The Chemistry of the Blood

 •  11 min. read  •  grade level: 7
Since our publication of the first issue of Christian Truth, we have received questions intermittently about a book entitled, "The Chemistry of the Blood," by M. R. De Haan, M.D. We have heretofore declined to make any public comments on the subject, but now feel that we should make a few guarded ones.
Dr. De Haan's main thesis is that the blood of the Lord Jesus was holy and was not contaminated by His birth into this world as begotten of the Holy Spirit in the virgin Mary. To this we all agree. But Dr. De Haan labors to prove that His blood was holy and was in no way contaminated by blood from Adam's fallen race. We have always felt a revulsion at the doctor's attempt to analyze the "precious blood of Christ." We do not need blood chemistry to understand Scripture.
As for the fact that the blessed Lord Jesus was holy, Scripture is unmistakably clear. "That holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God." Luke 1:3535And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God. (Luke 1:35). "Who knew no sin" (2 Cor. 5:2121For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21)); "Who did no sin" (1 Pet. 2:2222Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: (1 Peter 2:22)); "In Him is no sin" (1 John 3:55And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. (1 John 3:5)). Sin was no part of His nature; He was never tempted by it. He was always absolutely holy. No laboratory or science of man can establish this fact, but we are told it by the infallible Word of God.
The Lord came and took human form and "was made in the likeness of men" (Phil. 2:77But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: (Philippians 2:7)). He came to give His life for the sheep; man could not take His life from Him. He said, "No man taketh it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself." John 10:1818No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father. (John 10:18). It is true that His precious blood was shed, but man was not permitted to do this in order to take His life; for He first delivered up His Spirit to His Father. We rejoice that "the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin" (1 John 1:77But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. (1 John 1:7)).
But to venture beyond Scripture and to delve into secrets of His Person deserves censure. It savors too much of looking into the ark, as the men of Beth-shemesh did (1 Sam. 6:1919And he smote the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the Lord, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men: and the people lamented, because the Lord had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter. (1 Samuel 6:19)). They died for their sin. We need to tread softly when we are on that holy ground; the unshod foot of reverence becomes us. Adoration instead of dissection is what is fitting.
Another point of Dr. De Haan's which we regret is the following:
" 'Upon the Cross His blood was spilled,
A ransom for our sins and guilt.'
This is not true. Jesus' blood was not 'spilled.' Spilling is the result of an accident. The death of Christ was no accident. He laid down His life and voluntarily shed His precious blood that we might live." p. 44.
This we challenge. Truly He laid down His own life, but a Roman soldier pierced His side, and blood and water came forth (John 19:3434But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water. (John 19:34)). He did not shed His own blood. It was a deliberate act of wicked men to pierce His blessed side after He had given up His life.
In a certain sense Abel was a type of Him in being slain by his brother. He, blessed be His name, came so near to men that they could in all evil intent pierce His side in the last wicked act against Him.
When God spoke to Cain about his murdered brother, He said, "The voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto Me from the ground." Gen. 4:1010And he said, What hast thou done? the voice of thy brother's blood crieth unto me from the ground. (Genesis 4:10). Then in Hebrews we read that the blood of Christ "speaketh better things than that of Abel." Abel's blood cried for vengeance, but the Lord Jesus' precious blood spoke of pardon for sinners who received Him. To find fault with the expression in the hymn, of His blood's being spilled, is in our judgment pedantic, and mere quibbling. Of Abel's blood, God said, "the earth... hath opened her mouth to receive thy brother's blood." Was not this true also in the case of the Lord Jesus? Dr. De Haan says that it was not an accident; no, on their part it was premeditated murder. They were as guilty of the act as though they actually took His life, for the full intent was there. There is no basis for denying that His blood that flowed from His side fell to the ground. God will yet judge the world for what it did to His Son.
One meaning of the word "spill," according to the authoritative Merriam-Webster unabridged dictionary, is "5-To cause or allow intentionally to flow out and to be lost or wasted: to shed as blood."
And for Dr. De Haan to say that "Perhaps there is a golden chalice in heaven where every drop of the precious blood is still in existence, just as pure, just as potent, just as fresh as 2000 years ago" (p. 28),
savors of the superstition and idolatry of the Roman system. It is unholy speculation, and unworthy of one who trembles at God's Word. There is not one thing in Scripture that would countenance such a thought.
Many years ago a man by the name of C. E. Stuart was exposed to the folly of such speculation by overextending the types of the Old Testament. We must never carry types to the point where they contradict the plain statements of Scripture, nor add thereto. Mr. Stuart said that the work of atonement was not completed until the blood was presented before God in His immediate presence in heaven. He got this by overdrawing the type of the great day of atonement when the high priest presented the blood of the victim in the holy of holies of the tabernacle. In Mr. Stuart's strange overstatement, his doctrine made it necessary for the Lord Jesus to make a trip while in (or from) the tomb to present His blood on high before God. This would be to put the Christian back on Old Testament ground. Was not His blood shed before God and before man when His side was pierced? The Lord made no such trip into heaven between His burial and His resurrection.
