Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 26, 1961

Personal Exploitation At The Expense Of Christ And The Truth

A. Hugh Clark, Lubbock, Texas

One can but look with disgust and aversion at the disposition openly manifested by churches of Christ which, as a means of gaining the attention and accession of the worldly minded, are willing to advertise and exploit human beings and their achievements in the trifling affairs of this world at the expense of Christ, the truth, and spiritual things.

We do not asperse the character, nor do we seek to detract aught from the achievements of those who are thus used. But we do openly decry and condemn the practice as most distasteful and reprehensible to the spiritually minded, and offence to all that God, by inspiration, has said of such in his word.

We quote here from an advertisement which was placed the AVALANCHE JOURNAL of last week, with pictures of two of these "celebrities", one in the field of SPORTS, and one in the field of FINANCE!

"We want 500 of you to meet in the tent especially erected on our grounds to hear Bobby Morrow at both sessions of Bible Class, 8:10 & 10:00 A.M. Bobby Morrow is holder of three gold medals awarded when he was a member of the United States Tract Team in 1956 Olympics."

And there you have it! Bobby Morrow, HOLDER OF THREE GOLD MEDALS when he was a member of THE UNITED STATES TRACK TEAM IN THE OLYMPICS will speak. Come and see this great athlete; and incidentally, we will count you present in our Bible school that day, attendance at which we hope to advertise as greater than any other "church of Christ" in the City or In the world if possible.

Then the advertisement continues, "A special treat is in store for you as Billie Sol Estes, an elder of the church from Pecos, Texas, will teach the auditorium class.... So! Estes is a noted financier and has in the past been named as one of the ten outstanding men of the nation."

And there you have it again! But I search in vain through my New Testament for the passage which names success as "a noted financier" or being named as "One of the ten outstanding men of the nation" as a qualification either for elders or Bible school teachers!

All such is the results of the contagious yen for popularity and worldly recognition, long practiced among the denominations, but which has been swiftly catching on among liberal thinking churches of Christ in these last years; leading them not only to vie and compete with the denominations in the field of promotionalism and worldly show, but, one another as well. The rash of Institutionalism, the Herald of Truth, the Gospel Press, centralized missionary combines; these and many other recently and currently acclaimed are other manifestations of the same worldly spirit.

But brethren, remember that an inspired apostle wrote, "Far be it from me to glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world hath been crucified unto me, and I unto the world."