Tuesday, June 09, 2009


1838 CIRCULAR WARWICK ASSOCIATION[Ministers present this session were: Elders Richard Pickard, Gabriel Conklin, Amos Harding, Philip C. Broom, H. Hait, William Harding, D. Forshee, T. Bishop, William House, Hezekiah West, Benjamin Pitcher, and St. John.Associations seated this session were: Lexington, Delaware River, Delaware, Baltimore and Ketockton. Voted to solicit a correspondence with the Chemung Association (NY). Brother West, a member of that Association, though not a messenger from it, having already been invited to participate with us, expressed, as an individual, his wish, that a correspondence between the two associations should be opened.]CIRCULAR LETTERByGabriel ConklinOf JustificationThe Elders and Brethren of the Warwick Association, assembled at Hardeston Church, Sussex County, New Jersey, by appointment, June 13th, and 14th, 1838To the Churches whose Messengers they are,- Greeting.Dear Brethren:- In this our Circular Address, we promise calling your attention to the consideration of some part or portion of doctrine of our faith. The Justification of the people of God, is an important item in the plan of grace in a link in the chain, which binds the Lord's people to Himself and to each other; therefore it may not be amiss, to offer you a few ideas again on this object, at this time. Justification stands opposed to condemnation, and condemnation necessarily follows transgression, and transgression implies sin: "For where no Law is, there is no transgression. "� Roman iv.15. Hence when the Justification of the Church is spoken of, the idea of law, transgression and condemnation are clearly and fully implied, though it were not expressed. But it is also abundantly expressed in the Scriptures of Truth. Besides, it is so clearly present to the view of the people of God in their own experience, that their mouths are stopped, and they confess themselves guilty before God.The children of God, as they stand connected with, and related to Adam their natural head are, in view of the Law of God, in the same situation with the rest of mankind, "Dead in trespasses and sins,"� Ephesians ii.1, "Children of wrath even as others,"- Ephesians ii.3. An important enquiry arises here:� "How shall man be just with God?"� Job ix.2, or how shall he be justified in His sight? This question is one of great moment to the poor sensible sinner. Human wisdom suggests the idea of human justification: but that is foolishness with God. It proposes our own works, and those of our fellow men: it talks of our prayers, our cries, our tears, or agonizing, out fasting, our paying of tithes, our giving alms, our attending to what it terms the ordinances of the Gospel, or the "means of grace" &c. as being weighty in the scales, and if likely to fall a little short, it advises to mix with our own, the righteousness of Christ.But the poor condemned, guilty, sensible soul, knows better, even though heretofore ignorant of the letter of the Bible; feeling the weight of his guilt, and the justice of his condemnation, in view of the holiness of the Character of God, as set forth in His Law, by the quickening operation of the Spirit of God in his soul; he finds with all his works and service and attempts to keep the Law, and recommend himself to God, he becomes more odious in His sight; instead of becoming better he is growing worse; or of taking one step toward heaven, he is drawing nigh to destruction. If he turns to the Bible his condemnation is ratified and confirmed in his own view, for "By the deeds of the Law there shall no flesh be justified in His sight"� Romans iii.20. Thus the people of God are taught directly by the Spirit in their own experience that “vain is the help of man, that all human wisdom, human righteousness, human works, human shill and human schemes, will utterly fail of justifying the soul before God. That the people of God are justified in His sight, is abundantly established in the Word of God, and since it is also established, that they cannot justify themselves who is their Justifier? Paul answers, "It is God that justifieth." "Who is he that condemneth?" Romans viii.33 and 34. It is a matter of small moment to us, who condemns us, IF God justifies us. How does God justify His people? He justifies them freely! That is, without money and without price: or without any thing in them, as a cause, or from them as an equivalent or consideration; therefore it must be by grace and not by works. Hence the Apostle observes, “Being justified freely by His grace, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.â€� Romans iii.24. But when does He justify them? If we take into consideration the purpose of God, in the salvation of His people, the Scriptures seem to present the idea of their being justified "before the world was." In Paul's 2 epistle to Timothy, 1.9; we read as follows: "Who hath saved us and (then) called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began."When it is declared that God justifies freely by His grace, we understand that grace to be a justifying grace, and when again it is declared, that that grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began, we understand it was given to us before time, or in eternity; and here we pause and wonder, and admire, and where the grace came to clear our sins. That the eternal purpose of God, in His eternal purpose and grace did indeed determine the justification of His people, yea, that He positively and actually gave them the grace by which they were and are justified, in Christ Jesus before the world began; causes us to seek the way by which He could do this. This act of Jehovah giving us justifying grace in Christ, before time, in eternity, tells us of a wonderful relationship, "His strange acts." But is it proper to call it an "act?" A decree of flesh is properly called an act. To illustrate: a decree of the Congress of the United States is legally termed an "act of Congress." So too, in the "State of New York,“ thus the sovereign people, through their elected Representatives Assembled, determine, decree and ordain, which in other words are termed, "Acts passed." Hence from the use and language and definition of words, it is proper to term a decree, an Act.Again, the Lord by the Prophet declares, "He will bring to pass His Act."- Isaiah :21. In this passage and its connection, our minds are carried forward to Gospel times, to the coming of Christ. Here the Lord reveals something of His purpose, relative, both, to the salvation of His people, and the destruction of His and their enemies. Hear Him saying, "Behold I lay in Zion for a foundation, a Stone, a tried Stone, a precious Corner Stone, a sure foundation." Again, "Your Covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand," &c. verse 13. "For the Lord shall rise up as in Mount Perazim, He shall be wroth as in the Valley of Gibeon." See verse 21. Should the following objection arise viz., that the circumstance of Christ's coming in the flesh, His life, death, resurrection, &c., for the salvation and justification of His people, is the Act; then the inquiry is, What is the bring to pass the act?- Is it not clear that the Act, is first, and then the bring to pass? Consequently, that the decree or purpose of Jehovah, in relation to the justification of His people, was an Act, and His Act before time, or in eternity, and that in the fullness of time, God sent forth His Son, made of a woman, &c., and in all that Jesus has done and performed, and will do and perform, Jehovah is yet bringing to pass His "Act, His strange act!" None who "receive the Truth in the love of it," will deny that Jehovah purposed, determined or decreed the justification of His people; if so, it was an act, in eternity, or before time.Moreover He gave them the justifying grace in Christ before the world began. We have already remarked, that this was one of His "strange acts." Strange that He should decree their justification, "when as yet He had not made the earth or the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world," nor given to them their actual being. Strange that He should give them justifying grace in Christ before they were actually condemned, in Adam when in view of their union to Christ their spiritual Head, they needed no justification. But in this "strange Act" of Jehovah His people were held in view in their relation to Adam their natural Head, in the ruin of the fall, condemned by His law, and under sentence of death.. Their being justified (freely by His grace) through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus,� is the bringing to pass this strange Act, or the accomplishment of the purpose. The redemption was not "with corruptible things as silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot, who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you." 1 Peter 1. 19,20. Again, the Apostle speaking of the "purpose and grace given us in Christ Jesus before the world began," observes, "but is now made manifest, (that is, the purpose and grace) by the appearing of our Savior Jesus Christ "who hath abolished death, and brought Life and Immortality to light through the Gospel." Again, "Who only hath immortality"� (1 Tim.vi.16.- Again, "that through death, He might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the devil; and deliver them who through fear of death, were all their lifetime subject to bondage.�" Hebrews ii.14-15,- And lastly, "Who was delivered for our offenses, and was raised again for our justification, "- Romans iv.25. In view of the Scriptures, then, we see how admirably the purpose of God, and the accomplishment of that purpose; or in other words, the Act of God, and the bringing to pass that Act; or again, the grace of God, and the Revelation or manifestation of that grace are linked together, in the Justification and Salvation of His people, - May the Lord open our understanding to understand the Scriptures, and then shall we see eye to eye, in the things of the Kingdom.The Grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, be with you all. Amen.Amos Harding, Moderator.Gabriel Conklin, Clerk.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My yahoo group True Grace Fellowship

Very Good Gospel testimony..

