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    "A companion of fools shall be destroyed", (Prov. 13:20).
    That young person who knows his own best interests will learn early in life to SHUN THE SKEPTIC -- the young man who puts his fingers in his vest and laughs at your "old - fashioned religion", and turns to some mystery of the Bible and demands: "Explain that, my pious friend; explain that!" He is the one who says: "Nobody is going to scare me; I am not afraid of the future; I used to believe in such things, as did my parents, but I have got over it". Yes, he has got over it all right; and if you sit in his company a little longer, you may get over it too.
    Without presenting a single logical argument against the Christian religion, such men will, by their jeers and scoffs and caricatures, destroy your respect for that religion, which was the strength of your father in his declining years, and the pillow of your mother when she lay dying.
    Alas! a time will come when that blustering young infidel will have to die. His diamond ring will flash no splendor in the eyes of Death,
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    The story is told of a father who put his son on top of a ladder, then stood with outstretched arms urging the boy to jump into them. As the child jumped, the father stepped back and allowed him to fall to the floor. As the frightened and bruised child cried, the cruel father said: "I did that to teach you a lesson, Billy. Never trust anyone -- not even your own father."
    This story illustrates the mood that is becoming increasingly prevalent in our country. "The credibility gap" expresses vocally the suspicions with which people have come to receive the solemn pronouncements of those in authority. The President of our country cannot even make a statement without being accused of "ulterior motives". But sadder still is the fact that the plurality of those who profess to be followers of Christ and to love their brethren have succumbed to this evil spirit.
    "Love thinketh no evil". Nothing could be more obvious than the fact that one who constantly impugns the motive of his brethren, and "reads between the lines" for
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"hidden implications" IS NOT PRACTICING LOVE! Nor is he setting an example that others may safely follow.
    The ancient King Herod read "hidden implications" into the inquiry made by the Wise men from the East and arranged a "slaughter of the innocents" in Bethlehem - Judea. Imagining that his POSITION was endangered by this mysterious birth, he would take no chances. Nor was he the last to be ruled by a merciless, self - perpetuating spirit of intolerance. Sometimes this very spirit creeps into the hearts of men whodeceive themselves into believing that they serve God by such deviltry as destroys mutual confidence and renders true and unpretentious fellowship impossible. It is indeed shameful when such a spirit is allowed to isolate good and well - intentioned brethren --- rejoicing in their destruction, and

bringing reproach on the name of the Christ who shall soon judge all men righteously and "without respect of persons".
    The only solution to this spirit of distrust, suspicion, and skepticism is Jesus Christ -- not merely a theoretical Christ, but one who REALLY POSSESSES the reins of our hearts and exercises an absolute "lordship" over our lips, our pens and our tongues.
    So may it be! --------E. G.


    The brief article in the last issue of the CLARION HERALD concerning the withdrawal of Hebron church from the IBSA was NOT published at the request of Pastor Doug Sanford, nor was his permission sought.
    Pastor Sanford is, predictably, paying a costly price for failure to consider his reputation above his convictions. May heaven forbid that the "crime" of collusion with E.G. should be, unjustly, added to his burden!!
    Will the serious concern of Pastor Sanford result in his crucifixion (though some leading brethren have admitted to me that his most serious charge will "probably prove true" of one church in their fellowship)? Or will brethren abandon their face - saving devices and express genuine Christian gratitude for the courage of one who has forced their attention on a DANGER THAT IS REAL -- even though he may not have used the most acceptable METHOD?
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    However eloquently men may argue over the most appropriate, or most effective, method of reaching others for Christ, they will never be reached effectively without a personal witness. And this is the unquestionable responsibility, and privilege, of every child of God.
    At the command, and in the name, of Christ, we go forth to witness. It is His message that we are authorized to proclaim: "Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners" .... "He that believeth on Him is not condemned" .... "but is passed from death unto life". "Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness", (Matt. 6:33). It is His power that will accomplish His purpose through yielded vessels that He may fill and use for His glory.
    God Himself opens doors of opportunity for witness. If we are willing to go He will lead the way. There is no Biblical evidence that God has obligated Himself to honor our SCIENTIFIC METHODS, our zealous and enthusiastic activity, or our door-crashing persistence, (I Cor. 1:18-31; 2:1-14). Nor is it written that the steward must be found "successful" --- but "faithful", (I Cor. 4:2). Jesus cautioned His disciples against rejoicing over "results" -- apparent success. Instead, their joy should be rooted in the blessedness of their relationship to Him -- that their names were written in heaven. The blessings belonging to the servants of Christ far exceed those known by the dearest of saints in ages past.

    It is ever our business to invite and urge men to come to Christ. It is NEVER our business to coerce them into making a "decision". The "compel them to come in" of Jesus' parable (Luke 14:23) is the compulsion of love, (2 Cor. 5:14). And it involves a compelling -- not to make a profession in order to miss hell -- but "that my house may be filled". It is Our Lord's desire to be glorified "in the church" -- "the house of God....the pillar and ground of the truth".
    Faithful witnesses will learn to sow the precious seed and then wait for the harvest. Too much impatience often demands "results" that are nothing short of "tragic". We must remember that it is necessary for seed to germinate, grow and blossom before it bears fruit.
    "Soulwinning" (falsely so called) designed to get an "immediate commitment" has often alienated men from Christ. Offering Jesus as "Savior" only --- without setting forth His claim to Lordship over every heart and life -- has misled multitudes into thinking they have "arrived" when they have barely begun.
    Christ alone can "win souls". This He doeswhere faithful witnesses hold forth the Word of life -- proclaiming a "full" Gospel. Only in the sense of "accommodation" may it be said that men "win souls"; we must all learn, with Paul, to confess, "Not I, but Christ".
    True "soulwinning" involves such a faithful witness as is useful in the spiritual maturing of the whole man unto CHRISTLIKENESS; Whoever does this is TRULY WISE! -- E.G.

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FOR THE RECORD ... Continued

    We shall see whether brethren eventually face the REAL PROBLEM or whether they HANG THE WATCHMAN! It is the sincere desire of this Editor that they may join hands and hearts -- uniting to do battle with Satan. It is not at all pleasant to sit back and watch brethren devour each other -- even if it were not beholding sin!
    In the Potter's arrival in Brazil and in Duane Melancen's expressed desire to follow Jesus in the morning service last Sunday.

SHUN THE SKEPTIC ... Continued

as he stands over the couch, waiting for his soul. Those beautiful locks will be uncombed upon the pillow; and the dying man will say:
    "I cannot die -- I CANNOT die."
    Death, standing ready beside the couch will answer: "You MUST die; you have only a minute to live; let me have it right away -- your soul!"
    "No", says the young infidel, "Here are my gold rings, and these pictures; take them ALL".
    "No", says Death, "What do I care for pictures? Your soul!"
    "Stand back", says the dying infidel.
    "I will not stand back", says Death; "you have only ten seconds to live; I want your soul".
    The dying man says, "Don't breathe that cold air into my face. You push me TOO FAST! It is getting dark in the room. 0, God!"
    "Hush", says death; "you said there WAS NO GOD".
    "Someone pray for me", pleads the dying infidel.
    "Too late for that", says Death; "You have three seconds to live, and I will count them off -- one --two -- three". And he is gone!
    Where? WHERE? Carry him out - out, and bury him beside his father and mother, who died while holding fast the Christian religion. They died singing; but the young infidel only said: "Don't breathe that cold air into my face". "You push me too fast". "It is getting dark in the room".
-- Arranged from Talmage