Free Presbyterians to Protest Ecumenical Summit

On Wednesday, 26th September, the Protestant Ecumenical Churches are to enter into ecumenical dialogue in Dundalk.

The representatives of the Church of Ireland, Irish Presbyterian Church and Irish Methodist Church and others are to join with the Roman Catholic Church in seeking unity. The following reports from the 'Irish Catholic' of September, 6th, 1973, speak for themselves.

Plans are now well advanced for the holding, in Ballymacscanlon Hotel, Dundalk, on September 26 of the meeting between the Irish Hierarchy and representatives of the Protestant Churches.

After the June, 1972, meeting of the Bishops in Maynooth an invitation was sent to the Protestant Churches, through the Irish Council of Churches, for such a meeting with the object of surveying the whole field of ecumenism in Ireland, and to make arrangements for further dialogue on both doctrinal and practical issues, with the assistance of special working parties.

Replies accepting the invitation were received in the course of the next year from all eight bodies invited except the Moravian Church and the Salvation Army, who indicated that they would not be attending. The Presbyterian General Assembly stipulated that the subject of Church Unity would not be under discussion. [2]


It is expected that some 90 delegates will participate in the day's discussions. When these have assembled the day will begin with an Act of Worship.

The first discussion will be on "Church Scripture and Authority." Social and community problems, including the issues of Mixed Marriages, Education and Civil Rights, will be under examination before lunch.

"Baptism, Eucharist and Marriage" will form the theme for the third session, and in the final phase the challenge of Secularism, Christian Moral Values and the World Mission of the Church will be discussed.

The Hierarchy's invitation is in keeping with that position of the Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism which commends the holding of meetings with our separated brethren for the discussion of theological problems so that from such dialogue will emerge what the situation of the Catholic Church really is.

From such dialogue will emerge what the situation of the Catholic Church really is. In this way, too, we will better understand the outlook of our separated brethren and more aptly present our own belief.

That is how the Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism defines the purpose of the meetings which it recommends should be held between Catholic and their separated brethren "especially for the discussion of theological problems."

And such is the purpose of the meeting which has been arranged for Dundalk on September 26 between representatives of the Christian Churches in Ireland. Its primary aim is to promote dialogue on basic questions concerning which there is disagreement, the better to understand each other's true position.

It is as a result of negotiations between the Hierarchy and the Protestant Churches that the idea of bringing ecumenism in Ireland this step further has materialised. Hitherto there had been a good deal of contact and discussion between Catholics and Protestants here, but at a lower level and mainly on topics like drug abuse and teenage drinking on which there was agreement. On this occasion, however, it is intended that the discussions should cover "the whole field of ecumenism," and the participants are to be leaders and theologians at the highest level.

Quite obviously it would be impossible to cover "the whole field of ecumenism" in a one-day meeting, though a brave attempt has been made by those who have planned the agenda to include the main aspects of doctrinal and practical Christianity on which there has been disagreement. Authority, mixed marriages, civil rights, the challenge of secularism are all subjects which present problems impossible of solution in a single day, but it is hoped that the meeting will be regarded as a starting point and that working parties dealing with specific issues will be formed for further and more intensive study.

There is much that Catholics and Protestants in Ireland do not understand about one another. Or perhaps it is more [3] correct to say that there are many misconceptions of each other's real beliefs on both sides. The honest expression of these viewpoints in a spirit of tolerance and a desire for mutual understanding cannot but be of benefit to Christianity in our country.

Dialogue is the chief method by which we can all learn to correct any one-sided opinions we have inherited or formed. But the art of being passionately sincere about our beliefs and at the same time sweetly tolerant is one which requires much practice before it can achieve real results such as the elimination of prejudices and the acknowledgment of truth in a viewpoint opposed to our own. The ability to disagree agreeably and with respect is the example which lay people will be expecting from the clerics who will make up the bulk of those participating in the forthcoming Dundalk conference.

