Dear Editor of the Standard Bearer:
With reference to the Standard Bearer March 15, 1964, page 288, I read the following:
According to Oak Lawn’s bulletin, Dr. Payson says, “The symptoms of spiritual decline are like those which attend the decline of bodily health. It generally commences with a loss of appetite, and a disrelish for wholesome food, prayer, reading the Scriptures and devotional books. Whenever you perceive these symptoms be alarmed! Your spiritual health is in danger! Apply immediately to the Great Physician for a cure.”
Have you noticed any symptoms lately?
Is not this quote the rankest type of Arminianism found? For the following reasons:
1) The sickness that we do have is DEATH unless we are regenerated.
2) When we are guilty of decline and of doing works that are not pure, Scripture says that we are NOT honoring the true God. Our worship and offerings are filthy in His sight.
3) In such a state the WORD, that is Christ, must come to us. It is not that we apply for a cure. Nor do we ever cooperate in doing this.
4) This is found in Scripture:
“Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. FOR IT IS GOD WHICH WORKETH IN YOU BOTH TO WILL AND TO DO OF HIS GOOD PLEASURE. Phil. 2:12, 13.
Furthermore, if this is the case in. the church, that is with regard to the people not doing as they ought, I do not see that giving a spiced Arminian pill solves the problem. How much better to come with the words of the true prophets, such as, “Repent and turn from your evil ways for the kingdom of God is at hand. Repent and bring forth fruits meet for repentance.” This is all the work of God. Finally, what is material such as this quote from Dr. Payson doing in the Standard Bearer?!
The structure of the quoted article shows that it presumes the structure of doctrine that the Arminian would use, that is, the human is able and willing to turn to Christ even when he is backsliding. But we KNOW that God always preserves His church. We cannot even cooperate, because all our good works are Gods. TO GOD BE THE GLORY!
Arie Nobel, Jr.