PCA GA 41 – Not Pretty (updated)

Long and short, and from the smattering I’ve been able to catch,  it’s a farce.

For those interested, and so far as I can tell, every challenge to the Standing Judicial Commission’s upholding the exoneration of Federal Visionist Peter Leithart by the Pacific Northwest Presbytery has been shot down . . . except one . . .  Overture 19.   Overture 19  is going to be decided on tomorrow.  While I pray I’m wrong, don’t be surprised if this too is ruled out of order.

You can watch a live stream from the GA here.   No doubt God’s will will be done, but don’t get your hopes up that the GA will require the SJC to rehear the Leithart case.  It’s fair to say the FV is a protected and affirmed scheme of salvation by faith plus works  in the PCA.

OOPs, spoke too soon.   I thought business was coming to a close as I typed the above.

The Moderator just ruled Overture 19 out of order.   The Moderator just ran roughshod over the remaining conservatives in the PCA.

It’s over.

_________________________

Looking at the above I think a little clarification is in order.  I said the Moderator ran roughshod over the remaining conservatives in the PCA, but that isn’t quite accurate.  I called them “conservatives” because those opposing the SJC decision in the Leithart case identify themselves as “conservatives.”   That may not be completely accurate because I suppose the FV men view themselves as “conservatives” and are probably viewed that way but the “big-tent-everything-to-everybody-broadly-evangelical-Kellerites” who really don’t care either way about adherence to the WCF or even Calvinism per se except in the most mild and palatable sense.  Basically, you’re not going to hear much or anything about election, reprobation, or predestination in most of these churches and they’re generally indistinguishable from your local praise-the-Lord Arminan church sans altar calls.  Besides, the FV sprang out of theonomy which, at one time, was considered the über right of the PCA.  Militantly post-mill and dedicated to applying Bahnsen’s dictum:  “the abiding validity of the law in exhaustive detail” (I guess they decided that part of that “exhaustive detail”  included justification).

No, these men who attempted to challenge the SJC’s inexcusable ruling in the Leithart case were men who simply think the Gospel matters and that the doctrines espoused by men like Leithart, Meyers, Moon, Lawrence and many others represent “another gospel” and those who teach these doctrines rightly come under Paul’s anathema in Galatians 1:8,9 — even if they don’t come under the anathema of the PCA.

What I suspect happened, and this is just my two-cents, was that the Big Tenters don’t care one whit about Leithart or the Federal Vision or the New Perspectives or any of those things.  They’re an annoyance and discussing these nuanced doctrinal matters doesn’t help to attract new members.  Plus, it’s just dirty laundry. From their perspective the FV is a fight among conservatives anyway and voting to let the Liethart decision stand was a good way to either 1) drive those annoying conservative-confessionalists-anti-woman-officer types from the denomination, or, 2) emasculate them to the point where they learn to behave while they’re being ignored, which is what happened anyway.  My guess is the answer is both.  The only question is will those who love the Gospel stay in the PCA and learn to shut up and stop disturbing the peace in the name of purity,  or, leave.    Either way, both the FV heretics and the milquetoast Big Tenters win.

Advertisements
Explore posts in the same categories: Heresies, Jeff Meyers

133 Comments on “PCA GA 41 – Not Pretty (updated)”


  1. Praise be to God!

    These men are not heretics.

  2. Sean Gerety Says:

    The failure of the PCA to properly adjudicate Federal Visionists like Leithart, Meyers, Moon and others simply demonstrates the apostasy of the PCA.

    Your ignorance of the Gospel couldn’t be more evident. You embarrass yourself Daniel.

  3. Hugh McCann Says:

    la fou hath spoken

  4. Hugh McCann Says:

    You may ask yourself, “What is that beautiful house?”
    You may ask yourself, “Where does that highway lead to?”
    You may ask yourself, “Am I right, am I wrong?”
    You may say to yourself, “My God, what have I done?!”

