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  1. The Three Heavenly Witnesses. (The Authenticity of 1 John 5:7)

    "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."

    This verse is found in the KJV Bible but is missing from a great many, perhaps most, later English bibles. It is a very clear declaration of the reality of the Holy Trinity. Those who maintain, like myself, that the King James Bible is the perfect word of God in English, see its removal from modern bibles as part of the modern attack upon sound doctrine. In this case, the Trinity.

    Two wonderful books written in defence of the authenticity of this verse have been a great encouragement to me. They are, A History of the Debate over 1 John 5:7 by Michael Maynard, published in 1995, and Letters to Edward Gibbon, Esq. by George Travis, published in 1785.

    Maynard's book is exactly what he says it is. He traces from the first century to the present day the pro and con debate over the verse and the parties concerned. This is a very useful resource, though I must confess that I have only used it for occasional reference rather than a cover to cover reading.

    Travis's book I found hard to put down and was so pleased with it that I read all 376 pages of it twice through, excepting the appendices, which are almost all in Latin as taken from earlier authors such as Jerome (AD 347-420).

    My plan here is to try and give in simple terms some of the meat of Travis's work for Christians who might be troubled by the doubts being cast upon the verse. In dealings with so-called Jehovah's Witnesses, who do not believe in the Trinity, this can be a powerful verse but we must be ready to defend it. 

    George Travis, was Archdeacon of Chester from 1786 until his death in 1797. His defence of 1 John 5:7, often referred to as the Johannine Comma, comprises five letters addressed to Edward Gibbon, author of the famous work, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. Travis takes Gibbon to task for his comments on 1 John 5:7, hereafter, 'the comma'.

    Internal and External Evidence.

    Arguments for or against biblical texts are often made from what is called Internal Evidence or External Evidence. Internal evidence has to do with whether the disputed words agree with the biblical context in which they are found or not found, or with biblical truth as a whole. That is to say, does the passage in the Bible make more sense with or without the disputed text? External evidence has to do with how the manuscripts (MSS) read and how they compare with one another.

    External evidence is by far the most complex form of evidence, and on this particular verse, opens up a massive, though very interesting, field of investigation. This form of evidence is very much the realm of scholars and perhaps would not appeal to every Christian. It seems to me, however, that no matter how deep down the rabbit-hole you go, there are still those both for or against the text. I will mention some of this evidence in the second part of this article.

    I shall subdivide what follows under three headings.

    1. Internal Evidence.

    2. External Evidence.

    3. Scholasticism.

    Internal Evidence for the Authenticity of 1 John 5:7.

    To keep this study as simple as possible, I will argue first from the standpoint of internal evidence. Internal evidence may be taken from the English or the Greek Text. I will focus mainly on the English but there are some important points also to be made from the Greek texts.

    In studying John's first epistle recently, I was struck by his insistence both upon the deity and the humanity of the Lord Jesus Christ. For example, concerning Christ's deity, John writes,

    "Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God." ch.4:15

    And concerning the Saviour's humanity,

    "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;.." ch.1:1

    These two truths regarding the Saviour's deity and humanity form a thread running right through this first epistle of John. In the first chapter of John's gospel we meet immediately with the same two truths. 

    "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." ch.1.1

    and,

    "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us,.." ch.1:14

    Why does John say so much about this in his epistle? Because he lived very close to the end of the first century and he had seen the development of heresies concerning the person of Christ.

    George Travis, in his letters to Edward Gibbon, describes these heresies. By the time John writes his first epistle, there were at least three major heretical groups promoting error concerning the Lord Jesus. Here's what Travis has to say concerning two of them,

    "Before this epistle was written, the two, opposite, heresies of the Cerinthians, and the Docetists,1 had arisen, to the great disturbance of the Christian Church. The Docetists denied the incarnation of Christ; refusing to admit that he was ever clothed with human flesh, or ever took our nature upon him. The Cerinthians, on the contrary, denied his divinity; affirming the Jesus Christ had no other than the human. Against such errors as these it was highly needful to protest, and to contend for the faith once delivered to the saints: and St. John alone, probably, then remained, of the sacred College of the Apostles, to undertake the work with the authority of an inspired writer.

    "In a few of the first verses of his Gospel he asserts the God-head of the Word, the Almighty, and Eternal Word, in confutation of the errors of Cerinthus. 'In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was, in the beginning, with God. All things were made by him; and in him was life."2 And in a succeeding verse, he stops to affirm the incarnation of Christ, with a plainness, and precision, equally fatal to the opposite error of the Docetists. 'And the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us.' He condemns the Docetists also in the exordium of this epistle. 'That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life: declare we unto you.' He confounds the Cerinthians in the close of it. 'And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding that we may know him that is true; and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ: This is the true God and eternal life.'

    "These separate condemnations are found united together, and are urged in conjunction, in that passage of this epistle, which is the object of this present disquisition, and in a few words antecedent, and subsequent, to it. The text stands, literally, thus:

    'This is the victory that overcometh the world; even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God? This is he that came by water and blood, even Jesus Christ; not by water only, but by water and blood. And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is truth. For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one...

    "And these words may, in the sense just stated, be thus paraphrased.

    "It is this conviction, which giveth us that victory which overcometh the world, which rises superior to its terrors, as well as to its temptations, even our faith that Jesus is the Son of, a partaker of the same nature with, God. But this Jesus is not a partaker of the divine nature, only; for, when he came on earth, he took our human nature also upon him, as appeared by the Water, and Blood, which flowed from his side, when pierced by the spear upon the cross. These two truths, directly opposite to both your errors, ye Cerinthians, and ye Docetists, are established by the most powerful proofs. For there are three in heaven, that bear record to the divine nature of Christ; namely, the Father, who declared by his own voice from heaven, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; the Word, who continually affirmed of himself that he was the predicted Messiah, that he had existed before Abraham, that he was the true Christ, the Son of God; and the Holy Ghost, who descended, in bodily presence, like a dove, upon his head, at his baptism, and sat in cloven tongues, like as of fire, upon the heads of his apostles after his resurrection. And these three are one in nature, or, at least, in unity of testimony, proving against you, ye Cerinthians, the divinity of Jesus Christ. And there are (moreover) three which bear witness on earth, against you, ye Docetists; and these three agree in one, as to the reality of Christ's taking our human nature upon him: namely, the Spirit, Soul, or Life, which he breathed forth upon the cross, when he gave up the Ghost; and the water, and the blood, which flowed from his side...when they looked on him whom they pierced. These, ye Cerinthians, these, ye Docetists, are the testimonies which overthrow both your errors: proving Jesus Christ to have a divine, as well as a human, nature; to be God as well as man."3

    Thus, the subject of John's first epistle, perfectly correlates with the subject of the comma. This is strong internal evidence in favour of the verse. 

    There is also a very interesting internal consideration in favour of the verse when its place is retained in Greek texts. Greek nouns have gender.  That is, some nouns are masculine, some are feminine and some are neuter. If verse seven is removed from the Greek texts, the resulting reading, as found in modern Greek texts, is made to violate a rule of Greek grammar. Dr. J. A. Moorman explains,

    "If the passage is removed from the Greek text, the two loose ends will not join up grammatically. A problem arises which has to do with the use of the participle which is a kind of verbal adjective. Being an adjective it modifies nouns and must agree with them in gender. 

    "With the full passage set out, it becomes apparent how this rule of grammar is violated when the words are omitted. The disputed words are enclosed in square brackets.

    "vs. 6 And it is the Spirit (neuter) that beareth witness (neut.) because the Spirit (neut.) is truth.

    "vs. 7 For there are three (masculine) that bear record (masc.) [in heaven, 

    the Father (masc.), the Word (masc.), and the Holy Ghost (neut.):

    and these three (masc.) are one (masc.).

    "vs. 8 And there are three (masc.) that bear witness (masc.) in earth] 

    the Spirit (neut.), and the water (neut.), and the blood (neut.): and

    these three (masc.) agree in one.

    "Note  that the underlined words "that bear witness" are participles. If a textual critic wants to remove this passage he should be able to answer the following:

    "1. Why after using a neuter participle in line one is a masculine participle suddenly used in line three?

    "2. How can the masculine numeral, article (in the Greek), and participle (i.e. three masculine adjectives) of line three be allowed to directly modify the three neuter nouns of lie seven?

    "3. What phenomena in Greek syntax would cause the neuter nouns of line seven to be treated as masculine by the "these three" in line eight?

    "There is not a good answer! And perhaps this is the reason why such leading Greek scholars as Metzger, Vincent, Alford, Vine, Wuest, Bruce, Plummer, do not make the barest mention of the problem when dealing with the passage. The International Critical Commentary devotes twelve pages to the passage but is as quiet as the proverbial turkey farm on Christmas afternoon regarding the mismatched genders."4

    That looks like a slam dunk to me!

    Another grammatical problem is also raised by Thomas F. Middleton, whom I will quote to close this discussion of internal evidence.

    Dean John Burgon said that the authority on the Greek article was Thomas Middleton. Thomas Fanshaw Middleton was Bishop of Calcutta and wrote, The Doctrine of the Greek Article, Applied to the Criticism and Illustration of the New Testament in 1833. Personally, this appears to be one of the most learned works in my possession and makes me feel that I have the brains of a crustacean. 

    In this remarkable book, Dr. Middleton has a discussion of the Greek article in reference to 1 John 5:7 & 8. Dr. Middleton favourably cites some of the most hostile critics of the text such as Richard Porson and J. J. Griesbach. He begins by saying,

    "Everyone knows of how much controversy this passage has been the subject and that the words which I have enclosed in brackets [the comma.] are now pretty generally abandoned as spurious."5

    After recommending certain works for study regarding the comma, he continues,

    "The probable result will be, that he will close the examination with a firm belief that the passage is spurious;.."6

    There then follows a very learned consideration of what Dr. Middleton considers to be a grammatical problem with the end of verse 8 if verse 7 is rejected. This is not the same grammatical difficulty covered by Dr. Moorman above, but another. The last four Greek words of verse 8 include the neuter definite article 'το'. Middleton writes,

    "...if the seventh verse had not been spurious, nothing could have been plainer than that the ΤΟ εν7 of verse 8, referred to εν of verse 7: as the case now stands, I do not perceive the force or meaning of the Article."8

    After a long and learned consideration of why this anomaly should occur when verse 7 is omitted, Middleton concludes,

    "On the whole I am led to suspect, that though so much labour and critical acuteness has been bestowed on these celebrated verses, more is yet to be done, before the mystery in which they are involved can be wholly developed."9

    To summarise what Dr. Middleton has said, even though I have the brains of a crustacean and could not follow all his reasoning, some things are clear, even to me. At the start of his discourse on the subject he says that anyone studying the matter, "will close the examination with a firm belief that the passage is spurious." But he does not affirm that he has come to that conclusion himself. At the start of his discourse he states, "I do not perceive the force or meaning of the Article," At the end he confesses that the Greek construction, with the Greek article at the end of verse 8, remains to him a mystery if verse 7 is omitted.

    So here is a major Greek scholar in 1833 (whose work on the Greek article is recommended by the redoubtable John William Burgon), saying that he could find no convincing reason (after combing the New Testament, the Septuagint and the Greek classics) for the Greek reading of verse 8 without the presence of verse 7.

    On the basis of internal evidence then, of the English and Greek texts, the modern critics case looks pretty shabby. 

    External Evidence for the Authenticity of 1 John 5:7.

    To repeat what was stated above, external evidence has to do with how the MSS read and how they compare with one another.

    Michael Maynard's book, A History of the Debate over 1 John 5:7-8, mentioned above gives names and dates and titles of works of those who have debated this issue from the 1st.

    century until 1995. I think it quite plausible that the ink used in the manuscripts alone would probably be enough to fill a large swimming pool.

    Naturally, over such a massive field of enquiry and discussion, I must be selective. I will be leaning heavily on this part of the article upon George Travis's work, Letters to Edward Gibbon Esq.

    Travis argues strenuously and perspicaciously in favour of the inclusion of verse 7 as authentic scripture from the hand of the apostle John. Regarding external evidence he mentions many Greek manuscripts which are no longer in existence.

    The critics ace card these days, which they play all the time, is the dearth at the present time of Greek manuscripts which contain the verse. Out of around 5230 Greek MSS, which in many cases are only portions or even a verse or two, only 8 or 9 contain the verse. This is their constant song. But the question should be asked, "Was it always so? Was there never a time when there were more Greek MSS with the verse in-situ?"

    Travis begins by speaking of the Greek MSS copies that contained the verse in the early sixteenth century and describes the references to them by many authors and councils up to the close of the first century. He also refers to the early sixteenth century printed editions with some interesting claims about Greek MSS which were available to the editors.

    With the invention of printing in the fifteenth century, handwritten copies, or manuscripts began to be replaced by printed Bibles and New Testaments. The major editions printed in the sixteenth century are,

    Erasmus - 1516, 1519, 1522, 1527, 1535.

    Robert Stephens (Estienne) - 1546, 1549, 1550, 1551.

    Theodore Beza - 1556, 1565, 1582, 1589, 1598.

    The first printed Greek New Testament was called the Complutensian Polyglot, which was printed in 1514 but not published until 1522. The first printed New Testament to be published was produced by the Dutch scholar Erasmus in 1516. Travis says that the Complutensian Polyglot was the product of 42 Spanish scholars working with GREEK manuscripts which they had from the Vatican library. A copy of the Complutensian Polyglot can be seen in the Gutenburg Museum in Mainz, Germany. It is a stunning document to look at and was evidently backed by a considerable sum of money under the oversight of Cardinal Ximenes, a Spanish Catholic. Strangely, for a Romanist publication, the text is very close to Erasmus and Stephens. It includes the comma.

    So here is the first contradiction to the modern denial of Greek MSS testimony. The Complutensian used Greek MSS from the Vatican and they included the verse. It follows that it must have at least preponderated in those MSS. Travis writes concerning the Complutensian,

    "It was the result of the joint labours of many learned men, who were selected, by the Cardinal, for that purpose, and furnished with all the Greek MSS, and other aids, which his great political, as well as personal, influence could procure. In this work the 'Complutensian editors' have inserted the text of 1 John 5:7:..."10

    With this statement Daryl R. Coates concurs, writing in1994.

    "Cardinal Ximenes said this about the manuscripts he used for the Complutensian Polyglot New Testament (which also contained 1 John 5:7): 'For Greek copies indeed we are indebted to [Pope Leo X], who sent us most kindly from the Apostolic Library very ancient codices, both of the Old and New Testament, which have aided us in this undertaking.' (cited by Metzger, Text of the New Testament, p. 97; emphasis added.)11

    Evidently, in the beginning of the sixteenth century there were sufficient Greek manuscripts to convince the Spanish editors of the authenticity of the comma. Possible causes of the diminishing numbers we shall consider below.

    Erasmus' behaviour is a little strange and is much more the focus of modern critics. His first two editions of the printed Greek New Testament were published in 1516 and 1519. Neither of these contained the comma. His three subsequent editions of 1522, 1527 and 1535 all contained it although modern critics, according to Maynard, seem unsure.12 The strange conduct of Erasmus is highlighted by the materials Travis claims were used by Stephens just 34 years later in his 1550 edition. Concerning Robert Stephens editions, I will quote Travis at length.

    "In AD 1546 , Robert Stephens published his valuable edition of the Greek Testament. That this work might be as perfect as possible, great industry was used to collect such Greek MSS, as had escaped the enquiries of the editors of Complutum. And those endeavours were attended with such success, that Robert Stephens in the prosecution of that work, 'collated his Greek text with sixteen very ancient, written, copies.' This edition of AD 1546, and a subsequent one in AD 1549, not being printed in a volume large enough to admit of marginal remarks, and notations of different readings, contained only the plain Greek text of the New Testament. And in both these editions stands this testimony of the three (heavenly) witnesses. In AD 1550, Robert Stephens gave a third edition to the world, on a larger scale: in which he distinguished the different Greek MSS, which he had collated, by Greek letters (β, γ, etc.) and the various readings by an obelus and semi-parenthesis, or crotchet; which, wherever inserted, were meant to denote, that, from the word, before which the obelus was placed, to the station where the semi-parenthesis was found, in the Greek text, the whole of that verse, or verses, word, or words, was wanting in the particular MSS cited in the margin. In this third edition, Robert Stephens has thus marked, in a great variety of instances, sometimes a single word alone, and sometimes several words following each other. As he found in several of (for it seems to have existed in them all) his own Greek MSS, and in the Complutensian Bible, this seventh verse entire; so in some others he remarked the particular words (εν τω ουρανω) 'in heaven,' to be wanting. At the head of these three words, therefore, Robert Stephens placed an obelus, in his edition of AD 1550, and a semi-parenthesis at the end of them: thereby denoting, to the reader, that those three words were wanting in the particular MSS, referred to in the margin.13

    To illustrate Stephens' markings of the omission of the words 'in heaven', in his printed edition, the words would be marked thus,

    "For there are three that bear record † in heaven ) the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one."

    In the margin of his printed edition at the end of the line where the obelus and semi-parenthesis appear, Stephens would designate the MS or MSS which omitted the words.

    Those who oppose the inclusion of the comma have argued that Stephens made a mistake in the placing of his semi-parenthesis, that he meant to place it after the words 'in earth'. This would most conveniently excise the comma and make Stephens testify in favour of its exclusion. So they would say that wouldn't they? This seems to be standard practice with modern critics. Those who disagree with them, whether ancient or modern, are either deceivers or bunglers. More on this when we consider the subject of Scholasticism below.

    Because Stephens' annotations and marginalia state that seven of his MSS omitted the three Greek words only, it follows that the whole verse was present in the rest of them, as he included it in his finished edition.

    In further confirmation of this Travis writes,

    The Divines of the University of Louvaine, who were contemporaries with R. Stephens, positively affirm, in their Bible, published AD 1574, that ALL the MSS  of R. Stephens did contain, not only the epistle of St. John, but this disputed passage also. And this testimony at least, proves the general belief, and reputation, of that age, and time, to be so; and, added to the evidence of Stephen's own marginal references, on this verse, form a body of proof, which no cavils, or conjectures, of modern times.-- which nothing but the production of R. Stephens MSS themselves,--can ever discredit or destroy."14

    Regarding the production of the MSS of Stephens themselves, a priest of the Oratory at Paris, Fr. Le Long, claimed in 1720, that all the MSS which Stephens had used, he had found in the Royal Library at Paris. Travis demonstrates that Le Long was mistaken.15

    After Stephens, came the editions of Theodore Beza. Travis again,

    Theodore Beza...was born in Vezelai, in or about AD 1519 and died in AD 1605. He published an edition of the New Testament, with annotations, at Geneva, in AD 1551. He was urged to this work by Robert Stephens, who, on Beza's compliance with his solicitations, permitted to him the free use of all his Greek MSS. In his notes on this passage of St. John, he says 'This verse does not occur in the Syriac version,' &c. 'but is found in the English MS, in the Complutensian edition, and in some ancient MSS of Stephens...' And he further uses these remarkable expressions ( which indeed, Sir, seems to have drawn down the plenitude of your anger upon him)16 - 'I am entirely satisfied that we ought to retain  this verse.'"17

    So here we have Travis' account of  the principal editions, excluding Erasmus, of  what later came to be called the Textus Receptus. We have, given by Travis, 16th century statements that the editors had access to ancient Greek MSS which satisfied them of the authenticity of the comma as Holy Scripture. Then along come Johnny-cum-lately critics, such as Griesbach, two hundred years  later, and Metzger et al, four hundred years later, to contradict them. 

    But Travis also gives details of quotations of the verse by many individuals whom he names from Erasmus up to the beginning of the second century.

    He names them, dates them, and quotes them along with references from which all of their quotations were taken.

    From the latest upward they are,

    Laurentius Valla - 15th C.

    Nicholas de Lyra - 14th C.

    Saint Thomas - 13th C.

    Durandus - 13th C.

