Index by Subject

Desperately Seeking Relevance


The following article contains observations and perceptions that I have developed in the last few decades as a Christian and preacher.  The warnings are offered because of my concern and love for the people of God. I have tried to write cautiously, and to avoid inflamed rhetoric.  I pray my comments will be considered, and my intent understood.

Perhaps you have heard of the apocryphal “Chinese” curse, “May you live in interesting times.”  While it might seem to be a blessing, the phrase is most commonly used in an ironic sense.  It seems that times of physical peace and blessing are typically rather boring, but times of conflict and upheaval are, at least historically speaking, much more interesting.

It is our misfortune to live in interesting times!  We have rogue nations with nuclear bombs; a rapidly increasing world population, resulting in significant economic and ecological challenges; a militant faction of Muslims declaring jihad throughout the world; an extremely partisan spirit in Washington D.C. that has made our government ineffectual and unresponsive to the needs of the American people.  We have militant social activists seeking to disrupt and remake the norms of morality and decency.  We have racial unrest. Continue reading » Desperately Seeking Relevance

Review of “Anti-ism — From God or Man?” (1)


In 2006 the small group wearing the moniker “Spring Church of Christ” in Spring, Texas hosted their annual “Contending For the Faith Lectureship.”   In that year the topic under consideration was “Anti-ism—From God Or Man?”   In conjunction with the lectureship series, a lecture book was printed to help further the spread of their intended message.     I came into possession of this work, and spent some time at the wearisome task of examining the teaching therein.   What will follow is a series of articles reviewing portions of that lecture book.

Why only review portions?    As is so often the case, when those few institutional brethren who will discuss these issues take time to discuss them, they make attempts to tie them into some inane and obscure doctrines that are present among churches of Christ.  For instance, they will attempt to liken brethren who oppose the use of the collection to support human institutions such as orphans homes, preaching schools, etc., with those who oppose the use of separate Bible classes or who bind the idea that Christians must only use one container when partaking of the Lord’s supper.   Thus we see no reason to review articles that condemn ideas that we agree are not biblical. Continue reading » Review of “Anti-ism — From God or Man?” (1)

Walking Worthy: Reaping Another Whirlwind

“They sow the wind, And reap the whirlwind. The stalk has no bud; It shall never produce meal. If it should produce, Aliens would swallow it up” (Hosea 8:7).

The minor prophet was excoriating the false religions which Israel dallied with in their temptation of God so many centuries ago now. Such false religions plant something without substance and produce something destructive. Their adherents are without moral compass, for false religion offers either none or one inferior to God’s and thus the challenges of the world and the worldly overcome them in time.

The prophecy bears some resemblance to Christ’s parable of the sower in Matthew 13. There also, three of four souls touched by the gospel did not endure in the faith because of persecution, trial or apathy. Today, so many churches of Christ are sowing the wind in their instruction of the young that we are nearly reduced to standing back and waiting for the whirlwind when the next, untaught generation assumes pulpits, pens and presbyteries.

Continue reading » Walking Worthy: Reaping Another Whirlwind

Why I Left Liberalism

Editor’s Note: After this August 2001 issue was already posted, I was asked by brother Yeager to publish the following article. Brother Yeager has recently taken a stand against the error that is documented elsewhere in this issue of Watchman. His reasons for leaving serve as a welcome addition to the material already found in this month’s Watchman. I commend the article to you.

The Lord’s church today is divided over many issues. Most of those issues are simply filed under the subject of Bible Authority. I spent my first preaching work teaching liberal doctrines relative to the church’s authority to support things in which the Bible never authorized. I spent most of my second preaching work studying some of these issues because of Ed Phillips who was my neighbor, friend, and a fellow Gospel Preacher. I had studied with others and had seen some of my inconsistencies but I was not fully convinced that I was a false teacher on these matters of authority. I then began my third work and during the beginning of that work I was realizing more and more as I studied. I never did buy into the fact that we had authority to support orphan homes with the Lord’s money, but I did not stand against it either. This article is going to reveal what finally made me leave the liberal position of Institutionalism and the things relating to that position. I knew of some like myself who did not belong in that belief system, but we also had a developed hatred towards what we termed “anti’s”. Of course, labels are used to develop prejudice against a group of people. For example the Christian church calls faithful members of the Lord’s church “non-instrumentalist”. This is true, for faithful Bible students would be “anti instruments” or against instruments used in Christian worship. We must realize that there are extremists on all sides of every issue. I am not an extremist. I was listening to a lecture on the subject of “anti-ism” on the Internet. This fellow said that “anti-ism” was people who bind one communion cup, no bible class, etc. This is the case in some extreme positions, but not most. Do not allow your mind to be clouded by misrepresentations so that you will not study these issues. This is what I did, it took me too long to wake up and see the truth!
Continue reading » Why I Left Liberalism