header image
Home arrow Writers arrow Nichols-Holder Debate arrow Fourth Night: Nichols' Second Affirmative
Fourth Night: Nichols' Second Affirmative PDF Print E-mail
Written by Holder/Nichols   


Mr. Moderator, Honorable Opponent, Ladies and Gentlemen: I am before you to make my closing speech in the debate. I am calling attention unto my friend‘s speech. He says he did not say “Faith is a work.” Well, two or three of us copied it today from the wire recorder, and my statement right now will appear in the book. Let the reader turn back to his last speech of last night and you find that he said, “Faith is a work.” Now, if it were a slip of the tongue, I do not want to capitalize upon it, nor make any point upon it; but if he said it trying to dodge some point when he was in a tight place, and then said something else at another time, again trying to dodge, then he must suffer the consequences of my exposure tonight.

He said “beleiveth” is not the same as “faith,” and that it is true that we “believe” by the word, but he says “faith” does not come by the word. Well, if he knows anything about Greek, he knows that both “belief” and “faith” come from the same Greek word (“pisteuo”) and are used interchangeably. Jesus said to doubting Thomas, “Be not faithless, but believing.” (Jno. 20:27.) There was “believing” on one side and “faithless” on the other side, the two words used interchangeably. The two words are used interchangeably in Heb. 11:6, where he says, “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe—” here is the verb form of the word. “Faith” is the noun, or name of the verb or act of “believing.” Rom. 10:17 says, “So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” The American Standard Version says, “So belief cometh of hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” (Rom. 10:17). Therefore, “belief” and “faith” are the same. The King James Version says, “Faith” comes by hearing the word, and the Revised says “belief” comes by hearing the word. But my friend says only “belief” comes by the word; he tries to make a difference between “belief” and “faith.”

On Luke 19:10 my friend said Jesus does the seeking and the saving—“The Son of man is come to seek and to save that which was lost.” Of course, there is a sense in which the Lord does that, but there are conditions for us to comply with in order to be saved by him who came to seek and save us. And did he come to seek and save ALL THE LOST? Or, just a favored few of them, like my friend thinks it was?

Jno. 3:17, “God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.” So he came to save the world! Again, “The Father sent the Son to be the Savior of the world.” (1 Jno. 4:14.) Jesus says, “I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.” (Jno. 12:47.) Well, what “world”? He says it was the “world” he came “not to judge” now, but which he will judge later. So he came to save the “world” that is to be judged later. I wonder if my friend thinks only the ‘elect’ are to be judged!

1 Tim. 2:6, “Who gave himself a ransom for all”—. My friend said, “Yes, ‘to be testified in due time’.” That does not change the fact that “He gave himself a ransom for all.” So he paid the ransom price for “all,” and is therefore “the propitiation . . . for the sins of the whole world.” (1 Jno. 2:2.) What we need to do now is to meet the conditions. Rom. 3:25 says, “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood.” It is not without faith that we got the benefit of that “propitiation.”

Then he came to the heathen and talked about the heathen, as though he thinks Christ died for all the heathen. He will not say my friends—never will he say—that Christ died for all the heathen. He does not believe that all the heathen will be saved, any more than I do. He does not: he believes that only the ‘elect’ will be saved. But if all the heathen are ‘elect,’ and nearly all of us are ‘non-elect,’ then I am sorry that we live in an intelligent land—I am sorry that we were not all born and reared in heathenism so all of us could have been ‘elect’—if indeed all the heathen are ‘elect!’ Friends, there is but one “—ism” that offers salvation to the whole universe, WITHOUT CONDITIONS, and that is UNIVERSALISM;—and he is no UNIVERSALIST! But I have proved that the salvation of the heathen is conditional on the heathen‘s part. Paul said, “The scripture, foreseeing” (before it happened) “that God would” (then future in tense) “justify the heathen through faith.” (Gal. 3:8.) This gospel, or ‘good news was preached before—before fulfilled—unto Abraham, that in his seed—which is Christ—all the “nations”—” all the families,” or “all kindreds” of the earth would be blessed, justified “through faith.” Remember Paul says, “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God.” (Rom. 10:17.) “FAITH,” not just “belief” as he has it. As to the heathen, “The wicked shall be turned into hell, with all nations that forget God.” (Psa. 9:17.) God can’t be swayed by numbers, votes, and counting noses! You can‘t tell where God is by finding the big crowd, or a little one. Remember: God would damn a whole “nation” that forgets him, as quickly as he would an individual! That is what it says! Paul says, “But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost.” (2 Cor. 4:3.) He did not say if it be hid, all without it will be saved! If all are saved without it, then we ought to do away with it, let the world forget it, and all go to heaven, and have Universalism! I am asking him again, “DID CHRIST DIE FOR ALL THE HEATHEN?”

