The Tree of Fundamentalism... a End of The Age Message
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Preface To The Tree of Fundamentalism
In January, 1977, when I exited the gate of the U.S. Navy’s Treasure Island in California for the last time, I became a civilian again. But I was not the same civilian as I was before I went into the Navy.
Before I went into the Navy, I was in spiritual darkness, “for ye were sometimes darkness”. I also was without hope. “That at the time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world.” [Ephesians 2:12]
Further as a member of this old world I was a hater of God. To say it bluntly I was living by the light of my own fire.
However, the man who went through that gate in 1977 was no longer living by the light of his own fire. He had found by the grace of God the truth of the utter fruitlessness of such an endeavor. That endeavor is living by the light of one’s own fire.
“Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled.” [Isaiah 50:10-11]
As a Christian people, the Fundamentalists leaders ... who met together at the Niagara Bible Conference in 1878 … came to the conclusion that they needed fight the wave of religious modernism in the strength of a man-made precept: “in the original writings” or “original autographs” in their doctrine of the inerrancy of the Bible.
The Fundamentalists decided to walk in the light of their own fire.
I have given this story before.
It is now a long time ago, and I can remember in the backyard of our house in Palmer, Alaska there was a large, beautiful spruce tree. The bole of that tree was as straight as an arrow, and many a time I would stand in the yard and marvel at that tree. In all that snow-capped, mountain-rimmed glacial valley formed by the Knik River, surely there was no tree as perfect as this tree.
We named the valley "The Hidden Valley". This Hidden Valley was located 45 miles north of Anchorage, which is Alaska’s largest city. This tree could not have had a more perfect setting, for the lower reaches of the nearby Pioneer Peak afforded shelter from the worst of Alaska's winter winds.
Little did I know … concerning the true state of our tree.
Now, the story goes like this.
In the early spring of 1991, the snow was rapidly melting from the mountains above our home. Our brook, which cut across our property, was loudly gurgling out a tune, a melody in the night as we all slept. Then a Knik wind came up in the darkness of night, and all of a sudden we all awoke when the sound of a loud snap, and a strong shudder reverberated throughout the house. I wondered, “Was it an earthquake?” [In Alaska, earthquakes are quite common.] I looked out the window from my children's room into the darkness of the night. Everything seemed to be all right. “Oh well,” I said to myself, “it's nothing to worry about,” and went back to bed.
Little did I know!
Later, with the early light of dawn, I could see what really happened. Snapped off about eight feet from the ground, was my beautiful spruce tree! What a strange thing, because the trees in Alaska typically have a shallow root system, and if a tree does go down, it goes down because it was uprooted. This spruce failed at what I thought was its strongest point! Later that spring, I searched for the reason why my marvelous tree failed, and this is what I found. You see, this spruce tree had a bad heart: inner decay! It was rotten inside but majestically beautiful on the outside. This tree’s true state of health was deceptively hidden. Never did I imagine during the many times I admired this tree for its beauty that just below the surface … death was very imminent.
“Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles? Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit. A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit. Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.” [Matthew 7:16-20]
[The BIBLE nailed it down right!]
The tree was good for the fire!
1. The Beginning of The Tree
“Ye shall know them by their fruits.”
Every tree has a life … it has a beginning. Further than that, every tree will someday bear some sort of fruit, whether good or bad. Time will show what kind of fruit. Remember, the fruit of the tree is what matters. We need to examine the fruit of the tree, for it shows the heart!
This message concerns a religious movement in America … called Fundamentalism.
Now, Fundamentalism can be shown to be like a tree. I will call this tree the Fundamentalist Tree. This Fundamentalist Tree pictures this religious movement … from its inception to its very death.
Now, here is my question for you. When did this tree first germinate … to become a seedling? In other words, when did Fundamentalism as a religious movement come into being? There are very few people who know the answer!
Are you ready for the answer?
Fundamentalism … in the United States … began as a reaction to the German and English religious apostasy in Europe [Liberalism], and can be shown to have its beginning come from within the meetings that were held at the Niagara Bible Conference of 1878. The change agents [“the rulers of the darkness of this world” [Ephesians 6:12] were moving into action to prepare the ground for the twentieth century. The brethren who attended the Niagara Bible Conference prepared to oppose these agents of change by the formulation into articles their “fundamental” beliefs.