    Lombard - 12th C.

    Rupert of Duyts - 12th C.

    Saint Bernard - 11th C.

    Radulphus Ardens, Hugo Victorinus, Scotus - 11th C.

    "It would be tedious to particularise all the citations made, in this century, of this passage of St. John."18

    Walafrid Strabo - 9th C.

    Ambrose Ansbert - 8th C.

    Elipandus - 8th C.

    Cassiodorus - 6th C.

    Fulgentius - 6th C.

    Vigilius - 6th C.

    Eucherius - 5th C.

    Jerome - 4/5th C.

    Augustine - 4/5th C.

    Marcus Celedensis - 4/5th C.

    Phaebadius - 4th C.

    Cyprian - 3rd C.

    Tertullian - 2nd C.

    I do not claim that all of Travis' list must be accurate. The best and most upright of men make mistakes. Many of the above names, Metzger, for example, dismisses, as did others before him. We must allow that perhaps in some instances Metzger may be right, but the somewhat wholesale dismissal of many of the above names seems incredible. Travis, as noted above, gives all of his sources and responds to the kinds of criticisms that Metzger raises, from those who went before him. The devil only ever goes away for a season. Once a false teaching is overthrown by godly men in one generation, the devil brings it back when they have died.

    Isaac had to re-dig the wells that his father, Abraham, had dug, because the Philistines had filled them in.

    A stronger testimony still, however, in favour of the verse, is its inclusion in ancient Council documents or Decretals and Confessions of Faith.

    In A.D. 1215, Pope Innocent 3rd convened the Fourth Lateran Council, among other things, I believe, to challenge the teachings of Arianism. At this Council were at least 400 bishops and 800 abbots. Travis writes,

    "Among others, the Greek  patriarchs of Constantinople, and Jerusalem, were present: and the several patriarchs of Antioch and Alexandria, sent each, a bishop, and a deacon, as their representatives."19

    This Council condemned Arianism and included the comma in its act, or decretal.

    At the close of the eighth century, we learn from Travis, the Emperor Charlemagne called for a  Bible revision. The resulting work was called the Correctorium and contained the comma.

    In A.D. 484, King Huneric, the Vandal, and an Arian, convened the Council of Carthage. His professed aim was a debate of Trinitarian and Anti-trinitarians. Around 400 Trinitarian bishops from Africa and the Mediterranean attended this Council only to discover that Huneric's real purpose was to persecute them. Travis says,

    "Eugenius [a Trinitarian bishop], and his prelates, withdrew from the council-room; but not without leaving behind them a protest, in which...this verse of St. John is ...insisted upon, in vindication of the belief to which they adhered."20

    After these three last examples, Travis continues,

    "To the authority of these councils, and to the revision of Charlemagne, let me now subjoin the most sacred sanction, which any collective body of Christians can give to the truth of a passage of Scripture, namely, the admission of it into the public rituals, or service-books, of their churches..."21

    The comma was included in the service-books of the Latin Church, the Confession of Faith of the Greek Church, and in the liturgy, or public service-books of the Greek Church.

    And, of course, later into the printed texts of Complutus, Erasmus (3rd, 4th and 5th editions), Stephens, Beza and most important of all, for modern man, the King James Bible of 1611.

    A final and very important question to be asked under the heading of External Evidence is how do we account for the current small number of MSS which contain the verse? If it is indeed Holy Scripture, why does the MSS testimony not preponderate? 

    There are a number of factors for consideration and the likelihood is that each played a part to a greater or lesser degree. 

    First, it may have happened through the drowsiness of an early scribe. His eye, due to the similarity of the verse with verse eight, simply jumped the verse 7 as indeed, modern bibles do on purpose. One such error unnoticed in an early copy might be transmitted into many others. 

    Secondly, there was much persecution of Trinitarians by Anti-trinitarians, such as referred to above at the Council of Carthage. If violence was resorted to in order to oppose Trinitarian truth, how happily would Anti-trinitarians multiply such copies as omitted the verse. Anti-trinitarianism was very strong during the 4th and 5th centuries.

    Thirdly, how sure are we that all extant MSS have been examined at this point? The major repository of MSS documentation is the Institute for New Testament Textual Research in Munster, Germany. Its former head, Kurt Aland, was no friend of the Received Text. He was among the five editors of the United Bible Societies Greek New Testament along with Bruce Metzger and Cardinal Martini, a roman catholic. The UBS text was used as a basis for the NIV. The UBS Greek text says that 1 John 5:7 is certainly spurious. May I be excused for an uneasy feeling about Kurt Aland's textual predilections when he had such control of published MSS data. More data on the modus operandi of the Munster Institute can be found in the work of Dr. Jack Moorman, in particular, When the KJV Departs from the Majority Text.22

     For anyone with a taste for it, Travis in the next three letters of his book, responds to Griesbach, Isaac Newton and two other critics of the text at length. 

    Scholasticism.

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

    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;

    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:

    That no flesh should glory in his presence." 1 Corinthians 1:26-29.

    "At that time Jesus answered and said ,I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes." Matthew 11:25.

    Reading through a number of books on this subject, it is quite surprising how often the critics insult both the integrity and the intelligence of those in favour of the verse. Here are just a few examples.

    Edward Gibbon, to whom George Travis is writing, refers to the inclusion of the verse in the Complutensian Polyglot as "honest bigotry". The placement by Stephens of the obelus and semi-parenthesis around the words 'in heaven' as "the typographical fraud or error of Robert Stephens". The inclusion of the comma by Theodore Beza, Gibbon refers to as, "the deliberate falsehood or strange misapprehension of Theodore Beza".

    In another work by David Harrowar23 in defence of the comma, Harrowar replies to one of his critics and an opponent of the comma. In a message preached after Harrowar's defence of the text, his opponent, one John Sherman, said, "There is not a learned man, at this day, in Europe...who would degrade his character...on the defence of it." That is, 1 John 5:7. Note the implication. If you defend it, you are an ignorant booby. Harrowar responds to this snooty gentleman, saying, "To attack an opponent in the way that the gentleman in opposition has Mr. Travis, betrays the weakness of his cause." Or, as John Burgon put it, "they compensate for the weakness of their arguments by the strength of their assertions."

    Be assured, from whichever University you graduated, or however many degrees you may have, if you defend this verse, you will not be accepted as a scholar. Just because all the self-professed eggheads agree does not make it so. Consensus is not science.

    Brethren, the dice are loaded! 

    It is very important to be mindful, that learning without integrity is dangerous. Tozer once said, "The Devil is a better theologian than any of us and is a devil still." Learning is good, but honesty is critical. I find it remarkable that men criticising the texts, writing hundreds of years after, say Jerome, or even Stephens and Beza, will flatly accuse them of ignorance or deceit, when they have no idea to what material they had access all those hundreds of years ago. The current MSS testimony overthrows, with them, any claims that there were in earlier times, more MSS, as testified by the men who used them. I have not seen a Dodo in my lifetime, but I do not claim that there never were any. One suspects that an evolutionary mind-set, encouraging modern scholars to imagine themselves superior, is at work here. Darwin has come to church.

    To conclude.

    1 John 5:7 is in the Bible! Take this away and you will forever be at the mercy of so-called scholarship. You can never be sure what is scripture and what is not. Is that what God wants?

    Footnotes:

    1 I have modernised Travis's references to the 'Docetae' . CT.

    2 I give the scripture quotations here exactly as I find them in Travis's work, except for removing some capitalisation where it does not conform to the current printing of the KJV. It was common, it seems for English writers from at least the seventeenth century until late in the eighteenth, as here, to use many more capital letters.

    3 George Travis, Letters to Edward Gibbon, Esq.,(London, C. F. & J. Rivington, 1785), pp. 331-337. Available from kjvbooks.com.

    4 Jack Moorman, WHEN THE KJV DEPARTS FROM THE MAJORITY TEXT OF HODGE AND FARSTAD, CITED BY THE CORRUPT NKJV, (Florida,Faith Baptist Church Publications, 1988), p.116. All of Dr. Moorman's writings are highly recommended and many can be obtained from Kjvbooks.com.

    5 T. F. Middleton, The Doctrine of the Greek Article, Applied to the Criticism and Illustration of the New Testament, (Cambridge, J & J. J. Deighton, 1833), p. 441.

    6 ibid. p. 441.

    7 My apologies to all you Greek scholars out there for omitting the breathings here. I could not find them in my computer software, but you're smart enough to put them in.

    8 Middleton, op. cit., p. 441.

    9 ibid. p. 453.

    10 Travis, op. cit. p. 4.

    11 Daryl R. Coates, That Rascal Erasmus, (New Jersey,The Bible for Today, 1994), p. 5.

    12 Michael Maynard, A History of the Debate Over 1 John 5:7-8, (Tempe, Comma Publications, 1995), p. 244.

    13 Travis, op. cit. pp. 4-6.

    14 ibid. pp. 296,297.

    15 ibid. pp. 127-138.

    16 Referring to Edward Gibbon.

    17 Travis, op. cit. pp. 6-8.

    18 ibid. p.21.

    19 ibid. p.41.

    20 ibid, p.45.

    21 ibid, p.47.

    22 See pp. 4-5.

    23 David Harrowar, A Defence of the Trinitarian System in Twenty-Four Sermons, (Utica,1822). Available from kjvbooks.com.

  2. "We remember the fish, which we did eat in Egypt freely; the cucumbers, and the melons, and the leeks, and the onions, and the garlick:.." Numbers 11:5.

    The account of the children of Israel's experience in the wilderness is a picture of Christian immaturity. God's original purpose for Israel, upon leaving Egypt, was a short journey through the wilderness and then straight into the promised land of Canaan to overthrow the giants and possess the land.

    Time after time in the wilderness all the children of Israel did was moan and think about their bellies. We frequently find them wishing they were back in Egypt as the quote above exemplifies. This is where many Christians are today. If they got the slightest whiff of spiritual warfare, as represented by the giants in Canaan, they would run a mile. (I cannot, with hand on heart, assure anyone that I, myself, would not be among them.)

    I have observed from our own Hellier Street web-site and from many other preachers' YouTube videos, that most Christians seem to want onions and garlic. That is, something spicey. I am reminded of the apostle Paul's words to Timothy,

    "...the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears;.." " Tim.4:3.

    If I preach anything bordering on the sensational, or perhaps political, or especially about Satan, these often turn out to be my most popular messages. ('Going viral' at Hellier Street is about fifty views. Ho-hum!)

    With these things in mind, I felt it might be helpful to warn about some of the preaching available on the Internet.

    The apostle Paul said to the church at Corinth,

    "For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified."

    This ought to be the primary subject which colours the ministry of every preacher. For an example of this kind of preaching visit jesuslovesme.org and listen to the wonderful ministry of H.L.Roush Sr. Herbert rarely preached without clear gospel exhortation, often with tears, and yet expounded many books of the New Testament. This is what preaching should be like and it seems to be increasingly rare.

    On the other side of the coin I will mention some of the less helpful and downright dangerous preaching that gets thousands of subscribers on YouTube.

    I will not waste my time here with the downright obvious wack-jobs, like some preachers in Africa who have their audience eating grass, for example. Or the US charlatans who tell about the Lord Jesus wanting them all to get rich. Regular listeners to Hellier Street messages are less likely to fall for that particular brand of Satanic deception.

    First, the downright dangerous but not so obvious. Beware of any preacher who rejoices at the prospect of any unbeliever suffering in Hell. This is what some muslims do. I would not be inclined to listen to any such man twice, even if he has tens of thousands of subscribers and seems to preach the gospel. An important passage of scripture exposing any such preacher is Matthew 18:23-35. Please read it!

    How can any man who knows the depravity of his own heart rejoice at another man being lost? Such a man may have the mechanics of the gospel only and yet be a stranger to grace.

    As for those who are just less helpful, I am mindful of a man who I am sure loves the Lord and can preach very powerfully when he will but much of his YouTube material is mostly politics, conspiracy theory (that is, correct conspiracy theory), devil activity and all things weird and wonderful. This brother again has tens of thousands of followers on YouTube. He will begin with a passage from the Bible and then hardly go near it again for the next 45 minutes. In fairness to him, it may be the onion and garlic lovers, who upload his videos to their own sites, rather than his own church web-site. But the warning at least holds for those other YouTubers who upload his material.

    Again, listening to H. L. Roush will show the contrast. Herbert once said, and many of his quotes regularly ring in my ears, "The devil is not in the froggy-bottom saloon, the devil is in the religion business."

    As for the massive numbers of followers on Youtube, John Trapp once wrote, "Truth is never measured by the poll!"

    Colin Tyler.

  3.     On Saturday 4th June 2016, a group of us from Hellier Street, joined by a few extras, travelled to the British Museum. The Lord blessed us with safe travel and good weather. Colin Tyler was our tour guide for the day, he spent a lot of time researching what he was going to show us and talk to us about, for which we were all grateful for his hard work. The focus of the visit was artefacts from the Bible, looking at the different nations and kings. The tour was like stepping back in time as we were led through Assyrian, Egyptian, Persian and Roman artefacts. It is fascinating seeing things that would once have been seen by the prophets and kings/queens of the Bible. Below are some images from what we saw at the museum.
       There are a large number of people who visit the museum daily, however the relevance of them tying in with the Bible does not even cross their minds. If anyone is planning a trip to the British Museum to look at Bible artefacts, Colin would be a good person to talk to for advice about what to see. I would highly recommend any Christian to go and have a look, seeing physical objects before your eyes can really help bring the Bible to life even more.

    Here are a few of the highlights that we saw during the day:

    A panel from the palace in Susa. Mordecai and Esther would have seen these regularly-

    picture 1

     

    The Rosetta Stone. This stone was key to being able to decipher the Ancient Egyptian writing, Hieroglyhics-

    picture 2

     

    Part of the lion hunt by Ashurbanipal, king of Assyria-

    picture 3

     

    The Balawat gates of Shalmaneser III, Assyrian king-

    picture 4

  4. A SERMON DELIVERED ON SABBATH MORNING, FEBRUARY 4, 1855,

    BY THE REV. C. H. SPURGEON,

    AT NEW PARK STREET CHAPEL, SOUTHWARK..

    "A bruised reed shall he not break, and smoking flax shall he not quench, till he send forth judgement unto victory." Matthew 12:20.

    BABBLING fame ever loves to talk of one man or another. Some there be whose glory it trumpets forth, and whose honor it extols above the heavens. Some are her favorites, and their names are carved on marble, and heard in every land, and every clime. Fame is not an impartial judge; she has her favorites. Some men she extols, exalts, and almost deifies; others, whose virtues are far greater, and whose characters are more deserving of commendation, she passes by unheeded, and puts the finger of silence on her lips. You will generally find that those persons beloved by fame are men made of brass or iron, and cast in a rough mould. Fame caresseth Ceasar, because he ruled the earth with a rod of iron. Fame loves Luther, because he boldly and manfully defied the Pope of Rome, and with knit brow dared laugh at the thunders of the Vatican. Fame admires Knox; for he was stern, and proved himself the bravest of the brave. Generally, you will find her choosing out the men of fire and mettle, who stood before their fellow-creatures fearless of them, men who were made of courage; who were consolidated lumps of fearlessness, and never knew what timidity might be. But you know there is another class of persons equally virtuous, and equally to be esteemed-perhaps even more so-whom fame entirely forgets. You do not hear her talk of the gentle-minded Melancthon-she says but little of him-yet he did as much, perhaps, in the Reformation, as even the mighty Luther. You do not hear fame talk much of the sweet and blessed Rutherford, and of the heavenly words that distilled from his lips; or of Archbishop Leighton, of whom it was said, that he was never out of temper in his life. She loves the rough granite peaks that defy the storm-cloud: she does not care for the more humble stone in the valley, on which the weary traveler resteth; she wants something bold and prominent; something that courts popularity; something that stands out before the world. She does not care for those who retreat in shade. Hence it is, my brethren, that the blessed Jesus, our adorable Master, has escaped fame. No one says much about Jesus, except his followers. We do not find his name written amongst the great and mighty men; though, in truth, he is the greatest, mightiest, holiest, purest, and best of men that ever lived; but because he was "Gentle Jesus, meek and mild," and was emphatically the man whose kingdom is not of this world, because he had nothing of the rough about him, but was all love; because his words were softer than butter, his utterances more gentle in their flow than oil; because never man spake so gently as this man; therefore he is neglected and forgotten. He did not come to be a conqueror with his sword, nor a Mohammed with his fiery eloquence, but he came to speak with a "still small voice," that melteth the rocky heart, that bindeth up the broken in spirit; and that continually saith, "Come unto me all ye that are weary and heavy laden;" "Take my yoke upon you and learn of me, for I am meek and lowly of heart, and ye shall find rest unto you souls." Jesus Christ was all gentleness; and this is why he has not been extolled amongst men as otherwise he would have been. Beloved! our text is full of gentleness; it seems to have been steeped in love; and I hope I may be able to show you something of the immense sympathy and the mighty tenderness of Jesus, as I attempt to speak from it. There are three things to be noticed!: first, mortal frailty, secondly, divine compassion; and thirdly, certain triumph - "till he send forth judgement unto victory."

    I. First, we have before us a view of MORTAL FRAILTY- bruised reed and smoking flax-two very suggestive metaphors, and very full of meaning. If it were not too fanciful-and if it is I know you will excuse me-I should say that the brusied reed is on emblem of a sinner in the first stage of his conviction. The work of God's Holy Spirit begins with bruising. In order to be saved, the fallow ground must be ploughed up, the hard heart must be broken, the rock must be split in sunder. An old divine says there is no going to heaven without passing hard by the gates of hell-without a great deal of soul-trouble and heart-exercise. I take it then that the bruised reed is a picture of the poor sinner when first God commences his operation upon the soul; he is a bruised reed, almost entirely broken and consumed, there is but little strength in him. The smoking flax I conceive to be a backsliding Christian; one who has been a burning and a shining light in his day, but by neglect of the means of grace, the withdrawal of God's Spirit, and falling into sin, his light is almost gone out-not quite-it never can go out, for Christ saith, "I will not quench it;" but it becomes like a lamp when ill supplied with oil-almost useless. It is not quite extinguished- it smokes-it was a useful lamp once, but now it has become as smoking flax. So I think these metaphors very likely describe the contrite sinner as a bruised reed, and the backsliding Christian as smoking flax. However, I shall not choose to make such a division as that, but I shall put both the metaphors together, and I hope we may fetch out a few thoughts from them.

