Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
May 26, 1960

"Roy's And Yater's Bandwagon"

Jack L. Holt, Cullman, Ala.

Sometime ago Brother Guy Woods wrote me a letter in which he claimed he had caught Brother Charles and myself in a contradiction. After making a few futile efforts to establish such he remarked," I shall not be surprised if you write me an ugly and abusive letter (as your cohorts usually do), but somewhere in the midst thereof please harmonize your position with Bro. Charles." The part of the letter with which I am concerned at this time is the "cohort" part. Brother Woods, along with a number of his cohorts has somehow come up with the idea that many of us who are opposed to institutionalism do not have convictions of our own, and have, therefore, become involved with the wrong crowd. He has advised a number, I understand, that if they continue to ride "Roy's and Yater's bandwagon," their usefulness to the church will be at an end. And he has further hinted that some are too intelligent to fall for such "anti-ism." A few of these not knowing any better than to Believe such have "jumped off the wagon," and bought new hats for their institutional heads.

For a number of years those who have withstood the efforts of many to institutionalize the church have been given various and sundry tasks. The term "Guardian Angel(s)," was sarcastically flung at us by those two former cronies Will Totty and Sterl Watson. Both of whom have herded with their "cohorts" so long that I doubt that they would recognize an angel were they to see one. The "aged, exalted and venerable father," E. R. Harper has classified us all as "Guardian Boys," and has referred to us as "you boys," and I suppose that sooner or later some fellow north of the Mason-Dixon will refer to us as "youse guys." Couple these tags with a few words or names we have been called which none of us "angels" would even think of using and you have our description "Advocate Style."

I am aware of the fact that "evil companions corrupt good morals." And while it may be charged that some who oppose the human corporations in church work are riding "Roy's and Yater's bandwagon," the charge is not so and comes from those whose father is the devil," who is a liar from the beginning." The "Guardian angels," are not ashamed of the company they keep. If Guy Woods would call to remembrance the former days, in which he was enlightened concerning the institutional danger confronting the "ship of zion," he might repent and do his first works. He was numbered with my "cohorts" then. What bandwagon did Brother Woods ride in the '39 lectures and the '46 Annual Lesson Commentary? The Hebrew Christians were not ashamed to be "partakers with them that suffered, and were companions to them that were so used."

I would be untrue to the facts if I were to fail to give "honor to whom honor is due." Those who oppose the Baal-Institutional movement do not have their faith standing in the wisdom of either Roy or Yater, but nearly all who love the truth realize and appreciate the fight they have made for the truth. A number of those who oppose the Herald of Truth and the Benevolent Corporations learned the error of such from a study of the Word of God, and were impressed by the "anti," articles in the Gospel Advocate of former days. Naturally a few of the "wise" men among those who oppose the institutions have been able to point up what they considered to be the mistakes of Roy and Yater, and to speak of their "blunders." But one "mistake" they did not commit was in failing to stand for the truth! "They stand on the other side," and watch. While these sideline "wise men," of slow courage watched, many battles were fought. Now finally after these battles have been fought these gentlemen have finally pulled off their gloves and decided that the only way to fight error is to fight it.

Modern Sanballats may say what they please about "Roy's and Yater's bandwagon," but some of them have learned "the hard way," that it is the bandwagon of truth. Guy Woods tried to chock the wheels in Birmingham, but he was smitten "hip and thigh." And now he has been given an opportunity, since at first he did not succeed to "try, try again," down Houston way, But for some reason or another he is acting coy, and playing very, very reluctant. My "cohorts" have him on the run! In fact the whole "Advocate bandwagon," is about ready to pull stakes and vamoose clear out of the debating arena. With the exception of two "shotgun guards," who fire mostly acrid blanks, Totty and Watson, and who have lately fired such at each other, the Advocate's encounters with the truth are at an end. Brother Gus Nichols has retired from the debating arena to the role of moderator, and Brother G. K. Wallace had his first and last (?) "ride in the wagon," at Florence. Brother Charles sold him a one way debating ticket!

Had I lived in the days of the "Kadesh-Barnea incident," and been among the people of God who came to the borders of the land of Promise, I like to think that I would have been ready to ride "Caleb's and Joshua's Bandwagon." This would have been far better than following the multitude to do evil. The Hebrew writer records that the multitude failed to enter because of unbelief. They fell because they "were not united by faith with them that believed." That is they were afraid to be associated with Caleb, Joshua, and Moses. They were ready to appoint a new leader and return to bondage. Caleb and Joshua were in the minority — but they were with God. (See Heb. 4:2 A. S. V. Foot-Note.)

It is also implied that the whole fight is a personal fight. And it is whispered that such has been started by Roy and Yater because these men, not being able to make a go of it otherwise, and therefore being dissatisfied, have formed a party of their own. The fight is personal in one sense. Roy and Yater realized their personal responsibility to stand for the truth. The same which some have not realized as yet. And as far as ability is concerned such remarks as "they were not able to make it otherwise" reminds one of Diotrophes prating against John. Roy and Yater are ambitious, but it is of the kind mentioned by Paul: '"We are ambitious... to be well pleasing unto him." (2 Cor. 5:9, ASV Foot-Note)

Besides remarking that I have written this of my own free will to express my personal feeling in the matter, there yet remaineth one item. The idea that the battle for truth is "Roy's and Yater's fight," and thus I will keep out of it has prevented many from standing as they should. It may be that they have too much pride to be associated with a battle for truth that they did not start and in which they cannot "star." It appears to me that when a man gets too big to fight for the right, and to be "united by faith" with them who are, he is too big for the kingdom of Christ. Our Lord, when ready to eat the Passover, came into a room where his apostles were filled with a sense of "bigness." They had contended with each other concerning "who is the greatest in the kingdom?" They were refusing to extend to each other the common courtesy of hospitality, and service. They would not wash one anthers feet. No sir, that's somebody else's fight! Poor deceived disciples! And their attitude still exists today. There was one, however, who was not too big for the occasion. He arose took a towel and girded himself and washed his disciples feet. "If I then your Lord and master have washed your feet, ye also ought to wash one another's feet." "The disciple is not greater than his teacher, nor a servant than his master." I have given you an example that you should do as (not what) I have done unto you." And now while the truth of the living and ever blessed God is being undermined, and while men are robbing God of his glory a number of "great" men "sit and watch him there." "And what shall the master of the house do unto those servants?"

No, those of us who oppose the institutional error that has and is dividing the body of Christ are not riding "Roy's and Yater's Bandwagon", but the Lord's bandwagon. Roy and Yater are interested in going to heaven and since there are a number of others that are interested in doing the same, they are not ashamed to go along with them for they are "going our way." No one should be ashamed to be a companion here to those who are not "ashamed of the Lord's words" or with such they shall be companions in the world to come. If being associated with such will give the enemies of the truth cause to laugh, and to fling vile charges let it so be. The Truth still rings: "Be not ashamed of the testimony of the Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but suffer hardship with the gospel."