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Chapter 6

The Church Challenged by Spiritism

THE Christian church today is challenged by Spiritism -- not merely by the fact that Spiritism is sweeping around the globe like a spiritual influenza epidemic; but an actual challenge is thrown out by Spiritism, demanding that the church show a reason for the continuation of its existence. Until the church accepts Spiritism, the Spiritist claims that she is standing still and refusing to progress.

Mr. W. Britton Harvey, editor of the Harbinger of Light, speaks thus of the church's refusal to progress -- along the lines of Spiritism:

"It is a great drawback to the spiritual enlightenment of the people of Australia that there is no outstanding representative of the Christian church who 'will boldly declare that, inasmuch as the revelation of truth is a progressive process, it is possible that we have reached an age in which the outpouring is being accentuated, and that what is known as Spiritualism may be the channel divinely selected for the manifestation of the purposes of the Most High. We do not suggest that this should be definitely asserted as a fact, but that the possibility should be admitted ; and that, consequently, the varied phenomena associated with Spiritualism should be closely examined, and in every respect approached with an open mind.

"This does not appear to be a very unreasonable proposition, and if applied to any other department of inquiry -- a new scientific theory, for instance -- would be readily assented to. Otherwise there could be no progress in knowledge. We should be at an intellectual standstill. But when we ask that the same principle be applied to religion, we are usually met with a flat refusal, and assured that the truth has been revealed once and for all, and that there can be no revision. We, therefore, reach stagnation, and declare, in effect, that progressive revelation is nothing but a myth. The words of the Christ, that there were many things yet to be revealed, thus become meaningless. In other words, puny man presumes to limit the operations of the Almighty, and make Him indifferent to the growing spiritual needs of a seeking and progressive generation."-- Harbinger of Light, June 1, 1921.

What Mr. Harvey is pleading for, professedly in the interests of the church itself, is that influential ministers of the gospel should take a bold stand in encouraging their parishioners to investigate Spiritism, upon the possibility that Spiritism may be the channel through which the Most High will pour out the Holy Spirit upon the churches. Can we grant that there is such a possibility? Can we logically presume that what Jehovah cursed and absolutely prohibited under the patriarchal and Levitical dispensations, He will sanction and bless and use under the Christian dispensation? He says, "I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed." Mal. 3: 6. Again ; "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever." Heb. 13: 8.

Truth is eternal, rather than progressive, or in need of revision, because it is of the nature of God. We speak of things or individuals as progressive that are not yet perfect. We cannot speak thus of the omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, and eternal God as progressive. We may progress from truth to truth, and thus come nearer and nearer to the divine likeness; but God and truth are eternally the same; and His truth is in no more need of revision than He is in need of change.

Through the eternal ages it will continue true that salvation from sin was provided of God in Jesus Christ, and that there was no other provision made, no other through whom salvation could come to man. But Spiritism, upon the assumption that revealed truth needs revision, discards the principle of life through Christ and through Him alone, and teaches mankind to believe that life is continuous; that we do not need Jesus Christ to make eternal life possible; rather, that it is impossible to cause life to cease. That is not truth progressive or revised; it is truth contradicted; it is truth made to appear a lie. The Christ Himself declared, "I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly." John 10:10. According to this declaration of our Lord, what would have been the result had Christ not come?-- The absence of life. So He is called the Life- giver. "When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with Him in glory." Col. 3:4.

These are fundamental truths of the gospel, as declared by the Son of God Himself, and by Inspiration through the apostle Paul. This apostle found some among the Galatians who were preaching a different gospel from that revealed to him by the Lord Jesus Christ; and of them and their "progressive revelation" or "revised truth" he says:

"Though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed." Gal. 1: 8, 9.

Spiritism is certainly a different gospel from that taught by Jesus Christ or His apostle Paul. Whereas the true gospel teaches salvation through Jesus Christ alone, Spiritism teaches salvation as a progressive process, going on in a life beyond the tomb; and in the assertion of that life, it denies the explicit teaching of Holy Writ that the dead sleep until the resurrection.

