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For the sake of the traditional reader, however, it is in fact to what is called 'Roman Catholicism' that we refer.
Now it was not written for his sake alone, that it was imputed to him; but for ours also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on Him who raised up our Lord from the dead.This referred back to Abraham, of whom the scripture says, that he "believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness." This was not future for him, held in store; although much was held in store, the accounting was done and became a past action of deity. It was accounted, not 'would be'... So, says Paul, we too have righteousness, divine righteousness accounted to us: "If we believe on Him who raised up Jesus from the dead." In fact, this Jesus was, says Paul: "Raised up for our justification." The condition is now substantial in Christ; it depends on something He did; and on whether we put our faith in Him.
This Paul notes of Christians, followed this reference to the raising of Jesus Christ for our justification, and he then speaks of them as follows:
THEREFORE HAVING BEEN JUSTIFIED BY FAITH ( Romans 5:1).The condition has been laid down how Abraham was justified by God on a certain occasion, and how we are justified on the basis of another, the crucified and resurrected Christ, provided we believe in Him, as Abraham for his part believed God. Now God counted it to him for righteousness not, again, "would count", but "counted". Paul does not expect us to be in any doubt; using "therefore" at once in conjunction with the "having been justified", so tying the whole matter up.
Quite apart from the obvious character and condition of chapter 4 - though it cannot, being scripture, actually be torn apart - the past (aorist) tense in "having been justified" in Romans 5:1 cannot be what is called the 'gnomic aorist' - or a proverbial past; for there is nothing timeless in this. Rather does God refer to even those who were dead in sin, as having been quickened or made alive (Ephesians 2:5-8, 6:1-5). What were they ? They "were by nature children of wrath, even as others". However, now all that is changed. They "have been raised up together with Christ". As He died and rose, so they die into Him and rise in His risen power to new life. They have "been justified".
By grace you have been saved1 through faith and that not of yourselves,
says Ephesians 2:8. Now the act of Christ's raising is operative by faith for the justification of those who so address and receive Him. The justification is past. It is secure. Christ secured it (John 10:9) and guarantees the eternity in the words "shallbe saved", of those who enter that door. Nor is it a trend, but a fact: they go in and out and "shall be saved" if, says 10:9, they enter that door, prior to going in and out! As His sheep (John 10:27-28), their life in Him to eternity is multiply guaranteed.
His will ? Romans 9:15-16 speaks on that:
For He says to Moses: I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion. So then it is not of him who wills, nor of him who runs, but of God who shows mercy.Or again (John 15:16),
You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain.With the former self transfixed in crucifixion with Christ (Galatians 2:20), they 'live' now "by the faith of the Son of God who loved me and gave Himself for me." It is the same faith (Romans 4:22-23). It, like the "having been saved", is also in the perfect, and passive: "I have been crucified with Christ" - am in a sustained, crucified situation with Him.
Now then, this justification, Christ secured it, we have seen and it is a past happening for the Christian (Romans 5:1). In Titus 3:7, Paul repeats that we "have been justified", repeats it as past, just as in Romans 5:1. (Cf. Q, pp. 494-497 supra.)
Of course, "whom He justified, them He glorified...."2(Romans 8:30), tells the same story: whatever it is to be glorified (Romans 8:17 makes it equally clear, THAT is future and beyond the vale of suffering ), that is assured for those who "have been" justified, for the Christians who have received Christ. How ? Received Him as delivered up for their offences and raised up for their justification - Romans 4:25, cf.10:9.
Negatively, if - curious - we want to go further (but let the word of God speak once, and it is enough), we find in Romans 3:22, 2:27-28 and Ephesians 2:9 that which categorically negates the contributions of sinners to justifying merit. Saved? ''Not of works...'' not by some law of works. There is also a reason given: "LEST ANY MAN SHOULD BOAST". You can indeed imagine the hostile and unspiritual scene, were it otherwise... There, some Sunday morning in 'heaven', is some spiritual loud-mouth: "Oh yes, you see, I realised that there was nothing in other ways for me, that this was the way up, and frankly, I have been on the way up ever since. As a matter of fact, my mother was also very perceptive. You simply cannot get far without Jesus Christ, - and so I have hitched my wagon to His star and boy, what a journey I have made... praises for my clarity of insight, garlands for my helpfulness, all men speak well of me, and... well, I suppose some of us are just shrewder than others." That of course, would be hell, the land of self-bewitchment where 'I' do indeed live, and 'I' am by no means crucified with Christ. (Contrast Luke 16:15, 6:26.)
"NOT by works, lest any man should boast". Not at all (*9a - cf. the wholesome beauty of II Timothy 1:9), for then a man could boast, but Paul puts it:
Where is boasting then ? It is excluded. By what law ? Of works ? No, but by the law of faith. Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith apart from the deeds of the law (Romans 3:27-28).Notice. EXCLUDED, not adjusted; WITHOUT WORKS, not with rather less works, but without works - apart from works.
