Seek The Old Paths

Vol. 11   No. 4                               April,   2000

In This Issue...

I'm Sorry, Mr. Davis. I'm Not a Campbellite!

Chuck Northrop

          The pastor of the First Baptist Church in Nowata, OK, was A. A. Davis. In a book containing a series of sermons and other information, he listed 101 questions for "Campbellites" which have been posted on several denominational websites. I'm sure these questions have been answered many times before by more capable defenders of truth than I. Nevertheless, we must give a defense of the Gospel, and I, like Paul, "am set for the defense of the gospel" (Phil. 1:17). This will involve a series of articles in answering all 101 questions.
     Before beginning his 101 questions, Mr. Davis asks, "What are Campbellites?" His answer is simply, "They are otherwise known as 'The Church of Christ' or 'The Disciples of Christ,' and believe that Water Baptism is essential to salvation in Jesus Christ."
     It is no wonder why he uses such a derogatory term in reference to members of the church of Christ. He is clearly trying to bring us down to the level of the manmade Baptist Church. His Baptist roots go back to a man, and if he can take "church of Christ" roots back to Alexander Campbell then we are put on the same par, and we have become nothing more than "Campbellites." However, be assured we are not "Campbellites." The church of Christ goes much further back than either Alexander Campbell or his father, Thomas -- yea, nearly seventeen hundred years before either were born.
     You can read about the church of Christ in prophesy (Isa. 2:2-4), and in the promise Jesus made to His disciples when He said, "I will build my church" (Matt. 16:18). Whose church? Christ's church -- the church of Christ. You can read about the church of Christ as it was established in the city of Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost during the days of the Roman empire (A.D. 30) in Acts 2. You can also read about its evangelistic efforts in the remaining pages of the book of Acts. In addition, you can read about individual congregations of the churches of Christ in the pages of the epistles from Romans through Revelation. And, if you want to read about it specifically by name, read Romans 16:16, "Salute one another with an holy kiss. The churches of Christ salute you." Find such about the Baptist Church! You cannot!
     The Baptist church, with all of its manmade doctrines, didn't exist until 1607 AD -- about sixteen hundred years too late! It is not our desire to be harsh, but to point out facts, and these are the facts of the matter. Unlike the churches of Christ, the founder of the Baptist church was John Smythe, not Jesus Christ. And, instead of being founded in Jerusalem, it was founded in Holland. I'm sorry Mr. Davis, I'm not a Campellite! You can try if you will to pull me down to your level and give me some manmade name, doctrine, and church, but what is the purpose? Is it to effect an honest evaluation of truth? Or, is it to slander and steer people away from the facts? I have spent the major portion of my life "searching the scriptures," and though I have read a little about Campbell, I really do not know what he taught or believed, and don't really care, for Campbell was a man, and my desire is to go far beyond what man teaches -- back to a "thus saith the Lord."
     With this in mind, we begin here with Mr. Davis' 101 questions with Bible answers:
     "1. Are YOU saved or Lost? See 1 Cor. 1:13. Rom. 8:1."
     My salvation really has nothing to do with the question at hand. Whether I'm saved or lost, doesn't change what the Scriptures teach. The question should be, "what saith the Scriptures?" So, there is no mistake as to what these passages teach, 1 Corinthians 1:13 says, "Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were ye baptized in the name of Paul?" Romans 8:1 says, "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit." Since these questions ultimately concern baptism, then consider this question, "How does one get into Christ?" The question is answered in Galatians 3:27, "For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ." Now I know that doesn't agree with Baptist doctrine, but that's what the truth says -- that's what the Holy Spirit inspired.
