[1]
"When a Prophet ceases to be stoned he ceases to be a Prophet"

A Sermon by Ian R. K. Paisley on the occasion of his 33rd Anniversary as Minister of the Martyrs Memorial Congregation. Delivered on Lord's Day evening 5th August, 1979

The verses 33 and 37 of the 23rd chapter of Matthew's Gospel, v.33: "Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell".

Verse 37: "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee".

The title of my subject this evening is "Vipers in Vestments" or "The Prophet Ceases to be a Prophet when he Ceases to be stoned".

Thirty-three years ago as a mere stripling of some twenty years of age I was ordained on this road in our old Church building to be a minister of Christ and the pastor of this congregation. If I had known at that service on the lst August, 1946 all the rugged paths that lay before me, no doubt I would have been a Jonah and I would have fled away. But God in His great mercy kindly veils the future from our eyes and takes us along life's pilgrimage road a step at a time.

The memory of that service will never be erased from my mind in time, and, no doubt, it will be part of the joy of Heaven to think back upon the great spiritual exercises and blessings of the past pilgrimage here on earth.

GREAT AND FAITHFUL MEN OF GOD

I think of the Rev. W. J. Grier who brought the ordination sermon on that occasion; the faithful word by a faithful man, from God's faithful Book; an exhortation to a young preacher to earnestly contend for the faith; to stand true to God no matter what opposition might arise on that account. One word from that sermon burned itself into my mind and memory. Mr. Grier said, quoting Samuel Rutherford the sturdy Covenanter: "Give not one hair's breadth of truth away for it is not yours, it is God's".

I will ever remember my honoured and revered father looking down from the pulpit as I sat on the front seat, and exhorting me to uplift the Son of god, to make a Crucified Saviour the centre of my message, the centre of my [2] ministry and the centre of my Church.

Nor will I forget the Rev. Thomas Rowan who brought the charge to the congregation, exhorting the whole people of God to join in a great evangelistic drive so that men and women might be presented with the claims of Christ and pressed upon to come into the kingdom of God.

There is, however, a part in that service that I think marked the high watermark. It was a prayer offered by Professor T. B. McFarlane of the Reformed Presbyterian Church, in whose Theological Hall I studied for the ministry. That old and silver haired Christian pastor offered a prayer that made Heaven touch earth and has been a source of increasing encouragement and blessing to me as I have thought about it and as I have pursued the course and the path which God has so clearly set before me.

As I said this morning, three of those eminent servants of Christ have now crossed the River. The Professor has gone. Thomas Rowan has gone and my own father has gone. How we are reminded that here we have no continuing city, that the night is coming when no man can work, and we are all headed out for the great Eternity.


REV. W. P. NICHOLSON

There is, however, another service that I always link with that ordination service. It was the following Sabbath morning. I remember well my text. It was from the Corinthian epistle, "I am determined to know nothing among you save Jesus Christ, and Him Crucified". I was terrified when I entered the pulpit, for who was in the back seat but none other than that eminent evangelist and revival preacher, the Rev. W. P. Nicholson. When I got started however I forgot all about who was there and I had the joy of having what every preacher knows he needs, liberty. When he has liberty all is well.

When I had concluded my sermon, "W.P.", as he was fondly called by those who knew him, walked down the aisle. He stood at the Communion Table. He put one hand upon the Table and he turned round and he looked at me and he said, "Young man, have you ever seen a cow's tongue"? I said, "Yes, sir". He said, "Go into a butcher's shop, get a cow's tongue laid out on the counter and rub your hand up it the wrong way, and it will cut you like a file. It will bring the blood". Then he lifted up his heart to Heaven and he prayed, "Oh, God of hosts, give this young preacher a tongue like an old cow". It was a unique prayer from a unique man, but even my infidel opponents would bear witness that God has answered that prayer for my tongue has drawn the blood of many an opponent and many an enemy of the Gospel.

Thirty-three years is a large slice of one's life, and I certainly will not have another thirty-three years in which to pastor this flock, but this I can say that although I have many imperfections; although in those years I have done things that have grieved my Lord and grieved my own soul; although there have been sins to be repented of and mourned over, things done that ought not to have been done and said that ought not to have been said; yet I can say tonight, by the grace of God, that I have not been unfaithful to the gospel ministry given to my charge. I have never failed on any occasion to make clear the claims of Jesus Christ and the fundamentals of the glorious Gospel revelation. I have not changed my theology one iota. I started my ministry as a fundamentalist. I have continued it as a fundamentalist, and, please God, will conclude it as a fundamentalist. I stand upon the great foundation, for no other foundation can any man lay than that which is laid which is Jesus Christ'.

Many preachers talk about their progress. How they have liberalised in their ministry and theology. I am glad to say I have not changed a whit. It is the same gospel, the [3] same Christ, the same doctrines and the same eternal truths which I am going to preach and continue to preach.

AN INDICTMENT FROM THE LIPS OF JESUS

Having said those words by way of introduction, let me come to the main thrust of my message this evening, 'Vipers in Vestments' or 'A Prophet Ceases to be a Prophet when he ceases to be stoned'.

'Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell'. 'O Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee'. Who spoke these seething words? From whose lips came this terrible indictment, this awful condemnation? Who put the Pharisees, the religious leaders - the Ecclesiastical Biggies of His day into the pillory. Who cried out against them in language that has within it the lightning strokes of Heaven's indignation and the thundering roar of Heaven's condemnation? - 'Scribes, pharisees, hypocrites'. This was none other than the tender, compassionate, meek and lowly Jesus. This was none other than the One Who upon a Cross of shame was to Bleed and die on behalf of guilty men.

In this Age in which we live the religious biggies, the ecclesiastical establishment, those that control the forces within the great major religious groups still need to be indicted and pilloried in the same language. In other words, what we need is not a race of preachers, (Northern Ireland is coming down with preachers) but what we need is a breed of prophets; men with God's fire in their souls; men with God's burden upon their heart; men whom nothing will be able to stop as they cry aloud and spare not and show God's people their sin, and this nation its iniquity. God is looking for prophets.

THE PROPHET ALWAYS PERSECUTED

The prophet will be known to be a prophet when he is the recipient of stonings and persecutions. Show me a man in the pulpit of which the world speaks well; show me a man in the pulpit of which the religious establishment speaks well and I will show you a man upon whom is not the blessing of God or the unction of the Almighty. But show me a man of whom is said every evil and wicked slander; show me a man who becomes the recipient of wave after wave of condemnation; who is condemned out of hand, who is accused of the most outrageous of crimes and I will show you a man whom God has commissioned, whom God has called, whom God has sent to be a prophet to his generation.

CALEB AND JOSHUA AND OTHERS

How many people were stoned in the Old Testament? Two faithful witnesses Caleb and Joshua. They got a good report. They called the people to go in and possess the land, but a backslidden, carnal, fleshly Israel said, 'No, let us elect a captain. Let us go back to Egypt'. That is exactly what the ecumenical movement is saying, 'Let us elect a Pope, and go back to Popery'. These two men, Caleb and Joshua, said 'No', and the people took up stones to stone them. Joshua and Caleb had the hallmark of prophets.

What about the man David? Troubled, perplexed, afflicted and in the deepest of agony, he has to leave his royal palace. He has to leave the city of Zion because of the rebellion of Absalom his son. As he makes his way outside the city wall, Shimei of the tribe of Benjamin takes the stones and hurls them at the royal monarch. David under the stoning! Of course, when we read those wonderful Psalms and the message which God gave him to deliver, no wonder David was stoned. David had the hallmark of a prophet.

Then when we come to the first Book of Kings we see there a man who defended his heritage, who refused to sell his vineyard to[4] Ahab. He said, 'I will not part from the Lord's inheritance', and they took Naboth and they set him up in a rigged courthouse and they brought in rigged witnesses against him, and then they stoned him with stones. A man who would not sell, who would not betray, who would not give up his heritage. Naboth had upon him the hallmark of a prophet.

What shall I say of Stephen, the first Christian martyr, standing there surrounded by a howling mob thirsting for his blood, and as the stones fall fast and thick upon his person, bruising him and breaking his bones, he cries out, 'Lay not this sin to their charge'. Stephen had upon him the hallmark of a prophet.

What shall I say of the greatest of all the apostles, that rugged character who steps out of the Book of the Acts as large as life Paul. We see him with his pen writing the greater part of the New Testament. Yes and I read of him that they stoned him and left him for dead. Upon the apostle Paul was the hallmark of a prophet.

But all those characters great as they are from Joshua and Caleb, aye and Zacharias who was slain by stoning between the porch and the altar by a hostile crowd. We read about him in the Second Book of Chronicles; fade into insignificance when the Blessed Prophet of all prophets stands before us, the Lord Jesus Christ Himself.

A WORD OF ENCOURAGEMENT

I take great encouragement from one Word which the Lord Jesus Christ spoke, 'If they have called the Master of the house Beelzebub, the prince of devils, what will they not call His servants'? If I am a servant of Christ I will receive in full measure the same sneering and scorning, and ridiculing and condemnation which my Master received. Have you ever studied what they said about the Son of God? The first thing they did, they cast a sneer on His Birth. In John's Gospel chapter 8, and verse 4 they said, 'We are not born of fornication', inferring that Jesus Christ was an illegitimate, not understanding the mystery of His Virgin Birth. And all through the life of the Blessed Christ of God they cast this dark shadow upon His Birth.

CHRIST'S BIRTH ATTACKED

The Lord Jesus is no longer here. The Lord Jesus is on the Father's Throne in all the glory and majesty of His Kingdom, but the modernists are still stoning Him. Referring to His Birth they tell us that He was the illegitimate child of Joseph and Mary or of some mercenary German soldier who was residing near to the City of Nazareth, and that Mary herself was no better than a prostitute. In fact, one of the great leaders of religious thought, Leslie D. Weatherhead, in his last book 'The Christian Agnostic' said that a good explanation for Christ's Birth was that John the Baptist's father, Zacharias, too Mary to his home as a vestal virgin of the temple, lived in an illicit relationship with her and the child that was born was none other than Jesus Christ.