    …same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was,
    same as it ever was

    [ time isn’t holding us; time isn’t after us ]

  5. Hugh McCann Says:

    The other Talking Heads song that comes to mind is “Burning Down the House,” which is what the sympathizers and careerists are going to the PCA.

    Left unto them desolate…

    Hold tight, wait ’till the party’s over
    Hold tight, we’re in for nasty weather
    There has got to be a way
    Burning down the house
    Here’s your ticket, pack your bags, time for jumpin’ overboard
    Transportation is here
    Close enough but not too far, maybe you know where you are
    Fightin’ fire with fire
    All wet, hey you might need a raincoat
    Shakedown, dreams walking in broad daylight
    Three hundred sixty five degrees
    Burning down the house

  6. justbybelief Says:

    This rejection of the gospel by the PCA is evidence that God’s Spirit has withdrawn from them and given them over to their lusts, this, in accordance with His wise plan.

    In my mind their apostasy began many years ago and this is simply the manifestation it.

    Eric

  7. Sean Gerety Says:

    “la fou hath spoken”

    Good one.

    @Eric. No doubt. This has been a long fight and now that those who love the Gospel have lost and have no more possible avenues to pursue are left with an easy choice; stay in a denomination which protects and defends those who deny justification by grace alone, through faith alone, by Christ alone, to God’s glory alone or leave.


  8. That’s why we left a year and a half ago. Just didn’t make sense to continue to align ourselves with a denomination that allowed more than one way of justification.

  9. Sean Gerety Says:

    I suspect you’re going to see a lot more defections Patrick.

    Of course, La Fou is right in one sense, Leithart, Meyers, Lawrence, Moon, and Doug Wilson, Norm Shepherd and even NT Wright are not heretics in the eyes of the PCA. Proving once again that the PCA’s much heralded FV/NPP report isn’t even useful as toilet paper.

  10. Hugh McCann Says:

    Amen, Sean, Eric, & Patrick.


  11. I thought you were against churches leaving the PCA?

    On Fri, Jun 21, 2013 at 10:34 AM, God’s Hammer wrote:

    > ** > Hugh McCann commented: “Amen, Sean, Eric, & Patrick.” >

  12. JH Says:

    (admitted outsider)
    What denomination do you find more palatable in this context? OPC? ARP? Something else?

  13. Lauren Kuo Says:

    Commenting from Marseille, France where I have been visiting cathedrals that were built with indulgences. Just visited Avignon the home to several popes who were just as corrupt as the kings. They are mostly sepulchers now – kinda reminds me of the future of the PCA. What is amazing and comforting is that God’s true church always prevails. In the midst of this corrupt dark city is a group of Chinese believers who are still standing for the Gospel. God may be finished with the PCA as a denomination, but He still works mightily in His church.

  14. Lauren Kuo Says:

    In a way, it’s a good thing this is all over. Now the real defenders of the gospel can stand up. Kind of like Gideon’s army. This could be a good purging for the PCA.

  15. Horace Says:

    I’m not clear what happened with Overtures 20-21-22. Were they “omnibussed” with 19 and 23, or will they be handled by the SJC?

    Sad day when Roberts Rules and the BCO trump Scripture and the plain understanding of the WCF…


  16. Frankly, I’m not surprised. I recently joined a discussion group in Facebook called “Calvinism: The Group that Chooses You.” The rampant neo-orthodoxy and irrationalism there is stupendous. Anyone who even remotely resembles a classical Calvinist is labeled a “hyper-Calvinist.” Go figure. The battle for the Bible and Scripturalism is neverending. Charlie


  17. The ARP is full of liberalism. It’s worse than the PCA or at least just as bad. Didn’t you hear about the attempted take over of Erskine College and Erskine Seminary at Due West, South Carolina? Thing are bad all over.


  18. It seems to me that the way forward will either be independent congregations or small denominations willing to stand for confessional Calvinism…. I don’t think the OPC is it either. They are full of theonomists and Van Tilian irrationalists.

  19. Lauren Kuo Says:

    No church court or assembly can correct errors until hearts are convicted.

