McPhersonism, Holy Rollerism, Pentecostalism,
Miracles, Divine Healing
A Debate with Both Sides
Elder Ben M. Bogard, Affirming That
"MIRACLES AND DIVINE HEALING, AS TAUGHT
AND MANIFESTED IN THE WORD OF GOD, CEASED
WITH THE CLOSING OF THE APOSTOLIC AGE,"
Mrs. Aimee Semple McPherson, Denying
DID SUPERNATURAL GIFTS END
WITH THE APOSTOLIC AGE?
McPhersonites, Holy Rollers, Apostolics
Elder Ben M. Bogard is pastor of the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, Little Rock, Arkansas and Mrs. Aimee Semple McPherson is Founder of the Four Square Gospel Church with headquarters at Angelus Temple, Los Angeles, California.
The debate was taken in short hand by Mr. J. E. Rhodes, Court Stenographer, of the Circuit Court of Little Rock, Ark., and published as spoken.
With an Appendix following the debate, giving
This Book is republished by Vernon L. Barr, pastor of South Harwood Baptist Church Dallas, Texas by special permission from Dr. Ben M. Bogard, Little Rock, Ark., Original publisher.
By Request of Vernon Barr Republished by
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STATE OF ARKANSAS
COUNTY OF PULASKI
I, .J. E. Rhodes, do hereby certify that I am the Stenographer who reported the debate between Aimee Semple McPherson and Ben M. Bogard, held at the McPherson Tabernacle in the city of North Little Rock, Pulaski County, Arkansas, on the 22nd day of May, 1934. I further certify that the annexed and foregoing typewritten pages contain a full, true and complete transcript of my stenographic notes of said debate, to the best of my knowledge, and ability. I further certify that both speakers spoke for the same length of time, Dr. Bogard speaking much faster than Mrs. McPherson. This is. the explanation for there being more pages of Dr. Bogard's speeches than of Mrs. McPherson.
Given under my hand, this the 27th day of July,
A. D. 1934.
J. E. Rhodes.
Subscribed and sworn to before me this the 27th day of July A. D 1934.
J. S. Abercrombie, Notary Public.
My commission expires
25TH DAY OF July, 1936.
This debate came as a result of a challenge given to me by Mrs. Aimee McPherson during her tabernacle meetings in North Little Rock. She had attracted a great deal of attention and many were being led astray by her false teachings. I preached against her doctrine both over the radio and in my pulpit at the Antioch Missionary Baptist Church, where I am pastor. The newspapers quoted extracts from my sermons and Mrs. McPherson listened in over the radio and she challenged me to come over to her Tabernacle and debate with her. She said before several thousand people and I heard her say over the radio that, "If this preacher does not believe what I preach let him bring his Bible and come over here and I will debate it with him." A day or two after that I attended her services and in substance she said: "I understand that the preacher who said my work is of the devil is in the congregation. If he will prove by the Bible that miracles, such as Jesus and the apostles wrought, are no longer possible, I will close my Bible and never preach again."
The people understood that she had challenged for a debate and I wrote her a courteous letter as follows:
Little Rock, Ark., May 8, 1934.
Mrs. Aimee Semple McPherson,
North Little Rock, Ark.
Dear Mrs. McPherson:
In reference to my broadcast last Sunday you seemed to challenge me or any one else to meet you in debate on our differences. I might have misunderstood you but I listened in at your service over the radio and it seemed to me that you challenged any one to meet you in debate. If I am mistaken I beg your pardon.
Being a gentleman I would not think of disturbing your services. I believe in free speech and free press and free radio. I would not stop you nor any one else. I hate intolerance and love freedom of worship and freedom of speech. I believe we should discuss frankly and honestly our differences and not persecute any one because he may not agree with us. I have somewhat of a reputation as a debater and debaters are always tolerant and for that reason I tolerate what I do not endorse and try to show those who do not agree with me their error. I am willing to make that effort with you.
You said in your broadcast that you did not believe in using the scissors on the Bible and that you thought that all of it APPLIES TO US IN THIS AGE and for that reason you take the Bible FROM COVER TO COVER AS YOUR RULE OF FAITH AND PRACTICE. Will you affirm that,
The ENTIRE BIBLE, THE BIBLE FROM COVER TO COVER, IS THE RULE OF FAITH AND PRACTISE TO BE OBSERVED IN THIS AGE?
If you will so affirm I shall gladly deny it and you can name the time and place for this discussion.
Of course the debate should be governed by the rules of honourable controversy and have the time divided equally between us. I await your answer.
"Ben M. Bogard."
Mrs. McPherson gave the foregoing letter to her representative and he came to my office with the letter. Since I wrote the letter to her personally this gentleman could not have had it in his possession and brought it to me unless she turned it over to him. He asked me if I wrote the letter and I told him I did and he said that Mrs. McPherson asked him to come to me and negotiate the terms of the debate. He said that he would call me over the phone at about five O'clock and tell me the results of his conference with Mrs. McPherson. He did not call and I therefore addressed another letter to Mrs. McPherson as follows:
Little Rock, Ark., May 11, 1934.
Dear Mrs. McPherson:
I have so far received no reply to my letter in which I accepted your challenge to debate. Your representative came and brought the letter I wrote you and thus you answered through your representative. But he did not call me over the phone as he said he might and thus I am left not knowing whether you are willing to face an opponent in open discussion or not.
I attended your services last night and you took particular pains to tell the audience of my presence. I was made to hope that you would stand by your challenge because you said, and were correctly quoted in this morning's paper as saying,
"IF THIS MAN (referring to me) OR ANY ONE ELSE WILL PROVE BY THE BIBLE THAT THE DAY OF MIRACLES HAS ENDED, THEN I WILL QUIT AND NEVER PREACH AGAIN."
That is exactly what I will affirm. Since you have thus repeated your challenge and have submitted the very words I shall be glad to use in my affirmation, you will please name the time and place for the debate and we shall have it. You will EITHER DO THIS OR I SHALL READ THESE LETTERS OVER THE RADIO NEXT SUNDAY AND RELEASE THEM TO THE NEWSPAPERS who no doubt will like a story of this sort.
I assure you that wisecracks and stunt performances will not long deceive the masses. Thinking people will ask why you will not debate when you made the challenge and it has been accepted. I await patiently your answer.
Please have your representative phone me or call on me and we can arrange details. I AM ONLY ACCEPTING YOUR CHALLENGE.
You have been posing as an ordained Baptist preacher. You are not an ordained Baptist preacher and never have been. The church that ordained you ceased to be a Baptist church and became a Pentecostal Church BEFORE it ordained you. I am perfectly familiar with your record as I have spent much time on the Pacific Coast and have visited Angelus Temple. I was there while you were in the hospital under a good doctor and two nurses and I spoke over the radio from the Church Of The Open Door and exposed your heresies right there in Los Angeles. (See lecture referred to in the Appendix of this book). I have wondered why you use a doctor and medicine and surgery when you get ill and yet ask others to discard all these and expect the Lord to work a miracle to cure them. I am not guessing at what I am doing.
Ben M. Bogard.
This letter frightened her and she declined to debate (so her representative told me) unless I would promise not to expose her record since I had told her that I knew her record and was on the coast while she was making some of the worst of it. but I made the promise to let her record alone and confine myself strictly to the subject leaving personalities out. To this she finally agreed and the following was agreed upon as the subject for the debate.
Resolved: that miracles and divine healing as manifested in the Bible ended with the Apostolic Age.
We met at the appointed time and she had her crowd of several thousand admirers well organized. They had been listening to her for twenty-one days and were under her HYPNOTIC control almost perfectly. They sought to hoot and howl and BOO and cat-call in such a manner as to drive me from the platform. But they failed in this and the debate was taken in spite of the effort to break it up by such disorder. I had chosen Eld. D. N. Jackson, of Texarkana, as my moderator and he TRIED TO PRESIDE but the unruly mob of McPhersonites made it impossible for him to keep order and he had a difficult time in protecting me so that I might speak my full time as the effort was to keep me from using my allotted time. Such disgraceful conduct on the part of the McPhersonites showed what they regarded as religion. I was prepared for a lot of disorder but I was not prepared for the vicious MOB SPIRIT that was plainly manifested by Mrs. McPherson's followers. They seemed to think that noise, confusion, cat-calls and BOOING, and insulting remarks snot at me from the audience was the correct thing to do and they made the most of it.
The reader may ask why I did not withdraw from such a mob and refuse to debate under such conditions? That was exactly what they were seeking. If they could have driven me off the platform they would have shouted VICTORY and would have really thought that such as that was victory. My purpose was to expose the heresy and not to win such individuals as were under the hypnotic power of Mrs. McPherson. I was making a book that would be read by thousands after the mob had been silenced. Besides that I am no better than Paul who faced fanatical mobs and was evil treated and even mobbed by his opposers. Police protection saved me from violence and the stenographer got what was said and the debate is before you. You may read it and decide if it was worth while to face the howling mob in order to get BOTH SIDES before the public.
Mrs. McPherson is the founder of a new denomination, known as the Four Square Gospel Church. Over three hundred congregations of this new denomination have been organized and she is the recognized head of it. Besides being the founder of this new religious cult she is the best representative that all shades of that heresy have in the United States and possibly in the world. The people called Holy Rollers, Pentecostals, Come-outers, and such like all teach substantially the same thing that Mrs. McPherson teaches and when she is met successfully all of them are met. This debate becomes especially interesting and helpful when it is considered that I have not only met the Four Square Gospel heresy but at the same time have met all classes of Holy Rollers, Pentecostals, Apostolics and such like who are spreading themselves all over the land.
Holy Rollerism, Pentecostalism, McPhersonism are substantially the same differing only in small details. Modern Miracles, Divine Healing, Speaking with Tongues and such like are all exposed in this debate and the beauty of it is that the BEST REPRESENTATIVE they have has presented their side. The debate therefore becomes authority on this subject and it can be used successfully in combating the errors connected with the heresy all over the land.
The evil effects that come from this type of religion shows itself in loose sex relations. All classes of them have a very large percent of sex immorality among them. They marry and divorce their husbands and wives. They are living in an atmosphere of emotionalism and it results disastrously in sex relationships. There is an unusual and exceedingly large percent of sexual promiscuity among their young people as they follow the example of the older ones. A visit to the Arkansas Training School for Girls confirmed this decision for the Superintendent, a very high class lady, told me that EIGHTY PERCENT of the fallen girls consigned to her care came from the homes of Pentecostals and other so-called Holy Rollers. The notorious scandals connected with McPhersonism are so well known that it is needless to recount them here. No doubt that was the reason Mrs. McPherson demanded that I do not go into her record before she would agree to debate.
Bob Schuler, the famous Methodist preacher in Los Angeles, exposed McPhersonism in a book entitled "McPhersonism." If what he says in that book is not true he could be sent to the penitentiary for criminal libel. But Mrs. McPherson has wisely chosen to not prosecute him. That book can be obtained from Bob Shuler, Pastor Trinity Methodist Church, Los Angeles, Calif. for 25 cents and those who want to know the terrible story can order that book. If this notice can be the cause of thousands ordering that book I shall be glad. VICIOUS SEX RELATIONS is written all over these Modern Miracle sects, and the terrible record of the Arkansas State Training School For Girls, as related to me by the superintendent, shows the need for exposures such as this debate is.
The pretence of healing is fully exposed in this debate and the Appendix, which follows the record of the debate, gives startling facts that need to be published all over the world. They falsify when they make such big claims and even if they actually did perform miracles it would be by the power of the devil and not of God.
Every true preacher of the Word of God should help in spreading the exposure as found in this debate. It should be a part of the business of all good men to help expose heresy, especially such dangerous heresy as McPhersonism, Holy Rollerism, Pentecostalism and such like.
Sincerely and earnestly,
Ben M. Bogard.
NOTE: Before the debate started, the audience sang, "What a Friend We Have In Jesus."
High School Trombone Quartet.
MRS. McPHERSON: Good evening everybody. (Cheering) I know you have been sitting a long time. We are going to try to save your strength and ours. We are going to come quickly to the debate. My opponent asked me if I would say a word just before the chairman speaks and that word is to be that the audience may express themselves by moderate applause only, I am calling on my friends. I know you will do that if you love me, and I know those who love Dr. Bogard will do what he says. He will say a word to his friends. Everybody is entitled to hear both speakers and I am sure a most fair hearing will be accorded both. I will now ask Dr. Bogard to say a word to his friends.
DR. BOGARD: I appreciate the fact that Mrs. McPherson requested her people not to engage in boisterous applause. I am certain my friends don't need it. (BOOING, cat-calling and gross disturbance followed by the McPhersonites)
It is a fact that any mule can kick and make a noise and bray but that is not argument and if anybody thinks it is, that is just weakness on their part and I certainly don't want my friends to engage in that sort of thing. Listen to Mrs. McPherson. Listen to what she actually says. I suppose her friends will take her advice and do the same toward me. (Applause.)
