The Preacher’s Coffee - and a Sequel

The following poem and its sequel came from the late Ben M. Bogard, Baptist Debater and W. Curtis Porter, gospel preacher. It comes close to being a classic. - webmaster


I have a pleasant story which I will tell in rhyme

About a circuit preacher who lived in recent times

He was a circuit rider of good John Wesley’s brand

And rode the finest circuit in all the blessed land.

At one of his good charges, some members, not a few,

Became quite sorely troubled about the word “INTO”

The good book says quite plainly in Acts chapter 8

They went down into water, as Baptist people state;

The preacher preached a sermon of extra zeal and might

And to his satisfaction he set the passage right.

“INTO” does not mean into, but only at, near by;

They went down to the water and got a small supply.

But near the place of worship there lived a Sister Brown,

And for her splendid cooking she’d gained a great renown;

Her yellow legged chickens, her luscious cakes and pies

Had often made that preacher roll up his weeking eyes.

And her delicious coffee, the circuit all around

The preacher oft admitted, it’s like could not be found.

So when he preached his sermon of extra power and length

He stayed at the Brown’s table to rectify his strength

But Sister Brown was a Baptist, the stoutest in the land

She oft reproved the Methodist for changing God’s command.

She heard the preacher’s sermon, and thought the sermon o’er

And asked him home to dinner as oft she’d done before

She ground the good brown coffee, her kettle steaming hot,

And put it at or nearby the famous coffee pot:

She poured Brother Jones a cupful, I think if was no sin

“Why you forgot, dear sister, to put the coffee in.”

“No, no, Brother Jones that’s coffee, I ground a good supply

And put it at the kettle...INTO is at...nearby

By logic of your sermon, I thought it rather thin,

If “AT”, “NEARBY” means “INTO” I put the coffee in.

So if you’ll promise no more such stuff to teach,

Nor dodge God’s plain commandment when you attempt to preach;

I’ll go and make some coffee, just to the Bible dot

And I will put the coffee INTO the coffee. - Ben M. Bogard, Baptist


A Sequel to the Preacher’s Coffee

Just then in stepped a gospel preacher who wears a Bible name

The simple name of Christian, of Apostolic fame

God put into the Bible no human name to wear

And hence he was contented the inspired mark to bear.

Then Mrs. Brown he questioned if really she’d admit

That “into” had the meaning that she had given it.

She said she would most surely, and who would dare say not

No coffee’s in the vessel till put into the pot.

Then guilty spoke the preacher, “Don’t censure parson Jones

You’ve spoken condemnation to self in strongest tones

No need to hold tradition, such never has sufficed

The Bible says baptism puts people “into” Christ.”

“No, no replied the Mrs. such teaching is a sin

Our preacher gives baptism to those already in.”

“Well, well”, then spoke the preacher, “it surely gives me fun,

To see this Baptist woman throw down her Baptist gun.”

If “into” has the meaning you’ve given it at last

Your shot at circuit rider has gone “into” a blast.

Then Philip and the Eunuch went not into the creek,

For they were in already and had been for a week.

When Christians are invited “into” that Heavenly clime,

They’ll really not go “into”...were in it all the time

And when the Lord will banish the wicked “into” hell

They’ll merely stay in pleasure on earth they loved so well.

You thought you put the coffee “into” the coffee pot,

But it was in already, already boiling hot.

Now Mrs. Brown, please promise that you’ll not have the gall.

To hit folks with the Bible, unless you’ll take it all.

The Bible says plainly, to which you referred,

“They went down into water”, I trust it’s every word.

It tells us that the righteous go “into” mansions fair

It tells us that the wicked go down “into” despair.

It tells us just as surely, not only once but twice,

That which is called Baptism puts people into Christ

Now take it all dear woman, false preachers you can rout,

Or else just raise your window and throw the Bible out.

- W. Curtis Porter, Gospel Preacher

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