Hugh’s News & Views (Turning The Page)

TURNING THE PAGE

Swiftly we’re turning life’s daily pages,
Swiftly the hours are changing to years;
How are we using God’s golden moments?
Shall we reap glory? Shall we reap tears?

These poignant words were penned by Mrs. Roy Carruth and set to music by that grand old gospel preacher and song writer, Tillit S. Teddlie. The song appears in many hymnals used by members of the Lord’s church and is sung with much meaning.

On December 27, 2017 I turned a page on another year of life as I reached the heralded four-score years. I sometimes wonder where these eight decades have gone! I know that the Psalmist was right when he wrote, “The days of our lives are seventy years; and if by reason of strength they are eighty years, yet their boast is only labor and sorrow; for it is soon cut off and we fly away” (Psalm 90:10).

At midnight on December 31 we all turned the page on another year of life. What did we leave behind in the old year? What will we take with us into the New Year?

In the New Year, let us turn the page . . . Continue reading

#change, #hughfulford, #newyear

Hugh’s News & Views (Only Six Shopping Days Left . . .)

ONLY SIX SHOPPING DAYS LEFT UNTIL JUDGMENT DAY

(Note: I am indebted to my friend and fellow gospel preacher, Steve Kirby, minister of the Hilldale Church of Christ in Clarksville, TN, for the idea behind this issue of “Hugh’s News & Views”).

TV, radio, and print media remind us that there are only six (or whatever the number) shopping days left until Christmas. The Bible tells us about the great day of final judgment, but it does not tell us how many days there are until that day comes. Of His second coming and the day of judgment, Christ said, “But of that day and hour no one knows, no, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only” (Matthew 24:36). Continue reading

#hughfulford, #judgment-day

Hugh’s News & Views (Some Great Leaders . . . Pt. 4)

SOME GREAT LEADERS OF THE RESTORATION MOVEMENT

(Part 4)

In November I wrote three essays under the above heading, with vignettes of three great leaders constituting each essay. I have been encouraged by a number of readers to write some additional articles along this line, and intermittently over the next several weeks I plan to do so. I will resume with the previous numbering of the articles (i.e., this will be Part 4), as well as with the numbering of the men I shall mention (i.e., Barton W. Stone will be number 10, etc.). Continue reading

#biographies, #hughfulford, #restoration-movement

Hugh’s News & Views (. . . A Watchman)

“SON OF MAN, I HAVE MADE YOU A WATCHMAN”

From time to time, I feel compelled to deal with matters of a controversial nature, especially erroneous views and false teaching being advanced in some churches of Christ and often “incubated” in various institutions of higher learning connected with the church. I use my Facebook page, my “Hugh’s News & Views,” and other venues to point out that which I believe is contrary to God’s word, but I am aware that some of my brethren would prefer that I not do this. They think it is “hanging out our dirty laundry” for all the world to see, and they would rather I not do that. I am sorry that they feel this way, but the erroneous views and false doctrines are publicly disseminated (via the pulpits of churches, lectureships, journals, and books), so why should the warnings not be publicly disseminated as well? Continue reading

#apostasy, #doctrine, #hughfulford

Hugh’s News & Views (Assorted Blessings)

ASSORTED BLESSINGS

(Note: My post-Thanksgiving “News & Views” comes from the pen of Neal Pollard, via the bulletin of the Calvert City, Kentucky Church of Christ where my friend Lance Cordle has preached for many years. Neal is the able preacher for the Bear Valley Church of Christ in Denver, Colorado and an insightful writer. His article reminds me of a popular song of a past generation, “Little Things Mean a Lot,” though many of the things he mentions are not little. Read what he has said, reflect on your blessings, and continue to be grateful. hf). Continue reading

#blessings, #hughfulford

Hugh’s News & Views (Skipping Thanksgiving)

SKIPPING THANKSGIVING

Christmas decorations began to make their appearance in some large chain stores soon after Labor Day, and in some places sooner. Halloween decorations and “Trick or Treat” candy likewise made an early appearance. But what has become of Thanksgiving? Continue reading

#gratitude, #hughfulford, #thanksgiving

Hugh’s News & Views (Denial And Betrayal . . .)

DENIAL AND BETRAYAL OF THE RESTORATION PLEA

In 1973, a man who was viewed as a prominent preacher in the Lord’s church made the startling statement, “The church of Christ is a big, sick denomination, and I mean all three of those words – big . . . sick . . . denomination!” He had been taught better, had known better, and had preached better. If I am not mistaken, his family had been converted from denominationalism. But in this instance, he caved in to the religious pluralism of our age and turned his back on the restoration principle, the restoration plea, and the commitment to be Christians only and simply the undenominational church of the New Testament. He has been a friend for over sixty years (ever since our student days at Freed-Hardeman College [now University]). He is still loved, and it is sincerely hoped that he has seen the error of his way and returned to “the old paths” (Jeremiah 6:16) of New Testament Christianity, but I know of nothing to indicate that he has done so. Continue reading

#hughfulford, #restoration-plea

Hugh’s News & Views (Some Great Leaders . . . Pt. 3)

SOME GREAT LEADERS OF THE RESTORATION MOVEMENT

(Part 3)

Here are the remaining three vignettes in this series of some of the great leaders of the Restoration Movement. The numbering sequence continues from the two preceding articles. Continue reading

#hughfulford, #preachers, #restoration-history, #restoration-movement

Hugh’s News & Views (Some Great Leaders . . . Pt. 2)

SOME GREAT LEADERS OF THE RESTORATION MOVEMENT

(Part 2)