     Concerning the first passage: Paul was addressing the problem of division in the Corinthian church. There were factions, some followed Paul, some Apollos, some Cephas, and some Christ (v.12), but here is Paul's point: neither Paul, Apollos, nor Cephas were crucified for them (or us), and they were not baptized in the name of anyone but Christ. What does it mean to be baptized in the name of Christ? "In the name of ___," means by the authority of that person. The Christians at Corinth were not baptized by the authority of Paul, but by the authority of Christ. In Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus said, "All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen." Thus, to be baptized by the authority of Christ, is to baptize "in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit."
     Concerning the second passage: "All spiritual blessings" are "in Christ" (Eph. 1:3). Since all spiritual blessings are "in" Christ, there cannot be any spiritual blessings "outside" of Christ. To be in Christ, one must not walk "after the flesh, but after the Spirit." To walk after the Spirit is to walk according to how the Spirit guides and directs. Today, that is accomplished through the Spirit inspired word -- the Bible. Let there be no mistake, the Spirit through the Word of God directs each person to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins. On the day of Pentecost in the city of Jerusalem, the apostle Peter, being filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:4), in answer to the question, "Men and brethren, what shall we do?" said, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost" (Acts 2:38).
     "2. If saved, IS the love of God in YOUR HEART? See Rom. 5:5."
     Romans 5:5 says, "And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us." The love of God has been extended and shown to all mankind ("shed abroad" or "poured out") through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. True biblical hope is founded upon the evidence that God will keep His promises. God promises salvation through Jesus Christ who is "the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him" (Heb. 5:9). Hope without obedience is an empty pursuit. Therefore, the Lord's people obey him. To believe, teach and obey denominational doctrine (as the Baptist Church teaches) does not obey the Lord and therefore can have no hope!
     "3. If Saved. ARE you Born of God? 1 John 5:1."
     In 1 John 5:1, the Bible says, "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him." The term "believeth" is used two ways in Scripture. First, it is used as mere belief -- knowledge of facts. James says, "Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble" (James 2:19). The devils have a knowledge of facts, but they certainly are not saved. Second, belief is often used inclusive of acts of faith. When Paul was in Philippi, he and Silas were beaten and imprisoned. After the miracle of the earthquake, the jailhouse doors were opened, and "everyone's bands were loosed," the jailor asked, "Sirs, what must I do to be saved" (Acts 16:19-30)? Paul answered, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house" (Acts 16:31). Was Paul commanding them to merely believe? The Bible says no. Why? Because of the following verses. In verse 32, the text says, "And they spake unto him the word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house." Because "faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Rom. 10:17), their faith was being increased by the word spoken to them. Verse 33 goes on to say, "And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway." Why did the jailor and his family wash their stripes? Because they were repenting of their sin of beating Paul and Silas. By washing their stripes, they were helping the healing process, and thus correcting their sin as much as humanly possible. Also, notice in this verse, they were baptized. In verse 34, we find them rejoicing. Why? Because their sins were washed away. At the point of mere belief? No! After they repented and were baptized. Finally, notice the summary Luke gives by inspiration, "believing in God with all his house." Luke summarizes all they did in the word "believing." Thus, we see this term is sometimes used to include acts of faith.
     What is the application to our text? Remember John wrote, "Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God." Baptist doctrine teaches that for one to be born of God, all a person has to do is believe -- have knowledge of facts. However, the Bible teaches that for one to be born of God, one must be obedient to the truth. The "belief" John is writing about is the second type of belief that includes acts of faith. Peter wrote, "Seeing, ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth...." In the very next verse, he wrote, "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever." The truth is the word of God (John 17:17). People are born again when they have purified their souls. They purify their souls when they obey the truth. Thus, they are born again when they obey the truth. When is that? When they are baptized into Christ.
