God Speaks Out on "The New Morality" Ambassador College Department of Theology
But Was This Moral Code Christian?
WHAT A PARADOX! Solomon spoke prophetically of our time: "Of making many books there is no end." Altogether too many books have been written, in the last thirty-five years, on this subject of sex and marriage. Yet it is true, as the Creator says through the prophet Hosea, "My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge."
An Ocean of Water — But Not a Drop to Drink
There is tragic need for this present volume! The prophet Daniel said of our day: "... knowledge shall be increased." So here is the paradox: Utterly beyond our realization, knowledge has been increasing since the turn of the century. Knowledge in the fields of science, technology, engineering, medicine — to name a few. And at the very same time, there is a FAMINE of understanding right and true knowledge. I repeat: All this KNOWLEDGE — but no happiness! It's like the shipwrecked victim on a raft in the ocean-water everywhere, but not a drop to drink. What's WRONG? The true facts will sound incredible. But in the following chapters the amazing truth will be made PLAIN. When my wife and I were married, in 1917, we sought in vain for an authoritative book on the physical problems of marriage. Our parents had taught us nothing. Like their parents and grandparents before them, they knew too little about the embarrassing subject. I did find six books which I purchased. One was a series of three volumes for males written by a pious minister: What a Young Boy Ought to Know; What a Young Man Ought to Know; and What a Young Husband Ought to Know. The companion series, written by a "Christian" woman physician: What a Young Girl Ought to Know; What a Young Woman Ought to Know; and What a Young Wife Ought to Know. Just one thing was wrong with these six books. They did not tell us what we needed to know! It would have been unlawful. And, besides, judging from the sanctimonious flavor of the writing, I surmised that these authors would have been embarrassed — if, indeed, they themselves knew what a young married couple needed to know! I have before me a book titled Sane Sex Life and Sane Sex Living, by H.W. Long, M.D. This book does tell what the newly married need to know — though, in certain technical knowledge it is about 40 years out of date. You see, it was written more than 40 years ago, and first published in 1919. But it was not then sold in any bookstore! That would have been illegal. This book was made available only to members of the medical profession. Originally it had been used only in typed manuscript form, loaned by Dr. Long to married patients who had come to him tearfully pleading for help in their marital difficulties. This doctor had exhausted himself giving personal instruction verbally. To save time, he had typed the vital instruction to loan for private and confidential reading. In 1919 it was published in a book for other physicians to loan, also in strictest privacy, to their troubled patients.
The Dam Bursts
A few years later the legal floodgates opened. The tidal wave of sex books surged through, to be swallowed up by a public avidly hungry for the forbidden fruit of hitherto secret knowledge about sex. This flood of newly released knowledge followed in the wake of the first World War. It came on the market contemporaneously with a postwar moral sag and an upsurge of psychoanalysis. This new "science" was attributing mental disquiet and neuroses largely — and some of its practitioners wholly — to sex repression, sexual maladjustments and frustrations, due to ignorance. This fast-growing profession, predominately sex-minded, exerted powerful influence toward the revision of moral standards. The old taboos were being relegated to the limbo of superstition and dark-age ignorance. The new "enlightenment" was knocking down the moral bars. Sex, gradually, lost its "Sinful" label, and the sense of shame began to disappear. Women were being "emancipated." They wanted the same rights as men — that is to say, they desired to descend into the same gutter. At least enough of them to start a trend. Of course, all men were not in that gutter — but the idea of the double standard assumed they were.
