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Music Fundamentals for Song Leaders

Congregational “singing schools”…provided training for song leaders for several generations. These had already begun to disappear by the 1960s. Observing that void prompted me, in 1965, to prepare a booklet for those who lead singing in our worship assemblies…I was…prompted to pull my old, age-yellowed copy from its file when a young, inexperienced song leader indicated that he woujld welcome such help. My copy was so unattractive and inadequate in many ways that I was too embarrassed to give it to anyone. Rather, I decided to produce a “new and improved” version, thus taking advantage of attractive printing, type, and graphics, as well as improving its content…

A New Attack on Human Reason

When the brethren opposed to congregational cooperation and orphan homes ran out of scriptural positions several years ago, they attacked “human reason.” Tom Warren’s devastating unanswerable syllogisms were ridiculed as “sillygisms,” but they remain unanswered to this day.…

A Perpetual Pitfall of Preachers

I made my first miserable attempt at preaching a Gospel sermon in July 1954 to a Sunday evening assembly of the old Fourth and Bannock Streets Church in Boise, Idaho. My father, Henry Warden (“Red”) McClish, preached for this congregation and served as one of her elders at the time. I had worked hard on my sermon on “The Conscience,” and thought I surely had enough material to last at least half an hour…

A Personal Relationship With Jesus

There is a sense in which we do have a personal relationship with Jesus. We are indebted to Him for our salvation, which is definitely on an individual basis. However, the expression, as used by so many people today, is not a Scriptural concept at all….

A Plea for the Plea

There is no more exciting and thrilling ideal to those who hunger and thirst for ultimate Truth than that of being a part of the church of the Bible. The incomparable objective of restoring the church of Christ was necessitated by centuries of apostasy followed by earnest but doomed-to-fail attempts at mere correction of the evil monster of Rome and its apostate ancestors….

A Preacher’s Article and a Preacher’s Response

The “peace,” therefore unto which we strive and for which we endeavor is a peace based upon and growing from faithful obedience to the Word of God. Sometimes when you advocate the Truth you may well be accused of “stirring up trouble” in the church….

A Primer on the Meaning of Faith

There is hardly a more important subject for mankind to contemplate—and understand— than that of faith. It is a subject (and word) that men widely abuse and misuse….

A Review of Some Sermons and Bible Classes

The preacher in this series was the late Jimmy Allen (1930–2020). He was a Bible professor at Harding University for half a century but was perhaps best known for the fifty city-wide evangelistic campaigns in which he preached during the 1960s and 70s.

A Strange Criterion for Doctrine

Several years ago I attended a debate on the issue of marriage, divorce, and remarriage. In the debate one of the antagonists foolishly contended that adultery merely means, “breaking the marriage covenant,” rather than sexual infidelity….

Abortion—A Continuing Abomination

Herod the Great murdered all of the male infants living in and around Bethlehem at the time of Jesus’ birth (Mat. 2:16). Even the irreligious justly recoil at his jealous bloodthirst.…

Acappella and the Acappella Vocal Band

The musical group, “Acappella” and its corollary, the “Acappella Vocal Band,” have become extremely popular among brethren (especially “youth directors” and young people) in recent years. What is the origin of these groups?

Answering the Perseverance of the Saints Error

Recently I attempted to help a friend and fellow-Christian who was involved in a discussion with a co-worker concerning the question, “Can a child of God fall from grace?” or “Can a child of God sin so as to be lost eternally?”…

Are Grace and Law Mutually Exclusive?

The prevailing attitude in society concerning morals and behavior in our time is tolerance (except, of course, toward those who dare to expose the fallacy of their misplaced tolerance)….

Are Reasoned Conclusions Valid?

When the brethren opposed to congregational cooperation and orphan homes ran out of Scriptural positions several years ago, they attacked what they called “human reason.” Tom Warren’s devastating unanswerable syllogisms were ridiculed as “sillygisms,” but they remain unanswered to this day.

Attributes of God in the Book of Proverbs

To speak of the attributes of God is to speak of His characteristics, His traits, His abilities, and, to a certain extent, His nature. Unworthy and finite human beings must ever approach such a study with unalloyed reverence.

Building Up the Church Through the Home—Ephesians 5:22–6:4

Of the three institutions ordained by God—the church, civil government, and the home—the home is the oldest. Its stability and health (or lack thereof) fundamentally affect the stability and health of the two other institutions. God created the first home when he created Adam and then Eve and brought them together in a Divine “wedding ceremony” (Gen. 2:21–22)….  