I am calling attention again to Mark 16:15-16. I am doing about all I can do to get the gospel to every creature in all the world. I conduct above seven hundred services per year to spread abroad the light of the gospel. My conscience is clear. I wonder if his is not bothering him, since he brings up the question of the heathen so often???

Acts 10. My friend says I admitted Cornelius had faith before the preacher came to him. Yes, he had faith in God, but he had had that all down the line! He needed faith in Christ also. Jesus said, “Ye believe in God, believe also in me.” (Jno. 14:1.) Since Christ has come, all must believe in him. Cornelius’ religion was out of date after the cross, and he had to obey the gospel to be saved, just like everybody else.

My friend has paid no attention to my arguments on Cornelius, such as Eph. 3:6. And I am not afraid for him to notice this passage even in his last speech! Paul says “That the Gentiles—” that is Cornelius and his crowd—they are the first—“That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his PROMISE in Christ BY THE GOSPEL.” (Eph. 3:6.) I am trying to get the gospel to them. What are he and his people doing about it? ‘We are sending out and supporting hundreds of missionaries and workers to get the gospel to those who have it not. In Acts 15:7 Peter says, “That the Gentiles by my mouth should hear the word of the gospel and believe.” They were not to get faith in some mysterious way, but by the preacher’s “mouth.” That is why God sent Peter to Cornelius and his family—that they might believe in Christ and be saved. In his sermon to them, Peter said, “To him give all the prophets witness that through his name whosoever believeth in him shall receive remission of sins.” (Acts 10:43.)

I Tim. 1:15, “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief.” That is right; but how many sinners did Christ come to save? Did he just come to save Paul and a few others? I am contending that he came to save all sinners—that he came to save the world. He said, “I came not to judge the world, but to save the world.” (Jno. 12:47.)

Then my friend said I asked him the question as to when the blood was shed for him. I did not! That is another trick! I did not ask such a question. That is ridiculous! He dodged the question that I did ask him, which was: When were you saved by the blood? When it was shed? Or, since you were born into the world and sinned? I also wanted to know (if he says he was saved before he ever sinned) when did he get the new birth? Did he get the new birth before he got the old birth, the natural birth? I asked him questions like that, and he dodged to hide his doctrine!

Again I say, I have run him out of the Bible! He is now trying to create prejudice, though he said he would not do that sort of thing! That is why he brought up Alexander Campbell: hence I have run him out of the Bible. I am no more interested in Alexander Campbell than he is. I would accept the truth from any man. But I would not accept error from Campbell any more than from any one else. I have read but very little of Campbell’s writings, and know very little about what he taught; I care no more for what he says than for what Wesley or some other mere man says. I am interested iii the Bible, and not in the writings of Wesley, Campbell, nor some other man, nor what some human creed says. What some creed or mere man says has no more weight with us than a feather in a cyclone! I must meet the Lord in judgment, and Jesus says, “The word ‘that I hove spoken the same shall judge him in the last day.” (Jno. 12:48.) The other night I challenged my friend, when I had a chance to reply to name just one thing that I teach or practice in religion that started with Campbell, and which I can’t find in the Bible before Campbell was born. He has not tried it and it would be unfair now for him to try it in his last speech when he knows I can’t reply and expose his effort.

