"War, Revelation, and the Future"

Is our faith in the bible mere superstition?

By ROY FRANKLIN COTTRELL, Pastor, Glendale, California

Under the caption, "A Timely Word on the War, Revelation, and the Future," Norman Huffman, head of the Department of Religion at Wesleyan College, Macon, Georgia, deplores the fact that "many Christian people" possess a "faith in the Bible that is only a short distance removed from superstition." The fact that this article appeared in the Chris­tian Advocate, official newspaper-magazine of Methodism, presents tragic evidence of the religious drift since the days of Wesley and Whitefield. Among other things, the author says:

"Any fakir, with a new 'interpretation' of Daniel, Ezekiel, and Revelation, can get a following. . . . The belief that the world is coming to an end usually originates in the Revelation of John. . . . All com­petent Bible scholars agree that the historical events to which the Revelation refers were contemporary with the author, not with us."

Mr. Huffman speaks of the scholarly criti­cism of the New Testament in the early cen­turies, and states that the Book of Revelation "was saved from complete rejection by the church only by being given allegorical inter­pretations." He refers to those who at differ­ent times have "waited for Christ to bring an end to the world," then asks :

"What basis have we for believing that anyone making similar claims today is right? . . .

"Neither can we of today conceive of a New Jeru­salem descending out of the sky overhead, visible over the whole round world. Nor does the physical resurrection of disintegrated human bodies seem a reasonable, a necessary, or even a desirable basis for the future life."

After contrasting the Jewish and Greek teachings regarding the hereafter, the writer continues: "The Gospel of John is entirely inclined toward the Greek idea. It interprets the second coming of Christ as already realized in the gift of the Comforter, or Holy Spirit, and it drops the idea of the general resurrec­tion."

Concerning the latter statement, how in­credible that the clear and positive assertion of the Master Himself should be overlooked or ignored when He declared : "Marvel not at this : for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear His voice, and shall come forth ; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation." John 5:28, 29.

In its concluding paragraph the article re­pudiates any attempt to interpret Bible proph­ecies in the light of current events. With this ultraliberal attitude, the magazine Prophecy takes decided issue, and in its January number, of the present year declares: "When Mr. Huffman says that nothing that could happen in 1941 could possibly be a fulfillment of anything in the Book of Revelation or any of the other apocalyptic prophecies, he is flatly assuming an infallibility in his knowledge of the future that he denies to all men of God who were 'borne along' by the Holy Ghost."

Ministry reserves the right to approve, disapprove, and delete comments at our discretion and will not be able to respond to inquiries about these comments. Please ensure that your words are respectful, courteous, and relevant.

comments powered by Disqus

By ROY FRANKLIN COTTRELL, Pastor, Glendale, California

September 1942

Download PDF
Ministry Cover

More Articles In This Issue

Cornerstone of Christian Faith

The doctrine of the deity of Christ is the very cornerstone upon which the Chris­tian religion is built

Evangelizing Without Local Church Talent

Efficient Evangelistic Methods and Pastoral Technique.

Adapted Evangelistic Methods

A report from Southern England.

Paralleling Two Important Professions

Presentation at Columbia Union Evangelistic Council, Pittsburgh, February, 1942.

Encouraging Word From Africa

A report on recent efforts in Africa.

Let's Stop One of Those Leaks

Are we giving all we can to missions?

Sabbath Vesper Programs

The monthly music column.

Convert More Men in Our Efforts

Advice in connection with a recent union conference session.

Teaching Converts to Pay Tithe

Do we explain to new members exactly how tithes are paid and what they are used for?

Editorial Keynotes

Are we bible teachers or bell ringers?

Broadcasting Restrictions Being Agitated

Modernism's conspiracy to crowd Fundamentalism's programs off the air.

The Radio Read­ing Room

How this new room is a blessing to the city of Los Angeles and aiding the radio work.

Broadcasting Under Bombardment

We feel that this crisis experience, which illustrates the respect of the world for the message of the advent people, is evidence of the convincing power attending the proclama­tion of the truth.

Prayer in the Sanitarium Program

Experience here at our sanitarium demonstrates that when this fundamental truth is observed, men and women are convinced of the essentials of true living, and hearts are made ready for the reception of the third angel's message

Concepts of Nursing (A Symposium)

What are the basic concepts of the SDA view of nursing?

Aluminum Cooking Utensils

Is it unwise to use aluminum cooking utensils?

Food Economy in Wartime

A look at food conservation.

The Minister's Wife Should Dress Sensibly

A Study of Principles, Perils, and Developments.

Toward a Universal Church

Religious world trends are moving towards a universal church.

Prophecy and Destiny

God's control of human history.

Is This Nation Yet to Be Humbled?

How are we to understand Mrs. White's prediction?

Editorial Postscripts

From the Ministry back page.

View All Issue Contents

Digital delivery

If you're a print subscriber, we'll complement your print copy of Ministry with an electronic version.

Sign up
Advertisement - Southern Adv Univ 180x150 - Animated

Recent issues

See All
Advertisement - Healthy and Happy Family - Skyscraper 160x600