David J. Keyser PhD
The last hope of human liberty in this world rests on us. We ought, for so dear a state, to sacrifice every attachment and every enmity.

Thomas Jefferson

The words of the LORD are pure words: as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times.
Ps. 12:6
Of all errors, an error concerning the nature of God is the most fatal.
If Christ’s flesh was in the conception or generation changed . . . then I see these consequences;
Edward Irving
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B.S. The Citadel - M.S. Loyola – M.Div. Columbia Theo. Sem, -  M.Th. Edinburgh -  Ph.D.(Theo.) St. Andrews, Scotland

Times Of Refreshing Retreats

Especially designed for Pastors, Ministers, and Priests.

Since the weight of ministry is very different for sole ministers as compared to staff ministers these retreats will alternate between retreats for sole ministers and staff ministers.

Sole ministers are men and women who are the only full time minister to a congregation. They do everything, often with the equally dedicated help of their spouse.

Staff Ministers, including Senior Pastors, are members of a multiple minister team within one particular church congregation.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient Causes; and accordingly all Experience hath shewn, that Mankind are more disposed to suffer, while Evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security.

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And wherein then lay the great meritoriousness of Christ's sufferings? To which question, the answer generally given is, That they procured God’s favour, pacified him, and made him placable. This goes exactly upon the notion of the heathen, that God wanteth and will have suffering, wanteth and will have compensation, standeth to his point, and will not abate one iota of suffering to any one.

And as he had a mind to save so many, Christ came and bore the sufferings which they ought to have borne: every jot of it, but not one jot more; for if he had borne one jot more, the Father would have been unjust, and if he had borne one jot less, the Father would have abated of his sternest rectitude. And therefore it is they have such an abhorrence of the idea, that Christ died for all, that he was a propitiation for all, and bore the sin of the world. Such is the system of theology, or rather the one false view of a great truth, which hath swallowed up all theology, and upon which are constructed the greater part of the sermons with which the Evangelical part of the church are nourished, or rather poisoned.

Of all errors, an error concerning the nature of God is the most fatal; and such an error is involved in these representations, which set forth only one attribute of his being; namely, his holy severity against, and hatred of sin; and wholly obscureth another, which is his love to his creatures, and his mercy to his sinful creatures. Moreover, it representeth God as changeable and being changed, as having a different disposition towards me after the Incarnation than before it, in prospect of the Incarnation than not in prospect of it. And then the question is, What moved him to the Incarnation? it must have been to change himself, to bring himself into another state than he was in before, which are hideous blasphemies.

Yet are they the practical ideas of God, which are too often served out to the people by preaching. Surely this systematic divinity is becoming as noxious a thing as the scholastic divinity ever was. It may do very well as a convenient logical form, to speak of God being different out of Christ than he is in Christ; and for very good ends such language may be held: to teach the Deist and the Socinian, and all who deny Christ's Divinity, what they have to expect, even a consuming fire: but it is no more than the expression of an unreal and imaginary opposite to the truth: it is an accommodation to their falsehood, who are looking to a God out of Christ.

Edward Irving, The Orthodox and Catholic Doctrine Of Our Lord’s Human Nature (London: Printed by Ellerton and Henderson For Baldwin and Cradock, 1830), 100 -101.

If Christ’s flesh was in the conception or generation changed, so as to be in a different condition from man’s, either as it stands related to its susceptibility of temptation from the world, or handing up temptation to the mind, then I see these consequences; which I will not here undertake to open, but shall be content with simply stating: -

First, He is not tempted in all points as I am.

Secondly, He is not capable of being a high priest to me, which standeth in this very thing, that in all things he was likened to the brethren. Heb. V.

Thirdly, He had only two of my enemies to contend with, the devil and the world; and I have no proof that he can overcome the third, which is the flesh.

Fourthly, He never was one with me, and I know not how I can ever be one with Him.

Fifthly, I have no evidence either of the Holy Ghost’s willingness to wrestle with wicked flesh, nor yet of his ability to overcome it.

Sixthly, As Christ’s life is no prototype of the Holy Ghost’s power over sinful flesh, so is Christ’s resurrection no assurance of my resurrection. It is most likely a peculiarity of flesh in that new condition in which he had it.

Seventhly, The whole Gospels are an appearance, and not a reality. They are written as if he was passive to a temptation and inclination as man is; but you say he was not: therefore you put the lie upon the whole testimony of the Scriptures.

Edward Irving, The Orthodox and Catholic Doctrine Of Our Lord’s Human Nature (London: Printed by Ellerton and Henderson For Baldwin and Cradock, 1830), 27 - 28.

David’s Resume