Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
November 23, 1950

The Government's Work

Congratulations to the Gospel Guardian on publishing, and to brother Porterfield on writing "Can the Government Save Us?" Some good thoughts on a much needed topic of discussion. Could you have brother Porterfield give us an exposition of II Thess. 3:6-15?


Concerning brother John T. Overby's articles on Benevolence," will brother Overby please cite the New Testament passage which teaches that God ordained government to do benevolent work—or any work except to keep law and order, and to protect honest citizens from criminals and from aggressor nations?

Melvin E. Elliott, LaHabra, California


"Who Want To Be Helped"

It is too bad that brethren will get so "worked up" that they are not willing to measure impartially what others might say on certain issues who have contrary convictions. I appreciate the fine spirit that you are showing in all that you have written in the Gospel Guardian, especially here of late. I think that your attitude will help those who want to be helped.


Melvin J. Wise, Memphis, Tennessee


Presenting A Good Point

Just a word of appreciation for your editorial of October 5, regarding the letter you wrote Broadway concerning their method of approach with speaking appointments for Otis (Gatewood). You are presenting a good point, I think, and one that will bear serious consideration by the brethren. However, I'm sure that reaction, generally, will be contrariwise.

Another observation I've had, one I'm sure that you see, is the competitive nature in many of these "traveling reports." To date, those fields that can offer the greatest glamour receive the greater support. Of course the glamour must be in the form of material interests more than spiritual—after all, not many are excited into appreciable contributions when nothing more is offered than just preaching the word and saving souls! Why not content ourselves with having these men report the work that is being done in all the fields, and then leave the judgment of support to the local congregation under its elders. When traveling with brother Vandervia last summer to acquaint the brethren with Holland and its work, I was told in many refusals of appointments, "We're sorry but brother Gatewood, the boys from Italy, etc., have already been here." It looked as though "first come first served," and where all were allowed to come, "the better salesman won." When will the brethren lose the idea that we are in competition with each other?

In Christian regards,

L. Arnold Watson, Dearborn, Michigan


"Stay Clean And Fair"

Dear Brother Tant:

I have said little through the past months while so many others have given vent to their feelings one way or the other. I have watched with interest your own reactions to the very warm statements of some critics, and want to especially commend your very fine editorial in the Gospel Guardian of September 21, 1950. The spirit of it is especially fine. The case was stated fairly, and, as I had confidently expected the restatement of faith in God's word and love for the church as dominating influences over personal decisions, makes me love you more. Your father was my dear friend, and I want to encourage his son to stay clean and fair, and the best of the good and purest of the clean brethren will always be beside you.

Sincerely and brotherly,

Rue Porter, Neosho, Missouri


The Thing We Have To Fear

Dear Yater:

I received the Guardian yesterday, and read carefully your editorial (October 5). Undoubtedly there are many people who would not entirely agree with you on your positions, but your editorial will certainly (compel their respect)... There is too much of this spirit in the church today of following a clique rather than principle. If we could all judge in terms of principle and then stay by this regardless of who is affected, we would be more what God would have us to be. I long to see the day in the church when all men will have the courage to think independently and stand loyally by principles, and yet do so without harboring malice or personal ill feelings toward those with whom they disagree. This, in my judgment, is the mark of a great man of God.

Very frequently have I thought of a remark J. W. McGarvey made about sixty years ago. There was a fanatic going over the country advocating some silly extreme. Some brethren got excited. McGarvey remarked rather dispassionately that he had no fear of such fanatics. The church had always had them. The only thing he said he feared was that they might become numerous enough to influence the church in a major way. This is the basic thing we have to fear.


Earl West, Indianapolis, Indiana


"Grieved, Yet Disgusted"

Having spent my first years in the Christian Church before I saw all of the truth, it grieves, and yet disgusts, me to see how some of the preaching brethren scorn to adhere to the New Testament when they want to put over a matter. I can frankly say that if I were to return to that attitude, I would return to the Christian Church where that sort of thing is the order of the day. And when I say that, I hasten to add that I have no intention of returning, although I have had opportunity to do so. My conscience is worth more than that.