In summary, the birth of the Fundamentalist movement occurred with the last breath of the nineteenth century, which time corresponds with the time of the end of the sixth period of the Church Age, which is identified in the book of Revelation in chapter three, verses 7-13 as the church of “Philadelphia”. See verses seven and eight: “And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth; I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.” [Revelation 3:7-8]
During this time “of the church in Philadelphia” [1500-1900], “an open door” enabled the gospel of Jesus Christ to go throughout the world with supernatural effects on mankind.
The seventh period of the Church age began with the beginning of the twentieth century and corresponds to “the church of the Laodiceans”. We see this “church” in the book of Revelation, in chapter three, verse fourteen: “And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; these things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God; I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.” [Revelation 3:14-15]
The age of Fundamentalism is coincident with the beginning of the Laodicea period of the Church Age. [Revelation 3:14-22] To see this, all you have to do is open your eyes, and see the true state of the Fundamental church assemblies in the 21st century, and the lukewarm [“neither cold nor hot”] disposition towards Jesus Christ, and towards the Bible. “I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot.”
Now, remember the words of the Holy Ghost: “Ye shall know them by their fruits.”
2. The Root of The Tree
“Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?”
A Fundamentalist is identified … as believing … the five “fundamental” beliefs, which are listed below:
1) Divinely inspired scriptures which were inerrant in the original writing;
2) Christ's virgin birth and deity;
3) Christ's substitutionary atonement;
4) Christ's resurrection, and
5) Christ's personal, pre-millennial, and imminent second coming.
The first statement: [“Divinely inspired scriptures which were inerrant in the original writing;”] is expanded more completely by Fundamentalists throughout the 20th century [and into the 21st century] and runs something like this: “We believe in THE SCRIPTURES of the Old and New Testaments as verbally inspired of God and inerrant in the original writings, and that they are of supreme and final authority in faith and life. II Timothy 3:16, 17; II Peter 1:21.”
Now, notice the peculiar phrase: “in the original writings” or “original autographs” used by the Fundamentalists. When and where did the brethren first use such peculiar phrases?
We shall see “the when” and “the where”.
It was at the Niagara Bible Conference in 1878 [with the Niagara Creed of 1878], which affirmed the usage of this phrase: “the original autographs” within their doctrine of the inspiration of the Bible, which doctrine was formulated directly through the influence of the Presbyterians [Benjamin Warfield and Princeton Theology [according to the article “Earnestly Contending for the Faith”: The Role of the Niagara Bible Conference in the Emergence of American Fundamentalism, 1875-1900 by Walter Unger], and indirectly by Charles Hodge according to the book: A Testimony Founded For Ever, by James H. Sightler, M.D.
Now, here is a question I have concerning “the original writings”. Can men gather the words of faith to enable them to come to Jesus Christ through nonexistent “original writings”? What is the answer? Go to the King James Bible for the answer! The Holy Ghost says in Romans chapter ten, verse seventeen this: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.“ [Romans 10:17]
Now, if only the “original autographs” were inspired, as the Fundamentalists have steadily maintained for the last one hundred and thirty years, and all the “original autographs” are GONE, then how does faith come to us today?
Question: “Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?”
3. The Fruit of The Tree
“Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.”
There will be many times that the well-meaning things that we all have done will be manifested with the passing of time as having been ill founded: that is, “evil fruit.”
If a kernel of unbelief exists in the human heart concerning what God has said, then the flesh, the world and the Devil will have room to operate in our lives, and much damage will be the result. This whole thing about questioning God’s words: “Yea, hath God said”, is rooted in the garden. See Genesis chapter three, verse one: “Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” [Genesis 3:1]
What came from the beginnings of Fundamentalism?
It was doubt! It was doubt … concerning the book in their very hands. Was Fundamentalism born in believing God’s words … the Scripture? Consider this truth: unbelieving is unbelief and unbelief … is not believing what God has said. The Fundamentalist movement chose to enter into unbelief, and therefore, God chose to regulate this religious movement to a destination of the ash heap. “Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.”
Unbelief in the human heart is an enemy. “And he did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief.” [Matthew 13:58] The toxin of unbelief in the human heart limits how much God can use a Christian.
The unbelief in the hearts of the brethren [who went up to the Niagara Bible Conference in 1878] was manifested in the use of the “code” phrase [“the original autographs” or “the original writings”] in their affirmation statement concerning the inerrancy of the Bible. There are no “original autographs” extant … anywhere on the face of this whole earth.
