TO, CHURCHES OF CHRIST DROP
ISOLATIONIST VIEW, WORK WITH OTHER FAITHS
There are only two kinds of people in this world
those who obey God and those who do not obey God
In the January 31, 2010, issue of The Tennessean (a
Nashville, Tennessee newspaper), an article was published,
written by Bob Smietana. The views expressed in
Smietanas article definitely DO NOT represent the majority
of faithful churches of Christ. A response to these
misrepresentations is in order.
According to Smietana, Doug Sanders, associate
with the Otter Creek Church in Brentwood, Tennessee, learned in
his early years there were two kinds of people in the
Those who belonged to the ...churches of Christ, who were going
to heaven. And those who didnt, who were going to
Such a quote is highly prejudicial at best. Churches of Christ do
not set themselves as judges of anyone. We plead with all people
to study their bibles and follow only that for which there is
scriptural authority. The need for having biblical authority for
all we do is set out in Colossians 3:17. Jesus Christ will be the
Judge of all, and he has told us the standard by which he will
judge mankind. The standard is His word (John 12:48). In reality,
there are only two kinds of people in this world those who
obey God and those who do not obey God. Jesus spoke of this
reality in Matthew 7:21-23. At the final day of judgment there
will be two groups of people: those who obeyed God and those who
will wish they had.
Another of Sanders claims is, In the Church
of Christ we had all the answers, and if we had the answers, that
meant everyone else didnt. Its kind of embarrassing to
admit it, but thats the way it was. If Sanders
grew up with this perception, he was definitely wrong. Friends,
the bible is right and any church that practices only that which
the bible authorizes cannot be wrong. The truth is, Sanders
claim is nothing more than an effort on his part to justify his
liberal theology. Such justification will be useless at
the last day.
It was claimed by the author that Since the late
1800s, Churches of Christ...have believed their approach to
church singing without instruments in worship, interpreting
the Bible literally, taking Communion weekly and banning women
from church leadership was Gods way. Well,
lets see. Smietana is almost 1800 years late with his
assessment. The Lords church began in Jerusalem ca. A.D.33
(Acts 2). Let Mr. Smietana find the New Testament (the law to
which all men are now amenable) passage that authorizes the use
of instruments of music in Christian worship. Friend, there is no
It is misleading to claim that churches of Christ
believe in interpreting the Bible literally, as Mr. Smietana
claimed. There are many, many passages that require a figurative
interpretation. Jesus said, I am the door... (John
10:9). Was he a literal door? If so, of what material was he
made? Oak? Pine? Obviously, Jesus was speaking of his being
the way into which all must enter to be saved. No,
churches of Christ DO NOT interpret the Bible literally in all
passages and/or places. We do believe that God meant what he
said, and it is what he said in his word that we literally
Communion (the Lords supper) was observed by
first century church every Lords day (Acts 20:7). The issue
of the role of women in the church was settled by the
Paul (1 Tim. 2:11,12). And, all who respect the authority of the
scriptures have no problem with following that which is
authorized by the scriptures. The feminist movement in our
country has had an impact on some churches. Those who reject what
the scriptures teach face a woeful judgment at the last day.
The article continues, In recent years,
congregations like Otter Creek have adopted a more progressive
view of their faith. Theyve added instruments to church
services on Sunday nights and during the week. And theyve
begun cooperating with other faith groups, especially on
charitable projects. How sad, but true! Yes, they have
adopted a more progressive view and they have
added that for which there is not the least bit of
scriptural authority. The Bible says those who so do are guilty
of sin (2 John 9-11). The fact that they have added
instruments to church services on Sunday nights and during the
week, shows they have gone beyond the things (the
scriptures) which are written the very thing the apostle
Paul warned against (1 Cor. 4:6). Why limit the use of
instruments to Sunday night and week nights? Worship is not
limited to Sunday morning! Could this be an effort to
appease those who object to the use of instrumental
music in worship? According to Smietana, Sanders and others
say this approach is faithful to their traditions and to the
Bible. All faithful Christians know this
is definitely NOT FAITHFUL TO THE BIBLE. Let Sanders and
others step forward with the scriptures that authorize
this approach. Friends, it cannot be done!
Mr. Smietana says, To understand whats
happening in Churches of Christ, it helps to look at the
Bible. Yes, indeed! When one looks at the Bible it becomes
readily apparent that whats happening in churches of Christ
is without scriptural warrant. If those who look at the
Bible would accept what the Bible teaches rather than
following the doctrines of men, we wouldnt be in the mess
were in today.