“Career Women”

A full-page ad appeared in the “Career Women” section of the Denton, Texas Record-Chronicle on March 29, 2000. The page was headlined, “Once upon a time…Women were housewives & mothers, but now we do it all!” I did not appreciate the implication that women who stay at home and take care of husband, house, and children do not work or are of less value than are “career women.”…

Changed Doctrine Equals a Changed Church

The church can remain pure only as long as the doctrine it hears remains true. The New Testament contains numerous warnings about false doctrine and its purveyors…

Christian Women Are Individual

We are unique. Science is only now learning just how unique. The discovery of DNA, which contains all of the genes—the genetic code—that make up a human being, has brought about amazing knowledge.

Christianity—a Militant Religion

 Radical and lawless left-wing political groups that provoke and engage in behavior causing personal injury and destruction of private property are rightly labeled “militant.” Their violent antics have caused many sane folk to shrink from anything that resembles such temperament.

Christians and Persecution

Persecution of godliness is becoming increasingly common in our nation, even though, ironically, America was founded by men who believed in God and in the Bible. Also, ironically, many of the earliest colonists fled from Europe to our shores to escape religious persecution.

Coping With the Plague of Biblical Ignorance

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I also will forget thy children (Hos. 4:6).Such is the awful assessment of the ignorance of God’s people in the 8th century BC.

Dealing With Grief

We are sometimes tempted to ask “Why is God doing this to me?” or even “Why is God allowing this to happen? Doesn’t He love me?” or “What have I done to deserve such pain and sorrow? Am I being punished? Why did God take my child or my husband?”…

Death Be Not Proud

In 1949, John Gunther wrote a very emotional novel entitled Death, Be Not Proud chronicling the illness (a brain tumor) and death of his young son. I like to hope that death will not conquer me, as this quotation suggests, but it is unwise to boast of what I will do when I have not yet been tried….

Deaver Doctrine —Where Does it End?

Solomon observed that there is “a time to keep silence, and a time to speak” (Ecc. 3:7). Perhaps all of us wish for the “wisdom of Solomon” to know just when to do which….

Did We Understand Mr. Money?

Dr. Royce Money, President of Abilene Christian University, delivered a speech at the annual ACU Lectureship, February 21,1993.… It struck dismay, disappointment, and disgust to my heart to see the head of the largest school among Christians openly, yea, proudly confessing his agenda of error for the school.

 We could enlarge the title thus: Will those who die, having been saved through their faith in Jesus the Christ, their obedience to His conditions of pardon, and their faithful service to Him thereafter, go directly to Heaven?…This doctrine meddles with some of the clearest revelations of the Holy Spirit relative to “final events” and our Heavenly hope.…

Does the Truth Need Defending

It is becoming increasingly popular to take the position that the Truth does not need to be defended. In their mad rush to avoid what they label “negativism,” some have taken the untenable stance that it is not even the Christian’s responsibility to defend the Truth.

Elders—Their Crucial Role

When the Lord Jesus returned to the Father, He first entrusted the church to the apostles (Mat. 16:18–19; John 14:16–18), who had the responsibility of receiving the revealed Word (John 16:13) and delivering it faithfully….

Examples of Women Leaders

Whenever the subject of hospitality is discussed, poor Martha’s name is alwaysbrought up (Luke 10:38–42). Yet what Martha was doing was important, too. She was being a good hostess. She wanted everything to be just right for the most important and beloved person she knew….

Finances in the Home

We are here getting into a delicate and touchy subject: how to handle money. This is a highly individual matter, and there is no set of rules that applies to any and every family. At the same time, we have to recognize that more church leaders’ families have probably been destroyed by money matters than by anything else (other than disputes concerning children).

Forsaking the Assembly—a Grievous, Age-Old Spiritual Malady

It is obvious that many—some who have been in the church for decades—are merely playing at the job of being Christians. One tell-tale sign is their sloppy attendance habits—or none at all…

God’s “Ecumenical Movement”

When men and women involved with the ecumenical ideal are willing to believe in the all-sufficiency of the Scriptures (2 Tim. 3:16–17; 2 Pet. 1:3) apart from any creedal statement or rule of man, then the road to true ecumenism/unity lies clearly ahead. This indeed will be God’s “Ecumenical Movement.”

God’s Responses to Our Prayers

God’s Word discusses several conditions for acceptable prayer, all of which are important to consider and follow. Perhaps it will also help us to remember that, while God hears all of our prayers, He responds to the prayers of His faithful people in a variety of ways.…

God’s Word is Forever Settled

God’s Word discusses several conditions for acceptable prayer, all of which are important to consider and follow. Perhaps it will also help us to remember that, while God hears all of our prayers, He responds to the prayers of His faithful people in a variety of ways.…

Good People in Bad Churches

Rampant liberalism in churches of Christ has produced rampant apostasy over the past five decades. Hundreds of congregations that were at their inception strong in the Truth have become unrecognizable by New Testament standards. This phenomenon has produced a circumstance in which thousands of brethren, still faithful in their convictions in the Truth, have found themselves members of apostate churches….