Below are vignettes of three more great leaders of the Restoration Movement. The numbering sequence continues from last week. Continue reading

#hughfulford, #preachers, #restoration-movement

Hugh’s News & Views (Some Great Leaders . . . Pt. 1)

SOME GREAT LEADERS OF THE RESTORATION MOVEMENT

(Part 1)

In the movement to bring about a restoration of original, apostolic, undenominational Christianity—Christianity as it existed in New Testament times—there are literally hundreds of men who stand out as stalwart leaders. Over the next three weeks (D.V.) we shall provide vignettes of nine of them, three per week. Continue reading

#alexander-campbell, #hughfulford, #restoration-movement

Hugh’s News & Views (The Old Paths)

THE OLD PATHS

The restoration plea is about calling people back to the “old paths” of first century, New Testament, apostolic (i.e., “as in the days of the apostles”) Christianity. In reality, there is no other kind of Christianity, for anything that differs from what was preached, believed, and practiced in the first century, during the days of the apostles, and as set forth in the New Testament is but a perversion of the “one faith” (Ephesians 4:4), “the faith of the gospel” (Philippians 1:27), “the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3). Those who preach “another gospel” are accursed (Galatians 1:6-9).

As noted in an earlier essay (“The Restoration Plea: Is It Valid?”—September 19, 2017), in the days of Josiah, king of Judah (c. 640-609 B.C.), the prophet Jeremiah said to the people, “Thus says the Lord: Stand in the ways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk in it; then you will find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk in it’ ” (Jeremiah 6:16). How sad that many today do not desire “the old paths” as revealed by Christ and His apostles and as set forth in the New Testament. Any mention of “the old paths” brings a smirk to the face of some and a mocking, condescending comment from their lips. Now, as in the days of Jeremiah, people by their attitudes and by their actions are saying, “We will not walk in the good way of the old paths”! Rather, they seek their own way. Many are enamored by the latest fad in churches and that which appeals to their “felt” needs and their desire to be entertained. Simple, New Testament Christianity has little appeal to them.

As we continue our emphasis on the restoration plea, consider these thoughts concerning the “old paths” of biblical Christianity. Continue reading

#hughfulford, #old-paths, #restoration

Hugh’s News & Views (Baptism Of Alexander Campbell)

THE BAPTISM OF ALEXANDER CAMPBELL

Following is the account of Alexander Campbell’s baptism (as well as that of other members of his family) as reported by him in the Millennial Harbinger of May 1848, Vol. V, Number V. These are Campbell’s own words (including his spelling and punctuation) in describing the baptisms and the events leading up to them. It will be noted that the baptisms occurred one year to the month following Campbell’s sermon on “Humble Beginnings,” the subject of last week’s “News & Views.” (Note: I have inserted numbers into the body of Campbell’s account to indicate explanatory notes which I provide at the end of the account.) Continue reading

#alexander-campbell, #baptism, #hughfulford

Hugh’s News & Views (Humble Beginnings)

HUMBLE BEGINNINGS

In the Millennial Harbinger of January 1842 (Volume VI, Number I), Alexander Campbell, one of the leading voices in pleading for a restoration of original New Testament Christianity, looked back to the earliest days of the movement and gave a recap of a sermon he preached “under an oak” some eight miles from Bethany, Virginia (now West Virginia) in June of 1811 when he was 22 years old. Below are excerpts from the article by Campbell in which he gives the background to his sermon titled “Humble Beginnings.” Following that are excerpts from the sermon itself in which Campbell set forth some of the principles upon which he and others were launching out in the establishment of an independent congregation based on the New Testament alone. This was before any of the group had come to be immersed. (“We were all then Pedobaptists,” Campbell acknowledges, meaning they had been sprinkled as infants or very young children), thus indicating the infancy of the movement. Excerpts are in Campbell’s own words (as well as his spelling and punctuation), not the words of some Restoration Movement historian giving his spin, twist, or “interpretation” of what Campbell wrote and said about the event. Continue reading

#history, #hughfulford, #restoration-movement

Hugh’s News & Views (The Restoration Plea: Is It Valid?)

THE RESTORATION PLEA: IS IT VALID?

The restoration plea is a plea to go back to the Bible for all that we preach, teach, believe, and practice in the realm of religion. As we noted in our essay last week, it is a plea to take the Bible as our only guide in religious matters and use it as the divine pattern by which to reproduce in the present day the church as it existed in the first century—in faith, doctrine, and practice. It is a humble plea to speak where the Bible speaks and to remain silent where the Bible is silent, to call Bible things by Bible names and to do Bible things in the Bible way.

Is the restoration plea valid? Is it a sound, reasonable, logical, and defensible plea? Should people today be concerned about discovering what God has authorized in the Scriptures in the way of religious belief and practice and hold to those same beliefs and practices today? Continue reading

#hughfulford, #restoration-plea

Hugh’s News & Views (The Restoration Plea: What Is It?)

THE RESTORATION PLEA: WHAT IS IT?

There are three inseparably connected and interrelated concepts with reference to the way God’s people approach scripture and their service to the Lord.

First, there is the restoration principle, the principle that says we need to go back to the Bible for authority for all that we believe, preach, and practice in the realm of religion.

Second, for those who take this principle to heart and believe that others should take it to heart as well, a clear and compelling proclamation is made of it. This is known as the restoration plea, a plea to actually go back to the Bible for one’s religious faith and practice.

Third, as the principle and plea are advanced and people see that they are both right and necessary, a restoration movement begins to unfold, a movement that takes people back to the Bible for all that they preach, teach, believe, and practice in religion. Continue reading

#hughfulford, #restoration-plea