He says we teach that the flood is an analogy of heaven and hell. I have never taught it, nor heard of such teaching.

Then, to further create prejudice, he read from Catholic literature about baptism. If I were prone to reply in kind, I would read where Catholics believe (like my friend) that little babies are born in sin, then cry out: “Catholicism, Catholicism,” etc. But that is not debating the issue! It is nothing but an effort to create prejudice.

He quoted Rom. 3:12, “They are all gone out of the way.” But I had already used that passage, and coupled it with Isa. 53:6, “All we like sheep have gone astray.” That is why we needed a Savior to come and save us. But in Rom. 3, let us pass on down to verse 28, (and I used this in my other speech, but he did not make reply); Paul says, “Therefore, we conclude that a man is Justified by faith without the deeds of the law.” (Rom. 3:28.) Yes, we are “justified by faith” and without the deeds of “the law.” Faith and its obedience, is not the same as the “deeds of the law.” “The law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” (Jno. 1:17.) And, “Ye are not under the law, but under grace,” (Rom. 6:14.)

He referred to the confession in 1 Jno. 4:15, “Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God.” That referred to a confession to be made BY CHRISTIANS. Anti-Christ denied this confession. (Verse 3.) But the unsaved sinner must make it also: Paul says the apostles preached “that if thou shall confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth, confession is made unto salvation.” (Rom. 10:9-10.)

He used Col. 2:9-10, “In him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily, and ye are complete IN HIM.” Why, sure! But we must get INTO him where we are complete, for “Ye are complete IN HIM,” not out of him. And so, how do we get into Christ? Paul says, “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.” (Gal. 3:27.) My friend challenged me to find water in that! I can prove it by him. He says (on page 50 of his little book) that this passage means “WATER BAPTISM.” He can’t deny it, because there it is! This has been my reply time and again, and he has paid no attention to it.

Then he came to Rom. 6:3-4, and argued that the word “therefore” proves there were two baptisms in these verses. But not so. “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death!” (Rom. 6:4.) This baptism was “INTO DEATH.” But so was the baptism of verse 3: “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death.” (Rom. 6:3.) The baptism that put them “into Jesus Christ” also put them “into his death.” (Verse 3.) That one put them “into his death!” The same is true of the next verse: “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death.” (Rom. 6:4.) It is the same baptism in both verses, for it put them “into his death” (Verse 3), and “into death.” (Verse 4.) My friend just quibbled about it. No scholar would endorse the position he has taken on that.

Again, he said we are buried “with him.” Yes, he was buried in a tomb, and we are buried “with him”—we are buried ‘too; but not in the same grave with him. He was buried and we are buried too, “buried with” him in that sense; like we “die with” him—one person may “die with” another when they die in a common cause, as King Saul and his amour bearer, dying one like unto the other by suicide. So we are “buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him.” (Col. 2:12.) So, baptism has a resurrection in it and puts us “into death”—into the benefits of his death—puts us “into Jesus Christ” “IN” whom we are “complete.” “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12.)

I want to call attention to a point or two missed in his speeches last night, and round up the corners. Paul says, “Hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son.” (Col. 1:13.) My friend argued that salvation is a “translation,” and that it is not conditional on our part, but that we are passive in it. It is true that God does the translating, but he does it upon the conditions that we obey the gospel. I want to show you a man who was “translated” upon conditions: Paul says, “By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death.” Does that prove he had not done anything? It says, “By faith (he) was translated.” God translated him, but it was “by faith” that he was translated. Had he been an unbeliever God would not have translated him; so he was translated on conditions! It says, “Before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.” (Heb. 11:5.)