  20. Sean Gerety Says:

    @Horace. Overtures 19 and 23, the first remanding the Leithart case back to the SJC and the other the Meyers case, were both ruled out of order and will not be taken up by the SJC, ever.

    From the Aquila report:

    “The Overtures Committee (OC) recommended that the moderator rule Overture 19 and Overture 23, be ruled out of order because SJC rulings are final. The Moderator so ruled as recommended and was sustained.”

    Basically, if you want to remain in the PCA don’t question the SJC, because RAO 17-1 basically makes it impossible for anyone to challenge an SJC ruling because David Coffin said so and besides he wrote RAO 17-1 (even if 90% of those in the auditorium don’t understand a word he says or what RAO 17-1 means).

    Regardless, Meyers and Leithart are completely safe. Also, there is nothing wrong with Robert’s Rules and they’re arguably invaluable in keeping business moving particularly in a large assembly. But, you are right and the BCO completely trumps Scripture.

    On a side note, I heard from a reliable source that another FV man is going to be tried by a conservative presbytery, but so what? These men are grasping at straws and even if they were to convict this man and it was sustained, you’ll still end up sending a completely schizophrenic and contradictory message; it’s OK to be a Christ denying Closet-Roman-Catholic-Federal Vision-Neo-Legalists if you’re the Meyers/Leithart variety (meaning, you’re part of an FV friendly pres and have friends in positions of power and influence), just not if you’re this poor sap.

    Conservatives and conservative presbyteries, if there really are any, need to wake up and face the fact that it’s over, you lose. You are now officially and irreversibly part of a denomination that sanctions the preaching of a false gospel.

  21. Hugh McCann Says:

    Most excellent reply to Horace, Sean!

    Thanks!


  22. I was just banned from the FB group… My crime? I said that the PCA went liberal by not dealing with the FV error…. Oh, well:)

  23. Hudson Says:

    @Reasonable Christian. You are not correct concerning the ARP. It is moving in the opposite direction to the PCA with respect to heresies like FV, and recently succeeded in ending the latitudinarian adventures of Erskine College and Seminary. There is still some way to go, and a few presbyteries are in trouble, but solidly Reformed men hold the majority generally and liberals are in retreat. Please stop pretending that you know what you are talking about.

  24. Sean Gerety Says:

    Regarding Daniel Foucachon above, check out this video he made and uploaded of Doug Wilson marrying serial pedophile Steven Sitler in June 2011:

    For a little background on Sitler and Wilson’s relation to him a see:

    http://federal-vision.blogspot.com/2008/03/serial-pdophile.html

    http://federal-vision.blogspot.com/2008/08/leading-charge.html

    See also

    http://mailman.fsr.com/pipermail/vision2020/2011-June/076772.html

  25. Hugh McCann Says:

    Patrick, I missed this one.
    I am still missing the point.
    Where have I said that churches should stay in the PCA?
    Thanks,
    Hugh

    June 21, 2013 at 10:59 am
    I thought you were against churches leaving the PCA?
    On Fri, Jun 21, 2013 at 10:34 AM, God’s Hammer wrote:
    Hugh McCann commented: “Amen, Sean, Eric, & Patrick.”

  26. justbybelief Says:

    “…you’ll still end up sending a completely schizophrenic and contradictory message..”

    Great point, Sean. At least with a consistent liberal ( or conservative) one knows where a judgment will fall most of the time.

    In a schizophrenic world, no one knows what’s going to happen next. Yikes!

    Eric

  27. Ron Says:

    Eric and Sean,
    A denomination is not a person. A denomination is not indwelt by the Holy Spirit.

  28. Sean Gerety Says:

    And who suggested otherwise Ron? However, the irony should be particularly palpable in your case as there was a time when the PCA did not want to establish formal relations with the OPC due to the their poor handling of the Kinnaird case.

  29. justbybelief Says:

    Hmmm…no such thing as apostasy…nothing to see here, move along.

  30. Ron Says:

    My comment was made only to benefit.

    But, to answer (not in kind):

    Actually, you agreed at least by inference, Sean!