Grace and Moser—”Misunderstood?”

On March 3, 2010, I delivered a lecture on the closing night of the Spring, Texas, Contending for the Faith Lectureship. The lectureship was devoted to reviewing books (in one case, a sermon) produced by men who have veered from the Truth…

How Does the Holy Spirit Lead?

One is not a child of God, a Christian, unless he is led by the Spirit: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God” (Rom. 8:14). How does God lead His children by means of the Holy Spirit?….

Humanism—Enemy Number One

I am a threat that is even more sinister and dangerous to mankind than political terrorism. The grave danger I pose lies partly in the fact that most people do not recognize me. I do not grab dramatic attention by attacking innocent people with hijacked airplanes or car bombs, causing immediate physical injury or death. Rather, I subtly attack the spirits and minds of men, undermining and eroding the very foundations upon which sane lives are built…. I am Humanism….

Intellectual Snobbery

The not-so-well-educated should not despise the well-educated, nor should the latter despise the former. Yet, so often those who obtain advanced degrees leave behind all of the humility they may have once had….

Intentional Ignorance

It would be difficult to exaggerate the cursed consequences of ignorance. Various prophets explicitly blamed the downfall of God’s Old Testament people on their ignorance of God and His law. God’s indictment of His people through Hosea says it all: “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge:…”

Introduction to 2 Corinthians

As this study of Paul’s second epistle to the Corinthian church is introduced,  it is highly appropriate to notice several historical, social, and doctrinal factors which had a definite bearing on it.…

Is Matthew 19:3–12 Really so Hard to Understand?

For several years an average of fifty percent of the couples in our nation who say, “I do” have later said, “I don’t.” In some states the ratio has been much higher. Until about forty years ago divorce was almost universally stigmatized, and it was difficult to obtain apart from the cause of adultery. Then the social engineers did their work….

Is Matthew 19:9 a Part of the Law of Christ?

In order to please God, the doctrine of Christ must ever control our desires. Conversely, men behave exceedingly dangerously when desire becomes the father of their doctrine. This very phenomenon is apparent in the several attempts that have been made in recent years to escape the restrictive nature of Jesus’ words in Matthew 19:9 relating to marriage, divorce, and remarriage….

Is the Guilty Party Free to Remarry?

Among the several views relating to marriage, divorce and remarriage which have gained some following in recent years is the view that a fornicating spouse (who has been divorced by an innocent spouse) has the same Scriptural (God-given) right to remarry as does the innocent spouse…It would be difficult for me to conceive of a more anti-scriptural, unjust, unreasonable and immoral doctrine than this.

Jeremiah—God’s Humble, Faithful Prophet

To learn the way God measures preachers and preaching we need to return repeatedly to the faithful prophets as our models. There is no nobler model than Jeremiah in the way he responded to his commission from God.

Jesus Should Have Failed

Never has anyone on earth been more successful than Jesus of Nazareth. He accomplished exactly what He came to accomplish:…

Just Call Me a “Change Agent”

All right, I admit it: I am a “change agent”! Unquestionably, there are some things about and in the Lord’s church that need to be changed, and I want to do my best to change them. The Lord’s people should not be afraid of change—of the right kind.

Legalism, Law, and Love

Is obedience to Christ optional or unnecessary? Are belief in and love toward Christ the only things required of sinners to be saved?..

Lessons From an Earthquake

They had just given the first report to reach the “South 48” (as we are known in Alaska), of the earthquake. It was 1:00 am. My first concern was for my parents who lived in Juneau, Alaska, where my father, H. W. McClish, Sr., had been preaching since August 1963.

Lessons From Josiah—the Restorer King

Josiah, the sixteenth king of Judah after Israel divided, began to reign at the extremely young age of eight years. His father and grandfather before him were wicked and idolatrous, whose influences he rejected. Instead, he instituted a great restoration of true worship and service of Jehovah….

Lest We Forget…

The news media gave wall-to-wall coverage to the illness and … death of John Paul II, the Roman Catholic Pontiff. I do not recall hearing anything, whether from local or national radio, television, or newspaper coverage, that did not praise him. Without controversy, he was an international figure and wielded great influence, among both Catholics and non-Catholics….