     To Nicodemus Jesus said, "...Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God" (John 3:3-5). Thus, to be born again is to be born of water and the Spirit, which is water baptism.
     "4. If Saved, Is Christ in You? Col. 1:27; 2 Cor. 13:5."
     Colossians 1:27 says, "To whom God would make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory." 2 Corinthians 13:5 says, "Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?" The second passage will help us understand the first. Notice from this passage to "be in the faith" is the same idea as to have "Christ in you." Also, from John 15:5 we learn Jesus is in us when we are in Him. Jesus said, "I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." Thus, if a person is saved, Christ is in him/her, and he/she is in Christ.
     5. "If you are Born of God, ARE you a Child of God? John 1:12; Rom. 8:16."
     John 1:12 says, "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name." Again, to "believe on His name" is more than to simply have knowledge of facts. It is to trust God to the extent of having an obedient faith. This faith is described in James 2:24, "Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only."
     Romans 8:16 says, "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God." Baptist doctrine (and denominationalism in general), in the quest to advocate a direct operation of the Holy Spirit, has led to much confusion over this passage. There are two witnesses in this text, not just one -- the witness of the Holy Spirit and our (the human) spirit. The Holy Spirit witnesses to God, "This is your child," and the human spirit, based upon evaluation of heart and life, determines whether one has become and is remaining a child of God.
     6. "If a Child of God, do YOU have Eternal Life? John 10:27, 28."
     In John 10:27-28, Jesus said, "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand." Baptists use this passage to support their human doctrine of the impossibility of apostasy. Is this what Jesus is saying? The short answer is no. Why? First, because of so many passages that contradict this doctrine (Heb. 6:4-6; Gal. 5:4; 2 Peter 2:20-22). Second, such a doctrine removes man's choice, man's free will, which God has given to each of us. One may choose life, then because of the temptations of this world choose also to go back into the world (Luke 8:13). This is what Simon the Sorcerer did (Acts 8:13-24) as well as Demas (2 Tim. 4:10). Third, such an interpretation ignores the fact that salvation is conditional. Jesus knows the sheep who hear His voice and follow Him. To those who hear and follow, He gives eternal life. Eternal life is not promised to those who once heard His voice and once followed but are no longer hearing and following. Thus, eternal life is conditional upon hearing and following Jesus.
     7. "Is Baptism a PART of the Gospel? 1 Corinthians 1:17."
     In 1 Corinthians 1:17, Paul wrote, "For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect." In this text we learn that Paul's mission was to preach the Gospel. The desired purpose of preaching the Gospel is to lead one to obey the Gospel. Hebrews 5:9 says Jesus "became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him." Also, consider Romans 6:17 which says, "But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you." What was the "form of doctrine" they obeyed? Earlier in Romans 6, Paul answers the question. It was water baptism which is a pattern or form of the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ (vs.3-6). Couple that with the fact that Paul preached the Gospel to the church at Corinth which again included the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ (1 Cor. 15:1-4). Then consider Acts 8:35ff where Philip preached Jesus unto the eunuch. Surely all would agree preaching Jesus is the same as preaching the Gospel. In response to Philip's preaching Jesus, the eunuch said, "See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?" In preaching the Gospel, Philip included water baptism. Why else would the eunuch make such a request? Therefore, every time the Gospel (or Jesus) is preached, water baptism is a part of it.
     8. "Could a man without ARMS and Legs preach the Gospel Paul preached?
