY than in QUALITY of the "responses" it is the very thing. In the main it is nothing more than the employment of the tactics and ways of some of the great denominational preachers; such as Billy Graham, Billy Sunday and others. While we should be interested in people "responding" to the gospel, we must beware lest the use of certain tactics and an overemphasis on "appeal" cause them to "respond" not to call of the gospel nor because of true conviction in their hearts that they need to obey the Lord; but rather as a result of stirred emotions alone. Many of the "responses" in such meetings by members of the church are wholly unnecessary and pointless. Members who have fallen away or been out of duty need to be restored to their rightful place through public confession to the church and prayer; but most of these so-called "re-dedications" and confessions that "I have sinned" are matters that need no public display or public acknowledgements . . . . R. T. Robinson is now working with the South Flores church in San Antonio . . . . After eight years with the Seventh Avenue church in Miami, Florida, C. W. Scott is leaving to work in the Department of Public Relations at Florida Christian College . . . Harold Sain is moving from Hixson, Tennessee to work with the church in Dexter, Missouri.... Jerry F. Bassett has moved from Corvallis, Oregon, to Willits, California, where he will work with the church.... Have you seen a copy of the FLORIDA NEWS LETTER? It is a very interesting and profitable publication edited and published by James P. Miller and H. E. Phillips. Its purpose is just what its name implies — to give the news and progress of the churches in Florida. It is well-printed and edited. Anyone would enjoy reading it and it is thrilling to read of the work being done in that state. The front page of the last issue carried the pictures of Paul Breakfield, Jr., Marshall E. Patton, J. W. Evans and Jerry Belchick, along with an article telling of the work of the Lord in Orlando. Imagine the "shock" that these four pictures gave the readers! These four men live and labor in that city. The Cause has really grown rapidly and solidly there. There is no single subscription price for FLORIDA NEWS LETTER listed, so write for the price. You will enjoy the paper.... Joe Poston is now with the Memorial Drive church in Decatur, Alabama.... Joe Pruitt is moving from Trinity, Alabama to work with the church in Gordon, Georgia . . . . Edward Bragwell is moving from Russellville, Alabama to work with the church in Trinity . . . . Roy D. Merritt, who has been with one of the churches in Hamilton, Ontario, for several years, is moving to Ottawa, Canada, where he hopes to establish the church in that capital city . . . . Granville W. Tyler will soon move from West Helena, Arkansas, to Decatur, Alabama, where he will work with the Somerville Road church. He follows Doyle Banta in the work there . . . . The latest preacher to go to the GOSPEL ADVOCATE "confessional" is a F. Raines, now of Celina, Tennessee. He has now been absolved from all his sins of "hobbyism" and by doing proper penance toward the "Master Minds" of the GA, he can be fully accepted into the fold as a "sound and loyal preacher." It is amazing what splendid men such preachers become WHEN they make such confessions and how great a work they are doing AFTER they have been absolved by the Nashville Pontiff! Raines is now a sound preacher and has the official endorsement of Nashville. This will help him to be well-received in places where they hold sway and perhaps make of him a popular preacher! Is that what he is after? This "confessional" operated by the GA may impress some of the immature and unthinking among their readers, but everyone who is familiar with the facts knows that the number who have left the GA ranks and have thrown off their dominion is far greater than the few they have won with all their appeals to popularity, brotherhood favor, bandwagon tactics and intimidation. It would be interesting to see them publish a list of those who have departed from them and let them give a statement for their "change." But never fear such will be done — especially if the "departed" are to be given a fair chance to state the reasons for their departure . . . A NEW PAPER: THE SHIELD is the title of a new paper which has made its appearance on the West Coast. Bob Melear and R. G. Lovelady serve as the editors of this paper. There is a long and impressive list of staff writers associated with the paper. It is an eight-page, monthly publication. The price is $1.50 per year. The address is: THE SHIELD, 8808 Cattaraugus Avenue, Los Angeles 34, California.... I got a kick out of this: In reading one of the bulletins edited by one of the very best young preachers today, I noted that he was writing under the heading of PROBLEMS. He was dealing with local problems, and after discussing at length one of the main problems, he wrote this: "As for other problems — there are some serious ones. I've got my eye on a sister or two — I think they are trouble makers." Well, now I guess that it is good for a preacher to keep his eye on a sister or two, especially if they are "trouble makers." I know what was meant and certainly understand the problem. I also admire the boldness and forthrightness of this preacher. There is no doubt but that he is doing just what he said he was doing — keeping his eye on this sister or two — and if and when they give reason for being recognized as "trouble makers", he will properly deal with the matter. We need more of his kind . . . . Again I want to thank all of you who are sending bulletins and other papers to me. I am grateful to all of you who send me your paper, new book or tract. I shall try to make mention of all such in this column. Many have taken the time and interest to send me bulletins and other publications (not their own) which show the digressive and sectarian tendencies among the churches. Keep it up for without such help many of these would never be brought to the attention of the readers of this column.

