Quack Doctors of the Soul

FFF 12:6 (June-July 1966)

Quack Doctors of the Soul

George M. Landis

“But ye are forgers of lies, ye are physicians of no value” (Job 13:4). “When Ephriam saw his sickness, and Judah saw his wound, then went Ephriam to the Assyrian, and sent to king Jareb; yet could he not heal you, nor cure you of your wound” (Hosea 5:13).

In these words two Old Testament writers disowned false physicians. Our concern today is with fake healers of the soul.

As the great desire of a sick person is to find a doctor who can cure his disease, so the dominant wish of one who is conscious of soul sickness is to find one who is able to effect a cure for his ailment. We rightfully despise the medical charlatan who sells his useless nostroms for gain, deceiving, disappointing and often fatally injuring the unfortunate and unsuspecting. Not only do they prey upon the misfortune of their patients, but even worse, prevent them from going to a reputable specialist who might be able to relieve their distress. Even more dispicable is the quack doctor of the soul. His number is legion for the devil sends forth many deceivers. The Word of God warns us against such. “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ” (2 Cor. 11:13).

How often we find physicians gravitating to the same area or the same building. In one city there is a three-block district on a certain street where a number of doctors are to be found at the one end of the street and at the other end, undertakers. Let us consider the experience of the sinner, conscious of his ailing soul, as he walks down “False Way” and calls upon a number of soul soothers, asking each the question, “What must I do to be cured of my sin?”

First of all we will stop at the office of:

Dr. Atheist — In appearance he is bold, brazen, self-conceited and he has a contemptuous sneer on his face. He has been taught by Dr. Evolution and Dr. Skeptic. He diagnoses the trouble as “the remains of animalism.” He would have the patient believe that man is a machine, rather than a responsible moral being and that what he does is merely the outworking of the inflexible laws of nature.

Dr. Atheist prescribes “Negation Pills” — no God, no Christ, no Heaven, no hell, no future judgment. He declares that death ends all; that there is nothing beyond; that man dies like a beast. He follows the pills with “Eat, Drink and Be Merry Therapy,” enjoining his patient to enjoy life while he still has it.

Adjacent to his office is that of:

Dr. Agnostic — He is more refined and less harsh in his treatment, respecting somewhat the feelings of his visitor. His chief prescription is a “Don’t Know” dose of “Uncertainty Tonic.” He agrees that there may be a God and a future life, but affirms that such things are beyond our ability to ascertain.

Next we come to the well-furnished office of:

Dr. No-Sin — He is a graduate of a certain metaphysical college, once located in an Eastern City. He tries to argue his patient out of his pain. He prescribes “Can’t Sin Salve” and “No Error Ointment.” These are followed by a liberal application of “No Death Vanishing Cream.”

The Word of God tells us, “Fools make a mock at sin” (Prov. 14:9). What consummate folly to deny the facts of sin, suffering and death!

Next we come to the well-filled office of:

Dr. No-hell — He applies “All-healing Balm” discovered by Dr. Doubt and manufactured in the “Carnal Mind Pharmaceutical Plant.” The widest distributors of this miracle drug are a group professing to be “True Witnesses” from Modernistic Theological Seminaries.

Still another Quack Doctor of the Soul is:

Dr. Second Chance — He comes from the “Larger Hope Hospital.” His favourite opiate is the “False Hope Hypodermic” together with “Anti-Heartache Powders.”

Let us remember the Bible makes no mention of a second chance after death. On the contrary it says, “It is appointed unto men, once to die but after this the judgment” (Heb. 9:27).

In close proximity to this office is that of:

Dr. Universalist and Dr. Restorationist — These are old college chums in practice together. They give “Just a Little Hell Bitters” and “Save-All Syrup” interspersed with “Cure-All Capsules.”

Doctors No-hell, Second Chance, Universalist and Restorationist all administer “Pain-Killing Opiates” which dull the spiritual sensibilities but neither cure nor help the sin-grieved soul.

Some patients turn to:

Dr. New Thought — He has a small but lucrative practice. He is noted for his “Spark of Divine” pills and “Universal Spirit Lotion.”

Then there is:

Dr. Legality — He is very stern and harsh, but he has a large practice. His office is always crowded by anxious sufferers. He deals in “Tablets of the Law” in ten doses. But “by the law is the knowledge of sin” not the cure.

One often called in for consultation by Dr. Legality is:

Dr. Save-Self — His Alma Mater is the celebrated “Morality Medical College” where he was classmate of the distinguished “Ego-Therapists” Dr. Reputation and Dr. Respectability. Dr. Save-Self recommends a “Reducing Diet” with “Self-Surgery Exercises.” But remember “None … can … redeem his brother or give to God a ransom for him” (Psa. 49: 7).

Next we see:

Dr. Ritualist — He has a very ornate office with equipment both ancient and modern. For “the sincere milk of the Word,” he substitutes “Tradition Tablets.” He makes much of “Ecclesiastical Manipulations, Sacramentals, Public Piety Plasters, Right Rays and Formalistic Ferments.” All are equally useless in combatting sin.

Dr. Legality, Dr. Save-Self and Dr. Ritualist are all members of the “Natural State Examining Board,” and are leading consultants at “Good Works Hospital” and the celebrated “Proud Heart Polyclinic.” They either inspire a vain hope or leave their patient exhausted by self-exertion.

We now reach the office of:

Dr. Fatalist — He prefers “What Is to Be Will Be Linament” and “Creature of Circumstances Capsules.” He employs “Behaviouristic Psychology Light Beams” and has been known to dispense a “False Compound of Predestination, Self-deception and Carnality.”

Near the cemetery is the gloomy office of:

Dr. Hopeless — He has a thin, pale death-like face. His prescriptions are large does of “Too Late, Too Bad, Sinned Away Your Day of Grace” medicine. He suggests a “Final Fling Poultice” skilfully compounded of “Fleshly Lusts” and “Carnal Delights.”

Finally we visit:

Dr. Procrastination — He has a varied clientele. He is very cheerful and often jests with his patients. His specialty is “Plenty of Time Pills,” but the difficulty is, he cannot control time and is likely to run out of medicine at the critical moment.

From the counterfeits let us turn to the genuine:

The Great Physician — The Lord Jesus Christ — His office is at the corner of “Scripture Street” and “Grace Way.” It is readily recognized by the Cross on the door which is always open. No one ever comes and finds the “Doctor Out.” The door is entered by the “Step of Faith.”

The Great Physician has a perfect knowledge of every case. He needs no X-ray to discover what is inside His patient. He always makes a correct diagnosis and prescribes the proper therapy. He has a remedy for every illness no matter how severe or long duration. It is a remedy provided at “Calvary” and is the “Remedy of Redemption,” purchased by His own precious blood.

Our Physician has the unique record of never having lost a patient; none is beyond His power to heal. Moreover, His services are absolutely free for “The gift of God is eternal life, through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Rom. 6:23).

So we see that only the Great Physician can meet the need of the sin-sick soul.

“The worst of all diseases
Is light compared with sin;
On every part it seizes,
But rages most within.

‘Tis palsy, plague and fever
And madness all combined;
And none but a believer
The least relief can find.’