Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
April 15, 1971

If You. . .If I

Larry Ray Hafley

1) If you wear nice clothes, you are just trying to be a "flashy dresser," but if I wear nice clothes, I am being neat!

2) If you use your arms while speaking, you are trying to be "flamboyant," but if I use my arms, I am merely using "expressive gestures" as all good speakers should!

3) If you challenge a false teacher for a debate, you have "debate fever," but if I challenge one, I am trying to reach his blind disciples with the truth.

4) If you have a debate, you are trying to gain a debating reputation, but if I have one, I am defending the faith!

5) If you write most of the material for the church bulletin, you are seeking a reputation as a writer, but if I do so, I am merely using another avenue to teach the truth.

6) If you use articles by others in the church bulletin, you are a "clip and paste editor," but if I do so, I am attempting to give brethren the benefit of seeing better material than I can produce.

7) If you hold several meetings, you are seeking attention, but if I preach in meetings, I am merely "preaching the word and keeping busy in the Lord's vineyard!"

8) If you hold a number of meetings, you were "pushy" and invited yourself, but if I preach in meetings, I am using opportunities that God has given me.

9) If you appear humble, you are "putting on a front" in order to deceive people, but if I am humble, I am 'humble!

10) If you are kind and considerate, you are trying to put on a show of hypocritical congeniality, but if I treat others with courtesy, I am full of the fruits of the Spirit!

11) If you use strong language while rebuking a man or his error, you are angry and quarrelsome, but if I do so, I am speaking the truth in love.

12) If you speak loudly while preaching, you are trying to "showboat with sound," but if I speak loudly, I am emphasizing the truth upon the hearts of the lost with all the unfeigned sincerity of my being.

13) If you report a number of baptisms, you are seeking publicity as a great teacher and personal worker, but if I report results, I am only doing what Paul did when he "rehearsed all that God had done with them" (Acts 14:27), and are you going to charge Paul with glory seeking?

14) If you quote Scripture, you are doing it so people will be impressed with your knowledge, but if I quote a few passages, I am doing it so I will not break the flow of delivery by stopping to turn to every verse.

15) If you move to preach for a small congregation, you are too lazy to meet the challenge of a larger work, but if I move to a small church, I am sacrificing to help a small, struggling group.

16) If you preach for a large, well known church, you are "riding on their name," if I preach for a big, active congregation, I am concerned about "utilizing spiritual resources" to glorify God.

17) If you move due to a sharp disagreement with the elders, it is because you cannot work where you are not "the Pastor," but if I have trouble and move, it is because the elders are liars who attempt to "lord it over the flock."

18) If you preach on a controversial subject, you are a hobbyist, but if I do so, I am just setting forth my convictions.

19) If you "fellowship" someone I dislike, you are going along with their "error," but if I am a friend to your foes, it is because I am kind to everyone!

20) If you sell a product part-time, you are "entangled with the affairs of this life," but if I do so, I am seeking a "diversion" from the pressure of the work.

21) If you write an article like this, you surely have told on yourself, but if I were to write one like it, I would be trying to get brethren to take a sincere look at their attitudes so that we might have peace and love instead of envy and jealousy.

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