     Absolutely! However, does that mean those who hear the Gospel are not responsible for obeying the Gospel? Absolutely not! Just because the preacher has no arms and legs does not in any way release another from his or her responsibility. Who baptized the Corinthians? We do not know, but just because Paul did not baptize many of them, certainly does not mean they were not baptized, for no one has ever become a Christian without first being baptized (Acts 2:38,41; 22:16; Rom. 6:3-6,17-18; Gal. 3:27; 1 Peter 3:21). Jesus Himself did not baptize anyone, yet there were more baptized under his teaching than the teaching of John (John 4:1-2).
     9. "What is the Gospel Paul Preached? 1 Corinthians 15:1-3."
     As we noted in question 7, the Gospel included preaching the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus which is the "form of doctrine" the Christians in Rome obeyed in being baptized (Rom. 6:3-6, 17-18).
     10. "Do you preach the Gospel Paul preached? 1 Corinthians 1:17; Romans 1:16,17; 1 Corinthians 2:2."
     Romans 1:16-17 says, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith." Who is the person that is ashamed of the Gospel? The one who declares "all the counsel of God" or the one who declares only that portion that agrees with his theology? Baptist Davis does not teach baptism for the remission of sins, but Peter did (Acts 2:38,41; 1 Peter 3:21), Philip did (Acts 8:12-13, 36-39), Ananias did (Acts 22:16), Paul did (Rom. 6:1-18), John did (Mark 4:1) and Jesus did (Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:16). Therefore, Baptist Davis does not teach the whole counsel of God and therefore must be ashamed of the Gospel of Christ.
     In 1 Corinthians 2:2 Paul wrote, "For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified." Is Paul saying the only thing the church is to teach is "Jesus Christ, and him crucified?" I think not! Paul himself did not believe that! In the book of 1 Corinthians alone, Paul taught about unity, fornicators, brothers going to law against brothers, marriage, the Old Testament, spiritual gifts, and giving, to name only a few topics. A casual glance into the New Testament readily reveals a major portion of it contains more than just "Jesus Christ, and him crucified." However, everything in the Bible centers upon that fact. "Jesus Christ, and him crucified" is the focal point of all that we read about in the Bible. Without "Jesus Christ, and him crucified," there is no redemption, no need for obedience, and no need for instruction. The reason behind all that Paul and all inspired writers wrote is "Jesus Christ, and him crucified." Today, faithful Gospel preachers declare "all the counsel of God" including water baptism because Jesus is the Christ who was crucified for the sins of the whole world.
     11. "Is Baptism an act of SOVEREIGN GRACE performed by God or is it an act of righteousness on man's part? Matthew 3:15; Titus 3:5."
     Both! It is an act of the sovereign grace of God to reveal His will to mankind. Also, because all God's "commandments are righteousness" (Psalm 119:172), then it is an act of righteousness to obey God's righteous commandments. Concerning the Lord's baptism, Jesus told John the baptizer it was to "fulfill all righteousness" (Matt. 3:15). Could the same be said of anyone baptized with John's baptism? No, John's baptism was "the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins" (Mark 1:4; Luke 3:3). All those baptized by John, except Jesus, received the remission of sins. Why wasn't Jesus baptized for the remission of sins? He had no sins to be remitted.
     Paul, in Titus 3:5 wrote, "Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost." Water baptism is not a work of "man's righteousness." Man did not conceive of it, nor did he institute it. Water baptism is a work of "God's righteousness." God introduced it and commands men to obey Him in being baptized. By the redemptive act of Jesus, God saved us. Our salvation was "not by works of righteousness which we have done." Those who are saved did not in any way earn salvation, but in great contrast, salvation came "according to his mercy." It came "by" (through or by means of) "the washing of regeneration" which is baptism. The word "washing" comes from the word meaning laver or bath. It is also used in Ephesians 5:26 which says, "That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word." The word "regeneration" literally means "again beginning" and refers to the new birth which consists of water and spirit (John 3:3-5) and a resurrection unto "newness of life" (Rom. 6:4; see also 1 Peter 1:23 and 2 Cor. 5:17). That is only accomplished in water baptism.
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Garland M. Robinson

