PLUMBLINE -- Editor, Wayne Coats

Volume 5 Number 6, January 2001


The letter arrived and the content was rather interesting. I was invited to speak on a lectureship program and the subject assigned was "Temperance." Of all the subjects about which I felt a tremendous amount of self-consciousness--it surely had to be that of temperance. I looked down at my protruding belly and admitted to myself that I had not been careful to practice temperance in my intake of food, but I promised that I would attack the problem with the tenacity of a pit bull dog.

I began my lesson at the lectureship with a confession and a resolution, plus a plea for prayers. Have you ever tried to eliminate excessive fat? It is no simple feat, but it needs to be done by a multitude of Christians. We need to consider a few matters which will be of help in this crucial battle.

1. We must remember that gluttony is sinful. The Bible, which is our guide, teaches this point very clearly. Paul wrote about the enemies of the cross and said, "Whose end is destruction, whose god is their belly, and whose glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things" (Phil. 3:18-19). There is ever the temptation to some people to make a god of the belly. We might as well have Buddah for our god as to make a god of the belly. May we strive to eat in order to live, rather than live in order to eat.

2. We need to remember that the Bible teaches us to exercise self-control. We must add to our faith "...virtue, knowledge, temperance..." (2 Peter 1:5-6). I am told that temperance denotes the idea of self-control. One must practice self-control and this is especially true of those of us who are preachers. Far too many preachers are too fat. It is belittling and inconsistent for me to swagger and waddle into the pulpit then try to tell brethren to control their tongues if I refuse to control my teeth. You know, the grinders which I use to masticate gobs of food.

I would suppose he weighed between three and four hundred pounds as he waddled into the pulpit somewhat like a fat duck. He took his text on brethren wagging their tongue, of which not a few of us can be guilty. I tried to listen as he yelled and literally screamed "shut up, shut UP, SHUT UP." There stood a fat slob who would eat like a hog, trying to tell others what not to do. "Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest not thyself..." (Rom. 2:21)? Apparently the thinking of such characters--assuming they think--is "you do what I say and not what I do." The ascending yells reached the highest decibels as the fat slob spit them out.

The last time I looked, Paul's mandate was still in my Bible which says, "Let your moderation be known unto all men..." (Phil. 4:5). We can hardly affirm belief of this passage when we look like a huge role of baled hay with a string tied around it. I do not care to listen to some fat hog telling me what I should and should not do. You may not have this problem. Such retardants need to exercise self-control before they begin yelling and screaming at the people in the pew.

A healthy appetite is a wonderful blessing but we must be able to control our appetites and not be given over to destructive lusts of the flesh. A bishop must be temperate (Titus 1:8). Aged men are to be temperate (Titus 2:2). A part of the beautiful cluster which comprises the fruit of the Spirit is temperance (Gal. 5:23). "And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate (has self-control) in all things" (1 Cor. 9:25). When Paul stood before old Felix, he "reasoned of righteousness, temperance and judgment to come" (Acts 24:25). We can excoriate Felix with cutting words but overlook our own intemperance.

The inspired apostle wrote, "I keep under my body and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway" (1 Cor. 9:27). Paul did not go hog-wild over hog-meat. He realized that mind is stronger than matter. This being the case, one should determine that matter will not control the mind.

We admire the person who has the will-power, determination, resolve and self-restraint to overcome gluttony, piggishness and subdue a voracious appetite. Better still, I admire the person who exercises self-control and subdues a spirit of impudence, impertinence and contempt. Arrogance has no place in the pulpit.

Then there was the fellow who looked somewhat like a fat bear ready to hibernate for the winter. He had what some describe as a beer-barrel belly. He would hold his Bible, pat it and say, "It's gotta be in here." The problem with the fat one was that he found fault with everyone, but refused to look at himself. Such a person is a nuisance to people with common sense.

