Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
February 1, 1971

Unwise And Unscriptural Planning

John W. Hedge

Once there was a community the residents of which were mostly farmers. Each fanner, of course, had the right to plan his own farming operations according to his judgment and ability. Not one of the farmers living in this community thought he had any right to help the others to plan and do their work, for each one was independent of the others. And not one of them for a long-long time thought of planning a "cooperative farming operation" which would require the help of many farmers. But one day it happened; for farmer John Doe planned to plant and cultivate more crops on his farm than he could tend alone. Accordingly, he asked his neighbors to come over and help him do his work, otherwise his "big plan" would fail of results. Now see what happened in this instance:

1. John Doe planned a farming operation which he knew at the time he was unable to carry out alone.

2. When his farmer neighbors "cooperated" in helping him to do his work, such distracted from each one's own farming operations.

3. The farmers who "cooperated" in helping him to do his work contributed to unwise planning.

Question: What about one independent local church planning a work (authorized of God) which it cannot do alone, then asking other local churches to help carry out their plan? If it is right for other local churches to "cooperate" in helping the planning church to carry out it's ambitious plans what would be wrong in the cooperating churches in having some voice in drawing up the plan? This, of course, would require a meeting of the heads of congregations — and that kind of thing is called by the Baptist people "a convention," or by the Methodist people "a conference." What is wrong with a group of the heads from different local churches in planning an inter-church work such as is being carried on by the Highland church of Christ in Abilene? Maybe some of "our church paper" editors can answer these questions. Personally, I don't favor taxation without representation.

— 304 N. Glover Dr. Longview, Texas 75601