Tuesday, October 20, 2015

A Review of Kevin Bauder's Article on 1 Corinthians 12:13

In some previous very recent posts, I talked about an article that relied on almost no exegesis to declare a doctrinal position, and now I'm going to write about one that does the very rare and pleasant act of dealing with a text in order to come to one.  I applaud Kevin Bauder for looking at words and syntax in his approach to 1 Corinthians 12:13.  I would even call his essay the best I've ever read in arriving at the still wrong conclusion to the proof text for universal church advocates.  He falls short of proving his point, but he at least examines the passage in the process -- as I said, a rarity.

The title of Bauder's article on 1 Corinthians 12:13 doesn't inform us of the point of his post, but you'll see it is his argument for a universal, invisible church, reading Spirit baptism into the verse, a commonplace Protestant view.  If Bauder succeeded at showing the passage taught what he says it does, we should all believe what he says, so I think we all should enter into his presentation with an open mind.

As you can read for yourself, Bauder uses the entire first half for writing about the overlapping nature of cases of the noun in New Testament Greek as his launching pad to the meaning of the preposition en (en heni pneumati) in 1 Corinthians 12:13.  The goal here, of course, is to know what 1 Corinthians 12:13 means, not to defend a particular theological presupposition.  If you want a verse or word to mean what you want, you can turn a Greek case or preposition your way.  Bauder argues for an exceptional meaning of en, translated "by" in most of the English translations of 1 Corinthians 12:13, understanding it as the exceptional "agency."  It's root, normal, or foundational meaning is "in," locative (location).  As any Greek student knows, however, there are exceptional usages of Greek prepositions, part of the difficulty of Greek syntax.

In his sixth paragraph, Bauder moves into his purpose.  He provides a list of occasions when en is used in the New Testament communicating agency, and spends two paragraphs writing about the ambiguity, the complexity, of the meaning of en in the New Testament, identical forms translated "in" or "by."  All of this is to argue for the meaning of "by," as in "by one Spirit." He is treating "by" as if it is a major feature to buttress a universal church, invisible body, interpretation of 1 Corinthians 12:13.  It doesn't.

Anyone who reads here knows that Thomas Ross and I have a minor disagreement on the meaning of en in 1 Corinthians 12:13.  We've gone back and forth for years now.  He says "by" and I say "in," and yet we have identical positions on 1 Corinthians 12:13 because the meaning of en is not the major factor for understanding 1 Corinthians 12:13.  I have admitted there are good reasons for "by" in agreement with Thomas Ross.  I don't think of myself as 100% sure that it is "in," and would probably characterize myself as 55% "in" and 45% "by."  Either way, the body is the visible assembly of the Lord, both at Corinth and the one Paul joined by immersion.  Regeneration and immersion are both prerequisites to unify with any one body of Christ.  The meaning of en doesn't change that.  I'm not going to review my reason for believing that en means "in," but Bauder doesn't deal with it in his article.

Bauder's argument that pneuma is Holy Spirit and not the human spirit goes along with his argument for "by" and is the same as Thomas Ross's, a fine one, but it doesn't buttress a universal church position.  Bauder also hints that "we all" means "all saints."  He doesn't explain why "we all" must mean all saints in the entire world.  "We all" doesn't have to mean every believer on earth.  The normal usage has Paul referring to his audience at Corinth and then himself.  There is a lot that Bauder assumes here, perhaps believing that he's not persuading anyone, just preaching to the choir.  I would still be waiting for evidence that "we all" includes every saint on earth.  If I said to you, "we all went to the park," you wouldn't assume that meant everyone in the world went to the park.

I want to digress a moment to observe that those, who see 1 Corinthians 12:13 like Bauder, do believe that "by one Spirit," agency, is an important argument for the universal church.   They would be saying that the Holy Spirit doesn't water baptize people into a visible assembly, so this must be Spirit baptism, a kind of baptism they would say "places people into the invisible body of Christ," the true church in their surmising.  So, if it can't be water baptism, it must be Spirit baptism, they say, and so the body must be a spiritual body.  Bauder assumes that point, as if it is so obvious that it needs no argument.