We are saved without works in terms of justification (which, as we have just seen, necessarily leads to glorification) ... Romans 3:22, Titus 3:4-7:
But when the kindness and the love of God our Saviour toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness that we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Spirit, which He poured upon us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Saviour; that having been justified by His grace, we should become heirs according to the hope of life eternal.THIS we do not do, HE did it. He SAVED us, so that NOW justified we should be heirs in terms of eternal life, spreading forward, unbreached.
We are saved withoutworks: but not without faith (John 3:18,33-36): and faith works (Titus 3:8, James 2:20).
Titus puts it all together in one. Moreover, Christ in Matthew 7:7-8 tells us that a good tree bears good fruit: it cannot do otherwise. This however does not produce the root; the root produces the fruit. "By grace through faith", having been justified, you then are a new tree which must and will bear fruit. (If, interestingly, you studied your 'fruit' to see if you were saved, you would be showing you were in darkness as to whether you believed, not knowing whether you did or did not, and so would not have the basis for the fruit which would not therefore come! So does delusion lead to confusion. Faith gets fruit; fruit does not produce faith, but follows it.)
We might add to this. Paul in Galatians 3 is dealing with the question of recidivism, of falling from some clear understanding of the above, confusion. He is exhorting those who begin to lapse into this unhallowed pollution of purity, with carnal strivings and meretriciously meritorious endeavours towards acquiring salvation. He addresses those who began with the understanding of a free gift, or its implications, and have begun to rely on their own endeavours at least in part. Fascinatingly, he asks:
ARE YOU SO FOOLISH ? HAVING BEGUN IN THE SPIRIT, ARE YOU NOW BEING MADE PERFECT IN THE FLESH ?... THEREFORE HE WHO SUPPLIES THE SPIRIT TO YOU AND WORKS MIRACLES AMONG YOU, DOES HE DO IT BY THE WORKS OF LAW, OR BY THE HEARING OF FAITH! ... Then he recalls them to Abraham! (*9a).Rome however, not least in response to Luther, teaches that those who hold this doctrine of justification, found so clearly in the Bible, are to be damned, or anathematised, given the full force of damning curse: saying in its ultra-prestigious damning document, the Canons of the Council of Trent, that this is damnable doctrine. Thus Trent proclaims:
If anyone says, that by faith alone the impious is justified, in such wise as to mean that nothing else is required to co-operate in the acquisition of the grace of justification, and that it is in no way necessary for a man to be prepared and disposed by the motion of his own will; let him be anathema.That assault on the Bible and on the faithful is found in Canon IX, Session V1, Council of Trent 1547 (see above, and in particular, Romans 9:16, Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 3:22, 4:1, Galatians 3:1-13, Titus 3:4-5). Nor is this all. Canon X11 proceeds with this damnation of the word of God:
If any one says, that justifying faith is nothing else but confidence in the divine mercy which remits sins for Christ's sake ... let him be anathema.That is a very good exegesis of basic teaching found in Romans 3:22-28, except that the 'preacher' not merely did not teach it, not only did not praise it, impart it and cause it to be understood; 'he' condemned it, and with it, anyone who cares to believe it. Here Luke 11:52 is working overtime.
These things then are to be found in this Council of Trent, one that is consistently confirmed, not least by the modern papacy. Believe the Bible and be damned to you, is its practical import, effect, consequence. Motives we do not need to know; results however are to be assessed, with reference to the word of God. Once again in our time, as in that of Jesus Christ Himself, we have this modern Pharisaism, which parallels to perfectly, this word (Mark 7:7-8,13):
But in vain do they worship me, teaching as their doctrines, the commandments of men. For laying aside the comandment of God, you hold fast the tradition of men, making void the word of God by your tradition.
Certainly, it is not stated that this is being done. Indeed, that too mirrors the condition to which Jesus referred, saying:
This people honours Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me.It was in that context that He made His reference, indeed, to the above-mentioned suppressive devices. It is a popular plague.
He without spot through the eternal Spirit offered Himself...How brazen the blasphemy that presumes in this trinitarian arena (cf. p. 1050 infra)! In the Bible is a disjunction from the daily sacrifice; a removal of the repetitive; a departure from the priestly in Christ's uniquely acting Person, an insistence on His "unchangeable priesthood" at the right hand of the Father (Hebrews 1:3, 7:24-28, John 6:62-63, Galatians 1:6-12, 6:14, II Corinthians 11:3-4), just as there is assignment of inalienable suffering to His sacrifice (Hebrews 5:7, 9:25-26, Proverbs 30:6), as must be in all sacrifice. There is indeed, a divine dissection, definition, differentiation and inviolability to and for this ONE ACT of sacrifice "by Himself", that is irrevocable, unmanipulable and eternal (Revelation 21:22, 5:6,9).