Mr. Harvey pleads that the churches should investigate Spiritism as we do any other scientific theory; but Spiritism is not on the same basis as scientific theories. Spiritism is a denial of the most fundamental principles of the gospel, and seeks to prove itself true and the things it denies untrue by psychical demonstrations, spirit photography, table-rapping and table-moving, levitation, automatic writing, planchette and ouija-board messages, trance-medium speaking, etc. When we investigate these manifestations to see whether or not Spiritism's claims are true, admitting at the same time the possibility that they may be true, then by that same token and in that same investigation we are seeking to determine whether the fundamental principles of the gospel are true or not, and we are admitting the possibility that they may not be true; because Spiritism denies the gospel's very foundation; and if Spiritism be true, Christianity with all it stands for is a fabrication of the mind founded upon the shifting sand of human fancy.

Shall we, then, admit the possibility that the gospel as outlined in Holy Writ is untrue? that Jesus was mistaken in His teachings and gave His life for naught? that the disciples were hoodwinked into the acceptance of a system of religion founded upon misrepresentation and falsehood, and deluded in placing their hope and trust in One who was mistaken in His mission? that Paul was indeed beating the air when he was contending for the faith once delivered to the saints? We admit the possibility of all that when we investigate the phenomena of Spiritism to determine whether that or the gospel is the truth; whether that or Jesus Christ is false.

Mr. Harvey considers it necessary to make this investigation and to follow the leadings of Spiritism, else we shall "be at an intellectual standstill." Until we have learned and exhausted all the treasures of divine truth revealed in the Word of God, it is not necessary to look elsewhere for spiritual leadership. God has left us a mine of intellectual and spiritual wealth as inexhaustible as Deity itself, in the Book given to us through inspired prophets and apostles and the teachings of the Christ Himself. Are these empty now and exhausted? If this were possible, it were better for us to wait until the Deity Himself had filled them again, rather than accept a system of intellectual progress that denies them and leads away from them into the hopeless abyss of oblivion. Even though that way were studded with myriads of scintillating diamonds, if it leads away from the gospel, it leads to the pit of doom.

Mr. Harvey complains that Spiritism's plea for an investigation of spirit phenomena is met by the church "with a flat refusal." Well would it be for the church if this were as true as it ought to be and as he says it is. He is "assured [by the church] that the truth has been revealed once and for all, and that there can be no revision." Very well; truth that needs revision is not truth. Who will revise the truth of God? Are the peeping and muttering and table-breaking spirits fit workmen for that task which even Divinity will not attempt? We deny both their capacity and their authority.

It is indeed true that Jesus said, "I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now" (John 16:12); but nowhere did He declare that when He should tell them, they would contradict or be a revision of the things already told. Those things which His disciples could not bear then, He told them later, or revealed through Peter and Paul and James and Jude and John in their epistles, and through John again in the Revelation. In none of these do we find a denial of the basic principles of the gospel.

Spiritism comes to us now, claiming to have those other revelations; but it bears the earmarks of the counterfeit, for it denies the very foundations upon which the others builded, and denies the necessity for the sacrifice of Christ. The writer of the letter to the Hebrews declares: "Christ was once offered to bear the sins of' many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin [or not as a sin offering] unto salvation." Heb. 9: 28. "But this Man [Christ], after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right hand of God; from henceforth expecting till His enemies be made His footstool." Heb. 10: 12, 13.

In Spiritism's creed, salvation does not depend upon the sacrificial offering of Christ. From a work written by Rev.) G. Vale Owen at the dictation of a spirit who called himself Zabdiel, I take this significant statement:

"I have heard, moreover, and believe it true, that those who worship the Father God by other rules than the Christian are likewise tended at their great festivals by their own special guiding, watching angels."--"The Life Beyond the Veil," book 2, p. 157.

