CONVICTION

I wouldn't give you a dime for a person who dares not have a real conviction on everything in which he believes. Frankly, after becoming, in my late years, somewhat acquainted with persons of higher learning, I've lost a great deal of respect for a few of the apparent characteristics which are often found in academic doctors. One of these is the lack of real conviction. It may be that such persons have it but professional pride does not allow them to admit it. There is no question about the truthfulness of relativity but even through our faith, our love for God and man so much of what we believe is a matter of degrees percentage some things are 100 percent right and some things are 100 percent wrong. For example, if it is possible at all for man to understand the Bible, the person out of Christ is 100 percent loss, whereas, the man who dies in full human loyalty to Him is 100 percent saved.

There was a day when there were "giants" in our group Campbell, Smith, McGarvey, Lipscomb, Harding, Freed, Srygley, Boles, Armstrong, Brewer, Hall, Hardeman, Wallace and others. Brother Foy Wallace, Jr., was pretty much the last man among us, in my opinion, who, as a brotherhood figure, had deep conviction (whether we approved or not) and defended it anywhere, any time.

It is difficult today to find one of our highly educated leaders who is a fighter for truth it could be contrary to academic ethics to believe something deeply enough to positively defend it. On the other hand, there could be another reason one which appears more reasonable that of personal interests, "worldly" entanglements. Almost to a man today, our top preachers, in respect to academics, are promoting some sort of a personal venture that requires brotherhood favor and pleasant relations with the public. It is simply a case where a soldier who has put away his sword ceases to be a good warrior.

You have the right to disagree with me as much as you like - I admire the person who does - but I have become quite sick of "refined" religion, watered-down and leveled-out to the place where good is so confused with bad, and bad with good that pretty much anything goes. The apostle Paul puts it this way: "How can there be harmony between Christ and the Devil. How can light and darkness share life together."

It appears to be an age of "indirect approach" anything to avoid positiveness. The person today who earnestly stands for right in every case as he knows it is considered in many respects a trouble maker. I'm sure I will never become one congregationally speaking, but the Lord knows we need such persons since it is a downright shame the stuff that is being tolerated today in our churches in the name of peace. Keeping my mouth shut when I have felt like screaming will haunt me until my dying day.

May God hasten the time when there will again be leaders in the church who are so filled with love of truth and the destiny of man that they will compromise at no stage or on any point.

Editor's Note: The above article was written years ago by Jimmy Lovell (now deceased) in his paper called "California Christian". Even then he tried to warn of the danger of the lack of deep, motivating conviction, without which no one can ever please God.

Lack of deep conviction is a real danger in our day and is increasingly seen in the teaching and preaching today. Compromise, appeasement, and the stand-firm-against-nothing attitude has taken over as the modern approach. It is a sure sign of apostacy. - CAH