Over two thousand people attended the official opening of the Whitefield College of the Bible at Laurencetown last Saturday.

The large tent was packed to capacity and another 300 people watched the service on closed circuit television. Not everyone managed to see the closed circuit television, so the side wall of the tent was let down to allow a further number to see the service.

The opening ceremony was performed by Dr. Bob Jones (Chancellor of Bob Jones University, Greenville, South Carolina) U.S.A., after he had been presented with the key by Rev. Dr. Ian Paisley M.P., president of the College.

A beautiful oil painting of George Whitefield, the 18th century evangelist (after whom the College takes its name) was unveiled by Dr. Paisley. The artist was Mr., Samuel McCausland. [3]


After the offering Dr. Bob Jones preached a sermon on the things required to do a great work for God. He said God's people need the calling of God, the Grace of God, the Righteousness of God, the Word of God and the Power of God.

The service concluded with the singing of the Doxology and Benediction by Rev. David Creane.

A very sumptuous tea was served to all those present.


The College, comprising almost 30 acres, is bounded on two sides by the River Bann and on its remaining side by a wall. The location is near Gilford.

On the site stands a large and impressive dwelling which is between five and six thousand square feet in total floor space. With a commanding view of the river, whose far bank rises to high ground and is delightfully wooded, the new College is secluded and will possess an atmosphere conducive to study.

Approximately ten acres are expertly laid out in terraced lawns and shrubs. There is a separate enclosed rose garden which also includes a green house and orchard. The high wall surrounding this extremely beautiful garden creates a sense of exclusiveness and focuses attention on an area which, when in bloom, provides a perfect setting for outdoor studies.

Further away from the house, the forestation programme completed a few years ago now shows a sturdy growth of young conifers standing in some five acres, principally banking the river and the road which winds through the grounds. The remaining acreage consists of arable land with a hay shed for agricultural use.

A neat and attractive gate lodge, presently let, also belongs to the property.

At the rear of the house a spacious surfaced courtyard gives access to three garages, several stables and a store.


A mural of the College coat of arms by Miss Rhonda Paisley (daughter of Dr. Paisley and graduate of Bob Jones University) was unveiled by Dr. Bob Jones.

After the opening ceremony and presentations the service in the tent began with the singing of Psalm 84. Prayer was offered by Rev. S. B. Cooke, deputy Moderator of the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster. [4]

The scripture reading was taken by Rev. David Mcliveen, the college registrar, and after the singing of the hymn "O for a thousand tongues to sing," the principal, Rev. John Douglas, made the announcements and welcomed those who had come to this special historic occasion. Mr. Douglas gave a special welcome to the guests of honour.

Items of praise were rendered by the College choir.


Dr. Paisley then gave the address on 2nd Kings, chapter 6. He spoke about the early days of the Free Presbyterian Church and of the Lord's blessing upon it even to this very day. He also told of the faithful stand of the Free Presbyterian Church against the World Council of Churches and the Ecumenical Movement.

Referring to the scripture passage, Dr. Paisley drew a parallel to the present day and said that just as the school of prophets in Elisha's day had outgrown their accommodation so the Whitefield College had outgrown its previous accommodation. God had given the Free Presbyterian Church a world-wide vision and now through the Whitefield College "we can train our young men and women to do the work of evangelism."

Dr. Paisley said that the graduation class of students had "found doors of service open to them, and we could praise the Lord for sending forth labourers into His work."

The special offering came close to 8,500.

Banbridge Chronicle 8/10/81.


A large crowd of over 2,000 attended the official opening service of the 170,000 Whitefield College of The Bible at Banbridge Road, Gilford on Saturday afternoon.

Dr. Bob Jones, Chancellor of Bob Jones' University, South Carolina, U.S.A., performed the opening ceremony, after being presented with the key by Rev. Dr. Ian Paisley, President of the College.

A mural of the college crest was unveiled by Miss Rhonda Paisley, daughter of Dr. Paisley, and a painting of George Whitfield, the 18th century evangelist, was presented by the artist Mr. Samuel McCausland.

The opening service was held in a large tent on the College grounds, with the overflow congregation watching the service on closed circuit television. [5]

The service opened with the singing of Psalm 84 and prayer was offered by Rev. S. B. Cooke, Deputy Moderator of the Church.

The scriptures were read by Rev. David Mcilveen, Registrar of the College. After the singing of the hymn "O for a thousand tongues to sing", Rev. John Douglas, College Principal, made the announcements and gave a special welcome to everyone present, especially Dr. Bob Jones.

Dr. I. Paisley preached a sermon from 11 Kings 6 "The place where we do dwell with Thee is too strait for us".