    And first, the encouragement offered in our text applies to weak ones. What in the world is weaker than the bruised reed, or the smoking flax? A reed that groweth in the fen or marsh, let but the wild duck light upon it, and it snaps; let but the foot of man brush against it and it is bruised and broken; every wind that comes howling across the river makes it shake to and fro, and well nigh tears it up by the roots. You can conceive of nothing more frail or brittle, or whose existence depends more upon circumstances than a bruised reed. Then look at smoking flax-what is it? It has a spark within it, it is true, but it is almost smothered, an infant's breath might blow it out, or the tears of a maiden quench it in a moment; nothing has a more precarious existence than the little spark hidden in the smoking flax. Weak things, you see, are here described. Well, Christ say of them, "The smoking flax I will not quench; the bruised reed I will not break." Let me go in search of the weaklings. Ah! I shall not have to go far. There are many in this house of prayer this morning who are indeed weak. Some of God's children, blessed be his name are made strong to do mighty works for him. God hath his Samsons here and there who can pull up Gaza's gates, and carry them to the top of the hill; he hath here and there his mighty Gideons, who can go to the camp of the Midianites, and overthrow their hosts; he hath his mighty men, who can go into the pit in winter, and slay the lions; but the majority of his people are a timid, weak race. They are like the starlings that are frightened at every passerby, a little fearful flock. If temptation comes, they fall before it; if trial comes, they are overwhelmed by it: their frail skiff is danced up and down by every wave; and when the wind comes, they are drifted along like a sea-bird on the crest of the billows; weak things, without strength, without force, without might, without power Ah! dear friends, I know I have got hold of some of your hands now, and your hearts too; for you are saying, "Weak! Ah that I am. Full often I am constrained to say, I would, but cannot sing; I would, but cannot pray; I would, but cannot believe." You are saying that you cannot do anything; your best resolves are weak and vain; and when you cry, "My strength renew," you feel weaker than before. You are weak, are you? Bruised reeds and smoking flax? Blessed be God, this text is for you then. I am glad you can come in under the denomination of weak ones, for here is a promise that he will never break nor quench them, but will sustain and hold them up. I know there are some very strong people here-I mean strong in their own ideas. I often meet with persons who would not confess any such weakness as this. They are strong minds. They say, "Do you think that we go into sin, sir? Do you tell us that our hearts are corrupt? We do not believe any such thing, we are good, and pure, and upright; we have strength and might." To you I am not preaching this morning; to you I am saying nothing; but take heed-your strength is vanity, your power is a delusion, your might is a lie-for however much you may boast in what you can do, it shall pass away, when you come to the real contest with death, you shall find that you have no strength to grapple with it: when one of these days of strong temptation shall come, it will take hold of you, moral man, and down you will go; and the glorious livery of your morality will be so stained, that though you wash your hands in snow water, and make yourselves never so clean, you shall be so polluted that your own clothes shall abhor you. I think it is a blessed thing to be weak. The weak one is a sacred thing; the Holy Ghost has made him such. Can you say, "No strength have I?" Then this text is for you.

    Secondly, the things mentioned in our text are not only weak, but worthless, things. I have heard of a man who would pick up a pin as he walked along the street, on the principle of economy; but I never yet heard of a man who would stop to pick up bruised reeds. They are not worth having. Who would care to have a bruised reed-a piece of rush lying on the ground? We all despise it as worthless. And smoking flax, what is the worth of that? It is an offensive and noxious thing, but the worth of it is nothing. No one would give the snap of a finger either for the bruised reed or smoking flax. Well, then, beloved, in our estimation there are many of us who are worthless things. There are some here, who, if they could weigh themselves in the scales of the sanctuary, and put their own hearts into the balance of conscience, would appear to be good for nothing-worthless, useless. There was a time when you thought yourselves to be the very best people in the world-when if any one had said that you had more than you deserved, you would have kicked at it, and said, "I believe I am as good as other people." You thought yourselves something wonderful-extremely worthy of God's love and regard but you now feel yourselves to be worthless Sometimes you imagine God can hardly know where you are; you are such a despicable creature—so worthless—not worth his consideration. You can understand how he can look upon an animalcule in a drop of water, or upon a grain of dust in the sunbeam, or upon the insect of the summer evening; but you can hardly tell how he can think of you, you appear so worthless-a dead blank in the world, a useless thing. You say, "What good am I? I am doing nothing. As for a minister of the gospel, he is of some service, as for a deacon of the church he is of some use; as for a Sabbath-school teacher, he is doing some good, but of what service am I? "But you might ask the same question here. What is the use of a bruised reed? Can a man lean upon it? Can a man strengthen himself therewith? Shall it be a pillar in my house? Can you bind it up into the pipes of Pan, and make music come from a bruised reed? Ah! no; it is of no service. And of what use is smoking flax? the midnight traveler cannot be lighted by it; the student cannot read by the flame of it. It is of no use: men throw it into the fire and consume it. Ah! that is how you talk of yourselves. You are good for nothing, so are these things. But Christ will not throw you away because you are of no value. You do not know of what use you may be, and you cannot tell how Jesus Christ values you after all. There is a good woman there, a mother, perhaps, she says, "Well, I do not often go out-I keep house with my children, and seem to be doing no good." Mother, do not say so, your position is a high, lofty, responsible one, and in training up children for the Lord, you are doing as much for his name as yon eloquent Apollos, who so valiantly preached the word. And you, poor man, all you can do is to toil from morning till night, and earn just enough to enable you to live day by day, you have nothing to give away, and when you go to the Sabbath school, you can just read, you cannot teach much-well, but unto him to whom little is given of him little is required. Do you not know that there is such a thing as glorifying God by sweeping the street crossing? If two angels were sent down to earth, one to rule an empire, and the other to sweep a street, they would have no choice in the matter, so long as God ordered them. So God, in his providence, has called you to work hard for your daily bread; do it to his glory. "Whatsoever ye do, whether ye eat or drink, do all to his honor." But, ah! I know there are some of you here who seem useless to the Church. You do all you can; but when you have done it, it is nothing; you can neither help us with money, nor talents, nor time, and, therefore, you think God must cast you out. You think if you were like Paul or Peter you might be safe. Ah! beloved, talk not so; Jesus Christ saith he will not quench the useless flax, nor break the worthless bruised reed; he has something for the useless and for the worthless ones. But mark you, I do not say this to excuse laziness-to excuse those that can do, but do not, that is a very different thing. There is a whip for the ass, a scourge for idle men, and they must have it sometimes I am speaking now of those who cannot do it; not of Issacher, who is like a strong ass, crouching down between two burdens, and too lazy to get up with them I say nothing for the sluggard, who will not plough by reason of the cold; but of the men and women who really feel that they can be of little service-who cannot do more; and to such, the words of the text are applicable.

    Now we will make another remark. The two things here mentioned are offensive things. A bruised reed is offensive, for I believe there is an illusion here to the pipes of Pan, which you all know are reeds put together, along which a man moves his mouth, thus causing some kind of music. This is the organ, I believe which Jubal invented, and which David mentions, for it is certain that the organ we use was not then in use. The bruised reed, then, would of course spoil the melody of all the pipes; one unsound tube would so let the air out, as to produce a discordant sound, or no sound at all, so that one's impulse would be to take the pipe out and put in a fresh one. And, as for smoking flax, the wick of a candle or anything of that kind, I need not inform you that the smoke is offensive. To me no odour in all the world is so abominably offensive as smoking flax. But some say, "How can you speak in so low a style?" I have not gone lower than I could go myself, nor lower than you can go with me; for I am sure you are, if God the Holy Ghost has really humbled you, just as offensive to your own souls, and just as offensive to God as a bruised reed would be among the pipes, or as smoking flax to the eyes and nose. I often think of dear old John Bunyan, when he said he wished God had made him a toad, or a frog, or a snake or anything rather than a man, for he felt he was so offensive. Oh; I can conceive a nest of vipers, and I think that they are obnoxious; I can imagine a pool of all kinds of loathsome creatures, breeding corruption, but there is nothing one half so worthy of abhorrence as the human heart. God spares from all eyes but his own that awful sight-a human heart; and could you and I but once see our heart, we should be driven mad, so horrible would be the sight. Do you feel like that? Do you feel that you must be offensive in God's sight-that you have so rebelled against him, so turned away from his commandments, that surely you must be obnoxious to him? If so, my text is yours.

    Now, I can imagine some woman here this morning who has departed from the paths of virtue, and, while she is standing in the throng up there, or sitting down she feels as if she had no right to tread these hallowed courts, and stand among God's people. She thinks that God might almost make the chapel break down upon her to destroy her, she is so great a sinner. Never mind, broken reed and smoking flax! Though thou art the scorn of man, and loathsome to thyself, yet Jesus saith to thee, "Neither do I condemn thee, go, and sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto thee." There is some man here who hath something in his heart that I know not of-who may have committed crimes in secret, that we will not mention in public; his sins stick like a leech to him, and rob him of all comfort. Here you are young man, shaking and trembling, lest your crime should be divulged before high heaven; you are broken down, bruised like a reed, smoking like flax. Ah! I have a word for thee too. Comfort! comfort! comfort! Despair not; for Jesus saith he will not quench the smoking flax, he will not break the bruised reed.

    And yet, my dear friends, there is one thought before I turn away from this point. Both of these articles, however worthless they may be, may yet be of some service, When God puts his hand to a man, if he were worthless and useless before, he can make him very valuable. You know the price of an article does not depend so much upon the value of the raw material as upon workmanship put upon it. Here is very bad raw material to begin with-bruised reeds and smoking flax, but by Divine workmanship both these things become of wondrous value. You tell me the bruised reed is good for nothing; I tell you that Christ will take that bruised reed and mend it up, and fit it in the pipes of heaven. Then when the grand orchestra shall send forth its music, when the organs of the skies shall peal forth their deep-toned sounds, we shall ask, "What was that sweet note heard there, mingling with the rest?" And some one shall say "It was a bruised reed." Ah! Mary Magdalene's voice in heaven, I imagine, sounds more sweet and liquid than any other; and the voice of that poor thief, who said "Lord, remember me," if it is a deep bass voice, is more mellow and more sweet than the voice of any other, because he loved much, for he had much forgiven him. This reed may yet be of use. Do not say you are good for nothing; you shall sing up in heaven yet. Do not say your are worthless; at last you shall stand before the throne among the blood-washed company, and shall sing God's praise Ay! and the smoking flax too, what good can that be? I will soon tell you. There is a spark in that flax somewhere; it is nearly out, but still a spark remaineth. Behold the prairie on fire! See you the flames come rolling on? See you stream after stream of hot fire deluging the plain till all the continent is burnt and scorched-till heaven is reddened with the flame. Old night's black face is scarred with the burning, and the stars appear affrighted at the conflagration. How was that mass ignited? By a piece of smoking flax dropped by some traveler, fanned by the soft wind, till the whole prairie caught the flame. So one poor man one ignorant man, one weak man, even one backsliding man, may be the means of the conversion of a whole nation. Who knows but that you who are nothing now may be of more use than those of us who appear to stand better before God, because we have more gifts and talents? God can make a spark set a world on fire-he can light up a whole nation with the spark of one poor praying soul. You may be useful yet; therefore be of good cheer. Moss groweth upon gravestones; the ivy clingeth to the mouldering pile, the mistletoe groweth on the dead branch, and even so shall grace, and piety, and virtue, and holiness, and goodness, come from smoking flax and bruised reeds.

    II. Thus, then, my dear friends, I have tried to find out the parties for whom this text is meant, and I have shown you somewhat of mortal frailty; now I mount; step higher-to DIVINE COMPASSION. "The bruised reed he will not break, the smoking flax he will not quench." Notice what is first of all stated, and then let me tell you that Jesus Christ means a great deal more than he says. First of all, what does he say? He says plainly enough that he will not break the bruised reed. There is a bruised reed before me- a poor child of God under a deep sense of sin. It seems as if the whip of the law would never stop. It keeps on, lash, lash, lash; and though you say, "Lord, stop it and give me a little respite," still comes down the cruel thong, lash, lash, lash. You feel your sins. Ah! I know what you are saying this morning: "If God continues this a little longer my heart will break: I shall perish in despair, I am almost distracted by my sin; if I lie down at night I cannot sleep; it appears as if ghosts were in the room-ghosts of my sins-and when I awake at midnight, I see the black form of death staring at me, and saying, "Thou art my prey, I shall have thee;" while hell behind seems to burn. Ah! poor bruised reed, he will not break you, conviction shall be too strong, it shall be great enough to melt thee, and to make thee go to Jesu's feet; but it shall not be strong enough to break thy heart altogether, so that thou shouldst die. Thou shalt never be driven to despair; but thou shalt be delivered; thou shalt come out of the fire, poor bruised reed, and shalt not be broken.

    So there is a backslider here this morning, he is like the smoking flax. Years gone by you found such happiness in the ways of the Lord, and such delight in his service, that you said, "There I would for ever stay.

    'What peaceful hours I then enjoyed; How sweat their memory still! But they have left an aching void, The world can never fill.'"

    You are smoking, and you think God will put you out. If I were an Arminian, I should tell you that he would, but being a believer in the Bible, and nothing else, I tell you that he will not quench you. Though you are smoking, you shall not die. Whatever your crime has been, the Lord says, "Return ye backsliding children of men, for I will have mercy upon you." He will not cast thee away, poor Ephriam; only come back to him-he will not despise thee, though thou hast plunged thyself in the mire and dirt, though thou art covered from head to foot with filthiness; come back, poor prodigal, come back, come back! Thy father calls thee. Hearken poor backslider! Come at once to him whose arms are ready to receive thee.

    It says he will not quench-he will not break. But there is more under cover than we see at first sight. When Jesus says he will not break, he means more than that he means, "I will take that poor bruised reed; I will plant it hard by the rivers of waters, and (miracle of miracles) I will make it grow into a tree whose leaf shall not wither, I will water it every moment, I will watch it; there shall be heavenly fruits upon it, I will keep the birds of prey from it, but the birds of heaven, the sweet songsters of paradise shall make their dwellings in the branches." When he says that he will not break the bruised reed, he means more; he means that he will nourish, that he will help, and strengthen, and support, and glorify-that he will execute his commission on it, and make it glorious for ever. And when he says to the blackslider that he will not quench him, he means more than that-he means that he will fan him up to a flame. Some of you, I dare say, have gone home from chapel and found that your fire had gone nearly out; I know how you deal with it, you blow gently at the single spark, if there is one, and least you should blow too hard, you hold your fingers before it, and if you were alone and had but one match, or one spark in the tinder, how gently would you blow it. So, backslider, Jesus Christ deals with thee, he does not put thee out, he blows gently; he says, "I will not quench thee," he means, "I will be very tender very cautious, very careful;" he will put on dry material, so that by-and-by a little spark shall come to a flame and blaze up towards heaven, and great shall be the fire thereof.

    Now I want to say one or two things to Little-Faiths this morning. The little children of God who are here mentioned as being bruised reeds or smoking flax are just as safe as the great saints of God. I wish for a moment to expand this thought, and then I will finish with the other head. These saints of God who are called bruised reeds and smoking flax are just as safe as those who are mighty for their Master and great in strength, for several reasons. First of all, the little saint is just as much God's elect as the great saint. When God chose his people, he chose them all at once and altogether, and he elected one just as much as the other. If I choose a certain number of things, one may be less than the rest, but one is as much chosen as the other, and so Mrs. Fearing and Miss Despondency are just as much elected as Great-Heart, or Old Father Honest. Again: the little ones are redeemed equally with the great ones! the feeble saints cost Christ as much suffering as the strong ones, the tiniest child of God could not have been purchased with less than Jesus' precious blood, and the greatest child of God did not cost him more. Paul did not cost any more than Benjamin-I am sure he did not-for I read in the Bible that "there is no difference." Besides, when of old they came to pay their redemption-money, every person brought a shekel. The poor shall bring no less, and the rich shall bring no more than just a shekel. The same price was paid for the one as the other. Now then little child of God, take that thought to thy soul. You see some men very prominent in Christ's cause-and it is very good that they should be-but they did not cost Jesus a farthing more than you did; he paid the same price for you that he paid for them. Recollect again, you are just as much a child of God as the greatest saint. Some of you have five or six children. There is one child of yours, perhaps who is very tall and handsome, and has, moreover, gifts of mind; and you have another child who is the smallest of the family, perhaps has but little intellect and understanding. But which is the most your child? "The most!" you say; "both alike are my children, certainly, one as much as the other. "And so, dear friends, you may have very little learning, you may be very dark about divine things, you may but "see men as trees walking," but you are as much the children of God as those who have grown to the stature of men in Christ Jesus. Then remember, poor tried saint that you are just as much justified as any other child of God. I know that I am completely justified.

    "His blood and righteousness My beauty are, my glorious dress."

    I want no other garments, save Jesus' doings, and his imputed righteousness.

    The boldest child of God want no more; and I who am "less than the least of all saints," can be content with no less, and I shall have no less, O Ready-to-Halt, thou art as much justified as Paul, Peter, John the Baptist, or the loftiest saint in heaven. There is no difference in that matter. Oh I take courage and rejoice.

    Then one thing more. If you were lost, God's honor would be as much tarnished as if the greatest one were lost. A queer thing I once read in an old book about God's children and people being a part of Christ and in union with him. The writer says — "A father sitteth in his room, and there cometh in a stranger, the stranger taketh up a child on his knee, and the child hath a sore finger so he saith; My child, you have a sore finger;" "Yes!" Well, let me take it off, and give thee a golden one! The child looketh at him and saith, "I will not go to that man any more, for he talks of taking off my finger; I love my own finger, and I will not have a golden one instead of it."' So the saint saith, "I am one of the members of Christ, but I am like a sore finger, and he will take me off and put a golden one on." "No,'' said Christ, "no, no; -I cannot have any of my members taken away; if the finger be a sore one, I will bind it up, I will strengthen it." Christ cannot allow a word about cutting his members off. If Christ lose one of his people, he would not be a whole Christ any longer. If the meanest of his children could be cast away Christ would lack a part of his fullness, yea, Christ would be incomplete without his Church. If one of his children must be lost, it would be better that it should be a great one, than a little one. If a little one were lost, Satan would say "Ah! you save the great ones, because they had strength and could help themselves; but the little one that has no strength, you could not save him." You know what Satan would say, but God would shut Satan's mouth, by proclaiming "They are all here, Satan, in spite of thy malice, they are all here; every one is safe; now lie down in thy den for ever, and be bound eternally in chains, and smoke in fire!" So shall he suffer eternal torment, but not one child of God ever shall.

    One thought more and I shall have done with this head. The salvation of great saints often depends upon the salvation of little ones, Do you understand that; You know that my salvation, or the salvation of any child of God, looking at second causes, very much depends upon the conversion of some one else. Suppose your mother is the means of your conversion, you would, speaking after the manner of men, say, that your conversion depended upon hers, for her being converted, made her the instrument of bringing you in. Suppose such-and-such a minister to be the means of your calling; then your conversion, in some sense, though not absolutely, depends upon his. So it often happens, that the salvation of God's mightiest servants depends upon the conversion of little ones. There is a poor mother; no one ever knows anything about her, she goes to the house of God, her name is not in the newspapers, or anywhere else, she teaches her child and brings him up in the fear of God; she prays for that boy; she wrestles with God, and her tears and prayers mingle together. The boys grows up. What is he? A missionary-a William Knibb-a Moffat-a Williams. But you do not hear anything about the mother Ah! but if the mother had not been saved, where would the boy have been? Let this cheer the little ones, and may you rejoice that he will nourish and cherish you, though you are like bruised reeds and smoking flax.

    III. Now, to finish up, there is a CERTAIN VICTORY. "Till he send forth judgment unto victory." Victory! There is something beautiful in that word. The death of Sir John Moore, in the Peninsular war, was very touching, he fell in the arms of triumph and sad as was his fate, I doubt not that his eye was lit up with lustre by the shout of victory. So also, I suppose, that Wolfe spoke a truth when he said, "I die happy," having just before heard the shout, "they run, they run." I know victory even in that bad sense-for I look not upon earthly victories as of any value-must have cheered the warrior. But oh! how cheered the saint when he knows that victory is his! I shall fight during all my life, but I shall write "vici" on my shield. I shall be "more than conqueror through him that loved me." Each feeble saint shall win the day; each man upon his crutches: each lame one each one full of infirmity, sorrow, sickness, and weakness, shall gain the victory. "They shall come with singing unto Zion, as well the blind, and lame, and halt, and the woman with child together." So saith the Scripture. Not one shall be left out; but he shall "send forth judgment unto victory." Victory! victory! victory! This is the lot of each Christian; he shall triumph through his dear Redeemer's name.

    Now a word about this victory. I speak first to aged men and women. Dear brethren and sisters, you are often, I know, like the bruised reed. Coming events cast their shadows before them; and death casts the shadow of old age on you. You feel the grasshopper to be a burden, you feel full of weakness and decay, your frame can hardly hold together. Ah! you have here a special promise. "The bruised reed I will not break." "I will strengthen thee." "When thy heart and thy flesh faileth, I will be the strength of thy heart and thy portion for ever."

    "Even down to old age, all my people shall prove My sovereign, eternal, unchangeable love; And when hoary hairs shall their temples adorn Like lambs they shall still in my bosom be borne."