A gross misrepresentation of the Campbells, Barton W.
Stone and the Restoration Movement appears in the article under
review. It is claimed, The Campbells and Stone believed
churches of their day had split into too many denominations.
Those denominations bred hostility between Christians.
And, So the Campbells and Stone wanted to go back to the
Bible and create a simpler kind of church that could unite all
denominations. The fact is, Campbell and Stone recognized
the hostility that existed among the denominations, and the only
way to solve this problem was for all to go back to the Bible and
practice only that which is taught therein. They coined the
slogan, Where the Bible speaks, we speak. Where the Bible is
silent, we are silent. In principle, this is what the
apostle Peter taught If any man speak, let him speak
as the oracles of God (1 Peter 4:11). The Campbells and
Stone never desired to create a church that could unite all
denominations. They recognized the sinfulness of
sectarianism and they fought it tooth and nail. The
Scriptures still teach that there is but one church, the body of
Christ (Eph. 1:22,23; 4:4). Christ is the head of his church
(Col. 1:18). He adds the saved to his church (Acts 2:47). There
are no saved persons outside of Christ (2 Tim. 2:10). Only those
who obey the Gospel of Christ and live the Christian life
faithfully will be eternally saved (Rev. 2:10; 2 Thess. 1:7-9).
In referring to instrumental music in worship, Mr.
Smietana says, But churches disagree on why they sing a
cappella. Some congregations do because thats the way
theyve always done it. Others say that it remains the
biblical model and that to use instruments in church is a
sin. It is likely that some members of the church of
can give no better reason for singing a cappella than
thats the way weve always done it. Friends,
ignorance of the Scriptures is not limited to denominational
churches. After almost 46 years of preaching, I am convinced that
many church members are scripturally illiterate. But the fact
that a practice is done because thats the way weve
always done it, hardly justifies the practice. One may do
many things, for many years, and still be wrong in his practice.
We sing a cappella because that is the only way we are authorized
to worship God in song. It is a matter of having scriptural
authority for all we do (Col. 3:17).
Dan Chambers, pulpit minister at Concord Road
Church of Christ, is quoted as saying, We do it out of
conviction...we believe its the kind of worship God wants in
the church. While what brother Chambers says is true, his
statement is inadequate. Most people in the denominational
churches do what they do out of conviction, but the difference
between them and ourselves is this: We have scriptural authority
for our practice, but they do not. It was because of this
conviction brother Chambers said hes reluctant to
work with people of other faiths. I have the same
conviction but Ill tell you what my
conviction is based upon. I hold this
conviction because of what the apostle Paul said. Hear
him, And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of
darkness, but rather reprove them (Eph. 5:11). Though they
may mean well and may be very sincere, people who are in
denominationalism are in spiritual darkness. Denominationalism
is a work of spiritual darkness. Only those people who have
obeyed the Gospel of Christ and thereby have been translated into
the kingdom of his dear Son, are walking in the light of Gods
word (Col. 1:13,14; 1 John 1:7).
Doug Sanders claims that over the past two years he has
worked with Baptists, Methodists, Presbyterians, Jews,
Catholics and other local believers. No doubt he has, but
that does not justify what the Scriptures condemn. He claims that
cooperating with other faiths, especially on charitable
projects, makes sense. It may make sense to Sanders, but
you think it makes sense to the Lord, when his word
condemns such? I think not!
