Tuesday, November 30, 2021

A. Nunnery...was a “landmarker”

I have previously posted about two well-known Southern Baptist ministers being “Landmarkers”. This had a background of some person or persons thinking they should not be considered Landmarkers.
My basis for the label rightly applying to Burleson and Carroll is because they both held Landmark ecclesiology. For example, I wrote:
Carroll was not a “Landmark” come-out-er, but he was a “Landmark” stay-in-er. He held all the tenets of classic Landmarkism – Baptist church perpetuity, rejection of alien immersion, and so on.
Part of the problem in these discussions may revolve around how a writer uses the terminology (though perhaps sometimes the writer simply wants to rescue a hero from an ecclesiological belief with which the writer disagrees). Sometimes there is confusion over the use of terminology. Certain Southern Baptists revile both the term and the belief that it represents, and apply it only to those who left the convention. (This does not really work, because there a churches and preachers currently in the SBC who hold Landmarkism or Landmark ecclesiology.)

Studying the life and works of A. Nunnery provides an excellent case study of the confusion of terminology. The Oklahoma Baptist Historical Society, in selecting Nunnery as a sort of “dishonorable” member of their Hall of Fame, identified Nunnery as a Landmark Baptist.
“Alonzo Nunnery...was an early day Oklahoma pastor and the owner and editor of a statewide newspaper The Baptist Worker. He was a leader among the Landmark Baptists...” [“Oklahoma Baptist Historical Society, Annual Meeting - October 8, 2016, Minutes,” The Oklahoma Baptist Chronicle (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Eli H. Sheldon, Editor), Autumn 2016, Volume LIX, Number 2, p. 29.]
“From the beginning of his paper, Nunnery was harsh on the new state convention and its directors and other officials. Nunnery was a devoted proponent of Landmark theology.” [“Alonzo Nunnery (1861-1939),” a 2016 Hall of fame Monograph; article by Luke Holmes from The Oklahoma Baptist Chronicle (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Eli H. Sheldon, Editor), Autumn 2016, Volume LIX, Number 2, p. 20.]
While I disagree with some of the aspersions cast toward Alonzo Nunnery, I agree that they correctly identify him as a Landmark Baptist when that terminology is considered as referring to a certain Baptist belief about the nature of the church. However, when A. Nunnery used the term “Landmark” or “Landmarker” he always meant “the others” and never himself. To him it represented those who opposed Conventionism, not those who held a certain ecclesiology with which he in fact agreed.

Nunnery held Landmark ecclesiology. He opposed a number of goings-on in the Baptist General Convention in Oklahoma. He seems to have never doubted the propriety of having a Baptist convention, if it operated correctly. In fact, when he and others split from the BGCO in 1920, they also called their body a convention. Nunnery debated at least four Baptists that he personally identified as Landmarkers: H. M. Cagle in 1911; C. A. Smith and G. W. Crawford in 1916; and Ben M. Bogard in 1917. He affirmed that mission work through Conventions, by means of Boards, was scriptural.

If someone asked Alonzo Nunnery if he were a “Landmarker,” he would have answered, “No.” Despite that answer, Nunnery held a view of the church that is identified as Landmark ecclesiology, and he held it plainly, forcefully, and without equivocation.

Monday, November 29, 2021

A Report to Shine Light in Darkness, and other links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

The Professor, in Prosperity; a Golden Image in the House

From the writing of John Angell James (1785-1859) in The Christian Professor Addressed: in a Series of Counsels and Cautions to the Members of Christian Churches (New York, NY: D. Appleton and Co., 1838, excerpts from pages 218-239).