    Tottering on thy staff, leaning, feeble, weak, and wan; fear not the last hour; that last hour shall be thy best; thy last day shall be a consummation devoutly to be wished. Weak as thou art, God will temper the trial to thy weakness; he will make thy pain less, if thy strength be less; but thou shalt sing in heaven, "Victory! victory! victory! "There are some of us who could wish to change places with you, to be so near heaven-to be so near home. With all your infirmities, your grey hairs are a crown of glory to you; for you are near the end, as well as in the way of righteousness.

    A word with you middle-aged men, battling in this life's rough storm. You are often bruised reeds, your religion is so encumbered by your worldly callings, so covered up by the daily din of business, business, business, that you seem like smoking flax, it is as much as you can do to serve your God, and you cannot say that you are "fervent in spirit" as well as "diligent in business." Man of business, toiling and striving in this world, he will not quench thee when thou art like smoking flax; he will not break thee when thou art like the bruised reed, but will deliver thee from thy troubles, thou shalt swim across the sea of life, and shalt stand on the happy shore of heaven, and shalt sing, "Victory "through him that loved thee." Ye youths and maidens! I speak to you, and have a right to do so. You and I ofttimes know what the bruised reed is, when the hand of God blights our fair hopes. We are full of giddiness and waywardness, it is only the rod of affliction that can bring folly out of us, for we have much of it in us. Slippery paths are the paths of youths, and dangerous ways are the ways of the young, but God will not break or destroy us. Men, by their over caution, bid us never tread a step lest we fall; but God bids us go, and makes our feet like hind's feet, that we may tread upon high places. Serve God in early days; give your hearts to him, and then he will never cast you out, but will nourish and cherish you.

    Let me not finish without saving a word to little children. You who have heard of Jesus, he says to you "The bruised reed I will not break, the smoking flax I will not quench." I believe there is many a little prattler, not six years old, who knows the Savior. I never despise infantile piety; I love it. I have heard little children talk of mysteries that gray-headed men knew not. Ah! little children who have been brought up in Sabbath-schools, and love the Savior's name, if others say you are too forward, do not fear, love Christ still.

    Gentle Jesus, meek and mild Still will look upon a child; Pity thy simplicity, And suffer thee to come to him.

    He will not cast thee away; for smoking flax he will not quench, and the bruised reed he will not break. 

  5. Brain-washing in UK Schools.

    Charlotte Thomson Iserbyt worked in the Education Department of the US government during the Reagan administration. She was sacked for expressing concerns about the direction in which US education was headed. In 1999 she published 'the deliberate dumbing down of america.' (sic). This shocking tome catalogues a paper trail of the proposals of educators, and the elite who govern them, from the 1930 until the 2000s.

    In short, the plan has been to move education away from academic subjects such as maths, geography history, literature and so on, to behaviour modification through Pavlovian and Skinnerian brain-washing techniques. The goal is to produce a stupid, docile, global minded clone who has received 'work-force training.' One of the most telling and disgusting descriptions of the plan has been, "limited learning for life-long labour."

    I do not know whether Mrs. Iserbyt is a Christian, but what follows is a very perceptive analysis of what she calls 'the Devil's Seven Pronged Fork.' In the Revised and Abridged Edition, 2011, at page 9 we read:-

    1. Gradualism: implementing world-government agenda gradually over many years (two steps forward, one step back) so that succeeding generations are unaware of what has happened in the past and unable to question or apply reason to current events or future events (heating up the water gradually until the frog is cooked). Or, in the words of Florida's former Associate Commissioner of Education, Cecil Golden,"...like those assembling an atom bomb, very few of them understand exactly what they're building and won't until we put all the parts together" [PPBS, ed.]. You'll know it's true, when it happens to you!

    2. Hegelian Dialectic: in order to get what change agents want it is necessary first for them to create the problem - such as high taxes. When citizen resist, suggest a solution. Example: move education funding and control to the state level, a solution citizens never would have accepted had problem (sic) with high taxes not been deliberately created. This can be called reaching common ground, coming to consensus and compromise.

    3. Semantic deception: redefining terms to get agreement without understanding. Example: use of words that mean one thing to parents and another thing to change agents.[1] Parents define "basics" in education as reading, writing, mathematics, history, science etc. The education change agents' definition of "basics" is: education stressing the fact that the US Constitution is outdated; education stressing the need for non-judgmental/non-absolutist attitudes and values;[2] education stressing an environmental/sustainable development agenda, including the need for land use regulations, etc.; and workforce training.

    4. 100% conservative and liberal media control: the importance of the deliberate dumbing down of america can best be measured by its across-the-board censorship since its publication in 1999, not just by the usual culprits (establishment media), but by respected old line conservative media as well.

    5. Endless supply of money: Federal reserve, non-profit foundations, grant funding, and partnership with industry.

    6. Brain-washing in the schools and our communities, using psychological techniques: Pavlov, Lewin, Skinner, Bloom, Chisolm,[3]and others.

    7. Keeping the public unaware that both political parties (Republican and Democrat)[4] espouse the same values: these underly the international socialist/world government agenda. Most disheartening is that researchers have added to this unsavoury alliance many Christian churches and organisations who formerly could be counted on to go up against the secular humanists and globalists and their value-destroying programs (sic). These groups have been infiltrated by members of the corporatist/globalist leadership, and can no longer be counted on to support the free enterprise system, the US Constitution, or religious principles which place God above man.

    End quote.

    If that's not Satanic, it will do until Satanic comes along. Mrs Iserbyt can be seen on Youtube. Her entire original publication of the deliberate dumbing down of america can be freely down-loaded from the internet. The revised 2011 edition may still be available from G. Edward Griffin at realityzone.com.

    Finally, these appalling techniques which Iserbyt exposes are, without doubt, also being used in UK schools. This is a global programme.

    Have a good day! Jesus loves you.

    Colin Tyler.


    [1] Change agents are men and women who are trained in behaviour modification techniques, working subversively, and sometimes openly, to turn children into global citizens. [C.T]

    [2] Ie. Anything Biblical.

    [3] For example, here's a quote from G. Brock Chisolm, "To achieve world government it is necessary to remove from the minds of men their individualism, loyalty to family traditions, national patriotism and religious dogmas." [C.T.] Chisolm was not small potatoes, he was co-founder of the World Health Organisation.

    [4] Or Conservative, Liberal Democrat and Labour.

  6. Park Street and Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit

    INFANT SALVATION.

    A SERMON DELIVERED ON SUNDAY MORNING, SEPTEMBER THE 29TH, 1861,

    BY THE REV. C. H. SPURGEON,

    AT THE METROPOLITAN TABERNACLE, NEWINGTON.

    "Is it well with the child? And she answered, It is well" — 2Ki 4:26

    THE subject of this morning's discourse will be "Infant Salvation." It may not possibly be interesting to all present, but I do not remember to have preached upon this subject to this congregation, and I am anxious moreover that the printed series should contain sermons upon the whole range of theology. I think there is no one point which ought to be left out in our ministry, even though it may only yield comfort to a class. Perhaps the larger proportion of this audience have at some time or other had to shed the briny tear over the child's little coffin; — it may be that through this subject consolation may be afforded to them. This good Shunammite was asked by Gehazi, whether it was well with herself. She was mourning over a lost child, and yet she said, "It is well;" she felt that the trial would surely be blessed. "Is it well with thy husband?" He was old and stricken in years, and was ripening for death, yet she said, "Yes, it is well." Then came the question about her child, it was dead at home, and the inquiry would renew her griefs, "Is it well with the child?" Yet she said, "It is well," perhaps so answering because she had a faith that soon it should be restored to her, and that its temporary absence was well; or I think rather because she was persuaded that whatever might have become of its spirit, it was safe in the keeping of God, happy beneath the shadow of his wings. Therefore, not fearing that it was lost, having no suspicion whatever that it was cast away from the place of bliss — for that suspicion would have quite prevented her giving such answer — she said "Yes, the child is dead, but 'it is well.'" Now, let every mother and father here present know assuredly that it is well with the child, if God hath taken it away from you in its infant days. You never heard its declaration of faith — it was not capable of such a thing — it was not baptized into the Lord Jesus Christ, not buried with him in baptism; it was not capable of giving that "answer of a good conscience towards God;" nevertheless, you may rest assured that it is well with the child, well in a higher and a better sense than it is well with yourselves; well without limitation, well without exception, well infinitely, "well" eternally. Perhaps you will say, "What reasons have we for believing that it is well with the child?" Before I enter upon that I would make one observation. It has been wickedly, lyingly, and slanderously said of Calvinists, that we believe that some little children perish. Those who make the accusation know that their charge is false. I cannot even dare to hope, though I would wish to do so, that they ignorantly misrepresent us. They wickedly repeat what has been denied a thousand times, what they know is not true. In Calvin's advice to Omit, he interprets the second commandment "shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me," as referring to generations, and hence he seems to teach that infants who have had pious ancestors, no matter how remotely, dying as infants are saved. This would certainly take in the whole race. As for modern Calvinists, I know of no exception, but we all hope and believe that all persons dying in infancy are elect. Dr. Gill, who has been looked upon in late times as being a very standard of Calvinism, not to say of ultra-Calvinism, himself never hints for a moment the supposition that any infant has perished, but affirms of it that it is a dark and mysterious subject, but that it is his belief, and he thinks he has Scripture to warrant it, that they who have fallen asleep in infancy have not perished, but have been numbered with the chosen of God, and so have entered into eternal rest. We have never taught the contrary, and when the charge is brought, I repudiate it and say, "You may have said so, we never did, and you know we never did. If you dare to repeat the slander again, let the lie stand in scarlet on your very cheek if you be capable of a blush." We have never dreamed of such a thing. With very few and rare exceptions, so rare that I never heard of them except from the lips of slanderers, we have never imagined that infants dying as infants have perished, but we have believed that they enter into the paradise of God.

    First, then, this morning, I shall endeavor to explain the way in which we believed infants are saved; secondly, give reasons for so believing; and then, thirdly, seek to bring out a practical use of the subject.

     I. First of all, THE WAY IN WHICH WE BELIEVE INFANTS TO BE SAVED.

    Some ground the idea of the eternal blessedness of the infant upon its innocence. We do no such thing; we believe that the infant fell in the first Adam, "for in Adam all died." All Adam's posterity, whether infant or adult, were represented by him — he stood for them all, and when he fell, he fell for them all. There was no exception made at all in the covenant of works made with Adam as to infants dying; and inasmuch as they were included in Adam, though they have not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, they have original guilt. They are "born in sin and steepen in iniquity; in sin do their mothers conceive them;" so saith David of himself, and (by inference) of the whole human race. If they be saved, we believe it is not because of any natural innocence. They enter heaven by the very same way that we do; they are receives in the name of Christ. "Other foundation can no man lay than that which is laid," and I do not think nor dream that there is a different foundation for the infant than that which is laid for the adult. And equally is it far from our minds to believe that infants go to heaven through baptism — not to say, in the first place, that we believe infant sprinkling to be a human and carnal invention, an addition to the Word of God, and therefore wicked and injurious. When we reflect that it is rendered into some thing worse than superstition by being accompanied with falsehood, when children are taught that in their baptism they are made the children of God, and inheritors of the kingdom of heaven, which is as base a lie as ever was forged in hell, or uttered beneath the copes of heaven, our spirit sinks at the fearful errors which have crept into the Church, through the one little door of infant sprinkling. No; children are not saved because they are baptized, for if so, the Puseyite is quite right in refusing to bury our little children if they die unbaptized. Yes, the barbarian is quite right in driving the parent, as he does to this day, from the church yard of his own national Church, and telling him that his child may rot above-ground, and that it shall not be buried except it be at the dead of night, because the superstitious drops have never fallen on its brow. He is right enough if that baptism made the child a Christian, and if that child could not be saved without it. But a thing so revolting to feeling, is at once to be eschewed by Christian men. The child is saved, if snatched away by death as we are, on another ground than that of rites and ceremonies, and the will of man.

    On what ground, then, do we believe the child to be saved? We believe it to be as lost on the rest of mankind, and as truly condemned by the sentence which said, "In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." It is saved because it is elect. In the compass of election, in the Lamb's Book of Life, we believe there shall be found written millions of souls who are only shown on earth, and then stretch their wings for heaven. They are saved, too, because they were redeemed by the precious blood of Jesus Christ. He who shed his blood for all his people, bought them with the same price with which he redeemed their parents, and therefore are they saved because Christ was sponsor for them, and suffered in their room and stead. They are saved, again not without regeneration, for, "except a man" — the text does not mean an adult man but a person, a being of the human race — "except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." No doubt, in some mysterious manner the Spirit of God regenerates the infant soul, and it enters into glory made meet to be a partaker of the inheritance of the saints in light. That this is possible is proved from Scripture instances. John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Ghost from his mother's womb. We read of Jeremiah also, that the same had occurred to him; and of Samuel we find that while yet a babe the Lord called him. We believe, therefore, that even before the intellect can work, God, who worketh not by the will of man, nor by blood, but by the mysterious agency of his Holy Spirit, creates the infant soul a new creature in Christ Jesus, and then it enters into the "rest which remaineth for the people of God." By election, by redemption, by regeneration, the child enters into glory, by the selfsame door by which every believer in Christ Jesus hopes to enter, and in no other way. If we could not suppose that children could be saved in the same way as adults, if it would be necessary to suppose that God's justice must be infringe, or that his plan of salvation must be altered to suit their cases, then we should be in doubt; but we can see that with the same appliances, by the same plan, on precisely the same grounds, and through the same agencies, the infant soul can behold the Savior a face in glory everlasting, and therefore we are at ease upon the matter.

    II. This brings me now to note THE REASONS WHY WE THUS THINK INFANTS ARE SAVED.

    First, we ground our conviction very much upon the goodness of the nature of God. We say that the opposite doctrine that some infants perish and are lost, is altogether repugnant to the idea which we have of Him whose name is love. If we had a God, whose name was Moloch, if God were an arbitrary tyrant, without benevolence or grace, we could suppose some infants being cast into hell; but our God, who heareth the young ravens when they cry, certainly will find no delight in the shrieks and cries of infants cast away from his presence. We read of him that he is so tender, that he careth for oxen, that he would not have the mouth of the ox muzzled, that treadeth out the corn. Nay, he careth for the bird upon the nest, and would not have the mother bird killed while sitting upon its nest with its little ones. He made ordinances and commands even for irrational creatures. He finds food for the most loathsome animal, nor does he neglect the worm any more than the angel, and shall we believe with such universal goodness as this, that he would cast away the infant soul I say it would he clear contrary to all that we have ever read or ever believed of Him, that our faith would stagger before a revelation which should display a fact so singularly exceptional to the tenor of his other deeds. We have learned humbly to submit our judgments to his will, and we dare not criticize or accuse the Lord of All; we believe him to be just, let him do as he may, and? Therefore, whatever he might reveal we would accept; but he never has, and I think he never will require of us so desperate a stretch of faith as to see goodness in the eternal misery of an infinite cast into hell. You remember when Jonah — petulant, quick-tempered Jonah — would have Nineveh perish God gave it as the reason why Nineveh should not be destroyed, that there were in it more than six score thousand infants, — persons, he said, who knew not their light hand tram their left. If he spared Nineveh that their mortal life might be spared, think you that their immortal souls shall be needlessly cast away! I only put it to your own reason. It is not a case where we need much argument. Would your God cast away an infant? If yours could, I am happy to say he is not the God that I adore.

    Again, we think it would be inconsistent utterly with the known character of our Lord Jesus Christ. When his disciples put away the little children whom their anxious mothers brought to him, Jesus said, "Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not for of such is the kingdom of heaven," by which he taught, as John Newton very properly says, that such as these made up a very great part of the kingdom of heaven. And when we consider that upon the best statistics it is calculated that more than one third of the human race die in infancy, and probably if we take into calculation those districts where infanticide prevails, as in heathen countries, such as China and the like, perhaps one half of the population of the world die before they reach adult years, — the saying of the Savior derives great force indeed," Of such is the kingdom of heaven." If some remind me that the kingdom of heaven means the dispensation of grace on earth, I answer, yes, it does, and it means the same dispensation in heaven too, for while part of the kingdom of heaven is on earth in the Church, since the Church is always one, that other part of the Church which is above is also the kingdom of heaven. We know this text is constantly used as a proof of baptism, but in the first place, Christ did not baptize them, for "Jesus Christ baptized not;" in the second place, his disciples did not baptize them, for they withstood their coming, and would have driven them away. Then if Jesus did not, and his disciple did not, who did,' It has no more to do with baptism than with circumcision. There is not the slightest allusion to baptism in the text, or in the context; and I can prove the circumcision of infants from it with quite as fair logic as others attempt to prove infant baptism. However, it does prove this, that infants compose a great part of the family of Christ, and that Jesus Christ is known to have had a love and amiableness towards the little ones. When they shouted in the temple, "Hosanna!" did he rebuke them? No; but rejoiced in their boyish shouts. "Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings hath God ordained strength," and does not that text seem to say that in heaven there shall be "perfect praise" rendered to God by multitudes of cherubs who were here on earth — your little ones fondled in your bosom — and then suddenly snatched away to heaven. I could not believe it of Jesus, that he would say to little children, "Depart, ye accursed, into everlasting fire in hell!" I cannot conceive it possible of him as the loving and tender one, that when he shall sit to judge all nations, he should put the little ones on the left hand, and should banish them for ever from his presence. Could he address them, and say to them, "I was an hungered, and ye gave me no meat; I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink, sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not? "How could they do it? And if the main reason of damnation lie in sins of omission like there which it was not possible for them to commit, for want of power to perform the duty how, then, shall he condemn and cast them away?

    Furthermore, we think that the ways of grace, if we consider them, render it highly improbable, not to say impossible, that an infant soul should be destroyed. What saith Scripture? "Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound." Such a thing as that could not be sail of an infant cast away. We know that God is so abundantly gracious that such expressions as the "unsearchable riches of Christ," "God who is rich in mercy," "A God full of compassion," "The exceeding riches of his grace," and the like are truly applicable without exaggeration or hyperbole. We know that he is good to all, and his tender mercies are over all his works, and that in grace he is able to do "exceeding abundantly above what we can ask or even think." The grace of God has sought out in the world the greatest sinners. It has not passed by the vilest of the vile. He who called himself the chief of sinners was a partaker of the love of Christ. All manner of sin and of blasphemy have been forgiven unto man. He has been able to save unto the uttermost them that come unto God by Christ, and dons it seem consistent with such grace as this that it should pass by the myriads upon myriads of little ones, who wear the image of the earthy Adam, and never stamp upon them the image of the heavenly? I cannot conceive such a thing. He that has tasted and felt, and handled the grace of God, will, I think, shrink instinctively from any other doctrine than this, that infants dying such, are most assuredly saved.

    Once again one of the strongest inferential arguments is to be found in the fact that Scripture positively states that the number of saved souls at the last will be very great. In the Revelation we read of a number that no man can number. The Psalmist speaks of them as numerous as dew drops from the womb of the morning. Many passages give to Abraham, as the father of the faithful, a seed as many as the stars of heaven, or as the sand on the sea shore. Christ is to see of the travail of his soul and be satisfied; surely it is not a little that will satisfy him. The virtue of the precious redemption involves a great host who were redeemed. All Scripture seems to tendon that heaven will not be a narrow world, that its population will not be like a handful gleaned out of a vintage, but that Christ shall be glorified by ten thousand times ten thousand, whom he hath redeemed with his blood. Now where are they to come from? How small a part of the map could be called Christian! Look at it. Out of that part which could be called Christian, how small a portion of them would bear the name of believer! How few could be said to have even a nominal attachment to the Church of Christ? Out of this, how many are hypocrites, and know not the truth! I do not see it possible, unless indeed the millennium age should soon come, and then far exceed a thousand years, I do not see how it is possible that so vast a number should enter heaven, unless it be on the supposition that infant souls constitute the great majority. It is a sweet belief to my own mind that there will be more saved than lost, for in all things Christ is to have the pre- eminence, and why not in this? It was the thought of a great divine that perhaps at the last the number of the lost would not bear a greater proportion to the number of the saved, than do the number of criminals in gaols to those who are abroad in a properly-conducted state. I hope it may be found to be so. At any rate, it is not my business to be asking, "Lord, are there few that shall be saved?" The gate is strait, but the Lord knows how to bring thousands through it without making it any wider, and we ought not to seek to shut any out by seeking to make it narrower. Oh! I do know that Christ will have the victory, and that as he is followed by streaming hosts, the black prince of hell will never be able to count so many followers in his dreary train as Christ in his resplendent triumph. And if so we must have the children saved; yea, brethren, if not so, we must have them, because we feel anyhow they must be numbered with the blessed, and dwell with Christ hereafter.