2 Cor. 5:14, “The love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead.” So, Christ died for all that were dead—all who were dead in trespasses and sins. “And that he died for all”—all will not accept it, but those who do will live—-“that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them.” Hence, a universal atonement. But they don‘t live unconditionally: “He that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” (Jno. 3:36.)

Then Mark 10:15, “Whosoever shall not receive the kingdom of God as a little child, he shall not enter therein.” To receive the kingdom of God as a little child is to receive it as humbly as a little child is humble. In Matt. 18:1-4 Jesus set a little child in their midst and said, “Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” “Be converted”—that is action on our part, conditional on our part—”and become as little children”— that is conditional on our part. So, in Acts 3:19, Peter says, “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out.” Therefore, conversion is conditional on our part. It is brought about by the word of God. “The law of the Lord is perfect converting the soul.” (Psa. 19:7.)

He came to the jailer‘s case again last night. In answering the question, “What must I do to be saved?” Paul and Silas said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved and thy house.” (Acts 16:30-31.) My friend says this meant the jailer wanted to know how to be saved from being put to death by the Roman law, and that the prisoners beside Paul and Silas would escape, etc. But there is no proof of that. The earthquake had occurred, and all saw evidence of the power of God; and all were so awed by it they did not want to escape. They could have done so had they wanted to, no doubt. Paul had already told the Jailer: “Do thyself no harm”— for the prisoners are gone??? All gone but me and Silas??? No, but “We are alt here.” (Acts 16:28.) Not a prisoner had escaped! And so, “Don‘t commit suicide.” Thus the jailer had done been saved from suicidal death. And there was no danger of the Roman law, for the law did not have jailers put to death when no prisoners escaped, as in this case. In Acts 12, the prisoner had escaped when the keepers were put to death.

I used Rom. 14:15 “Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died.” My friend said “Destroy” there only meant “don‘t cast him away.” Let us see about that: it is from the same Greek word translated “perish” in I Cor. 8:11, “And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish for whom Christ died.” There is the same Greek word rendered “destroy” in the one passage but “perish” in the other. Because of the eating of meats offered to idols these persons might be led off into idolatry and be “destroyed” and “perish”—be lost! In Rev. 21:8 “Idolaters” go into the lake of fire and brimstone. So, if influenced into idolatry by those eating meats, they would be lost. The Greek is “apollumi” and is rendered “destroy” in Matt. 10:28, “Fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” That is the same Greek word! The same Greek word is rendered “perish” in 2 Pet. 3:9, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to usward not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” It is the same word used in Jno. 3:16, For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Here is “everlasting life” on one side, and “perish” on the other. Hence, one could be lost, for whom Christ died. (Rom. 14:15.)

He wanted to know if I am one of the ‘elect.’ I have used 2 Thess. 2:13 time and again: Paul says, “God hath from the beginning CHOSEN you to salvation THROUGH sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth.” I proved that we are “sanctified by faith.” (Acts 26:18.) That makes it conditional. So, we are chosen through sanctification and “belief of the truth.” Chosen “through” that—that is the way I was chosen or ‘elected.’ When I believed the’ truth and obeyed it, I was chosen, became one of God ‘s ‘elect,’ and God now has no ‘elect’ other than those who thus obey the gospel.

My friend thinks God‘s people were always his people even before they were born into the world. But Paul says, “As he saith also in Osee, I will call them my people, WHICH WERE NOT MY PEOPLE; and her Beloved, WHICH WAS NOT BELOVED. And it shall come to pass, that in the place where it was said unto them, ye are not my people: there shall they be called the children of the living God.” (Rom. 9:25-26.) Therefore, God’ people have not always been his people! Peter says, “Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy.” (1 Pet. 2:10.) That is the truth of the matter!

Summing up, I have proved in this discussion that Christ died for all men—“Gave himself a ransom for all.” (1 Tim. 2:6.) My friend would not have written that into the Bible. he would I have said, “That would get us Old Primitive Baptists into trouble.”