Agreement to disagree would, however, be a purely negative outcome of meetings such as this. Everyone will hope that agreements on some at least of the contentious subjects will be reached, or that at least the way towards eventual agreement will be made smoother. This should be possible without any sacrifice of principle on anyone's part; indeed, any agreements reached as a result of watering down of sound doctrine or the stressing of what the participants hold in common to the exclusion of elements of conflict, are unlikely to be enduring.

During the weeks before the meeting Catholics would be well advised to make themselves familiar with the Vatican II Decree on Ecumenism. Not only will this enable them to follow the discussions on September 26 more knowledgeably, but it will prepare them for any decisions which might otherwise come as a surprise to them."

- from the 'Irish Catholic.'

The Free Presbyterian Church will officially protest the talks and publicly declare where it stands on the whole question of church unity. There can be no compromise with and no surrender to Rome.

Sod Cut For New Church at Banbridge

Special Offering of 748

There was a very encouraging start to the building of a new Free Presbyterian, Church at Ballymoney Hill, Banbridge, on Friday evening when an offering amounting to 748.26, was taken up at a sod cutting ceremony and service.

The Moderator of the denomination, the Rev. Dr. Ian R. K. Paisley, M.P., who performed the sod cutting ceremony, made a strong appeal on behalf of the building fund. Explaining that their churches are self propagating, resulting from the vision and zeal and enthusiasm of other of their churches, he added that the people of Moneyslane were the people who had the vision for Banbridge and so they had commenced this work. Ground had been procured, miracles were wrought and a wooden structure had been erected.


Referring to the burning down of this first church by what he described as "certain evil forces", Dr. Paisley pointed out that God's Word says He will give "beauty for ashes". They had had the ashes and now they were going to have the beauty - a building was going to be erected to the glory of God and the confusion of the powers of darkness.

"God moves in a mysterious way His wonders to perform", said Dr. Paisley, and so tonight we are here for the sod cutting. The foundations will be going in and a new building will be erected, and, most important of all, the Lord Jesus will be glorified and sinners shall be converted and blessings will abound. But in order to do that we have a part to play, and so I want you all to give as God has blessed you."

"This place," he went on, "will not be for the entertaining of the goats, but for the feeding of the sheep. We are not building a bowling alley - we are building a New Testament Protestant Church that shall stand true to the old Book till Jesus comes again. Let us give 'as God hath prospered us', remembering that 'the Lord loveth a cheerful giver'."

During the offering the hymn, "Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim it", was sung to instrumental accompaniment by the Rev. Fred Greenfield of Mount Merrion Free Presbyterian Church, Belfast, who earlier sang to his own accompaniment.

The open air service and ceremony, on an elevated site at the grounds of the first temporary church, had commenced with the singing of the hymn, "To God be the Glory", followed with prayer by the Rev. Frank McClelland, minister of the Tandragee Church, who was responsible for drawing up the plans of the new building.


The minister-in-charge at Banbridge, the Rev. F. J. Buick, gave a very hearty welcome to the very large attendance, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

He referred in particular to the members of the platform party, with special reference to Dr. Paisley.

Remarking that it was a very memorable occasion for them at Banbridge, he recalled that just over two years ago their first temporary church had been burned to the [5] ground. "But," he said, "here we are again. We have come to another milestone in the history of this congregation, and it is a great joy and privilege to have fellowship with you all on this special occasion."


It was at this stage that he presented Dr. Paisley with a specially inscribed spade and requested him to perform the sod cutting, adding that they looked forward to the Lord's blessing in the days to come, and trusted that they might see great things and mighty things of which they knew not.

Having turned the first sod "to the glory of God", Dr. Paisley handed back the spade to the minister and requested that it be hung in the session room of the new church as a constant reminder of that memorable evening.

After the Rev. John Long, Dungannon, had read from Zephaniah 3, Dr. Paisley brought, as he termed it, "a message from this great chapter which the Lord hath laid on my heart", with particular reference to verses 16-18.

In his address Dr. Paisley drew attention to the parallel between the day of which the prophet was speaking and the present day. "I believe," he said, "that there is a coming day when God shall make Jerusalem the joy of the whole earth - when the kingdoms of this world shall become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign."