    Now for one or two incidental matters which occur in Scripture, which seem to throw a little light also on the subject. You have not forgotten the case of David. His child by Bathsheba was to die as a punishment for the father's offense. David prayed, and fasted, and vexed his soul; at last they tell him the child is dead. He fasted no more, but he said, "I shall go to him, he shall not return to me." Now, where did David expect to go to? Why, to heaven surely. Then his child must have been there, for he said, "I shall go to him." I do not hear him say the same of Absalom. He did not stand over his corpse, and say, "I shall go to him;" he had no hope for that rebellious son. Over this child it was not — "O my son! would to God I had died for thee!" No, he could let this babe go with perfect confidence, for he said, "I shall go to him." "I know," he might have said, "that He hath made with me an everlasting covenant, ordered in all things and sure, and when I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I shall fear no evil, for he is with me, I shall go to my child, and in heaven we shall be re-united with each other." You remember, his, those instances which I have already quoted, where children are said to have been sanctified from the womb. It casts this light upon the subject, it shows it not to be impossible that a child should be a partaker of grace while yet a babe. Then you have the passage, "Out of the mouths of babes and sucklings he hath perfected praise." The coming out of Egypt was a type of the redemption of the chosen seed, and you know that in that case the little ones were to go forth, nay, not even a hoof was to be left behind. Why not children in the greater deliverance to join in the song of Moses and of the Lamb? And there is a passage in Ezekiel, for where we have but little, we must pick up even the crumbs, and do as our Master did — gather up the fragments that nothing be lost

    — there is a passage in Ezekiel, sixteenth chapter, twenty-first verse, where God is censuring his people for having given up their little infants to Moloch, having caused them to pass through the fire, and he says of these little ones, "Thou hast slain my children, and delivered them to cause them to pass through the fire," so, then, they were God's children those little ones who died in the red-hot arms of Moloch while babes, God calls "my children." We may, therefore, believe concerning all those who have fallen asleep in these early days of life, that Jesus said of them, "These are my children," and that he now to-day, while he leads his sheep unto loving fountains of water, does not forget still to carry out his own injunction, "Feed my lambs." Yea, to-day even he carrieth "the lambs in his bosom," and even before the eternal throne he is not ashamed to say, "Behold I and the children whom thou hast given me." There is another passage in Scripture which I think may be used. In the first chapter of Deuteronomy these ball been a threatening pronounced upon the children of Israel in the wilderness, that, with the exception of Caleb and Joshua, they should never see the promised land; nevertheless, it is added. "Your little ones, which ye said should be a prey and your children, which in that day had no knowledge between good and evil, they shall go in thither, and unto them will I give it, and they shall possess it." To you, fathers and mothers who fear not God, who live and die unbelieving, I would say, your unbelief cannot shut your children out of heaven and I bless God for that. While you cannot lay hold on that text which says "The promise is unto us and our children, even to as many as the Lord our God shall call," yet inasmuch as the sin of the generation in the wilderness did not shut the next generation out of Canaan but they did surely enter in, so the sin of unbelieving parents shall not necessarily be the ruin of their children, but they shall still, through God's sovereign grace and his overflowing mercy, be made partakers of the rest which he hath reserved for his people. Understand that this morning I have not made a distinction between the children of godly and ungodly parents. If they die in infancy, I do not mind who is father nor who their mother, they are saved; I do not even endorse the theory of a good Presbyterian minister who supposes that the children of godly parents will have a better place in heaven than those who happen to be sprung from ungodly ones. I do not believe in any such thing. I am not certain that there are any degrees in heaven at an; and even if there were, I am not clear that even that would prove our children to have any higher rights than others. All of them without exception, from whosoever loins they may have sprung, will, we believe, not by baptism, not by their parents' faith, but simply as we are all saved through the election of God, through the precious blood "Christ, through the regenerating influence of the Holy Spirit, attain to glory and Immortality, and wear the image of the heavenly as they have worn the image of the earthy.

    III. I now come to make a PRACTICAL USE OF THE DOCTRINE.

    First, let it be a comfort to bereaved parents. You say it is a heavy cross that you have to carry. Remember, it is easier to carry a dead cross than a living one. To have a living cross is indeed a tribulation, — to have a child who is rebellious in his childhood, vicious in his youth, debauched in his manhood! Ah, would God that he had died from the birth; would God that he had never seen the light! Many a father's heirs have been brought with sorrow to the grave through his living children, but I think never through his dead babes, certainly not if he were a Christian, and were able to take the comfort of the apostle's words — "We sorrow not as they that are without hope." So you would have your child live? Ah, if you could have drawn aside the veil of destiny, and have seen to what he might have lived! Would you have had him live to ripen for the gallows? Would you have him live to curse his father's God? Would you have him live to make your home wretched to make you wet your pillow with tears, and send you to your daily work with your hands upon your loins because of sorrow? Such might have been the case; it is not so now, for your little one sings before the throne of God. Do you know from what sorrows your little one has escaped? You have had enough yourself. It was born of woman, it would have been of few days and full of trouble as you are. It has escaped those sorrows, do you lament that? Remember, too your own sins, and the deep sorrow of repentance. Had that child lived, it would have been a sinner, and it must have known the bitterness of conviction of sin. It has escaped that; it rejoices now in the glory of God. Then would you have it back again? Bereaved parents, could you for a moment see your own offspring above, I think you would very speedily wipe away your tears. There among the sweet voices which sing the perpetual carol may be heard the voice of your own child — an angel now, and you the mother of a songster before the throne of God. You might not have murmured had you received the promise that your child should have been elevated to the peerage, it has been elevated higher than that — to the peerage of heaven. It has received the dignity of the immortals, it is robed in better than royal garments it is more rich and more blessed than it could have been if all the crowns of earth could have been put upon its head. Wherefore, then would you complain? An old poet has penned a verse well fitted for an infant's epitaph; —

    "Short was my life, the longer is my rest, God takes those soonest whom he loveth best, Who's born today, and dies tomorrow, Loses some hours of joy, but months of sorrow. Other diseases often come to grieve us, Death restrikes but once, and that stroke doth relieve us."

    Your child has had that one stroke and has been relieved from all these pains, and you may say of it, this much we know, he is supremely blessed, has escaped from sin, and care, and woe, and with the Savior rests. "Happy the babe," says Hervey, "who,

    Privileged by faith, a shorter labor and a lighter weight, Received but yesterday the gift of breath, Ordered tomorrow to return to death."

    While another says, looking upward to the skies,

    "O blest exchange, O envied lot, Without a conflict crowned, Stranger to pain, in pleasure bless'd And without fame, renowned."

    So is it. It is well to fight and will, but to will as fairly without the fight! It is well to sing the song of triumph after we have passed the Red Sea with all its terrors, but to sing the song without the sea is glorious still! I do not know that I would prefer the lot of a child in heaven myself. I think it is nobler to have borne the storm, and to have struggled against the wind and the rain. I think it will be a subject of congratulation through eternity, for you and me, that we did not come so easy a way to heaven, for it is only a pin's prick after all, this mortal life; then there is exceeding great glory hereafter. But yet I think we may still thank God for those little ones that they have been spared our sins, and spared our infirmities, and spared our pains and are entered into the rest above. Thus saith the Lord unto thee, O Rachel, if thou weepest for thy children, and refuseth to be comforted because they are not: "Restrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears, for thy work shall be rewarded with the Lord, and they shall come again from the land of the enemy." The next and perhaps more useful and profitable inference to be drawn from the text is this: many of you are parents who have children in heaven. Is it not a desirable thing that you should go there, too? And yet have I not in these galleries and in this area some, perhaps many, who have no hope hereafter? In fact, you have left that which is beyond the grave to be thought of another day, you have given all your time and thoughts to the short, brief, and unsatisfactory pursuits of mortal life. Mother unconverted mother, from the battlements of heaven your child beckons you to Paradise. Father, ungodly, impenitent father, the little eyes that one — looked joyously on you, look down upon you now, and the lips which had scarcely learned to call you father, ere they were sealed by the silence of death, may be heard as with a still small voice, saying to you this morning, "Father, must we be for ever divided by the great gulf which no man can pass? "Doth not nature itself put a kind of longing in your soul that you may be bound in the bundle of life with your own children? Then stop and think. As you are at present, you cannot hope for that; for your way is sinful, you have forgotten Christ, you have not repented of sin, you have loved the wages of iniquity I pray thee go to thy chamber this morning and think of thyself as being driven from thy little ones, banished for ever from the presence of God, cast "where their worm dieth not and where their fire is not quenched." If thou wilt think of these matters, perhaps the heart will begin to move, and the eyes may begin to flow, and then may the Holy Spirit put before thine eyes the cross of the Savior the holy child Jesus! And remember, if thou wilt turn thine eye to him thou shalt live: if thou believest on him with all thy heart thou shalt be with him where He is, — with all those whom the Father gave him who have gone before Thou needest not to be shut out. Wilt thou sign thine own doom, and write thine own death warrant? Neglect not this great salvation but may the grace of God work with thee to make thee seek, for thou shalt find — to make thee knock, for the door shall be opened — to make thee ask, for he that asketh shall receive! O might I take you by the hand — perhaps you have come from a newly-made grave, or left the child at home dead, and God has made me a messenger to you this morning; O might I take you by the hand and say, "We cannot bring him back again, the spirit is gone beyond recall, but you may follow!" Behold the ladder of light before you! The first step upon it is repentance, out of thyself the next step is faith, into, Christ, and when thou art there, thou art fairly and safely on thy way, and ere long thou shalt be received at heaven's gates by those very little ones who have gone before, that they may come to welcome thee when thou shouldest land upon the eternal shores.

    Yet another lesson of instruction, and I will not detain you much longer. What shall we say to parents who have living children? We have spoken of those that are dead, what shall we say of the living? I think I might say, reserve your tears, bereaved parents, for the children that live. You may go to the little grave, you may look upon it and say, "This my child is saved; it resteth for ever beyond all fear of harm." You may come back to those who are sitting round your table, and you can look from one to the other and say, "These my children, many of them are unsaved." Out of God, out of Christ, some of them are just ripening into manhood and into womanhood, and you can plainly see that their heart is like every natural heart, desperately wicked. There is subject for weeping for you. I pray you never cease to weep for them until they have ceased to sin, never cease to hope for them until they have ceased to live; never cease to pray for them until you yourself cease to breathe. Carry them before God in the arms of faith, and do not be desponding because they are not what you want them to be. They will be won yet if you have but faith in God. Do not think that it is hopeless. He that saved you can save them. Take them one by one constantly to God's mercy-seat and wrestle with Him, and say, "I will not let thee go except thou bless me." The promise is unto you and to your child, even to as many as the Lord your God shall call. Pray, strive, wrestle, and it shall yet be your happy lot to see your household saved. This was the word which the apostle gave to the jailer, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved and thy house." We have had many proofs of it, for in this pool under here I have baptized not only the father and the mother, but in many cases all the children too, who one after another have been brought by grace even to put their trust in Jesus. It should be the longing of every parent's heart to see all his offspring Christ's, and all that have sprung from his loins numbered in the host of those who shall sing around the throne of God. We may pray in faith, for we have a promise about it; we may pray in faith, for we have many precedents in Scripture, the God of Abraham is the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob, but for this good thing he will be inquired of by the House of Israel to do it for them. Inquire of Him, plead with Him, go before Him with the power of faith and earnestness, and He will surely hear you.

    One word to all the congregation. A little child was saying the other day — and children will sometimes say strange things — "Papa, I cannot go back again." When he was asked what he meant, he explained that he was here, he had begun his life, and it seemed such a thought to him that he could not cease to be, — he could not go back again. You and I may say the same; here we are; we have grown up, we cannot go back again to that childhood in which we once were; we have therefore no door of escape there. Good John Bunyan used to wish that he had died when he was a child. Then again, he hoped he might be descended from some Jew, for he had a notion that the Hebrews might be saved. That door God has closed. Every door is closed to you and me except the one that is just in front of us, and that has the mark of the cross upon it. There is the golden knocker of prayer: do we choose to turn aside from that to find another, — a gate of ceremonies, or of blood, or of birth? We shall never enter that way. There is that knocker! By faith, great God, I will lift it now. "I, the chief of sinners am, have mercy upon me! "Jesus stands there. "Come in," saith he, "thou blessed of the Lord; wherefore standest thou without?" He receives me to his arms, washes, clothes, glorifies me, when I come to him. Am I such a fool that I do not knock? Yes, such I am by nature — then what a fool! O Spirit of God! make me wise to know my danger and my refuge! And now, sinner, in the name of him that liveth and was dead, and is alive for evermore, lay hold upon that knocker, lift it, give it a blow, and let your prayer be, ere thou leanest this sanctuary, "God be merciful to me a sinner!" May the Lord hear and bless, for his name's sake!

  7. John 7:8-10 NIV (Jesus lies to his brothers)

    You go to the festival.

    I am not going up to this festival, because my time has not yet fully come.”

    After he had said this, he stayed in Galilee.

    However, after his brothers had left for the festival, he went also, not publicly, but in secret.


     John 7:8-10 KJV (the Lord Jesus Christ tells the truth)

    Go ye up unto this feast: I go not up yet unto this feast: for my time is not yet full come.

    When he had said these words unto them, he abode still in Galilee.

    But when his brethren were gone up, then went he also up unto the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret.

  8. 'Britain has priests, but they are fools; numerous ministers, but they are shameless, clerics, but they are plunderers'
    (Gildas 540's A.D.)

    We had our own corruption it seems before Rome sent Augustine (the 1st Archbishop of Canterbury) the 'Apostle to the English' in 595 A.D. (This date is given in history lessons as to when Christianity reached the shores of the UK)

    Winston Churchill's in his book 'A history of the English speaking peoples' states that the gospel came to Britain within weeks of Pentecost!

    Paul Debney

  9. 1 Corinthians 10:32

    Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God

    Some KJV bible believing Christians out there need to apply this verse......is God pleased with Christians calling other Christians names?

    The KJV Bible is the Holy word of God without error and other bibles are corrupt, no doubt, but you dont need a KJV bible to be saved. If somebody gets saved, and is presented with the truth of modern bibles being corrupt but refuses to change from an NIV, does that person then cease to be saved? As Paul would say 'God forbid'

    We should uphold the KJV and defend it, read from it, preach from it and love it.

    If a Christian (somebody belonging to the Church of God) uses a modern version I feel sorry that they are missing out on so many truths but are they the Lord Jesus Christ's? Of course, if they are saved by believing the Gospel!

    Calling them idiots, baffoons etc contradicts 1 Corinthians 10:32, Titus 2:8, Galatians 5:13-15, James 2:8-9, Luke 14:11, 1 Thessalonians 4:7-8, John 13:35, Titus 3:2, Ephesians 4:29, 2 Timothy 2:24-25

    Paul Debney

  10. I was reading through Matthew 27 yesterday morning and came across something that I found quite interesting in the account of Judas returning the 30 pieces of silver to the chief preists and elders. This payment, was of course, paid to Judas in return for him betraying our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Matthew 27:4 reads;

    Saying, I have sinned in that I have betrayed the innocent blood. And they said, What is that to us? see thou to that.

    What struck me in this verse, as I read it, is the word 'the'  before the word 'innocent' making 'the innocent blood' singular, a one off and unique. Somebody naturally speaking would state 'I have betrayed innocent blood', this verse to me highlights the importance of the blood shed for me at Calvary's cross.

    Every person that has ever walked this earth; you, me, mother Teresa or Adolf Hitler is a 'sinner' and is 'guilty' before a holy God of breaking His commandments.The Lord Jesus Christ is the only person that has ever lived who has ever had totally 'innocent blood' coursing through His veins.

     

  11. Matthew 26:67-68

    Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands,  68 saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, Who is he that smote thee?

    The following excerpt is taken from 'Blunt's Scriptual Coincidences' 16th edition dating from 1888.

    I think undesignedness may be traced in this passage, both in what is expressed and what is omitted. It is usual for one who invents a story which wishes to be believed, to be careful that its several parts hang well together - to make its conclusions follow from its premises - and to show how they follow. He naturally considers that he shall be suspected unless his account is probable and consistent, and he labours to provide against that suspicion.

    On the other hand, he who is telling the truth, is apt to state his facts and leave them to their fate; he speaks as one having authority, and cares not about the why or wherefore, because it never occurs to him that such particulars are wanted to make his statement credible; and accordingly, if such particulars are discoverable at all, it is most commonly by inference, and incidentally.

    Now in the verse of St. Matthew, it is written that "they smote him with the palms of their hands, saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, who is he that smote thee?"

    Had it happened that the records of the other Evangelists had been lost, no critical acuteness could have possibly supplied by conjecture the omission being supplied, the true meaning of the passage must for ever have lain hid; for where is the propriety of asking Christ to "prophesy" who smote Him, when he had the offender before his eyes?

    But when we learn from St. Luke (22:64), that "the men that held Jesus blindfolded him" before they asked Him to prophesy who it was that smote Him, we discover what St. Matthew intended to communicate, namely, that they proposed this test of his divine mission, whether, without the use of sight, He could tell who it was that struck Him.

    Such an oversight as this in St. Matthew it is difficult to account for any other supposition than the truth of history itself, which sets its author above all solicitude about securing the reception of his conclusions by a cautious display of the grounds wheron they were built.

  12. Extant Greek manuscripts (old documents available) used to translate the verses Matthew 2:2-3 are either written entirely in CAPITAL LETTERS or entirely in lower case letters.

    The translators chose therefore what to capitalise (e.g. names, titles etc) when performing the task of translation.

    In the KJV, Matthew 2:2-3 reads;

    Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

    When Herod the king had heard these things, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

    The NIV reads;

    and asked, ‘Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.’

    When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.

    The translators, when translating both the KJV and NIV used the same Greek manuscripts to perform their task. The translators chose what to capitalise and what not to. It is obvious the KJV translators gave reverence to our Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ, but the NIV translators would prefer to give that honour to Herod!

  13. 1 John 2:16

    For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the father, but is of the world.


    Genesis 3:6

    And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food (lust of the flesh), and it was pleasant to the eyes (lust of the eyes), and a tree to be desired to make one wise (pride of life), she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat


    Matthew 4:1-11 (How did the Saviour react when being tempted? - with the word of God, 'it is written')

    Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.

    And when he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was afterward an hungred.

    And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. (lust of the flesh)

    But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

    Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city, and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple,

    And saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. (pride of life - show us a miracle, what can you do Jesus?)

    Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God.

    Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him (lust of the eyes - look at all this Jesus) all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;

    And saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me.

    Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve

  14. GORGEOUS & BLUE IN THE HOLY BIBLE

    Ezekiel 23:5-6 And Aholah played the harlot when she was mine; and she doted on her lovers, on the Assyrians her neighbours, Which were clothed with BLUE, captains and rulers, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding upon horses

    Ezekiel 23:12 She doted upon the Assyrians her neighbours, captains and rulers clothed most GORGEOUSLY (CLOTHED IN THE COLOUR BLUE ACCORDING TO V5-6), horsemen riding upon horses, all of them

    THE SAVIOURS ROBE COLOURS IN THE GOSPELS

    Matthew 27:28 And they stripped him, and put on him a SCARLET robe

    Mark 15:17 And they clothed him with PURPLE, and platted a crown of thorns, and put it about his head,

    Luke 23:11 And Herod with his men of war set him at nought, and mocked him, and arrayed him in a GORGEOUS (THE COLOUR BLUE according to EZEKIEL 23) robe, and sent him again to Pilate.

