The Mail Room
Letters from Volume 24
Welcome to the Mail Room for Present Truth Magazine! This is where we post some of the interesting letters which we receive from our viewers. All of our viewers are invited to E-mail us your comments and views and we will post these views for all to consider!
"The Old Testament"
Your issue on "The Old Testament" is enough to clue me in that, although you are aware of dispensationalists, you do not agree with us. I've been born again for almost 40 years, studying very closely the Word of God, and I'll stick with Darby and Scofield, thank you! Dispensationalism is the only way to dovetail all of Scripture to make sense. We are told to rightly divide the Word of truth. Anything else is confusion. God has a plan for Israel, and He has a plan for the church. Let's not mash them up like a lot of leftovers.
Your February issue of Present Truth Magazine on "The Old Testament" meant a great deal to me because it underscored the one story of the Bible. It is interesting to note that the New Testament writers, following the example of the Old Testament prophets, interpreted the gospel in the light of the exodus. The New Testament message is, "What God has done in the past He has done again." The apostle Paul, speaking of the Rock in the wilderness from which the people drank, says, "That Rock was Christ." 1 Cor. 10:1-5. Mark shows how Jesus entered the water and was driven into the wilderness for 40 days to be tested. Israel failed; Jesus did not fail! One could go on and list the wilderness feedings of the manna versus the feeding of the 5,000, the signs and miracles, etc. I only mention this to say that your February issue helps us see the total picture and enables us to understand why the early church was accused of "turning the world upside-down." Thank you for a timely topic.
Gordon Damsteegt, Reformed Church of Holland Minister
George Eldon Ladd's material on "The Nature of Man and the Old Testament" in your February issue was especially revealing and biblically sound.
Ronald D. Walton, Minister
God bless you for having the courage to delve into Old Testament realism.
Your issue on "The Old Testament" was particularly great, though I would add that I find most of what you print to be useful and particularly timely! Keep up the good work.
Howard A. Fosser, Minister
I have little confidence in your magazine. I can sympathize with the reaction of Pentecostals so prevalent in your "Letters" section. It likely isn't an unfair assumption that you display as much bias and ignorance about their theology as you do toward dispensational theology.
I have read your February issue of Present Truth Magazine and am rejoicing in its truth. How much we Christians need to see and realize that the Old Testament is absolutely basic to the understanding of the New! For both are the two halves of the one great message to one great people, Israel. How happy it makes me to know that I, a Gentile, am one of Israel's multitude through Jesus Christ, the great King of kings—the King of the kingdom He came to establish!
I am a fugitive from dispensational teaching, and I praise God for the deliverance. You are doing the Christian community a great service in putting both Testaments in their proper perspective and showing that all the promises in the Old are fulfilled in the New.
Walter R. Wullschleger
The articles in your issue on "The Old Testament," affirming the total fulfillment by Jesus Christ of all Old Testament prophecies, are the most important and edifying that I have ever read in anything other than the Word itself. A full apprehension by the church of this glorious gospel would bring back the life and power of the New Testament era.
Even though I am a dispensationalist and reject your system of eschatology, I have found many articles in Present Truth to be helpful, especially in a day when so many are promoting religious subjectivism.
I am very impressed with Present Truth Magazine. In fact, my views have changed since I have made its acquaintance. I had been a dispensationalist all my life — or at least until I began to search for myself.
Your magazine came to me about two years ago from a friend who asked me to read it and give her my opinion. I expected it to be another "new" false teaching publication, and I read it looking for error. Imagine my surprise when it directed my attention to the Saviour and His death at Calvary on every page I It has enlightened me in more ways than I can tell you, and I now see dangers in my own evangelical circle that needed to be brought to my attention. Today I test every article I read and every speaker I hear with the question, "Is the gospel central in this message?" Thank you for providing a much needed warning to one who might easily have fallen into the subjectivism with which evangelical churches are saturated today.
After reading your magazine, one has to recall the story about a boy who knew one note and played it constantly to the boredom of his listeners. Present Truth Magazine seems to know one doctrine, and only one doctrine. The Johnny-one-note" emphasis so evident in the magazine leaves the trained Bible scholar strangely empty. Any casual reader of the inspired Volume would realize that justification by faith is not the only truth revealed therein! In fact, justification by faith is merely the beginning of a life in Christ and not the end of all divine purpose for His creatures who know redemption by the precious blood of Jesus.
You are making a great contribution to biblical and historical truth in our day. Your writings on Pentecostalism, the charismatic movement, Catholicism, dispensationalism, subjectivism, antichrist, sanctification, and the great doctrine of justification by faith, by which all —isms are to be judged, have been very helpful and enlightening.
I believe you to be in error in many ways. I am personally more interested in the Person of Jesus than in the concept of justification by faith. Your narrowness and negativity seem to be reactionary bad news instead of good news.
I believe that the doctrine of justification by faith is one of many emphases needed in the church today. However, I doubt that your narrow-minded partisanship is any service to our Lord or His church. Sir, if I had to choose between your logically airtight but redemptionally impotent dogmatic system and that of Rome, mixing as it admittedly does a great deal of biblical truth with a certain amount of unwarranted superstition, I would not hesitate to trust my soul's fate to Rome.
Your presentation of justification by faith has clarified my thinking so much that it is no exaggeration to say that a completely new understanding has come to me. I thank God for your presentation.
I consider Present Truth Magazine to be a check on the disastrous trends of the churches. Never has a doctrine been so thoroughly buried in a lot of "churchianity" as has been the truth of justification by faith. I feel that your magnifying of this great central doctrine of all doctrines comes just before Protestantism slips over the brink of subjectivism.
Why So Few?
Why do so few preachers preach justification—especially when the Reformation was so successful because of that doctrine? Perhaps ministers assume that we laymen know these things. Yet I've been a Christian for years now and have read some 65 to 70 Christian books on evangelism, prayer, Bible study, Christian biography, etc., and could not give someone an accurate definition of justification, sanctification, and other such terms.
With the amount of reading that I do as a minister, rarely have I come into contact with such a clear and forceful presentation of the truth as I have found in your publication. I find you easy to learn from, interact with, and take issue with.
Let the chips fall where they will. Even chips are fuel!
I must say that I have learned more about what Christianity is really all about in the year I've been reading Present Truth than in all the previous years of study. Thank you for stating what the issues really are in the Christian's life.
The quality of Present Truth surpasses any other Christian magazine I have ever read. I am indeed grateful for the way that it has answered, in a few issues, so many questions that I had accumulated during regular Bible reading in my 13 years as a Christian.
Mail Room index
Volume 24 index