Three New Movements
Coincident also with the rise of the psychiatrists, and the relaxing of ethics and morals resulting naturally from the stresses and strains of a world war, three other movements were gaining tremendous momentum. These all combined to add impetus to the morals' "new look." These three were: 1) The "women's rights" crusade which was termed woman suffrage. Women wanted the same "rights" as men. It was more than a fight for the vote. Especially in America, women began to rebel against the Biblical edict that makes the husband the head of the wife. Marriage became a "fifty-fifty" proposition — temporarily. Of course some one has to rule, so the fifty-fifty deal merely bridged the transition into the World War II NEW deal when the wife put on the trousers. Women not only began to vote and make their voices heard in government, they began to rule the home, and run for public political office — (as I write, one is running for President of the United States!). They went into business. Women bobbed their hair and began to feel and act like men. They abolished the double standard. The old-time saloons became cocktail lounges and pubs. The legalized red light districts were abolished, and gradually premarital promiscuity began to give amateur competition to the professionals. Women — too many of them — had descended to man's level! 2) German rationalism and intellectual materialism permeated curricula in our institutions of higher learning. Education, as will be shown more vividly later, had always been basically pagan. But it also had had a certain "Christian" flavor. "Christianity" had clung to many basically pagan doctrines and customs, attempting to "interpret" them INTO the Bible. But it held to the name of Christ, dispensed "grace" even though turned into license — and it had retained certain standards of morals. And, it had acknowledged the Bible, though with its own interpretations. But it seems the Scopes trial not only ended in the death of William Jennings Bryan, it sounded also the death knell of the Word of God in education. The Bible was thrown out the window altogether, in favor of intellectualism's new Messiah — Science, and the theory of evolution. 3) The Modernist religious movement simultaneously leavened the Protestant ranks. The ministers "of the Gospel" were inoculated with the evolutionary serum in their pre-seminary college years. The seminary professors were themselves the victims of anti-God German rationalism absorbed in their student days. More and more, theological institutions were sending into pulpits young ministers addicted to Modernism. And they were becoming increasingly "broad-minded" in their attitude toward sex and marriage. A fourth trend might be mentioned also. In America, teen-agers began a new custom — "going steady." And the age of beginning to "go steady" has gradually lowered, until today even twelve- and thirteen-year-olds are starting it. This close familiarity has contributed its portion to the moral trend. So THERE IS THE PROBLEM! THERE is the state of affairs today.
Knowledge — But No Solutions!
KNOWLEDGE has rapidly increased. But it has been wholly materialistic knowledge. And this flood of sex knowledge has been only half complete. It has failed to reveal the Creator's PURPOSES. It has implanted a totally false interpretation of sex. It has produced wrong attitudes, led to wrong and sinful uses, and robbed humanity of the glorious blessings of God-INTENDED uses. A structure of sex knowledge was being built. But it was a superstructure without a foundation. The FOUNDATION OF ALL KNOWLEDGE — the revelation from God to mankind — was lacking. And WHERE does this leave us, today? It leaves us with a vast accumulation of KNOWLEDGE while at the same time this civilization is being destroyed for LACK of RIGHT KNOWLEDGE! Permissiveness and promiscuity have replaced prudery and the sense of shame. The former evil has been replaced by one far more deadly! The unhappiness caused by dualism has been multiplied by the modern swing. One of the most desperate needs of our time is a book disseminating the true, and heretofore unpublished, knowledge about SEX and MARRIAGE. Moral standards, emphatically, are indeed in need of revision. But they cannot be rightly revised until wrong attitudes have been dispelled, and a right view established. God Almighty created sex to bring blessings, happiness. Wrong attitudes and uses have brought curses. Before the full truth about sex and marriage can be received, we need to know how present and former false concepts were acquired. The "sex-is-evil" attitude came to us of today through the medium of the Roman Catholic Church. But where did they acquire it? The true facts are stranger than fiction!
Through the centuries the moral standards in the western world were regulated by the Roman Catholic Church. Does that mean, then, that Jesus Christ started this teaching that sex is evil? Or, did the original apostles inject this dualism into Christianity? Is this concept to be found in the Bible? The answer to these questions is an emphatic NO! Yet this interpretation of sex was embraced by organized Christianity through the centuries. It is still the teaching of the Catholic Church. Many Protestants still cling to it. Many — and in rapidly increasing numbers — are breaking away from it. The true facts about the appearance of this attitude in Roman Catholicism are astounding. They have been cloaked in mystery. The time has come for the shocking truth to be revealed. We need, first of all, to understand some facts about creation, education, and early church history.
