PLUMBLINE -- Editor, Wayne Coats

Vol. 4 No. 8,    March 2000

Rubel And Billy

Not since the days when old Jessie B. Ferguson came to Nashville, Tennessee, and led the church into apostasy, has there been such a disgraceful, foolish, silly, blundering, inconsistent, inane, absurd, preposterous, senseless, asinine and ridiculous apostate effort as is being promoted by Rubel Shelly and his Shepherds.

I am referring to an announcement which was contained in "Lovelines" which is "The Weekly Newsletter of the Family of God at Woodmont Hills," and which Newsletter was sent to me by a friend.

The heading of the article under consideration is: "Billy Graham Crusade -- June 1-4, 2000, Adelphia Coliseum."

I beg and plead with the reader to ponder the following comments carefully and prayerfully. The article in the bulletin states, "Woodmont Hills supports the decision of Dr. Graham and his ministry team to be in Nashville."

For one, I am not at all surprised that Shelly and his crowd will support a Baptist preacher such as a Billy crusade. It is a fact with the force of a demonstration that Shelly will ridicule, make fun of, deride, scoff, jeer, mock, sneer, put down, and laugh at the conservative congregations. This is too evident for honest people to deny. The records (tapes) are available and prove the assertion.

It is sickening to reflect upon the fact that Nashville has been the scene of so many courageous battles upon the part of dear old brethren down through the years as they battled the Baptist preachers in defense of the ancient order of things and now comes one who claims to represent Christ, but betrays that for which gallant soldiers have suffered so much.

The Woodmont piece informs its readers that, "our church family...will be enthusiastic participants." That means all of those Lipscomb professors who are a part of the "church family" will be "enthusiastic participants." Is this true or false?

The reader will recall a former issue of the Plumbline wherein it was noted that Dan Dozier and his wife had joined the Community Church in Hendersonville, but they left and joined Shelly's Church. It would be most interesting to hear Dan babble why he left the Community Church to join Rubel's Church. It would make as much sense for those far-out liberals to join in with the atheists of Nashville--but of course the liberals never make any sense.

"...The uniqueness of this event stands to make it effective in reaching many who don't know Christ." It is puerile beyond description to prattle that Billy Graham will tell people how they can know Jesus Christ. Baptist preachers and Baptist doctrine keeps people blinded to a saving knowledge of Christ. One must know the truth in order to be free from sin (John 8:32). I emphatically deny that Billy and Rubel teach the truth which sets men free.

"Billy Graham presents Jesus Christ as mankind's only hope for eternal life." This is but another case of Shelly's foolishness. If Billy and Rubel presented Christ, hope, and eternal life, they would present what the Bible teaches instead of sectarian and cultic theology.

Rubel avers, "If it is right to link arms with other believers to oppose pornography and drugs, surely it cannot be wrong to join with them to preach Christ crucified?" What Shelly needs to do is remove the "if" and tell people what the Bible teaches, but this is expecting too much of Rubel. Jesus did not link arms with the religious racketeers of his day, nor did the apostles. People used to have enough sense to respect the Word of God above and beyond the clatter of false teachers. "And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them (Eph. 5:11). "Wherefore, come out from among them and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing: and I will receive you" (2 Cor. 6:17). "(Touch not, taste not, handle not; which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men" (Col. 2:21-22). The preceding passages mean nothing to the Shelly crowd.

Shelly speaks of linking arms with "other believers." Of course he has reference to the Billy brand of Baptists. Billy Graham believes and teaches that little babies are born totally depraved. Will Rubel link arms with the Baptist preacher on this false doctrine? John R. Graves who was a very noted Baptist preacher said, "total depravity is a doctrine which Baptists believe the Bible teaches...." Graves also said, "We, as Baptists, teach that repentance toward God and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ secure pardon." Will Shelly and his family link arms with Billy on that statement of Baptist doctrine?

Further, Graves stated, "Baptists believe that when they are saved, they are eternally saved." Of course Billy babbles these points of Baptist doctrine, and Rubel and his clones will try to act like they are "enthusiastic participants" with Billy in these false doctrines.

