Heresy or Truth, Which?

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Different religious bodies have their own particular interpretation of what is truth and what is heresy, but unfortunately they judge other peoples beliefs strictly upon the basis of their own, which they affirm is the one and only basis of truth. What amazes me most is their entire ignorance of the teachings of the people they call Heretics. They charge such with believing certain doctrines, when the truth of the matter is that such doctrines are not believed or taught by them. There is a good example of this in Islip Collyer's little book "The Meaning of Sacrifice" where he says, "If I ask them (his Christadelphian brethren) what is meant by the Clean Flesh Heresy, I am given an explanation that is promptly repudiated by those who are supposed to believe it."

I have often wondered why Christadelphians have not taken the advice hinted at by Brother Collyer's words. It may be because dogmatism is blind or it may be because their dogmatism makes them see no other way than to condemn the "other fellow" unheard. Another reason is summed up in one word - bias. When Edward Turney delivered his address on "The Sacrifice of Christ" at the Temperance Hall, Birmingham in 1873, Brother Roberts was present and frequently interrupted Brother Turney. Brother Turney tolerated the interruptions for a long time patiently, then decided to retaliate; but he could only retaliate in a few words at that time because his business was to deliver his address, but those few words were the groundwork of the bias that has existed in the minds of Christadelphians ever since; so much so that the generations of Christadelphians since that time have been kept in ignorance of the true teachings of supposed heretics.

Let me quote the few words of Brother Turney. After stating a few false accusations made by Brother Roberts, Brother Turney said:- "The truth is, brethren, that I have been the party ever ready to meet Mr Roberts on anything like fair terms," "time and time (platform debate procedure), but he would not, for reasons best known to himself."

It was obvious to Brother Turney what those reasons were. He well knew that Brother Roberts could not misrepresent his statements to a listening audience in debate. Brother Turney also knew that he (Brother Roberts) could more easily blind the eyes of his brethren with the pen. Well did our late Brother A.L.Wilson state that Brother Roberts could "dazzle the eyes of an owl."

This is exactly what did happen. R.Roberts thought that he could accomplish more towards cementing his brethren to the Birmingham statement of faith by writing in opposition to Brother Turney's address than by risking a clash on the platform, hence he wrote "The Slain Lamb."

"The Slain Lamb" accomplished its purpose by blinding the brethren, and even today it is a misrepresentation of Brother Turney's address.

It is not my intention in this booklet to deal with "The Slain Lamb" as I already have written a "Review of The Slain Lamb" (*) which can be had gratis on application. My mention of the above is to exhibit the bias that has prevailed for so long, yea, even at the expense of discouraging search for truth.

When I became a Christadelphian some years ago I often heard brethren speak of "Clean Flesh Heretics," "Immortal Emergence Heretics" etc., etc. Being inquisitive I asked one of the eminent brethren of the ecclesia what these "Clean Flesh Heretics" believed. He replied, "They believe that Jesus was of a different kind of flesh than ourselves."

Some years later, having found out what these supposed heretics believed, I spoke to this Brother and he told me that "I couldn't tell him anything about the Teddy Turney theory." I later wrote him, showing by his arguments that he was entirely ignorant of what Edward Turney taught. He has since read a verbatim report of the address but has refrained from making any comment.

The honest thing to do is to hear the other fellow out and endeavour to understand what he means. The dishonest thing is to condemn without a hearing - the latter is the most frequent attitude.

I am not opposing the teachings of certain brethren because I have an axe to grind, God forbid. I am doing it in good conscience for the honour of God, His Son, and His Word. The theories that I will oppose are the theories that I once held to be saving truth, therefore I am not opposing anything that I am ignorant of. So without further introduction I proceed under the heading of

The Curse

For ages it has been taught and believed that the physical equation of our first parents was somewhat between the Angelic and the Human constitution, was lowered from the original standard, became vile and full of sin. This is known as the Sin-Full-Flesh theory and permeates Christadelphian literature. All Adam's offspring are Supposed to have inherited this "flesh full of Sin." If this is accepted, where does it land Jesus? That is what we have to consider. Let us go back to Eden and endeavour to discover if there is any foundation for the Sinful-Flesh assumption. We find Adam created from the ground a real man - Paul says "The first man was of the earth earthy." It is no use getting entangled with the terms mortal and immortal just here, as it is more correct to say that Adam was corruptible. If Adam was physically constituted otherwise, why place him under law which qualified obedience and disobedience? When created, Adam was son of God (by creation), so long as he remained obedient such was his relationship, but when he rebelled he became a son of Sin. He changed from being a servant of obedience unto righteousness to a servant of Sin unto Death.

Now let us search for the scriptural evidence of Adam's flesh being changed after transgression, from a very good quality to a physical sin compound. God told Adam that "of all the trees in the garden he may freely eat," except one. This places Adam under law – "for in the day thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die." It is taught that this could not mean the literal day because Adam did not die until some 900 odd years later. In the first place can we conceive of God placing Adam under Law without Adam having the full facility of understanding? Frankly, I cannot. If therefore "the day" meant 900 or 1,000 years, we are asked to believe that Adam understood God to mean that "in the 1,000 years that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die"! How do we harmonize this with the fact that he ceased to eat of the tree after the first offence (being turned out)?

The advocates of the changed flesh theory say that the particular tree contained properties that in the eating thereof brought about the change. There was a change brought about after eating, undoubtedly, but it was a change of relationship and not of flesh. It was not a matter of the quality of the fruit of the tree but a matter of manifesting Law. Could God have employed a more simple method of exhibiting Law? How else could God make more clear to Adam the "Thou Shalt Not"? (Law). It is no surprise that people who think for themselves shelve this "Sinful-flesh-change theory" which made no room for the appearance of Christ because it makes the virgin birth unnecessary. I will explain why in subsequent remarks.

