Jim Bill McInteer – updated

Jim Bill McInteerNews of passing and tributes to Jim Bill McInteer, one of the brotherhood’s great men in the 20th century.

Dale Jenkins shares a personal perspective:

One of my heroes died today. Brother Jim Bill McInteer was a prince of a man, a gentleman, a man of God’s Word. Where do you start in remembering this godly man?  He casts a long shadow and in the minds of many he the last of small group of preachers who so strongly influenced our brotherhood – Ira North, Willard Collins, BC Goodpasture, Batsell Barret Baxter and Jim Bill McInteer. His life entered into so many spheres.

The Christian Chronicle has a notice.

BrotherhoodNews.com story is now up.

I’ve asked to quote one brother who testified to brother McInteer’s firmness in face of false doctrine. Stay tuned for that.

And, from a “Reverend” who thinks very little of us, comes this tribute from November of last year:

One of the influences in my life was a Kentuckian who had the good sense to leave Kentucky and move to Nashville.  His name was Jim Bill McInteer.  He stood about five feet ten, and had a muscular frame, reddish hair thinning on top, and the face of Santa Claus  smile and all.  He was a preacher, but not like any preacher I’ve ever heard before or since.  He spoke with that broad, upper-class Kentucky drawl, and he could form a sentence of poetic grandeur, a sentence so flowery that it was spell-binding.  He hypnotized us with twenty-minute sermons of sentences woven together like a floral basket overflowing with beauty.  Going to church to hear Jim Bill McInteer preach was like eating candy.  Sometimes I had to go to some other church just to stop eating candy for a Sunday.  Jim Bill was one of two ministers who conducted our wedding.  Since he was wealthy, being the manager of five family farms, he graciously accepted the honorarium we paid him, and then gave it back as his gift to the bride and groom.

Jim Bill brought to his perfectionist, sectarian denomination a wise and healthy hearing of the gospel of grace, which was good news to our ears.  The Christianity he affirmed was full of common sense, and he served for decades as the editor of a magazine for the generation that grew up in the 1940’s—a practical generation, willing to work hard, save much and think for themselves.  The vision of God that he preached was full of hope like I’m talking about this morning—hope that is promise, not a “maybe.”

And then one Monday evening I got a chance to see another side of  Jim Bill McInteer, the leader behind the scenes.  I was in college.  I had something I wanted to talk to the lay leaders of the church about, so I was invited to the meeting.  I sat off to the side as they sat around a long table, Jim Bill at one end.  He brought one issue after another to their attention, and then he let them discuss it, ask questions, work on it and come up with a resolution.  He left his flowery language in his study, but the grace was still there.  Respected nationwide, he submitted his ego to the discipline of a shared fellowship, and he was content to be a partner with every person sitting at the table.  By the time it was my turn to speak I was so impressed by the atmosphere of the meeting that I felt like my issue was petty, crimped and ungenerous.  It was a lesson in humanity, which is Christianity, which is love, which is the practical living out of “the hope that does not disappoint us.”

I never knew Jim Bill McInteer and feel the poorer for it. But I am heir to many of his good works which I have known and benefited from.

My prayer is that his family be comforted and, above all, that they continue his legacy of good works and faithfulness to the Lord.

UPDATE: Here’s the Tennessean’s obituary. BNc link added above.

J. Randal Matheny

Be pithy.

5 thoughts on “Jim Bill McInteer – updated

  1. I have known Jim Bill McInteer for most of my life. My first memory of him is from his earliest days at West End Church of Christ. I was perhaps four or five years old, attending Vacation Bible School. A group of us were playing on the playground equipment across the street from the church in West School Park. As I slid down the slide, a pair of strong hands plucked me off of the slide and pulled me up to the face of a man who scared the daylights out of me. His big smile and bushy red eye brows were strange to me. He laughed out loud and set me down.

    Over the years I came to love that man who once scared me so. His teaching, counseling, and love for me and my family have been one of the strongest influences on my life. God Bless him, and his memory.

  2. West End Church of Christ was my home congregation, and Jim Bill McInteer was my preacher.

    I was privileged to work with Jim Bill as a minister at West End from1979-1984.

    He continued to remain a good friend to me and to my family up through his final days.

    May the Lord be with all of Jim Bill’s loved ones in this time of mourning.

  3. I have just looked again at Jim Bill McInteer’s little tract on Placing Membership, and have reflected again on this remarkable person. When I was in Montreal, he came through one Sunday and met with us and I was much encouraged to hear his commendation of our efforts in preaching in that vast city. He came to Dallas and spoke at White Rock Mission dinner. At first, I wondered who the lonely appearing old man was who looked almost like a tramp (his wife had died a few years earlier). But when he rose to speak to the gathering, I knew at once the voice, the gentleness and marvel of this great servant of God. Thank you for an opportunity to say this word of love and admiration.

What do you think?