What are we to infer from this, except that those who follow Confucius, Buddha, and Mohammed are as certain of eternal life as those who trust in the sacrifice offered for man on Calvary? Each seems equally acceptable to God, according to this teaching of Spiritism, in spite of the plain and very positive declaration of God's Word that "there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved." Acts 4:12. And yet Spiritism uses the very language of Scripture, and some of the very words of our Saviour Himself, in which to conceal the subtle poison of its deadly doctrine.

The pure gospel of Jesus Christ does not "limit the operations of the Almighty," nor "make Him indifferent to the growing spiritual needs of a seeking and progressive generation." A seeking and progressive generation must be saved through exactly the same sacrifice and by exactly the same process that men are saved by who lived in the days of Christ and of Paul, of Luther and the Wesleys. There is no respect of persons and no partiality with God. The "operations of the Almighty" cannot be limited by humanity, nor can they be revised or extended by mutterings from the spirit world which deny the need for Calvary's offering and contradict the plan of God by teaching salvation through one's own efforts in a continuation of life beyond the tomb. God is not necessarily limited in His revelations to prophets and apostles; but all further revelations from Him will be in harmony with those already given. Revelations which purport to come from Him, but which contradict those already given, bear their own stamp of fraud and deceit. "To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them." Isa. 8: 20. That is the divine touchstone, the divine acid test; and the verse immediately preceding the one quoted shows that it is to be applied to Spiritism primarily.

Mr. Harvey, continuing his plea that the church investigate Spiritism, says:

"This is the only way of adding to our store of spiritual knowledge. And it is knowledge -- knowledge that shall buttress a wavering faith in the only things that really matter -- that thoughtful men and women are seeking today. Above all else they want to know: 'If a man die, shall he live again?' They put that question to the church, and the church replies: 'Yes.' Then they ask for proof. 'We have none,' is the reply, 'apart from the statements contained in the Scriptures.' But 'statements' are not 'proofs,' and as no further advance can be made, the hungry are sent empty away. The church, in short, has no proof that there is a spiritual world at all. As Canon Adderley admits: 'The church can only assume that there is another world. It does not know. It has remained for science to provide the proof, and yet, notwithstanding all the evidence adduced, the church still prefers to cling to mere assumption.' "--Harbinger of Light, June 1, 1921.

But let us look into these most astonishing statements. Here is Spiritism professing to be setting forth the revised truth of God for "the growing ' spiritual needs of a seeking and progressive generation," and what is its attitude toward the truth of God already revealed, as we have it in the Bible? The statements found in that Book of truth, spoken by the Christ Himself, or written by His inspired penmen, are not "proof" to them; they are only "statements," "assumption." And when we give them to persons hungry for the truth,-- and that is all we have to give,-- these hungry seekers "are sent empty away." After such statements as these, it is incomprehensible to the writer how Spiritism can make any claim at all to a belief in the God of the Bible, or in Jesus Christ as even a great teacher.

Jesus Christ answered the question, "If a man die, shall he live again?" in these plain words:

"Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." John: 28, 29.

Does that not answer the question? or is it only assumption, and not proof? If that is only a "statement," only "assumption," and not "proof," then we can put no dependence in any of the teachings of the Man of Nazareth, and He is not what He said He was,--" the way, the truth, and the life."

It was Job who asked the question, "If a man die, shall he live again? "and under the spell of inspiration he answered it:

"All the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come. Thou shalt call, and I will answer Thee: Thou wilt have a desire to the work of Thine hands." Job 14: 14, 15.

He says that he will wait till his change shall come. But where will you wait, Job? Job answers: "If I wait, the grave is mine house: I have made my bed in the darkness." Job 17:13. Therefore in the grave Job would wait; he would be in the grave during all his "appointed time," until God should call; and when God does call, Job will stand up and answer. He will be among those of whom the prophet Isaiah speaks, who will "awake and sing." I have already quoted Isaiah's wonderful words; but inasmuch as they also answer the question of a future life, I will quote them again:

"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.