Dr. Paisley spoke of the early beginnings of the work in the Free Presbyterian Church and the world-wide Missionary programme they were called to engage in. He said that just as the school of the prophets in Elisha's day had outgrown their accommodation so God had blessed the Whitefield College and their number of students.

After musical items rendered by the College Choir, Dr. Bob Jones preached a sermon concerning the things required in the work of God - The calling of God, the grace of God, the Word of God, the Righteousness of God and the power of God.

After singing the doxology the benediction was pronounced by Rev. David Creane. The opening offering came to almost 8,500.

Tea was later served to all who attended the service.

Whitefield College Grounds

The grounds of Whitefield College of The Bible comprising almost 30 acres is bounded on two sides by the River Bann and on its remaining side by a wall. The location is near Gilford. On the site stands a large dwelling which must be between five and six thousand square feet in total floor space. With a commanding view of the river whose far bank rises to high ground is delightfully wooded, the new College is secluded and will possess an atmosphere conductive to study.

Approximately 10 acres are expertly laid out in terraced lawns and shrubs. There is a separate enclosed rose garden which also includes a greenhouse and orchard. The high wall surrounding this extremely beautiful garden creates a sense of exclusiveness and focuses attention on an area which, when in bloom, provides a perfect setting for outdoor study.

Further away from the house the forestation programme completed a few years ago now shows a sturdy growth of young conifers standing in some five acres, principally banking the river and the road which winds through the grounds. The remaining acreage consists of arable land with a hayshed for agricultural use. A neat and attractive gate lodge, presently let, also belongs to the property. At the rear of the house a spacious courtyard gives access to the three garages, several stables and a store.

The Leader 8/10/81


The new Whitefield College of the Bible at Laurencetown, Gilford, which will be used by the Free Presbyterian Church as a theological college for its ministerial and missionary students was opened on Saturday.

The collection at the service, for the funds towards the purchase of the college and 30 acre site, amounted to 8,500. [7]

Some 2,000 people from all over the province attended the service and the overflow congregation in a large tent was accommodated in other buildings.

The new college was opened by Dr. Bob Jones, Chancellor of the Bob Jones University in South Carolina.

A portrait of the famous preacher, George Whitefield was unveiled - it was painted by Samuel McCausland, a member of the Bethany Free Presbyterian congregation, Portadown.


A mural bearing the coat-of-arms of the new college was also displayed, and it was drawn by Rhonda Paisley, daughter of the Rev. Ian Paisley, she is a graduate of the Bob Jones University.

The new College choir, consisting of about 20 of the students who are graduating, and another 20 who are starting their studies this week, rendered a number of special items.

Mr. Paisley, in his address, referred to the great need for the new college as the existing premises in Cyprus Avenue, Belfast, were now too small.

The Rev. John Douglas, principal of the new college, also spoke, and thanked the many people who helped make the day a success.

Portadown News & Craigavon Times 9/10/81.


Students preparing to take the gospel message to the hot gusty lands of Africa will be studying for their challenge in the idyllic surroundings of a 30-acre estate by the banks of the River Bann.

The students will be those studying at the new Whitefield College of the Bible, which opens its doors in September.

Formerly known as Laurencetown House, the new college stands in magnificent parkland, with gardens, shrubs and trees, rolling down to the Bann, a few miles from Gilford.

The Edwardian mansion is being converted to suit the needs of the College, which will be run by the Free Presbyterian Church, and it is also planned to provide a big new lecture hall in the grounds of the College.

Most of the 19 students attending in September will be residential, and they will include some from the United States and other parts of Britain.

Not all will be Free Presbyterian, as the principal of the college, the Rev. John Douglas, pointed out, but theological students for the ministry of [8] that church, attending the Belfast college, will be able to take advantage of the facilities at the Whitefield College.


The Whitefield College course extends over two years, and Mr. Douglas will have 10 lectures, teaching a variety of subjects, including English, church history, New Testament Greek, Bible survey and Hermeneutics - the science of Bible interpretation.

There is a full time resident matron, Miss M. E. Dennison, and the staff includes a secretary, a cook and assistant cook.

Most of the students, both boys and girls, will be in their teens and early twenties, and they will be training as missionaries or Christian workers. Previously, many of them would have had to attend college across the water, and Mr. Douglas believes that the central location of the Whitefield college will make it attractive for students from most parts of Northern Ireland.

The House, formerly the home of the Wilson family, is in excellent condition, and renovations have been carried out this summer to serve the needs of the new college. Some rooms have been transformed into lecture halls, dormitories, staffrooms, and offices, but the basic character of the house has been retained.