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Imputation study by Mr Pounds 3

Eternal Imputation 3
Why Christ Did Become Incarnate, or can Abstract Deity partake
of both Good and Evil?Gen.22 (3:23) And {1} God said, Behold, Adam is become as one of us, to know good and evil, and now lest at any time he stretch forth his hand, and take of the tree of life and eat, and so he shall live forever––{1) Alex. +the Lord} LXX.22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: AV.James 1:13 Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man:De 32:4 He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.Job 34:10 Therefore hearken unto me, ye men of understanding: far be it from God, that he should do wickedness; and from the Almighty, that he should commit iniquity.By Abstract Deity, I mean the Diving Beings without the Incarnation of the God-Man or the Word’s assumption of flesh and blood. In my opinion the Trinity of Deity, in their pure spiritual state, cannot sin or have sin either imputed or imparted unto them. Since this is ture, neither can the entire Trinity, in their upre and abstract spiritual state, make an atonement for sin or reconclile the Father little Children unto God.James 1:14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.Since this is true, neither can the entire Trinity, in their pure and abstract spiritual state, make an atonement for sin or reconcile the Father’s little Children unto God.The Holy Trinity cannot actually bear sins in their pure spiritual state. Sin is primarily the fruit of the flesh. I know there are exceptions such as Lucifer, but I am speaking concerning mankind. Lucifer could sin, but not make atonement for his own sins. Men can and do sin, and make typical sacrifices to make a typical atonement for their sins.Elohem, denoting the Trinity of Divine Beings or Jehovah, in union with the God-Man, the Mediator, did know both good and evil before Adam and Eve did sin and by that, did know both good and evil.Elohem learned evil by the imputation of sin and iniquity unto the Mediator. The God-Man learned evil only in a decretive way before all creation when the sins of His people were imputed unto Him in decree. Adam and Eve learned evil by actual sin following creation.Elohem knew evil only through and by means of the union of Jehovah with the Mediator. God the Eternal Word, the Second Being in the Trinity, by the hypostatic union, did enable the Divine Beings in their pure spiritual state, to know good and evil. The Divine Trinity did not know evil in their Jehovah-like state, the Divine Nature considered without union with the Mediator, and they did not learn goodness. The reason they did not learn goodness is because they were already in possession of every good within their own Divine Natures and Beings and needed not to acquire further goodness.James 1:17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.Our Lord Jesus Christ, considered in the totality of His complex person, Divine and Man, was able to become complete in His knolwledge by His obedience. Involved in this was His obedience unto the death of the Cross. He learned this two ways, by decree and then by actual fact. By learning this, through His union with the Divine Beings, They could say they knew both good and evil.The learning of Christ was and is only in His manhood, not in His Godhood. Christ’s learning obedience concerned ONLY His essential being as a Son.Heb 5:8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;Php 2:8 And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.Christ experienced the actual knowledge of good and evil as a Son after Mary fashioned Him into the form of His manhood. As a man He humbled Himself and suffered and died for His people on the Cross.Further proof that the Divine Beings in their pure and abstract spiritual state did not and could not have suffered for sins, and learned evil by the imputation of sin, is evidenced by the fact that Christ did this in His Sacred manhood and not in His deity. The only way that Christ experienced these in His Deity was by union with His humanity, not by actual being or fact.Christ shed His blood on the Cross in His sacred humanity. He offered a better, or heavenly sacrifice unto the Father than all the earthly sacrifices of the first covenant. He, by the hypostatic union, made atonement and ransomed the Church of God by the very blood of God.Acts 20:28, though denied a place in the Gnostic or Egyptian texts of Westcott and Hort, is a continuing testimony to the Hypostatic union between the Man Christ Jesus and God the eternal Word.Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers,to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.God has not blood except by the hypostatic union. The shedding of the Blood of God did occur decretively before and from the foundation of the world, and actually when Christ Jesus did die on the cross.In the New Testament Christ is said to have made the atonement:1. On the Cross;Eph 2:16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:Heb 12:2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.2. In His Own body prepared by God or in His flesh, the Father’s hidden manna;Heb 10:5 Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me:John 6:31 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat.32 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.34 Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.36 But I said unto you, That ye also have seen me, and believe not.37 All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.38 For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.39 And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.40 And this is the will of him that sent me, that every one which seeth the Son, and believeth on him, may have everlasting life: and I will raise him up at the last day.41 The Jews then murmured at him, because he said, I am the bread which came down from heaven.42 And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven?43 Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Murmur not among yourselves.44 No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.45 It is written in the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of the Father, cometh unto me.46 Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.48 I am that bread of life.49 Your fathers did eat manna in the wilderness, and are dead.50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.51 I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.52 The Jews therefore strove among themselves, saying, How can this man give us his flesh to eat?53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.54 Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; and I will raise him up at the last day.55 For my flesh is meat indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.56 He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me, and I in him.57 As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me.58 This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.59 These things said he in the synagogue, as he taught in Capernaum.Re 2:17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.3. When He died;Ro 5:10 For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.1Co 11:26 For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come.Col 1:22 In the body of his flesh through death, to present you holy and unblameable and unreproveable in his sight:2Ti 1:10 But is now made manifest by the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death, and hath brought life and immortality to light through the gospel:Heb 2:9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.Heb 2:14 Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;Heb 5:7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;Heb 9:15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.Heb 9:16 For where a testament is, there must also of necessity be the death of the testator.1Co 15:3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
And shed His own blood, the blood of God. Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.1Co 10:16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?Eph 2:13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.Col 1:20 And, having made peace through the blood of his cross, by him to reconcile all things unto himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.Heb 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh:14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?Heb 9:19 For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the law, he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people,Heb 9:20 Saying, This is the blood of the testament which God hath enjoined unto you.Heb 10:19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,Heb 9:12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.Acts 20:28 Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.The very blood of Jesus Christ is His own blood that He created while He was in the womb of the Virgin Mary, and at the same time by the Hypostatic Union with God the Eternal Word, is the very blood of God.Eph 1:7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;Col 1:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:I want to come to a conclusion by repeating an opening statement:Since this is true, neither can the entire Trinity, in their pure and abstract spiritual state, make an atonement for sin or reconcile the Father’s little Children unto God.The Holy Trinity cannot actually bear sins in their pure spiritual state. Sin is primarily the fruit of the flesh. I know there are exceptions such as Lucifer, but I am speaking concerning mankind. Lucifer could sin, but not make atonement for his own sins. Men can and do sin, and make typical sacrifices to make a typical atonement for their sins.The LXX and the KJV:6 All we as sheep have gone astray; every one has gone astray in his way; and the Lord gave him up for our sins.6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.7 And he, because of his affliction, opens not his mouth: {1} he was led as a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before the shearer is dumb, so he opens not his mouth. {1) Gr. Ac 8:32, 33}7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.8 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken away from the earth: because of the iniquities of my people he was led to death.8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.9 And I will give the wicked for his burial, and the rich for his death; {1} for he practised no iniquity, nor craft with his mouth. {1) 1 Pe 2:22}9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.10 The Lord also is pleased to purge him from his stroke. If ye can give an offering for sin, your soul shall see a long–lived seed:10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.11 the Lord also is pleased to take away from the travail of his soul, to shew him light, and to form him with understanding; to justify the just one who serves many well; and he shall bear their sins.11 He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.12 Therefore he shall inherit many, and he shall divide the spoils of the mighty; because his soul was delivered to death: and {1} he was numbered among the transgressors; and he bore the sins of many, and was delivered because of their iniquities. {1) Mk 15:28}12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.The LXX alone:Isa. 53:6 All we as sheep have gone astray; every one has gone astray in his way; and the Lord gave him up for our sins.7 And he, because of his affliction, opens not his mouth: {1} he was led as a sheep to the slaughter, and as a lamb before the shearer is dumb, so he opens not his mouth. {1) Gr. Ac 8:32, 33}8 In his humiliation his judgment was taken away: who shall declare his generation? for his life is taken away from the earth: because of the iniquities of my people he was led to death.9 And I will give the wicked for his burial, and the rich for his death; {1} for he practised no iniquity, nor craft with his mouth. {1) 1 Pe 2:22}10 The Lord also is pleased to purge him from his stroke. If ye can give an offering for sin, your soul shall see a long–lived seed:11 the Lord also is pleased to take away from the travail of his soul, to shew him light, and to form him with understanding; to justify the just one who serves many well; and he shall bear their sins.12 Therefore he shall inherit many, and he shall divide the spoils of the mighty; because his soul was delivered to death: and {1} he was numbered among the transgressors; and he bore the sins of many, and was delivered because of their iniquities. {1) Mk 15:28} LXXFrom the LXX Interlinear:Isaiah 53:11And the lord willed by his hand to remove misery of his soul, to show to him light, and to shape in the understanding; to justify the just one, the good one serving many, and their sins he shall bear].53:12 On account of this he shall inherit many; of the strong ones he will portion out spoils, because [was delivered up unto death his soul]; and among to the lawless ones he was considered]; and he himself [the sins of many bore], and because of their lawless deeds he was delivered up.Special thanks to Brother David H. our webmaster, for providing this special LXX-Interlinear