The "day" in Genesis 2:17 is the same word as used in the first chapter, "Yom." Are we then to understand the first chapter thus; "And the morning and the evening were the 1,000 years"? Are we to say that the creation record of Genesis 1 covers 7,000 years when the world week is only 6,000 years? Words must ever be twisted about to fit in with a theory, but when the light of scriptural analytical harmony is played upon them, they show up in all their nakedness.

"Yom" is "day," "B'Yom" is "in the day." "Muth Temuth" is "surely die." The same words were used in the warning to Shimei (1 Kings 2) and Shimei died in the literal day. It may be asked, then why did Adam not die in the literal day? I reply, Adam deserved to die but if God meted out the violent death there and then, we would not have had existence. God started at mercy; it was not a matter of God going back on His word. It has been used as an argument that if God meant that Adam should die in the literal day that he transgressed and did not carry out the penalty, then God went back upon His word. Nonsense; it is not strange in Scripture for God to go back upon His word if that going back is in mercy. What of Ninevah? Don't be misled by such an argument. God started at mercy in sparing Adam and us as being in Adam. The Great Woodman spared the tree, therefore the little buds.

Could anyone deny that Adam was typically redeemed in the figure of the animal slain – "The Lamb slain (in figure) from the foundation"? Therefore does it not follow that the Antitype died the violent death (not natural death) instead of Adam and we as "in Adam"? Why, the very fact that God spared Adam the violent death necessitated the Christ. The question will then be asked, Why did God place Adam under condemnation, e.g., concluded Adam and all in him under sin, if He had spared him from paying the penalty? I reply, the fact that God spared Adam the violent death did not mean that the price would not be paid, but that someone else would pay it - as per the figure of the animal slain for a covering. The debt was due to King Sin. The condemnation or bondage of Sin under which we were all sold in Adam is the principle whereby God's justice is presented. "No man cometh unto the Father but by me." We are born in bondage (Adamic relationship) and we can escape from the very bondage that we are born in by accepting the redemption from such. If the condemnation we inherit from Adam be our corruptible nature, I am at a loss to understand in what sense we are a purchased possession. If we are not fully cleansed from "Sin" until we pass through the grave, then Jesus in paying the price only paid in full for Himself and an instalment for us!!

Let us go back to Adam. God said, "Cursed is the ground for thy sake." Why for his sake? Simply to give him and his seed an opportunity to be ultimately saved. Was it the literal "earth" that was cursed for his sake? I think not. God said to Adam, "Dust thou art." Dust he was before returning to it, therefore it is correct to say, cursed is man for thy sake. This is in harmony with Scripture because it is "man" that it deals with concerning condemnation.

The Adamic ground of condemnation is not that we inherit condemned sinful flesh but that Adam left us bankrupt aliens - nothing more, nothing less. That concludes all born of the will of the flesh, under the Edenic curse.

The Law of Moses was added because of transgression. What transgression, the children of Israel's? No, they could not transgress before they had Law. Where there is no law there is no transgression. It was added because of the Edenic transgression and contained in its ordinances all that the Edenic transgression involved. This Law was holy, just and good, yet as many as are of the works of the Law are under the curse. What curse? We find a man doing the works of the Law yet under the curse. It is not very difficult to perceive that the curse is not the punishment of the literal law breakers, but the Edenic curse. This was portrayed in the typical ordinances which went back to Eden and also pointed forward to its removal by the great Antitype.

"The Law was not of faith." Does this mean that it was a worthless thing? God forbid. A law given cannot of itself be of faith but it can call for faith to be exhibited in it, and that was what was required. It could not of itself give life on the same principles, hence Paul could say in the same chapter (Galatians 3), "The just shall live by faith," also in the same chapter we read, "Christ hath redeemed them from the curse of the law" - by dying. Was it not the same curse that all are concluded under? Certainly it was. He was cursed in the manner of law breakers but not for Himself - it was for us. The law did not curse Him or He could not have honoured it. It was wicked men that made Him a curse without a just cause for doing so, little dreaming they were bringing about the fulfilment of the very purpose (or curse) for which He came into the world, viz: to pay the price for the removal of the curse which Adam could not pay.

It does not follow that because the Gentiles were not under the Law of Moses they were not under the curse that the law typified. Paul specifies a certain class under the law who were "under the curse," namely; those who were of the works of the law, and the works of the law (merely a keeping of the letter of the law) justified no one. It had to be faith in what the ordinances typified - the great Antitype, Jesus. They had to see His day through the eye of faith like Abraham, to be justified, therefore the class that Paul specifies in Galatians 3 were in no better state than the Gentiles in darkness. It was little use the law being a schoolmaster to bring them to Christ if they played truant with it. Now, if the curse that Jesus removed by dying is the supposed condemned nature then why do people still die? Away with such ideas. It finds not the minutest support in Holy Writ. This physical sin principle is the rubbish bin of the world. It places Jesus as coming to rescue others from a condemnation that He is in Himself. Just accept the fact that man is alienated in Adam and then there will be no need to have two Christs to bolster up – a 'white' Christ when considering His moral relation to His Father and a 'black' Christ when considering His physical constitution. There is no need to hide behind this black and white shield as it is not of unified strength. Get behind an all white one and it will withstand all assaults. Jesus was free from any curse!

Free Life

Free life is one of the doctrines to be rejected in the Birmingham Statement of Faith, and much ridicule was poured upon the phrase by Brother Roberts when Edward Turney mentioned it in an unguarded manner, but like the phrase "clean flesh heretics," it brings forth the same answer when enquiry is made as to what is meant by it, viz: that Jesus was of a different kind of flesh, and a different kind of life to ourselves. This answer is untrue. We have never believed at any time that there was any difference between the flesh of Jesus to the flesh of all men. The life that He had was the life of His flesh, like ourselves. He had no different kind of flesh or life and what is more, His being free had nothing to do with His flesh or life. It was the manner of His birth which made Him free. Had He been born of the will of the flesh He would have been under the curse. He derived His life direct from God. Did not Adam derive his life direct from God? Was he not therefore free?

