Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
July 30, 1959
NUMBER 12, PAGE 6-7b

"Ohio Valley College Lectures"

P. J. Casebolt, Weirton, West Virginia

An article under the above caption appealed in the June 11, 1959 issue of the Gospel Advocate. It is signed by three members who are on the Board of Trustees of OVC. It is evidently prompted by an article in the May 21, 1959 issue of Gospel Guardian, authored by Bro. Warnock.

It is difficult to understand why anyone would take exception to Bro. Warnock's article. I thought it presented the future of OVC in a very favorable light, and is as good a commendation of the school as I have seen. I am not attempting to come to the defense of Bro. Warnock for he is well able to defend himself, if it is necessary. But, I cannot help making a few observations about the GA article, inasmuch as I have viewed the college movement in the Ohio Valley with interest and concern for the past two years.

In Paragraphs 2 and 3 we have the following statements which are a bit confusing.

"However some of us wish to say just a little about one article which has appeared in one publication. The writer of the article mentioned the fact that our by-laws provide that no funds shall be solicited or accepted from church treasuries. He uses this in a way that tends to drive a wedge between us and other colleges."

Do these brethren wish to say that they want to keep secret the by-law that has reference to church support of the college? Does not this by-law constitute the difference, or the "wedge", between them and other colleges rather than the article written by Bro. Warnock? If refusing to solicit or accept funds from church treasuries is a matter of conviction rather than convenience, why keep it a secret? Is it conviction among the brethren of the Ohio Valley, but convenience among church-supported colleges in other parts of the country? We wonder.

Then in Paragraph 5 of the GA article, there is a statement that certainly hints of compromise.

"We feel that we and they (other colleges, PJC) are working toward the same goals. Though our philosophy of obtaining support may vary from them, we are not intending to start any crusade against those schools, but shall give them our prayers and blessings."

Now, if it is wrong to solicit or accept donations from church treasuries, why make it appear that the only difference between the school that does accept support from the church treasury and the one that doesn't is a matter of "philosophy"? If these brethren believe it is scripturally wrong (therefore sinful), to have colleges so supported, how can they conscientiously give their "prayers and blessings" to something which is contrary to the doctrine of Christ? Do they not realize that Eph. 5:11 and 2 Jno. 9-11 enjoin upon them the obligation of reproving that which is wrong, lest they "become partakers" of such evil deeds? Can we give our "prayers and blessings" to sectarians who claim to have the same goal as we, yet differ with us in our "philosophy" of obtaining that goal? By what standard is it wrong for some, but right for others?

In Paragraph 6 we have a "confession of faith" that has not been forthcoming until now.

"Most of us on the Board do not agree with those who contend that orphan homes should not be supported from the treasury of the churches. We believe that colleges and orphan homes fit into different categories. Moreover, we believe that a nationwide radio program may be sponsored by one congregation and supported with funds from many congregations. We do not appreciate any effort which would cast us in another role."

These brethren do not need to worry about being cast in a role they don't appreciate as long as they talk this plainly. They are casting their own role. It may help to believe in Christian education in order to be elected to the Board, but it evidently doesn't hurt matters if one also believes in the church support of orphan homes and the Herald of Truth. I give some of the Board members more credit than this paragraph attributes to them.

In Paragraph 7 we have an attitude manifested that could eventually spell disaster for the college, and do great harm to the church.

"The Board of Trustees of Ohio Valley College has not written a creed on these matters setting a standard which must be met by prospective members. We do not intend to. Neither shall we write a creed which must be met by a prospective president."

Yet, these same brethren admit in the April, 1959 issue of OVC Bulletin, that "The direction which the school will take in the future will be determined to a very great extent by the President of the school." We believe this too. Then why not make it a requirement that the President hold views that are in harmony with the by-laws of the College? It is little wonder that some are reluctant to support OVC at this stage. Its policies are too uncertain.

There are many brethren, including preachers and elders, in this Ohio Valley that do not subscribe to the church support of orphan homes, colleges, and arrangements such as the Herald of Truth. Neither do we want the Gospel Advocate article under consideration to cast us in that role. I am not even going to attribute the conclusions of that article to the Board members of OVC, until each one of them personally acknowledges and accepts the conclusions. I know some of them, and believe they are capable of better reasoning.

Many of us believe that a school can be operated scripturally by brethren, and have encouraged several boys and girls to attend such colleges as Florida Christian. We would like to see one in the Ohio Valley as sound as the one in Tampa. But, we concur with Bro. Warnock when he says, "The school may as well hire a president who advocates the missionary society, as one who advocates putting colleges into church budgets." It would be better for the Ohio Valley College to end up in the middle of the Ohio River, than to end up in the middle of the road that leads the church into digression. It may be too late yet to make the college what it should be, and we believe that NOW is the time to take preventive measures by electing board members, a President, and a Faculty that will send our children back home to us knowing the difference between the church and the college.