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Chapter 5

"Ye Shall Be as Gods"

GOD recognized the sinful condition of man, and provided a remedy which would obviate the necessity of man's perishing. "God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life." John 3:16. And again Inspiration declares, "When we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly." Rom. 5: 6. God considers that there are ungodly people in the world, and that their case is desperate; and outside of the provision He has made, there is no hope for man. But the Spiritist does not so look upon it. We read:

"As a matter of fact there are, at the stage of evolution which we know, no really ungodly nor godly. . . . The declaration that each one of us is a god in the making, is as literally true as that the caterpillar is a butterfly in the making."--" The Truth About Our Dead," page 69.

Here are two declarations of Spiritism, one denying the Word of God, and the other supporting the words of Satan. Both are therefore opposed to God and in favor of Satan. Are there no ungodly in the world? If there are not, then the life of Christ on earth, His sacrifice on our behalf, and His resurrection, were all equally unnecessary and equally worthless. If there are no ungodly now, then there never have been any in the world, and Christianity and all that pertains to it is a worthless shell, husks, chaff, and there never was any necessity for Christ to come to this world. Furthermore, if that be true, He is not only useless and worthless, but He is an absolute impostor; for He said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me." John 14: 6. Again He said, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." John 10:10. If those words mean anything, they mean not only that outside and apart from Him there is no abundance of life, but that there is no life at all. Peter stated it very plainly in just that way: "Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." Acts 4:12.

The Word declares, "All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God." Rom. 3: 23. None certainly can deny that to be ungodly (or ungodlike) is to come short of God's purpose, to come short of His aim for us. And in the judgment of God, all mankind are in that state. It is not a hopeless state, however; for says the Word again, "In due time Christ died for the ungodly." Rom. 5: 6. Because Christ died for the ungodly, the ungodly may be saved. "Thou shalt call His name Jesus: for He shall save His people from their sins." Matt. 1: 21. Whoever is counted a sinner in the sight of heaven is ungodly, and is in need of a Saviour; and there is only one provided,-- Jesus Christ the righteous, the one and the only one who "did no sin; " for says the apostle, "What things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God." Rom. 3:19. Then all the world is in need of a Saviour, and in need of one who can "save to the uttermost" them "that come unto God by Him." Heb. 7: 25.

Having died for the ungodly, we may know that Jesus Christ has made it His chief concern to bring the ungodly to repentance, and to restore in them the image of the divine character, so bringing to them eternal salvation. He finds them ungodly, invites them to set their feet in the way of life, to turn away from iniquity and seek after righteousness, and creates within them a clean heart. Then their iniquity and ungodliness are forgiven, and we read of the man who has passed through that experience, "Blessed is the man to whom the Lord will not impute sin." Rom. 4: 8.

Spiritism may continue to deny the existence of the ungodly; but all that heaven has done for man's redemption is done upon the basis that there are ungodly people in the world. 'Heaven affirms this fact, and Spiritism denies it. Jesus Christ gave Himself for the one purpose of bringing the ungodly to repentance and salvation. Spiritism, in denying the existence of the ungodly, denies the necessity of Christ's sacrifice and the necessity of redemption; and in denying of Christ what Christ affirms of Himself, Spiritism sets itself against the most fundamental and most vital principles of Christianity. It may, and does, use the language of the sacred Book; but the voice is the voice of him who denied the declarations of the Deity in the garden of Eden, and spread the black pall of sin over the whole habitable world.

Satan declared to Eve, "Ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil," and Spiritism says (in the last quotation from "The Truth About Our Dead ")' "Each one of us is a god in the making." Thus we see that the declarations of Spiritism are either a denial of the Bible and the words of Jesus Christ, or an affirmation of some declaration of the spirit of evil. However we take it, what Spiritism denies is what Satan denies, and what Spiritism affirms is what Satan affirms. Again, what Spiritism denies, God's Word affirms; and what Spiritism affirms, God's Word denies. The issue is clear-cut, and no one who desires to be a true and sincere follower of Jesus Christ ought to be for a moment in doubt as to what attitude he should assume toward Spiritism.

The declarations of Holy Writ are very clear to the effect that outside of Christ there is absolutely no hope of eternal life for any of these "gods in the making." "In Him was life; and the life was the light of men." John 1: 4. Again: "Ye will not come to Me, that ye might have life." John 5: 40. "I am the door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall he saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture." John 10: 9. "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on Him." John 3:36.

Thus all who are outside of Christ, all who do not believe on Him as the all-sufficient and all-needful Saviour of the world, even though they consider themselves "gods in the making," are doomed to eternal extinction. They "shall not see life;" and this on the emphatic declaration of the One whom even Spiritists claim to honor as the great Teacher. Again He said, "I am the resurrection, and the life: he that believeth in Me, though he were dead, yet shall he live." John 11: 25. He recognizes death and life as two opposite conditions. Spiritists, on the other hand, while professing to honor Him, deny His teaching, and claim that death is merely a continuation of life. He recognizes death as the cessation of life, and the resurrection as the cessation of death. In this He is in perfect harmony with the declarations of Inspiration through the prophet Isaiah: "Thy dead men shall live, together with My dead body shall they arise. Awake and sing, ye that dwell in dust: for thy dew is as the dew of herbs, and the earth shall cast out the dead." Isa. 26:19.