But unlike Adam, Jesus did not rebel. In this respect He was rich; but for our sakes He became poor, that we through His poverty might become rich. What did He posses to have been rich? (He was rich before He became poor). He certainly was not rich in worldly goods, in fact He had nowhere to lay His head. His riches lay not in the foolish assumption of Christendom that "He left His ivory palaces in Heaven." He was bone of our bone, flesh of our flesh, made in all points like unto His brethren, with the same temptations and the same kind of life - (There is one flesh of men, Jesus included). In view of the foregoing, it is well, yea profitable to enquire wherein He was rich. He was rich because He was free to give what no son of Adam could give - His life, for the Sin (singular) of the world. "No man (born of the will of the flesh) can redeem his brother or offer to God a ransom for his soul (life)." Jesus was not born of the will of the flesh. God was His Father, hence He was the only one who could pay what Adam could not pay. Why, this is the only reason why it was necessary for Christ to be born of a virgin. If He were not like us physically, all that the Scriptures say of Him would not be understandable. Why could no other man redeem us? If the condemnation passed upon all men was change of flesh (physical condemnation) then Jesus could no more have redeemed us than Judas, because He would have been in the same condemnation as those He came to save. Mankind was in prison, and it needed someone outside of the prison to pay for our freedom.

In relation to the family of God, we are either sons or aliens. All sons were previously aliens, so who can deny that sonship has made us free? Free from death via the natural channels? No. Jesus did not die to prevent us going to the cemetery but to free us from the condemnation, which condemnation was alienation; a legal affair entirely, though it required a literal violent death to remove it. "If the Son shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed." With regard to the redemption money (Exodus 30:11; Matthew 27:27) Jesus, alluding to Himself, informed Peter. "Then are the sons free" - exempt. Exempt from what? "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which walk, not after the flesh but after the spirit." Whatever the condemnation put on it is the same that is removed. If, as I was taught as a Christadelphian, "condemnation is not fully removed this side of the grave," Paul must have made a mistake in Romans 8:1, and what is more, Jesus must have meant "Half-released" when He said "Free."!

No curse, Edenic or Mosaic, can be pinned on Jesus. He was free, free, free!

The purpose of this book is to point out what supposed heretics really do believe in contrast to what they are accused of believing, therefore I will sum up this heading in brief, then no Christadelphian that comes in possession of this book can have any excuse for misrepresenting. It must be clearly understood that brethren like A.D.Strickler and Bell (Australia) who have been accused of clean flesh heresy never belonged to the supposed clean flesh heretics. Christadelphians have directed their attacks against such but have attacked the wrong enemy in so doing. Please attack us. Our defence is stronger than Strickler's or Bell's. To leave no one in doubt, here in brief is what we mean when we say that Jesus was born with a free life.

The condemnation was alienation, not physical defilement. All born of the will of the flesh were under it, Jew and Gentile. Jesus was born of the Spirit, Son of God direct – the only begotten, therefore free to lay down His life as the price of redemption. No man could take it from Him. He laid it down of Himself, voluntarily. If physical condemnation be truth then sacrifice is meaningless. Being legally free He was in the same position as Adam prior to transgression, therefore the only one who could redeem from the dominion of Sin what Adam had forfeited.

Sons of God by adoption are in the same position now. The difference between them and Jesus is that whereas they were born in debt, Jesus was born free. Their freedom was purchased by He who had the means to buy it, hence became a purchased possession. The means was His life, which was legally free from any curse. The means was provided by God, "I will provide the Lamb." The means was paid over voluntarily, hence sacrifice. It is a matter of legal position (law) throughout, not physical condition. I hope I have made myself clear.


The very mention of substitution makes a Christadelphian brother's ears burn with ridicule. If he has (which is invariably the case) the orthodox idea of substitution in mind, I can quite understand his attitude toward it because I am as much opposed to that absurdity as he is. Nevertheless there is true substitution as well as the false ideas. It is the word substitution that frightens. Let us examine it. We will do so by examining Brother John Carter's "Analytical Study" which appeared in "The Christadelphian" a few years ago. This will necessarily touch upon redemption as well. In the second column Brother Carter quotes, "Ye are not your own, for ye were bought with a price." I thoroughly agree with him here and ask him to note that the verb is in the passive voice, indicating that we did not buy ourselves. Then he continues, "Ye were redeemed, not with corruptible things as silver and gold, but with the precious blood of Christ." (1 Peter 1:18). "Thou wast slain and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood." Hitherto we are in strict agreement; let Brother Carter proceed. He now asks, "To whom is the ransom paid?" Here it gives me the utmost pleasure to reply to his question from the pen of the late Dr.Thomas who declared, "Redemption means to buy back, hence, it is release for a ransom. All who become God's servants are therefore released from a former lord by purchase. The purchaser is God and the price or ransom paid, is the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish even without spot."

Thus John Carter, fully aware of his inability to refute the literal ransom in the texts he quotes, resorts to the stratagem of reducing the ransom to a contemptible figurative affair. I am interested in his mode of procedure. He blankly contradicts the Dr. and every inspired writer on this theme. He next says, "some say that the ransom was paid to the Devil, who found Christ too powerful for him, and he had to let Him go, thus losing both his captives and the ransom price. On this view the Devil was either self-deceived or deceived by God into accepting a ransom he could not retain."

