28 Sep 2008

Musings from the Desert on K. C. Moser & R. C. Bell

Author: Bobby Valentine | Filed under: Bobby's World, Church History, K. C. Moser, R. C. Bell, Restoration History
Its Sunday afternoon here in the desert. We had a wonderful (I think) time at the Gathering at PV today. It is still quite hot out though I learned driving across New Mexico and western Texas that they seem to be in the 70s and 80s … not so here! I ate at a fast food mexican joint called “La Salsa” with some friends from PV today. One asked me “what do you do on Sunday afternoons?” As you can tell … NOTHING! I don’t really have anything significant to blog about so I will just sort of practice my free association, 😉

Can you believe the Brewers beat the Cubs and are in the playoffs for the first time since 1982! They are going to party in Milwaukee tonight (like it is 1999 to quote Prince). Read about Milwaukee going wild here. And the Packers lost to Tampa Bay but Farve threw a career high of 6 (that is SIX!!) touchdowns against our Arizona Cardinals. See him here. In other sporting news we can all celebrate that USC was humiliated by Oregon St and Florida lost to Ole Miss. But Alabama rolled over Georgia and is now ranked #2 in the AP poll behind Oklahoma … and I have to say that based on who each team has played so far … BAMA deserves to be placed first. Bama is the “unanimous” choice to play either Missouri or Oklahoma in a BCS title game. There is a lot of football left so I suggest that Bama fans not get too cocky yet but it was sweet to see the teams the pundits anointed so early on crumble when actually challenged (i.e. USC in the Pac-10 … give me a break!!!).

On to other stuff. R. C. Bell, K. C. Moser, and J. D. Thomas. There is a connection between these three. I have often heard the quip “If you get Romans, God get you” and seen or heard it attributed to Moser. I do believe Moser said that and probably often. But Moser did not originate that saying, R. C. Bell did. J. D. Thomas in a small “Self-Study Guide” to Romans published in 1963 states that Bell was his teacher at ACC and attributes the slogan to Bell. This is significant because he also mentions both Moser and Brewer in the same context. I know that there was significant interaction between Moser, Brewer and Thomas in the late 1930s when all three were in or around Lubbock, TX. I have little doubt that Thomas was in many ways mentored by Moser in those years. Years later Thomas would still lament that “Our people are legalists, basically” (quoted in an interview with Jim Mankin).

In the Center for Restoration Studies, as I was searching for Moser material I decided to look into the connections with Thomas and a few others (like John P. Lewis) to fill in the gaps in Moser knowledge and to trace his influence as best I can. I decided to dive into Thomas and was surprised that the Thomas papers are not extensive at all, at least those in the Center. But I did find biographical material, a special edition of Minister’s Monthly (April 1962) edited by Thomas with articles by Thomas, Bell and Moser in it. Here are some great lines in Bell and Moser:

Christianity is God’s superrefined, perfected way of making men gracious, loving, and lawful … [A]part from Christ, they become self-righteous, ungracious, unsympathetic legalists and weary drudgers of dull duty” (Bell).

The doctrine of grace has been lifted, so to speak, right out of the cross… The cross changes things!” (Moser)

While in Abilene it was great to fellowship with Fran Moser Winkles, her husband Dub and daughter Susan. They are wonderful people and have been so gracious towards me. I owe them a debt of gratitude. And my teacher, John Mark, I would not even be doing what I’m doing if it were not for him … things in my life have not let me go the route I intended to go (teach) but such is life. John Mark taught me more about Moser than anyone. He may not claim me but …

Let’s see what else? Oh yes! I wore my helmet today and Jeanne Holt was NO WHERE to be seen. I was like hello girl … here it is. I got to talk with Rachael and Talya on the phone yesterday and I was so happy about that.

Ramblings are over,
Bobby V

12 Responses to “Musings from the Desert on K. C. Moser & R. C. Bell”

  1. Jeanne Says:

    That’s okay. Brendon can vouch for you– he saw the helmet!

  2. wjcsydney Says:

    I enjoyed toyr ramblings, Bobby, and am very pleased to hear about the helmet!

  3. wjcsydney Says:

    YOUR.. how did I get toyr? methinks another coffee is required..

  4. muriel b Says:

    Isaac (my 17 year old) will argue probably to the death that Oklahoma will and should be number one. As for me, I am extremely pleased that the Titans are 4-0.

    Kudos on the helmet!!!

    Have a good week,

  5. Stoogelover Says:

    I believe had the game clock had about 3 more minutes on it, Bama very well may have lost that game! At some point in Saban’s career there, he needs to get those guys to the point they can actually play four quarters of a football game. Bless their hearts!

    Enjoyed the ramblings.

  6. kingdomseeking Says:

    Let the Milwauke and the Brewers have their party now. My prediction is that come the end of October we will be singing, “Go Cubs go, go Cubs go, hey Chicago what did ya’ say, the Cubs are gonna win today…” But I am a proud and biased Cubs fan.

    Grace and peace,


  7. Greetings From Tucson Says:

    Welcome back from Abilene! We enjoyed your sermon today and are looking forward to the first half of John 14 as well. My daughter the RN calls motorcyclists who don’t wear helmets “organ donors”. Glad to hear you are wearing your helmet!
    – Sandy

  8. johnmarkhicks Says:

    I’m glad that the Cubs let the Brew Crew into the playoffs. It will make a nice championship series for the Central rivals to battle it out…with the Cubs victorious, of course! 🙂

    I am also pleased with Bama. The SEC is the conference, but the Big-12 will be a tough fight as well. I hope Bama goes all the way!

    I continue to appreciate your work on Moser. The Romans quip is part of Bell’s heritage, and I still think Moser probably first heard it from him at Thorp Springs in the 1910s. Perhaps Bell planted a seed that bore fruit in the 1920s as you have demonstrated in Moser’s changes during that decade.

    Thanks for your work, my friend. It is wonderful!

  9. AncientWanderer Says:


  10. Carrie Says:

    Well, BV, I found your blog. Love the Ozzy.

  11. Stoned-Campbell Disciple Says:

    Carrie I’m pleased that you have.

  12. Matthew Says:

    I love your work into the history of the movement. You are one of the best with it.

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