The Arrogant Western Church

This is what it is all about for orthodox believers. This quote by the Archbishop of Uganda (Anglican) sums up in a paragraph the frustration of many “evangelical” members of the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. about those in leadership positions not only in our denomination but liberal mainliners in general:

They regard with dismay the progressive turn of the Western church, its willingness

to rethink the fundamentals of the faith, and its apparent doubt about the plain meaning

of Scripture. “The Bible doesn’t make as much sense to them as it used to, to their

ancestors,” Henry Luke Orombi, the Archbishop of Uganda, says. “The interpretation of

the Bible is no longer what it was before. And that’s why the church life in America is

so anemic and feeble.” (New Yorker April 10, 2006)

We live in a church that is like chaff in the wind, swaying to the popular perspective of the perceived majority instead of standing like the house on the rock and keeping itself rooted in the word of God. We have been told that a house divided cannot stand but we must look at whether we should rebuild the side of the house that is broken or let it go to ruin because this side of the house that is rooted in scripture and therefore will not fall.

Here is another quote from the same story:

[Bishop Robert] Duncan and his fellow-evangelicals see their Christianity as a religion

of transformation, and liberal Christianity as a faith of affirmation. “One has sin and needs

a Saviour, the other one simply tells you that you’re O.K. as you are,”

(New Yorker April 10, 2006)

http://www.newyorker.com/printables/fact/060417fa_fact5

Thanks for the Prayers

I thank those who have offered prayers and encouragement. It is appreciated beyond measure. I especially thank Gannett Girl for her encouragement. Most who disagree offer only sarcasm and venom but you have shown humility, graciousness, and gentleness. Thank You.

Funny How God Speaks To You

I had an atheist-Unitarian to be exact-friend who had pressed me on the meaning and definition of the Trinity. My lacking of a definitive answer that would satisfy her forced me to read the Westminster Confession of Faith (not just read it but study it) and its thoughts on the Trinity. As I read the confession and the accompanying verses I felt my heart strangely warmed (thanks John Wesley for your wonderful description) and I felt at peace. A strange peace; a peace that you only feel when your body is completely settled and at rest. I called my friend and read from the confession. While I could hear the hesitation in her voice though she still stated she did not buy it. Being a defense mechanism I can only hope that I assisted the Holy Spirit in placing a burning ember in her heart because I know it reignited the fire within mine for the words of the gospel. The pure gospel as laid out in the wonderful words of the Westminster Standards. As I laid in bed last night I slept the best I had done in weeks. Thanks be to God whom in all things are possible. Amen

Prayer Request

I am currently a seminarian at a Presbyterian school and yet I do not feel (I may be entirely wrong) that the gospel and/or the words of Christ are taken very seriously but are more just things for topical discussion and philosophical arguments. I have recently been questioning the validity of many of my long held-at least in thought-beliefs about Presbyterianism. I have found in speaking to Lutheran friends and reading Lutheran tracks and studying Luther’s own writings that I may be finding a spiritual pull towards Lutheranism. I would like a prayer of guidance that the Holy Spirit may lead me and that through words of our saviour Jesus Christ I may be led to where it is Christ wants me to be in him.

AN APPEAL TO PRESBYTERIANS

An Appeal to Presbyterians and Congregations
within the
Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)

We are loyal Presbyterians who affirm the unique Lordship of Jesus Christ, the authority of Holy Scripture (our only infallible rule of faith and practice), and biblical standards for holy living. Therefore we seek to be a church that is faithful to the Word of God.

The marks of the true Church are the Word of God truly preached and the sacraments rightly administered. The passage of the recommendations of the Theological Task Force on Peace, Unity, and Purity of the Church will confirm the growing obscurity of these marks. Our drift away from constitutional integrity is equally tragic. This is increasingly apparent in judicial decisions that have affirmed the celebration of so-called marriages between persons of the same sex and the ordination of individuals in violation of our current standards.

Denying the truth of Scripture by endorsing and supporting ordination of those who are sexually active outside of marriage, to say nothing of bypassing constitutional process to do so, is not the Presbyterian way. These and other actions of the church are not only offensive, but they also violate our conscience, which is bound to the Word of God. In effect, the Presbyterian Church of which we are a part is departing from her own standards. In response, we believe that the denomination is being called back to faithfulness.

Accordingly, many Presbyterian officers and members have been watching with dismay the slide in our denomination away from biblical faithfulness and from sacramental integrity. We are preparing to offer a response to the present crisis, an alternative for both congregations and individual Presbyterians. We pray that the true and faithful witness of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) thus may be renewed under the power and guidance of the Holy Spirit.

We appeal to Presbyterians and Sessions, who, like us, are troubled by all of this, to remain strong in their faith and to remain active in their congregations. We will invite them to join us in further action following the June 2006 meeting of the General Assembly.

Drafted and signed in Montreat, N.C., March 31, 2006.

A New Reality

My Wife’s recent laying off and my recent force to seek full-time employment has caused me to question many beliefs I have had in the past. First being the development and certification of election. I am currently ( and seek many and full prayer) in a dire need of grace.