Imputation study by Mr Pounds 2

Eternal Double Imputation, 2 A Short Study When did Elohem Partake of Both Good and Evil? Gen.22 (3:23) And {1} God said, Behold, Adam is become as one of us, to know good and evil, and now lest at any time he stretch forth his hand, and take of the tree of life and eat, and so he shall live forever––{1) Alex. +the Lord} LXX.22 And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever: AV.After the fall of Adam and Eve, the Lord God drove them out of the Garden and set up the Cherubs and the flaming sword to preserve the way unto the Tree of Life. Before doing this Elohem stated that Adam, after sinning had become as the Beings in Elohem, the Holy Trinity, knowing good and evil. I would highly recommend S E Pierce’s Messages on the Pentateuch for a very good summation of these events. These can be found on Brother Leroy Rhodes’ church site. The statements show that Elohem did know both good and evil. Important questions may be:
How did Elohem know good and evil, by direct, personal experience or by observation?
How did the Three Beings in Elohem know good and evil, by union with the God Man, or in their actual Beings?
When did Elohem know good and evil? I will invert these questions and suggest some answers. I hope the dear ministering brethren will help me with these questions and answers.
When did Elohem know good and evil? In our generation observations it seems obvious that Elohem did know both good and evil before Adam did. By sinning, Adam knew both good and evil by experience. He certainly knew good while in the innocent state and he certainly knew evil by his actual sin against God. I do not find revealed in Genesis when Elohem did experience any act that would result in His knowing good and evil by experience. However, there are other statements throughout the Sacred Scriptures that can help in this matter.
The Fall of Lucifer Is there any way that Elohem did experience knowing good and evil by the fall of Lucifer? While this event did involve Elohem’s actions in casting down Lucifer, Elohem did not undergo any experimental knowledge of good and evil by this event. The same is true of Elohem’s dealings with the angels who kept not their first estate and other such falls in the spiritual world. The Slaying of the Lamb of God In my opinion when Jesus Christ, as the Lamb of God, became slain by decree and in a decreed experience, that is when Elohem came to know both Good and Evil. What I have just said opens the doors to many involved question. I must wait to deal with some of those questions until my final study on this subject.
Distinguishing between Elohem’s Inheritant Divine Knowledge and His Accumulative KnowledgeInvolved here is Elohem’s inheritant knowledge arising from His divine nature, which is perfect, complete and not accumulative. By this I mean that Elohem experienced both good and evil in a knowledge and experience not inheritant from His divine nature. By this knowledge and experience He came to know both good and evil. I will say this briefly and pass on until later, this knowledge is impossible for Elohem in His pure abstract state of Divine Spirit only. Under no circumstances did Elohem ever experience evil in His pure, spiritual state. Under no circumstances did Elohem ever learn evil by experience in His pure, spiritual state. This would be incompatible with the Immutability of Elohem and His perfect knowledge and perfect inheritant holiness.
Elohem did Experience Evil and Learn by that Experience However, with the above in mind, may I suggest that Elohem did experience evil and learn by that experience. But, I must also stress that Elohem ONLY DID SO in union with Jesus Christ in His pre-creative state as the God Man. As the God Man, with both natures and beings in One perfect union, Christ’s knowledge is accumulative and not perfect and immutable. The Scriptures teach us that in Christ’s incarnate form He both grew physically and increased in knowledge and grace. Proverbs 8 shows us how that the Father instructed and taught Him in His pure spiritual, heavenly form before all creation. As a man, even the God man, Christ’s knowledge increased and He learned by or from that experience. Paul said: Heb 5:8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; Christ Jesus, in His Sonship, not God the Eternal Word, has the ability to learn by experience. This means that He learned evil by experiencing it someway and somehow. I feel we can say that Christ’s suffering were an educational experience for Him in His Sonship. So to conclude this point and enlarge it in another Short Study, may I say that the entire Trinity, Elohem, because of their union with Christ Jesus the Mediatorial man, and only by that, experienced both good and evil, and that Christ did learn by this experience. Now the question is when did this happen?
Christ’s Learning by Experiencing Evil When did Christ experience evil? He did so in two ways, decretively and actually. Since Elohem knew evil before Adam did, it seems correct to say that Christ’s initial learning of evil was when our sins were imputed unto Him in a decretive manner and He stood slain before and from the foundation of the World. Before our Lord Jesus Christ became the Creator, the Medium and by Whom the Father created the kosmos, He already knew what was ahead for Him and He already had experienced by decree the sins of God’s elect being placed upon Him. By this decree Christ stood slain before and from the foundation of the world.
Christ Knew by Decretive Knowledge Before the world was Christ already knew by decretive knowledge what it was like to experience evil when the sins of God’s little children were placed upon HIm. I mean Christ received the sins of His people by imputation. The little children did not yet exist in their flesh and blood forms, and did not actually sin. However, they did so decretive and Christ experienced this just as surely as He did actually on the Cross. I do not mean that Christ suffered in His heavenly body at that time, for He suffered once in the end of the Hebrew World or age, when He died upon the Cross. Heb 9:26 For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. Is it not safe to conclude that Elohem did know good and evil, by direct, personal experience rather than only by observation? The Holy Trinity did so by their Union with the Man, Christ Jesus in His Mediatorial form and works. They were able to do this because God the Word already was in a personal union with the Man Christ Jesus, and through this Personal Union, the entire Trinity experienced this by Trinitarian union rather than actual experience. 1 Tim. 2:5 For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; John 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word; 21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me. 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one: 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me. 24 Father, I will that they also, whom thou hast given me, be with me where I am; that they may behold my glory, which thou hast given me: for thou lovedst me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father, the world hath not known thee: but I have known thee, and these have known that thou hast sent me. 26 And I have declared unto them thy name, and will declare it: that the love wherewith thou hast loved me may be in them, and I in them.
How did the Three Beings in Elohem Know Good and Evil, by Union with the God Man, or in Their Actual Beings?I will be enlarging this question in a different short study, the Lord willing. I will now state that the Three Divine Beings in Elohem experienced both good and evil, not in their actual beings, but by Union with the God-Man, Christ Jesus. This involves both God the Word’s personal union, the hypostatic union, with the man Christ Jesus, and the personal union of the Father in the Son, and the Son in the Father, with the Holy Sprit or the Trinitarian Union.
When did Elohem know Good and Evil?The entire Holy Trinity, Elohem, knew in a decretive manner good and evil before the creation of the world when the sins of God’s people were imputed to Christ and He stood as the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. Elohem said: Behold the man has become as one of us, to know good and evil… Next the Lord willing: Why Christ Did Become Incarnate, or Can Abstract Deity partake of both Good and Evil?