In the course of his address Dr. Paisley asked : "Why has this land fallen on such evil days? Why is there terrorism and trouble in our land ?" And the answer he gave "Because this nation has departed from God".

What of the future? The fact that they were building that church showed they believed this country has a future, he said, adding "and here is the promise - The Lord thy God in the midst of thee is mighty" (Zephaniah 3, 17).

The Rev. David McIlveen, Belfast, led in the closing prayer, after which Dr. Paisley announced that the official opening of the new Free Presbyterian Church at Tandragee will take place on Saturday, 15th September, at 3.30 p.m.

THE BREAKER by C. H. Spurgeon

"The breaker is come up, before them." Micah ii. 13.

INASMUCH as Jesus had gone before us, things remain not as they would have been had He never passed that way. He has conquered every foe that obstructed the way. Cheer up now thou faint-hearted warrior. Not only has Christ travelled the road, but He has slain thine enemies. Dost thou dread sin? He has nailed it to His cross. Dost thou fear death? He has been the death of Death. Art thou afraid of hell? He has barred it against the advent of any of His children; they shall never see the gulf of perdition. Whatever foes may be before the Christian, they are all overcome. There are lions, but their teeth are broken; there are serpents, but their fangs are extracted; there are rivers, but they are bridged or fordable; there are flames, but we wear that matchless garment which renders us invulnerable to fire. The sword that has been forged against us is already blunted; the instruments of war which the enemy is preparing have already lost their point. God has taken away in the person of Christ all the power that anything can [6] have to hurt us. Well then, the army may safely march on, and you may go joyously along your journey, for all your enemies are conquered beforehand. What shall you do but march on to take the prey? They are beaten, they are vanquished; all you have to do is to drive the spoil. You shall, it is true, often engage in combat; but your fight shall be with a vanquished foe. His head is broken; he may attempt to injure you, but his strength shall not be sufficient for his malicious design. Your victory shall be easy, and your treasure shall be beyond all count.

"Proclaim aloud the Saviour's fame,
Who bears the Breaker's wond'rous name:
Sweet name; and it becomes His well,
Who breaks down earth, sin, death, and hell".

The Practice of Sin or the Principle of Separation:
What Bible Believers should do about the World Council of Churches.

The Shorter Catechism defines sin as 'any want of conformity unto or transgression of the law of God'. The Word of God must be the final court of appeal. To all who are caught up in the unholy Romanising fellowship of the World Council of Churches, the Word of God has plainly spoken. True Christians don't argue about the commands of Scripture, they obey them. 'For to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams.' The choice is clear. Either these men must continue to practise sin or be faithful and separate. The way of the cross is the path for the true servant of God.

The commands of God's precious Word

The Word of God states clearly how we should act in this day of crisis. There is absolutely no uncertainty about its message. You do not need to be in doubt. The Scriptures of Truth are explicit in their teaching on this subject. Let us obey God rather than man. The Bible gives us five great exhortations how we should react to Rome and all Romanisers within the Church and to all who by silence condone their pernicious plans.

I. Recognise them

'Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God; because many false prophets are gone out into the world' (I John 4:1).

'Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them' (Romans 15:17).

Having tested their teaching by the Scriptures and found them wanting, we have then to mark them or brand them for their apostasy. Failure to do so in sin, for it is wilful disobedience to God's word.

II. Resign from them

'If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; He is proud,

Continued Page Sixteen

The Preacher and Bible Teacher: The Pentateuch
Lesson notes by the Minister Dr. Ian R. K. Paisley

In previous lessons we considered the appellation, origination, proclamation, and confirmation of the Pentateuch. We now come to a study of


External evidence, that is the evidence of history, fulfilled prophecy, realised promises and the findings of archaeology authenticates the Pentateuch narrative. The greatest verification, however, of the five books of Moses is the irrefutable accuracy and complete harmony of the writings themselves. To the minutest detail they are stamped with divine veracity.