Now, that did not come from the poisoned pen of an infidel, so-called, that came from the poisoned pen of Leslie D. Weatherhead, President of the Methodist Church and hailed as one of the greatest religious leaders since John Wesley. So far has modernism blasphemed the Son of God.

I have gone along the streets of this city during these past days. I have had my birth attacked and as Romanists hurled at me the slur of 'bastard' I have counted myself joyful to share in the reproach of Jesus Christ.

CHRIST'S LEARNING ATTACKED

The second thing that they attacked concerning Jesus was His education and His learning, John's Gospel chapter 7 and verse 15, 'How hath this man letters, having never learned'? It has been the same with every prophet. They have said, 'How could these men be prophets? They have not graduated [5] from our schools. They have not been taught in our establishments. They have no formal educational attainments'. But when that is said about the preacher he can rejoice in fellowship with the Blessed Son of God. If He Who was Eternally vase; if He Who knew all things and made all things and controls all things; if He Who is the source of wisdom for He is indeed the Wisdom of God; if He is called into question in His learning and education, we poor followers, bereft of anything but the grace of God, can gladly take these slurs and rejoice that they are part of the reproaches of Jesus Christ. So we can wear these badges gladly.

I often say, 'If it be so, surely it is an indictment upon their schools of learning - if some so-called self-made man can do more in one week than they can do in one year there must surely be something seriously wrong with their system of learning and with their so-called boasted advantage of superior intellectualism.

These slurs will be repeated, but through good report or ill report the prophet shall go on and on. I do not suppose that John the Baptist was any the worse of not having graduated from the school of Gamaliel. I do not suppose the wild herdsman of Tekoa was any the worse that he had not sat at the class desk. He had upon him the anointing fire of God, and if that fire be upon the preacher then he has an equipment that far outshines the equipment of any educational attainment.


CHRIST'S SANITY ATTACKED

Then they said of Jesus, 'He is beside Himself', and His friends and His brothers came and they said, 'Come home, you are bereft of your senses, You are beside yourself. Come back to Nazareth. Get back into your father's carpenter's shop. Get back to the nails and the hammer and the plane and the joinery work'.

'A man's foes shall be they of his own household', and in the household of the evangelical body of believers there are many who would cry out against God's prophet. They too would say, 'Let him go back to where he came from but let him not continue to disturb the peace, the tranquillity, the serenity of our religious formalism'.

CHRIST'S MINISTRY ATTACKED

Then they said of Jesus, 'Have we not heard this before?(it is right up to date) He is a rabble rouser'. He goes about all Jewry stirring up the people from Galilee to Judea and through all Samaria. He leaves a trail of rabble-rousing. He is a stirrer up of the people, an offender of etiquette. He does not do the preaching like we do it.

Thank God, He did not!

I never want to be a pulpit ornament like some men, upon whose robes there is the smell of the tomb rather than the scent of Calvary. Lord Jesus, I want to walk that road in which the world shall hurl the same scorn at me as was hurled at Thee, for I am thy servant. If they have called Thee Beelzebub, then as Thy servant I gladly wear what names are hurled at me, because I know that Thy Word is Truth, They hate me because they hated Thee!

They went further. They said He was mad and was a devil-possessed person, a madman. From many a pulpit that has been said about me. In many a newspaper column that has been written about me.

Of Paul they said, 'He was a murderer, a leader of a gang of four thousand murderers'. Of Paul they said, 'He was a pestilent fellow'. That sounds right up to date when one reads some of the letters appearing in the Press. But if the prophet ceases to be stoned he ceases to be a prophet, and when instead of the vile names there are fair names called, instead of the opposition there is laud and praise, then the prophet has lost the holiest of all mantels - the approval of Heaven, and has sacrificed his ministry on the altar of [6] expediency for the approval of men.

Must I be carried to the skies
On flowery beds of ease?
While others fought to win the prize
And sailed through bloody seas.
Since I must fight if I would reign
Increase my courage Lord;
I'll bear the toil, endure the pain
Supported by Thy Word.

This is the prophetic way. It is the way of the Cross, and, thank God, it is the way which leads to Home, to God, to Heaven and everlasting joy.

THE END OF THE ROAD

When the prophet has finished his ministry, when his last prophetic word is uttered, when his last protest is made and his last combat with the enemy has been accomplished, then although he dies unsung and unknown, God shall command the angels of His glory to gather at the border of the River.

What a reception Joshua and Caleb must have had when they went across the River.

What a reception David must have had when he went to sing Psalms far more sweetly than he ever sung on earth.

What a reception Paul and Stephen must have had on the day when their immortal souls fled from bodies broken by death into the Land that is fairer than day.

But there is a scene that far outshines the scene of the ransomed coming Home. It is the day when Jesus Christ with a scarred Body, bearing upon it the brandmarks of the burnings of the Crucible of the Cross, rose triumphantly from Joseph's tomb and ascended into Heaven. Then did all the angels of God shout, 'Lift up your heads O ye gates and be ye lifted up ye everlasting doors, that the King of Glory shall come in. Who is this King of Glory? the Lord of hosts, the Lord Mighty in battle, He is the King of Glory'.

He sat down at God's right hand.