Jno. 3:16, “God so loved the world—” he would have put the word ‘elect’ instead, had he been writing that, you know. But “God so loved THE WORLD, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” God loved the “world” and gave his son for it, and some of them will “perish” because they would not “believe.” That is the “world” he is talking about. “The Father sent the Son to be the Savior of the WORLD.” (1 Jno. 4:14.) Christ said, “I came not to judge the WORLD, but to SAVE THE WORLD.” (Jno. 12:47.) “And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not FOR OURS ONLY, but also FOR THE SINS OF THE WHOLE WORLD.” (1 Jn. 2:2.) My friend says it was for ours only—’ elect’ only. But John said “NOT FOR OURS ONLY, but also FOR THE SINS OF THE WHOLE WORLD.” I tell you, my friends: God loves you, Christ died for you, and if you are not saved it is because you refuse to believe the gospel and obey it!

Acts 17:30, “Now commandeth all men every where to repent” And that is in view of a coming judgment: “Because he hath appointed a day, in which he will judge the world in righteousness.” (v. 31.) That is why God calls on the world to repent. Yes, the “world” that is to be judged is commanded to repent. But it would do no good to have the “world” repent unless Christ had made an atonement for the “world.” But the fact that God commands all to repent—commands them to do it—is proof that an atonement has been made for them, so they could be saved.

I have proved that the gospel is necessary to salvation. “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God unto salvation, to every one that believeth.” (Rom. 1:16.) And, “By which also ye are saved,” said Paul, to the Corinthians. (1 Cor. 15:1-2.) “Who shall tell thee words whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved.” (Acts 11:14.) His house could be saved on the same terms by which he could be saved—by the word. “Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house.” (Acts 18:8.) To the jailer they said, “BELIEVE on the Lord Jesus Christ, and THOU SHALT BE SAVED, AND THY HOUSE.” Acts 16:31.) After baptism he rejoiced believing in God with all his house.” (v. 34) That is the way his “house” was saved, and by the “word.” Acts 11:14.

I have also proved that faith is necessary to salvation. “Therefore whosoever believeth on him should not perish but have everlasting life.” “Believe on the Lord and thou shalt be saved.” “For by grace are ye saved thorough faith.” Not WITHOUT faith but THROUGH faith. Then, “We have access by faith into this grace.” So faith must lead the sinner to obey the gospel and come into grace, where he stands and rejoices as a saved person. “It is of faith, that it might be by grace.” (Rom. 4:16.) “For as many of you as have been baptized INTO CHRIST have put on Christ.” (Gal. 3:26-27.) We are “baptized INTO Christ” where we are “justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.” (Rom. 3:24.)

I have proved that one must repent to be saved. “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, THAT YOUR SINS MAY BE BLOTTED OUT.” (Acts 3:19.)

One must also be baptized to be saved: “He that believeth and is baptized SHALL BE SAVED.” (Mark 16:16.) “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ FOR THE REMISSION OF SINS.” (Acts 2:38.) “In the name of Christ,” as Acts 16:18, “I command thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.”

Hence, I have proved that salvation is conditional on man’s part, and if my friend would accept that, he would not quibble at baptism, as he knows; and that is the reason I have not discussed baptism more fully. I have presented the truth, my friends, and wish to leave that truth with you. May the blessings of God rest upon this discussion and study, and upon all of us, even upon my good friend and worthy opponent. “I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.” (Acts 20:32.)

Moderator:    Rapped for time up.

Nichols (to audience): Be sure to stay and listen to my friend.

Holder:    They will stay.



Last Updated ( Tuesday, 06 March 2007 )
< Previous   Next >


The Primitive or Old School Baptists cling to the doctrines and practices held by Baptist Churches throughout America at the close of the Revolutionary War. This site is dedicated to providing access to our rich heritage, with both historic and contemporary writings.