    “justbybelief Says:

    June 21, 2013 at 2:05 am
    This rejection of the gospel by the PCA is evidence that God’s Spirit has withdrawn from them and given them over to their lusts, this, in accordance with His wise plan.

    In my mind their apostasy began many years ago and this is simply the manifestation it.

    Eric

    Sean Gerety Says:

    June 21, 2013 at 6:41 am

    @Eric. No doubt.”

    I am simply pointing out that to say a denom, “the PCA,” above, has had the Holy Spirit withdraw from it is a fallacy, since the Spirit only indwells believers, not groups.

    John spoke in one of his lectures that a group is not a person. I only pointed it out as it is inconsistent with the teaching of the founder of Scripturalism. I should think you would simply amend and move on…I am definitely not expecting you to thank me!

    Are you even able to address my point, or are you still so blinded by your hatred for me? a hatred begun with misinformation?

    I find that palpable, indeed.

  31. Ron Says:

    “…there was a time when the PCA did not want to establish formal relations with the OPC due to the their poor handling of the Kinnaird case”
    I am unaware of an official PCA statement. Can you give me a reference?

  32. Hugh McCann Says:

    Speaking of fraternal relations (I write as one who was under PCA care in the late 1990s and exhorted in numerous OPCs), I find it profoundly interesting that the PCA is still in NAPARC. Or, should I say, amazed that they’re still allowed to be in NAPARC?*

    Elders in the “Reformed Communion” are found from the following:
    1. The Christian Reformed Church (CRC)
    2. The Communion of Reformed Evangelical Churches (CREC)
    3. The Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC)
    4. The Presbyterian Church in America (PCA)
    5. The Reformed Church in America (RCA)

    NAPARC, as you’ll recall, includes these denoms:
    1.The Associate Reformed Presbyterian Church (ARPC)
    2.The Canadian Reformed Churches (CanRC)
    3.The Reformed Church of Quebec (ERQ)
    4.The Free Reformed Churches of North America (FRCNA)
    5.The Heritage Reformed Congregations (HRC)
    6.The Korean American Presbyterian Church (KAPC)
    7.The Orthodox Presbyterian Church (OPC)
    8.The Presbyterian Church in America (PCA)
    9.The Presbyterian Reformed Church (PresRC)
    10.The Reformed Church in the United States (RCUS)
    11.The Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America (RPCNA)
    12.The United Reformed Churches in North America (URCNA)

    One is liberal(-leaning), the other, conservative(-minded).

    The former meets in October this year in Decatur, GA.
    The latter meets in Flat Rock, NC in November.

    *One OP TE asked me, “Should the PCA be disciplined by NAPARC?” Indeed. Or does anyone care?

    Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners ~ St Paul. Plus, 2 Cor. 6:14-7:1 and all that.

  33. justbybelief Says:

    Individuals form groups

  34. Ron Says:

    Indeed, Eric. A truism.

    So, for your conclusive statement, “This rejection of the gospel by the PCA is evidence that God’s Spirit has withdrawn from them and given them over to their lusts, this, in accordance with His wise plan” to be true, you must resort to either omniscience, induction, or special revelation.

    Or, you could just admit you and Sean are wrong, as neither of you are omniscient, induction isn’t open to Clarkians/Scripturalistists, and the Canon is closed.

  35. justbybelief Says:

    God has in the Bible treated groups of people on the basis of the actions of a few, or even one. How about the apostasy of Adam, much more, the righteousness of Christ?

    The PCA leadership (a group of individuals that represent the denomination) has made it clear that justification by works is acceptable, this is antithetical to the Biblical doctrine. Anyone who is a Christian in that denomination is now responsible to leave as a little leaven leavens the whole lump.

    Open your eyes and repent, Ron.

  36. Ron Gilbert Says:

    Fallacy of composition.

