"AS I SEE IT" 

Volume 3, Number 12, December 2000

 

["As I See It" is a monthly electronic magazine compiled and edited by Doug Kutilek.  Its purpose is to address important issues of the day and to draw attention to worthwhile Christian and other literature in order to aid believers in Jesus Christ, especially pastors, missionaries and Bible college and seminary students to more effectively study and teach the Word of God.  The editor's perspective is that of an independent Baptist of fundamentalist theological persuasion.

 

AISI is sent free to all who request it by writing to the editor at: DKUTILEK@juno.com.  You can be removed from the mailing list at the same address.  Back issues sent on request.  They may also be downloaded at http://www.kjvonly.org.

 

All articles are by the editor (unless otherwise noted) and are copyrighted but may be reproduced for distribution, provided the following conditions are met: 1. articles must be reproduced in unedited, unabridged form; 2. the writer must be properly credited; and, 3. such reproduction must be for free distribution only.  Permission to distribute in any other form must be secured in writing beforehand.  Permission for reproduction in Christian print periodicals will generally be given.]

----------

 

LUTHER ON ISAIAH 11:1

 

“A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from his roots a Branch will bear fruit,” Isaiah 11:1 [universally recognized as a Messianic prophecy]

 

“This is a short summary of the whole of theology and of the works of God, that Christ did not come till the trunk had died, and was altogether in a hopeless condition; that hence, when all hope is gone, we are to believe that it is the time of salvation, and that God is then nearest when He seems to be farthest off.” (

Martin Luther

quoted by E. W. Hengstenberg

in Christology of the Old Testament

2 vol. MacDonald edition, vol. 1, p. 459

----------

 

EVOLUTION IN THE PUBLIC ARENA

 

The Conservative Book Club, as its name suggests, is a book club which specializes in books that are politically and socially “conservative.”  I have been a member of it for some 17 years and have bought from them in that time dozens of books.  The editor of CBC is one Jeffrey Rubin.  In a recent CBC catalog (#1400), in his column “And RIGHTLY So,” Mr. Rubin explained his own pilgrimage from atheistic evolutionist to theistic evolutionist to theistic creationist, and then reflects on the current public debate regarding Darwinism.  With his permission, I reproduce his remarks.

 

“One of my all-time favorite non-fiction books, which I bought through the Club a few years before becoming editor is Philip Johnson’s Darwin on Trial.  Until reading it, I had been a ‘theistic’ evolutionist (having evolved, as it were, from an atheistic one), believing that while the fact of evolution was beyond dispute, except by the willingly blind, the process itself was not ‘random,’ as Darwin taught, but somehow ‘directed’ by God.

 

Johnson disabused me of even that qualified belief in Darwin’s theory.  What he made clear--crystal clear, in some of the most scrupulously logical argumentation I’ve read on any subject--it that however plausible evolution may sound in theory, the evidence simply doesn’t back it up.  Pardon, I understated that: Johnson showed that there really is no evidence for evolution--none, that is, except for a few meager scraps that require a certain latitude, shall we say, to even interpret as evidence.

 

And this very absence of evidence, Johnson argued, is evidence in itself that Darwinism is false.  How so?  Well, since the theory posits a near-infinity of ‘transitional’ species, one evolving into another and still another through random mutation, the fossil record should be bursting with them.  But again, all we have is a few scraps that might qualify as transitional forms--none of them beyond serious controversy among specialists.  What we do have in abundance are fossils of many distinct species, with no clear ‘links’ connecting them.  Come to think of it, it’s almost laughable that so much is made of each new ‘discovery’ of a possible ‘missing link,’ since we should have discovered countless links already, and be discovering countless more each day.

 

Then why, you may ask, is Darwinism still so widely accepted as fact?  Why do people continue to assume that the evidence for it is as vast as indeed it should be?  For one thing, because Darwinism is less a scientific theory than a religious faith--or rather an anti-religious faith.  More precisely, it is a pseudo-scientific excuse for anti-religion, purporting to disprove key tenets of Christian (and Jewish) belief, such as the fundamental difference between animals and humans and the creation of all life by God.

 

Truly what Darwinists say dismissively about Christians is really more applicable to themselves: people believe what they want to believe, for reasons that have more to do with subjective motives than objective evidence.  What sort of motives could those be, as applied to Darwinists?  I can think of a few, having mostly to do with some rather inflexible moral laws that might safely be dispensed with if Christian ‘belief’ can’t be squared with Darwinian ‘fact.’  But I don’t want to get personal--unlike those Darwinians who spew every manner of insult (‘ignorant,’ ‘bigoted,’ ‘intolerant,’ and so on) at Christians who ask only that Darwinism not be accorded the status of official dogma in public schools and elsewhere.  Indeed, the vehemence of the Darwinists’ . . . shall we call it ‘hate’? . . . is likewise evidence that their ‘theory’ is on the ropes, scientifically speaking.

