Tolbert Fanning on Evangelists and the Lord’s Day

April 5, 2013

Brother “J. R. W.” of Kentucky tossed Tolbert Fanning a softball in the June 1858 issue of  the Gospel Advocate (pp. 170-171).  It was a subject he had constantly addressed as an editor and evangelist. It was one of the great themes of his life beginning with his time as an evangelist supported by the Nashville […]


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 […]


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 Poor V

April 26, 2012

The 1866 Gospel Advocate, the year its rebirth after the Civil War, is filled with notices about sharing resources with the poor and encouragement for churches both north and south to do so. Apparently, the Advocate was accused by some of controlling these resources as they came to Nashville for distribution as if the paper was a […]


New Testament Hymns

February 5, 2012

The early church, even as its Scripture was being written, expaned the Hebrew Psalter to include their own faith-hymns. Some (like Luke’s Canticles) are squarely rooted in the Hebrew traditions though with a Christological application and others reflect the new situation of the people of God in the church as the story of Israel is […]


How Much Do We Tolerate Till We Disfellowship? David Lipscomb Responds

January 4, 2012

In response to a question about whether a congregation should disfellowship another believer for voting, David Lipscomb offered this advice about any act of withdrawal of fellowship (Gospel Advocate, 1875, 399):      Our brother asks the question how far may a man go in sin, without being withdrawn from.  We are not much of […]


The Church Has Left the Building

May 17, 2010

I like the idea.  It is a wonderful point to emphasize.  The church must not see itself as bounded by or confined by the four walls of its building. We have always known that the church is not the building but somehow we have tended to think or at least act as though the Sunday […]


A Tale of Three Conversions (Acts 10-11, 15)

May 15, 2010

We often call it the “conversion of Cornelius.” And, indeed, that is a significant moment. Cornelius was a Roman centurion—the commander of 80 men (sort of like a Captain of a company, though centurions could rank much higher in a Legion—stationed in Palestine. This was no honored placement. It was like soldiering on the Eastern […]


Salvation: Sector 6

January 16, 2010

What is salvation? In my first post in this series I proposed the below chart as a way of answering that important question. In this post I will comment on the sixth sector (6).   Past Justification Present Sanctification Future Glorification Personal Forgiveness of Sins and Relationship with God (1) Moral (Inner and Outer)  Transformation (2) […]


Salvation: Sector 5

January 6, 2010

What is salvation? In my first post in this series I proposed the below chart as a way of answering that important question. In this post I will comment on the fifth sector (5). Past Justification Present Sanctification Future Glorification Personal Forgiveness of Sins and Relationship with God (1) Moral (Inner and Outer)  Transformation (2) Resurrection […]