Malachi, Liberals, and Worship

The fundamental Truth that since the cross none have been accountable to the Old Testament excuses no one from carefully studying it. The God Christians worship is the Creator God of Genesis 1:1, the God of the Patriarchs, and the God of Israel. His attributes, attitudes, and incomparable power…are changeless from eternity…

Marriage, Divorce, and Remarriage

Divorce laws in America have been constantly undergoing liberalization since the 1960s, increasingly making of marriage anything but a life-long commitment.…

Micaiah—Lessons From a Little-Known Prophet

We call the twelve authors of the short prophetic books “minor prophets.” In actuality there are no minor prophets among those who have been faithful to God. Not all of God’s prophets wrote their messages for posterity and we know almost nothing about some of them except a brief mention of their faithful work. Among these little-known, non-literary prophets was Micaiah….

Millennialism and the Church

By millennialism I refer to Premillennialism which pervades the vast majority of Protestant churches, including the old “mainline” denominations, independent groups, the various Pentecostal sects, and the newer “community” churches.…

“Movement in Transition”

Some time ago an announcement in the bulletin of a large (1,000+ member) West Texas “Church of Christ” caught my eye. The church had planned a special summer series of Wednesday night lectures on the theme, “Movement in Transition: A Vision for the Future.”…

Musings on “the Journalism of Hate”

The Gospel Journal (TGJ, henceforth) was not begun primarily to engage in direct confrontation with either periodicals or persons. However, it certainly does not contradict our published editorial aims to be confrontational when occasion demands. Such an occasion has arisen, and I cannot conscientiously ignore it,….

New Testament Baptism

Perhaps there is no teaching of the New Testament over which more controversy has raged than the’ subject of baptism. This is not the case because the New Testament is ambiguous on the subject, nor because men are incapable of understanding its teaching….

On “Evolving Standards”

The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday [March 1, 2005] that the Constitution forbids the execution of killers who were under 18 when they committed their crimes, ending a practice used in 19 states….

On Miracles and Revelation

The word miracle is one of several Biblical words that have been “wordnapped,” redefined, and misused…The “religious” con men on TV have amassed fortunes by confusing a gullible public with their pseudo claims of miraculous powers.…

On Persecution 

Persecution of godliness is becoming increasingly common in our nation, even though, ironically, America was founded by men who believed in God and in the Bible.

One More Vicious Attack on “Conservatives”

The extreme to which some liberals in the church are willing to go in an attempt to discredit those who reject their agenda was demonstrated at the 1991 annual lectureship at David Lipscomb University.…

Politics and Religion—Liberals Will Be Liberals

Railroad tracks run parallel to each other, as do numerous other things (e.g., lines on a music staff, window blinds, prison bars, et al.). Such items are not only aligned; they go in the same direction and generally have the same terminus. Parallels exist not only in the area of physical phenomena, but in the realm of ideas as well….

Practical Principles of Right Living—No. 1

Everyone develops principles by which we will live. Once one has resolved that he will live by these principles (i.e., his “moral standards”), one must then choose the standard he will follow. This choice is the crucial one in determining one’s behavior—one’s “morality.”

Practical Suggestions and Examples for Christian Women

There is little in the Word of God in the way of detailed and specific instructions for women of God. Therefore, these suggestions are simply that: possible ways of applying the Scriptures to our own needs….

Prayer in the Life of Jesus

No one can read the four New Testament accounts of the life of the Lord and come away doubting that He was a man of earnest prayer. His emphasis and dependence upon prayer must be a powerful and positive example for every ordinary son and daughter of God”….

Praying at the Lord’s Table

As I travel about, I have opportunity to worship with brethren over a wide geographical area, both nationally and internationally. I thus hear a wide variety of prayers at the Lord’s Table. Unfortunately, these prayers often indicate misconceptions and ignorance about the Supper itself, as well as about the prayers to be prayed in connection with it.

Preachers and Preaching—an Overview

In ages past God called men to preach His Word by immediate and/or supernatural means.… God no longer thus calls or commissions men to serve Him. Nor does He inspire them, notwithstanding the claims of some. He still calls men to serve Him as Gospel preachers, according to their abilities and inclinations, but through His Word. 

Preaching First Principles Is Still Important

The implication of the title of this article is that some no longer believe “first principles” need to or even should be preached. Evidence that this is so abounds in our congregations.

Premillennialism—A System of Fatal Error

Premillennialism pervades the vast majority of Protestant churches, including the old “mainline” denominations, independent groups, the various Pentecostal sects, and the newer “community” churches. This phenomenon is more than “a doctrine.” It is a system of theology…

“Prove… the Sincerity of Your Love

Sometimes faithful Christians needlessly bear a load of guilt because, while they know they are supposed to love their enemies (Luke 6:35), they do not feel a sentimental affection for them. Since they do not thus “love” their enemies, they then reason, they must not love God or their fellow man either. This concept of the word love is faulty….

Proving the Existence of God

There are only two possible positions relative to the existence of God: Either He does or He does not exist. The absolutely fundamental issue to Christians is belief in God. In the very nature of the case, Christians must believe in God….

