Biblical Economics 5: Increasing Income with Hard Work

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Catholics, Protestants, and Salvation

See also:

– John Wesley’s “Letter to a Roman Catholic” (1749).

– Council of Trent: Sixth Session on Justification (1547). A Catholic Arminian statement on salvation.

– Mel Gibson’s Interview About The Passion of the Christ (2004) – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ecnfe530IE

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A Debate with Christian Universalists

For the sake of brevity, I will refer to the two Christian universalists from this Facebook dialogue as CU 1 and CU 2. Based on my understanding, CU 1 is a Catholic and CU 2 is a Wesleyan of some type, maybe a United Methodist. CU 1 objects to my view of exclusivism by postulating that pagans in foreign lands, for example, the Native Americans, couldn’t all end up in Hell without hearing the Gospel. It would be unjust for God to eternally punish “good” pagans without giving them a chance to hear of Judeo-Christian salvation. I respond by saying that I believe in prevenient grace: that God has always been using the Holy Spirit to internationally draw pagans to the people of Israel so they could hear the Word of God, either by ship, person, miracle, dream, or vision. CU 2 proposes that I am so haughty, and incorrect to assert that Romans 2:12-16 does not allow for “good” pagans who have never heard the Gospel, to be saved from Hell. I respond by first acknowledging my imperfection, because his reply was only a knee-jerk ad hominem attack, revealing the insecurity he has about his universalist view. I reply that this passage is not referring to the Atonement and cannot be sufficient for salvation, because, without faith in the blood of Jesus, the conscience can’t be cleansed from guilt. That is the most essential part of the Gospel. Then I tell him, that in my view, Romans 3-8 is the substance of the Gospel message. Unless a person comes to faith in the Atonement; and is changed into a life of holy obedience to God’s commandments, then it doesn’t matter what country they are living in, or what time period they are living in. Without faith in the religion of Moses in Old Testament times; and without faith in Christ in New Testament times: there is no Atonement and no holiness and no salvation from Hell. CU 2 then asks where the Old Testament saints went who were not exposed to the New Testament Gospel message, and I reply that they were sent to the underworld paradise known as Abraham’s Bosom (Luke 16). CU 2 then jumps to the conclusion that “good” pagans must go to Abraham’s Bosom today then, but I reply that Abraham’s Bosom was emptied by the resurrection and ascension of Christ, because the Atonement of Christ now allows saints to live in Heaven with God in New Jerusalem.



CU 1: My question on salvation is this, taking accounts of the Native Americans prior to the introduction of Christianity: due to their isolation from the Christian world, and ignorance of Christ, did any native person before Christianity made it to Americas go to Heaven?

Wesley Gospel: No, I can’t say that they did. Anymore than the pagans in foreign countries during the Old Testament; or the pagans in the first century who were not able to hear the apostles. Hell is most likely where they went. Unless the Gospel was communicated to them by dreams and visions, which is unlikely, although not impossible. It is always possible that prevenient grace could have drawn some Native Americans to travel to Israel for whatever reasons, and be grafted into the faith that way. There were many pagans from all sorts of countries that migrated to Israel in the past 6,000 years.

CU 1: Would it be sound to say that those who, through no fault of their own, do not know the Gospel of Christ or his Church, but who nevertheless seek God with a sincere heart, and, moved by grace, try in their actions to do His will as they know it through the dictates of their conscience—MAY (possibility as opposed to permission) attain eternal salvation?

Wesley Gospel: No way. Galatians 1:11-12: “I certify you, brethren, that the Gospel which was preached of me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ.” Without the Gospel revelation, there’s no saving grace, no blood to assuage the wrath of God, no salvation by faith. Conscience is not saving grace, but I’d say it would be a “prevenient” grace that could lead up to “saving” grace through the revelation of the Gospel. Native Americans in Old Testament or New Testament times would either have to 1. Travel by boat to Israel and hear God’s saving revelations. 2. Have dreams and visions of God’s saving revelations in the Western hemisphere first; and then as a result of that, end up traveling to Israel to receive more complete theological teaching. 3. Be physically teleported to Israel like Philip was (Acts 8:39-40). 4. Travel from Alaska to Russia, and then down to Babylon or Persia, where they heard about Judaism or Christianity at the proper times.

CU 1: I think my question may have been misunderstood, because of the way it was worded, so let me try and restate it. Let’s say there’s a man named Gerald who is living in the pre-Christian America; and Gerald lives for 33 years, has never heard the stories of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and has no idea who Jesus is, doesn’t even know that there is a Jewish race out there; and dies at 33 years old. If God were to look at Gerald and say, ‘Oh by the way I’m the God of the universe. The one who created you, and because you have not believed in my Son, who you did not have knowledge of; and because you did not follow my Son’s teachings, which you did not have knowledge of, you are now going to be punished for eternity in Hell.’” Would this be just of God to do?

Wesley Gospel: There is no Biblical warrant for salvation outside of the revelations given by God to the people of Israel. Gentiles were grafted into Judeo-Christian religion from the beginning of time, regardless of their geographical locations. I believe that the vast geographical distance from say, Mexico to Israel, is so large, that to your mind, you’re thinking it would be almost impossible for say, the Mesoamerican people like the Olmecs, to come into contact with the people of Israel. My only answer to Christian universalism or anonymous Christianity is this: “there are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” God is Almighty, all-powerful, and is more than capable of getting people in far and distant pagan lands to come into contact with either the message of Moses or Jesus, depending on the time period they were living in. And it would be unjust for God to eternally punish a person who was never given a chance of hearing about either Jewish salvation or Christian salvation. But I believe in prevenient grace: that the Spirit of God has always been working on people internationally, to come into contact with Judeo-Christian revelation. That’s why if the Olmecs or the Mesoamericans went to Hell, then it was no fault on God’s part, because he was likely trying to speak to them about Israel by dreams and visions. In fact, I’ve actually heard that some archaeologists suggest that during King Solomon’s reign, he might have dispatched ships to either North or South America on expeditions, and that items have been found to suggest such. Although I am no Biblical archaeologist, and my proof for such a suggestion is greatly lacking at this moment, it might be worth exploring. Solomon was the richest man in the world; and would have certainly had the resources to send ships to the Americas for any purpose: see this article. Though some people believe this could be a Mormon forgery: click here.

CU 2: So you think indigenous people go to Hell?

Wesley Gospel: Without the Gospel they do.

CU 2: So people who have never heard of Jesus Christ will be in Hell? You’re so incorrect.

Wesley Gospel: Show me in the Bible.

CU 2: Romans 2:12-16: to those who live righteousness.

Wesley Gospel: Nope, there’s no faith in the blood of Jesus there to cleanse the conscience from guilt. That doesn’t work.

CU 2: You are very haughty. And you argue against Scripture? So what do you say about the Old Testament follower of God? Who never knew who Christ was?

Wesley Gospel: Abraham’s Bosom (Luke 16). Sure I can be haughty: I’ll admit that definitely. Romans 3-8 is the Gospel as I see it. The Atonement is always necessary in my view of things.

CU 2: And Abraham’s Bosom is where people who have never heard of Jesus go. Just like the people in the Old Testament.

Wesley Gospel: Not according to evangelical Protestants. Abraham’s Bosom was emptied during the resurrection and ascension of Jesus (Eph. 4:8; Heb. 9:27). Abraham’s Bosom was the paradise of the righteous dead who lived by the faith of Moses. The only reason why Heaven became the paradise of the saints, is because the Atonement broke down the barrier between God and his people fully.