There was a day when He stood up. When was that day when the seated Lord stood up in Heaven? It was the day when Stephen witnessed a good confession and paid the price of his testimony in his own blood.

We stand to honour men whom we revere and men whom we trust, but what a day it was when the Son of God stood up to honour Stephen the prophet.


Oh God, may I so live my life, discharge my ministry, fulfil my commission that when the day comes for me to cross the River, Thy Blessed Son shall stand and with extended hand He will greet me when the saints go marching in!

It will be worth it all when we see Jesus!

So here in the battle I must use the language of Scripture. I must spare no enemy of the Gospel. I must raise my voice in militancy and in power. I must be the most unpopular of all preachers. I must cry aloud against the idolatry of Popery, against the Pope's visit no matter how many signatures Bill Jeffries gets or does not get. I must go on and on and on.

If you want a preacher who will put you to sleep with smooth sayings he will not be in the pulpit when I am here. If you want a preacher on this road who will conform to the religious establishment, he will not be here when I am in this pulpit. My sights are far above the plaudits of the religious establishment. My sights are far above the popular acclaim of men. My sights are on the Everlasting Throne of God, and there is One there to whom I have sold myself totally and completely. I am the slave of Jesus Christ.

May we each tonight present ourselves as slaves to the Eternal Son of God.

AMEN AND AMEN!

[7]
LETTER TO MRS. THATCHER BY OUR DUTCH FRIEND MISS W. TAVERNE

Madam,

Much interested, we over here learned about your victory and as Christians we hope that it will be one like Deborah's in Old Testament times, as the men are forsaking their duties. And due to a long series of misgovernments, the once so-called Christian countries of the West have fallen into the hands of socialists in a very bad way whereas the European Movement which is working hard to restrict national power and have it handed over as much as possible to a European Parliament, is actually socialistic as for its main founders.

EUROPE

Please excuse me for writing you mainly on the topic of "Europe" as I found that we and you, the Dutch and the British, have been betrayed and sold out to a supernational power which originally claimed to be just economically working, but of which already Walter Hallstein said that they were in for politics, not for business! Anyway, I had the said pleasure of being at the public gallery at Westminster when the House of Commons voted their final YES EEC and ever after as well as before that historic date, I keep informed about Britain's doings in this matter - as I feel it was a curse upon your country, that yes-vote. By the way, our country has been dragged into the EEC silently.

It is due to my experience over here and abroad that I wonder whether even you are up with the actual history of the European Movement: which powers were behind its main architect (Joseph H. Retinger, a very unknown person as for modern history, yet he being the main inspirator of every congress since that in The Hague, 1948 to mention just one job) and how the various activities organised by that sinister Polish gentleman developed. As I recently wrote a booklet into Dutch on this subject (whereas it took a lot of trouble to get the information, I have collected facts which are really astonishing as you will see later) I will just mention some points which you may find of importance.

HISTORY OF THE EUROPEAN MOVEMENT

Joseph H. Retinger, born 1888 at Cracow; a strict R.C. family. Intended to be a priest but as "the world is more interesting than the hereafter" he left his studies for the priesthood, went to the Sorbonne at Paris and finished his philological studies over there. In 1911 Retinger goes to London to work for the National Polish Council and then starts his political career. During World War I he travels frequently between London and Paris and busily mediates in the war conflict together with Prince Sixte of Bourbon Parma and the general of the Jesuits, the Pole Count Ledochowski. By the way, Count Ledochowski is known by his "Habsburg" - or "Ledochowski" - plan, e.g. a future federation of European countries of the R.C. religion was going to get a Habsburg prince as head. But that plan did not materialise . . . until: last December 1978 there was a special commemoration meeting in the historic Parliament building in The Hague, organised by the "Pan-Europa-Union" of Count Coudenhove-Kalergi, founded in 1923. The main speaker was: Otto of Habsburg who is destined to take the lead over that extreme part of the movement for European Unity. And Otto of Habsburg is moreover the [8] chairman of the documentation centre of OPUS DEI in Barcelona!

To return to Retinger, due to intrigues (as he says himself) he has to leave Europe and at last arrives in Mexico where he gets friendly with Luis Morones the later socialist leader over there. Retinger organises Mexican Labour and is being asked by Mexico to mediate again, this time between American oil companies and Mexico. He also visits Rome to try and get the relationship between the pope and Mexico more tight. That is about 1925.

After much travelling on behalf of Mexico, he at last leaves for the USA where he arrives after having been put in prison by the Americans first. He goes to his friend Felix Frankfurter whom helps Retinger to a new Polish Passport (and Frankfurter was a member of CFR as well as a friend of Alger Hiss and Dean Acheson), and then Rettinger starts travelling to Europe again. But apart from his activities on behalf of the "victims" of Pilsudski of Poland, and of international socialism, he already started another activity, e.g. of European Unity. In 1920 already he discusses the opportunities of a European Federation with some intimate friends whereas in 1924 he tries for the first time to start a secret Organisation to work for European unity; but due to the death of his future father-in-law and confidential agent in this job, E. D. Morel of London (1925), he temporarily has to stop these activities.

