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Most of the articles on these WebPages have been written by godly men with a central belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. However as with most of us, they may have different beliefs concerning some particular doctrines. These articles have been made available for the purpose of “gleaning the good” where good can be found. I do not necessarily endorse all that is written by others, anymore than I expect others to endorse all that I write.


Elder C.H. Cayce


November 16, 1915

We have been urgently requested, and we promised some time ago, to write an article on the subject of regeneration. There seems to be much misunderstanding among the brethren on the question in some sections of the country, and we are of the opinion that there is no real or material difference among the brethren on that question. We think that some have become unduly alarmed, and are simply confused, and do not, perhaps, understand each other. But we will state our views just as we have always tried to preach, and just as we have ever believed since we have had a name among the Old Baptists. What we have tried to preach on the question has never caused trouble among them that we have ever heard of.

The Saviour says, in (John 3:3), "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." The word man is translated from a word which means anyone. Hence, "Except anyone be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." The word again is translated from a word which means from above. Hence, "Except anyone be born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of

God." The word man, or the word anyone, simply refers to the race-except anyone of the race of Adam be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. One must be born from above in order to that end. It is the sinner of Adam's race that is the subject of the new birth.

It is not some kind of spirit, or eternal child, that comes down and takes up its abode in the Adam man, and remains in him until the Adam man dies and then goes back to heaven where it came from, thus leaving the Adam man out of the benefits of salvation. In (John 3:6) the Saviour says, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit."

By the expression, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh," the Saviour does not mean to teach that the person born of the flesh is nothing more than a lump of flesh, for the Scriptures abundantly teach that man is a complex being-a being composed of soul, body, and spirit. He simply meant the same that is abundantly taught elsewhere, that in the natural birth the person partakes of the nature of the natural parentage. In creation, God gave a fixed and immutable law, that everything partakes of the nature of that from which it springs; and the Saviour teaches that great truth in that expression. Even so, in the expression," That which is born of the Spirit is spirit," He teaches the great truth that in being born of the heavenly parentage one partakes of the nature of that parentage.

This language also teaches that as the first birth is natural, the second birth is spiritual. Regeneration is a spiritual work. As it is a spiritual work, it is accomplished or performed by the work of the Spirit of God upon the spirit of the man. The Spirit of God does not operate on the body in regeneration, but on the spirit of the man. The work of regeneration makes the sinner a partaker of the divine nature. See (II Peter 1:3-4): "According as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue: whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust."

The work of regeneration is an inward work. See (Philippians 1:6) "Being confident of this very thing, that He which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ." This does not mean that regeneration is a progressive work, or that the Lord begins regeneration and completes it later on, for it is an instantaneous work. But he does mean that the work of the Holy Spirit, the Third Person in the Holy Trinity, in the salvation of the sinner, is begun in regeneration, and will be carried on to perfection. It was the work of Christ, the Second Person in the Trinity, to make atonement, and He carried that work on to perfection. No part of it was left undone. Even so, no part of the work of the Holy Spirit will be left undone, and it is the work of the Holy Spirit to bring in all the heirs of promise, and it was the work of Christ to make atonement for them.

In the work of regeneration, the sinner is given a new heart. He is not given a new lump of.flesh which we call the heart, but he is given a new seat of affection, for the heart is the seat of affection. In a state of unregeneracy, the heart is wicked and deceitful. See ((9) (Jeremiah 17:9) "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" Without the operation of the Spirit of God, the Spirit shining in the heart, no one can know the wickedness and deceitfulness of his heart; but the light of the Holy Spirit shining in the heart, makes the wickedness of the heart known to the sinner in whose heart the Spirit is thus shining.

Without this operation of the Spirit in the heart no one knows, or can know, the Lord. But the Lord gives a heart to know Him. See (Jeremiah 24:7) "And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the Lord: and they shall be my people,

and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart." The Lord gives the sinner a heart to know Him. In a state of unregeneracy the sinner has a stony heart; but the Lord takes away the stony heart and gives a heart of flesh. See ((9) (Ezekiel 11:19-20) "And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh: that they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God."

The stony heart is not susceptible of spiritual feeling or emotion, but the Lord gives a heart of flesh, which is susceptible of spiritual emotion. With this new heart, which makes the sinner a child of God, he hates sin; he loathes sin; he abhors unrighteousness, and longs to be free from sin, and to be pure and holy as Jesus is. The fact that one begins to hate sin, and to long to be free from it, and to be pure, and holy, and righteous, as Jesus is, is evidence that the Lord has given him a heart of flesh. It is proof of the inward work of grace. To take a man's heart out of him is to kill the man. A gentleman once said to us concerning this matter: "Cayce, you know that will never do! The very idea of taking a man's heart out of him! You have sense enough to know that this would kill the man right now!"

