In order to make some space for a #NoQuarterNovember post today, I am serving up a truncated letters section today. In order to keep life simple, I am just publishing letters on the PCA, R.I.P. post.
How does the story of the Southern Baptist Convention fit into your paradigm of the slippery slope toward inevitable liberalism? I don’t know that story in any depth, but from what I understand, some decades ago the Southern Baptists were almost lost, and conservatives rescued the denomination. Maybe that they fought, that leaders emerged who refused to be cowed into silence? We currently attend a PCA church, and the pastors are well aware of the drift, and have mentioned it from the pulpit. I wonder how they fit. Anyway, thoughts appreciated.
Mike, I believe that the SBC was saved from liberalism once, but is on the brink of going under again. It was saved the first time by men who fought, and who need to fight again. The same thing is true of men in the PCA.
Re: PCA, R.I.P. Pastor Wilson, you wrote: “The fight about southern slavery was not an apologetic for slavery at all. It was an apologetic for the plain teaching of the Bible.” I concur. And would say the same thing about the PCA’s move in the early 2000s allowing our elders to hold multiple views of the days of creation. If the PCA General Assembly held such a dim view of the authority of Scripture that it allowed our elders to turn 6 days into 6 billion years, I figure we were pretty much toast even back then. Revoice affirms this, and is a sign (to those who are paying attention—see the Parable of the Ten Virgins, Matthew 25) that the end is coming sooner rather than later.
Bill, yes, particularly as these things have a way of picking up speed.
Thank you for the critique of the PCA’s handling of the Revoice. I was a ruling elder in Louisiana Presbytery during the several presbytery meetings addressing the internal and external forces being directed toward the FV adherents. It was relentless and personal. When we found no grounds for charges, we were told to look again until we did from the hierarchy. I distinctly recall one pastor, a Covenant grad, buckle and reverse course under the pressure which portended even more serious fecklessness to come. The Book of Church Order and Presbyterian polity is only as good as the men who are involved and procedure cannot substitute for character. I would recommend continuing to shine a light in that direction. Thank you.
C______, yes. Constitutions and BCOs are made out of paper, and paper doesn’t have a backbone.
Thank you! Thank you! Thank you for writing this stuff! I have been blessed beyond measure by your faithful teaching for many years. I have also recently met some PCA folks and have encountered their blind hatred for you—the kind that you cannot have a reasonable conversation with, and also the kind that cannot be bothered to actually read your writing for themselves. (Why else would someone claim you teach salvation by works?) So as someone who had no dog in the FV fight but has still been shamed for picking the wrong side, I really enjoyed this article! Your very existence triggers them, but articles like this raise my enjoyment from a hamburger cooked in a frying pan on the stove to a burger cooked on the grill with melty cheese and bacon and all the good stuff! Keep making them cry!
Rachel, thanks very much.
Doug is exactly right; the denomination I came into as a young believer and now pastor in is/has left me far behind. BTW, I believe you are also right that many will not speak out clearly on the Revoice conference because it carries a much heavier weight with regard to consequences.
Henry, yes. Consequences are always the issue.
I have greatly enjoyed your work for many years. Whether sermons, books, or your always interesting blog, I’ve been blessed with solid biblical thinking as well as logic and laughs. So THANK YOU! Now on to the PCA R.I.P. which has been a long time coming. I was an elder for 8yrs in the PCA. It never ceased to amaze me the “process . . . patience” meetings that never seemed to deal with what we, as shepherds, were there to actually DEAL with. An issue as black as a tar-covered crow could be right smack down in the middle of our consideration and someone would want to wait to see if that bird was actually a snow covered toad. Whether in Session meetings or at Presbytery, I found far more hand folding than fist pounding. We were supposed to be godly men serving God and His people. I thought we were raised up to be men of courage, conviction, and faithful warriors for our King. We were to be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong, and do all in love. Instead I saw and heard too many brothers bow out without so much as a word of challenge from the Word, or unashamedly swooning over the latest Keller book. Blah! So good call on the Revoice issue. If the PCA doesn’t have the stones to handle this problem, then the only stone they will get is a tombstone. Sad, but evidence of the times we are living in. Again thanks for being the man, Doug.
Rob, thank you.
Thank you for writing this. I have seen the drift in the PCA for years, and finally had to pull my credentials out in January. I had men telling me that the vows we took with the BCO and WCF were not really that important, since the presbytery I was trying to join was focusing on becoming a big tent presbytery. That means, as you know, that everyone is welcome except those of us who are confessional. If you know of any CREC churches in the states that need a pastor that are not listed on the church’s website, please let me know. . . Keep up the good work, and thank you for writing what needs to be said. In Christ,
Re: PCA, RIP, I’m thinking that your thoughts will be ignored. That seems to be the way that libs are dealing with (rather not dealing with) any sane opinions, evidence or observations. It is a coward’s strategy, but will serve our Lord’s purpose as well as any. They are winnowing His church for Him.
George, right. God is also up to something.