CU 2: Sir that’s why Jesus told the thief about paradise. It’s still in effect.

Wesley Gospel: There’s no support for universalism with the thief on the cross (Luke 23:39-43). Jesus said, “Today you will be with me in paradise,” but that doesn’t mean he meant, “A couple of months from now, you will be with me in Abraham’s Bosom,” because there’s reason to believe that the thief would have been transferred with all the other saints into New Jerusalem up in Heaven after the ascension of Jesus. The thief had a faith in the Atonement; he understood something of what was going on: the Innocent One suffering on behalf of the guilty.

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Biblical Economics 4: The Vanity of Worldly-Mindedness

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Biblical Economics 3: Machiavellians Drift Away from Richard Steele

Richard Steele’s The Religious Tradesman was the greatest book on Biblical economics ever written. Niccolò Machiavelli’s The Prince, Bernard Mandeville’s The Fable of the Bees, and Adam Smith’s The Wealth of Nations, all helped London’s tradesmen to drift away from Steele and adopt a more secular and self-interested approach to business. This happened progressively in the 18th century as the rationalism and unbelief of the Age of Enlightenment replaced the Biblical faith of Puritanism.

25:00 – The punk ethos is primarily made up of beliefs such as non-conformity, anti-authoritarianism, anti-corporatism, a do-it-yourself ethic, anti-consumerist, anti-corporate greed, direct action and not “selling out.”  –Wikipedia

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A Debate with an Anti-Catholic

I would consider myself a fundamentalist in the sense that I believe in the fundamentals of Christianity. But I’ve found that a lot of Protestants in evangelical Christianity have a sense of anti-Catholicism; and as a result, have not really thought through the implications and the inconsistencies of their view. Namely, that Catholicism was pretty much the only form of Christianity that existed for most of church history. They seem to believe that everybody went to Hell until Luther and the Protestant Reformation came around! This is an example of ignorance and theological perfectionism, in my opinion.



Facebook Post: Catholicism is a false religion: like Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam.

Wesley Gospel: Even though Martin Luther used to be Catholic, the church fathers were Catholic, and hundreds of Catholic saints cast out demons.

Anti-Catholic: I’m so grateful for the awesome work Martin Luther and John Calvin did and the changes they made…Yes, the Catholics thought they can keep on sinning and their secrets are hidden, everything they did in the dark came to light and the world see them for who they really are…Yes, sure! and so the Catholics keep on sinning and the demons return seven times.

Wesley Gospel: So I guess the church history timeline looks like this for you guys:

1 – 33 AD – Jesus and the 12 apostles.

34 AD – 350 AD – The devil takes control of the church through Catholicism entering in.

351 AD – 1530 AD – The devil controlled the entire body of Christ through the Roman Catholic Church and the Eastern Orthodox Church. There were no true Christians or real Christian preachers during this time period. Also, the Holy Spirit basically withdrew from the world and went up into Heaven.

1530 AD – Present – The Protestant Reformation started and brought the Bible back into the front and center of Christianity. The Holy Spirit came back and real Christians started showing up again. But before the Reformation, basically, every person was not saved for about 1500 years…mainly because they did not believe in the Five Solas of the Protestant Reformation.

Anti-Catholic: Huh? what can you explain to me why did the Holy Spirit of God disappeared for some time, what was the reason?

Wesley Gospel: Simple, I mean that is, according to my understanding. If I was to accept your view of Catholics, then the next step would be that no saved people existed in the world from about 34 AD to 1534 AD right. Since the Holy Spirit is needed for people to be saved, born again, regenerated, and saved by grace. But since all church members were basically Catholic during those times: in effect, there was no Holy Spirit saving activity going on at all in those times. Zero. Do I understand you correctly? Is that what you believe about church history, or…

Anti-Catholic: The Holy Spirit of God were never gone for certain periods, no the problem was with certain groups of people. And it is still happening today. People are spiritual blind and deaf, because of disobedience.

Wesley Gospel: Oh so people were being saved from Hell in the Middle Ages then?

Anti-Catholic: Hell is not on earth, people were not saved from any Hell. After Judgment Day people will go to Hell.

Wesley Gospel: Kinda skirting around my question there. Do you believe people were getting saved from the wrath and judgment of God in say the year 1435 AD? Any saved people before the Reformation?

Anti-Catholic: You are ignoring the point, you are supposed to explain to me were the Holy Spirit of God disappeared to? People came to salvation from the earliest times since the four gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John start spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Holy Spirit was present for that time until present.

Wesley Gospel: There was no disappearance of the Holy Spirit, ever. I was only testing the strength of your view of church history in light of Catholic church members existing in church history as the ONLY form of Christianity, for most of church history. 100% of Christians were virtually Catholic in medieval times. The Holy Spirit is omnipresent, everywhere, at all times (Psalm 139:7). I think then, what you would be implying then, by your view of Catholics is this: the Holy Spirit EXISTED from 34 AD – 1530 AD, but the Holy Spirit was never USED by people during those times. Because everyone was Catholic. So although the Holy Spirit existed back then…unfortunately, they all were damned to Hell when they died. Because their theology was messed up. They never got the privilege of reading the Bible or becoming Protestants. I guess it just stinks to be them. So sorry they had to live in those times and have zero chance of being saved from Hell, because the priests wouldn’t let them read their Bibles. Shucks. At least people started getting saved in the 1500s again, because they read Martin Luther’s books, John Calvin’s books, and the Bible. But before that, yeah, everyone just went to Hell. Shucks…

Anti-Catholic: “Hearts” my statement above: indicating that she completely affirms the view that everyone went to Hell before the Protestant Reformation started.

Wesley Gospel: Ok, yeah I don’t believe in that: and I think it’s insane that you would “heart” what I said! And that you would affirm such an ignorant view as that. My view is that many Catholics were saved before the Reformation, and there could be some still being saved today. You don’t need perfect Reformed or Baptist theology to be saved. All you need is faith in the atonement of Christ on the cross (1 Peter 2:24). And although many Catholics have strange and unbiblical beliefs: I think you will also find that many today still believe in the atonement, and repentance from sin, although not in exactly the same way that Protestants do.

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The Sugar-Ice Duck – Arthur Eedle

Originally from here.
I received this through Andrew Strom’s Revival List.
(A vision received by Arthur on 5th Sept. 1974)

The Crown Agents in London had appointed me to teach in the King George V School, Kowloon, Hong Kong as from the beginning of the autumn term 1974. We flew out there and landed on September 3rd, and were given a suite of rooms on the 8th floor of the Hong Kong Hotel. It was a temporary arrangement until suitable accommodation could be found. Two nights later, after the children were asleep, and my wife had gone to bed, I sat looking at the magnificent view across the harbour. It was a fairyland of coloured lights. The colony is a cameo of all that relates to luxury. The love of money is the paramount factor that keeps everyone going. I was told there were more millionaires per square mile in Hong Kong than anywhere else in the world, and after being there for some time, I could well believe it. Nothing stops in Hong Kong, night or day, unless there is a typhoon. It is a hive of constant activity that can easily get into one’s soul. It is difficult to stand against it when living in such an atmosphere. Looking back I now believe that what happened next was related to the Hong Kong way of life, as it was going to influence the newly forming charismatic churches in the west. Except that the luxury relates mainly to the spiritual realm rather than the material realm.

