June 1: Machen Expects to be Dropped from the Ministry (1936)

The following is from a news clipping on file here in the PCA Historical Center, part of the Manuscript Collection of the Rev. Henry G. Welbon.

From The Syracuse Herald of June 1, 1936, dateline Sunday, May 31, 1936:—

J. Gresham Machen spoke at the First Ward Presbyterian Church in Syracuse, NY, criticizing what he termed “the church’s demand that we ministers submit our consciences to a living and shifting human authority.”

“Fundamentalists,” he said, “believe in the permanency and universality of truth, that they should obey God rather than man.”

“We believe that a thing true in one generation is true in all generations,” he said. “So we believe that the Bible is as true now as when it was written, and that the true interpretation of it is forever true. God has told us once and for all in His Holy Word.”

The lawlessness of the Judicial Commission’s decision [to defrock Dr. Machen and about a dozen others] is no isolated thing, Dr. Machen declared.

“On the contrary,” he said, “it is quite in accord with the world’s spirit of our times. All over the world today there is a tendency to run rough shod over guarantees of liberty and to regard solemn contracts public and private as mere scraps of paper.”

“That tendency has given us Mussolini; it has given us the Soviets; it has given us Hitler; it has given us in this country certain phenomena which I am not going to mention.”

“I think that tendency is going to bring about persecution of the Christian religion.”


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