I am enjoying my 40th year in the ministry. God has allowed me to travel and preach in this nation for 36 years, as well preaching in 17 foreign countries. I attended the best Bible College in the nation, at the time, in Hyles-Anderson College under the leadership of one of the greatest men of God I have ever known. I was apart of the first four year class of HAC and graduated in 1976.
In addition to pastoring two great churches God allowed me, for some reason, to travel with Dr. Jack Hyles for 22 years including the last Bible Conference he ever preached in Mexico.
This man of God was attacked, lied about, and attempts were made to diminish his influence, but all in vain. Those who hated him still do and those who loved him still do, but even more. Whether the enemy likes it or not there is a resurgence and return to the Bible principles he embraced.
Dr. Hyles voiced concerns that proved to become reality and was in his own right a Seer. I think it would be wise to revisit some of these words of warnings!
- He spoke and wrote that in the next ten years the great battle would be over the King James Bible. WOW! I was surprised at that, but he certainly turned out to be a prophet. In 2009 a shot that was heard around the fundamental world split churches, families, and schools.
- He warned young preachers about allowing architects, who knew nothing of old fashioned preaching, to dictate the type of auditoriums to build. We have coliseum style auditoriums conducive to entertainment and not preaching.
- He warned us about allowing lawyers to tell us what we can and cannot do. Most lawyers are "crisis creators." A physical church building should be built in the mind of the man of God and then let the architect help. A church constitution should be built on Biblical principles and Bible commands. Let the church constitution be built around the Bible. I am afraid If we overly listen to the lawyers and all that can go wrong, then we will go wrong by living in fear. We should not break the law of man, but for sure not break the commands of God to reach the world with the Gospel.
- He warned us of deacon run church boards. He brought the trustee board into the deacon board and made it one board. Dr. Roberson kept them separate and look what happened. Deacons must aid the pastor not run the pastor.
- He warned us of deacons, church staffs, and faculty members who did not go soul winning on a weekly basis becoming nobles who did not work. Nehemiah 3:5, "...but their nobles put not their necks to the work of their Lord." We lead by example and not by exhortation only.
- He warned us of wanting and desiring "change" after the leaving of a pastor or in the event of his death. What ever we believed and practiced should be the same for the next generation. HIGHLAND PARK BAPTIST CHURCH should have called a TENNESSEE TEMPLE grad, but instead they called a Calvinist in Don Jennings. He blew through 8 million dollars and left the church running hundreds instead of thousands.
- He would often warn us by saying, "Do not spend what you do not have." Yet, we have monster building programs where in some cases churches are 40 to 50 million dollars in debt and hoping that the new buildings will bring in the people.
- He warned us of the bringing together of our Christian schools and the public schools in the sports arena. He warned us of introducing our kids to the world's kids. This is a sorry substitute for church wide soul winning by sacrificing our kids to offer opportunities to witness. Go door to door and you will find the same people to witness too without a leg show at half time.
- He warned us about taking government money. When the local church starts taking government money then the strings that are attached will strangle the work of God one day.
- He warned us of obtaining accreditation from the world. I can still hear him equating the need for Babe Ruth to be accredited as being silly and in like manner our Christian schools and colleges wanting the world's accreditation.
- He warned us of Expository preaching and the dangers of verse by verse preaching. He believed in Topical preaching and practiced it. He was not opposed to Expository preaching, but he felt it negated an emphasis on the needs of the people of God. He felt it satisfied the preacher and make preaching easier, but did not help the people in the pews. He would often speak of an apothecary where the spiritual medicine should NOT be given by going from one bottle to the next, but rather find out the need and then give the prescribed and corresponding spiritual medicine.
I fear we have listened to the youth and ignored the wisdom of the aged men of the past who proved to be blessed of God with great soul winning churches. Too many are like Rehoboam of whom it is said in I Kings 12:8, "But he forsook the counsel of the old men, which they had given him, and consulted with the young men that were grown up with him, and which stood before him:"
GOTTA LOVE THE OLD TIME RELIGION!