Archive for the ‘Bible Doctrine’ Category

Dr James Ach

Steven Anderson has made several “Post Trib Moment” videos as well as a series of anti-Israel videos in support of his Armstrongism views of the relationship between the church and Israel. These videos have been responded to thoroughly at length by two other brothers, Bryan Denlinger, Post Trib Moments Exposed, and Rick Jacoby, Israel Moments Examined, so I have chosen not to address those videos, but since this issue was addressed on my Twitter account with several others wanting a reply, I wanted to offer a few short comments to refute Anderson’s “Post Trib Moment #48” in which Anderson asserts that the 144,000 sealed servants of Revelation 7 are not future Jews.

Anderson claims that the Bible never calls the 144,000 listed in Revelation 7:4-8 “Jews” but “of the 12 tribes of the children of Israel”. Now how anyone could come up with that ridiculous conclusion is beyond me, because to make any kind of sense to the passage, you would first have to understand who the 12 tribes were, and then who the children of Israel were, and conclude that neither the 12 tribes nor the children of Israel were ever Jewish. But Anderson offers a solution to that conundrum by offering a kind of Preterist interpretation: that these 144,000 were chosen from 12 tribes that were already on earth, and not that they will be chosen from any future tribes.

Where Are the 144,000 Located?

Anderson’s first contention (which he never really fully explains the relevancy and skips over Revelation 7) is that the 144,000 can’t be Jews because they are in heaven. He never really revisits this after making the argument that they are in heaven in Revelation 14. True, they are in heaven in Revelation 14, and that proves what exactly?? The 2 witnesses end up in heaven, too, in the middle of the tribulation (This also provides one of the strongest arguments for a 7 year tribulation. The 2 witnesses ministry lasts for 3 1/2 years Revelation 11:3, and the devil’s antics do not begin UNTIL they are killed in Revelation 11:6-8, at which point, the dragon knows that he has 3 1/2 years left. Revelation 12:11-12, Revelation 13:5).

But note that the 144,000 are first SEALED ON EARTH.  1) The angels that seal them are standing on the FOUR CORNERS OF THE EARTH (Revelation 7:1) which is below heaven where God resides, and, 2) they are told not to hurt the earth until the servants are sealed (Revelation 7:3). Why would they be told not to hurt the earth if the 144,000 were sealed in heaven? Thus we see why Anderson never came back to Revelation chapter 7 to develop this point. The 144,000 are sealed on earth, and are taken with those who believe Christ during their ministry to the mountains (Revelation 12:6), and from there to heaven which is why you see them there in Revelation 14. Keep in mind that this fits the timeline of the ministry of the 2 witnesses of Revelation 11:3, Anderson’s account does not.

What About Those 10 Tribes? Where Are the Tribes?

Anderson makes an absurd argument not found in Scripture or history that the Northern tribes of Israel (all 10 of them) became Samaria, and thus lost their Jewish identity. However, race-mingling occurred all throughout the Old Testament (See Ezra 10:3 and Nehemiah 13:26-28) and yet it never caused any of the tribes to lose their identity. Oddly enough, although Anderson contends that none of the 12 tribes are mentioned after the resurrection of Christ except one, Asher (which would be Anna, Luke 2:36), he fails to mention that Asher was of the NORTHERN tribes of Israel.

Anderson argues that the Jews lost their identity because of intermingling, but he makes this argument from only the Northern tribes. Wouldn’t that argument, to be consistent, also need to include the Southern tribes as well? If the Northern tribes lost their identity because of intermingling, then how did the Southern tribes lose their identity who did NOT intermingle? Not only is Anderson’s argument inconsistent (and unbiblical), it is also erroneous in the fact that it merely made the progeny of those particular relationships half Jewish, it didn’t make the Jewish perpetrators any LESS Jewish. And keep in mind, for Anderson’s argument to be true, all of this would have had to have been accomplished at the time of Christ, because he defers to the term “Samaria” as proof of this, yet James writes to “The 12 tribes” after Christ’s resurrection (more on that below).

Moreover, one the strongest refutations against Anderson’s position is that the tribe of Levi exceeded the physical tribal boundaries. They were not part of either Northern or Southern kingdoms because they were never offered a physical inheritance (Deuteronomy 10:9, 18:1, Numbers 18:20-24), and yet they are listed with the tribes in Revelation 7. This proves beyond a doubt that the 144,000 COULD NOT HAVE BEEN Old Testament saints as Anderson erroneously contends.

Lastly on this point is Anderson’s oversight (we think deliberately) that no other tribes are mentioned other than a prophetess from Asher . However, in Romans 11, Paul tells us he is an Israelite from the tribe of Benjamin, in Philipians 3:5 he repeats this, but refers to his identity as a Hebrew of Hebrews, and in Acts 21:39 Paul calls himself a Jew. So Israelite, Hebrew, and Jew are all synonymous, and it is therefore ludicrous to think that the 12 tribes of Israel in Revelation 7 would not be 12 JEWISH tribes, and then attempt to make some unbiblical distinction between Jew and Israelite.

We also read the following from Acts 26:7 in Paul’s address to King Agrippa,

 Unto which promise our twelve tribes, instantly serving God day and night, hope to come. For which hope’s sake, king Agrippa, I am accused of the Jews.

Clearly here, the “hope to come” is a reference to a future 12 tribes. There’s a long list of Old Testament passages that are relevant to the millennial kingdom that could  be cited as well (such as the Zechariah 8:23) that prophesy God’s fulfillment of remaining promises to the NATION of Israel. See our article on “Not All Israel Are of Israel?” for irrefutable proof of Israel’s future restoration and a refutation of popular Replacement Theology arguments.

The 144,000 Are the Firstfruits OF the Lamb, Not BEFORE the Lamb

In Revelation 14:4, as Anderson correctly points out, the 144,000 are called the firstfruits of the Lamb. Here’s a common sense question, how could Christ be the firstfruits in 1 Corinthians 15:20-23 and Colossians 1:18, and the 144,000 be firstfruits that precede THE Firstfruit? The ORDER of firstfruits in the NT is ALWAYS Christ first. Thus, the 144,000 could not possibly have been Old Testament saints before Christ.

So Where Are the 12 Tribes Today?

Anderson contends that none of the 12 tribes exist today in Israel, and therefore that proves Revelation 7 isn’t about 12 Jewish tribes [See The Khazar Myth Debunked by Chris White for a short explanation about DNA evidence linking modern Jews with OT Jews] . Ironically, Anderson says he takes the Bible literally in Revelation 7, but then refuses to believe the possibility that these 12 tribes exist, and are just unknown, but will be made known in the future. By using this kind of criteria to evaluate Scripture one could argue that NONE of the events Christians consider future (including even Anderson’s pre-wrath rapture) will ever happen. For example, we could argue that there is not NOW a New World Order, yet even though Revelation 13-18 is clear that there WILL BE, using Anderson’s logic we could easily argue against it. Jews could have argued in the OT that no virgin has ever given birth to a child and therefore it will never happen. Nobody ever thought Israel would be a nation again, either.

Anderson admits that there are Jews alive today, and that our land is called Israel, and Jews live in it. Now common sense would tell you that we at least at one point in history had a tribal identity and just because Israel today does not KNOW all of the tribes due to being scattered and persecuted does not mean that the tribal identities will not be recovered/known at a future time, just as the Hebrew language was recovered. Many Africans sold into slavery were taken from tribes in Africa and today, none of them can tell you what tribe they belong to; that doesn’t mean those tribes don’t exist. Anderson can’t simply write off all of the fulfilled prophecies of the OT regarding Israel as coincidence (See our articles on Prophecies Fulfilled In Modern Israel, and Debunking Myths About Current Israel ) If all of the prophecies listed in these articles are not the actual fulfillment of prophecy, then there is yet another group of people that will be called Jews and another land yet to be called Israel (Ezekiel 37:12) that have yet to fulfill them all-TWICE.

Scripture makes it clear that this is a period called “The Time of the Gentiles” (Luke 21:24) and the setting aside of Israel –which would naturally and consequentially include their tribal identity– is temporary. Romans 11:25-26. Paul says that Israel NATIONALLY is brought back “from the dead” in Romans 11:15. Why then should we expect a temporarily dead nation to know all of their tribal identities? If we BELIEVE the Scripture, and take it literally as Anderson claims he does, then there’s no reason to believe that the tribes of Israel will not be made known WHEN THE TIME IS COME, a standard that applies to any other remaining prophecy (again, including even Anderson’s own view of a post-tribulation rapture). 

However, if Steven Anderson-to borrow an American phrase-“wants to be technical”, Revelation 7:4-8 doesn’t say that the tribes MUST BE KNOWN TO US. If it is only God that knew them, the Scripture would still prove that 12 JEWISH tribes are future regardless of whether those tribal identities are known to any of us (or them). Certainly, it would be hard to fathom how Jesus could promise His disciples that they WOULD (future) sit on 12 thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel if those 12 tribes are never manifested. Matthew 19:28. And to create 12 tribes, you’re going to need men and women who aren’t virgins. Yet nothing in Revelation 7-14 indicates that any of the 144,000 virgins stopped to make a family while they were sealed and witnessing during the tribulation.

Furthermore, when James wrote his epistle, even though he admits that the Jewish tribes were scattered, he still referred to them as “the 12 tribes”. James 1:1. It would be silly to argue that James did not know the identity of these 12 tribes and yet still refer to them as “THE 12 tribes”.

Witnesses During the Wrath of God?

One of Anderson’s followers, “Edward”, stated that,

the 144,000 are from the tribes of Israel and are sent from heaven to win souls during the wrath of God.

