On December 26 and 29, 2006 Calvinistic pastor and (Unchained) radio talk show host Mr. Gene Cook and I had a two part debate on The Narrow Mind broadcast regarding Total Depravity and Eternal Security. I had been told it was to be: (1) an interview and (2) only on the subject of eternal security with no mention of any other point of Calvinism. Here is how the invitation email read:
“I would like to invite Mr. Corner to be interviewed on the subject of \"Eternal Security\" on The Narrow Mind Broadcast. We have December 26th and 29th available at 9am PDT.”
I have had various interviews on eternal security in the past. This was no interview but an unannounced debate presented as a mere interview to catch me off guard.
Furthermore, for Mr. Gene Cook to bring up something other than eternal security was also cunning.
My response to the above email was:
“I am interested in these two interviews on Eternal Security. Give me the details: (1) How long will I be interviewed? (2) Who will interview me? (3) Will listeners call in? (4) Will I be sent a complete unedited copy of the interviews?”
The response from that was:
“Pastor Gene Cook, Jr. is the host of the program. The program lasts 60 minutes. We have a toll free number for callers. You will be provided
with an unedited copy of the interview in mp3 format.”
Also, please know that I was told in writing that I would be supplied with an unedited copy of my interviews (debates) but was only offered the ones from his web site which are grossly different from the originals.
What Mr. Gene Cook (Unchained Radio) is offering is not the actual debate. It is instead a heavily edited version with various words and spaces that have been removed from our dialog, especially as this would make him and his false doctrines sound better. Mr. Gene Cook’s words that were mispronounced or misstated in some other way were sometimes removed, as well as, space from the end of my answer to the start of his reply. All of these changes were made to make it appear that Mr. Gene Cook answered in a more polished and quicker way than he actually did. Moreover, a critically important word in my answer was mostly removed, thereby hindering the listeners from easily grasping that point. I confronted Mr. Gene Cook about these on the second day. I was cut off after I quoted what Jesus gave us in Luke 8:21.
Hours after the second part of our debate, Mr. Gene Cook removed the link to get to part one and part two, that is, if he was even going to put it up on his web site. During that time I emailed Mr. Gene Cook the following:
If you put both parts (December 26th and December 29th) of our doctrinal (debate) exchange on eternal security up on your web site and offer them as
you do your other debates, I will NOT allow the latter part of today’s message to be aired. I’m interested in truth and souls coming to salvation. If you do this, NOBODY will hear anything said today from when you brought up the editing you did on Tuesday’s broadcast to when I was cut off. I will end it just prior to you mentioning the editing. It must also be understood that all of your final comments, after I got off the air with you on Tuesday must also be removed. End Tuesday’s debate when I finish speaking to you. Let’s ONLY have our exchange up for the whole world to hear. (It is now your decision what happens. Choose carefully.)
Gene himself wrote back the following shocking reply:
“I suggest you take a long walk off a short pier!
Here are the two parts of that debate unedited as they were recorded over the telephone on those days. If they had not been recorded then we would not have genuine copies for you to listen to. Everything remains unchanged except for about 40 seconds when the recorder wasn’t recording part 1 because it ran out of tape between caller 1 and the start of caller 2. That time period was plugged in from Mr. Gene Cook’s edited version.
God Bless You.
An Analysis of Mr. Gene Cook's Faulty Arguments
and Contradictions From Our Debate
Mr. Gene Cook had in his possession 801 pages from me in my book refuting eternal security, yet never quoted me. Instead he quoted someone who did a foreword and then tried to use that to change the subject from eternal security to Total Depravity. During that time Mr. Gene Cook said the following:
“There are Calvinists who do believe that all infants who die in infancy are saved.”
If that is true then let him take issue with those Calvinists too, since they are believing like the Bible on that point, which is not the way Calvin taught. Also, if believing like that makes one a Pelagian, then those same Calvinists would be Pelagians for believing all babies that die go to heaven. Gene wants it both ways.
In Gene’s feeble attempt to slither out of the force of Romans 8:13 he gave three different answers:
“This is talking about dying physically.”
Then he changed to:
“I’m talking about the second death. This is talking about the second death.”
