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      The Warden Who Wants to Execute Every Single Person Who Ever Existed and Will Ever Live

      Saturday, November 22, 2008


      I received this. I hope that some of you can help me out with this because it's caused me great turmoil and distress over the last few days. It appears to be a letter of some kind.:

      "To the inmates on death row,

      The warden is not slack concerning his duty as some count slackness, but he's righteous toward you, not willing that any should escape, but that all should be executed."


      I must admit; this note has me a bit uneasy. There is no question that it says that "The warden is... not willing that any should escape, but that all should be executed." What are we going to do, people? Clearly this means every single person on the face of the earth is going to be executed by this warden! I'm not sure what to do. I read this, and I just get hysterical at what is clearly laid out as his plan of what is going to happen. If you could all pray for me, I'd greatly appreciate it.


      ...now, what if I were to come to you with this concern? What would you tell me? Would you agree with me that this letter clearly lays forth the fact that this warden is coming to execute my family, friends, and me?! Or would you look at it and say, "Lane, I believe you're taking things out of context and acting upon them. Clearly the letter is addressed to a certain people. The warden even takes the initiative to say 'you' before he says 'not willing that any should escape, but that all should be executed.' You've taken the letter out of context and are using it in a way that is different than what the letter is meant to convey. It's obviously talking about a select group of people, namely the 'inmates on death row' whom the letter is addressed to."

      I would agree with your advice...

      ...and I would submit to you that the verse 2Peter 3:9 is abused by many people in the self same manner. Let's look at it:

      In 2Peter 1:1, we read: "Simeon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:" (2Pe 1:1) To whom? Oh, the letter is "to those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:" So does that mean that it's to unbelievers, too? Well, not according to Peter. 2Peter 3:9 (of the same letter) reads: "The Lord is not slow concerning his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance." (2Pe 3:9) Here we have the word "you" just like in our letter from the warden hypothetical. So let's look back to that hypothetical letter. Would you have advised me as the wise person did who told me that I was taking something out of context and reacting upon it, or would you have congratulated me for being earnest and honest with the text and the intention the author wished to convey to me? Let's now place the letter from the warden and the verses from 2Peter side by side:

      "To the inmates on death row,

      The warden is not slack concerning his duty as some count slackness, but he's righteous toward you, not willing that any should escape, but that all should be executed."



      "To those who have obtained a faith of equal standing with ours by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ, (2Peter 1:1b)

      The Lord is not slow concerning his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. (2Peter 3:9)"


      What differences between the two do you see? Is there any? If not, and you would have advised me that I was acting foolhardily in the first hypothetical, why would you not hold that it is likewise foolish to take the verses in 2Peter in the self same way? If consistency matters to you, this should trouble you greatly indeed. If you hold that after all this 2Peter 3:9 is still meant to be taken in the way many do declaring that "God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance" (meaning every single person who has ever lived and who will ever live), then you better be phoning me now seeking to console me for the imminent danger which is coming... that is if you care about being consistent, anyway.


      I'll leave you now with three videos to help you deal with this subject of 2Peter 3:9 and the various erroneous ways in which it's taken out of context and interpreted. If you take verses out of context in the Bible, hey, you can make it even say that we're supposed to "curse God and die" (Job 2:9) It's something to think about. Ponder your ways. If you can't account for your interpretation without leaving words out of Scripture and taking it out of context, it might be time to let your interpretation conform to the Bible instead of the Bible conforming itself to you.








      (This is not the same video as the first one.
      Less than halfway through, an exegesis by James White is presented.)

      15 comments:

      Jeremy Strang said...

      Hey there Lane, my name is Jeremy Strang and I love the content on your blog page. I have added a link to your site on my blog page, www.time2stand.wordpress.com Also check out www.time2stand.net Keep up preaching and posting the truth! Send me a comment on my blog page and I will send you out my new book, Urgency to Rise-a call to the American 'church'. God bless brother, Jeremy

      Joseff said...

      Lane, this is an awesome, awesome analogy.

      You need to do more of these for other passages, such as 1 Ti 2:4, maybe something like this:

      I urge that homework be turned in by all students,
      by 10th graders, 11th graders, and 12th graders.
      This is good and pleasing to the teacher,
      who would have all to graduate and get a diploma.

      Doug E. said...

      Well Said Lane,

      Doug

      ABClay said...

      Lane,

      There you go again...using common sense and logic when interpreting the text of the scripture.

      Grace and Peace...

      ABClay

      Rod Rogers said...

      I love the content; this is an awesome, awesome analogy; Well Said Lane; There you go again...using common sense and logic when interpreting the text of the scripture.