  37. justbybelief Says:

    You’re grasping at ropes of sand, Ron


  38. It is ridiculous to say that it is a “fallacy” to say that God does not “indwell” denominations as he does individuals. The fact of the matter is that God “indwells” neither since the knowledge of God relates not to location but to rational propositions and your acceptance or rejection of the same. Since ecclesiastical synods do determine doctrine when said denominations “officially” commit apostasy by publicly affirming what can only be called unconfessional and, most of all, unbiblical heresies, then the assessment that the providential guidance of the Holy Spirit on that body of believers has indeed been “withdrawn.” Of course, providence also implies that God turns nations and denominations/communions of faith over to apostasy as well. Take a long, hard look at the PCUSA, ELCA, and TEC for example. And the CRC and RCA are two other good examples.

    And here is my Gordon H. Clark quote of the day: “To speed the dissolution of Christianity, it is not necessary to say that we know a contrary philosophy is true; it is equally effective to say that we do not know anything is true. The Gospel is a message of positive content, and whether it is dogmatically denied or merely silenced makes little difference.” — Gordon H. Clark


  39. Since ecclesiastical synods do determine doctrine when said denominations “officially” commit apostasy by publicly affirming what can only be called unconfessional and, most of all, unbiblical heresies, then the assessment that the providential guidance of the Holy Spirit on that body of believers has indeed been “withdrawn” is a valid assessment and the conclusion is true in this case. Sorry for the incomplete sentence…

    The quote from Clark is from God’s Hammer, e-book edition….. Charlie J. Ray


  40. Ron, deduction is not a fallacy, though:)

  41. Sean Gerety Says:

    In my mind their apostasy began many years ago and this is simply the manifestation it.

    Eric

    Sean Gerety Says:

    June 21, 2013 at 6:41 am

    @Eric. No doubt.”

    I am simply pointing out that to say a denom, “the PCA,” above, has had the Holy Spirit withdraw from it is a fallacy, since the Spirit only indwells believers, not groups.

    What wasn’t in doubt Ron was that the apostasy, i.e., the one that is unable to discipline PCA pastors who profess the very scheme of salvation condemned in the PCA’s own study report on the FV as striking at the vitals of the faith, is something that began long before the 41st GA.

    These things don’t happen in a vacuum.

    As for the reference re the OPC I’ll see what I can dig up for you when I have some time. It’s old news, but speaks to Eric’s point – the one I don’t doubt.

  42. Ron Says:

    Reasonable, since you claim the Spirit indwells neither, I can conclude no one on this thread has the Spirit?

    Eric, Sean , etal:

    As a nation, Israel apostatized, yet Jesus did not leave and start his own group. He was put outside of the camp. Same with Luther, btw.

    Not true of a certain man, who when told by the Shepherding Committee of his Presbytery to remit his office for the peace of the Church, left the PCA in a fit of pique, which is often advocated here.

    And, therein is a major factor as to why Clark has lost his hearing, because such men, via their organizations (and public forums), marginalized themselves, and so Clark.

    To present people who defend jbfa with their hearts and hands the way you do (contra the FV’sts, Rome, etc.) is less than charitable and inclines them not to listen to you.

    You are telling people who are just as angry, hurt, and concerned as you are to repent? You are mad.

    Ya’ll need to do some serious soul searching as to your methods, your attitudes (self-righteousness is the hardest thing to see in one’s self), and your supposed representation of Christ.

  43. Ron Says:

    What I mean by that last statement is that Jesus wept over His Church. I see no weeping for Jerusalem, only castigation. If we see no fruit, we have no root.
    So, why don’t ya’ll conclude for yourselves that you are devoid of the Spirit?
    Do you act with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, and self-control towards the PCA/OPC/anybody who doesn’t act and believe the way you do?
    “Your condemnation is just.”
    “These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.”
    Judge yourselves, then proceed to judging others.
    (Sean, these are the sentiments that divided me from your hero, so it is easy to conclude why he wanted me gone.)

  44. Sean Gerety Says:

    As a nation, Israel apostatized, yet Jesus did not leave and start his own group. He was put outside of the camp. Same with Luther, btw.

    Not true of a certain man, who when told by the Shepherding Committee of his Presbytery to remit his office for the peace of the Church, left the PCA in a fit of pique, which is often advocated here.

