We read in James 1st chapter 27th verse, "Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction and to keep himself unspotted from the world."
The reader will see here that the very fact of a pure religion denotes the fact that there are impure religions in the country. For when you hear a man say, "This is a genuine dollar," he means by that that it is not a counterfeit dollar. Of course a religion that is a pure religion would denote that many religions are counterfeit. A pure religion would denote that there are counterfeits in the country, but also a pure religion denotes that a man has been saved from all sin, and purified and made pure. Now my next objection to a sinning religion is, first, that the atonement provides a salvation from all sin, for all men, for we read in Titus 2d chapter 11th to the 14th verse, "For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world, looking for that blessed hope and the glorious appearing of the great God, and our Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us that he might redeem us from all iniquity and purify unto himself a peculiar people zealous of good works." Now in this quotation the author says that we were redeemed from all iniquity, and then he adds, "and purified."
Then he tells us that we are to live a life of holiness and righteousness in this present world, and not in heaven. Of course we expect to live holy in heaven, there is no dispute in that, but where the war breaks out is, some claim we can't live right in this world, and others claim we can. The man that says he can is evidently in harmony with the teachings of God's Word, and the man that says he can't is without doubt out of harmony with God and the teachings of the Book.
Then the Lord tells us also in this quotation that we are to be a peculiar people. Now, in the minds of some people, a peculiar man or woman is a person that wears a peculiar kind of a dress. In that they take a ribbon off of their hat or leave off their necktie, or cut the two little buttons off their coat sleeves, or that they eat in a certain way or certain things they don't eat. Some people believe if they don't eat pork or oysters they are peculiar and fulfilling the Scriptures. Many people imagine that if they don't wear certain things or don't eat certain things that within itself will make them peculiar people, but, according to the Book there is but one thing to that makes man peculiar, and that is to be saved from all sin and then good common-sense will regulate his eating and his wearing.
My next objection to a Sinning religion is found in this fact that the least religion a man can have to have any at all will settle the sinning question. For we read in 1st John 3d chapter 9th verse, "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin for his seed remaineth in him and he can not sin because he is born of God." I want the reader to see that as great as the new birth is, and as far-reaching, and as eternal as it is, and as wonderful and glorious as the experience of the new birth, still it is the least experience that God gives to man. For if a sinner gets anything below the new birth, he gets nothing. However, we don't teach that the new birth is a small blessing or a little insignificant experience. It is a tremendous experience, and, sorry to say, so much bigger than the average man has nowadays, that the average man in the church when he meets a man that is really born again, often accuses the fellow of professing holiness My next objection to a sinning religion is found in the fact that a sinning religion would make no distinction at all between a sinner and a Christian, and there should be a distinction between them, and the lines of separation between the two should be so clearly marked that any man could detect it. Now we read in 1st John 3d chapter 8th verse, "He that committeth sin is of the devil, for the devil sinneth from the beginning." Then we read in the 9th verse, "Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin," and then in the 10th verse, "In this the children of God are manifest and the children of the devil." Now if this means anything in the world, it means God's children don't commit sin and the Devil's children do. We have just read in the preceding verse if a man is born again, he can not commit sin, and that doesn't mean if a man professes holiness that he can't commit it. It simply means that any man that is born of the Spirit of God has been brought into such a relationship with God, that he has gone completely out of the sin business. We have often heard worldly church members say that the holiness people said they couldn't sin if they wanted to, but the Bible said that the converted man can't do it. We next notice that a sinning religion would make God swear a lie, but somebody might say, "Brother Robinson, you should not talk that way." Yes, Brother Robinson ought to be honest, and if a man can not be saved from sin God is a liar.
We say not to be rude, or unmanly, but because from what we read in the Bible it is impossible for us to say anything else, for we read in Luke 1st chapter 73d, 74th, and 75th verses, "The oath which he sware to our father Abraham that he would grant unto us that we being delivered out of the hand of our enemies might serve him without fear in holiness and righteousness all the days of our lives."
Now here the reader will notice that God put Himself on oath that He would deliver us from the hands of our enemy that we might serve Him without fear in holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life, and beloved, all the days of a man's life are not the last days, so some men are ready to tell us that they believe in being made holy in death, but God said we are to have it all the days of our life. You will notice the two expressions, holiness and righteousness; it means that inward holiness will produce outward righteousness, and there is no better condition than that in this country-holy on the inside and righteous on the outside is God's standard, so he is clean on both sides-inside and out.
I heard the Rev. Seth C. Rees say once that, "Salvation is a revolution and not an evolution, that regeneration is a revolution that turns a man upside down, and that sanctification is a revolution that turns a man inside out." This is all brought about, as we have just noticed, through the oath that our Father sware unto us. And beloved, when our heavenly Father puts Himself on oath that we should have a thing, why should we listen to unbelievers and backsliders although they may be in the pulpit?
A sinner in the pulpit is the most dangerous man in the land.
Robinson, Reuben A. (Bud). The Collected Works of 'Uncle Bud' Robinson (Kindle Locations 3751-3803). Jawbone Digital. Kindle Edition.