Now lets look at a statement by Lee
Camp, who teaches theology and ethics at Lipscomb
University. According to Camp, Alexander Campbell
started out with good
intentions but a faulty assumption. Camp said, He assumed
that one could simply read the Bible and everyone would come to
the same conclusions. Brethren, it is little wonder why so
many of our young people leave the church when we have a
professor on a college faculty who knows no more than this about
Alexander Campbell and his teaching. To accuse Campbell of such a
simplistic approach to the Bible and a proper understanding of
Gods word is ludicrous. Campbell never held any such
Campbell spent the greater part of his life teaching
people the truth as he understood it revealed in the Bible. Why
would he have done this if he thought that all who just read
their Bible will come to the same conclusion? After saying,
It wasnt quite so simple, Camp continued,
saying, Instead, followers of Stone and the Campbells began
split. Those in the north eventually formed two distinct groups
the Independent Christian Churches/Churches of Christ and
the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Most in the south
became Churches of Christ group. That there eventually was
a split among brethren is not denied. It would have been helpful if
Camp would have told us why the split occurred. The split
occurred, not over the instrument, per se, but over how to
ascertain Bible authority. Those who favored the use of the
instrument in worship held that whatever is not specifically
forbidden by Scripture may be used, while those who held to the
biblical view of Scriptural authority, held that only that which
is authorized in the Scriptures may be practiced (without
sinning). Those who wanted the instrument in worship held that
since its use is not specifically forbidden, then its use is
allowed. Well, neither is adding ham and eggs to the unleavened
bread and the fruit of the vine (grape juice) on the Lords
table forbidden. The same authority which allows the
use of instrumental music in worship, will also allow ham and
eggs in the Lords supper. If not, why not? Once the gate of
biblical authority is thrown open, the liberals among us have a
Finally, lets look at a few observations made by
various individuals. Glenn Carson, president of the
Disciples of Christ Historical Society in Nashville, said
that congregations like Otter Creek are creating a fourth stream of
the Restoration movement, distinct from Churches of Christ and
other groups. Sad, yes, but true. One of the first
so-called progressive congregations was Woodmont Hills in
Nashville. Another is Richland Hills Church of Christ, near Fort
Worth, Texas. True, but not only are they
they are also digressive. They have digressed from the New
Testament pattern for the church. Camp is concerned
congregations like Otter Creek could lose their distinctive
nature. Truth is, they have ALREADY lost their distinctive
nature! Following the New Testament will make any group
distinctive, but departing from it will cause any group to lose
Brother Dan Chambers said that even though hes
reluctant to cooperate with other faith groups, he doesnt
criticize churches of Christ that do. Well, Dan, what happened to
consistency? Either what they are doing is right or its
wrong! If the practice is wrong, then the practice must be
criticized. If the practice is right, then we ought to all join
in and help. Brethren, if there is anything Jesus does not
condone, its the fellow that tries to straddle the fence.
Jesus said, He that is not with me is against me, and he
that gathereth not with me, scattereth abroad (Matt. 12:30).
Smietana wrote, Theres at least one danger
the progressive movement, Camp said, Hes concerned that
congregations like Otter Creek could lose their distinctive
nature. We could just become plain vanilla
evangelicals, he said. Instead, hed like to see other
Christian denominations learn from Churches of Christ, especially
when it comes to the weekly Communion. Other Protestants take the
Lords Supper far less often, sometimes once a month,
sometimes quarterly. That means they are missing out on an
important part of worship.
In reality there is no such thing as other
Christian denominations. The word other implies
that we (churches of Christ) are denominational. So long as we
remain faithful to Gods word, in doctrine and practice, we
are NOT DENOMINATIONAL. If we depart from Gods word, we lose
our identity and, therefore, we become just another denomination
among many. If we use biblical terminology, there is no such
thing as a Christian denomination. Christ died to
purchase his church (Acts 20:28). He did not die for any
denomination. Just before he died, Jesus prayed for unity among
all who follow him (John 17:20,21). Denominationalism exists in
direct opposition to that for which our Lord died.
Brethren, as far as this world is concerned, we are
isolationists. We are neither to love the world, nor
are we to be conformed to this world (1 John 2:15-17;
Rom. 12:2). When we cease to be isolationists, we enter into
Brethren, I fear in some cases we are making to much
out of the so-called Restoration Movement. Its not
unusual to hear some brethren refer to what they call our
restoration heritage. Surely, men such as Thomas and
Alexander Campbell, Barton W. Stone and James OKelly are to
be commended for their efforts to restore primitive New Testament
Christianity. However, we should remember, Alexander Campbell did
not build the church of Christ, nor purchase her with his shed
blood, but Christ did (Matt. 16:18; Acts 20:28). We are not
Campbellites. We are Christians. I do not appeal to Campbell for
my religious convictions. I appeal to the Bible.
When churches of Christ follow only that which is
authorized in the Bible, they are not descendants of the
Restoration Movement. Jesus said, ...the seed is the word of
God (Luke 8:11). When the seed is planted in an
honest heart, it will produce only a Christian and where
Christians assemble, the church of Christ exists. The Bible
makes Christians only, and the only Christians. How else can we
account for the fact that there were churches of Christ in
America long before the Campbells arrived on its shores.
Alexander Campbell did not start the church of Christ as Baptists
and other such denominations have long claimed.
This article by Bob Smietana basically does three
things: 1) It misrepresents the stand faithful churches of Christ
take relative to the Scriptures. 2) It misrepresents Alexander
Campbell, Barton W. Stone and the Restoration movement in several
areas. 3) Unfortunately, it shows the sad departure from the
faith the Lords church has experienced in so many places.
Brethren, its later than we think!