Recognizing Our Own Needs

While the wives of elders, deacons, and preachers (and the single women in leadership positions such as teaching) must be strong and self-sacrificing, we cannot afford to ignore our own needs.

Respect for Authority

In every system there is a basic, core principle that largely determines the nature and operation of the whole. In the business world, the guiding principle is to turn a profit. In the sports world, winning is the principal thing. In politics, getting elected and remaining in office are paramount….

Reviewing Some Fundamental Principles

The church as God planned it and as Christ built it is revealed in only one place: the New Testament. It is a Divine institution. It was no mere man—not even an angel or an archangel—who said, “I will build my church”… and then erected it on a bloody foundation….

Responsibilities of Dedicated Parents

In the normal development of family life there comes a time when the second generation leaves the first generation to establish a new family from which succeeding generations spring forth. This perpetual “family cycle” was ordered by God in the very beginning as the means of propagating the earth with humankind.

Scriptural Pragmatism

Our English word pragmatic generally connotes that which is practical, that which “gets the job done,” sometimes to the exclusion of reasonable or artistic considerations…To call one a “pragmatist” in the general sense would generally be considered a compliment. It is an innocent word that conveys no evil in itself….

Shall We Surrender the Scriptural Purpose of Baptism?

The subject of the one age-lasting baptism (Eph. 4:5; Mat. 28:19–20) has stirred discussion and controversy for centuries. Men have hotly contested various facets of the subject in countless conversations and thousands of debates….

Should Parents Be Concerned With Selfish Traits in Their Children

The traits of rudeness, disobedience and uncooperativeness are all problems of attitude, whether in children or adults. They all relate to one basic attitude problem—selfishness. Such traits are both anti-social and anti-scriptural.…

Small Things That Can Become Great

Women are often given to feeling that we are inferior, that we are not important, that since we cannot lead in worship or work of the church, we are insignificant. Long ago Zechariah cautioned us not to despise “the day of small things” …. If a cup of cold water is all we have to give, and we give it with love, we will not lose our reward ….

Some Practical Suggestions on Prayer

My aim is not to find fault, but to call attention to (1) some of the practical aspects of these prayers that we may sometimes overlook and (2) some Scriptural principles that may apply to them. I am not offering my comments as “law,” but rather as brotherly suggestions, which I hope will be helpful.

Some Sad and Serious Misconceptions

If truth were told, denominationalists and their first cousins (liberal brethren) do not know the meaning of Biblical grace. To them it is little more than a free, unconditional ride to the Gloryland. If ever there was a prostitution of a Scriptural doctrine, this is it. And, how could there be a more crucial, salvation-jeopardizing doctrine than that of perverted grace?….

Some Thoughts on Worship “Etiquette”

Acceptable worship must be God-centered, rather than man-centered….However, some who would never consider introducing any strange worship practices behave in worship assemblies so as to indicate their inattention toward God….

Spiritual Anticlimaxes

An anticlimax is a reversal of direction, thought, or status from the superior to the inferior or from the sublime to the ridiculous …The behaviors of people in religious matters frequently demonstrate this phenomenon.

Stand Fast or Compromise

The whole point of a soldier’s being well-armed is not for the parade ground, the reviewing stand, or mock maneuvers, but for the field of combat. The reason we are to “take up the whole armor of God” is that we “may be able to withstand in the evil day, and, having done all, to stand”….

Strong and Fully Armed

A recurring metaphor in the New Testament likens the church to a spiritual army and its members to soldiers ….. God’s people are engaged in spiritual combat….

Thank God for the Seven Thousand

While it is necessary on occasion to highlight the extreme departures some who were once among us have made, there is room for some optimism.…

The All-Sufficiency of Scriptures and the Cessation of Miracles

Among other things that love, grace, faith, elect, and miracle have in common is that they are all words that have been “wordnapped,” redefined, and misused. Miracle is loosely used in reference to a spectacular catch in the end zone of a football game, a person who somehow escaped the wrath of a tornado, or to the providential answer to prayer….

The Authority of Elders

I believe I have produced Scriptural evidence that elders (as a group; never independently of his fellow-elders) possess authority over the local church.… Rebellion against the Word of the Lord is rebellion against the Lord himself (John 12:48)….

The Best-Known Verse of Scripture

If you were to guess the verse of Scripture more people (even those who are not Christians) can quote than any other, which one would it be? Surely, there are many who can quote John 3:16. Many can also recall John 11:35 (“Jesus wept”) when put on the spot to quote a verse.

The Both Ways Philosophy

A childish trait that many seem never to outgrow is the desire to have certain things “both ways” when it is not possible to do so. In all such cases, the choice of one item, course of action, or result immediately and automatically excludes the other—one cannot have it both ways in such matters….