There’s not one verse in Revelation that says there is any witnessing that occurs DURING the last 3 years of the tribulation but by ONE ANGEL (Revelation 14:6). Furthermore, in the last half of the tribulation any surviving saints (that did not make it to the mountains in Revelation 12:6 during the first 3 1/2, and those who convert under the angel during the latter half) will be martyred by the dragon who is given power over them (Revelation 13:5-7). There are no SEALED saints in the latter half of the tribulation. In fact, it is because those who heard their message during the first 3 1/2 years and rejected it chose their fate for the last 3 1/2 years (Revelation 14:8). Those who reject Christ during the first 3.5 years will not be written in the book of life of the Lamb, and will be given over to a reprobate mind (believe a lie, i.e., that the beast is God when he declares himself so. 2 Thessalonians 2:11-12). They are given chance after chance and continually refuse to repent (Revelation 9:20-21, Revelation 16:9-11).

However, not all of them will be killed (the meaning behind “he that endureth to the end shall be saved” in Matthew 24:13), some survive and make it to the millennial kingdom (Isaiah 65:20), but become slaves of Israel which will include the church as ruling judges (Isaiah 1:26, 1 Corinthians 6:3, your position in the kingdom will depend on your obedience in THIS time, 1 Corinthians 3:11-16) and be subject to the theocratic rule of the Lamb (Revelation 2:27, 12:5, 19:15). They have children during this time who increase in population and ultimately rebel against God after a thousand years when Satan is released from the bottomless pit (Revelation 20:7-8).

Finally, Anderson’s logic here is that God has left the church on the earth to endure the tribulation, and chosen to seal 144,000 Old Testament saints to carry the gospel, because apparently the entire church got amnesia and forgot what it was and how to preach it, or perhaps the Calvinists got left behind and since they don’t evangelize (in any meaningful sense of the word), God in His foreknowledge chose to get the job done with 144,000 OT virgins. Hard to fathom how 144,000 virgins passed through 2000 years of Jewish history unnoticed, but hey, Anderson’s sticking to his story. Perhaps one day he’ll fight another border patrol officer and get shocked back into sanity. Anderson’s argument is based on “it makes way more sense that…”, which is the exact type of reasoning he condemns from those who use this reasoning to support certain verses for a pre-tribulation rapture that are not exactly spelled out.* Anderson’s entire argument therefore rests on speculation, not anything he can support from Scripture with the same certainty that he demands from pre-tribulationists.

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*We do note Anderson says the 144,000 serve to replace the saints so that the earth is not left without witnesses, which would place the rapture of the saints MID TRIBULATION, when Anderson has devoted an entire movie arguing for a POST TRIBULATION rapture! Furthermore, the wrath of God that is poured out

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Those who follow Twitter know there is a little troll who spams the IFB #oldpaths hashtag trying to unsuccessfully convert KJVO fundamental Baptists to Calvinism. “Wee Calvin” or Colin Maxwell (Wee, I assume, because of his small theology). He follows IFB members comments on this popular IFB hashtag, and then expounds on them on his blog, adding his own twist and fantasy to the tweeted material.

He’s targeted us a few times, but never responds after we take the time to thoroughly sink his paddle boat. He’s obnoxious, rude, foul-mouthed, and so we treat his responses to the IFB with the same courtesy minus some of the rhetoric (Prov 26:4-5, Titus 1:9-12).

Wee Calvin chose to pick on “L. Ivey” (Twitter.com/liveyneckwear) who quoted his opinion that Matthew 25:41 debunks Calvinism since hell was initially created for the devil and his angels, then the obvious conclusion is that God could not have intended to predetermine anyone to hell. Although this is not a new argument against Calvinism, it is still a goodie, because it’s true. But, Wee Calvin made an effort to defend Calvinism and did probably one of the most eisegetical hack jobs to Scripture I’ve ever seen.

Matthew 25:41 (KJV) reads:

Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:

And for additional analysis, we are going to throw in Isaiah 5:14:

 Therefore hell hath enlarged herself, and opened her mouth without measure: and their glory, and their multitude, and their pomp, and he that rejoiceth, shall descend into it.

I guess we could also cite Genesis chapter 1 to show that hell was NOT one of the things created in God’s six days of creation. Since Lucifer did not fall until AFTER creation, then hell being prepared for Lucifer and his angels could not have existed BEFORE creation.

Wee Calvin first attempts to state the “old argument”, and then offers his first rebuttal,

Well, to state the pretty obvious, it does not say that Hell was prepared only for the Devil and his rebellious angels.That is the gist of the old argument, but it is not what the Saviour said.

Seriously? Now just think of how much grammatical sense it would make for Jesus to have said, “depart ye into everlasting fire prepared ONLY for the devil and his angels”? Of course it doesn’t say “only” because Jesus is speaking of a PRESENT warning based on a place that was prepared for Satan. Wee Calvin’s argument is IRRELEVANT. That text does not HAVE to include the word “only” in order to convey that hell was initially created ONLY for Satan and his angels.

The reason that hell was created for ONLY the devil and his angels is obvious: because Lucifer and the angels were CREATED BEFORE HUMANS and BEFORE HUMAN SIN. There was no need to include humanity in hell because Lucifer fell before Adam did. Hence, hell was prepared for Satan, but not for any of humanity. The only reason that Calvinists need to this to not be true is because Calvinism would have to claim that God DID create hell for humans in order to prove that He intended on sending the majority of His creation to hell by a predestinated eternal decree of reprobation. If the Calvinist can’t show in Scripture that God did not INTEND on including humans in hell PRIOR TO THE FALL OF ADAM, then that alone destroys the entire concept of Calvinist preterition.

Point 2 of Wee Calvin’s horrific response goes:

If such were the case i.e. that the everlasting fire of Hell was prepared only for the Devil and the angels, then does God deny Himself (2 Timothy 2:13) when He bids the wicked above to depart as curséd to that dread place? Is God indeed a man that He should repent i.e. change His mind, after all? (1 Samuel 15:29)

What on earth does this have to do with whether or not hell was or wasn’t created for ONLY the devil and his angels? It’s based on a question-begging fallacy and circular reasoning, i.e., it must not be true because my warped theology says it isn’t true, and therefore God can not deny Himself and therefore it’s not true.

Furthermore, Wee Calvin has a disturbed view of God’s repentance, because Scripture is FULL of examples where God in fact DOES change a course of action that HE SAID HE WOULD DO, and the story of Jonah is a PERFECT example of this no matter how much Calvinists would like to change the narrative around to fit their awful presuppositions.

 8But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.

Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?

10 And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil, THAT HE SAID THAT HE WOULD DO unto them; and he did it not.” Jonah 3:8-10

Now this passage ALONE should settle the debate as to whether or not the Bible contains counter-factual conditionals. As Brother Ruckman says, the Bible isn’t hard to understand IT’S HARD FOR PEOPLE TO BELIEVE. Notice that “repent” in vs 8-9 show God TURNING AWAY from something He SAID HE WOULD DO. So Jonah himself answers Wee’s hypothetical unbiblical NONSENSE and shoots #2 down in 3 verses.

On to point #3, Wee Calvin argues that:

Since God turns and will continue to turn the wicked into Hell (Psalm 9:17) then He has always purposed to do so. There was never a time in the mind of God when His hatred did not burn against sin and His justice demand that the perpetrators (if chronically unrepentant) of it be banished forever from His presence. (emphasis added).

Notice the highlighted part: God was ALWAYS purposed to do so??  SCRIPTURE??? Zero. None. Notta. Zilch. Nolo Contendere. NOWHERE does the Bible state anything near what Wee just claimed. IT IS PURELY A FICTIONAL SUPPOSITION BASED ON PHILOSOPHICAL SPECULATION. 

There are a number of other problems with this speculation as well:

*How can Wee Calvin claim “there was never a TIME…when God” when God exists OUTSIDE OF TIME? In order for Wee Calvin’s argument to even BEGIN to have substance, it would require that God’s emotions be bound to future events before time was even created.

*This is the equivalent of confirming dialectical materialism which maintains a premise of matter being eternally existent. In order for sin to be a reality in the mind of God for Him to be eternally angry about it, sin would have to coexist with God. Now the Calvinist will typically dress up a straw man and label it Open Theism by accusing anyone who would raise such an argument that God must not know the future if this isn’t possible, but notice the Calvinist does so without addressing the argument of dialectical materialism, and forces God to be bound by what He knows. In other words, God is not free to create, the future has a mind of its own that binds God to act according to His perfect knowledge of future events, and therefore the future is actually equal with God (the concept behind much Yin & Yang [Shintoism], or panentheism). So while Open Theism deprives God of being omniscient, Calvinism deprives God of being omnipotent.

*What perpetrators? In Wee Calvin’s rush to sound convincing, he claimed that God’s justice demands eternal punishment against “chronically unrepentent..perpetrators”. Where did these “perpetrators” come from in eternity? Are there some eternal perpetrators that God is mad at that we don’t know about? Maybe these eternal perpetrators are the ones who caused the devil to fall. WHO KNOWS. With Wee Calvin’s speculation, the sky is definitely NOT the limit.

Wee Calvin adds that:

This being the case, we read of ungodly men who were before of old ordained to this condemnation (Jude 4) and verses of a similar nature. Since God always determined to cast the wicked into Hell, then He determined that there would always be a Hell for wicked sinners to be cast into. One logically follows the other.

Jude 4 reads:

For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

One problem that Calvinists have is always interpreting “ordained” as “determined”. THEY ARE NOT THE SAME THING. A pastor can be ordained for a certain ministry doesn’t mean he was DETERMINED to do so. See Titus 1:5, Acts 16:4, Gal 3:19, Eph 2:10 (Ephesians 2:10 is especially critical, an argument we have raised called the “Calvinist Uniformity Conundrum”. If ordained always meant determined, then how can believers ever backslide EVEN FOR A MOMENT if their works were determined? Unless God determines that believer’s sin, Eph 2:10 is VERY problematic for Reformed Theology).

