Seek The Old Paths

Vol. 30   No. 8                   August,   2019

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Jon Gary Williams

        The Apocrypha is made up of a group of fourteen ancient writings, penned during the inner Biblical period, between 200 B.C. and the 1st century A.D. Though these books contain some valuable historical information, they are not a part of the inspired Bible. They are not found among any of the Old Testament Hebrew manuscripts. They appear in only one of the late copies of the Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament about 400 A.D.
        The word Apocrypha means “hidden” and has been applied to these books because they are largely spurious and lack authenticity. Hence, they fail to reflect the marks of inspired writings.
        These books are: I Esdras, II Esdras, Song of the Three Holy Children, History of Susanna, Bel and the Dragon, Prayer of Manasses, Tobit, Judith, The Rest of Esther, Wisdom of Solomon, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, I Maccabees & II Maccabees.

  1. While the Apocrypha is often associated with Bibles used in the Catholic Church, only the last eight of these books are found in Catholic editions of the Old Testament.
  2. In Catholic Bibles the books of I & II Samuel are titled I & II Kings, the books of I & II Kings are titled III & IV Kings, and the books of I & II Chronicles are titled I & II Parali-pomenon.
  3. While Catholic Bibles contain the names I Esdras and II Esdras, these are not the Apocryphal books of the same name. Rather, these titles were given to the Old Testament books of Ezra and Nehemiah.
  4. Though The Rest of Esther is a separate book in the Apocrypha, in Catholic Bibles it has been placed at the end of the Old Testament book of Esther.
  5. In Catholic Bibles, the book of Ecclesiasticus (also called Sirach) is not the same as Ecclesiastes, and Song of Solomon is called Canticle of Canticles.
  1. They never had a place in the Jewish Hebrew Old Testament, hence, were never recognized as inspired by the Jews.
  2. Though the writers of the New Testament were aware of their existence, they never quoted from them.
  3. Early secular writers who quoted the Old Testament, never referred to them. This includes such men as: Josephus, Philo, Tertullian, Origen, Hilary and Epiphanius.
  4. Jerome (400 A.D.), who is held in high esteem by the Catholic Church, regarded only the 39 books of the Old Testament as inspired. He did not include them in his own version, the Latin Vulgate.
  5. None of the Apocryphal books are found in the oldest known catalog of Old Testament books.
  6. None of the writers of these books claim inspiration. To the contrary, one wrote: “I also will here make an end on my narration, which if I have done well and as it becometh the history, it is what I desired. But if not so perfectly, it must be pardoned me.” (II Maccabees 15:38,39)
  7. They contain no prophetic element.
  8. They sometimes contradict themselves.
  9. They teach doctrines that are contrary to the Bible.
  10. They contain events that are contrary to the Bible.
  11. They teach practices which are at variance with the Bible, such as sorcery, witchcraft and prayers for the dead.
  12. They are weak in expression and lack originality.
  13. Some of them contain stories that are legendary and absurd.
  14. They are on a spiritual and moral level far below the Old Testament writings. As one textual analyst said: “You feel like you are in a different world.”
  15. The Apocryphal books accepted as inspired by the Catholic Church were not officially recognized until the Council of Trent in 1546.
  16. Early Christians did not accept these books as inspired.
(In Bold Type)
  1. Genesis
  2. Exodus
  3. Leviticus
  4. Numbers
  5. Deuteronomy
  6. Joshua
  7. Judges
  8. Ruth
  9. I Kings (or I Samuel)
  10. II Kings (or II Samuel)
  11. III Kings (or I Kings)
  12. IV Kings (or II Kings)
  13. I Paralipomenon (or I Chronicles)
  14. II Paralipomenon (or II Chronicles)
  15. I Esdras (or Ezra)
  16. II Esdras (or Nehemiah)
  17. Tobit
  18. Judith
  19. Esther (Rest of Esther)
  20. Job
  21. Psalms
  22. Proverbs
  23. Ecclesiastes
  24. Canticle of Canticles (or Song of Solomon)
  25. Wisdom of Solomon
  26. Ecclesiasticus (or Sirach)
  27. Isaiah
  28. Jeremiah
  29. Lamentations
  30. Baruch
  31. Ezekiel
  32. Daniel
  33. Hosea
  34. Joel
  35. Amos
  36. Obadiah
  37. Jonah
  38. Micah
  39. Nahum
  40. Habakkuk
  41. Zephaniah
  42. Haggai
  43. Zechariah
  44. Malachi
  45. I Maccabees
  46. II Maccabees