The Church—Purposed of God

Is the church Jesus promised to build a “new kid on the block” in God’s eternal purpose? When Jesus announced to the apostles, “I will build my church” (Mat. 16:18), was He introducing something only recently conceived in Heaven? Is the church a mere afterthought in the mind of Deity?…

The Church of Christ Is Not a Denomination

The church of Christ is not only constitutionally non-denominational, but anti-denominational….The truth in the title of this essay is so basic and obvious that every member of the church of the Lord should know and understand it….

The Church— Its Uniqueness, Distinctiveness, and “Exceptionalism”

While fighting a war against terrorism that seeks to destroy our nation from without, it is also in the throes of a crucial civil war…..It is a philosophical and ideological engagement; its weapons are ideas and words. The assaults are aimed at the very heart of that which constitutes the United States of America—that which makes our nation unique….

The Consequences of Pentecostalism

“Even though I don’t believe In ‘speaking In tongues’ or in other claimed miraculous gifts identified with Pentecostalism, I don’t see what it hurts if someone does, as long as he doesn’t try to influence others.” It is not uncommon to hear members of the Lord’s body making such a statement. Does it really do any harm either to the individual or the church to hold such views?…

The Man or the Plan” Discussion Revisited

Scriptural accuracy includes “the Man and the plan.” Men who choose one in favor of the other are apostates. Our Lord, by self-imposed limitation, cannot/does not save apart from His plan….

The Oak Hills Church of Lucado

It was a long time coming. Oak Hills “Church of Christ,” San Antonio, Texas, is no more. No, it did not close its doors (unfortunately). It will now be just “Oak Hills Church.” However, the name more accurately describing this religious body would be “Oak Hills Church of Lucado” (OHCL).

The Parable of the Barren Fig Tree

As with all parables (indeed, with all statements of Scripture), consideration of context is most important in arriving at the correct understanding and application of this parable.

The Power of Incrementalism

While whoever wrote it had to have “tongue” firmly “in cheek,” it nevertheless demonstrates a very serious principle: the power of incrementalism..This is the way the devil generally works to conquer individuals, churches, schools, and even nations. He is a master at this strategy.

The Preacher’s Wife—the Unpaid Partner

Whether we like it or not, whether it is fair or not, we must face facts: Many, many people in the church consider the preacher’s wife an employee (albeit unpaid) of the congregation with which her husband works.

The Purpose of Worship

The worship of God is at once an exalted privilege and an awesome responsibility. A failure to grasp this has cost many much….

The Purpose-Driven Church Paradigm

Churches should have goals and aims. In this sense every congregation of the Lord’s people should be driven by purpose rather than stumbling along haphazardly….

The Responsibility of Motherhood

During the years when her children are young, motherhood is the Christian woman’s number one job, after her duties to her husband. If she fails, entire generations will be affected, and the sad results will be perpetuated.

The Same Subjects, but New Applications

Occasionally I review some of the sermon material I preached as a young man three or four decades ago (and am still preaching). I am often impressed with a striking phenomenon: Several of the Biblical principles which I fervently preached then to those who were outside of Christ are the very principles which we must now aim directly at our errant brethren….

The Shelter of Hell

As awful as the Bible depicts it to be, it is only right for us to consider another fact about Hell: Along with its evil environment … and unending torment,… it is nonetheless a place of eternal shelter and relief. It will provide a haven for its inhabitants from many of the things that so greatly irritated them and that they despised and rejected in their earthly sojourns….

The Truth About Tradition

Is everything that we call “tradition” bad, dangerous, or even prohibited? Is there such a thing as “good” or even “mandatory” tradition?  This word occurs thirteen times in the New Testament (ASV), and we still frequently employ it in religious discussions. Since it is often misunderstood, it is worthy of our attention….

In a most expressive figure, the writer to the Hebrews compares the Word of God to a sword, an offensive weapon of war. This is a reminder that God’s people are in a war, a death struggle, and our own faithfulness in combat will determine not only our own eternal victory but that of many others.

The Ultimate Capitulation—Inspiration of Scripture

The mere mention of the inspiration of the Bible, the authority of Scripture, baptism, the church, repentance, worship, the Lord’s supper, the virgin birth, the Deity of Christ, the resurrection of the Lord, Heaven, Hell, and many other subjects reminds us that men have utterly abandoned the Scriptures concerning them….

The Value of Woman and How God Has Used Her in the Past

From the beginning of humanity God has placed a great value upon woman. He made her originally to be the “help meet [suitable, fitting]” for man…

The Word of God Is Able and Profitable

From my earliest remembrance of the content of Gospel sermons, God-fearing men have exalted the inspired, written Word of God (the New Testament specifically) as the “road map” to Heaven. Mind you, faithful brethren have not set it forth as one among a few or many others, but as the only way by which sinners may reach eternal glory.