I know how to abound.—Phil. iv. 12
It is not the possession of wealth that we should dread; but the inordinate desire, the dishonest means, the undue love, and the covetous hoarding of it. I am quite aware, that it is difficult to have money and not love it; hard indeed to have a golden image in the house, and not worship it. It is also quite evident that covetousness is indeed the sin of the church. In this commercial age and country, where men often rise from the workman to the master, and from nothing to affluence; where the career is open to all; and where, once engaged in the complexity and onward impulses of a large business, it is so difficult to so or slacken the pace, there is imminent peril of professing Christians forgetting their high vocation, and living only to get riches. We see them toiling and panting in pursuit of the golden object of ambition, apparently as eager to obtain it, as any who do not profess as they do, to seek first the kingdom of God; enlarging their desires with every addition to their gains; and then extending their mean to the limit of their desires...
Professors, take as it were a bird’s eye view of the dangers [wealth] throws in the way of travellers to eternity. Does it not produce the pride of life so opposite to the humility and poverty of spirit, which is essential to the nature of true religion? Does it not generate a worldly-mindedness, which makes its possessor contented with things seen and temporal and disposes him to mind only earthly things?— Does it not lead to a prevalent feeling of independence, so unlike that habitual trust and reliance on God, which the Scriptures require? Does it not originate and keep up, both the care and perplexity of getting, and the anxiety of disposing; and thus exhaust the vigor as well as time, upon worldly objects, leaving the soul neglected, impoverished, and defrauded? Does it not draw the Christian from the means of grace? Does it not corrupt the simplicity of the mind, and the gentleness of the character?…

[Prosperity] is the green and flowery mount from which many have slid down into the bottomless pit; for it has proved to many the occasion of apostacy...
…the more you have of earth, the less you have of heaven; your gain here will be a loss to you there.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

All praise to Him

1. All praise to Him Who built the hills;
All praise to Him the streams Who fills;
All praise to Him Who lights each star
That sparkles in the sky afar.

2. All praise to Him Who wakes the morn,
And bids it glow with beams new-born;
Who draws the shadows of the night,
Like curtains, o’er our wearied sight.

3. All praise to Him Whose love hath given,
In Christ His Son, the life of heaven;
Who gives us, for our darkness, light,
And turns to day our deepest night.

4. All praise to Him in love Who came,
To bear our woe, and sin, and shame;
Who lived to die, Who died to rise,
The all-prevailing the sacrifice.

5. All praise to Him Who sheds abroad
Within our hearts the love of God:
The Spirit of all truth and peace,
The fount of joy and holiness.

6. To Father, Son, and Spirit now
Our hands we lift, our knees we bow:
To Thee, blest Trinity, we raise
E’en here, in exile, songs of praise.

The above hymn is by Horatius Bonar (1808-1889), a minister in the Free Church of Scotland. The hymn traces God the creator and sustainer of his world; the loving Father who gave his Son to die for our sins, Jesus who willingly gave himself as our sacrifice, and the Holy Spirit who sheds abroad the love of God in our hearts. The hymn is in Long Meter and has been attached to several different tunes, including Rockingham by Lowell Mason (circa 1830). In recent times (2017) it has been rewritten with a new tune by Matt Merker and Bob Kauflin.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

A PE Teacher and a Trans Policy

“I’m a teacher but I serve God first, and I will not affirm that a biological boy can be a girl and vice versa because it’s against my religion. It’s lying to a child, it’s abuse to a child, and it’s sinning against our God.” 

“This case is not about how schools should treat students who struggle with gender dysphoria...It is about whether public schools can punish a teacher for objecting, as a private citizen, to a proposed policy, in a forum designated for the purpose of considering whether to implement such policies, where the policy would force him to express ideas about human nature, unrelated to the school’s curriculum, that he believes are false.”

Friday, November 26, 2021

4 Reasons Spurgeon Died Poor, and other links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

Count your blessings

Hymn by Johnson Oatman, Jr. (1856-1922)

1. When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Count your blessings, name them one by one;
Count your many blessings, see what God hath done.

2. Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, ev’ry doubt will fly,
And you will be singing as the days go by.

3. When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings, money cannot buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

4. So, amid the conflict, whether great or small,
Do not be discouraged, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,

Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

Thursday, November 25, 2021

Happy Thanksgiving!

O give thanks unto the Lord; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.
1 Chronicles 16:34
  • Thanksgiving 2021 -- “Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday in the United States, and Thanksgiving 2021 occurs on Thursday, November 25.”
  • Pilgrim-Wampanoag Treaty Established, March 29, 1621 -- “These Independents believed God should only be worshipped according to the commands of the Bible, a belief held by other Separatists and Presbyterians, a doctrine known as “the regulative principle of worship”. The congregation left England for the Netherlands, where such dissenters found a warm welcome. In 1620 a portion of Pastor John Robinson’s congregation pioneered another move, this time to the New World.”
We thank thee, heavenly Father, 
For every earthly good;
For life and health and clothing,
And for our daily food.

O give us hearts to thank thee,
For every blessing sent;
And whatsoe’er thou sendest,
Make us therewith content.