While now in heaven is He held, to continue (Hebrews 7:25, cf. note p. 1048 infra): reserved "until" the restitution of all things (Acts 3:19-21), it is then and not before, that "sent", He returns in the authorised visible and manifest form (Acts 1:11, Matthew 24:26,44-46). Clearer than this, it would not be possible to be. Priests, sacrifices, suffering in and for the same, paraphernalia and repetitious enactments to cover all sin: all are declared past. Rome however continues the lot: contradicting in each point, itself performing by sinful hands a repetitive 'sacrifice' of the 'veritable' body and blood of Christ, free of suffering, around the clock. Perhaps it is the sheer enormity of the brazenness of contradiction which appeals to some . . . (cf. p. 843 supra, *16, *19 infra). Alas, the Council of Trent, 13th. Session, Ch. 3, being itself spiritually re-affirmed in the field by Vatican II (cf. pp. 1087-1088C infra) . . . in a sort of contra-Biblical contra-world of its own: one kaleidoscopic, illusory, Christ-contradicting - declares of the Mass "sacrifice" that it contains the body and blood of the Christ of history (see Trent , Session 22 - cf. *16; esp. p. 1088C infra):
his veritable blood, together with his soul and divinity, are under the species of bread and wine; but the body indeed under the species of bread, and the blood under the species of wine . . . but the body itself under the species of wine, and the blood under the species of bread . . . (Bold added.)
Thus the wine is the divine. How easy it is to make 'God'! To this, one may with some advantage therefore compare Jeremiah 9:5-11. God is not mocked by Gentile any more than by Jew, by 'radical' this or by 'radical' that: whatever it calls itself (Galatians 6:6-9).
How readily do all God's divine declarations through the author of Hebrews go missing: while the body which ascended and will return "in like manner" to that in which they saw Him go... it returns for Rome in most unlike manner, adding to the statements of the angels by means of crass and callow contradiction. How marvellously does unrepeatable action become repetitive, clad in the garments of verbal contradiction. Like the US Stealth aircraft, how does this refusal of revelation steal up on a people ready to be deluded! Thus suffering sacrifice replaces sufficient and eternal redemption, already secured - by the statement of Holy Writ (Hebrews 9:12). It has been obtained, we read, and He obtained it! We also find how He did it - by entering into the Holy Place once (Hebrews 9:12,25-27); whilst Rome on the contrary, through sacrifice gains and uses His merits often, as it freely and conveniently sacrifices Him, ever anew. The concepts may be old: BUT THE PRACTICE IS NEW.
If it is sacrifice, then it
is death and suffering and involvement, which is forbidden expressly (Hebrews
9:26). If it is not sacrifice, then it is woeful blasphemy to call
it such; and worse to refer to actual blood and body when all sacrifice
for that body and blood is statedly past: Nor yet that He should
sacrifice Himself often ...
But now once ... He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself.
But Rome says He often appears and that these sacrifices have effective merit. The Bible, the word of God says that He once appeared, this sacrifice had eternal merit (Hebrews 9:12), and that He has obtained it. This is adequate, we find, for eternal redemption; and that redemption of the transgressions was accomplished by this very single, unrepeatable, terminal, very final, wholly effectual action (Hebrews 9:14-26). By this one offering, indeed, He has justified and secured the sanctification completion ('perfection') of believers (Hebrews 9:12,14,26, 10:10-14,19-22). No blood shed, no remission (Hebrews 9:22); but WITH HIS, this total coverage.
Further, John 6:40, 52,60-64, as well as Acts 3:19-21 make it very clear that He is not available for gnawing. His words were 'spirit' and 'life', He told any potentially cannibalistic literalists. Indeed their tasteless and imperceptive literalism was at once despatched by Christ with grand truths and piercing sardonism. As for Him: He would ascend to where he was before (John 6:62). There till the "regeneration of all things", He remains. In Hebrews 1, similarly, we read that he who upheld "all things by the word of His power", did something. What then was that ? It was this:
WHEN HE had BY HIMSELF purged our sins, He sat down on the right hand of the majesty on high (Hebrews 1:3).The purgation is past; the hanging is gone; the sitting is present; the person who ascended is now received and retained (as Bagster's Analytical Greek3 Lexicon renders it) in heaven, with but one body because, true man, He is willing to call men His brethren (Hebrews 2). Thus "by one sacrifice He has perfected (or completed) for ever those who are sanctified" (Hebrews 10:14), who also are such by that same one offering (Hebrews 10:10). Perfection, fulfilment, total maturation of provision, this needs no building. The Bible is clear: He did it, it is done, it is complete. It says so. Rome says not. God contradicts Rome and Rome contradicts God, and as to that, God says in Jeremiah 10:11, that the gods who have not made heaven and earth will perish from the earth. That is dealt with elsewhere; but it is good to remember here.