Graves asks the question, "Do you believe the doctrine of once in grace, always in grace, as taught by the Baptists?" "...The things about which we differ are not essential to salvation." Rubel will link arms on this point and out-shout the Holy-Rollers.

The main sugar-stick of Billy Graham is the whoop-it-up about the direct, supernatural, illuminating, work of the Holy Spirit in conversion. In this, Shelly will link arms and try to keep a straight face while the Holy Spirit supposedly leads one to be a Baptist, another to be an Adventist, another to be a Mormon, still others to be whatever (stripe and ilk--Rubel's words) they choose to be.

"We will be working closely with the campaign effort to advise and teach those who mark, 'Church of Christ'." My sincere judgment would be that with all the splutter from Shelly about name-dropping, a person would have to be some sort of stark-naked fool to mark, "Church of Christ." Yes, I do wonder how much sarcasm Shelly can exude toward one of those markers.

"With the blessing of our shepherds, Rubel Shelly is serving as a General Committee member on behalf of this outreach effort." "Our shepherds" will bless Billy and the Baptists, and some of the shepherds will run back to the Lipscomb campus and bless the students and others who feel a need to be blessed. While these blessings are taking place, a whole bevy of brothers in Nashville will continue nursing their affliction with lockjaw.

"Several of our shepherds wrote letters of invitation to Dr. Graham to encourage him to come to our city." Again, I am not surprised at anything "our shepherds" might support. It does bother me no little to reflect upon the fact that brethren have been so obstinate, blind and persistent in their efforts to hob-nob with the Shelly crew.

For several years I have stood opposed to the shenanigans of Rubel Shelly and other liberals in Nashville and I have tried my best to warn brethren. While opposing and exposing Shelly-Flatt, etc., and their notorious Jubilee; Abilene, Harding, Freed-Hardeman and Lipscomb Universities were helping to support the ungodly outfit. When Lipscomb wheels opened the auditorium on campus for Shelly and his gang to meet in, I tried to get some of the board members to hear my plea, but to no avail.

When Neil Anderson and the Gospel Advocate were pumping up the Jubilee and purchasing booth space, I tried to get Neil to turn the Advocate around. My reward has been an increase in cold stares and enemies. I truly believe it will be better for me to fall straight, rather than to stand crooked.

Billy Graham teaches salvation by faith alone. Shelly must feel proud to link arms with a Baptist preacher who teaches such heretical foolishness. There is not enough conviction in the entire motley crew of "our shepherds" to get them to make any sort of sensible effort to defend Rubel and Billy in preaching Baptist Doctrine.

Does Shelly believe in hereditary total depravity? Does he believe in the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit? Does he believe in salvation by faith alone? Does he believe in once saved always saved? Does he believe Baptist doctrine? What about these shepherds of Shelly who teach at Lipscomb?

Guess who the villain really is. If he isn't called by some slurring term, he might be referred to as W. Coats.

Shelly has the unmitigated gall to go over on the Vanderbilt campus and debate an atheist. Even a half-wit atheist could unravel Rubel as he tries to link arms with false teachers. Instead of trying to show-off while debating an atheist on the Vanderbilt campus, with his modernism so obvious, Shelly might as well link arms with atheists. Who will deny this? The man has written and said too much. Of course we know that Rubel knows exactly which propositions to deal with and where to deal with them.

"And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: that they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness" (2 Thess. 2:10-12).

--Wayne Coats, Editor



A Team Is In Place

The above caption is the title of an article which came in early morn. After reading the piece I felt like exclaiming with the writer who opined, "Great God, what crimes have been committed in the name of religion."

The piece describes the team assembled to bring the dream of "The Encyclopedia of the Stone-Campbell Movement to Reality. The team is being led by three General Editors." The General Board is comprised of Paul M. Blowers of Emmanuel School of Religion, Anthony L. Dunnavant of Lexington Theological Seminary (an ultra-liberal-modernistic, Disciples of Christ school) and Douglas A. Foster of Abilene (unchristian, w.c.) University. There are too many fellows on that General Board. The only one needed is Doug Foster. Anyone scholarly enough to attribute the words of John R. Graves -- a Baptist preacher -- to brother David Lipscomb (and get by with scarcely a ripple) such an one needs no help from a professor at Notre Dame, Lexington, or Emmanuel.