If John Carter's deduction be valid, it wholly shatters the Dr's. definition of Redemption. Then on page 347 he says, "When a ransom is paid for someone held in captivity no one expects the return of the ransom, as well as the release of the captive." I am in strict agreement with him here. Let him proceed. He next says, "Beautiful as the figure of ransom is when rightly understood, it is fatal in any attempt to use it in all possible aspects for the establishment of a doctrine, when we take into account the fact that Christ not only laid down His life, but also took it again."

Here then, John Carter favours us with his reason why he rejects the literal ransom, viz: the fact that Christ was raised from the dead. He is super-confident that if Christ be raised we charge God with taking back the ransom price. Is John Carter's deduction valid? I am confident it is not. What is the real cause of his rejection of the ransom? He skilfully keeps this reason up his sleeve. His true objection to the ransom is not the fact that Christ was raised from the dead, but a more fatal charge against Christ which he artfully conceals below the surface.

He advocates that Christ's very nature was obnoxious to the curse (see "Christendom Astray," pages 113,4) – "That his very life's blood was demanded before he could possibly extricate himself." The unbiased reader will perceive that if this were so, then John Carter renders the Beloved One hopelessly powerless to redeem Himself, to say nothing of another human soul. Hence John conjures up yarns of "God taking back the ransom" which diverts the attention of his readers apparent absurd flaws in God's scheme of literal ransom.

John Carter's accusation of God taking back the price - when you, John, extinguish the flame of your gas jet, that flame has gone for all eternity. When you wish your gas jet re-lit do you recall the flame that has been extinguished? No, if your gas jet has evermore to be re-lit it must be supplied afresh from "the fountain of light." If at anytime we receive it back, it ceases, that moment, to be a sacrifice, and you thereby reduce it to a mere loan. So with the sacrificial life blood of Jesus. Now Jesus declares, "I am the light of the world," but before our lamps could be lit, it drained the last drop of oil He possessed and the very sun in the heavens shrouded His face, and there was darkness over all the land till the ninth hour.

How truly "He sold all that He had and bought (egorasai) that field." Now if He were under your double curse He had nothing to sell and the field could not be His. Cannot you perceive John, that your assumption would force Christ to be a thief? What are the facts? Must the ransom which the gracious God provided be stolen back or reduced to a contemptible figurative affair? Must the fatal pagan assumption of hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh which is supposed to have rendered the very nature of Christ obnoxious to the curse, must the divinely provided ransom be rejected? All this pretended aversion to the ransom, this bogey of taking back the price is conjured up to shelter John Carter's assumption of the ransom being an irrevocable debt the beloved required to pay on His own account, which rendered Him so blasphemously unfit for the purchase for which God raised Him up. Thus John is forced to conjure up such unfounded tales and stratagem of God taking back the ransom price.

Dear John, had you restricted your analytical study to the analysis of your pagan assumption of hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh, instead of picking flaws in the divine ransom, you had by this time become a very powerful exponent of the Divine scheme of redemption!

Now God declares "The life of all flesh is in the blood thereof," Leviticus 17:11. Here is a universal affirmative proposition by One who cannot lie. Again, "And I have given it to you upon the altar." I here ask why? To make an atonement for your soul. Now God also declares, "The redemption of their soul is precious, and it ceaseth for ever." Psalm 49:8. Now hear Peter re the preciousness of this life-blood ransom, instead of it being obnoxious to the curse, Peter declares silver and gold were corruptible things in comparison. 1 Peter 3:18. Now Peter also clenches the second proposition of the prophets compound sentence viz: that the ransom was not taken back but, as the prophet declared, "It ceaseth for ever." Hear Peter - He was put to death in the flesh, but was quickened in spirit.

Now these declarations are in strict conformity with the accurate definition both of the terms "sacrifice" and "redemption." Thus demonstrating that the ransom was not taken back but ceased forever.

"Like the snowflake on the river,
One moment white, then gone forever."

John's Mere Figure

Will you, dear John still reject the ransom by deluding yourself with your absurd deduction that when God raised His beloved One it would involve the God of heaven in your stratagem of the very nature of Christ being obnoxious to the curse? Instead of involving God in such a stratagem, you would discover a just God whose scheme of redemption is transcendently purer in love, justice, mercy and truth by His provision of an honest ransom: Life in place of {anti} life. Instead of God handing over to his "Black Majesty" one you declare, who was already under the double curse, if you would sit down calmly and try to reconcile that assumption with Malachi 1:13,14; Hebrews 10:26-29, you would redeem the time you have wasted to drag the beloved under any curse.

While we are agreed on the personification of sin there are nevertheless two irrevocable Governments which will be as rigidly carried out in detail as if there had existed the literal personal orthodox "God of Evil" or Devil, viz: the Law of the Spirit of life in Christ, and the Law of Sin and Death. Be not deceived, God will not be mocked, "What a man sows, that shall he also reap." While therefore sin is personified it is a fatal error to reduce the ransom to a mere figure also. Was not Christ literally crucified on Calvary? Will you therefore point out in God's Book where God ever took back the life blood, either of the typical or of the antitypical sacrifice? Is not such a charge therefore prima facie absurd?

There was undoubtedly a time when the ransom was figurative, viz: From Eden to Calvary, but when we behold the beloved impaled on the accursed tree for man, did He experience a figurative affair or is there the slightest hint of your assumption that He was squaring off his own debt to the Edenic and Mosaic Curses? Horrid theology! Hear the Master's own words, "Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, ye have no life in you." Had your assumption of squaring off His own debt been accurate, I tell you. John Carter, Christianity had forever perished there! Again! "The hour is come that the Son of Man should be glorified. Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone, but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit." John 12:24. Could you read "His own debt" into that divine utterance? Then explain "abideth alone."