Christ Himself, asked about the end of the world, makes it clear how and when He should come, just as the angels in Acts 1 stressed it would be this Jesus (cf. II Corinthians 11:1-3). He would come "like lightning", we recall (Matthew 24:27): and that, lightning, it is so very unlike Masses. He would be visible and bringing mourning (Revelation 1), through that fact, not least; coming resplendent in power, He would be... so unlike bread. He even went to the point of WARNING OF FALSE CHRISTS of a special sort - THOSE OF WHOM THEY WOULD SAY:
Behold, He is in the secret chambers (Matthew 24:24-26).THAT is precisely what is being said! It is exactly what was predicted. It is in fact soundly verified; Rome is divinely covered predictively, in its doings (cf. also 1 Timothy 4:1-5), and indeed, as to its destiny, as we note in its place. This secrecy, it is precisely Rome's mode. This Rome in fact does - secret from all observation! From the personal point of view, we have been warned explicitly! But Christ, the One who was crucified, went on to say, to command of such action, such invention:
DO NOT BELIEVE THEM!
Indeed, in terms of apologetic verification, this is fulfilled MASS-ively in almost innumerable episodes.
Thus the system of sacrifice with priests is discarded by the Bible, but restored by Rome; the suffering essential to sacrifice is ended, but secured and strung out by Rome; the waiting required by Christ is dispensed with, and bread replaces almighty power in visible glory; the eternal efficacy to perfection is made partial, completed episodically by a false 'Christ'... in secret chambers. Indeed it is in esoterically secret places, all of which, other Christs and such places for such purposes, is expressly forbidden by Jesus Christ the Lord, warned against and predicted.
In thought, He is wrested from heaven by priestly hands who sacrifice the sacrificed, kill what was dead once, and what thus eternally was incapable of further death (Revelation 1:18-19). You cannot have it both ways: He died then and He as man died once, so that is that. Hebrews 9:27-28, further, explicitly aligns Christ and man in precise parallel, in this very regard (cf. Hebrews 2:12-18).
Indeed, Hebrews 9 is about as final and terminative of death; of priests other than the Deity, Jesus Christ, emphasised in Hebrews 1 as such; of suffering for the securing of redemption by Christ and other acts of redemption : as anything could be, except perhaps Hebrews 1:3 - having purged sin, He sat down, at Majesty's right hand.
As men die once, so Hebrews states, Christ "was offered once" to bear sin (9:27-28). Not only did Christ offer Himself, once, securing eternal redemption, thereby acting to "put away sin" by the "sacrifice of Himself". He did this by a severely scripturally stressed solitary sacrifice: reference to this solitariness of act occurs 5 times in the references of Hebrews 9 alone! Much focussed in verses 24-27, it dis-enables all idolatrous wafer-worship... in Masses. (See Ch. 10, Sections 2A, 2B supra.) Even Rome says it is worship, indeed glories in it 4.
Christ however declared (John 10:17-18) of His life, that He and not men would offer it, He and not they would do the deed. It is simply not possible to play-act your God:
1) He being sinless, you sinful;
2) He, all-powerful, you puny;
3) He, uncreated, you created.
What He says of Himself, for Himself, none can touch. The blasphemy there is as total as if, in terms of degree - an atomic blast were used for a tooth pick. But that example is merely temporal; this insult is eternal. It illustrates Hebrews 6:6.
Christ of His sacrifice, then, positively declares that He is to offer Himself, and utterly declines, absolutely refuses to have anyone else do it, and says so in words express and explicit. When God indicates the solitary splendour is His for this sovereign sacrifice, only one of divine status could even... argue (if such things were not even then blasphemous). There are two troubles here: we humans are not divine in status (being creatures, and adopted if Christians); and, secondly, there is in any case onlyone God. So far from encouraging acting as if God, Christ declares: "Call no man on earth Master". (Cf. Isaiah 42:8,12.)
He even gives the reason: because He Christ, being one, is that master. Nothingcould be clearer. He is Master. One is Master. The One is He. Not a crowd, a succession, a line, a dynasty: One Jesus Christ who speaks.
Thus this Roman folly is not only infinite presumption; it is utter defiance of Jesus Christ. As such it is a work of antichrist, the blood trail of Roman deeds merely confirming to the physical eye, what the word shows to the heart (John 16:12...''the hour comes when he who kills you will think that he does God service''!).
Consider it. If a man wishes to die, surely we may allow him to do it in his own way, if at all; but if God as Christ wishes to die on earth, surely we may allow ... 'permit' ? - Him to do it His own way. Rather, woe to the presumptuous folly which tries to do it for Him, however satisfying it may be to a warped sense of ecclesiastical power, and whatever financial or other advantages there may seem to come from having Christ as a (seeming) manipulee, who will 'jolly well' lay it down, in an actual sacrifice involving His actual body and blood, on demand! It reminds one of the indulged: first they are given a gift, and then they demand favours, lastly seeking tyrannically to dispose the assets of those who were merely kind to them. For all this, there is only one end: destruction.
More ludicrous yet, the thing is not only forbidden, it is impossible as Christ, by divine fiat, having become incarnate, is reserved in heaven until the times of which we may not know, are fulfilled; and He comes as He went (Acts 1:7-11).
There He is reserved till the great moment of world renewal (Acts 3:21) "OF ALL THINGS ..."