The meeting of the General Board met at the Disciples of Christ Historical Society in Nashville, Tennessee, to settle some of the essential matters prepatory to the research for the Encyclopedia.

The editorial board includes: C. Leonard Allen of Abilene University, Carisse M. Berryhill of Harding University, and James O. Duke of Texas Christian University. I would almost be willing to eat that encyclopedia--without salt and pepper--if it is indeed a factual, objective, trustworthy, piece of research.

I have penned the above to present a point that needs to be emphasized. It needs to be seen that the liberal, modernists from ACU have far more regard, affinity and fellowship with other far-out-modernists, than they care to have with sound, faithful, conservative brethren. I predict that Allen, Foster, et.al. will capitulate and help present a work somewhat akin to a stirred-up hound dog's breakfast. I know the thinking of liberals. What a team!

--Wayne Coats, Editor




More Liberal Nonsense

I have repeatedly written the very truth that liberals never make any sense. Many of our readers are aware of the recent exit made by Doug Varnado from the Lipscomb Bible faculty. The professor hopped out to the Community Church in Hendersonville, Tennessee to become the head guru. He continued to serve as a teacher at Lipscomb although he preached for the sectarian, cultic, Community Church. Did this bother Steve Flatt or any of the board members of Lipscomb? Apparently not one whit!

Professor Varnado introduced instrumental music into the Community worship, and bless his heart he resigned, was fired or something, and-so-forth. The "infamous box" was a real problem to somebody and so Varnado vamoosed right early.

What a tragedy! What ingratitude! What a sham! What a farce! What stupidity! Do we not remember how Hazelip, McKelvy, and-so-forth and so-on traipsed out to Community to speak? It is absurd to contend that Community has changed its stance. Do we not remember how the Community Church served as a contributing church to Steve Flatt's Jubilee wonder?

Do we not remember how Steve Flatt of Lipscomb copied word for word and sentence for sentence from Rubel Shelly? But poor Varnado had to fly down off the roost all because someone got antsy about instrumental music.

Liberals never make any sense.

Varnado is gone to the Community Church and LaGard Smith is welcomed by Flatt and Board Members. I truly wonder if these school men think that we are so dense, dumb, and demented as to not be able to see through a ladder. Frankly, I just believe that I would not and could not act so inconsistently. I will assume that such is the one and only reason that I never did become president of Lipscomb. Oh well, it could be that I just never did care to become a professional beggar.

F. LaGard Smith has written a book which he calls, "Who Is My Brother?" The book was praised by some TV character in Florida who is some sort of cultic, Pentecostal, preacher. I saw LaGard when he appeared on the pastors program, as presented on TV. My, but F. LaGard Smith was praised. The program was something akin to the Jim Bakker, Tammy Faye outfit. Can you imagine some cultic outfit commending a book written by faithful brethren? The very fact that the TV evangelist promoted the Smith book is prima face evidence that the book is heretical from "kiver to kiver."

Smith tells about some of his experiences in England. He went to worship at the Aston-under-Hill sectarian Church for six months. He wrote, "The singing is accompanied by instruments." "For two or three years when I would periodically attend the services, I would slip into a pew and worship pretty much in my own personal world." "As for the instruments, I tried to content myself with the thought that while everyone else was singing with the instrument, I was singing without them." "Not everyone is happy singing without the instrument." Ho, Ho, Ho! Only a bunch of demented fools will buy Smith's prattle.

It causes me to wonder why and how Varnado and his "infamous box" would be rejected by Steve Flatt and the Lipscomb Board, yet hire F. LaGard Smith who has repeatedly worshipped with a church which uses the instrument. Please read again, "As for the instruments, I tried to content myself with the thought that while everyone else was singing with the instruments, I was singing without them" (p. 103). This same sluice of nonsense was uttered by Rubel Shelly and it brought guffaws of laughter from his audience. The same poppycock was made by the Old Digressives who babbled that the instrument was not actually in the worship. This was their alibi after they learned better than try to sustain the idea of the instrument in the worship.

