Nashville Cherry Street Christian Church Burned (1857)

July 4, 2014

This is the report in Nashville’s Republican Banner (April 9, 1857), page 3. Destructive Fire!  CHURCH BURNED!–LOSS $25,000 The cry of fire was raised yesterday morning between 5 and 6 o’clock, by the discovery of flames issuing from a small Carpenter Shop in South Field, near the Depot of the Tenn. & Ala. R. R., […]


Alexander Campbell, Gratuitous Evil and Meticulous Providence

June 11, 2013

Yesterday I received my copy of J. Caleb Clanton’s new book entitled The Philosophy of Religion of Alexander Campbell (Knoxville: University of Tennessee Press, 2013). I had previously read the manuscript in early 2012 and am pleased to see it in print. Caleb taught philosophy at Pepperdine for several years but now teaches at Lipscomb.  I am […]


Alexander Campbell on Trinity and Christology

March 18, 2013

Nancy Koester’s The History of Christianity in the United States (Fortress, 2007) is my current supplementary text in my undergraudate Stone-Campbell Movement course at Lipscomb University. I use it to provide the American context for Stone-Campbell history. I was surprised to read this sentence in the book (p. 61):  “[Alexander Campbell] also rejected the doctrine of Trinity […]


G. C. Brewer on the New Heavens and New Earth

March 16, 2013

I’m seeking some help regarding G. C. Brewer’s (1884-1956) undertstanding of the earth. Concerning Isaiah 65, 66, 2 Peter 3 and Revelation 21, Brewer wrote (Gospel Advocate [4 April 1946], 314): “The New Testament references describe a condition that will come after the destruction of the present heaven and earth. That this earth—this existing order of […]


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 […]


Benjamin Franklin: On Rebaptism…Again

March 1, 2013

One of the more common “gotcha questions” in the late 19th century discussion of rebaptism in the Stone-Campbell Movement was something like this: Is baptism administered to a person scripturally valid when he claims he is in Christ before he was baptized, and will contend that his sins were all forgiven him before he submitted […]


Another Example: Texas and Tennessee Clash

January 15, 2009

Foy E. Wallace, Jr. dubbed Harding College “an incubus of error” and “unsound” in the May 1941 issue of The Bible Banner.  Wallace’s assault against George Benson, J. N. Armstrong and Harding College is a good illustration of the tension between the Texas and Tennessee theological traditions within Churches of Christ. The emphases below are […]


Controversies over Hands–Forgotten Debates

January 4, 2009

David Lipscomb (1831-1917) and James A. Harding (1848-1922) belonged to the same theological orbit. They started the Nashville Bible School (now Lipscomb University) together in 1891. Harding, for a time, was an associate editor of the Gospel Advocate in the 1880s. They agreed on a host of theological issues, including opposition to rebaptism, renewed earth eschatology, […]


“United, Yet Divided”: Understandable and Unavoidable

January 1, 2009

The article below, by the hand of J. N. Armstrong, first appeared in The Way entitled “United, Yet Divided” [4 (14 August 1902) 156-158].    Contextually, several factors are involved.  First, the Firm Foundation out of Austin, Texas–under the editorship of Austin McGary–was pushing a sectarian agenda which demanded unity on many fronts as a prerequiste for […]


Christians Among the Sects? James A. Harding Answers

December 24, 2008

While in Montgomery Alabama for a summer meeting in 1902, James A. Harding answered several questions from the “Question Box” which was available to hearers there.  He answered a few of these through the pages of The Way (“Questions and Answers,” 4 [July 17, 1902] 121-123). One concerned the name “Christian Church” (which he opposed […]