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Editorial Column

Garland M. Robinson

        The “right hand” is the opposite of the “left hand.” Whereas the “left hand” ignores the laws of God and acts in open violation to them, the “right hand” stops short of God’s laws. The “right hand” approach to the Bible will not allow the liberties God permits.
        The right hand forbids what God allows. It is to make laws God did not make and bind them upon themselves and others. The “right hand” looks at scriptures which authorize a particular action but will not allow that action. They forbid (prohibit, refuse, outlaw) anyone to observe what God allows (authorizes, grants). The right hand “binds” where God has not “bound.”
        There is not any one single word that would particularly identify this position. In the sense that one may oppose what God allows, such could be called “anti” — against what God allows. Some of the Pharisees made laws based upon their traditions and they would bind them upon others (Mark 7:1-13, especially vs.7-8). The Lord condemned them for their hypocrisy and elevating tradition above law. (As there is a sense in which the word “liberal” is good, such as being “liberal givers” (2 Cor. 9:6-7); there is a sense in which the word “anti” is good. That is, we obviously are against everything God forbids. But these definitions are not what is under consideration here.
        Sometimes the word “conservative” is used to apply to those who make laws God did not make. However, the definition of the word “conservative” does not show this to be the case. The word “conservative” according to Random House Dictionary is: “disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc. Traditional in style or manner. A person who is conservative in principles, actions, habits, etc.” Webster says the same. gives this as a definition: “disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc. or to restore traditional ones, and to limit change.” This being the case, it appears that one who believes in following the New Testament and using it as a pattern is a “conservative.” That is, such a person is doing exactly what the New Testament authorizes — not deviating to the “right hand” or to the “left.” Those who are approved of God do not make laws that God did not make (right hand), nor do they loose (ignore, disregard) the laws that God did make (left hand).
        The Lord spoke to the apostles concerning the matter of “binding” and “loosing.” When the church began, and in the early days of its existence, the apostles and others who were inspired (men upon whom the apostles laid their hands to impart spiritual gifts, Acts 8:17-18), were given the task of revealing the Word of God to the world. They did this through their speaking and writing. Jesus told the apostles, “And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven (Matt. 16:19).
        The binding and loosing they did was not according to their own whims, opinions and decisions. The Scriptures were not written according to their own likes and dislikes. They would be binding and loosing what God (in heaven) had already bound and loosed. Even Jesus did not speak of his own accord. He spoke only what was given him from the Father in heaven (John 12:49). And likewise, the Holy Spirit only revealed what he had been given from above (John 16:13). It was no different with the apostles and prophets in the early church. Did you know there were prophets in the first century church (cf. Acts 3:18b, 21; 11:27; 13:1)? Whether apostles or prophets, they spake and wrote as they were guided by the Holy Spirit (2 Peter 1:20-21; Matt. 10:20; John 14:26; Acts 2:4; 2 Tim. 3:16-17). They were infallible in their writing.
        The 27 books of the New Testament are the Very Words of God! God gave the world exactly what he wanted. Therefore, we all are obligated to do only what God has authorized us to do. This is made clear in Colossians 3:17, “And whatsoever ye do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God and the Father by him.” We are not free to ADD TO what God says. Nor are we free to SUBTRACT FROM what God says. Deuteronomy 4:2, Proverbs 30:6, and Revelation 22:18-19 makes this clear. God permits some things and he prohibits some things. Man cannot change either!
        The truth of the matter is that God’s Word is “...true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever” (Psa. 119:160). God’s word is “strait and narrow” (Matt. 7:14). That means it is “close, hemmed in, to crowd.” It is “the way” that leads to eternal life and few are those who find/follow it. The Truth is the strait and narrow path between the extremes of the “right hand” and the “left hand.” When you drive down the road and run off into the ditch, it doesn’t make any difference if it’s the ditch on the left side of the road or the ditch on the right side of the road, you’re still in the ditch! One is just as bad as the other. Both are to be avoided!
        All the ways (doctrines and practices) to the left and all the ways (doctrines and practices) to the right, constitute the broad and wide way (Matt. 7:13-14). Look at a clock on the wall (I guess I need to say analog clock): 12 o’clock is the way that leads to God and heaven. Any thing and every thing to the “left” of 12 ignores the laws God made. Consequently, it is the wrong way. Any thing and every thing to the “right” of 12 makes laws God did not make. Consequently, it is the wrong way. 12 o’clock is the single, narrow, strait way that God outlines for all humanity. It includes all the ways and laws of God. It is the New Testament (when “rightly divided,” 2 Tim. 2:15). It does not include man-made ways — whether they “loose” laws God made or “bind” laws God did not make. Everything from 12:01 to 11:59 is the wrong way. The wrong way is wide and broad and easily contrasted with the strait and narrow way.
        It is easy to choose to go the way that is broad and wide. That is the way the world is rushing along. The Lord’s way is exclusive and narrow. Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). That does not allow any other religion. It does not allow any other way. It does not allow any other personality or supposed religious leader. It does not allow any other “so-called” savior. We must choose the way of truth (Psalm 119:30) or suffer the consequences of being lost!
        In Jeremiah 6:16 we read very comforting and promising words from the inspired Jeremiah. But we also read some tragic and horrifying words. “Thus saith the LORD, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls.” Tragically, multitudes of people said,We will not walk therein.” In the next verse God said, “I set watchmen over you, saying, Hearken to the sound of the trumpet. But they said, We will not hearken.”
        Those who will not walk in the path laid out for us by God (the old paths), are those who boldly say, “we will not walk therein...we will not hearken” to what God says. There’s no hope for people like that. The Lord’s word is a reproach unto them. They have no delight in hearing and learning God’s will (Jer. 6:10).
        Which way are you traveling? Are you on the “left” or on the “right?” Or, are you on the strait and narrow? Don’t apologize for loving the truth and holding to the “old paths” which is the good way, the right way. It’s the ONLY way that leads to life everlasting. “Examine yourselves whether ye be in the faith” (2 Cor. 13:5).