And they knew that! There is a heart problem here! Hello!
“The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.” [Psalm 12:6-7]
Therefore, this is what happened at the Niagara Bible Conference. The brethren … in their haste to refute the wave of the religious apostasy coming from Germany and England … stepped back [withdrew] ... in an evil heart of unbelief, [from the promise of God … located here in Psalm 12:6-7] and stood in man’s [carnal] strength and man’s wisdom [worldly wisdom] to affirm a belief in the “original autographs” as being the only inerrant words of God: Scripture.
The Niagara Creed of 1878 shows a HEART PROBLEM already existed in the hearts of the brethren who went up to the Niagara Bible Conference in 1878. This HEART PROBLEM is the UNIVERSAL condition in all mankind. It affects you and me! Unbelief will kill us. It is nothing more than DEATH in the pot!
You and I have had this problem … from birth. We were born of human parents! “For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.” [1 Corinthians 15:21-22] Amen!
1) Unbelief comes from an evil heart. [Hebrews 3:12] “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.”
2) Unbelief will not allow you to come into GOD’S REST – Jesus Christ. [Hebrews 3:19] “So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.”
3) Unbelief in all our hearts [the hearts of men] is universal. [Romans 11:32-33] “For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.”
GOD said it! I believe it!!! Do you? Amen! Now there can be MERCY. “O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out!”
4. The Blindness of The Tree [Double Inspiration]
Among Fundamentalists a peculiar doctrine has been developed [or invented] over the last one hundred years or so. This peculiar doctrine consists of this: if a man believes the King James Bible is the actual [inerrant] words of God in the English language ... then that man obviously believes in a “double inspiration” of the Bible, which thing is heresy in their eyes. The “double inspiration” [as defined by the Fundamentalists] occurred with the first inspiration of the original autographs and then with a second inspiration at the time of the translation of the King James Bible in 1611.
Rule: always go to the Bible … to clear out … the muddy waters of doubt … raised in the minds of men … about the Bible.
According to the prophet Jeremiah in Jeremiah chapter thirty-six, it was in the fourth year of Jehoiakim that God told Jeremiah: “Take thee a roll of a book, and write therein all the words”.
Now, notice it is all about “the words”. The words of God came from God [whether they were “spake” or “spoken” or “written” [Genesis 8:15, 12:4]. There is even an instance in time past when the written words came directly from “the finger of God” without men being involved. [Exodus 31:18, Daniel 5:25]
Every “spoken” word of God that was given to the prophet Jeremiah … in all the years of Jeremiah’s ministry … were written [a perfect copy] in the roll of a book [the Scripture]. “Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the Lord, which he had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book.” [Jeremiah 36:4] This was an "original autograph"!
What happened to this “original autograph” of God’s words? We see what happens in verse twenty-three: when the king of Judah heard the words of God, his response involved the use of “the penknife” and “the fire”, destroying the “original autograph” of God’s written words. “And it came to pass, that when Jehudi had read three or four leaves, he cut it with the penknife, and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the roll was consumed in the fire that was on the hearth.” [Jeremiah 36:23]
Though men do not want God’s words and though men have destroyed the “original autographs” of God’s words or the copies of God’s words, God’s words will be preserved in spite of men. Amen!
Now, in verse twenty-eight, God caused a second instance of the “original autograph” to be written to “restore” perfectly [word-for-word], the first “original autograph”, which men had destroyed. “Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, after that the king had burned the roll, and the words which Baruch wrote at the mouth of Jeremiah, saying, Take thee again another roll, and write in it all the former words that were in the first roll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah hath burned.” [Jeremiah 36:27-28]
And further, God then had words added to the second “original autograph” that were not in the first “original autograph”. Conclusion: the first “original autograph” does not match the second “original autograph”; see verse thirty-two: “Then took Jeremiah another roll, and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah; who wrote therein from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire: and there were added besides unto them many like words.“ [Jeremiah 36:32]
Is not this “double inspiration”? Answer: God is not bound to man’s limitations!!!
Blindness has been imparted to the Fundamentalists because of unbelief!
5. The Straw Man of The Tree [Translation]
Now, here is the “straw man” that has been postulated or erected in the Fundamentalist circles over the last 130 plus years: that no translation extant today can possibly be the inerrant words of God because no translation from one language into another can perfectly equivocate the original words.