In contrast to what Bauder assumes, 1 Corinthians provides plenty of basis to believe that, even if en pneumati means agency, that the Holy Spirit is also the agency of water baptism into a single assembly.  A lot of activity in 1 Corinthians by believers is accomplished "by the Spirit," even with the en pneumati construction.  Two earlier general examples of this are found in 1 Corinthians 6:6 and 11 (underline provided):

By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, . . . And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.

However, even more telling is the usage right in the very context of which Bauder speaks, something he doesn't even mention.  It's poor to assume something that is the opposite of what the actual context shows.  It starts with 12:3 (underlining provided).

Wherefore I give you to understand, that no man speaking by the Spirit of God calleth Jesus accursed: and that no man can say that Jesus is the Lord, but by the Holy Ghost.

Then look at 12:8-11 to see everything in those verses considered the work of the Spirit within which the ordinance of immersion would qualify (underlining provided):

8 For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9 To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; 10 To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

Everything that a believer does in obedience to the Bible is equal to and in addition to his submission to the Holy Spirit, His filling, so that the Holy Spirit enables that obedience.  Bauder didn't show at all why his agency position also means 1 Corinthians 12:13 isn't talking about water immersion into a visible assembly.  He just assumes what he doesn't prove.

In the last two paragraphs, Bauder then writes like the argument is over, almost entirely resting on the meaning of en as "by" or agency.  When you read what other universal church advocates write about 1 Corinthians 12:13 and "by one Spirit," you get quite a bit of disagreement even among themselves about what Bauder speaks as already proven.  It is far from proven, and let me give a few reasons (of many, many in addition to these) that Bauder doesn't deal with, that are real trouble for him.  Since this is only a blog post, I'm not going to belabor them too much.

Not necessarily in this order, but, first, as much consideration as Bauder gives to the preposition en, he should look at the word "baptize," because it's only water baptism in 1 Corinthians, the entire epistle, unless 1 Corinthians 12:13 is "Spirit baptism."  Baptizo is used 11 times in 1 Corinthians and the other ten are water, so why Spirit here?  Baptism being Spirit is more exceptional than en being agency.  Baptism in 1 Corinthians is never Spirit, always water.  If it were to be water here, one would expect some announcement this was the case.  That's how it works in proper exegesis, so this is classic eisogesis.

Second, Bauder says that the Holy Spirit is the agency of Spirit baptism.  Is that true?  That's not the model of Spirit baptism prophesied or predicted by Jesus and John the Baptist in the gospels and Acts.  John said in Matthew 3:11, " I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost."  Every case of Spirit baptism has Jesus as the Administrator and the Holy Spirit as the medium.  Bauder writes, "The body is the medium and the Holy Spirit is the agent of this baptism." If the Holy Spirit is the agent of the baptizing, then it isn't Spirit baptism.  This is a Protestant invention. Jesus is the agent of Spirit baptism.

Third, if the body of 1 Corinthians 12:13 is all believers, then Paul excludes himself as a believer later in 12:27, when he defines the body by writing, "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular."  If the body of Christ is all believers, then Paul would have at least written, "we are the body of Christ."  Since it is a visible assembly of immersed believers, Paul wrote, "ye are the body of Christ."  "The body" is definitional with the definite use of the noun, "body." The unity Paul addresses in 1 Corinthians 12 is found in a church, not between all believers.  As you read the whole chapter, it's obvious he's addressing the unity of the church of Corinth, not something hypothetical between all living saints.  The latter is just strange.

In anticipation of a few questions, why does Paul write "we" in 1 Corinthians 12:13?  Answer:  Paul was also baptized into the body of Christ. He was immersed into an assembly just like they were at Corinth.  However, when he writes, "ye are the body of Christ," that clinches the point that each true church is the body of Christ.  If I write, "we all applied to one college," that doesn't mean that we all applied to the same college or applied in the same location.  However, if I wrote, "ye are the college of Harvard," that does exclude me and everyone else except those to whom I write.

Why does Paul say "one body," if he's talking about more than one?  Answer:  "One" is not always numeric one.  Certainly, when someone is water baptized, he is immersed into that numeric one church, but that is not the sense communicated in 1 Corinthians 12.  Each body (church) is one, like the human body is one.  Paul mentions that earlier in the chapter.  The nature of the body corresponds to the unity of a church.  Like a human body, Christ's body is one.  A human body isn't "two."  So even though there is diversity of parts, there is oneness in the body.  Each church has various members, who are still one body. The unity Paul describes is found in a church, not in all believers.