As I sat looking at this amazing scene I began to see something else, and because of its strangeness my mind was alerted immediately to the fact that God was conveying truth in visionary form. I saw a duck, and I knew that it had been made of icing sugar because a hand was smoothing down the surface with a knife. When all was complete, the strange thing padded along on its webbed feet as though alive, and settled down on a flat surface somewhere. But if this was strange, the next part of the vision took me even more by surprise, because I saw dozens of people arriving at the duck, and it was only then that I realised how large it was. It must have been all of forty feet tall! The people were excited about the coming of the duck, and some of those who were braver than the rest even went up to it and touched it. One of them licked his fingers and the taste was sweet. Breaking a fragment from the surface he ate it, and jumped for joy. Others gained confidence and followed his example until they were all delirious with excitement. I saw them singing, dancing, throwing up their hands in the air, and embracing each other. The festive atmosphere was its own advertisement. People arrived in droves, pushing and shoving, and climbing over the duck with the aid of ladders in an effort to obtain a handful of icing sugar and join in the fun.

This continued for some time until one man gave a very loud shout, which brought everything to a halt. They saw him pointing to a hole that had appeared in the icing sugar. It was therefore not solid as they had originally thought. No one had imagined the sugar icing might give out sooner or later. After this, caution was exercised in the eating. Everyone agreed to ration what was left. But they found to their joy that even the smallest taste produced the same effects as a handful, and they wished they had learned this lesson earlier. In the process of time many more holes appeared. Some tried looking inside the duck, but all was pitch dark. Nothing could be seen. Gradually the duck became wafer thin. All of a sudden the crash came as the remainder of the duck disintegrated in a cloud of very fine dust. The crowd became silent, waiting and watching.

It took a while for the dust to settle, and then I had a shock. Inside the duck there was a terrible black beast about forty feet long, in shape like a scorpion with bulbous green eyes. It also had wings similar to those of a dragonfly. I fully expected the crowd to disperse at great speed, but instead they became delirious with excitement once again, and accepted the beast as their accredited leader. If anything, the excitement became greater than before. At this point the vision changed, and I saw the hand once again. It was outstretched with some white pills on the palm. A small number of people were arriving to receive one, which they ate. The result showed on their faces as an inner sense of peace and tranquillity. And then the two visions merged. Once again I saw people taking the icing sugar from the duck and jumping about in excitement. The group from the second vision were approaching, and mingling with the crowd, warning them, “Don’t eat it! It’s dangerous!” But there was very little response. Some shouted at them, “Go away, you prophets of doom! Don’t tell us that YOU have the Spirit of the Lord. Where is your joy?” Disheartened they eventually wandered away, feeling a dull ache in the pits of their stomachs.

Later on, when I had made a record of the vision, the Lord spoke to me, and I wrote down the message, as follows:-

The hand that formed the bitter pill fashioned also the duck. This is my work, and by it my name will be magnified. Twenty centuries of progress has not changed the nature of man, and neither has it changed mine, says the Lord. My Son is the Way, the Truth and the Life. All those who reject the bitter pill of the cross will find themselves prey to the lie. I will send them strong delusion, and they will believe it and rejoice in it because their hearts are not set upon the Way. They will accept falsehood in a season of careless security, indulging in spiritual flirtation with powers of darkness dressed up in acceptable guise. They longed for sweet things and I gave them sugar, but it was not in tune with my heart, says the Lord. And each bite of the duck they take, so grows the beast within. And each bite of the duck they take, so blind they become to the truth. And then, when antifaith has done its final work the beast is revealed to the world, enthroned within the temple of God, blasphemously parading divine nature. Mark well my words, says the Lord, there is but one great sign for this world, one marvel, one miracle of challenge that I will accept, and it is the sign of the prophet Jonah. And those who take the bitter pill shall find loneliness, derision and sorrow. And they shall walk the way of their Master, learning of His sorrows, sharing His suffering, conforming to His death. But I shall raise them to life, life on a higher plane, and they shall take my message to the nations. This is my sign, and this shall be their reward. All other ways, however right they may appear to man, shall be disallowed in my sight, says the Lord. And those who eat the duck shall refuse this glory when it is revealed for it shall be folly to them. Choose therefore whilst it is still possible, choose the salt and reject the sugar, says the Lord, for the time is now short.

Before making any comment about the application of this vision over the last 33 years, it will be best to explain what the symbols mean in practice. And before doing this, I should like to display a brief snatch from another vision, one which my wife received in June 1969. She saw a dam across a narrow ravine, and behind the dam there was initially just a small trickle of water, but over a lengthy period of time the water rose to produce a large lake, and eventually filled the ravine to the top of the dam. At this stage, the dam burst, and the waters flowed out, bright and iridescent, into the valley beyond. The Lord gave the interpretation. The water represented the faith of His people. And the effect of faith was twofold. Firstly, the faith had an effect in the believer’s life and his walk. But secondly, the faith had another effect, which was not appreciated by the believer at all. In heavenly places, each act of faith was like water building up behind the dam. God was preparing for a yet future day when, in His Kingdom, He could liberate the combined effect of all the faith of His elect, and it would flow out to a needy world. I believe the two visions are essentially the same in their interpretation. But the dam refers to God’s work, whereas the duck refers to the counterfeit work.

To understand the duck vision I will set down the various elements of it in sequence.

1. The duck. This is of course invisible to the people who approach it.

2. The sugar. The Lord said, “They longed for sweet things and I gave them sugar, but it was not in tune with my heart.”

3. The eating. What should they have been eating? The Lord said, “I am the bread of life.” He also said, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” Therefore they were eating the wrong stuff.

4. The meaning of eating the sugar. If the TRUE BREAD is the Lord, and what we eat is His living word, then the sugar represents something akin but not wholesome. It must also be a doctrine, an idea, a suggestion, which comes from an alien source. Hence, as Paul put it, it could be a “doctrine of demons.”

5. The first effect of eating. There was sweetness in the mouth, and by what followed, there was no “bitterness in the stomach” like John experienced when he ate the little scroll of words. In fact they began to experience a profusion of supernatural effects which gave them what might be called “a spiritual bean feast”, calculated to bring the crowds flocking in.

6. The second effect of eating. What they didn’t realise was the gradual blindness coming upon them, blindness to the truth of God’s word written clearly in the sermon on the mount. As time passed, so the new experience took precedence over a sober contemplation of what Jesus asks for in a believer’s life.

7. The third effect of eating. This was also beyond their knowledge, and may be compared with the water rising in the dam. There was a beast inside the duck, and the beast was powerless to act out his role at the start, and would have been rejected if it was seen. But the eating had the effect of giving power and strength to the beast, and causing it to grow.

8. The collapse. When Satan sees that (a) the blindness of those who have eaten is sufficient, and (b) the beast has grown to the required extent, he causes the duck to collapse. This represents a brief interlude between two phases or waves of activity. The people sense that their original hyper-activity is near its end, but have no knowledge of what lies ahead.

9. The beast appears. Their blindness is such that they now pronounce the beast to be their accredited leader. This beast is also invisible, but they recognise “something” that is more powerful and attractive than what had gone before. And they give themselves to it wholly. This is the true antichrist phase, much more powerful than the earlier phase.