Sincerely and fraternally

E. C. Koltenbah, Pekin, Indiana


Closed Season — For A Few Days

Dear Yater:

I wish you could have been here during Nichol's meeting. He did a fine job and went over big with the congregation. He has amazing vitality and power for his age. Of course I am partial to him and have been for years. He enjoyed himself and made a lot of friends ...

I hope to see you while you are in Center (Texas). However, I'm taking off for deer country November 15th and will be gone several days in a quest for bucks and gobblers. I usually close the season on sinners and wild brethren about that time.

You are doing a good job. Keep it up and I'll help all I can. Don't let Lubbock or Abilene get you on the plain of Ono.


Cled (Wallace), Lufkin, Texas


"Trial" Sermons

Dear Brother Tant:

In the October 12 Issue of Gospel Guardian, brother C. D. Crouch writes of "Another Sort of Deadbeat." He mentions about the church temporarily without a preacher inviting preachers from afar to preach "trial" sermons. He informs us the visiting preacher may get a check for $10.00 or $15.00, never over $25.00. If the visiting preacher loses his regular pay for that Sunday, estimated at from $50.00 to $100.00, the church has short-changed these visiting brethren and built up its own treasury at their expense.

This scribe agrees that such a practice is shameful and unchristian. May he humbly suggest to his preaching brethren that they refuse to compete with one another for the ministry of any church! With, so great a need, with a field so vast, the entire world, and with, thousands of places where the plea for the New Testament Church has never been heard, why should preachers have to compete with each other for a soft berth, where plenty of soft money (the folding variety) is in prospect, plus the free use of a preacher's home and usually an allowance for his car and utilities thrown in for good measure?

This writer would very kindly suggest to his younger preaching brethren that they re-read and ponder carefully II Timothy 2:3 and Matthew 10:16-42. He would also ask our worthy elders to prayerfully consider the following suggestions:

1. Instead of having a procession of preachers stage an oratorical contest for your pulpit, why not investigate the record of say two or three ministers of good report, those you think would render an acceptable service and fit into the needs of your church?

2. If you can, visit the preacher you wish to consider and hear him in his own pulpit. If favorably impressed, talk the matter over with him in person. If he is favorably inclined to consider a call from your congregation, then bring back your report, and if the entire church concurs in your choice, extend him an invitation.

3. If you insist that the minister visit your church and community, why not allow him a fair amount for his traveling expenses, besides what you would pay him for that Sunday if he were your regular preacher?

4. Then find out the reaction of the entire congregation to his preaching and personality. If favorable, then extend him an immediate invitation but under no circumstances place him in competition with four or five other preachers. The church at Corinth was divided over some outstanding preachers of that day according to I Cor. 1:10-13.

Dearly beloved brethren in the ministry and dearly beloved bishops who have the oversight of the flock, I plead with you to bring an end to the unscriptural, unchristian, and unbusinesslike procedure that our beloved brother Crouch has pointed out! Surely there is a more scriptural, statesmanlike, and satisfactory way to bring a worthy preacher seeking a change for any valid reason, and the church seeking to employ a preacher together than the utter lack of method or system that now prevails in all too many places.

Humbly submitted by Gus Winter, Akron, Ohio


Sister Blue Ill

Dear Brother Cogdill:

I have been reading the Gospel Guardian with much interest, and I am sure, it is on the "Rock," and I want $5.00 worth of it. I don't often deal in futures, but I shall take $5.00 worth of the G. G. Please mark me up for same.

My wife has been sick for two years, and I have done very little preaching in that time. I can't leave her. She is not able to do anything. I had a birthday last week, and am now 75 years old. I have been preaching the gospel 54 years of that time. May God bless and keep all of you in the right.

Love to all,

Joe H. Blue, Salem, Arkansas