In conclusion and as a practical matter, the quest for unity between all believers spawned by the wrong view of the church has eroded the truth.  The desire to get together and get along has exceeded the desire to know, believe, and obey the truth.  The fools errand of worldwide unity brings the collateral damage of diminishing of and minimization of the truth.  This is one of the more significant dangers, a byproduct, of what Bauder pushes here.


KJB1611 said...

Pastor Brandenburg is exactly correct that just like "in one spirit," so "by one Spirit" by no means proves Spirit baptism in 1 Cor 12:13, as proven, for example, by the fact that none or next to no commentaries on 1 Cor 12:13 before c. 1850 said it was Spirit baptism in contrast to water baptism, but the KJV and many interpreters thought it was "by one Spirit." Compare http://faithsaves.net/spirit-baptism/ for the historical theology (and a lot of exegesis).

Chris Gable said...

Very informative and helpful article. I enjoy reading things like this that "sharpen my sword" and help strengthen my belief in local church doctrine.

Jim Camp said...

I'm with Chris on this. Good read, helpful.
I learned the truth of vs. 13 in Bible college.
The instructor said that the verse was about water baptism, the baptizer was a man, & the Spirit lead or enabled the believer to partake. I laughed on the inside & thought it would take him 4 concordances & a jar of fairy dust to make that verse teach this. I was so steeped in Un. In. that there was no way it taught an thing else. 50 minutes later I was a more informed young man.
Thanks again

George Calvas said...

11 But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.
12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.
13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

It is amazing what men do to evade what the Lord God wanted with his body, the church. Yes, by one Spirit are WE...WE...WE ALL baptized into ONE body. What a Holy King Jacobs Bible will do to correct any misunderstanding. And when Brother Paul said WE ALL he included ALL those who he knew throughout all the churches (he used "we" plenty of other times without including the pronoun ALL).

Independent, local only creates schisms in the body. Anybody understands the assembly of the saints is local, but the body is still one. When Paul wrote to the Galatians the following,

3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.
29 And if ye be Christ's, then are ye Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.

to whom is the "you, ye" making reference to since the "local church" he was writing to was Galatia which was a COUNTRY of Asia that included cities such as Lystra, Derbe, Iconium?

Seriously brethren?

Kent Brandenburg said...


I doubted your authority and then I saw CAPITAL LETTERS.

First, you don't deal with my arguments. Two, "we all" is used seven times in the NT, and for your point to stand, "we all" must be all believers on earth every time it is used. It isn't. In Acts 2:32, Peter says, "This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses." Anyone reading would know that Peter meant himself and his audience, who were in Jerusalem. It's not in Acts 10:33 either, and I'll stop there. Two out of the seven are good enough.

Galatians 3:27 also hurts your cause, because "put on Christ" isn't salvation terminology. Baptism was akin to putting on the robe, the toga of the graduate. If you keep reading, you get the same picture in Galatians 4. The law a schoolmaster leads to graduation of the servant to the son -- the latter faith. When he graduates he's baptized into Christ. "Into" isn't expressing location, but identification. It is eis, not en. Baptism is the public profession of an inward reality. It's water baptism again.

"You" excludes the author. Unity is found in Christ Jesus, that is, unity is found through fellowship with Christ. It's not natural, but supernatural. This doesn't prove a universal church, which is a contradiction in terms, because something universal doesn't assemble.

George Calvas said...


"First, you don't deal with my arguments."

I never have to deal with any ones arguments. I just deal with the scriptures, its context and based on that I get thee understanding.

"Two, "we all" is used seven times in the NT, and for your point to stand, "we all" must be all believers on earth every time it is used."

Again, just because Passover is used everywhere except one time in the NT, does not negate the correct reading of Easter in Acts 12. The context of 12:13 is the Spirit, that by ONE Spirit that we are all baptized by it (NOT water!) into one body. The body of Christ is made up of one bride, the Lord God does not have a harem.