Then he changed again to this:
“This is speaking of an unbeliever, sir.”
What Paul wanted Christians to know in Rom 8:13, Mr. Gene Cook and other grace changers flatly deny and scoff at. Calvinists are spiritually dangerous people, who are teaching a false gospel and distorting the holy image of being a saint to one that can include a person living in wickedness.
The Scripture I was referring to which shows that Jesus loves even the unsaved is found in Mark 10:21. I cited the wrong reference for that, but the point is still scriptural.
Part of Mr. Gene Cook’s answer for David remaining saved in adultery and murder was that David was a man after God’s own heart. That truth about David was not unique to him. Furthermore, it has nothing to do with him remaining saved or not while in such wickedness. Jer. 3:15 says:
“Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding.”
Hence, from that Scripture we can see that to be a man after God’s own heart means to lead the people of Israel with Godly knowledge and understanding. Finally, remember this: the multiple warnings in Ezekiel which state that if a righteous man turns from his righteousness and does evil he will die spiritually, were written to such people that would be like David in that regard.
Mr. Gene Cook mentioned the Lord’s teaching of the Prodigal in Lk. 15:11-32 and said the following:
“It’s a parable. It’s not about salvation. It’s not anything, it doesn’t have anything to do with salvation.”
The truth is, the teaching about the Prodigal is definitely a teaching about salvation, for that younger son left the presence of the Father and dove into sin. After he spent all he had and was in great distress, he repented and returned humbly to the Father to serve him. At that point, the father declared his spiritual condition, when in wild living with the prostitutes. The father said he was both spiritually DEAD and LOST when in sexual sin. But now since he repented and returned to Father to serve him, he is “ALIVE AGAIN.” Here are the exact words as found in Luke 15:24:
“‘For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ So they began to celebrate.”
The words ALIVE AGAIN are significant. Those words come from the same Greek word found in Rom. 14:9 where we read the following:
“For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.”
Jesus returned to LIFE AGAIN, which showed he had physical life before he died on the cross. Hence, Jesus went from being physically alive, to physically dead to being physically alive again when he rose from the dead.
Similarly, the prodigal went from spiritual life TO spiritual death when in wild living with the prostitutes, to spiritual life again when he repented and returned to the Father to serve him.
According to the eternal security teachers, after a person gets saved he can commit the same types of sins that characterize an unsaved person, yet he remains saved. That’s how Mr. Gene Cook could make the following slanderous statement about me:
“A guy who is actually born again who’s looking at pornography is in a whole lot better position that you are in your doctrine.”
According to Gene Cook’s theology a guy who has been born again and is looking at pornography is in a whole lot better position than me in my doctrine. For him to state such implies the following three things about his own beliefs: (1) There are Christian adulterers and (2) I’m not a Christian based on my doctrine. This is nothing but pure slander since in my book, “The Believer’s Conditional Security” (which he has a copy of), there are various times I mention how salvation comes and that is by grace and justification by faith. I also mentioned these in this part of the debate. Hence, he is the one guilty of a strawman argument. (3) For him to state that I’m unsaved is also contradictory to his doctrine of eternal security. According to the belief system he holds to, it is possible that I could have been regenerated at some past point and I’m currently in the midst of a serious and radical fall and may return at a future point, but I’m still saved at this moment. Hence, Gene slandered me and contradicted his own belief system to state what he did.
Unlike what the eternal security people want us to think, getting set free from sin addiction is what happens at the point of salvation. This is what is referred to by Jesus’ teaching that truth will set you free in John 8:32-36.
Gene brought up Romans 4 and imputed righteousness but fails to recognize that after getting saved one can lose that righteous standing through wicked living. In other words, you can’t be holy if you are living wickedly, as the Calvinists want us to believe. The Apostle John wrote in 1 John 3:7,8:
“Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. He who does what is sinful is of the devil.”
One of the shocking arguments used by the eternal security teachers to support their teaching centers around asking others if they lust. It is my firm belief the reason they ask this is because they think everyone is lustful as they are. Believe it or not, one of the characteristics of the people who change grace into a license for immorality is found in 2 Peter 2:14. Peter wrote:
“With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning; they seduce the unstable; they are experts in greed—an accursed brood!”