When Paul wrote to the church in Thessalonica he said, "That every one of you should know how to possess his vessel in sanctification and honor" (1 Thess. 4:4). In a class taught by Brother L. L. Brigance at FHC, I recall him explaining that the brethren were to exercise control and subdue their sexual organ or vessel. Some preachers can raise a holy wow against sexual perverts but completely refuse to deal with self-control and gluttony. You do as I say and not as I do. If you refuse to listen to me, then I will yell and scream at you when I swagger into the pulpit.

--Wayne Coats, Editor

Whose Fault Is Disunity?

Charles Pledge

In many circles today, the best way to gain favorable attention is to deliver a stinging criticism of the Lord's church. The more venom one can spit at the Lord's body, the more popular one is with some preachers and teachers. Although the critics are numerous and the criticisms are varied there is one recurring theme harped upon and that is the matter of disunity among religious people. The development of this theme by most of the hypocrites indicates a complete misapprehension of Bible teaching on the matter.

Disunity! Who is to blame for the present state of division in the religious world? To hear some preachers preach(?) among us, the church is altogether at fault. It is said that "we have the wrong spirit," "we don't have enough love" or "we are to provincial." Some may state the case a little differently but the sermon is the same and the tune never changes. God is going to consign his people to an eternal hell because we have not united the world. We are told that we must have a more "tolerant" spirit and that we must drop the "oddities" which characterizes us if we will ever be successful.

We categorically deny that the Lord's body is to be blamed for the disunity of the religious world. The devil instigated the false doctrine which divides and all of his religious followers have been diligent workers of division. It is not possible for Christians to possess a spirit that could unite the world in its present condition of rebellion against God. We deny that we are going to hell for something we are not responsible for. Furthermore, that there is no Biblical authority for the kind of "unity" which some are preaching is evident upon superficial comparison of their brand of unity with the Bible teaching on unity. Jesus never prayed for the world to be united. Paul never commanded the world to be united. The Bible does not teach that the religious world is to be united in a condition of unbelief. When men take the teachings pertaining to unity out of their context and condemn those who do not rise to their interpretation of these passages is to pervert as much as any Calvinist, Romanist or other false teacher. It is a complete misconception of unity as taught in the Bible. The kind of unity taught by some is not unity, but a compromise union, and the religious world has demonstrated the folly of attempting such as that.

For whom did Jesus pray to be united? Let his words answer. "Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth. As thou hast sent me into the world, even so have I also sent them into the world. And for their sakes I sanctify myself, that they also might be sanctified through the truth. Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us; that the world may believe that thou hast sent me" (John 17:17-21). Jesus prayed for the sanctified believers to be united. Who are these? The truth sanctifies (John 17:17). For one to be sanctified by truth, he must obey that truth (Rom. 6:17-18). To sanctify is to set aside or apart. In Romans 6 Paul shows exactly how and when this happens. In Romans 6:18 Paul wrote, "Being then made free from sin...." Then is an adverb of time which indicates without question when the Romans had been set aside. It is when they had "...obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you" (Rom. 6:17). Romans 6:3-7 clarifies this a bit more. In obedience to truth (God's word, not human doctrine) one is sanctified and justified by God. These people are added by God to the church or kingdom and these are the people our Lord prays for in John 17, not the religious world in general.

Paul commanded the saints at Corinth to be united (1 Cor. 1:10). Who are these saints? Luke records in Acts 18:8 that they are the ones who heard, believed and obeyed the gospel. There was disunity in the church at Corinth and Paul, by the authority of Jesus, commanded them to be of the same speech and to be perfectly joined together in the same mind and the same judgment. Paul did not command them to be joined with the heathen religions of that city. He commanded Christians to be one. Unity with the religious world is never taught by our Lord, the apostles or any of the inspired writers of the New Testament. There is no example of early Christians practicing it with the approval of the apostles and furthermore, it is an impossibility. Even the devils are religious to a degree (James 2:19). Shall we be urged to unite with them also? But what is the difference between uniting with devils and those who follow the doctrines of devils?

