(Dr. Dennis Spackman, M.D., graduated from Open Bible College International in the 1980s. He lived in New Zealand where he practiced medicine for many years. He and his wife, Rowan, as well as his brother, Neil, who handles all his books, study materials, including over 6000 taped Bible studies, became our dear friends. Sue and I visited, were guests in their home, and preached several times in the church Dr. Spackman started in NZ. Dr. Spackman went to be with the Lord in 2007. We will place the entire study on the Blood of Jesus Christ on this site in several installments. Since the study is transcribed from taped sessions, I have taken the liberty to omit some comments related to local events. Dr. Spackman gave me permission to edit and use any and all of his materials.–DR )
“For the life of the flesh is in the blood: (that is a sweeping statement – “for the life of the flesh is in the blood”) and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” (Leviticus 17:11) “For it is the life of all flesh; the blood of it is for the life thereof:…” (Leviticus 17:14)
The point that we make here is that the life of the flesh is in the blood. It is the life of all flesh. Now if you think about life for a moment, do you know what is life? That mysterious something that science so far, has never been able to define or fathom out, is said by God, in these two verses, to be in the blood of the flesh. There can be no life without blood. We are talking about human beings, we are not talking about amoeba and paramecia and those organisms, and we are talking about humans and animals.
There can be no life without the blood. While this is certainly true of all flesh, we are immensely interested in human blood. We are not interested in rabbit blood, we are interested in human blood, and particularly in the blood of one Person, Christ Jesus. In His blood was not only life as we think of it physically, but also in His blood there was eternal life as well.
One of the things which you probably seldom think about is human blood. What is it? Medical doctors deal a lot with human blood. Well, it is fluid, it is mobile and it is not just in your big toe or your liver, it is over the whole part of your body. It is free to move, blood corpuscles can go over your body from the top of your head to the tip of your toe.
Blood touches every cell in your body and supplies it with nourishment and it takes away waste products. Quite an incredible tissue, we call it a tissue, in medicine. How much have you got? If you are nice and fit, you have about eleven pints, if you are an adult, you will be interested to know that it takes twenty three seconds for it to go right through the body and come back to square one again.
In surgery doctors put a particular anesthetic into a vein in a man’s arm and it takes about seven seconds for that to reach his brain. Now here is a good question: how does my blood differ from that of an Eskimo, or a Red Indian or a Zulu? The answer is – it doesn’t differ at all!
Turn with me to Acts chapter 17. And it is very important to get this. You see, if I am in a car accident and I am up in Alaska and I have to have a blood transfusion, I can have a blood transfusion from an Eskimo.
Look at verse 24, and I again I remind you that this is a very important verse, and note that it is Paul speaking: “God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; (25) Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things: now look at verse 26 (this is the important one) (26) And hath made of one blood (who?) all nations of men (put a ring around “all”) for to dwell on all (put a ring around the second “all”) the face of the earth and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation.”
God has set boundaries in the world for different races and different nations. No doubt about that! But in verse 26 – “He hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth.” So there is no such thing as “Irish Blood,” no such thing as “Jewish Blood,” no such thing as “Blue Blood.”
By our being born a human being by natural birth we are born into the one human race, there is only one single race on the earth and that is “the human race,” which is distributed of course among peoples and nations and tribes and tongues and colors and religions and so on.
One race, the human race – one blood. Turn to Romans chapter 3, and here is a verse you may know by heart. Romans 3 verse 22: “Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe; for there is no difference…” and in the next verse – “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Put a ring around all the “alls.”
You see there is no difference between the Eskimo and a New Zealander, or a Zulu and an American. Then how did all this start? One human race, one blood – no difference – all have sinned! How did it start? Turn to Romans chapter 5 verse 12: “Wherefore, as by one man (we know who that man was – it was Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.”
You remember we learned that God, because of His great love for mankind, purposed and determined that it would be possible for man to be saved, and look at the contrast in verse 12 to verse 19! What a wonderful verse is 19. Romans 5 verse 19: “For as by one man’s disobedience (that was Adam) many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one (and you know who that is, that is the Lord Jesus Christ) shall many be made righteous. (20) Moreover the law entered, that the offense might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound.”
