Two Tests

Two Tests
Catalog # SKU3651
Publisher TGS Publishing
Weight 1.00 lbs
Author Name Lionel Lisle
ISBN 10: 0000000000
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The Two Tests

The Supernatural Claims of Christianity
Tried by Two of Its Own Rules

Lionel Lisle

"The following treatise was not originally written for publication; but as it faithfully represents the process by which the minds of some, brought up in reverence and affection for the Christian faith, were relieved from the vague state of doubt that resulted on their cherished beliefs being overthrown or shaken by the course of modern thought, it has been suggested that it may, perhaps, be useful to others in the same position. Although their hold on the reason and intellect may have been lost or weakened, still the supernatural authority, the hopes, and the terrors of the gospel continue to cling to the heart and conscience, until they are effectually dislodged by considerations of mightier mastery over the heart and conscience. 'The strong man armed keepeth his palace' until the stronger appears. Then the whole faculties, mental and moral, are set free, and brought into accord in the cause of Truth."

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1. The belief, concerning the position of mankind in this world and the next, held by the various Christians, who cling to the Old and New Testaments as the one inspired and infallible revelation of the mind and purpose of an Almighty, may be briefly summed up thus:

-That the whole human race, because of the disobedience of Adam, is fallen from its original righteousness, and is under condemnation for transgression of the law or will of God; whether as Jews, to whom the law was given in certain forms of words or as Gentiles, who have the law, the knowledge of right and wrong, written on their consciences: that the eternal justice of God requires the eternal punishment of sin: that thus no escape being possible from the consequences of guilt, the result of Adam's disobedience and their own depravity, the whole human race must have perished, had it not been that God in love, and in order that he might place himself in a position to pardon sin in a way that would be consistent with eternal justice, sent his Son-the sole-begotten-into the world, who became incarnate in the person of Jesus of Nazareth: that Jesus fulfilled the will of God in his life: that his death by crucifixion has been accounted by God a full atonement for the sins of all who believe on him and his fulfilment of the law as if it had been their fulfilment: that by his atonement and righteousness they are thus restored to the divine favour: that Jesus rose from the dead on the third day: that he ascended into heaven: that he is now there waiting until all who are ordained unto eternal life shall, in course of time, be born, when he will return to earth in the glory and power of heaven: that then those who have believed in him will be raised from the dead, or, if not dead, will receive an incorruptible body and a purified mind: that the new heavens and the new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness, shall then be inaugurated: that risen mankind, who have believed on Jesus, will thenceforth enjoy eternal bliss in direct communion with God: that those of mankind who have not believed in Jesus will also be raised from the dead, but, their sins being unatoned for, they will be punished with everlasting banishment from the presence of God: that the doom in each case will be irrevocable, everlasting.

2. The conception of the Almighty, in relation to fallen man, formed in the minds of many believers, is that of a king dealing with rebel subjects who are equally guilty, and whose lives are equally forfeit. He shows mercy to whom he will-those who are thus favoured having no right to this grace; and whom he will he leaves to deserved death-those thus left having no right to complain of the pardon of the others, as their own doom would have been the same whether the others were spared or not.

Other believers, again, rather conceive the Almighty to be in the position of a gracious benefactor, offering pardon through the merits of Jesus to any one who chooses to accept of it, the pardon not to take effect unless the sinner accepts it by acquiescing in the divine plan of salvation. And among the numerous sects into which believers are divided through opposing interpretations of various passages of the Bible, other conceptions of the Almighty and modifications of the foregoing statement of belief will be found. But all, or almost all, agree in dividing mankind into the believing and the unbelieving, the elect and the non-elect, the sheep and the goats, the saved and the lost.

Many Christians maintain that the atonement was universal; but it is doubtful if any maintain that the salvation will be universal, as belief is held to be a necessary condition or a sign of salvation.

Beyond such ideas as these there are two momentous considerations:-

(1.) Whether an Almighty Maker of the universe could be such an one as, were he to carry out a scheme of salvation for a condemned race of his creatures, would do so in a way to have but a partial effect, or to be dependent on the belief or unbelief of those for whom it was devised.

(2.) Whether vicarious sacrifice can in any way satisfy justice, divine or human. For what is vicarious sacrifice?-the substitution of the innocent for the guilty, whether an innocent lamb or an innocent child, or the innocent Son of the Eternal made flesh. However exalted the victim the principle is the same,-that of satisfying justice by committing so gross an injustice as enjoining or permitting the innocent to take the place of the guilty. Would any earthly tribunal be accounted righteous which allowed a self-sacrificing mother to substitute herself for a son, a son for a father? And does not the Christian doctrine represent its deity as the author of a proceeding so utterly unjust?

192 pages - 7 x 8½ softcover

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