The reason we know this is describing the same group mentioned by Jude is because 2 Peter 2 has many similarities to Jude. In other words, Peter adds to the description of those grace changers who distort grace into a license for immorality and states they have eyes full of adultery. This has to be why eternal security teachers think others are lusting all the time as they must be.
The second part of our debate opened with Gene’s introduction of me:
“You’re about to meet a real, present-day Pharisee. That’s right. The guy that Jesus was describing here in this text, well, I’ve got somebody that has the same mind set. I’d like to introduce to you today on our show Dan Corner. Dan, welcome to Narrow Minds.”
Gene started this part of our debate with that slanderous accusation after reading Luke 18:9-14 and even worse, it was after I had stated during part 1 of our debate that I believe we are saved by grace and justified by faith. Nowhere in the entire Bible will one ever read where the Pharisees believed salvation comes by grace and justification by faith. Yet, Gene made such an unscriptural and unkind judgment of me and all because I reject and oppose the teaching of eternal security.
Gene dislikes the idea that King David died spiritually when he committed adultery and murder. His false and dangerous version of grace, which parallels the devil’s teaching in Gen. 3:4 (that is, a righteous person can’t die spiritually through sin), is shattered by the fact that a righteous person can indeed die spiritually as found all throughout Scripture (Genesis 2:16,17; Ezek. 3:20; Ezek. 18:24; Ezek. 18:26; Ezek. 33:13; Ezek. 33:18; Rom. 6:16; Rom. 8:13; James 1:14-16; James 5:19,20; etc.). David is a prime example of that. David committed evil (2 Sam. 12:9) and therefore died spiritually just as Ezek. 33:18 says. To avoid spiritual death we have to keep Jesus’ teachings (John 8:51) and continue to believe on Jesus (John 11:25,26). It is possible to become spiritually dead and lost after getting salvation, as shown in Jesus teaching with the prodigal in Luke 15:24 and Luke 15:32. Gene asked me the following about David:
Gene: “... his unsaved period after he committed adultery with Bathsheba and murdered Uriah, was he under the discipline of God?”
Dan: “There’s no question about that ...”
Gene is feeling confident and pleased at this point because he thinks he has found an argument to support wicked living and his deadly Calvinistic version of grace. Gene is thinking David was still saved in his adultery and murder because he was disciplined.
Gene wants to appear accurate and precise, but that is only part of his facade. He has and does misquote me as he already has done and will do later in this same part of the debate. He presses me for an answer and here is the second time I answered him:
“I believe that what we have in Hebrews 12 and Ezekiel 33:18 and all through the rest of the Bible is going to have to be in conformity one with the other. I believe that David died spiritually. If you’re going to say that it was merely discipline and he remained alive, then you’ve got all kind of other problems. Those problems would be that a person sinning to that degree all through the Bible is on the road to Hell. They will not inherit the Kingdom of God.”
At this point I had already answered his question more than once, but he didn’t like my answers so he made it appear I didn’t answer. He thinks for the moment he found a way to defend wicked living, but got disappointed when I mentioned Hebrews 12:6 states God disciplines all those he loves, which includes even the unsaved, since God loves unsaved people (Mark 10:21). I could have added to that fact, but didn’t, that the prodigal was spiritually dead and lost in his sins and was going through great affliction and pain of various sorts, which could be considered discipline. Then I pressed Gene for an answer and he responded with:
Gene: “And then now you’re saying after I point out to you that you’ve got a little bit of a quandary here. Now you’re saying ...”
Dan: “My quandary is with you. You won’t answer the question. Do you believe that an adulterer will inherit the Kingdom? Please answer the question.”
Gene: “I’m sorry, I missed the question. What was it again?”
Gene heard the question at least 3 times at this point yet he said he missed the question. He wanted me to repeat it again, as he stalls for time to think for an answer. He finally answers with the following:
Gene: “An adulterer is always used in reference to somebody who’s not saved. You’ll never find an adulterer in Scripture being described when it comes to the, a person whose lifestyle is, is characterized by adultery. For example, adulterers will not inherit the Kingdom of God. That’s an individual whose lifestyle is characterized by unrepentant adultery.”