Period furniture and fittings - much of it provided in gifts from Free Presbyterian congregations - add to the atmosphere and it would be difficult to envisage a more relaxing place of learning.

For those who. enjoy a walk in rural surroundings, the gardens and parkland are ideal, and of course the river Bann, which skirts the estate, is another big asset.

After students have completed their course, they will prepare a thesis, and sit an examination in the hope of earning diplomas, and Mr. Douglas is confident it will soon make its mark on the community.

Mr. Douglas, who is minister of Lisburn Free congregation, is 47, married, with six children, and he will be combining his administrative role of principal, with that of lecturing, mainly in Hermeneutics, and also in introductory Greek and Hebrew.

The purchase of the mansion and estate, and the conversion into a Bible college represents a considerable outlay for the Free Presbyterian Church, but Mr. Douglas is confident the congregations will provide the money to pay off the debt on the building and also the running costs.

One other thing he is very grateful for is the amount of voluntary labour provided by friends of the church with a knowledge of gardening in helping to maintain the beautiful gardens.

Portadown News

Memorial Service to Miss Margaret Armstrong . . . Missionary Who Chose God's Way Without Question

A largely attended memorial service was held in Armagh Free Presbyterian Church on Thursday night last week in memory of the late Miss Margaret Armstrong, formerly of Deans Hill, Armagh, who devoted her life to the missionary work of the Gospel.

Moderator of the Free Presbyterian Church in Ireland, Rev. Dr. I. R. K. Paisley, was the guest speaker at the service with the church's own minister, Rev. S. B. Cooke, and Mr. Laurie Darmanin of Southampton, officiating.

The service opened with the singing of the 23rd Psalm after which Mr. Cooke led the congregation in prayer. The second hymn, "I love Thee my Jesus, I know Thou art mine", was one of Miss Armstrong's favourite hymns which was sung at the funeral service in Southampton.

Mr. Cooke then welcomed the many visitors from the neighbouring churches, especially Miss Armstrong's mother and immediate family who had gathered together to remember Margaret Armstrong, the missionary, who had devoted so much of her life to teaching others the Gospel.

The collection was taken up for the work of the Missionary Council in which she had been involved.


Mr. Laurie Darmanin, who had been closely involved with Miss Armstrong in her work, while she lived in England, related how she had helped him in his little biblical book-shop and how she had gathered the children together on Sunday mornings in Springroad Evangelical Church. He also pointed out how she had lived her life singly, to carry out the work of God, in the very depth of darkest Africa, eating and living with the African people.

Miss Armstrong had a great desire to spread the Gospel to children whom she met each Sunday evening at a site one-and-a-half miles from her church at a block of flats in a tough neighbour[20]hood. She gathered the children together to teach them the Word of God. Miss Armstrong's last days were spent worshipping the Lord and the last words she probably ever spoke were: "It was good news, so very good news."

The large congregation then joined in singing "Forever with the Lord, Amen, so let it be," a very appropriate hymn outlining the work of God in preparing a new life after death.


Dr. Paisley took as his text, Acts. 20, v. 24, which deals with the testimony of another great Missionary, St. Paul, who spent so much of his life administering the Word of the Lord to the people. The first lesson we learn from this verse is that there is a course prescribed for us all and it is the will of God that we might finish that course. It should be our highest objective and joy in completing the course of God's will. Many Christians often find excuses when it comes to beginning a new course of life, and this is a sinful circumstance.


Miss Armstrong 'pleaded no excuses', even in severe illness, from serving God with all her strength and joy. She had been so devoted to her work that she chose her last resting place very close to where the children met each Sunday evening. She had been a saint in the New Testament sense; when she came to love the Lord she took on a new beginning in life.

One wonders why she chose a life of hardship and illness. She knew God had chosen her for this course and she understood that the ways of God are mysterious but never questioned these ways; instead she continued to obey her Lord.


Miss Armstrong never spoke about her hardships but, like St. Paul, she fulfilled her course to the end, noting Paul's words - "I have fought a good fight, I have finished the course."

Time is assigned to each of us; it may be a long life, a long innings or maybe a short time to dwell on this earth. God never mentions death in terms of years, only in days and months for man is but days away from death, said Dr. Paisley. [11]

Miss Armstrong spent twenty years of her life in Africa where she saw how the roads of ecumenism were attempting to bring us back into the priesthood and popery of the world. She knew she had to do something about this and she did. She devoted her life to run the race which the Lord had prepared for her, continued the speaker.

Miss Armstrong heard the voice of the Lord and she replied: "Where He will lead me I will go." It meant leaving the Church of her father and it meant carrying her own cross. She knew God would guide her, defend and protect her, from the charms and temptations of this world.