Prophecy Came True!

Readers of this column will recall that last month I made a prediction relative to the exchange being conducted between Guy N. Woods (in the Gospel Advocate) and Reuel Lemmons (in the Firm Foundation). Lemmons had been bold and brash enough to write "A Shocking Editorial" exposing the newly-espoused position of Woods and the GA regarding the orphan homes. Lemmons actually wrote that their present position is "extreme and unscriptural." Lemmons contended that such benevolent works must be under the oversight of an eldership and as elders they must do such work. Woods says such a position as held by Lemmons is "sinful." Woods wrote two lengthy articles in the GA devoted to setting Lemmons straight and whipping him into line. I predicted that Lemmons would "line up" or otherwise capitulate! Well, Lemmons made a feeble, half-hearted, apologetic reply in an attempt to defend his previous writings. Then in the same article he declared that he was willing to "go along" with all the homes; that he was a friend to all of them and wanted all of them supported from the treasuries of the churches! He is willing to give in to and go along with a position and teaching he believed to be "extreme and unscriptural." What a man! What honor! What conviction and courage! He sold out and called off the fight. Just drop the matter and he will meekly submit to an "extreme and unscriptural" practice for the sake of peace and to have the favor and blessing of the GA combine! He has been bluffed and cowed into submission!

Brother Woods understood Lemmons' article in just this way and he came back with a front-page article in the GA telling everyone that there had been "A Meeting Of Minds," and "now, however, we are assured that churches may take from their treasuries funds to provide for the homeless in such institutions as Boles Home; and, the church may contribute to work which elders do not oversee."

Woods freely confesses that he had understood Lemmons to be opposed to such institutions as Bole Home and that the logical conclusions from his (Lemmons) writings, which he cites again, are such as to force anyone to such a conclusion. Actually Woods reflects upon Lemmons as a writer and upon his reasoning ability, if not upon his sincerity and honesty also. Woods confesses that while he does not understand how one can write as Lemmons does and yet accept all these homes, he rejoices to know that he does and he finds "tremendous satisfaction in the knowledge that the powerful pen of our Brother L is not dedicated to the destruction of these havens for the homeless among us." Woods writes: "We are not concerned about the logical processeswhich he follows, in his editorial of April 29, in order to reach a conclusion that justifies the existence of all the homes among us. It is sufficient (and here he might well have put in the qualifying phrase: "to our purposes"! — Holt) that the conclusion is reached . . . ." Hence, Woods admits his inability to understand Lemmons' "logical processes" and confesses that his admission is out of harmony with his teaching, but that is all right just so long as Lemmons will knuckle down and not cross them! Now Lemmons is in line and all is well!

In this very clever fashion Woods has pulled Lemmons into endorsing the GA position (which Lemmons had denounced as "extreme and unscriptural") and thereby "pulls the rug from under" Brother Roy Lanier and leaves him standing all alone. In this way the pressure has fallen very heavily upon Lanier to come back to the GA, make confession of his error of crossing them and be restored to their fold. What Lanier will do remains to be seen.

Reuel Lemmons needs desperately to back off and take a good long look at himself and see how he has sold out his convictions, compromised with an "extreme and unscriptural" position and how he has been used and intimidated into lining up with the GA combine. It should be enough to make him good and sick with himself; perhaps even to the point like Peter that he will repent and from henceforth stand like a man for truth. He will learn soon, if this lesson has not been enough to teach him, that he is dealing with desperate men who are bent upon controlling the church!