Man Is NOT An Animal!
Actually, education started in the Garden of Eden. The original Great Educator was the Creator Himself. He created the first man and the first woman. The first instruction came direct from God, in Person. But how had He created these humans? And for what PURPOSE? First, the Eternal created the fish in the oceans, lakes and streams, after the fish kinds. Then the birds of the air after the bird kinds, and winged land fowls after the fowl kinds. Then the land animals — cattle reproducing after the cattle kind; lions after the lion kind; dogs after the dog kind. Then finally, God said: "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." God now proposed to make man, not as an animal — not after the animal kind, but after the GOD kind! MAN IS NOT AN ANIMAL! The word "image" means, Biblically, the stamping with CHARACTER. It can also mean form or shape — does in some passages. But in Genesis 1:26, the word likeness refers to form and shape — appearance. And "image" here refers to God's character. Man was not then stamped with God's divine character — image. God is composed of SPIRIT (John 4:24) but He formed man of the dust of the ground — material substance (Genesis 2:7). What was formed of this material substance became a living SOUL. The soul, says your Bible, is composed of MATTER, not spirit. And the soul that sins shall die (Ezekiel 18:4, 20). The soul is mortal. Man does not have a soul — he is a soul (Genesis 2:7). This material man was formed — shaped — out of material substance. Thus, in form and shape, he bore God's likeness. God reveals Himself as having a face, hair, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, arms, feet. But man was made for the very purpose of acquiring — during his mortal lifetime — the CHARACTER of God. Notice I Corinthians 15:45-54. The first man, Adam, was made a living soul. But Christ, the "last Adam," was made an immortal spirit. The first Adam — a living soul — was not immortal, not spirit, but was of the earth — earthy (verse 47). Then, verse 49, we — speaking to converted Christians — have borne the image of the earthy, in this life. That is, the character of sinful humanity. But through Christ the Christian shall — through the resurrection to immortality (verses 50-54) — bear the image of the heavenly. That is, the divine character. Notice the first few verses of the first chapter of Hebrews. It speaks of the resurrected Christ, "who, being the brightness of His (the Father's) glory, and the express image of His person.... " The Moffatt translation renders this, more correctly, "He, reflecting God's bright glory and stamped with God's own character.... " "Image" means character. The creation described in Genesis 1, brought into being the MATERIAL, from the earth, out of which God, the Master Potter, with our right decision, shall fashion, mold, and shape SPIRITUALLY, into His very own perfect spiritual character. CREATION IS STILL GOING ON — God's spiritual creation. God's PURPOSE is to create us into the God kind — to beget us as His children, so we may be BORN AGAIN — this time born of God into His divine family! Few readers, I know, will be able to grasp this tremendous truth. It is repeatedly revealed in your Bible — from Genesis to Revelation. Yet it has remained hidden from this world — just as God's wonderful truth about sex has remained hidden.
Animal vs. Human Sex Behaviour
I repeat, MAN IS NOT AN ANIMAL! One may ask, do not all animals come equipped with sex? Do they not, like humans, reproduce after their kind? All mammals reproduce in the same manner as humans — yes! Are not animals made of material flesh and blood — the same as humans? Yes, but not the same kind of flesh. Have you not read, I Corinthians 15:39, that "All flesh is not the same flesh: but there is one kind of flesh of men, another flesh of beasts...," etc. God made cattle to reproduce after the cattle kind. But He is, by a spiritual creation still going on, reproducing MAN after His kind — after the God kind. Man is being made in the God image! God possesses MIND. Man possesses MIND. Animals have mere brain. Both animals and humans reproduce through sex. Yet there are some astounding differences between animal and human sex functions, to be explained later. There is a vast difference between humans and animals in relation to the Creator's PURPOSES of sex. These differences need to be understood. But man alone, of all creatures that reproduce through sex, devises his own codes of morality. He has always rejected GoD's code. Only MAN, by use of mind, exercises self-determined control over sex urges. Animals establish no moral codes. Animals are actuated by instinct. The animal brain is set by the Creator to act in certain ways under certain circumstances — much as you might set an alarm clock to ring at a certain hour. Humans, like God, have MIND-power. Humans acquire knowledge which no animal brain can receive. What can any animal know about astronomy, chemistry, mathematics, literature, art, music? The human MIND has actual creative powers. From a vast labyrinth of acquired knowledge, the human mind can reason, plan, imagine, design, make decisions, and will to act according to personal choice. HUMANS WERE CREATED WITH THE POTENTIAL OF DEVELOPING RIGHTEOUS CHARACTER!