It really is not that difficult unless one has preconceived ideas.

"Galatians 3:27 also hurts your cause, because "put on Christ" isn't salvation terminology"

You missed the obvious point. It was written to Galatians which were Christians in a country that did not all assemble in one place. Therefore, which "body" was he writing to?

"This doesn't prove a universal church, which is a contradiction in terms, because something universal doesn't assemble."

It gathers as the body of Christ in all parts of the earth, as local assemblies. The one does not preclude the other. I proven that by the simplicity of looking at the USA which is one country, many states, many counties, many cities and many communities, yet it is ONE nation that has many members with authority structures setup as governments (1 Corinthians 12:28), for first is mentioned the apostles who went into all the world to establish THE church as one, having many members which included governments (plural) in the church!

Ah, but these local autonomous pastors who love to have the preeminence have no desire to put themselves under authority to no one except themselves. That is the issue!

Can you not see that this is clearly what the scriptures teach "Till WE ALL come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ?


Farmer Brown said...

Good points Kent. It is easy to see how Paul would be using the "Royal We", as they say. Also, the people of Corinth would clearly have understood this a certain way, not being afflicted by catholic (universal) philosophy.

On the other hand, this is only one verse. Arguing 1 Cor 12:13 is like arguing Acts 2:38. The baptismal regen people say, "What about this?", as though it is the only verse on the subject. According to them, if you cannot satisfy them on this verse, their position is right.

I refuse those terms. You answer the 500 other verse that destroy the BR position, and I will answer the one that could possibly be used to support it.

For the catholics and their universal philosophy, this verse is exciting. They can bend it to some slender support, while ignoring a total contradiction in the rest of scripture.

Just look back to Exodus. We should see a universal Israel if we have a universal church. Churches do not replace Israel, but they follow the patterns set forth in Moses. This is why for matters of church polity, Paul constantly refers to the law.

Exodus 23:17 Three times in the year all thy males shall appear before the Lord GOD.

Why? Isn't God everywhere? Aren't they the Jews no matter where they are? Why does this assembly in the wilderness have to assemble? They serve one God and one faith, why can't they universally assemble instead of making the trek to Jerusalem three times per year?

Deuteronomy 12:13 Take heed to thyself that thou offer not thy burnt offerings in every place that thou seest:

Why not? Isn't all Israel part of Israel? Why does it matter where they sacrifice? It matter because the assembly is not universal. When they come before the Lord, they cannot "come where they are". They have to assemble to be assembled.

Moses would not support a universal assembly just based on the law. If he does not support it, I do not support it. If you cannot show me a universal assembly in the Pentateuch, you probably cannot show me one in 1 Corinthians.

Jim Camp said...

I would like to take a shot at answering George on some of this, specifically Galatians.

George wrote
"You missed the obvious point. It was written to Galatians which were Christians in a country that did not all assemble in one place. Therefore, which "body" was he writing to?"

The discussion in Gal. 3 was not that they were baptized into any one body in Galatia (that is the discussion in I Cor. 12). Gal. 3 is referring to public profession of saving faith (vs. 26), which is accomplished thru baptism (vs. 27) - That is how they had "put on Christ"
The problem a Ruckmanite will have with this is the expression "into Christ", which carries a slightly different meaning between the English & the Greek. Since it is verboten to reference Greek for a Ruckmanite, they settle on a Spirit baptism placing a person into Christ (salvation), & turn the passage on its head.

Paul uses the metaphor of clothing in the passage. A common one he had used before & would use again in later books. The majority of times this word / expression is used in the NT by Paul, it is not literal, but figurative. Eph. 6: 11 (the whole armor of God is not something we literally cloth ourselves in), Rom. 13: 14 (One does not literally put on Christ as a garment).
"Putting on Christ" is not about salvation, it is about public profession (like a policeman wearing a badge - We might say "He's put on the badge").

Water baptism is the public "putting on" of Christ, the public symbol a person is now a Christian. This would have been easily understood, had you simply looked at the difference between the Greek words for "in, & into". There is no need to alter my King James to explain this to people (I have a KJV, not a King of Jacob Bible?!). It is reasonably simple.

My $.02

George Calvas said...