10. The people who ate the pills. These have fed on the true word, and have seen the nature of the evil. They pray for the others, and whenever occasion arises, they approach them and warn them, but usually to no avail. Hence the sweetness in the mouth gave way to bitterness of soul at the outcome of their endeavours.

11. The Lord’s hand. Some might be upset when they realise the Lord was the One who designed the duck. But it must be remembered that in olden days, after King Saul’s disobedience, the Lord withdrew His Spirit from him, and gave him an evil spirit instead. In each of these cases, the Lord takes full responsibility for what happens, even though Satan was the donor of Saul’s evil spirit, as he is also the architect of the duck.

In 2 Thessalonians 2, Paul paints an identical picture, but because of the difficulty of some of the verses, coupled with an amazing variety of translations in the Versions, the force of what he said is often lost. He speaks of a “man of lawlessness” who is equivalent to the black beast of the duck vision, and of those who “love not the truth”, who are not outsiders, but those within the larger company of believers. Also he refers to a “restraining influence” which is explained clearly by the duck vision, in that the Devil cannot achieve his plan without the “antifaith” of those who reject the truth. Hence there has been a restraining influence on evil. But when “the great apostasy” has taken place, and crowds of people flock to the duck, eventually the “man of lawlessness” can be revealed, when “he comes out of the midst,” in other words when the black beast is finally seen. But Paul says that this “man of lawlessness” sits in the temple of God saying that he is God.

Which temple is Paul referring to? Many believers today have been tutored to believe that the antichrist will not arise on the world stage until the church is removed to be with the Lord. Hence this section of Paul’s writing doesn’t hold much urgency for them. Likewise they have been advised that the Jews will build a Temple in Jerusalem, and the antichrist will make his throne there. Hence there is a double pressure upon them to discount any present danger signal in this chapter of Thessalonians. But the temple Paul speaks of is the temple of God’s people, and the antichrist seats himself (invisibly) in the midst. The (prophetic) words he delivers are from himself, but presented as though they come from God. The words are believed because of the blindness. Hence the danger is critical to all God’s people.

As for the geographical interpretation, it takes only a moment’s thought to realise that if a man were to establish himself inside a newly built temple in Jerusalem, he would immediately be recognised. His cover would be blown by the world, let alone the church! The newspapers would quote 2 Thessalonians 2, and he would be the laughing stock of the world. Surely we cannot expect Satan to be quite so lacking in strategy! It is a very sobering thought to realise that the antichrist is AT THIS PRESENT TIME enthroned within the whole body of those who call themselves Christians on this earth. Whereas in the past the “mystery of lawlessness” has been at work throughout, in these last days a great change has occurred – the black beast has been revealed. So we are left to consider the “powers and signs and wonders of deceit.”What are they? They must be the supernatural effects that were produced by the eating of the duck in the first phase, and then multiplied to a much greater degree in the second phase when the beast is revealed. This second phase then must be a far greater force of evil and deception than the first. No wonder that John was told, as Daniel was before him, that the antichrist would have power over the saints of God to “make war on them and overcome them.” Words like that cannot possibly refer to a time AFTER the church has been taken up into glory.

But the force of the duck vision hasn’t yet been revealed to its full extent. We must now examine the difference between the “word of God” that believers are enjoined to eat, and the “sugar-icing” that is preferred by so many today. What is the crux of Jesus’ teaching? I have used a play on words. The Latin word CRUX means a “cross”. And the cross is the central hub of all that our Lord taught. Even as He gave Himself up to die on a cross, so also He expected all His followers to do likewise, not literally (even though some did) but in the more important sense of “overcoming” the “flesh”, the nature we have all inherited from Adam and Eve. Again and again in the Gospels, and particularly in the Sermon on the Mount our Lord taught the truth concerning this. “Except a man take up his cross he has no part of me.” “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me.” What does it mean to “deny ones self”? It means to realise the incipient evil of the human heart, and stamp on its desires, relying steadily more and more on the leading of the Lord in everyday situations of life. Oswald Chambers put it this way. “Our Lord’s illustration of a Christian is salt. Salt preserves wholesomeness and prevents decay. It is a disadvantage to be salt. Think of the action of salt on a wound, and you will realise this. If you get salt in a wound, it hurts, and when God’s children are amongst those who are ‘raw’ towards God, their presence hurts. The man who is wrong with God is like an open wound, and when ‘salt’ gets in it causes annoyance and distress and he is spiteful and bitter. The ‘salt’ causes excessive irritation which spells persecution for the saint.” This was seen clearly in the duck vision. Those who tried to warn the people of the dangers they were facing, only received reviling comments. “Where is your joy?” they asked. But how can you approach such people with a smile, when your task is to warn them of danger? They were drunk with the wine of intoxication, produced by the effects of eating the sugary sweet words of the false prophet, and enjoying the effects.

The Prophet Daniel spoke about the antichrist, calling him “the Little Horn”. And we are told that the Little Horn “takes away the daily sacrifice”. What does this mean? In the days when the Temple services were operating, God’s priests sacrificed a lamb each morning and evening. This was called the “daily sacrifice.” But this all came to an end after the resurrection of our Lord. What significance does it now hold? Some might say “none”, because the system to which it referred has passed away. But our Lord referred to “the abomination which makes desolate”, which Daniel said would take the place of the daily sacrifice. He said the principle still applied, and warned His readers to make sure they understood what He meant. Every believer should have a “daily sacrifice”, a spiritually understood sacrifice. When Jesus spoke about“taking up our cross DAILY” He was making reference to just that. Throughout our lives we should daily remember that we are but dust. Our thoughts and our desires are far removed from divine righteousness, and need constantly to be made new by the power of God’s Holy Spirit. Now we are approaching the absolute hub of understanding.

The Holy Spirit’s ministry to believers is essentially towards their re-creation in the Lord’s own image. But in these days, at the beginning of the 21st century, vast numbers of believers look to the Holy Spirit for power, signs and wonders, which instead of crucifying the flesh, tend to feed it. Oh how easy it is to be captivated by all the manifestations of supernatural power today. Many Christians go “conference hopping” in the hope of being present at yet another occasion of “blessing”, where they can witness all manner of effects, not just by the preacher and those called to the front, but throughout the auditorium. If believers persist in praying to the Holy Spirit for signs and manifestations, the Holy Spirit cannot answer. It is contrary to the purpose for which the Spirit has come. But there is always “another” who “comes in his own name”, and “him you will hear.” The crucial decision must be made. Is the flesh being fed, or crucified?

The Lord spoke to my wife some years ago saying, “In these days treat the miraculous very lightly.Look rather to the lives of those who profess to have spiritual powers.” We have found it a most valuable word. The Little Horn “casts truth to the ground and stamps on it.” What item of truth does he stamp upon? It is the daily sacrifice. And in its place he establishes “the abomination that makes desolate.” The word “Abomination” in the Bible is usually connected with idol worship. In this case the idol is “self”, and we can all set it up within the “temple of God”, almost without realising it. But when the “great apostasy” occurs (and it already has) then the idol abounds within God’s church, and the Lord speaks of it causing desolation.