CHAIRMAN: Good evening, ladies and gentlemen: It affords me great pleasure tonight to have been selected to act as chairman of this meeting, although I did not anticipate it. I want to read the agreement: Agreement for debate by Aimee Semple McPherson and Ben M. Bogard. "We, the undersigned, do hereby agree to meet in public debate Tuesday night, May 22, 1934, at the McPherson Tabernacle in North Little Rock. The subject to be debated shall be as follows: Resolved that Miracles and Divine Healing as taught and manifested in the word of God ceased with the closing of the Apostolic Age."
CHAIRMAN: I now have the pleasure of introducing Dr. D. N. Jackson of Texarkana, Editor in Chief of the American Baptist Association Sunday School Literature who has been chosen by Dr. Bogard as his moderator.
DR. JACKSON: I am calling Brother M. L. Moser, Pastor of the Central Baptist church Little Rock to lead us in prayer while we stand:
REV. MOSER: "Our Heavenly Father, at the beginning of this discussion we are here in your power, we love thy word and the teaching of thy word. Father we ask tonight that this discussion be one that will open our hearts and our minds to the truth, and when we receive the truth we will be willing to walk in the truth; we ask that Christian courtesy be observed, in thy name Father, we ask it. Amen."
DR. JACKSON: Debating has been the means of bringing to light truth and uncovering error which is its principal object, therefore, we should be here tonight for the sole purpose of learning what the Bible teaches on this important question. This seems to be a happy climax to a question that has been under fire of questioning for a number of years. While we are to let the Bible be our criterion we should give prayerful consideration to the Bible talks as given by the two speakers. It is my happy privilege, ladies and gentlemen, to introduce to you the affirmative speaker tonight. The question has already been read. The affirmative speaker is a man of wide experience, a veteran in the field of polemics, he has had the distinction of having held more debates than any other Baptist minister living or dead. We put behind him unqualified endorsement. We have known him for years. We know him to be a champion of any proposition which he maintains. He is an authority on the question of debate. He comes tonight with the hearty endorsement of his people. He is a man nationally known, and I will say internationally known as a writer, a speaker, a lecturer and debater. It is my delight to introduce to you Dr. Ben M. Bogard, Pastor of the Antioch Baptist Church. Dr. Bogard.
"Divine healing and Miracles as taught and manifest in the word of God, ceased with the Apostolic Age."
Dr. Bogard's First Speech
I most gladly affirm this proposition and in order that we may understand what we mean I shall define the terms used. Divine healing as seen in the Bible was without the use of medicine or surgery, direct, immediate, perfect. Miracles were supernatural acts of God such as turning water into wine, stilling the storm on the sea, cleansing lepers instantaneously, taking up serpents and not being harmed and drinking deadly poison without injury, and raising the dead. In Matt. 10:8: we read where Jesus sent his disciples out to "Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead." Our Lord told his disciples that they should even do greater works than he did, meaning greater in number, certainly not greater in degree or power. The issue between Mrs. McPherson and me is not whether we should pray for the sick but the issue is whether miraculous healing or any other kind of miracles can be had today.
A common argument, and one used with tedious repetition by Mrs. McPherson, is that the Bible says "God is the same, yesterday, today and forever." She has contended that since God never changes that therefore he never changes his laws, never changes dispensations, and continues to have the same rule of practice that he had all the way back SHE HAS NEVER LEARNED THAT GOD DOES CHANGE WHILE HIS CHARACTER REMAINS UNCHANGED. If we are expected to take the whole Bible, Old and New Testaments, as our rule of faith and practice then we shall still be compelled to offer up animal sacrifices, such as lambs, bullocks, and red heifers. That was once the practice by the command of God. We shall still be compelled to observe the Passover Feast, and observe all the temple ceremonies. But Mrs. McPherson will agree that those things have been done away because they were all fulfilled in Christ. Exactly. They served their purpose and being fulfilled in Christ they were done away. There was the Seventh Day Sabbath, that was observed by God's command, that we no longer keep because in the New Testament we have the Lord's day or Sunday. God has not changed but he has changed his laws and his methods. Even so miracles had their purpose and when the purpose for miracles was fulfilled then miracles were done away.
What was the purpose of miracles? Why did Jesus and the Apostles heal the sick miraculously, and cleanse the lepers, and turn water into wine, and still the storm at sea and raise the dead? The purpose of these wonderful miracles was to convince the people that the message brought by Jesus and the Apostles was from God. Miracles were their credentials. When Jesus healed the paralytic man (Mark 2:1-12) he said be did it "That ye may know the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins." I feel sure Jesus knew what he was talking about and I am sure He told the truth as to why he wrought miracles. Nicodemus was convinced by the Lord's miracles that Jesus was sent from God because, he said, "No man can do these miracles that thou doeth except God be with him" (John 3:1-16) Heb. 2:3-4 says "How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by our lord, and was confirmed by them who heard him, God bearing witness both with signs and wonders and divers miracles." What was the purpose of miracles? These passages say they were to confirm the message of God. In Mark 16:20 we read: "And they went forth, and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them, confirming the word with signs following." Thus we see that the purpose of miracles was to confirm the word spoken by Christ and the Apostles. The purpose of miracles never was to accommodate the ones on whom the miracles were performed. In II Tim. 4:20 we read where Paul said: "Trophimus have I left at Miletum sick." Why did he leave him sick since Paul had the power to heal? The answer is that Trophimus was already a believer and did not need the miracles to confirm the word. Paul told Timothy to "Take a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities" 1 Tim. 5:23). Why did not Paul heal Timothy? He had the power to do it. He had the faith necessary. Why then did he not heal Timothy? Because Timothy was already a believer and did not need the miracle to confirm his faith. Whenthe Bible was completed, when John wrote the book of Revelation the Apostolic Age ended and the Bible being finished, the Word of God fully confirmed, miracles were no longer needed and like the animal sacrifices of the Old Testament, and the Temple ceremonials which fulfilled their purpose and were done away, being no longer needed, so with miracles, when no longer needed they were done away.
The Bible plainly tells us that miracles, these supernatural gifts, were done away when the New Testament was completed. I Cor. 12th, 13th and 14th chapters is on the subject of Spiritual Gifts. In the 12th chapter and first verse we are told what the subject is. Here it is: "Now concerning Spiritual Gifts, brethren, I would not have you ignorant." "Spiritual Gifts" is the subject. In that 12th chapter at least nine gifts are mentioned, such as healing, gift of tongues, prophecy, inspiration, called the gift of knowledge, and on through the list. In the 13th chapter we are told that all these gifts were done away "when that which is perfect is come." What is that perfect thing that would come and at which time the miraculous would be done away? Some strangely say that it means these gifts will pass away when Jesus comes again. A student of Grammar who has studied Grammar so much as three months knows that a personal pronoun is not used here. It does not say when HE WHO is perfect is come, then the supernatural gifts would pass away but it says when "THAT WHICH" is perfect is come. You can't correctly speak of Jesus as a "that which." What perfect thing has come? The New Testament, which James calls "the Perfect Law of Liberty" (James 1:25). The New Testament, at the time Paul wrote Corinthians was only "in part" and Paul said in this 13th chapter that they knew "in part," and prophesied in part, but when that which is perfect is come then that which is in part shall be done away." That settles it. So long as the Bible was in process of formation, up until the last word in the Bible was written, they only had the truth "in part." But when the New Testament was completed they had the PERFECT THING, the PERFECT LAW OF LIBERTY, and then INSPIRATION, prophecy, tongues, and all other miracles were done away. In Eph. 4:-14, we read that the "Gifts," these miraculous gifts, were to last "Till we come into the unity of the faith, and the knowledge of the Son of God." That Unity of the faith is the New Testament. At the time Ephesians was written the faith, the knowledge of the Son of God, was in fragments, in part only, as Paul said in Corinthians. but when the New Testament was completed the KNOWLEDGE OF THE SON OF GOD WAS COMPLETE and hence the Gifts ceased. These gifts, mind you, were to last "TILL this knowledge of the Son" of God was completed, and having been fulfilled the gifts passed away.
Then what have we left? Paul explains in I Cor. 13:1,: "Now abideth, faith, hope and love, these three." Can you spell three? Can you count three? Then you know just exactly the number of gifts that remain. What are they? "FAITH, HOPE, LOVE, THESE THREE." If we still have the gift of healing that would make four and if we still have the gift of tongues that would make five and if we still had the gift of prophecy that would make six. But it does not say we have four, five or six of these supernatural gifts left, but it positively says we have JUST THREE and names them, FAITH, HOPE, LOVE. It seems strange to me that any one can conclude that he has four, five or six of these miraculous gifts when the Bible plainly says that only three abide in the Church. God has not changed. He is the same, yesterday, today and forever, but he changes his methods of dealing with men, he changes his laws, and he changes dispensations, and when he has served his purpose with such things as the Jewish ceremonials, and with the Seventh Day Sabbath, He sets them aside and starts something else. So when he used miracles for the purpose of establishing his PERFECT RULE OF FAITH AND PRACTICE, to confirm the word until it was fully written, then he set aside miracles also. HE IS UNCHANGEABLE but he changes his laws and methods as it suits him.
Why do we not need miracles now the same as they needed them before the Bible was completely written? Because the Bible is fully confirmed and preachers can be gauged by the New Testament. You can tell whether the preacher is from God by whether he preaches according to the written word and miracles would be superfluous. How do we know the New Testament is God's word? We know it by several rules. The miracles recorded are as much for us now as they were for those who personally witnessed them. In Mark 16:17, the passage used so much by modern miracle workers, we read: "THESE signs shall follow them that believe. In my name shall they east out devils, they shall speak with new tongues, they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover." What signs? THESE SIGNS. Not similar signs, wrought over and over again, but these signs, the very signs that the Apostles wrought shall follow all believers all through the ages, not signs we do but the signs the Apostles wrought, THESE SIGNS shall follow clear on down to the end of time. We have every one of these signs recorded in the Bible and wherever the Bible is read these same signs are right there. A surveyor surveys a tract of land and he makes signs of the land lines by hacking the trees and placing corner rocks. Those signs remain on through the years to come. Any one can go to that land and see the same signs that the original survey made - the signs follow from one generation to another. We do not need to hack fresh notches in the trees and set out fresh rocks on the corners from year to year. The signs FIRST MADE REMAIN and follow on down through the years to come. So in establishing the Bible, the original survey is sufficient, the Bible is marked all over with God's approval. The original signs remain, they follow and are just as good today as they have ever been. No need for more. If there is need for more then the Bible is not perfect, it needs supplementing. II Tim. 3:16 says: "All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." If we are COMPLETELY, THOROUGHLY FURNISHED FOR ALL GOOD WORK in the Bible there is no need for miracles. If something in addition to the Bible is needed to bolster up the Lord's work, then the Bible is not a perfect rule, it is short somewhere or some-how. Those who use miracles or expect miracles to be used show that they do not believe what God has said in his word, because they demand further confirmation.
How do we know that the Bible is God's word? We know it by fulfilled prophecy. Peter calls fulfilled prophecy the "more sure word of prophecy." The prophets foretold events that have come to pass in such wonderful exactness that we can not doubt their inspiration. The scientific accuracy of the Bible proves it to be from God. It was written long before any scientific book was written and yet there is not an unscientific statement in the Bible. We can demonstrate the Bible to be God's word and hence we do not need miracles to confirm it. It is already confirmed. It is a "perfect law of liberty." The man who demands miracles shows he has no confidence in the Bible.
Since God withdrew the power to work miracles from his people it follows that any miracles wrought now are wrought by the power of the devil and not by the power of God. Can the devil work miracles? He can. If you will read the 7th and 8th chapters of Exodus you will find that when Moses wrought miracles, "The magicians did so with their enchantments." In Rev. 13:13-14 we read that the beast deceived the people "By means of those miracles he had power to do in the presence of the people." In Rev. 16:14 we read that it is "The spirit of devils working miracles." Jesus foretold that just exactly this sort of thing would be in Mark 13 "For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall show signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect." In Acts 8:5-11 we read of Simon the sorcerer who bewitched the people by his sorcery until the people declared: "This man is the mighty power of God." Thus we see that Simon did such wonderful things that the people were convinced that he was the MIGHTY POWER OF GOD. We read also of Elymas the sorcerer in Acts 13:6-11, who wrought miracles and led off many people but Paul came along and called him a "Child of the devil." Rough language to use against a miracle worker. Some of you may think I am speaking roughly but don't forget I am using Bible language.
The devil has the most attractive preachers in the world. Read II Cor. 11:14-13 "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as ministers of righteousness," (You are a liar yelled a McPhersonite), I did not say that. I read these very words in the Bible and you called God a liar. God pity you. The devil does not come with cloven feet and horns and barbed tail and dark visage. He could not deceive people that way. A counterfeit is not dangerous if the difference between it and the thing counterfeited is glaring. But when the counterfeit looks almost exactly like the genuine, so much like it that very few people can detect the difference, then it becomes dangerous. That is why the devil comes to us as an angel of light, he comes in the most attractive form and even preaches righteousness. He even works miracles that benefit people to get them the more in his power. If the Scriptures read do not mean this then they have no meaning.
