The Number of Chicken Bones is Irrelevant

“I have gone through enough theological paradigm shifts to know when it is happening. I used to be Arminian, and now am Calvinist. I used to be baptistic and now am paedobaptistic. I used to be premill and now am postmill. I have learned to recognize it when the scenery changes outside the car window. But I was brought up as an evangelical Christian, I am an evangelical now, and if the doctrine of perseverance is what I take it to be, I will die an evangelical. Bottom line, this means that I hold that a man must be born again, must be given a new heart, in order to see the kingdom of heaven. I don’t care how many chicken bones the priest threw in the air at his baptism. If he is not converted to God in his heart by the glorious gift of the Spirit, then he is going to Hell.”

The Auburn Avenue Chronicles Vol. 2, p. 760

The Right Word at the Right Time

“As I have maintained, clearly I do not want to substitute biblical language in for confessional language. I want confessional language, believing it to be necessary and edifying in its place. What I object to is the restriction that has been placed on using biblical language ever. So the question is not whether we use biblical language or confessional language. The issue is when we are to use each, because we must use each.”

The Auburn Avenue Chronicles Vol. 2, p. 758

So It All Works Out

“Signs signify. Seals do more than that. When we say that baptism is a sign and seal of the covenant, we are saying more than that baptist is a ‘sign and another kind of sign’ . . . The grace signified (sign) by their baptism is really exhibited and conferred (sealed) at God’s appointed time, in the power of the Spirit. This is not a place where I have to take an exception to Westminster. I would be happy to do so and have taken an exception to the Westminster Confession at other places. But I don’t have to do so here. Their position is mine.”

The Auburn Avenue Chronicles Vol. 2, p. 755

Faith Grows Organically

“Granted that true faith is necessary, how does this faith arrive? If it is genuine faith, how does it get here? One view says that it is shipped, and it arrives in a box. You open the box, take the bubble wrap off, and hold it up so the elders can see if it is the same kind they got. The other view of faith is that it grows. Timothy had the same faith that his mother and grandmother had (2 Tim. 1:5). Now, if true faith can grow from a seed, those guarding the Table must know what it looks like at every point along the continuum—first the blade, then the ear, then the full head. My toddler grandchildren coming to the Table have true faith—but it is blade faith. We’re not anywhere near done”

The Auburn Avenue Chronicles Vol. 2, p. 754.