    Our Saviour and the tabernacle wonderfully intertwined in the Holy Bible (Blue, Purple and Scarlet)

    Exodus 26:1 Moreover thou shalt make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen, and BLUE, and PURPLE, and SCARLET: with cherubims of cunning work shalt thou make them.

  15. What is repentance & how does one repent?

    The best answer on the subject is from the works of Joseph Siess.

    The first essential element of Christianity is repentance. The easiest way to show what this is will be to show what it is not.

    First, it does not consist of a mere confession of sins. This is a part but not the whole. A man may condemn himself in the most debasing language, sit in sackcloth and ashes, all without avail. The Pharisees confessed sins after the manner of their formalism daily, but very few of them repented.

    Second, it is not sorrow and weeping on account of privations and distress brought upon us by our sins, to be regarded as genuine repentance. We may be sorry for a course of conduct because it brought us into serious difficulties, and not hate that course of conduct itself. Esau wept for the consequences but not for their cause.

    Third, it is not the occasional meltings of natural affection. Some are constitutionally more soft and yielding than others. A sermon may dissolve them to tears, a tale of the Savior’s sufferings may melt them to tenderness but never bring them to repentance. Orpah wept and lamented and then returned to the Moabites and their idolatry.

    Fourth, it is not deep conviction and remorse for sin. Felix trembled under the pungency of his conviction, but turned away from the  light. Judas was overwhelmed with remorse but landed in hell.

    Fifth, it is not a glad hearing of the gospel, a compliance with its outward requisitions. Herod heard John gladly, and did many things which he taught, but afterward beheaded him for the gratification  of his woman.

    True repentance embraces conviction of sin, contrition for  sin, confession of sin and abandonment of sin. Different individuals may  experience these states of mind and these dispositions of heart in  different degrees according to their various constitutions and  temperaments, the history and intellect, but in every instance they are  indispensable qualities of a genuine penitent.

    When convicted of sin, the individual clearly sees and deeply  feels his natural depravity and practical wickedness: his conscience, awake to guilt and exquisitely sensitive, becomes painfully oppressive; and his spirits droop under the dread of final condemnation and endless punishment. This conviction is wrought by the agency of the Holy Spirit through the instrumentality of scriptural truth. That it is not a natural and original operation of the mind itself, is evident from the indisputable fact, that the uniform tendency of sin is to darken the mind, harden the heart, and scar the conscience. The longer the sinner persists in transgression, the more his moral blindness and insensibility will increase. But the state of conviction implies light and tenderness and a quick conscience. Hence, no man need doubt that these circumstances are sufficient indications of the presence and action of the Holy Spirit. The part of man in this is to receive the  truth in love of the truth and to submit to the will of God as directed by the convicting word.

    Copied from James Knox's website http://www.jameswknox.org/our-ministry-to-you/faq/

     

  16. I was talking to a person that classes himself as a 'Christadelphian' this past week.

    This person does not believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is God, but that Jesus Christ is still a 'saviour' (although the Lord doesn't save a 'sinner' from Hell as he does not believe it exists).

    There are bible verses such as John 1:1 that clearly state who our Saviour is, but the following verses were part of a sermon I was listening to on the way to work this morning that reinforce that Jesus Christ is indeed God.

    Isaiah 43:3

    For I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel,thy Saviour: I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba for thee.

    Isaiah 43:11

    I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no saviour

    Hosea 13:4

    Yet I am the Lord thy God from the land of Egypt, and thou shalt know no god but me: for there is no saviour beside me

    Titus 1:4

    To Titus, mine own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, and peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour

    Titus 2:13

    Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;

     

    If there is only one saviour what does this make the Lord Jesus Christ........He is God.

  17. I love myself

    The Bible and Self Esteem by Jonathan Hewett

    What verses in the Bible help you with increasing confidence in yourself? With regard to verses in the Bible helping to increase confidence in yourself, we need to start by realizing just what condition we are in. We are told by many today that man is the ultimate being, the final development in evolution, the one who can achieve anything. If you believe it, you are it and if you believe you can do it, then it's done. These are statements that are all too commonly heard today.

    However, the Bible is very clear on the state of man. First of all, before we can even begin to look at the question of confidence, we need to look at our state before God. Consider the following verses carefully.

    • Psalm 14:1-3 "The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good. The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one."
    • Psalm 51:5 "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me."
    • Psalm 58:3 "The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies."
    • Romans 3:23 "For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;"
    • Romans 6:23 "For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord."

    The first thing we need to realize is that we all, every one of us, are not only sinners now, but were conceived and born in sin. This sin nature separates us from God, and until that situation is remedied in our own personal lives we will remain separated from Him and in danger of hellfire.

    The remedy is only found in one Person; the Lord Jesus Christ.

    • John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
    • John 14:6 "Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
    • 2 Corinthians 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."

    It is my personal belief that a lack of self confidence often stems from a lack of self worth. This can result from a whole host of circumstances in our lives, yet Satan will seek always to remind us of these. Yet, the wonder of the Gospel is that the Lord Jesus Christ proved to us our own worth by dying for us at Calvary, that through faith in Him we might be saved. We need to understand just how much God loves us.

    • John 15:13-14 "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you."
    • Romans 5:7-8 "For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us."
    • 1 John 3:16 "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because he laid down his life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren."
    • 1 John 4:10 "Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins."

    You see, we all need to realize that God loves us, God loves you as an individual, just the way you are, and he openly displayed that love for you by the giving of His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ at Calvary. When we accept this wonderful truth, His precious blood cleanses us from all our sin, and we stand redeemed in Him. We can then more fully understand the wonderful statement made in Hebrews 2:11 "For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren."

    Those who trust in the finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ for their salvation He is not ashamed to call brethren. What a wonderful truth that is. Now if Jesus Christ is not ashamed of us, why should we be ashamed of ourselves? We can rest and glory in Him, and we can learn the truth that the apostle Paul learned that could make him say of the Lord Jesus Christ in Acts 17:28 "For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring."

    When we become a Christian, we become a new creature in Christ. Old things are passed away, and we live in Him. Therefore, our confidence is not in ourselves, what we can do, or how good we are; our confidence is in Jesus Christ and what He has already done. Some verses that might help with this are:

    • Psalm 118:8 "It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man."
    • Proverbs 3:26 "For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken."
    • Proverbs 14:26 "In the fear of the LORD is strong confidence: and his children shall have a place of refuge."
    • Philippians 4:13 "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."
    • 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."
    • 1 John 5:14 "And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us:"

    In the book of Ephesians Chapter 6 verses 11-18 we read of the armour of God that a Christian should always find himself clothed in. Prior to these instructions, we read in verse 10 the following words: "Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might."

    I think that sums up what I'm trying to say about self confidence. It's all about the Lord Jesus Christ, who He is, what He's done and how He is with those that trust in Him.

  18. The Last 12 Verses of Mark 16:9-20

    (Originally posted  by Will Kinney on the facebook discussion group 'King James Bible Debate')

    The verses in question have been in every Bible we know about in history in every language it was ever printed in, except the liberal RSV that removed them, and then the NRSV put them  back in again.

    Even critical text versions like the ESV, NIV, NASB and the modern Catholic versions keep these verses in their "bible" versions, although sometimes in brackets or in smaller italicized letters. 

    If they really believe they are NOT inspired Scripture, then let them take a solid stand on their mistaken convictions, and simply OMIT them.  But don't keep sitting on the fence and sowing doubt as to the true words of God.  Oh...wait....THAT'S what they DO anyway, isn't it!

    As To MANUSCRIPTS, there are none older than the fourth century, and the oldest two uncial MSS. Vaticanus and Sinaiticus are without those twelve verses.  Of all the others (consisting of some eighteen uncials and some six hundred cursive MSS. which contain the Gospel of Mark) contain these twelve verses.  

    There are also some very curious irregularities with both Vaticanus and Sinaiticus.  As Dean Burgon testifies,  the Vatican manuscript has only one blank space in the entire manuscript and it is here at the ending of Mark 16:8. He says "it is amply sufficient to contain the verses, the column in question being the only vacant one in the whole manuscript."  The Traditional Text of the Holy Gospels, Volume 1, page 298.

    Siniaticanus

    As for Sinaticus, according to Dean Burgon pages 298-299, even Tischendorf (who discovered this codex) believed this whole section was originally canceled out and written over by a different scribe than the one who wrote most of the manuscript.  Suddenly the letters in the columns become much larger than at any other place in the codex, either before or after.  Dean Burgon points out that if the letters had been written in the normal size, there would be ample room for these missing 12 verses.

    See - The Traditional Text of the Holy Gospels, pages 298-299 The Last Twelve Verses of Mark.

    Even the UBS, Nestle-Aland critical textual apparatus show the overwhelming textual evidence that exists for the inclusion of these 12 verses.  They are contained in the Majority of all remaining Greek manuscripts, including A, C, D, K, and other uncial (capital lettered) copies. They are found in the Old Latin aur, c, d, ff2, l, n, o, q, the Vulgate, the Syriac Curetonian, Peshitta, Palestinian and Harclean ancient versions, as well as the Coptic Sahidic, Boharic, the Gothic, the Armenian, the Ethiopic and the Georgian ancient versions and the early  Greek Diatessaron.

    As to the Versions:--

    THE SYRIAC.  The oldest is the Syriac in its various forms :  the "Peshitto" (cent. 2), and the "Curetonian Syriac" (cent. 3).  Both are older than any Greek MS. in existence, and both contain these twelve verses.  So with the "Philoxenian" (cent. 5) and the "Jerusalem" (cent. 5). 

    THE LATIN VERSIONS.  JEROME (A.D. 382), who had access to Greek MSS. older than any now extant, includes these twelve verses; but this Version (known as the Vulgate) was only a revision of the VETUS ITALA, which is believed to belong to cent. 2, and contains these verses.

    THE GOTHIC VERSION (A.D. 350) contains them.

    THE EGYPTIAN VERSIONS:  the Memphitic (or Lower Egyptian, less properly called "COPTIC"), belonging to cent. 4 or 5, contains them; as does the "THEBAIC" (or Upper Egyptian, less properly called the "SAHIDIC"), belonging to cent. 3.

    THE ARMENIAN (cent. 5), the ETHIOPIC (cent. 4-7), and the GEORGIAN (cent. 6) also bear witness to the genuineness of these verses.

    THE FATHERS.  Whatever may be their value as to doctrine and interpretation yet, in determining actual word or their form, or sequence their evidence, even by an allusion, as to whether a verse or verses existed or not in their day, is more valuable than even manuscripts or Versions. There are nearly a hundred ecclesiastical writers older than the oldest of our Greek codices; while between A.D. 300 and A.D. 600 there are about two hundred more, and they all refer to these twelve verses.

      1. PAPIAS (about A.D. 100) refers to v. 18 (as stated by Eusebius, Hist. Ecc. iii. 39).

      2. JUSTIN MARTYR (A.D. 151) quotes v. 20 (Apol. I. c. 45).

      3. IRENAEUS (A.D. 180) quotes and remarks on v. 19 (Adv. Hoer. lib. iii. c. x.).

      4. HIPPOLYTUS (A.D. 190-227) quotes vv. 17-19 (Lagarde's ed., 1858, p. 74).

      5. VINCENTIUS (A.D. 256) quoted two verses at the seventh Council of Carthage, held under CYPRIAN.

      6. The ACTA PILATI (cent. 2) quotes vv. 15, 16, 17, 18 (Tischendorf's ed., 1852, pp. 243, 351).

      7. The APOSTOLICAL CONSTITUTIONS (cent. 3 or 4) quotes vv. 16, 17, 18.

      8. EUSEBIUS (A.D. 325) discusses these verses, as quoted by MARINUS from a lost part of his History.

      9. APHRAARTES (A.D. 337), a Syrian bishop, quoted vv. 16-18 in his first Homily (Dr. Wright's ed., 1869, i. p. 21).

      10. AMBROSE (A.D. 374-97), Archbishop of Milan, freely quotes vv. 15 (four times), 16, 17, 18 (three times), and v. 20 (once).

      11. CHRYSOSTOM (A.D. 400) refers to v. 9; and states that vv. 19, 20 are "the end of the Gospel".

      12. JEROME (b. 331, d. 420) includes these twelve verses in his Latin translation, besides quoting vv. 9 and 14 in his other writings.

      13. AUGUSTINE (fl. A.D. 395-430) more than quotes them.  He discusses them as being the work of the Evangelist MARK, and says that they were publicly read in the churches.

      14. NESTORIUS (cent. 5) quotes v. 20 and

      15. CYRIL OF ALEXANDRIA (A.D. 430) accepts the quotation.

      16. VICTOR OF ANTIOCH (A.D. 425) confutes the opinion of Eusebius, by referring to very many MSS. which he had seen, and so had satisfied himself that the last twelve verses were recorded in them.

    John MacArthur also does not believe that 12 verses as found in Mark 16:9-20 are inspired Scripture and should be in our Bible. To see a very well done refutation of John MacArthur's arguments for their omission, see these Youtube videos done by James Snapp Jr.  He completely demolishes MacArthur's position on these verses.
     

    Here is Part One - about 15 minutes
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bx2Q1X0_r5g&feature=relmfu

    And here is Part Two - about 15 minutes
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0s7ZxsBjtaw&feature=relmfu

    And here is Part Three, the Summary - about 15 minutes
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GU4JNBCckxI&feature=relmfu

  19. The following post was posted on facebook by John Hinton;

    Some of my favorite examples of nonsensical and downright stupid attacks on the King James Bible concern 2 Samuel 5:8.

    2 Samuel 5:8 And David said on that day, Whosoever getteth up to the gutter, and smiteth the Jebusites, and the lame and the blind, that are hated of David s soul, he shall be chief and captain. Wherefore they said, The blind and the lame shall not come into the house.

    The Bible critics who put together the New English Bible chose to be the authors of confusion by making the farfetched claim that the Hebrew word tsinnor was connected to an Akkadian word for "grappling hook", a translation that they based on a speculation of Albright. The fact that no such cognate is known to exist in Hebrew did not influence this ridiculous speculation. There is even a lunatic "scholar" who made the surrealistically bizarre suggestion that it meant "penis"!1 How this clown came up with that one is beyond me. His mind was not on the gutter, but in  the gutter.


    These theories were in response to a mistaken belief that the Pool of Siloam was outside of the walls of the city, which led foolish men to assume that the translators of the Bible were mistaken by calling it a gutter, or a water shaft. They also made the false claim that the divinely led translators of the King James Bible did not know what it meant when they (and Aquila) translated it as gutter. However, due to the excavations of Kathleen Kenyon, we now know that there was another wall that the NEB era translators did not know about, and the pool of Siloam was well within it.  Obviously, God's word was correct and those who wished to correct it were wrong. There was no reason to question the Bible's historical account of this event, and no reason to question the King James Bible's translation of it. What is particularly telling is that the King James translators did not have any idea that the Jebusite Shaft even existed; God was fulfilling his promise to preserve his word, and those who tried to discredit it were the ones who were discredited and shown to be fools. 

    One arrogant scholar, Clifford Wilson, a professed anti-Darwinist and anti-Marxist defender of the Bible, even made the simpleminded statement that the King James Bible translators had it wrong by translating tsinnor as "gutter" when it meant, as he explained it, a "stream or watercourse." It is a shame that this foolish blowhard, in his haste to promote false Bibles (that are compiled by Darwinists and Marxists) did not bother to use an English dictionary. The Oxford Universal Dictionary defines gutter thus: "1. A watercourse; later a small brook or channel -1797. b. A furrow or track made by running water 1586." What did this false Bible defender think that it meant -- a house gutter, a gutter by the curb of a road, or perhaps a part of a pool table?

    Romans 1:22 "Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools"

    Endnote1Quoted by Shanks, Hershel. The City of David: A guide to biblical Jerusalem. Washington, D.C.: The Biblical Archaeology Society, 1975, p. 27 ff. This is not the theory of Shanks himself, but he does refer to this unnamed idiot as being "reputable."

    Your servant in Christ, John Hinton, Ph.D.

    Bible Restoration Ministry

    A ministry seeking the translating and reprinting of KJV equivalent Bibles in all the languages of the world.

    jhinton@post.harvard.edu

  20. The perfect tense of ge, graptai (translated It is written) shows clearly that the words inspired in the past have been preserved in the present. Regarding the perfect tense H.P. Nunn in The Elements of the New Testament Greek writes:

    The Perfect tense....donates that the action of the verb is to be regarded as brought to its appropriate conclusion at the time of speaking in such a way that its results will remain in action. The Perfect has therefore as much to do with Present as with Past time, since it describes the present result of a past action. p 91.

    1. It is written - Matthew 2:5
    2. It is written - Matthew 4:4
    3. It is written - Matthew 4:6
    4. It is written - Matthew 4:7
    5. It is written - Matthew 4:10
    6. It is written - Matthew 11:10
    7. It is written - Matthew 21:13
    8. It is written - Matthew 26:24
    9. It is written - Matthew 26:31
    10. It is written - Mark 1:2
    11. It is written - Mark 7:6
    12. It is written - Mark 9:12
    13. It is written - Mark 9:13
    14. It is written - Mark 14:21
    15. It is written - Mark 14:27
    16. It is written - Luke 2:23
    17. It is written - Luke 3:4
    18. It is written - Luke 4:4
    19. It is written - Luke 4:8
    20. It is written - Luke 4:10
    21. It is written - Luke 7:27
    22. It is written - Luke 19:46
    23. It is written - Luke 24:46
    24. It is written - John 6:31
    25. It is written - John 6:45
    26. It is written - John 12:14
    27. It is written - Acts 1:20
    28. It is written - Acts 6:45
    29. It is written - Acts 7:42
    30. It is written - Acts 15:15
    31. It is written - Acts 23:5
    32. It is written - Romans 1:17
    33. It is written - Romans 2:24
    34. It is written - Romans 3:4
    35. It is written - Romans 3:10
    36. It is written - Romans 4:17
    37. It is written - Romans 8:36
    38. It is written - Romans 9:13
    39. It is written - Romans 10:15
    40. It is written - Romans 11:8
    41. It is written - Romans 11:26
    42. It is written - Romans 12:19
    43. It is written - Romans 14:11
    44. It is written - Romans 15:3
    45. It is written - Romans 15:9
    46. It is written - Romans 15:21
    47. It is written - 1 Corinthians 1:19
    48. It is written - 1 Corinthians 1:31
    49. It is written - 1 Corinthians 2:9
    50. It is written - 1 Corinthians 3:19
    51. It is written - 1 Corinthians 9:9
    52. It is written - 1 Corinthians 10:7
    53. It is written - 1 Corinthians 14:21
    54. It is written - 1 Corinthians 15:45
    55. It is written - 2 Corinthians 4:13
    56. It is written - 2 Corinthians 8:15
    57. It is written - 2 Corinthians 9:9
    58. It is written - Galatians 3:10
    59. It is written - Galatians 3:13
    60. It is written - Galatians 4:22
    61. It is written - Galatians 4:27
    62. It is written - Hebrews 10:7
    63. It is written - 1 Peter 1:16
  21. The Spanish Armada & The Gunpowder Plot

    1588  1588 Spanish Armada 

     The Roman Catholic 'superpower' of Spain sets sail to conquer England with her 'armada'.

     Forces of 'nature' (we know it was God) in the form of strong winds played a major part in destroying the Spanish fleet.