Like that great missionary, Paul, she had to endure afflictions but counted them as small afflictions. The thought of finishing her course was her only joy; she finished her course in a hospital bed in Southampton," ended Dr. Paisley.

The service was brought to a close by the congregation joining together in praise for the Lord.

A sermon by Rev. Dr. Ian R. K. Paisley, M.P.

The fourth chapter of the Book of Genesis and at the verse 10, "And God said, What hast thou done? The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground".

I am not going to discourse this morning upon the sin of murder. This text of Scripture has its setting in the first murder scene, where Cain, the first generated man, the first man born of human parents, lifted his knife and struck it home to the heart of Abel his brother, and the blood of Abel fell to the earth and he died a martyr to his faith in God and his faith in the religion of substitutionary sacrifice. I am taking this text this morning in a completely different setting. I want to deal with bloodguiltiness as far as souls are concerned.

You will have noticed in our reading that the great apostle said that he was clear of their blood. Psalm 52, the Psalmist David said, "Deliver me from bloodguiltiness". These Scriptures are not referring to the natural blood of men slain and murdered. They are to do with the death of immortal souls, and the total and absolute failure of God's people to discharge their duties in service for Christ and in the winning of the lost to the Blessed Son of God. [12]

God has put upon me a tremendous burden in these past days. I don't know when in my ministry I have carried such a heavy burden before the Lord. I believe that we are not going to see, except we have a wonderful Divine intervention, a great many of the present generation won for Christ. I must, of course, hedge that statement about carefully and I must say that we must strain every effort, we must do everything we can to win this present generation to the Lord, but there is one thing we can do and there is one thing within our reach, humanly speaking, and that is we can win the next generation to Jesus Christ. The men and women of our day are going to be hard to reach and hard to win, but the boys and girls - the men and women of tomorrow have eager hearts and listening ears, and, thank God, are interested in hearing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and I believe that we have got to take up this challenge as a church, and I want to impress upon every church member in this church, with no exceptions, that you have a solemn and serious responsibility.

There are three things in this text. First of all there is the voice which must be heard. This is a speaking text. 'The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground' - The voice which must be heard. Secondly, there is the blood which must be faced. 'The voice of thy brother's blood' - The blood that must be faced. Lastly, there is the question which must be answered - "What hast thou done?" I want to discuss with you the voice that must be heard; the blood that must be faced, and the question that must be answered.

I got in touch with the appropriate Government Authority this week to find out how many children we have in Northern Ireland under 14 years of age. There are 413,437. I want these numbers to sink into your heart - 413,437. In Belfast there are 137,812. While I have a vision for the whole of Northern Ireland, I want to concentrate my attention on the 137,812.

I have been making a rough calculation of all the Sabbath Schools and Children's Meetings that the Free Presbyterian Church of Ulster have, and in this city we would be fortunate if we cover the 812. That leaves 137,000. Speaking generously there may be of that 137,000, 15,000 to 20,000 boys and girls who attend a Sunday School where the Bible is taught. That means there are 100,000 boys and girls in Belfast who never hear the Word of God and never hear the Gospel of Christ, and I tell you, today, whether you like it or not, their voice must be heard, and I want to tell you, God hears their voice. 'The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground'.


In the silence last night I asked myself, what does that voice speak? I will tell you what that voice speaks. The voice of the boys and girls of our generation say, "O, God, we have been born in a violent age. We have [13] been born in an age when our society is torn with strife. We have been born in an age when murder is an every day occurrence. We have been born in an age when life is little thought of and cared for". That is the cry that goes up from the boys and girls. That is the voice that God Almighty hears in the highest Heaven.

What else does that voice say? "Oh God we have been born in a sinful age. Our parents never had to face the temptations that we have to face. Our parents were not introduced so early to the great corrupting sins of men and women that we have been introduced to". The voice of boys and girls, 100,000 of them, rising to high Heaven today and saying, "Oh, God, we have been born in a violent age. We have been born in a sinful age. We have been born in a drinking age". The curse of booze and drink never was as accursed as it is today. Not only do we have pubs doing a roaring trade, but at this very hour in this city there are hundreds of clubs in business to damn men and women with accursed drink. These children raise a cry. They say, "Oh, God, I have a drunken father. I have a drunken mother. I have drunken relations and brothers and sisters, I live in an age of drinking".

What else does that voice say? There is a voice from the boys and girls in this city and it says, "Oh, God, we live in a blaspheming age. The first time I heard Your Name, O, God, I heard it in a curse. The first time Your Son was mentioned, I heard it in rude and awful and vile blasphemy. My first introduction to Your Person and Your Name was one of blasphemy". One has only to walk around the streets of this city, and one has only to listen to the conversation of men - men in business, men at work, at their bench, women in the home and on the media, and the whole age is polluted with blasphemy, blasphemers of God. "I was born in an age of blasphemy".