We replied that we were aware of the fact that it would kill the man to take his heart out of him; but that this is the very first thing the Lord does for the sinner in the work of regeneration-it is to kill him. Hence, the apostle says, (Romans 6:11) "Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord." The Lord kills to the love of sin, and makes alive to the love of holiness. See (Deuteronomy 32:39) "See now that I, even I, am He, and there is no god with me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal: neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand." As the sinner is thus killed to sin, and to the love of it, he does not then love sin as he once did. He loves holiness and righteousness as he once did not.

In the work of regeneration, the Lord puts His Spirit within them. He gives them a new spirit. He gives them a new heart -a heart of flesh. See ((26) (Ezekiel 36:26-27) "A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them." This brings about a great change in the sinner. He is no longer an unregenerate sinner, but a saved sinner, a sinner who has been born from above. It is accomplished by the operation of the Spirit of God in the heart, in the spirit or in the soul, of the sinner; and this makes the sinner a child of God. The work is not accomplished by the work of the Spirit on the body, for the Spirit does not operate on the body.

When we were a boy we heard an old preacher in this country use an expression which was amusing to us then. The quaintness and peculiarity of the illustration caused us to remember it. Since then we have been enabled to see more in it than the mere quaintness of it. He said: "The grace of God in the heart of the sinner is like grease in a gourd. You may put grease in a gourd, and it will soak through and show on the outside. So the grace of God in the heart cannot be hid; it will show on the outside."

There is much in this illustration. According to modern theology, if you put grease on the outside of a gourd, it would soak through to the inside; but it will not do so. If you rub grease on the outside of a gourd it will not soak through to the inside. Modern theologians seem to teach that the grace of God on the outside of the sinner will soak through to the inside. This is the reverse of the truth. The truth is that the grace of God implanted in the heart (put on the inside) by the work of the

Holy Spirit, will soak through and show on the outside. This work of the Spirit will manifest itself in some way in the life of the recipient of it.

It makes known to him the fact that he is a sinner in the sight of God, and thus he is made to mourn on account of sin. He is brought low, at the foot-stool of God's sovereign grace and mercy, and made to plead for mercy-just what he realizes he must have if ever permitted to see God in peace. But the grease put in the gourd does not take away the old nature which it had, but the grease soaking through and showing itself on the outside makes manifest that something has been done on the inside.

There is another nature now permeating the gourd, and the two natures may both be seen in the same gourd. Even so, the grace of God in the heart of the sinner, implanted there in the work of regeneration, does not take away the old nature which he had, but it gives him another nature; and both natures may sometimes be seen manifested in the person. These two natures are contrary, the one to the other. This causes the warfare in the child of God; and this warfare will continue as long as he stays on earth.

This work of regeneration brings the sinner out from under the law of sin and death. The atonement of Christ satisfied that law, and regeneration brings the sinner out from under it and places him under another law. He is then under law to Christ. See (I Corinthians 9:21): "To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law." This brings him under obligation to render service to the Master. He is under law or obligation to Christ, because he has been made a child of God by the operation of the Holy Spirit in his heart or soul.

The unregenerate are in a state which the apostle calls in the flesh. The child of God is not in that condition, but is in the Spirit. See (Romans 8:8-9): "So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His." The child of God is not in the flesh in the same sense that the unregenerate sinner is, for he possesses the Spirit of Christ; and he is, therefore, said by the apostle to be in the Spirit. It is true that he still has the same old nature that he had before; and he may follow the inclinations of that old nature, and thereby fail to receive and enjoy the blessings which the obedient child receives and enjoys.

Hence, the apostle says, in (Romans 8:12-13): "Therefore, brethren, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live after the flesh. For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live." The child of God should not follow after the flesh, or the inclinations of the old sinful nature; but he should follow after the Spirit; he should through the Spirit mortify the deeds of the body; he should follow after the inclinations of that divine nature which has been implanted in his heart or spirit; and in doing this he receives the approving smiles of the Saviour; by doing this he enjoys blessings which he would not otherwise enjoy.

A wonderful change is wrought in the sinner in the work of regeneration. Saul of Tarsus was a great man in his own estimation before regeneration. In those days names meant some thing. His name was Saul, and that name meant great. He was a Pharisee of the Pharisees. He was indeed a great man from a worldly point of view, in regard to worldly wisdom, or worldly attainments. He was not only great from that standpoint, but he was great in his own estimation; he was a self-righteous Pharisee. But while he was on his way from Jerusalem to Damascus with

letters of authority to bind and cast in prison those who were calling on the name of the Lord, the Lord of glory spoke to him and said, "Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutes!" -((9:4) (Acts 9:4-5).

