Quite the week…
There is nothing more fearsome than having to stand up to ones heroes.
I’ve been sick to my stomach over publicly disagreeing with those whose opinions and praise would matter most to me.
R. Scott Clark, Martin Downes, Carl Trueman, and Mike Horton are men whose works occupy prominent places in my library and in my mind.
They are my intellectual and spiritual superiors to a laughable degree.
Yet, there is a spirit of sectarianism and elitism running through all of our sects and their elite that is not of God and it grieves me to the point of courage.
When we gather together in our personal sects, whether we are Reformed, Lutheran, Calvary Chapel, or garden variety Baptist…we speak of our brethren with contempt.
I have heard it in Geneva, I’ve heard it in Costa Mesa, and we hear it all day online.
Division is not necessarily a bad thing…it proves that which is right and highlights the various gifts that God has given to different parts of the Body.
When we have contempt for one of those parts we are loathing ourselves because all of the Body and all of those gifts and emphases are part of who we are as a whole.
None of us have it all down…even if our confessions give us the false security that we do.
I know that the most doctrinaire members of each group think me a fool and maybe even an apostate for seeking fellowship with the whole Body.
However, until convinced by Scripture that one group has received the whole pure truth, I’ll consider myself a fool for Jesus and hang with whoever will have me.
While we found new ways to divide and criticize each other over things like J.I. Packers legacy and how far evangelicalism has strayed from orthodoxy, the real issue of the day was rearing it’s head in Michigan.
I’ve come to the conclusion that this is the defining issue for the church and culture today.
If we give in to the cultural mandate to incorporate that which the Bible calls an abomination into the life and standards of the church we lose not only our moral and spiritual standards, we lose our positions on the inerrancy and authority of Scripture.
When that happens, all is lost.
This does not mean that we do not continue to struggle with the issues, it does not mean that we give license to those who want to deal with the issues and the real people involved in less than a gracious and godly fashion.
It means we refuse to compromise on what the historic, orthodox church has already agreed to according to Scripture.
I listened to Dave Rolph’s teaching Wednesday night live on the internet.
I did so partly because I’ve been worried about his health and partly because nobody can soothe my soul like Rolph.
He does something amazing and I wish others in the pulpit would emulate him.
He assumes his congregation is intelligent.
I know that sounds odd, but many pastors avoid going too deeply into certain issues because they believe their people will get lost in the depths.
Rolph assumes his folks can handle hard concepts and his messages therefore speak in a more profound manner to what the text is teaching.
He won’t appreciate me mentioning this, but it really was striking to me and a lesson worth emulating.
That’s all…as you were.