WESTCOTT AND HORT HERESIES
by D.A. Waite, ThD., PhD.
Heresies in Theology Proper
In this general division of theology proper, there is usually taken up the Trinity, and the nature of God Himself [cf. Systematic Theology, by Lewis Sperry Chafer, 8 Volumes, 1948, Dallas Seminary Press, Dallas, Texas, Volume I]. I noted the following items, in various degrees of heresy and/or error,
Embraced the Heresy of the Universal "Fatherhood of God"
1. Westcott believed "Fatherhood of God" could be applied to "humanity" as a whole because of creation in the "Divine image."
(John 4:21) Very much of the exact force of St. John's record of the Lord's words appear to depend upon the different conceptions of the two forms under which the Fatherhood of God is described. God is spoken of as "the Father" and as "my Father." Generally it may be said that the Former title expresses the original relation of God to being and specially to humanity, in virtue of man's creation in the Divine image, and the latter more particularly the relation of the Father to the Son Incarnate, and so indirectly to man in virtue of the Incarnation.
—Westcott—John, op. cit., pp. 79-80
The term "Father" cannot refer to "humanity" as a whole outside of faith in Jesus Christ. This is heresy of the first dimension. Does not Westcott understand clearly John 8:44, where Jesus Christ taught two fatherhoods? Likewise, the term, "my Father" cannot refer to "man" as a whole either, but only to one redeemed by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. It is not in virtue of "the Incarnation" that men can call God "my Father," but by virtue of the vicarious and substitutionary sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ on the Cross.
2. Westcott clearly stated the heretical doctrine of the "universal Fatherhood" of God in discussing John 10:29.
(John 10:29) The thought, which is concrete in v. 28, is here traced back to its most absolute form as resting on the essential power of God in His relation of universal Fatherhood.
—-Westcott-—John, op. cit., p. 159
This, again, is pure heresy as taught by the Lord Jesus Christ in John 8:44. To accept the heresy of the "universal Fatherhood" of God, is to misunderstand the total plan of redemption that God wrought out through His Son, Jesus Christ.
(AGAIN IT IS THE CONTEXT OF HOW YOU USE THE WORD "FATHER" THAT IS THE KEY. CERTAINLY TO BE THE SPIRITUAL SON OF GOD, AND TO SO CALL HIM "FATHER" IN THE REAL SPIRITUAL SALVATION SENSE, YOU CAN ONLY DO SO THROUGH CHRIST JESUS AS YOUR PERSONAL SAVIOR. BUT SEE JEREMIAH 31:9. GOD IS FATHER TO ALL THE ISRAELITES AND EPHRAIM IS HIS FIRSTBORN. MOST OF THE ISRAELITES WERE NEVER CONVERTED AS NUMBERS 11 CLEARLY SHOWS [plus other verses]. WAITE IS MAKING A CASE THAT IS FOUNDED ON SAND - Keith Hunt)
Denied That Christ Made Known God,
the Father, as "God," Stating Only That He Made Him
Known as "The Father"
(John 1:18) The Son made God known not primarily as God, but as the Father.
—Westcott—John, op. cit., p. 15
This is heretical. Had Westcott never understood Colossians 2:9? It states clearly concerning Christ: "For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily."
(A WEAK ARGUMENT FROM WAITE. JESUS TAUGHT GOD WAS "THE FATHER" - IT WAS A DIFFERENT ENLIGHTENMENT FROM "GOD" UNDER THE OLD TESTAMENT. JESUS DID PUT EMPHASIS ON GOD AS "THE FATHER." - Keith Hunt)
Denies That God Had to be "Propitiated" in the Sense of "Propitiating God"
(1 John 2:2). They shew that the scriptural conception of is not that of appeasing one who is angry, with a personal feeling, against the offender; but of altering the character of that which from without occasions a necessary alienation, and interposes an inevitable obstacle to fellowship. Such phrases as "propitiating God" and . . . are foreign to the language of the N.T.
—Westcott—1-3 John, p. 87
This is in error. God was "propitiated" by the sacrifice of His Son at Calvary's Cross. Thus God is now "propitious." As Chafer clearly indicates, propitiation is toward God as to its direction. He is "satisfied" with the work of His Son on the Cross of Calvary for our redemption.
(AGAIN, THE SEMANTICS OF WORDS AND HOW YOU VIEW SOMETHING FROM WHAT SIDE, DOES NOT NECESSARILY MAKE YOU A HERETIC - WEAK ARGUMENT FROM WAITE - Keith Hunt)
TO BE CONTINUED