      Well, Lane, it sounds like everyone loves your analogy. That says something about those who read your blog, doesn’t it? Lane, tell me the truth, do you think J. Gresham Machen would have wrote such a complementary comment?

      Rod Rogers

      Lane Chaplin said...

      Hi Rod, I'm sorry for my lack of a reply, but I looked in your comment for some substance to reply to and wasn't able to find any. Perhaps if you provide an actual argument instead of some pejorative statements, I'll be able to respond meaningfully.

      PS. If J. Gresham Machen doesn't agree with this interpretation of 2Peter 3:9, please 1) provide a citation that shows where he disagreed and 2) explain how that has any basis on proving the truth of the argument if he did disagree.

      Rod Rogers said...

      You’re not starting too charitably here, Lane. I only asked two questions, substance or not, you should have answered them. Seeing you have Machen’s picture at the head of your blog and you claim to be reading one of his works at present, I thought it was a fair question to ask what you thought Machen’s comments might be to your analogy of the warden and inmates.

      My I suggest that when you finish “What is Faith?” that you start reading “New Testament Greek For Beginners”? That way you might understand a little grammar and syntax so that you can exegete 2 Peter 3:9 for yourself and not rely on a bunch of videos or resorting to useless analogies to explain yourself. No need to take offence Lane, this is exactly what J. G. Machen would tell you.

      Rod Rogers

      Lane Chaplin said...

      First, because I merely pointed out that you didn't present actual arguments, I'm "not starting too charitably here" according to you. Wow... ok.


      Second, "useless analogies"

      Bless you heart. You've yet to prove that it is a useless analogy, but you're still quick to assert it in your comment. I'm sure that you're familiar with the use of the the informal logical fallacy of begging the question and question begging epithets. If not, please pick up a remedial logic book and learn those fallacies accordingly.

      Also, I have What is Faith? I've read it and have not found where 2Peter 3:9 is contradicted in there. 2Peter 3:9 is not even listed in the verses at the end of the book. I also have New Testament Greek for Beginners. Where in there would you like me to check exactly? Perhaps you could give us actual citation and not just allude ambiguously to entire books, it would be helpful to those you are wishing to help. I would also like to note that James White is a greek scholar, too, and agrees with my interpretation of 2Peter 3:9.


      Finally, you said, "I only asked two questions, substance or not, you should have answered them."

      Here are the questions you asked,

      1) "...do you think J. Gresham Machen would have wrote such a complementary comment?"

      I asked for specific citations as to where he disagreed since your implication is obviously that he did. You haven't provided. I hope this changes and you do provide.


      2) "That says something about those who read your blog, doesn’t it?"

      I'll let the reader who is wanting to investigate the issues here decide if this was a question worth responding to.



      What it comes down to, Mr. Rod, is that basically all you've presented here are a few pejorative statements, reference to two books without actual citations to check this material ourselves, and an abusive ad hominem statement regarding those who read this blog. In other words, if this were the big leagues, you'd be batting .000. Please don't disappoint in future comments.

      Anonymous said...

      Merry Christmas Mr. Rod!! You too Lane!

      Rod Rogers said...

      Thank you very much and a Merry Christmas to you and also to Lane.

      Mr. Rod Rogers

      Rod Rogers said...

      Lane, my question was directed toward you, I asked “What do you think”. I don’t care what Machen would have thought or even what your readers think. What I asked was, “Do you think J. Gresham Machen would have written such a complementary comment”?

      J Gresham Machen was a scholar and when discussing the NT didn’t need to resort to analogies. Exegesis of a text is basically the result of examining grammar, syntax and context. Lane, logic is not the glue that holds doctrine together, exegesis is, and your friends should have reminded you and encouraged you to stick to the text and not rely on analogies and logic, not me. That was the problem I saw with everyone patting you on the back.

      Lane, I believe that one of the major issues in understanding 2 Peter 3:9 is understanding the indefinite pronouns and the context of the definite pronoun in that verse. If you would rather not discuss this verse with me just let me know. I did not intend to be crass in my assessments but I have yet to tell anyone I disagree with them and they like it.

      Rod Rogers

      Rod Rogers said...

      Let me say that there is a lot thrown out on the table of discussion as far as 2 Peter 3:9 is concerned on your blog. You have recently presented the “Anology”, Mark Kielar’s video (CrossTv), James White video on 2 Peter 3:9 and a third video that I am not aware of (you mentioned 3 videos on your blog). I think it is wise to limit my discussion to one portion of this discussion, so if you don’t mind, I’d like to shelf the “Analogy” and Mark Kielar’s video and concentrate on James White’s exegesis of 2 Peter 3:9.

