Know Your Bible

VOL. 14                                                                                                                         February 26, 2017                                                                                                                            NO. 50



by Donnie Radar

(Editor’s Note: Since this interview contains four sections, this series will continue in this bulletin for the next three weeks. ERH)


On October 21, 1994 I had the privilege to interview Mrs. Irven (Otha) Lee. I had suggested to Mike Willis that, in light of some other material we were preparing on the role of women, an interview with a woman who has been active in the kingdom, yet within her role, would be helpful. It would show women (particularly younger women) that a woman can be effective in the kingdom of God without stepping out of the role God gave her. It would encourage other women to do the same.

First, some personal things about sister Lee and then the interview. Sister Lee is the widow of Irven Lee who died May 4, 1991 at the age of 76. She is now 79. Her two daughters, Judy (Mrs. Wayne Moore) and Sandra. (Mrs. Bob Waldron), are faithful servants of the Lord. Both sons-in-law are gospel preachers.

The Lees did their labors in the gospel primarily in the South-east. They lived in Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia and Florida. Most of their work was done in North Alabama. Brother Lee did more preaching in Limestone County, Alabama than any other place. They traveled in full-time meeting work (40 meetings a year) for four years.

Irven Lee helped start the Athens Bible School (Athens AL), one in Florence, AL and another in Chattanooga, TN.

Sister Lee is an active member of the Jackson Drive Church of Christ where she teaches two ladies classes and a private class.

Sister Lee has not and does not present herself in any way that would be questioned by others. In fact, she was embarrassed by doing this interview. It is obvious that she does not want to do anything that would leave any impression that she was even close to stepping out of her God-given role. Yet, she wants to be useful in the service of God. She refused a request to write an article about women for both Guardian of Truth and Christianity Magazine. Likewise, she refused to participate in one of the women's seminars (a woman's lectureship) because that would be "one step that leads to the next step."

There are four sections to this interview.

Personal Spiritual Life

How did you first come to learn the gospel?

My mother was a very good Bible student. From an infant I've always heard the Bible stories. I never knew a time when I didn't know the Bible stories. I was the sixth of seven children. By the time I came along, Mother was telling them to the older children. So, there was never a time when I didn't hear them.

Through the years how have you approached your personal Bible study? It's obvious that you have a greater Bible knowledge than the average woman.

At home, we read the Bible together from the time we were able to read every night at bedtime. And, I grew up with a conscience that said if I haven't read my Bible today, then I have sinned. So, daily Bible reading has always been my practice. To this day if for some reason I haven't read any in the Bible I feel just as guilty as though I've committed some crime. Always that has been a part of my teaching.

Then, as I grew older, I began teaching children's classes as soon as I was old enough to do anything like that. I began to study for various lessons on my own. Starting very early teaching classes, there has been a particular class in mind almost always.

What have you done through the years to stay spiritually strong? What would you say to other women to help them be strong?

Marry a preacher, I suppose. I married a preacher who thought of one thing: the Bible. This is what he taught, thought and practiced all the time. Our conversation at home so much of the time was the Scriptures. And that has been so much a part of our life that I rarely have a telephone conversation or just a visit with one of my daughters that we don't talk about it. This is what's on our mind. We all are teaching classes all the time. Our lives have been centered around the church and the Bible. I haven't known anything else in my life. That's all there's been.

What do you think may be the problem with so many Christian women who feel so weak?

They are so busy. There are just so many distractions in our day. I didn't have all those distractions. There is no time for one to study. The mother gets up in the morning and she must get her children off to school. And then there are their household duties. She has so many, many different duties that I think a lot of it is the times in which we live. We are just too busy with other things. And we let things of the world just crowd out the time for study. And I believe that is more a matter of time that we've not allowed ourselves the time.

When you don't have time, then you don't meditate on the word. Therefore, your interest wanes. If you don't have time to think about these things, then you don't have time to practice any of it. And you naturally grow weak.

Then there's an awful lot of lack of teaching our children in the homes and in the church. So, we're not bringing up our young people with a knowledge. We are not implanting this in the home or in the church. So, to start with, our young ladies simply don't know the Bible. Now, we've taken them to Bible classes. But, we've offered then little when they get there. Therefore, they just come through life knowing little. It is difficult to find a home in which the Bible is taught to the children. We're allowing a generation to grow up without really knowing God. It's like the generation that followed Joshua's time. People were faithful during the days of Joshua and the elders that outlived Joshua. Then there arose a generation that didn't know God because they hadn't been taught. And that's what's wrong with our women today. They haven't been taught.


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The philosophy of GENERAL EVOLUTION has reduced man to an accident of nature and a highly developed animal, governed by no fixed code of ethics, accountable to no one. The philosophy of HUMANISM has removed God from the picture, deified man, removed restraint, and made fleshly pleasures the highest goals in life. Both hate God and God's word and labor with a passion to destroy man's belief in them. “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.” (Colossians 2:8).           


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Know Your Bible" is e-mailed weekly by the church of Christ which meets at 112 Roberts Avenue in Wise, Virginia. If you know of others who might benefit from the articles contained in this bulletin, we would be glad to have you submit their e-mail addresses and we will include them in next week's mailing. If you are receiving this bulletin and do not wish to continue to do so, please e-mail us with your desire to be removed from the mailing list and we will remove your address promptly. Continue to the bottom of this page and further instructions will be given as to how you may contact us.

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