Certainly disunity is a tragedy. Disunity indicates disobedience on the part of someone. Therefore, disunity is a pressing problem, primarily because it is the problem of sin. There must be a solution? Admittedly, disunity poses other problems which must be solved. The question for Christians is, whose solution shall we seek? Shall we accept the solution of those who are responsible for division or shall we seek God's solution? This is the choice we must make.

What is God's solution? Is it not the same today as when Jesus prayed for it and Paul commanded unity? What was the answer then? Truth! The truth that sets one free (John 8:31-32, Romans 6:17-18). The gospel of Christ that saves the soul ( Rom. 1:16) and by which we are born into the family of God at our obedience to it (1 Peter 1:22-23). This gospel must be preached (1 Tim. 4:16; 2 Tim. 4:1-2). Honest people must hear and obey this truth and when this happens, those who thus obey are obedient to the same standard, therefore, are united as long as obedience continues to be rendered. It is in this manner that the "mind of Christ is in us" (Phil. 2:5). It is among Christians, saints of God, that unity is commanded by our Lord and we are the only ones who are in position to truly exemplify Bible unity. Therefore, we ought to be truly concerned about it. Each of us should examine his heart to determine if we are contributing our share of effort to achieve unity.

Whose fault is disunity? Look to those who refuse to obey the plain teachings of the Bible.


A Conspiracy To Restructure

Glenn L. Wallace

In this article we briefly outline a movement to undermine the faith of members of the Body of Christ and to capture in particular, the minds of the youth. Those who are the leaders in this move may not always be aware that they are leading us into an open division but some of them are aware of such a move and are set to bring it about. Those who stand on middle ground waiting for a decision to be made or those who measure the temperature of the day by trying to decide how many and who, are the greatest enemies of the cause.

What are the methods being used to disturb and divide us? First, there is an undue concern about our image. How do we look to the religious world? What will our neighbors think of us? In the New Testament we read that Peter and John made an impression upon the city because they "had been with Jesus" (Acts 4:13). In our time this is not enough. We are "better educated" and in our ranks we have "highly trained and well informed men and women" so we are told, and this group will not sit by while we preach worn-out and thread-bare catch phrases of the 19th century. There are some who are so bold as to say that we have been trained by "illiterate, Bible-belted, Scripture quoting and legalistic rule keepers" and that we must separate ourselves from this image. Such will not appeal to the intellectual atmosphere of our time, hence we must revamp the message and the image. It is not enough to ask, "Have you been with Jesus?" but we must inquire if one has been to "Harvard" and whom does he know among the intellectuals of the day. Look over the implied demands for our preachers that some of our leaders are making and one cannot help but see that we are worried lest someone get the wrong idea of who and what we are.

The deliberate effort to change our image is seen in the way we copy the efforts of denominational churches in our gospel meetings. We have quit preaching and gone out to "witness" for Christ. We do not hold gospel meetings but they must be crusades with fancy names, gadgets and borrowed catch-alls from our neighbors. Even our methods for getting "responses" come right out of the blue books of professional revival leaders. In some cases the plans look more like a reproduction of Oral Roberts or Billy Graham than they do of a preparation for a series of gospel sermons. Our radio programs must be smooth, soft, gentle mouthings of lovely platitudes lest we offend someone. Our television presentation must be drama with the winds of the sea or the sounds of the city in the background, we are not permitted to preach. While we present amateurish dramatic productions many will flip off the dial and listen to straightforward teaching such as is presented by men like Ted Garner Armstrong, even though it is pure error. Why must we say nothing in trying to improve our image while in reality we are making ourselves look feeble as a gospel preaching people? The fear that we may not look right has caused us to revamp our directions.

