HERESIES  OF  WESTCOTT  AND  HORT


by  D.A. Waite, ThD., PhD



Heresies in Anthropology and Hamartiology

In this general division of anthropology and hamartiology, there is usually taken up the teachings on the origin of man, the element of man's being, the fall, the doctrine of sin {"hamartiology"), imputed sin, the sin nature, and so on. [Cf. Chaffer, Systematic Theology, op. cit., Vol. II.] In this area, I noted the following items, in various degrees of heresy and/ or error.

Westcott Taught That Men Could Be Divine in Some Way

(John 17:22) Viewed from another point of sight it is the revelation of the divine in man realized in and through Christ.

—-Westcott-—John, op. cit., p. 246

(1 John 2:18)... while the lie of Antichrist was to teach "that man is divine apart from God in Christ."

—-Westcott-—-1-3 John, op. cit., p. 70

The clear teaching of Westcott in both of these places is that either "man is divine" when it's the action of "God in Christ," or else there is a "divine in man." This is pure heresy. The Bible speaks of the believer partaking of the "divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4), but this is a far cry from making man in any sense "divine." The use of the word "divine" by Westcott is important as he uses this same word to describe the "divinity" of Christ later. He evidently means that Christ was no more "divine" than man can become, or else that man can become as "divine" as Christ was.


(WAITE  IS  NOT  SURE  EXACTLY  WHAT  WESTCOTT  TAUGHT  HERE.  THE  LAST  SENTENCE  BY  WAITE  IS  IMPORTANT.  WHAT  WAITE  CANNOT  SEE  FROM  THE  NEW  TESTAMENT  IS  THAT  CHRISTIANS  NOT  ONLY  HAVE  THE  DIVINE  NATURE,  BUT  THAT  ONE  DAY  WE  SHALL  BE  LIKE  CHRIST [SEE  1  JOHN  3].  ANGELS  WERE  NEVER  CREATED  TO  BE  LIKE  CHRIST, THEY  WERE  CREATED  TO  BE  SERVANTS  TO  THOSE  WHO  RECEIVE  SALVATION [SEE  HEB. 1:14]. WE  SHALL  ONE  DAY  JUDGE  ANGELS [SEE 1 COR. 6:3]. CHRISTIANS  ARE  BROTHERS  OF  CHRIST [HEB. 2:5-18].  THERE  IS  MUCH  MORE  TO  THE   WHOLE  SUBJECT  THAT  WAITE  THINKS  IS  HERESY.  WAITE  IS  VEREY  WRONG  ON  THIS  POINT.  IT  IS  COVERED  IN  MY  FULL  IN-DEPTH  STUDY  CALLED  "A  CHRISTIAN'S  DESTINY"  -  Keith Hunt)


Westcott Espoused "Evolution" in Various Ways

(Hebrews 1:2) The universe may be regarded either in its actual constitution as a whole ... or as an order which exists through time developed in successive stages. There are obvious reasons why the latter mode of representation should be adopted here.

—-Westcott-—-Hebrews, op. cit., p. 8

Here is a denial of the immediate creation by God of the entire universe and a heretical teaching of the "development" of the universe "in successive stages."


(WAITE  IS  WRONG  AGAIN.  THE  HEBREW  OF  GENESIS  1:1  READS  "AND  BY  PERIODS  GOD  CREATED  THE  HEAVENS  AND  THE  EARTH" [SEE  THE  FENTON  TRANSLATION]. THE  UNIVERSE  SCIENCE  NOW  SHOWS  IS  EVER  IN  STATE  OF  DYING  AND  BIRTH,  THE  DYING  OF  STARS  AND  THE  MAKING  OF  STARS.  THE  EARTH  WAS  NOT  MADE  WHEN  THE  UNIVERSE  WAS  BORN  WITH  THE  "BIG  BANG" - PARTS  OF  THE  UNIVERSE  CAME  INTO  BEING  BY  "PERIODS" - AT  DIFFERENT  TIMES - Keith Hunt)


(Hebrews 7:10) Each man is at once an individual of a race and a new power in the evolution of the race.

—Westcott—Hebrews, op. cit., p. 179

Again, Westcott's preference for Darwinian heresy in the form of evolution is in evidence.


(MAYBE  WESTCOTT  TAUGHT  HERE  EVOLUTION  AS  TAUGHT  TODAY,  THEN  HE  MAY  HERE  HAVE  HAD  SOMETHING  ELSE  IN  MY  BY  THE  WORDS  "EVOLUTION  OF  THE  RACE"  AS  A  MOVING  FORWARD  BY  A  PEOPLE  IN  CULTURE  AND  EDUCATION   AND  SCIENCE  ETC. - Keith Hunt)


Westcott Had a Heretical Theory of Man's Sinfulness

and Depravity, Believing in Man's Perfectability

in Various Ways

1. Westcott thought "Christians" are in a "true sense
'christs.'"

(1 John 2:20) "Christians" are themselves in a true sense "christs," anointed ones. . . .