And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
1 Timothy 6:8

No. 189, p.183 in The Children’s Hymnal with Tunes (John Ireland Tucker, editor. New York, NY: F. J. Huntington & Co., 1877)

Here is a standing reason for thanksgiving. Although we may not always be healthy, nor always prosperous, yet God is always good, and, therefore, there is always a sufficient argument for giving thanks unto Jehovah. That he is a good God essentially, that he cannot be otherwise than good, should be a fountain out of which the richest praises should perpetually flow.
The constant tenor and spirit of our lives should be adoring gratitude, love, reverence, and thanksgiving to the Most High.

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
1 Thessalonians 5:18

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

The Jesus Trilemma

A “trilemma” is a difficult choice from three alternatives. The “Jesus trilemma” is an apologetic argument defending the divinity of Jesus by postulating the unreasonableness of the alternatives. It is most often associated with British lay theologian Clive Staples “C. S.” Lewis, who is doubtless responsible for its popularity and notoriety. It is, nevertheless, something with deeper roots. It is simple and reasonable enough that some earlier Christian thinkers may have arrived at it independently of others who postulated a similar logical equation. This trilemma is often found designated as the “Lunatic, Liar, or Lord” argument, or the “Mad, Bad, or God” argument.

In Mere Christianity (1952, pp. 55-56) C. S. Lewis (1898–1963) wrote:
“A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic—on the level with the man who says he is a poached egg—or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon or you can fall at his feet and call him Lord and God, but let us not come with any patronising nonsense about his being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to. … Now it seems to me obvious that He was neither a lunatic nor a fiend: and consequently, however strange or terrifying or unlikely it may seem, I have to accept the view that He was and is God.” 
In 1936, Chinese Christian church leader Watchman Nee (1903-1972) in The Normal Christian Faith wrote:
“How can Jesus of Nazareth claim to be God? Before going on, we have to pause for a moment to seriously consider the matter. It is not a light thing to claim to be God. A person who makes such a claim falls into one of three categories. He must belong to one of these three categories; he cannot belong to all three. First, if he claims to be God and yet in fact is not, he has to be a madman or a lunatic. Second, if he is neither God nor a lunatic, he has to be a liar, deceiving others by his lie. Third, if he is neither of these, he must be God. You can only choose one of the three possibilities. If you do not believe that he is God, you have to consider him a madman. If you cannot take him for either of the two, you have to take him for a liar. There is no need for us to prove if Jesus of Nazareth is God or not. All we have to do is find out if He is a lunatic or a liar. If He is neither, He must be the Son of God. These are our three choices. There is no fourth.” (The Normal Christian Faith, Chapter 3, Section 3)
Scottish Free Church preacher John Duncan (1796-1870), in Colloquia Peripatetica (2nd edition. Edinburgh: Edmonston & Douglas, 1870, p. 107) wrote:
“Christ either deceived mankind by conscious fraud, or he was himself deluded and self-deceived, or he was Divine. There is no getting out of this trilemma. It is inexorable.”
American Congregationalist preacher Mark Hopkins (1802-1887) in Lectures on the Evidences of Christianity: Before the Lowell Institute, January 1844 (1846, p. 255), wrote:
“...either that those claims [by Jesus of who he was and what he would do, rlv] were well-founded, or of a hopeless insanity. No wonder those who did not believe said of him, ‘He hath a devil, and is mad: why hear ye him?’...No impostor of common sense could have had the folly to prefer such claims.”
The trilemma is based on accepting the New Testament as an inspired source that portrays Jesus accurately. I find that those who question the logic of the trilemma also question the accuracy of the New Testament record.

God is either the I AM or He is not at all.

Psalm 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Tuesday, November 23, 2021

I Found Him! C. R. Powell

On Thursday the 11th, I wrote and posted C. R. Powell: Where He Comes From and Where He Goes, Nobody Knows. I was quite frustrated that, despite every effort I made, I could not find out when and where he was born, who were his parents, where he went and what happened to him after he was in Little Rock in the 1910s. All I had hinting a family was the death of his little girl Oma in 1904.