Imputation study by Mr Pounds

ETERNAL, DOUBLE IMPUTATION No. 1 Definition of Terms Introduction, involved in the concept of eternal justification we find several related doctrines. I do not like the name eternal justification because it seems to limit the subject, and would much rather use the terms eternal, double imputation. Yet, I realize that this does not even convey the grand and innumerable glories of Jesus Christ as the Mediator in His actions for His Brothers and Sisters before all creation. Perhaps the best title for these doctrines that I know about would be Decreed, Eternal, Double Imputation. Let me define my terms:
By Decreed, I mean the purpose of God to impute and arising from imputing, to justify God’s little children, first in a decreed manner, not an actual manner; this decreed manner occurred before all creation, before the world began; the actual manner occurred on the Christ, the evidential manner occur in our minds when we receive the knowledge of our salvation by the remission of our sins;
By Eternal, I mean God’s actions done in pre-creative eternity, I do not mean eternal as we speak of God as an eternal Being;
By Double Imputation, I mean the Imputation of the sins of the elect unto Christ, and the righteousness of Christ to them. I do not believe the Scriptures to teach single imputation of the Righteousness of Christ to the elect without the imputation of their sins to Him first. Paul said: 2 Cor. 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. The first act in Double Imputation is God the Father’s making Christ to be Sin For Us. I would also suggest that arising from Christ’s being our Sin Offering and our Scape Goat, we receive, or have imputed unto us, His very own righteousness. These are both sure and certain. Let me now state that I do not believe that Christ received our sins by impartation, or that He had Mary’s fallen and sinful nature, or that we receive Christ’s righteousness by impartation, but only by imputation. We partake of Christ and His Divine Nature by Union, and His Righteousness only by impartation.The Scriptures teach us that Christ was indeed made sin for us. The Holy Trinity made Christ to be sins for us two ways. First decretively, He stood before all creation as the Lamb Slain from the Foundation of the World. Secondly, actually when He died on the Cross and shed His Blood and secured our Actual Justification. On the Cross the Holy Trinity met with the elected family of God in Christ, their first such meeting since they fell in Adam and were thereby lost. What about those elect who were not alive when Christ died, and have been born following Christ’s death, were they actually justified by Christ on the Cross? Yes, justification is before God in this sense. Also, what about their meeting with the Holy Trinity in the Lord Jesus Christ when He died on the Cross? Yes by their union and standing in the Lord Jesus Christ from all eternity. I really do mean that the entire Trinity were in Christ when He died on the Cross, not by actual Being, but by Eternal and Trinitarian union. Jesus often said that He was in the Father and the Father was in Him. While He was on this earth, He was also in Heaven. But to return to double Imputation, let me note that Christ did die in a decretive manner before the foundation of the world, and in an actual manner on the Cross. I would ask what slew Christ decretively before and from the foundation of the World? Did not our sins slay Christ from and before the foundation of the world in a decretively manner? In my opinion YES. How can this be? The key here is understanding the Decrees of God and the certain fulfillment of those decrees. The Scriptures teach us that God often speaks of these things that are not yet, as though they were. There is no time zone with God. He is the eternal I AM, hence He spoke first in His decrees and then these decrees were manifested in this present evil world as they became worked out. The issue here with some may be, are God’s decrees certain? In my opinion all that God has decreed, and that is all inclusive though not the same way for all things, some to cause and some to permit, are all sure and certain and a part of His all inclusive decrees. I do not want to overload this glorious subject with too much in each of these short studies, so I shall conclude this first one now and hope to follow with the following:
When did Elohem partake of both Good and Evil?
Why Christ Did Become Incarnate, or can Abstract Deity partake of both Good and Evil?
The Absolute and Immutable Certainty of Double Imputation.
Christ’s Pre-Creative Actions to Justify the elect in Pre-Creative Eternity.
What did Christ Receive in Pre-Creative Eternity, the elect only, or the elect and their sins, or their sins only? In parting I want to ask this question as food for thought, If Christ received both the elect and their sins in pre-creative union, does this mean would be anything uncertain about the existence of the elect and their sins, or the Existence of the Incarnate Christ and His righteousness. I trust this subject of the Antiquity of Christ and His works as the eternal God-Man and Mediator, will continue to open up and enlarge further as we study together, Ron.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Bible definition of Gospel

Like so many Bible terms, the word GOSPEL has been given various definitions contrary to its original and proper meaning.
The word has its origin "in Christ before the foundation of the world." This was contained in the "promise" God made before the foundation of the world. (Tit. 1:2) The "gospel," the "good news" or "good tidings" is the declared fulfilment of that promise.
In Isaiah 61:1-3 is found the outstanding proclamation made by the Sum and Substance of the good tidings, -- Jesus Christ Himself: "The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the meek, He has sent Me to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound. To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all that mourn. To appoint to them that mourn in Zion, to give to them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that He might be glorified." The Redeemer repeated this same proclamation of Himself in the synagogue.
While this prophetical statement is often quoted, its full significance is rarely understood. In this one sweeping declaration, there is encouched - not the beginning of the gospel, not a part of its fulfilment, - the grand total of what the Son of Man declared on the cross: "IT IS FINISHED"!
The Greek word "evanggelion" is translated "gospel" in the King James Version. This word, together with its rendering of "good tidings," glad tidings" and "preach the gospel" occurs some one hundred and eight times in the New Testament, none of which intimate anything less than "finished redemption" in Christ.
In no instance does the word convey any thought of a mere "free-offer of grace."
When Jesus stood and cried, "If any man thirst, let him come unto Me and drink," He no more invited the thirsty, than He invited the light when He said, Let there be light. In the first place there is not a soul on the earth that does or can thirst for the living waters which flow from Him, until He quickens it, and makes it thirst, and when made to feel its thirst, and even when the tongue faileth for thirst , it can no more approach the living fountain than it can make a world, until Jesus applies, not the invitation, but the word, "Come unto Me." His words are spirit and they are life; and His sheep hear them, and they know His voice, and they follow Him; because they have no power or even disposition to resist their Shepherd's voice. The calling of the saints is nowhere in the scriptures denominated an invitation. He calleth His own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. If he only invited them they would have to get out themselves, or stay behind. But when he calls, the dead hear His voice, (not His invitation,) and they that hear shall live. How would it suit the condition of a poor, lost, helpless soul, one that feels his poverty, inability and impotence, to read the word thus: The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall be invited to live, and they who accept the invitation shall live. And when He inviteth forth His own sheep He goeth before them, provided they accept the invitation. It is perfectly in keeping with every feature of Arminianism for workmongers to talk of invitation of the gospel, because the very term implies the willing and the doing power to be in the creature. But it is neither in harmony with the doctrine of experience of the saints of God to so speak of His communications to them as to imply that He has yielded up the government to them; that He has hinged the effect and result of His communications on their will instead of His own will. It is derogatory to His character, it reflects on His wisdom, power, and grace.
Gilbert Beebe, July 15, 1846

Sunday, October 01, 2006

A firm foundation

This is a must read...