The psalmist also expresses the assurance of eternal life when he says, "I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever." Ps. 23: 6. In that assurance he could "walk through the valley of the shadow of death" and "fear no evil." He it was also who declared: "I shall be satisfied, when I awake, with Thy likeness." Ps. 17:15. Job, in spite of his misery, had the same glad assurance and hope when he declared:

"I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God: whom I shall see for myself, and mine eyes shall behold, and not another [or not as a stranger]; though my reins be consumed within me." Job 19: 25-27.

The apostle Paul, whose writings were indited by the Spirit of Inspiration, and who tells us that the gospel which he preached be did not receive from man, but from the Lord Jesus Christ Himself (Gal. 1: 12-19), has given his testimony concerning the prospect of man's living again. Let us hear him:

"Behold, I show you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality. So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory. . . . Thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ." 1 Cor. 15: 51-57.

Paul speaks as the veritable mouthpiece of the Lord Jesus Christ. He declares, as our Lord declares with His own lips, that man shall live again. The dead will leave their graves at the summons of the Life-giver.

"I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the hook of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell [" the grave," margin ] delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And whosoever was not found written in the hook of life was cast into the lake of fire." Rev. 20: 12-15.

Upon such testimony as the foregoing the Christian church bases its belief in the affirmative answer to Job's question, "If a man die, shall he live again?" Are these positive testimonies of prophets, apostles, and of Jesus Christ Himself, to be tossed aside as mere "statements" unproved, assumptions founded upon nothing tangible, while we place our confidence and hope and trust in the inane mumblings of those who, through "familiar spirits," seek to the dead on behalf of the living? Woe betide those who do; for they are casting away every possibility of immortality while they follow the ignis fatuus of satanic falsehood into the quicksands of eternal death.

Nor is it easy to understand the position of Canon Adderley, that "the church can only assume that there is another world;" that "it does not know;" and that "notwithstanding all the evidence adduced [by Spiritism], the church still prefers to cling to mere assumption." The church does know, if it believes the Christ who founded it, and the apostles through whom He spoke to it, and who sealed their testimony with their blood. Surely a canon of the church will not say that such positive declarations as we have read from our Saviour are only "statements" and "assumption," unless he has accepted the destructive philosophy of the "higher criticism," which is Ingersollism in a clerical collar and stole; or unless the wanderings of a planchette over a sheet of paper have convinced him that he ought to deny the Lord who bought him. Only under such circumstances can we understand the "assumptions of the canon; for the authorship of all such messages has to be assumed. They purport to come from the dead; he assumes that they tell the truth, because they speak of things which only he and the departed friend or relative knew about, forgetting that invisible watchers are intimately acquainted with every detail of one's life, and that some of these invisible watchers are of the fallen hosts of heaven, against whom heaven warns the inhabiters of earth.

Another doctor of divinity (Rev. Dr. Nixon) who seems to have left the sure foundation for one of shifting sand, is quoted by Mr. Harvey as saying:

"The attitude of the church seems to me to be strange, since we would naturally suppose every churchman to be in the way of becoming a Spiritualist, if not one already."

The churchman who places the Scriptures simply on a par with other literature, who feels at liberty to discard whatever portions do not agree with his own ideas, and who has imbibed the doctrine that immediately at death the soul enters upon its eternal reward or punishment, really has no logical reason to give as to why he should not believe in Spiritism. The phenomena of Spiritism, when the fraud, which even Spiritists admit, has been eliminated from them, do demonstrate that there is an intelligence and a power connected with Spiritism which are entirely outside of and beyond the human. Why, then, if these are spirits of the dead, as they affirm they are, should not their earthly friends communicate with them? To be sure, certain portions of the Bible forbid witchcraft, wizardry, necromancy, and consulting with "familiar spirits." But what of that? It is the fashion now among many theologians, who have been educated in the schools of the "higher critics," to discard portions of the Bible which do not appeal to them as essential, and why should not the would-be Spiritist do the same?