In one of the finest books ever written on the internal evidences of Scripture to their own impregnable truthfulness, Prof. J. J. Blunt, B.D., sets out the amazing accuracy and consistency of the Pentateuch. His book, entitled "Undesigned Coincidences", is indispensable to any study of the internal evidences of Scripture, and proves conclusively that the Bible itself is its own best defence. We summarise below one of Prof. Blunt's arguments and findings :


"To read it is to believe this story. But the point in it to which I beg the attention of my readers is this, that Rebekah is said to be 'the daughter of Bethuel, the son of Milcah, which she bare unto Nahor'. It appears, therefore, that the grand-daughter of Abraham's brother is to be the wife of Abraham's son - i.e., that a person of the third generation on Nahor's side is found of suitable years for one of the second generation on Abraham's side. Now what could harmonise more remarkably with a fact elsewhere asserted, though here not even touched upon, that Sarah, the wife of Abraham, was for a long time barren, and had no child till she was stricken in years? (Gen. 18:12). Thus it was that a generation on Abraham's side was lost and the grandchildren of his brother in Haran were the coevals of his own child in Canaan. I must say that this trifling instance of minute consistency gives me very great confidence in the veracity of the historian. It is an incidental point in the narrative - most easily overlooked - I am free to confess, never observed by myself till I examined the Pentateuch with a view to this species of internal evidence. It is a point on which we might have spoken differently, and yet not have excited the smallest suspicion that he was speaking inaccurately. Suppose he [8] had said that Abraham's son had taken for a wife the daughter of Nahor, instead of the grand-daughter, who would have seen in this anything improbable? and to a mere inventor would not that alliance have been much the more likely to suggest itself ?

"Now here, again, the ordinary and extraordinary are so closely united, that it is extremely difficult indeed to put them asunder. If, then, the ordinary circumstances of the narrative have the impress of truth, the extraordinary have a very valid right to challenge our serious consideration too.

"The consistent insignificance of Bethuel in this whole affair. Yet he was alive, and, as the father of Rebekah, was likely, it might have been thought, to have been a conspicuous person in this contract of his daughter's marriage. Thus, when Abraham's servant meets with Rebekah at the well, he inquires of her, 'Whose daughter art thou? tell me, I pray thee, is there room in thy father's house for us to lodge in ?' She answers that she is the daughter of Bethuel, and that there is room; and when he thereupon declared who he was and whence he came, 'the damsel ran and told them of her mother's house' (not of her father's house, as Rachel did when Jacob introduced himself) 'these things'. This might be accident, but 'Rebekah had a brother', the history continues, and 'his name was Laban, and Laban ran out unto the man, and invited him in'. Still we have no mention of Bethuel. The servant now explains the nature of his errand, and in this instance it is said that Laban and Bethuel answered: Bethuel being here in this passage, which constitutes the sole proof of his being alive, coupled with his son as the spokesman. It is agreed that she shall go with the man, and he now makes his presents, but to whom? 'Jewels of silver and jewels of gold, and raiment, he gave to Rebekah' He also gave, we are told, 'to her brother and to her mother precious things ;' but not, it seems, to her father ; still Bethuel is overlooked, and he alone.

"In the next generation, when Jacob, the fruit of this marriage, flies to his mother's country at the counsel of Rebekah, to hide himself from the anger of Esau, and to procure for himself a wife, and when he comes to Haran and inquires of the shepherds after his kindred in that place, now does he express himself? 'Know ye', says he, 'Laban the son of Nahor ?' This is more marked than even the former instances, for Laban was the son of Bethuel, and only the grandson of Nahor; yet still we see Bethuel is passed over as a person of no note in his own family, and Laban, his own child, designated by the title of his grandfather, instead of his father. This is consistent and the consistency is too much of one piece throughout and marked by too many particulars to be accidental. It is the consistency of a man who knew more about Bethuel than we do or than he happened to let drop from his pen".

How striking this one narrative verifies itself! The same principle of internal verification runs right through the Pentateuch demonstrating its unquestionable veracity and authenticity.