You see it says here “the obedience of one” – we had the sin of “one” which was Adam and it became a hereditary thing, so that your blood and my blood and everybody else’s blood came from Adam. We are of a sinful race! But as a result of Christ’s obedience there is another race, a second humanity. This was part of Christ’s work on earth, to begin another race – the New Man. We have the first race which is the fallen human race, and the second race, you can call it the “redeemed race” of the Lord Jesus Christ.
All men, and this is just the interruption, by their first natural birth, were born from a woman’s womb. You were born from a woman, so was I, and it goes right back to Eve if you like, natural birth belonged to the one fallen human race of Adam. Whereas it is only by the second birth, of course, that we can become members of the “redeemed race” – God’s children.
And as God’s children, we are going to see this in a moment – we are brought in by Jesus Christ’s Precious Blood. It is the Blood of Christ that makes the new birth as a child of God possible. Before we look at the Blood of Christ, let us learn something about blood itself.… (To be continued)
“10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.
11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.
12 Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few.” (Acts 17:10-12 KJV)
Bible Bereans are believers from the area of Berea (Acts 17) and bear no resemblance to the contemporary denomination that calls itself “Bereans”.
Dispensationalists, generally, are those who believe normal-literal interpretation of the scripture is a sound method of understanding the various differences, as well as the similarities, of Bible economies. Those who claim to be dispensational in their Bible study are found in various denominations.
Neo-Bereanism and Hyper-Dispensationalism are closely related in that both groups claim the prison epistles of Paul dominate all Biblical doctrine; they deny water baptism by any mode and for any reason. Historically, “Bereans” such as Darby, Bullinger, and Welch did get along with those who differed on some of their doctrine. They were not narrow on fellowship with those who differed. (Bullinger, although not agreeing with some writers, nevertheless placed many of their articles in his seven volume set, “Things To Come”) Neo-Bereanism DEMANDS agreement with their position on baptism, etc., for fellowship. This contemporary crowd are the new breed of “Bereans”. Hypers and Neos disagree among themselves as to where the body of Christ began, observance of the Lord’s Supper, and other doctrines and practice. Those differences among themselves are so important in their view that they have split and splintered into different churches, and severed individual fellowship even with their “Berean” compadres.
I am dispensational in my Bible study but have not wavered from identifying myself first, as a Bible believing Christian and secondarily, a Baptist, for over 50 years. Regardless of theological beliefs, a man denominates himself when he takes any part or whole of a theological position. Like politics, you may be “Independent” “Libertarian” “Democrat” or “Republican” or even differ from all or some of those tenets; you have already denominated yourself, it is the “nature of the beast”. Man may call himself, or be called a “cuddy” “neddy” “dicky” “moke” or “burro”. You may indeed be a member of the family “Equidae” but if you are of the subspecies, “E. a. asinus”, you are a verifiable, real jackass, no matter which moniker is hung around your neck. (Jeremiah 2:22-24)
In 1980 I designed a dispensational chart that illustrated one way to understand some of the different economies or programs found in various periods of Bible history. Following several precedents before me, I named these as “Innocence” “Conscience”, etc., for relevance and general description but indicated the Bible order of references for each period, leaving gaps between each to allow transition periods from one economy to the next. Since the beginning of my college Bible studies, although many confuse it with time, I understood the term “dispensation” did not refer exclusively to a period of time, but better defined by “economy” or “program”. To my knowledge, the unique design of my chart was the Bible references to each period exactly as they are ordered in the Bible. The chart is still available on this website and has been used worldwide in many places to help believers understand the supposed contradictions in the Bible. The Bible has no contradictions; contradictions lie in our attempt to fit the Bible to our thinking instead of simply believing the Bible is right and men are wrong.
Never have I insisted that this chart was the ONLY way to understand the Bible or to “rightly divide” it. It was designed as one tool among many ways to understand the word of God. Only a fool would claim to have discovered what millions of other Christians over centuries have never seen, or that his way was the ONLY way to study the Bible.
When I say “Bible”, the reference is to the King James Bible, commonly known as the Authorized Version of 1611. I differ somewhat (don’t we all) from others in that I believe the translation of the word of God into English was simultaneous with the development of the English language over a period of c. 500 years, reaching the peak in 1611. I do not believe that ONLY the “original manuscripts” were inspired and copies were merely “preserved”. In my understanding, inspiration and preservation are inseparable. Jesus said, “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.” (Matthew 24:35). Inspiration, if limited to the original manuscripts being God-breathed, then preservation means nothing more than the attempt to preserve dead words. Details of my view on inspiration may be found in my sermons and writings.