The Lord there made him alive from the dead; he was raised up out of a state of death in trespasses and sins into a state of life in Christ. When the Lord speaks to a sinner who is dead in trespasses and sins, He makes him alive from that state. See (John 5:25) "Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live." Saul heard that voice and was made alive from that dead state. "Suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven: and he fell to the earth," etc.-((9:3) (Acts 9:3-4). Prior to this time he was very erect-he was great in his self righteousness; but now he is brought low before the throne of grace and mercy. His cry was, "Who art thou, Lord?"

He now realises something he had never before realized. He is found lying prostrate on the ground. Perhaps some of our readers can remember that they felt unworthy to kneel on God's footstool, and you prostrated yourself on the ground, and placed your face and lips in the dust, and plead for mercy. Saul's prayer was a prayer for mercy. It was an evidence of the quickening or regenerating power of the Spirit of God in his heart. After this, his name was called Paul. His name was changed-why?

Because names meant something. The name Paul means little. He is no longer great, but is now little. The grace of God in the heart always makes the sinner little. It never causes one to be self exalted; but makes him feel and realize his own unworthiness. When he follows the influence of that grace after regeneration he feels his own imperfections, and he does not desire to make his brother an offender for a word, and he will not do so.

He is not so particular about the words used to convey an idea; his desire is to get the truth and the sentiment. The sentiment is what he desires, more than the words used to convey the sentiment. "Love suffers long, and is kind; envieth not; vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things." -(I Corinthians 13:4-7)

The Campbellite position is that regeneration is effected by moral suasion or moral influence. They do not hold that regeneration is a moral influence, but that it is brought about by moral influence. In fact, with them regeneration is nothing more than moral reformation, while it is a reformation instead of a reformation. In that work the sinner is formed anew in his soul, or spirit, or heart. The body is not formed anew in regeneration; it is still mortal and corruptible. It goes to the grave that way. In the resurrection at the last day the body will be formed anew; it will be made spiritual; it will be made immortal and incorruptible. Then the entire man will be made pure, holy, sinless, and be in the perfect image of Christ. You may call the resurrection of the body what you please, this is what is done for it in the resurrection. See (I Corinthians 15:42-57); (I John 3:2); ((21) (Philippians 3:21).

In regeneration the man is made good in heart. His heart is made good, and the man is then a good man, because he has a good heart. The Saviour says, in (Matthew 12:33-35): "Either make the tree good, and his fruit good; or else make the tree corrupt, and his fruit corrupt: for the tree is known by his fruit. O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure

bringeth forth evil things." Why were these people not good? Because their hearts were not good.

That is the reason. How is the heart made good? The Lord gives a good heart. He takes away the stony heart, and gives a heart of flesh. This makes the man good. If not, the Saviour would not have said, in the very next verse, "A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things." The man having a good heart makes him a good man, but that does not make his body spiritual, nor remove the nature he had before. It gives him another nature, which is a divine nature; and that divine nature is implanted in his heart. If that does not make a man a better man, we confess that we do not know what would make him better. If it does not make him better, we do not see how a tree can be known by his fruit. We know a tree is a good tree because it produces good fruit. We know the man is a good man, because he brings forth good things. Regeneration gives him a good heart, and then the Saviour calls him a good man. Having been made a good man, he manifests the same by his life. He then brings forth good fruit.

Elder G. M. Thompson was considered one among the ablest men of his day. He wrote a book called "The Measuring Rod; or the Principles and Practice of the Primitive Baptists," which was published in 1861. It is a refutation of Two-Seedism. On pages 79, 80, 81, and 82 he says: The Bible represents the new birth or regeneration, as producing a great change in the sinner; but it does not only prove the change, but it proves that the sinner is the subject of that birth or regeneration. It is the sinner's heart that is circumcised to love the Lord; it is the sinner that is purged from an evil conscience to serve the Lord; and it is the dead sinner that is to hear the voice of the Son of God, and live. In the work of regeneration, the stranger is made a citizen, the enemy is made a friend, and those who know not God, are made to know Him and love Him.

The debtor receives forgiveness, the criminal receives pardon, the captive receives liberty, and the guilty receives justification. The change is great, and all this change is wrought in the sinner, the son or daughter of Adam. The change was so great in Saul, the vilest persecutor, that he became the humble follower of the Lord Jesus Christ, and labored to build up what he had tried to tear down. ... When Paul wrote to the Ephesians, he believed that in regeneration the sinner experienced a change, for he says, "Ye were once darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord."

Again, to the Colossians, he says, "Who hath delivered us from the power of darkness and translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son." As these people deny that in regeneration the sinner is" changed from the love of sin to the love of holiness," they cannot belong to the Apostolic church, for we see that the doctrine of a change in the sinner was a cardinal article in the Apostolic faith. The first Baptist I ever read of required all, before baptism, to "Bring forth fruits meet for repentance," or to give evidences of a change. If one of these Arians had gone to John, denying a change, and had demanded baptism of him, he would have rejected them, as he did the Pharisees and Sadducees. And they would today be rejected by the New Testament church, if they were to come declaring that" they had never experienced any change, that they loved sin as well as they ever did."