What else does this voice of the children say to God? "Oh, God, I have been born in an unclean age. Early in my days I have been introduced to perversion, to uncleanness, to habits that are filthy, to a way of life that is corrupt, and my young life is corrupted because of the atmosphere and the conditioning of this age". I could go on and I could mention the characteristics of this age in its corruption, but I will tell you what that voice is saying this morning, and you better hear it and I better hear it, you know what it is saying? It is saying, "Oh, God, I live in a city where there are hundreds of born again Christians. I live in a city where there is the Martyrs Memorial Free Presbyterian Church. (And on our books we have 700 saved people - Communicant members). I live in a city where there are men and women who know Christ and love Christ, and Oh, God, (that voice says) they are doing nothing to win me from an age of corruption, an age of booze, an age of drink, an age of sacrilege, an age of blasphemy, an age of gambling". That is what the voice is saying, and you better hear it. "They have privileges, they have a great house, they have gospel preaching, they have comfort on a Sunday morning. They have a [14] good pew to sit on, and carpet beneath their feet, but oh, God, they are not looking and searching and praying for me". The little child's prayer is reaching Heaven this morning. You know what it is saying? It is saying, "Take away their privileges. They are not worthy of them. Take away their church. They are not worthy of it. Take away their gospel preaching, they are not worthy of it. Take away their comforts, they are not worthy of them. Take away their peace of mind, they are not worthy of it". One hundred thousand souls a day are passing one by one away, in Christless guilt and doom! What are we doing? A voice which must be heard!

Brethren and sisters, I have heard that voice and I intend to do something about it.

My friend we have a job to do and we better do it. What better are we than a modernistic church? What better are we than an apostate church? What better are we than a World Council of Churches Church if we haven't a vision, if we haven't a burden, if we haven't tears for lost souls and a heart for boys and girls that will be polluted?

I was at the Crumlin Road Prison this morning. I looked over a great crowd of men, the place was filled, and as I looked at them I thought of them as little boys if they had been taught right, if they had been won for Christ they would never have been there. I was talking to a fellow there and I asked him, "What are you in for?" He said, "I am in for two murders". Two murders - an indictment upon the Christian church, an indictment upon God's people. Thank God the little group is growing. I remember when there were only three saved there. Today we have sixteen around the Table of the Lord, this morning, - sixteen men really saved from the depths of sin. Man, to hear one of those men returning thanks today for the cup, it went through my heart like a flash of joy as he prayed that God had washed him in the Blood and set him free, and prayed for the men that sat round him that God would have mercy upon them and save them. I said, Thank God for the, mighty Majestic and Glorious Grace of God!

Let me say to you friend, God is saying, "What hast thou done?" "Lord, I have done nothing. I have just come to God's house on Sunday morning, and come sometimes on Sunday evening, and that is my Christianity. I have never been in a Wednesday night prayer meeting. (We had a crowd on Wednesday night almost as large as we have here this morning.) I have never been there. I have never even thought about coming on a Wednesday night. I have never offered myself and my car to bring people. I go home on Sunday and have a good meal and put up my feet and have a wee snooze". (That will do you no harm. There is plenty of time to snooze after meals, and then get out to work for the Lord. Plenty of time).

My friend, God wants us to do something, I wonder will this Church rise to this challenge today? I wonder will men and women in this house today say, "Lord, I admit I have done nothing". There are people in this Church who come from outlying areas, did you ever think of asking God should you have a Sunday School for the children of your area in that district [15] where you live? If you come and tell me that God is speaking to you and putting that in your heart, we will get you workers to help you. We will do everything we can if God's people respond to help you. Don't just pass them by with your car on Sunday morning and think you have no responsibility to them. Please remember that God is saying, "What hast thou done?"

I confess myself before God, upon my knees I make confession that I have not seen the vision of these children the way I ought to have. I think too that there is another matter that we would need to consider, and that is getting more children out to both our morning and evening services, because "The entrance of God's Word giveth light, It giveth understanding to the simple". What have we done? Perhaps we can't get their parents, but we can get them.

A young boy came to Christ in this house a few months ago, He brought his dad by the hand a few weeks afterwards, and his dad came to Christ. He brought his sister, and his sister came to Christ. It all started with one lad prepared to bring a soul to Jesus. "Andrew found Peter". (What a catch!) "and he brought him to Jesus". "What hast thou done?"

We cannot do this without money. Our buses are not enough. We need more of them. I have had an appeal from two areas this week, "if we only had a minibus we would drive it. We could bring more children to hear the Gospel".