Do not try to figure out how F. LaGard Smith could sing without the instrument. No doubt he is gifted with mental reservation, psychic phenomonology, and hypnotic abnegation. He could just as easily worship with a crew of Catholic monks. Please tell me why not. Moreover, please try to inform sensible people why Varnado, "cut the shuck out" of Lipscomb on account of his instruments but Smith moves in to sing without his melodeon. No wonder the church is in such a disgraceful mess in and around Nashville. Have we lost all of our brains?

How would it be possible for Smith to worship with the Catholics six months, and while everyone else was praying to Mary, he would pray to God? While they ate the literal body and drank the literal blood, how could he refuse to participate in that act of worship? Perhaps to him it would be butter milk or coke.

The actions of F. LaGard Smith demonstrates the poverty of Biblical instruction available at Lipscomb. "And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them" (Eph. 5:11). Do not curse and malign those who oppose and expose the heretics. And to think, some people like to brag about supporting Lipscomb and sending their offspring over there. Ichabod!

Let me offer a parallel for your consideration. Let us suppose there are two people in Nashville, Tennessee who agree to engage in a sexual relationship. I imagine such could be found without too much effort. One of the partners freely admits that such action is fornication, unlawful, out of order, off limits. Not everyone is happy engaging in fornication.

The other partner feels no compunction of conscience at all while being a participant in such illicit behavior. When confronted about their conduct one partner says, "I don't see anything wrong with what I'm doing. Looks like, er, uh, I tried to content myself with the thought that while everyone else was fornicating, twould be alright for me."

The other partner remarks, "for two or three years when I would periodically visit my partner, I would slip in and engage in sexual activities pretty much in my own personal world. I tried to content myself with the thought that while another was involved in fornication, I was not. I was sort of fornicating without fornicating."

Heaven help us! The Lipscomb mess is enough to cause the Lord to puke (Rev. 3:16).

--Wayne Coats, Editor



The Most Needed Man In The World

Michael Light

The most needed man in the world today is not a doctor or a lawyer or an actor or an astronaut or even a preacher or elder. What the world needs in the worst way is more godly fathers. As our homes deteriorate, so does the nation. A home will never be what God would have it if the man of the house is not a man of God. The picture of the father God would have is mentioned in Ephesians 6:1-4, "Children obey your parents...and, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."

Family Relationships

This text delves into the subject of family relations and concludes by stressing the role of the father as the provider of "the nurture and admonition of the Lord." It is not exclusively the work of the church or the preacher to train up the children of the world. God gave that glorious and responsible task to the fathers of the children. Certainly a faithful congregation can aid in the rearing of a child, but the duty lies in the person of the father.

When Paul addressed the family unit he began in citing that man was first formed, then Eve (1 Tim. 2:13). The husband is to be the head of the wife due to his place in the very creation of the human race (Gen. 1,2). In Ephesians 5 the Spirit adds, the husband is to be the head of the wife as Christ is head of the church. He leads her out of his love for her, and would gladly die for her as Jesus died for the church (Eph. 5:22-33). Far to many men are unwilling to stand up and be the head of the house. We are in desperate need to once again have men who will stand as "real men," not shunning their God-given position. There is no place for cowardice in the heart of godly fathers (Rev. 21:8).

Training Up Children

Not only is the man to be the head of the wife as Christ is the church, he is also to train up his children in that which is most important. Often fathers worry about the financial and educational futures of their children more than their spiritual future. Friends, such things ought not to be. Nothing is as important as preparing children for a life of godly service. In Deuteronomy 11:18-21, God clearly sets out what it takes to truly prepare our children to be able to stand in the day of adversity. "Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul...And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house,...walkest by the way,...liest down,...risest up...That your days may be multiplied, and the days of your children...."