None could take anything:for He gave, and offered Himself, yes as Hebrews 9:14 advises us, He did so "through the eternal Spirit ..." in a triune beatitude of wonder; and He did it "without spot unto God", in a Redeemer's sinlessness. Deity chose when, how to do it, and Christ did it in trinitarian plenary session in a spotless manner. By its very nature all this infinitely unduplicable: and the 'mass'-ive blasphemy here is abysmally deplorable.
There is a magnificence indeed about this majestic act of Christ, that is awesome; and ecclesiastical interference with it by the rank comedy of Mass is a blasphemy which almost needs a new height to permit it to exist, one correlative to the grandeur of the act into which it so gravely and grossly intrudes.
How much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God. And for this cause, He is the Mediator of the New Covenant, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first covenant, they who are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance. (Hebrews 9:14-15 is the site of this MONERGISTIC, TRINITARIAN MAJESTY. Who will intrude!)
Thus just as everything was finished ... so once, was He offered ... not that He should offer Himself often ... but now once ... Hebrews lacerates the whole conceptual folly of repetitive ceremonialism in such a setting (9:23-25).Just as scripture stresses it was all finished, so it was done by Christ; so done once. A second time ? What then of that ? Yes He shall appear - controlling as always His own actions, this one being statedly in the secret divine counsel and to come at His pleasure in His time (Acts 1:7-11), in the time indeed the Father has set for the terminus. A second time ? By all means, but then in terms of judgment (Hebrews 9:28). Just as men die and face judgment, so He first would die, and then make judgment when He comes. But as for being a sacrifice (*10, *16) ? Once only, fully finished, unduplicable, untouchable . . . made only once as surely as men die only once (Hebrews 9:26-28). Anyone thinking himself "higher than the heavens", might seek to touch it; but the One who IS, has finished! (Hebrews 7:26, 8:12, 9:15, 9:28).
He offered Himself and will appear a second time, then, "being come a high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands" (Hebrews 9:11 - so unlike the 'unborn' Masses), a "minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched (past tense) and not man" (Hebrews 8:2). It is so incisive and clear: it is all not mere man, but Christ. The suitable, seemly, sympathetic and sufficient, the unique and sovereign, the pure and perfect, the sinless Lord (Hebrews 8:6, 4:15, 7:26) who acted, can act, alone acts, has acted, is sole agent, plenipotentiary absolute by nature (John 5:26-27).
He came in human form ("the tabernacle not made with hands" - cf. Luke 1:35), and then "not with the blood of goats... but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption" (Hebrews 9:12).
He is priest ? Yes He alone is lofty enough to operate, unique high priestforever, by an eternal order (Hebrews 7:21-26). As priest, as sanctuary, as sacrifice, Hein Himself, as all-sufficient, offered Himself and entered not into "holy places", but "into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us" (Hebrews 9:24), that being His locale and this His work of intercession (Hebrews 7:25-27, 1:3, John 17:1-3, 8:42). "He offered himself" ... "once". Zechariah 3:9-10 and Isaiah 22:23-25 both assign a day for the event, showing together the totality of all the offices and actions in the Lord, so that the entire system of sacrifices was concentrated on Him, and He did it ''in one day''.
Christ priest: Christ by Himself: Christ
for Himself: Christ sovereignly selected, suitable and sufficient to operate:
Christ for ever ... Christ who
"after He had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever"
(ONE ... FOR EVER, THAT IS CHRONOLOGICALLY EXCLUSIVE AND MATHEMATICALLY UNIQUE),
"sat down on the right hand of God" (Hebrews 10:12).
When, says Hebrews 1:3 accordingly, He had "by Himself purged our sins, He sat down on the right hand of majesty on high."
Did He sit before He had purged ? We do not so read: While He was purging perhaps? Neither is that written. Rather, this is written: When He had purged, He sat.
How then do these blasphemers arise to offer 'God', when God has done it once and sat, being reserved in heaven, at the right hand of majesty, from which they fear not to seem to pluck Him down, to a real and still sacrificial and therefore suffering flesh: killing often those who would not so blaspheme, as 'heretics'. Yes multiplications of suffering 'Christ's' flesh do they invent and propose and pretend, like some theological octopus, found in ever new masses, made in ever novel ways, contrary to the original in blood, in suffering, in offeror, and scripturally therefore without its requisite efficacy (Hebrews 9:22).
When He comes, however, it will be as when He went, and as to that, it will indeed be unto judgment (Matthew 24:44-51) and the tribes of the earth shall wail (Revelation 1:7).
as it is finished,
as it is done by Christ
(who is neither subject to a beginning nor a sinner, nor ever was nor could be: uniquely sufficient because deity, for the task and hence unduplicable, undeterrable, unambiguous, irreplaceable);
and as it is done by the Son of God,
so it is done once by Him. (Hebrews 9:25-28, 6:18-20; 7:25-27).