Let me say, secondly, there is blood which must be faced. Out of the skirt of our garment, if we would screw it, there runs today a stream of blood. What is it? It is the blood of the children of this generation. If these children didn't want the Gospel we perhaps would have some excuse. If these children would not attend the Gospel service, we perhaps would have some excuse. But these children are eager; these children are willing; these children run to the bus that brings them to the service. It is a long time since you saw grown-ups running for a bus to a Gospel service. It is a long time since Christians ran for a bus to a Gospel service, but these children, they run, they want to be there. An indictment on this church!

Last Friday night our Children's Meeting was packed to capacity. You know what we needed? We needed workers and we didn't have them. We needed grown-up believers, mothers and fathers to sit among them and we didn't have them. "Oh, God, we are running to the bus to go to the Children's Meeting. We are getting out of bed early on Sunday morning to attend the Sunday School, when God's people are sleeping, and they won't take time to sit amongst us so that we might hear the Gospel". I tell you, friend, there is blood that you and I have got to face this morning. There is blood that we have got to face! [16-17 PHOTOGRAPH OF OPENING OF WHITEFIELD COLLEGE; 18]

Out there in Finaghy we have started our first Outreach Sunday School. Thank God for the young people of this Church who get out of bed early on a Sunday morning, led by our brother Noel Stevenson our Children's Evangelist, and they go out to that little Hall which has been put at our disposal and paid for by one of our members, and they gather in the children at half past ten. Some 40 to 50 young children and they are eager to come. They are up waiting to come. They want to come. That Hall, I suppose, would hold 150 children. I am looking for the day when it will be packed out completely with boys and girls that are going to hear, some of them for the very first time, the true message of the Gospel. I have a vision of 100 such Sunday Schools in this city. I have a vision of 100 such outreaches from this Church. I have a vision of a real evangelistic drive to win this generation, of boys and girls that are coming up, for Jesus Christ, for one day their blood will be required at my hands and at your hands.


There is no use me preaching along this line if I am not prepared to come and answer the question, "What hast thou done?" What have we done? We have done little to bring these children to Christ. We could do more, number one, for our own Sabbath School.

You know, you have a car, sir, and you could use it every Sunday afternoon to ferry boys and girls to God's house. Did you ever think about doing it? We can give you areas where you can pack your car and bring them to God's house. Lack of transport last Friday night kept a whole busful of boys and girls from being at our Children's Meeting. Perhaps some little laddie didn't get on the bus and perhaps this week he will be in God's Eternity, and the chance he had of getting to Christ and being saved he didn't get because God's people were apathetic. Yes!

Let me say something, I want God's people to take this message, not from me, but from the Lord, and I want you to go home and ask God, What He would have you to do, and I will tell you one thing He wouldn't have you to do and that is to sit and do nothing. He wouldn't have you just to carry on the way you have been carrying on.

I can get Halls across this city with no problem, but I can't get workers to do these Sunday Schools. When you talk to some of God's people they say, "Me get up at a quarter past ten on Sunday to go out with my car to get children to the Sunday School". I want to tell you friend, those children's souls will flock around your death-bed and they will point their finger at you as you lie dying, and they will say, "There is a man that would do nothing, there is a woman that would do nothing about my soul". At the great judgment day their blood God will require at our hands!




The sort of Church with which Irish Presbyterians fellowship

The Irish Presbyterian Church has recently hosted in Belfast the World Presbyterian Alliance of Reformed Churches. An example of the apostasy of this Organisation is demonstrated by the following searchlight on the Annual General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church in America. This is the sort of Church which Irish Presbyterians are forced to fellowship with as a result of their membership of the ecumenical movement.

Leaving the WCC is not enough. All ecumenical organisations and churches must be shunned if there is to be full obedience to the word of God.


If these words shock you, perhaps you can understand why a controversy of major proportions has existed among United Presbyterians the past two years. It was on March 20, 1979, that the question, "IS JESUS GOD?" was asked by the National Capital Union Presbytery during its theological examination of Rev. Mansfield Kaseman who had applied to be received and installed as a UPC pastor. Kaseman's answer, "NO, GOD IS GOD," touched off a furore within the UPC which has grown in intensity ever since. For, in spite of his flat denial of the Deity of Jesus Christ, Kaseman was approved for reception by a very substantial majority vote of that presbytery. The Bible-believing minority which voted against Kaseman's reception was shocked and outraged, not only by his denial of the Deity of Jesus Christ, Kaseman was approved for reception by a very substantial majority vote of that presbytery. The Bible-believing minority which voted against Kaseman's reception was shocked and outraged, not only by his denial of the Deity of Jesus Christ, but by his denial of other basic doctrines of the Christian Faith as well. They appealed to the synod to overturn the presbytery's decision. When the synod declined to intervene, the matter was appealed to the synod's permanent Judicial Commission. On the basis of technicalities, the commission ordered the presbytery to conduct a second examination. This was done but the results were almost identical.