The discussion is not on baptism, but rather on the church, the body of Christ. I contend that the letter written to the Galatians, was written to many churches since Galatia was a country in Asia.

So, my question was on which "local body" was Paul writing to since there were at least three cities mentioned that Paul preached during his journeys in Galatia.

I also mentioned that in 1 Corinthians 12:28, he set some in the church that included "governments" (plural) as part of the church structure. Since Jesus Christ that is spoken of in Isaiah 9:6-7 said that "the government shall be upon his shoulder" and the "increase of his government shall be no end", the Spirit of God also established that for his church, knowing that 1 Corinthians 12:13 establishes his body as one, it would be apparent by the time you get to v28, that the Lord God wanted the church assemblies organized and governed.

And to continue on with that, go to 2 Corinthians 8:18-24 and explain how that Titus and this other brother came to Corinth "as administrators" to collect monies as part of the giving of all churches for the saints in Judea, for "they are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of Christ (v23)".

They all keep skirting scriptures that speak against this local, autonomous mentality which was never his intentions for "the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood (Acts 20:28)".

George Calvas said...

Again, we have more scripture to prove that the body of Christ is considered not a local, autonomous assembly.

Let look at the book of Hebrews. It was specifically written to Jewish Christians (even the apostles in Judea) to correct the heretical teachings of Jewish traditions as it pertains to the gospel, Jew and Gentile put into the body of Christ. I believe that Paul wrote this and preached much of it in the synagogues throughout his travels. It helped to bridge the gap of understanding of OT theology such as laws, sacrifices, priesthood, and that all of this pointed to the one God and Saviour, Jesus Christ.

At the end of Hebrews, you have the following benediction:

23 Know ye that our brother Timothy is set at liberty; with whom, if he come shortly, I will see you.
24 Salute all them that have the rule over you, and all the saints. They of Italy salute you.
25 Grace be with you all. Amen.

v23- Paul said that he would come to "see you shortly". To whom is he referring to? Since it is written to Hebrews, it could be to many throughout Paul's travels that met at various assemblies, or it could be the Hebrews back in Judea. Nevertheless, it was not one assembly!

v24- It says to salute "them" as well as all the saints, probably both Jew and Gentile. But, to show the communion of the saints everywhere, all together as one, Paul says that "they of Italy" salute you! Not they of Rome, but all the churches throughout the country of Italy.

Question: How is it that all of Italy salutes all the saints, both Jew and Gentile if there was not a form of ONE BODY, working together, even though the churches met and assembled locally?

The scriptures show that to be true, and it was in God's heart and mind that it be so. To deny it is to be "willfully ignorant" of these truths and many more like them.

You cannot see the forest (the church, one body) before the trees (local assemblies) working together for the common goal of preaching the gospel and making disciples of men. The Lord has a whole OT of ONE nation (Israel) made up of twelve tribes "working together" to first take the land. Once it was settled, they all took their portions and continued to work collectively as well as individually to accomplish God's goals. They had a central government (the temple) with a king, yet elders ruled in every tribe and city.

It is not that difficult, but American Christianity is so full of itself and consistently being divided by the devil, that they are nothing to be reckoned with. All this unnecessary bickering where every man is doing that which is right in his own eyes would be greatly subsided.

Could you imagine if we actually believed the bible and organized the church structure to have one voice for God, yet made up of many assemblies to the glory of Jesus Christ and the kingdom of God.

Never will happen in this country, because even good men like yourselves will never change.

Farmer Brown said...

George, I think you are saying that as Paul travels through churches and speaks of other churches, and then those churches to whom he travels sends greetings by Paul's hand to those other churches of whom he has spoken and to whom he is writing, that proves they are all one body. Is that a fair summary?

George Calvas said...

Farmer Brown,

If you can start with that summary, you are further along than most. You would never greet someone unless you knew them or wanted to know them personally or that a spiritual bond existed beyond yourself where Paul and other disciples were given "authority" to carry forth. Paul would never have written, "they of Italy salute you" unless it was true by teaching them something larger that themselves, i.e., the body of Jesus Christ is that one body.

If you read the Pauline epistles, understand that the body has as gifts "administration" and well as "governments", and that by presbyteries, bishops, elders and deacons would form the basis to establish both the local and church "governments" for the "administration" of "working together" in preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ and of making disciples of men, going into "all the world" to preach and teach the truth.