Once, He states, He "became dead", but now He is "alive for evermore", hence neither by location nor by life available for ecclesiastically possessive "deaths" (Revelation 1:18), let alone for those claiming to produce power by them.
"No longer offering for sin," says Hebrews 10:18 - and offering for sin is sacrifice: no more sacrifice, demands the Bible, the word of God.
Far more! says Rome.
No longer, says the Bible.
Much longer! says Rome.
By priests, says Rome;
by Christ, says the Bible.
This then is what is called heresy, a movement apparently within a religion, which in fact denies or contradicts it. The contradiction is all-pervasive, grotesque, impudent, sustained, manifold and dashingly derelict in duty to God, smashing into His word in opposition, like that of a teen-ager careering into a lamp-post with his father's car, as if he had little conception of the value of the car, or of his parent's approbation.
It is deed once for all, ACCOMPLISHED BY JESUS CHRIST PERSONALLY.
It is a unique, once for all deed performed BY JESUS CHRIST AS SOLE AGENT, EXCLUSIVELY AS DEITY in the flesh, with the status of Godhead, and the fulness of it (Colossians 2:9, John 3:34).
It is ONE, FINISHED offering made ONCE FOR ALL by Jesus Christ.
It is ONE UNDUPLICABLE, WHOLLY EFFECTUAL OFFERING, performed with the PROHIBITION of ANY FURTHER SACRIFICE ( Hebrews 10:18).
NO MORE SACRIFICE, THUNDERS THE SCRIPTURE: MUCH MORE, CHIDES ROME. God Himself will be the judge then, as is His word now (John 12:48). THIS is damnable heresy, such as that of which Peter rightly spoke in one more, precisely verified prophecy (II Peter 3:1-3). Thus the wrath of man serves Almighty God... even the nations are as the small dust. His power however does not remove the pity of it; though His love gives pity abundant place in His entirely gratuitous and utterly adequate offering, available to ALL!
HE is the offering: HE offers HIMSELF.
HE is the DIVINE temple FOR the offering; and HE as DIVINE High Priest to end by His perfection ALL priests, offers HIMSELF IN HIS OWN TEMPLE.
This ? it was His living body which thereby died, in that temple which the LORD pitched and not man, as we saw (Hebrews 8:2). Yielding Himself up, while living, He was the only New Testament sacrificial mode ever authorised; for death CANNOT sacrifice; and life for evermore WILL not. Indeed He, by the eternal Spirit offered Himself, and that without spot (Hebrews 9:14). That was authorised. That was wrought. Nothing else was authorised. Nothing else can be wrought. All else is forbidden.
ROME CONTRADICTS ALL THESE THINGS WITH A LAVISH LORDLY LICENCE.
As if to ensure that "the wayfarers, though fools, shall not go astray" (Isaiah 35:8), this damnable heresy is set in the midst of polluted practices. It makes merchandise of men by remitting penalties in purgatory which are not there in the first place, illusionist expiation, by failing to warn them of the need to embrace Christ as their sole means of mercy, Christ crucified, yea rather risen, once sacrificed, now in heaven5, returning, justifier of the ungodly apart from works, and by providing more of the illusionist fare of secret Christs within doors, in which we must not believe, being so directed by the Lord Himself, who knows indeed the hearts of men.
What is the significance of this merchandise, damnable heresy admixture ? Just this: this IS THE MIX to which Peter the non-pope refers, in making his predictive prophecy of coming events which would afflict the church, evil flowers blooming, their ill-savour expressed in "great swelling words of vanity" ( II Peter 2:18). These? wells without water, says the apostle. All this DOES relate to Christianity; but not as part of it, rather as divorcees... predicted divorcees.
That is the teaching in its exclusiveness. Christ made a further distinction, that between God the Father and God the Son: the Father sent Him - John 3:16; and the Father conferred equal honour (John 5:19-23). The intimacies of the deity are infinitely removed from expeditious, meretricious manhandling, when even the Saviour specifies what is, and what may be done, and His own position faithfully (John 8:42; "Neitherdid I come of myself, but He sent Me...").
He explains, but He also commands, and He is Lord, and is displeased with the business of calling "Lord, Lord" and not doing what He says! (Luke 6:46). Men are not to call, not to designate any man either as master or father:no spiritual implications, no spiritual place indeed is to be suffered, of this kind. "YOU ARE ALL BRETHREN": so where is the boss ? It is Christ. The only one who may take this role is Jesus Christ, and He says so. It is in vain for Popes to talk of being representatives; for the exclusion is total. How represent Einstein at a maths. conference; and how much less represent the infinitely and not comparatively superior God anywhere, except as adopted members of His family, brethren of whom He is Father! Rank is ridiculous before such majesty; it dissolves, if only into tears of laughter at the blindness. In the kingdom of heaven, greatness is service and lowliness, not arrogance and direction (Matthew 18:4, 20:25-28). God has this, without arrogance, for His is creation, and by His will it is, and was created (Revelation 4:11).
