By Cecil Willis
Brother Clifton Inman, Editor of the Bible Herald which is published in Parkersburg, West Virginia, is upset. He seems to be having trouble getting some of his brethren to believe him and to take him seriously when he tells them that Ohio Valley College does not accept funds from church treasuries.
The drive is still on to get the colleges in the budgets of churches. This effort has been underway, in varying degrees, for twenty-five years. For many of those years Brother Inman has affected to be strongly opposed to the church support of colleges. But now some of his brethren seem not to be taking what Brother Inman says too seriously. He is so upset over the current circumstance that he wrote about the matter in the issue of Bible Herald which bears a date of June 15, 1971, but which was only recently received, due to the fact that Bible Herald is several months behind its publishing schedule.
Recently, concerted efforts have been made by David Lipscomb College, Freed-Hardeman College, Alabama Christian College, and the newly formed International Bible College to get themselves implanted in the budgets of churches. Some of us have been trying to tell some of the liberal brethren (like Brother Inman) for years that the church support of colleges is really the issue before brethren, and that the controversy about the church support of institutional orphan homes is only a smoke screen which these liberal college brethren have thrown up to cloud the real issue. Apparently Brother Inman is one of those who have been taken in by the liberal propaganda machines.
Brother Inman writes in the June 15th issue: “One man who was urged to send his son to OVC (Ohio Valley College – CW) retorted that he would never send his son there because they take funds from church treasuries. He then sent his son to a college in the south which both solicits and receives funds from church treasuries and recommends the action. For too long men have spread the falsehood that Ohio Valley College has received funds from church treasuries. It is time for the man who says this to either bring forth the proof or admit his falsehood. And it is time that men quit patronizing there what they condemn here.”
As for me, I would about as soon OhioValley accept funds from churches as for them to be as indifferent about the matter as Clifton Inman sometimes is. Have you seen any strong editorials, in Bible Herald opposing the recent fund raising drives of David Lipscomb, Freed Hardeman, etc.? You certainly have not, and are not likely to see any. In fact, Brother Inman signed a statement published in the Gospel Advocate in June, 1959 which included the following remark: “Though our philosophy of obtaining support may vary from them (i.e. from those schools which solicit and accept funds from church treasuries-CW), we are not intending to start any crusade against those schools, but shall give them our prayers and our blessings.”
Now Brother Inman would like for you to think that he really believes it is sinful for a church to support a college, but he said in the Gospel Advocate that he was not going to start any crusade against those schools which do accept money from churches. Furthermore, he also made the absurd statement that he was going to give those brethren, who are engaged in that which he would have us to believe that he believes is sinful, both his prayers and his blessings. Is it any wonder that some of his brethren really have their doubts about where Brother Inman stands on the church support colleges? How can one give his prayers and blessings to one engaged in that which believes to be sinful? Read 2 John 9-11.
Furthermore, if you will watch the, annual lecture program of Ohio Valley College, you find that they “load” their program with those who are in favor, of the church support colleges. They even had J. M. Powell, a brother-in-law to B. C. Goodpasture, Editor of the very liberal Gospel Advocate, to serve as their President for a while.
Brother Inman chides the brother who criticized Ohio Valley College, and then sent his son to a college that both solicits and accepts church funds. Is that any worse than for Brother Inman to give the same “sinful” school his prayers and his blessings? I think Brother Inman’s advice to his brother is timely advice for Brother Inman Himself: “And it is time men quit patronizing ‘there’ what they condemn ‘here.’
Until Brother Inman gets up enough gumption to openly and strongly oppose the Church support of colleges, and to quit promoting using those brethren who practice the church support of colleges, he is going to continue to have his brethren confused and uncertain as where he stands on the issue. As long as extends his erring brethren, who solicit and accept church money for their schools, his prayers and his blessings, Brother Inmans brethren are going to continue not to take opposition seriously. It is no wonder to me Brother Inman has to continue to try to make brethren understand where he stands on this question. In this regard he is about like Brother Reuel Lemmons on several issues: strong on both sides!
TRUTH MAGAZINE, XVI: 23, pp. 3-4
April 13, 1972