Wednesday, April 13, 2016

My Conversations With Father (IV)

A couple years ago I called dad on the telephone to inform him about an interesting piece of information I uncovered in reading parts of Purefoy's History of the Sandy Creek Association* that I thought he would like to know. I did not call him to argue, just to give him this piece of information. It related to the fall of Satan and the "non elect angels," a subject upon which he and I agreed totally and suffered for it. I found it, as an historian, quite interesting and one that left me wanting to do more research upon this subject.


Purefoy wrote:

"In 1805, this association convened at Chambers M.H., Montgomery county, on the 26th day of October. Up to this time this body had transacted its business without a moderator, which must have subjected them to great inconvenience.

 5. Query from Little River church:

“Was the devil ever an angel of glory?”

 This query was withdrawn without an answer."

Knowing that controversy over the origin of Satan and the fall of the angels has characterized the Hardshells and the Two Seeders, in the decades following the anti mission split, and in the Powell's Valley Association in the 1970s, involving my dad and me, I thought dad would be interested in this piece of historical information. After all, historians are always delighted when they find rare records and documents. I said to dad, after reading this piece of historical information, "notice that the subject of the origin of Satan was a kind of taboo topic as early as 1805 among the Sandy Creek churches. I had always assumed that this only became a forbidden topic after Parker's introduction of two seed theology, which of course focuses on the origin of Satan and his "seed.""

Well, what do you think was dad's reaction to this information? He said to me - "that doesn't help me." At hearing this I was shocked and disturbed. I responded by saying - "what does that matter? I don't think we should ignore information that may appear to go against our views." I said "you know I agree with you on the origin of Satan and on the fall of the angels, and this bit of information does not change that." I also said - "The citation only shows that this subject was a taboo issue among some Baptists before the time of Daniel Parker and the Two Seeders and does not affect what is the teaching of Scripture nor of what has been the generally accepted belief of the church on the subject."

What his reaction showed was the Hardshell "spirit." It was a spirit or attitude or state of mind wherein facts that oppose any of our ideas or beliefs are ignored, or otherwise swept aside and forgotten.

I loved my father, have great respect for him, and know he is with the Lord. But, these things cannot be ignored. He was not perfect. Nor are any of us. We should welcome the honest scrutiny of others.

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