Let us beware of overdrawing Scripture and of introducing our own reasonings and speculations into it. Let us keep the unshod foot of reverence when speaking of either the Person or the work of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
"Who to our charge shall lay
Iniquity or guilt?
Our sin is done away
Since Jesus' blood was spilled.
Captivity is captive led,
Since Jesus live ill that was dead."
This is perhaps the suitable issue and place to make a few comments on a clipping that was sent to us recently. It was taken from a pamphlet entitled "Water Baptism," by Dr. De Haan. We have no wish to challenge the writer, but we do desire to keep a clear perspective regarding the truths of Scripture. Everything is to be tested by Scripture, and the early believers at Berea tested the words of the Apostle Paul by the Old Testament. For this they were commended by the Spirit of God, who says that they were "more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they... searched the Scriptures daily, whether those things were so" (Acts 17:1111These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. (Acts 17:11)).
The clipping as it was relayed to us is: "When God saw Christ on Calvary He saw more than Christ's physical body. He saw also the MYSTICAL body of Christ which He had chosen from eternity, to which every believer of every age has belonged from eternity. So when Christ hung on the cross, the Father saw there the whole body of Christ, the entire Church and body of believers and He reckons that what happened to Christ happened to every member of the body of Christ." (Emphasis by copyist.)
It is difficult to quote a single verse that would say this is not true when Scripture never raises such a thought, even in the negative. It is never even supposed in the sacred pages. One comment on the body of Christ is found in 1 Cor. 10 "The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread." It is the loaf of bread placed on the table in remembrance of the Lord which when unbroken reminds us that all believers of this dispensation the Church from Pentecost to the rapture—are members of His body. But when it is broken it is no longer a symbol of the body of Christ as composed of believers, but of that body which was prepared for Him when He came into the world. "A body hast Thou prepared Me." It was His own body in which He suffered for sins, the Just for the unjust. But nowhere is it even hinted that God saw in Christ's body on the cross the "mystical body of Christ." Such a statement is the product of imagination.
In 1 Cor. 12 we read, "Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular." v. 27. "Ye"—the saints at Corinth, not "every believer of every age." The saints of the Old Testament times were not part of the Church. Only those of this age, between the descent of the Holy Spirit and the calling home of the Church at the coming of Christ for His own—those who are indwelt by the Spirit of God—are a part of "the Church." No doubt Old Testament saints were "born again," but they were not indwelt by the Spirit. "Christ... loved the church, and gave Himself for it... that He might present it to Himself a glorious church.... For we are members of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones." (Eph. 5:25-3025Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; 26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, 27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish. 28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself. 29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: 30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. (Ephesians 5:25‑30).)
We were not members of His body when He hung on the cross, but we are when indwelt by the Spirit as the seal of whose we are. The Church of God is separate and distinct from the Old Testament believers, and also from those saints who will be on earth after the Church has been taken home to be with Christ. The Church is distinguished from Old Testament saints in Heb. 12:2323To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, (Hebrews 12:23) (the "spirits of just men made perfect"). The Church is His body now, as united to a living Head in heaven. There never was such a thing, before the day of Pentecost, as a body on earth united to a living head in heaven; and there never will be after the Church is taken home, when He presents her to Himself "not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing." She will then, after the marriage takes place in heaven, be His bride, and be that forever. Rev. 21:22And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (Revelation 21:2) speaks of her as a bride 1000 years after the marriage.
The Old Testament saints will occupy that place which John the Baptist claimed, "the friend of the bridegroom." When the marriage takes place in heaven, there will not only be the bride and the bridegroom, but invited guests. "Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb." Rev. 19:99And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God. (Revelation 19:9).
Another remark that needs 10 be searched out in the light of the Holy Scriptures is that God in viewing Christ on the cross "reckons that what happened to Christ happened to every member of the body of Christ."
This is farfetched and untrue. Christ died for our sins, but God never reckons that what happened to Christ happened to every believer. He was alone there. On that cross He suffered
the rejection of men, and this is never reckoned to us. On that cross, in those dreadful three hours of darkness, He was alone—shut out from the light of God's countenance when He, the Holy One, was made sin for us. It brought forth from those blessed lips that cry of abandonment, "My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?" That was never reckoned to us.
We quarrel not with the man who wrote these remarks, but all Christians have a duty to check everything by the Word of God. This we seek to do in all fairness. We are not cast upon men for the preservation of the truth, but on the Scriptures. When the Apostle Paul was leaving the leaders of the Ephesian assembly, he told them of failure to come, and said, "And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of His grace." Acts 20:3232And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified. (Acts 20:32).
May we all be more diligent in searching the Scriptures, while seeking grace and wisdom from Him for proper discernment. "Hold fast the form of sound words." 2 Tim. 1:1313Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. (2 Timothy 1:13).