Our sense of values and our spiritual directions are being changed by a policy of brain-washing. This is deliberate and well organized. Look at the book store shelves that are lined with books that ridicule the people of God. Mark well the slurs, innuendos and scorn that comes out of speeches and articles we hear and see often. The pseudo-intellectual can always get a big laugh from the youth crowd with some sick, sarcastic humor about the humble efforts of our preachers and elders. Our youth are reading and devouring with glee such books as "Are You Going To Church More And Enjoying It Less?" "A Funny Thing Happened To Me on the Way to Heaven" is almost as popular as the Living Bible and both are sick literature.

The book, "A New Song," is devoured by many. A new song indeed? It is the same old watered down Pentecostal testimonies that most of us have been hearing for forty years. What is new about it? Only the author is new. Perhaps one of the most clever efforts to brain-wash us is seen in these words:

"The cold snows of division in the higher peaks are beginning to melt; the spring thaw is starting; it was almost a century ago that our fathers in a frontier culture, many of them uneducated and illiterate, began to splinter." (Mission Messenger, Nov. 1969)

Notice the subtle efforts to ridicule all of us. The author of this article sees himself as a Moses to lead us out of captivity, and would lump our past into the cold frozen lands of ignorance in a backwoods climate. This would simply say that what your fathers preached is not fit for today's world. This even implies that Paul could not be considered relevant to an educated 20th century resident. After hearing this for awhile there are some who begin to believe it. We have sat on the sideline while these reformers have come into our ranks in retreats, closed forums and protected platforms to browbeat us into submission. We have too long watched without protest while the poison pens of the pseudo-intellectuals have ripped us apart.

Each man can speak for himself, BUT I am tired of hearing from those who castigate the people of God in every line they write. I am SICK of those who have nothing good to say about our ancestors and who argue that we are following the trails of deluded illiterates. I am full up to the ears with those who hand out merciless beatings to our brotherhood. I have had it with the rantings of Integrity, Mission, Mission Messenger, and other free-wheeling sheets of bitterness, scorn and caustic comments. If any of these fellows would come out in the open and really dialogue, we think they could be accommodated.

When in a so-called unity forum, one of our preachers stands up to cheer a Roman Catholic priest and addresses him as "brother" and "father" and when that preacher tells us that he has learned more from this Catholic brother than he has ever learned from his "church of Christ" brethren--we wonder where this man got his spiritual food and from what classrooms.

Let Us Read

Every time I hear my brethren pray in a public place, I hear them ask God to bless us. I am certain we desire the fullness of the blessings of our Father and seek to avoid the curses and condemnation which can be pronounced upon us.

We can appropriate the blessings of God, if we will observe those commands and requirements upon which certain blessings are promised. We recall where Jesus declared, "Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand" (Rev. 1:3). I understand there are some people in America who have never learned to read. What a pity to know that some have rejected one of the greatest blessings available to mankind.

Then there are those who can barely read the most elementary matters because of unconcern, disinterest and apathy. This group is surely missing so much in life. Special programs are being formulated to help adults learn to read.

Because of laziness and indolence, some folks refuse to read the Bible, good sound religious papers, and helpful books. One fellow wrote me a note and asked to have his subscription to the Plumbline canceled because he, "...didn't have time to read it." I figured one excuse is as good as any for not reading the paper.

Have you read the Bible today? When Paul wrote to Timothy he said, "Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine" (1 Tim. 4:13). There were materials at hand for Timothy to read. The Holy Spirit through Paul admonished Timothy to read. The apostle knew the blessings which would accrue to Timothy and others as a result of reading.

To the brethren at Colosse, Paul wrote, "And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea" (Col. 4:16). We can see that the inspired writer produced that which he wanted the brethren to read. To the Ephesians Paul wrote, "How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery (as I wrote afore in few words) whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ" (Eph. 3:4).

In addition to the inspired word of God, which we need to read every day, there are many good religious papers available and we need to read and help support the truth as presented in these papers. Some of the papers are free whereas others can be had for a subscription price. Our most difficult problem is to get brethren motivated to read, and those of us who hunger and thirst for informative materials need to make an effort to get others to have a voracious appetite for good, solid, teaching.

