The Berean Expositor
Volume 34 - Page 7 of 261
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statement of fact that introduces a contrary, sets aside columns of similarities in the
matter of identity. The editor of The Berean Expositor would have had not the
slightest qualm in going up for examination, for he was in possession of one essential fact
which disproved his identity with the criminal concerned: the wanted man was born in
New York, whereas the editor was born in London. We cannot conceive that any official
would interpose and say, "We are not concerned with where this man was born, we are
more concerned with the many items of similarity. He must be the man."
Alas, the children of this generation are often wiser than the children of light, and
would at once admit that one established contrary destroys assumed identity based on
many similarities. "Similar" is not the "same".
In Ephesians we discover a revelation never before made known; a choice from
"before the foundation of the world"; a calling "far above all"; a unique position,
"seated together in heavenly places". Any one of these is a "contrary" to the revelation,
the choice, the calling, or the position revealed in Hebrews.
One item alone in Hebrews is enough to destroy any attempt to make the callings of
the two epistles identical. Embedded in the heart of Hebrews is "The New Covenant",
and this one fact is so foreign to the whole teaching of Ephesians as to cancel any number
of similarities, if they are used with the object of establishing identity.
We will not occupy valuable space with further illustrations of this principle, for we
believe it is obvious. The reader can work out other illustrations by, for example, noting
that the "ransom" occurs in Matthew and in I Timothy, and disprove the conclusion that
the callings of Matthew and I Timothy must therefore be identical. In this case the
emphasis on the Gentile in the epistle, and the emphasis of Israel in the gospel provide
the "contraries".
Parallel passages abound in Scripture, but, instead of impinging on the domain of
other callings, they, like those of Euclidean geometry, never meet. Let us "try the things
that differ"; let us "rightly divide the word of truth". We shall then approve the things
that are more excellent, and be workmen who need not be ashamed.