Every heretical cult and church founder that comes along comes working miracles. Why should not Mrs. McPherson? The Mormons have a large book printed telling of their wonderful healings. These Mormons, with a half dozen wives each, come along healing the sick. Are they of God? Alex. Dowie, the founder of the cult that holds forth with Voliva as their leader now, healed thousands of people. Yet he was living in such disgrace that his name became a stench in society. Christian Science, that denies the existence of the devil, denies the existence of sin, comes along healing. So with all the Pentecostal, and Holy Roller sects, they come healing and talking with tongues and working miracles. Now comes McPhersonism exercising this same sort of deceitful powers. They all claim the Baptism of the Holy Ghost and power to work miracles. Do they work miracles If they do the Bible says it is by the power of the devil. But Mrs. McPherson says that if this is true then the devil has been converted and has gone to doing good works. Not at all. he is onlyup to his old tricks, clothing himself as an of light and if he does any good thing it is for an evil purpose in order to deceive the people and thus get them securely into his power. Are the people sincere who are deluded by such deceitful work ? Read II Thess. 2:9-12: "Even him whose coming is after the workings of Satan with all power and signs and lying wonders and for this cause God shall send upon them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie." Are they sincere? Certainly. So is the Hindoo mother who throws her babe to the crocodiles to appease the wrath of her imaginary god. Are they sincere? So is the Mormon woman who believes that her salvation depends upon her husband having several wives. Sincere ? So was Saul of Tarsus who said he thought he was serving God when he persecuted the saints and brought them bound into Jerusalem. The devil can deceive until those who "kill you will think they do God's service" (John 16:2). Sincere? Hear what the Lord says of some who shall appear in the Judgement: Matt. 7:22;23, "Many shall say unto me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name, and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then shall I profess unto them I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity." Surely these miracle workers were sincere or they would not have talked like that at the Judgement.
Mrs. McPherson declares that the Baptism of the Holy Ghost is what enables her and others like her to work these miracles. The baptism of the Holy Ghost was miraculous. All of God's people have the Spirit. The Bible says that we are born of the Spirit, that we are led by the Spirit, and that we have the comfort of the Spirit. But the Baptism of the Spirit was miraculous and passed away with the Apostolic Age. How do we know this? Here is how we know it. In Eph. 4th chapter we read: "One Lord, one faith, one baptism ." For awhile there were TWO baptisms, the baptism in water and the baptism in the Holy Ghost. But when the baptism in the Holy Ghost accomplished what God intended to accomplish by it that baptism passed away. In Acts 2:38 where it says the promise is "unto you and your children and to all them that are afar off" it has no reference to the baptism of the Holy Ghost. That is not what is promised but the remission of sins and the gift of the Spirit is promised to all to the end of time. If we have water baptism, and Mrs. McPherson declares we have, she having stated many times during her protracted meetings here that many thousands had been baptized in water in Angelus Temple, then it follows that the Holy Ghost baptism would make TWO BAPTISMS and Paul made a mistake when he said that there is only ONE baptism. To suit the McPherson doctrine it will need to read "One Lord, one faith, and TWO baptisms." Her whole theory of miracle working depends on this unscriptural idea of Holy Ghost baptism.
If I am right in my contention that these miraculous gifts have passed away then why pray for the sick? I pass the question back. Why pray for bread? When we pray for bread we go to work to get bread. That is right. When we pray for sinners do we not go to work and do all we can to get sinners saved? Certainly we do. Then when we pray for the sick, we should do all we can to bring them back to health. Since God made Peruvian bark from which quinine comes and quinine kills the malaria germs we should pray for the one sick with malaria and then give quinine, God's remedy for malaria. When we pray for the poor we should take our prayers along in a basket and pour it out in the pantry of the poor. Two little boys were on their way to school and one said, "We are late, let us get down here and pray that we may get to school on time," but the other said, "No, let us run and pray while we run." Even so when we pray for the sick, let us do all we can for them, and since a good doctor knows more about how to help the sick than we do, we should pray and then call the doctor.
Paul had a bodily affliction, a thorn in the flesh, and he prayed three times for the Lord to remove that bodily affliction but God refused to do so, telling Paul that "My grace is sufficient for thee." (II Cor. 12:7-10). If Mrs. McPherson had been there she would have told Paul that healing of the body is in the atonement and that it is guaranteed like the forgiveness of sins. But Paul was not a McPhersonite. He knew that healing of the body was not in the atonement and for that reason he said he took pleasure in his infirmities which God refused to remove.
Job suffered agony with terrible affliction brought on him by the devil, God permitting it. (See the book of Job). All the faith that Job had did not keep him from suffering. God was working out a great purpose in this terrible affliction of Job. If healing of the body had been in the atonement then Job would have been as well in body as he was in soul. God sometimes has a purpose in allowing his people to suffer. Will he sometimes heal in answer to prayer. Yes, just exactly as be gives bread to the hungry in answer to prayer, the sick get well and the hungry are fed in answer to prayer but both are done by the use of means and not by miraculous power. Pray for bread and then hitch up old Beck and go to plowing. Pray for the sick and send for the doctor. If we do as Mrs. McPherson teaches we shall pray for bread and sit down and wait for God to bake it for us and slice it and put butter on it and drop it down from heaven. That is exactly what she does when it comes to praying for the sick. She advises the sick to throw away medicine and refuse to use a doctor and just depend on the Lord to work a miracle. Can't you see the absurdity of this? Can't you see the Bible plainly says that the miraculous ceased when the New Testament was completed? Can't you see that the power to work miracles has been withdrawn from God's people and that the devil's people only have power to work miracles? That is one way to distinguish between the Lord's people and the devil's people. The Lord's people are willing to accept the Bible as a PERFECT RULE OF FAITH and Practice but the Devil's people positively refuse to believe the Bible unless a miracle proves it to them. You should use your brains and not be carried away by pomp and beauty and spectacular performances and miracle working.
Here are some questions I present to Mrs. McPherson to answer. If she does not answer them the people will know the reason why. (Here the McPhersonites broke out in yells, saying "Put him out").
1. Why do you go to the hospital and use doctors and medicine when you get sick?
2. If other people should refuse to call the doctor and take medicine as you instruct them and leave their healing to a miracle to be wrought by the Lord, why do you not practice that?
3. If there is only ONE BAPTISM according to Eph. 4th chapter, why do you advocate TWO baptisms, one in water and one by the Holy Ghost?
4. Since the Gift of Knowledge has passed away according to I Cor. 13th chapter why do you claim to have direct inspiration from God?
5. Since it is specified that the gift of prophecy shall pass away so soon as the New Testament was completed I Cor. 13th chapter) why do you claim to be a prophetess?
6. In your book "Lost and Restored," page 4, you say that "this booklet was given to me in vision and prophecy, under inspiration and power of the Holy Ghost," If so is that not in addition to God's Bible?
7. If you have added to the Bible how do you escape the curse pronounced on those who add to God's word! Rev. 22:16, says: "If any man shall add to these things God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book." How can you escape this curse, since you declare you speak by inspiration. thus adding to God's inspired word?
8. The Bible says that when prayer is made for the sick that the elders of the church should be called in. Where do you find Scripture for calling the sick to the elder in a public healing service?
9. Since the elder or bishop must be the husband of one wife how in the world can you qualify as an elder or bishop since you certainly can not be a husband at all? See I Tim. 4:2. ("Throw him off the platform. Put him out," yelled many McPhersonists).
10. Did you not write in your book entitled "This And That," page 776; that God showed you in a vision that you, Aimee McPherson, are the BRIDE OF CHRIST?
11. If you are the bride of Christ where do the rest of the saints of the Lord come in?
12. If healing is in the atonement then have you not fallen from grace when you get sick?
13. Since you are in full control of the Four Square churches and personally own the property and appoint the pastors over the congregations as you did when you established the Four Square Church in Little Rock, how do you miss disobeying the positive command in Matt. 20:25-26 where it says "The princes among the gentiles exercise dominion over them but it shall not be so among you"? If you do not have dominion over these Four Square Churches, who has?
14. Why did not you heal the little Tacket boy who came up paralysed in his arm? His arm is no better.
15. Why did you not heal the little girl you brought on the platform and took off her braces and showed the people how she could walk without them? She has never been so she could not walk a little without braces. But she is in braces again.
16. Why did you make the palsied man who lives on Seventh street go back and thus refuse to try to heal him?
17. Why was not the insane man brought from the asylum healed? He went back to the State Hospital worse than ever.
18. Why can you heal a mule you needed to work for you and the mule's broken leg was instantly healed when you fail to heal the little helpless children who are brought to you? Is God partial to mules?
19. My friend, Elder E. R. Harper, is writing a book of the fake healings and he wants the names and addresses of those you profess to have healed. He will investigate each case and publish the pictures if possible with doctor's certificates. Will you have the names for him?
Mrs. McPherson's First Reply-
Mrs. McPherson, after introduction, spoke as follows:
MR. CHAIRMAN, HONORABLE OPPONENT, LADIES AND GENTLEMEN:
It gives me great pleasure to stand before this splendid audience for a few moments to affirm the facts strongest in my heart - That the Lord Jesus Christ still lives and answers prayers for the broken hearted (cheering) and the sick. These are days of great heartbreaks; these are days when angels themselves must weep tears over the ballustrades of heaven over this old world; these are days when nations are threatening wars;. these are days when the church, according to their own admissions and according to statistics have been steadily losing ground. In many localities the churches are empty and the pews deserted and the altars are no longer used. These are days when the world is making a track to the door of the church saying "Oh, Church of Jesus have you any power? Is there no Balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Is the arm of Jehovah shortened? Can he not answer prayers?" These are days when drug addiction is spreading through the land. They come and say, "O Church of Jesus can you help me? I have taken this cure and that." The church says "I am sorry for you, but Jesus cannot answer prayer, he no longer works miracles. If the state can not help you, if the hospitals can not help you, you will have to stand it, I am sorry there is no miraculous power to cleanse you from your drug addiction or to work miracles, but Oh, this is not true. (Applause).
Some years ago, Moses stood in the wilderness before a burning bush and from that burning bush came the voice of God and God called him to go to Egypt and preach deliverance to the captives and lead them to the promised land. Moses cried "If I go there they will say `who sends you and what is his name', What shall I say unto them?. These are days when every minister who is called from the burning bush to go might ask the same question, "When I go down to that congregation and tell them the truth about sickness, disease and heart breaks and they say who sent yon ? What authority brings you here 7 What shall I say . And the Lord may answer and say, "I Am hath sent me unto you. This is my name forever, and is my memorial unto all generations." And he would say, "I shall go but if he says, I understand the days of miracles are over when creation was completed; that the days of miracles are past; that miracles have ceased" you shall say, "No, I am the God who delivereth thee, the God who still answers prayer." But suppose they say to me "Miracles ceased with the flood" - In the 6th chapter of Genesis, "And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth both man and beast, and the creeping things, and the fowls of the air, for it repenteth me that I have made them." They say that a miracle took place in the destruction of Sodom, then what shall I say, "I Am hath sent me unto you this is my name forever even unto all generations." Amen. So Moses went with the name of the great "I AM" upon his lips. Divine healing is all through the Bible itself. It is a mistake to think that divine healing and miracles are ended and that all the days to come are cut off, such things will not hold water in the light of God's word.
When God made this earth and created mankind he made it without sin and without sickness, it was perfect in the eyes of God and God saw all he had made and pronounced it good. With the entrance of the curse of sin into the world, God sent the curse of sickness. Christ came to take away the curse of sin and to heal. The curse was manifested in various manners. Thorns and thistles. Those thorns which Christ wore on his brow. There will be no thorns when the lion and lamb shall lie down together. One curse was labor, man earning bread by the sweat of his brow; another pain and travail with which sons and daughters are brought forth, and sickness follows and death. Christ came to take away the curse of sin, he came to end the curse, he was "wounded for our transgressions and with his stripes we are healed." He wore the crown of thorns and the last enemy to be conquered is death, which is yet to come. In the meantime before he puts the enemy under his feet we have the earnest of our purchase, which is eternal life.
The first man who prayed for the sick was Abraham. We have to turn but a few pages, it was one thousand years before Christ was born, Abraham prayed for Abimelech and his family and they were healed. That was before Christ's time, it was the usual rather than the unusual way, to pray for the sick.
