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Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany.
The Collect.

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Gordon H. Clark: Quote of the Day: Understanding


It is impossible to believe what one does not understand. The evangelist or missionary must spare no pains to help his prospective convert to understand the message.  --Dr. Gordon H. Clark


"Understanding, therefore, is a prerequisite to faith. It is impossible to believe what one does not understand. The evangelist or missionary must spare no pains to help his prospective convert to understand the message."


"Just how much has to be understood is difficult to measure. Obviously a child of ten cannot understand as much as a highly educated adult; yet God regenerates some children. Does it follow that God will regenerate a highly educated adult if he understands no more than a child? Some individuals and some churches have tried to set down minimum requirements. They have tried to separate the few sentences in the Bible that are essential from all the rest that is unessential. One can see how these people become interested in such an attempt, but one cannot see any Biblical recommendation of such an attempt. Christ commanded us to teach all the things he taught; Paul was guiltless of his auditors’ blood because he had declared all the counsel of God; and many other passages condemn ignorance and recommend knowledge. In Scripture there is no minimum."

Gordon H. Clark (2013-03-04T05:00:00+00:00). What Is The Christian Life? (Kindle Locations 2942-2949). The Trinity Foundation. Kindle Edition.

5 comments:

Brandon R. Burdette said...

A child of 10 who is regenerated understands and believes what an unregenerate, highly educated adult does not: The true Gospel.

Mark 10:14, But when Jesus saw it, he was indignant and said to them, “Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God."

An infant unborn/still within the womb who is regenerated understands and believes what an unregenerate, highly educated adult does not: The true Gospel.

Luke 1:41, And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the baby leaped in her womb.

John the Baptist leaped within his mother's womb because he was regenerated and believed the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

One such infant or child who believes this is saved currently, while a highly educated adult such as R.C. Sproul, Sr. or John MacArthur is currently lost. They are lost because they believe in false gospels while the regenerated infant or child does not.

And concerning the entire Bible supposedly being perquisite knowledge unto salvation, I really think that's just ridiculous. I highly doubt Jesus walked around teaching crowds, for example, Zelophehad's children's names from Numbers 27 as the necessary way unto salvation. Neither would Paul have done such a thing. God condemns ignorance of His righteousness, not ignorance of the knowledge of Zelophehad's children. It's a great thing for one to read the Bible in its entirety, but doing so does not regenerate someone, and if a regenerated person does not do so, they are still saved.

Charlie J. Ray said...

Clark did not say that a person needs to know every proposition in Scripture to be saved. He said that there is no minimum requirement for the Christian to learn. The Christian is obligated to believe all the Scriptures as he or she can best learn and understand them over time. 2 Peter 3:18.

Which Scriptures are optional? Paul says that "ALL Scripture is profitable for doctrine." 2 Timothy 3:16.

Jesus said that man shall not live by bread alone but by "every" word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. (Matthew 4:4). The Bible over and over affirms that the Book stands together as a whole system of theology that cannot be broken. (John 10:35). All Scripture is inspired, not just certain parts of the Bible.

The system of theology in the Bible is not a loose collection or aggregate. It is a systematic theology composed of propositions that fit together. Disjointed and isolated propositions would be easily distorted. But God's Word stands as a whole.

I would suggest that you read Clark's book, God's Hammer, and judge for yourself from Clark's work firsthand. Secondhand sources are not dependable.

Even a child knows that the whole Bible is God's Word.

To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. (Isaiah 8:20 NKJ)
These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so. (Acts 17:11 NKJ)
And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. 46 Then He said to them, "Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, 47 "and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 "And you are witnesses of these things. (Luke 24:45-48 NKJ)

Charlie J. Ray said...

"The thief on the cross very obviously understood only a little. Is not this little, if we can discover it, sufficient for an evangelist’s sermons? Well, the thief called Jesus Lord. And Romans 10:9 says that those who acknowledge Jesus as Lord shall be saved. Here if anywhere is the essential proposition. Nothing else – except belief in the Resurrection – is necessary. Maybe the Resurrection is not necessary, for the thief did not know that. Furthermore, as other references in this book mention, the devils believe there is one God, they even believe that Jesus is the Son of God, but by some twist of demonic mentality, they do not confess him as Lord. Have not we therefore found the irreducible minimum?"

" The answer is, No. The reason for this negative answer lies in the necessity of understanding the proposition. It is a matter of intellectual apprehension. There are many who in that day will say to Christ, Lord, Lord. And he will profess, I never knew you. Thus, clearly, a verbal profession of Lord is not saving faith. One must understand what the term Lord means. Further, as has already been pointed out, the name Jesus must be correctly apprehended. Confess that the Jesus of Strauss, Renan, or Schweitzer is Lord, and you will go to Hell. “Jesus is Lord” therefore is not a minimum that means nothing else."

Gordon H. Clark (2013-03-04T05:00:00+00:00). What Is The Christian Life? (Kindle Locations 2959-2969). The Trinity Foundation. Kindle Edition.

Charlie J. Ray said...

All Scripture is "profitable," though. That means doctrine can be drawn from even the most obscure details.

Charlie J. Ray said...

"The thief was not a systematic theologian. There were many propositions he did not know. But he knew he was being punished justly for his sins; he knew Jesus was innocent. He was impressed and convinced by Jesus’ demeanor. So he said, not merely said, but confessed Jesus as Lord. He may not have known much, but he knew more than some evangelists give him credit for."

"For such reasons as these the idea of a minimum faith must be dropped as un-Biblical. The evangelist is un-Biblical who decides to preach only a little bit of God’s revelation. Granted that no preacher can cover the entire Bible in one sermon, nevertheless he should not decide on principle to omit certain themes. He should in many sermons try to explain all he can. “All he can” no doubt should be limited by what the audience or the prospect can understand. One of the worst principles imaginable was expressed by a very popular but very stupid evangelist in Canada who said, No one has the right to hear the Gospel twice until everybody has heard it once. Another man of similar sentiments boasted that he had preached on five continents. But more than likely the poor natives in the Andes or the Himalayas understood nothing at all when the preacher gave them one sermon and then ran off to another continent."

"The Gospel is a message to be understood. Knowledge is the first and an essential part of faith."

"But though it is essential, knowledge or understanding alone is not faith. A man may know and understand the Gospel message and yet not believe it. A professor of philosophy knows and understands many systems of philosophy, but obviously he cannot believe them all. He may accept one, but the others he knows without accepting. Therefore a second essential part of faith is acceptance or assent."

Gordon H. Clark (2013-03-04T05:00:00+00:00). What Is The Christian Life? (Kindle Locations 2982-2996). The Trinity Foundation. Kindle Edition.

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