Presentation on theme: "20 th Century church History Men who established their own agenda and pushed it around the country to anyone who would listen. Their rhetoric was persuasive."— Presentation transcript:
20 th Century church History Men who established their own agenda and pushed it around the country to anyone who would listen. Their rhetoric was persuasive and many followed. Acts 18:24-28 – Apollos was persuasive with his rhetoric but Aquila and Priscilla still saw they need for correction Gal. 2:11-21 – Paul confronts Peter and his example of hypocrisy
20 th Century church History What it was not: Mechanical instruments and fellowship halls. This was a battle for the church but this battle was fought first in the 1880’s and 90’s and then again later in the 1960’s for the fellowship halls and the 1990’s for the mechanical instrument. The social gospel was a Protestant movement in the early 20th century and was not really picked up by the church until the 1960’s.
20 th Century church History Other issues that arose early in the 20th century: 1. The no Bible class/one cup division of 1925. The major contention was that it was unscriptural to divide the assembly for study. 2. The pacifism controversy. The pacifistic position was not concerned with the taking of life, per se, but was an outgrowth of a view that all governmental participation was evil including voting, holding office and serving in the military. 3. The premillennial controversy. It may surprise those who are not students of history to learn that a significant premillennial controversy raged among churches of Christ from 1915 into the 1940s.
20 th Century church History One of the things that the 20th century church almost universally participated in without question was the support of orphan homes. Before 1940 orphan homes were supported either directly or indirectly by churches.
The appeal for support was made on an emotional basis. Sympathy and compassion were used to authorize the aid and support of the little helpless children who were starving. This support would come back to haunt the church.
20 th Century church History While anyone can see the impact of James 1:27 but we must understand its meaning and the context of the passage. The word translated visit means to inspect, to oversee. To understand the context of the passage we must go back up to verse 21. James 1:21-27 – It seems that the individual is being spoken of here. It does not indicate by context that a local church is under consideration here. To insert the church into the passage is an abuse of scripture.
20 th Century church History The fatherless and the widows have always been a concern for the people of God. Under the Old Law the Israelites had responsibilities toward the fatherless and the widows, Deut. 24:17, 21. Under the law of Christ we should understand our responsibilities also.
20 th Century church History 1 Tim. 5:3-16 – the family of the widow has primary responsibility, the church has secondary responsibility but only if the widow meets the criteria The principle established here can be applied to the care of orphans also.
20 th Century church History Nowhere in the Old Law or the Gospel of Christ do we find the authority to establish an outside organization to take care of what is the individual’s responsibility. Additionally even if the church is the caregiver there is still not and institution established. The scripture is silent upon this while it specifically tells the individual his responsibility.
20 th Century church History The division of the church that occurred during the 50’s can be attributed to one thing, institutionalism. Institutionalism involves financially and politically burdening local churches to regularly support various human institutions such as colleges, missionary societies, and orphanages. It is claimed that these institutions can perform specific work of the church better than the local church.
20 th Century church History During the late 40’s and early 50’s three institutional ideas came forth; 1. Support of colleges. 2. Sponsoring church arrangement: missionary aid to Europe radio and television evangelism
20 th Century church History After WW2 institutionalism grew in the church and it was pushed and promoted by noted preachers. B.C. Goodpasture was a leading voice in the progressive, liberal movement. In Dec. of 1954 he called for the quarantine of preachers who opposed the institutional movement of the day.
20 th Century church History The support of colleges: The support of colleges was brought up because of the number of servicemen who returned home after the war and began to flood our nation’s colleges and universities. It was stated that because of the vast number of attendees the colleges would not have the resources necessary to support a growing student population.
20 th Century church History The rational used was the previously unquestioned support of orphanages. If the church can support orphanages then the church can support colleges.
20 th Century church History Sponsoring church arrangement: This idea came into prominence during the same period. The idea was that one congregation would be the focal point of a particular work and congregations and individuals could participate in that work simply by sending the church money. The elders at the clearinghouse church would oversee the work. This was prominently seen in two institutions.
20 th Century church History Mission trips to Europe: After the war many reconstruction efforts began in Europe. Beginning in 1947 the Broadway church of Christ in Lubbock, Texas became a major player in the mission work conducted in Europe. The church established itself as the clearing house to receive funds from other congregations to aid in their missionary efforts.
20 th Century church History Phil. 4:15-16 – the church at Philippi supported Paul even while he was in Thessalonica 1 Thess. 1:8 – Paul praises their efforts at proclaiming the word There are no instructions for a centrally localized church to be a clearinghouse for anything.
20 th Century church History Radio and television evangelism: In 1952 the Highland church of Christ in Abilene, TX began a radio program called the Herald of Truth. This program expanded to television in 1954. Due to the production cost of radio and television programs it was understood that most congregations would not be able to do this type of evangelizing. The elders at Highland sent out word that they would oversee the work of evangelizing in this method and they encouraged other congregations to send money to participate in this effort.
20 th Century church History Men such as Roy Deaver, Tom Warren, Ruell Lemmons, and Guy N. Woods went around the country proclaiming the merits of this type of hierarchy. As a result, many congregations agreed to support the Highland work. At the high point of its existence there were some 3000 congregations sending money to Highland.
20 th Century church History Again there is no command, example, or inference that local congregations are to or can work in this manner.
20 th Century church History The division of the church grew ever greater during the 60’s due to a couple of factors. First, the counter culture movement that came into vogue during the sixties. Second, the war in Vietnam. During the sixties the culture movement was especially seen on the college and university campuses around the country.
20 th Century church History While at college, many young people became influenced by the world and the various turmoil’s that were present in the sixties. They would come under the spell of the professors, student activists, and societal changes of the day and try to bring those ideas back into the church.
20 th Century church History Preachers such as Carl Ketcherside and Leroy Garrett were instrumental in changing the attitude of preaching during this time. Instead of preaching on doctrinal issues the preaching took on a more social aspect, relating to the times, instead of teaching that would help Christians see through the times.
20 th Century church History Carl Ketcherside was infamous for his statement, “fellowship all Christians in all denominations”. They were instrumental in an ecumenical movement that spread throughout the church.
1 Peter 4:11 – we are admonished to speak as the oracles of God. If we change God’s word to fit our thoughts, are we speaking as the oracles of God? If we speak where God hasn't spoken, are we speaking as the oracles of God? Do we continue to abide in Christ if we change His word? 2 John 9