    1604 1604 Hampton Court Conference

    The Hampton Court Conference met and a new bible translation in English was agreed

    1605 1605 Gunpowder Plot 

      We all know the story of the 'Gunpowder Plot' where Guy Fawkes and his Jesuit mates tried to blow up the Houses of Parliament.

    The plot was revealed to the authorities in an anonymous letter sent to William Parker, 4th Baron Monteagle, on 26 October 1605.

    1611   The Authorised Version is published

      If the 'Spanish Armada' and the 'Gunpowder Plot' had been successful the massive Authorised Version translation project would never had happened.

    The Authorised Version has been used mightily by God through history and men of God such as John & Charles Wesley, George Whitfield, George Muller, Charles Spurgeon, Jonathan Edward, D. L. Moody & Billy Sunday have all used the Authorised Version while doing the Lord's work.

    Is the thwarting of Roman Catholic attempts to overthrow protestant England highlighted above just down to chance or the providence of God! We would say the latter!

  22. Siniaticanus

    Codex Sinaiticus was found in a trash-can!

    A debate took place between Dr. Jack Moorman and Dr. James White a year or two ago which can be viewed on Youtube.

    During that debate James White made the following statements.

    “I did want to correct just one misapprehension. Sinaiticus was not found in or near a trashcan. That is a common myth, but it’s untrue. All you have to do is read Constantine von Tischendorf’s own first-hand account of his discovery of the manuscript. A monk brought it out of the closet, the cell, wrapped in red cloth. Folks, people in monasteries do not wrap garbage in red cloths, O.K?”

    Having read Tischendorf’s account of his discovery of what we now call the Sinaiticus manuscripts some time previously, Dr. White’s assertion rang alarm bells. So let’s turn to Tischendorf;s account and check out Dr. White on this point.

    The volume I am referring to is;

    Codex Sinaiticus, The Ancient Biblical Manuscript Now in the British Museum.

    Tischendorf’s Story and Argument Related by Himself.

    Second Impression of the Third Edition. 1934

    London, The Lutterworth Press, 6 Bouverie Street E.C.

    Tischendorf’s original account was in German, but my reference copy is an English translation. Bold type in Green are my emphases. In the preface to this eighth edition at page 7 we read,

    “The story of the discoveries of the celebrated scholar in 1844 and 1859 is here related in his own words.”

    The first thing therefore we must observe is that Tischendorf made at least two visits to St. Catherine’s monastery at the foot of Mt. Sinai. This is subsequently born out in the account following by Tischendorf himself. Furthermore, the translator adds a few facts which are pertinent here. On page 9, the translator refers to,

    “…the discovery of the Sinaitic Manuscript, the full particulars of which are given to the English reader in the following pages.”

    And on page 10, the translator says,

    “We have only to add that this version into English was undertaken with the express approbation of the Author…”

    On the strength of these assertions, I believe I hold a reputable account in this volume of the events exactly as they happened.

    Now we turn to the words of Tischendorf himself. He writes at page 16,

    “In sitting down to write a popular version of my pamphlet, the Zwickau Society also expressed a wish that I should preface it with a short account of my researches, and especially of my discovery of the Sinaitic Codex, which naturally takes an important place in my list of documentary proofs.”

    Moving on to page 23, Tischendorf there gives specific details of his first visit to Mt Sinai.

    “It was in April, 1844, that I embarked at Leghorn for Egypt. The desire which I felt to discover some precious remains of any manuscripts, more especially Biblical, of a date which would carry us back to the early times of Christianity, was realized beyond my expectations. It was at the foot of Mount Sinai, in the Convent of Saint Catherine, that I discovered the pearl of all my researches. In visiting the library of the monastery in the month of May, 1844, I perceived in the middle of the great hall a large and wide basket full of old parchments; and the librarian, who was a man of information, told me that two heaps of paper like these, mouldered by time, had been already committed to the flames. What was my surprise to find amid this heap of papers a considerable number of sheets of the Old Testament in Greek, which seemed to me to be one of the most ancient I had ever seen. The authorities of the convent allowed me to possess myself of a third of these parchments, or about forty-three sheets, all the more readily as they were destined for the fire. But I could not get them to yield up possession of the remainder. The too lively satisfaction which I had displayed had aroused their suspicions as to the value of this manuscript. I…enjoined on the monks to take religious care of all such remains which might fall in their way.”

    “Folks, people in monasteries do not wrap garbage in red cloths, O.K?” says Dr. White.

    That’s right Dr. White, they burn it! Unless they perhaps get wind later that someone will pay good money for it.

    Tischendorf continues, having returned to Saxony,

    “But these home labours upon the manuscripts which I had already gathered did not allow me to forget the distant treasure which I had discovered.[i] I made use of an influential frien, who then resided at the Court of the Viceroy of Egypt, to carry on negotiations for procuring the rest of the manuscripts; but his attempts were, unfortunately, not successful. “The monks of the convent,” he wrote to me to say, “have, since your departure, learned the value of these sheets of parchment and will not part with them at any price.”

    We learn on page 24 that Tischendorf made a second visit to the monastery in 1853, “but I was not able to discover any further traces of the treasure of 1844.”

    We read of  third visit at page 26.

    “..in the commencement of January, 1859, I again set sail for the East…By the end of the month of January I had reached the Convent of Mount Sinai…After having devoted a few days in turning over the manuscripts of the convent, not without alighting here and there on some precious parchment or other, I told my Bedouins, on the 4th February, to hold themselves in readiness to set out with their dromedaries for Cairo on the 7th, when an entirely fortuitous circumstance carried me at once to the goal of all my desires. On the afternoon of this day I was taking a walk with the steward of the convent in the neighbourhood, and as we returned, towards sunset, he begged me to take some refreshment with him in his cell. Scarcely had he entered the room, when, resuming our former subject of conversation, he said: “And I, too, have read a Septuagint” – i.e. a copy of the Greek translation made by the Seventy. And so saying, he took down from the corner of the room a bulky kind of volume wrapped up in a red cloth and laid it before me. I unrolled the cover and discovered to my great surprise, not only those very fragments which, fifteen years before, I had taken out of the basket, but also other parts of the Old Testament, the New Testament complete, and, in addition, the Epistle of Barnabas and a part of the Pastor of Hermas. Full of joy, which this time I had the self-command to conceal from the steward and the rest of the community, I asked, as if in a careless way, permission to take the manuscript in to my sleeping chamber to look over it more at leisure. There by myself I could give way to the transport of joy which I felt. I Knew that I held in my hand the most precious biblical treasure in existence – a document whose age and importance exceeded that of all the manuscripts which I had examined during twemty years study of the subject.

    And there we have it. When we turn as James White directs us to Tischendorf’s account, we find no such thing as White asserts.  No doubt, it was only after the monks perceived Tischendorf’s excitement, that realizing the age of the document, they “would not part with it at any price”, and wrapped it in red cloth.

    KJV only advocates are right therefore, when we claim that Sinaiticus was found in a waste paper basket. No mythology here!


    [1] Dean John William Burgon, who, unlike Tischendorf, combined faithfulness with his considerable scholarship had this to say about Tischendorf. “Which of this most inconstant critic’s texts are we to select? Surely not the last, in which an exaggerated preference for a single Manuscript which he has had the good fortune to discover has betrayed him into an almost child-like infirmity of critical judgment.” And again, “It has been ascertained that his discovery of Codex Aleph caused his eighth edition (1865-72) to differ from his seventh in no less than 3505 places, -“to the scandal of the science of Comparative Criticism, as well as to his own grave discredit for discernment and consistency.””

    Colin Tyler
  23. The 'New' New N.I.V. 2011 - A brief critique of the latest New International Version of the bible by Colin Tyler

     "For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell or to hear some new thing."

    Act 17:21

    Introduction

    A brother in the Lord recently handed me some notes headed, Updating the New International Version of the Bible: Notes from the Committee on Bible Trsnslation. The notes were dated August 2010 and appear to be a preparatory statement regarding the next edition of the NIV, due for publication sometime early in 2011. To those who love and revere the pure and precious word of God as found in the Authorised Version of 1611, these NIV notes can only be distressing. We grieve over the whole dreadful charade. I had to steel myself to read them. Due to the very serious nature of ongoing corruptions finding their way over subsequent editions onto the pages of the NIV, I felt it necessary to make some comments.

    It has been ably demonstrated by a host of competent critics over the last thirty or more years, that the NIV is corrupt. The evidence, for any fair minded Christian with an open-ness to the truth, is available in an abundance of publications. For this reason, I am not going to go over old ground and provide specific rebuttals to all of the textual changes that the NIV Committee list in their 2010 notes. It's like painting the Forth Bridge: no sooner is an exposure made of all the ridiculous and ungodly alterations one edition of the NIV made, than they present us with a whole fresh batch of vain imaginings. I have long been of the mind that an idiot can ask enough questions in five minutes to keep a wise man answering for days. The NIV constantly keeps raising such questions , and responding to them all becomes tiresome. In this article therefore, I propose only to make some general observations upon their stated principles for their new translation and just a few responses to some of the specific texts they propose to alter.

    General Observations.

     1. The Title

    As soon as one picks up a New International Version alarm bells ought to be ringing by the very way it describes itself. The word 'International' should serve as a warning. The concept of internationalism is trendy. It is again the kind of mentality that the New World Order promoters are very keen to create. The world is one big happy family. But the word of God, I believe, warns us about this kind of thinking. Acts 17:26 & 27 reads,

    "And hath made one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation:.."

    The concept of the United Nations is a godless one. The United Nations is, along with the Church of Rome, arguably the most wicked and corrupt institution on earth. God divided the nations at Babel! The United Nations and the according notion of internationalism is a feature of end-time apostacy. It is the run up to the One World Government and the vicious reign of the Antichrist. Listen again to what God thinks of the destruction of borders and nation states in Proverbs 22:28,

    "Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set."

    For 'New' and 'International' read 'modern political correctness for suckers.'

    2. Incrementalism

    About twenty years ago, when I was working in a factory, we had a new foreman come on to the site who was able to accomplish more changes to working practices in a few months than all his predecessors had been able to make in years. I noticed this and I asked him what his secret was. I have never forgotten his answer. He said, "It is a trick I learned when I worked for Birmingham City Council: make small changes, one at a time and no-one notices what is happening."

    This technique, I have since learned, is sometimes called incrementalism.

    The NIV translators refer to what they call 'the unchanging truths of the Bible'.

    Slick! 'Neat, but not gaudy' said the Devil as he painted his tail pea-green.'

    They change the text at regular intervals while talking about unchanging truth. They follow the ever more base mores of society and adapt what they call 'the unchanging truths of the Bible' to the growing social decadence. Every new release of their so-called Bible moves further and further away from the words of God. Like the characters working for the setting up of the New World Order, they are constantly doing with their hands what they are denying with their mouths. For example, they write,

    "First, it's important to stress that about 95% of the text of the updated NIV is exactly the same as the 1984 text it replaces."

    But the 1984 translation was also changed from the one that preceded it, and the one prior to that was a considerable shift from the text of the AV. Besides, 95% means nothing: the real issue is the nature of the changes.

    3. Conceit

    One of the fundamental planks in the NIV translators' platform is their imagined superior knowledge over the translators of the AV. Their whole welter of changes to the text of scripture stands upon their own assertion that they are more knowledgeable than the men who gave us the AV and that the materials that they have access to are also superior to those available to the AV translators.

    They cannot of course know this for sure because they cannot know for sure exactly how smart the AV translators were or to exactly what materials they had access. They imagine they know better because they refuse to accept, for whatever reason, that the King James translators actually rejected their preferred materials and ideas. It is true that manuscripts have been discovered since 1611 but it is also undoubtedly true that some manuscripts have been lost.

    To illustrate the folly of this kind of conceit consider the following story from history.

    Alexander McClure in his book Translators Revived tells of one of the AV translators, Dr. Richard Kilby, travelling with a friend into Derbyshire. On the Sunday Dr. Kilby and his friend visited the local parish church where they were unknown to the preacher.

    Not knowing who he had in his congregation, the young preacher gave three reasons why a particular word had been incorrectly translated in the AV.

    After the service, the young preacher was informed by Dr. Kilby that the AV translators had themselves considered all three of his reasons and had found thirteen more reasons why they had translated it as printed. It seems clear from reading these preparatory notes on the upcoming NIV that the NIV translators have imbibed the modern mentality towards.

    4. Evolution

    It does not seem to trouble the NIV translators that the English language is degenerating. As western societies move further away from God, indecent, irreverent and careless language has become more current. The NIV translators want to incorporate this degeneracy into their so-called bibles. Only an evolutionary mentality, it seems to me, can account for this. They want their bible, it would appear, to be easily grasped by the man in the street. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones once said that our job is not to bring the Bible down to the level of the man in the street but to bring the man in the street up to the level of the Bible.

    Furthermore, the great bulk of scripture is not addressed to the unsaved anyway, it is addressed to believers. The epistles of Paul, for example, are addressed to the saints. Modern believers are supposed to be separated from the world, so what have we to do with modern modes of speech and language for the most part developed by the ungodly.

    Let me say this to the translators of the NIV: I reject your so-called Bible as an abomination. It stinks, and if God spares my life (as Tyndale once said), I will continue to warn the saints of its corruptions. I am aware after years of such endeavor, that just as Jeremiah's warnings went unheeded until it was too late, most saints will not listen.

    5. Scholarship

    "Our top priority is locating willing and able members with a high level of expertise in the Greek of the New Testament and/or the Hebrew and Aramaic of the Old Testament. Usually this means scholars with Ph.Ds in one or the other sub-disciplines of Biblical studies. Facility with writing in fluent English is also obviously a high priority."

    There priorities, by their own admission, are intellectual. Men like Stephen, of honest report and full of the Holy Ghost, recieve no mention. They would no doubt respond that that is a given. But I think they have made a Freudian slip. They have actually told us what they think matters most. One of Tozer's 'Gems' springs to mind.

    "The Devil is a better theologian than any of us and is a devil still."

    A close study of the plagues upon Egypt will reveal that the step by step departure from the faith described in Romans chapter 1 answers to the plagues in remarkable detail. Suffice to say here that the darkening of the sun is described as being given over to a reprobate mind. The sun in Egypt may represent the light of human intellect. The sun was the great god of Egypt as the mind and learning of unbelievers is the great god today. God in judgement darkened the whole land of Egypt and today He is allowing the nations to be darkened by the puffed-up intelligence of man. Someone, I have heard it said, once told the Methodists that they needed to fill their pulpits with men with Degrees. So they filled their pulpits with men with Degrees and by degrees they emptied the churches. Scholarship must always go hand in hand with faith and obedience to the word of God.

    6. Feminism

    Restless women who despise God's order for the sexes have always wanted to tell men what to do. A nagging wife is one of the greatest curses in any marriage or family. Such women behave so because they do not respect God's order and they will not trust their husbands in important decisions. So also do irresponsible men, to save themselves the trouble of leadership, encourage women to usurp authority. Male headship in the home and leadership in the Church is clearly taught in my Bible. Just as the feminists have been pushing for the equality of the sexes in society, so have they been pushing for equality in the churches.

    The NIV translators, seemingly taking their lead from the godless, want to encourage the Church in feminist error.

    The same short paragraph in their notes which describes their scholars uses the word 'diversity' four times.

    "The committee today is as diverse as it has ever been, although it recognizes the need to diversify still further...The committee prizes denominational diversity as well...If past committee members are included, this diversity becomes even greater."

    'Diversity' is a shibboleth of the politically correct. The NIV has always, even in past editions, struck me as an effort to please men. It has always been weak and effeminate and the up-coming 2011 edition promises to be worse. Plain speaking such as is recorded in the Authorised Version is no longer fashionable. The NIV is just what its translators want it to be: a product of the times.

    7. The Standard

    Just eight lines into their notes we read,

    "In 1611, the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible sought to bring English readers back as close to that original fusion as possible....But just like the original documents, the KJV was unable to escape the effects of time."

    But why hark back to the KJV and 1611?

    There have been dozens of English translations made since 1611; the flood-gates opening with the Revised Version of 1881. Why do they not compare their work to that or to the Revised Standard Version of the fifties?

    Why do they not compare their work to the NASB or to the ESV?

    I submit it is because they unwittingly recognize the KJV as the standard.

    They, along with the publishers of other modern translations, mostly compare their bibles with the 1611 KJV, seldom with one another. They will usually say something nice about it before telling you we need to move on. But most Christians have 'moved on' if NIV publicity is to be believed, so why keep constantly comparing their bibles with the KJV? It's as though the KJV in particular must be deposed. That, along with making money, seems to be the real agenda here.

    On this head, the recent comments of the Trinitarian Bible Society are apropos. They are quoted in The English Churchman, #7808 thus,

    "For the NIV translation committee to indicate by its publication year that the NIV is a valid successor to the AV is disingenuous and ignores the great gulf between the approach of the AV translators and those of the NIV, as has increasingly been seen in the editions up to 2011."

    Texts.

    We read in The Notes,

    "The Corinthian slogan in 1 Corinthians 7:1 was captured best in the original NIV footnote, which has now become the text: "It is good for a man not to have sexual relations with a woman" (a view Paul had to qualify before he could endorse it)."

    This is vague enough in the latest NIV to leave open the door for smooching and petting.

    The AV 'not to touch' gives a clearer and more definitive warning. Furthermore, 'not to touch' is only three syllables, but 'not to have sexual relations with' amounts to ten syllables. This makes scripture memorization more difficult.

    Modern translations are usually wordier even though based upon a shorter Greek text.

    The excellent study, Missing in Modern Bibles by Dr. Jack Moorman, gives more details.

    Continuing in The Notes,

    "And one shouldn't be as easily able to misapply Philippians 4:13 now that it reads, "I can do all this through him who gives me strength" (i.e., to be content in all circumstances, whether in riches or in poverty), rather than "I can do everything through him who gives me strength.""

    The AV reads,

    "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

    Earlier and later editions of the NIV omit the word 'Christ' having followed the corrupt UBS Greek text. Their latest innovation, inserting the word 'this', has no Greek support. Also it imposes a limitation upon Paul's meaning. When Peter walked on the water, he did it through Christ who strengthened him. This makes a broader application of the text which the latest NIV rendering rules out.

    In a section headed, What Happened to Some of the Most Famous Texts on Gender Roles, we read,

    "Romans 16:1-2 now reads, "I commend to you our sister, Phoebe, a deacon [diakonos] of the church in Cenchreae. I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of his people and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been the benefactor [prostatis] of many people, including me." Complementarian and egalitarian scholars alike are increasingly agreeing the diakonos here means "deacon" (not just "servant," though "servant is provided as an alternative in the footnote...."

    The Greek word 'diakonos' should, in some contexts, be translated as 'deacon'; but not in Romans 16:1 because the Biblical rather than the local context does not allow it as the AV translators were clearly well aware.

    All the roles of leadership and authority from Genesis to Revelation are committed to men, not women. Moses and Aaron were chosen to lead Israel out of Egypt, not Miriam. The priesthood in Israel in Old Testament times was given to men, not women. All of the prophets were men, not women, with the exception of Deborah, who proves the rule. The scriptures give us the histories of the kings of Israel, not the queens. The Lord Jesus chose twelve apostles: all men. No doubt had any of the latest batch of NIV translators been alive at the time, holding current prejudices, he would have found fault with the Lord Jesus Himself for not appointing any women.

    When the apostles chose deacons in Acts 6 they were all men.

    Finally 1 Timothy 3:12 says "Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife..."

    It is difficult to see how Phoebe could possibly qualify.

    "As for my people, children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, they which lead thee cause thee to err, and destroy the way of thy paths." Isaiah 3:12

    The word ‘saints’ has also been removed from Romans 16:1 which we shall consider below.

    The New New NIV translators are trying to bring worldliness into the Church. The other texts discussed by them in this section all derive from the same unbiblical egalitarian mentality.