We find when Moses led the Children of Israel out God instructed him to divine healing. In Exodus we read the promise of God, " If thou wilt diligently hearken to the voice of thee Lord thy God, and wilt do that which is right in his sight, and wilt give ear to His commandments and keep all His statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon thee, which I have brought upon the Egyptians; for I am the Lord that Healeth thee." We find that there was not one sick on that trip. The next thing to be done, the blood had to be put on the doors and sickness and disease had been taken away. Sin and sickness was from the same curse and is relieved through faith in God. One might ask the question, How could these people be healed and their sins forgiven before Christ came? Because time is only a relative term with mortal man but God's will is infinite. They were saved by looking forward to Christ Who was to come even as we are saved by looking back to Christ who did come. That same hand is still reaching us here two thousand years from Christ. When Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness those who looked upon the serpent and who had been bitten had life for a look. Christ said, "Even as the serpent was lifted up by Moses in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up." That is a double cure for a double curse. We find divine healing absolutely necessary all through those years when they were stricken with plagues. When Miriam was stricken with leprosy and was put without the camp for a period and taught her lesson, for God does not answer the first moment, but when she came back she was healed. We find such man as Hezekiah, the King, was given a chance to put his house in order, in order that he should die. Many people say when the time comes to die I shall die. This man turned his face to the wall and cried out to God and God answered his prayer and sent Isaiah and said, go back and tell him he is healed and I will add fifteen years to his life. Isaiah put figs on that boil and he was healed. There are many such instances, but I had rather draw your attention to the fact that a departure from divine healing in the sight of the Lord was unhealthy. We read of a man Ahaz who was diseased in his feet, the Bible says, "in his afflictions he turned not to the Lord but to the physicians and Ahaz slept with his fathers." That is he died, they were dead. He turned to physicians instead of the Lord. It was the usual thing to turn to the Lord.
In the New Testament we find healings in the days when no man or woman preached this message. We find that God sent an Angel to trouble the waters. I simply mention this to show that God was so anxious to heal the sick that he didn't heal the sick for any selfish motive to advance his own cause. The New Testament was not begun until Christ begun his ministry. Christ Jesus came for the purpose of laying down his life for his own and to bring a double cure for a double curse. Jesus had more trouble with preachers than any body else throughout his ministry. (Applause) If he was here today he would still be having the same trouble exactly.
When they let the man down through the roof Jesus said "Thy sins be forgiven thee." These men jumped up and said "You haven't the power to forgive sin, we believe you heal the sick but you can't forgive sins. Jesus propounded this question, "Which is easier to say `Thy sins be forgiven thee or arise take up thy bed and walk.?" It is neither easier to forgive sin nor to heal, they go hand and hand together. Our Saviour was to live after his death and his resurrection. His wonderful works were limited only by the people, "According to your faith be it done unto you," and in one place we find "because of their unbelief he could not do many mighty works." He said, not only to the apostles but to Dr. Bogard of Little Rock "Go you into all the world" as long as we go into all the world the sick must continue to be healed. "Go you into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature." No? Now, Dr. Bogard. Now as long as you go into all the world and preach the gospel, as long as there is a creature in all the world. Those twelve would never have lived long enough to go into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature. I submit to this audience, who are the judges of this debate, that those twelve men could not have lived long enough to preach the gospel to every creature. These signs shall follow them that believe on my name; they shall cast out devils, speak the new tongues and if they shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the and they shall recover. The last words Jesus said was, "Lay hands on the sick and they shall recover."
Probably hundreds of you are familiar with the facts in the 3rd chapter of Acts as Peter came to the temple he found a lame man by the gate called Beautiful and the man said to him "Alms, Alms," thinking he would receive something. Peter said "look on us"; he looking thinking he would receive alms and Peter said, "Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk" and "immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength and he, leaping up stood, and walked and entered with them into the temple walking and leaping and praising God." (Applause)
Let me in my closing ten minutes call your attention to the point under discussion "Resolved that Miracles and Divine Healing ceased with the closing of Apostolic Days" Therefore, you must see I must get out of the Bible to endeavour to prove my point. There are only two ways, one is by church history or by actual facts around about us today.
Justin Martyr in A. D. 161 testified to a number of healings by prayer. I am quoting from research which appeared some time ago from your own paper called "Southern Churchman." Martin Luther in the 15th and 16th century testified of healing where the man whom he healed said, "I would be a dead man if Luther had not interceded by a miracle of God," St. Bengol in 1708 says "The Gift of healing seems to have been given of God that it might remain always in the church." John Wesley in 1790, "I have brought up from the Bible days until now" - writes of divine healing. It is true John Wesley furnished medicine for the poor, yet he believed in prayer. Yet in 1738, May 19th his brother, Charles had a second return of his pleurisy. "A few of us spent Saturday night in prayer. Sunday May 10, 1741 I was obliged to lie down most part of the day, being easy only in that posture. Yet in the evening my weakness was suspended while I was calling sinners to repentance. But at our love feast which followed, besides the pain in my back and head, and the fever which still continued upon me, just as I begun to pray, I was seized with such a cough that I could hardly speak. At the same time came strongly to my mind, `these signs shall follow them that believe.' I called on Jesus aloud, to increase my faith, and to confirm the word of his grace. While I was speaking my pain vanished, the fever left me; my bodily strength returned and for many weeks I felt neither weakness nor pain, unto thee, O Lord, do I give thanks." There is so much I would like to read. On October 3, 1741, John Wesley, Founder of the Methodist Church, said "My disorder returned, why lid I not apply to God in the beginning rather than the end of my illness, and I did so and found immediate relief." In 1778, October 16th, "I visited one who was confined to bed unable to raise herself up, she desired prayer that the chains might he broken, we prayed and she immediately dressed herself and came down stairs." I now skip a whole lot to show you where he prayed for his horse. I am so glad I have this book, I had to send telegrams and Air Mail and finally received it this afternoon. "September 5, 1781," "where his horse was so lame he could scarce set his foot to the ground, it being impossible to procure any help I had no remedy but to pray and immediately the lameness was gone and he went on just as before."
There are all sorts of testimonies. A. J. Gordon, another fellow filled with divine love, believed in divine healing, also A. B. Simpson, founder of the Christian Missionary alliance. James M. Hix tells of praying for the sick; Andrew Murray, a very saintly man whose messages and writings breathe the word of God, spoke firmly of the power of prayer; he says if the Church has lost the power of healing it is its own fault, if she repents and comes back he would return to her.
Dr. Bogard's Second Speech
DR. BOGARD: In rebuttal spoke as follows:
Ladies and gentlemen I certainly feel very happy to find my honourable opponent not trying to disprove a single solitary argument I presented.
MRS. McPHERSON: That will come out in rebuttal next time.
DR. BOGARD: I am also very glad to know she is a promising young lady, she is going to do it later.
MRS. McPHERSON: I don't know if I am correct. The form of proper debate is to state your proposition in the opening and answer in rebuttal. Probably I am misinformed.
(Cheering and booing and cat calling by the McPhersonites)
DR. BOGARD: The longer you act like that the longer you will have to wait for this debate to close. It won't embarrass me in the least and it shows that you think Mrs. McPherson needs it. (Boos) If you don't think she needs it please cut it out. Do what she requested you to do and not disturb me.
Mrs. McPherson began in the old testament with miracles wrought by Moses coming on down through the Bible. There is no issue between us on this point, we both believe that miracles were wrought in the Old Testament and in the New. The issue that she did not touch and scarcely referred to is "does the Gift of miracles come on down to the present time."
(In the audience: Yes).
So you settle it by saying "yes" that is the way you feel about it, but that is not proving it by the Bible.
You can't answer it by that sort of ballahoo. We both believe miracles were wrought in the Bible. I am contending and have proved to you by the Bible that miracles ceased with the Apostolic age, to which she has made no reply.
(From the audience: She will).
D. BOGARD to MRS. McPHERSON: Will you request those hoodlums to stop?
MRS. McPHERSON: Let us listen to every word Dr. Bogard has to say. There are thousands here who want to hear every word.
DR. BOGARD: Of course, they don't hurt me the least bit. Every word that is being said is being taken down in short hand to be published and all that stuff will be against those trying to stop me. The issue between us is "Does the Gift of miracles continue to this day." That is the issue. I showed you from the Bible these signs wrought by the apostles and recorded in the book. We have the record of them. You had just as well decide to have another survey of that piece of land over and over in order to establish the corners as to say we have got to have that confirmation of the Bible to continue on and on forever. Then my friend goes entirely out of the Bible and begins to quote from church historians. I listened at her sermon Sunday afternoon. She ridiculed those who believe in baby baptism. I can take those historians by whom she proves divine healing, and prove baby baptism. I can prove not only baby baptism, I can prove the doctrine of purgatory -
(From the audience "Stick to the subject," and booing) - I certainly have a right to respond to what she said. I can take those same historians and prove anything, why doesn't she stay in the Bible? From the audience ("how about your bible ").
If you want to turn this into a razzing match I have got a thousand people here to turn loose that can razz her down any time.
(Audience "Bring them on").
If you will be quiet I will ask our folks to be quiet if you don't, before God, they will razz her like you are trying to razz me.
When Mrs. McPherson appeals to the personal testimony of those who declare they have been healed it raises several questions. First, it is a fact eight out of ten sick people will get well anyway whether anything is done for them or not. Any doctor will tell you that. That fact makes long odds in favor of any doctor and certainly it makes long odds in favor of the Divine healers. If I can hang out my shingle as a doctor or as a divine healer with the certainty that eight out of ten of my patients will get well anyway, as nature restores such people, then I am certain to be able to point to great success. I could point to eight who are well and could get out of the fact that the other two were not healed by the dodge that they did not have faith. But if the Lord is doing the work there would be one hundred percent success. He never made a failure and our proposition is that Divine Healing and Miracles, as taught and manifested in the Bible, passed away with the Apostolic Age. Mrs. McPherson claims to have the same power that the apostles had and to do the same sort of miracles that Jesus did for she claims that it is Jesus who is doing the miracles and not she. Then why any failure ? Why the IMPERFECT cures where the sick one only claims to be better? The Lord's healing did not make the sick one better but made them entirely well. The blind were made to actually see, the deaf to actually hear, and the DEAD WERE RAISED. Why has Mrs. McPherson never raised the dead? The apostles had power to raise the dead and exercised it.
When Mrs. McPherson fails to heal she tells us it is because the sick one did not have faith. How much faith did the widow's son of Nain have while he lay there dead ? (Luke 7 :12) Jesus raised him from the dead. how much faith did the daughter of Jairus have as she lay there dead? (Mark 5 :41-42). But she was raised from the dead. How much faith did the loaves and fishes have which a lad brought to the big meeting when they were miraculously multiplied until the handful of food fed five thousand men besides women and children? (Mark 6.37-44) Remember our proposition says MIRACLES as they were taught and manifest in the Bible. Mrs. McPherson had it told on this platform during her protracted meeting here that a mule, that she needed so very badly, got his leg broken and she prayed for the mule and the broken leg was healed instantly so that the mule went right on plowing. How much faith did the mule have? Heart broken mothers bring their idiotic children, and still others their poor pitiful epileptic children. They want them healed and pray that they may be healed. Why do they go away disappointed?
There is one marked difference between the miracles the Lord and the apostles wrought and those that are wrought by the power of the devil and we have seen it manifest in these McPherson meetings. Our Lord's miracles were perfect and complete and instantaneous. The devil imitates but does not quite reach up to the perfection of the Lord's work. I saw a man the other night in this tabernacle who said he was healed of cancer. But when he came on the platform to testify he still had the bandage on the cancer and said it was gradually healing, that the hole was gradually filling out. The Lord did not do such imperfect work. HE HEALED PERFECTLY. So no matter how many are paraded before the public as having been healed in this campaign none of them were perfect healings.
That there have been psychopathic cases, mental ailments, cured is no wonder for the same sort of thing is done by mind curists all over the land. The mind has powerful effect over the body. Down in Texas a man who was crippled in a wreck was walking on crutches and thought he could not walk without them. He was out on the prairie herding cattle and he tied his crutches to the horn of his saddle and crawled down from the horse and lay down on the grass to rest. The cattle stampeded and the horse scampered away. There he was lying, as he thought helpless on the ground and the cattle coming straight toward him and in a few moments he would be trampled to death under their feet. He jumped up and ran without his crutches to a mesquite tree and climbed it and saved himself from death. After the cattle passed he walked a half mile and caught his horse and never used his crutches any more. What was the matter with him? His mind needed the shock. He believed he could not walk without crutches and that belief enslaved him. The cattle coming his way cured him. Was that a cattle cure? A lady had lain on her bed in her humble cabin for two years and thought she could not walk. The doctors did all they could for her and failed. One day she lay alone in her cabin and looked straight above her at the loose board ceiling and there crawled a horrid snake. She watched it in terror and then all of a sudden the snake fell right in her face. She jumped out of bed and ran out of doors. She never had her trouble any more. Was that a snake cure? So with many who say they are healed in Mrs. McPherson's meetings. They are mental cases. All such cases can be cured if the right sort of action can be brought upon their minds. Such as that accounts for most of the so-called healings. Are the people helped by such performances? What of it? So are they helped by the quack doctor who gives bread pills and pure water with some coloring in it to make believe that it is good medicine. The mind does the work.