Human Mind vs. Animal Brain
Humans are endowed with the faculty to learn to know right from wrong. Human minds have ability to weigh facts, to judge, make decisions, and to exercise self-restraint and self-discipline. My son had a dog. When the fact was flashed to that dog's brain, through the sense of scent, or hearing, that a member of the family was coming down the walk outside, the dog automatically wagged its tail happily. But when a stranger was coming down the walk, the dog just as automatically began to bark. Now can you imagine a dog reasoning thus: "A stranger is coming down the walk. Now let me think! Shall I set up a bark, or shall I restrain myself and keep quiet? O.K. I guess I'll practice self-restraint and resist the instinct to bark, this once." A thinking, reasoning, talking horse may be interesting entertainment on a television show — the very impossibility of it attracts millions of viewers. But if it were a natural occurrence, that particular show — format would be a flop. Pure instinct, in animal brain, sets off action automatically. Humans do not have this kind of instinct. Humans have HUMAN NATURE. Human nature is a PULL — in the direction of vanity, self-gratification, self-interest. Like the pull of gravity, it is a downward pull. But the human mind can recognize this pull, decide whether to yield or resist, and then will to follow its decision. Nowhere are the differences between animal brain and human mind more pronounced than in the area of sex.
Rejecting the Great Educator's Instruction
In creating man for this SUPREME purpose of the Great God, He created them male and female. It was the Almighty Eternal God who designed, formed, shaped male and female bodies. And the "instruction book" which the Maker sent along with His product — this human mechanism — is the BASIS for knowledge of How sex was intended to be used — and for what purposes! The Great Creator was also the GREAT EDUCATOR — the very first educator to instruct humans. He instructed our first parents in SEX. He instructed them also in the right WAY of life — the way of true LOVE. For His Law is LOVE! The Genesis account portrays the Great Educator instructing the first man and woman regarding the two basic philosophies of life. These were pictured by the two symbolic trees. The one, the tree of LIFE, was freely offered. It represented THE WAY of LOVE — of outgoing concern for others, of giving, helping, serving, sharing. This was THE WAY of God's inexorable spiritual LAW, summed up in the Ten Commandments. God revealed THIS WAY as the way to peace, happiness, security, abundance. This law is fulfilled by LOVE (Romans 13:10). Two of the Ten Commandments concern SEX, and protect marital love against pollution. The other philosophy of life — that of Satan — was symbolized by the forbidden tree of the knowledge of good and evil. That philosophy is THE WAY of vanity — of SELF — of taking, gratifying fleshly desire, coveting — lust. That false WAY is, simply, rebellion against God's Law. God ordained and intended LOVE in a happy marriage. He forbade lust prior to, or outside of, marriage! Much, much more on this, in detail, later. But WHAT HAPPENED? Our first parents rejected the direct revelation of knowledge from God. They listened to the false teaching of Satan. From that day, humanity was embarked on the course of false education. Mankind had chosen, and succeeding generations have followed, the life-philosophy of vanity, self-desire, greed, competition, strife — taking, getting the most while giving the least — the way of hate and of WAR. Incidentally, every book about sex so far published, save the present volume, so far as I know, has been based on the attitude of this world's false life-philosophy! The most ancient records reveal that educational institutions, from dimmest antiquity, were organized and maintained by religions. But the religions of this world have always been pagan! Their religions are based on the satanic philosophy. As early as the tenth century B.C. we find the record of schools for the training of pagan priesthoods. The academic form of curricular education — the form in vogue today — was originated by the pagan Greek philosopher Plato, 427-347 B.C. He was the founder of education of regular curriculum in a fixed place. He called it the Academy. At the time of Christ pagan schools on the Plato model dotted the Roman Empire. As the Church of God grew and multiplied during the first thirty-eight years after Christ's ascension, and later, during the rise of what came to be called "Christianity," no Christian schools existed. All children — if they were educated — were educated in the pagan philosophies — and in the pagan concept of sex. You see, printing had not yet been invented. Textbooks had to be prepared, laboriously, entirely by hand, one at a time. And truly Christian textbooks were never produced.