As part of that one body, we would all be fulfilling the great commission, each one working individually as well as collectively establishing worldwide biblical truth.

I mean, most of you make references to Baptist Confessions of old that churches established so that they could be united? The reason most failed is that they did not establish unity based on "the church as one body in Jesus Christ", but they at least tried knowing that is the direction to grow the kingdom of God.

George Calvas said...

More food for thought:

In the book of Galatians it has Peter visiting Antioch sometime after Acts 15, though according to Acts 13, it was Paul and Barnabas who were commissioned by "the church" to go "into all the world". Sometime after Peter arrived, more came from James (2:12) to the church at Antioch, which at that time caused no small stir.


Why did Peter and those from James leave their "local church" in Jerusalem to come to Antioch when the Holy Ghost already commissioned Paul and Barnabas to go to the uncircumcision?

Why hold a church council (Acts 15) and then tell Paul to tell all the churches and remind the Galatians of that promise to "remember the poor" in Judea(2:10)?

Why did the council make decisions that was "good to the Holy Ghost"(Acts 15:28-29) for all the churches to keep certain commandments?

Again, these kinds of truths scattered everywhere in the epistles show that the church "worked together" to keep the unity of the faith in the bond of peace to make sure that the gospel of Jesus Christ was not to be compromised (Gal 2:11-21), that any false brethren (Gal 2:1-4) would be exposed everywhere, and other such things as the church having administrators to go to all churches (2 Corinthians 8) to take a collection of a decision made by a "government of the church" in Acts 15.

Farmer Brown said...

George, I do not want to give you the wrong idea. I asked my question to give you the benefit of the doubt, thinking perhaps I was misunderstanding what you were saying. Apparently I did not. I hoped I had because what you wrote was baseless, both logically and Biblically.

Your treatment of this reminds me of John's admonition, "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments." "Keep" here being hold fast, as in the keepers of the prison.

You do not keep the commandments. Instead of submitting to the Word of God, you demand the Word of God submit to your strange interpretations, absent any evidence. The things you say are not even minutely supported, and you wrest scripture so aggressively that your conclusions do not even resemble what is written.

Keeping the commandments is submitting to the Word of God, even when it contradicts your own doctrines and traditions. This means you cleave to the Word of God, not object to it or twist it to your own meaning. You disregard it, and twist it to demand it submit to you. That is very dangerous ground.

George Calvas said...

"This means you cleave to the Word of God, not object to it or twist it to your own meaning. You disregard it, and twist it to demand it submit to you. That is very dangerous ground."

My own meaning? Strange interpretation? By the way, no one should interpret anything, for that becomes "private interpretation". The only interpretation comes from God, and that only if you have a dream, and I know of no one that that has happened to since the time of Daniel, unless of course it was by a "filthy dreamer".

I do not demand anything except for what it says. Twist what? Just because you say it, does not make it so. Absent of any evidence? I gave you all the evidence you need, but of course you have no answer, but your own traditions (independence, a harem of church bodies) based upon your own conclusions of reading into the scriptures to resemble what you want to support.

Instead of giving your opinion, take what I wrote, and the scriptures that I showed and give an answer. You will not do it, because you have to handle Acts 15, 2 Corinthians 8, 3 John 10, 1 Corinthians 12, Isaiah 9, Galatians 2 and other such scriptures.

What is of "private interpretation" are autonomous, local, independent churches that will not abide in the body of Christ.

Kent Brandenburg said...


I'm going to tell you something that I know already you aren't going to handle, because you just don't handle anything but praise. The sample size is now very large. No one dare contradict you. They tip toe up to you to give it their best shot, and then you swat it away like you cured cancer. On top of that, you say crazy things, of which I could give you samples in general, but "Holy King Jacob's Bible" is a recent one.

I say, "you don't deal with my arguments," and you answer, "I never have to deal with any ones arguments. I just deal with the scriptures, its context and based on that I get thee understanding." Who wants to talk to someone who says those kinds of things? I think, just dust your feet of him, because he does this again and again. But I hear you saying, I never have to deal with what someone else thinks of scripture, just the scripture. Go argue with yourself then, enjoy talking to yourself.

