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20/04/2011 / Test All Things

A Letter To Mr Parks – November 20th, 1858

My dear Mr. Parks,

I am much obliged to you for your kindness and courtesy in sending me your pamphlet upon Chastisement. I like it very much, and think it is a very clear and faithful testimony against that error which I fear is making great and fearful progress.

Controversial writing is at times as needful for the church of God as that which is more purely doctrinal and experimental. Each has its distinct and peculiar advantages; for truth requires to be set forth in its purity, experience in its divine reality, and error and heresy laid bare in all their naked deformity. Most errors have in them a dash of truth. The potsherd must be covered with silver dross, or its earthen nature would be discovered at once. But the grand deception is to draw natural inferences from Scriptural premises — which inferences are distinctly opposed to Scriptural conclusions. Thus, for instance, the carnal mind draws this inference from the blessed truth of salvation by grace – “Then the more I sin, the more will grace abound”, which conclusion is the very logic of hell, and as distinct from that drawn by the spiritual mind as Belial from Christ. So, because the advocates of non-chastisement see in the Word that God has put away all the sins of the elect in and through the blood of Christ, they logically but erroneously infer that God sees in them no sin to chastise. Horrible conclusion!

Of course I cannot altogether sympathize with you in your present position; but I am glad to think there is any one in the Church of England who preaches truth and opposes error.

I am, dear Sir, yours very sincerely,
J. C. P.

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