A. T. Jones
The genuine evolutionist recognizes that creation must be immediate, but he does not believe in immediate action, and therefore does not believe in creation. Do not forget that creation is immediate or else it is not creation, if not immediate, it is evolution. So touching again the creation at the beginning, when God speaks, there is in His word the creative energy to produce the thing which that word pronounces. That is creation, and that word of God is the same yesterday and today and forever; it lives and abides forever; it has everlasting life in it. The word of God is a living thing. The life that is in it is the life of God—eternal life. Therefore it is the word of eternal life, as the Lord Jesus said, and in the nature of things it abides and remains forever. Forever it is the word of God; forever it has creative energy in it.
So when Jesus was here, He said, “The words that I speak unto you, they are spirit and they are life.” The words that Jesus spoke are the words of God. They are imbued with the life of God. They are eternal life, they abide forever, and in them is the creative energy to produce the thing spoken.
This is illustrated by many incidents in the life of Christ, as narrated in the New Testament. I do not need to cite them all, but I will refer to one or two, so you can get hold of this principle. You remember that after the sermon on the mount, Jesus came down, and there met him a centurion, saying, “My servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him.” The centurion said, “I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof, but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.” Jesus turned to those standing about and said, “I have not found so great faith, no not in Israel.”
Israel had the Bible; they knew the word of God. They boasted of being the people of the Book, the people of God. They read it; they preached in their synagogues, “My word … shall accomplish that which I please.” They said, when they read that word, That is all right, the thing ought to be done. We see the necessity of it and will do it. We will accomplish what it says. Then they did their best to accomplish it. It took them a long while, so long indeed, that they never did it. Their real doing of the word was so far away that the greatest of them were led to exclaim, “If but one person could only for one day keep the whole law and not offend in one point—nay, if but one person could but keep that one point of the law which affected the due observance of the Sabbath—then the troubles of Israel would be ended, and the Messiah at last would come.” So, though they started in to do what the word said, it took them so long that they never got to it. What were they?
There was the word of God, which said, “It shall accomplish that which I please.” It was spoken thus of the creative power. And though they professed to recognize the creative energy of the word of God, yet in their own lives they left that all out, and said, We will do it. They looked to themselves for the process which would bring themselves to the point where that word and themselves would agree. What were they? Are you afraid to say, for fear you have been there yourself? Do not be afraid to say that they were evolutionists, for that is what they were, and that is what a good many of you are. Their course was antagonistic to creation; there was no creation about it. They were not made new creatures; no new life was formed within them; the thing was not accomplished by the power of God; it was all of themselves; and so far were they from believing in creation that they rejected the Creator and crucified Him out of the world. That is what evolution always does, for do not forget that “evolution is directly antagonistic to creation.”
Now these were the people upon whom Jesus looked when He made this statement about faith in Israel. Here was a man who was a Roman, who had grown up among the people who were Jews, and who set at naught the teachings of Jesus. That centurion had been around where Jesus was, and seen him talking, had heard His words and had seen the effect of them, until he himself said, Whatever that man speaks is so; when He says a thing, it is done. Now I am going to have the advantage of it. So he went to Jesus and said what is written. Jesus knew perfectly well that the man had his mind upon the power of His word to do that thing, and He replied, Very well, I will come and heal your servant. O no, my Lord, you do not need to come. You see this man was testing the matter to see whether or not there was any power in the word. Therefore he said, “Speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed.” Jesus replied, “As thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed.” When that word went forth, “so be it done unto thee,” how long before their man was healed? Twenty years? No. Didn’t he have to go through many ups and downs before he was certainly healed? Honest, now? No, no! When the word was spoken, the word did the thing that was spoken, and it did it at once.
Another day Jesus was walking along and a leper some distance from Him saw and recognized Him. He, too, had got hold of the blessed truth of the creative energy of the word of God. He said to Jesus, “If thou wilt, thou canst make me clean.” Jesus stopped and said, “I will; be thou clean. And as soon as He had spoken, immediately the leprosy departed from him, and he was cleansed.” Mark 1:41, 42. We are not allowed to put a moment of time between speaking of the word and the accomplished fact: “Immediately” the leper was cleansed.
Now you see that the word of God at the beginning of creation had in it the creative energy to produce that thing which the word pronounced. You see that when Jesus came into the world to show men the way of life, to save them from their sins, He demonstrated, over and over again, here and there and everywhere, to all people and for all time, that that same word of God has that same creative energy in it yet; so that when that word is spoken, the creative energy is there to produce the thing.
Now are you an evolutionist or are you a creationist? That word speaks to you. You have read it; you profess to believe it. You believe in creation, as against the other evolutionists; now will you believe in creation as against yourself? Will you put yourself upon that platform today where you will allow nothing to come between you and the creative energy of that word—no period of time whatever?
Jesus said to a certain person, “Thy sins are forgiven.” How long before it was so? There was no length of time whatever between the word “forgiven” and the thing. That same word, “Thy sins are forgiven,” is spoken to you today. Why do you let any time pass between this word, which is spoken to you and the accomplishment of the thing? You said a while ago that anybody who let a minute, or even a second, pass between the speaking of the word of God and the production of the thing is an evolutionist. Very good; that is so. Stick to it. Now I ask you, Why is it that when He speaks forgiveness to you, you let whole days pass before forgiveness gets to you, before it is true in you? You said the other man is an evolutionist. What are you, I want to know? Are you going to stop being evolutionists and become creationists?
This day will be one of special importance to many here, because it is a time when many will decide this question one way or the other. If you go out of this house an evolutionist, you are in danger. It is to you a matter of life or death just now. You said that evolution is infidelity and that is so; therefore, if you go out of this house an evolutionist, where do you stand? What is your choice? And if you go out of this house without the forgiveness of sins, you are an evolutionist, because you allow time to pass between the speaking of the word and the accomplishment of the fact.
From what I have read, you see that whoever lets any time pass between the word spoken and the thing done, is an evolutionist. The word of God to you is, Man, “thy sins are forgiven thee.” Woman, “thy sins are forgiven thee.” [Elder Corliss: “Didn’t it say, Thy sins shall be forgiven?”] No, sir. “Thy sins are forgiven thee”—present tense, with an emphasis. “Thy sins are forgiven.” I thank God this is so, because the creative energy is in that word “forgiven” to take away all sin and create the man a new creature. I believe in creation. Do you? Do you believe in the creative energy that is in the word “forgiven” spoken to you? Or are you an evolutionist and do you say, I cannot see how that can be, because I am so bad? I have been trying to do right, but I have made many failures. I have had many ups and downs and have been down a good many more times than up. If that is what you say, you are an evolutionist, for that is evolution.