I attended Mrs. McPherson's Angelus Temple services while she herself, the founder of the Temple, lay sick in a private hospital under the care of a good doctor and two graduate nurses. A big BAY WINDOWED Jew with spectacles on to help his defective eyes, and whose throat was so sore he could scarcely talk, was doing the preaching as Mrs. McPherson's substitute while the doctor was doing all he could to restore Mrs. McPherson to health. That Jew was healing people. I saw him. They claimed that all you needed to do was to throw away medicine and doctors and such like and ask God to heal you and He would do so. Out of sixteen who came forward for healing not one was actually healed. They limped on to the platform and limped off. But I kept wondering why the Jew preacher did not have his eyes healed so he could read without glasses. I kept wondering why he did not have his sore throat healed so he could use it in preaching. I wondered still more, until I almost spoke out, WHY IN THE NAME OF REASON DID THEY NOT HEAL MRS. McPHERSON who lay at the point of death and lay there for weeks? Why did they call in a doctor? Did not Mrs. McPherson have faith? Did not her worshippers at that Temple have faith? Why then the doctor and the trained nurses? When Mrs. McPherson had a terrible boil on her leg she had a surgeon to heal it by lancing it. Why use a surgeon and why lance the boil? She did a sensible thing when she used the doctors and the doctors used medicine and the lance. But why in the name of reason did she not depend on a miraculous cure? She advocates that for others.
When Mrs. McPherson challenged me for debate and I accepted her challenge and after accepting her challenge came very near not getting her to go into it, she doing every thing she could to squirm out of it, I did not think she would be so unfair as to hold me up to her thousands of listeners in this great tabernacle and to the other thousands who heard over the radio as one who was trying to disturb her tabernacle meetings. I wrote her distinctly that being a gentleman I would not think of disturbing her tabernacle meeting but since she had made the challenge I accepted it and would leave it to her to name the time and place. She knows that this is true and yet she over and over again declared that she was being persecuted, that she had a lion to roar at her and the devil was after her and that a serpent had bitten her and more such unfair and dishonorable things like that. Then she resorted to ridicule and said she had never even heard of me and could not really remember my name. If she had listened in while I spoke over the great radio from the largest church on the Pacific coast, the Church Of The Open Door, right there in Los Angeles, she would have heard of me. If she had read the Baptist & Commoner which for a time was sent in exchange with her weekly paper she would have heard of me. If she had kept up with religious work and workers she would have heard of a man who has held more religious debates than any man who lives or ever did live, this being his two hundred and fourteenth debate. I am not responsible for her lack of information, BUT, AIMEE, dear, you have heard of me at last and no doubt you will know me next time you see me. I have never challenged you to debate with me but if you are not satisfied with this one I shall gladly meet you in Los Angeles, right where you live and where all the records concerning you are convenient, and where I can use my personal friend, Dr. Bob Shuler, who has been pastor for twelve years of the great Trinity Methodist Church in Los Angeles, for my time keeper. I had a personal visit with Bob and we talked of Aimee and I have read all his wonderful books exposing her and her work. I am ready for any kind of a contest you may name. I mention this personal feature in self defence. If I am to be blamed for accepting her challenge then Bob Shuler, one of the greatest Methodist preachers in America, is to blame for exposing her wicked work right there in Los Angeles.
MRS. McPHERSON, in rebuttal:
Perhaps I have not been fully instructed in the method of debates in the South. I have read a number of rules on debates, those rules set forth first the affirmative should state their position, the negative should state their position then should come the rebuttal. I don't know whether Dr. Bogard has some other style or not.
I find myself in a quandary. I listened to Dr. Bogard. I have tried to follow him very closely. I noticed the first time I heard him speaking over the radio he said if any one was healed - naturally he hoped there would not be - but if they were it proved the person who prayed was a devil. Then I heard him say he prayed for the sick. Oh, Oh, Oh, Dr. Bogard! The only possible explanation of that is that he prayed but did not expect them to get well.
I would like to bring out one thought before beginning my rebuttal. He said I should stick to the Bible. Then it would be impossible to prove that miracles continued after the Bible. I have covered from the beginning to the close of Bible days then took from Bible days from A. D. 100 right down through and because I named one Catholic Priest, he argues about that one, he didn't say anything about A. B. Simpson, A. J. Gordon, nor Dr. Frank Mayo, the original of the Mayo Brothers, who recognizes the power of Christ in the present day to heal the sick. The Episcopal church called a committee of which three were physicians and Christian healing by the clergy was discussed and the board and physicians brought in the report, that Christian healing is not a fad but the devout practice of many. Second, divine healing can not be questioned says Dr. Frank Mayo by an unprejudiced man. Third, its results are found to be sure and lasting.
Now, then, as to some of the questions. First of all it was stated that the practices of the Old Testament should continue on through time if healing continued. This is hardly worth answering. Christ said, and so did the apostles, the blood of both Goats and Heifers had been offered up to the time of the cross but Christ shed his blood to take away the sins of the world and no more bulls and rams have got to be slaughtered after that time. However, the healings did continue and we find in James 5:14 - at the end of the Bible, handing down instructions for men of all times to pray for the sick. James 5:14; "Is any sick among you let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord." James 5:13: "Is any among you afflicted let him pray. Is any merry, let him sing psalms." That don't say the elders have to pray. You can pray for yourself. "If any sick among you let him call for the elders, let them pray over him. And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him." and then again he says, By what authority did I pray, not being and elder. I come in under the next verse where it says "Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much." I am one of them. I can pray, sick folks can pray, the elders can pray and one can pray for another and a mother can pray for her child. It is not restricted to the elders.
As for the broken mule's leg. I remember one time a mule kicked and injured its foot, we prayed that night and after a few days the mule was well. It was a small incident. My son was four and a half years old. I had forgotten it. It made an impression on his young mind.
He asked me if I had heard of the dead being raised. I have heard of folks being brought back. I have read in medical journals. I never personally experienced it. I have been too busy praying for the living. I have never caught up on that yet.
He said the devil can heal the sick. I have never read that in the Bible. Perhaps I missed it. If the devil is doing these works then the devil has certainly changed for men are crying out, "have mercy on me, Oh God I have been a sinner, let me be born again", they stop their cursing, swearing and are uniting with the church, is this the work of the Devil?
As to the gifts that are to pass away, in the 12th chapter of first Corinthians I would remind you that the 12 gifts include Wisdom. Wisdom has not passed away. Another is the gift of knowledge, knowledge has not passed away. One of these gifts is knowledge, we read "knowledge shall be increased, then should not healing be increased? He says prophecy has been taken away and the Bible says "I will pour out my spirit on all flesh and your sons and daughters shall prophesy." In the 9th verse of the 12th chapter of 1st Corinthians, "To another faith by the same Spirit ; to another the Gifts of healing by the same spirit." Without faith all things are impossible. Why pick on divine healing, why not take knowledge? He says that when that which is perfect had come that which was in part passed away. We are looking for that day of perfection when the body shall be well and there will be no more disease. I notice he speaks about the baptism of the Holy Spirit. That is not the subject of the debate. I feel the people have a perfect right to say "Stick to the subject." But I think however it would not be amiss to say one word. When he says the baptism of the Holy Ghost was done away with. We are living in the dispensation of the Holy Spirit, it began on the day of Pentecost and continues until the second coming of Christ. In Act 2:38 we read, "Repent ye and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost." "For the promise is unto you, and to your children and to all that are afar of, even as many as the Lord our God shall call." The Lord has called us and promised us the Holy Spirit and God knows the Church needs the baptism of the Holy Ghost today. He left out this verse, in the beginning of the 14th chapter of 1st Corinthians, "Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy."
Now, about the sanatorium, Brother Bogard said when I was ill I went to the sanatorium. I am living in the human body: I don't know how much work Brother Bogard has done. For eighteen years I haven't had one vacation. I broke God's law "Six days shalt thou work -" I was working every day through the year. I preached and taught my school an average of twenty-one times a week, edited a weekly paper, I bought the ground and built Angelus Temple seating 5,300 and raised the money without any help for the radio and Bible theological seminary; raised the money to build sixteen foreign missionary stations and maintain thirty-eight foreign missionaries so I suffered a nervous break down, but when they thought my life was despaired of they put me in a quiet little room in a sanatorium because my own home was filled. We had seventeen electric sewing machines making clothing; we feed over two thousand unemployed and their families and the noise was so great they thought my life was despaired of and they took me away and the friends gathered and prayed to God and He not only raised me up and healed me but has given me such an overflow of strength that now I hardly get tired. I call you as my witness I have not spared myself in your city in the midnight hours I have carried on. We have found if all else fails God answers prayer and as John Wesley said "Why wait to pray at the end of our afflictions ?" I feel that the prayers of my people raised me up.
He also says, "if she does not answer these questions the people will know why." His question. "If other people refuse to call a doctor and believe in healing why do you not practice that?" I do that every day of my life. I don't think a woman could work as hard as I have except through the mighty power of God. His fourth question "Since the Gift of knowledge has passed away according to I Corinthians 13th chapter why do you claim to have direct inspiration from God?" It is not stated that way. It says "In the last days I will pour out my spirit and your sons and daughters shall prophesy." That gift was put there to stay. Next question: "In your book `Lost and Restored,' page 4 you say `this booklet was given to me in vision and prophecy, under inspiration and power of the Holy Ghost,' if so is that not an addition to God's word?" The 1st verse of the 14th chapter of I Corinthians says, "Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy." What is it to prophesy?
I Corinthians 14:3, "But he that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification and exhortation and comfort." "If you have added to the Bible how do you escape the curse pronounced on those who add to God's word"? I have not added to it, you were taking from it. "The Bible says that when prayer is made for the sick that the elders of the church should be called in. Where do you find Scripture for calling the sick to the elder in a public healing service?" The Acts of the Apostles is filled with it. You take one instance where Peter and John prayed for the sick, they came to them in every direction until no building would hold them and finally they had the sick on the beds and couches in the streets until the shadow of Peter passing by might over-shadow some. This wasn't the elders going to the people. "Since the elder or bishop must be the husband of one wife how in the world can you qualify as an elder or bishop since you certainly can not be a husband at all." I am not a bishop and never made such claim, I am only a hand maiden of the Lord. A mother can pray for her child, a husband can pray for his wife. "Did you not say in your book, `This and That', page 776, that God showed you in a vision that you, Aimee McPherson, was the Bride of Christ?" What I said was this, that the church was the bride of Christ. We are many members of one body whether we be Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterians or Episcopalians. When all that bridal party came up and reached the Lord I saw myself taking the humble place at the foot thereof. I know where you got that. Bob Schuler told it and talked so radically that the Government had to get him. "If you are the bride of Christ where do the rest of the saints of the Lord come in?" No one person is the bride, we are all members of one body if we are washed in the blood of Jesus. "If healing is in the atonement then have you not fallen from grace when you get sick?" I remember it says "Who sinned this man or his father." Jesus said, "This is for the glory of God", it is not for the glory of God to be sick but to be healed.
"Since you are in full control of the Four Square churches and personally own the property and appoint the pastors over the congregations as you did when you established the Four Square Church in Little Rock, how do you miss disobeying the positive command in Matthew 20:25-26, where it says, `The princes among the gentiles exercise dominion over them, but it shall not be so among you'? If you do not have dominion over these Four Square Churches who has?" The property was my own and I incorporated it and do not own one square foot of ground in this whole world: every bit of the money I have is in the incorporation and goes into church work and if I died tonight I have but a few hundred dollars. The Board - incidentally all men every one of them - has control over the property. I am only the pastor. "Why did you not heal the little Tacket boy who came up paralyzed in his arm. His arm is no better " I have never said I could heal any one, neither can I save any one. Not every one who comes to the altar is saved unless they cry out to God. "Why did you not heal the little girl you brought on the platform and took off her braces and showed the people how she could walk without them?" Because I understand two preachers went to her mother and told her that divine healing was not for today and discouraged her.
My time is up, I will try again later.
Dr. Bogard's Reply-
Mrs. McPherson says that I said over the radio that those who prayed for the sick are of the devil and that I then turned around and said that I prayed for the sick. Then she dramatically said, "Oh, Oh, Oh, Dr. Bogard." It is enough to say that I never said any such thing at any time. But I did say that if a miracle is performed now it is of the devil. The issue is not shall we pray for the sick but shall we discard the use of medicine and physicians and depend altogether on a miracle being performed to cure the sick. I think Mrs. McPherson knows this is the issue and that she seeks to confuse the minds of the hearers by such dramatic suggestions.
She says she went to history to prove that miracles have continued since the apostolic age because she COULD NOT PROVE IT BY THE BIBLE. What a confession! But when she went to history for proof of it the very witnesses she introduced also testify in favor of infant sprinkling, and at least one of them believed in purgatory and some of them believed in baptismal salvation and others even believed in infant damnation. You can prove any absurdity by appealing to history. I went into this debate believing that we were to take the Bible as our rule and not history. For that matter you can get many to testify right now that they have been healed. Mrs. McPherson has such witnesses right here in this congregation and there have been some in all ages who have so claimed. But that is only the opinion of men. The Bible is our rule and if they testify contrary to the Bible their testimony is false no matter what history you read it in nor who says it.
