While I no longer am a member of the PC(USA) many of my friends, relatives, and colleagues still reside there so I from time to time check into the latest news concerning my former denomination. Recently I came across an article that notes a recent lecture series given at Union Theological Seminary and PSCE in Richmond, VA that tries to say that the …”use of the cross to symbolize God’s love was a latecomer to church history.” Claiming instead that the breast of the Virgin Mary (whom I presume the lecturer does not believe was actually a virgin but that is another discussion for another time) was “…An earlier and presumably more persuasive symbol of God’s love”. Now I cannot imagine that this is true and with a .24-second search on Google one can find it is not true and the only people who do hold to this view are radical Feminist theologians at urban or suburban seminaries. Now this in and of itself does not discredit the theory but what does is basic biblical research. The Apostle Paul in 1 Cor 15 squarely places the cross and love in communion with each other. Now the radical Feminists will say Paul hates women. So next we go to the Apostle Peter in Acts 2:14-39 and surprisingly enough Peter makes the same argument. Though the radical Feminists will say all I am doing is quoting men and of course men would say violent acts are loving. So I guess we’ll go to Anna in Luke 2:36-38. Looks like she is saying the same thing as Paul and Peter. Well I guess Anna must have been brainwashed by Phanuel. So I guess then we’ll go to Jesus in John 15:13. How soon do I forget though that John 15:13 is disputed by the Jesus Seminar. So I guess if we do away with all of that I guess the author of the original article may have a point.
That is of course unless you discount nearly all of the early Church.
All this is to ask the question should we be actively concerned when unbelievers act like unbelievers? When unbelievers are not even average scholars and not even really worthy of sharing the name “heretic” with giants of heretical faith like Pelagius, Marcion, Arius, Schleiermacher, Spinoza, etc…? Do we give them too much credence and legitimacy by confronting them and giving them a larger audience for their views? Dealing with this kind of lousy scholarship and rabid unbelief and giving far too much energy (emotional and physical) personally to engaging with them in seminary I have found it quite relaxing to dealing with authors like this much in the same way I deal with people who clamor like Anti-Government anarchists or like those who claim that Elvis lives with Jim Morrison and John Kennedy on a tropical island in the South Pacific. Prov. 10:7-10 speaks quite clearly and succinctly about what I think concerning this.
Pray for them? Of course. Share with them about the Gospel? Absolutely.
Pay any attention to their ideas and give them any sense of respectability among serious scholarship?