HIS DREAM

During World War 2 Retinger becomes the right hand man of the Polish general-in-exile Sikorski at London and apart from many war-activities over there, Retinger starts his European dream once again. Thus he organises the various Ministers of Foreign Affairs who have settled in London during the war, at regularly held meetings at which a European Union is being discussed. And so we see together, often at a lunch in Claridges, representatives from Eastern European countries like Count Raczynski, Masaryk, Hubert Ripka and Nincic, together with those from the West like Paul H. Speak, Van Kieffens, Bech, Lie, Dejean and Massegli. Anyway, during the war it is a busy time in London for the various political leaders and when the Dutch Prince Bernhard is going to be the chairman at the monthly lunch at Claridges this can be seen as a forerunner of the future Bilderberg Movement (which was also started by Retinger).

Thanks to those contacts, the Benelux union is started in 1944 at a special meeting in the Savoy hotel. Benelux-father: Retinger! Other advancements for European unity are in progress.

As soon as World War 2 is over, Retinger is present at a conference of Charham House, the subject being "A European Continent"? and right after that, he leaves for Brussels (early May 1946) where another job is waiting for him. E.g. Retinger starts, together with the Belgian minister Paul van Zeeland the European League of economical co-operation, but although its name is "European", Americans are welcome too. Then Retinger starts travelling again to organise national branches of the ELEC, and in Britain Harold Butler and Macmillan, together with one or two other people, get the lead while in France it is a.o. Giscard d'Estaing and Debre. Apart from the ELEC, many other movements for European unity are being started.

CONGRESSES

It is also the period of congresses. In 1947 at Montreaux the Federalists have their big congress whereas Retinger is making preparations by then for the huge Congress of Europe in The Hague which is being held May 1948 and from which resolutions specially nr. 7 is important: The Creation of a United Europe has to be seen as a step to the ultimate aim of a United World. [9]

And also important is the quotation from one of the contemporaries "people spoke about the St. Bartholomew of national sovereignity" (Jean-Pierre Gouzy in "Les Peinniers de l'Europe Communautaire"). Apart from Retinger another 700 people from the leading circles were present, among them being of course Winston Churchill, Adenauer, Spaak, Hallstein, De Caperi, Duncan Sandys, Brugmans, Eden and Bertrand Russell. There were "Syndicalists and papists, Lords and travaillists, bishops and anarchists" all united in "one and the same European Enthusiasm" - but it is nevertheless Retinger who tells what has to be said and done, and it is also Retinger who "manipulates Churchill's European Movement" in such a way that it is not longer Churchill but it is Retinger who tells which course has to be taken! And these are the words of Retinger's biographer. And Denis de Rougemont tells us that the Congress of Europe of 1948 "was the personal work of Retinger" - yet hardly anybody knows about this man. Then, exactly 9 months afterwards the Council of Europe is born thanks to Retinger's constant work; but he goes on and transforms the International Committee of the Movements for a United Europe into the European Movement, and becomes its first secretary-general. Actually it was the Council of Europe which started the European Parliament!

ROME'S INVOLVEMENT

I can go on as Retinger's activities on behalf of European unity went on till his death in 1960, but it would take at least another page to do it even cable-style. I have to mention another aspect of his work, e.g. his contacts with Rome in order to use ecumenism as another means of achieving a United Europe. Thus he gets in touch with Sir Stafford Cripps and Lord Halifax of Christian Action and then with Canon Collins. With the latter he goes to Rome to see the pope (Pius XII) whereas the latter pope Paul IV is present - at the discussions as well. A second visit to Rome is made but then the wind has turned against Retinger: for Archbishop Fisher of Canterbury has warned Rome that something will go wrong and no papal co-operation can be expected for Retinger from then on; ecumenism was not ripe enough yet! Then the Jesuits get the order to supervise matters on Europe and when in Spring 1974 the Roehampton Conference on "Christians and the EEC" is being held, it was the Jesuits who supervised every part; even the Jesuit Press Officer from London (Mr. Hugh Kay) had to be present at Roehampton in order to act as sole information officer on behalf of the general press! It was striking that this fact was not mentioned in the press after all as the information was not complete now. By the way, I was one of a few observers at that Congress and I did learn quite a bit about the actual intentions of "Europe".

So much so about Retinger and his life-long work. I myself am doing what I can to make known what really is behind Europe and I could mention the proper sources if wanted. I do pray meanwhile that if it is the Lord's will, Britain at last may be saved from going the European track any longer and with that purpose I have written this long letter. To complete information about my stand, I enclose some duplicate copies of Open Letters written on behalf of the Ulster Protestants. I hope to embark to visit them mid-May, G.W.

Trusting to listen to you from the Public Gallery of Westminster some time (I heard you speak before, already), praying that you may be kept faithful to the Bible faith. [10]


THE NEW KING JAMES VERSION

Another modern English version of the Bible has been in course of preparation for several years in the U.S.A., under the sponsorship of Thomas Nelson Publishers, and the New Testament is due to be published in June under the title, "The New King James Bible - New Testament". The declared aim of the 119 scholars engaged on this project was "to produce a new edition as it would have been done today by the original scholars", and to preserve "the beauty and purity of the original King James Version in its communication of God's Word to the English-speaking world". To a very large extent the word order and rhythm of the King James Version have been preserved, so that a reader with the new version could follow without difficulty a public reading from the old.