We need to learn that an apparent problem … can be found to be no problem at all. Consider the word God used for a name for a man in Genesis chapter five, verse twenty-nine, “he called his name Noah”. Read the verse now: “And he called his name Noah, saying, This same shall comfort us concerning our work and toil of our hands, because of the ground which the Lord hath cursed.” [Genesis 5:29]
Notice: the Spirit of God spelt this word [the name of a man] … in the original tongue or language [in the Hebrew] … in the “original autograph” as N-O-A-H; then God turns around and 1500 years later gives mankind the “original autograph” [in the Greek] of the book of Matthew and spelt this time the same man’s name as N-O-E. “But as the days of Noe were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.” [Matthew 24:37]
Now, how about that?
These are two different “original autographs” or “original writings” that have two different renderings of the same name for this one man. God did the translation work and no scholar was involved! Can a translation be perfect? You bet, a translation can be perfect, if God does the translation. Amen! “Noe” perfectly preserves the name of “Noah”.
What lesson can we learn here?
Languages are no hurdle to God. We need to learn that an apparent problem with the translation of the words of God by the Holy Spirit … will be found to be no problem at all.
For God to superintend over [providentially intercede] a translation from the original tongue to another tongue should be no surprise, which thing has occurred more than once down through the expanse of time.
“The words of the Lord are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O Lord, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.” [Psalm 12:6-7]
6. The Problem of The Tree [Those Copies]
Men … in their flesh, and in their unbelief … sitting in their high places of scholarship are not able to handle this following issue. [Unbelief in God’s promises in a man always causes a paralysis in the brain of the man concerning spiritual things! [1 Corinthians 2:13]: Which see. “Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.”
This issue is as follows: that the copies produced from an “original autograph” cannot possibly be as perfect as the “original autograph”. It is postulated, by those who believe only the original autographs as being the inerrant words of God, that there will be [most always] errors [or corruptions] introduced into the copy, whether knowingly, or unknowingly. This postulation is formed within the constraints of the wisdom of this world. “For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.” [1 Corinthians 3:19]
Worldly wisdom will take it further; for it is also commonly believed in the Fundamentalist religious circles, that God had left the scene [after inspiring the “original autographs”], and had left his inerrant “original autographs” in the hands of the scholars of this world … to maintain and to multiply the copies for dissemination into all the world [including the translations into other languages from the original language].
These men are the very same men who see only the natural things of this world and not the invisible [supernatural] things.
We need to be men and women of a different mind, “not with fleshly wisdom” but with a “godly sincerity”, believing the impossible is possible with God. God actively keeps his words.
We need this kind of conscience: “For our rejoicing is this, the testimony of our conscience, that in simplicity and godly sincerity, not with fleshly wisdom, but by the grace of God, we have had our conversation in the world, and more abundantly to you-ward.” [2 Corinthians 1:12]
All men everywhere need to believe the Bible “as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.” “For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.” [1 Thessalonians 2:13]
To dispel unbelief we must needs “go” to the Bible to see “how” the Bible gives witness to “how” Jesus Christ [THE WORD] handled this very issue concerning the inerrancy of the “scripture” [the words] that he read in the very day this “scripture” [the words] was fulfilled in the ears of men. For this we can turn to the “book” of Luke, chapter four. Come down to verse seventeen and read: “And there was delivered unto him the book of the prophet Esaias.”
We see now a “book”. The “book” is the book of Esaias. “And when he had opened the book, he found the place where it was written, The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised, To preach the acceptable year of the Lord. And he closed the book, and he gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on him. And he began to say unto them, This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.” [Luke 4:17-21]
Jesus Christ read from a copy … of a copy … of a copy, and called it [“the book”] HE read from SCRIPTURE that day: “This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears.” “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.” [2 Tim 3:16-17]
Remember the story of the spruce tree in my back yard in Alaska.
Remember, it had a bad heart.
Remember, it had a problem from its beginning.
How is your heart now, my friend? The spruce tree had a bad heart, and the bad heart was the reason for its destruction in the day of strong wind.
- Do you have, my friend, a BOOK in your hands like Jesus did?
- Does the Scripture that you have read [“This day”] dispel all doubt about what God has said, and that God has kept the inerrant words of God by the Holy Ghost?
Believing in “the book” … you
can hold in your hands [the King James Bible of
1611, or any of its editions] … as God’s words to
you … will lead you to a solid “rock”.