By the "Golden Rule" they cannot be the true church, and have no right to bear its name. If there are any among them that have ever been born again; have ever been made a new creature in Christ Jesus; have ever been changed from the love of sin to the love of holiness, I would say, "Come out of her, my people," for the doctrine is at war with the Bible, is at war with the interests of the true church, and is at war with your own experience. Again, on pages 86 and 87, he says: The apostle tells us that the Son of God was "made of a woman, made under the law, to redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of

sons. And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying Abba, Father." -(Galatians 4:4-6).

In this passage it is the son that is redeemed, and it is the very same son and heir that receives the Spirit of God's Son, that also receives the adoption of sons; there is no distinction made by the apostle. The child, the heir, must be redeemed, because it had sinned, and fallen under the curse of the law; it must be made free, because in a state of bondage; and it having become an enemy to God, the Spirit of God's Son must be sent into its heart, to circumcise it to love God, and it is by the renewing and regenerating influence of that Spirit that it is enabled to cry, Abba, Father.

Again, on pages 169 and 170, he says: His elect are predestinated unto the adoption of children, and it is according to this unalterable purpose that in the fulness of the dispensation of times they are called to be saints, receive the adoption of sons, are born a second time, or become new creatures in Christ Jesus.

The apostle's doctrine teaches that it is the man that is dead in sin that is quickened, that it is the enemy that is made a friend, and the stranger and foreigner that is made a child and fellow citizen. This is a great change, and is the work of God, for Paul tells the Ephesian saints that they are the workmanship of God, created in Christ Jusus unto good works, which God before ordained that they should walk in.

Just here we quote the following contained in a letter to us from Elder R. O. Raulston, 806 Dodds Avenue, Chattanooga, Tenn.: I have lived among the dear Old Baptists for more than forty years, and have heard our precious brethren preach from all parts of the country, and if I have ever been so enlightened by the sweet Spirit of the Lord as to be able to understand them, they have all believed and contended that the salvation enjoyed by the poor sinners of Adam's race in regeneration was an inward work of the Spirit of God upon, or in, the soul or spirit of the sinner; and all have understood that the individual thus dealt with through the mercy and goodness of God was a saved sinner, and looked upon as a child of God; and still all have fully agreed with the expression of the poet, where he says: Here I am, behold who will; Sure I am a sinner still; I believe our people fully understand that the unspeakable treasure possessed by them they have in an earthen vessel. They have believed that He who has begun a good work in them will perfect it, and they have hoped and trusted in the Lord to immortalise and spiritualize their vile bodies.

Now, we have stated our views plainly, it seems to us. This is just the way we see the matter. We do not care to, and we will not, "split hairs" on questions that some may bring in by speculation. If every church who has a preacher in it who is agitating this question would call in his liberty and stop him from preaching until he agrees to stop agitating the question, our people would have no trouble, no strife, no confusion, and no division on the same. The preachers are the ones who cause trouble in the Old Baptist Church.

It seems to us that we have been plain enough in the foregoing for anyone to know that we do not believe the "whole man" doctrine; but for fear some person might not remember, we will say, most emphatically, that WE DO NOT BELIEVE THE" WHOLE MAN" DOCTRINE. When we say we do not believe a thing, there is no man under heaven who has any right to say that we do, and no honest man who reads this will hereafter do so. Some have accused us of believing that, but every honest man who has thought so will say it no more, and will be willing to correct his statements that we did.

Now, we will say, in conclusion, that we do not want any agitation of this question, and we are not going to have it in our paper. This article ends the matter, so far as

our columns are concerned. No one need to send us any communications arguing this question either way, for they will go into the fire as soon as we see what they are. We have written in plainness, but we have done so in love for the cause of our blessed Master. We have been silent for some time, and have written nothing for our columns, hoping that peace might be restored, until we have felt that circumstances and the cause absolutely demanded that we say this much, and give our readers to understand that we do not believe the "whole man" doctrine, and that we were not going to allow any quarrel in The Primitive Baptist on the question. While we do not believe the "whole man" doctrine, we wish it also understood that we do not believe what has been called the "hollow log" doctrine. Both are wrong and we will not accept either.

While we do not, as stated, believe the "whole man" doctrine, yet we are not responsible for any wrong construction which any man may place on our language; but no honest man who reads this article will hereafter place such a construction on our language as we here deny that we believe. May the Lord grant to give us all the spirit of love and forbearance, that we may be willing to bear with others, as we would wish them to bear with us. If we would manifest more of the spirit of love and forbearance, instead of secretly working to destroy a brother, we are sure there would be less trouble in our beloved Zion. May the Lord have mercy upon us all, is our humble prayer. C. H. C.