      First, let me say that I think Mr. White is the only one who addresses the issue correctly. Grammar and context are the keys that will unlock the meaning of this verse if it is ever to be unlocked. Much of what Mr. White presents is true, contrary to Mark Kielar’s presentation.

      I would like to call attention to two things in regard to Mr. Whites comments. First, he says that he does not see where the “you” changes. Mr. White says, “You who?” and then lays the groundwork to link all the “you” to the saved (Kielar goes all the way back to the “elect” in 1 Peter 1:1) and therefore the “any should perish” and “all come to repentance” are linked to the saved/elect.

      I want to go back and exegete this passage like Mr. White did but I want to stop at the “you” and maybe see what Mr. White “does not see”. This passage is Eschatological and not Soteriological as Mr. White states. This passage is speaking to those “who have received like precious faith” and speaking about scoffers. Peter calls these people “ungodly” and Chapters 2 and 3 are devoted to these ungodly people.

      Mr. White says, “I don’t see where the “you” changes. I don’t either. The question, that has never been considered, in my opinion, is not “you who” but “you when”? What is the context of “You”?

      I make a simple proposition on this one point. 2 Peter 3:9 is talking about the “ungodly”, all of it. I also maintain that you must decide this issue first. Mr. White made an unconscious decision on this by default, being Reformed. It never entered his mind that the “You” could have been the “elect” in their “ungodly” condition. Let me go through 2 Peter 3:9, commenting as we go through the verse.

      The Lord is not slack concerning his promise: The promise is that the Lord will come back and destroy the ungodly.

      as some men count slackness: I am disregarding the indefinite pronoun at this time. The “some men” refer to the scoffers, the ungodly in verse 3. These “some men” come in the last days.

      but is longsuffering to us-ward: Here is the crux. When was the Lord longsuffering toward you? The answer is when you were ungodly! The Lord was longsuffering toward all of us waiting for us to come to repentance.

      not willing that any should perish: Any? Any who? The only ones that could perish, the ungodly, the ones the Lord is currently longsuffering toward.

      but that all should come to repentance: I’m not sure that the true meaning of this clause has been presented. The verb CWREW means to make room for. It may not mean “come to” but “make room for-consider” repentance. What ever meaning of CWREW the subject of the verb, or infinitive if you will, is the ungodly. They are the only ones who need to come to repentance.

      So you see, 2 Peter 3:9 is an apologetic in defense of Christ’s second coming. The Lord Jesus Christ will come when all have come to repentance that will come to repentance. The Lord is not slack nor slow in His return. The delay is to be counted as salvation, 2 Peter 3:15.

      I have considered only one aspect of this verse, the context of “You”. This is not even the main point of 2 Peter 3:9 as far as stating that the Lord is not willing that any should perish but come to repentance. I believe that the indefinite pronouns are equally against the “You” being in a state of grace. I will cover that next.

      Rod Rogers

      Lane Chaplin said...

      Rod,

      You before:
      "Well, Lane, it sounds like everyone loves your analogy [what people think]. ...Lane, tell me the truth, do you think J. Gresham Machen would have wrote such a complementary comment? [care about what J. Gresham Machen would have thought]"

      You now:
      "I don’t care what Machen would have thought or even what your readers think."

      Please do share the reason for your sudden change in priorities and interests.


      "Lane, logic is not the glue that holds doctrine together, ...and your friends should have reminded you and encouraged you to stick to the text and not rely on... logic, not me."

      Defend the doctrine you just presented in your assertion here without using logic then.


      Needless to say, your position has been demonstrated as being inconsistent and absurd.

      Kirby L. Wallace said...

      Sorry for the late comment, but:

      I don't get it. The analogy doesn't work. It's an anology, but in the workings, you reversed the meaning.

      It should have read:

      "To all the inmates on death row.

      The warden is not slack regarding his promise (to execute you), but he wishes that none of you be executed, and that all of you receive a pardon... Nevertheless, barring that, he's gonna execute all of you."

      Lane Chaplin said...

      Kirby:

      Huh? You said:

      "To all the inmates on death row.

      The warden is not slack regarding his promise (to execute you), but he wishes that none of you be executed, and that all of you receive a pardon... Nevertheless, barring that, he's gonna execute all of you."


      ...but that completely turns the verse's structure on it's head. I'm pretty sure that the analogy wouldn't make sense if the entire structure of the statement is changed from what the Bible says to what you say it is.


      Also, I think it's kind of funny that you state "I don't get it." so you naturally attribute it to being the post's fault ("The analogy doesn't work."). Could it be that it's the reader's fault as to why he doesn't understand it?

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