 

Scientifically speaking--not politically.  At least not yet.  Darwinism’s dominance in our culture is more than ever a purely political one, based on raw power--the power to stifle dissent by (1) forbidding criticism, or the teaching of alternative views, through legislation, court rulings and threatened lawsuits by ‘free speech’ groups like the ACLU; and (2) intimidating scientific dissenters by using the heavily tax-subsidized apparatus of academic research and publication to deny them research grants or career advancement, prevent them from being published, or bury their work in obscurity.

 

In short, an intellectual reign of terror, which to resist effectively requires men of not only scientific and intellectual brilliance, but also great courage.  Phillip Johnson is such a man.  And so is biologist Jonathan Wells, author of this month’s Main Selection, Icons of Evolution, which Johnson himself calls ‘one of the most important books ever written about the evolution controversy.’  As for me, I think it’s the most important book on evolution since Johnson’s.”

-------------

 

HAVING “THE FINAL AUTHORITY” IN ONE’S HAND

 

In response to the my analysis of Daniel 3:25 in the November 2000 issue of AISI (“’The Son of God’ or ‘A son of the gods’?”), one reader wrote:

 

“I generally enjoy reading your comments but think you are wasting your time on Daniel and the "Son of God".  I have a final authority right here on my desk and I have not read that you do since you do not have even one of the ‘originals’.”   

 

This reader was writing from the perspective of one who claims that the King James Version of the Bible is an absolutely perfect translation.  Further, he believes that a no-longer-extant, hypothetical “infallible original Bible in Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic” is of no practical use to us today since the original manuscripts have all perished, and such copies as we have (and we have many thousands) differ in numerous details from each other, and therefore no one manuscript and no one printed edition has been or can be identified as “the final authority.”  Based on these two premises--first, that the KJV which we do have is infallible, and second, that the original language copies of the Bible which we do have are not--he leaps to the conclusion that the final authority in all matters of theology is therefore the KJV English Bible, and not the original language text of Scripture.

 

Such a conclusion is fraught with gross defects. 

 

First, it must be noted that the existence of variant readings in now-existing Bible manuscripts has been employed in the past by modernists and apostates such as Harry Emerson Fosdick (1878-1969) to undermine and ridicule the authority of Scripture in the original languages and the doctrine of inspiration.  Today this argument is used by self-styled fundamentalists to the same end: to undermine the confidence of Christians in the authority of the Scriptures in the form they were originally given by God.  When you find yourself using the same arguments as apostates to destroy confidence in the authority of Scripture, you are in very dangerous company--warming yourself, as it were, by the devil’s fire in the courtyard of Caiaphas.

 

At Daniel 3:25, the verse discussed in the previous issue, there are no reported variants in the Aramaic manuscripts we possess.  Furthermore, there is nothing in the ancient translations of Daniel to indicate that they knew of any variant reading in the verse.  It is therefore entirely in keeping with this evidence to conclude that we DO HAVE here presumptively the exact reading of the original words as given by the Holy Spirit to and through Daniel (cf. 2 Peter 1:20, 21).  Since in this particular place we have perfectly preserved for us the exact original words, who can dispute that we do have the absolute authority of the inspired original here?  And if that is the case, then it is entirely proper and right--indeed, it is the only valid course of action--to appeal to and rely on those inspired and infallible original words for determining what is or is not the correct translation of those words into English.  Anything else, anything less, would be inadequate.

 

And just here, we must note that whatever authority the King James Version may have is wholly dependent on its adherence to the standard of original language text. The translators themselves on their very title page describe their version as “translated out of the original tongues, with former translations diligently compared and revised.”  They certainly did not denigrate the original language text (though they were aware of the existence of manuscript variants), or hold it in disdain, nor did they mock those who held to the authority of original language texts; indeed, they themselves were obviously among this number.  To deny the authority of the original language texts we now possess is to cut off one’s nose to spite one’s face, and undermine unwittingly the authority of the KJV which is entirely dependent on those original language texts for whatever authority it might have.  Without the prior and superior authority of the original language text, the KJV is wholly devoid of any authority or validity.

