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Tanuary , 1885

Z I O N ’S

WA TC H

T O W E R

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called new, even if it should by some be considered light. It
demption and remission of sins through the blood of the cross.
is the commonly held, inconsistent, unscriptural, and “ myste­
We were about to say— and at the same time maintain its
theory— but conclude that its theory, severely pressed for ar­ rious” view of the atonement, handed down from the dark ages,
guments, is changing and it would be difficult now to state
which we thank God we got rid of years ago.
what the exact theory is, except that the unchanged purpose
The peculiarity of fallen human nature to go from one to
the other extreme like a pendulum is remarkably illustrated
is still plainly evident— the denial of the ransom.
in the treatment of this subject— it either wants to say that
Before pointing out its sophisms, we place some of its open
there was no ransom necessary, and none given, or else, that
and palpable contradictions side by side, thus:—
the penalty was so great that nothing short of the sacrifice
“It seems as if the
“We not- only claim that He
of a God could be an “ atoning sacrifice” for human sin.
was Lord when He gave himself idea of God accepting
In its confusion our contemporary says both. (See th<‘
a ransom; or when he “bought an innocent substitute
contrasted statements of the two columns.) Would to God
for the life of the guilty
us with a price,” but we also
it had the courage and humility to acknowledge its confusion
criminals is so grossly
claim that an appreciation of His
and accept the favor of God in His appointed way.
divinity and lordship as the ex­ inconsistent with both
love and justice that in­
How contrary to this is the teaching of Scripture, that the
press image or manifestation of
penalty of human sin was the forfeiture of h um an existence ,
the Father’s substance is neces­ stead of winning to God
it must have repelled
and that in order to be man’s ransom and give a “ correspondsary to a just estimate of the
ing pbice ” it was necessary that Jesus should become a man,
nature and value of the great many thinking minds
from Him.
It places
that as by m an came death, by a man also the resurrection
atoning sacrifice which he made.
God in the attitude
or restoration of the dead might be accomplished. (1 Cor. 15:
The advocates of the theory that
21.) And therefore, He who ransomed us, left his former
the divine law was satisfied with of demanding all men
owe, instead of in the
glory and spiritual “ form of God,” and humbled himself to
the substitution of one mere hu­
our nature and was “ made flesh ,” (Phil. 2:6-8, and John 1:
man sacrifice instead of the bill­ gracious attitude of ex­
tending mercy and for­
1-3, 14), and gave himself a ransom for all. And the apostle
ions of human beings must have
distinctly tells us, that “ the m an Christ Jesus” who “ gave
strained ideas of equity and jus­ giveness to the helpless
sinner. What is fully
himself” was therefore highly exalted, and given a “ name
tice ; must ignore the statement
paid for, cannot be ac­ above every name” — Lord of all. Phil. 2:5-11.
that man cannot redeem his
This fact, that Jesus’ right, and power, and control of
brother nor give to God a ransom cepted as an expression
of the Father’s love and
men as their Master and Lord, was gained by his sacrifice
for him.” Psa. 49-7........................
as a m a n , hence not as claimed above, is clearly stated by
“ The extremely literal mate­ grace.”
In a former issue the
the apostle, thus: “ For to this end, Christ both died and
rialist may exclaim in horror,
revived, and rose th at he might be LORD both of the dead
Can Divinity die? Oh n o 1 it can­ same contemporary gave
not die, in the sense in which the following explana­ and living.” Rom. 14:9.
tion (? ) of the nature
The statement above concerning one mere human sacrifice,
you are thinking of death. He
and value of the death
is not a quotation from the columns of the T ower. Our contem­
cannot lose his existence. But
porary does not thus favor us. The expression, “ mere man,”
your idea of death is at fault.” . . of Christ, viz.:
“ Christ died to the
would convey to many minds the idea of an imperfect man;
“ The gross m aterialist could
old relation which he
hence we would not use it. When Jesus “ w as made flesh ”
he but revise his theology and
had
come
into
by
it was neither on the “ lowest round of the ladder,” nor on
open his eves, might see a sublime
“ The
any other than the very highest, a glorious perfect image of
truth in this mystery of life im­ A d a m ’ s sin.”
God , in the flesh. Had he been one whit less perfect than
parted instead of extinguished by blood which must be
shed,
without which
the first perfect man, he could not have been the Redeemer