But several things to note about Jude 4:

1) It doesn’t say these men were condemned from eternity, but “before OF OLD”. That means, the judgment was something proposed IN TIME, NOT eternity.

2) It was the CONDEMNATION that was ordained, not the particular group of men. In other words, the CONSEQUENCE for rejecting Christ is what is ordained.

3) Three above is further supported by the fact that the ordained destruction WAS IN RESPONSE to those who “turned the grace of God” into something evil. For God to have eternally reprobated these men would require the ABSENCE of any reason for doing so. Thus, God can not eternally reprobate men while Jude claims that their condemnation WAS BECAUSE OF their reaction to the grace of God IN TIME. Notice moreoever in verse 7 how that those of Sodom and Gomorrah GAVE THEMSELVES OVER to their own lusts and sinfulness.

The same “decree” that God gives for life- whosoever believes in Him shall not perish- He also gives for death, that whosoever believes not shall suffer eternal punishment. The Calvinist must read their own twisted eisegesis into the text to come out with eternal reprobation because that’s NOT what Jude 4 says.

And finally, we will end with the most contradictory babbling you will ever see or hear among most Calvinists, and the greatest examples of philosophical flip-flopping of common sense and Scripture twisting extant.

First of all, the “kingdom” that is being discussed in Matthew 25:34 has absolutely NOTHING to do with any Gentile Christian believer or non believer during the Church Age. It is based on a judgment of men that occurs as a result of their obedience during the millennial reign of Christ when the sheep and the goats are separated AT THE END OF THE THOUSAND YEARS. Although we won’t go into the differences between the Kingdom of Heaven and the Kingdom of God here, it’s well worth the study.

Now notice that things that Jesus condemns those men of which He damns to eternal fire in Matthew 25: 42-45 because this is just as important as verse 41:

42  For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:

43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.

44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?

45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.

Notice the list “FOR” which here means “BECAUSE OF”. Now here’s a hint: you can’t have a BECAUSE OF and an ETERNAL DECREE AT THE SAME TIME AGAINST THE SAME EVENT. “Because of” implies causation. Every single act mentioned by Christ is something that these men COULD HAVE done differently, BUT FOR or BECAUSE OF their action or inaction, they are condemned. They are condemned FOR WHAT THEY DID, NOT CONDEMNED FROM ETERNITY, and Christ spends 5 verses on this subject to prove that.

The sinner, as a fully responsible creature, should ever seek the Lord and rest not until he is found of Him, not having his own righteousness etc. The free gospel offer of salvation is addressed to the ‘whosoever will.’ Calvinist evangelists have always rejoiced in the preaching of it.

The sinner is hardly a responsible creature if his destiny as well as his punishment has already been determined. The Calvinist would say that he is free to choose out of the compatibilistic nature that God gave him, even though he can’t ever choose good because of it, nevertheless he is still held responsible. But the problem with even that view is that his judgment was determined before any of his choices were made, so that alone would serve to prove that the sinner is not responsible for his sin because he was damned to eternal fire before he even sinned. (See our article “Would God Have Reprobated Perfect Human Beings?)

According to Calvinism’s view of Total Depravity, the sinner has Total Inability to seek God, and for Wee Calvin to suggest otherwise is blatantly dishonest. In addition to the non elect sinner not ever having the ability to respond to the offer, it is certainly, moreover, not a “FREE gospel offer”. A free offer implies that it can actually be accepted by anyone. But if ONLY the elect can receive and respond to it, then how is it a “free offer” to “whosoever will”? IT ISN’T!! That’s how Calvinism maintains credibility by LYING to you about what they really believe.  Wee Calvin had just clarified his position by claiming that those headed for hell are going there because God determined it to be so. How then can anyone be DETERMINED to go to hell, and yet have the actual ability to FREELY respond to the gospel?  That is utter nonsense and is the most patent example of a logical contradiction if there ever existed one. These are two extremes that CAN NOT both be true at the same. The gospel can not possibly be addressed to whosoever will without any meaningful opportunity for those among the whosoever to respond to it FREELY. If you mean that “whosoever” is ONLY the elect, then be honest and say so, and stop appealing to “whosoevers” as if anybody can actually read your rubbish.

Now remember when we started, we cited Isaiah 5:14! This is very simple logic and Bible. If hell was initially created for BOTH the devil, and sinful human beings, IT WOULD HAVE A PREDETERMINED PARAMETER. Would God make a place knowing exactly how many people were going to occupy it ONLY TO HAVE TO GO TO HOME DEPOT FOR MORE BUILDING SUPPLIES TO EXPAND IT LATER?? “Hell hath ENLARGED HERSELF”. The fact that hell GETS BIGGER shows that it was not intended to hold more than it was initially designed to hold.

Hence, Calvinism is NOT safe as Wee Calvin claims, and yes, hell was created initially for ONLY the devil and his angels which proves Biblically and logically that man was never predetermined to burn in hell.

Hell and destruction are NEVER FULL. Proverbs 27:20

 

 

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Dan Corner is a popular “holiness” preacher that rejects eternal security, and labels all who believe in “once saved, always saved” as heretics. Dan Corner has written an 800 page book on conditional security which rehashes many of the proof texts used by hyper-Arminians and Pentacostals to refute eternal security by mis-characterizing eternal security and what it means, and accusing those who believe it of promoting a license to sin. Ironically, he levies many of these charges against independent Baptists who are so often accused of legalism because of our emphasis on righteous living and standards. Thus, it is laughable that Corner renders such an accusation against Baptists that we promote licensure for sin.

In reviewing his videos on the subject of eternal security, I discovered a video where Corner also espouses to the heresy that Christians are not sinners. This is a popular view of the Nazarene denominations who believe that a believer receives a “second blessing” that gives them complete victory over sin.

Dan Corner accuses Christians who believe that even Christians are still sinners of being deceived by Satan to promote sin.  Dan asks “is everyone in the Bible a sinner? Answer: No.” According to Corner, there are only sinners or saints, either righteous or unrighteous. Don sites as evidence Luke 15:7 which reads,

I say unto you, that likewise joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons, which need no repentance.

Corner notes the difference between the 99 righteous and the one lost, and that the 99 need no repentance, thus if a Christian claims to be a sinner, he needs to repent.

Corner then quotes 1 Peter 4:18, “And if the righteous scarcely be saved, where shall the ungodly and the sinner appear?” Corner argues that because Peter contrasts the ungodly against the righteous, that this proves Christians are not sinners. Corner opines “Jesus said, ‘I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance” (Luke 5:32). Corner then states that a Christian can become a sinner again after being saved, and cites James 5:20 “Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.”, and thus, a Christian can become a sinner again who needs to repent again to be saved (also relying on Romans 11:19).

Corner then attempts to explain away 1 Timothy 1:15 where Paul says he is chief of sinners that Paul is explaining his pre-conversion.

Now, Corner is correct in the fact that ultimately, there are only 2 classes of “haves” and “have nots”. But Corner has created a gross caricature and straw man of what eternal security proponents believe about being sinners, and offers views that conflict with his own theology. Corner has applied some very egregious methods of hermeneutics in his analysis of the believer verses his sin nature, and fails to observe that once a believer is saved, his sin nature is still attached. This could not be anymore clear than in Galations 5:16-17, and Romans chapters 6-7.

 This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

Paul shows above in Galations 5:16-17 that both the Spirit AND the flesh work in the believer concurrently. Paul further makes this abundantly clear in Romans 6:1, “What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound?”. Paul clearly shows that a believer can continue in sin, but that he should not because of grace. Paul states that we are freed from sin and thus should not serve it. Yet Paul still says “WE” should not serve sin because we are dead to the old man and baptized into Christ. Paul does not eliminate the possibility that the believer while being a believer can serve the flesh. Romans 6:16.

Corner does not recognize the difference between being declared judicially righteous which removes the judgment of sin and  eliminates us as sinners positionally in Christ, but does not eliminate our being sinners experientially.

 For if the truth of God hath more abounded through my lie unto his glory; why yet am I also judged as a sinner? Romans 3:7

For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me. For I delight in the law of God after the inward man: But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

Paul showed that he delighted in the law of God after the inward man, which shows this passage is NOT about Paul’s life before conversion (as some have erroneously suggested). But noted a continual present tense manner in which sin still affected him.

Naturally, Corner attempts to offer a preemptive explanation of a verse that clearly refutes his doctrine in 1 Timothy 1:15 which states, “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I AM chief.” Corner simply attributes this passage to Paul’s pre-conversion, but that’s not what the verse says. Paul did not say “of whom I WAS chief”, Paul said of “whom I AM chief”.

Corner’s reliance on Luke 15:7 is equally gruesome. Jesus is not referring to a believer that loses salvation and then repents again but of a lost Jew that has never put their faith in Christ in the first place. Jesus is referring to a person getting positionally right with Christ, and is not referring to the the sinful experiences that are still present in the believer after they are saved. Luke 15:7 serves instead to refute Corner’s view that a believer would ever have to repent again for salvation. If a believer is not a sinner that never needs to repent, then how could he possibly lose his salvation?

This brings up another point. If a Christian is not a sinner, then how could he ever backslide and become lost? If a Christian is no longer a sinner, then he must no longer possess the ability to sin, yet if he does not have the ability to sin, then common sense should show Mr. Corner that he would not be able to backslide into salvation-forfeiting apostasy or sin.

Luke 5:32 is equally as comparable to Luke 15:7 where Christ is again, not referring to a believer already in Christ, but a person who has never been in Christ in the first place. Also, these verse are in contrast not to truly righteous persons but to SELF RIGHTEOUS Pharisees. Jesus was not emphasizing a comparison between saved and lost, but that He did not come to call those who thought they possessed righteousness of their own. Luke 15:2, Luke 5:30 (for cross reference that explains this, see also Luke 13:2).