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Bill Boyd
Renewed earth advocates cannot show where the Bible says that Jesus will accompany us from the air back to the earth. They cannot prove that Jesus will set one foot on this earth again.
Jesus spoke of his Father as being in heaven about twenty times in the New Testament. If we follow Jesus to his Father, we will follow Jesus to heaven.

        My wife’s grandmother heard Foy E. Wallace Jr. debate premillennialism with Charles M. Neal in Chattanooga, Tennessee. I asked her what she remembered about the debate. She told me that Wallace quoted where Paul said we would “meet the Lord in the air” and “ever be with the Lord” (1 Thess. 4:17). Then he challenged Neal to prove that Jesus would set one foot on this earth again. For her, that was a defining moment of the debate. Neal could not do it, premillennialists have never done it, but the renewed earth advocates tell us that Jesus will.
        When Paul preached in Thessalonica he was “Opening and alleging that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead...” (Acts 17:3). He must have also said something about Christ’s second coming, because shortly after leaving, he wrote two epistles to that church to clear up confusion they had about that subject. It is good to study these epistles with renewed earth advocates because there is so much upon which we agree. Every chapter in these two epistles affirms our mutual faith that Jesus is coming again.
        Paul said, “The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night” (1 Thess. 5:2,4). He will come “with all his saints” (1 Thess. 3:13). He will be “revealed from heaven with his mighty angels” (2 Thess. 1:7). There is “wrath to come” (1 Thess. 1:10), and “sudden destruction” (1 Thess. 5:3). He shall “destroy with the brightness of his coming” (2 Thess. 2:8), “in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power” (2 Thess. 1:8-9). “God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Thess. 5:9). We are “delivered” from that wrath (1 Thess. 1:10). We are “ the obtaining the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ” (2 Thess. 2:14). “He shall come to be glorified in his saints and to be admired in all them that believe” (2 Thess. 1:10). There will be a “gathering together unto him” (2 Thess. 2:1). We will be “in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming” (1 Thess. 2:19), and “live together with him” (1 Thess. 5:10). We are promised “rest” (2 Thess. 1:7), “all the good pleasure of his goodness” (2 Thess. 1:11), and an “everlasting consolation” (2 Thess. 2:16). “We which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord” (1 Thess. 4:15-17).
        We should give ourselves credit for being together on all Paul said. “Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133:1)! But what happens next?
        Renewed earth advocates tell us that when we rise to meet the Lord in the air, we will go to him like the citizens of a city would go out to welcome an approaching king, and after meeting Jesus in the air we will accompany him back to the earth the way these citizens would accompany a king back into their city. But Paul did not say that. They all tell this story. When it comes to the Thessalonian epistles it is all they have. But Paul did not say it. It would have been as easy for Paul to have told us this story as it is for them to tell it, but he did not do it. They say there is precedence for this in history. Perhaps, but is there historical precedence for the citizens of a city going out to joyfully welcome a king while the king sends his army in to destroy the city? I do not think so.