      It is a misconception that the church is dependent on the colleges and universities for its preachers. The church of the Lord is "self perpetuating." It is responsible for training its own preachers. Paul told Timothy, "And the things that thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also" (2 Tim. 2:2).
     What better place can you think of to get the job done than in the Lord's church? Where else would you find the dedication to TRUTH and SOUNDNESS than in the Lord's church? Schools are often more interested in money and notoriety than they are the Truth. Therefore, they court those with money. They most often will go where the money is, even if it means compromising the Truth. When such an attitude exists, they need to shut their doors. If they refuse to shut their doors, they ought to announce they have no intention of following the Truth. Many are not bothered at all at the constant bashing of the church by the liberals, but get terribly upset when the school is criticized and examined in light of Scripture.
     The many great things taught in the Bible about the church cannot be said about the colleges. For example:
     1) Matthew 16:18 says the gates of hades shall not prevail against the church. Many act as though this were true of the colleges.
     2) Ephesians 5:29 says the Lord nourishes and cherishes the church. This is not true of the colleges.
     3) 1 Timothy 3:15 says the church is the pillar and ground of the Truth. The colleges are certainly not the pillar and ground of the Truth. I don't know of any that seem to be that concerned about the Truth because they will support and promote about anyone that comes along.
     4) Matthew 18:15-18 says wayward brethren are to be reported to the church. This is not true of the colleges for they apparently don't know of any wayward brethren, especially among themselves.
     5) Ephesians 3:21 says Jesus receives glory in the church. Many act as though the Lord receives glory in the colleges.
     6) Ephesians 5:25 says Jesus died for the church. This is not true of the colleges for the Lord did not die for them.
     7) Acts 2:47 says the Lord adds the saved to the church. They are not added to the colleges.
     8) Ephesians 5:23 says Jesus is the Savior of the church. He is not the savior of the colleges.
     9) Revelation 21:2,9 says the church is the bride of Christ (cf. Romans 7:4). Colleges are not His bride.
     10) Ephesians 5:27 says Jesus will present the glorious church to himself without blemish or spot. This is not true of the colleges for they are not without blemish or spot.
     11) 1 Corinthians 15:24 says Jesus is coming for the church (cf. 1 Thess. 4:13-18). He's certainly not coming for the colleges.
     12) Ephesians 3:10-11 says the church is the eternal purpose of God. This is not true of the colleges.
     13) Romans 16:16 tells of the church's divine name (cf. 1 Cor. 1:2). Colleges have no such divine name.
     14) Acts 2:16 says the church was foreseen by the prophets (cf. Acts 15:13-18). This is not true of the colleges.
     15) 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1 shows the church has a divine organization. This is not true of the colleges.
     16) 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 says the church has a divine memorial. This is not true of the colleges.
     17) Hebrews 12:28 says the church cannot be moved, it is indestructible (cf. Acts 5:39). This is not true of the colleges. About the only moving they do is away from the Truth.
     18) 1 Cor. 15:24 says the church has a divine reward in heaven (cf. 2 Peter 1:11; 1 Peter 1:4). This is not true of the colleges.
     19) Ephesians 1:22-23 says Christ reigns over the church as its divine head. The Lord is not the divine head of the colleges.
     20) Ephesians 2:20 says the church was built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone. This is not true of the colleges.
     21) Ephesians 2:21 says the church is an holy temple in the Lord. Colleges are not the Lord's holy temple.
     22) 1 Timothy 3:15 says the church is the house of God. Colleges are not the house of God.
     23) Hebrews 12:28 says we serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear in the church. This is not true of the colleges, yet many think so.
     24) Numerous Scriptures speak of the church as the army of the Lord (cf. 1 Tim. 1:18; 6:12; 2 Tim. 2:3; 4:7; Jude 3). Colleges are not the army of the Lord.
     25) Ephesians 4:11-16 says the church is all sufficient. This is not true of the colleges.
     The church, not the college, has the responsibility of evangelizing the world (Mark 16:15-16; Eph. 3:10,21). But you would not know it from the way some of them operate.
     The church existed nearly 1900 years before so-called "Christian" colleges came on the scene. Colleges are here because of the church. The church is not here because of the colleges. The colleges could cease to exist tomorrow and the church of Christ would still be here. The church has no connection with them. The church of Christ does not own or operate colleges. The colleges are an extension of the HOME, not the CHURCH! It's a secular business that happens to be run by some who are members of the church.
     Colleges and Universities are the source of much, if not most, of the digression among us. I'm convinced the church today would not be in the apostasy it's in if it were not for the colleges. People like to say, "but look at all the good they've done." Good people, the good does not out way the bad. We must remember, the schools are not divine. They are built by man, not God. They will perish along with all the other works by man.
     When questioned about the many false teachers and compromising brethren they have on their programs, they like to hide behind the saying that it is not their job to censor or expose false teachers. They often say they like to offer students both sides of the issue. And, most often do not clearly point out the Right Way. They use the church when it is to their advantage and run from it when they get caught in error. They love to get their hands into the church treasury. They love to send their representatives to promote their agenda.
     Some will not accept the comments I've made in this column and say I am not a supporter of "Christian education," that I'm an enemy of "Christian education," but such simply ignores the facts. Schools operated by brethren have every right to exist and I defend that right. However, the schools are not the church and have no right to pilfer off congregations and usurp the work of the church.
     Schools are a work of the home, not the church. Let's not confuse the two.

