Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
January 31, 1952

Can Men See The Bible Alike?

Thomas B. Warren, Galena Park, Texas

Once there was a preacher who loved his children very dearly. One day one of his children became very ill. The preacher immediately called the beloved family physician. The physician came at once, and after having given a careful examination to the child, gave the preacher a prescription to be filled as soon as possible.

Realizing that his child's life was in danger, the preacher hastened to the nearest drug store. This store employed two druggists, and as neither of them happened to be busy at the time the preacher came in with the prescription, both of them examined it. One of them remarked, "This prescription calls for castor oil as one of its ingredients." The other immediately spoke up, "No. You are mistaken there is nothing in this prescription at all calling for castor oil."

Upon hearing this conversation, the preacher quickly took the prescription away from them and said, "Since you differ in your views as to what this prescription calls for, you cannot both be right—and you may both be wrong! My child's life is at stake, and I insist upon having this prescription filled just as my physician, in whom I have great confidence, has written it. Since you men cannot agree, I will take this to some store whose druggists can see alike in the matter. I will not trust the life of my child to your faulty services." And he picked up his prescription slip and walked out.

The next Sunday it happened that these two druggists went to hear this preacher deliver a sermon. In the course of his sermon the preacher mentioned the fact that there are many churches in the land. "But," said he, "this is to be expected, since men cannot see the Bible alike. Some see it the Lutheran way, others the Episcopal way, others the Catholic way, still others the Baptist, or Methodist way, etc. Some feel that one must be baptized in order to be saved, while others do not so feel. Some feel that in order to be saved one must belong to the church which Jesus built; others think that the church is of little, if any, importance. But, as I said before, this is to be expected, since we cannot all see the Bible alike."

After the services were over, the druggists gained an audience with the preacher. "The other day," they said to him, "when your child's life was in danger, you showed wisdom in refusing to allow us, who could not see alike the prescription of your physician, to fill that prescription. You knew that when we differed we could not both be right; and we might both be wrong. But now you tell us that men cannot see alike the prescription for salvation given by the Great Physician. The souls of men hang in the balance, and yet you very casually say, 'we cannot see the Bible alike.'

"The truth of the matter is, my friend, that you have allowed yourself to become the instrument of the devil in preaching such a doctrine. Jesus stated the plan of salvation plainly enough for all to understand. He said, 'He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.' Yet you and many other preachers declare, 'we cannot see it alike,' and persuade people that they do not have to do what Jesus said do. Paul said there is but one church (Eph. 4:4; 1:22, 23), yet you Methodist, Baptist, Lutheran, Presbyterian, and other denominational preachers declare that 'we cannot see it alike,' and persuade men to become members of churches which have been founded by men instead of the one church founded by Christ. You say that every man should go to a church of his own choice, and do not consider the choice of the Lord at all in the matter. You ignore the words of Christ, 'Every plant which my heavenly Father hath not planted shall be rooted up.' (Matt. 15:13) You declare that these manmade churches are just as good as the Lord's church, and persuade men to risk their eternal souls in these human institutions.

"You are wise in the physical realm, my friend. You refuse to trust the welfare of your child to men who cannot see a physician's prescription alike—but you expect men to trust their soul's eternal welfare to men who cannot see alike the prescription given by the Great Physician. Is not that prescription clear? Is it not given for men to understand and obey? Would God play a trick on us by putting it in terms that would confuse and bewilder?"

This conversation between the druggists and a preacher has a great lesson in it for those who will ponder. As for us, we refuse to fellowship anyone who would teach such an idea. It does not come from the Bible, for the Bible teaches that there is one faith. (Eph. 4:4, 5)