Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
January 20, 1955

The Overflow

F. Y. T.


Brother W. Wallace Layton recently sent us a brief note telling of his work in the mountains of east Kentucky. Among other odd things he found was a congregation back up "Hell-for-certain canyon." Name of the church? "Hell-for-certain Church of Christ"!

Services Temporarily Suspended.

Then there was that Pentecostal church which put the following announcement in the daily paper: "Faith healing services at the Pentecostal Church will be temporarily suspended due to the illness of the pastor."

Small Crowd

Two business girls were discussing the poor attendance at their respective congregations.. "Our crowd is so small," said one, "that when the pastor says, 'Beloved,' I almost feel like I've had a proposal."

Off Again, On Again

As of right now the "off again, on again" Tant-Harper debate is "on again." In response to our "open letter" to Brother Harper (published in the Gospel Guardian of January 6), we have a blistering letter from hint, breathing out threatening and slaughter, and saying he definitely, positively will engage in the debate both in Lufkin and in Abilene. He has assured us he will debate the issue (Herald of Truth), but he declined to sign the propositions having that expression in them. Apparently the only way we can have a discussion with Brother Harper is to make him so furious he can't see; then he agrees. When he cools off, he backs down. It's anybody's guess as to whether the discussion will take place or not. Men who have known Brother Harper for years assure us he will NOT debate, and has never had any intention of doing so. But as of right now we have his written, signed statement that he will debate, and we have both signed the propositions. We'll see what happens. But be assured of this: there will be no debate in Lufkin without a guarantee from Highland's elders that it will also be in Abilene.

Slight Discrepancy — $4,080.00

The official bulletin showing receipts for the Lubbock Children's Home for the month of September revealed total contributions of approximately $3,550.00, and showed a contribution of only $20.00 from Broadway Church in Lubbock. Brother Raleigh Martin an elder in Broadway insists that Broadway's actual contribution that month was $4,100.00! That's a rather considerable discrepancy. We've asked Brother Martin for clarification; but as of this date (January 4) have no word from him. We will give his explanation when it is forth-coming.

Pure Water

He is a famous evangelist. In a meeting in a town on the Gulf coast of Texas he happened to quote Hebrews 10:22, "let us draw near with a true heart in fulness of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience; and having our bodies washed with pure water, let us hold fast the confession of our hope that it waver not;". "Pure water," said he, "simply means water that is free from all impurities or foreign elements. It is not salt water; you could not be baptized in the Gulf. It must be pure water!"

Adams' Review — And Others

Brother James Adams' review of Brother Guy N. Woods' series of articles on benevolence will start in the Gospel Guardian next week. Brother Woods writes us that Carl Ketcherside and Leroy Garrett also plan to review him. We have perhaps a dozen bulletins from faithful gospel preachers reviewing some points in the Woods' articles. A letter from Brother James Cope indicates that the Preceptor also plans a full review of the material. We rejoice to see brethren taking a serious and sober view of these matters. Full, free, and open discussion is the proper way to arrive at truth.

The Indianapolis Debate

Type-setting is already under way on the Holt-Totty debate held in Indianapolis last fall. We hope to have all work completed on it by the spring. It discusses "church support of Christian colleges," "institutional orphan homes" and "centralized schemes of evangelization." These are issues that are causing unrest and disturbance all over the land. The book of 300 pages will sell for $3.50, but the pre-publication price is $3.00. You may send your order now to Gospel Guardian, Box 980, Lufkin, Texas.

Otey-Briney Debate

We have had a fine response to our enquiry about demand for a reprinting of the famous Otey-Briney Debate. This was held in Louisville, Kentucky, in 1908, and in the judgment of many marked the real turning point in the fight with the digressives. The book is out of print and hard to find. Copies of it have been selling at $10.00 or more. It deals with issues that are again coming to the front in brotherhood thinking. We are giving serious study to the feasibility of reprinting, and hope to make announcement concerning it very soon.

Death Of Martelle Pettey

On December 29 Brother Martelle Pettey, faithful gospel preacher in South Africa, was killed in a motorcycle accident. He left his wife and three small daughters (one of them only five days old) to grieve with many thousands who knew and loved him. A brilliant and capable servant of Christ, his untimely death will leave us all with a sense of personal loss. He had been in Africa nearly five years, and was planning a return to his home (Dallas) next summer. Brother Pettey will be sorely missed; he knew the truth, loved it, and proclaimed it.

New Editor For Firm Foundation

The sons of Brother G.H.P. Showalter have selected Brother Reuel Lemmons of Cleburne, Texas, as the editor of the Firm Foundation. Their statement will appear in next week's issue of the Gospel Guardian, along with Brother Lemmon's initial comments as editor. We wish for all of them a happy and useful association together. There can be little question that the Firm Foundation stood as a mighty bulwark against digressions and innovations in the fight of sixty years ago. She can fill a similarly useful place in the great battle now shaping up between the forces of truth and those who would "institutionalize" the Lord's church. Our heart-felt best wishes to Brother Lemmons as he assumes his new role!