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Marvin L. Weir

     The above title was taken from the October, 1998, Christian Chronicle. I took the liberty of adding the question mark, and if you continue to read, I believe you will understand why such liberty was taken.
     The Chronicle article observes that the Richland Hills Church of Christ in Fort Worth, Texas, has baptized 600 people in the last 18 months. The question of concern to their preacher, Rick Atchley, was "How did you do it?" Atchley mentions "fasting and prayer for the lost" and "blatantly evangelistic sermons at regular intervals" as methods used to reach the lost.
     The Chronicle article remarks that "most congregations, even large ones, such as Richland Hills, struggle to baptize even 50 people a year." This causes one to wonder just what it is that Richland Hills is doing and not doing in their appeal to the lost. This congregation has long been known to rank second to none in espousing liberalism and digression in the Fort Worth area.
     The majority today are akin to those of Jesus' day in that they seek out only the loaves and fishes (cf. John 6:26). The liberal congregations among us are seeking to attract people with every denominational gimmick that has been invented. It is fun and games coupled with Pentecostal emotionalism rolled up into a "made to feel good shuck" that appeals to the masses of our society.
     But now, let's observe what Rick Atchley believes and teaches that was not and will not be revealed in the Christian Chronicle article. On October 14, 1990, Rick's sermon at Richland Hills was entitled "Don't Bother Your Brother." In his infamous explanation and misrepresentation of Mark 9:38-41 he states, "Let's not limit the kingdom of God to the size of our brotherhood ... I was raised in churches of Christ ... maybe this wasn't said, but this is what I heard ... the only people that could go to heaven were in churches of Christ ... I'm going to suggest to you not only is that not Biblical, but it is in fact a violation of the very restoration plea to which we are heirs ... let me say this clearly ... A Christian is determined by his affiliation with Christ, not with any particular group ... I have brothers and sisters in Christ who may be in churches where I couldn't worship ... But if grace will cover moral error, why are we so afraid to let it cover doctrinal error? ... First, about our past ... If we're the only Christians, and we've only been around since the early 1800's, where were all the Christians the first 1800 years of the church?"
     Do we "limit the kingdom of God" when we exclude fellowship from those of denominational persuasion? I think not! Are we wrong in teaching that only those who are going to heaven will be members of the Lord's body, the church of Christ (cf. Eph. 4:4; Rom. 16:16; Eph 5:23)? Again, I think not! Does not the statement that "a Christian is determined by his affiliation with Christ, not with any particular group" endorse denominationalism? I believe so! Is there "grace" to cover error outside the gospel? Absolutely not (cf. 1 Tim. 2:1; Gal. 3:26-27)! Has the church of my Lord existed only since the 1800's? Does Rick believe the church of Christ was founded by Alexander Campbell? The truth of the matter is that the church of Christ has existed since Pentecost, A.D. 33, and the precious "seed" (Luke 8:11) produces the same thing today as it produced then.
     It was at the 1998 Nashville Jubilee that Rick Atchley said, "Let's close with prayer. Bow your head, please ...Ask God to put on your heart right now something for your church ... The Spirit will bring something to mind if you are sincere in your asking. Let God right now put something on your heart and it may be weeks and it may be months and it may be years in coming but if it is from God don't stop asking."
     Brethren and friends, this is requesting a direct operation of the Holy Spirit upon the mind of man! The Bible teaches the Spirit works today through the word of God (Eph. 6:17) and it is foolishness for one to expect to receive a latter-day revelation from God (cf. Gal. 1:6-9; 2 Peter 1:3; Jude 3).
     If Atchley has "brothers" who believe in Christ and have been immersed to join a denomination, and he believes in the direct operation of the Holy Spirit on the mind of man today, then why should we not suspect that the 600 may have not responded to the pure, unadulterated Gospel of Christ? Repentance still precedes baptism, and scriptural baptism is still for the remission of sins, and Christ still adds the saved to His church, the church of Christ (cf. Luke 13:3; Acts 2:38,47)! The Richland Hills church and Rick Atchley do not need to be praised, and as the saying goes, "the proof is in the puddin."
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      From time to time we receive complaints concerning condemnation. People will write or call to tell us we should quit condemning others and just try to reach the lost. We invite all, especially those who want to complain, to read and carefully consider the following thoughts.
     First, if condemnation in general is what turns you off, then may we suggest that you never read the twenty-third chapter of Matthew where the Lord condemns the religious leaders of His day (scribes and Pharisees). Please don't ever glance at 1 Corinthians in which Paul condemns an entire congregation. Further, never bother with the inspired letter to the Galatian churches, because the writer condemns Judaizing teachers who wanted to blend the Gospel of Christ with the Law of Moses (much like those who, in our time, advocate instruments of music and/or observing the Sabbath).
     Likewise, if condemnation is what offends you, then you will want to remove the second and third chapters of Revelation. There, the Lord Jesus Christ condemns several churches for their toleration of sin and false doctrine, lukewarmness, loss of love for Christ, or deadness. Many, many more examples could be given (2 Peter, Jude, Matthew 15). Do you object to these? If not, why object to one who compares the practice of modern religionists to the Bible, and finding them lacking in faithfulness to the word, exposes that error?
     Second, allow us to explain where we are "coming from." We have the firm conviction that the only way to be a New Testament church and New Testament Christian, is to go back to the inspired New Testament. If it is not in there, then it is not authorized. If it is in there, then we need to believe, preach, and practice it. "And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus..." (Col. 3:17). "If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God" (1 Peter 4:11).
     It is the truth that sanctifies and sets us free from sin and death (John 17:17; 8:32). This truth must be taught to all men (Matt. 28:19-20). Anything that is contrary to the truth is error and must be exposed as such (Gal. 1:6-9; Eph. 5:11). This is done, not for the sole purpose of upsetting people or stirring up strife, but for the salvation of souls and glory of God in heaven. "Have I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth" (Gal. 4:16)?
         -- Steven F. Deaton