Then suddenly, on November 17, God dropped it all in place. I contacted the Marion County Historical Commission wondering whether Oma is buried at Jefferson, Texas. Mitchel Whitington went over and above, not only checking records to confirm that Oma is buried there, but also going to the Oakwood Cemetery to see whether her grave is marked, even taking a picture of the section in which her unmarked grave resides. With this encouragement and excitement, I decided to go back to the censuses to see if I might find Oma Powell in 1900. (I had heretofore searched and searched for Charles Powell in the 1900 and 1910 censuses without results – even though I knew he lived in or around Little Rock, Arkansas in 1910.) Lo and behold, this time the first record result in Ancestry was little Oma with her family living in Red River County, Texas! From there other links fell into place – who were Charles’ parents, who he married, his other children, when he died, and where he is buried. I have added his information to Find-A-Grave. There is still more to learn about him, but I am so pleased to know more than I knew. Now we know where he came from and where he went!

With that in mind, I have rewritten “Where He Comes From and Where He Goes, Nobody Knows” as C. R. Powell: the Landmark Leader who Left.

C. R. Powell: the Landmark Leader who Left

Charles Robert Powell was a son and the oldest child of George Dietz Powell and Tennessee “Tennie” French of Henry County, Tennessee – born in August of 1877 in Kentucky. It seems the Powell family came to Texas by 1893, settling in Red River County. Tidie Powell, a daughter of George and Tennie, died in 1893 and is buried in the Bluff Cemetery at Bagwell in Red River County, Texas. In 1900 George and Tennie’s family, as well as the newly minted Charles Powell family, were all living in Justice Precinct 2 in that county.

Charles “Charlie” Powell married Joe Etta (Josephine) Vann on January 5, 1898 in Red River County, Texas. They had at least five children, but probably six.

  • Oma Powell (1898-1904)
  • Jack Earl Powell (1901-1988)
  • Clarence Powell (1905-aft. Jan1920)
  • Child Powell (aft. May 1900-bef. May 1910)
  • Mabel Powell (1907-1923)
  • Ruth Juanita Powell (1910-1970)

In his valedictory in the Sword and Trowel, Charlie Powell says that he was “born into the Kingdom and called into the ministry in Texas sixteen years ago last August.”[i] His Christian and preaching life thus begins about 1896 in Texas. He further notes that at the end of the fourth year of ministry (circa 1900), he entered Baylor University. This was possibly in the fall of 1900.[ii] Later, being ostracized as a “church party” Baptist at Baylor, he left before completing his studies and took up the Landmark banner.[iii] Powell went to the First Baptist Church of Jefferson, Texas as pastor in 1904 upon the recommendation of S. A. Hayden, who had been a former pastor there.[iv] Powell left the church in Jefferson in 1905, going into evangelistic work. The Jimplecute discloses in January of that year, “Rev. C. R. Powell and family moved to Jacksonville this week.[v]  While in Jefferson, the Powells lost their little daughter Oma to typhoid fever August 11, 1904. She lies at rest in an unmarked grave in “Old Section L” at the Oakwood Cemetery at Jefferson, Marion County, Texas.[vi]

Powell’s foray into newspaper work began during his time at Jefferson. While at Jefferson, he bought half interest in the Baptist Echo, then owned by E. A. Puthuff and J. M. Newburn.[vii] He participated in organizing the General Association of Baptists in the United States of America in 1905. In this capacity, he later became editor of the Arkansas Baptist. The Arkansas Baptist had merged with the Baptist Flag after the death of J. N. Hall, then reestablished itself in April 1906, with W. R. Cross, president, and C. R. Powell, editor and business manager (recently come to Arkansas from Texas).[viii]  “Powell was a good editor” but “In three years Powell became dissatisfied and the company [Baptist Publishing Company, rlv] accepted his resignation.”[ix] According to Powell, he was dissatisfied with the “bossiness” of W. R. Cross. About this time, Powell served as treasurer of the General Association and became editor of the Baptist Mission Bulletin.[x]

In Arkansas, C. R. Powell actively participated in the Anti-Saloon league. He was elected Field Secretary of the Arkansas Anti-Saloon League in 1909.[xi] That year he debated Socialist Colonel Dick Maple (a nom de plume of Robert Seth McCallen).[xii] He seems to have been a popular and respected minister and editor in the Landmark movement, as least up until 1912. When Powell started the Sword and Trowel, J. B. Sellman wrote, “The paper is the best I have seen in some time, and C. R. Powell is by far the best paper-man I know. It seems as though God had made him specially for newspaper work. He is wise in thought, bold in expression, and honest in purpose.”[xiii]

