THE SUPREME COURT
by Maurice M. Johnson
The Creator's Decrees Clear and Final!
A healthy imbecile baby could and would quickly reverse the decision of the U.S. Supreme Court were that august body to prescribe for the babe, a diet contrary to the divine laws governing food and its digestion. The infinitely wise Creator not only ordained and decreed the laws that obtain in the realm of human health and hygiene but He has endowed even little babies with a private chemical laboratory enabling them to either accept and assimilate or urp and burp as it rejects the wrong food and drink. Were this not true doubtless most, if not all, of the human family would never have survived the officious and unrealistic diets and dogmas, foods and fads palmed off in the name of superior wisdom and authority.
Scientists Obey Laws—God Makes Them!
Thomas Edison never made a law that electricity would obey. Albert Einstein never created an atom or even an infinitesimal segment of a law that nuclear energy would obey. Luther Burbank never succeeded in getting potatoes or peaches to obey him. These scientists were real scientists only because they were humble and realistic in their respective fields. They merely discovered a few of the laws that the Creator had made and with the humility of mind that must and does characterize every true student that obeyed those already existing laws. Today we have an ever-increasing crop of peanut brains and weevil-eaten souls that are impishly though vainly seeking to put the Almighty in their dirty little test-tubes and supplement Omniscience with profound piffle.
The largest sect in Christendom (The Roman Catholic Church) takes the lead in this blasphemous presumption business. They inform us that precisely as the constitution of the U.S. needs to be and is interpreted to the masses by our U.S. Supreme Court, exactly so is the Bible infallibly interpreted to all of the rest of us by an ecclesiastical court, sometimes narrowed down to but one lone man. The only thing wrong with that is that it is all wrong. The constitution of the U.S. was written by uninspired men with the positive and clearly specified provision that it is to be interpreted by the Supreme Court, which court is likewise composed of un-inspired men. But the Bible was written by men, moved by the Spirit of God (II Peter 1:21), who wrote to other men in words that were divinely chosen—chosen and used for the express purpose of being understood by those to whom and for whom the book was written.
The Bible is the Supreme Court's Decision!!
This spiritual food and drink is super-naturally suited to the inner, the present and eternal needs of every child of Adam. Try to find in the Bible where the Apostle Peter ever warned believers to wait until his successor should come along with ability to interpret and explain his (Peter's) non-understandable sermons and epistles. Just who followed Paul for the purpose of telling the Corinthians exactly what was the correct interpretation of that inspired Apostle's two letters to those Corinthians ? Did Paul send a specially trained professional interpreter to the church at Thessalonica to explain his otherwise dangerously dense epistles to those Spirit-indwelt children of God?
The Good Shepherd Feeds His Sheep!
My friends, just as surely as God equipped and qualified the human stomach to receive and digest only that which is needed for health and strength, so has He decreed: "Blessed are they that do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled". (Matt. 5:6). Thank God for Christ's sublimely simple promise, "My sheep hear my voice". (John 10:27). I'm so glad He didn't say, "My intellectual or ecclesiastical giraffes hear my voice" . . . but "My sheep . . .". Probably many picayunish food-faddists and nervous food-chemists suffer with stomach ulcers and die of acute indigestion while doodle bugs and dogs live out their natural span of life because they are satisfied with the laws and with the food made by their Creator.
In our day of tremendous trivia and Frankenstein artificiality, the tyranny of the professor is making more goose-stepping "yes, yes" slaves than Hitler ever did. And how few Christians seem to know that scholastic sheep-skins have never enabled anyone to better understand the things of the Spirit of God any more than a scientific dissertation on vitamins would enable a healthy baby to better nurse at its mother's breast. How magnificently independent of the second and third party—how splendidly independent of all middle men are all who believe this oft repeated Bible promise, "Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved !!" (Joel 2:32, Acts 2:21, Romans 10:13). Why should the Creator have qualified snails and whales, mice and men to eat physical food without "infallible" middle-men to pre-digest and dish out food to them but when it comes to spiritual food the common man is more helpless than a babe on its mother's breast!! We are asked to believe that that which was divinely given to man in the Bible must be handed over to ecclesiastical refineries to be rendered palatable and digestible for hungry souls. This, my friends, is the most deadly of all delusions! Only "wolves in sheep's clothing" belittle the SHEPHERD'S ability and availability!
True Ministers Preach But Never Interpret the Word!!