 

Finally, those who claim to have “the final authority” in their hands in the form of the KJV while at the same time denying the finality of the authority of extant Hebrew and Greek texts, display defective knowledge of the facts in the case.  No one today has the original KJV, even if they own one of the copies actually printed in 1611.  Those printed editions are merely copies--and defective ones at that--of the translators’ original manuscript which was submitted to the printers in 1611.  The fact is, the translators’ original manuscript of the KJV is now lost, apparently a victim of the great London fire of 1666.  Its existence was attested as late as 1660, but thereafter, it entirely disappears from historical records (see T. H. Darlowe and H. F. Moule, compilers, Historical Catalogue of the Printed Editions of Holy Scripture in the Library of the British and Foreign Bible Society, vol. 1, p. 134; John M’Clintock, and James Strong, eds., Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature, vol. I, p. 562).  If these facts are so, then no one has seen or held what is allegedly “the final authority in English” for approaching 350 years!  At best, all they have are imperfect copies of a now lost “original,” leaving KJVO adherents in precisely the same boat as those who appeal to the original language Biblical texts as their final authority.

 

It should be unnecessary to say much about variations which have always existed among various printings and editions of the KJV.  They do exist, and have from the beginning (the two editions printed in 1611 differ in over 2,000 places, perhaps the most famous being “he” or “she” at Ruth 3:15).  The problem of variant readings in KJV printed editions had become so disturbing that from the middle of 18th century to the middle of the 19th century, several attempts were made to produce “standardized” editions of the KJV from among the editions then in print, and eliminate the many thousands of variations (more than 24,000 by one careful count) known then to exist.  Some of these attempts at making standardized editions were not well-received (see Darlowe and Moule, vol. I, pp. 286-7; 294; 349; and especially 362-3), and none of them achieved the goal of creating a truly standard text.

 

To bring it up to our day, counting every text difference of whatever sort between those first two editions of the KJV (and which of the two was published first in 1611 is still an unsettled controversy), and KJV editions today, they number more than 70,000.  True enough, they are mostly of small significance (just as are most of the differences between printed Greek texts), but certainly not all are.  The real issue in this context is that there is no one standard KJV edition, only a plethora of differing editions.  

 

And just here, the ground is cut from under the wishful thinkers who claim they have “the final authority” in their hands in the form of some one or another printed edition of the KJV.  But which one? And which variants do they accept as correct?  Unless and until they can point with certainty to one and only one pristine KJV edition which perfectly conforms to the translators’ now lost manuscript, all talk of having “the final authority” in their hands is nothing more than hollow pious posturing.

 

“But variations don’t affect theology!” they would insist.  In nearly all cases, we grant that this is true, but the same could be said of the variants in exiting Greek and Hebrew texts.  The variations in these latter do occasionally affect the interpretation of a specific verse or passage, but not a syllable of any standard theologically-conservative “statement of faith” would be altered by any known variations that have any claim to being the true original reading.  A person could compare at random any of the more than 2,000 printed Greek New Testament, choosing among the many differing textus receptus editions, Griesbach, Lachmann, Tregelles, Tischendorf, Alford, Westcott-Hort, Nestle, UBS, Majority Text, etc., and the doctrinal content of these would be found to be identical, with only a rare alteration in “proof texts” (in some cases losing one or two among dozens, and yet gaining others).  Such variations are of far less importance than questions of interpretation of passages where there are no issues of textual variants (e.g., does Romans 9:5 teach the Deity of Christ?).

 

I have repeatedly challenged those who claim to have “the final authority” in their hand and mock the very idea of the “original authority” view.  My challenge is this: “Which ONE KJV edition is the infallible ONE?”  There is no “wiggle room” here.  We are told by the KJVO faction that “God wrote only one Bible” and that “things which differ are not the same.”  So, tell me straight out: which one KJV edition is the infallible one.  It must be only one (if any at all), not two or three, or the KJV editions taken collectively.  It must be just one.  Until you can with certainty identify it for us, the objections raised against those who appeal to the “originals” as their final authority is entirely discredited. 

                                                                        ---Doug Kutilek

----------

 

BOOK REVIEWS

 

WILLIAM BARCLAY: A SPIRITUAL AUTOBIOGRAPHY.  Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1977.  127 pp., paperback.

 

One writer very commonly quoted in sermons, devotional commentaries, topical religious books and Christian magazine articles is William Barclay.  Barclay (1907-1978) was a Scottish preacher, pastor, professor, but especially a very prolific writer.  No doubt his most famous work is The Daily Study Bible, a devotional exposition of the entire New Testament, uniformly bound in 17 volumes.  A friend moving to Ireland recently passed on to me a set of Barclay’s commentary on the New Testament, a set that was never on my list of “must buy” books, but which I am now happy to have, at no cost, for purposes of reference.