“Wisdom hath builded her house, she hath hewn out her seven pillars.”
THE ABOVE scripture is found in the ninth chapter of Proverbs and if you will read the entire chapter you will find that two houses were under consideration. One house was the product of wisdom, and the other house was of the foolish woman. I think wisdom’s house is figurative of the Church of Christ, and the other represents the false church. All has been done to make the Church of Christ secure and firm, but the foolish will fall by the wayside. I believe this house to be composed of all the children of God as chosen in Christ before the world began. It is not our desire to consider the house at this time, but to consider the foundation upon which this house is built. Surely the foundation is Christ Jesus and all who were chosen in Him will finally be blessed to view the seven pillars or principles of the doctrine of God, our Savior. The abstract of the faith of God’s elect may be summed up thus: 1. . Sovereignty of God. 2. . Total depravity of man. 3. . Unconditional Election. 4. . Limited atonement or special redemption. 5. . Irresistible or efficacious grace. 6. . Preservation of the saints. 7. . Resurrection or complete immortalization of the saints. I believe these phases of the doctrine are experienced in the order named. The first six are experienced here in time and the seventh is to be experienced in the beyond.
The first lesson to be revealed to the child of God is His sovereignty. We are thinking in terms of seven so we think of God as eternal, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, holy, living and triune. Yes, He is eternal. One day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. He is of one mind. He has never learned anything new nor has He forgotten anything. Everything that has ever taken place, is taking place, or that ever will come to pass is just as present and vivid in His mind as if it were (at this very moment) taking place. Things that we experience are past, present and future with us because we are creatures of time and finite, but all things are as present with God. We wonder what the future holds for us and forget things that are past, but God being eternal sees it as now transpiring.
The second part of the first pillar of this firm foundation is the omnipotence of God. He is all-powerful. God says through the prophet, “I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, Declaring the end from the beginning, and from the ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure.” “The Lord of hosts hath sworn, saying, Surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass.”
In the Scriptures it is said of God; “He doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?” God spake this world into existence. He only had to say, “Let there be light: and there was light.” “As I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” He is God “who worketh all things after the counsel of His own will.”
God is omniscient. He is wise to the extent that His knowledge embraces all things because He has decreed them and is abundantly able to bring them to pass. There is not a thought or act of man that God does not know about. “He is before all things, and by him all things consist.” Though the world seems to run at random, and events huddled together in blind confusion to our finite minds, God is so wise that He knows the outcome of all causes and effects, and so governs them that He makes perfect harmony out of all those seeming jarrings and discords, He is so wise that all things praise Him.
God is omnipresnet. He is present at all places at the same time. He is at all times at the same place. There is no possibility of hiding from God. In Him we live, move and have our being. He fills the universe.
Another characteristic of God is His eternal love. God is love. “I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with loving kindness have I drawn thee.” He loved His people even when they were dead in trespasses and in sin. This love of God is the basis of their salvation. It is the characteristic that is planted in the hearts of God’s people by the Holy Spirit.
The seventh phase of His sovereignty is that He is triune. God, the Father; God the Son; and God, the Holy Ghost. God the Father, chose His people unto salvation before the foundation of the world. God, the Son, accomplished this salvation by performing the requirements of the law, and suffered the penalty of sin and satisfied justice by shedding His precious blood on Calvary’s tree for the remission of their many sins. God, the Holy Ghost, operates upon them here in time by taking from them the stony heart and giving them a heart of flesh; reveals to them the truth as it is in Christ Jesus; comforts and consoles them in this life; and will (in the resurrection) baptize them with immortality.
Now let us consider the second pillar of this firm foundation. According to my experience, I was given a glimpse of the sovereignty of God. This was the stimuli that made manifest the fundamental truth of the total depravity of man. Job had a similar experience as recorded in Job 42:5,6, “I have heard of thee by the hearing of the ear: but now mine eye seeth thee. Wherefore I abhor myself and repent in dust and ashes.” Isaiah speaks likewise in Isaiah 6:5. “Then said I, woe is me for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips; for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts.” God, first, revealed Himself to each of these causing them, secondly, to see their depravity.
What a contrast! God is eternal; I am timely. God is all-powerful; I have no ability. God is all-wise; I know nothing as God knows. God is everywhere at all times; I can be nowhere at any time upon volition of my own will, for I find myself a victim of circumstances over which I have no control. God loved us even when we were dead in trespasses and sin; I naturally love no one by myself. God is holy; I am unholy. God is triune in complete agreement; my natural desires war against the Spirit. I find myself totally depraved, not able to extricate myself from this terrible state. This experience agrees with Jer. 13:23. “Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.” Jesus expressed this incapacity of man to recover himself from this fallen state he is in when He said as recorded in John 6:44, “No man can come unto me, except the Father draw him; and I will raise him up at the last day.” As long as the skin of the Ethiopian is black and the leopard is spotted there is no reason to expect goodness to spring from man. It is just as possible for the Ethiopian to change his skin or the leopard its spots. We must look to some other source than ourselves for anything good. We are so naturally constituted that we will trust in our own ability until God sees fit to reveal to us our true condition by His Spirit. Then we are made to “cry unto God, the most high; unto God that performeth all things for me.” In this state of mind it is with pleasure and heart-felt thanks to God that we view the third pillar of this firm foundation, unconditional election.
“According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world” (Eph. 1:4). Paul trust in the power and amazing grace of God as stated in his letter to Timothy, 2 Timothy 1:9, “Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before the world began.” Thus, it is not according to our works. Our finite minds would argue that surely it is according to our works. The Spirit teaches us contrary to natural reasoning so let us see what Paul has to say about it in Rom. 9:11-18. “(For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works but of him that calleth;) It was said unto her, The elder shall serve the younger. As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated. What shall we say then? Is there unrighteousness with God? God forbid. For he saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy. For the scripture saith unto Pharoah, Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might show my power in thee, and that my name might be declared throughout all the earth. Therefore hath he mercy upon whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.” Jesus said to His disciples, “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you.” So we are unconditionally elected according to the good pleasure of God’s will.
Let us further view this foundation by noting the fourth pillar or principle of truth, limited atonement. God’s people were chosen in Christ Jesus. Christ’s life and death must have been for them only. Concerning Jesus before His birth the angel said, “And she (Mary) shall bring forth a Son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus; for he shall save his people from their sins.” The work of Christ was for God’s people, not for the entire Adamic race. Christ said in John 10:14,15, “I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.” Christ died for the sheep, not for the goats. Christ said in His prayer to God as recorded in John 17:9, “I pray not for the world, but for them which thou hast given me; for they are thine.” Christ did not pray for the entire Adamic race. Paul tells the ministers of Ephesus in Acts 20:28, “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the Church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” His blood was shed for the church, not for the world. Christ said in Matt. 20:28, “Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.” He gave His life for many, not for all.
The fifth pillar is that of irresistible or efficacious grace. The teachings of the Scriptures is such that we must say that man in his natural state is radically corrupt. He is spiritually dead and must be saved by Christ if at all. He does not desire God; therefore, must have a new disposition before he can love God. He loves sin, therefore can never desire to be redeemed from it until he is wrought upon by the effectual working of God’s mighty power. Jesus said, “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). This inward change wrought by supernatural power is termed in the Scriptures as “Called out of darkness into his marvelous light” (1 Peter 2:9). A passing out of death unto life (John 5:24); a taking away of the heart of stone, and a giving of the heart of flesh (Ezek. 11:19); and the subject of the change is said to be a new creature (2 Cor. 5:17).
We had nothing to do with our physical birth but received it as a sovereign gift of God; we likewise have nothing to do with our spiritual birth but receive it also as a sovereign gift. Each occurred without any exercise of our own power, and even without our consent being asked. We no more resist the latter than we did the former. Consequently, salvation to whomsoever it may be granted is to see “Jesus the author and finisher of our faith” (Heb. 12:2). There is no such thing as a “self-made man”; the highest type man agrees with Paul, “By the grace of God I am what I am.” God said through the prophet, Isaiah 56:11, “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth, it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereunto I sent it.” When God says repent, you repent; when He says come, you come; when He says go, you go.
The doctrine of election and efficacious grace logically implies the certain salvation of those who receive these blessings. Therefore let us consider the sixth pillar, to with: the perseverance of the saints. Those who have been brought to Jesus for refuge have a firm foundation upon which to build their hope of eternal life. The iniquities of their own hearts together with all the Satanic influences will never cause them to fail. The same amazing grace that has brought us thus far will lead us home. Paul said in Rom. 8:29, “Whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.” It is an evidence that God has predestinated the recipients of these gifts to be like Him in character, destiny and glory and that He will infallibly carry out His purpose. “Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6). This day of Jesus Christ will be the crowning work of immortality in the resurrection. Psalms 138:8 reads, “The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me: thy mercy, O Lord, endureth forever.” Paul states that “The gifts and calling of God are without repentance.” So God’s dealings with His children are never ending, but will finally save them in heaven without the loss of one.
In this life God’s people may experience a close view of the six fundamental principles or pillars of this firm foundation as God sees fit to reveal to them, but the seventh, or that of the immortalization or resurrection of the saints, is yet to be experienced in reality. Now we see as through a glass darkly but then face to face; now we know in part but then we will know as we are known. Now we look forward with deep anxiety and precious hope toward the reality of the seventh principle, the resurrection, which is to be the crowing work of salvation and is yet to be experienced actually and really by all the children of God. I desire to close this treatise by quoting 1 Cor. 15:51-58, “Behold, I show you a mystery: we shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump; for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. O death, where is thy sting? O, grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.” Amen.
Elder E.J. Lambert “Tried in the Furnace” Pgs 97 – 105

