Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 16, 1950
NUMBER 28, PAGE 8-9a

" What The Brethren Are Saying-----"

Preachers And Degrees

We do not oppose the education which degrees indicate —or should, at least. Free use and full talk about degrees sounds too much like Spencer's "Sir Braggadocio—an imaginary character always boasting of his deeds. If a preacher cannot deliver the goods, all the degrees in the world cannot stand for the missing message; and if he can forcefully proclaim the gospel, his work and not his degrees will attest the fact. We know some preachers who lead many souls to Christ who could use no more than "R.F.D." after their names; and those who flaunt degrees could better use "M.U.D."

— L. 0. Sanderson (Christian Worker) The editor wonders

We read practically all the religious papers and get much good from them; but some things the writers say arouse my curiosity to an uncomfortable degree, so that I wonder out loud.

I wonder who was the preacher, and which was the church in Houston that had the Methodist judge speak at their Men's Fellowship dinner. Brother R. 0. Kenley wrote about it in the FF, and said it was the congregation which he attends. He refused to fellowship these brethren and their preacher in their sin; I wonder if he fellowships them now in their unrepentance of the sin, or does he continue to support with his money and personal prestige, a congregation which honors the propagators of false religions and bids godspeed to those who bring not the doctrine of Christ?


Brother Reuel Lemmons reports in FF that the Balboa, Canal one, congregation is under the oversight of Central Cleburne Church. I wonder how many congregations these Cleburne elders are ruling? Now, will some brother tell me how many congregations an eldership can scripturally rule?


S. E. Witty reports from Long Beach that the Central elders and the Ninth and Lime elders "are meeting monthly for prayer, meditation, and planning a co-operative work in the Long Beach area." I wonder how one would go about organizing two eldership into one planning committee"?... With all the "meditating and planning together" of Central and Ninth and Lime, I wonder how long it will be till a "Christian Church" preacher will hold a meeting at Ninth and Lime as one has already at Central.


— Jack Hardcastle (Gospel Defender) Baptismal bowls.

John F. Rowe was one of the strongest men in the fight against the errors and innovations of Roman Catholicism and all other kinds of sectarianism. In his great work, History of Reformatory Movements, he gave the history of "sprinkling" in a masterful way. He showed that immersion is baptism, and that sprinkling is not.

But now, the paper he founded sends out leaflets advertising "metal baptismal bowls" to be used in performing the Romish rite of "rhantism," better known as "sprinkling." It is enough to make brother Rowe turn over in his grave... It is possible that it was not the intention of the Leader to encourage the purchase and use of the "bowls; it is possible that the Thomas Individual Communion Company furnished the Leader the folder and the Leader sent it out merely to advertise the individual cups. So the Leader may not be responsible, in the first place, for the advertisement of the "bowls." But to send them out to brethren over the country, over the Leader's imprint, portends no good to the cause of truth and right. Present-day preachers and church leaders are, as a general rule, not as well grounded as brethren were a generation ago. Many of them hardly know why we believe and teach certain fundamental things. I regret to see the Leader giving that much encouragement to sprinkling. It will have a harmful effect, whether the brethren meant for it to, or not. Our plea now, as in the days of Campbell, should be "Back—back to the old paths."

— J. D. Phillips (The Truth)

Right methods necessary

One of the sorrows of the ministry is to see eagerly sought goals missed, not because the aim is bad, but because the methods are bad. We don't build lovely homes by unlovely methods nor faithful homes by unfaithful methods; we can never have peace by unpeaceful methods or liberty by illiberal methods. In taking our eyes off the goals and ideals which Christ so vividly gave to us, may we never forget that it is not enough to face merely the issues in local churches, they must be faced with the Christian spirit and method. This is the point we must keep in mind, it seems to me, when all of us are called on to face the issues .. .

The road to hell is paved with good intentions, we say, and I am sure we are right. One of the most dangerous things in the world is to have high lofty aims and neglect right methods. Of all the fellows who go to Sing Sing, who ever made Sing Sing his goal ? They do not start out with a poor, cheap goal, but by neglecting to care for the day-by-day methods of life they walk the road which leads to Sing Sing.

— B. E. Bawcom (Christian Leader)

Coleman Overby

For those who might be interested, we state that his book business will be continued. At the time of his passing more books were being printed, and other manuscripts were being prepared. These will be made available to the public as quickly as the work can be done. The best service possible will be given in filling orders, and all mail should be addressed to Mrs. Coleman Overby, 1434 Sereno Drive, Dallas 18, Texas.

We feel that a great and good man has gone from us to be with his Lord on the other side. "He being dead yet

speaketh." His last words to those with him enroute to the doctor were, "I am ready to go," reminding us of the words of the great apostle Paul, "For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith." May the Lord bless all that he loved and all that loved him.

— Perry B. Cotham (Firm Foundation)

The individual and the church

The argument is currently being made by those who want the church to put human institutions into its budget and support them that: "One is a member of the church twenty-four hours a day. Whatever the individual does, the church is doing it. If the individual may do it, the church may do it. If the church may not do it, the individual may not do it." The principle thing wrong with this line of reasoning is that it just is not so. The individual may do many things which the church may not do. The church may not support as a permanent charge a widow who has not reached the age of sixty (I Tim. 5:9), an individual may do so.

An individual or a group of individuals (all citizens of the state) may execute a man but it is unlawful—it is not the state doing it! One man, the governor for example, may act as an individual or as governor.

In the church the same man may be a husband, father, elder, evangelist, Christian, citizen of his state, member of the school board, and owner of his business. In each capacity he may take certain action which might not be taken in another capacity. The church may not spank his children; as a father he may find it necessary. The church may not borrow money and contribute to his failing business; as the owner he may find it necessary. We have yet to hear one sensible argument proving that whatever the individual may do the church may do—that when the individual acts, it is the church acting. Usually when someone raises the question, he is abused, persecuted, and accused of being a trouble-maker and "under the evil influence of someone else," etc. Waiving all that aside: let those who teach this false doctrine and foist it on a long-suffering (too long) brotherhood, give us the argument to justify their contention.

— George W. DeHoff (Christian Magazine)