The Incredible "Lost Century"
At this point an amazing, diabolical Great Conspiracy of Satan occurred. The unbelievable TRUTH of this masterpiece of deception has been successfully hidden from public notice for eighteen long centuries! In the Book of Acts and other New Testament passages we have the well-preserved authentic history of the founding and the first 38 years' history of the original Church of God. But by the time of the Roman siege against Jerusalem, 70 A.D., the curtain is suddenly rung down on the stage of church history. In 69 A.D., the Christians from Jerusalem, heeding Jesus' warning of Luke 21:20-21, fled north from Judaea to the east side of the Jordan. From that date their organized proclaiming of Christ's true Gospel ceased. For the next hundred years, church history is virtually a blank. The historian Edward Gibbon terms this virtually non-existent history "scanty and suspicious." IT WAS THE MYSTERIOUS "LOST CENTURY" OF CHURCH HISTORY! When the curtain rises, about 170 A.D., we behold a "Christian" church hardly recognizable! In most vital points of doctrine and custom it is the very antithesis of the Church of the original Apostles founded by Jesus Christ. Yet it professes Christ. It proclaims His shed blood. It freely offers grace. It calls itself "Christianity." WHAT HAPPENED during that lost century? For 1800 years it has been cloaked in mystery. But suddenly God has seen fit to reveal in unmistakable clarity the facts surrounding this Master Conspiracy of Satan. For by it he has deceived the whole world! The sure prophecies in your Bible say plainly that the whole world was to be DECEIVED! Satan was to deceive all nations! (Rev. 12:9; 17:2; 18:3.) But How? He would have to use human instruments to bring about his Great Deception. He did! Jesus Christ foretold the entrance into His Church of spurious ministers — false prophets. He called them wolves "in sheep's clothing" (Mat. 7:15). This was not an apostasy, or going astray, of Christians within the Church. His disciples were designated as "sheep." Jesus was not speaking of "stray sheep," but of "WOLVES." They were DECEIVERS — they pretended to be — they masqueraded as — sheep. They came in from the outside for the very purpose of destroying the sheep. Jesus said they would come in His name — that is, pretending to be His MINISTERS. He said they would actually proclaim that Jesus was the Christ (Mat. 24:4-5), yet they would DECEIVE the MANY — not the few, the MANY! The Apostle Paul warned of the same thing (Acts 20:29-30). Actually what these deceiving false apostles brought in was the pagan BABYLONIAN MYSTERY religion with its pagan interpretations of sex. It was a religion of LAWLESSNESS, called "Mystery of Iniquity," and was already active, posing as "Christianity," by 50-51 A.D. (II Thes. 2:7). In this Scripture Paul tells us WHAT religion was brought in to deceive. Paul branded them as, in true fact, the ministers of Satan (II Cor. 11:14-15). Yet they palmed themselves off as the apostles of Christ — but they were FALSE apostles (verse 13). When Jude wrote, about 67 A.D., they had already crept in by stealth and false pretense, turning GRACE into license to disobey God's Law (Jude 4). In their letters James and Peter spoke of this opposition against God's Law. The Apostle John combatted it in his letters, written in the 90's A.D. By that time these impostors had come and GONE — claiming that they, and their followers, NOT the true Church, constituted the original "Christianity," and the ONLY original true Church (I John 2:19). But they never were any part of the TRUE Church which Jesus founded (same verse). The whole story of this Great Deception can be told only in a full-length book, yet to be written. This much of summary may be revealed at this time:
The Great Conspiracy