There are so many problems with your 'arguments' from 'thee' scriptures. When you give arguments, this is 'thee' scriptures. When someone gives them, 'thee' are arguments. Nice. It's a long road to have with someone like yourself, so I appreciate Farmer Brown and Jim Camp stepping in.

My biggest issue that you don't have to answer because it is my issue and you don't answer ones (sic) issue, just scriptures, is that you have an unbiblical view of God Himself, the Trinity. Why should I talk about the church and the body of Christ and unity, if you don't have the right view of God. I might do that out evangelizing, just to answer questions, but I doubt it. I would keep bringing him back to God and salvation.

Sure, you won't like this, and I'll get name-calling in CAPITAL LETTERS. Fine. So I'm not going to get into "the body of Christ" and unity with you.

George Calvas said...


Jacob is another form of the word James that came from either the French or Spanish translation of Jacob. You probably knew that.

It might be true that during the time of the writing of the Holy Bible that king James was a sodomite, therefore IF it were true, I would rather associate the name of the Holy Bible to Jacob which is in line with the generation of Jesus Christ, therefore "the Holy King Jacobs Bible" or better yet, the Holy Authorized Bible.

I am not arguing with anyone. You put down your understanding of 1 Corinthians 12, and I rejected it as "your understanding" that has fallen short. I gave you plenty of verses that trouble you... governments of the church in 12:28 and "administrations" (12:5) that have to do with "administering" decisions made in Acts 15 and the brethren collecting monies from all the churches (2 Corinthians 8). You have difficulty with the salutations of the brethren in Italy (Hebrews 13:24) to all the Jewish Christians or those from the "church at Babylon, elected together with you" (1 Peter 5:13).

What, is this all hyperbole? I trow not.

I can unite with anyone that is truly a repentant sinner who is born-again, that loves the Lord Jesus Christ, and that tries to live a life that is holy and pleasing to the Lord. That is "abiding in the body of Christ". I can abide with you, Farmer Brown, Thomas Ross and others in this blog without any issue, because I am commanded to "love my brethren". I know enough bible to spiritually discern many of the brethren, whether they be spiritual or even carnal. I have no problem "loving my brethren" even when I do not agree with them in all points, including some Charismatics, Protestants, Baptists, Holiness, etc. I am not saying that I agree or fellowship with their "denominations", but I take every brother as an individual according to truth and as God gives me grace.

Really, brother, I am certain that I personally can come to California, walk right up to you, shake your hand and tell you that "I love you as a brother in Christ".

Can you do the same?

Farmer Brown said...

The problem is George does not make arguments. He says things he says are arguments and demands they be answered, but they are not arguments. An argument has a proper progression and support.

This reminds me of a conversation I had with a christian man and his wife about the role of women. He cited Lydia (seller or purple) to prove it was proper for women to lead and be in leadership. He said she sold purple, therefore she owned a business, therefore she had male employees, therefore it is proper for women to lead. I was challenged to prove that was not the case if my position was correct.

The text about Lydia does not contain any of that information. It simply says she was a seller of purple. Everything else is made up. You cannot argue against something that is made up except to point out it is made up. The person putting forth the position will demand you address their position, but there is no position, just some made up assumptions.

This is what George is doing. He is adding all sorts of extraneous information and demanding you address it. For example he says, "You would never greet someone unless you knew them or wanted to know them personally or that a spiritual bond existed beyond yourself where Paul and other disciples were given "authority" to carry forth. Paul would never have written, "they of Italy salute you" unless it was true by teaching them something larger that themselves, i.e., the body of Jesus Christ is that one body."

Now prove that wrong or there is a universal church. There is no basis for anything in those sentences. All we know is some people saluted some other people. Everything else is invented by George and shoehorned in to support his doctrine. George then says you have to argue against his invented additions. No I don't. His additions have no authority.

Then he does the question thing. This is reminiscent of a 911 truther who looks all serious and then asks, "Can gas melt steel?" In his mind, by asking that question he has proved that thousands of Americans and foreigners conspired to kill thousands of other Americans and foreigners for some unknown reason. It does not prove that. It does not prove anything. Questions are not proofs.