—Westcott—-1-3 John op. tit., p. 73

Let this be remembered when Westcott deals with Jesus Christ. This is heresy. What confusion is wrought by Westcott in this statement. It demeans the Lord Jesus Christ and His exalted position, and it wrongly exalts sinners saved by God's grace into a level that they do not now merit. One day, we shall be "like Him," but not while we're on this earth.


(AGAIN  WAITE  READS  INTO  THE  WORDS  OF  WESTCOTT  SOMETHING  THAT  WESCOTT  DID  NOT  INTEND.  CHRISTIANS  ARE  ANOINTED  BY  THE  HOLY  SPIRIT  IN  THEM.

THE  KINGS  OF  ISRAEL  WERE  ANOINTED  WITH  OIL,  OIL  BEING  POURED  OVER  THEIR  HEAD.  SO  CHRISTIANS  HAVE  THE  ANOINTING  OF  THE  HOLY  SPIRIT  AS  IT  IS  POURED  INTO  THEIR  BEING.  A  WEAK  REPLY  BY  WAITE  -  Keith Hunt)


2. Westcott believed in the heresy that "man" in general
is, by possessing a "spirit," "united to heaven."

(John 3:6) (flesh... spirit) The words describe the characteristic principles of two orders. They are not related to one another as evil and good; but as the two spheres of being with which man is connected. By the "Spirit" our complex nature is united to heaven, by the "flesh" to earth.

—Westcott—John, op. cit, p. 50

Westcott does not say believers are, by their spirit, "united to heaven," but clearly states it is "man" in general by "our complex nature." This heresy takes a wrong view of man's anthropology and his sinful nature, and, in effect, is universal-ism, because if a man is "united to heaven" already, what else need he do to be saved and go to heaven?


(ONCE  MORE  WAITE  READS  INTO  THE  WORDS  OF  WESTCOTT  WHAT  HE  DESIRES  WESTCOTT  TO  BE  SAYING.  MAN  DOES  HAVE  A  "SPIRIT" [PROVED  BY  MY  STUDY  CALLED  "THE  SPIRIT  OF  MAN"]  WHICH  GOD  GIVES  FROM  HEAVEN  AND  WHICH  RETURNS  TO  HEAVEN  UPON  DEATH;  EVERY  MAN/WOMAN [SEE  ECCL. 12:7]. SO  IN  THAT  SENSE  MANKIND  IS  CONNECTED  TO  HEAVEN.  A  WEAK  REPLY  BY  WAITE  -  Keith Hunt)


3. Westcott makes other heretical statements about man's perfectability and goodness as well.

(Hebrews 2:7-8a) In spite of his frailty man recognizes his divine affinity.

—-Westcott-—Hebrews, op. cit., p. 43


Man is totally depraved and has no "divine affinity" whatsoever before he is saved.


(AGAIN  DEPENDS  ON  HOW  YOU  USE  THE  WORDS  "DIVINE  AFFINITY" - WAITE  FORGOT  ABOUT  ROMANS  2:14-15 - Keith Hunt)

(Hebrews 2:8) For man, as he is, still retains the lineaments of the divine image in which he was made. He is still able to pronounce an authoritative moral judgment: he is still able to recognize that which corresponds with the nature of God.

—Westcott—Hebrews, op. cit., p. 60

Through the fall of man, he is totally depraved, and has, in himself, apart from Divine grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and salvation which this brings, none of these things predicated of him by Westcott.


(AGAIN  WAITE  FORGETS  ABOUT  ROMANS  2:14-15 - Keith Hunt)

(Hebrews 5:7) We can indeed form no clear conception of "immortal," "incorruptible'' flesh; but the phrase represents to us the continuance under new conditions of all that belongs to the perfection of our nature..

—Westcott—Hebrews, op. cit., p. 125

We have no "perfection of our nature," and certainly we are not, outside of our resurrected, glorified bodies, either "immortal" or "incorruptible."


(WESTCOTT  DOES  NOT  SAY  WHAT  WAITE  MAKES  HIM  SAY.  UNDER  OUR  NEW  CONDITION  OF  REGENERATION  THROUGH  CHRIST  WE  SEE  THE  END  RESULT  OF THE  PERFECTION  OF  OUR  NATURE.... IMMORTAL  AND  INCORRUPTIBLE.  WAITE  IS  READING  INTO  WESTCOTT  THINGS  WESTCOTT  MAY  NEVER  HAVE  MEANT - Keith Hunt)

(1 John 3:23) Thus in the three cases the Sonship of Jesus Christ is regarded in relation to God as the Father, to God as God, and to God as perfectly satisfying the divine ideal which man is able to form.

—-Westcott—1-3 John, op. cit., p. 136

Again, "man" in himself is not able to "form" the "divine ideal." This is heresy.