Why does it “make desolate”? Because God cannot own it. Whereas once the Holy Spirit delighted to be present and gently guide flocks of believers, now the Spirit has departed, as the spirit left King Saul. Hence we are told that the Little Horn “scatters the power of God’s people”, (those who eat the duck), and“wears out the saints”, (those who gently warn the rest.) How does the Little Horn obtain such power?“He will flatter those who act lawlessly towards the covenant.” What is the covenant? It is now the New Covenant in Jesus’ blood. And this covenant is based upon the cross in His own life, and also in our lives. Our Lord said that “because of lawlessness the love of the many will grow cold.” It is amazing how hard one may become when striving constantly for “power”. But those who are striving for mastery (lawfully), “walk in the spirit and have no confidence in the flesh.” All such are progressively broken on the Rock which is Christ, and in brokenness they learn to be gentle, even when acting as salt.

Dear friends and brethren, over the last thirty years we have witnessed a tremendous growth in what is now called the Charismatic movement, and it has gone through a number of phases of development. And we remember being told of  a “new wave of blessing” that was to sweep this land. One of our family has been present during a church service when this “new wave” was being enacted, and he witnessed people laughing, others crying, yet others jogging on the spot, whilst other were dancing, or raising their hands and speaking in tongues. To an outsider coming into such a gathering, he would wonder whether it was a mad-house. But we are being advised that this is the “new wave” of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. Has the sugar-ice-duck collapsed? Has the beast started its awful work of power? All the signs lead us to believe it has, but we leave our readers to decide. Please act wisely and prayerfully. Above all the Lord is teaching us to look upon our brethren caught up in this “duck syndrome” with great compassion and love. It must be understood that at no time have we a mandate to think in terms of what Kipling called “We and They.” His poem is masterly, and shows how invidious the Pharisaic attitude can be.

Daniel was told that “some of the people will fall to try them and make them white.” God is in it all. Those who know and understand may “do exploits” and “save out of the fire” some of those who are ensnared in this latter-day evil, but we must realise that God is using Satan’s device to His own end. The Lord will have His sovereign way, and the Serpent will bite the dust. Two words of prophecy were sent to us, the first was received on July 13th 1994. The force of it is so exactly what is needed at this time, relative to the sugar-ice-duck that we reproduce it here in full, by permission. “Why are you so surprised at what is happening my children? Does it not say in my word that in the last days false prophets and falsechrists (anointed ones) will come in my name and deceive if possible even the elect? This work of deception will be in my hand as a refining fire to purify, cleanse, and refine my true church, separating those who love the truth from those who do not. There are three things that I require of you in this time of testing. First, be deeply rooted and grounded in my word. Soak yourselves in my word, memorise my word, meditate on my word, and confess my word. This is your greatest protection. Second, pray with great love and compassion for those who are being deceived. Pray that my purposes in their lives will be fulfilled and not hindered by this work of the enemy. Third and most difficult, warn those who are being deceived. Many will turn away from you but I will strengthen you and give you boldness and courage and put words in your mouth. My hand of blessing and favour will be upon you. Above all do not be discouraged but rejoice for my coming is very close.”

The other prophetic word, received in October 1993, contains the following words, “The lights are going out in many local churches where my name was at one time honoured. Many of these churches will be plunged into confusion and darkness, ready to embrace any revelation that comes from men known for their world-wide ministries. Many of them that come are not sent by me. They are false teachers and prophets ready to bring together many followers. For those who love and honour my name, the time is coming when I have to say with great sorrow and heartache, ‘come out from among them, even from those you deeply love, for they are desirous of heaping up their own teachers and they are not willing to embrace my true and unadulterated word.’  Many wish to prostitute themselves for something that appears good and real, but what they experience does not come from me, but from the evil one who is being allowed to send demonic gifts and ministries. It is because many look for signs and wonders as validation of a ministry, rather than to men who come with my pure unadulterated word. To those of you who are faithful: do not be afraid when I say to you, ‘Come out of where you are’, because I am preparing homes of refuge for you to be part of what is real. I will hide you in those places for a time to nurture and strengthen you. You will be part of my true witnessing church in these last days.”


The above message was written in 1994, when we sent it out as a Prophetic Telegraph. I have been through and changed a few dates, to bring it up to date, but otherwise it is unchanged. I believe this message is of the utmost importance, and comes as a clear message of interpretation of what Paul said to the Thessalonians, and which is so often misunderstood. But even if we have only understood a part of what he was saying two millennia ago, the truth concerning “the way of the cross” is timeless, and is the essence of all that the Lord was teaching His disciples during His earthly life.

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Machiavel, the Tough Guy

You think you’re real smart
With your schemes and plans
With your twisted mind
And deceiving hands

You think you’re real tough
You’re a macho man
With a knockout punch
And your screaming fans

You think you’re real rich
With your bank accounts
And your stocks and bonds
And financial clout

But wisdom from above
Comes to judge the fool
And if it comes in love
It’ll overrule

All you really got
Is just a power trip
You’re a fool to God
And a little wimp

Dying every day
With your cars and homes
And withering away
As you pay your loans


Hit this guy!
Why? he’s called you out
You’re in the rat race
And now you’re full o’ doubt

So you got some might
And now you wanna use it?
But might don’t make right

If you misuse it

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Red: The Origin of All Skin Colors?

I have a theory about where all of the skin colors came from. Revelation 4:2-3 says that God’s skin color on the throne is “jasper and carnelian,” in other words, the color of blood-red gemstones. We all know that Adam was created in the “image of God” (Gen. 1:27). It might be possible that Adam’s image was a carbon copy identical twin image of what God looks like, sort of like Flynn and Clu in the movie Tron: Legacy. Adam was made from the “dust” in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 2:7). This place is reputed to be where the Tigris and Euphrates rivers had met (Gen. 2:10-14), which is currently in modern-day Iraq, just slightly northwest of the Persian Gulf. The clay in this area is what you might call red Indian clay, which might have been the color of Adam’s skin, and also of God’s skin.

In art, we understand that there are three primary colors: red, green, and blue. Since red is one of the colors upon which all other colors are based, it stands to reason that white-skinned, black-skinned, brown-skinned, and yellow-skinned people must have all originated from the red skin tone that Adam and Eve were. Currently, there are no red-skinned people in the world. Native Americans are not red-skinned, even though there is a popular misunderstanding about it, they are brown-skinned: there was a tribe that used to use red war paint, which gave birth to this misunderstanding. The Queen of Sheba was a black-skinned woman and attributed her skin color to the melanin or dark pigmentation from generations of sun exposure in Africa (Song of Solomon 1:6). Melanin is a skin chemical that causes freckles in white-skinned people. But in general, the opposite is true of the white-skinned people of Europe, who had migrated far away from the equator into the northern countries, with pale white skies, and tons of white snow. Their skin developed a deficiency in melanin due to their decrease of sun exposure. Over time, the different people groups changed their skin colors as they bred within their tribes, were exposed to the sun at different levels, and adapted their skin DNA to the melanin levels of their ancestors. It took thousands of years for this to happen, but it appears that we all might have come from the primary color of red skin…the color of Adam…and the color of God.



I had another additional thought to that the other day. We all bleed red regardless of our skin colors (Acts 17:26, KJV). As if to say, this color was close to the color of our skin a long time ago.



Let me point out that talking ABOUT race and ADVANCING A RACIST IDEOLOGY are two completely different things. There is nothing here about one race being superior to another. I am only speculating about the nature of the unity and origin of all people groups!

— UPDATE: 3/29/22

A creationist ministry that I respect differed from my views.