You will be like the man who built his house on a
rock! Amen! “He is like a man which built an
house, and digged deep, and laid the foundation on a
rock: and when the flood arose, the stream beat
vehemently upon that house, and could not shake it:
for it was founded upon a rock. But he that heareth,
and doeth not, is like a man that without a
foundation built an house upon the earth; against
which the stream did beat vehemently, and
immediately it fell; and the ruin of that house was
great.“ [Luke 6:48-49]
Thus far in this message:
We have seen:
The beginning of the tree:
1.Fundamentalism began as a reaction to the German and English religious apostasy which began in Europe in the nineteenth century.
2. Fundamentalism began at the meetings that were held at the Niagara Bible Conference of 1878.
The Root of The Tree:
1. Fundamentalists [starting with the Niagara Bible Conference with the Niagara Creed of 1878] adopted the usage of the peculiar phrase: “the original autographs” within their doctrine of the inspiration of the Bible.
2. Fundamentalists limited the inspiration of the Bible to the “original autographs” and not to any copy or translation.
The Fruit of The Tree:
1. Fundamentalists … in their haste to refute the wave of the religious apostasy coming from Germany and England withdrew in an evil heart of unbelief from the promises of God … that God Himself would keep His words … in spite of men.
2. Fundamentalists … in their trust of the scholars [education] and in their worldly wisdom … hold to an empty belief in the “original autographs” [which no longer exist].
3. Fundamentalists have doubt as to what God has said to man.
The Blindness of The Tree [Double Inspiration]:
1. Fundamentalists are blind as to the nature of the work of the Spirit of God at the time of the inspiration of the words of God [called Scripture] here on earth … in spite of men.
2. Fundamentalists are blind to the ability of God to keep, or to maintain, the inerrant words of God [called Scripture] here on earth … in spite of men.
The Straw Man of The Tree [Translation]:
1. Fundamentalists have erected a “straw man”, which “straw man” says that no translation extant today can possibly be the inerrant words of God because no translation from one language into another can perfectly equivocate the original words.
2. Fundamentalists fail to see how God has superintended over particular translations from the original tongues to other tongues through the expanse of time.
3. Fundamentalists fail to see how God superintended over a particular translation from the original tongues to the English language at a particular time .
The Problem of The Tree [Those Copies]:
1. Fundamentalists believe that the copies produced from an “original autograph” cannot possibly be as perfect as the “original autograph”.
2. Fundamentalists see only the natural things of this world and not the invisible [supernatural] things of God in the preservation of God’s words in spite of the multitude and variants of manuscript copies.
7. The Remedy of Unbelief
[Luke 18:27] “And he said, The things which are impossible with men are possible with God.”
What can you do once you realize that you possess a heart of unbelief?
The answer is this: go to the book of Mark chapter nine, verse twenty-four: “And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief.” [Mark 9:24]
The free fall end result of sin is always “unbelief”. One of the methods God uses to break the free fall in our lives [as a brother or a sister believer in Jesus Christ] is to have the brethren [our fellow believers] “exhorting one another daily” to be in obedience to the BOOK … in the fellowship of THE SPIRIT … to the WORD of GOD … so that all honor goes to The Word … The SON of GOD. [Hebrews 3:13] “But exhort one another daily, while it is called To day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”
We need to … accept as little children … that God has inspired not only some missing original autographs but that he has MAINTAINED His inspired words down through the centuries of time … in spite of sinful men who sit in the high places as the scholars and as the educators.
With over 200 translations of the Bible into the English language having been made since 1881, the Devil sure has caused a lot of confusion; nevertheless, THE BIBLE still remains to this day in the 21st century for us to trust and obey.
The Apostle Paul had great cause to be thankful over the believers according to the words of God recorded in the epistle of First Thessalonians chapter two, verse thirteen: “For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received it not as the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.” [1Thessalonians 2:13]
Faith comes only by hearing the actual “word of God”. This is according to the book of Romans chapter ten, verse seventeen: “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” [Romans 10:17]
THOU STANDEST BY FAITH IN THE WORD OF GOD! “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.” [John 17:17] “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” [John 8:32]
This BOOK … The A.V.1611 Bible or the King James Bible … in any of its editions … is the “word of God”!
“The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times. Thou shalt keep them, O LORD, thou shalt preserve them from this generation for ever.” [Psalm 12: 6-7]
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