Corner views James 5:20 as a believer that falls from the faith to show that a believer can become a sinner again. But that’s not what James 5:20 says. James does not say if you see a brother lose his salvation then if you reconvert him you will save a soul from death. James 1:1 shows that the audience are to 12 TRIBES OF JEWS scattered abroad. The Greek word used for brother, adelphos, also means those of a racial or national ancestry. James is referring to his brothers as flesh and blood Israelites, and if a believer converts an unbelieving Jew to Christ he saves a soul from death. There is also a dispensational element of James that does not apply to the church age, which as with Hebrews, we will save for another discussion. But the fact that the Jews rejected Christ, Paul stopped preaching to them Acts 18:6 and stated Israel as a nation was under blindness. Romans 11:25-26. So certainly, James was not referring to the 12 tribes as believers, but is referring to believers who convert unbelieving Jews.

Furthermore, Corner has taken Romans 11:19-20 entirely out of its context.  Romans 11:19-20. Corner here makes the same mistake that the Calvinists make in attributing Romans 9-11 to individual salvation instead of what the context is actually about, the grafting in of the Gentiles into the spiritual promises that Israel AS A NATION rejected, and then the future fulfillment of a remnant of Israelites who inherit the physical promises of the birthright through Ephraim of which the Gentile church is not privy to. Paul is giving the same admonition to Gentiles AS A WHOLE that Jesus spoke of against Israel in Matthew 23:37-39. Israel boasted of being the recipients of blessings merely because they were born in Abraham and Paul and Christ both affirmed that is not how it works (John 1:12-13, Romans 2:17-29). And likewise, a Gentile does not get in simply because he is a Gentile. Ultimately, the Gentiles as a whole have had as much time to receive Christ as did Israel (2,000 years) and thus the time of the Gentiles has reached it’s apex, and the time is near where Israel again becomes the focus. The Gentiles as a whole, have committed exactly what Paul said, and will be “un-grafted” from the opportunity to be the light to the world and recipients of the gospel offer until it is presented by JEWS during the tribulation (Rev 7:4-8, Rev 11:3-4, Rev 14:6). Thus this passage is not referring to individual Gentiles anymore than Romans 9-11 was referring to individual Jews or any individual element of salvation.

Corner’s reliance on 1 Peter 4:18 is also out of context. Peter here is referencing the sufferings of believers, and admonishes those who suffer as Christians to be happy. Yet Peter also says that a Christian can suffer as a thief or even a murderer (v. 15). Now that fact may seem to be preposterous to Corner, but being a murderer is spoken of in the same context as being a busybody in other men’s matters. So if a Christian can burn in hell for resorting to murder, he can also go to hell for gossiping and sticking his nose where it doesn’t belong. The contrast that Peter shows here actually proves that a Christian can sin. Peter gives an example of such a wayward believer that would make Corner have a Pentacostal snake seizure. Peter in describing the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, explains the following about the salvation of Lot,

And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds;) The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptations, and to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment to be punished:” 2 Peter 2:6-9

Peter showed that even though Lot was immoral, he still spared Lot and the angels literally drug Lot out of the city. Yet in all of Lot’s sin, he was still referred to by Peter as a “righteous man” with a “righteous soul”, and was used as an example of God’s ability to deliver the GODLY from temptation even though Lot was told the night before to leave, and did not, and had to be dragged out by the hand out of the city. Genesis 19:12-16. Even after Lot finally went to another city, Lot allowed his daughters to get him drunk and produce the Moabites and Ammonites with them.

Hebrews 6:4-6 (a proof text often sited by hyper-Arminians and those who believe one can lose salvation) makes it clear that one can not be out of Christ and then back in again, and if they could be, then they could never repent again and be re-placed back into Christ anyway. Although Hebrews 6:4-6 is directed specifically to tribulation Jews, the concept is still the same that IF a person could lose their salvation they could not repent again and be saved. (The relevance of this passage as pertaining to tribulation Jews will not be expounded upon in this article.)

As Christians, we still sin against the brethren (1 Corinthians 8:12), we can sin by unresolved anger (Eph 4:26) and we are to rebuke other believers who engage in blatant sin (1 Tim 5:20). John says in 1 John 2:28,

And now, little children, abide in him; that, when he shall appear, we may have confidence, and not be ashamed before him at his coming.

Now if a Christian can not sin, then how could he possibly be ashamed when Christ comes? This also goes to show that there will be Christians who stand before Christ that will regret not having lived for Him and will lose rewards (1 Cor 3:15). How can a Christian lose rewards without losing his salvation? Would not the same acts necessary to lose rewards be the same acts that would jeopardize a believers salvation? And yet the believer in 1 Corinthians 3 only loses rewards but not salvation. The very existence of a system of rewards that can be gained or lost annihilates Corner’s views against eternal security or that a believer can still be a sinner.

We will deal with Corner’s book against eternal security/once saved-always saved, in another segment although we have  touched the surface of it in this section. But suffice it to say that Corner has completely misinterpreted Scripture that has nothing to do with a believer being righteous and then having to repent unto salvation again. He has ignored the differences in the Bible that show a believer’s positional and judicial righteousness in Christ that has delivered us from the penalty, the indwelling of that Holy Spirit that gives us the ability to refrain from the power of sin, and his experiential nature that still has not been delivered from the presence of sin. Corner makes the categorical error of ascribing the unsaved persons sin nature to the sinful actions of Christians, and slanders Christians that maintain they are sinners as a verb, to what an unsaved person is by noun. An unsaved person sins because he is a sinner and chooses to act out of sinful nature in rebellion against God;, a Christian is a sinner because he sins, and that is the fundamental difference between the two because the Christian is declared righteous by God but still sins, and thus is in the verb sense a sinner, but not in the noun sense as an unbeliever.

The Christian is not exempt from chastisement when he sins, and certainly being saved is not a license to sin. But thanks to God IF we sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 1 John 2:1, and were sealed by the Holy Spirit the moment we received Christ. Eph 1:13, that it is HE that performs the work in us until the day of Christ. Phil 1:6, and having begun in the Spirit we can not be perfected by the flesh. Gal 3:3.

For the which cause I also suffer these things: nevertheless I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day. 1 Timothy 1:12.

_______________________________

Dr. James Ach and Dr. Elisha Weismann

J/A and Dr. Elisha Weismann

Seek ye the Lord while he may be foundcall ye upon him while he is near: 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the Lord, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. 8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:6-9

There is a clear distinction between the mind of God and the mind of man. The struggle to define the boundaries of accountability and free choice is drawn between definitions of freedom. Free will is the ability to choose A or to not choose A without any compelling force that causes the choice, as opposed to determinism which is the view that God from eternity past has determined all things whatsoever comes to pass. Yet if determinism (viz, compatibilist freedom/soft determinism) is true, and our minds are simply following predetermined responses, then ultimately God is having a universal chess match with Himself.

Free will is important in distinguishing the difference between an infallible creator, and fallible humans. Permitting free will demonstrates that man makes choices that God would not make, and thoughts that God would not think, actions that God would not take. Free will shows that God’s thoughts and actions are infinitely superior to humans. By God allowing man to think and act independently without any external or internal compulsion, man proves that he is incapable of making the best and wisest choices. When man is given the choice to decide between A and B, and chooses B where God would have chosen A, man’s free will shows that he can not possibly be like God.

Free will proves the sovereignty of God far more than a deterministic system. If God determines that man chooses A, then ultimately man has not actually had the ability to make a decision that is independent from God, and if God controls the response as well as the decision, then there is no way to prove that man is not just as equally as intelligent as God.

In a compatibilist form of free will, compatibilists deny that man has the ability to refrain from choosing A or B, but only the freedom to incline and such inclinations being programmed into the man’s will. Thus man is still doing what he wants to do out of the will that he has been programmed with.

Thus, if a computer prints out the letters “ABCDEFG”, it does so not because it chooses to but because that is the manner in which the software has been designed to produce the sequence of letters. The computer is in effect printing what it wants to print based on the software that has given it its available options. However, if a glitch is introduced into the system that causes the computer to print “AXYZEFG” can the computer itself be blamed for its production?

The actions of the computer reflect the programming of the software designer. When a computer fails to produce what it was designed to produce, the creator of the software is held accountable because there is no distinction between the results produced by the computer, and the actions of the programmer. Thus ultimately, man who is pre-programmed to act out of a determined inclination can not be responsible or accountable for what he produces because his own actions and inclinations were not the cause or the ultimate origin of the glitches, but that of the programming.

For God to be the cause of man’s sinful actions and poor choices, deprives God of the ability to claim that His thoughts are higher than our thoughts because inevitably, our thoughts ARE His thoughts if our thoughts are the result of His determining. Compatibilist freedom is no more than a human philosophical attempt to be God. It turns our frailties into God’s attributes by proxy and extension.

Let God be true, and every man a liar (Rom 3:4). Albeit, man can not be said to be a liar if his thoughts and actions are concurrently dictated by that which God determines them to be predisposed to. Ultimately, God would be the cause of the lie, and could not consistently maintain His own truthfulness. The Bible shows an obvious distinction between choice and causation, yet determinism would opine that the 2 are equal:

“Then there shall be a place which the LORD your God shall choose to cause his name to dwell there; thither shall ye bring all that I command you; your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, your tithes, and the heave offering of your hand, and all your choice vows which ye vow unto the LORD” Deuteronomy 12:11

Only libertarian free will provides the distinction between God and humans. Only the permissive will of God that allows humans to act independently and autonomously proves that man is a complete failure in comparison to God. God proves nothing of Himself by determining men to fail. There is a way that seems right unto man, but the end thereof are the ways of death. Prov 14:12. We see this concept often in our own families with our children. We often permit children to do things that we don’t always approve of, only for them to return later and say “Dad, you were right”. If we force them to do precisely what we desire, we can make no distinction between their reasons, will, and choices from ours. Thus we demonstrate that we are wiser than our children by allowing them to freely fail.