 

Barclay was thoroughly at home in classical Greek and Latin, and had a good academic background for New Testament studies.  And an honest evaluation of his writings would compel the conclusion that he is an interesting writer with a good command of the English language, and is therefore easy to read. 

 

However, Barclay’s theology, when judged by the standard of Scripture itself--when weighed in the balances of God’s revealed truth--is found wanting.  Barclay protests against the “intolerance” of certain conservative evangelicals and fundamentalists who charged him with teaching heresy.  But how can they be blamed for speaking the truth about a man who denied the inerrancy of Scripture, rejected the Deity of Christ, denied the doctrine of the Trinity, repudiated the miraculous birth of Jesus, denigrated the reality of miracles, seems to have cast aside the reality of Jesus’ physical resurrection, and rejected the central Biblical teaching of substitutionary atonement?  In fact, there is apparently not a single fundamental doctrine of the faith that Barclay rigidly adhered to.  He taught theistic evolution, the inherent goodness of man, and universalism--that even the stubbornly impenitent who have maliciously scorned the grace of God will nevertheless somehow, in some way be restored to God’s favor.  He so warped the doctrine of the love of God that he essentially denied the holiness or justice of God, and even sneered at the Old Testament teaching that men feared to be in the immediate presence of God lest they die (Barclay conveniently ignored that this is the teaching of the New Testament as well--Revelation 1:9ff).  Such a perspective reveals a gross underestimate of the seriousness of sin, and devalues the absolute holiness of God.  The prophet, overwhelmed with the sense of his own corruption when confronted with the holiness of God, cried out, “Woe is me! For I am undone!” (Isaiah 6).  Barclay would have replied smugly, “It’s nothing to worry about, really.”  Barclay, though raised in a conservative evangelical Christian home, apostasized from the doctrines of his youth, adopting wholesale the errors of modernism.

 

Barclay’s autobiography is, true enough, very readable, in some places quite instructive, and even entertaining.  He has a section of advice on preaching (pp. 80-98) which is, with the exception of a stray statement here and there, among the best I have seen.  But that does not make his false, soul-condemning theological errors any less grievously false.  I have been, and remain, at a complete loss why anyone would favorably quote Barclay in a message to (usually) poorly-informed laymen, whether it be a lesson, sermon, or written article.  Such a favorable quotation from a perceived authority figure leaves the lasting impression in gullible minds that Barclay is a man to be respected and trusted, which I hope would be the absolutely last thing a conservative teacher, preacher or writer would want to do.  (If one feels he must quote Barclay in such a context, it can be done anonymously--“One writer, who otherwise is not to be trusted theologically, happened to hit on the truth here when he said such-and-such. . . .” ).

 

I perceive that one of the pre-eminent duties of Bible teachers is to warn their hearers against false prophets and false doctrines, rather than hold such up for admiration.  I remember years ago being completely appalled when at a national meeting of a Baptist group a leading pastor favorably quoted with no caveat Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a rank apostate if there ever was one.  (This pastor later showed very bad judgment in other areas as well).  Yet in spite of the real spiritual peril to which the naïve or gullible may be subjected by exposure to Barclay, we find him widely recommended, without such necessary warnings.  Warren Wiersbe, in his 48-page list of recommended books, “A Basic Library for Bible Students,” which first appeared as a chapter in his book Listening to the Giants (Baker, 1980), includes seven separate Barclay titles in his recommended list.  In describing specifically Barclay’s commentary on the New Testament, the most Wiersbe can muster is to say that it is “very weak theologically,” a phrase which could be taken to mean simply that he ignores issues involving theology.  A more plain-spoken evaluation would have said, “the author is a heretic who denies every cardinal doctrine of the Christian faith, and is theological poison.”  D. A. Carson, in his New Testament Commentary Survey  (Baker, 1986, third edition), gives a rousing recommendation to Barclay’s commentary set, and gives a feeble warning: “But two tendencies should be noted by way of warning: Barclay often maximizes ‘spiritual’ application from the text after minimizing the historical foundation (e.g., miracles tend to be lessons rather than events); and sometimes one wonders whether the original text bears all the applications suggested” (p. 23).  The nature of Barclay’s departures from orthodoxy is vastly more serious that that warning might let on.  Cyril Barber, in The Minister’s Library (Baker, 1974), does, on the other hand, fairly regularly warn the reader of Barclay’s corrupt theology in the sixteen titles he mentions.