The Tigris and Euphrates Rivers; and the Location of Eden. They said, “We take issue with your idea concerning the Tigris and Euphrates. The modern rivers that go by these names are not the same rivers that the Bible refers to when describing the location of Eden. Even if they were, the flood completely reshaped the surface of the earth (it was not a tranquil flood), and we should not expect the clay present in that region to match the pre-flood world. It is far more likely that after Noah departed the Ark, people began re-using names of old locations that were destroyed by the flood.”

I can’t accept this view, because Genesis was revealed by God to Moses and written by him on Mount Sinai, long after the flood was over. To say that the Tigris and Euphrates of Genesis 2:14 are not really the Tigris and Euphrates but that they were just other rivers that were re-named: is to express doubt in the plainness of the Scriptures. For them to say emphatically, bluntly, and with absolute certainty as they do, “The modern rivers that go by these names are not the same rivers that the Bible refers to when describing the location of Eden…It is far more likely that after Noah departed the Ark, people began re-using names of old locations that were destroyed by the flood,” is in plain contradiction of Genesis 2:14. If Moses and the Bible say that those rivers are the Tigris and Euphrates, and that they locate Eden, then I trust that they really are; and that “there are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.” I trust that a paranormally intervening and vision-giving God is more than capable of assisting Moses, the greatest prophet who ever lived, besides John the Baptist, of locating the rivers which point to the former location of the Garden of Eden. This again points back to the red Indian clay of that region–which resembles the “jasper and carnelian” color of Revelation 4:3, as being the possible color of Adam and Eve’s skin.

The Physical Appearance of God. Another issue that they took with me was the possibility of Adam being a carbon copy image of God, because to them, the incarnation of Christ was the only time that God physically appeared in human form. I take issue with that as well. Genesis 3:8: “They heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day.” God was walking in the Garden of Eden like a man. Whether he fully manifested in physical form, I can’t say; but this was a theophany. This happened not only to Adam and Eve, but also to Abraham, Jacob, and Moses (Gen. 18:1; 32:22-32; Exod. 24:9-11).

The Skin Color of Adam and Eve. They also had reason to believe that their skin color was brown, like all middle easterners in the Iraq area. I think this might be a generally reasonable assumption, if it weren’t for the fact that modern-day Iraqis are living 6,000 years after the creation. But to be as accurate as possible, if Adam and Eve were made from the “dust” of red Indian clay as I assume they were in Genesis 2:7, then to be perfectly honest, it is not really the color red we are talking about. Not the color of blood. We’re really referring to a reddish-brown like the dirt on the planet Mars: the color of rust, which if you look into the origin of that word, appears to be a combination of the word red and the word dust: red dust then becomes the word rust.

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A Debate with a Wesleyan Perfectionist

In this Facebook dialogue, the Wesleyan perfectionist reveals not only that he is Marcionite in that he pits the words of Christ against Paul’s words in Romans 7:14-25, but also that he is a Pelagian like Charles Finney and A. B. Simpson, both of whom denied the doctrine of original sin. He rejects the Baptist view of progressive sanctification, because he thinks it’s just another example of antinomians making excuses for their sinful behavior. He puts all Baptists in the cult category along with the Mormons! He redefines sin by saying that sin is only sin if done by personal outward actions. To him, sinful thoughts are not really sins. By taking this view of sin, it becomes easier for him to hold to a perfectionist view of the Christian life. He rejects creeds, and theologians, and Puritans, and reformers, and sets himself up as the only reliable interpreter of Scripture. Even though in the beginning of the dialogue, I told him my view of sanctification entails Romans 8, he soon lost sight of that, and thought my view of original sin and sanctification were one and the same doctrine. He saw no light at the end of the tunnel in the Baptist view: just one heaping mass of sinfulness. I propose a fight against sin, with sin and holiness warring within the Christian, as the apostle Paul and the Puritans did. He proposes that there is little to no fight against sin required, because he denies that sinful thoughts really are sins in the proper sense. So he can get away with saying he does not sin–even if he thinks about sinful things–so long as he does not outwardly do anything sinful. Such was the doctrine of the Pharisees: who did only “clean the outside of the cup” (Matt. 23:25).

Perfectionist: “STOP SINNING! You can do it!”

Wesley Gospel: “I agree to a point: Romans 7 and 8.”

Perfectionist: “I simply agree with Jesus; and know He doesn’t command the impossible. Jesus said, “Go and sin no more.” The same as saying stop sinning. That settles it for me.”

Wesley Gospel: “True, but there’s a lot more thought that’s been communicated in the Scriptures than just that one sentence. The whole Word of God harmonizes. I hold to this view:

1. They who are united to Christ, effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart and a new spirit created in them through the virtue of Christ’s death and resurrection, are also farther sanctified, really and personally, through the same virtue, by His Word and Spirit dwelling in them; the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed, and the several lusts thereof are more and more weakened and mortified, and they more and more quickened and strengthened in all saving graces, to the practice of all true holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord (Acts 20:32; Romans 6:5, 6; John 17:17; Ephesians 3:16-19; 1 Thessalonians 5:21-23; Romans 6:14; Galatians 5:24; Colossians 1:11; 2 Corinthians 7:1; Hebrews 12:14).

2. This sanctification is throughout the whole man, yet imperfect in this life; there abideth still some remnants of corruption in every part, whence ariseth a continual and irreconcilable war; the flesh lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh (1 Thessalonians 5:23; Romans 7:18, 23; Galatians 5:17; 1 Peter 2:11).

3. In which war, although the remaining corruption for a time may much prevail, yet through the continual supply of strength from the sanctifying Spirit of Christ, the regenerate part doth overcome; and so the saints grow in grace, perfecting holiness in the fear of God, pressing after an heavenly life, in evangelical obedience to all the commands which Christ as Head and King, in His Word hath prescribed them (Romans 7:23; Romans 6:14; Ephesians 4:15, 16; 2 Corinthians 3:18; 2 Corinthians 7:1).”

–The 1689 Baptist Confession, ch. 13: “Of Sanctification”

Perfectionist: “This is a mere teaching of a denomination my friend and isn’t sound. Many teachings of the reformers are full of error. Thus their doctrines follow such error. Luther did some good things but was still no more than a reformed Catholic still in much of his practices. The 1689 Baptist Confession is full of Calvinistic theology. It’s filled with John Calvin’s false gospel my friend. The 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith, also called the Second London Baptist Confession, was written by Particular Baptists, who held to a Calvinistic soteriology in England to give a formal expression of their Christian faith from a Baptist perspective. This is not a Biblical perspective but rather a biased one.

Aligning ourselves with man-made creeds is departing from our Biblical duty to follow Christ’s doctrines and the foundation in which He laid. So I cannot agree with the TULIP doctrine found in the 1689 Baptist Confession. From the false doctrine of the sinful nature to once saved always saved. Baptists are no different than Mormons, Catholics, etc…why? Because they follow tradition over the Scriptures.

The original post here is what Jesus said. And again it’s cut and clear. I believe any kind of reasoning away from the cut and clear words of Christ is departing from Biblical truth and just man’s attempt at explaining away conviction to hold to one’s sinfulness. As most Calvinists, Baptists, and reformers do.”