Once again, the Bible-believing minority sought redress through the established channels of the UPC. This time, the Permanent Judicial Commission of the General Assembly, the highest court of United Presbyterianism, handed down a decision which fully vindicated Kaseman and the liberal majority of the National Capital Union Presbytery. The protesting minority then issued the following statement:

The highest tribunal of the United Presbyterian Church, the permanent Judicial Commission of the General Assembly, has rendered a decision that has legitimatized apostasy. We understand apostasy to be a denial of basic Christian beliefs. The complainants demonstrated to the Permanent Judicial Commissions of the Synod of the Piedmont and the General Assembly that the Rev. Mansfield Kaseman effectively denied four essential doctrines of the Christian faith: the Deity of Jesus Christ, His vicarious atonement, the sinless nature of Christ, and His bodily resurrection. The January 26, 1981, decision sustained the action of March 20, 1979, of National Capital Union Presbytery in receiving a person as a minister who failed to affirm essential Christianity. The Permanent Judicial Commission place too much reliance on a presbytery. It failed to recognize the extraordinary reason of apostasy demanded the reversal of the judgment of the National Capital Union Presbytery. We call upon members, ministers, and judicatories to review the facts and issues that resulted in this historic decision. If this verdict stands unchallenged the Denomination has departed from her Lord. We urge every member to join in an effort that will reverse the effects of this decision and turn back apostasy. We regard the 1981 General Assembly as the court of last resort. [29]

When the 193rd General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church convened in Houston, Texas, May 20-28, 1981, it proved to be a "court of last resort" on several important issues - issues over which more than fifty congregations had withdrawn from the UPC during the previous year. The UPC was clearly a church in turmoil. Everyone agreed that it appeared to be a time of real crisis! At least four major issues demanded immediate attention. These were:

    1. How to resolve the controversy over the doctrine of the Deity of Christ.
    2. How to deal with continuing dissatisfaction over the mandate requiring women elders in every congregation.
    3. Finalizing action to prevent seceding UPC churches from taking their church property with them.
    4. Consideration of final steps toward merger with the Presbyterian Church in the U.S. (Southern Presbyterians).


The Assembly had not been in session long before it became obvious that the UPC liberal leadership had already made some hard line decisions concerning items 2, 3 and 4. And they had prepared an "AFFIRMATION CONCERNING THE DEITY AND HUMANITY OF JESUS CHRIST" which was cleverly designed to include just enough evangelical terminology to attract the conservatives while at the same time being broad enough and sufficiently lacking in specificity to revive liberal support. At the close of the Assembly, it was clear that the liberal position had prevailed on all four major issues.

There is to be no relaxing of the mandate requiring women elders in every UPC congregation. Finalized action now legally prevents any future seceding UPC congregation from retaining their own church property. Plans for reunion with the Southern Presbyterians continue on schedule in spite of the fact that it is freely admitted that there will probably be further membership losses in both groups. And, the "AFFIRMATION CONCERNING THE DEITY AND HUMANITY OF JESUS CHRIST" - a masterpiece of liberal linguistic subterfuge - was adopted with only four negative votes. The liberals were delighted. The conservatives were deceived!


Most headlines read something like this: "Presbyterians Affirm Deity of Christ." Dr. William P. Thompson, Stated Clerk of the United Presbyterian Church, said to the assembly delegates:

You have said resoundingly that the United Presbyterian Church adheres to the theological position which this church has had for more than two hundred years. And you have said that those who have attempted to circulate rumors to the contrary that they are just plain wrong.

That is certainly the way UPC liberals wanted it to appear. Exactly the opposite is true. The floor debate on the affirmation was devastatingly revealing to anyone familiar with the way in which today's liberals misuse evangelical terminology to hide their unbelief. In order to properly evaluate the real significance of all the actions taken by the UPC in Houston, it is essential to recognize the great changes which have taken place in Presbyterianism these last 250 years. [30]


Unlike several other denominations which claim to have no creed but Christ or no creed but the Bible, Presbyterians have always claimed to be a confessional church. The Westminster Confession of Faith and the Larger and Shorter Catechisms, adopted in 1729, set forth their doctrinal positions in great detail. In 1797, the Scripture references (or proof texts) were added to and printed with each section of the Westminster Confession and the catechisms. These early Presbyterians wanted to be as definite, explicit and clear as possible. They wanted everyone to know what they believed and why they believed it!