To whom is the gospel preached ?

There is, and long has been, much controversy between legalists and the disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ, not only as to what the gospel is, but also in regard to whom it is or should be addressed. If all the parties engaged in the controversy could understand the scriptural signification of the word, those who are now zealously contending for a universal application of it to all mankind indiscriminately, would desire rather to restrict than to extend its application, as they have ever exerted themselves to suppress its publication. What they call gospel differs very widely from what Christ and the holy apostles proclaimed in the primitive days of the gospel church. Our Redeemer encountered the same class of zealous fanatics, who compassed sea and land to disseminate their false gospel, but a perversion of the gospel of Christ; and exposing and denouncing their hypocrisy charged them with teaching for doctrines, the commandments of men. The voluntary religious institutions originated and enjoined by men without any divine authority from God are now very widely taught and greedily received by graceless men, and such teaching is by them dignified with the name of gospel. Their preachers may entertain conflicting opinions in regard to what is contained in the Scriptures, for the doctrine of the Bible and the laws and institutions of Christ are regarded by them as minor points, while opposite sects can freely unite in opposing the doctrine of Christ, and in the propagation of any or all of the inventions of men. They can and do, with much seeming cordiality, take each other by the hand, and with wonderful reciprocity compliment each other as "truly evangelical," while in truth there are but two points in which they are really agreed among themselves; the one is that salvation is attainable by works, and the other is in denouncing the Old Primitive order of Baptists. As to precisely what works will secure salvation, and by what mode of warfare they should fight the Old Baptists, they may differ widely without interruption of fellowship. What they call gospel may be obtained in any quantity from the schools of men, in which every man is engaged in teaching his brother and neighbor, saying, "Know the Lord." From Infant and Sabbath Schools, and Bible Classes, as well as from Theological Seminaries; from books and tracts, and various other sources, they can procure all of that kind of delusion which they call gospel in indefinite quantities. We would by no means misrepresent them; but we have failed to understand their language, if what they call gospel is not with them an article of commerce. Do they not propose to send it to the heathen; to Burma, Hindostan, and to all the distant islands where they can find a profitable market? They gravely tell us, in a business way, what amount of capital must be invested, what number of men and amount of money, how many ships and seamen must be employed, and how long it will take to supply the world.
What of their falsely called gospel they retain for home consumption, if we may judge from ruling prices, ought to be superior to what they ship to foreign markets, as those who retail it from their pulpits at home frequently amass large sums by this traffic.
To make their false gospel salable, they must, of course, adapt it to the taste of all. Those who have no ears to hear what the Spirit saith to the churches, have no difficulty in hearing the doctrines of men; hence there is a great cry about preaching to sinners. Their doctrine is precisely what unconverted sinners can feast upon; for instead of being told that they are condemned already and the wrath of God abideth on them, they are told that they are probationers, free agents, and have ability to move by their prayers the power that moves the world. Instead of being told that "No man can come to the Father but by Christ," and that "No man can come to Christ except the Father draw him," they are told that they can do a great deal for the Lord. And this is profanely called preaching the gospel to sinners. While with an air of affected superiority, they charge the Old order of Baptists, that we do not preach the gospel to sinners, while they themselves do not preach a word of gospel to saints or sinners. It is not gospel to utter falsehood in the name of the Lord; there is no gospel in telling men what they can and must do, or be damned. To call on dead sinners to repent and believe the gospel implies ability in them to do so, whereas the gospel proclaims that Christ is exalted to be a Prince and a Savior, to give repentance to Israel and the forgiveness of sins. It is as exclusively the work of our exalted Savior to give repentance as it is to forgive sins, and the dead sinner can no more do the one than the other. True repentance which is unto life and needeth not to be repented of, must proceed from life. If the repentance be spiritual it proceeds from a spiritual source, and must be preceded by the quickening Spirit of God. The sorrow of the world worketh death; but godly sorrow worketh repentance unto life; and to be godly, in distinction from the sorrow of the world, it must come from God, it must be given by the exalted Prince and Savior. Faith is also the gift of God, Jesus Christ is the author and finisher of it, if it be genuine; for it is not the faith of the creature, but it is the faith of the Son of God, and without it no man can please God. Paul says, It is not of yourselves; it is the gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast. To preach the opposite to what the inspired Scriptures teach, is not preaching the gospel to saints, nor to sinners.
But we propose to show how the Scriptures define the word gospel. Compare Isaiah 61:1, with Luke 4:18, and you will see that what is by the prophet called good tidings, is by our Lord rendered gospel, and to prevent any caviling, the good tidings in the prophecy, and the gospel in its fulfillment, are defined to mean, good tidings to the meek - "to bind up the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and opening of the prison to them that are bound; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all that mourn. To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified." Observe who these meek, poor, broken-hearted, prisoners are, and what gospel is preached to them. The Spirit of the Lord God qualifies those on whom it is poured, to follow the blessed Savior in preaching good tidings, or gospel, to the meek; not to the proud, haughty, and self-righteous. It proclaims liberty, not to free agents who were never in bondage, who have all the religion they live for, and could have as much more if they pleased to work for it. The poor broken hearted, helpless prisoner hails with joy the tidings that proclaims his release from prison. But how could the same tidings be joyful, or gospel, to those who are not poor, nor captive, nor broken hearted, nor meek? When Jesus said to the poor dying thief, "This day thou shalt be with me in Paradise," we cannot doubt it was good tidings to him. But would the same words, if spoken to his murderers who were reviling him, been appreciated as gospel tidings? The gospel is discriminating; it finds out the "humbled sinner in whose breast a thousand thoughts revolve." You who complain of the Old Baptists, that we do not preach the gospel to sinners, would you have us, if we meet a band of robbers, pirates or murderers, say to them, in gospel terms, "Fear not, little flock; it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom?" Or to a company of Atheists, "Let not your heart be troubled; ye believe in God, believe also in Jesus?" If this is not what they mean by preaching the gospel to sinners, how far short of this do they come, when they address the most blessed and sacred assurances which Christ gave to the meek, the poor in spirit, the pure in heart, the peace makers, and the persecuted saints, to unconverted sinners, as an inducement to them to "get religion," saying to them, Seek, and ye shall find; Knock, and it shall be opened unto you; Ask, and it shall be given to you? Not one of these gracious promises were ever addressed by our Lord or any minister of his to any but to quickened subjects of his saving grace. Instead then of preaching the gospel to saints or sinners, they pervert the gospel, in attempting to give the children's bread unto dogs, in direct defiance of the special command of Jesus Christ, who positively forbid that that which is holy should be given to the dogs. By their artful misapplication of the Scriptures, they are charged by an apostle with "turning the truth of God into a lie," by making the Scriptures seem to say what they do not say; and so by handling the word of God deceitfully, they not only lead the blind into the ditch, but frequently perplex and worry many of the unsuspecting honest hearted enquirers after truth. We have at this moment a case before us that is in point. An esteemed and dear friend who has long been held in captivity among the New School Baptists, has recently withdrawn from their communion, writes us that there is still one point of difference in which she cannot yet feel satisfied that the Old order of Baptists are right, and that is the point which we are now discussing; namely, that our pastors confine their addresses to the churches, or in other words, do not preach the gospel to sinners, and she refers us to the parable of the king's son as favoring her position, or as being in the way of her accepting the views supposed to be held by us.
Without digression from the theme of this article, we will examine the objection to what is supposed to be our views, and the bearing of the parable upon the subject.
First, we will correct a misapprehension of the position and practice of the ministers of our order. While we believe and preach the gospel, as Christ and his apostles did, wherever a door is open for that purpose, openly addressing our preaching to every one within the sound of our voice, the gospel which we preach discriminates between the living and the dead. It is a savor of life unto life, to those who are quickened by the Holy Ghost, and a savor of death unto death, to them that perish. It is "to the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; but unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God." And if our preaching is not a savor of death unto death to the ungodly, and a stumbling block to the Jews, and foolishness to the Greeks, and if it be not a savor of life to the quickened, and if it be not to them that are called, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God, then it is not apostolic preaching. Who ever knew an Old School Baptist to refuse to preach the gospel to any but saints? We cannot search the hearts or try the reins of those to whom we preach; but the word which we preach makes the discrimination; for it is quick and powerful, sharper than any two edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart; neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight; but all things are naked and open unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. Hebrews 4:12,13. The gospel which we preach is good tidings to the meek; but if any part of our audience are not meek, it is not gospel, or good tidings to them. All who have an ear to hear, are more than welcome to hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches. But if any have not hearing ears, the preachers cannot supply them; for the hearing ear and understanding heart are of the Lord. The Son of God alone has power to cause the dead to hear his voice and live; for the words which he speaks to them, they are spirit, and they are life. Therefore his sheep hear his voice, and he knows them, and they follow him; for he gives to them eternal life, and they shall never perish. He, and he alone has power over all flesh that he should give eternal life to as many as the Father has given him. All this the Old Baptists preach to every creature. But we do not give the children's bread to any but the children, nor do we give what belongs to the dogs to the children.
