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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 ďgleaning the goodĒ 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.

The Full And Divine Inspiration Of The Old And New Testament Scriptures

  Elder Sylvester Hassell   

 

It is estimated that there are now in the world four hundred million copies of the Bible--enough to furnish every human family with a copy: that these Bibles are in nearly four hundred languages, the tongues of nine-tenths of the human race; and that two hundred thousand different books have been written for the purpose of defending, expounding, and illustrating the Holy Scriptures. Nothing short of an infinity of wisdom and an eternity of time could worthily set forth and demonstrate the divine inspiration of the Old and New Testament Scriptures; but I will try to compress in the briefest possible space the fresh reflections with which, I hope, the Lord has favored me on this most important subject. I will give Twelve Infallible Proofs of the Divine Inspiration of the Scriptures--the first Six being addressed to the reason, and capable of being understood by all men, and the last Six being addressed to the heart, and capable of being spiritually appreciated only by the children of God; and in each group of six the first Three Proofs are of an indirect, and the last Three of a direct, character--the connection between the members of the same subgroup of three being indicated by the use of the same italicized adjective or phrase at the beginning of each paragraph.

1. The utter darkness of all human minds, both ancient and modern, in regard to spiritual and eternal realities, the origin, the government, and the destiny of the human race, unless those minds have been illuminated by the truths of the Holy Scriptures. The wisest natural men only guess and dream and hope and fear in regard to the insoluble problem of human life--what preceded and what will succeed the brief period of present human existence: and the awful question grows darker the nearer they approach the grave, and beyond its gloomy portals they see in the dying hour nothing but the blackness of darkness forever. It is now apparent that all true light on these momentous subjects appearing in the literature of the ancient heathen world, whether of Rome, or Greece, or Egypt, or Babylonia, or Persia, or India, or China, was derived from the divine revelations in the Old Testament Scriptures.

2. The utter falsity of all the theories of so-called philosophers, scientists, and critics, invented to discredit the statements of the Holy Scriptures. There have been thousands of such theories, but, like the Midianitish enemies of Israel, they have, in the wise and righteous providence of God, slain each other; and today the discordant infidel speculations of the enemies of truth form a perfect Babel, their tongues being confounded by the High and Holy One that inhabiteth eternity. "Proud, positive, dogmatizing, they pretend to know everything, but prove nothing, and ridicule each other--every one of them preferring his own error to the truth discovered by another. They would fain palm upon us the unintelligible systems that they have erected in their own heads, while they trample under foot all that the wisest and best men revere." According to the most eminent living professors the sciences of astronomy, geology, archaeology, ethnology and philology, all the discoveries of those sciences confirm and illustrate the wonderful truths of the Holy Scriptures--the Mosaic record of creation, in the exact order therein detailed; chaos, light, the individualization of the earth, the separation of the water from the land, the vegetable kingdom, the clear shining of the heavenly bodies, fish, reptiles, birds, mammals, and, last of all, man, for whom the world was made; the first appearance of man on earth within less than ten thousand years ago; the derivation of the human race from one pair; their primitive innocence and subsequent fall and degeneration, attended by a deterioration of the climate and an eruption of thistles and weeds; the high intellectuality and longevity and rapidly advancing civilization of the antediluvians; their professed belief in God and immortality; the Sethites and the Cainites, and the Nephilim or Giants (their skeletons from seven to ten feet long), the descendants of the intermarried Sethites and Cainites; the increasing corruption of the race; the deluge that swept them all away, except one righteous family; the repeopling of the earth from that family, the confusion of tongues and the dispersion of the nations; and the leading facts in the lives of the patriarchs and in the history of the Israelites, as recorded in the Old Testament, and in the lives of Christ and His apostles, and in the history of the Christian Church as recorded in the New Testament. More than two thousand mistakes have been proved to be in the writings of Herodotus, "the Father of Profane History," but not one single mistake has been proved to be in the writings of Moses or the other inspired authors of the Holy Scriptures. The few slight apparent discrepancies and errors, paraded and magnified by the so-called "higher critics" who occupy professorships in the theological seminaries of Europe and America were satisfactorily explained to men of common sense and common honesty hundreds of years ago. The wild, vague, pretentious ignorant speculation of these disguised infidels in regard to the authorship and dates of the books and the different parts of the books of the Bible are not only self-contradictory, but are opposed to the teachings of all true history and archaeology, as well as of all common sense; and a hundred of their eight hundred theories die every year; and the most radical of these destructives admit that every particle of the Old Testament was written at least a hundred years before the beginning of the Christian era. Satan in the subtle serpent in the Garden of Eden, was the first "higher critic," when he said to Eve; "Yea hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree in the garden?" thus casting doubt upon the word of God. The Highest Critics--Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit--put the stamp of their Divine authority on the Scriptures of eternal truth. The Old Testament was "Our Saviourís Bible," and was always referred to by Him, with the greatest reverence, as the infallible, the literally and perfectly true testimony of God; and more than two thousand times in the Scriptures did the Holy Spirit move the writers to say that not only their thoughts, but their words, were God-breathed or inspired of God.