    In a section headed, What Other Improvements Have Been Made? we read ,

    “Saints” often becomes “God’s people,” “the Lord’s people,” “the Lord’s holy people” and the like. Most people today think of a particularly good person when they hear the word “saint,” whereas in the Bible it translates terminology that regularly refers to all believers. Sometimes the context suggests an emphasis on God’s having declared them holy or the process of them becoming more and more holy, so a variety of similar expressions were used depending on the context.”

    Ah! Rome, there you are! How the papists will love this one. Could there ever be a clearer indication of the NIV translators’ complete indifference to Biblical truth. Because ‘most people today think of a particularly good person when they hear the word “saint”’ we must pander to their ignorance and reserve the word for the likes of John Henry Newman and Pope John Paul 2nd. This one alteration alone ought to be enough to show all real Christians what a godless publication this latest rehash is. It may suffice for ignorant and Christ-rejecting Christendom but every Christian ought to know better.

    Continuing in the same section we find,

    “There aren’t nearly as many “O”s but a number of additional “for”s. The interjection “O” used in a vocative sense (O God, help me!) is not nearly as common in spoken or written English as it once was. Where the context suggests that it adds nothing of substance to the text, the updated NIV has left it implied by other vocative nouns rather than separately translated. But it remains in many other contexts.”

    Dr. A. W. Tozer seems to have prophesied more than fifty years ago when he wrote in an article entitled, Are We Losing Our “Oh!”

    “Vocabularies are formed by many minds over long periods and are capable of expressing whatever the mind is capable of entertaining. But when the heart, on its knees, moves into the awesome Presence and hears with fear and wonder things not lawful to utter, then the mind falls flat, and words, previously its faithful servants, become weak and totally incapable of telling what the heart hears and sees. In that awful moment the worshiper (sic) can only cry “Oh!” And that simple exclamation becomes more eloquent than learned speech and, I have no doubt, is dearer to God than any oratory.”

    When considering this latest work by the NIV translators, one is reminded of the words of the psalmist,

    “O GOD, the heathen are come into thine inheritance; thy holy temple have they defiled; they have laid Jerusalem upon heaps.”   Psa. 79:1

    Note the “O”! A man told me once that the NIV must be OK because the translators were conservative evangelicals, but the Lord Jesus says, “By their fruits ye shall know them.”

    Dr. Tozer continued,

    “In theology there is no “Oh!” and this is a significant if not an ominous thing. Theology seeks to reduce what may be known of God to intellectual terms, and as long as the intellect can comprehend it can find words to express itself. When God Himself appears before the mind, awesome, vast and incomprehensible, then the mind sinks into silence and the heart cries out “O Lord God!”… We

    Christians should watch lest we lose the “Oh!” from our hearts.”

    Dr. Tozer’s pre-emptive assessment of the consequences of shallow Christian experience is now fulfilled in the New New NIV.

    In keeping with my introductory remarks, I do not propose a lengthy discussion of texts. I cite just one other in conclusion.

     “1984: For everything in the world – the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does- comes not from the Father but from the world

    “Updated NIV; “For everything in the world – the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life – comes not from the Father but from the world.

    “Has anyone really improved on the KJV rendering of these three expressions to which the updated NIV returns? Is it unclear even in this four-hundred-year-old wording that John is condemning the evil desires of fallen humanity….The language still communicates, and the poetry and the style to which the NIV has returned is magnificent.”

    We welcome this repentance and we are pleased to see at least here their recognition of the magnificence of the AV. When comparing the modern Bibles with the AV, I am often reminded of Hamlet’s rebuke to his mother when comparing two likenesses of his father and his uncle, with which I conclude.

    “Look here upon this picture, and on this,

    The counterfeit presentment of two brothers.

    See, what a grace was seated on this brow;

    This was your husband. Look you now, what follows;

    Here is your husband; like a mildewed ear,

    Blasting his wholesome brother.

    Have you eyes?

    Could you on this fair mountain leave to feed

    And batten on this moor?

    Ha! Have you eyes?”

    “My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change..” Proverbs 24:21

    Colin Tyler

     

     

  24. NKJV Whopper no. 7.

    Hebrews 2:16.

    “For verily he took not on him the nature of angels; but he took on him the seed of Abraham.”

    Hebrews 2:16 NKJV

    “For indeed He does not give aid to angels, but He does give aid to the seed of Abraham”


    This verse as it stands in the A.V. is a simple and plain declaration of the incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ into the lineage of Abraham.

    That this is the meaning of the verse is clear from the context. In the first chapter of Hebrews, the Lord Jesus is seen as God, higher than the angels. In the second chapter he is seen as man, ‘made a little lower than the angels’. We read in chapter 2:11,

    “For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause he is not ashamed to call them brethren…”

    and at verse 14,

    Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same…”

    We are reading about the Lord Jesus being born as a man; as a descendent of Abraham.

    Verse 16 as it stands in the A.V. plainly states that the Lord Jesus “took on him” the nature of the seed of Abraham. The NKJV erases this truth altogether from verse 16.

    We will no doubt be told that the context in the NKJV supports the truth of the incarnation as really as does the A.V.

    The fact remains that it is erased from verse 16 and with the deity of Christ being negated in other places in the NKJV footnotes; we refuse to accept this error yet again in this verse.

    Colin Tyler

  25. NKJV Whopper no. 6.

    Acts 1:3

    “To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs…”

    Acts 1:3 NKJV

    “…to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs…”


    One of the sad evidences of our modern spiritual decline is the disappearance of passion from our pulpits and prayer-meetings.

    Perhaps it should come as no surprise, seeing it is being removed from modern bibles, as in the verse above.

    The NIV uses the word ‘passion’ seven times in the Old and New Testaments. (1)  Every instance has a negative connotation as, for example, Romans 7:5 and Titus 2:12.

    Every reference I discovered to passion in the NKJV is also negative.

    For example, Colossians 3:5,

    “Therefore put to death your members which are upon the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.”

    Or Romans 1:26,

    “For this reason God gave them up to vile passions.”


    The Authorised Version only uses the word ‘passion’ three times.

    In Acts 1:3, Acts 14:15 and James 5:17.

    Acts 14 and James 5 are clearly used non-judgmentally in the A.V.

    The A.V. uses the word ‘compassion’ 21 times in the New Testament and the NKJV also translates twenty of the same references as ‘compassion’. Compassion is always a positive sentiment, a good thing in its New Testament use. Is it not a little strange then that the NKJV always translates ‘passion’ negatively, like the NIV?

    It seems that modern translators can only think of passion in the seedy sense of the X-rated sex movie.

    This is the consequence of imbibing too much of the mentality of the world.

    Dirty minds beget dirty bibles.

    In Acts 1:3 the NKJV changes the ‘passion’ of the Lord Jesus upon the cross into his ‘suffering’.

    This destroys, along with the shallow NIV, NASV and ESV, the precious truth that the Lord Jesus embraced the cross. ‘Suffering’ is negative, ‘passion’ is positive.

    Isaiah prophesied of Jesus’ resolve to go to Calvary:

    “The Lord GOD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. I gave my back to the smiters, and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting. For the Lord GOD will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.” Isa. 50:5-7.

    Hallelujah! What a Saviour. Doctrinally, the NKJV might not be telling such a great whopper here, but what a miserable downgrade of Jesus’ love.

    Colin Tyler

    (1) E.W. Goodrick & J.R. Kohlenberger III, The NIV Complete Concordance (Hodder and Stoughton, 1981) p.798.

  26. NKJV Whopper no. 5.

    Philippians 2:8  

    “And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”

    Philippians 2:8 NKJV  

    “And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself, and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross,”


    Note the very serious alteration from ‘unto death’ to ‘to the point of death’.

    What do we understand today by a statement like, ‘I was at the point of giving up’? We mean. ‘I nearly gave up, but didn’t!’ Or if a nurse told us that a sick relative was at the point of death?  We would understand that they were not dead yet; we might even still entertain hope of recovery.

    The NKJV is joined in this pernicious alteration by the NASB and the ESV.

    What do Muslims believe?

    They believe that Jesus was crucified but that he did not die upon the cross. He only swooned but later revived. This is one of the most shocking and nasty whoppers that I have found yet in the NKJV. If Christ did not die, we have no gospel. (1 Corinthians 15:1-4.)

    To borrow Burgon’s words, ‘Those must have been wondrous drowsy days’ among the NKJV translating committee.

    Colin Tyler

  27. NKJV Whopper no. 4.

    2 Corinthians 2:17.

    “For we are not as many, which corrupt the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as of God, in the sight of God speak we in Christ.”

    2 Corinthians 2:17 NKJV

    “For we are not, as so many, peddling the word of God: but as of sincerity, but as from God, we speak in the sight of God in Christ.”


    It is the switch from ‘corrupt’ to ‘peddle’ the word of God, with which I take issue.

    The NKJV here has lined itself up with the NIV, NASB, ESV, NEB, RSV and NWT of the so-called Jehovah’s Witnesses. The Greek word translated ‘peddling’ and ‘corrupt’ is καπηλυοντες.

    Eminent Greek scholar A.T. Robertson, no friend of the A.V., gives ‘corrupting’ as his primary translation of the word. (1) 

    Also, John Bois, one of the A.V. translators writes,

    v.17. καπηλεýοντες] [being a retail dealer, playing tricks, corrupting] i.e. νοθεýοντες [adultering]. κÜπηλος is derived απο του καλλονειν τον πηλον [from glossing over lees] by corrupting and adulterating wine.” (2)

    The idea is that men corrupted wine in order to make greater profit from the sale of it. I believe ‘corrupt’ to be correct for two reasons: one, because the Holy Bible says so, and two, because it best fits with the context of the verse. Paul is contrasting the corrupt handling of the scriptures with the sincere handling of the scriptures.

    “…but as of sincerity…”

    It is strongly probable that men perverted the word of God in Paul’s day in order to peddle it as it is true now. It is difficult not to imagine that constant bible ‘updates’, bibles with specific ‘target’ markets, and a multiplicity of varieties of presentation are not, at least some of the time, produced merely for the financial profit of the publisher.

    Because of copyright law, changes to the text of the previous bible must constantly be made. If the modern versions, including the NKJV, have spoken truly of ‘peddlers’ who corrupted the scriptures for financial gain in the first century, then the same peddlers, by their own admission, are likely still with us. If not, their text is redundant. The peddlers of scripture in the first century and at the present are corrupters of the word of God. Nigel Harris in the Monarch Standard gives some telling insights into the money-making motives of some modern bible publishers and salesmen.

    “Today the largest Christian publishers are owned by secular corporations or have shares held by Wall Street investors. As ministries turn into big business, theological integrity can easily give way to marketing considerations…. The attendant cut-throat competition, coupled with theological looseness, can lead to promotion of a new watered-down, pop Christianity.

    “The Zondervan guide gives lots of advice to secular retailers it wants to encourage to stock bibles – from talking displays and flip charts to sales patter with the express purpose of making the bible more a consumable item than a once-only purchase. The guide provides the advice of a salesman, ‘Bill Reynolds, a Holman Bible rep for 32 years, points out two other incentives for beefing up the Bible department – repeat sales and add-on purchases. “Bible sales should never end,” he says. “Once you help a person you plant a seed for another translation or style…” For ‘…add-on purchases…’ we can read spin-offs!” (3)

    Personally, I think that such an attitude to the Holy Scriptures is as sinful as can be. Such a man would, given the right profit margin, no doubt sell his own grandmother. To return to our text: the change from ‘corrupt’ to ‘peddling’ has a serious consequence. The use of the word ‘peddling’ distracts attention from the corrupting that was going on. The truth according to the Holy Bible is that men were perverting the word of God in the first century when Paul so wrote to the Corinthians. There were therefore, such things as corrupted first century manuscripts. This truth from the 1611 Bible is extremely damaging to the modern translators’ contention that fourth century manuscripts are, of necessity, more pure because of their age. The oldest manuscripts now available may be more corrupt than others from later centuries which were copied from more accurate exemplars. F.H.A. Scrivener has stated,

    “It is no less true to fact than paradoxical in sound that the worst corruptions, to which the New Testament has ever been subjected, originated within a hundred years after it was composed: that Irenaeus [A.D. 150] and the African Fathers, and the whole Western, with a portion of the Syrian Church, used far inferior manuscripts to those employed by Stunica, or Erasmus, or Stephens thirteen centuries later, when moulding the Textus Receptus.” (4)

    Colin Tyler

     (1)A.T. Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament (Harper & Bros. N.Y. & London, 1931) Vol. 4, p. 219.

    (2) Ward Allen, Translating for King James (Allen Lane The Penguin Press, 1970) p. 51

    (3)Nigel C. Harris (Ed.) The Monarch Standard, Aug. 1999, Issue 23. pp. 6 & 8.  

    (4) Cited in J.W. Burgon, The Revision Revised (Conservative Classics, Paradise, PA) p.30. Originally published 1883.

  28. NKJV Whopper no 3.

    1 Tim. 6:10

    “For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”

    1 Tim 6:10 NKJV

    “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”


    The change from ‘the root’ in the AV to ‘a root’ in the NKJV is a whopper.

    The scriptures would have us aware of the singular and primary danger arising from the love of money.

    It is not as the NKJV, NIV, NASB, ESV, Good News and NWT of the Jehovah Witnesses all translate; simply one root among other roots. It is the root. In my experience the modern translation has been defended by two arguments: the first, that the Greek word ‘root’ has no definite article ‘the’; and the second, that common sense dictates that the AV must be wrong.

    It is claimed by modern translators that because the word ‘root’ does not have the definite article in the Greek text, that it must be translated as ‘a’ root. If this is so, why does the NKJV use the word ‘the’ twice in 1 Cor. 2:16, agreeing with the AV, when ‘the’ is not found in the Greek text?

    Why does the NKJV use the word ‘the’ eight times in Luke 1:17, agreeing with the AV, when ‘the’ is not found in the Greek text?

    Why does the NKJV use the word ‘the’ twice in Mark 10:6, agreeing with the AV, when ‘the’ is not found in the Greek text?

    Furthermore, right in the very text of 1 Tim 6:10, ‘all evil’ has a definite article! Literally the Greek reads, ‘of all the evils’. So why does the NKJV leave it out?

    Is it not obvious from these examples, that the presence or absence of the Greek article is not, taken alone, decisive when translated into English?

    There are other considerations. Modern scholars think that they are smarter than the AV translators and want Christians to believe so. In the final analysis, it comes down to who you believe is the more able Greek scholar. And how will you know?

     Has God left us without a definitive voice?

    The Lord Jesus came preaching the truth and the Pharisees called him a liar. The apostle Paul preached the gospel to the churches of Galatia and the false teachers who followed after him accused him of error. Everyday life is full of examples of men skilled in their particular field being contradicted by others who are comparatively ignorant.

    “A little learning is a dangerous thing, Drink deep or touch not the Pierian spring, Shallow draughts intoxicate the brain, But drinking largely sobers us again.” Alexander Pope.

    I believe that modern scholars have ‘a little learning’ compared with the AV translators who ‘drank largely’. It is true that I cannot prove it, but neither can those who disagree prove the opposite. The proof is in the pudding. The AV speaks for itself. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

    The second argument for substituting ‘a’ root for ‘the’ root is that modern translators, and those who follow them, do not believe that the love of money could possibly be the root of all evil. Such people should obtain and read The Fourth Reich of the Rich or Descent into Slavery by Des Griffin. What men, notably international bankers, will do for the love of money; beggars belief. I cite an example from Descent into Slavery,

    “Early in 1945, as the war was fast drawing to a close, the population of Dresden, normally 600,000, had swollen to well over 1,000,000 as refugees, mostly women and children swarmed in from the east. ‘Every house in Dresden was filled with these unfortunates, every public building was crowded with them, many were camping in the streets. There were no air raid shelters. “On the morning of the fateful February 13th 1945, Allied reconnaissance planes were observed flying over the city… “At 9:30 that evening the first wave of Allied planes (Fortresses and ‘Liberators’) appeared over the Dresden area and began to rain down death and destruction… When the second wave of the two thousand, one hundred and fifty plane ‘demolition crew’ arrived shortly after midnight, they found the area still burning furiously. “When the three-stage assault on the defenseless and refugee-packed Dresden was completed, all the priceless buildings in the greater Altstadt area lay in ruins. Half the buildings in the greater Dresden area were demolished, and approximately 250,000 of the hapless inhabitants lay incinerated in the ruins. “Who was responsible for the barbaric Dresden Massacre which took place when Germany was clearly beaten and when no strategic purpose could be served by such wanton destruction and loss of life?

    “I can only say,” states Air Marshall Sir Arthur Harris, the top man in the British Air Force, “that the attack on Dresden was at the time considered a military necessity by much more important people than myself.”

    “In his book, Sir Arthur refrains from naming these “much more important people.” “Those “much more important people” were obviously the men who were running the European ‘theater of war’ for their own profit and for their own ends. They were clearly looking beyond the end of the war to vast fortunes that could be picked up in ‘redevelopment’ projects in such cities as Dresden. The fact that millions of ‘peasants’ were incinerated in such ‘urban renewal’ projects was of no import to them.” (6)

    Sir Winston Churchill said,

    “You know, an all-out battle on land, and heavy battles in the sea, and this total bombardment over Rotterdam and over London, the High Cabal is operating here.” (7)

    Another example of the love of money being the root of all evil is the greed of the pharmaceutical industry. G. Edward Griffin in his book, World Without Cancer exposes the pernicious suppression of a very effective cancer cure by organized medicine. Natural remedies cannot be patented: there is no money to be made from them. Surgery, on the other hand, and radiation therapy and chemotherapy generate revenue for the pharmaceutical industry coffers. Doctors who have far superior success rates with natural cures like Vitamin B17 are branded as quacks and persecuted by government medical bodies. For powerful detailed evidence see Laetrile Case Histories (8) in which the persecution of Dr. John Richardson and his very successful cancer treatment clinic is told. Further exemplification of the truth that the love of money is the root of all evil is given by Dr. P.S. Ruckman in his commentary on Timothy in loco.

    “Every piece of communist literature on both sides of the Atlantic can be traced to that root. That is, the Bilderbergers, the international bankers, the Illuminati, the House of Rothschild, and the whole BANKING system – with all financed wars, financed crime (the Mafia, the Cosa Nostra, etc.), all financed communist cells, and all financed revolutions – were MONEY-MAKING jobs….

    “Is there unemployment in your area?

    Do teenagers roam the streets because they have nothing to do?

    Are there riots and demonstrations because white people won’t hire black people?

    “…THE LOVE OF MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL…”

    Behind the unemployment lies FDR, the “New Deal,” President Wilson, the Federal Reserve Bank, Carter, Kennedy, and Eisenhower with the Federal takeover. Martin Luther King Jr. (9) was PAID to stir up a following to burn $40,000,000 worth of property….” (10)

    Let us just suppose, naming no names, that modern bibles were produced for the purpose of making money. Let us just suppose that for some get-rich-quick bible publishers, sales were more important than souls. The truth to them would no longer be sacred. Corruption of the scriptures for the love of money would, without question, be the root of all evil. The consequences of repeated ‘up-datings’ of the word of God would be catastrophic.

    Has it happened? I think so!

    1 Tim. 6:10 in the NKJV is a whopper.

    Colin Tyler

    (6) Des Griffin, Descent into Slavery (Emissary Publications, Oregon. 1980) pp. 179,180. Mr Griffin includes quotes here from F.J.F. Veale, The Veale File, Vol. 1. p.189.

    (7) William Stuart, The Invisible College (Bright Pen, 2010) Back Cover.

    (8) Richardson & Griffin, Laetrile Case Histories (?????) 280pp.

    (9) Martin Luther King Jr. was a media god. Anyone shocked at Dr. Ruckman's assertion should obtain the eponymous recording from James W. Knox of the Bible Baptist Church, Deland, Florida.

    (10) P. S. Ruckman, The Pastoral Epistles 1 & 2 Timothy - Titus (Bible Baptist Bookstore, Florida, 1989) p. 133.