Those Who Were Lost on Pentecost

We learn much from the Gospel sermon Peter preached on Pentecost, and from the response to it. His answer to those who cried out, “What shall we do?” are clear, plain, and unambiguous.

Too Good To Be True

When the women who discovered the empty tomb of the Lord brought the news back to the apostles, they were at first incredulous, labeling it “idle talk”…. This provoked Peter and John to race to the tomb to find it empty as reported….

Unity in [Spite of] Diversity?

As beautiful and desirable as unity is, it is not the “be all and end all” in religion. Jesus did not say, “Ye shall know unity, and unity shall make you free,” but “Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free” (John 8:32)….

We Can KNOW That the Bible is the Word of God—Inspiration

No doctrine is more fundamental to true religion than that of the inspiration of the Bible. Rejection of the Bible’s inspiration is tantamount to rejection of the Bible itself, and therefore, rejection of the religion and of the God Whom it claims as its source….

What Are Elders For, Anyhow?

The foregoing title seems appropriate when we hear and read what some say about elders. When elders refused to let brethren teach their “anti” hobbies in the mid-20th century, they attacked the authority of those elders by labeling them as “pontifical bishops.”…

What Are They Teaching Our Children?

The July 2000 issue of this publication carried my article titled “What Are We Teaching Our Children?” The thrust of that piece was that Christians (parents, teachers, and others) need to be very careful and thoughtful about the kinds of messages we send to our children regarding the importance of Bible study, worship, and godly living….

What Are We Teaching Our Children?

All conscientious Christian parents have a keen sense of their responsibility concerning the spiritual training of their children. Bible classes in conjunction with the regular assembly periods of the church are designed and provided to help parents with this responsibility. The efforts of faithful teachers everywhere should be recognized, appreciated, praised, and encouraged….

What Ever Happened to the “First Principles”?

To speak of “first principles” in any field of endeavor is to speak of things basic, elementary, fundamental, and rudimentary. The Hebrews writer referred to “the rudiments of the first principles of the oracles of God”….

What Is a “Change Agent”?

The term, change agent, has been in use at least since 1947 in social psychology circles in reference to those whose task it is to facilitate change in organizations. Lynn Anderson is generally credited with being the first to apply the term to the church,….

What Is Sectarianism?

“I am trying to think my way out of a sectarian attitude. I grew up in the context of one. I learned a sectarian spirit. I breathed a sectarian spirit. I exhibited a sectarian spirit. I am embarrassed. I am ashamed. I have repented. I am trying to outgrow it.”….

What Is the Work of the Church?

Several years ago, a family visited the Lord’s day morning assembly where I preached. In conversation with them afterward they asked some questions: “What sort of program do you have for teenagers? Do you take them on skiing trips and have other such activities for them?” It was their first—and last—visit. They did not like my answer….

What Love Is Not

Several rich and beautiful Biblical words have been “wordnapped,” redefined, misused, and abused. Among them are grace, faith, miracle, elect, and predestined. Love is another of these words….

When the Heart Is Missing

When we study the sad history of the cyclical apostasies of the descendants of Jacob, it is difficult not to be harshly critical of their folly. God never did before or ever will again so choose and bless a nation as he did Israel when He, with a mighty hand, brought her out of Egypt and gave her a wonderful land. How disgracefully she began to squander her place of privilege….

When Your Husband Is Not a Christian

Paul commended Phoebe (Rom. 16:1–2), who was a succorer of many,including himself. We read nothing about her husband. If she had a husband, he was apparently not a Christian, or perhaps he had died. Yet that did not stop Phoebe from serving the Lord and her brothers and sisters in Christ….

Who Killed Jesus?

To believe historical truth says nothing of one’s love or hatred for anyone, only for the truth. One is not anti-Semitic simply because he believes some historical facts about the Jews that are uncomplimentary.

Who or What Is “the Man of Sin”?

Who or what is the “Man of Sin”? Is he a specter of the past, is he yet to appear, or is he presently stalking the earth? The Thessalonians apparently understood this passage. Its specific application has been more or less enigmatic to every generation from the second century forward….

Why the Plan of Salvation Was Necessary

There is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus made me free from the law of sin and of death (Rom. 8:1–2).This grand statement at once calls attention to mankind’s need of a means by which he might be saved from “the law of sin and death” ….

Will God Change His Mind?

God has “changed His mind” on occasion …. If God never “changes His mind” about anything Deism is justified, and many of our prayers are vain. Often the very aim of our supplications is to persuade God to intervene providentially in situations that (as we understand from the Bible) would not contradict His immutability….