        Renewed earth advocates hang a lot on the word translated “meet.” They tell us that Martha and Mary went out to “meet” Jesus and later returned to Bethany (John 11:20,29); that people went out to “meet” the Lord as he rode into Jerusalem and returned (Matt. 21:8-10); that the virgins went forth to “meet” the bridegroom and returned (Matt. 25:1,6); that the brethren came out of Rome to “meet” Paul and returned (Acts 28:15). Therefore, we will go up to “meet” the Lord in the air and return to the earth (1 Thess. 4:17). In the passages in John, Matthew and Acts, the “return” is clearly in the context, but Paul said nothing about a “return” in Thessalonians. Some tell us that Paul did not have to mention a return in 1 Thessalonians 4 because he assumed the Thessalonians would have associated a return with the word “meet.” But, they have to assume Paul made that assumption. They are assuming the very thing they are hoping to prove!
        Renewed earth advocates tell us that we will meet the Lord in the air in order to escape the wrath of his destruction, and then return to earth. If that is the case, we will not want to remain in the air where the clouds are, not while the earth is being destroyed, (not unless the clouds and the air are symbolic of something greater). The word translated “air” is a word for the lower atmosphere. If we want to escape the wrath of his destruction, we will not want to hang around in the lower atmosphere. Peter said, “The heavens and the earth which now are” are “reserved for fire” (2 Peter 3:7), “the heavens will pass away with a great noise” (2 Peter 3:10), and “the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved” (2 Peter 3:12). If the heavens are destroyed with the earth, what is the advantage of being in the air? If the earth will survive all this anyway, we may as well hide ourselves in the dens of the mountains and say to the rocks, “fall on us...” (see Rev. 6:14-17). It may be better for Jesus to bring us safely into his heavenly kingdom than for us to wait out the destruction of the earth in the lower atmosphere. Renewed earth advocates tell us that after things have cooled off we will accompany Jesus back down to an eternal home on earth, but Paul did not say that. We are together on all that Paul said, but we are not together on what he did not say.
        Renewed earth advocates respond that Paul did not say that we were going to heaven either. True enough, not in the epistles to the Thessalonians, but we do not have to make up a story about following Jesus to heaven. Jesus said, “I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself, that where I am there ye may be also” (John 14:2-3). In this context Jesus said, “I go unto my Father” (John 14:12), and “Thou shalt follow me afterwards” (John 13:36). Jesus spoke of his Father as being in heaven about twenty times in the New Testament. If we follow Jesus to his Father, we will follow Jesus to heaven. The Hebrew writer says that Jesus is our “forerunner...into heaven itself” (compare Heb. 6:20 with Heb. 9:24), therefore we will follow Jesus to heaven.
        Paul wrote of the “heavenly kingdom” when he wrote of the Lord’s “appearing and his kingdom” (2 Tim. 4:1). This “heavenly kingdom” is not the kingdom that had already appeared. Paul was already in the kingdom that had already appeared. Paul wrote of his “departure” (2 Tim. 4:6), but he said nothing of his return. He said, “There is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing” (2 Tim. 4:8). In this context, he spoke of being brought safely into the Lord’s heavenly kingdom. “The Lord shall deliver me from every evil work, and will preserve me unto his heavenly kingdom” (2 Tim. 4:18). It would be good and pleasant for us to be together on all Paul said.
        To account for their doctrine, advocates of a renewed earth imagine their own end to the story and bring it to the Thessalonian text, but they cannot show us where the Bible says that Jesus will accompany us from the air back to the earth. Therefore, the challenge stands; renewed earth advocates cannot prove that Jesus will set one foot on this earth again.
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Marvin L. Weir