I do not have words to express my gratitude to so many who have made such great efforts to provide good reading materials. I am so thankful that I can see sufficiently to read my Bible along with good articles which faithful brethren send to the Plumbline and other papers. God bless you brethren. Come, let us read.

One of the best things any of us can do during the new year is to put forth a concerted effort to get others to read. A gift subscription for some friend to receive either a free or paid subscription, would be such a wonderful blessing for so many people. You may not be able to go out preaching, but it might be possible to sit in your chair and help spread the truth. We need to increase our efforts as individuals like the "sower who went out...."

--Wayne Coats, Editor

Strange Bedfellows

Jerry A. Price

Perhaps the title should read, "Not So Strange Bedfellows." I never cease to be amazed at my brethren's inconsistency. I'm not talking about baptism or faith. Nearly any member of the church of Christ that you talk to regarding these two subjects will be in agreement with you. We all know what the Bible says about these topics and we will stand up for the truth! But what inspired the writing of this particular article is the fact that hardly a month goes by without hearing about some brother or sister somewhere who have changed their mind on what they think the Bible says regarding divorce or remarriage.

We condemn denominationalism as being sinful because people twist the Scripture around to fit their particular situations and attempt to justify themselves in whatever condition they happen to find themselves. But I have been hearing about preachers of the gospel and other members of the church of Christ who are doing the same thing. They have jumped into the boat of denominationalism and are trying to convince themselves that it is not sinking in the sea of sin, as they desperately bail out water with the bucket of self-justification. I'm referring to Christians who for some other reason than the one in Matthew 19:9, have been divorced and now they want to remarry. Or, perhaps they have a relative who has been unscripturally divorced and remarried, and now they seek to justify their kin. One preacher gave the excuse that his first wife was "cold." That, in his eyes, would give him a reason to marry the second time. Brethren, besides being a "bunch of hogwash," this is nothing more than self-delusion and twisting of Scriptures, pure and simple! They have been sent a deluding influence (II Thess. 2:11) and therefore find themselves in the same bed with the denominations. Strange bedfellows!

I feel compassion for those who have been divorced. In many cases the divorce could have been avoided if both parties had earnestly tried to patch up their differences and made an effort to get along. Sometimes little arguments get out of hand and they think the only solution is separation. The high divorce rate outside the church is, I think, having an influence on the church. We need for parents, preachers, and teachers to teach more on marriage and divorce. Many times we hesitate to say that God's plan is one man married to one woman for life, and that God hates divorce, because we are afraid it might hurt somebody's feelings, or that it might start an argument.

I do not have time nor space in this article to discuss all the ramifications involved in the divorce-remarriage issue; but why should I? The entire problem can be solved quite readily and simply by reading God's word with an open mind with an honest desire to please God, and not please ourselves. when Jesus gave one exception in Matthew 19:9, we must accept it, and quit trying to add our own exceptions. Jesus' teaching on marriage and divorce and remarriage is really quite simple, if we would only refrain from confusing things with our "Yes, but's." Do you recognize this pattern? You ought to! It is really very prevalent. It goes something like this: A couple can't get along. Things get continually worse until they get a divorce. They both may remain single for some time. Then, a third party enters the picture. There is the temptation to remarry. But remarriage may violate their conscience--if they have studied the Bible at all. What to do? An intensive Bible study then commences with only one purpose in mind--to justify what they have already decided to do! Then, when he/she have convinced themselves they are justified in remarrying, and have thoroughly deluded themselves, then their "conscience" is clear, and they go ahead and remarry. Sound familiar?