It was very hard to get him to admit what he believes. This is often the case with people who change grace into a license for immorality. But he finally did admit it. Again, he said an adulterer is a person who lifestyle is characterized by unrepentant adultery. That is the Calvinistic definition of an adulterer, not the Biblical definition. The truth is, an adulterer is a person who commits adultery, but that would refute eternal security and expose their version of grace as being counterfeit.
Dan: “So you’re saying, then, that occasional acts of adultery won’t make a person an adulterer. Is that correct?”
Gene: “I’m saying that if somebody is born again and they have, they’ve been justified, they have the imputed righteousness of Christ, it is possible that they could, for example, commit the sin of lust which Jesus equates with adultery, and therefore, be guilty of at least a form of adultery and yet still be saved. Yes I am. Because their lifestyle is actually characterized by their longing and desire for righteous and holy living.”
He changed from the kind of adultery David committed to mental adultery. He also revealed his deadly unscriptural definition of a Christian. Again, this is what he said about a real Christian—such a person is committing sin but is longing and desiring for righteous and holy living. Of course, from their warped interpretation of Romans 7:14-25, that means the normal Christian cannot refrain from doing evil all the time. And if Paul couldn’t get the victory over sin, we certainly won’t. But, according to him, while the Christian is doing evil all the time, he is longing for and desiring righteous and holy living. He went on to say this:
Gene: “See there’s a difference in the heart of a man who is unsaved and in the heart of a man who’s saved. When an, when an unsaved man commits lust in his heart or even the physical act of adultery, for the most part, he’s not going to have any remorse, he’s not going to have any sorrow over his sin. If somebody is truly born again and saved, they are going to have remorse, they’re going to actually dread and hate their sin. They’re going to have a heart that seeks repentance.”
The Calvinistic distinction between an unsaved person and a saved person is not that one is living holy while the other is living unholy. His concept of grace declares that both are committing the same kinds of sins—adultery, murder, drunkenness, lying, theft, etc. The real difference is an unsaved person is not going to have any sorrow or remorse over his sin, but the saved will seek repentance. Listen again to what he said:
“See there’s a difference in the heart of a man who is unsaved and in the heart of a man who’s saved. When an, when an unsaved man commits lust in his heart or even the physical act of adultery, for the most part, he’s not going to have any remorse, he’s not going to have any sorrow over his sin. If somebody is truly born again and saved, they are going to have remorse, they’re going to actually dread and hate their sin. They’re going to have a heart that seeks repentance.”
According to Calvinism’s deadly counterfeit grace and false gospel a saved person is actually going to dread his sin but he is still sinning in the same manner as an unsaved person. Charles Stanley’s version of eternal security would wholeheartedly agree. Listener, did you notice that he cited no Scripture for support? He had no Bible backing for such a statement.
He also stated here that the saved will seek repentance, but that is not in their understanding of the sin unto death. The essence of that teaching is an elect person strays into wickedness, remains unrepentant and vile until God in his anger and wrath strikes him physically dead because of his wickedness and takes him home to heaven! Getting back to the Calvinistic version of a Christian and non-Christian both acting the same wicked way, please note that the truth is: Scripture teaches the exact opposite to Gene:
“This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.” (1 John 3:10)
From 1 John 3:10, it is crystal clear that one’s behavior and his love is how we can “know” who is saved and who is not. It is absolutely unlike what Calvinism teaches. Listen again to how that reads:
“This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not a child of God; nor is anyone who does not love his brother.”
In regards to Romans 6:22 Gene answers as follows:
“Well, he’s been set free from the standpoint of prior to, prior to regeneration, prior to being born again, he could do only evil.”
That is what he says, but the Scripture actually says such a person has been set free from sin addictions and has become a slave to God at salvation. That leads to holiness and the result is eternal life. This is how Romans 6:22 reads:
“But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life.”
After I shared other Biblical facts about eternal life being a hope, yet to be reaped, in the age to come and only for the ones who don’t give up sowing to please the Spirit of God, all Gene could answer is the following:
“Well, to say that I don’t know anything about the eternal life that is to come, that, that actually kind of hurts my feelings.”