means of death
T his is the
there is no remission of
of what Adam lost for himself and his race. Had he been
grand mystery of the cross of
sins, is that which is
one whit higher than perfect m a n , he could not have given
Christ.”
the evidence of the
himself as “ a corresponding price.” See Y oung ’ s G reek H e­
death of the enmity
brew and E nglish C oncordance for definition, under head of
w ith in
us — death to
Ransom, 1 Tim. 2 :6— Antilutron “ a corresponding price.”
sin.”
By reason of the “ fall” of its representative, Adam, the
If this contemporary had more than one editor, we should
whole race is now depraved, imperfect, ungodlike, and all
suppose that they were of opposite minds, and that by some
condemned to death; hence all being under the same con­
accident, the writings of the two had gotten mixed. But
demnation, “ None can by any means redeem his brother, nor
the mixture is the more deplorable, as it gives evidence of a
give to God a ransom for him.” (Psa. 49:7.)
fierce struggle between a theory and a Scripture, in which
This text is most too much for the views presented in the
the former has the control. Judging from the conflicting
right-hand column. If it means anything, it proves that
arguments advanced and tried, our contemporary’s plan and
God’s law did demand a ransom , that he would not excuse
policy seems to be:— Any argument to get rid of the BANSOM sin in the way that can be “ accepted” by our contemporary
— as a corresponding price.
“ as an expression of love and grace ”
No, lie will by no
Extreme indeed must be its need of supporting
means “ clear [excuse] the guilty.” (E\od. 34:7.) But when
argument, when it finds it necessary to claim as
the guilty had proved the futility of their own efforts to
above, that life is imparted instead of extinguished
redeem and cleanse themselves, God in great mercy and
by death. The very meaning of the words is the
love ransomed us by giving His Son to be a propitiation
reverse.
Does this contemporary endorse Satan’s lie
[covering] for our sins— “ In this [way] was manifested the
in Eden and contradict Jehovah? (Gen. 3:3-5).
And
love of God.” (1 John 4:9-10.)
then call it: “ a sublime truth” — “ the grand mystery of the
At .the time of his consecration, at baptism, Jesus offered
cross of Christ”— “ this mystery of life imparted instead of ex­
up himself— a man to redeem men— and there he received
tinguished by means of death.” Would it claim that death
special power from on high, by which he was enabled not
is a great blessing and that Satan by whom it was intro­ only to carry out his consecration by a life of self-sacrifice
duced and “who has the power of death” (Heb. 2:14) is really
even unto death— even the death of the cross, but by which
the one who imparts life, instead of extinguishing it? I f so
also, as a foretaste of his future power [as partaker of the
it should at once claim that Satan is the one by whom all
divine nature, by which he could restore all things, and have
the families of the earth shall be blessed!
all power] he was enabled to do the “ many wonderful
The new mixture is shown in the left column; and as we
works” with which those three and a half years abounded.
have heretofore shown the views of the other column to be
Farther on in the same article, after the query— "Does
unscriptural, we now merely note the expression above— “ What
not ‘redeem’, ‘ransom’ or ‘price’ imply substitution?”— it
is fully paid fob cannot be accepted as an expression of the
answers that question thus:— “ The terms are commercial in
Father’s love and grace”— and remark that if our contempo­
common usage, but have also another use not uncommon.
rary cannot accept of the Father’s grace and love and gift,
The means necessary to secure any end are commonly and
in and through the ransom sacrifice of Jesus, we fear it can
properly spoken of as the cost, or price of the object thus
never accept it at all, for “there is none other name, un­ gained. The pioneer labors to secure a cleared farm; the cost
der heaven, given among men whereby we must be saved.”
is great, but he will be well repaid. The son costs his
(Acts 4:12.) In this was manifested the love of God, that
mother labor and pain, but his true manhood is her joyous
he sent his Son to be the propitiation [covering] for our sins.
reward. The means are the price and are adapted to secure
(1 John 4:9, 10.)
the desired end.”
We now pass to a hasty review of the expressions of the
Very good! But cannot all sec that the cost of each item
left column. The idea that it was necessary for a God to die,
had to be substituted or given up for each result specified,
as the “ great atoning sacrifice” for a man’s sin, cannot be
before it could be had? The same principle is involved whether
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