We are living in a generation that is taking all kinds of liberties with the hidden forces of nature, and why not take liberties also with the records of revealed religion? Surely if the theologians can condense the ten commandments, which were spoken by the lips of Jehovah and written by their Author's own finger, eliminating the "nonessential"(!) portions; and if doctors of divinity can condense the Bible itself into a Shorter Bible," eliminating all "nonessentials"( !), such as all texts referring to the second coming of Christ, and even eliminating the divine prohibition against tampering with Holy Writ (Rev. 22: 18, 19), surely the would-be Spiritist may be excused for eliminating such texts as do not comport with his ideas and wishes. And he does it, and then takes to his bosom the practices of Spiritism, which the unmutilated Book forbids.

It might be logical, as Dr. Nixon feels, for churchmen who believe in the inherent immortality of man, to adopt Spiritism; and yet it is a fact that many of them, while holding to beliefs that make the doctrines and the practice of Spiritism logical, refuse to be, for the present at least, ensnared in it. They realize that when their belief in the inherent immortality of mankind is carried to the logical extent of communicating with the supposed spirits of the dead, they are entering upon dangerous ground. Across the pathway leading thitherward Jehovah has set a danger signal and a warning, "Thou shalt not; that way lies madness and the wreck of human hopes."

One professed representative of the Christian church, the Rev. F. Fielding-Ould, M. A., vicar of Christ Church, Albany Street, London, who has published a work entitled, "The Wonders of the Saints in the Light of Spiritualism," is quoted by Mr. Harvey as saying:

"The leaders of thought, enlightened by divine inspiration and afire with living intuitions, speak as prophets and seers, and march in the forefront of the moving hosts of mankind, while the priests are too often searching the musty authorities of the past until compelled for their very life, and with a very great loss of prestige, to accept what has become self-evident."-- Harbinger of Light, June 1 , 1921.

This clergyman speaks as one who is thoroughly convinced that the claims of Spiritism are true, and has therefore left the "musty authorities of the past" (the Word of God) for what Spiritism has to give; for none but "higher critics" and Spiritists can speak of Holy Writ as a "musty" authority. How far such leadings beguile away from the divine channel of truth and blessing, is seen in this very declaration of a clerical convert to Spiritism. He deprecates dependence for the essentials of religious faith and practice upon the authoritative, heaven-inspired Book, the Bible. But God expects us to depend upon that Book for those essentials. He has revealed His will; He has never authorized any man or men to amend it, and has never intimated that anything else would ever take its place. Here is His admonition concerning just such suggestions as the aforementioned clergymen have thrown out:

"Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, We will not walk therein. Also I set watchmen over you, saying, Hearken to the sound of the trumpet. But they said, We will not hearken. Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto My words, nor to My law, but rejected it." Jer. 6: 16-19.

They had turned away from the "musty authorities of the past," even as Rev. Fielding-Ould advises this generation to do. The principles of the gospel are eternal. The gospel is indeed "the power of God unto salvation," and is capable of exercising its divine functions equally in every age. This "progressive age" does not require a revision of the divine plan of human redemption in order that it may find the way to the Author of salvation. God was displeased with the majority of His church in Jeremiah's day because they deserted Him and His Word for the "progressive religious ideas found in other systems, and He declared His displeasure in these words:

"Therefore thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will lay stumblingblocks before this people, and the fathers and the sons together shall fall upon them; the neighbor and his friend shall perish." Jer. 6: 21.

That destruction which God said would come upon the people because they turned away from His authoritative plans and requirements, did come, swift and certain. Now this generation is being led in the same way that Jeremiah's generation was led,-- away from the authoritative teachings of Jehovah, after the new, the mysterious, and the "progressive." Has Jehovah warned us of a similar result?

"Then shall that Wicked be revealed, whom the Lord shall consume with the spirit of His mouth, and shall destroy with the brightness of His coming: even Him, whose coming is after the working of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders, and with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusions, that they should believe a lie: that they might be damned who believe not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness." 2 Thess. 2: 8-12.