God doesn't tell us to just take them to services once or twice a week. Rather, He instructs us to put His word ever before our children and to train them up in His way. Many fathers fail in this area for a number of reasons. Some are ignorant of what the word of God teaches, and therefore are unable to pass on to their children that which they do not know. The solution is quite simple, study God's word with the diligence and persistence due it. "Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth" (2 Tim. 2:15; cf. 2 Tim. 3:16,17).

Others have a knowledge of God's word but lack a scriptural love for their children and therefore fail to take the time or make the effort needed to train them in the ways of Jehovah. "He that begetteth a fool doeth it to his sorrow: and the father of a fool hath no joy" (Prov. 17:21). How many children have ruined their lives because their father didn't really care enough about them to lead them to Jesus and instruct them in His divine ways? "For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth" (Prov. 19:26).

Many fathers are simply too busy. Their intentions are good. One day they are going to get "around to it," but far too many never do. The love of money and prestige take them from home and keep them out late, day after day, week after week, and year after year. Sadly, many awake from the stupor of their materialistic life too late to save their children from the pit of hell. Children are a gift from God and we should be appreciative of it. But they will make us miserable if we fail them as fathers.

We Need Godly Men

Fathers, be men. Stand in the old paths of God on this matter (Jer. 6:16), and such misery can be avoided. What the world needs today is for you, as a man created in the image of God, to rise up and be a REAL father, a Christian father, a father after God's own heart. We can achieve biblical fatherhood if we are willing to comply with the ways of God on the matter of being a father (Isaiah 55:8-9: Phil. 4:13). SYF...

P.O. Box 158, Bangs, Texas 76823




"He Being Dead, yet Speaketh"

Steve A. Miller

We are blessed to have had many in our past who set godly examples and left their mark in the great works they accomplished. Brother Foy E. Wallace, Jr. must be classed as an individual who though dead, yet speaks volumes! One of the treasures he left to us was his book, The Instrumental Music Question. Deep within this rich work is the following simple, yet powerful, teaching set forth on the question of mechanical instrumental music in worship. Brother Wallace gives us a syllogism on the subject, which concludes that instrumental music in worship is an authority issue.

Number one:

1. To use things not authorized in the worship is going beyond the teaching of Christ.

2. Instrumental music is not authorized in the worship by Christ.

3. Therefore, instrumental music in the worship is going beyond the teaching of Christ.

Number two:

1. To go beyond the teaching of Christ is transgression.

2. Instrumental music in worship is going beyond the teaching of Christ.

3. Therefore, instrumental music in the worship is transgression.

Number three:

1. Transgression of the law of Christ is sin.

2. Instrumental music in worship is transgression of the law of Christ.

3. Therefore, instrumental music in worship is sin.

The whole question of the use of instrumental music in worship involves respect for the word of God, a recognition of the authority of Jesus Christ. (Foy E. Wallace, Jr. The Instrumental Music Question, p.240).

316 4th St.

Paintsville, KY 41240



Victory Through Jesus Christ

"Be a winner" is a slogan often used by coaches, sales managers and promotional experts to encourage better performance. From pro football to little league, we expect a victory as the reward of our interest and effort.

There is no virtue in defeat, nor is it wrong to win. Paul used an athletic illustration to encourage the Corinthians, by saying, "Every man that striveth in the games exerciseth self control in all things" (1 Cor. 9:24).

In athletic contests only one team or individual can win. In the game of life all can win: "Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us" (Rom. 8:37). Jesus assured his disciples, "In the world ye have tribulation. But be of good cheer; I have overcome the world" (John 16:33).

"All that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution" (2 Tim. 3:12). Nevertheless, such does not separate us from the love of God (Rom. 8:35). All other victories pale into insignificance compared to the victory over sin. Ponder the question Jesus asked, "For what shall a man be profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and forfeit his life? or what shall a man give in exchange for his life" (Matt. 16:26)?