Books recommended for further study:- "The Pentateuch and the Gospels", by Prof. J. L. Porter. "Undesigned Coincidences", by Prof. J. J. Blunt. "Talks to Men about the Bible", by R. A. Torrey. "The Divine Origin of the Bible", by R. A. Torrey. "A Short Introduction to the Pentateuch", by Prof. C. Ch. Aalders. "The Five Books of Moses", by Oswald T. Allis. "The Organic Unity of the Pentateuch", by John Thomas.

Some students have misinterpreted a statement in a previous lesson on the number of books of the Old Testament, confusing the number in our English versions with the number in the original Hebrew MSS.

For the information of our students we tabulate below the original division of the Old Testament writings and the Jewish [9] reckoning of the number of books.

I. THE LAW (Torah). Five books.
Comprising : 1. Genesis ; 2, Exodus ; 3, Leviticus ; 4, Numbers ; 5, Deuteronomy.

II. THE PROPHETS (Nebiim). Eight books.
Comprising : Earlier Prophets (4 books). 1, Joshua ; 2, Judges ; 3, Samuel ( 1 and 2 books) ; 4, Kings (1 and 2 books). Later Prophets (4 books). 1, Isaiah ; 2, Jeremiah ; 3, Ezekiel ; 4, Minor Prophets - Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi (all counted as one book, the order not always being the same).

11 books. Comprising : 1, Psalms 2, Proverbs ; 3, Job ; 4, Song of Solomon; 5, Ruth ; 6, Lamentations ; 7, Ecclesiastes; 8, Esther ; 9, Daniel ; 10, Ezra-Nehemiah ; 11, Chronicles (1 and 2 books).

In the Hebrew MSS., Ezra and Nehemiah are always reckoned as one book with the one name, Ezra. Each of the double books is reckoned as one book, e.g., 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, 1 and 2 Chronicles; and all the minor prophets are also reckoned as one book. This makes twenty-four books in all.

The Alexandria Jews and early Christian fathers, however, reckoned 22 books. This number was obtained by reckoning Judges and Ruth together as one book and Jeremiah and Lamentations together, in addition to reckoning the double books as one and Ezra and Nehemiah as one.

This number was arrived at in order that the number of books would agree with the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet, there being 22 letters in the Hebrew alphabet.

A Study of the Types By HERMAN WITSIUS


The staves, which were put into four rings of gold for carrying the ark, signified that Christ with all His grace and glory should be, as it were, carried by the preaching of the Gospel to the four quarters of the world. The faithful preachers of the Gospel may justly be called bearers of Christ. These staves were never to be taken out of the rings, even while the ark rested, after it was set up in its place. The sound of the Gospel has never been altogether suppressed; and no country can be assured, that Christ with His Gospel may not depart from it. The place in which the ark rested, was the holy of holies within the veil. The place of Christ's rest is in the sanctuary not made with hands, Heb. ix. 24, after He entered into that within the veil, Heb. vi, 19, 20. That though Christ indeed is in heaven out of the reach of our bodily eyes; yet he reveals himself to the eyes of our faith, by a manifestation of His manifold grace. That, during the standing of the tabernacle, the ark was carried sometimes to one place, and sometimes to another, but was not removed from the temple, till the [10] destruction of it, might signify to believers that Christ should afterwards come forth, from the sanctuary of the divine decrees and promises, and so from heaven itself, and while He passed through the country of Israel, was seen sometimes in one place, and sometimes in another, but after He was again received into heaven, he should continue there until the time, "in the which the heavens pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat," 2 Peter iii. 10. "Whom the heaven must receive, until the times of the restitution of all things," Acts iii. 21.


