Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
May 25, 1961

When Will The New Digressives Catch Up?

C. D. Crouch, Lumberton, Mississippi

According to a news report in the Nashville Tennessean on December 26th, 1960, the Vine Street Christian Church of Nashville had two babies presented for dedication at their services on the 25th of December. The Dr. Wayne H. Bell, minister of the Vine Street Christian Church, is reported to have touched the forehead of the babies in the dedication ceremony. In fact, the Tennessean carries a picture of the "minister" as he touches the forehead of one of the babies.

The Vine Street Church was the first church in Nashville to apostatize in the development of the apostasy of the last century. It was the old church for which Philip H. Fall preached, and for which Alexander Campbell preached at times. It is not yet quite one hundred years since the church left the "old paths" in quest of ways that would be more pleasing to men. Of course, it is not surprising that they will now have "Dedication Services." The news report did not say whether or not this "dedication service" was patterned after the Circumcision ceremony of ancient Israel, or the ceremony of presenting the first born to the Lord. Possibly Dr. Bell is not quite sure which it is supposed to represent, but perhaps he ought to circumcise the boy babies just a little bit, so as to be sure he is on scriptural grounds, even if it is Old Testament ground. It would seem to be more impressive that way. Surely he would not want to imitate the Methodists. If so, why not sprinkle a little water on the babies?

At the speed "Dr." (Harding College, honorary) Goodpasture is making his departure from the old Paths it will not be long till he will be having "dedication services" too, and of course, those who go along with him will also be having "dedication services." All who write for Goodpasture's Advocate are open to the suspicion that they write only what Goodpasture approves, because it is a known fact that nothing will be published in that paper that he does not approve. So, it can not be known what the real convictions of the writers may be. But, assuming that those who write for Goodpasture's Advocate agree with Goodpasture, and that they are making as rapid strides as he is in the departure from the old paths, it will not be long till "Dedication Services" are common among them.

Missionary Societies were condemned by the Advocate as unscriptural up until a very few years ago. Now that Dr. (?) Goodpasture has become a "director" in the Gospel Press Society, and Paul Hunton has become a vice president with an office in Nashville, to appeal to the churches for a "fifth Sunday contribution" or for all the contribution of a definite Sunday above the church expenses of that day, we may expect the apostasy to gain momentum. And the more momentum it gains the more gadgets we may expect to be employed. We shall see more and more "churches on the march" in the immediate future. And they will be marching like many of them are now marching — like the crayfish!!!!

Gospel Press is the name given to that society when it was organized. And the facetious claim was made then that it is an organization established on the same basis as the Firm Foundation or the Advocate. That is clear that that was false on the very face of it. It has no newsprint, no printing press, and no subscription list. In fact it has nothing to sell, not even services. "Gospel Press" is a misnomer.

One hundred men might get together and form a corporation on the exact pattern of Gospel Press, and call it Gospel Press Number Two. But the object of Gospel Press Number Two would be to place gospel preachers in towns where the gospel has not been preached. The "editorial committee" would be the proper ones to examine preachers who might apply for jobs. Gospel Press Number Two might or might not agree, at first, to solicit individuals to support the organization. It would be a missionary society in either case, just as Gospel Press of Dallas, Texas, is a missionary society.

You need not be surprised if some of Goodpasture's cohorts actually establish a Gospel Press Number Two.