It is hardly conceivable that gods, even in the making, should go down into death. Neither God nor Christ has anywhere told man that men are "gods in the making." Satan taught man that lesson in unholy ambition; and the first step man took after that lesson sent him to the grave, there to remain until the hand of the Life-giver shall sunder the rusty bars of the prison house of death, speak life to the long-silent prisoners, and bid them go forth again into the sunlight of their Father's love. They are dead, waiting through the sorrow-sodden centuries for the summons of the great Redeemer. Their pillow is the dust, their dew the dew of herbs; but their hope is knit into the unbreakable cable of divine love; and when the voice of the Archangel rolls around a reeling, waiting world, and the trump of the eternal God bursts out of the sundered sky, there is no power of man or earth or demon that can hold the manumitted prisoners of hope. They are not gods, but they are God's own.

That is the hope of those whose lives are hid with Christ in God; but it is the hope of only such -- so far as God gives us hope. Spiritism says: "No soul can be forever lost." (" The Truth About Our Dead," p. 70.) But the Word declares of those outside of Christ, that to them "is reserved the blackness of darkness forever." Jude 13. Those who are in that condition are certainly "lost." The psalmist says: " Yet a little while, and the wicked shall not be: yea, thou shalt diligently consider his place, and it shall not be." "The wicked shall perish, and the enemies of the Lord shall be as the fat of lambs: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. Ps. 37:10, 20. Malachi speaks of the wicked as "ashes" under the feet of the righteous, in the day when the Lord of hosts shall punish the wickedness of the wicked. Mal. 4:1-3. They were not "gods in the making," in spite of Satan's promises and Spiritism's assurances. They were men and women placed in this world on probation, and chose to use their time and opportunities to advance their own selfish interests, and went to their graves or came up to the great and final day with no shield between their souls and divine justice. Says the apostle Paul, "The fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is." 1 Cor. 3:13. If we have crucified self, if our lives are hid with Christ in God, the fires of that day will not harm us; for we shall be "caught up" out of the fiery welter of ruin to "meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord." 1 Thess. 4:17.

The inspired apostle gives one more very positive declaration as to whether men are undying and imperishable and gods in the making." He says:

"To you that are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with His mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of His power; when He shall come to be glorified in His saints, and to be admired in all them that believe . . . in that day." 2 Thess. 1: 7-10.

While the Book of God plainly declares the utter destruction finally of all the impenitent, and that, too, by literal fire, Spiritism denies the whole idea of destruction, and makes this affirmation:

"The lower and lowest types of mankind will unquestionably suffer, not from literal flames, but from cravings for drink, clamorings of lust, the clutchings of greed for gold, and many other insistent demands which can never be satisfied, and from the remorse which crime and cruelty and tyranny entail."--" The Truth About Our Dead," p. 72.

According to Spiritism, therefore, the hell of the lowest and most incorrigible spirits is no worse than a gaol for sinners and criminals in the flesh. How different is this from the simple Bible statement of the fate of the wicked! The Spiritist declares: 

"'The way of the ungodly shall perish.' This statement of the psalmist is literally true. Not the ungodly, but his way shall perish." --Id., p. 75.

But the psalmist also says: "The wicked shall perish: . they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. Ps. 37: 20. This is plain; but it unhorses Spiritism.

The divine Word positively contradicts the idea that "no soul can be forever lost." Satan said, "Ye shall not surely die;" Spiritism says, "No soul can be forever lost." These two agree. But the Bible says, "The wicked shall perish: they shall consume; into smoke shall they consume away. "They shall be as though they had not been." Obadiah 16.

Where, then, does Spiritism stand -- with God, or against Him? with Satan, or against him? It has rejected God, and chosen His enemy. The prince of ruin is thus found to be the originator of the basic idea of Spiritism. The Prince of the Restoration has given us the truth of these weighty matters through prophets and apostles inspired by Him. The prince of ruin has given his willfully wicked perversion of these truths and his contradiction of them through spirit mediums inspired by him.

In this controversy between the prince of ruin and the Prince of the Restoration, Spiritism upholds the former and contradicts the latter, and in doing so, is, in turn, upheld by heathenism. Through ages past heathenism has held to the continuity of life after "the change called death." In a book entitled, "The Song Celestial" (book 2, pages 8, 9), translated from the Sanskrit by Sir Edwin Arnold, occur the following expressions of Brahman philosophy concerning the idea of man's inherent immortality:

"That which is
Can never cease to be; that which is not
Will not exist."

"Nor I, nor thou, nor any one of these,
Ever was not, nor ever will not be,
Forever and forever afterwards
All that doth live, lives always."

"Never the spirit was born; the spirit shall cease to be never;
Never was time it was not; End and Beginning are dreams!
Birthless and deathless and changeless remaineth the spirit forever;
Death hath not touched it at all, dead though the house of it seems."

These expressions occur in the exhortation of the god Krishna (Brahma) to the prince Arjuna to go on with the battle which he had planned, and slay his enemies. The slaying of one's fellow men is permissible, he teaches, because, though he slays men, they do not die, and he has done no wrong.

It can readily be seen how this philosophy cheapens one's respect for life, and makes the taking of human life seem a harmless thing to those holding such a belief. And this teaching comes, too, from the lips of Krishna, the Brahman's god of all gods. Thus does heathenism support Spiritism, and Spiritism support the doctrine of Satan, which robbed the world of righteousness and innocency, and turned the earth itself into a charnel house of disease and dead men's bones.

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