The concept of free will and accountability for choices is ingrained not only into our morals but also our governments. In the legal system, duress is a defense against actions that compelled the defendant to act otherwise than he would have chosen to. Likewise those who compel another to commit a crime are charged with conspiracy.The Bible is replete with examples of free will and accountability:

“And Elijah came unto all the people, and said, How long halt ye between two opinions? if the Lord be God, follow him: but if Baal, then follow him.” 1 Kings 18:21

“But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king’s meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.” Daniel 1:8

“There is none greater in this house than I; neither hath he kept back any thing from me but thee, because thou art his wife: how then can I do this great wickedness, and sin against God?” Genesis 39:9

” Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season” Hebrews 11:25

“For which of you, intending to build a tower, sitteth not down first, and counteth the cost, whether he have sufficient to finish it?” Luke 14:28

“Go and say unto David, Thus saith the Lord, I offer thee three things; choose thee one of them, that I may do it unto thee.” 2 Samuel 24:12

” And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.” Isaiah 30:21

” But if thine heart turn away, so that thou wilt not hear, but shalt be drawn away, and worship other gods, and serve them….I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:” Deut 30:17,19.

Furthermore, the Old Testament is full of moments where God shows anger for rebellion against Him. Isaiah 65:2, 2 Sam 4:21, Exodus 4:14, 2 Kings 13:3, Numbers 12:9, Joshua 7:1-13, 2 Sam 24:1, Isaiah 5:25, Judges 2:14. That fact that God reacts negatively to decisions that are made against His will show that God did not determine their actions. It would be absurd to imply that God is angry over actions that He determined and caused.

” And they built the high places of Baal, which are in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire unto Molech;which I commanded them not, neither came it into my mind, that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.” Jeremiah 32:35

“Therefore will I number you to the sword, and ye shall all bow down to the slaughter: because when I called, ye did not answer; when I spake, ye did not hear; but did evil before mine eyes, and did choose that wherein I delighted not.” Isaiah 65:12

The fact that the Bible itself proscribes against compelling others to sin and choose to act negatively is telling of the character of God. Mark 9:42, Romans 14:21.

There are clear Biblical and logical reasons to reject any form of determinism and compatibilist freedom. Divine determinism is an affront to the sovereignty of God because it not only makes the human will and mind equal to God and provides no distinction between His thoughts and our thoughts as it only claims to limit capacity but not origin, it fails to prove that God always chooses that which is ultimately the best and wisest choices by eliminating any standard of comparison to that which is autonomously inferior, thus obscuring God’s own will as well as turning options themselves into a deity equally rivaling God’s omnipotence.

When determinism is compared to Scripture, and reduced to its logical denouement it fails miserably as a legitimate explanation of our relationship to God, our accountability and responsibility for decisions, the very existence of choices, and God’s own autonomy and omnipotence. No Christian should ever be a compatibilist. Only free will rightly provides the distinction that demonstrates the holiness and sovereignty of God.

__________________________

See also short excerpts from Dr. Elisha Weismann’s debate on secondary causation on our forum

scholarshipO Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called: Which some professing have erred concerning the faith. 1 Timothy 6:20-21

In keeping with the tradition of attacking any Baptist who does not have an “accredited” degree from MyOwnGod University, the Stuff Fundies Like website pokes fun at a Baptist preacher in an “article” titled “Anti Scholar”.

Liberal groups like SFL have a habit of demeaning the educations of those who graduated from Bible colleges that are unaccredited. In their minds, a proper education and thus the only appropriate barometer for measuring ones intelligence is the inclusion of the academic standards of secular colleges and “higher learning” institutions. A Christian school can’t possibly know more about the Bible and Godly living standards than a state- sponsored accreditation entity.

It must have been such a shock to all the converts of the early church to find out that the apostles that Jesus chose were fishermen and tax collectors-ordinary people. The Pharisees themselves questioned the education of Jesus:

How knoweth this man letters having NEVER LEARNED” John 7:15

Aside from the fact that over 53% of college graduates in the US are unemployed [1] (“A college diploma isn’t what it used to be”, ibid) it is nothing short of pompous arrogance and foolishness to think that a state- sponsored accreditation agency can produce better education standards to learn the Bible and church ministry than a school/college that focuses on that particular subject exclusively.

And on another note, who goes to a Bible college to get a job in the auto industry? If you went to a Bible college and then complain that you can’t get a job curling hair, an accredited degree probably isn’t going to offer the kind of help you really need.

Unless you have an “accredited” education, you are not as smart as Dr. Harvard. Dr. Harvard is well versed in “equal rights” of homosexuals and Muslims, is an astute expositor of Marx, Benthem, Maslow, Descartes and Kant; and can demonstrate why Christians should not hold to an exclusive view of their religion over all others. Dr. Harvard can prove that Jesus is not the only way to heaven and no Christian can possibly be “educated” enough to prove otherwise unless they have obtained a degree from an  institution that demands a “balanced” approach and equal emphasis on alternative beliefs.

Of the numerous comments on the SFL article in support of the title, the tide seems to have turned toward the lack of “scholarship” in evaluating Biblical texts. One reader, “Bob” posts;

As others have pointed out, your analysis is absolutely backward. I don’t know who you have been listening to, but I spent the better part of 9 yers reading books and articles and researching textual criticism. Erasmus’ text was not even the Textus Receptus. That was a designation given later to a text that was based on Erasmus’ and had been corrected. The textual theory behind the original Greek New Testament that Westcott and Hort compiled is a far superior textual method than Erasmus. It does not matter how great the scholars were who translated the KJV, it was a horrendous Greek text compared to the most recent ones that other English versions are based on. The UBS and NA are excellent and produced by the most painstakingly accurate textual scholars. DO they have disagreements? Yes, but Erasmus had no one to help him, and he was in a rush to be the first Greet text printed, and he made some bad blunders. So, as another has said, please get your facts straight before you pontificate.

There is so much “scholarship” on SFL that many of them can’t agree with each other on the issues of textual criticism. We could write an entire book on the errors of just this comment. In fact, Dean Burgon has written an irrefutable book on the matters of the texts used by Westcott and Hort (The Revision Revised, and Causes of Corruption in the New Testament). And the scholarship of the “UBS” texts are so “scholarly” that they omitted the entire book of Revelation on most of their texts, even though “Bob” here would merely claim “do they have disagreements?”, I would have to say the omission of entire books of the Bible is a pretty big “disagreement”. And then of course, the NA didn’t just stop at NA1, or NA 20, or NA 27 (the most popular used  being NA28), the “scholarship” is so advanced that they have to keep revising NA (Nestle-Aland) texts every few years or so.

It is worthy of note that NASB scholar-even with his “accredited” degree-Frank Logsdon, said the following about his involvement in translating the NASB:

“I’m in trouble; I can’t refute these arguments; it’s wrong; it’s terribly wrong; it’s frightfully wrong; and what am I going to do about it?”

Logsdon renounced his involvement in the translation of the NASB and began defending the KJV.

Other so-called scholars like James White have attempted to down-play Logsdon’s involvement by making accusations and straw-man arguments that KJVO proponents have never claimed for Logsdon. Regardless of the debate of whether Logsdon was “co-founder” of the Lockman Foundation, or NASB Committee (critics can’t make up their mind as to which accusations to stick to), there is no question Dr. Logsdon was an integral part of the process, that he was a recognized scholar in the field of Greek and Hebrew (with an ACCREDITED degree), and that he was formerly against the KJV and capitulated TO the KJV after objectively reviewing all of the evidence from David Otis Fuller, Dean Burgon et al, facts that all the KJVO critics are unwilling to admit.

What is equally ironic about the ensuing comments posted from the SFL article is that there is no evidence that any of the readers themselves have ANY degree, let alone accredited ones. So should their comments all be summarily dismissed for lacking the qualifications to critique the “unqualified” Bible scholars from “Non Accredited” schools?

Accreditation is nothing more than a group of fallible humans agreeing on what they believe should be taught in public institutions, and how they should be taught. Most accrediting agencies are biased by default against the exclusive claims of Christianity, and therefore are not even remotely “qualified” to make a judgment on what should and/or should not be taught in regards to matters of Biblical beliefs. The majority of curriculums in a public institution, with the exception of technical/vocational trade schools, are humanist and replete with anti-Christian sentiment. Hardly an appropriate environment for any student who has a desire to be in ministry and learn the word of God. Yet liberals and back-slidden anti-fundamentalists seek to impose standards on believers that Christ Himself did not impose on the very first group of people He chose to lead His church.

Let the Bible speak on the matter of the “wise” and “higher learning” of the statist sponsored standards of education.

For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

1 Corinthians 1:18-31:

18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.

20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?

21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.

22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness;

24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.

25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:

27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;

28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:

29 That no flesh should glory in his presence.

30 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption:

31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

——————-

There are @ 17 grammatical errors contained in this article. We will award you the Award of Pedantic Scholarship if you can find all 17.

J/A

Herbert-and-Catherine-Schaible-via-screencap-615x345Herbert and Catherine Schaible are members of the First Century Gospel Church in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and after refusing to take their sick child to a medical treatment facility due to belief that medicine and hospitals are not Biblical, allowed their child to die of pneumonia.

Media outlets such as the utlra liberal Huff Post, and Facebook groups such as IFB Cult Survivors are touting this as an example of fundamentalist abuse.

A few observations we want to make here.