These deceivers, actually the ministers of Satan, who is this world's god (II Cor. 4:4), were priests of the Babylonian Mysteries. All the world's religions, until Christ, had been state religions, controlled by kings, emperors, or heads of government. All, but that of Israel, were superstitions maintained for the very purpose of exercising sway over the people through fear of one's fate after death. These religions determined the sexual morals of the people. Normally, when a country was overthrown, and a new government came to power, a new religion was introduced. But when Nebuchadnezzar's Chaldean Empire (Babylon) was overthrown, their Assyrian-Babylonian Mystery religion did not die. By the time of Christ, the prevailing religion throughout the Roman Empire was ROMAN paganism — a religion of Emperor-worship. Yet there was a colony of Babylonian-Mystery followers in Samaria. Samaria had been the capital of the northern Kingdom of Israel, until their captivity and removal from their land to Assyria. It is north of Jerusalem in Palestine. In 33 A.D. Babylonians were there. Their forefathers had been moved there by Shalmanezar, after the captivity of the Kingdom of Israel, 721-718 B.C. (II Kings 17:1-3, 6, 18, 22-24). They were, by 33 A.D., a small remnant, but headed by a very ambitious priest — a sorcerer, named Simon (Acts 8:9). When Philip came to Samaria, performing real miracles, many of these people accepted Christ and were baptized (Acts 8:5-24). Their leader, Simon, saw his following disintegrating. He tried to purchase a Christian apostleship with money. The Apostle Peter rebuked him, saying he was "in the bond of iniquity." He was. He was chief leader of the "Mystery of Iniquity" spoken of in II Thessalonians 2:7. Iniquity is lawlessness — opposed to God's Law. This "Mystery" religion was the same old Babylonian Mysteries. It is called, in Revelation 17:5, by its true name, which is NOT "Christian," but "MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT." That is, the "Babylonian Mysteries" having become GREAT at a later time. This Simon the magician, called Simon Magus in history, marvelled at the phenomenal growth of this new INDEPENDENT Christian religion. Never had anything contained its virility, life, and power. He saw TWO main factors, which, in his carnal thinking, "made it tick." First, this religion had a CHAMPION — a HERO for people to worship. That Hero — Christ — had been persecuted, finally martyred. Simon knew mass psychology. He knew people sympathize with the "underdog." And here was a man who had come back, by a resurrection, as a Champion to triumph over His enemies! People would FOLLOW such a Champion! They would worship such a Hero! He determined to simply "take over" the NAME of Christ to gain followers for himself! And thus Satan used this Great Conspiracy to DECEIVE THE WHOLE WORLD (Rev. 12:9; 17:2; 18:3). These deceivers claimed the NAME of Christ. They proclaimed the shed BLOOD of Christ for the remission of sins — they offered GRACE — because this was POPULAR, as long as they did away with OBEDIENCE to God and His Law. They substituted penance for repentance. Satan, their god, was represented as being the Creator. They then invented a fictitious devil, appearing as a diabolical being with horns, a tail, and a pitchfork. All the while the real Satan palmed himself off as "an angel of light" (II Cor. 11:14), this world's god. This Simon the magician, leader of these priests of the BABYLONIAN MYSTERY religion, had gone along and been baptized with the others, when Philip preached at Samaria (See Acts 8:12-13). Even though the Apostle Peter strongly rebuked him for trying to buy an apostleship with money — and condemned him as being "in the bond of iniquity" — that is, bound to the Babylonian MYSTERY religion of INIQUITY or LAWLESSNESS opposing the Law of God (compare Acts 8:18-23 with II Thessalonians 2:7 and Revelation 17:5) — nevertheless this Simon went on pretending he was a Christian. He had been baptized. Now notice, in the 8th chapter of Acts, verses 9-11: This Simon used sorcery. He bewitched the people of this district of Samaria. He claimed to be a GREAT religious leader. And all of the population of Samaria — followers of the BABYLONIAN MYSTERY religion — gave heed to Simon — accepted him as LEADER — from the least to the greatest. Even the most important leaders of the people accepted him. The people said of him: "This man is that POWER OF GOD which is called GREAT" (Revised Standard Version, verse 10). He had been so accepted for a long time. Now here comes an astounding, surprising FACT. For many centuries before this, the chief religious head of the pagan