        Psalm 81 contains tremendous truths and principles that will benefit any honest person seeking to save his soul. God has always communicated with human beings regarding the type of lives He would have them to live. In this Psalm, God tells His people what is expected of them. Having been delivered from Egyptian bondage, Israel should have known what to expect from God. This Psalm also makes clear as to why Israel failed to be blessed by God.
        The penalty of rejecting God’s pleas is just as deadly today as it was under other dispensations. A loving God sets before all people the opportunity to choose between blessing or failure. Let’s observe some conditions that must be considered:
        God’s Merciful Plea! God pleas with Israel, saying, “Hear, O my people, and I will testify unto thee...” (Psalm 81:8a). Why is it that most people are so inclined to listen to the testimony of men rather than the testimony of God? Solomon wrote: “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding” (Prov. 3:5). These words come from a man that had requested an “understanding heart” (1 Kings 3:9) to judge his people, and God gave him wisdom and understanding greater than that possessed by any other man (1 Kings 3:12). As wise as he was, Solomon realized man’s wisdom in no way can compare with God’s wisdom.
        Jehovah entreats His people to have an attentive ear (Psalm 81:8a). If one is going to benefit from God’s blessings, he must first hear what God expects him to do to receive such blessings. This principle has not changed. When Peter preached the Gospel on Pentecost to an audience of thousands from some 15 nations (Acts 2:1-11), the Scriptures especially note, “Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls” (Acts 2:41). The majority present who heard Peter’s preaching did not have attentive ears and thus rejected instead of received the Word of Life. God’s Word is of no value to the one who will not hear and heed!
        Israel was told, “There shall no strange (foreign) god be in thee; neither shalt thou worship any strange god” (Psalm 81:9). Whatever wins the heart’s affection, or whatever a man places his trust and confidence in, becomes his god. It can be his family, business associates, or friends. Pagan worship was no friend to Israel, and is no friend to members of the Lord’s church today. Anything not authorized by the Lord for worship is foreign to God. Acceptable worship will always be according to truth (John 4:24).
        God delivered Israel from Egypt. Thus, He instructs, “...Open thy mouth wide, and I will fill it” (Psalm 81:10). Jehovah is ready and willing to provide for His people. It is no wonder that Paul would encourage Christians in saying, “Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them” (Heb. 7:25).
        God’s Gracious Purpose! The Creator laments, “Oh that my people had hearkened unto me, and Israel had walked in my ways” (Psalm 81:13)! Coffman comments on what God would have done for Israel if only they would have heeded his voice. He says: “(1) Their enemies would have been subdued (Ps 81:14); (2) the haters of God would have turned to the Lord (Ps 81:15); (3) God would have given them abundant prosperity (Ps 81:16). This being true of the Old Israel, is it any less true of the New? The answer is negative. As Barnes expressed it, ‘This psalm is of special importance to the church now, reminding God’s people of their obligation derived from the past mercies of God, and showing what would be the consequences if they should be wholly dedicated to the service of God.’ ‘With honey out of the rock would I satisfy thee’ (Psalm 81:16). ‘This verse looks back to Deut. 32:13-14. Honey from the rock is not a natural product.’ The parallel from Deuteronomy, where we have, ‘oil out of the flinty rock,’ shows that we are ‘not here on the ground of the actual, but of the ideal.’ The expression is hyperbole for incomparable abundance.” What a glorious thing it would be for all of God’s people to devote themselves without reservation to the love and service of God. Should anyone be afraid that God either could or would fail to provide abundant blessings for his people who might do such a thing? Has not Christ himself said, “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world?” God’s purpose was to subdue enemies, save sinners, and provide abundantly for His saints.
        A Sorrowful Observation! “But my people would not hearken to my voice; and Israel would none of me” (Psalm 81:11). The lesson to be learned from this verse is that when one refuses the Word, he rejects the Father. Nothing has changed! It is impossible to love the Lord while refusing to acknowledge and obey His Word. Countless millions commit this error today, and it is indeed a very sad observation.
        Jesus likened the Pharisees “...unto whited sepulchres, which indeed appear beautiful outward, but are within full of dead men’s bones, and of all uncleanness” (Matt. 23:27). Paul spoke of Christians who “hold a form of godliness,” while “having denied the power thereof” (2 Tim. 3:5). Again, one cannot claim to honor and praise the Lord while denying the truth and power of His Word!
        A Contemptible Condition! “So I gave them up unto their own hearts’ lust: and they walked in their own counsels” (Psalm 81:12). Those who are more anxious to hear the words of men rather than a “thus saith the Lord” are those who have chosen the chaff instead of the wheat. It is a deadly diet!
        The problem is the same today. Nothing good ever comes from exchanging “the truth of God for a lie” (Rom. 1:25). God will allow people to consume themselves by “the lusts of their hearts unto uncleanness” (v.24). Those who profess “themselves to be wise” and reject the pleas of God become mere fools (v.22).
        Prepare yourself to be a recipient of God’s bountiful blessings, and you will not be a tragic failure throughout eternity!
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Johnny O. Trail
If Lucy is the strongest evidence that evolutionists have to offer regarding the human evolutionary chain, it fails miserably in light of the evidence!