God sent Christ into the world to save sinners (Rom. 2:23; Luke 19:10). There is no salvation in any other (Acts 4:12). Forgiveness is in him (Eph. 1:7). Through faith, one is baptized into Christ and thus has access to forgiveness (Gal. 3:26,27). With implicit trust in the Saviour Paul could say, "I can do all things through him" (Phil. 4:13). God provides a way of escape (1 Cor. 10:13). He knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation (2 Peter 2:9).

Life's trials will come. Job observed that "man is of few days and full of trouble" (Job. 14:1). Paul added, "For as the sufferings of Christ abound unto us, even so our comfort also aboundeth through Christ" (2 Cor. 1:5). The illness that weakens us, the deaths that give sorrow, the treachery of false friends and the myriad of other trials, make this a bleak world indeed without the hope Christ can give to His disciples.

To the follower who puts his implicit trust in God, He gives his assurance as he did to Moses and Joshua; "I will in no wise fail thee, neither will I in any wise forsake thee" (Heb. 13:5). Jesus taught his disciples not to fear the hatred of the world, for it hated Him before us, and that we are hated because we are not of the world (John 15:18,19).

The last victory the Christian hopes to attain is victory over his mortality, which will be accomplished in the resurrection (1 Cor. 15:53). The question "If a man die, shall he live again?" was posed centuries ago and answered in Christ who brought life and immortality to light through the gospel (2 Tim. 1:10). If one can say, as did Paul, "For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain" (Phil. 1:21), then he can be assured of the final victory.

--Harold Kennamer



Let The Bible Speak On

Unity in Diversity

A denominational preacher (in a fellowship meeting of several different denominations) commented that "there are at least twenty-five major differences among us but we still have unity." Some in the church today teach that the only way we can have unity is in diversity.

The word unity is defined as: the state of being one; the quality of being one in the Spirit (Webster's New World Dictionary). Diverse, on the other hand, means: different, dissimilar. When we substitute the definitions of the words unity in diversity, we have oneness in difference. Just how can different things be one? "Can two walk together, except they be agreed" (Amos 3:3)?

Are we to believe that one can be saved by believing any kind of preaching? Paul instructed in Romans 16:17-18 that we are to "mark and avoid" those who teach "contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned." These men by their "good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple." Some today are being deceived by those teaching the idea of "unity in diversity."

In Gal. 1:6-9 Paul states: "I marvel that ye are so soon removed." Where were they removed to, Paul? To "another gospel: which is not another." Some today say, "It doesn't make any difference what you believe, just as long as you are honest and sincere" or "one church is as good as another." These statements are not found in the Scriptures, thus, it is from man. Paul said those who so teach "pervert the gospel of Christ. But though we or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed" (vs.7-8). If the preaching of a perverted gospel will make the preacher accursed, it will make the believer accursed.

Before there can be real unity, there must be a unity of the Spirit as we read in Ephesians 4. Unity in diversity is a damnable doctrine. The Bible never talks about diversities of faiths! However, it talks repeatedly about the one faith. We are told to "speak the same thing." There are to be "no divisions" among us. We are to be "perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment" (1 Cor. 1:10). There, unity is demanded and diversity (division) is condemned.

There is only "one faith," just like there is only "one Lord" (Eph. 4:5). Yet, the question is asked: "Of what faith are you?" Verse 5 also states there is "one baptism." Yet, many teach different baptisms, but only one Lord! There are just as many Lords as there are faiths and baptisms.

Unity in diversity is being taught in the church as a means to fellowship some that God forbids us to fellowship. It is the doctrine of men, and Jesus said: "But in vain they do worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men" (Matt. 15:9).

There can be no God-approved or true unity that is not founded on and sustained by Bible authority. We can easily see the need of proper authority in our everyday lives. How much more so is it true and necessary in matters pertaining to our eternal destiny. "He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day" (John 12:48).

"If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God" (1 Peter 4:11).

--Don H. Noblin



Maintaining The

Purity Of The Church

W. Douglass Harris

In English dictionaries, the first definition of "pure" is "free from extraneous material, or mixture of anything of a different, inferior, or contaminating kind." Paul said of Christ that He "gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself A PEOPLE for his own possession" (Titus 2:14). Because of the ecumenical syndrome of our times, compromise of the truth by some brethren threatens to corrupt the purity of the church. By allowing an admixture of man-made doctrines and practices of men, the purity of the church is destroyed. How do we keep the church free from extraneous and unscriptural matters?