The Passover Lamb

We have demonstrated that the ransom price for man is the life blood of God's own Lamb (Gen. 22:8; Rev. 13:8; Psalm. 49:8; John 3:16; 1 Pet. 18:19; Eph 1:4 etc.). We have also demonstrated that God did not descend to the stratagem of stealing back the ransom price from John Carter's Devil. Just permit God to climax this truth: Regarding the Passover Lamb, God, in the imperative mood, declares, "And ye shall let nothing of it remain over till the morning. What remains, ye shall burn with fire." Exodus 12:10.

Now, dear John, will you still persist in reducing the ransom to a mere figure and accuse the honest God of stealing back the ransom price? Could God have more explicitly declared – "None of it shall remain over till the morning"? And Jesus in spirit declared, "I restored that which I took not away." Psalm 69:4. Do not both God and Jesus demonstrate that there is something lamentably subtle demanding a strict eye to be kept upon your mode of operandi; your analytical study, because instead of either God or Jesus stealing back, both are disposed to restore even four fold (Psalm 69:4; 2 Samuel 12:6). Cannot you perceive John Carter, that your modes of operation in your analytical study would force the God of heaven to violate His own law regarding our Passover Lamb if He left His Lamb over till the morning, and then raised Him in mortal nature - which means doomed to death! You exhibit a horrid opinion of Christ throughout. Again I implore thee to confine your analytical study to your pagan assumption and your confusion will disappear like the mist before the rising sun.

When Jesus fulfilled the "victim function," both Peter and Paul declare, "God quickened Him in Spirit." (1 Peter 3:18; Hebrews 7:16). Permit God to settle this point; "Thou art a Priest to the age" [eis ton aiona). Do please distinguish between mortal nature and "in Spirit." Is not God's arrangement and provision infinitely more glorious than the stratagem you conjure up? God freely offers the reconciliation and provided the means, but by no means does He steal it back. Dear John, has it not yet dawned upon you that instead of the Beloved requiring, as you imagine, His life's blood poured out before His own debt could be squared, He owes His very existence to that calamity – "To this end was I born, even for this cause came I into the world."

Now John, we must not jumble together the high rank and the functions of our Lord Jesus but ever follow up these in the Divine sequence. Each office to do it justice, demands an exposition, meantime however our aim is multum en parvo.

His Rank

First: He is the Son of God (not Joseph) - a Name denied the highest angel. "Unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given." Just note this gift. Separate was this one, and undefiled. Proof of this can be given ad infinitum.

Second: He is the Prophet of Nazareth (Deuteronomy 18:18; Matthew 2:23), who declared the purpose and accomplished the will of God, His own Father.

Third: He enters the second man function who, in the wilderness in three successive encounters renders his "Black Majesty" hors de combat, where the first Adam succumbed in the "first round."

Fourth: We have the victim of the New Covenant. "Christ our Passover slain for us."

Fifth: "We have an altar..." etc., etc.

Sixth: "He is consecrated High Priest, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life," and the ransom not taken back.

Seventh: A few more "ticks of God's clock," when He shall return and claim possession of His own Mount Zion, and reign over the earth. How truly He "restored that which He took not away." Once more, dear John, I implore of thee to judge between restore and steal back and so, please steal no more.


John Carter says, "The fact that sins are forgiven preclude the idea of the figure from every conceivable point of view." If forgiveness and deliverance did not accompany the ransom then in Paul's words, "Christ died in vain." This view point John has hitherto failed to reach. Then John repeats it – "When the ransom is regarded as an equivalent price, the question of forgiveness does not enter."

This is a defective rambling statement which restricts forgiveness to one view point alone. I ask, does forgiveness annihilate ransom? John Carter is confident in the affirmative. Permit me here to point out that John's invalid deduction is due to indiscrimination between Purchaser and Creditor. Here then, are two view points from one of which John has not yet had a peep.

Now I agree with John that when we pay our debt to our creditor, forgiveness is absurd! Yea, we can crack our fingers in his face. Let us then take the other view point which is a case of all having been sold (Passive Voice) under sin. Where no soul can redeem his brother. Along comes the ever gracious God who in the imperative mood ordered His Elohim to "deliver him from going down into the pit, I have found a ransom" (Job 33:24). Now throughout the Book divine love and forgiveness are the major factors which prompted God to provide this ransom. I ask, could this display of divine love of itself have accomplished our salvation? Dear John, I here ask you to step up with me to

The Master's Viewpoint

"What shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and forfeit his life? or what shall a man give in exchange (en antellagema = in place of) his life?" Matthew 16:26. Now, John, do you imagine your figurative affair would have met the case? Would such have squared the demand of the law - Life anti Life? "In the day thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die." God alone knew that a ransom alone could counteract this. Cannot you perceive that your handing over to your creditor One you declare was already under the same curse would be a wicked fraudulent transaction? When the deliverance of a captive is irrevocably impossible apart from a ransom, it is then as Dr Thomas declared, "a case of literal honest redemption."

Redeem and Deliver

"Deliver him from going down into the pit. I have found a ransom." This ransom accomplished two specific purposes. First, God's attribute (truthfulness) regarding the sentence. "Thou shalt surely die." Ransom alone safe-guarded divine verity by the provision of one in place of Adam. Second, this ransom was imperative to the continued existence of Adam and his prospective race. God can make an "indicative announcement" and reserve a tacit or silent condition, which can alter the circumstances of the former pronouncement. Now John, I wish you to observe particularly here that God did not say, "I have found a figurative ransom," nor one whose "very nature was obnoxious to the curse!" There must therefore be something lamentably defective in your theory requiring that improvement of God's plan! Will you therefore still persist that this one could have been delivered from going down into the pit apart from this appointed ransom? If so, then Paul declared, "Christ died in vain."

On the other hand if God descended to the stratagem either of taking back the price or handing over to the Devil a figurative affair or one whose very nature was obnoxious to the curse, could you point out to me in history a blacker fraud? What havoc your hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh has wrought! Was the life blood of Jesus a figurative affair? Is not the transaction on Calvary an historical fact? If therefore you reduce the ransom to a mere figure, you are deductively forced to reduce the retribution to a mere figure also.

