News And Views
News Of Moves
Lowell Williams moved about two months ago from Beaverton, Oregon, to Kirkland, Washington. He and Johnnie Gibbs had a public discussion concerning the current issues, the week of September 12-16, in Seattle.... Myer Phillips has moved from Prineville, Oregon, to Beaverton .... Thurston Kimbrell moved to Pasco, Washington, from Bremerton, Washington .... E. C. Koltenbah is scheduled to move to Bremerton to labor with the church .... I recently read the following: Some observant — and undoubtedly experienced — person has defined a "committee" as: The unready who have been appointed by the unwilling to do the unnecessary. Seems like a reasonable conclusion .... I note the Dr. Leroy Garrett has left his job as head of the department of philosophy at McMurray College, to become head of the department of philosophy at Bethany College .... Reading the Classified section in the Christian Chronicle could be right amusing if it was not such a serious matter. The "preacher wanted, available" ads really get me. In the September 2 issue I note the following: One preacher "desires full time work with growing church." Evidently he wants the proverbial "tub of butter" we have heard so much about. He insists upon a "growing church." If it is not "growing" he seemingly will not consider it. Wonder if he would know the difference between real growth and swelling? He avows that he is "no hobbyist and believes in orphan homes and cooperation." They all swear allegiance to the brotherhood creed and standard .... The Keizer church out in Salem, Oregon, seems to be having some real trouble with the "anties" and they are looking for a preacher who can handle them. It would be interesting to know just who applies for the job and feels himself capable of dealing with this problem. This church advertises that they "prefer a man from the Southwest who is thoroughly experienced with the 'anties' and their tactics as they are now at work in this, their last area of hope." Wonder why they think a man from the Southwest would most likely fill their need? Are there more "anties" in the Southwest than elsewhere? Wonder what preacher will answer this request and declare himself to be "thoroughly experienced with the 'anties' and their tactics"? I hope someone out that way will advise me as to the man they finally accept, for I would like to know such a man. Evidently this church is in a desperate plight and a "thoroughly experienced" man is absolutely essential. They can't cope with such a problem themselves. Those "anties" must be a rough crowd and must be giving these brethren a lot of trouble. They advertise their complicated problem further with this statement: "With a total church membership of less than 1/4 of 1% of the county population plus the 'anti' problem, this is a place for a sound preacher who is looking for a challenge." The "anti" problem is really making it rough on them. I more or less feel stirred by this "Macedonian call' for help and am tempted to apply for this job and help these brethren with this problem. However, I must confess that I am somewhat inexperienced in dealing with the "anti" problem, but maybe I could learn .... The church in Suffolk, Virginia, advertises for a preacher around 40 years old, who likes to do personal work with a small congregation. They advertise that there is a "good salary, but no fringe benefits." Well, this caught my eye. Wonder what is meant by "fringe benefits?" I did not know preachers were getting any of these, so I am no doubt behind the times. I realize that most brethren receive such on their jobs, but I guess preachers are not entitled to what other brethren are along this line. Does it mean they offer no sickness and disability benefits, no retirement benefits, no help with savings, no provisions for his children in case of his death, and such things? If so, I don't know many preachers even expect such "fringe benefits" anyway, altho I must confess it would be very considerate and nice. "Fringe benefits" for most preachers are entirely of a different nature, and are unwanted. He is usually on the "fringe" of being moved on or asked to resign — for the good of the Cause, of course! The uncertainty and insecurity is a prominent "fringe benefit." Can't you think of several others? Oh, well, enough of this .... Wallace-Holt Debate. This publication is now ready for sale at $4 per copy. The discussion was held in Florence last December between G. K. Wallace and myself. If I do say so myself, I think it is worth reading and every member of the church should do so. It deals with some new material. I took the position that in benevolence the church is responsible to saints only! See what Wallace did or didn't do with this. Order your copy today. Order from me at the above address.
Shindig In Taipei
There are a lot of things that I do not know and cannot know about the problems and situations in foreign areas where the church is being planted. We are certainly rejoicing that the gospel of Christ is being spread to new areas. But occasionally reports come our way which raise our eyebrows and cause us to wonder.
A good sound Christian family in Formosa with the United States Army had their eyebrows raised by a big party welcoming the new evangelist from America while bidding farewell to the old one. The party was held in the church building and the program is described as a "Programme of party for welcoming Bro. Theweatt and his family, and for bidding farewell to Bro. Foshee and his family held jointly by Mandarin Speaking, Antung St., Hsin Yi Lu Churches of Christ, Taipei, Taiwan China August 24, 1959."
The program consisted of opening speeches, harmonica and Chinese violin presentations, solos, ballet, presentation of banners, hymns and prayer. Two girls were hired for the ballet.
Although this was not a church service or a church function it was held in the church building. I wonder what the public thought of the affair? When such secular festivities are so closely associated and allied with the church functions how can they contribute any good toward teaching people the truth on such vital matters as the nature of the church — what it is, what it is for, and what it is supposed to do?