All who were engaged on the revision were commissioned only after expressing their belief in the inspiration and infallibility of the Holy Scriptures. The publishers acknowledge that the King James Version is still deeply revered among the English-speaking peoples of the world, and they have endeavoured to produce a revision "which will unlock the spiritual treasures found uniquely in the K.J.V."

Recognizing the growing concern among reputable New Testament scholars that the 19th century text suffers from over-revision, and that the effect of the Westcott-Hort type of text is to delete many words, phrases and verses that are found in the Authorized Version, the publishers of the New King James Version offer "a useful and accurate revision based on the traditional Greek text underlying the 1611 edition of the English Bible", assuring the reader that "no verse has been omitted and no word has been chanced unless the change genuinely improves the understanding of God's Word for our time".

A preliminary examination of the New King James Version shows that most of the changes fall mainly into three categories:

(1) modern equivalents for archaic expressions;

(2) replacement of world which have changed their meaning;

(3) changes for greater precision and accuracy.

In Matthew 21:31 "whether of them twain" becomes "which of the two"; in Matthew 17:25 "Jesus prevented him" becomes "Jesus anticipated him"; and in Acts 12:4 "after Easter" becomes "after Passover". Such changes are quite numerous, and might well have been made a hundred years ago, if the scholars engaged on the 19th century revision had been less preoccupied with radical changes in the Greek text.

The most noticeable change is the complete elimination of "thou", "thee", "thy", etc., and the related verbal forms, in speech addressed to God or man. To many English-speaking Christian people these are still part of their normal speech when approaching God in prayer and praise, and those who retain these forms of speech are by no means all of the older generation, or all of our race. In Africa, India and the Far East, as well as in Great Britain, the U.S.A. Canada, Australia and New Zealand, there are many thousands who will never accustom themselves to using the modern colloquial forms of speech in their prayers, or adopt an English Bible entirely in modern language. It is equally true that after thirty years or more of widespread use of many modern versions there is now a generation of English readers who are unlikely to adopt or revert to the older forms of speech in any context.

Limitations of space made it impossible to present a detailed review in this issue, but further details may be published in the [11] October Quarterly Record. The theological terms of the Authorized Version, and a very large proportion of its familiar vocabulary, have been retained. In many matters of detail, both in the body of the text, and in the eleven hundred and more subject headings, there is scope for improvement, but comment upon these must be deferred.

The Quarterly Record Trinitarian Bible Society

CALGARY

At the beginning of May Revs. William Whiteside and Frank McClelland visited Calgary in response to local requests to form a Free Presbyterian congregation there.

The visit created quite a bit of local interest and the result is that plans are now under way to establish a church in Calgary in the Fall.

Rev. William Whiteside of Kilkeel, Northern Ireland, hopes to return to head up the new work and has received Presbytery approval. The challenge is great but so are the difficulties in leaving a thriving, established Church and uprooting family to commence a pioneer work.

Mr. Whiteside will be embarking upon a series of meetings in Ulster to put the challenge of Calgary to the people and to solicit their prayer support for the venture. Do pray for him, his wife Hazel and their three sons, that the Lord would lead and guide each step of the way.

As an encouragement to the fledgling congregation the Board of Toronto Free Presbyterian Church unanimously approved a financial gift for our Calgary friends to cover the first three months rent for the minister's house.

Those living in the Calgary area who are interested in the new Church should contact Jim Warnock at (403) 288-9720. We hope to carry full details of the opening date etc. in our next issue.

DRAYTON VALLEY

For some time now, Dr. Carl Campbell has been conducting a Sunday evening service in the oil town of Drayton Valley, Alberta. It appears now that this work will be closing down and naturally we are sad at that prospect. But we are delighted that Carl, after many months of deliberation and prayer, has decided to enter full time service for the Lord.

He has applied to the Presbytery of the Free Presbyterian Church to enter the Theological Hall as a student for the Free Presbyterian ministry. His application was accepted and so Carl, Ella and their four children will be leaving Drayton Valley for Belfast, Northern Ireland where Carl will commence studies in October.

Carl and Ella would value your prayer support as they make the transition from the field of medicine to the pastorate. Although they are called to make great personal sacrifices, no doubt they will prove experimentally the truth of the Words of Christ:

"There is no man that hath left house or brethren . . . for my sake and the Gospels, but he shall receive an hundredfold now in this . . . and in the world to come eternal life "' Mark 10 v 28-30.

Pray also for the faithful remnant in the Drayton valley area. They need much grace and strength from the Lord to stand firm for the cause of Christ. Carl's departure will mean a gap in the sponsorship of our Radio Ministry in Wetaskiwin. May the Lord raise up someone to stand in the gap.

TRIBUTE TO A MODERN-DAY SAINT

I wish to speak of the calling to glory a short time ago of our dear sister Mrs. Graham.

She belonged to an (apparently) dying race [12] of saints who lived selflessly for her Lord and whose quality of spiritual life is sadly missing today.