I. IT MUST BE KEPT PURE DOCTRINALLY. The church at Jerusalem continued steadfastly in the apostles' doctrine--the doctrine taught by the Spirit-guided apostles (Acts 2:42). There is a body of teaching that is identified as the "doctrine of Christ," which we are forbidden to go beyond (2 John 9-11). This doctrine unmixed with the doctrines of men provides us with all the reproof, correction, and instruction that furnishes us unto every good work (2 Tim. 3:16,17).

Preaching the word (gospel) and it only as Paul charged Timothy to do will keep the church pure in doctrine (2 Tim. 4:1-4). Four times in his letters to Timothy and Titus, Paul charged them to speak the things that become (befit) "sound doctrine" (1 Tim. 1:10; 2 Tim. 4:3; Titus 1:9; 2:1). "Sound" is from a word that means "healthy or wholesome!" It is paraphrased in the New Century Version: "you must tell everyone to follow the true teaching."

One becomes a Christian by obeying a certain "form of doctrine" -- a likeness to the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. This all takes place in scriptural baptism (Rom. 6:16-18; cf. vs.1-5). So there is pattern of doctrine that must be followed, the opinions of some brethren to the contrary withstanding.

Modern change agents begin navigating their agendas for change by corrupting Bible doctrine. There are frequent warnings in the New Testament against departures from the apostles' doctrine (1 Tim. 4:1,2). Preaching the word as Paul commanded Timothy excludes everything else (2 Tim. 4:1-4).

II. THE CHURCH MUST BE KEPT PURE IN PRACTICE. Twenty-one books of the New Testament are devoted to exhorting members of the church to live pure and holy lives. Here are some of the injunctions from the inspired apostles: "Come ye out...and be separate and touch no unclean thing" (2 Cor. 6:14-7:1); "Be not conformed to the world, but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind" (12:1,2); "Keep yourselves unspotted from the world" (James 1:27); "Let sin no longer have dominion over you" (Rom. 6:14); "Depart from unrighteousness and be vessels of honor" (2 Tim. 2:19,20); "Love not the world, nor the things in the world" (1 John 2:15-17; James 4:4).

CONCLUSION: Eternal vigilance is the price of the purity of the church. Maintaining the purity of the church requires a pure faith (doctrine) and a pure practice. "Neither ridicule nor opposition from denominationalism can defeat us as long as we keep the church pure--refuse to compromise in either doctrine or Christian living" (Gordon J. Pennock).



MATERIALS WRITTEN BY WAYNE COATS

A Critique of How Christianity Grows in the City 50

Death Brings Hurt and Help $8.00

Tell Us Plainly 50

Rubel's Cube 50

My Sermon in the Methodist Church 50

Hell Hath No Fury Like Some Modern Music 50

Dear brother Jones & Some Observations on

That Atlanta Speech 50

Dear brother Jennings and Some Other Stuff 50

Witnessing and Testifying 50

Affirming and Dedicating Babies 50

What Did You Say Matt. 18:15-17 Teaches? 75

Rabbi Fuchs at Lipscomb 50

Go to Lipscomb and Learn About Incest

(Review of Lecture by Gayle Napier) 75

Rubel's Rubbish (or the Mountain Sermon

Mangled by Modernism) 75

How Flatt Flattened the Master's Sermon (or

Playing "Simon Sez" with Shelly) 75

Tip Toeing Through the "Jubilee" 50

A Review of the Shelly-Harris Material on the

Second Incarnation 60

Review of Another Liberal Digressive Effort as

Proposed by James Woodroof to Change

the Church of Christ $1.25

How Rubel's Bloated Wineskins Burst 50

Rubel's Case Against the Ignorant, Arrogant

Traditional Church Relative to Solos, Choirs

& Quartets (or Shelly on Presentation Music) $1.00

Shelly's "Harsh & Steely" Shellacking of the

Idolatrous, Arrogant & Ignorant Church Regarding

Its Sisters (A Review of Shelly's Role of Women

in the Church) $1.00

Liberalism at the Jubilee 75

How the New Liberals Dig up the Bones of the

Old Liberals $1.50

Brother Flatt's Holy Rollerism as Presented by Lindsey

Garmon & Steve Flatt at the Jubilee $1.25

Compendium of Pentecostal Holiness Teachings

at the Jubilee $5.00

(Plus postage if order is mailed)