1336 Spring Lake Rd.
Fruitland Park, FL 34731
Table of Contents
WHAT CHRISTIANS HAVE
THE WORLD DOES NOT
Garland M. Robinson
There are only two classes of people in the world:
Christians and non-Christians, the saved and the lost (Matt.
7:13-14). There are no other possibilities! One day, all the dead
will be raised either to eternal life or eternal damnation (John
5:28-29; Matt. 25:46). So, what does the Christian have the non-
Christian does not? Everything that counts!
Christians have God as their Father (John 20:17).
God is called our heavenly Father in Matthew 6:26,32. Christians
are the called of Jesus Christ...beloved of God, called to be
saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father (Rom.
1:6-7). Now therefore ye are no more strangers and
foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the
household of God (Eph. 2:19).
Those in the world have Satan as their father.
are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye
will do. He...abode not in the truth, because there is no truth
in him...he is a liar, and the father of it (John 8:44).
Christians have Christ as their savior (2 Peter
Thou shalt call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people
from their sins (Matt. 1:21). Christ is the head of the
church: and he is the saviour of the body (Eph. 5:23). He
died so that all might be saved (Heb. 2:9).
Those in the world have Satan as their adversary.
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as
a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour (1
Christians have a sure foundation.
the foundation of God standeth sure, having this seal, The Lord
knoweth them that are his (2 Tim. 2:19).
Those in the world have a foundation of sand.
every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not,
shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon
the sand: And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the
winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was
the fall of it (Matt. 7:26-27).
Christians have peace with God. Therefore
justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus
Christ (Rom. 5:1). Christ is our peace (Eph. 2:14-16).
Those in the world are enemies of God. Ye
adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of
the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a
friend of the world is the enemy of God (James 4:4).
Christians have access to God. Through Christ
have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore ye are
no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the
saints, and of the household of God (Eph. 2:18-19; 3:12).
Through Christ we can come boldly unto the throne of grace,
that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of
need (Heb. 4:16; 10:19-22).
Those in the world are aliens to God. They
in the vanity of their mind, Having the understanding darkened,
being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that
is in them, because of the blindness of their heart: Who being
past feeling have given themselves over unto lasciviousness, to
work all uncleanness with greediness. But ye have not so learned
Christ (Eph. 4:17-20).
Christians have hope. There is one hope (Eph.
are saved by hope (Rom. 8:24). Wherein God, willing more
abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of
his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable
things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have
a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon
the hope set before us: Which hope we have as an anchor of the
soul, both sure and stedfast (Heb. 6:17-19).
Those in the world have no hope. Before one
Christian, he is ...without Christ, being aliens from the
commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of
promise, having no hope, and without God in the world (Eph.
Christians have eternal life. In hope of
life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world
began (Titus 1:2). God, according to his abundant mercy
hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of
Jesus Christ from the dead, To an inheritance incorruptible, and
undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for
you...ready to be revealed in the last time (1 Peter 1:3-5).
Eternal life is in Christ (1 John 5:11-13).
Those in the world have eternal damnation to look
forward to. The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven
with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them
that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus
Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from
the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power (2
Thess. 1:7-9). They will be in a lake which burns with fire and
Become a Christian today. Dont delay. Study and
learn what you must do to be saved. Hear and listen to the
Gospel (Rom. 10:17; John 6:44-45), Believe the Gospel and in
Jesus the Son of God (John 8:24; Heb. 11:6), Repent of your
sins (Acts 2:38; 17:30), Confess faith in Jesus as the Savior and
Son of God (Acts 8:37; Rom. 10:9-10), be Baptized in water
for the forgiveness of your sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; Acts
22:16), live faithful the rest of your life (Matt. 10:22; 1
Cor. 15:58; Rev. 2:10).
If we can assist you, please contact us today.
Table of Contents
ISNT THE ONLY WAY
As Some Churches Of Christ Cling To Tradition, A Few
Drop Their Isolationist View And Work With Other
Faiths, They Say:
This news article appeared on the front page of the
Nashville, Tennessean on Sunday, January 31, 2010, written
Smietana. It fits perfectly with the progressive agenda of the
Nashville, Tennessean newspaper. Progressives despise anyone
holds to established principals such as the Constitution, Bill of
Rights or Gods Holy and inspired word. They, with their
superior attitude, would render such documents as subject to
change at the whim of those who are wiser than man or God. They
look down on those who hold to objective absolutes as unlearned
and narrow minded.
Count this writer as one who believes that Gods
word is the perfect, final, complete and unchangeable revelation
of God to mankind (2 Tim. 3:16-17; 1 Cor. 13:10; Heb. 1:1-2).
