Has The "Issue" Changed?
Brother Gayle Oler wrote an article in "Boles Home News" entitled, "The 'Issue' Has Changed Again!" It has been run now in the Childhaven News. Thus the liberals lament the changes in their opposition. In this case, as in all cases, when Oler and Brock attempt to represent the opposition they misrepresent us. There is not one word of truth in their assertions that we have changed issues because of defeats in public discussions. Subjects for debate have changed a few times to be sure. But why have they changed? Here is the truth.
In 1947 N. B. Hardeman "affirmed" that it was scriptural for churches to support colleges from their treasuries, Thus that was an issue. It is still an issue. But we are not debating it now. Why? Because Hardeman got his brains beat out by Foy E. Wallace on the subject. The issue was changed to support of orphan homes. Why? Because Wallace was defeated on the "college question?" No! It was changed because Hardeman was defeated. Hardeman was the man who changed the issue. I, along with perhaps fifty gospel preachers, stand ready, right now to meet any man the liberals will put up on the college support issue, No, we didn't change from the college support issue. The liberals changed and we went after them!
Then for a time the liberals debated the question of church support of benevolent institutions. Thus that was an issue. It is still an issue. But we are not debating it now. Why? Because the liberals got their brains beat out on the subject. The issue was changed again. We are now debating the issue of "limited and unlimited benevolence." Why are we now off the "church support of benevolent societies?" Is it because we were defeated? No! It was because Woods and Totty and others were defeated. I, along with fifty gospel preachers, stand ready right now to meet any man the liberals will put up on churches building and maintaining benevolent organizations.
Then the liberals started debating the unlimited benevolence question. But it is very apparent that this fight too is over before it hardly gets started. Totty has "welched" on meeting me on the "outlandish" proposition. And Tom Warren has "hoped" (?) in the Gospel Advocate that "if" any more debates are held that the opposers put up a "smart" man. Warren knows the liberals have promised to engage in another debate in Jacksonville. But you can tell from the tune of his piece that they are getting cold feet. So, it looks like we are fresh out of "issues" so our debating days with the liberals are at an end.
Oler and Brock can lie to their readers if they want to. Incidentally that is why neither should be at the head of any kind of institution. No child should be under anybody who won't tell them the truth! But the truth is: The issue changed from (1) College support to support of Benevolent Societies. Then from (2) Church support of Benevolent Societies to Unlimited Benevolence. And now it is changing from (3) Unlimited benevolence to no debates at all! But it was the liberals who made all of the changes and it is they who won't debate now at all!
Is there a congregation in Mississippi or anywhere in the South who will endorse Woods or anybody else on issue number 1? (College support by the church.) If so, I am ready to meet him in public debate. Does that sound like we are defeated? Is there a congregation in Mississippi or anywhere in the South who will endorse Woods or anybody else on issue number 2? (Church support of benevolent Societies.) If so, I am ready to meet him in public debate. Does that sound like we are defeated? Is there a congregation in Mississippi or anywhere in the South who will endorse Woods or anybody else on number 3? (Unlimited benevolence.) If so, I am ready to meet him in public debate. Does that sound like we are defeated?
If you are fighting a boy in the front yard and go upon the porch to continue the fight as he runs toward his mother, that doesn't sound like you got defeated in the yard fight. If you go on in the house and poke at him under the bed, it doesn't signify that you got whipped on the porch! And if he "sulls up" under the bed and refuses to strike back at all, it is no indication that you got a whipping! Even so, when we left the college fight to engage the liberals on support of Orphan Homes it did not mean that we were defeated. We just followed our adversary. And when we left the support of orphan homes to discuss the limited benevolence question it didn't mean we were defeated. We again followed our opponent. And when we plead with them now to fight on any of the issues it doesn't sound like we are defeated.
If they want to fight in the front yard (on church support of colleges), we will scrap them from now on, If they want to stand on the front porch and fight (on church support of orphan homes), we will accommodate them. But if they want to stay under the bed of a "poor little hungry orphan" and debate unlimited benevolence we are ready for that too.
They started the fight. They named the issue to start with. They changed the issue every time it has been changed. And they are the ones who have been defeated. They are the ones who won't debate now.
— Meridian, Mississippi