(WESTCOTT  DOES  NOT  SAY  "MAN  IN  HIMSELF"  BUT  GOD  IS  SATISFYING [THROUGH  CHRIST  AND  SALVATION]  THE  DIVINE  IDEAL  WHICH  MAN  IS  ABLE  TO  FORM....CHRISTLIKENESS,  AND  THE  END  IS  TO  BE  LIKE  CHRIST [1 JOHN 3]. ANOTHER  WEAK  REPLY  BY  WAITE - Keith Hunt)


Hort Held a Heretical View of Man's Psychology,

Disbelieving the Teaching of 1 Thessalonians 5:23,

and Taking "Soul" to Mean Merely "Life"

1. Hort spurned the truth of man's psychological make-up
as clearly taught in I Thessalonians 5:23.

(1 Peter 2:11) It is by this time sufficiently recognized , that the modern religious sense of the term "soul," as the highest element in man, is founded on a misunderstanding of the N.T. . . . and it is dangerous to build an absolute psychology on such passages as 1 Thess. v. 23.

—Hort—/ Peter, op. cat., p. 134

Tell me, please, just why it is "DANGEROUS" to build an "absolute psychology" on the clear teachings of First Thessalonians 5:23 to the effect that the Christians in Thessalonica had spirits, souls, and bodies? If it is taught in the Word of God, we can use it to "build" on, regardless of what it is, so long as it is correctly interpreted in accordance with sound hermeneutical principles.



(IT  IS  NOT  THE  "SOUL"  OF  MEN  BUT  THE  SPIRIT  OF  MAN  THAT  GIVES  US  THE  PSYCHOLOGICAL  AND   ABILITY  TO  THINK  AS  MAN  THINKS,  CONTRASTED  TO  THE  ANIMAL  WORLD [SEE  1 COR. 2:11].  THE  FALSE  TEACHING  OF  CHRISTIANITY  GIVES  AN  "IMMORTAL"  SOUL  AND  ALL  THEY  TEACH  THAT  GOES  WITH  IT.  BUT  IT  IS  THE  SPIRIT  IN  MAN  THAT  GOES  BACK  TO  GOD  AT  DEATH [ECC. 12:7]  AND  EVEN  THAT  IS  MISUNDERSTOOD.  SEE  MY  STUDY  "THE  SPIRIT  IN  MAN" - Keith Hunt)



2. Hort confused "soul" with mere "life," thus taking the "soul" as, in reality, part of the material part of man rather than the immaterial.

(1 Peter 1:5) "salvation of souls". . . In these and similar phrases we must beware of importing into "soteria" the modern associations connected with the religious use of the word "soul." The "soul" in the bible is simply the life and "to save a soul" is the opposite of "to kill."...

—Hort—1 Peter, op. cat., pp. 38—39

This is completely false and erroneous and heretical view of the "soul" in the Bible. "He that winneth souls is wise" certainly does not mean, he that "doesn't kill people is wise."


(WAITE  OF  COURSE  IS  OF  THE  IMMORTAL  SOUL  TEACHING  OF  THEOLOGY.  THE  STUDY  CALLED  "DEATH...THEN  WHAT?"  ON  MY  WEBSITE  GOES  INTO  DEEP  DETAIL  OF  "SOUL" AND  THE  IDEA  OF  CONTINUING  TO  LIVE  AFTER  DEATH - Keith Hunt)

(1 Peter 1:9) (salvation of souls) Here again, as I had occasion to say of v. 5, we have to be on our guard against interpreting the language of Scripture by the sharp limitations of modern usage. Salvation is deliverance from dangers and enemies and above all from death and destruction. The soul is not a particular element or faculty of our nature, but its very life

—Cf. Westcott—of John xii. 25

First Thessalonians 5:23 clearly says that the "soul" as well as the "spirit" and the "body" are "particular elements or faculties of our natures" and that's good enough for me.


(YES  WAITE  IS  COMING  FROM  THE  "IMMORTAL  SOUL"  IDEA,  HORT  IS  SIMPLY  SAYING  WE  SHOULD  NOT  JUMP  TO  A  CONCLUSION  OUR  "SOUL"  IS  IMMORTAL  AND  SEPARATE  FROM  OUR  VERY  LIFE.  


VERY  WEAK  REPLIES  BY  WAITE,  ON  POINTS  WESTCOTT  AND  HORT  WANTED  TO  CHALLENGE  AS  BEING  ISSUES  THAT  HAVE  BEEN  TAUGHT  INCORRECTLY.  ANY  CHALLENGES  BY  OTHERS  TO  THE  CORRECTNESS  OR  INCORRECTNESS   OF  POPULAR  CHRISTIAN  TEACHING,  IS  TO  PEOPLE  LIKE  WAITE....HERESY.  WESTCOTT  AND  HORT  DID  HAVE  HERESIES,  BUT  FEW  REAL  HERESIES  SO  FAR  HAVE  BEEN  BROUGHT  FORTH  BY  WAITE - Keith Hunt)