 

Barclay does bring together a large number of interesting quotations from other writers, and some of these assembled quotes are not to be missed.  I have gleaned his compilation in the autobiography for some of its better numbers, which are reproduced below.

 

Jeremiah wrote, “Since they have rejected the word of the Lord, what kind of wisdom do they have?” (8:9).  This is exactly my approach to Barclay, and such like.  While an edible morsel of food or some valuable article of jewelry or even a piece of money can be from time to time recovered from a city dump, with enough digging through the mire, I do not recommend that anyone regularly dine or mine there.  Spiritually, none should consult Barclay with the expectation of finding there much of the truth as it is in Jesus. 

                                                                        ---Doug Kutilek

---

 

Some quotations from Barclay’s writings illustrating his doctrinal aberrations:

 

(On Matthew 1:18-25)  “This passage tells us how Jesus was born by the action of the Holy Spirit.  It tells us of what we call the Virgin Birth.  The Virgin Birth is a doctrine which presents us with many difficulties; and it is a doctrine which our Church does not compel us to accept in the literal and the physical sense.  This is one of the doctrines on which the Church says that we have full liberty to come to our own belief and our own conclusion.”  The Gospel of Matthew, I:10. 

 

[Regardless of what “the Church” may permit regarding belief in this doctrine, the Scripture absolutely compels it; the sinlessness of Christ, His Deity, His atoning death, bodily resurrection, and second coming, all hang on the thread of the Virgin Birth.  If it is false, all these are necessarily false as well.--DK]

 

(On I Timothy 3:16)  “Right at the beginning this hymn stresses the real manhood and the real humanity of Jesus.” 

 

[In reality, the stress and foundational premise here is of the pre-existence and Deity of Christ--true whether the original Greek reading here is “God” or “He who.”  Without the pre-existence and Deity of Christ, there is no incarnation, and the humanity of Jesus is of no more importance than the humanity of anybody else.  It would then be true of Him, as David Lloyd Webber blasphemously wrote in Jesus Christ Superstar, “He’s a man, he’s just a man.”--DK]

 

[At Titus 2:13, Barclay completely ignores the important matter of “Granville Sharp’s rule,” a Greek grammatical construction which demands that the terms “great God” and “Saviour” refer to one and only one person, namely, Jesus Christ.  That a man with Barclay’s linguistic training would be ignorant of this matter is not possible (indeed, he translates the clause in question correctly--“our great God and Saviour Jesus Christ”).  He had to know the truth, know the implications of the truth, and yet here deliberately suppressed the facts. He says not a single word about this passage teaching the Deity of Christ, which it certainly, unambiguously does.--DK]

 

“I am all for women in the ministry”  (Autobiography, p. 23)

 

“I believe that pain and suffering are never the will of God for his children.” (p. 51)

 

[In contrast, see e.g., I Peter 3:17, “For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.”]

 

“I spoke of the stilling of the storm, and I said that if Jesus did still a storm on the Lake of Galilee in AD 28, it meant very little to me.” (p. 52)

 

[Such contempt for Divine miracles--and for the miracle-worker!--DK]

 

“The only bad teaching is the teaching which leaves the listener completely uninterested, completely indifferent, unmoved to learn and unstimulated to think.” (p.39)

 

[Any teaching which leaves the student embracing heresy surely qualifies as “bad teaching”--DK]

 

“What do I believe about Jesus? . . . .[F]or me the supreme truth of Christianity is that in Jesus I see God . . . .It is not that Jesus is God . . . .  Nowhere does the New Testament identify Jesus and God . . . . There are attributes of God I do not see in Jesus.”  (pp. 55, 56)

 

[Barclay’s pulling our leg here--he must have known that the New Testament most assuredly does plainly affirm the absolute Deity of Christ in Titus 2:13; 2 Peter 1:1; John 1:1; 5:18; 20:28; Philippians 2:5-11; Colossians 1:15-20; and in dozens of other places by direct affirmation or unmistakable implication.  Had Barclay been an honest man, he would have said something to the effect: “The early disciples and the writers of the New Testament in their zeal and enthusiasm sometimes make extravagant claims that Jesus was really in fact God, but I simply cannot and do not accept their exaggerated claims.”--DK]

 

“All arguments for a life to come must begin with the nature of God.” (p. 62).