I believe normal-literal language communication is the only way we can understand each other, as well as understanding that which God has revealed in His Bible. The Bible does not hide, make difficult, or allow only the intellectuals to know the essential things a man must know about God, or what God wants man to do. God is more interested in your heart than your head. David was a man “after God’s own heart” and not a man after “God’s head”.
Education in the writings of men (secular and religious) will not necessarily make you closer to God but it may very well drive you away from God. Many “professing themselves to be wise, they became fools…”(Romans 1:20-22).
Above all things, salvation and service to God are personal matters. The salvation of your soul and how you serve Him are One-on-one, between God and you alone: Entre Dios y sólo a ti. No man is to have dominion over another man’s soul or be his Judge. The reason for these things are plain: all men are sinners and in the same boat before the Eternal God. In the course of living everyone must make “judgments” but before we undertake to condemn a man for his religion, we had better do a double-take on our own.
Since all men are liars in one way or another, and put on their pants just like all others do, one leg at a time, we must be very careful before swallowing any man’s words—hook, line and sinker. Absolute Truth resides in one place on this earth: the Bible. When men (liars as we are by nature) tell us what God means in the Bible, this is where it hits the fan. Red flashing lights should go on and “PROCEED WITH CAUTION” signs begin to blink.
“Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.” (Matthew 7:20 KJV)
A simple story about spiritual fruitfulness: Bill and Joe, friends for many years, attended a gospel meeting out of curiosity. The preacher quoted the Bible and made a powerful but clear gospel message. Declaring that all men are sinners and that the wages of sin is death, the preacher said Christ came into the world to pay the penalty of sin, died on the cross, and that “Whosoever” trusted His finished work on the cross for salvation, would have everlasting life. Both men, realizing they had sinned and were sinners under the wrath of God, believed on The Lord Jesus Christ that night.
Bill and Joe began to study the Bible and rejoiced in all the blessings, peace with God, and joy they had. Joe began to study under a system called “dispensationalism” and listened, almost exclusively, to only a small group who referred to themselves as “Bereans” and claimed to “rightly divide” the Bible. Bill also listened to the dispensational views and saw some value in understanding but noticed the studies left a few critical questions unanswered. Their close fellowship began to fade as Joe became more and more involved in what Bill saw as Joe “splitting hairs” and making “mountains out of molehills”.
Joe finally declared that if Bill did not deny water baptism and believe the body of Christ (the Church) began with Paul, he would not have any more fellowship with him. He demanded many other “doctrines” such as: the Bible order of books was wrong, the New Testament was not Matthew through Revelation, water baptism was totally Jewish tradition, the grace of God came with Paul’s revelation, the body of Christ began after Paul got that revelation, those who believed Paul’s doctrines had a “high calling” and would be caught out before the rest of the “low calling” believers, etc.,,etc.
Bill tried to reason with Joe that these matters were not more important than their fellowship as members in the body of Christ. Both of them believed on Christ and salvation by grace, plus nothing and minus nothing. Bill did not believe water baptism saved or had any power to make a person a better Christian; he believed it was a sImple illustration or identification with the gospel message of the believer’s union with Christ in His death, burial, and resurrection. He reasoned that Christ did not intend that they become virtual enemies over these lesser matters, but all of his pleas went unneeded by Joe.
Joe went on to become a pastor of a dispensational church that had split from another dispensational church across town–not because they baptized converts–both groups denied that. The church split because some believed the Lord’s Supper should be observed, while the splinter members did not. When Joe tore down his church sign and put “Berean Fellowship” removing the old traditional words “Calvary Church”, (because “Calvary” was not found in Paul’s letters) Bill tried again to reason with Joe that many words were not found in Paul’s letters but that did not mean Paul denied them. When Bill mentioned that Paul established many churches and even addressed his letters to them, Joe insisted that the word “church” had been ruined by old traditionalism and was no longer of any value. When Bill asked Joe if he was going to stop meeting in a building, throw out the “pews” “pulpit” and of course change or drop his “Sunday School” “morning Worship service” at 11-12 AM, and begin meeting only in houses, Joe was strangely silent.
The illustration is a real one except the names. Can any saved and reasonable Christian believe that Joe’s fanaticism is pleasing to God? Do you really believe that God sent His Son to the cross, saved Paul and gave His apostleship to bring about such “fruit”?
(to be continued….)