There are 3 types of people I don’t trust:

1) A psychic that has a wreck on the way to work

2) A bald man that sells hair tonic

3) A faith healer that wears glasses

First of all, First Century Gospel Church is NOT a fundamentalist church. Liberal media and liberal churches have been permitted to use the term “fundamentalist” so loosely that any church that commits a heinous act or crime is now called a “fundamental” Christian church. The FCGC does not believe that a person is saved the moment one accepts Christ as Saviour but that salvation depends on “continuing faith in Christ”. In a sermon titled, “How To Be Saved And Kept”, the FCGC gives the following statement about their progressive salvation view:

Very few, if any, trust God for the healing
of their body, and even less trust Him in faith
for finances. Most avenge their own wrongs,
and do not trust God to control family members. If anyone lives like that, then they are not
saved, and not kept by faith in the power of
God—they are lost and following the unbelieving ways of the world [1] (emphasis added).

Thus according to the FCGC, among all of the things you must do to stay saved, one of them includes trusting God for your healing. If the parents did not trust God to heal their sick child, they could lose their salvation. THAT IS NOT FUNDAMENTALISM.

Now a word about faith healers.

While it is certainly Biblical to pray for sicknesses (James 5:14), and Christ healed many of their ailments, it is erroneous to shun medical treatment for serious conditions. Most of the miracles performed by Christ were to verify His ministry and deity (Acts 2:22) and this ministry was practiced by the apostles. But these miracles as a sign had a cessation point. Paul said in 2 Timothy 4:20 “Erastus abode at Corinth: but Trophimus have I left at Miletum sick.” Thus there were example of men in the Bible that were NOT healed.

Moreover, of the many people who offered greetings to the church in Colossae, one of them was named Luke, a physician. Col 4:14. Thus the New Testament was not opposed to the use of doctors.

I can’t count how many times I have seen Oral Roberts or Benny Hinn put on reading glasses to read a passage of the Bible. Is not

Oral Roberts

Oral Roberts

blindness an ailment that Jesus healed characters in the Bible from (John 9)? Then why don’t faith healers trust God to heal their eyesight? Or how about healing AIDS and cancer patients or raising the dead? Acts 9:40.

The next time you have an irregular heart palpitation or your child has an excessive fever, pray for them, call the pastor of the church, by all means use anointing oil, and GET TO THE HOSPITAL.

And you liberals can lie about and slander fundamentalism all you want, but at least get the right churches.

J/A

This will be part one of a series to refute the rebuttals that Calvinists argue against standard texts used by those that oppose Calvinism.

Matthew 23:37 is a common passage used to refute the “I” in the TULIP of Calvinism (Irresistible Grace) and rightly so. The passage reads:

“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye WOULD NOT!

The Calvinist believes that man’s will or free will is never involved in the salvation of the believer, but that the grace of God is superimposed upon the believer regardless of whether he wills to be saved or not. Jesus clearly states here that He would have gathered them together, but they WOULD not. Would is an indication of the will of the subject.

Now my dear Calvinist friend has an explanation for this, but as I will demonstrate, the explanation fails for several reasons.

CALVINIST ARGUMENT 1: God promises to bring Israel back into the land under His covenant, so Israel will eventually be saved anyway. And relying on Matthew 23:39 in support of such which reads:

“For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth, till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.”

REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT 1: It is clear that in Matthew 23:37, regardless of when God will EVENTUALLY take Israel out of blindness, in THIS passage and during THIS SPECIFIC PERIOD, His gathering of Jerusalem was conditioned upon their “WOULD”. What the Calvinist ignores is that even though passages such as Romans chapters 9-11 speak of an eventual restoration of Israel, there could have been an EARLIER one if they had WILLINGLY accepted Christ as their Messiah.

If at ANY point in time any person had an opportunity to come to Christ of his own free will, such a notion would defeat the Calvinist position.

Furthermore, relying on v. 39 does not support their case, but rather the opposite. The Calvinist emphasizes that this verse shows there will be a future restoration and thus God’s grace is sovereign after all against the will of man, but they ignore the part where this restoration is CONDITIONED on Israel saying, “Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord”.

Another thing to note here (and a fact in many other verses) is something that destroys Calvinism, and that is the existence of any condition at all upon man. For in Calvinism, God alone gives repentance, spiritual awakening from the dead, faith, and ultimately salvation totally as an independent act of God and completely separate from any response or involvement by man.

However, even if God preordained the children of Jerusalem to call on Him, even if God FORCED their confessions (Romans 10:9-10), and FORCED them to call on the name of the Lord, that still proves there is a human element that is required in the salvation process even if it is God that provokes or causes it, and as such, still contradicts Calvinism. Now the Calvinist may argue “any human element involved at all would be a works salvation”. Not true. A works salvation is depending on ones own effort of keeping God’s commandments and being a “good person”. Yielding the will to God is not a human effort to achieve salvation.

The Bible is clear in Romans 10:9-10 that with the heart man believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. Confessing Christ is a matter that requires the man to do something, confess with the mouth. Now there are some passages of scripture that may give the appearance that God would impose belief (and we will deal with those later) but there are NONE that show God imposing His will on a man’s mouth to confession.

CALVINIST ARGUMENT 2: Jesus is speaking to the Pharisees and not Jerusalem as a whole. (This argument is not held to by my friend, but is held to by other Calvinists when dealing with Matthew 23 so I am including the rebuttal to it here.)

REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT 2: It is argued by the Calvinist that the context of Matthew 23 is a rebuke to the Pharisees, so when Jesus makes this statement to Jerusalem, he is not talking to Jerusalem as a whole, but to those who killed the prophets and caused the rebellions in Israel. So just as Jesus did not mean that God so loved the world, but that God so loved the elect, this verse also has a limited application in Calvinism.

However, if you carefully note in verse 37, Jesus said how often He would have gathered their CHILDREN. Jesus wasn’t speaking to any CHILDREN while rebuking the Pharisees. Moreover, the plain meaning of the text is that Jesus is in fact speaking to Jerusalem as a whole. In fact, He says it TWICE!

CALVINIST ARGUMENT 3: It is argued that several OT passages that reference the GATHERING of Israel, demonstrate that God will eventually impose His will on Israel, siting Deut. 30:1-6, Isaiah 11:11,12, Isaiah 54:6-8, Jeremiah 23:3, Jeremiah 29:14, Jeremiah 31:8-10, Ezekiel 11:16-20, Ezekiel 20:32-37.

REBUTTAL TO ARGUMENT 3: Almost all of these passages are a reference to God regathering the scattered of Israel back to their homeland, and are not even remotely close to the context of what Jesus is referring to in Matthew 23, particularly since Israel would not be scattered for another 40 years when Titus attacked Jerusalem in AD 70.

In Ezekiel 20:32-37, where God causes Israel to “pass through the rod” is a reference to the tribulation where God will try the entire earth, and even then only a remnant of Israel is saved. If all of these verses are used to prove God’s will over the will of Israel, then it would logically follow that there could not possibly be a remnant that end up lost in Israel.

Now I personally believe that when Paul mentions that all Israel will be saved in Romans 11, that the tribulation is going to kill off all the unbelieving Israelites, but even during the tribulation, men refuse to repent of their deeds (Rev 16:11) which shows a free will to choose to accept or reject Christ, and in Revelation 2:22, those that commit adultery with the whore are told to repent, and in Revelation 18:4, Israel is told to come out of Babylon so that she receives none of her plagues and does not become partakers of her sins which implies that God’s people have a choice to stay in Babylon or be destroyed with her.

Nevertheless, the fact that there will be those among the Jews that reject Christ during the tribulation (Rev 2:2, 9, and 3:9) shows that relying on verses to prove God forces all Israel to be saved as a means of His imposition over their will prove false.

Moreover, sovereign grace that holds God’s will is imposed against the will of man does not give options to leave or remain in a damning situation (as in Rev 18:4). If Irresistable Grace were true, this command in Revelation 18:4 would not be necessary, God would simply drag them out like He does to the tribulation saints just prior to the last 3 1/2 years of the tribulation in Revelation 12:6.

Yet and still, these passages must be interpreted in light of the clear reading of Matthew 23:37-39. Regardless of what interpretation is given to the words “gathering” in all of the OT texts, when arriving at Matthew 23, it would not happen unless Israel calls upon the name of the Lord, and that condition teaches the exact opposite of Calvinist theology.

If Jesus WOULD HAVE gathered them, then that means He COULD HAVE gathered them, and the parallel between verses 37 and 39 show that He COULD NOT because they WOULD NOT!

J/A

hellAfter scores of emails criticizing the doctrine of hell, I chose to address it today. The most common attempt to logically exclude the doctrine of hell by its critics is “would a loving God send someone to hell?”. The problem with that is they are asking the wrong question. The Bible says that those who have not placed their trust in Christ are condemned already. Condemned to what? We’ll answer that later, but the question should be, would a God of justice and holiness permit someone to reject His son who suffered and died and offered salvation freely not exact some type of punishment?

However, at the end of this article, I am going to show you that hell is not the sinners final destination. So even if hell were to be the “common grave” or a burning sector for trash (and those terms were used to describe as close as man could understand what hell is like, not the other way around) that would not affect the sinners final judgment, which is NOT HELL. It’s worse!

THERE IS A PENALTY FOR REJECTING CHRIST

Jesus said in Luke 13:3-5 “except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish”, and “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” John 3:17. Jesus also states that He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him” John 3:36.

Man is appointed to die in life at least once, and after that is judgment. Heb 9:27.

Those who believe that because God is love ignore that He is also a “consuming fire”. Heb 12:29. If one were to read the Old Testament starting from Isaiah through Malachi, every prophetic book was about judgment. In the New Testament Jesus preached about hell thirteen times. (Matthew 5:22-30, Matthew 10:28,  Matthew 16:18, Matthew 11:23, Matthew 18:9, Mark 9:47, Matthew 23:15-33, Luke 16:23[and Jesus states also that He has the keys of hell and death in Rev 1:18]). In fact, Luke 16 is one of the most descriptive stories regarding hell in all the Bible. Jehovah’s Witnesses argue that this is a parable, but the story is not called a parable; any time Jesus was using hyperbole to make a point, He always identified the story as a parable, and the characters were  given specific names like “a certain woman”. The story in Luke is an actual event, it describes Abraham, Lazarus and the Rich Man, as well as other real places.