The Nashville News, July 20, 1910, page 4

In late 1912, C. R. Powell became editor of the Sword and Trowel in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Western Publishing Company (of which Powell served as secretary and manager) owned and published the Sword and Trowel. It was conceived as a denominational and promotional organ of the Baptist Missionary Association of Oklahoma.[xiv] The BMA of Oklahoma churches associated with the Baptist Missionary Association of Texas and the General Association of Baptists in the United States of America (Landmark). The Sword and Trowel paper was a neat production of 16 pages (except what was possibly the last issue, having eight pages), but died an early death – spanning from its first issue in September until Powell resigned in December. In the December 19 issue, Powell uses nearly 4-1/2 pages of eight pages explaining that he has changed his alignments and has “fought my last battle for we have been calling Landmarkism.”

“My readers must allow me to be tedious and lengthy in my last article in a Landmark Baptist paper.”[xv]

Sword and Trowel, December 19, 1912, page 4

He scores Landmark leaders Ben M. Bogard and J. A. Scarboro as assassins of character, liars who must rule or ruin, and says that the only thing the General Association leaders permit “is a fight on Conventions.”[xvi] While generally excoriating the behavior of leaders of the General Association, there was a specific and current problem. At the Association’s meeting at Bay Springs, Mississippi in December 912, Powell defended missionary I. N. Yohannan against what he perceived as abuse at the hands of Corresponding Secretary J. A. Scarboro.[xvii] Pitted against Bogard and Scarboro, Powell failed to accomplish his goal. He thereafter despaired of the “Landmark” work. Landmark leaders possessed strong convictions, and were passionate about them. In establishing these new associations, it was inevitable that these leaders would, like rams vying for dominance, butt heads. Powell does not indicate what he would do in the future, though he suggests he might look for a home among the Convention Baptists.[xviii] G. W. Crawford of Oklahoma describes the Sword and Trowel paper and its editor this way:

A paper was launched. C. R. Powel was the editor of this paper and its name was “The Sword and Trowel.”

This paper was owned by a bunch of stockholders. I give a few names here of the stockholders of this paper: R. V. Thompson, Bob Thompson, C. R. Powell, Uriah Farthing and myself. There were others, but I do not have their names at hand. This was the breeziest paper I ever saw. It lived for awhile and then died. I will not mention the cause of its death, and its nature.

Poor Charley and the paper went down but we went right on with our work.[xix]

After his return to Arkansas from Oklahoma, Charlie Powell served on the board of trustees of the Anti-Saloon League in 1915.[xx] His name appears in the Little Rock, Arkansas city directories. He lived at 3206 Wright Ave through 1915. The 1916 city directory records “Powell, Rev Chas R moved to Halstead Ark.”[xxi] His life and stay in Halstead was brief. Dr. L. L. Marshall of Little Rock certified that he attended Powell from July 25 to August 4, 1916. On August 4, at 8:40 a.m. Friday morning, Charles Robert Powell lost a battle with “pernicious malaria” and succumbed in the sleep of death.[xxii] His remains were laid to rest in the Halstead Cemetery, Sunday, August 6, 1916. At the time of his death, Powell was a Mason, a member of the Magnolia Lodge F. & A. M.[xxiii]

Arkansas Democrat, August 5, 1916, page 3

It is not known where Charlie Powell was living when the 1880 census was taken, though probably still in Tennessee. He appears in the 1900 census at Justice Precinct 2 in Red River County, Texas, and the 1910 census at Brodie Township, Pulaski County, Arkansas. Each of these censuses lists him as a farmer, indicating that he labored as a bi-vocational minister. His death certificate gives his occupation as “Farming & Stock Dealer.” Probate records indicate at the time of his death Powell owned 5 hogs, 1 horse, 3 cows, 1 Jersey milk cow, and 10 goats.[xxiv]

Probably raised on a farm, Charlie Powell likely spent a lifetime with some relationship to farming. As a minister of the gospel, he gave approximately twenty years – 1896 to 1916. He spent most of it in the “Landmark movement.” These Baptist churches hoped to reform the denominational structure of the Southern Baptist Convention and its related state conventions. Those hopes dashed, they created their own organizations. The Baptist Missionary Association of Texas (1900). The State Association of Missionary Baptist Churches in Arkansas (1902). The General Association of Baptists in the United States of America (1905). The Baptist Missionary Association of Oklahoma (1912). Powell worked in all four of these Landmark bodies that were organized in his lifetime. He participated in organizing the General Association of Baptists at Texarkana in 1905. He remembers himself as the first person to point out the inconsistency of “supporting the Southern Baptist Convention while we fought the [Baptist] General Convention of Texas…I suggested a general association patterned after the B. M. A. of Texas.”[xxv] Powell became a prominent leader in the Landmark movement in the first decade of the 20th century. He labored in evangelism, editorial work, and denominational activities. He served as a financial agent for the Buckner College in Huntington, Arkansas.