But let us examine the parable of the marriage of the king's son. Matthew 22:1-14. Unto whom, and for what purpose was it spoken by our Lord, and why spoken in parable? The context will show that it was addressed to the Jews, including the Pharisees, who were so much enraged on hearing it, that they went and took counsel how they might entangle him in his talk. See verse 15. As whatsoever God speaks is certain to secure the object for which it is spoken, see Isaiah 55:11. What was accomplished by this parable shows conclusively for what purpose it was spoken. And the reason why he spake to all but his saints in parables, is given in his own words to his disciples, in Luke 8:10. "And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be?" Alluding to the parable of a sower, "And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God; but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand." We must reject Christ's own explanation of his reason for using parables, or admit that this parable was spoken expressly to discriminate between his disciples to whom was given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, and all others from whom that gift was withheld, and by the inscrutable purpose of God all but the disciples, in seeing should not see, and hearing should not understand. Instead of his parables being used to elucidate, illustrate, and make the mysteries of the kingdom of God clear and plain to the understanding of the ungodly, they were designed to make them the more obscure, that they might be a stumbling block to the Jews, and folly to the Greeks. "Therefore Jesus rejoiced in spirit, when he said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hidden these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father, for so it seemeth good in thy sight." Perhaps our esteemed friend will perceive that neither this nor any other parable, correctly understood, will sustain the position taken, that the address of the ministers of Christ should be indiscriminate. The same gospel preaching which elucidates the mysteries to the saints on whom the heavenly gift is bestowed, involves them in parabolic obscurity to all but such. Still the question may return, What does the parable mean? We have already shown that it was intended like all the parables to baffle the wisdom of the scribes, pharisees and work mongers of that and of all subsequent ages, and bring down their lofty imagination, humble the pride of man, and cause that none should glory, only in the Lord. It was nevertheless full of wholesome instruction to those to whom it was given to know the mysteries of the kingdom. The kingdom of God, which in this parable or similitude is compared to a king who made a marriage for his son, embraces Christ and his people in both the legal and then prospective dispensations. The marriage of the king's son represents the public espousal, and marriage of Christ and his bride, the church, which was then about to be consummated, according to prophecy. The oxen and fatlings, representing all the sacrifices under the law, had been killed, and the Bridegroom had come to redeem his bride from under the law, that she might be identified with him in his resurrection from the dead. The marriage festivities, or feast, was now about to be spread, in the opening of the gospel dispensation. The Jews, as a nation or people, had been notified and bidden to the marriage by the prophets, and they had professed to be anxiously awaiting the coming of the Bridegroom and announcement of the feast. "The law and the prophets were until John." John the Baptist had announced the advent of Christ as the Bridegroom, saying, "He that hath the bride, is the Bridegroom; but the friend of the Bridegroom rejoiceth because of the Bridegroom's voice: thus my joy is fulfilled." John's mission was to make ready a people prepared of the Lord. Seventy servants had been sent to announce to the commonwealth of Israel that the feast was prepared; but they were not ready to leave Judaism, nor had they any disposition to embrace Christianity. These servants had been forbidden to go with this proclamation to any but those Jews which had been bidden by the prophets. "Go ye not in the way of the Gentiles," nor into any city, even of the Samaritans were they not to enter, but to go exclusively to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. "But they made light of it." He came to his own, and his own received him not. He grew up among them as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground; he hath no form, nor comeliness; and when they saw him there was no beauty or attraction for them to desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Isaiah 53:1-3. Again other servants, the apostles, were sent out, with the same charge to go only to the Jews which were bidden; but they made no serious matter of it; and they slew the servants. This was literally true of the disciples and apostles which were sent with this message to the Jews; they not only rejected their message, but put the messengers to death. All this preceded the wrath which was brought upon the Jewish nation, when nationally they were destroyed, and Jerusalem and other cities were terribly destroyed.
Then said the king to his servants, or ministers: The wedding is ready, but they which were bidden, the carnal Israelites, were not worthy. The law could make nothing perfect. Their legal self-righteousness was but filthy rags, and would not answer for a wedding garment. They with all their filthy rags, or legal works, were now utterly rejected, and the decree of the king is published, that none of them which were bidden, or to whom the prophets had been sent, should taste of the supper, the gospel feast. And now the servants are sent forth to the Gentiles, who had not been bidden to the feast as were the Jews. Comparing the version of Luke 16 of this same parable with that of Matthew, we perceive that when those who were whole had declined the feast, the servants were instructed to gather from the streets and lanes of Jerusalem, or Israel, the poor, the maimed, the halt and the blind; quite a different description of guests; yet the very description to whom the gospel is good tidings; and of this description there were gathered by the apostles from the secluded lanes and streets of Israel all the original constituent members of the gospel organization. And the apostles reported to their Lord, saying, "It is done as thou hast commanded, and yet there is room." Poor, helpless, halt and blind sinners who felt their poverty, and had no works or merits of their own to plead, were gathered to the gospel feast; but those of that character called from the Jews did not exhaust the provisions of grace, and the gospel proclamation is by divine command extended to the high-way and hedges of the Gentile world. "Go ye," the ministers of the everlasting gospel, who had received a "Go ye" from their King, "and as many as ye shall find bid to the marriage." Certainly not as many of the self-righteous work-mongers, but as many as they should find of the character already gathered into the marriage, of the poor, lame, broken hearted, helpless and guilt-stricken; bid them welcome, in the name of the King to the marriage. But none others should partake of the feast, as we see how he fared who came in not having on the wedding garment. The broad phylacteries of self-righteous pharisees would not do; the guest must be clothed with garments of salvation, as sinners saved by grace alone, and covered with the robe of Christ's own righteousness, that is the wedding dress; and a profession of religion without it will avail nothing. All who come in without God's grace will be thrust out without his favor.
Again, permit us to ask, What is there in this parable that can be justly construed to favor an indiscriminate address of the gospel ministry to all mankind?
The work of the gospel ministry is very clearly and fully stated in the words of our risen Savior to the apostles immediately before he ascended to heaven. "And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth." This is a most vitally important introduction to their commission. If there are any sinners who have power to resist his will, or to secure their own salvation, or to prevent their own salvation, then all power in earth is not in him. If ministers have power to save souls, to quicken dead sinners, or to prevent their quickening and salvation, then there is power besides what is vested in him. Or if Theological Schools have power to prepare men for the gospel ministry, or Mission Boards have power to commission men to preach, then that power is not exclusively found in him. The fact is not only in itself important, but it is also important that all who are called by him to the work should know it; for it is upon this very therefore that they are commanded to go. Go ye therefore, or from this consideration. It does not allow the alternative, to them to tarry at home, and send somebody else. "Go ye therefore." And what? "Teach all nations." He who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords, having all power in both worlds, has a right to send them over every state, territory, and division of the universe; and no king, potentate or ruler of the earth has any legitimate right to forbid, or throw impediments in their way. All nations. The command of Christ is no longer restricted to the Jews; now the middle wall of partition is taken down, and the messengers of Christ are commanded to go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. For God has a people in every tribe and nation, and his gospel shall search and find them out, and call them out; baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. That is as was understood and practiced by the apostles, baptizing all who gladly receive the word, and who believe with all their heart on the Lord Jesus Christ. Thus by baptism adding them manifestively to the apostles, and to the apostolic church. "Teaching them." They need instruction, and Christ has by his supreme authority authorized this manner of instruction, by and through the diversified gifts which he has received for and given to them. But what are they to teach them? Not the arts and sciences of this world; for in the knowledge of them the ministers of Christ are generally quite limited themselves. But the orders of the King are very plain and definite. "Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you." No new lessons that Jesus has not commanded the apostles. No progression beyond the commands of Christ. Nothing that he has commanded may be omitted. Nothing that he has not commanded may be added. If any man shall add to the words of the book of this prophecy, or instruction, God shall add to him the plagues written in this book; and if any man shall take from the words of his instructions, he shall be expelled from the church of God, the communion of the saints, and from the privileges of the Holy City, New Jerusalem. But, "Blessed and happy are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. For without are dogs."
We have been the more particular in showing what the gospel is, by whom, and to whom Christ has commanded it be preached, that not only our friend, but all who read may see that very much of what passes currently for gospel at our day, is but the teaching for doctrines the commandments and institutions of men, instead of the all things whatsoever Christ commanded his apostles to teach. In conclusion of this extended article we wish to add a few words in regard to the object and utility of the gospel ministry. The apostle, who is commanded to teach us, defines it thus: "Feed the flock of God, which he has purchased with his own blood." Jesus commanded Peter, saying, Feed my sheep, and feed my lambs. None but the flock of God can feed upon the gospel; none but they can live on every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. The beloved disciple and inspired apostle John says, "Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. They are of the world; therefore speak they of the world, and the world heareth them. We are of God; he that knoweth God heareth us; he that is not of God heareth not us. Hereby know we the spirit of truth, and the spirit of error." I John 4:4-6. Finally, as the sun in the heavens can only be seen in its own light, so the light and glory of the everlasting gospel can only be discerned in its own divine radiance. Until God who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, shines in our hearts, we cannot comprehend the light of the knowledge of the glory of God shining in the face of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Elder Gilbert BeebeSigns of the Times - February 15, 1869.

