Nashville Church Planting–Early Perspectives

March 26, 2013

David Lipscomb wrote a wonderful biography of Tolbert Fanning which was published in Franklin College and Its Influences (Nashville: McQuiddy Printing, 1906). There are many historical gems in this piece, especially concerning the history of the Nashville Church. One particular theme struck me as I read through it again. After Philip Slater Fall, who had led […]


J. D. Tant on the Firm Foundation and Rebaptism

March 11, 2013

While reading parts of the Firm Foundation for a research project, I rediscovered the following article by J. D. Tant (“Looking Back Fifty Years,” Firm Foundation 50.3 [17 January 1933] 2). In this article he highlights how the Firm Foundation had served the church over the past fifty years. In his view, the periodical saved the church from extremes–the extreme […]


Antebellum Gospel Advocate on Rebaptism: Tolbert Fanning and William Lipscomb

March 8, 2013

While David Lipscomb, editor the Gospel Advocate after the Civil War (beginning in 1866), opposed rebaptizing those who were immersed to obey God though they did not understand its design for the remission of sins, the original editors of the GA thought differently.  While reading through the 1855-1861 GA, I  ran across the following two statements from […]


David Lipscomb on Voting

November 5, 2012

David Lipscomb’s opposition to participation in civil government is perhaps well-known. He is, in some ways, a Christian anarchist. This arises both from his experience in the Civil War but also out of his kingdom theology which envisions the kingdom of God destroying all human ruling authorities through Jesus Christ. Consequently, Lipscomb was a pacifist […]


Lipscomb on the Urban Poor II

May 28, 2012

Lipscomb’s response to the notice in the Apostolic Times did not go unchallenged. The Apostolic Times quickly replied and Lipscomb reprinted the article in the May 19, 1873 Gospel Advocate under the title “Preaching to the Poor” (pp. 508-509). However, the question is quickly diverted. Instead, it becomes a discussion of how best to send “preachers” among the […]


Lipscomb on the Urban Poor I

May 25, 2012

In the April 24 1873 issue of the Gospel Advocate, Lipscomb reprinted a piece from the Apostolic Times under the title “Preaching to the Poor” (p. 390). Here is the article as reproduced by Lipscomb: In these days of mails, and printing, the newspapers, which go forth from the great cities with their well laden columns of local […]


Lipscomb on the Poor VII

May 22, 2012

This piece from David Lipscomb in 1866 speaks for itself. “The spirit of the church must be changed–radically changed in this respect,” he writes, “before it can be truly the Church of Christ.” “The crowning characteristic of the Christian religion in the esteem of its founder, is that the “poor have the gospel preached to […]


Lipscomb on the Demise of Church Attendance in the Cities (1878)

May 17, 2012

In the late 1870s several noticed a decline in church attendance among the urban poor. David Lipscomb offers his own opinion as to why there is such a decline which, he thinks, is primarily a northern phenomenon (though he does think New Orleans may fit). The urban poor do not participate in urban church life because […]


David Lipscomb on “Fine Houses for Worship”

May 16, 2012

When the Central Christian Church in Cincinnaiti, Ohio, completed its $140,000, 2000-seat French Gothic building in 1872, many–especially Benjamin Franklin and David Lipscomb–thought it was an outrage.  By 1892 there were rumors that the church needed to sell the building since many of its members had moved to the suburbs. The downtown, urban church could not […]


Lipscomb on Giving Caesar His Due (Mark 12:13-17)

May 8, 2012

Yesterday I posted on Mark 12:13-17 where jesus encounters the “Caesar tax” question as part of my regular blogging on my Sunday morning Bible Class.  It was not an agenda piece but rather part of working through the text of Mark as I understand it. My views, however, are generally similar to those of David […]