Maybe some of you are thinking: "Well, what is Maurice Johnson doing right now if it isn't the very thing he is speaking against ?" No, I am not endeavoring to substitute any supposed superiority or clerical interpretations for the work of the Holy Spirit. He is the only Infallible Interpreter of the Inspired Word of God. When I call your attention to Micah 5:2 and Matthew 2:5-6 as Biblical proof of my declaration that Christ was born in Bethlehem I am not usurping the divine prerogative of interpreting the Word of God. I am merely preaching it to you. And if you listen with an open mind and then honestly check up on me you will learn for yourself the truth that I am giving. I Corinthians 2:12 is God's gracious gift and guarantee to every humble believer and every one of us is either a member of God's nobility or Babylon's gullibility. Listen to Acts 17:10-11: "And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea; who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so".
When the God-ordained Timothy was commissioned and commanded to "preach the Word" he was not told to BLEACH and IMPEACH the Word of the Living God. He was not to dilute or adulterate it but faithfully declare it. Timothy himself had heard the scriptures from his youth. (II Tim. 3:13-17) "He that is of God heareth God's Word". (John 8:47) And, thank God, it is also still true that "the Word of God is quick (or living) and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword . . ." (Heb. 4:12) No wonder then that the Apostle Paul wrote to the Christians at Rome: "I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth, to the Jew first and also to the Greek." (Rom. 1:16)
God Defines His Own Terms
But that word, gospel, must be defined by the Bible itself. A few hundred million professing Christians are taught that when one reads from the gospel he will be reading something from Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John, the first four books of the N. T. Scriptures. That is just about as accurate as for one to say, "That's the gospel truth, I did get drunk last Saturday night . . ." The word gospel, as you doubtless know, means glad tidings or good news. And exactly what is the gospel truth that fallen and sin-enslaved children of Adam need to hear and believe ? They need to hear the gospel which is the "power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth" as given in I Cor. 15:1-5 where Paul says: "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you THE GOSPEL . . . , how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures, and was seen . . ."
Yes, thank God, the gospel, the good news, that He has for guilty and helpless children of Adam is that He "so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have everlasting life . . ." (John 3:16) However, we may read hundreds of verses in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John that are not at all good news to a guilty and helpless sinner. For instance, listen to these words from the lips of the Lord Jesus Christ, "Woe unto you, Scribes, Pharisees, hypocrites . . . Ye generation of vipers. How shall ye escape the damnation of hell ?" (Matt. 23) In that chapter we have eight cries of "WOE" made by the Lord Jesus to the religious "interpreters" of that day—the religious big wigs—and only one immeasurably sorrowful "OH". "Oh Jerusalem, . . . How often would I have gathered thee . . ."
What theological expert or ecclesiastical specialist did that thief on the cross need to enable him to correctly understand the dying Saviour's gracious and tender promise made to him then and there? After hearing the thorn-crowned One quote Psalm 22 that thief ceased to mock the dying Saviour and cried out: "Lord, remember me when thou comest into thy kingdom!" To that sin-sick dying thief the Saviour graciously said, "Today, shalt thou be with me in paradise". (Luke 23:42-43)
The Author of the Bible is the Interpreter
When the Apostle Paul, by divine inspiration, told the younger Timothy, and, beyond him, all true ministers of Jesus Christ, ". . . make full proof of thy ministry", did he give the faintest hint that that proof would include certain kinds of clerical garb, long tailed coats, high vests and artificial connections with steeple houses and external organizations ? If I am speaking to any young preachers, let me urge you to read and reread prayerfully Paul's letters to those two younger men of God, Timothy and Titus. Nor will you need the so-called infallible interpretations impishly heaped upon them by an ecclesiastical "supreme court". All humble believers in the Lord Jesus Christ have been born from above, created anew in Christ and have been given the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of truth, for the express purpose of enabling them to know the things of God. In other words, every single Christian on the face of the earth has the very Author of the Bible as his ever-present and infallible teacher. Think of that, my brother, my sister in Christ! How we must grieve and stupidly quench this Heavenly Dove. We read in I Cor. 2:12 and I John 2:20-21 . . . "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." "Ye have an unction from the Holy One, and ye know all things. I have not written unto you because ye know not the truth, but because ye know it, and that no lie is of the truth!"
Must We Infallibly Select the "Infallible" Man?