It was not without a display of divine wisdom, that there was to be a time when the ark was not in the house of God, namely, under the second temple, as Jeremiah foretold should happen: "They shall say no more, the ark of the covenant of Jehovah: neither shall it come to mind," Jer. iii. 16. For by this they might be admonished to expect another, and indeed, a far more noble habitation for God; another mercy-seat, far more excellent, to which the former was commanded to give place, as the shadow to the body. However, it is not without a mystery, that John saw again the temple of God opened in heaven, and that there was seen in His temple the ark of His testament, Rev. xi. 19. And that, at the time, in which the kingdoms of the world were become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ, ver. 15. John saw these things in heaven, because heaven was the place where he was favoured with these visions, Rev. iv. 1. Not that everything he saw was to be in heaven. For surely that war, which he describes Rev. xii. 7, 8, was not to be there, but in the church on earth. But what did he now see? The temple opened. This, if I mistake not, signifies a free, open, and unobstructed entrance for all into the church of Christ, into which the nations of the world, or as Paul speaks, Rom. xi. 25, the fulness of the Gentiles had come in; and whose doors now stood open even for the Jews, against whom they had been shut for a great while. In that temple, he sees again the ark, which was a symbol of the covenant formerly entered into with habitation for Christ among the Jewish the Jews: by which is signified a new nation, not by an external symbol, but by internal and spiritual grace; and as they shall enjoy this, they will readily and with gladness be without an external symbol. See what Jonas le Buy, whom Bochart, Hieroz. lib. iii. c. 9, calls an excellent person, and highly skilled in those matters, has wrote on this place.


Near the ark was laid up the pot of manna and Aaron's rod, which budded, Numb. xvii. 35, to represent the incredible and permanent sweetness of that spiritual food, which Christ bestows on His people, and which Himself prefers, on so many accounts, to the manna given by Moses, John vi. 48, etc., and [11] which, by an evident allusion to what was contained in this pot, is called the hidden manna, Rev. ii. 17. And, at the same time, to show the perpetual verdure and eternal efficacy of Christ's priesthood by virtue of which our buds also may come to blow, and humble shrubs may emit balsam. So much shall suffice concerning the ark of the covenant.


Let us now consider the things which the high priest was to perform on the solemn day of expiation, in order to give another instance of a legal type, the ceremonies of which are described, Lev. xvi. Aaron was to put on the linen garments appropriated for that day, and only during those ministrations which were to be performed within the second veil. 4. And after he was ordered to make an atonement for himself and his house by offering a young bullock, he was commanded to take from the congregation of the children of Israel, two kids of the goats for a sin-offering, and a ram for a burnt offering, ver. 5. These kids were to be procured at the common expense of all, out of the treasury appointed for defraying the charges of the sacrifices, and other things necessary for the worship of God. Both were an expiatory sacrifice, bearing their sin, in the room of sinful Israel. These goats were to be presented to God before Jehovah, at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation; they were sacred to God and devoted to his worship, ver. 7. Lots were to be cast upon both; one lot for Jehovah, and the other for Azazel, (or, as our translation renders it, for the scapegoat) ver. 8: this, according to the Jews, was done in this manner. The High Priest stood before the goats between the Sagan, or the Priest next the High Priest and the head or chief person of the principal family; then out of a box he drew the lots, which were at first of wood, and under the second temple, of gold: on one of these was inscribed, "for Jehovah," and on the other "for Azazel: " the lot drawn out with the right hand, was put on the head of the goat, opposite to that hand; and that drawn with the left, placed on the head of that opposite to the left. See Ainsworth and Altingius. That which fell to Jehovah, was to be prepared for a sin-offering; which was directly done, not by killing immediately, but by declaration. For, the lot being laid upon it, the High Priest called it the sin for the Lord, that is, appointed to be a sacrifice for sin; and he offered it, that is, put it in the place of slaughter at the north side of the altar. But that which fell to Azazel, was again presented alive before Jehovah, to make an atonement over it, by confession and imposition of sins, ver. 9, 10. Then that which was Jehovah's was to be killed for the sins of the people, and its blood carried within the veil, with which blood the High Priest was to sprinkle both the mercy-seat, and the place before the mercy-seat. Thus an atonement has to be made for the holy place, and for the tabernacles of the congregation, because of [12] the uncleanness of the children of Israel, ver.15, 16. Then again the live goat, which by lot fell to Azazel, was to be brought forth: and the High Priest laid both his hands on his head, and confessed over it the iniquities of the children of Israel, generally in this form, according to the Jews: "Lord, I beseech thee, thy people, the house of Israel, have transgressed, been rebellious, and have sinned before thee. Lord, I beseech thee, forgive now the trespasses and rebellions and sins, which thy people, the house of Israel have trespassed, and in which they have been rebellious; as it is written in the law of Moses, thy servant, because, on this day, he will make atonement for you, to cleanse you from all your sins." Joma c. 6. And the priests and people, who stood in the porch, upon hearing the name Jehovah, pronounced by the High Priest, kneeled, with their faces downward, adored, and said: "Blessed be the Lord, and let the glory of his kingdom be for ever." In this manner, all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their trespasses of what kind soever, greater and smaller, sins against knowledge, or sins of ignorance, were laid upon the goat, which was sent away by the hand of a fit man into the wilderness, bearing the iniquities of the Children of Israel, into a land not inhabited, ver. 21, 22. But the bullock which Aaron offered for himself, and the goat which he offered for the people, were to be carried without the camp, that their skins and their flesh, and their dung, might be burnt, ver. 27. Before we inquire into the mystery of these things, some difficulties are first to be cleared up.