Mrs. McPherson quotes Dr. Mayo, a famous surgeon, to prove that God heals the sick. Glad she quoted Dr. Mayo. Dr. Mayo and I are in agreement because he believes in praying for the sick and then doing all he can for the sick, giving medicine and using surgery, while he prays. But that is on the same principle as praying for bread, then go to work to get the bread, not sit down and wait for God to work a miracle. She quoted John Wesley who also used medicine along with his prayers. But suppose Mayo and Wesley and all the others believed that God still performs miracles, as Mrs. McPherson contends, we do not have to accept their opinions. The Bible is the rule, not these men's opinions.
Mrs. McPherson's bungling effort to answer SOME of questions was amusing. For instance she said if the GIFTS were done away as the Bible says they were when the "Perfect" thing came, meaning when the Bible was completed, then the gift of WISDOM, and the GIFT of Knowledge were done away, and she adds that she understood that knowledge would increase instead of being done away. Ordinary knowledge has increased with the increase of education. But we know only what we have learned. But the "GIFT" of knowledge meant that one did not have to learn but it would be imparted to him direct from heaven. Ordinary knowledge has increased but the GIFT OF KNOWLEDGE has ceased with all the other GIFTS except FAITH, HOPE, and LOVE, THESE THREE as the Bible says.
Mrs. McPherson says that all she does is to pray and that she never claimed the power to work miracles. But the PROPOSITION we are discussing says DIVINE HEALING AND MIRACLES and she is affirming that these miracles continue till this day and she has said so over and over again. Then when I pin her down she comes back and says all she does is to pray. If all we can do is to pray then MIRACLES DO NOT EXIST NOW. In Apostolic days they DID MORE THAN PRAY. They wrought miracles, even raised the dead.
Mrs. McPherson says the reason she does not try to raise the dead is that she is too busy with the living. But Jesus and the apostles were not too busy with the living to raise the dead. They were not so busy but what they also raised the dead and the very command of Jesus to his disciples was to HEAL THE SICK and RAISE THE DEAD. To raise the dead is in the same verse with healing the sick.
She says that if the devil is working miracles now he has changed because that would be doing good. You notice she has not one time even referred to the passages of Scripture I gave in my first speech where I showed the devil does work miracles. She has not even referred to the passage which says the devil clothes himself "as an angel of light" and that the devil's ministers are "transformed into ministers of righteousness." Why is she silent on these passages? Because she herself is the best exemplification of that thing that is on this earth today.
The prophet Micah foretold exactly how long miracles should continue, Micah 7:15; "According to the days of thy coming out of Egypt will I show unto him marvellous things."
The book of Micah is a prophecy concerning the coming Saviour. The place of the birth of Jesus was foretold. Micah 5:2; "But thou Bethlehem Ephrata, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel." His marvellous work began when he performed his first miracle, at Cana of Galilee, when he turned the water into wine. It continued all through his ministry and his apostles continued his marvellous work, even doing greater works than he, until the Bible was fully written. then the "marvellous things" came to an end. The prophet Micah foretold EXACTLY how long the "marvellous things" would continue; "according to the days of thy coming out of Egypt will I show unto him marvellous things." The Israelites were forty years in their journey out of Egypt into the land of Palestine. Thus we see that from the FIRST miracle at Cana until the year A. D. 70 was almost exactly forty years and no man can show that a miracle was performed after A. D. 70. Miracles ceased when the NEED for miracles ceased. Miracles were wrought to confirm the word preached by Christ and the Apostles. When the confirmation was sufficient, and the BOOK OF BOOKS was completed then the miraculous ceased except as the devil works miracles as the Bible foretold he would continue to do.
Thus in prophecy we are told in advance how long miracles would continue and in the New Testament we are told how long they would continue, and the New Testament also told us that the devil will continue to work miracles after that power was taken away from the Lord's people. Yet in the face of all this the McPhersonites and other Holy Rollers go right on claiming the power to work miracles.
But there are some people on whom the words of the Bible have no influence. Alas!
Mrs. McPherson says that the baptism of the Holy Ghost is not in this discussion. I wonder why ? Does she not claim, and do not all Holy Rollers claim, that they get the power to work miracles by the Baptism of the Spirit? If I prove that there is only ONE BAPTISM now, then either the Holy Ghost Baptism has ceased or WATER BAPTISM has ceased. Both can't exist if there is ONLY ONE. But JUST WHAT DID SHE SAY TO MY SCRIPTURAL ARGUMENT ON THIS? I fail to remember and if those who read the debate will search for it I think they will find that she left it severely alone. She did say we are living in the dispensation of the Spirit and that of course we still have the Holy Spirit and this nobody denies. But it is not the BIRTH of the Spirit, it is not the COMFORT of the Spirit, it is not the LEADERSHIP of the Spirit that we are discussing. It is the BAPTISM of the Spirit that we are discussing, and that particular feature of the work of the Spirit passed away with the Apostolic Age.
Mrs. McPherson acknowledges that she did get sick and that she was placed in a sanitarium and that she did have a good doctor and nurses but she contends that PRAYER CAUSED A MIRACLE to be wrought in her and now she is well. Sakes alive, why all that going to the hospital and why the doctors? She recommends that others discard all such as that and not do one thing except to pray and that the Lord will miraculously heal in answer to prayer. That is what she recommends to others. Why did she not practice it herself ?
The promise in Acts 2:38 is not the baptism of the Holy Ghost but it is remission of sins. The promise to all them that are "afar off" is that when they repent they will be saved, they will obtain the remission of their sins.
In the very last part of her speech she said that the man born blind was for the purpose that God might he glorified and that neither he nor his parents had sinned. Thank you. So then all sickness and bodily infirmity is NOT OF THE DEVIL. Some of these bodily afflictions are for the glory of God. Thank you. Then healing is not in the atonement. Then to be sick is not evidence of having sinned. Thank you. Then it is not always God's will that the afflicted one be healed as, for instance, Paul, who was afflicted with that terrible "thorn in his flesh" that God refused to remove. Thank you. Thus you have surrendered entirely. Gone back on all you have said. Such is the benefit of debate.
("Take him out. Put him off the platform. You are a liar," came from a number in the congregation).
Some people think to make a rough house is the thing to do to win. It may be the best you can do for Mrs. McPherson and since you think she needs such ruffianism you are welcome to help her that way.
(Loud yells and hoots and boos came from Mrs. McPherson's followers at this point until it was impossible for Dr. Bogard to continue and since his time lacked only about a minute of being out he stopped speaking).
Mrs. McPherson's Closing Speech.
Mrs. McPherson in conclusion said:
I guess you noticed this little whispering on the platform. I turned to the chairman and said that I had brought up some witnesses to testify as to healing and they said I would be breaking the rules of the debate, they said I would be introducing new evidence, finally they have agreed in so far as Dr. Bogard introduced the three whom he says are not healed, I will call you as my jury, he said the little girl with the braces, the man with the crutch and a Tackett boy, would it be fair for me to introduce three who were healed? (Applause.)
I will introduce one who has been for twenty years a member of Bro. Bogard's church; until recently Mrs. E. W. Ottie of 3001 Arkansas Avenue, she was organist and taught in the Sunday School.
DR. BOGARD: She is not a member of my church and never has been.
MRS. McPHERSON: The sister says twenty-five years ago she was organist and worker there.
MRS. OTTIE: I came here twenty-five years ago. I joined the First Baptist church of North Little Rock and Brother Bogard was the pastor at that time, then we moved over in Little Rock and I attended the First Methodist church at 7th and Louisiana. I was a member there until I went to Memphis. I can prove what I say by Dr. H. L. White, 210 1/2 Main Street, North Little Rock. I had a cancer on my nose and Dr. McDonald 1106 Cumberland Street, two years ago said I had a cancer on my nose and he wanted to take it off. I didn't have the price. I had never met Mrs. McPherson. I asked her to pray that it be healed and they began to draw and draw and they both dropped off this morning, this is the third day. There was a cancer here (indicating) one here (indicating). I have given you my address and my doctor's name, my husband was at the Baptist hospital as financial secretary for two or three years.
Mrs. McDonald, 1004 East Washington. A member of the First Christian Church. My baby was paralyzed from six months of age. She is four and a half and when I brought her to Sister she could not raise her arm up and when I would go to dress her it was with great pain but now she can raise her arm up. (To the Child), raise your arm up, (the child raises her arm). This little thumb was drawn inward in the palm of her hand, and when Jesus touched them they immediately straightened. She can open her hand wide open - praise the Lord. Her left hand, the fingers were a quarter of an inch shorter than those on the right. When she was healed they immediately became the same length. Every person in this audience who knows me stand up. (Several stand up).
MRS. McPHERSON: Rev. Roy Jordan, Third and Pulaski, pastor of the Capitol View Methodist Church has sent this testimony that he was instantly healed by prayer of a bad rupture.
MRS. McPHERSON: So, tonight, I rest my case. Dear Brother Bogard, may God bless you and I may never see you again. Jesus does answer prayer for the sick and so tonight before I say good night and good bye to North Little Rock and the folks here, those who believe Jesus does not answer prayer for the sick will you vote for Brother Bogard by standing in a body. (Some stood, how many not known).
DR. BOGARD: That is not the subject of debate.
MRS. McPHERSON: How many does not believe, or do believe that divine healing ceased with the apostolic age. Stand. Will those who believe as Dr. Bogard that Miracles and Divine healing ceased with the apostolic age please stand. (Some stood).
Now, will those who believe that Jesus still answers prayer and heals the sick, signify by standing. (Many stand).
THE HEALING TESTIMONY REFUTED
Mrs. E. V. Ottie, whom Mrs. McPherson paraded before the congregation contrary to the rule in debate which forbids bids NEW MATTER to be brought into a final negative, testified as seen above that she was cured of cancer by Mrs. McPherson's prayer after Dr. H. L. White had failed to cure her and that her case was pronounced cancer by Dr. McDonald. Here are the facts:
Dr. H. L. White, whose address Mrs. Ottie gave in her testimony, is a reputable and long time doctor of North Little Rock. He was asked the following questions and the questions and answers are given below exactly as asked and answered:
Question: "Dr. White, did you treat Mrs. E. W. Ottie for cancer and failed to cure her? What are facts?
Answer: "I treated Mrs. Ottie for some warts on her face. They were not cancers. I used the electric needle and told her that in from two to four days the warts would drop off. My treatment was successful because just four days after I applied the electric needle she went to Mrs. McPherson and was prayed for and the warts did drop off as she said, and just as I told her they would when I treated her. I was present in the tabernacle when she made the statement and some one asked me why I did not get up and contradict her. I did not want to get into trouble by facing that mob and decided to keep still but I told several before leaving the tabernacle that I cured her and Mrs. McPherson got the credit for it. Incidentally I have not been paid for the treatment and the thanks I got was to be advertised as a failure.
That is Dr. White's testimony and here is Dr. McDonald's testimony:
Dr. McDonald's Certificate.
Little Rock, Arkansas
May 26, 1934
Rev. Ben M. Bogard,
Little Rock, Arkansas.
Dear Dr. Bogard:
During the debate of Mrs. Aimee S. McPherson and Ben M. Bogard at the Tabernacle in North Little Rock, it was asserted over the radio that I had examined a certain Mrs. Ottie, and pronounced her case Cancer, that I had made a definite diagnosis of facial Cancer. I wish to correct this statement. I wish to say that I NEVER AT ANY TIME EXAMINED MRS. OTTIE NOR DID I EVER PRONOUNCE HER CASE CANCER, NOR TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE AND BELIEF DID THIS WOMAN EVER HAVE CANCER. I know this woman when I see her but she never was a patient of mine at any time, neither did I ever make an examination of her.
The statement attributed to me of her having a cancer on her face is false, and without any foundation what ever.
This statement I make out of fairness to all concerned. This statement was not solicited by Dr. Bogard nor any one else, but was made voluntarily by myself to correct a wrong impression.
E. B. McDonald, M.D.
Thus the claims are proved to be false.
As to the little girl who was paralyzed. SHE IS STILL PARALYZED. Her mother claimed that she had been HELPED by Mrs. McPherson. But the child is still paralyzed. If that is the sort of evidence Mrs. McPherson has, and it must have been her BEST for she picked out just THREE from all the great number who claimed to have been healed, and certainly it is to be taken for granted she picked the best evidence she had; then it follows that ALL HER CLAIMS to doing such wonderful things fall flat. It is rank fraud and such frauds should be exposed and that is the purpose of this debate and these statements from reputable doctors.