There couldn't be a more vicious and spiritually stupid thing than to teach that I must recognize another human being as the only one capable of interpreting God's Word to the rest of us merely because he says he is IT—the sole, special and infallible voice when it comes to the truth of God. Before I could willingly close my eyes and open my mouth to receive whatsoever he cared to drop in the name of divine truth, I would have to personally hear and personally (privately) interpret his "proof" that he was the one and only "infallible" interpreter of the Bible. So, even with that utterly unscriptural program of an ecclesiastical Supreme Court to pass on God's infallible Word, each individual who accepts such pontifical authority must exercise his own personal mind and will constantly in order to allow the elected official to "infallibly" officiate. What a silly circle of contradictions and priestcraft!
Oh! let all of us, who have ears to hear, give ear to God himself. Jeremiah cried out, "Hear ye; give ear. Be not proud for the Lord hath spoken". (Jer. 13:15) And again in Jer. 22:29: "0 earth, earth! hear the word of the Lord." To deny that all humble God-fearing souls can hear and understand His Word, each for himself, is nothing but an attack on God, Himself! Where was there any human, religious "supreme court" to infallibly interpret the word of the Living God for the four thousand years from Adam to Pentecost—from the creation of Adam until the ascension of Jesus Christ? You and I today can pray precisely as David did, "Open Thou mine eyes that I may behold wondrous things out of Thy law" (Ps. 119: 18), and the same gracious, Omniscient and Omnipresent God will open our eyes to see and understand all that we need to know in order to become and behave exactly as He would have us. That truth, and that alone, renders us spiritually responsible human beings. We can know. Therefore we should know. "The just shall live by faith" . . . and "faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God!" "But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he that cometh to God must believe that He is and that He is the rewarder of them that diligently seek Him." "Whatsoever is not of faith is sin". (Heb. 10:38, Rom. 10:17, Heb. 11:6 and Rom. 14:23).
MORE SIGHT — LESS FAITH
It is most significant that as the emphasis upon specially trained clergy has increased, so also has the emphasis upon things to be seen—our ever-increasing inverted pyramid of institutionalized, mechanized and money-controlled churchanity. The less spiritual faith (Bible knowledge and conviction) we have, the more sensuous our religion will become. What does one need with faith in the invisible when he has such expensive, attractive and supposedly efficient institutionalism? Can't he see his institutionalism and his impressive religious BUSY-ness ? How often today one hears these Babylon builders proudly call attention to the sensuous rather than the spiritual—the visible ecclesiastical real-estate instead of the fruit of the Spirit—"supposing that gain is godliness". (I Tim. 6:5)
Honest Bible Reading Makes No Sect!!
When a saved sinner—a new creature in Christ —is walking by faith, having the telescope and field glasses of God's infallible word to his Spirit-enlightened eyes, all of this confused and confusing sectarian churchanity is seen to be exactly what it is in God's sight—a religious Adam with his fig-leaf aprons, fig-leaf tailoring societies—modern religious towers of Babel. Writing from the Roman jail, that God-taught man, Paul, said: "We are the circumcision, which worship God in the Spirit, and rejoice in Christ Jesus and have no confidence in the flesh!" (Phil. 3:3).
"But just look at the results of your theory, that every man has a right to interpret the Bible for himself ! Just see all of these splits and sects and denominations in your Protestantism . . ." retorts the devotee and advocate of a religious "supreme court", a human interpreter. In the first place, I believe that if one man can read and understand the Bible all by himself, then so can another and another and every other. But I should like to add a word or two about that oft repeated figment of these brain-washed deniers of historic Bible-Christianity. Tell me how one single person in all the world ever came to be a Presbyterian or Lutheran or Methodist or Roman Catholic as a result of reading the Bible ? Do you know of any translation of the Bible in all the world that has the name, Lutheran Church, in it ? Do you know any translation of God's Word that has the name of any religious sect or denomination in it—Methodist, Baptist, Presbyterian, Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Anglican, Pentecostalist, Grace Gospel Fellowship, Bible Hall, or any name that is used to distinguish one group of professed Christians from any other group of professed Christians ?
By humbly and prayerfully reading and studying the Bible, we become believers in the Christ of the Bible and it is just as true today as it was at the time of Acts 2:44, "And all that believed were together . . ." "God is not the author of confusion". And all God-taught men are taught alike. By the grace of God all true Christians can hear and obey Paul's inspired command, "Now I beseech you brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ . . . that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment . . ." (I Cor. 1:10)
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