Wesley Gospel: “Partly I’d say, but we got to use our heads and common sense too, right. There are Bible verses in that statement, and those Bible verses are just as much the Word of God as “Go, and sin no more” (John 8:7). I’m sure you’d agree that all Scripture is inspired by God, and not just the words of Jesus (2 Tim. 3:16). Marcionism was the heresy that said only Jesus’ words are inspired. I believe that Romans 7 teaches that our bodies have a sinful nature (flesh, Gr. sarx)–and especially an inclination to sexual immorality and other carnal lusts. I believe that the Holy Spirit is needed along with free will to fight against sin and resist temptation, but I believe the Word of God consistently teaches that there are limits to holiness. Time will always tell the truth of this one by experience. Free will can only push you so far in the direction of righteousness, until you finally burn out and break down, and realize that you need the grace of God through the cross again. That is, unless you redefine sin. If you can redefine sin into something that does not affect the thoughts, or if sinful thoughts or sinful feelings are not properly “sins”–which would be totally unbiblical, because Jesus spoke of sins of the heart–then yes I guess you could get to the point of believing that sinless righteousness or entire sanctification is possible in this life, like the Methodists used to. I for one think it’s an extreme doctrine, usually based on passages from 1 John, and that it does not make any sense. Law and grace my friend. It’s not an either-or: it’s a both-and!”

Perfectionist: “Yes, I believe all Scripture is inspired by God. Which is Jesus! Amen! So I don’t agree with Marcionism. In Romans 7, Paul was speaking of an unconverted Paul. If what he was teaching there was the same as he was claiming in Romans 6 and 8, then he is contradicting himself. Which I do not believe that’s the case, so the problem must be with a person’s interpretation.

When you say law and grace. Let me say this as the Scriptures teach. I’m crucified with Christ. Dead to the law and under grace, because sin has no dominion over me. If it does then I’m under the law. The law of sin and death and in need of repentance. The law was only a schoolmaster to show my unconverted state before God. A ministry of death that cannot save.

So back to the original post. Does Jesus command the impossible? NO. I know He doesn’t and I know His grace given to the humble is power of God over sin. I’m dead to sin or dead in sin. Sin is always a choice we as free moral beings can make for ourselves. It’s not a sickness that we have no control over. There is just a curse on it. If we don’t walk in the light, sin will rule over us. That’s why we need to surrender to Jesus and repent. Then He gives us the Holy Spirit to overcome.

Greater is He that’s in me! Sin has no dominion over me because I’m under grace. If sin did, then I would need to repent. Can I still sin? I could. But don’t know why I would, knowing how God feels about it. Those who love the Lord now hate evil and sin. I want a blessing, not a curse. So I will never hold to a doctrine that teaches I can never have true victory. Especially knowing Jesus won and destroyed the works of the flesh: so I don’t have to walk in the flesh or be controlled by the flesh. Die daily and you too can walk in a worthy, perfect manner before the Lord. Especially because we are supposed to have His Spirit. So I don’t see any excuse for sin other than pride and choosing so.”

Wesley Gospel:

“In Romans 7, Paul was speaking of an unconverted Paul.”

“I disagree. I’ve heard J—- M—— and a number of holiness street preachers say this. If this were talking of Paul in his unconverted state, before he became a Christian, then apparently he hadn’t learned how to distinguish between past tense and present tense grammar. Because in the part on the sinful nature in Romans 7, Paul is using present tense language to describe the sinful nature that wars against his desire to be holy. It’s true that he refers to himself in the past tense in Romans 7:7-13, and this was clearly referring to him in his unconverted state, and he there says the Ten Commandments pointed him to God. But things change in Romans 7:14-25: he says all of this in the present tense (as he is writing): “I am unspiritual” (v. 14), “what I hate I do” (v. 15), “I agree that the law is good” (v. 16), “as it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me” (v. 17), “I know that good itself does not dwell in me, that is, in my sinful nature” and “I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out” (v. 18), “I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing” (v. 19), “if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it” (v. 20), “although I want to do good, evil is right there with me” (v. 21), “in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me” (vv. 22-23), “what a wretched man I am!” (v. 25), “I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin” (v. 26). All of this is in present tense language. If Romans 7:14-25 is not written in the present tense, then I do not know the meaning of words. It is because of this passage, and Paul’s present tense language of the sinful nature residing within him, alongside a desire to obey God’s law, is what makes me believe the Baptist view of sanctification is right, and the Wesleyan view–at least their sinlessness teaching–is wrong.”

Perfectionist: “Again my friend. Romans 6 and 8: there is a huge contrast to the letter that’s wrote. If you wanna believe you are like the Romans 7 Paul, that’s on you. I choose to agree with Jesus that it’s possible to go and sin no more. Especially having Christ’s Spirit within me. Baptists have many false doctrines that are not Biblical. And I’ve mentioned those above. The present tense sinfulness is all around us. Not in us! That’s false doctrine my friend, and a serious charge against God, making Him the author of our sin. Making Him unjust. Creating us in a way that we had no choice; and then punishing us for a nature we cannot control. You might wanna rethink your position.”

Wesley Gospel:

“In my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me” (Romans 7:22-23), “what a wretched man I am!” (v. 25).

“Present tense…in him…in us…J—-, if you’re honest with yourself and God, you have sinful thoughts every week! The frequency of them is known only to you. I don’t need to rethink my position. I think like the Word of God thinks. I think what it tells me to. I also observe my experience. I use my common sense. Paul is not talking in the past tense. Paul is not talking about sin being around him, but inside of him, along with the desire for holiness. This is reality for a Christian. And I think it is pretentious–that it’s pretending, making a mockery out of Christianity–to think any Christian can constantly live above the sinful nature like the holiness people say. Some of them say there is no sinful nature, like Charles Finney. I look at these people and I shake my head. What a mass of nonsense and playing with words and semantics! When they know in their hearts how unclean they truly are, even as they fight and fight against their sinful inclinations. What a mass of dishonesty Wesleyan perfectionism truly is; and also a breeding ground for authoritarianism, because it makes people hold others, namely children, to unreasonable expectations. Neither does the doctrine of original sin require Supralapsarianism, as you suggest. God is not to blame for my sinful nature, Adam and Eve are: it is genetically inherited through the fall from our fallen ancestors. God created them innocent and sinless, but they sowed sinfulness into the gene pool after they ate the fruit. That’s why God warned them against it, saying they would “surely die” if they ate the fruit (Gen. 2:17). God did not create my sinful nature or yours. That would be Adam and Eve’s fault. Just like heart disease runs in my family. I need to eat healthy; and I need to be on guard against high blood pressure, because two of my grandparents had it. I have acid reflux because my mom had it. If sickness can be transmitted by genes, then of course the inclination to sin can be as well.”

Perfectionist: “Look man. If you are in Christ you should be dead to the law of sin and death. Dead to the flesh. Sin is always around us yes, in the actions of the lost, and the world. A sinful society and satanic influences. Yes temptation can come, but we have ways to escape, and do not have to give in. Sin is a choice. If you wanna believe you’ll always have sin in your life reigning inside you, then that’s on you. That’s not my experience, nor what I see being taught by the Scriptures. I cannot help you. If you can’t read right after Romans 7:25, and into Romans 8, to see the error in your interpretation, then I cannot help you. The carnal mind is at enmity with God; and those who walk in the flesh cannot please God, nor understand what the Scriptures are saying. A bad thought alone isn’t a sin until conceived. It should be taken captive unto the obedience of Christ and cast out. Set your mind on things above, and fill it with God’s Word, and you’ll find you have no room for such thoughts with the armor of God on. A helmet of salvation in which the fiery darts of Satan cannot control your mind. Forget Paul for a moment. WHAT DID JESUS SAY! GO AND SIN NO MORE. There really is nothing more to say. You either believe Him or not. Because I assure you that Paul believes Him. (Shaking my head.) The Scriptures say death passed on unto all men, not sin. You are in error my friend. Think wrong, live wrong. Sinners live sinful lives; and excuse their sin by believing in a false doctrine of the sinful nature inherited from Adam. The Scriptures don’t teach that unless you are reading a false translation. Again death passed on from Adam, not sin. The consequences for sin have always been death. No one inherits the guilt of another. The Baptists teachings have deceived you my friend. Perhaps you sent the wrong guy a Friend Request and this ain’t gonna work.”