 

[No, they must begin with God’s self-revelation in Scripture.  For Barclay, rejecting whatever he didn’t like in Scripture about the nature of God--His holiness, justice, and punishment of evil--was a matter of course, and rejecting these, he talks himself into universalism, a concept expressly contradicted by the nature of God as revealed in Scripture and by the clear teachings of the Bible about eternal condemnation for many.--DK]

 

“But in one thing I would go beyond strict orthodoxy--I am a convinced universalist.  I believe that in the end all men will be gathered into the love of God.” (p. 65).

 

[Were it only one doctrine where he abandoned strict orthodoxy!  In contrast to Barclay’s universalism, consider a couple among a multitude of quotations from the Scriptures, “Whoever shall speak against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, either in this age, or in the age to come.” (Matthew 12:32).  “These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” (Matthew 25:46).--DK]

 

“When I began to write, and when I began to be known outside my own town, attacks began and still go on.  I have been called a child of the devil, a destroyer of the faith, a traitor to Jesus Christ.  I have been informed that I am destined for hell, and that there are those who are praying that I may be brought to see the error of my ways.  Those who disapprove of me so strongly are those who are commonly called fundamentalists or conservatives.” (p. 101).

 

[Not without cause.--DK]

 

“I don’t think God is nearly so much interested in orthodoxy as some of his servants are.” (p. 105)

 

[“But even though we, or an angel from heaven, should preach to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed.  As we said before, so I say again now, if any man is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed.”  Galatians 1:8,9]

 

“I believe that Jesus so appeared to his men that they were convinced that he conquered death.  I do no know exactly what happened.” (p. 113)

 

[In sharp contrast, anyone who accepts at face value the plain teaching of Scriptures does know what happened: the dead, lifeless physical body of Jesus was literally raised from the dead by the joint act of God the Father and God the Son, and given additional new qualities it lacked before: “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. . . . (He spoke of the temple of His body).” (John 2:19, 21).  “Christ died. . . and was buried . . . and rose again the third day.” (I Corinthians 15:3, 4).  Dozens more specific verses could be quoted to condemn Barclay’s self professed ignorance--DK]

 

“I believe in the essential goodness and nobility of man.” (p. 117)

 

[“And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth and that all the imaginations of the thoughts of his heart were only evil continually.” (Genesis 6:5); “I know that in me, that is in my flesh, dwells no good thing.” (Romans 7:18)]

 

“God is not the omnipotent God, he is the struggling God.” (p. 119)

 

[“Ah LORD God, you have made the heavens by your great power and stretched out arm and there is nothing too hard for You!” (Jeremiah 32:17).]

 

Barclay, then, has a Jesus who is not God, who did not physically rise from the dead and who likely didn’t perform miracles, and a God who is not omnipotent, along with men who really don’t need to be redeemed from themselves.  No thanks, I believe I will stay with the God and Jesus and salvation as found in the Scriptures!

 

In reviewing Barclay’s autobiography, Cyril Barber wrote: “His reminiscences . . . clarify for conservatives why this renowned Scot’s theology has been viewed with a jaundiced eye.” (THE MINSTER’S LIBRARY, supplement #2, p. 54).  Indeed.

                                                                        --Doug Kutilek

---

 

Some quotes from Barclay’s Autobiography--

 

“Beverley Nichols tells of a talk he had with Winston Churchill.  Nichols had just written Prelude, and had at one stroke achieved fame.  Churchill asked him how long he had taken to write it.  Nichols said that it had been written in spasms over five months.  Churchill demanded if Nichols did not go to his desk every morning and write.  Beverley Nichols said that he had to wait for the mood and the inspiration.  “Nonsense!” Churchill answered.  “You should go to your room every morning at nine o’clock and say, ‘I’m going to write for four hours.’ “  Nichols asked what about toothache, indigestion, the inability to get down to it.  Churchill answered: “You’ve got to get over that.  If you sit waiting for inspiration, you will sit waiting until you are an old man.  Writing is like any other job--like marching an army, for instance.  If you sit down and wait until the weather is fine, you won’t get very far with your troops.  Kick yourself; irritate yourself; but write; it’s the only way.” (pp.28-9)

 

“The professional theologians leave me faint, . . .and sometimes I am tempted to agree with the cynical verdict that they write books which no one but another theologian can read, and that they produce confusion and call it theology.” (p. 33; this is especially true of the liberal and neo-orthodox kinds--DK)

 

“I am sure that the man who reads nothing but theology and ‘religious’ books will do himself and his message an infinite deal of harm.” (p. 37)

------------