If a Pope is a man, then he is excluded by direct scripture. If the pope died on the cross, raised Lazarus, was born in Bethlehem... well; but what Pope was! God does not have stand-ins.These are the constraints of infinitude and majesty for the sole Creator-Redeemer: BE JESUS CHRIST OR QUIT PRETENDING. That is the message. He forbids any duplication of master as much as of the cross, excluding both popery and masses. (Cf. 1:6-9, 6:14, II Corinthians 11:2-4, John 10:14-18.)
Cease pretending, then, for it is forbidden; and He alone is Lord who forbids. That encapsulates the result.
One sacrifice, once made, effective once for all by one living Master, who was dead and is alive for evermore, without duplicates. God cannot be cloned. There are no clones; only clowns; but the business is deadly for the misleaders and the misled.
Men are not to designate any man their master, or their father in a spiritual setting of dominion and direction, for then they thereby dishonour the One who is their Master, and the One who is their Father (if so be they are His!). Christ states both the prohibition and the reason. Rome breaks the one and ignores the other. Thus Peter, most interestingly, tells the elders (having identified himself as one of them) that they are not to be lords over the flock but examples to it!
Peter (*11) would never have done for a Pope! And who is more a leader and a teacher and a master than the one who can send you to hell, for refusing to be subject to him. (Thus the Canons of Trent indicate, in a code so lavishly affirmed by recent Popes; and thus indeed, does that famous declaration of Boniface tells us ... "it is altogether necessary to salvation to be subject to the Roman pontiff". And what more does this man desire ? It is this: "Complete submission and obedience of will to the Roman Pontiff, as to God Himself" - Pope Leo XIII's encyclical - Chief Duties of Christians as Citizens ... (cf. pp. 1061ff. infra, and 915-916 supra!).
Did not Christ say to fear the Father because He could send to hell, and He made it clear this was categorically distinct from those who kill the body on earth, as popes have so often done! In that case, here is the papal performer, investing himself with such a prerogative: ought not Christ then to have made an exception, if this were true ? Should He not have said, 'But especially fear some men, like popes, who can both destroy the body and send you to hell!' But no, THERE ARE NO SUCH THINGS AS MASTERS IN THIS SPHERE, BECAUSE THE UNIQUE GOD HIMSELF, AS JESUS CHRIST IS MASTER. Impersonating God is blasphemy, full of names of blasphemy, the phrase Revelation indicated, as we study in its place.
Servants merely affirm and apply modestly the words the master has spoken (John 12:48, 5:45-47, Proverbs 30:6, Galatians 1:6-9): and pre-eminently so when the master is the Creator God, infinite in understanding and absolute in majesty.
Contrary to such divine teaching of the only lord, the Roman pontiff would assume to make you accursed if you refuse to believe his specified declarations (cf. p. 1071 infra), in their ex cathedra imposition: Who more your lord than that ? who would have more mastery than this, that he opens his mouth and declares what adds to scripture or contradicts it, and then and thus sends you to hell if you differ or diverge, or at all events, do not acknowledge him and become subject to him! How vile this violation of 1 John 2:27, moreover.
Not only (but not least) in word, then, but in deed, this prohibition of Christ is violated in the very heart and core of the caricature of Christ, which these 'representatives' at Rome, dare to sketch with sinful ink.
a) not finished by one offering for any believer;
b) not accomplished by just one offering;
c) not independent of sinful man in its once-for-all enactment (Hebrew 7:26), instead setting up ecclesiastical mastery, machinery and methodology.This places another Jesus in the hands of those who teach another gospel which they control, using the fictitiously 'presenced' body of Christ to gain the merits in an ever so much more than one offering, which is offered by those who, being unable to offer their sinful selves (Psalm 49:7), make up this manoeuvrable (in fact transportable) 'god' and call it 'Christ', amongst the worship of the people. Is it any wonder that the Inquisition has not been acknowledged by ex cathedra papal denunciation, as pious and official mass murder master-minded by popes, and all Romans required to repent of it. Or do we marvel that the death penalty for the refusal to acknowledge what in fact is the blasphemy of the Mass, as genuine and legitimate, which led to so many burnings wrought by Rome: that this also has not been confessed as blasphemous presumption... by Rome ?
Teaming error together with freedom to dominate, so expressly forbidden by God and so desired by the antichrist, this Roman preliminary to the antichrist of that dire day, already makes justification:
a) dependent on churchly conditions continuing, and capable of change, even in fact contradicting scripture (an EXCELLENT first step to the antichrist, and a really congenial lead to get into the feeling of it) ... Romans 5:l, Titus 3:7, Hebrews 10:10 and 14, John 5:24, John 10:9 Hebrews 8:1-12, 6:19, 7:25, 2:17, 4:5-16, 7:21-26, 9:14, 12:2.
b) to be entrammelled with a repeated offering, administered by the church.
c) dependent on sinful men, not faith in a once for all Christ (Galatians 4:4-7, Romans 8:16) who offered Himself (Hebrews 9:14) so that whosoever believed in Him should have once for all, everlasting life (John 5:24, 4:14, 10:9, I John 5:13, 3:9, Ephesians 1:7-11, Hebrews 7:26). In all this personalised programming away from the Biblical Christ, the Pope is a way-shower for the antichrist.