Creditor or Purchaser?

You imagine, John Carter, that forgiveness renders ransom out of the question from every point of view. If you fail to discriminate between purchaser and creditor here, your analytical study will prove a miserable failure because hitherto you saddled the wrong pony. God, Purchaser alone can forgive. Adam did not sin against the Devil but became his dutiful servant and possession. If therefore forgiveness were from that quarter then ransom had been equally superfluous and Christ had not required to die. In that case the Devil had been our benefactor throughout, which would have left your God altogether in the background with Baal.

Now the reverse is the case. "The sentence was from one to condemnation, but the free gift is from many offences unto righteousness" (Romans 5:9,11,15, etc.) and specifically declares that a figurative ransom profited nothing. Hebrews 10:1,2,4,5,6,9,16,17, etc., etc.) but now in Him who "came not to be served, but to serve, and to give his life a ransom (anti lutron) in place of many" (Matthew 20: 28). It is then alone we discover where "mercy and truth have met together, even righteousness and peace have kissed each other." Psalm 85:10.

Anti = In Place Of

I am in a position to furnish you with the pedigree of this Greek proposition from its birth, suffice however to note that it can fill three functions. First, Anti - against, aversion; antipathy, anti - against, pathos - feeling. Second, it can denote, before, in time or place. Third, Anti, in place of, in exchange. Anti lutron = a ransom, in place of.

The highest educational authorities are agreed on that point. If you John will refute this, you will bestow on me a favour. I am as anxious as you could be to hear the "Come ye blessed of my Father."

A List of "Anti"

Matthew 2:22, 5:28, 17:27, 20:28, Mark 8:27, 10:45, Luke 11:11, Romans 12:17, Ephesians 5: 31, 1 Thessalonians 5:15, 2 Thessalonians 2:4, 1 Timothy 2:6, 6:20, Hebrews 12:2,16, James 4:15, 1 Peter 1:19, 3:9.

Even in retribution for crime anti stands irrefutable. "God will not be mocked." Man shall reap the equivalent retribution for his crime, and I find the "Old Lady" will receive double. Revelation 18:4,7.

Anti Re Crime

Romans 1:27, 11:9,25, 12:17,19; 2 Corinthians 6:13, Colossians 3:24, 1 Thessalonians 3; 9, 5: 15, 2 Thessalonians 2:4, etc., etc.

Now John Carter, if you will contort the Word of God to uphold your hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh assumption which involves Jesus and forces you to reject the ransom provided and reduce it to a mere figurative affair, will you be honest with the valid deduction of your own premises? If you reduce to a mere figure the horrid ordeal through which Christ passed in order to ransom man, will you say the second death will be also figurative, a mere imitation! Anti demands that the blessing and the retribution in these respective cases shall stand or fall together. The verity of both is predicated in the same terms. But the most horrid of all is your charge against the Beloved One being under the irrevocable obligation to go through all this before He could extricate Himself! Could you sacrifice your own debt? Dear John, try that view point!

On page 348 you say, "redemption and deliverance is a Biblical term, as illustrated by Israel's release from Egypt."

This is equivalent to saying "James and John is a sailor"! I therefore deem you either extremely careless and confused, both in your grammar and in your handling of these Biblical terms or expertly shrewd to make it appear that Biblical terms mean one and the same thing. We must say what is written and discriminate between these Biblical terms for the simple reason they are not synonymous and I venture to say that you John Carter, in ordinary business know this fact right well. I do not incriminate but a bias in the wrong direction can force the most honest and qualified scholar to favour a preconceived assumption.

I hold with the late Dr. Thomas that redemption means to buy back, whereas deliverance of itself contains no thought of buying back. When deliverance is dependent upon or is the result of a ransom, the context alone must ever decide whether a ransom has been paid to effect such deliverance since deliverance can be effected by any means apart from a ransom.

Result - I find you either extremely careless in your discrimination of these biblical terms or positively expert to make them synonymous to uphold your charge against the Beloved of God being under your double curse. To uphold which forces you to violate and disfigure every "Thus saith the Lord," relative to the divine scheme of redemption.

Then you say, "No ransom was paid to Egypt in this redemption." Dear John! The very fact that no ransom was paid to Egypt demonstrates what I am labouring to point out to you, viz: that it was not redemption but a pure unambiguous deliverance by a Mighty Hand and an outstretched arm. Had God and Pharaoh agreed on a ransom, Pharaoh and his host would have escorted Moses and the Israelites along the road some distance and given him a friendly send of - music and dancing!

On page 349 you say, "John was preaching that man was mortal, that man finds himself in this position because of sin." Here again this is ambiguous. Do you mean man finds himself in this position or condition? The former connotes attitude or status under law. The latter refers to physical state, quality, particular state of being. I think I shall be safe to infer that you mean that "The flesh of man has been changed." If so, I ask, are the terms corruptible and mortal synonymous? If not, please define the distinction and explain the physical difference. Could you apply the term mortal to the lower animals? Please say yes or no. Is the change physical or does the criminal now stand in a different relation to law? Paul's universal negative proposition confirms the fatal stupidity of your changed flesh assumption. He declares "There is nothing unclean of itself," Romans 14:14, Acts 10:28, 11:8, 1 Corinthians 6:11, Titus 1:15, Luke 11:39.41.

What about the phrases Mortal crime, Mortal danger, Mortal wound, etc.? Again, Mortify – "put to death the deeds of the body and ye shall live." Romans 8:13. But if you mortify - put to death your body, then you commit suicide. No murderer hath eternal life abiding in him. Why? Is it that he has changed his flesh, or committed murder - a mortal crime? Would you say the change was in his actual flesh, or in altered relation to law which has pronounced his execution?