This question is almost impossible to answer because, although the United Presbyterian Church still claims to be a confessional church, actually it is a pluralistic church - a church where various degrees of belief and unbelief are not only tolerated but welcomed! Instead of one confession of faith, they now have nine, including The Confession of 1967 which was the product of liberal and neo-orthodox scholarship. This latter confession, while claiming to be a re-affirmation and restatement of historic Christian and Presbyterian doctrinal beliefs, is actually a vivid example of how false teachers use feigned words to deceive. The Westminster Confession of Faith is conveniently relegated to the reference shelf rather than its historic use as a standard expression of Presbyterian beliefs. With this change, applicants for ordination in the UPC were no longer asked to receive and adopt the Westminster Confession of Faith but only to be "under the authority of the Scriptures, and under the continuing instruction and guidance of the Confessions (note the plural) of this church." Unlike their Presbyterian forebears who were strong defenders Of the faith, today's United Presbyterians have become diluters of the faith. Instead of explicit truth, abstract generality is the order of the day. Perhaps most dangerous of all is the fact that words with deep Scriptural and historic meaning have been so radically re-defined that a complete twisting of Scripture is made possible. These forms of liberal deception must be kept in mind in correctly evaluating the Houston Affirmation.


The following is the complete text of the "AFFIRMATION CONCERNING THE DEITY AND HUMANITY OF JESUS CHRIST" which was adopted with only four negative votes by the 193rd General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church in Houston:

We believe that God came to redeem this world of lost children, and to open the way to eternal life, through the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. This Jesus who is one with us in our common humanity is one with God as the incarnation of the second Person of the Trinity. Therefore, we confess hat Jesus is one Person, truly God and truly human. This mystery of God's grace in Jesus Christ, which can be experienced and proclaimed, but never fully explained, is what ties Christians together in common faith and life across the centuries. Believing this Affirmation to be in accord with the Confessions of the Church, the 193rd General Assembly of the United Presbyterian Church in the USA (1981) makes this Statement in the light of recent events which have focused attention on the way in which our Church understands Jesus Christ. [31]


There was considerable apprehension on the part of the UPC leadership as to just how this Affirmation would be received by the General Assembly. Would it be broad enough to suit the liberals? strong enough to suit the evangelicals? In presenting the proposed text of the Affirmation, the chairman of the drafting committee obviously sought to defuse in advance any harsh reception on either side of the theological fence. He explained, "THIS IS NOT A NEW CONFESSION. IT IS A RE-AFFIRMATION OF OUR FAITH. IT IS NOT CARVED IN STONE, BUT WRITTEN ON PAPER TO BE SENT TO THE CHURCHES."


This very brief Affirmation suited the liberals to a "T". It gave them a splendid opportunity to publicly proclaim their orthodoxy without surrendering one iota of their liberalism. As noted earlier in this report, liberals have thoroughly redefined the meanings of so many Scriptural and theological words that they are now able to promote liberalism even while professing orthodoxy. Through perverted semantics they make the Word of God of none effect. Mansfield Kaseman, whose outright denial of the Deity of Christ under explicit questioning initiated the present controversy, did not attend the General Assembly in Houston. But when contacted at his home by phone following passage of the Affirmation, he was reported to have said, "It sounds good to me." The duplicity of liberals is a sight to behold!


Evangelicals were at first pleasantly surprised and pleased by the wording of the Affirmation, especially the expression ". . . . we confess that Jesus is one Person, truly God and truly human . . ." Surely this should serve to re-affirm the historic Presbyterian belief in the Deity and humanity of Jesus Christ! But careful reflection upon the entire statement brought the realization that at least three key words were missing in the opening sentence which referred to the life, death and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. So, they proposed an amendment which would insert the word SINLESS before life; ATONING before death; and BODILY before resurrection. The amended statement would then refer to the SINLESS LIFE, ATONING DEATH AND BODILY RESURRECTION of Jesus of Nazareth. Could any Christian - could any United Presbyterian - possibly object to the addition of these three words in a statement affirming the Deity of Christ? After all, if Jesus Christ did not live a sinless life, He was not God. If His death was not an atoning death, we are yet in our sins. If His resurrection 'was not a bodily resurrection, then the Bible is not true and the Blessed Hope of the believer becomes a giant hoax. Yet, the proposed amendment was soundly defeated and the SINLESS LIFE, ATONING DEATH AND BODILY R ESURRECTION of Christ were later officially referred to as "theological concepts" to be further explored rather than Biblical truths to be believed and taught. Evangelicals were completely out-manoeuvred and the UPC now has an affirmation which everyone can sign and interpret in their own way.