The many people who voted with Mrs. McPherson were no doubt convinced that she was right by this fraudulent testimony. They were not influenced by the Bible arguments that were made but would take the testimony of false witnesses. Taking the word of men instead of the word of God.
Rev. Roy Jordan positively denies sending Mrs. McPherson any word at all about being healed. So that is another fraudulent claim.
THE MOST USED PASSAGE ON HOLY GHOST BAPTISM
1 Cor. 12:13; "For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body."
The above passage is considered by many as positive proof that we may have Holy Ghost (Spirit)baptism in this age. But a little investigation will show it does not teach anything of the kind.
The Greek word that is translated "by" is the word "en" and it means exactly what our English word "in" means. So it should read "IN one Spirit are we all baptized into one body."
Already IN THE SPIRIT before we are baptized into the body. So we do not get into the body by being in the Spirit. But being IN THE SPIRIT qualifies us for membership in the body, which is the church. In the Spirit FIRST, then baptized into the one body.
Since Eph. 4:5 tells us there is ONLY ONE BAPTISM, it follows that either the Holy Spirit baptism has ceased to be or water baptism has ceased to be. If BOTH continues to exist, then we have TWO BAPTISMS. But water baptism was commanded to be observed to the end of the world. It therefore follows that Spirit baptism passed away with the age of miracles, ended with apostolic age.
It therefore follows that the passage means that being in the spirit, being already saved, we are baptized in water which admits us to membership in the church. Water baptism is the only baptism since the apostolic age. We are BORN of the Spirit; we are COMFORTED by the Spirit; we are LED by the Spirit; but no one has been BAPTIZED by the Spirit since the end of the apostolic Age.
The Appendix is printed following the debate because it is believed that it will help the reader to a better understanding of some things mentioned in the debate. The debate is published word for word as spoken, and the Appendix is simply a further discussion of some features of the important subject. The work of the Holy Spirit, and the correct understanding of the things in the Bible that apply to the people living in this age of the world should by all means have careful study and consideration.
Ben M. Bogard.
IS EVERYTHING IN THE BIBLE TO BE
OBSERVED BY US?
Is Every Thing in The Bible To Be Observed By Us?
If every thing in the Bible is for us to observe we should be careful never to eat hog meat or cat fish for fish without scales was forbidden as food in the Bible. Lev. 11:7 -12). If every thing in the Bible is to observed by us then we must offer up animal sacrifices for animal sacrifices, such as lambs, bullocks were offered up by the command of God. (See Leviticus). If every thing in the Bible is to be observed by us then we should circumcise our male children (Gen. 21:2-4). If every thing in the Bible is to be observed by us then we must burn incense at the altar (Lev. 16:2-13). If every thing in the Bible is to be observed by us then we must keep the feasts such as the Passover and Tabernacles, for these were commanded by the Almighty (Exodus). But you are ready to say that all these things belonged to another dispensation and were fulfilled and then done away. Exactly. That is correct. There are many things that were observed in Bible times that we do not now observe because they served their purpose and were done away by the authority of God Himself.
Suppose some one was contending that we should not eat cat fish and in doing so would point to the law in the Bible on that subject? You would answer that this Scripture does not apply to us as it was a part of the law God gave to the Jews and was done away when the law was done away. The law was "taken out of the way, nailed to the cross (Col. 2:14-18). What! A part of the Bible done away? Yes, because it had fulfilled its purpose and then was set aside. Suppose some one should contend that we should observe the Passover Feast and insist that a lamb be slain and the blood sprinkled on the door posts of our houses? What would you say? You no doubt would know enough to say that this part of the Bible does not apply to us and that it applied to the Jews only and since it was a type of Christ it was fulfilled in Christ and then done away. That would be a correct answer. Suppose someone should contend that we bring our lambs and bullocks to the altar and offer them there in sacrifice? Does not the Bible command that these sacrifices be made? Most assuredly such a command is found in the Bible but we all agree that, since the sacrifices were types of Christ and were fulfilled when Christ died on the cross, they do not apply to us now.
Then we are agreed that much in the Bible is not for us to observe now. Much of it has been fulfilled and has been done away. Much of it was of a temporary nature and when it served its purpose it was done away. When one his learned this primary principle in the study of God's Bible then we are prepared to begin to understand the Bible. Suppose I should declare that we should not now offer up sacrifices and some one should cry out "There, don't you see he is trying to do away with a part of the Bible? What would sensible people conclude? Suppose I should say that we should not now observe the Passover Feast and some one would cry out: "That preacher is trying to do away with the Bible. He does not believe all the Bible. What would a sensible person conclude? Suppose I should say that we should not burn incense on the altar now and that we may eat cat fish now, and some one should, in, great excitement, cry out, God is the same yesterday, today, and forever and here is a preacher who is trying to do away with what is in the Bible?" What would a sensible person say to such an answer as that?
There is a cry from those who claim to be able to work miracles and heal the sick, and speak with tongues that those of us who oppose such heresies are trying to do away with a part of the Bible, use our scissors on the Bible and cut out such parts as we do not want and they cry out lustily that "God is the same yesterday, today, and forever," and therefore all that we find in the Bible applies to us today. When Mrs. McPherson made such silly arguments over and over again; when she said she would take the WHOLE BIBLE as her rule of faith and practice and pronounced all of us modernists who did not take ALL OF IT and then challenged me "to come over to the tabernacle and debate it," I accepted her challenge and proposed to debate that very question, and wrote her that I would affirm that parts of the Bible did not apply to us now and asked her to affirm that ALL THE BIBLE, FROM COVER TO COVER SHOULD BE OBSERVED BY US, she declined and then wanted to switch the debate off to whether God would hear our prayers now as of old, which, of course, was altogether another question. Finally we agreed to debate the miracle question, that divine healing and miracles such as was found in the New Testament, passed away with the apostolic age. That is the question discussed in this debate. The ONE QUESTION between us was whether MIRACLES, TONGUES, HEALING and such like had been done away. If I succeeded in showing that these MIRACULOUS GIFTS PASSED AWAY at the end of the apostolic age then I won the debate. If she showed that they were not done away she won the debate. That was the issue.
A prophecy concerning the birth and work of Jesus is found in the Prophet Micah. That prophet foretold the birth of Jesus, even the very town where he would be born. He prophesied of his life and work and then of his wonderful miracles, and in Micah 7:1 we are told EXACTLY how long the miraculous would continue. Here are the words: "According to the days of thy coming out of the land of Egypt will I show unto him marvellous things." How long were the Israelites coming out of Egypt? Just about forty years. Then how long were the "marvellous" things connected with the life of Jesus to last? The same number of days that the Israelites were coming out of
Egypt. From the time the first miracle, at Cana, where he turned the water into wine, to the destruction of Jerusalem, in A. D. 70, it was forty years. Jesus was thirty years old when he wrought his first miracle. Thus the first miracle was in A. D. 30 and the "marvellous" things thus begun were to last forty years, that is until A. D. 70. No one can show a miracle wrought after the year A. D. 70. The time was up and miracles ceased. Since that time the New Testament, has been sufficient for all our needs, and hence miracles passed away because no longer needed.
Why then did Paul tell the Corinthians to "covet earnestly the best gifts" it they were done away? They were not done away at the time Paul told the Corinthians that. Might as well ask why God commanded circumcision and why God commanded that the Passover be observed, and why God commanded that animals be offered in sacrifice if they were done away? The answer is that they were not done away at the time God commanded they be observed. So these "MIRACULOUS GIFTS" were not done away at the time Paul told the Corinthians to "covet earnestly the best gifts." But in the very next chapter (I Cor. 13) we are told that when the "perfect thing" came these very gifts would be done away. The perfect thing came when the Bible was fully written. Now we have the New Testament and it is all we need. The miracles by Jesus and the apostles during the FORTY YEARS that "marvellous" things were to continue, are all recorded in the New Testament and they "follow" all believers because we have them in the Bible. The passage that says "these signs shall follow them that believe," could not mean that ALL BELIEVERS would work miracles. The reason is that ALL BELIEVERS did not work miracles even in the apostolic age. Even those who did work miracles in the apostolic age did not do ALL THE MIRACLES because some had one gift and some another and none of them had ALL THE GIFTS. But the passage that says "these signs shall follow them that believe," undoubtedly means that ALL THE SIGNS should follow ALL believers. That forces us to the conclusion that all the signs, being recorded in the New Testament, follow all believers at all times. It does not say that all believers should forever be able to do all these miracles.
All should remember that the New Testament is our all-sufficient rule of faith and practice. The miraculous was needed up until God had fully revealed his will to us in the Bible then we no longer needed the OBJECT LESSONS which miracles furnished.
The following lecture was delivered over the Radio of the Church of the Open Door, Los Angeles, Calif., which I mentioned in a letter to Mrs. McPherson.
Why Can Not We Perform Miracles Now As Was Done in The Apostolic Times?
The Work of the Holy Spirit, Miracles, The Baptism of the Spirit, Divine Healing, Speaking With Tongues and kindred subjects are badly misunderstood by the majority of the people. This lecture, which may be heard by many thousands over the air and then read by many other thousands in the Baptist and Commoner, is delivered for the purpose of helping to a better understanding of the Scriptural Questions.
Many contend that since God never changes it follows that miracles must of necessity continue because we read of miracles being performed in the Bible. If that argument amounts to anything it would follow that circumcision, burning of incense, slaughtering animals in sacrifice, and the prohibition of eating hog meat and cat fish and rabbits, and the keeping of the seventh day Sabbath and all the rest would necessarily continue at this time, for God not only endorsed but commanded these things in Bible times. But all Bible scholars agree that circumcision, and animal sacrifices and burning of incense and such like were used for the purpose of teaching valuable spiritual lessons and that they passed away when they were no longer needed. The vast majority also believe that the old seventh day Sabbath passed away when the law was nailed to the cross. (Col. 2:12-17) and that circumcision passed away when the New Testament became the rule of faith and practice and that now we may eat hog meat and rabbit and cat fish which God forbade in the Old Testament Dispensations. Certainly God has not changed but He has made these changes in his laws. Then it would not follow that God had changed if HE CHOSE TO ALLOW MIRACLES FOR THE PURPOSE OF ESTABLISHING HIS DOCTRINE AND TO CONFIRM THE WORD SPOKEN BY HIMSELF WHILE ON EARTH AND SPOKEN BY THE APOSTLES AFTER HE ASCENDED TO HEAVEN. That miracles were for the purpose of CONFIRMING the word spoken by Christ and the Apostles is certain. Read Heb. 2:3-4; "how shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by our Lord, and was confirmed by them that heard him. God bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his will?" After the Word, the New Testament, was CONFIRMED, ESTABLISHED, miracles were no longer needed and having served their purpose they passed away.
What they taught and did, and how that sinners heard and believed and became Christians, and how Christians should live, is written in the New Testament for our guidance, because we are to observe the same teaching. Therefore when we hear the teaching of the New Testament, we hear the Spirit speaking to us and when we OBEY what it teaches, we walk after the Spirit and are the children of God, saved and sanctified. "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God" (Rom 8:14).
Paul says, "Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit which is of God; THAT WE MIGHT KNOW the things that are freely given to us of God, which things we also speak not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the HOLY SPIRIT TEACHETH" (1 Cor. 2:12, 13). By those WORDS given to and through the apostles, we are taught and guided today. (See 1 Peter 1:12).
God gave the apostles power to lay their hands upon certain ones and give them gifts of the Spirit. (Acts 19.6 and 8:18, and 2 Tim. 1:16). "For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another the interpretation of tongues; to another divers kinds of tongues" (Cor. 12:8 - 10). These "gifts" were not the baptism in the Spirit.
Paul says that these gifts are to CEASE "when that which is perfect is come." He says: "But whether there be prophecies THEY SHALL FAIL; whether there be tongues they shall cease; whether there be knowledge IT SHALL VANISH AWAY. For we know in part, and we prophecy in part; but when that which is perfect is come (which is "the perfect law of liberty", James 1:25, the completed New Testament), then that which is in part SHALL BE DONE AWAY" (I Cor. 13:5-10).
Paul did not teach that anything necessary for our salvation or Christian life would be "done away." Hence these gifts are not necessary for salvation or Christian living, or they would not have ceased.
And, moreover, the Scriptures do not even INFER that those who received these supernatural gifts, were made better or holier Christians, but were only better able to teach others, who, when they obeyed, were made better and holier.
The Corinthians, like many people today, did not understand the purpose of these Spiritual gifts; and Paul makes a very plain explanation in the 12th, 13th and 14th chapters which all should diligently study.
These powers were given to the apostles and part of them were given to a few others on whom the apostles laid their hands. See Acts 2 :43; 5 :12; Heb. 2:4; Acts 28:3-5; 19:6,11,12; Acts 8:18.
These signs were to confirm the word and NOT to cure our physical sickness, or Paul would have cured Epaphroditus (See Phil. 2:25-30), and Trophmimus (See 2 Tim. 4:20). Did not Paul care if they were sick and suffering? He did not heal them.