Count me as one who believes that no man is able to improve upon
Gods word. All will be judged one day based upon the
teaching of Jesus Christ (John 12:48). It all comes down to
whether or not we believe Gods word. Love for God and
mankind is found in truth and obedience. Jesus taught that if we
love Him, we will keep His commandments (John 14:15). And
being made perfect he became the author of eternal salvation to
all them that obey him (Heb. 5:9). Adam and Eve lost
paradise and life eternal because they went beyond Gods
commandments. Whosoever transgresseth and abideth not in the
doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine
of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son (2 John 9).
If the only place we can find authority for a thing is in the
creeds and doctrines of men, then one has gone beyond the
doctrine of Christ.
There is no salvation in the doctrines of men. Man can
not save Himself. Jeremiah 10:23 says, O Lord, I know that
the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man that walketh
to direct his steps. Men write their creeds which teach
salvation is by faith only, but Gods word does not
so teach. Men write that salvation is by grace only,
but Gods word does not so teach. Men sprinkle a few drops of
water on an infant and call it baptism, but Gods word does
not so teach. Men teach that a Pope is the earthly head of the
church, but the scriptures do not so teach. The list is almost
endless of what men teach as their creed or doctrine, but God is
not bound by what men believe and teach. Any person or group may
decide to start their own church and write their own rules of
faith, but only a fool would believe that God is bound by the
creeds and doctrines of men.
The Old Testament has many examples of mankind turning
their backs upon God and His instructions. God destroyed the
entire world with the exception of those aboard the ark. Without
exception disobedience leads to disaster. God is immutable, and
is no respecter of persons. We are told that he is the author of
salvation to all who obey Him (Heb. 5:8-9). Since obedience is
essential to salvation, then it follows that man is capable of
understanding the Lords instructions. However, man is often
arrogant and self willed and desires salvation on his own terms.
This is the basis for men establishing their own churches and
writing their own creeds, doctrines, manuals, confessions of
faith, catechisms, and such like.
Jesus taught, If you continue in my word, then
are you my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the
truth shall make you free (John 8:31-32). Note that Jesus
said ye shall know the truth, not a truth or
some truth. Does it require some time and effort to
know the truth? Yes indeed, Paul instructed Timothy to
to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to
be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth (2 Tim.
2:15). Are many people just too lazy to put forth the time and
effort to know the truth? Yes. Do many blindly follow some
preacher or teacher, some human creed or doctrine? Yes. No person
will be judged based upon a human creed, doctrine or philosophy,
for they are from men and not from God. Man cannot save himself
and yet he has over and over attempted to do so. Soul a Savior
you are needing!
The newspaper article begins with quotes from Doug
Sanders who stated When he was growing up he learned
were two kinds of people in the world. Those who belonged to the
a capella Churches of Christ who were going to heaven, and those
who didnt were going to hell. In the church of
Christ we had all the answers, said Sanders associate
minister at Otter Creek church in Brentwood. And if
we had the answers, that meant everyone else didnt. Its
kind of embarrassing to admit it but thats the way it
was. If Doug had paid attention to what the Bible and his
taught, it would be that those who believe and obey God will be
saved and that those who refuse to do so will be lost (Matt.
7:21). Doug, unlike the apostle Paul, is ashamed of the Gospel
Just who is this Doug Sanders who attempts to
what members of the Lords church believe and teach? He is
the son of the late Joe and Evelyn Sanders. The husband of the
late Lady Frank Ezell Sanders. I have known Doug from a child and
he by no means has the ability to state accurately what members
of the church of Christ believe and teach. He is not only a poor
student of the Bible but also falsely claims to know what
knowledgeable Christians believe.
His father, Joe Sanders, never taught what Doug claims
the church of Christ believes and teaches. When Doug was a child
his father Joe Sanders and I were co-teachers of an adult Bible
class. It was his father that asked me to preach in his place at
the Stewart Creek church of Christ when he had a conflict of
schedule. It was one of the first sermons I preached.
Joe Sanders, the father of Doug, was a knowledgeable
and faithful preacher of Gods word and I refuse to allow his
son to falsify what he and the church of Christ taught and
believes. Joe and other faithful Gospel preachers only teach what
the Bible teaches. In the New Testament (which records the early
history of the Lords church), the command of God is without
exception to sing. Not one hint, not one mention of employing
instruments of music in the worship of the New Testament church.