Gene had no Scriptural rebuttal, nor did he even attempt to answer these truths head on. All he could say was a shocking:
“Well, to say that I don’t know anything about the eternal life that is to come, that, that actually kind of hurts my feelings.”
But that is only part of his doctrinal problem. Here is more as I mentioned afterwards:
Dan: “Let me add to that and say that you don’t have the grace of Titus 2:11 and 12 that saves and you also don’t have the gospel of 1 Cor. 15 verse 2—the gospel that says it’s possible to believe for a while in time of, it’s possible to believe in vain.”
Again, Gene had no Scripture to answer with but merely tried to divert attention away from the Scriptures I just cited.
Gene: “Okay, well. You don’t know me. I don’t know how many of my sermons you’ve listened to or how much of my personal life you’ve observed. But that’s a pretty bold statement to make about somebody that professes to be a Christian.”
Another shocking answer but he had nothing better! We got back on Romans 7:14-25 and he offered the following feeble answer as a refutation to what I said earlier:
Gene: “For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh, he said, so the argument that you used a moment ago is fallacious that God dwells in him.”
The point I was trying to make regarding Rom. 7:14-25 was this: If that is supposed to be Paul as a Christian, then in v. 18 Paul stated that nothing good dwells in “me,” that is in him a Christian if that is what it means. That would glaringly contradict other Scriptures which declare that God is good and he dwells in Christians. Hence, my argument is not fallacious as he stated. It is his attempted rebuttal that is fallacious. Furthermore, that same verse, verse 18, actually states Paul is writing about the sinful nature or the flesh, depending on what Bible translation you are reading from. But all of this is hidden from the eternal security proponents.
I brought up 1 Cor. 9:27 to defend the truth and oppose his slander of Paul and his deadly interpretation of Romans 7:14-25. Concisely stated in 1 Cor. 9:27 is:
Dan: “Not only does it say that he was living holy but he realized that he could yet end up in Hell.”
From that statement, which is not a warning, Gene mentioned the warning passages which cleverly divert attention away from the points just brought up. These points again were: (1) Paul was holy and (2) he knew he could yet go to hell even after preaching the gospel to others, if he didn’t beat his body and make it his slave.
At this point in the debate Gene is visibly shaken and stalling for time. Hence he starts to read and read and read more through Acts 27 to try to make his point about warnings, which has nothing to do with the salvation of one’s soul. Instead, it is a warning about physical well being. Gene went on to say:
Gene: “Well, Paul was smart enough to take the warning passages to heart. And so he takes, there are several warning passages as, as you’ve rattled off from time to time. There are several warnings passages that warn believers.”
At last, he reveals his understanding of the purpose of warnings, which I clearly refuted afterwards with Scripture. Listen carefully:
Gene: “God uses the warnings as a means to keep the believer, to keep that fear of God instilled in his heart, because that’s the last thing that a true believer wants, is to be cast off. And the other purpose for the warnings is that there are those that actually profess the name of Christ, that think that they’re Christians that are not Christians at all. And certainly those warnings would apply to them.”
Dan: “But that doesn’t refer to salvation of the soul. You have strayed off into a tangent. Well, let me ask you, Matthew 10:33 was a warning. Jesus said to the Twelve disciples who were also apostles, that if they would disown him, he warned them that he would disown them. Was that given to unbelievers or was that warning given to real believers which unfortunately, nonetheless, was not heeded and they yielded to the temptation and disowned Jesus.”
Gene summarizes his understanding of Acts 27 in about 10 seconds.
Gene: “God uses the warnings of Scripture not only in real life situations but also in salvation to keep the elect where they need to be.”
Why didn’t he just say this earlier to save time? It will soon become apparent as he, in desperation, tries to go to the phones but no one is there. That will soon be coming up.
Gene said the following:
Gene: “Okay, one thing you haven’t heard me say, or one phrase that you haven’t heard me use is ‘a moment of faith.’ You won’t hear me use that type of terminology.”
While that might be true, he believes if one had a moment of regeneration he remains saved forever, even if he turns to adultery and murder like David did. Gene tries to bring in phone callers:
Gene: “All right, let me give out our phone number. We may have some callers that would like to ask questions.”
Why would he give out the phone number for phone callers if, as he said at the very end of the debate, just before he disconnected me the following:
Gene: “I told my screener that we weren’t going to be taking any calls ...”
