Theology? Doctrine? Whatever…. (SBD 2)

May 6, 2009

A few introductory comments on the definition and function of theology…… Systematic Biblical Doctrine That’s the title of the course I will teach this Maymester at the undergraduate level for Lipscomb University. I don’t particularly like it. Here’s why. “Doctrine” rings hollow at best for most students (especially at the undergraduate level) and creates hostile […]


David Lipscomb (1912)

April 8, 2009

As I continue to study and think about the Texas, Tennessee and Indiana Traditions within Churches of Christ in the first decades of the 20th century, I have  been reading through the Gospel Advocate in those early years of the last century.  I thought I would provide a sampling of what has interested me in […]


One Year at WordPress: The Most Viewed Posts/Series

March 30, 2009

My earlier attempts at blogging, before this past twelve months, were rather meager though I did post a considerable amount of material at my first site begun in September 2000.  I appreciate how the blog has been received by old friends and new ones. Thank you for your patronage. I hope our dialogue can continue […]


Comment on Rebaptism Articles

February 18, 2009

In my previous post, I repoduced two responses to a question asked by J. Wesley Smith of Lynchburg, TN, in 1905.  He asked:  “Is it right to make a knowledge of baptism for remission of sins a test of fellowship?” David Lipscomb, editor of the Gospel Advocate, answered in the negative and George W. Savage, […]


I am a Patternist; Yes, Really!

February 12, 2009

Jesus is the logos (word) of God; he is our pattern, the speech of God. His life is the word of God. He embodies all that God desires. Disciples of Jesus follow Jesus. They follow him into the water, and are thereby baptized. They follow him into the wilderness, and thus seek solitude with God […]


Patterns, Legalism and Grace: J. D. Thomas

February 9, 2009

 Patternism and a healthy theology of grace are not mutually exclusive.  A previous post noted that Alexander Campbell did not make his particular understanding of the apostolic pattern a test of fellowship. The “ancient order” was not a soteriological category for him. Rather, it was a  matter of communal sanctification, a matter of growth, development and […]


Patterns and Legalism: Commenting on an FHU Lecture

February 5, 2009

Cecil May, Jr.–Dean of the V. P. Black College of Biblical Studies at Faulkner University–is a kind, loving Christian gentlemen in the best sense of that term.  He was the first to ever interview me for an academic position just weeks before Sheila died as he was about to become President of Magnolia Bible College.  […]


Privilege or Silence: Women in Churches of Christ (1897-1907) I

January 20, 2009

One of the forgotten debates from the first decade of the 20th century among Churches of Christ is whether audible participation in the assembly through prayer, singing, and exhortation was a woman’s privilege or a subversion of the created order. May a woman lead prayer in the assembly? May a woman lead singing in the […]


Facing Our Failures: A Review

January 12, 2009

Peter Abelard (1079-1142), who pioneered the scholastic method of theologizing, produced a volume entitled Sic et Non (or, “Yes and No”) for use in teaching through the dialectic method. It is a composition of quotes from earlier theologians and fathers on a variety of topics, but they are arranged oppositionally, that is, some theologians say […]


Mercy, Not Sacrifice: Sabbath Controversy in Matthew 12

January 8, 2009

A “God of technicalities”? The first article I ever published in academia was “The Sabbath Controversy in Matthew: An Exegesis of Matthew 12:1-14″ which appeared in the Restoration Quarterly 27.2 (1984) 79-91. I have now uploaded this on my Academic page. At some point in the future, I may reflect in personal terms on how that study subsequently impacted […]