There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day: And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores, And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man’s table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham’s bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried; And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented. Luke 16:19-25.

…the bush is not burnt. Exodus 3:3

Like the burning bush that was not consumed when it was on fire where God spoke to Moses in Exodus 3:1-15, likewise the rich man was consumed by the fire, and only wanted a drop of water because he was tormented by the flame. Not only was he tormented by the flame, but he had his full memory of his opportunity while he was yet alive to choose Christ.

Those who see Jesus as a loving God who would never torment someone for rejecting Him are denying the multitude of Biblical evidence to the contrary. God can not look upon sin (Hab 1:13) and because He is a holy and righteous God, He can not allow sin to go unpunished, that is His nature. He is much a God of judgment as He is a God of love.

PAUL PREACHED HELL

Many have argued that while Jesus preached hell, Paul did not. I disagree:

In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his power”. 2 Thess 1:8-9.

Not only does Paul state that a flaming fire is how those who reject the gospel will be punished, but with “everlasting destruction”. At this point, cults like the Watchtower attempt to explain this as annihilation, that you are destroyed forever into oblivion. But that’s not everlasting destruction. God made man in His image, and with that means an eternal soul, and as we seen with the rich man, the soul that rejects Christ lives in constant eternal torment.

Paul also warns about the coming wrath of God numerous times (Rom 2:5,8, Rom 9:22, I Thess 1:10 [a good verse that proves the church will not go through the tribulation], 1 Thess 2:16 Rom 1:18 , and as we will see later, the wrath of God is not only carried out by judgments during the tribulation but is consummated by a sentence of eternal fire for those who reject Christ. Not only does God give men a chance in this time, but He even gives them an opportunity during the tribulation albeit under much worse conditions and not for those who heard the gospel in this time and rejected it, and yet men still refused to repent. Rev 9:20-21, Rev 16:9-11.

But praise God the believer is not appointed unto wrath! 1 Thess 5:9, Romans 5:9.

Jude also referred to eternal fire in Jude 9, and coming judgment on unbelievers. Jude 14-15.

THE LAKE OF FIRE IS THE ETERNAL DESTINY FOR THOSE WHO REJECT CHRIST

John writes in Revelation 20:15 “And death AND HELL were cast into the LAKE OF FIRE“. This one verse dispels all the non-sense that hell is merely the grave, because even hell itself is cast into the lake of fire.

Now we will focus on how long this punishment lasts as described from the book of Revelation.

“And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever, and they have NO REST, DAY NOR NIGHT who worship the beast and his image and whosever receiveth the mark of his name” Rev 14:11. If you had a chance to receive Christ and rejected Him before the chaos starts in the tribulation, you will worship the beast. 2 Thess 2:12, Rev 13:8, Rev 17:8.

The judgment of the whore. This is the judgement against an entire empire that ends up with its final empire as Rome (at a later time, I will give conclusive proof that the United States of America is an extension of the Roman Empire). This empire began with Nimrod in Genesis 11, and is described in the dream of Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel chapter 2 and then by John in Rev 13:2, and is called “MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT, THE MOTHER OF HARLOTS AND ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH” in Rev 17:5. It is an empire made up on individuals so it is not just a judgment on a bunch of buildings and land. Her sins come before God in Rev 16:19, and Rev 18:5, and we see her judgment described as eternal in Rev 19:3: ” And her smoke rose up for ever and ever”. Now for there to be smoke there has to be fire, and for there to be a smoke and fire that rises up forever and ever, there has to be something to burn. Those individuals that were part of the whore of Babylon suffer an eternal torment in fire.

Now pay attention here because this is one of the strongest verses in the Bible that demonstrate how long God’s judgment lasts.

In Revelation 19, after Christ’s second coming to earth, the beast and the false prophet are cast alive into the lake of fire. Rev 19:20. Now in Revelation 20:1, Satan is bound for 1,000 years during the millennial reign of Christ. After the thousand years are finished, he is let loose for a season, but is then finally judged and notice this:

And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are, and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever.” Rev 20:10

Notice that is says when the devil is cast into the lake of fire, that he is cast where the beast and the false prophet ARE. Remember they had been cast there prior to the 1,000 year reign, so they were alive and conscious 1,000 years before the devil was finally cast there, and how long does this last? “and shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever

CONCLUSION

I have often used the illustration that if I had a cure for AIDS or cancer, I would be cruel not to share it with others to heal them. How much more then should a believer not preach hell?  Fundamentalists are accused of manipulating people with fear by preaching hell, but this is not manipulation, this is an honest warning that there is an eternal consequence for rejecting Christ, and I think that it is cruel for those who tell others NOT to preach it. Do the churches including the independent Baptists have their issues? Yes they sure do, but what could possibly be worse than spending an eternity in a burning lake of fire? We fundamentalists don’t preach it because we are trying to gain numbers, we preach it because we have a heart for the lost. Even when I go soul winning, I always tell a potential convert that even if they do not join a church, MAKE SURE YOU ARE SAVED. I can’t count the number of times I have wept every time I have reviewed my memory verses going over Revelation 14:11. As much as I vehemently disagree with my critics, I don’t want to see ANY of them burning in eternal torment.

Jesus paid a great price to obtain our salvation, and those who crucify the Son of God afresh by despising His cross, the blood that He shed and expect God to let them into heaven on THEIR TERMS are in for a rude awakening because the devil and misguided apostates have told them “God would never send anyone to hell” and that is a bald-faced lie. If you end up in the lake of fire forever, it is not because God wanted you to go there. You have a chance to avoid it, and a choice to receive Christs gift of eternal life by coming to God knowing and acknowledging you do not deserve it, for you were born with sin (Psalm 58:3, Romans 5:12) and can not save yourself. “But God commended his love toward us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us”. God is not willing that ANY should perish, but that all come to repentance. I Peter 3:9. God said in Ezekiel 18:32, “For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord GOD: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.”

Salvation is a free gift, it is not of your own effort or works. “For by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not of works lest any man should boast” Eph 2:8-9. “Not by works of righteousness which we have done” Titus 3:5. Since salvation is a free gift, why would anyone choose to reject Christ and attempt to explain away the consequences? “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” Rom 10:13. Do not let anyone corrupt your mind from the simplicity that is in Christ Jesus (2 Cor 11:3).

Will you call upon Him now? Will you come to God as the sinner you are and ask for His mercy and receive Him as your Saviour? I hope so, because not only does God love you, and sent Jesus Christ who is God in the flesh (1 Tim 3:16, Rom 9:5) to reconcile His creation back to Himself, but does not want this to be your fate:

And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire” Rev 20:15

J/A

May Women Preach?

Posted: February 1, 2013 in Apologetics, Bible Doctrine

In perusing the DRHAC blog today, a post was made by Cynthia Umling McClasky on how the IFB brainwashes its members into following false doctrine and sites an article entitled Women May Preach? to show the fundamentalists’ error in subjecting women to abuse or as she describes it, leads to slander, contempt and harassment of women.

The question that will be addressed is, may women preach? And the answer is: NO, and I will use the article she posted to rebut the numerous misinterpreted passages of Scripture.

First, this is very simple. Paul gives the instructions for the qualifications of the bishop (preacher, pastor etc) in 1 Tim 3:2 “A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;” It says the HUSBAND of one WIFE. It does not say the wife of one husband. And to make sure there is no room for error in misunderstanding this passage, Paul writes in verse 11, “ Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things”  The entire chapter makes it perfectly clear that the office of the bishop over the church is to be a male figure.

Paul reiterates this same message in Titus 1:6-7 ” If any be blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly.For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of God; not self-willed, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre”.

Paul further instructs that a woman is not to have authority over a man, which she would if she were a preacher. And the follow-up is that she learn is silence. I Tim 2:12. Now this verse can and has been misinterpreted by many even in fundamentalist circles that a woman can never speak or speak up at all. The Greek word used here for “silence” is “hesuchia” which means a person that quietly works at home that doesn’t meddle with the affairs of others. In context with Paul’s command for a woman not to teach, usurp authority over the man, being in silence means not challenging his authority as the pastor. That does not mean she can not tell her husband that the preacher is speaking something that is clearly heretical, but she does not have the right to question his position as the pastor of the church. This does not mean she is never allowed to question him at all, but not his official capacity in his function of the office of the pastorate.

Only dishonest scholarship and Bible rejecting Egalitarianists attempt to perform the Biblical gymnastics necessary to make these verses mean something other than the plain meaning they were intended to give.

MAY WOMAN PREACH (Bushnell is listed as the author, and since it is dated 1923, I am assuming it is Katharine Bushnell, the woman considered to be the founding mother of feminist theology.)

Although this subject could be extended beyond this short article, I am going to limit it to a critique of this article.

The Church has often told woman — we might say very loudly– that Paul commanded her to “keep silence in the
churches.” The Church has told woman very softly, or not at all, that Jesus Christ obliged one woman to NOT KEEP
SILENCE (emphasis mine), but to proclaim before a great multitude, made up largely of men, that Christ had redeemed
her from that very “curse,” as it has been called, which is supposed by some to lie at the base of the doctrine of silence
and subordination for women, and which was the pretext for her original exclusion from service at the altar.~Bushnell

Bushnell did not address the specific reference to where Christians get this idea that “woman should be silent in the churches”. It is found in I Corinthians 14:34-35:

Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church

Critics try to explain away this verse by either claiming that is was only cultural or based on a rabbinical reading and therefore not authoritative even though it was given to a GENTILE church to whom Paul was the apostle of (Rom 11:13) and in verse 37 Paul tells the church that what he says are the commandments of the Lord.