Order from: Wayne Coats -- (615) 758-7406

705 Hillview Drive, Mt. Juliet, TN 37122



People, Places, Things

No thanks! Mike Trout is one with whom I do not care to fish. Trout is co-host of Focus-on-the-Family and is scheduled to be the speaker for the Herald-of-Truth sponsored Family Seminar. Knowledgeable people know that the Focus-on-the-Family affair is the brain child of James Dobson who is a denominational preacher. Of course that doesn't bother the big-wigs who produce the Herald-of-Truth (error) and the gullible wigs who support the outfit. The compromising Herald-of-Error needs to be rejected by the children of God. We have no use for the Herald-of-Satan.

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I apologize for including in the Plumbline the sordid foolishness of the Woodmont Hills Church bulletin containing the announcement of the Billy Graham troupe which is coming to Nashville. We know that it is impossible to tell some brethren anything about apostate modernists and liberals. Hopefully we can show some skeptics a few things.

I have made copies of the Shelly bulletin and am trying to scatter it about. The slime is on the internet and I suggest that brethren diffuse this rot everywhere possible in order to demonstrate how far-out some folks in Nashville will venture. In years to come, if there should be such, sound and faithful brethren can read about the gross departures from the faith in the Nashville area led primarily by Rubel Shelly and his shepherds who teach at Lipscomb University.

My heart overflows with thanksgiving for the many kind words of encouragement, plus the prayers and expressions of goodwill. I would like to respond to all of the mail received but I cannot.

I know what it means to be knocked flat of my back with critical illness and as I began to make some progress, again I have been flattened with pain and suffering. Please understand. I say this by way of explanation to those who have requested booklets. I promise to "catch up," Lord willing.

Two months ago I went for cataract surgery which from all reports would be a very simple procedure of fifteen or twenty minutes. I was in surgery one and one-half hours. Some slivers of the cataract fell down through a hole in the eyeball and the doctor, poked, prodded, pulled, pried, and so forth and so on. The eye was sewed with stitches which gave the feeling of rocks in my eye. The next day I was sent to another doctor who set a date for two weeks later to try to retrieve the slivers. All the time I have been blind in my right eye but I am assured that I will eventually see. Another trip to the doctor is due and hopefully I can get some relief. I do not understand why I experience so much pain. If it will help me to be better prepared to enter that land where pain and suffering will never come, so be it. Please try to be patient with me as I try to respond to your requests for books. If you desire, please send a note of reminding and I will try to do better.

Back in the days when I was a young school-boy, a very frequent practice was to have spelling contests each Friday evening. Two eighth grade students would be selected and they would choose the rest of the students to be on opposite sides. The teacher would pronounce the words to be spelled and when a student missed spelling the word he or she would sit down. I would frequently win those contests. Later at Freed-Hardeman College the students would form a long line around the inside of the college auditorium and brother W. Claude Hall would give the words to be spelled. The rumor was spread that each student had to pass a written spelling test in order to graduate. I managed to exit the spelling class right early. We seemed to have had a generation of college students who could read, spell and write.

Can you imagine that which is happening today? I try to check very carefully the articles submitted for publication in the Plumbline and delete some of the worst blunders. None of us are perfect or supernaturally inspired. In a recent issue of the paper which was mailed, I discovered a line wherein I had written that something was the "cheepest." I suppose everyone knows that some things are the "cheapest" whereas other things are not so cheap. The Plumbline paper is exceedingly cheap in price and we implore brethren to help spread the paper.

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