Changed Flesh

The late J.J.Andrew, in his pamphlet, "The Blood of The Covenant," pages 6 and 7 says, "A change must, therefore have taken place in Adam's physical constitution as the result of this decree... How the change was effected is not revealed, neither is it necessary to know."

Now John Carter, I ask, must we swallow wholesale this unrevealed assumption without even a pinch of salt? This hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh assumption which rendered the very nature of Christ obnoxious to the curse, which forces you to blot out of your theology the glorious ransom the Beloved one laid down for man, is your fatal error. Just ask yourself whether a man on earth or an angel from heaven could sacrifice his own debt? Do please try this view point.

You next say, "We see Jesus a member of Adam's race, voluntarily submit to a rite which symbolizes death, burial - God well pleased - we see Him on the Cross according to the determinate counsel of God. He was there because He is obedient in all things even to the death of the Cross."

The magnetic power of a preconceived assumption over its advocate is truly remarkable. I pronounce this a collection of absurd inference which miserably fails to land the faintest shadow of the fatal deduction which John Carter is eager it should yield. Do these Scriptures lend the faintest thought of Jesus requiring on His own account to submit to His life's blood being drained out before He could possibly extricate Himself from John's charge against Him, viz: "That His very nature was obnoxious to the curse? Horrid deduction! Blasphemous theology!

Hear Paul, O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you... before whose eyes Jesus hath been (prographia) previously written typically slain. Revelation 13:8.

Hear Jesus also, "O fools and slow of heart to believe. Ought not Christ to have suffered these things before entering into His glory?" Does He say this was on His own account? Blasphemy! Hear His own words, "The hour is come that the Son of Man should be glorified. Verily I say unto thee, except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone, but if it die it bringeth forth much fruit." (John 12:24). This was the only means by which God could raise this crop of wheat. This is God's wheat field, out of which the darnel is being tied in bundles.

You next ask, "Was it right He should be there (on the Cross)?" Then you defiantly ask, "Who will say it was not?" Then you dogmatically declare, "It was right He was there, because He was a member of a race that was mortal, dying because of sin. God's righteousness could only be exhibited by the willing submission to death of one in that position."

Now John, I do not wonder you are forced to reject the gracious ransom! Cannot you perceive that your hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh would pollute not only the table of the Lord (Malachi 1:12,14, Hebrews 10:26,29) but every human being with whom He came in contact? How positively you represent the God of heaven handing out to his "Black Majesty" one of his own unfortunate helpless wretches, one you declare was already dying because of sin. Could you give me an instance in history of a blacker fraud? If as you declare, Jesus was in that position, could He possibly extricate Himself, to say nothing of another human soul?

My candid conviction could not be more accurately expressed than from the declarations of the late Dr Thomas, the late J.J.Hadley and the present C.C. Walker. You see, I keep nothing up my sleeve. I honestly confide to you that my salvation depends on my acceptance of the divine truth of these statements as they stand and reject all the blank contradictions each of the writers made of themselves. Viz: Dr. Thomas:- "Redemption means to buy back. Hence it is release for a ransom. All who become God's servants are, therefore, released from a former Lord by purchase. The Purchaser is God, and the price or ransom paid, is the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish or spot." I hold the foregoing literally as it stands, without subtle ambiguity or concealed undercurrent.

J.J.Hadley:- "As regards His moral relation to the Father, He was under no curse whatever. He was not in the position of guilty man, who is outside Eden, and can approach God, only with a petition of forgiveness, His relation to the Father was not that of one alienated from Him, as was Adam, and all his descendants. He was, from the beginning, holy (Luke 1:35), a beloved Son in whom the Father was well pleased." Now, John Carter, could you harmonize the above with your fatal black antithesis? Your proverbial Black and White Shield?

C.C.Walker:- "Sin, the prince, the devil, had nothing in Jesus. "I find no fault in him." No, nor yet Herod, and Pilate washed his hands of the case."

Now, Dear John, if neither Pilate, Herod, nor the Devil had any death claim in Him, I advise you to wash your hands of this case also, before it is too late. I have reasons to believe His return is imminent, and this warning puts it beyond the power of you and your followers who read this to say, "You never told me."

These three declarations without addition, subtraction, or alteration, I hold imperative to my salvation. These declarations will admit of no inclusion of the Beloved One among the damned, demanding His life's blood poured out before He could extricate Himself from your charge against Him. If the prince of this world found no death claim against Him, then dear John, play second fiddle to C.C. Walker no longer. He had his chance a number of years ago. Just try to conceive of the idea of the God of Heaven offering one whose very nature was obnoxious to the curse! We have discovered this assumption of hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh to be the intoxicator of Christendom. Both Malachi and Paul denounced the Israelites of their day in the persistence of offering sacrifices to the Lord which were, in your own words, dying because of sin.

This changing of the flesh of Adam would, as irrevocably have involved Jesus as any other human soul. This valid deduction perplexed Rome for some time, to surmount which she conjured up the Immaculate Conception. While Dr Thomas rigidly adhered to the assumption of hyphenated sin-in-the-flesh, the valid deduction of which landed him with a Christ whose very nature was obnoxious to the curse. This is the -

Christadelphian Criterion

unto the conformity of which the Word of God must ever be screwed, twisted, contorted and defaced. The assumption renders Christ so blasphemously unfit, and contrary to the divine purpose for which sacrifice was instituted. The types must be without blemish – the Christadelphian anti-type must be obnoxious to the curse. Dying because of sin. The Christadelphian youngest daughter has therefore surpassed her tottering old mother in abomination. Thus, as Rome was forced to fabricate the Immaculate Conception, so our Christadelphian friends, to surmount their monstrosity of Christ being under their double curse, were forced to fabricate their -

Theoretical Distinction

They discovered that it was too glaring to state in an honest indicative proposition that Jesus was constitutional sinner under both the Edenic and Mosaic curses, from which, to extricate Himself He was under an irrevocable obligation to submit to execution. They now find themselves forced to clothe that assumption in modified verbose, until they array Christ in a garb more blasphemous than the former. Let us examine this theoretical distinction.

