Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
October 4, 1951

"Fallacious Arguments"

Vaughn D. Shofner, Fort Worth, Texas

From their earliest existence the Catholics, Presbyterians, Baptists, Methodists and all other denominations which add to and subtract from the word of God to support their creeds, have tried to leave out certain parts of the Bible. Their greatest eraser is the sky-high intellectuality attained by their leaders. They learn so much about Greek and Hebrew that they can prove baptism is not in order to salvation and that it is not really baptism anyway, but is a sprinkling or pouring.

I guess every generation has seen some with like mind in the church of the Lord. It is obvious that there are several in the church in this generation. Under the above caption a brother "proved" by the Greek that the gospel is not "the" power of God unto salvation, and "any argument based on 'the' in Rom. 1:16 is fallacious (Firm Foundation, July 31, 1951, quite naturally). Many of the things he stated in this article we believe and accept, but we have no disposition to believe his statement about "the" of Rom. 1:16. We not only disbelieve and deny it, but we urge every gospel preacher under heaven to preach the gospel of Christ as "the" (not a) power of God unto salvation.

The first thing that we call attention to in this brief writing is the language of the Lord in John 3:3. "Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God." Being born again is accepted by all as "the" (not a) way of entrance into an existence, and here the existence is in the kingdom of God. We don't suppose there is need to prove in this article that being in the kingdom is equivalent to being saved, therefore the one way to salvation is by the new birth.

According to "the" plan of God there must be planting of seed before there can be a birth. Peter says that this being "born again" process is by the word of God as the seed. "Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever." (1 Pet. 1:23) Jesus told certain disciples, "The seed is the word of God." (Luke 8:11)

Paul said, "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also you have received, and wherein ye stand: by which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain. For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, 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." (1 Cor. 15:1-4) This inspired man tells us the gospel is a message declared which deals with Christ's death, burial and resurrection, that it was received and by it the recipients were saved. Hence the gospel of Christ, the seed, is planted in the hearts of men as it is declared, preached. When believed it causes men to turn from the way of sin into righteousness, and by way of the waters of baptism they come forth as new creatures, born again. Paul also tells us that the preaching of any other gospel will bring damnation. (Gal. 1:7-9) And he tells us that faithful men are to keep it the same throughout time. (2 Tim. 2:2)

Then we'd examine each example of conversion recorded in the Bible and learn how people were saved under the direction of inspired men. In these examples we find exactly the same process as that above. The seed was sown, received and people were saved as they became new creatures. Surely if the gospel is a (not "e;the") power unto salvation, at least one example of salvation by other means would have been given.

Now we request that the wise of this world show us another power unto salvation. If the gospel of Christ is but "a" (not "the") power of God unto salvation, surely one so wise as to be able to detect this, understands about and can explain some of the other powers of salvation. Being but a power, there must be at least one other. What is it? If such a person is unable to prove that Christ's gospel is "a" power by showing another, then let him silence his prattle. Grant it that "it is well known to students that the article "the" is often supplied in the English when it has no counterpart in the Greek," and that "the Greek has the definite article only;" this falls a million miles short of proving "any argument based on 'the' in Rom. 1:16 is fallacious." Why the context of the entire gospel message bears out the truth of "the" in Rom. 1:16, and to prove it fallacious demands the proof that another power unto salvation exists. Moreover, we've reminded ourselves of Paul's warning to those who might dare preach another gospel, and since Christ's gospel is the only power unto salvation preached by him, to say it is but "a" power puts such a preacher in danger of damnation.

Yes, gospel preachers, the gospel of Christ is "the" power of God unto salvation, and such statements as, "obviously any argument based on "the" in Rom. 1:16 is fallacious," must be dealt with as any other dangerous step in this age of many dangers. There is no other way. Preach it from the housetops, young men, for by so doing you are sowing the seed of the kingdom in the hearts of men. Let no mortal being wreck your faith in the all-sufficient seed. The gospel of Christ is "the" power of God unto salvation, and let no man toy with it to please his pride.