Such activity so closely associated with the church is certainly distracting to say the least, and it involves unscripturalness, to say the most. It distracts from the truth which should be taught, and it violates the principles governing the mission of the church. — William E. Wallace, Poteau, Oklahoma.
THIS & THAT — HERE & THERE
"The elders of the Acadia congregation are prayerfully determined to do an effective job in carrying out the oversight of the work of Brother Sandhaug. To do this they have SET UP AN OVERALL COMMITTEE — with ONE of the ELDERS as CHAIRMAN — which will concentrate on the undertaking. Within this group several smaller committees have been organized to perform specific functions."
I do not know just how these elders are going to "oversee" this man — since he is in Norway! If, to oversee this Man, It Is Necessary To Set Up An "Over-All" Committee And "Within" This Group Other Committees, Wouldn't It Be Good For Them, In Their Work Of Overseeing The Members At Home, To "Set Up A Committee" With One Elder As Chairman? If It Will Work In "Overseeing" One Member Why Wouldn't It Work In The "Overseeing" Of All Members?
This Kind Of Practice Gave Birth To The First Apostasy. "Benevolent Sunday — Remember That Today Is Benevolent Sunday .... (From Arlington, Calif., Bulletin).
Now, let's set aside a "Palm Sunday," an "Ash Wednesday" and a "Maundy Thursday." It was Paul who said, "Ye observe days and months, and times, and years. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labor in vain." (Gal. 4:)
Youth Efforts — Tonight The Young People Travel To The Figueroa Congregation To Attend The Musicale Sponsored By The Youth Chorus Of The Figueroa Church In Los Angeles. .... There Will Be No Youth Fellowship This Evening." (Arlington)
This "Musicale" of the Figueroa church has placed the Arlington youth in an undesirable position. If they go to L. A. this Sunday evening they can't have any "fellowship" in so doing. John said, "If we walk in the light .... we have fellowship" .... So, I guess these youngsters are not going to be walking "in the light." And so it goes with
all these "youth" functions. They make it impossible to abide in the teaching of Christ. Such "youth" movements had their birth in Catholicism, rubbed off on denominationalism and has found a "happy home" in the hearts of liberal members of the Lord's church. God hasten the day when the extreme of extremities will be reached and will be ready to return to "the old paths."
— Wright Randolph, bulletin, Montibello, Calif. * * * *
Wood, Hay And Stubble
God warns all churches and preachers about building flimsy memberships upon the solid foundation, which is Christ. (1 Cor. 3:9-15) All stones in the wall shall be tried by fire. Only the true shall be saved and shine forth in the brightness of heaven. Wood, hay and the stubble shall perish when subjected to fire.
The preaching of the pure gospel of Christ will convert men and women to Christ and build them into an holy temple of the Lord. (Eph. 2:17-22) Faithful preaching and teaching will strengthen the church and cause it to stand for the truth with boldness. (Eph. 6:10-20)
All the gimmicks that have been employed in recent years to shake people into the church have produced nothing but perishable products. On every hand we hear and read of ways and means of catching people for the Lord. From Terrell, Texas, comes this bit of advertising from the church that meets at Rockwall at Brin: "All boys, ages 9 to 15, are invited to go with Bro. Madeau out to the Bowling farm Saturday. You are requested to be at the church building by 1:30 p. m., if you want to go. Fishing and hiking is on the program for the first outing this fall. Come and bring a friend." From Phoenix, Arizona, we hear of "Ice Cream Fellowships," "Church Dinners," and "Pot Luck Dinners."
You can no more build a solid building out of flimsy people that are "Shook In" by these "sectarian gimmicks" than you can build a twenty story building of straw. Men and women who will not worship God in truth are not fit to be members of Christ's Kingdom. If truth has no appeal to them, let them alone.
The potter cannot mold a beautiful vessel from miry clay. The gun smith cannot build fine rifles and pistols from pig iron. The wood worker cannot build fine furniture from dotty lumber. Who then, are we to think that we can take people who serve their own bellies and build a strong church? Take heed how you build.
— Wilson M. Coon, Phoenix, Arizona
Marriage Is For Grown-Ups
All of growing up is for the purpose of getting one ready to live as an adult, and usually for marriage. Marriage is not for children but for grown-ups. All people grow up physically and in age, but not all grow up in their ability to accept responsibility, in their ability to enjoy sharing, in their ability to solve new problems. These are necessary if marriage is to be enjoyed, for marriage will certainly bring these needs. The person who is 21 years old but can't be trusted more than a twelve year old will be irresponsible in marriage. The person who thinks only of himself and can't enjoy sharing with others and thinking of their feelings will not enjoy sharing with a mate and providing for children. Young people sometimes think that their love is so great that it will change the immature to the mature. Love will work wonders for a few weeks, but, after the excitement has worn off, the person will return to the same selfish irresponsible ways that characterized him before marriage. Growing up is unavoidably a long slow process. The teen years should be used for growing in accepting responsibility and learning to work and to think of others. Marriage should be delayed until considerable maturity has been attained. Being grown up is what brings happiness to marriage. Being immature is what turns marriage into a torment from which so many seek escape.
— Ted H. Waller, via The Messenger, Akron, Ohio