Gene was nervous, didn’t know how to deal with the Scriptures I presented, and wanted phone callers to help him out like they tried during the first part of our debate.
After that, Gene actually put a noose around his neck when he himself brought up the first part of our debate several days before and stated none of the dialog had been tampered with:
Gene: “Now of course there are minor edits that are made to the mp3, but I can assure you, that none of our conversation was edited. The type of things that were edited were, were silent areas between the break and we start recording the show about five minutes before the show actually begins. We allow the recording to run past the end of the show. Those are the types of things that are edited out. None of the dialog has been tampered with. And so, all right, let’s go ahead and take a call.”
First of all, there was no break in our debate. It was one straight unbroken exchange to the very end.
Politely, I waited to interject the real truth about what was actually done to the first part of the debate. Since I recorded the debate over the phone as it was occurring, I had a true unedited version, which now appears to be the only one left. I played over the air, first, his obvious change to what I had said, “Obedience is not legalism” with the word “obedience being mostly removed, then the true unedited version of that same part of our dialog. The following was his response:
Gene: “Now, now, I change it. Okay, you said obedience is not legalism. And then what are you, what are you saying that I change it to?”
Gene attempts to cloud what I said. I explained it again and played the excerpts again and stated the following:
Dan: “Listen to what Jesus. Luke 8:21, he said, ‘My mother and brothers are those that hear the Word of God and put it into practice.’ Your version of grace allows you to do this and not only do that, look at pornography, and not only do that, to be drunk and not only do that, to do anything, any form of wickedness and you think you’re still a child of God. But the Bible says that God’s children put his Word into practice, Lk. 8:21.”
That was the final straw. He was refuted with Scripture and exposed as one who edited part 1 of the debate. He and his Calvinistic cohorts are now trying to cover over his tracks by saying it was merely a “glitch” or accident in the equipment. If that is true, that is quite a coincidence that the machine would malfunction at a critical point in the debate!
But even if that was true, that still doesn’t explain all the other edits he made of his own statement during part 1 in our dialog. He edited out some of the verbal botch ups as he tripped over his words, but left mine in. He also took out space sometimes from when I finished speaking to when he started answering to make it appear that he gave a quicker come back.
Gene went on to say I’m irrational and accusatory. But the truth is, I have given rational and Scripturally consistent answers which demolished his security-in-sin gospel advanced to defend wicked living. Those arguments are refuted and his teaching was shown to be the same as the devil’s in Gen. 3:4.
Furthermore, to reveal truth about what he did to part 1 of our debate is not accusatory, but factual. He paints me as the one in the wrong, though it was him who edited (multiple times) various things from our debate. All of those edits were made to make himself appear more polished and to conceal my message. If that wasn’t the case, then why didn’t he make the same kind of edits in my favor? He said he didn’t edit the dialog, but he did.
Gene was thoroughly shaken and defeated. He was refuted with Scripture and exposed as presenting a false representation of the first part of the debate and much worse, a false version of grace and the gospel. He wanted me off the air with him and that came after I shared Luke 8:21. This is what I heard:
Gene: “Uh, I’m done talking to uh, Dan. It’s been nice talking to you. And uh, ‘Hey lady I’ll give you a call sometime.’”
Then I heard him say the following before I was disconnected:
Gene: “All right, we’re going to go ahead and take a quick break and when we come back, we’re going to start taking calls. We haven’t been taking calls yet because I told my screener that we weren’t going to be taking any calls but now that I’ve made a decision that I really don’t want to talk to Dan Corner anymore because he’s become irrational and accusatory ...”
If I was irrational as he claims, why would he disconnect me? You would think he’d want me to stay on the air so he could continue to expose my doctrinal weaknesses. Also, to expose the unfruitful deeds of darkness is not being unjustly accusatory. It is being Scriptural based on Eph. 5:11, to expose the unfruitful deeds of darkness. The truth is it wasn’t me that was cornered, but it was Gene that was cooked and he was glad to have an excuse to get rid of me, even though it was unjust. God bless you.
**Mr. Gene Cook had people helping him on the phones. Both callers were Calvinists.
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