The Authorised Version 1611 versus The Modern Translations

The following was published in April, 1857 (116 years ago). Its author, Joseph Charles Philpot, M.A., one time Fellow of Worcester College, Oxford; a faithful Minister of the Gospel (also Editor of 'The Gospel Standard' 1849-1869), was one of the greatest Hebrew and Greek scholars of his day, and certainly was a deeply spiritual man with a sanctified discernment of the evil trend of the apostate church.

We cannot but admire the great faith fulness of our translators in so scrupulously adhering to the exact words of the [13] HOLY SPIRIT, and when they were necessarily compelled to supply the ellipses in the ORIGINAL, to point out that they had done so by marking the word in italic characters. By so doing, they engaged themselves, as by bond, to give the WORD OF GOD in its strict original purity; and yet, as thorough scholars in the original tongues, and complete masters of their own, they were enabled to give us a version admirable not only for its strict fidelity, but also for its eloquence, grandeur, and beauty. Would it be desirable to have a new translation of the Scriptures?

We fully admit that there are here and there passages of which the translation might be improved; as, for instance, "love" for "charity" throughout, I Cor. 13; but we depreciate any alteration as a measure that the smallest sprinkling of good would deluge us with a flood of evil. The following are our reasons.

1. Who are to undertake it? Into whose hands would the translation fall? What an opportunity for the enemies of Truth to give us a mutilated false Bible! Of course they must be learned men, great critics, scholars, and divines. But these are notoriously either tainted with popery or infidelity. Where are the men, learned, yet sound in Truth, not to say alive unto GOD, who possess the necessary qualifications for so important a work? and can erroneous men, DEAD IN TRESPASSES AND SINS, CARNAL, WORLDLY, UNGODLY persons, spiritually translate a book written by the BLESSED SPIRIT? We have not the slightest ground for hope that they would be godly men, such as we have reason to believe translated the Scriptures into our present version.

2. Again, it would unsettle the minds of thousands, as to which was the WORD OF GOD, the old translation or the new. What a door it would open for the working of INFIDELITY, or the temptations of Satan! What a gloom, too, it would cast over the minds of many of God's saints, to have those passages which had been applied to their souls translated in a different way, and how it would seem to shake all their experience of the power and preciousness of GOD'S WORD!

3. But besides all this, there would be two bibles spread throughout all the land, the old and the new, and what confusion would this create in almost every place! At present, all sects and denominations agree in acknowledging our present version as to the standard of appeal. Nothing settles disputes so soon as when the contending parties have confidence in the same umpire and are willing to abide by his decision. But this judge of all dispute, this umpire of all controversy would cease to be the looser of strife if present acknowledged authority were put an end to by a rival.