        My eleven year old son started the sixth grade. His mother and I always make it a point to speak with him about the events of his school day. In less than a fortnight, his ancient history class had already started talking about proto-humans. In a somewhat disturbed voice, he remarked, “Dad we talked about ‘Lucy’ in our class today.” After that, he went on to say that the teacher said Lucy was about ׁ.5 million years old.”
        Much ink could be spilled on the fallacy of our planet being millions (or billions) of years old. When one considers that the sun is burning off at a constant rate, and adds that rate back to the circumference of the sun, the lunacy of such a claim is apparent. This is one example of many that could be referenced to refute any ancient earth theory. Still, there remains the question of alleged skeletal evidence in the evolution of human beings.
        Public schools typically do not share all of the information about alleged human ancestors in the evolutionary chain. It is easier to take for fact the incomplete research of paleontologists and anthropologists with an agenda —i.e., to prove evolution regardless of what the evidence says. These things are done so that programs continue to receive funding for their efforts at continued research. That is, there is money to be made in promoting evolutionary theory. One journal that supports evolutionary research opines, “A false and sentimental glow surrounds science in the minds of many outside the science world. A reverent belief in the purity of scientists, so tender and mild (except for those intelligent-design scoundrels), is a badge of membership for the enlightened. The cult of science all but denies that professionals in the field are human beings, subject to the familiar corruptions that go with money, power, and prestige.“1 When one examines the “evidence” they use to support a false theory of human evolution, it destroys the preconceived notions surrounding evolution.
        What do the facts teach about ‘Lucy’ and other creatures that are supposedly on the human evolutionary chain? For one thing, Lucy, like so many other creatures, has very little skeletal evidence to support the artistic license that many exaggerate to create the images that are displayed to the public. Consider this fact: “Unfortunately, there is very little fossil evidence to go on. Even though Lucy is fairly complete for a mammal fossil (47 of 207 bones found), the bones are mostly small fragments with many pieces missing. Other specimens have been found, but they are far more fragmentary. No matter how complete, all fossils must be interpreted. Some interpretation is always left to the imagination of the person doing the reconstruction.“2 From just a few incomplete fragments, scientists and artists have recreated this icon of evolutionary history.
        Lucy, like so many other proto-humans, is really an ape that has been given human characteristics. Scientists have agreed with this conclusion. One writer avers, “Rak and colleagues studied 146 mature primate bone specimens, including those from modern humans, gorillas, chimpanzees and orangutans and found that the “ramus element” of the mandible connecting the lower jaw to the skull is like that of the robust forms, therefore eliminating the possibility that Lucy and her kind are Man’s direct ancestors.“3 Thus, there is more evidence to connect ‘Lucy’ with apes than humans.