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Predestination and faith

Can a true christian have a God given faith and not believe in predestination ? Absolutely not. Notice I did not say that the believer will totally understand predestination, but they will believe in predestination. predestination is the only ground of faith. Heb 11

6And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

1pet 1

18Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers;
19But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:
20Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world,
but was manifest in these last times for you,

I should not hesitate to say, that a faith given by God, that is the faith of Gods elect will also believe in unconditional election, sovereign grace, mans spiritual inability by nature, particular and atonement for the sheep only, and preservation of the saints. Why am I so convinced of this ? Because all those are Gospel truths that should have been preached or declared in one hearing the good news... Don't get me wrong, those truths will be assailed by the world, flesh and devil, and that mightily, but, it shall not defeat the believer, he is secure in christ hand and his advocay...lk 22:

31And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:
32But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.

Friday, September 29, 2006

The Carnal christian

I have been asked do I believe in the carnal christian. The answer is no. I believe all true christians are spiritual by reason of their having been given faith to believe the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. Now if you ask me if true chrisitians walk in a carnal manner my answer is yes !

Notice what the apostle paul says in rom 7: 14For we know that the law is spiritual: but I am carnal, sold under sin. Here is a spiritual man admitting he is carnal.

True chrisitians live by faith in what God has declared them to be, rather than what they feel or experience. True believers will be taught of God not to trust in the flesh , but to rely upon and cling to what has been revealed to them in the gospel, and that is all of our righteousness and acceptance with God has been made a reality by the imputed righteousness of christ to his people, based soley on Gods sovereign grace !! Nothing we did to gain it, or recieve it, we come to know it by faith, we recognize it by faith. The world , flesh and the devil are now our sworn enemies and oft times causes us many of falls, but nevertheless, we are holy, righteous and blameless before God because of christ and for his sake.. God will always be there to raise up his people: ps 37

23The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.
24Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholdeth him with his hand.

Yes, even our sinful steps are ordered by the lord ! How does God delight in that ? Because his son becomes more and more precious to the saint after every fall. He is our avocate, he is our righteousness, and we can rejoice that we are complete in him, bless his holy name...