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Faith One Blog

A Story Book

Children love stories, especially fairy tales, stories about people they may well know don’t really exist. They pretend to believe at first and as the story develops seem to really believe the characters are alive. Their fertile imaginations bring them to life. Adults are different. The fairy stories they believe must have a more credible connection with reality. The characters must be real people, like those they see walking about every day.

A once highly popular adult fairy tale, the Scofield Bible, was published about a century ago. It combined God’s Word, a King James Bible, with man’s word as explanatory notes adjacent to the text. That might seem today as a rather presumptuous action but at the time it was a roaring success. Millions of copies were purchased, read, believed and highly revered in the English-speaking world.

A huge number of God’s people were very enthused with a ‘Bible’ that had explanatory notes for difficult passages. It was like having a pastor or teacher alongside the reader that explained what God meant. Or, we could say, what Scofield said God meant.

Why, you ask, do I call  it a fairy tale? It is because, as fairy tales do, it combined truth with falsehoods. Most of the notes were legitimate explanations but many were gross distortions of God’s truth. For example:

  1. Scofield said that the Ten Commandments were for Ancient Israel and not for Christians today. They say this even though Jesus said they were in effect forever:

Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets:  I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.   18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.   19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven:  but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 5:17-19)

  • Scofield said that God changed His mind and we are now in the last days. Jesus will return very soon and the world will end. All the lost, the great majority of people on earth, will go to hell.  

Contrary to this, God says that all the nations will one day be Christian nations:

And the seventh angel sounded;  and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ;  and he shall reign for ever and ever. 

We see here a future time, one in which the nations still exist and are Christian nations (kingdoms). The world will not end until this is fulfilled. God’s purpose is to save the world, not to send it to hell.

  • Scofield said that we need to obey part one of the Great Commission, to save as many as possible before the imminent end. Part two, the conversion of all the nations, is meaningless and impossible in the face of the short time frame we’ve been given.

No, nothing is meaningless or impossible in God’s Word. God gave His chosen people the task of making the world a Christian world. He never rescinded it and never will.

For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.  (Malachi 3:6)

God will give us all the time we need to complete this assignment but He will not relent and change His mind.

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