Secular history teaches that it was hundreds of years later when
men added instruments in worship services. Instruments are
therefore a clear violation of Gods warning that we are not
to add to or take from His word. The introduction of instruments
of music was not done to please God, but man. It is a symptom of
progressivism and without exception, will in time, lead to
further departures. History proves this to be true. Israel,
Gods chosen people in the Old Testament, departed so far
with their progressivism that they embraced idolatry. No Doug, I
was there when you were growing up and heard what your father and
other faithful Christians taught and you have mis-characterized
what was and is believed and taught. Would you (or anyone else)
be so foolish as to teach that one may disobey the Lord and
remain in His favor?
Doug, it is not a matter of if we have the
answers, but does God have the answers and the ability to
make them understandable? The false concept held by
progressives is that there are no clear and absolute
answers and that whatever one believes is acceptable (cf. John
The restoration movement was not designed to establish
a new denomination, or one at all. It was to have those who had
written their own creeds and doctrines to cast them aside and to
allow Gods word to be the authority for everything believed,
taught and practiced. Multitudes made that transition and the
Lords church was restored to its original purity of
faith and practice. We are told, And whatsoever you do in
word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks
to God and the Father by Him (Col. 3:17).
Gods word teaches nothing about denominations.
Christ built His church and purchased it with His own blood (Acts
20:28). How dare any man counterfeit the blood purchased church
of the Lamb of God? It is to the church established by Christ
that He adds the saved when they have complied with His commands
of faith, repentance, confession and baptism by immersion in
water for the remission of past sins (Acts 2:41-47). Then one
must continue in the teaching of Jesus Christ (John 8:31-32).
Departures from the instructions of God are nothing
new. The Bible records that such has occurred throughout time. It
is still taking place today as men refuse to abide in the
teaching of God. Hear the words of Jesus. Not everyone that
saith unto me Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven;
but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many
will say unto me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied
in thy name? And in thy name have cast out devils? And in thy
name done many wonderful works? And then will profess unto them,
I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity
Just who do you suppose were those who Jesus said he
didnt know? They were those who did not abide in the
doctrine of Christ. They went beyond His authority: just as Nadab
and Abihu when they offered unauthorized fire (Lev. 10:1-2), just
as King Saul lost favor with God when he brought back king Agag
and the animals for sacrifice. There are many examples of those
who refused to abide within the confines of Gods
instructions and as a result perished. But some people simply
Since God did not authorize instruments of music in the
worship of the Lords church, why would they be any more
acceptable than the self-willed actions of Nadab, Abihu, king
Saul and a host of other examples of self-will that are recorded
for our learning (Rom. 15:4)? Perhaps you should read (2 Tim.
3:1-9) once again.
It appears Doug, that you as a progressive, find
fellowship with other progressives but you heap insult upon those
who hold true to the faith once delivered to the saints (Jude 3).
My prayer for you and the once faithful Otter Creek church
that you will repent and return to Gods favor abiding
within the doctrine of Christ.
In Christian love, Lloyd Gale
1186 Martha Leeville Rd.
Lebanon, TN 37090
Table of Contents
PREACHERITIS AND UNPREACHERITIS
Preacheritis and unpreacheritis are two sad diseases which
have become predominant in the church. Both of these diseases
center around how congregations and individual Christians look at
preachers. These diseases cause congregations to build around the
preacher instead of the congregation being built around Jesus
Christ. These diseases also can cause congregations to
disintegrate because of the preacher instead of being unified
because of Christ. Because of these diseases, many Christians
either recommend a congregation or complain about a congregation
in terms of the preacher.
Preacheritis infects the church in a variety of ways.
Frequently it is heard that one should come to a particular
congregation to hear the preacher. It is never the preacher that
needs to be heard; instead, it is the message or Gospel of Christ
that needs to be heard (Rom. 10:10-17). Instead of inviting
individuals to come and hear the preacher, they should be invited
to come and hear about Jesus Christ (Matt. 11:28-30).
Frequently it is said that preachers should be heard
because of the delivery of their sermons. Some are bragged about
because they can quote scriptures and preach without notes. Some
are bragged about because they interlace their sermons with a
variety of stories that attract attention. Some are deemed to be
worthy of hearing because they are known because of their media
work on television, radio or in publications. Others are said to
be exceptional because they use graphs, charts or computer
presentations during their lessons. When the preacheritis is
stripped away, only one thing really matters. Did the preacher,
to the best of his ability, deliver the message of the Gospel
that needed to be delivered in a way that was pleasing to God?
The apostle Paul wrote, For though I preach the gospel, I
have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe
is unto me, if I preach not the gospel (I Cor. 9:16).