At this time, it is not clear whether Powell pastored any other churches after leaving the church at Jefferson in 1904. After his fateful and vocal departure through the Sword and Trowel, he may have become something of “a man without a country.” Whatever transpired, his life was not spared long. The final years of his ministry are still somewhat shrouded in mystery. In the second decade of the 20th century, Charles Robert Powell ceased to be an influence among the Baptists – because of his conflict with Elders Bogard and Scarboro, and certainly because of his death. Almost any Landmark Baptist will know the name Ben M. Bogard. Few will recall C. R. Powell. Nevertheless, as with every servant “to his own master he standeth or falleth.”

And now at the least we know where C. R. Powell came from and where he went!

[i] “Powell Quits and Explains,” Sword and Trowel, Thursday, December 19, 1912, p. 1. On page 4, he refers to “15 years in the ministry.”
[ii] In June of 1900, the family lived in Justice Precinct 2, Red River County, Texas. 1900 U.S. Federal Census, Red River County, June 1, 1900, Dwelling 14, Family 14, Sheet 1.
[iii] In a letter to The Standard, November 7, 1903 (Vol. 51, No. 10, p. 13), Walter E. Tynes of Houston, Texas explains that the (white) regular missionary Baptists of Texas “are divided, not about their articles of faith or local church government, but about the proper administration of their associational or general denominational affairs, such as missions, education, care of old ministers, orphans, etc.” Tynes classified those divisions under three headings, the board party, the church party, and the Gospel Mission churches. His explanation of the difference between the board party and the church party is that the first held to board supremacy in denominational matters, while the church party held “the doctrine of church sovereignty over the convention.” (By the time of this writing by Tynes, the churches had already divided and operated in different denominational organizations.)
[iv] S. A. Hayden pastored First Baptist Jefferson approximately, 1878-1883.
[v] Jefferson Jimplecute (Jefferson, Texas) Saturday, January 6, 1905, p. 5.
[vi] Jefferson Jimplecute, August 13, 1904, p. 5. 140 Years Interment Data, Marion County, Texas, Annette Lemmon, et. al., 1987.
[vii] He apparently bought Newburn’s interest, since Puthuff remained as an owner and editor.
[viii] The Life and Works of Benjamin Marcus Bogard, Foreman and Payne, Little Rock, AR: Seminary Press, 1966, p. 202; Western Christian Advocate, Wednesday, April 18, 1906, p. 3.
[ix] Life and Works of Bogard, p. 202.
[x] Baptist and Reflector, Thursday, June 24, 1909, p. 9.
[xi] The Arkansas Democrat, Saturday, April 17, 1909, p. 3. This article describes him as former editor of the Baptist Advance, which is incorrect. It was the Arkansas Baptist, as we note above.
[xii] Baptist and Reflector, March 4, 1909, p. 12; The Daily Arkansas Democrat, June 10, 1909, p. 9.
[xiii] “From J. B. Sellman,” Sword and Trowel, Thursday, September 26, 1912, p. 10.
[xiv] See, for example, Sword and Trowel, Thursday, September 26, 1912, p. 9.
[xv] “Powell Quits and Explains,” Sword and Trowel, December 19, 1912, p. 1.
[xvi] “All Landmarkers are not mean as the leaders whose names I have mentioned.” Sword and Trowel, December 19, 1912, p. 4.
[xvii] Sword and Trowel, December 19, 1912, pp. 3-4. Powell had previously written, “If Bro. Scarboro is guilty of trying to boss Yohannon there are those in the Baptist General Association who will take care of the matter and avenge the missionary…” Sword and Trowel, October 31, 1912, p. 1.
[xviii] Incidentally, his signature at the end of the article gives his location as “Little Rock, Ark.” not Oklahoma City as in the masthead. One of the stockholders wrote, “Bro. Powell has taken no advantage of us in any way, and the above statement goes in with my permission and regrets.” “A Statement,” Uriah Farthing, Sword and Trowel, p. 5.
[xix] My Fifty Years of Gospel Ministry: an Autobiography, G. W. Crawford. Riverbank, CA: Missionary Baptist Press, 1949, pp. 18-19.
[xx] The Arkansas Gazette, Wednesday, January 20, 1915, p. 10.
[xxi] Little Rock and Argenta City Directory, Vol. XIV, 1916, Polk’s Southern Directory Co., Pubs. (available on
[xxiii] “The Rev. Charles R. Powell,” Arkansas Democrat, Saturday, August 5, 1916, p. 3.
[xxiv] Arkansas probate records at [Jersey milk cow is my interpretation of what appears to be “Jearsey Mail, rlv.]
[xxv] “Powell Quits and Explains,” Sword and Trowel, December 19, 1912, p. 1.

