Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
January 26, 1967
NUMBER 37, PAGE 10b-11a

"The Preacher Shortage"

Pryde E. Hinton

I commend to you the article by Floyd Thompson, Gospel Guardian, Nov. 17, 1966. The picture is even brighter than the one I could paint of the years beginning about 1919.

Had it not been for preachers like Charley Wheeler, J. Henry Horton, Mack Creel, John T. Lewis, R. N. Moody, and many of their contemporaries, we would have no big churches today in Alabama to support "full-time" preachers, and build elegant meeting houses.

Some of these older brethren, however, were so necessarily engaged in fighting back the attacks of the "Sanballats" that they failed to teach the brethren that they must give cheerfully and liberally or bountifully, if they would be like their God and Saviour, and be saved. So, other brethren and I, who overlapped many years of the lives of these "giants in the earth in those days," precipitated a storm when we taught such Scriptures as 1 Cor. 9:16; 2 Cor. 8:9; etc. "If one purposed in his heart to give 10, that was Scriptural," some of the brethren averred.

Later, we entered into "The Golden Age," as the Catholics called their "Dark Ages. Every congregation could not hope to succeed unless it had an elegant meeting house, "that would be a credit to the Cause of Christ," and a "full-time" preacher, whom they would get for as little support as they could. I still say that Exodus 32:35 could be truthfully applied to many of the churches of Christ, with little change in the wording. Having been a "full-time preacher" for many years, I can tell you what they are expected to do "full-time." They don't preach or teach full time. If Christians worked as those of Acts 8:4 did, and would call in the preacher when he could help, progress would be made, the souls would be saved. But "full-time" preachers lessen the work of Christians!

I still affirm that Philippians 3; Gal. 2:20; Romans 8:32; Hebrews 13:5,6; Philippians 4:6-9, and many such Scriptures, if studied and obeyed by us, would heal all of our diseases and "lick" all of our problems and enemies. We all need to learn how to "endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ." Shall we wait for a depression to teach us?

-Rt. #2 Dora, Alabama