"Why did Peter and those from James..." "Why hold a church council (Acts 15)..." "Why did the council make decisions..."

Those are questions, not Biblical proofs. "Answer my question or there is a universal church."

No. Present Biblical evidence, not silly assumptions and leading questions, and then address the responses to defend you position. That is proper. This is making an argument. It is not dramatic assumptions (people greeted = universal church) or leading questions.

Jim Camp said...

I agree with the honorable Farmer. I've read a lot of Ruckman over the years, & this is the manner in which he argues. Making dramatic statements of absolute truth that all should be astonished by, & if you dare disagree, it is because you don't really believe the "Holy King James Bible".
From the time George began commenting here, I could tell what he was reading. Those who follow Ruckman simple parrot what they read in his books, whether good or bad. I seriously doubt that any one of them would come up with the often ridiculous positions Ruckman holds on their own. It is simply following "the great leader", much like the Hyles crowd, or any other "great leader".

George Calvas said...


Some people?? They of Italy salute you! Prior to that it says to salute "all of them that have the rule over you and all the saints...".

Leading questions. Seriously. You think because you can put logical thoughts together in a form that seems right to you presupposes that you have answered any of the questions or have given any reasonable explanation to the scriptures sited:

"All we know is some people saluted some other people. Everything else is invented by George and shoehorned in to support his doctrine."

Some people? It says all. Is all then mean some? Really? And you believe that you made a valid argument?

Jesus Christ asked many questions to prove what is actually written and how it is to be understood. I am following an excellent example. Your problem is that you refuse to answer any of the questions because you just might find yourself in a position that proves you are wrong.

Therefore Farmer, either answer the questions, make some valid arguments as to what actually transpired in Acts 15, 2 Corinthians 8, 1 Corinthians 12, 1 Timothy 4:14 (presbytery) and many other places or learn something that you have never considered. You do not like the biblical evidence I present, and the questions I ask. You consider them "silly" because that is how you hide from giving an answer!

Proper? Ever read the prophets? I am not hear to "argue" by making "arguments" and following some set of rules that you consider "proper". I set forth the truth, now deal with it, or just keep to yourself. Attacking me only shows that you are spiritually weak.

Kent Brandenburg said...

Farmer and Jim,

I think what both of you are saying is true. "I just read scripture." OK. I'll take that at face value. I will. You can't have a discussion without believing someone. Love believeth all things. The jot is the smallest letter of the Hebrew alphabet, so preservation of scripture is in the original language. God preserves the letters the text was written in. That's coming from the actual passage. "God preserved His Word in the English Holy King Jacob's Bible, because James was a homosexual." What verse do you have for that? "SCREAMING! YOU PROUD ARROGANT FOOL!" Aaaaaah. Yes. I get it now that my eardrum is bleeding. Who really is making a scriptural argument?

George Calvas said...


I really enjoyed that.

"Who really is making a scriptural argument?"

Certainly not you, nor Farmer or for that matter, anyone else.

George Calvas said...

I just thought this was hilarious if not just plain nonsense:

As Thomas wrote "reasons to join" to which Kent would agree with the DBS statement below:

"This is the WORD OF GOD!" while at the same time realizing that, in some verses, we must go back to the underlying original language Texts for complete clarity, and also compare Scripture with Scripture.

Yet in a previous comment, this tirade appears:

"God preserved His Word in the English Holy King Jacob's Bible, because James was a homosexual." What verse do you have for that? "SCREAMING! YOU PROUD ARROGANT FOOL!" Aaaaaah. Yes. I get it now that my eardrum is bleeding."

All I did was change a name associated with the Authorized Bible from James to Jacob (perfectly legitimate since Jacob is the Hebrew form of James) by which the Holy Bible is named and that based on some "historical documents" that James could have been a sodomite. The "Holy King Jacobs/James Bible" is NOT the "words of God", but a name associated with the bible that contains the very words of God. By the way, it is also known as the AV, KJV, King James Version, and the Holy Bible.

Yet you get bent out of shape to ask me for a verse to support changing the name of the Holy Bible and yet all if not most of you have no problem changing words IN the bible without any support OF the bible (based on quote from DBS)?

Talking about one who "strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel"