ABOUT

The Author



Most people will say that knowing who the author is, is the most important factor in their decision to read or ignore his or her work. This suggests that we base our judgment of what the author has written on knowledge of his or her person. Prejudice, in other words. This reveals that we have already decided which authors we believe, and, whom we believe may be more important than what we believe. Alternatively, perhaps we are only interested in reading things that confirm what we have already chosen to believe. This seems to suggest we believe that Truth is determined by the character of the writer, or the credibility of the message is determined by the messenger.

Questions

Before discussing the background, education, vocation, philosophy, hobbies, failures and sins of this author, may we first discuss three questions?

First: Why would anyone want to know about the author?

Second: Would knowledge of the author sway our decision to read his or her work?

Third: Is information about the author more important than information about the subject, or quality, of his or her work?

Discussion

Is knowledge of the author important? The answer to this question may depend on who the author is, and the subject of their work. For example, consider a medical question. Would any sensible Doctor follow the directions for an emergency appendectomy written by a writer of funny page cartoons? Don't be ridiculous. Would a Judge pardon a man guilty of rape based on an appeal by a writer of Mythology? We hope not; but, regretfully, Judges in the United States seem to release criminals based on "Alice in Wonderland" logic.

We would expect scientists to reject, without a glance, an article written by a convicted liar and imposter who claims to have discovered the secret to perpetual motion, or cold fusion--what ever that is.

We hope our family Doctor would reject an article written by a graduate of the Humbug School of Acting, which explains how to cure old age and hiccups with an herb tea brewed from Hemp leaf, Ginseng and Liberty Cap mushrooms.

We conclude that, yes, knowledge of the author is important. We base our decision on the premise that a graduate of medical school will know little of the practice of law, and a practicing attorney will have sense enough to refrain from giving medical advice.

About Science, Medicine, Law and other subjects of human endeavor, such as gardening, cooking, and auto mechanics, this is an eminently sensible method of sorting writings into categories, one of which may well be "don't waste your time."

This leads to the point of the subject we are discussing. That is, Christian Literature in general, or Bible Prophecy and Eschatology in particular.

A Baptist will most likely reject the writing of a Jehovah's Witness, and the reverse is true. Most Christians of the pre millennial persuasion will reject the writings of non-rapture writers, if for no other reason than they have already made up their mind about what they believe. In general, Catholics read only Catholic writers, and so on down the list.

The question now is, is this always a sensible practice for Christians? We acknowledge it is a sensible practice concerning the fields of human endeavor such as medicine and auto mechanics. Shall we, therefore, conclude we should apply the same measure to Christian Literature?

We may ask, How do we decide who has the authority to tell us what to believe? Do we examine the facts and having verified the accuracy--Truth--then decide the writer is believable? If we decide a writer is believable about one subject, can we safely conclude he or she is believable about everything they write?

To believe everything a writer says about anything may accurately be termed "gullibility." Perhaps that term is repulsive. True, we have a lot to do every day. With grocery shopping, paying the bills and soccer practice, we find little time to verify the details of everything we read. As an alternative to mental laziness, perhaps we can plead a matter of Priority. After all, earning a living does require a lot of time, and may leave little time to verify the truth of what we have already decided to believe.

It needs to be emphatically stated here, that our salvation is not based on what we believe; if, in fact, the One Thing we do believe is that Jeshua is Messiah. And, conversely, those who reject the Son of God are lost, regardless of what else they believe. John 3:16, 6:51, 8:24, 11:25-26. To say the same thing in other words, it is not Baptist or Methodist Theology that saves our souls. It is not "in what" we believe, but "In whom" we believe that we find salvation. In addition, to follow this line of logic to its conclusion, it is not necessary for you to believe what this writer has written in order to be saved.

Why, then, read THE LITTLE BOOK? You will want to answer this question for yourself. Start with asking yourself why, and how, you came to this page. For what were you searching?

Having admitted most Christians are likely to reject the literature of a writer from a Church Organization other than his or her own, we should ask, "Is this idea a good idea?" Why is it the case? Does this reveal a lack of confidence in our own ability to judge the Truth for ourselves? Could it reveal a fear of discovering what we believe is wrong? Would we rather go on believing what we have always believed? Do we insist on believing what we choose, rather than what we can prove--by the Word of God--to be true beyond any shadow of doubt?

This leads to another question: Can we tell the difference between the Word of God, and what we have been told is the Word of God? Alternatively, can we recognize the difference between what the Word of God teaches, and what some person has told us it teaches?

Should we, as did those of Berea, examine the Scripture daily to see if these things be true? Acts 17:10-11.

Measure of Truth

What is our measure of Truth? Is it the reputation of the writer? Is it the Scripture, or is it what others have taught us the Scripture says. Do we compare one doctrine to another, and choose the one we want to believe without comparing both to the Only Measure of Truth?

By some process of selection, men decide who will have authority over them. People, by one process or another, choose whom they will believe, or whom they will allow the authority to tell them what to believe.

God's Messengers

Should we believe--or reject--a writer who claims to have received revelation from God? Our gut reaction, a reflex as subconscious as blinking our eye as a bug flies toward it, would be to reject such a writer. However, to do this without thinking would eliminate the writings of both Daniel and John. How, then, have we judged the work of Daniel and John to be dependable?

How are messengers of God chosen? Do men choose whom God will use to communicate with them? Did men choose Moses? Did men choose Isaiah or Jeremiah? God chose them. Men do not choose to be a messenger, or a prophet, of God.

How shall we judge a man or woman who, in these last days, claims to be a messenger from God? Accepting him or her just because they claim to be from God seems to be a sure path to hell. With the possible loss of our soul in the balance, perhaps the safe decision is to reject them immediately.

On the other hand, is there any possibility that God might send a messenger in these last days? The Book of Revelation tells us He will. Revelation 11:3-11.

The Lord Himself told us that our enemy would send false prophets. Matthew 7:15, 24:11 and 24.

False Prophets

How can we recognize false prophets? On the other hand, how can we recognize a True Prophet? Are all preachers, teachers and theologians from one Theological Seminary true prophets, and all those with a diploma from another False Prophets? Is that how, according to the Word of God, we are to sort the false from the True? No, we are told, if a prophet tells us something, and it does not happen, that is a false prophet. Deu. 18:18-24. Jer. 8:29. In other words, we are instructed by the Word of God to judge the prophet by what he or she says (or writes), rather than judge the writing by the writer.

Conclusion

We must conclude that the criteria for the selection, or credibility, of Christian Literature are in no way comparable to writings about human affairs. We cannot say if a man is a fisherman or a Doctor rather than a theologian, his article about Scripture is worthless. If we choose that measure, the letters of John and Luke must be discarded. We cannot declare that if a man is a sinner, his work is garbage. If we choose that measure, we must throw out the writings of Paul. This would also eliminate the writings of Luther, Calvin, Henry, Haley and all warm-blooded creatures that stand on two legs, since according to the Word of God all men are sinners.

It is not the qualifications and credentials of the writer that make their writing true. To insist the person of the writer makes their work dependable would be to deny the Word of God, and must negate all literature which claims authority from it while denying the measure and standard demanded by it. We must abide by its every word, or throw it all out.

Since we are to judge the writer (or prophet) by what he or she has written, it is indeed important to know something about the writer: Namely, have the things the writer has written happened? Alternatively, do the things the writer has written contradict the word of God? In order to answer the first question, we need to know what the writer has said about coming events, and we need to be a student of human events--else how can we judge the writer as instructed by the Word of God? To answer the second question, we need to know what the writer has written, and we need to know the Word of God--else how can we judge the writer according to the only dependable measure of Truth?

Thus, it is not possible to know a false prophet from True if we do not know what they say, or write.

Nor is it possible to recognize a false prophet if we do not know the Word of God.

Nor is it possible to recognize a true prophet if we choose to ignore human events, since human events fulfill Prophecy.

Judge For Your Self

To judge the writing by the writer is to put sour for sweet, to get the cart before the horse, and otherwise get things backwards.

Since it is more important, according to the Word of God, to know what the writer has said than it is to know which school the writer received his or her diploma from, the Berean thing to do would be to read "The Little Book" and compare it to the Word of God. Let the reader judge this writer's work by the One True Measure, and if it proves false, let it be burned.

Now, if you consider no other words uttered by this writer, consider these: "You who read these words shall not all die before the Lord's return."

In the way you think best, prepare to meet your God.



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