        Questions regarding the authenticity of Lucy’s human ancestry are being asked by people other than creationists. Many researchers question the alleged link between Lucy and humans. A team of Israeli scientists have disputed the links that others have sought to affirm. They write, “Mandibular ramus morphology on a recently discovered specimen of Australopithecus afarensis closely matches that of gorillas. This finding was unexpected given that chimpanzees are the closest living relatives of humans. Because modern humans, chimpanzees, orangutans, and many other primates share a ramal morphology that differs from that of gorillas, the gorilla anatomy must represent a unique condition, and its appearance in fossil hominins must represent an independently derived morphology. This particular morphology appears also in Australopithecus robustus. The presence of the morphology in both the latter and Au. afarensis and its absence in modern humans cast doubt on the role of Au. afarensis as a modern human ancestor.“4 If Lucy is the strongest evidence that evolutionists have to offer regarding the human evolutionary chain, it fails miserably in light of the evidence!
        Another problem that Lucy has to overcome is bipedalism. The reconstruction of her pelvis region is problematic at best. Instead of allowing the evidence to dictate the results, Lucy’s bipedalism is connected to footprints discovered over one thousand miles away from where her remains were found. Note the following information, “Johanson bolstered his claims after Mary Leakey’s 1976 discovery of the Laetoli footprints in Tanzania, roughly 1000 miles away from the site of Lucy’s 1974 discovery in Ethiopia. Leakey unearthed a trail of fossilized footprints belonging to several bipeds (two, three, or four —possibly including a juvenile stepping in the bigger prints —depending on whose analysis you accept). The prints look like those of habitually barefoot people, and their morphology and evident gait demonstrate that whoever made them walked upright on two legs.“5
        Furthermore, many scholars have asserted that Lucy’s pelvic bones are more closely related to chimpanzees than humans. This adds credence to the fact that Lucy was most likely a tree-dwelling primate and not another link on the chain of evolution.6 Russell Tuttle, an anthropologist from the University of Chicago is quoted as saying, “Tuttle agrees that, based on anatomical data, A. afarenis must have been arboreal, but he goes even further, arguing that Lucy’s pelvis shows a flare that is better suited for climbing than for walking. More importantly, he says, the Laetoli footprints do not match the foot bones found in Hadar; where the Hadar foot is ape-like, with curved toes, the footprints left in Laetoli are ‘virtually human.’ Tuttle concludes that the bipedal species which lived in Tanzania is a different species from A. afarensis —and one more closely related to humans.“7 “Moreover, Lucy’s rib cage is reminiscent of a primate rather than a human being. That is, ‘Lucy’s rib cage is conical like an ape’s, not barrel shaped like a humans’.“8
        The ribs of Lucy were rounder in shape than what one would expect from an organism that is allegedly humanoid in anatomical features. Instead of fitting into a more human shaped barrel design, the ribs of Lucy seemed to fit into a conical shaped ribcage.
        Finally, one might consider the wrist bones that were linked to Lucy’s discovery. Upon close examination, many scholars have concluded that the anatomy of these bones was most closely akin to the bones of tree-dwelling primates.9
        The “evidence” among those who believe in the theory of evolution is fragmented at best and experts are not in harmony about the true identity of Lucy’s family tree. These things being evident, why do textbooks and instructors talk about Lucy as if she is concrete proof of a human evolutionary chain? Amos’ words in this instance ring true, “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3).