The main context was regarding speaking in tongues and the abuse of it in preaching the word of God in a church with unbelievers. (We at DRC are cessationists, but will not go into that issue in this article.) Although many churches have misapplied this verse to say that women should not speak at all, implying that because they talk too much they are expected to wait until they get home, that is not what the context is about. The context is directed at women preaching in the church.

LUKE 8

The account of this woman’s case will be found in Luke 8:43-48. Zechariah had proclaimed, 500 years before this
incident, that there was to be a “fountain opened for sin and uncleanness” (13:1), referring to the coming Christ, and
using the very word for “uncleanness” which, according to Levitical law, separated a woman from the congregation of
Israel (Lev. 15:19). Men straight from a battle; from stumbling over a grave in the churchyard; from administering
comfort in the home of the dead, and from many other conditions producing that same state called “separation,” (or
“uncleanness,” as translated), for which exclusion from the congregation of Israel was prescribed, have never thought of
excluding themselves, even temporarily, from the altar of the Church. In a word, men found that “fountain for sin and
uncleanness” when Christ came and took full advantage of it; but presently they excluded women from its benefits, and
placed her back under Levitical disabilities.

We have a lesson to learn from Christ’s bringing the woman to the front to declare her own redemption from an
infirmity, instead of His merely declaring it for her. It is not enough that Christ’s teaching is plain on this subject, WE
WOMEN MUST PROCLAIM THIS (emphasis mine). It is not enough for women to modestly and quietly seek their own
redemption, they must proclaim it, even when that proclamation lays them open to the FALSE CHARGE OF IMMODESTY
(emphasis mind)[sic]~Bushnell [I am assuming that the ’emphasis mine’ were added by Cynthia]

Here Bushnell is equating personal redemption from sin to liberation of women from rules that restrict their role in the church. There is absolutely nothing in the context of Luke 8 that can be used to reinterpret what Paul said in I Corinthians 14, Timothy or Titus. There is nothing in this verse that gives a woman the authority to preach or pastor a church merely because she was purified of her uncleanness by Christ.

LUKE 13:11-13

This brings us to another lesson that Christ taught, when he caused yet another woman NOT TO KEEP SILENCE. This case
is recorded in Luke 13:11-13. We can easily picture this poor deformed creature making her way wearily to the
synagogue, to hear the great Prophet; climbing the steps to the stuffy little compartment behind the lattice, usually up
in the gallery under the roof. How amazed she must have been to have the great Prophet call out suddenly, “Mary,
come here to me.” the other women help her to descend as quickly as possible, and she walks up the aisle to the
platform with trembling feet, and stands in a most unusual position–out in public, among all the men! Gently He spoke
to her and “laid His hands on her,” and behold! not only is she “loosed from her infirmity; “she was made straight and
glorified God.” This means, of course, that she broke the silence with her hallelujahs, and with rapid toungue [sic]began to
tell eagerly all about her former suffering, and healing, to all in the synagogue~Bushnell

This is what Luke 13:11-13 actually says:

And, behold, there was a woman which had a spirit of infirmity eighteen years, and was bowed together, and could in no wise lift up herself. And when Jesus saw her, he called her to him, and said unto her, Woman, thou art loosed from thine infirmity. And he laid his hands on her: and immediately she was made straight, and glorified God.

First of all, the article is supposed to be about woman preaching in the church. Secondly, there is nothing in the context the indicates Jesus told her to say anything, let alone to “NOT..KEEP SILENCE”. She glorified God as a result of being healed, not because she was told to. And again, this passage has nothing to do with a woman preaching in a church. Her response was reactionary not imperative.

LAYING ON OF HANDS

This act of the “laying on of hands” afterwards came into use among the Apostles as the ceremony which fitted men for preaching the Gospel and to this day men boast that they are in the “Apostolic Succession,” which means that someone laid hands on them, who had had hands laid upon him, of one who had hands laid upon him, of one, etc., etc., all the way back to an Apostle. They forget that this “laying on of hands” goes farther back than to the Apostles, to a certain woman, who had Christ’s hands laid upon her; and she immediately responded by publicly glorifying God, in spite of the prohibitions of man. Men might have been not merely in the “Apostolic succession,” but in the Divine succession, had they not despised the ministry of women. They should have sought of this woman the “laying on of hands,” if there be any virtue in “succession”.~Bushnell

In this argument, Bushnell attempts to equate the laying on of hands for healing, with the laying on of hands for placing a man in the ministry.(see 2 Timothy 1:6.) And she offers a gross interpolation of traditions to make a completely unsupported premise that the laying on of hands for healing morphed into the practice of laying on of hands for ministry. She argues that the Jews in the temple opposed this laying on of hands and that Jesus gave her permission to defy mens orders, and thus the precedent is established that woman are not under the authority of men in the church. Again, a gross interpretation of Scripture. What the Jews were angry about was not that Jesus healed a WOMAN, or that a woman spoke in church, but that he healed her on the Sabbath. This issue was a major point of contention with the Pharisees against Jesus and was a debate that occurred quite often (Mark 3:1-6, John 7:23-24, Luke 14:1, Matthew 12:10, John 9:14-16, Luke 6:2).

While we are on the subject of laying on of hands for the ministry, there is not one single verse in the Bible where any apostle ever laid hands on a woman to ordain her into the office of bishop.

SOME “PROOF TEXTS” USED TO PROVE WOMEN CAN PREACH

Critics attempt to use Deborah as proof that God ordained woman to the ministry. Deborah was a judge (Judges 4:4), not a priest, she was not given the charge over a congregation of spiritual matters, but as a judge was an enforcer of the law, and a prophetess, and this was an exception, not the rule in those times. And even if it was the rule, it would not over-ride Paul’s commands in the New Testament. Although women like Deborah, Huldah, Anna, provide remarkable examples of the character, courage, and charisma of godly women in the Bible, their examples can not be used to prove that women preachers are permitted in the New Testament church.

Even during the tribulation, when God seals 144,000 servants whom work with His 2 witnesses in Rev 11:3 (Rev 7:4), all 144,000 are men (Rev 14:4).

Romans 16:1-2 is where the Bible rejectors (NIV, NASB, ASV et al) butcher the text to prove that Phebe was a “deaconess” instead of what the King James accurately translates as “servant” because the Greek word is diakanon. The first Protestant reading with this perversion was in the Amplified Version New Testament in 1958.

The issue with translating diakanon as “deacon” is that it is a neutral word, not  feminine. In Romans 15:8, diakanon is translated as “minister” refering to Christ, and Christ was not a deacon, He was an Apostle (Heb 3:1). The same word is also translated “minister” in Eph 3:7 and is used to describe the function of Paul’s work, not his title. The requirement of a DEACON is to be the “HUSBAND of one wife” (1 Tim 3:12). Therefore to translate diakanon as “deaconess” is erroneous.

This does not exclude women from being helpers in the church as Paul described Phebe (Rom 16:2, “succourer” means helper), but there is no justification whatsoever for relying on Rom 16:1-2 as a proof text for women preachers.

CONCLUSION

Although the Bible is clear that women are not permitted to serve as pastors, that does not mean these are proof texts for bullying or harassment. The Scripture is clear that elderly women are to be treated as mothers, and the younger women as sisters, and WITH ALL PURITY (that means no raping them, no molesting them, no abusing them, no talking dirty to them)1 Tim 5:1-3. And especially for married couples where the husband beats his wife over the head with Ephesians 5. Ephesians 5 does not give the husband authority to dominate a woman and make her his slave. Paul makes it clear in 1 Cor 7 that the woman’s body belongs to the man, and the man’s to the woman (in marriage) which clearly demonstrates an equal partnership, not a “do as I say or you are being disobedient” type attitude. Being the ‘head’ over the household does not mean being a control freak.

Now granted, the role that women have taken on today whether it’s in the workplace, in the church and in making choices and decisions that the husband clearly has the final authority on has caused a breeding ground of rebellion and feminazi mentality. There’s a “new age” of woman’s liberation and Titus chapter 2 is not in it. And those women can not claim exemption by pointing to God and saying ” the husband thou gavest me”. But men need to bear the responsibility of treating their wives as Christ loved the church. Since a woman is crafted physiologically, mentally and biologically different from a man, WHAT you say may make sense to you, but HOW you say it may mean 10 different things to her. “A soft answer turneth away wrath, but grievous words stirreth up anger”. I have never met a man who boldly claimed his authority over a women that didn’t do so in an angry manner, and if men act like that, the women is going to rebel. A Proverbs 31 woman, or an Abigail is a rare breed, but there is a way to help her WANT to become one and it has everything to do with your attitude, HOW you talk to her and communicate, HOW you listen to her. This doesn’t mean that a husband gives in when his wife is clearly acting in a unscriptural manner, but “He that handleth a matter wisely shall find good” Prov 16:20. Too many men today treat their wives like a doormat by failing to understand  what the Bible says about the roles of women AND MEN.

A husband that dwells with his wife according to knowledge (I Peter 3:7), will seek to understand her, and work toward intimacy (into me see). God made woman from a rib under man’s heart, not from his foot. True, that men are not good communicators in general, but if God told the husband to love his wife as Christ loved the church, any husband that is not willing to get out of his nothing box and learn how to love her is a lazy, rebellious and sinful man.

God has ordained a role for the woman, and a role for the man, and has clearly defined the boundaries of each in marriage and in the church. That may not be popular, and it may not fit today’s cultural ideologies, but what is written is what is written; but there is no reason for that to be a cause of contention between Christian men and women. God did not write the boundaries to make relationships oppressive, and when the proper balance is achieved and the Scriptures applied in context, men and women, and couples, can and will find themselves blessed in the will of God!

J/A