4. If the new translation were once to begin, where would it end? It is good to let well alone, as it is easier to mar than to mend. The Socinianising Neologian would blot out 'GOD' in I Tim. 3: 16, and strike out I John 5 : 57, as an interpolation. The Puseyite would mend it to suit his Tractarian views. He would read "priest" where we now read "elder," and put "penance" in place of [14] repentance. Once set up a notice - "The old Bible to be mended" and there would be plenty of workmen, who, trying to mend the cover, would pull the pages to Pieces. The Arminians would soften down the words "Election" and "Predestination" into some term less displeasing to Pharisaic ears. "Righteousness" would be turned into "Justice" and "Reprobate" into "Undiscerning." All our good Bible terms would be so mutilated that they would cease to convey the Spirit's meaning and instead of the noble simplicity, faithfulness, and truth of our present version, we should have a bible that nobody would accept as the WORD OF GOD, to which none could safely appeal, and on which none implicitly rely.

5. Instead of our good old Saxon Bible, simple and solid, with few words obsolete, and alike majestic and beautiful, we would have a modern English translation in pert and flippant language of the day. Besides its authority as the WORD OF GOD, our present version is the great English classic - generally accepted as the standard of the English language. The great classics of a language cannot be modernised. What an outcry there would be against modernising Shakespeare, or making Hooker, Bacon or Milton, talk the English of the newspapers or of the House of Commons.

6. The present English Bible (Authorised Version) has been blessed to thousands of the saints of GOD; and not only so, it has become part of our national inheritance which we have received unimpaired from our fathers, and are bound to hand down unimpaired to our children. It is, we believe, the grand bulwark of Protestantism; the safeguard of the Gospel, and the treasure of the Church; and we should be traitors in every sense of the word if we consented to give it up to be rifled by the sacrilegious hands of the Puseyites, concealed papists, German Neologians, infidel divines, Arminians, Socinians, and the whole tribe of enemies of GOD and godliness.


Compare all the foregoing with the Modern Translations, 'The New English Bible,' 'The Common Bible Revised Standard Version,' 'The Living Bible,' 'Good News for Modern Man,' etc. These are certainly not translations whatever they are. Vulgar, obscene and hideous remarks are attributed in them to the Holy Spirit. Denials of the Lord Jesus are scattered throughout their pages. Unpalatable verses are ruthlessly deleted.

Thank God we still have the Authorised Version the Legacy of the Reformation and the Bible of the great Revivals. In it the Lord Jesus Christ is exalted. Let us cling to this time honoured God glorifying version.


knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself' (I Timothy 6:3-5).

We are not to associate with them. We are not to co-operate in evangelism with them. We are not to remain in church fellowship with them. Out we must come. Christian, speak out! Get out and stay out! To disobey is sin, and all the preachers who say contrary are opposing the Word of God.

III. Reprove them

Of course, many would like to separate and leave the matter there. The Scriptures, however, tell us our duty after we have ceased to fellowship with apostasy.

'And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them' (Ephesians 5:11).

We must reprove at every turn the apostasy. Silence is sin.

IV. Receive them not

'If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds' (11 John 10-11).

We are not to throw our homes open to them. We are not to invite them to our church to address our young people. We are to receive them not. Christian, are you both receiving and supporting the apostasy? If so, you will be a partaker of her plagues. What saith the Scripture?

'And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities' (Rev. 18:4-5).

V. Reject them

'A man that is an heretic after the first and second admonition, reject' (Titus 3:10).

The apostles and disciples of apostasy must be rejected. The way is clear to the true and faithful believer. The pathway for the Christian is as a shining light. There is no need for hesitancy. God has ordered, we must obey. Like the Reformers, it must be separation for us.

Those of you who are true believers, I have shown you your duty. Do it now for the honour of your great Redeemer. Those of you still unregenerate turn instantly to Christ, for 'neither is there salvation in any other, for there is none other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved' (Acts 4:12).

The following Churches in the U.K. and Eire are in membership with the World Council of Churches :-


-Work book for the Assembly Committees (page 197).