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Archive for the ‘Emergent’ Category

ge-truth.jpg“Heretics are rarely excommunicated these days. Instead, they go on book tours.”

 

That is an excerpt from Mohler’s latest blog dealing with Bishop John Shelby Spong. Spong has recently flown to Australia only to be denied access to the pulpits under the authority of Archbishop Peter Jensen, who oversees the Sydney diocese! Sadly, Australia’s Anglican Primate Phillip Aspinall of Brisbane has invited him to speak two sermons in Brisbane’s St John’s Cathedral.

 

For those of you who aren’t familiar with Spong and his venom-laced bile, go here, here, and here. I encourage you to read through a few of the articles you may find. In my opinion, Spong is one of the first architects of many of the foundational rhetorical tricks one finds in emerging circles. He manages to question central Christian doctrines by means of ad hominum attacks on Sola Scriptura, Sola Christo “conservative” Christians (such as myself) who have allegedly ruined Christianity.

Nowadays, Rob “discovering the Bible as a human product” Bell, N.T. “the ultimate enemy, death itself” Wright, and Brian “disagreeing agreeably (about sin)” Mclaren have managed to position themselves much more successfully within Evangelical circles, while making similar and, perhaps, more subtle distortions of Scripture. These men often take the clearest possible statements from the Bible and convolute them, all the while making you feel guilty because it seemed pretty simple to you when you first read it.

It’s not that all Scripture can be understood simplistically; it’s that the basic truths of Scripture are clear merely by reading it and understanding it within its own context. You don’t have to have to be a scholar of Jewish culture, church history, or postmodernism in order to know the most important things in this life: you just need to see, “that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence.” (2 Peter 1:3) If you want to learn that, be a humble student of the Word of God.

Deal bountifully with Your servant, that I may live and keep Your word.
Open my eyes, that I may behold wonderful things from Your law.
I am a stranger in the earth; do not hide Your commandments from me.
My soul is crushed with longing after Your ordinances at all times.
You rebuke the arrogant, the cursed, who wander from Your commandments.
Take away reproach and contempt from me, for I observe Your testimonies.
Even though princes sit and talk against me, Your servant meditates on Your statutes.
Your testimonies also are my delight; they are my counselors.

Psalm 119:17-24

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Mohler

I’m regularly refreshed by Dr. Al Mohler’s blog… and today was no exception. His post deals with the question “What would Luther do?” regarding the issue of homosexuality today. The author he cites, Mary Zeiss Stange, makes the claim

“But would the man whose break from Roman Catholicism involved a revolutionary rethinking of the role of sexuality in human relationships take such a negative view of homosexuality today? Most probably, given the way his theological mind worked, he would not.”

I love how Mohler addresses Stange’s claim in this article. I also appreciated reading this little nugget from Luther,

“Is it not certain that he who does not or will not believe one article correctly (after he has been taught and admonished) does not believe any sincerely and with the right faith? And whoever is so bold that he ventures to accuse God of fraud and deception in a single word and does so willfully again and again after he has been warned and instructed once or twice will likewise certainly venture to accuse God of fraud and deception in all of His words. Therefore it is true, absolutely and without exception, that everything is believed or nothing is believed. The Holy Spirit does not suffer Himself to be separated and divided so that He should teach and cause to be believed one doctrine rightly and another falsely.”

Here’s why this quote matters to me:

Mohler’s article is dealing with a non-Christian professor who has decided that Luther would adapt with the times. But there are people who make a very strong claim to be devout Christians who say the same thing (especially in the Emergent crowd)! I was in a discussion last week with someone who very much seems to be a Christian who made the exact same argument about Paul and Luther that Professor Stange makes,

“Like his role model Paul, Luther was a product of the social prejudices of his time and culture…”

Thus, when our culture has “evolved” to a higher level, our interpretation of God’s word must reflect this evolution. Ultimately, though, such a mentality adds nothing to an accurate interpretation of God’s word. For if the text we affirm to be God’s word cannot speak clearly against mere social prejudice in Paul’s time, who are we to make it into a document that does so in our era?

On the contrary, in Paul’s day, just as in ours, there were people who believed the Bible to be God’s word (both orthodox Jews and Jewish believers in Jesus) who avoided homosexuality since it is directly against God’s command, and men who, like Nero, “burned in their desire toward one another” (Rom 1:27). Paul is not merely encouraging people to live godly lives, while slightly biased in a certain way based on his culture; rather he is speaking authoritatively and precisely as he isolates homosexuality as a sin (Romans 1:24-27; 1 Cor. 6:9-10; Titus 1:8-11).

All that to say, I encourage you to read Mohler’s post.

“I see there is danger of my being drawn into transgression by the power of such temptations, as the fear of seeming uncivil, and of offending friends. Watch against it. — I might still help myself, and yet not hurt myself, by going, with greater expedition, from one thing to another, without being quite so nice.”

~Jonathan Edwards

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Lovely, Lovely Quote

“We think the post-propositional, post-dogmatic, post-authoritative ‘conversation’ is post-relevant and post-saving.” – John Piper

I found that quote on a blog entitled, “A Submerging Church“, which is written by a man named Andrew Malloy.

Solid!

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