No Replay Received!
In view of the persistent efforts to spread the false doctrine known iii Conditional Immortality' we print a, letter which Mr. J. Monypenny, of Belfast wrote to the Conditional ha mortality Mission in response to a written invitation (reading "Correspondence invited. 1 Thess. 5. 21") which accompanied some books the Mission bad sent him. No answer ever came, hut a year later more booklets arrived the accompanying note this time being reduced to "1 Thess. 5. 21."
BELFAST, 14th April, 1948.
About 57 years ago as a young believer in Canada, Satan from two different directions, tried to seduce me into the unscriptural error of non-eternity of punishment. Throughmuch exercise of heart before God, and by His Word, I was delivered. In many years of Evangelistic work in many lands, I have had no doubts as to this matter, and I have tried as a "watchman" to "warn" lest the unsaved die in their iniquity and lest their blood should be required at my hand. I should here say to till of you, beware! For your doctrines are lulling the poor unsaved to sleep. Note: Ezek. j. 17/18.
Death is never extinction in the word of God. Death Spiritual ("dead in trespasses and in sins" which Adam and Eve fell into the day they ate of the fruit. (Gen. 2.17) is separation spiritually from God with Whom they had evidently enjoyed fellowship up to that time. Death physical is the separation of the spirit and soul from the body (James 2.26, Genesis 35.18) The second death is the separation of body (raised) and soul and spirit from the presence of God into the eternal lake of fire (Revelation 20. 14; 21. 8) - "the fire that never shall be quenched" (Mark 9.43) or as the R.V, and other important translations render it "the unquenchable fire." Also in that same passage the Lord said: "Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." "Their worm" something pertaining to them (the persons) "dieth not, and the fire is not quenched." These two facts you deny! Did the Lord tell a double He? Am I to believe Him or you!
"The things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal," (11, Cor, 4. 18). None of us has ever seen eternal fire. We have only seen temporal fire. And I must mention to you that the word "everlasting" in "the everlasting God" (Rom. 16. 26) is precisely the same original word as in Matt. 25. 41—"Everlasting fire," and as in precious John 3. 16 - "everlasting life." Do you really dare to do away with any of these?
What God did to man in "breathing into his nostrils the breath of life (Gen. 2. 7) He never did to any beast. In your booklet "A Concise Statement, etc." on Page 3, you class beasts and man together, as having the same kind of life. Do you actually believe that in this sense you are no better than a beast? On page -1 you say "... it gives no hope for the survival of any part of man through the portal of death."What therefore did the Lord mean when He said in Matt. 10/28 "And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul." Is there survival after death in this passage or is there not? Where, I ask you, did you get the authority to contradict frequently in your teachings the wards of Him Who is "The Truth"? (John 14. 6).
You also teach that even when believers die they sleep. Your evident meaning is that they become utterly unconscious; for example, on page y of "A Concise Statement" your worlds are "We have seen that the first death involves the temporary cessation of being, and that this condition remains until the spell is broken in resurrection." But the Lord said regarding the dead patriarchs in Luke 20. 38—"For he is not a God of the dead, but of the living; for till live unto him, Also in Phil, 1.23 the Apostle Paul said—"having a desire to depart and to be with Christ which is far better." R.V. has it (and correctly) "very far better." You would have me believe that, the ardent Christ-loving Apostle has found it "very far better' to be unconscious for nearly 1900 years.
You state that 'Jude tells us (in his epistle) that Sodom and Gomorrha suffered the vengeance of eternal fire" and your words further are 'Jude's eternal fire is nothing but the equivalent of ashes as used by Peter" and "When everything that was consumable in Sodom and Gomorrha was burned up the eternal fire went out and nothing but ashes were left." Terrible reasoning this, surely! Jude does not say "suffered" the vengeance of eternal fire, but he says 'suffering." Abraham beheld the burning (Gen. 19. 28) and yet the inspired Word. I again remind you, says that, 'the things which are seen are temporal" therefore the fire which consumed the cities was not eternal. "Suffering (participle) or "undergoing" is the word used by Jude.
You confess that the story of the rich man and Lazarus is the greatest in difficulty as to explanation. I don't wonder at your difficulty in trying to fit your theories with this plain and solemn description of Hell given to us by the Lord Jesus Himself in Luke 16. 19/31. We learn from this description that Hell before the Lord's resurrection was a place of two - compartments - one of comfort where Abraham and Old Testament Saints were, till the Lord rose and brought them up to Heaven where they now are. The other the plate of torment where the rich man "lift up his eyes" after death. The Lord in verse 22 speaks of the place of comfort as 'Abraham's bosom" and Josephus (he Jewish writer, in his discourse to the Greeks concerning Hades, describes it as a place of two compartment and regarding the place of comfort says : "this place we call the bosom of Abraham." This was the Paradise to which the Lord Himself went from the Cross and of which He said to the dying thief—"Today thou shah be with Me in paradise" (and by the way this is another direct proof of the survival after death). The Lord said prophetically in Psalm 16 -"Thou wilt not leave my soul in Hell" ("Sheol" the Hebrew name for Hell, never once meaning "grave," The Hebrew for "grave" is "queber." "Sheol" Heb., "Hades" Greek, in Psalm 16 and Luke 16 are translated correctly by the English word "Hell"), When the Lord rose "He led captivity captive" (Eph. 4: 8, 9, 10). He brought the Old Testament saints up to Heaven when He ascended. These I believe are "the spirits of just men made perfect" (Heb. 12: 23). And when the Apostle Paul described his marvellous experience (whether in the body or out of the body he could not tell) (2 Cor. 12:2, 3, 4,) he tells us he was "caught up into paradise" (verse A), "caught up to the third Heaven" (verse 2). This is where those who now fall asleep in Christ (it is their bodies only which sleep) go 'to be with Christ which is very far better," (Phil. 1. 23.) awaiting there the resurrection when He comes to the air, the blessed eternal reunion of spirit, soul and body.
When Abraham addressed the rich man in Hell (Luke 16), from the other side of the great gulf, he called him "child" not "son" (See R.V.M., etc.). You say "son." "Know therefore that they which be of faith, the same are sons of Abraham" (Gal. 3: 7. R.V, etc.). The rich man was a. natural descendant of Abraham but not spiritually his son. And here I ask a further question - Who told you that when the Lord spoke of an "unjust steward" (Luke 16. 1/8) and "a certain rich man" (verse IP) He meant that neither one had any actual existence?
One other matter I mention—Does Revelation 6: 9, 10, 11, deny or prove survival after death? These were people who had been "killed" (v. 11) and yet though disembodied, they spoke and prayed "with a loud voice."
I shall seek Lo pray that you all may sincerely and carefully weigh what I have now put before you from Gods Holy Word. And I believe He now says to you "Sec that ye refuse not Him that speaketh." (Heb. 12. 25).
Readers will be interested to learn that our brother, E. W. Rogers, of Wallington, purposes to leave business at the end of September in order 10 devote his whole time to the ministry of the Word of God, Whilst in business he has exercised a wide and much appreciated ministry, and we crust his usefulness will now be greatly increased.
Former members please note:
The assembly at RICHMOND HALL, Vicarage Road, Plumstead, will, D.V. celebrate FIFTY YEARS' JUBILEE, on September 24th. Meetings at 3.30 and 6.15. Speakers: S. Dimmick, H. F. Sandford and W. J. Warner.
ANNUAL MISSIONARY MEETINGS
Central Hall, Westminster, London. October 27/28th.
Particulars from, W. W. Allen, 12, Court Ave., Old Coulsdon, Surrey.