religions had been given the title "Pater," meaning "Father." But sometimes it was spelled "Patre" — even as, today, in Spain and South America priests are called "Padre." And, USUALLY, it came to be spelled "PETER!" Also the chief headquarters, or chief place of worship, was called by the title "PETER." This was not a NAME, but a TITLE. Even heads of ancient families came to be called "arch-Peters" or "Arch-Pater," which came to be "PATRIARCH." Strange? Surprising? Yes, but TRUE. This Simon the magician, who had deceived the people with his tricks of magic, was the LEADER and HEAD of the remnant of the BABYLONIAN MYSTERY religion. His followers attached the word "GREAT" to his name — the actual originator of the CHURCH labeled "MYSTERY, BABYLON THE GREAT" in Revelation 17:5. Yes, he was the "SIMON PETER" who was the FIRST "PAPA" or "FATHER" or PATER-PETER — of that church.
What Sex Teaching?
This Simon was inspired — by his god — to desire to found a UNIVERSAL religion. But what interpretation of SEX did he bring with him, from the religion of ASSYRIA and BABYLON? Various other names had been attached to this religion. When this Simon had wormed his way in, pretending to be a member and apostle in God's CHURCH, even during the very first century, Christ speaks of him and his followers as "Nicolaitanes" (Rev. 2:6). The true apostolic CHURCH is represented as hating the deeds of these Nicolaitanes. What were these deeds — and the teachings on which they were based? They are clouded in some mystery. Every effort was made, during the following two centuries, to destroy every secular record of them. They couldn't destroy what God inspired in the BIBLE! The resurrected Jesus (inspiring John from heaven) mentions a direct connection that occurred a few generations later between these Nicolaitanes and "the doctrine of Balaam." What was this doctrine of the Nicolaitanes that came from Balaam's doctrine? The Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics (Hastings) says Clement of Alexandria refers to this sect as IMMORAL. Tertullian made similar charges of self-indulgence and lustfulness. The article speaks of "the explicit comparison with the teaching of Balaam (Rev. 2:14) in the two particulars of sanctioning, and even recommending, fornication, and compromise with idolatry." Balaam was a recognized prophet (pagan) and soothsayer. He counselled Balak to seduce Israel from its allegiance to The ETERNAL by alluring the people into the immoralities associated with the Moabite nature — worship — sexual immorality. Even the Catholic Encyclopedia says these Nicolaitanes "led lives of unrestrained indulgence." The sect "claimed to have derived from Nicholas the doctrine of promiscuity." Now Nicholas of Antioch (not the Nicolas of Acts 6:5) is identified with a Bishop Nicholas of SAMARIA, said to have become a heretic in company with Simon the magician! (This last according to the Dictionary of the Bible by Hastings.) Actually, it is probable that these names have simply been confused, and that the Nicholas of Samaria is indeed Simon himself, and one and the same as Nicholas of Antioch. This would mean that Simon himself was, after all, the original bishop "Saint Nick," or Santa Claus! Now HOW do we reconcile this religion of lustfulness and sexual promiscuity and unbridled fornication with the teaching that sex is SINFUL? An account I well remember reading in a Bible Encyclopedia some 37 years ago stated the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes thus: They took the principle of the Scripture: "But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound" (Rom. 5:20). The argument was that bestowing GRACE glorifies God and His great POWER. If SIN abounds, then GRACE abounds much more. Therefore, the more we sin, the more GOD'S GRACE abounds — and the more GOD is glorified by forgiving so much more! That sort of satanic reasoning was the basis of the ancient "temple prostitutes." The more sinful they paint fornication — or ANY use of sex — the GREATER was God's glory in forgiving it and bestowing grace. This was their diabolical argument. This was their doctrine! In this ancient pagan religion they even had an order of women who wore black garb, did certain physical