3. The utter insincerity of the enemies of the Scriptures, who, the more fully and clearly the natural light of these truths shines upon the world, the more stubbornly and tightly close their eyes and refuse to see it. The attendant immoralities of the leading infidels of the world are too shocking to be detailed in these fair pages; and the unutterable pandemonium to which their teachings would reduce human society is portrayed, for the warning of all subsequent generations, in the diabolical scenes of the French Atheistical Revolution at the close of the eighteenth century.

4. The absolute certainty that this apparently illimitable and incomprehensible universe had an Adequate First Cause, and that that First Cause was the God of the

Bible--one omnipresent, eternal, sovereign, infinitely holy, merciful, wise, powerful, unchangeable, personal Spirit, who, for the manifestation of His glory, called all things and all other persons into being out of nothing, and who sustains and governs them and will reign in glory over every one of them forever and forevermore. The very first verse of the Bible, read in the light of true science, demonstrates the fundamental truth of the Holy Scriptures. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." The Hebrew word Bara, translated created, means to make of nothing; and so atoms, the imperceptible and infinitesimally small particles of which matter is composed--the little invisible gods of infidelity--have, in their perfectly exact combining weights and volumes, all the qualities of manufactured articles, thus demonstrating that matter is not eternal (though all heathenism and infidelity say it is), but was made by an Eternal Living Spirit, who also must have made all other spirits and all other living beings. And the Trinity, or Three-Oneness, of the Creator, everywhere set forth in the universe which He created--in law, power, and manifestation.

5. The absolute certainty that, as the miracles of Godís creation, out of nothing, of matter, life, and mind, took place as recorded in the first chapter of Genesis, and in geology, so God could, by a simple volition or command, perform the fifty other miracles recorded in the Old Testament and the forty recorded in the New Testament, in attestation of His existence and character and of the Divine commission of His prophets and apostles. The disproof of the theory of spontaneous generation has beheaded the doctrine of an atheistic evolution of the universe, in support of which lying vanity not one established fact can be adduced, according to the concurrent testimony of the whole scientific world. The insane imaginations of Charles Darwin in regard to the transmutations of species are as false and incredible as the Metamorphses of Ovid or the lying wonders of the Arabian Nights. In all the ages of the earthís history, the five hundred thousand different species of plants and animals have been "as fixed as the Sphinx that slumbers on the Egyptian sands;" the resemblance between them has been the result, not of physical descent, but of the unity of plan in the Creative Mind.

6. The absolute certainty that, as Godís foreknowledge and predestination and prophecy of the coming of man shine all throughout the first twenty-five verses of Genesis and all through the geological ages, so God foreknew and predestinated and inspired His servants to prophesy, as related in the Scriptures, not only the destruction of the enemies of Israel, the Canaanites, Ammonites, Moabites, Edomites, Philistines, Ninevah, Babylon, Tyre, Egypt, Greece, and Rome, but also the coming of the Son of God as the Son of Man, the time and place of His birth, His Divine-Human nature, His life, teachings, miracles, sufferings, death, resurrection, and ascension; the setting up and history of His kingdom; the destruction of Jerusalem and the dispersion of the Jews for their rejection and murder of their Messiah; the treading-down of Jerusalem by the Gentiles, as is now the case; and also the great unfulfilled events of the eternal future--the restoration of the Jews to faith in Christ, if not to their own land; the ingathering of the Gentiles, the almost universal apostasy, the second personal coming of Christ, the resurrection of the dead, the final judgment, the everlasting salvation of the children of God in heaven, and the everlasting damnation of His wicked enemies in hell. History shows that hundreds of the prophecies of the Scriptures have been circumstantially fulfilled. Nothing but ungodly ignorance denies it. No other book but the Bible pretends to base its claims upon prophecy, which is a perpetual miracle that all intelligent men can see.