Her conversation was never of "we" or of complaint or moan. Instead her constant, girlish, happy smile and wave of recognition inspired one.

Yet no doubt she had her troubles and trials like the rest of us.

Faithful and constant always to her church and her minister this 90+ woman was the "youngest" old lady I have ever known.

I salute and miss her.

OLIVIA M. CROCKETT

Letters regarding the Pope's visit

Letter from Humphrey Atkins

Northern Ireland Office
Stormont Castle
Belfast BT4 3ST

Rev. Dr. I. R. K. Paisley MP
The Parsonage
17 Cyprus Avenue
Belfast BT5 5NT

Dear Dr. Paisley,

There seems to have been such a welter of confusing messages and conversations yesterday about the possibility of the Pope visiting the United Kingdom that I thought it might be useful to set the record straight in a short letter.

The Prime Minister made clear yesterday that the Pope would be welcome to visit the United Kingdom but that at that stage she had had no approach from the Vatican. My own position was quite clear: if the question of the Pope visiting Northern Ireland arose, I was, of course, most willing to hear and take account of the views of all Northern Ireland's MPs both on the general issue and on the detailed arrangements.

However, the Vatican authorities have now told us that a visit by the Pope to Northern Ireland has never been contemplated. His itinerary for his forthcoming trip does not include Northern Ireland.

Yours Ever,

Humphrey Atkins

Letter from W. J. Whitewood

Dear Any Answers,

Your team castigated the Rev. Ian Paisley severely for his attitude towards the Pope, but I want to come to the defence of that courageous and stalwart Christian man. What is the point in issue? It is salvation, and salvation is about deliverance from hell-fire. The Protestant Ian Paisley knows that salvation is obtained only by faith in the atoning death and finished work of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Pope heads a non-biblical system of salvation by works. He thinks his faith is Christian and saving, but it is in fact anti-Christian and damning. Ian Paisley, praise be to the Lord, stands, for the truth. He sticks his neck out to save his compatriots from that which could take them to hell. It is on that count that he should be judged. Note to his credit that it is an Irish non-conformist who is taking the stand - not the Archbishops [13] and bishops of the Church of England who are as dumb dogs while the enemy is at their sheep. I salute the Rev. Ian Paisley. He is the foremost Christian in our land. He makes other Christians look like milksops.

Yours sincerely,

W. J. Whitewood

Independent Orange Grand Master Speaks Out

We protest against the suggested visit of Pope Paul II to Ulster. Not only will we not welcome him but we will oppose and resist every effort to have this unwelcome visitor foisted upon us. This is not a step new to Independent Orangemen, since, through the decades, we have consistently opposed Romanism, Republicanism, and weak willed Protestantism. Therefore, at this time, we merely seek to maintain our Reformation Protestant Principles and oppose any visit of "that Antichrist, that man of sin, and Son of Perdition that exalteth himself in the Church against Christ and all that is called God".

Gerry Fitt criticises Dr. Paisley for his opposition to this proposed visit, but only two years ago he, himself, opposed the Queen's visit in her Jubilee Year to a part of her own realm. Gerry thought it would inflame the opinions of the minority community. This time we're concerned with the opinions of the majority community and we are merely rejecting a foreign Head of State.

With fervency, with more determination than ever, and with old-time meaning we reiterate our watchwords, "Not and inch", and "No Surrender".

Rev. W. H. Fleming

From the Apprentice Boys of Derry

While some members of the public confuse the prevention of the Pope's visit to Northern Ireland with an infringement of Civil and Religious Liberties, The Co. Down Amalgamated would disagree and call for effective steps to be taken to make sure this event does not take place, for the following reasons.

1. The Pope is Christ's Enemy (Martin Luther)

2. The Popes have always backed any murderous campaign to extinguish the Gospel Light, this has been an unchanging policy since the inception of the Papacy, even before the Reformation.

3. Benedict 15th gave his blessing to the murderous campaign in Easter 1916.

4. The murder of 80,000 Protestants in France is still celebrated by the Pope who on that anniversary says a special mass to mark the occasion.

5. Following the putting down of the Irish Rebellion in 1918, 27 Bishops and Arch-Bishops of the Roman Catholic church signed the Sinn Fein pledge on continuing the murderous struggle against Northern Ireland.

6. The most ardent Roman Catholic country in the world (Eire) is also the one that gives sanctuary to most of the murderers of our people.

7. The Vatican State does not recognise the existence of Northern Ireland as a part of the United Kingdom.

8. A leading Catholic stated on the radio on 29th July 1979 that the Pope's visit would have no meaning except he visited Northern Ireland, for unless he did, he would in fact be recognising the Border.

9. We deplore the Baptist Pastor's statement in the Press, which was smoothing the road for the Pope. The Scripture likens such Clergy, Pastors etc., to watch-men and thinking of these we cannot but recall to mind the words in Isaiah 56: 10-1 1: "His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb dogs, they cannot bark; sleeping, lying down, loving to slumber. Yea, they are greedy dogs, which can [14] never have enough, and they are shepherds that cannot understand; they all look to their own way, every one for his gain, from his quarter".

Well can we recall Christ's own words, Matt. 7:15: "Beware of false prophets which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits".

