The Conditionalist Faith of Our Fathers, vol. 1


VI. Essence of Fall Was Believing Satan’s Lie

It cannot be overstressed that Satan’s basic attack was on the veracity of the word of God as to the nature of man. That is why this entire episode of the “fall” is basic to our study of the issue, and that is why we dwell upon it. And the very fact that Satan’s contention has been perpetuated primarily through all the major pagan religions and philosophies, and not through the long line of Hebrew prophets, is likewise of utmost significance. It was through pagan channels that Immortal-Soulism found its fateful way into certain major sections of Judaism and Christianity. CFF1 55.3

So the acceptance of Satan’s misrepresentation of the words of God, and his bold denial of the Creator’s declaration as to the mortability of man, became the epochal turning point of the race at the very dawn of human history. CFF1 56.1

And never was Satan’s astuteness more crafty than when he secured the well-nigh universal acceptance, in the pagan circles of antiquity, of his original lie in substitution for God’s truth, for—let it be repeated—the essence of the Fall consisted in believing Satan’s lie instead of God’s truth. And the contention, “Ye shall not surely die,” first whispered into the ears of Eve within the confines of Paradise, has continued to echo on through all the diversified corridors of time to this very day. CFF1 56.2

In due time, in pagan antiquity, Satan secured the wellnigh worldwide acceptance of his declaration of the universal Innate Immortality of the soul. Only among God’s ancient people, the Hebrews, to whom were committed the protective “oracles of God” (Romans 3:2), was it not accepted until shortly before the time of Christ, in the inter-Testament period, a period marked by grave departures. And then it was adopted only by a section of Jewry, chiefly in Alexandria, as we shall see, and with disastrous consequences. CFF1 56.3