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14 thoughts on “Longer Articles

  1. Brother,

    Looking at the new setup. It really looks great. I am sure I will be visiting often looking for materials when researching a subject. Keep up the great work.


    1. Don:

      Thanks for your kind evaluation of The Scripturecache. I hope you will visit often and will tell others about it.

      Yours in the Cause,

      Dub McClish


  2. Dub, the article by Lavonne on "principles on which to love", is very touching. In my new apartment, when I walk out my door, I am facing the other apartment where the lady lives that I am planning to study God's word with. She is on Oxygen. I went over to her apartment to visit her one day and she was studying the Bible. She told me that she didn't understand what she was reading. I asked her if she would like to have a Bible study with me and immediately she said yes. I am preparig to study with her. It just so happens that when I went on Scripturecache to find an article to read, I clicked on Lavonne's article "principles on which to love". Isn't that ironic. I told you in my other email that her name is Miss Bessie Shears. I have been visiting with her each day. She says she has no one to visit her; she is all alone. She has become attached to me. I am now visiting her several times a day as she has become attached to me. She told me that she started smoking when she was just 14 years old, she is now 85 years old. She just stopped smoking last year at 85 years old and has a bad case of COPD and many other ailements. Lavonne's article truly touched me on "principles on which to love. Not to mention, visiting Miss Bessie has given me a great outlet in the mist of my mourning for my family. Isn't it great how God truly takes care of his own. Thank to Lavonne and you Dub for this article. Judy

    1. Judy:

      Thanks for your nice note. I’m especially gratified that you appreciated Lavonne’s article. She was very devoted to the Lord, and she was a good thinker and writer. I’m glad you’re making contacts with others to try to teach them the Gospel.

      Yours in the Cause,


  3. Dub, the article, "The intertestamental period was so informative. I have often wandered what exactly was going on during that 400 years. I had to read it twice to truly understand it; but it was worth it. I finally figured out that these different groups were apostate Jews. Thank you Dub for this good information. My husband is studying this article now. Thanks again.


    1. Judy:
      I’m sorry I just now read your very nice note about one of my MSS. Thank you, and please accept my apology for letting it slip by without my notice.
      Yours in the Cause,

  4. God has not changed his mind. Those who assume that He has would do well to change theirs while they still have life this side of the judgement. Dub, thank you so much for his article. I so love your humor

    1. Judy:

      No one could have said it better than your comments, both about God’s “mknd-changing” and man’s need to face this fact. I appreciate your kind words. What? Don’t you know that we old stick-in-mud conservatives don’t have any sense of humor? ;-]

      Yours in the Cause,

      Dub McClish

  5. Dear Dub: “Prove The Sincerity of Your Love,” by Lavonne. All I can say is that it is so true what Lavonne said. Quote, “If brethren would use this Bible principle there would be less unloving attitudes in the church toward each other.” I put that in my own words.

    1. Dear Judy:

      I’m so glad you wrote these nice words about one of Lavonne’s articles. She was a very good Bible student (helped me many a time!) as well as a good writer. Your paraphrase of her statement is right on target. Thanks for taking the time to write. I hope you’re well.

      Your brother and friend,

      Dub McClish

  6.  Dear Dub: I began reading this article and it was so good that I decdied to print it out and take it home to study with the scriptures. The part in it about us bearing our cross, I have read it sevral times from the scriptures and now I know exactly what that means. But, I will study it carefully at home and get a better/deeper understanding. Thank you.

    1. Dear Judy:

      Thank you for visiting The Scripturecache again. From your description of some of the content, I assume you may be referring to my MS on "Overcoming Temptation." I've dealt with this subject more fully in a MS on my Long Manuscripts page. It is titled, "Persecution, The Christian and." I thought you might want to take a look at it, also. You are so very gracious in your comments, and I am encouraged by them. May God bless you in your continued study and in your daily walk on the road to Heaven.

      Yours in the Cause,

      Dub McClish

  7.  Dear Dub:

    I must have printed out about 15/20 articles from the scripture today. They are only 10 cents a copy(15 cents a page in NJ). I know that I will be able to have several months of sermons to study from when I get back to NJ. Thank you for all these wonderful lessons. Thanks for the article on the Patriachial Dispensation; I have the answer to  questions that I have longed to understand. Can't wait to be able to move to TX so that I can have access to to great teachers like you, Phil, Jerry, and the other preacher/teachers. I can't recall his name right now.

    Your Sister and Friend


    1. Dear Judy,

      I’m so glad to get your note and to learn that you have “stocked up” on material from The Scripturecache. You are a great source of encouragement. We’re anxious for you to get back here to stay!

      Yours in Christ


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