7. The thorough conviction that the first human pair did not make themselves nor spring from brutes, but were created by such a Being as the Bible represents God to be, and that He made them sinless and accountable creatures, and constituted them the rulers, under Him, of the world, and placed them under a righteous law which they, without any compulsion from Him, willfully transgressed and thereby involved themselves and all their unborn posterity in a condition of sin and death, just as the Scriptures declare.

8. The thorough conviction that, as is set forth in the Scriptures, the only man that ever lived a perfectly holy life on earth was the Messiah, the Christ, the Son of God, the Son of the Virgin Mary, Jesus of Nazareth, who was born, and lived, and died, and rose again, and ascended to heaven, in exact accordance with the three hundred and thirty-three Old Testament prophecies of Him for four thousand years; and that He is the only possible Saviour of sinful men, and will save His people from their sins, having atoned for their sins by His death, and having justified His people by His resurrection; that He will give them eternal life and will save them in both soul and body forever.

9. The thorough conviction that, as the Scriptures represent, natural men are dead in trespass and sins, and need to be quickened by the Spirit of God into a divine, a new, and a holy life, in order to realize their lost and helpless condition, and to cause them to cry unto God for mercy, and to bring them to believe in Jesus as their Saviour, and to enable them to understand the spiritual meaning of the Scriptures and the dealings of God with them in His providence, and to keep them by His power through faith unto the fullness of the glorious salvation which is to be revealed to them in the last time.

10. The deep feeling that we ourselves are vile, inexcusable sinners, as represented in the Scriptures; that we have sinned, all our lives long, in thought, and word, and deed, against a Most Holy and Merciful God, the being who made and has kept us alive and has bestowed innumerable blessings upon us; and that He might most justly consign us at once to hopeless and endless perdition.

11. The deep feeling that, if we are saved, it must be by the exercise of Godís entirely free mercy; if we are ever accepted of Him, it must be alone in the perfect righteousness of His incarnate, crucified, risen, and glorified Son; and that we do believe that the spotless Son of God, the meek and lowly Lamb, did, for the eternal, amazing love that He felt for us--poor, hell-deserving sinners--leave the courts of heavenly glory, and was born of a woman in the greatest humility, and lived an earthly life of the deepest poverty and reproach and sorrow and persecution, and prayed and groaned and wept and bled and died, in unspeakable shame and agony, for us, and rose and ascended and intercedes for us at the right hand of the Divine Majesty, and will bless us, both in time and in eternity, with His everlasting salvation, in accordance with the Scriptures of eternal truth.

12. The deep feeling that, as declared in the Scriptures, no power less than the Holy Spirit of the Living God could have quickened us from death of sin, convicted us of our ruined condition and revealed to us the salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ, and caused us, from the depths of our souls, to hate the sins that slew our Saviour, and to love, incomparably above all others, the dear Lord who gave Himself for us, and to love His Written Word far above all other books, and His precious children above all other people, and His holy Law and blessed Gospel, and to desire, from a principle of love, to benefit our fellow-creatures and to glorify God by willing obedience to all His commandments and cheerful submission to all His dispensations. Holy life and light and love are the inner essence of God and of His salvation. They are the production of His Holy Spirit in His people. When perfectly developed in a creature, they will assimilate him to God and make him perfectly happy; and when perfectly prevalent, according to Godís promise, on the new earth, wherein shall dwell righteousness, they will banish sin and its curse forever, and transform the world into a heavenly . Such is the crowning and unanswerable proof of the full divine inspiration of the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments which set forth these glorious truths.

No other book or document of human literature bears these marks of divine authority; and, therefore, Primitive Baptists consider the Old and New Testaments the only infallible rule of faith and practice. "All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field; the grass withereth, the flower fadeth, but the word of our God shall stand forever." Isaiah xl. 6-8; 1- Peter i. 24, 25.