a) tenets contradicting Christ
b) doctrine not recorded in God's word under His promise (John 14:26).This is that word recognised as such for thousands of years by the churches, as coming from God (see Appendix C, infra). Nor is it found in the word of God, recognised by Christ in His time, and in due time delivered by the Jews (Proverbs 30:6). Rather does this Rome-specific doctrine exhibit a miscreant and forbidden mastery - one that both surpasses and suppresses the doctrine of God (Psalm 62:2, Deuteronomy 32:4,15,18,30-31, II Samuel 23:3, Isaiah 51:1, 32:2, Psalm 18:2, Galatians 1:6-9, Zechariah 3:9, I Corinthians 10:4, Isaiah 28:16, I Corinthians 3:11, Mark 7:7, Revelation 19:19).
"Who", asks the Psalmist (18:31) "is a Rock save our God ?" If any man wishes to found things on himself, let him take this one precaution only, that He is God; but as for the Lord of the Christians, He is in heaven until ... (Acts 3:21) the "RESTITUTION OF ALL THINGS"; and when He comes, it will be in a manner befitting His majesty, like that in which He went (Acts 1, Revelation 1), heralded indeed like lightning flashing from the East to the West.
Accordingly Rome has made:
1) another gospel (which is 'not another' Galatians l); and
2) another Jesus, and as such is explicitly under the curse of God (Galatians 1:6-9, II Corinthians 11:14-15, Revelation 22:16-22).What to the point of our present enquiry does it provide ? Let us consider.
Such modes of human intervention, theologically, physically, directively, absolutely and irrationally, unscripturally and blindly, in a kingdom of this world, consigning itself to dominate it are an obvious basis for study for any self-respecting antichrist. Such a figure, mounting his final 'throne', and bringing his final test of the patience of God, to the brink, and past the brink of judgment, as God intervenes for His people, amidst the ultimate mischief, the final folly and the uttermost blasphemy: could know how it was all foretold, though alas, by that time, it would not help him.
That which is personally predicted by God is coming true (cf. also I Timothy 4:3, for designations prophetically befitting Roman priestly practice and tradition)... like a Big Dipper car at a fun-park, swerving vigorously around its last cavortings, preparing to pull into the final station.
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1. 'You have been
saved', or 'you are saved'. This is literally, in the Greek: 'You are in
a having-been-saved condition.' It is the verb 'to be' plus a passive perfect,
the verb tense of sustained completion. An example, say of a freed prisoner,
would be this: 'He has been released'. It is past, it is complete, and
its results continue. The whole idea of the 'perfect' tense is one of perfection,
of having been brought to completion. Used here, it is very forcible. The
passive voice, have been saved, signifies that the action has been carried
out on the person concerned.
Moreover in I Peter 1:23 you have the same perfect passive tense used in what is translated: ''having been born again'' (cf. I John 3:9). That, equally, and in parallel, is done once, birth per se, and its results continue. Thus Romans 5:1 tells us the Christian has been justified; and 5:9-10 stresses that much more then he will be saved from wrath ... for if the one now justified was an enemy of God, changed by the death of Christ and reconciled, much more is salvation secure since
a) the subject is now no more enemy but friend; and
b) this friend is secured by Christ's life. Eternal security is not only true, but true a fortiori. (Cf. John 6:51, 4:14, I John 3:9, 5:13, I Thessalonians 5:9-10, Romans 11:29, 8:16, 37-39, 33-34. See pp. 572, , 618619 infra.)
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2. Cf. Romans 8:17,23-25,39. The heirs will be "glorified together", being "predestinated" - 8:30. I John 3:2 leaves for future discovery the precise format of being "like Him, for we shall see Him as He is"; but this glory is for "that which we shall be" (1 John 3:2), the time of knowing as we are known (I Corinthians 13:12), when all the preliminaries of the pilgrimage are past. Then suffering is past, including that which is "the trial of your faith" - I Peter 1:6-8
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3. Cf. Williams' New Testament translation - ''Heaven must retain Him till the time for the universal restoration''. (Thayer gives - welcome, embrace.) The period (Acts 3:21) of His glad reception is specific; and it ''must'' be so (as in Matthew 26:54). Sacrifice ? yes. Lootable ? no! In heaven He must be till then.
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4. The Woe of False Worship. This footnote appears in a fuller form in the End-notes. The Canons of Trent, from the 13th Session of the Council of Trent, Chapter 5, October 11, 1551 , state: all the faithful of Christ may ... render in veneration the worship of latria which is due to the true God, to this most holy sacrament. See also End-notes *10 & *16.
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5. Yes, and now"higher than the heavens" interceding in His untouchable life "for evermore" (Rev. 1:18, Hebrews 7:25-26), for those whom ''He is also able to save to the uttermost''.
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