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15th Annual
Seek The Old Paths Lectureship

July 23-27, 2000

Always the 4th Sunday in July



9:30 Leaving Our First Love...Jimmy Bates
10:30 Bible Authority...Rusty Stark
7:00 Grace, Law and Works...Garland Robinson
8:00 Binding Where God has Not Bound...Nat Evans


9:00 Instrumental Music...Tom House
10:00 The Indwelling of the Holy Spirit... Tom Bright
11:00 Faithfulness...Michael Jordon
1:30 Elders...Richard Guill
2:30 Special Music... Victor Eskew
7:00 Preachers Under Fire... Charles Leonard
8:00 Loosing Where God has Not Loosed... Gilbert Gough


9:00 Changes in Worship: All of life is Worship, Holidays, Praise Teams, Hand Clapping... Freddie Shows
10:00 What The Holy Spirit Does for us Today... Bill Lockwood
11:00 The Community Church... Gary McDade
1:30 Modern Versions & Translations... Chuck Northrop
2:30 What Biblical Love Is... Joel Morrison
7:00 Christian Schools -- Source of Digression and Apostasy... James Boyd
8:00 Emotionalism / Pentecostalism, Pep-rally Religion... Ken Burleson


9:00 Fellowship -- Unity in Diversity... Alan Adams
10:00 The Baptism of the Holy Spirit... Robert Taylor
11:00 Materialism... Johnny Burkhart
1:30 Young People... Gary Williams
2:30 The Work of the Church... Roger Campbell
7:00 The Role of Women... Virgil Hale
8:00 Benevolent & Missionaries Societies... Terry Joe Kee


9:00 Corruption of the Plan of Salvation... David Paden
10:00 Humanism... Dwight Fuqua
11:00 Sin...Ed Floyd
1:30 Immorality, Homosexuality... Don Tate
2:30 Bible School Literature... Mike McDaniel
7:00 Who is on the Lord's Side?... Ed Casteel
8:00 Evangelism... Charles Blair

East Corinth Church of Christ
1801 Cruise St., Corinth, MS 38834

Voice (662) 286-2040 or 286-6575

Fax (662) 286-2040
Contact Us

VIDEO TAPE INFORMATION: Complete set of video tapes, $45 postage paid Jim Green 2711 Spring Meade Blvd. Columbia, TN 38401 Phone: 931-486-1365 / Email:
CASSETTE TAPE INFORMATION : Audio cassette tapes are being offered free by the church. Donations to help defray their cost are welcome. Order cassette tapes from the church.  East Corinth church of Christ, 1801 Cruise St., Corinth, MS 38834
BOOK INFORMATION $5 pre-publication price if postmarked by July 31, 2000. $6.50 beginning August 1, 2000. Please include postage and handling: 1 book $1.75; add 50cents for each additional book. Makes checks to Old Paths Publishing and mail to: P.O. Box 97, Nettleton, MS 38858. These books are not sold by the church.
MOTELS : Be sure to tell them you are here for the lectureship!
     Executive Inn -- (800) 354-3932, $38 (double or king single) and up, plus tax, They have a Restaurant.

       Comfort Inn -- (800) 22-5150, $39 (Single), $48 (double) and up, plus tax, Continental breakfast.

     Hampton Inn -- (800) 426-7866, $64 (two queen beds) and up, plus tax, Complimentary deluxe breakfast.
     Holiday Inn Express-- (800) 465-4329, $63.22 (double), includes tax, Continental breakfast
Limited housing is available in members homes.
Contact the church office for reservations. RV's need to contact us if you want a hook-up.

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        1999 -- The Uniqueness of the Church, $6.50
        1998 -- The Home, $6.50
        1997 -- The Church At Colosse, $5
        1996 -- The Seven Churches of Asia, $5
        1995 -- The Church at Corinth, $4
        1994 -- Immorality, $3.50
        1990 -- New Testament Questions, $3.00
        1989 -- Old Testament Questions, $2.00
        Preparing For The Eldership, $2.00
        The Race That Is Set Before Us, $8.00

Shipping/Handling -- 1 book, $1.75
add 50cents for each additional book.

All books are sold by Old Paths Publishing, not the church.

Send order to:
Old Paths Publishing
304 Ripley St.
Corinth, MS 38834

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