"Gifts of the Spirit" were the powers given by the Spirit to do the things Paul mentions in I Cor. 12:8-10, while "the GIFT of the SPIRIT" is the Spirit himself given to all who believe.
The baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the gifts of the Spirit, as Jesus has explained, were to TEACH and GUIDE the recipients thereof, which they did. What the Spirit guided them to say and to write, we have now as the New Testament, which is a "perfect law of liberty" in Christ Jesus. See James 1:25; 2 Tim. 3:16, 17; 1 Peter 4:11.
And Paul says, "But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away" (I Cor 13:10).
To not believe they were "DONE AWAY," would be to disbelieve God, because Paul was taught this by the Spirit of God.
The Bible records but three instances of persons being baptized in the Holy Spirit; The apostles (Acts 2nd), Paul (Acts 9th), and the household of Cornelius (Acts 10th).
Although the apostles were baptized in the Holy Spirit, they baptized their converts in water. See Acts 2:41; 10:48; 16:15, 33; Acts 18:8; 19:5; 8:36-39; 22:16. And this is what Jesus commanded them to do. See Matt. 28:19; and that is what the church is now commanded to do.
For awhile there were two baptisms - one in the Spirit, and one in the water. But when Paul wrote Eph. 4:5, about A. D. 70, he said there is "one baptism," showing us that Spirit baptism had been "done away" before that time, leaving only water baptism when Paul wrote Ephesians.
The Holy Spirit baptism was always seen and heard by those present. Acts 2:2, 3. See also Mark 1:10, 11; John 1:33. If such heavenly proofs could be seen and heard to-day few would doubt Holy Spirit baptism now. Therefore "Let no man deceive you by any means," for no living person is now baptized in the Holy Spirit, but many have been deceived because they have believed false teachers instead of the Bible.
Neither Jesus nor His apostles ever taught that sinners or Christians need a baptism of the Holy Spirit nor any Spiritual gifts of I Cor 12: 8,10 to be saved. Paul says, "Follow after charity (love), and desire Spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy" or teach. Paul did not consider Spiritual gifts of great importance. He said "Yet in the church I had rather speak FIVE words with my understanding that by my voice I might teach others also, than TEN THOUSAND words in an unknown tongue" (1 Cor. 14:1,19).
We all need the Holy Spirit, for "if any man have not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his (Rom. 8:9). And God gives him to those only who believe. (See Acts 5:32).
The new birth, being born of the Spirit, is not restricted to the New Testament. Jesus said to Nicodemus : "Art thou a master (teacher) in Israel and knowest not these things? (John 3:1-16). Why should Jesus make such a statement if Nicodemus could not have learned of the birth of the Spirit in the Old Testament ? The regenerating work of the Holy Spirit has gone on all through the history of the world. The abiding presence and being filled with the Holy Spirit were experienced by men and women before Christ came into the world. Luke 1:67, "Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost." Simeon was led by the Spirit and received revelations from the Spirit before Christ was born (Luke 2:25-26). John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Spirit from birth (Luke 1:15). The Holy Spirit came upon Mary, the mother of Jesus, when the birth of Jesus was announced to her (Luke 1:35). Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit (Luke 1 :41). The Holy Spirit had worked with and in men all through the history of the world. But HIS ADMINISTRATION OVER THE KINGDOM and his miraculous BAPTISM did not exist until the Pentecost after the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. The confusion that exists in the minds of many on this subject is deplorable. So many think the BAPTISM of the Spirit is the same thing as the BIRTH of the Spirit and the leadership of the Spirit. The birth of the Spirit, the indwelling of the Spirit, and the leadership of the Spirit have all been enjoyed by the Lord's people from the time of creation until now. But the ADMINISTRATION of the Spirit and the Baptism of the Spirit began at Pentecost.
The baptism of the Spirit and the miraculous gifts of the Spirit were done away when the "Perfect thing" came (1st Cor. 13:8-10) and as expressed in different words by James, "The Perfect law of liberty" came (James 1:25) when the church came into "The knowledge of the Son of God" (Eph. 4:11-14) which means the revelation of Jesus Christ was complete by the finishing of the perfect rule of faith and practice which we know as the New Testament. Since this perfect thing, this "perfect law of liberty" came, this "knowledge of the Son of God" came, since that blessed day no one has had the baptism of the Holy Spirit and no one has been able to work a miracle. Why? Because the "gifts" which enabled men to do that sort of thing were "done away," "ceased," and now we have the indwelling of the Spirit, the comfort of the Spirit, and sinners are born of the Spirit but nobody is baptized in the Spirit and nobody has the MIRACULOUS gifts of the Spirit.
Are any miracles worked now? Can anybody heal the sick, or speak in unknown tongues now? You may be surprised when I tell you that possibly some are able to work miracles even now. But such miracles are not of God. They are of the devil. When Moses worked miracles in Egypt the "Magicians did so with their enchantments." (Ex. 7:11; 22:8-7). This was done over and over again. The devil has counterfeited God's work in all ages. The devil is still counterfeiting God's work by working miracles. THE DEVIL ENABLES HIS SUBJECTS TO WORK MIRACLES. See Rev. 13:13-14: "He doeth great wonders, so that he maketh fire to come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men. And he deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by means of those miracles which he had power to do," etc. Rev. 16:14 "The spirit of devil's working miracles."
Thus we plainly see that the devil is still working miracles and if I were to see a miracle and know it to be a miracle; if I were to see a man heal the sick or do any other wonderful thing I would not be convinced that he was of God because of that. Instead of the miracle causing me to believe that the miracle worker was of God I would be convinced of the exact opposite for the very good reason that the miraculous gifts have been withdrawn from the church and all miracles are now of the devil.
Will apparently good men, men who praise God and shout, and preach and pray and seemingly good be under the power of the devil? Most assuredly. Read 2nd Cor. 11:1-15. "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as ministers of righteousness."
So we see that the devil has ministers, the devil has miracle workers, and since we know by the Scriptures that God's ministers do not now have the gift of healing, and the gift of tongues and such like because they were done away, done away when the "PERFECT THING," the "PERFECT LAW OF LIBERTY," came, when the church came "INTO THE KNOWLEDGE OF THE SON OF GOD"; since we know that miracle working is a thing of the past in the church of Jesus Christ, then we can as certainly know that any miracle working we now see is of the devil, no matter how wonderful and no matter how religious they may seem to be. The more prayer, and shouting, and praising God there is attached to it the more danger there is of deceiving the unsuspecting.
These plain words are necessary now because so many are claiming these miraculous gifts. The Holy Rollers, the Christian Scientists, the Mormons, the McPhersonites and others are making loud claims. We had better prepare to meet them for they are only different varieties of the same vicious species.
There is a hue and cry going up all over the land for more SPIRITUALITY. That is well and good provided it is sure enough SPIRITUALITY that is wanted. But what is MEANT in many cases is EMOTION, DEMONSTRATION, the SO-CALLED BAPTISM OF THE SPIRIT, and a goody, goody, sort of feeling. The devil is back of all such demands. Spirituality of a Bible sort is to be in HARMONY WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT. To be in harmony with the Spirit is to respect his written word, to obey his written commandments, to be submissive to his written will. To be governed by DREAMS, EMOTIONS, FEELINGS, and then not be willing to hear what the Holy Spirit says in his word is positive proof that the individuals so governed are not Spiritual. A Spiritual man LOVES THE BIBLE and does not get angry when the preacher preaches the words of the Spirit on baptism, the Lord's Supper, church government, LAYING BY IN STORE OF THE MONEY GOD HAS PLACED IN HIS HANDS, and thus be a liberal contributor to his cause. To get angry at a sermon preached on contributing money and then cry for SPlRITUAL preaching is a certain indication that the one so exercising is anything but Spiritual. The man or woman who can not sit and listen with pleasure at a doctrinal sermon, a sermon that plainly shows our duty and yet weep over death bed stories and rejoice over emotional illustrations shows a lack of Spirituality.
If we are led by the Spirit we shall do what the Spirit teaches us to do. if we are filled with the Spirit we shall rejoice in what the Bible teaches. If we think of Jesus and want to honor and obey Jesus we are Spiritual. The Holy spirit testifies NOT OF HIMSELF but of Jesus and if he is our GUEST he will fill us with LOVE OF JESUS and we shall not think of the Spirit himself, and we shall feel unworthy of the Lord's service instead of boasting of our SPIRITUALITY. Spirituality produces humility and never the Pharisaical feeling that we are so very good.
Let us hear what Jesus said this baptism in the Holy Spirit was to do. "But the Comforter, which is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He shall TEACH YOU ALL THINGS, and bring all them to your REMEMBRANCE, whatsoever I have said unto you" (John 14:26).
"He shall TESTIFY of Me" (John 15:26). "And when he (the Spirit) is come, he will REPROVE the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment. * * * I have yet many things to say unto you but ye can not bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of Truth is come, he will GUIDE YOU INTO ALL TRUTH: for he shall not speak of himself ; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak; and he will SHOW you things to come. He shall glorify me for he shall receive of mine and SHALL SHOW IT UNTO YOU" (John 16:8-14).
Note the fact that the Holy Spirit was NOT TO SPEAK OF HIMSELF but was to testify of Christ. Those who have the Holy Spirit will show that fact by thinking of Jesus and SPEAKING of Jesus. If man is constantly talking about the wonderful things the Spirit has done for him and is always boasting of being filled with the Spirit and of being baptized by the Spirit it is positive proof that he does not have the Holy Spirit because the Spirit does not talk of himself but he testifies of Christ.
Thus Jesus leaves no uncertainty for us to guess at, about the baptism in the Holy Spirit, but tells us in plain words the exact purpose of this baptism. It was "to TEACH" His apostles, "to SHOW" them, "to GUIDE" them, to bring to their "REMEMBRANCE, whatsoever I have said unto you," and "to TESTIFY" to the world, of Jesus through them.
At that time there was no New Testament to tell the people how to be saved, and how to live, hence Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to guide his apostles into what to teach men and women. And the Spirit guided them so perfectly that they spake only "AS THE SPIRIT GAVE THEM UTTERANCE" (Acts 2:4).
Thus guided and controlled by the Spirit, they could teach and testify exactly what Jesus wanted taught to the people, and could prove their words were given them from heaven by confirming them "with signs and wonders and divers miracles." (Heb. 2:4).
What they taught and did, and how sinners heard and believed and became Christians and should live, is written in the New Testament for our guidance, because we are to observe the same teaching. Therefore, when we hear the teaching of the New Testament, we hear the Spirit speaking to us and when we OBEY what it teaches, we walk after the Spirit and are led by the Spirit and are the children of God, saved and sanctified. "For as many as are led by the Spirit of God they are the sons of God" (Rom. 8:14).
Paul says "Now we have received not the spirit of the world but the Spirit which is of God; THAT WE MIGHT KNOW the things that are freely given to us of God which things we also speak not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the HOLY SPIRIT TEACHETH" (1 Cor. 2:12, 1). By those WORDS given to and through the apostles, we are taught and guided today. (See l Peter 1:12)
This idea does not deny the LEADERSHIP of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit leads in two ways. He instructs in WRITING, the writings of the New Testament, as to every doctrine and practice, he tells us plainly what to do under all circumstances in HIS WRITTEN WORD. The other way the Spirit leads is by HIS PROVIDENCE. He, by His providence, hedges up our way at times and opens up new ways by his providence but ALL HIS INSTRUCTIONS are in the New Testament. When a man takes a dream or an IMPRESSION for the leadership of the Spirit he becomes an easy victim for the frauds and imposters who come along with plenty of such dreams and impressions. But if we give all these imposters to understand that we are UNDER WRITTEN INSTRUCTIONS from the Holy Spirit as to our duty that we can TRUST the HOLY SPIRIT TO OPEN UP WAYS FOR SERVICE and to PROVIDENTIALLY PREVENT US FROM ENTERING WHERE WE SHOULD NOT then we are Safely on Bible ground and at the same time immune to attack from the hundred and one religious cults who prey upon the ignorant and establish their heretical cults. To hold, as some do that we still have the "GIFTS" of the Spirit, to heal the sick, LOGICALLY TURNS US OVER TO THE MORMONS, HOLY ROLLERS.
This position does not discourage prayer for the sick. We should take every thing to God in prayer. We should pray for daily bread (Matt. 6:11) but we should do what we can to get bread, use the means God has ordained to get bread and YET HE GIVES US OUR BREAD. We should pray for the sick. But when one has malaria, for instance, when we pray for the Lord to heal the malaria we should give the patient quinine because the malaria germ is killed by quinine. We should pray the Lord to protect us from smallpox and when we pray go to a doctor and be vaccinated, thus using the means God has put in our reach to prevent smallpox. How foolish it would be to pray for bread and then expect the Lord to rain it down from heaven. Pray for the salvation of souls and then, as we pray, we should preach to these same souls and use the means God ordained for their salvation. But to depend on miracles is to be depending on what has been done away.
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