"A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit".

Yours,
for the County Down Amalgamated

R. Brown

Jesuitical Propaganda for the Pope's Visit

The following is being circulated in R. C. areas. This is typical Jesuitical propaganda. However the Pope is not to visit Ulster simply because the Vatican dreads adverse publicity. The cancellation has nothing to do with the I.R.A. campaign.

Dear Sympathiser,

Captain has been formed by a group of well-wishers in England, with the support of Protestants, Roman Catholics and Jews. It has the backing of the League for the Defence of Democracy in All Ireland. The Campaign is strictly non-sectarian and non-political.

Our immediate object is to distribute 60,000 copies of this leaflet to people well disposed to our objects who will show a willingness to help. It is important that no Press publicity should be sought until the appropriate moment.

The problem which divides Ireland is not primarily religious, and we think this is the perfect opportunity to make the Vatican aware of this. It is a racial and cultural problem of which religious sectarianism is merely the outward and visible symbol. The television pictures every night of activists are proof of this.

The Pope is an exceptionally wise, experienced and intelligent man. But like many foreigners, and coming from a Marian country, he may mistakenly see the Irish problem in terms of Colonialism with Northern Ireland as an indefensible anachronism yet to be de-colonised. The aim of Captain is to open his eyes to this potent and fundamental misconception and to enable him to alleviate the troubles of what many still think of as the holy land of Ireland.

He may also have been inclined to draw an even more misleading analogy with Poland, seeing the Irish Roman Catholics and the Presbyterians victimised through the ages by an imperialist tyranny little better than Tsarist Russia. The comparison is fatally easy to make and ludicrously inept.

For all these reasons it is important that the Pope should come to Northern Ireland and inform himself. In the United States afterwards he will be able to choose his words with care about Northern Ireland and to show that the ancient conflict has less to do with religion than many Irish-Americans believe from the pronouncements of Mr. Moynihan and Mr. "Tip" O'Neill.

You have been chosen as a person of influence in Northern Ireland to know of our aims. The sponsors of Captain include several leading M.P.s on both sides of the House of Commons, and some former M.P.s of the standing of Mr. Paul Rose. We hope to enlist the support of some prominent Ulster [15] Unionists. Mr. Gerald Fitt is a Patron. Mrs. Margaret Thatcher has indicated that she is in favour of Captain's aims, and the movement has the pledged support of various Italian organisations in London.

You will be sent fuller details shortly, with addresses to contact. An office is being opened in Royal Avenue, Belfast to co-ordinate the efforts.

The prime aim is to encourage the Vatican to include Northern Ireland in the plans for the Pope's forthcoming visit to Dublin, Maynooth, Clonmacnoise and the Knock shrine in Mayo. The feeling is that this can best be accomplished by the efforts of people of standing like yourself. The Westminster Conference of 1648 called the Pope the "anti-Christ" and "a man of sin in the church". In taking a much broader view of the forthcoming visit we feel we shall have your sympathy and support.

The plan, still in its initial stages, is to use a Sikorsky helicopter. Ample funds for it have already been promised. The helicopter would take off from near Drogheda early on the third day of the visit, fly to a landing place Nortons Cross Roads where a motorcade would be waiting to drive His Holiness into Armagh, the Christian capital of Ireland. The visit of several hours to Armagh would include a short trip to Crossmaglen and a Mass for members of the community who had died on active service in the area. In Armagh, there would be an official reception on the Mall, with seated accommodation for 10,000 and standing room for 40,000.

The helicopter would then take the Pope across Lough Neagh to a former airfield near Coagh, where some 20,000 could be accommodated from the counties of Tyrone, Fermanagh, South Derry and Donegal.

In the afternoon, the helicopter would fly to Belfast, to Casement Park. Depending on the weather, it might be possible to use a large open area at Finaghy Road North which could hold well over 100,000 people. After an open air Mass and a reception at the City Hall in Donegal Square (the helicopter would land in open space at York Street) the Pope would leave for a brief visit to Londonderry, with a five minute stop at Dungiven.

All these arrangements are tentative and are subject to alteration, but the Northern Ireland Office has given a qualified blessing to the plan provided the talks in Dublin early in September on the visit reach agreement on the advisability of the trip north of the Border. Ulsterbus will be asked to provide as many vehicles as possible to transport the crowds to and from Coagh.

Funds are already available for an extensive publicity campaign, and Mr. Keith Kyle of "Panorama" has already been approached with a view to a special programme on September 3rd. Amnesty International is arranging to print 20,000 leaflets. Captain has been promised the support of the Young Liberal Organisation. A Press Conference is being arranged at the Regent Centre Hotel in central London.

You are asked to copy this letter ten times and send it to people you think will be interested. This request applies also to the further circular that will be sent to you. Until you receive it, please do not give the plan general publicity.

If the Pope continues as confident as he has been on previous journeys in wielding the twin powers of the papacy and of his personality, a visit to Northern Ireland on the eve of his trip to the Irish-American capital, New York, would be of enormous significance. The Americans will want to know what he thought of the condition of Roman Catholics in Northern Ireland. Through your help, you can support his appeal for understanding in the context of Christian Europe.