  1. “Let’s Tell the Truth about Science Funding” (2006). Evolution News and Science Today.
  2. Henderson, Doug (2013). “Bringing Lucy to Life.”
  3. Siegel-Itzkovich, Judy (2007). “Israeli Researchers: Lucy Is Not Direct Ancestor of Humans.”
  4. Rak, Yoel et al. (2007). Gorilla-like Anatomy of Australopitihecus Afransis Mandibles Suggest Au. Afransis Link to Robust Australopiths. PNAS.
  5. Menton, Dr. David and Mitchell, Dr. Elizabeth (2012). “A Look at Lucy’s Legacy.” Answers in Genesis.
  6. Ibid
  7. Wray, Herert (1982). “Was Lucy a Climber? Dissenting Views of Ancient Bones.” Science News, vol. 122, pg. 116.
  8. Harrub, Brad (2009). Convicted. Focus Press, Franklin, pg. 188.
  9. Richmond, Brian, and Strait, David (2000). “Evidence that humans evolved from a knuckle-walking ancestor.” Nature 404:382 5.


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The Church Of Christ Was Bought
And Paid For By Jesus Christ.

        Matthew 16:13-19: “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”
        Acts 20:28: “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.”

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        In August of 1999, Pulpit Helps published part 3 of a 4-part special series on homosexuality. The following quotes are from that article.
        “While many homosexuals deny they have an agenda, Mike Haley (Focus On The Family staffer with the Public Policy Division, who had been involved in the homosexual community as a teenager and young adult) quoted at length from a 1987 article, The Overhauling of Straight America, which did set forth a six-point agenda to achieve the goal of desensitizing the American public. If the gay community can bring the public to a state of indifference, rather than keen emotion, ‘your battle for legal and social rights will be virtually won,’ the article stated.”
        As you read the six-point agenda, you will instantly take note of what is taking place all across America and the world!

  1. Talk about gays and gayness as often and as loudly as possible.
  2. Portray gays as victims, not as aggressive challengers.
  3. Give protectors a just cause, (“Straights” are urged to surround and support gays at rallies and confrontations — especially effective on college campuses.)
  4. Make gays look good.
  5. Make “victimizers” look bad.
  6. Solicit funds.

        Here we are twenty years later and the homosexual agenda is aggressively pro-active in suppressing what they term “bigotry” by labeling opposition as “hate speech.” It is no surprise that the entertainment industry, as well as liberal politicians and theologians are strongly supporting LGBT as an “alternate lifestyle.” All major television networks have gays and lesbians constantly on various programs and talk shows. There is absolutely no question but that which has catapulted the LGBT movement are the highly liberal television networks!
        When a picture of the White House with a rainbow overhead was televised, many suggested it might be a ‘sign from God’ supporting the LGBT movement. How shameful and disgusting to imply God’s rainbow sanctions homosexuality and lesbianism! The beautiful rainbow God placed in the sky is His promise to the human race that he will never again destroy the earth with a flood as he did in Noah’s day (Genesis 9:12-17). He will destroy the earth again, but next time it will be with fire (2 Peter 3:5-14).
        My friends, homosexuality and lesbianism is an abomination in the sight of God (Lev. 20:13). The word “abomination” is that which is detestable, disgusting and loathsome to God! As Christians, we speak as God speaks. We are not violent nor promote violence. We simply teach what God says and call upon all men to repent of every sin in their life. “For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:3-4). God is “...not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).
        We are seeing, right before our eyes, an attempt to completely denounce God and His Word as the source and standard for the human race! Homosexuality, lesbianism and all perversion is severely condemned by God. Why did God give them up? Because they “changed the truth of God into a lie” (Rom. 1:25)! They were filled with “uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator.... For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet (due). And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient” (fitting, Rom. 1:24-32; see also 1 Cor. 6:9-11).
        According to Galatians 5:19-21, all who participate in “the works of the flesh...shall not inherit the kingdom of God.” In Romans 1:18 we read, “The wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness.”
        Yes, God loves all sinners, including homosexuals and lesbians (just as we do), but He does not approve of nor accept their sinful practices! That’s not hate speech. That’s God speech. God wants all sinners to repent, obey the Gospel, and no longer live in the darkness of sin (Col. 3).
        “O earth, earth, earth, heard the word of the Lord” (Jer. 22:29)! Remember Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 19; 2 Peter 2:6; Jude 7)!
                Ivie Powell
                PO Box 92
                West Plains, MO 65775

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Bound Volumes (with a complete index) for the years of
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