God did not take halfway measures with His people anciently when they turned away from Him and were turned unto fables. He instructed them, pleaded with them, and warned them. They persisted in their stiff-necked attitude, and would have none of His authority; and then came the judgment which He had in love warned them of and had pleaded with them to escape. His warning to us is even more emphatic than to them; and as certainly as night follows day, so certainly will the divine judgments fall upon the people of this generation who sneer at the "musty authorities of the past," turn a deaf ear to God's warnings, and follow as a religion the system of satanic deception which Jehovah denounced through His prophets of old; viz., seeking to the dead on behalf of the living.

God called that practice "abomination," and outlawed it among His people; and concerning His people's refusal to be bound by His authoritative Word, He speaks thus through the prophet Isaiah:

"Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations. I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before Mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not." Isa. 66: 3, 4.

This is the exact course which the above-named clerical Spiritist advises this generation to pursue,-- to turn away from the musty authorities of the past." But Isaiah tells us also what the result will be of following that advice:

"Behold, the Lord will come with fire, and with His chariots like a whirlwind, to render His anger with fury, and His rebuke with flames of fire. For by fire and by His sword will the Lord plead with all flesh: and the slain of the Lord shall be many." Isa. 66: 15, 16.

Leaders of heathen systems challenged the church in those ancient days even as they do today, and sneered at her respect for the ancient authorities. The church failed then as she seems to be failing today; and the swift retribution which followed those apostasies is an unmistakable prototype of the destruction which Paul says awaits the church of this last generation when she follows those examples of apostasy from the truth of God.

One of the most dangerous developments of our day is the re-enforcement of the ranks of Spiritism from the clergy. Clergyman after clergyman has gone over to it, and written books and preached

sermons in favor of the practice of necromancy. A Spiritist journal says:

"A great many of the clergy of Great Britain -- particularly in the Church of England -- have unquestionably arrived at a similar conclusion [to that of the bishop of Southwark], and it may be only a matter of time when they will obtain that convincing personal experience which, in most cases, is absolutely necessary for the removal of "the. remaining vestiges of doubt."-- Harbinger of Light, June 1, 1921.

The bishop of Southwark, Dr. C. F. Garbett, had 'said he "was bound to say that, when all that could be said against Spiritism had been said, there remained a residue which could only be accounted for at the present time by the hypothesis that there was some communication with those who were not of this world. That was only a hypothesis which might be disproved. There was, however, a strong case for investigation, but it must be an investigation by competent people."

Thus do some of the leading clergy answer the challenge of the prince of ruin. They answer it either by denying the fundamentals of their own faith and accepting his delusions, or by weakly admitting that he has presented a good case, worthy of serious consideration. So did Eve; so did Adam; and so we have death and ruin in the world today; and so will come, as God has so plainly declared, the judgments of the great Judge upon a generation that stops its ears to the word of God speaking to us from the past. This generation, that ought to be standing fast and asking for "the old paths" surveyed by our own Saviour through this wilderness of sin, is setting its face into that wilderness on a path of its own choosing, but which the cunning deceiver has surveyed for it,-- a path which leads straight down into the pit of everlasting ruin. Says the wise man:

"When wisdom entereth into thine heart, and knowledge is pleasant unto thy soul; discretion shall preserve thee, understanding shall keep thee: to deliver thee from the way of the evil man, from the man that speaketh froward things; who leave the paths of uprightness, to walk in the ways of darkness." Prov. 2: 10-13.

They who counsel us to fling aside the "musty authorities of the past," are enticing us to "leave the paths of uprightness;" and, doing so, we shall indeed "walk in the ways of darkness," in the path that leads to the precipice of destruction. If it is our firm intention to be humble followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, and to share in the eternal inheritance which He has promised, we will follow the divine admonition to "ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein;" then we shall indeed find rest for our souls.

When the prince of ruin challenges us, to desert the infallible standard of divine truth, and sneers at that standard as the "musty authorities of the past," it is time for us to answer that challenge as did our Saviour in the wilderness of temptation: "Get thee behind me, Satan." It is as necessary for us in the wilderness of our temptation to be true to the Father as it was for Him; and the power to enable us to do it "awaits our demand and reception."

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