Unpreacheritis is the open expression that one simply
does not care for a preacher and desires his demise.
Unpreacheritis is as damaging to the church as preacheritis is.
Unpreacheritis believes that because a certain preacher does not
meet ones personal perceptions of a preacher, he should be
removed. Preachers are as different as other people are
different. It is sad however that often a preachers work is
hurt because members fail to allow for personal differences.
Instead of accepting the preacher for the abilities and good
qualities that he has, he is frequently compared to the last five
preachers that preached for a particular congregation. He does
not have the personality of preacher four, he does not have the
compassion of preacher two, he does not visit like preacher
three, and he does not know the members like preacher one. How
can any individual survive being expected to follow the patterns,
habits, and expectations of so many different people?
In the attitudes of unpreacheritis, preachers have not
been hired or have been fired because they did not golf, throw a
football with young people, know about hockey, or understand
local customs pertaining to showers, weddings and funerals.
Preachers have been rejected because they did not use computers,
understand internet and web sites or have a pleasant
preachers voice. Ironically, preachers have been rejected
because they are too young, middle aged or too old. They have
been rejected because they were not married, were married, had
children or did not have children. Preachers are rejected because
they do not have a degree, they have a degree, they use too much
scripture, they move too slowly or too fast in class or simply
because the congregation needs a change and changing the preacher
is the easiest change to make.
No congregation can be what God wants it to be until
preacheritis and unpreacheritis are removed from their thinking
and practices. A preacher is just a fellow laborer in the
wonderful work of Jesus Christ. He is a man that has strengths
and weaknesses. He is a man that stands before the judgement of
God for every action he does and every word he speaks. He is a
man that will be judged for his successes and failures alike. He
is a man that needs Gods grace and forgiveness. He is a man
that loves brethren and needs brotherly love. He is a man that
does well and makes mistakes. He is a man that needs mans
forgiveness and needs to be forgiving of men. Simply, he is just
395 W Main St.
Algood, TN 38506
Table of Contents
THE PURPOSE OF PREACHING
- To declare good news. Rom. 10:15; Luke 2:10-11
- To present the Truth. Gal. 4:16; John 8:31-32
- To inform the listener. Acts 2:40-41; Mark 16:15-16; 1 Cor.
- The show the consequences of sin. Rom. 6:23; Rev. 21:27; Isa.
- The produce faith. Rom. 10:13-17; Acts 15:7; John 6:44-45
- To condemn error and rebuke the erring. 2 Tim. 4:2; 1 Tim.
5:20; Eph. 5:11
- To restore the erring. James 5:16,19-20; Gal. 6:1; Matt.
- The edify the hearer. 1 Thess. 5:11; Rom. 14:19; 1 Cor. 14:12
- To encourage Christian living. 2 Peter 1:5-11; Eph. 6:10-17;
1 Peter 2:9
- To comfort those in sorrow. Rom. 12:15; 15:4; 2 Cor. 1:3-4;
Table of Contents
We enjoy receiving Seek The Old Paths each month and
help in a small way with postage expenses. Keep up the good work.
God bless you all ...Roy & Sandy Ingram, Crane, MO.
Dear brother Robinson, Enclosed is a check for the ministry
of Gods work. Keep it up as many are so lost. In Christ
...Name Withheld by request, Gallipolis, OH. I am
copy of our church bulletin to let you know how much you help us
daily. Good work. Thank you ...Dry Fork church of Christ,
Austin, KY. Dear Elders and brother Robinson, Due to some
things happening in my life, I have not been able to help with
your great work for many months. First of all, my health has
suffered a great decline in the past year, increasing medical
expenses and leaving me home bound. Then, because of our
broken economy some of my family have lost homes, jobs
and health and need help. Ive tried to help them as much as
I could with my limited funds (I believe the Bible teaches this).
But I have not forgotten the great work you are doing for one
minute and have continued to remember all of you and your readers
in my prayers. I hope I can continue now to help from time to
time. Ive not been able to attend church services for
several months and I really miss that. I continue to enjoy
reading your wonderful paper from cover to cover and I pray that
God blesses all of you who work on its publication for many years
to come. Please use my small contribution where and how most
needed, the STOP and/or brother Garlands other project. A
sister in Christ ...Murriel Windham, Las Vegas, NV.
Thank you for sending me the publication Seek The Old
Paths ...William & Susan Trees, Sioux Falls, SD.
