1877 - 1952
"Whenever you find a preacher who takes the Bible allegorically
and figuratively...that preacher is preaching an allegorical
gospel which is no Gospel. I thank God for a literal Christ,
for a literal salvation. There is literal sorrow, literal death,
literal Hell, and, thank God, there is a literal Heaven."
J. Frank Norris, one of the most controversial and flamboyant
figures in the history of fundamentalism, was born in Alabama,
but his family moved to Texas when he was a boy. His childhood
experiences included being shot trying to help his father defend
their farm from horse thieves. Norris was saved at the age of
13 in a brush arbor revival. Feeling that God had called him
to preach, he enrolled at Baylor University. While Norris was
a student, he was pastor of a church on weekends in nearby Mount
Calm. By the time of his graduation, the church regularly had
800 in attendance-in a town of 400 people! After graduating from
seminary, Norris was a pastor in Dallas for three years before
accepting the call to the First Baptist Church of Fort Worth,
Texas for the beginning of a 43-year ministry. By the late 1920s
the church had an average attendance of 5,200 people. Norris'
running feud with the Southern Baptist Convention over the issues
of evolution, modernism and liberalism and local church independence
covered many years. He was excluded from the Tarrant County Baptist
Association in 1922 and from the Texas Baptist Convention in
1924. Trials for perjury and arson in 1912 (related to a fire
which destroyed the church auditorium) and murder in 1927 (Norris
had killed a man in his office who threatened his life) ended
with his acquittal on all charges. Norris successfully forced
at least five newspapers to retract statements they made about
him during the second trial. In 1935 Norris accepted the pastorate
of a second church-Temple Baptist Church in Detroit, Michigan.
This church too experienced phenomenal growth. By 1946 the combined
membership of the two congregations was more than 26,000. Norris
commuted by train and later plane between the two churches for
some 16 years. Norris founded the Premillennium Baptist Missionary
Fellowship among like-minded independents. A struggle for control
of the group by men who resented his authoritarian methodology
led to the formation of the Baptist Bible Fellowship and the
World Baptist Fellowship (Norris' group). Norris died in Keystone
Heights, Florida in 1952, having influenced a generation for
the fundamentals of the Faith. Although a rift developed between
Dr. Norris and Dr. John R. Rice in 1936, Dr. Rice advised his
friends to love and pray for Dr. Norris: "He is a great
man, has won many thousands of souls, and has stood for the fundamentals
of the Faith in a way that has greatly honored God."
Tape One - "The Revelation"
Tape Two - "Remission Of Sin"
Priced $5.00 $1.60
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