The late J.J.Hadley declared, "As regards His physical constitution, He was as much under the curse as His brethren, but as regards moral relation He was under no curse whatever."

This is sitting astride the fence, prepared to take either side, or both. This smart acrobatic trick eclipses the old ladies immaculate conception and paralyses the law of contradiction, and exhibits the most contemptible logic under heaven. Let us examine this leap from the concrete physical condition to the abstract moral relation. This trick enables the oratorial expert to violate the fundamental laws of thought, by which the innocent, unskilled thinker is talked over. God's message is silent as the grave regarding an abstract Christ. Did Jesus sacrifice His moral relation for us? This had nullified His own power over the grave. Well then, if you curse His physical condition, will it improve matters? Would not a cursed sacrifice pollute the table of the Lord? (Malachi 1:12, 14. Hebrews 10:26-29).

Did Jesus actually say "This is my cursed body which is given for myself"? Dear John, if you are not ashamed of your analytical study by this time, then I shall be forced to pronounce your case hopeless! Where is your authority for landing Christ in such a fatal mess? This theoretical distinction, this juggling with the Word of God, enables you to conjure up in the minds of the unskilled, two Christs, like Siamese twins, one of them you paint black, the other white. Then as the theory demands you pluck the twain asunder and pop "Blackie" into the nominative case of some of the most contemptible orations under Heaven, and inflate your vocabulary to explosion, e.g. "Passive Sinner," for His being hung on a tree. "Singular plurality," one sacrifice for Himself and another for the people. "Voluntary Compulsion" - doomed to death on His own account; and your pretence of laying it down. Sacrifice - debt, under the curse, and under no curse whatever, etc., etc. We must refrain from subordinating the Word to the creeds of Paganism. One breath of God alone sweeps these to eternal oblivion, viz: "He came... and to give His life a ransom (anti lutron = in place of) of man. How would an honest discussion between you and me through the pages of "The Christadelphian" do? Think it over John.

Why have I not mentioned substitution, inasmuch as such was the title of this section? For the very simple reason that true redemption proves substitution. If changed flesh be the condemnation then Christ could not have escaped that calamity. If the term "representative" be a truth because Jesus was of the same nature as ourselves, then He would have been unfit as a sacrifice because of physical defilement. You cannot have it both ways. Jesus must not be carved up to fit in with particular theories. Once alienation is understood and accepted there is no need to carve Jesus up, because you leave Him whole, yet separate from us, because of His legally free (from condemnation, alienation) being born of God and not of the will of the flesh.

Look into these things, dear Reader. Why was Jesus born a little lower than the angels? Simply for the suffering of death. Could He have suffered death had He been made, equal physically to the angels?

This brings us to the contemptible handling of Romans 8; 3. If the ordinary Church or Chapelgoer be asked, "Is the term immortal soul in the Scriptures?" the answer is oftentimes to the effect that the Scriptures are full of it. When asked to point out one, it cannot be found. "Well, being as our Christadelphian brethren are so keen when opposing orthodoxy in reference to Scripture, let me ask them one. Where in the Scriptures do we find the phrase "sinful flesh"? When I was a Christadelphian I was under the impression, like the Chapelgoer with immortal-soulism, that there were many references to that effect, but upon looking it up I was surprised to find that the only reference to be found was Romans 8:3. Now upon this one reference Christadelphians built up the most contemptible logic imaginable. Sinful flesh is not to be found in Scripture. Romans 8:3 is no translation at all.

How readest thou?

Try repeating the last line of Romans 8:3 several times then ask yourself whether Jesus could have condemned sin if He were not in the flesh? The accurate rendering of Romans 8:3 can be found in the writings of Dr. Thomas, though he reluctantly gave it to a correspondent in "The Rock" when pressed. C.C. Walker agrees with the revisers and declares that the A.V. and R.V. is a perfectly good rendering of the Greek flesh of sin. It is a pity that when he was up among the revisers he neglected to ask their favour to define for him the term "soul," when their prompt reply had been "the immortal part of man". Of course, circumstances alter cases and the circumstances were that the supposed perfectly good rendering suited the sin-in-the-flesh theory. It was just the right quality of black paint for the Black Christ Shield. Christadelphians will accept the personification of sin until they are confronted with Romans 8:3. What happens then? They see the red light, then give personification the go-by. Aha, we must bring out the Black Shield here! And by so doing annihilate the possessive case and prefer ham-artia to sinful flesh which C.C.Walker claims to be a perfectly good rendering of the Greek sarkos hamartias, "Flesh of sin." For the benefit of those who have hearing ears I assure them that the adjective "sinful" is not there in the Greek. It is a noun, in the genitive case, indicating possession, not an adjective indicating the quality of flesh.

It is therefore irrefutably a question of the possession of God or the possession of the devil, Sin. The two possessors are mentioned in Romans 8:3. The Greek does not use our English form of the possessive case, but ever the genitive. We also use the genitive form but only when the Possessor is neuter gender, e.g. "The roof of the house," we do not say "the house's roof."

The accurate rendering of Romans 8:3 demonstrates that Jesus belonged to God and therefore stood clear at the Bar from any charge, while the rest of humanity belonged to Sin, requiring to be redeemed.

Dear Reader, read honestly. Do not allow yourself to be persuaded that we teach what we are accused of teaching. Having read, thought and judged, act.


Jesus lived unto God before He died unto Sin.
We must die unto Sin before we can live unto God.

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