Brother Garland, I have enjoyed Seek The Old Paths for many
years, thank you. I am now 87 years old and I am loosing my
eyesight and do not drive anymore so I must ask you to take me
off your mailing list. I have been a member of our Lords
Church for 64 years. Your brother in Him ...Archie Ristine,
Ellensburg, WA. Dear Sir, I dont know how you got my
address but Im glad I get your little paper about the
church. I will send something every time I can. Thank God for the
church of Christ. Love to the brothers and sisters ...Emily
Lewis, Jahleguah, OH. Dear brother Garland, I appreciate
and the effort of publishing Seek The Old Paths. I have
Seek The Old Paths probably for 15 or 20 years and
bundle for the Gardendale Church. Best wishes ...Ed
Armstrong, Pecos, TX. To the Eldership at the East End
church of Christ, Im committed to giving $$ a month in
support of the periodical ...Jamie Hampton, member of South
Phoenix church of Christ, Phoenix, AZ. Dear brother
Robinson, Enclosed is a small contribution. I look forward to
each edition of Seek The Old Paths. In Him we serve
...Corrine Young, Columbia, MO. Enclosed is a check as
anonymous gift to help in the publication of the paper. I really
enjoy receiving it. Thanks ...Anonymous, Oxford, MS.
Dear Sirs, Thank you so much for sending me the Seek The
Old Paths. I love receiving it and it helps me a lot. I
get it. Thanks again ...Hester Riffe, Suffolk, VA.
Brethren, We appreciate Seek The Old Paths very much and for
faithfulness to preach and teach Gods Holy Word. It is
necessary for us to drive seventy miles a trip to meet with a
faithful congregation and we are blessed to be a part of that
group of Gods people. Keep up the good work and we pray God
will bless you all ...Orville & Jewell Spears, Okmulgee,
I enjoy your Old Paths. We all need to Seek It
...Anonymous, Kemp, TX. Dear brethren, it is so
sit and read Seek The Old Paths in the midst of what has
to churches that for many lifetimes wore church of Christ on
their buildings. Sometimes entire local denominational churches
were converted by the truth. Now it seems the tide has
turned. Do they ever read II Peter 2:20-22? Its a
chilling thought. Weve known a couple for forty years who
started down the broad road to liberalism. They now attend the
huge church in Fort Worth, go to church on Saturday,
have instruments and communion. Vain worship it is. Here in the
Treasure Valley, the true church is hard to fine. Thanks be to
God for all of you and for all those still seeking the old paths.
There was one way paid for by the death of Christ, and there is
one way now and till the end of time. Its strange that
people love old homes and antiques but wont accept the
old time religion. Weve had a rough year with
sickness (me), whats happening in our country, etc. May that
bring people back to God before its too late. Were
talking about the U.S. in the past tense. Now the politicians are
working to make Washington, DC a state! Its already passed
in the senate and no one is talking about it. Our government is
so corrupt, its hard to believe. We had a very traumatic
experience months ago. We had a letter stating that our
investments were on hold because the company was being
investigated for fraud. If anything happens to my husband I would
have no income, so we have to have investments. It also gave us
back-up security to be able to make donations to churches and
worthy charities. Weve heard nothing to update the situation
and would appreciate your prayers. We know God cares and knows
the needs of his children. You are in our prayers always. May God
bless you in many more years of work in his Kingdom.
Sincerely ...Name withheld by request, ID. Dear
brethren, Greetings from the church that meets in Allenhurst, GA!
Thank you so much for the work you are doing in publishing Seek
the Old Paths. It is certainly a blessing to have your sound
publication that all can read and find Bible truth. We have been
receiving your publication for some years. We request that you
continue to send us a bundle of twenty copies each month. Please
accept the enclosed check and use it in whatever way you deem
best for the publishing and distribution of this good work. May
God continue to bless you in this noble effort. In His
service ...church of Christ at Allenhurst, Bob Miller,
Secretary, Allenhurst, GA. I have only recently been
receiving your paper and I appreciate it so much. It is so good
to know that there are other sound people out there. I am
enclosing a small check to help with the paper. Please send it to
these addresses ...Name withheld by request, TN.
put me on your STOP mailing list. I came into contact with this
publication while sitting with my husband in the hospital.
Thanks ...Georg A. Fields, Pikeville, KY. Please
copy of the most recent publication. Thanks ...Kay
Table of Contents
Bound Volumes can be ordered from:
Old Paths Publishing
2007 Francis Ferry Rd.
$5 postage paid
Bible Page |
Seek The Old Paths |
East End Church of Christ |
WSOJ Gospel Radio 24/7 from East End C/C
Old Paths Publishing Book Store / Lectureship