Wesley Gospel: “You err by pitting Christ against Paul, making the Bible contradict itself, showing your position to be a confused one. I do read Romans 8, as well as 6, 7, 12, 13, 14, 15, etc, which are all about using the Holy Spirit to fight against sin. You said, “A bad thought alone isn’t a sin.” Oh yes it is! There are many references to this in the Bible, the most notable being Jesus’ teaching about adultery (Matt. 5:28). As I said previously, I agree with the Baptist confession on sanctification. Never minding whatever other things they said. I believe they have a truly honest and balanced view of all the issues involved in Biblical sanctification. I make no excuses for sinful behavior other than admitting all people have an inbred sinful nature from Adam. To deny the doctrine of original sin is Pelagianism. That is a heresy. Not even John Wesley did that; and he was the theologian that developed the doctrine of entire sanctification that you hold to (see his sermon “Original Sin” where he spends most of his time proving the sinful nature of man inherited from Adam, but on 3.5 he begins to suggest that entire sanctification is possible in this life as a cure-all for original sin: so unlike a Pelagian, who denies the existence of original sin, Wesley implies that the original sin nature can actually be extinguished by entire sanctification through Bible study and Holy Spirit regeneration). The sinful nature is not inherited guilt, but it’s an inherited inclination to do evil. My hope for you, in me saying all these things, is that you would change your mind. Although I’m an Arminian, I don’t think that holiness people are right about everything. Although I agree with the Baptists and Presbyterians on sanctification, I don’t think Calvinists are right about everything either. But I do believe that the Bible is always right; and we need to use our common sense when we’re using it.”

— 

CONCLUDING REMARKS.

After I published this debate on a Facebook group for street preachers, my debater made some concluding remarks. 

1. He stated that Romans 7 is an exhortation to holy living–not a justification for being sinful. I completely agree with this. How he lost sight of that in our debate shows me how unreasonable holiness people can be with their perfectionist doctrine; and how tunnel vision can make them dismiss all of the relevant issues bearing on the complicated subject of sanctification.

2. “You cannot be led by the Spirit of God following doctrines of Calvinism.” He then quotes 2 Peter 3:16 as support for this: implying that all Calvinists are unlearned and unstable and they twist the Scriptures to their own destruction. Even though I am not a Calvinist, and he knows that, my acceptance of the Puritan doctrine of sanctification was enough for him to put me in the same damnation category. The Scots Worthies by John Howie might contest with my debater’s view: all the Scottish reformers were Calvinists and the paranormal evidence of the Holy Spirit permeates their life stories. The Great Awakening, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit there, all happened under the preaching of Jonathan Edwards, who happened to be a Calvinist preacher. I am not a Calvinist. I am a Wesleyan-Arminian, but that doesn’t mean that I need to accept Wesley’s erroneous teaching on entire sanctification. The same can be said of the Free Will Baptists and the Assemblies of God.

3. He pits Romans 7 and Romans 8 against one another. It does not make sense to him in any way that a Christian can have conflicted feelings about holiness. For him, it’s like a light switch: it’s either on or off. You’re either good or evil. Even though I quoted Romans 7:7-13 in its entirety to him, showing plainly that Paul is struggling in the present tense, as of writing, with a combination of unholy and holy feelings inside of himself…my debater cannot come to this point for himself. It’s just too confusing for him to accept such a complicated view of the human condition as a saved Christian man. It has to be a Bible translation problem or an interpretation problem. Why would God command holiness if people have original sin in their bodies? He also sees this as a slight against God’s character. He says, “It’s clear reading comprehension isn’t your thing. As you have twisted words I said, into your own understanding, out of context. Much like you do the Scriptures. Shame on you.” Manners sir, manners! But I forgive him though. Theological debates aren’t easy to do; and they will test the tempers of anyone. But seeing that this is coming from a man who is claiming sinless entire sanctification, I would think his remarks would have had more of the character of “the love of God” which is “shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost” (Rom. 5:5). Instead, I get a reaction of arrogant pride, obstinacy, lacking all grace, at the sight of exposure, being proven wrong, exposing circular reasoning tautologies and unreasonable thinking patterns. Debates can bring out the worst in all of us, which seem to prove the doctrine of original sin, as I have been asserting.

Front Cover Preview Image - 1 of 7 - Five Views on Sanctification4. He says I’m deceived and that I’m cherry picking with the denominational doctrine of Baptist sanctification. While I don’t think I’m deceived, he’s got a point by saying I’m cherry picking. When looking at different theological perspectives, we all have to pick the view that makes the most sense to us, don’t we? He has picked the Wesleyan view of sanctification, whether he’s aware of it or not. I have picked the Reformed view of sanctification, because it makes the most sense to me. There’s nothing wrong with that. For more about this, see Five Views on Sanctification edited by Stanley Gundry.

5. He resents the label of perfectionist and condemns me for saying so. I can understand that, for two reasons: 1. Nobody likes to be the recipient of name-calling, but in a theological debate, it is necessary to make distinctions for the sake of clarity. He says I am prideful for calling him this name; and that I am utterly a fool. 2. He says that I am bothered by his talk of holiness and obedience to Christ–that I hate holiness and obedience to God so much in fact, that now I have been moved to slander him, a fellow brother in Christ with the label of perfectionist. He then says that I am a sinner, unlike himself, and that by holding to the Reformed view of sanctification, and refuting his Wesleyan view, that I am only “seeking to justify myself.” He then says that he hopes that I repent from holding to the Baptist view of sanctification–clinging to their creed on sanctification–over and above the Word of God. What can I say to all of this? Only that I must have hurt his feelings with my perfectionist label, which I am partly sorry for, but not entirely: because as of the writing, that is exactly what he is: a perfectionist. He believes in sinless perfection. I am not bothered by talk of holiness, only by his perfectionist false doctrine of holiness. That I am bothered by. I am partially encouraged that he appears to be so zealous to obey the Word of God, but also disheartened that he has lowered the standard of righteousness by saying that sinful thoughts are not actually sins. In my view, the Baptists actually have a stricter view of holiness than this holiness preacher has, because they acknowledge the psychological conflict of sanctification. Whereas, this man makes it sound like its no problem. His arrogant boastfulness–of which I’ll admit I am guilty of ten thousand times more in matters of theology–is a sign to me that he has a sinful nature just like I do. The Holy Spirit has not eradicated or annihilated sin in his heart. He’s merely confused about the Bible teaching on holiness and how to understand his Christian life. I think his heart actually could be in the right place, and that he is probably saved–even though he doubts my salvation–but I see his main problem being an intellectual one. He is merely confused mentally about the nature of sanctification.

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