The Bible teaches that if a person divorces and remarries for any reason other than fornication, he commits adultery; and if the one put away remarries, he/she commits adultery too. This is God's universal law and applies to all alike. One keeps on committing adultery until he removes himself from an adulterous marriage. Now, isn't that simple? Let's not add or subtract to God's word, and let us accept it for what it is. Yes, what strange bedfellows they are--the one who justifies sprinkling for baptism and the one who justifies remarriage for just any reason.

People, Places, Things

This one will find a place in my forthcoming book -- "The Garden of Nuts" -- Lord willing. A lady related the following to me. A sort of self-elevated somewhat brother cautioned her that she was not allowed to sing spiritual songs outside the worship assembly. The brother "nut," had been brainwashed by the nut preacher.

Such unfounded fool notions find acceptance in the minds of those who hop amid the high places in the Garden of Nuts. It might be asking too much of doltish minds to read the account of Paul and Silas who sang at midnight in the old Philippian jail (Acts 16:25). Would anyone be so depraved as to contend that the jail-house was where the church assembled? Paul and Silas sang and prayed but they were not in an assembly of the Philippian church.

We read where James said, "Is any among you afflicted? Let him pray. Is any merry? Let him sing psalms. Is any sick among you? Let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord" (James 5:13-14). If we cannot sing outside the worship assembly, then we cannot pray outside the assembly. They stand or fall together. It is ridiculous to think that if a brother is sick he must wait until the church assembles before he can pray. Moreover if one is merry he must wait until the church meets for worship before he can sing. Tell me how a congregation can prosper and grow with such -- "wood, hay, and stubble" (1 Cor. 3:12)? The wood, hay and stubble is usually defined according to the passage as: trash, refuse, useless material.

O the bitter pain and sorrow to realize the wasted years spent in trying to get brethren to use common sense.


According to a front page article in the Nashville Tennessean newspaper under the heading of "9 Area Churches make 'best list'," a national survey was reported on wherein a Catholic group had listed a number of churches in the United States, including nine Nashville churches which had made the list. The great churches included Catholic, Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, the Una Church of Christ and the Old Hickory Church of Christ. From reading the criteria for selection, I gather that the churches have become front-runners in the Social Gospel movement which is sweeping the nation after the pattern of old Walter Rauschenbuch of the early nineteen hundreds.

According to the report, "these churches welcome you--you can have alcohol on your breath or holy water on your breath. We take you as you are." "The churches share fresh ways of presenting the gospel message and engaging members in social outreach."

Passing out potatoes and peanuts is a sorry substitute for "the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe" (1 Cor. 1:21). Can you imagine some Catholic outfit selecting a congregation of the Lord's people where the Bible is preached without fear or favor? Such would not happen in a million years, yet such tom-foolery as appeared in the newspaper will make some people whoop and holler, clap and dance. Such is comparable to Herod and Pilate selecting two great sermons presented by Judas Iscariot.


From May 31 to June 5, 1923, a debate between brother N. B. Hardeman and Ira Boswell was held in the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee. I have just finished reading the debate again and I do declare that it is one of the most one-sided affairs I have ever read. Boswell completely ignored the speeches made by brother Hardeman.

It was emphasized by brother Hardeman that the instrument to be used in singing was the heart. One day in class at F.H.C., brother Hardeman told us that the report was circulated that Boswell and his crew sat up all night trying to figure out some sort of answer. They must have decided that silence was the best treatment, for no answer was ever given. At one point in the debate brother Hardeman declared, "I will tell you what you can do, brother Boswell. You can take a fine-toothed comb and rake the entire number, and there is not an infidel, there is not a destructive critic in the entire list-not one" (Hardeman-Boswell Debate, 1923, page 120).

We would not be able to make such a statement today. Brother Foy E. Wallace Jr. commented that the Modernists (infidels) can be raked up with a hay-rake today. Of course such is the result of so many brethren getting so brilliant (??) and weighed down with all sorts of degrees; and other brethren with fermented ignorance encouraging such sleaze.

The above expression is not too polished or elegant, but hopefully you can understand what I am trying to say.