Monday, November 22, 2021

The milk of human kindness, and other quotes

The posting of quotes by human authors does not constitute agreement with either the quotes or their sources. (I try to confirm the sources that I give, but may miss on occasion; please verify if possible.)

“Do not let the milk of human kindness in your heart turn to bonny-clabber.” -- UK saying

“When faced with a serious medical diagnosis, prudence dictates the seeking of a second opinion.” -- Mike Landry

“It’s okay to ride just one horse, but ride it well.” -- Heard

“The genuine spirit of religion has been and will be preserved by those only, who dissent from all establishments devised by human policy.” -- G. H. Orchard

“Wealth justly obtained, and piously spent, is a blessing—not a curse.” -- John Angell James

“The more you have of earth, the less you have of heaven; your gain here will be a loss to you there.” -- John Angell James

“The D.D. for a preacher is like the curl of a pig’s tail, a little more style but no more pig.” -- J. B. Gambrell

“A preacher is undone if he doubts his message – either the truth of it, or the power of it.” -- J. B. Gambrell

“Some preachers take the edge off of the sword of the truth by apologizing before they strike. ” -- J. B. Gambrell

“As surely as carbon monoxide follows a line of traffic, trouble follows revival.” -- Peter Ruckman

“The whole movement is in the hands of God, and, so far as I can see, all that we can at present have to do with it is to stand still and see his work.” -- Landrum Holmes

“Baptists are very easily led, but they will not long bow to a dictator.” -- Alonzo Nunnery

“We can do all the good that we believe that God wants us to do, and do it as a Baptist and inside Baptist ranks, without affiliating with man-made sects.” -- Alonzo Nunnery

“Credentialism is the bane of scholarship.” -- Unknown

“Power is okay, and stupidity is usually harmless. Power and stupidity together are dangerous.” -- Patrick Rothfuss

Do vs. Done

Run, John, and work, the law commands,
Yet finds me neither feet nor hands;
But sweeter news the gospel brings,
It bids me fly, and lends me wings.
John Berridge

The Only Two Religions

There are only two religions in the world:
The True and the False.
All phases of false religion are alike. They all say:
Something in my hand I bring,”
The only difference between them being as to what the “something” is.
The True religion says:
Nothing in my hand I bring.”

The Only Two Religions, and Other Gospel Papers, H. A. Ironside, Loizeaux, 1907, p. 5

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Say “Amen” to God

I cannot say,
Beneath the pressure of life’s cares today,
I joy in these;
But I can say
That I would rather walk this rugged way,
If Him it please.
I cannot feel
That all is well, when dark’ning clouds conceal
The shining sun;
But then I know
God lives and loves, and say, since it is so,
“Thy will be done.”
I cannot speak
In happy tone, the tear-drops on my cheek
Show I am sad;
But I can speak
Of grace to suffer with submission meek,
Until made glad.
I do not see
Why God should e’en permit some things to be,
When He is love;
But I can see,
Though often dimly through the mystery,
His hand above.
I do not look
Upon the present, nor in nature’s book,
To read my fate;
But I do look
For promised blessings in God’s Holy book,
And I can wait.
The above poem was published Thursday, July 6, 1893, in the Baptist and Reflector (Nashville, Tennessee), page 8. The next stanza was not printed in Baptist and Reflector. I ran across it elsewhere, when searching for information on the poem.
I may not try
To keep the hot tears back; but hush that sigh,
“It might have been;”
And try to still
Each rising murmur, and to God’s sweet will