duties and tasks, were kept in seclusion, like a convent. You will find them described in the Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics, Volume VI, article "Hierodouloi" (Graeco-Roman). This term, it explains, designated certain temple ministrants, who were below the rank of priests, and usually, if not invariably, of servile status. Actually, these were the "temple prostitutes." "At Eryx and Corinth, then, we see that the hierodouloi were nothing but female prostitutes," continues the article, "who gave all, or a share of, their gains to the temple.... There is, therefore, no doubt that the term hierodouloi, in all the instances so far discussed, means serfs, whose bodies were absolutely at the god's service and the priests' discretion, to be used either for purposes of labor or prostitution." Now, of course, the fornication committed by the priests with these women was kept completely secret. These were "dedicated" women! Their priests took the place of their god. The fornication was represented as a holy act — a sort of being married to their god! Nevertheless, this entire rotten and foul pagan doctrine represented sex as EVIL, then claimed to glorify God by carrying it to excessive indulgence, thus allowing God to bestow the greater grace in forgiving it. No wonder the resurrected Jesus, who inspired Revelation 2 and 3 as a direct quotation from Him, says to the apostolic Church: "Thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitanes, which I also hate" — and, to the later Church in Pergamos, "So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes, which thing I hate" (Rev. 2:6, 15).
Babylonian Mystery Deceptions
The message to the Church in Smyrna says: "I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan." The Apostle Paul explained that a Christian is a Jew spiritually (Romans 2:28-29). So Jesus referred to those following Satan's WAY, and Satan's ministers, who professed to be the true Church. Again, these Babylonian Mystery followers at Samaria professed to be JEWS when it suited their purpose — and, again, Gentiles when that suited their purpose. Example: the woman Jesus encountered at Jacob's well, in Samaria. This woman — like the other Samaritans — was in the Babylonian religion. She had been living successively with six men, in fornication (John 4:5-7, 16-18). When it suited her purpose, she claimed to be Jewish — a descendant of Jacob (verse 12), but then when it suited her purpose to call herself a Gentile, she did (verse 9). There is reason to believe that Simon the magician was the man she was currently living with. This event in Jesus' life is not without significance! One other significant fact. There were those in Pergamos who held the doctrine of Balaam (Rev. 2:14). This seems to be directly connected with the doctrine of the Nicolaitanes (verse 15). Balaam was the PETER — chief priest of the pagan mystery religion — of his day. Balaam's headquarters, or chief place of worship, was Pethor. In the Hebrew language the "h" was commonly not pronounced. In today's English, therefore, the chief headquarters place of worship would be "PETOR" — or PETER! How MUCH there is that has been kept a MYSTERY — covered up — kept from the knowledge of the world! Today God is revealing much that Satan has tried to cover! So TWO POWERFUL FACTORS operated to inject pagan attitudes and teachings into a deceived professing Christianity. 1) All children attended schools where the textbooks were PAGAN. They grew up accepting pagan teachings, customs, and attitudes. They were reared in pagan concepts of SEX. Even the "Christian" leaders were reared from childhood under this paganized influence. 2) The "Christian" religion which spread, late in the first century and on through the second, third, and fourth centuries, through the Empire, was this counterfeit "Christianity," spawned by paganism. The true Church had fled, become scattered. Its members were branded "heretics." It is not so strange, then, after all, that pagan interpretations of sex should have flowed at full tide into this fast-growing counterfeit "Christianity." It was not, after all, a "new" concept, but the SAME inherited conception that had been accepted for generations in this pagan religion.