Now that the Holy-Days have passed, it is evident that some would-be Christians joined in with pagans for the celebration of Jesus' birthday. The Christ-mass Day has been a HOLY DAY for the sects, cults, and pagan cultures for some centuries. If you don't believe Jesus was born December 25th, then some of the brethren can educate you very quickly.

Out in San Antonio, Texas, a reporter from the "Express News" told of Max Lucado whose church celebrated "A Christmas Eve Candlelight Service." The theme for the worship was, "the Perfect Christmas" centering on "the perfect Baby." The program consisted of "music, song, dance, projected photos of newborns and a poignant rendition of 'Who would imagine a King' performed by a choir of mothers and young children." "The program featured a performance by a string quartet of San Antonio Symphony Musicians, solo vocal selections, -- an interpretive dance by Tabatha O'Connor -- and a live nativity scene featured children from the church." Such theatrical performances appeal to all such as have never been truly converted to Christ. The carnal mind rules the multitudes. Worldly show and pageantry is the name of the game among liberals.

The fickle, fallen, Galatians were over-run with the spirit of Digression. Paul wrote, "ye observe days, and months, and times and years" (Gal. 4:10). The point is simple. There was no authority to observe those days. The Galatians stepped across the line. They ventured ahead without a thus saith the Lord.

During the era of the Old Testament, God had Israel to observe certain days. He gave directions as to how those days were to be observed. There were times when some attempted to add to and change what God had ordained.

There is not the slightest hint in the New Testament that we are to commemorate and make Holy, the birthday of Jesus. Maybe some liberal would like to borrow a Bible and prove all things which are being practiced thereby (1 Thess. 5:21). We can give Bible authority for observing the death of Christ, but not his birth.

Maybe Lucado's Church should begin to observe Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday -- and all the period of Lent. On Easter Sunday, Lucado could bless all the baby rabbits, baby chicks, baby ducks, and baby girls and boys. A statute of Santa Claus would fit perfectly beside the communion table. The collection baskets could sit in the lap of Santa as a reminder to have the spirit of giving throughout the year.

"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).


From a bulletin received, "to boost attendance one Sunday at the Farmington Hills Church, their minister Jeff Slater promised to shave his head if more than 130 people came. 165 people attended. 'Baldy' was pleased!"

There seems to be less brains in the pulpits than ever before -- possibly because there are less brains out of the pulpits.

Some preachers have real problems increasing attendance by using what is on the inside of the head. They then resort to all sorts of gimmicks on the outside of the head.


Did you hear about the child who asked his daddy a very difficult Bible question and his dad told him to go ask his mother? The little one said, "I don't want to know that much about it."


The brother was introducing the young boy preacher and he was straining and trying his best to brag on the boy. Said he, "This here boy has one of the mostest, wonderfullest deliverances your years will every heer."


Did you hear about the very zealous lady who canvassed the town begging the merchants for money to build a new sanctuary?

She visited one store and the owner said, "I'll give you fifty dollars if you will put a big sign in front of the building which reads, 'This is a Church of Christ'." The lady just about lost her breath and said, "Oh no, we couldn't do that cause it isn't a church of Christ."

The merchant said, "Well, I will give you fifty dollars if you will put a big sign up which says, "This is not a Church of Christ." The lady gasped and said, "It is a Church of Christ but it isn't a Church of Christ, generally speaking."

I would say she had just graduated from one of OUR universities.


The Ashland City Church of Christ has joined with the denominations in Cheatem County and a "Jesus Video" has been mailed to each home in the county. The ministerial alliance wheeled the deal. The video "...was not an accurate account of Jesus' life as portrayed in the Bible," according to a statement made by brethren from the Bethlehem Church of Christ who made their opposition known to the Ashland City church.

This joining in with the sects by the Ashland city congregation is but anther occasion of weak, compromising, affinity with denominationalism. When does a church of Christ cease to be a church of Christ?