    I really don’t know what you’re talking about Ron? Yes, there are times when men are put out, but there are other times when men are commanded to separate (2 Corinthians 6:14ff). That’s not my command, but you are advocating men simply ignore this imperative. You think leaving is an act of pride instead of obedience. I don’t see how that follows?

    But, then, perhaps you think the idea that our “covenant faithfulness is the way to salvation for the doers of the law will be justified at the final judgment” is a perfectly acceptable expression of the Christian faith and may be preached and taught with impunity? Regardless, the PCA does and now it’s official as the SJC has spoken and their word is final and may not be challenged. It must be obeyed. Of course, the other alternative is to freely leave the PCA, but you somehow think this would be contrary to the example set by Martin Luther and Jesus Christ. There is no way out except death or excommunication. That’s not my reading of Scripture.

    Normally I find your comments insightful Ron and even helpful, this time not so much.

  45. Ron Says:

    I realize you do not know what I am talking about.
    Yet, you ought to know better than to suggest I am anything akin to FV, or Rome, in anything, but it seemingly alleviates you somehow to cast such dispersions on the character of those who don’t take your methods (the message we hold is actually much the same).

    Name one Reformer who, before Trent, looked at Rome the way u look at the PCA.
    It was upon the issuance of Rome’s ex officio’s that the Reformers made their final judgments.
    The PCA has not formalized the FV doctrines in any way, shape, or form. True, the possibility is they may at some later date, but the argument made by Eric, and hence you, is that I need to repent of being in the PCA. It is offensive because it is contrary to Scripture, logic, charity, and (and subpar to these) history.
    By the same argument, Jesus was in sin.
    These suggestions, with all of my statements, are twofold in their intent: answering foolish men according to, and not according to, their follies.
    Do you deny you lack charity toward a large number of people who believe they should not part, who believe, like Dabney, that there are ways to address problems while endeavoring to avoid unnecessary separation?

    (“But let us not forget that this testimony for the “form of sound words which we have heard of” the apostles must be borne “in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.” Unhallowed is that zeal for the truth which is animated merely by rivalry, or the spirit of party, which is not founded in solemn convic­tion, the result of faithful study and earnest prayer, which con­tends for wrath, and not for conscience’s sake. The apostle here teaches us, in two words, what is that spirit of orthodoxy which God requires. It values revealed truth because it has humbly received it with adoring reverence, as the gift and trust of infinite wisdom and love, and because it sees in those doc­trines the instruments of glory to God and endless blessing to blind, erring man; yea, to our enemies and opposers. Let us, then, while we hold fast to the pattern of sound words, ever study to do it in faith and love.”)

    Once, I asked you if I was your enemy for telling you the truth, and your reply was, “When will you start?”
    I never haven’t.
    We simply bang heads over what truths should supercede others. I think charity demands you not falsely accuse the innocent.

  46. Sean Gerety Says:

    The PCA has not formalized the FV doctrines in any way, shape, or form.

    Actually, they have Ron. The GA upheld the lower courts decision vindicating Peter Leithart. Leithart said he wanted to be tried so that he could make the PCA a safe haven for people like him and he succeeded. I know you’re reply will be there is no “formal statement by the PCA endorsing the FV,” but that would just be an unnecessary redundancy.

  47. Ron Says:

    The redundancy would highlight your error, however.

    The PCA has not given its official stamp to these errors. It has failed to properly discipline the errorists to this point, for some of its elders lack discernment, intestinal fortitude, or otherwise.
    And, its work in regard to Leithart is not over.
    Overtures 20, 21, and 22 have been sent to the SJC, requesting that GA assume original jurisdiction over Leithart per Book of Church Order 34-1.
    Comes up at the Oct meeting of SJC.
    So, until the work is done, the battle is not un-won.
    Your unbelief notwithstanding.

  48. Steve M Says:

    Ron; “I think charity demands you not falsely accuse the innocent”

    I agree that one ought not to falsely accuse an innocent.party. Who is the innocent party that has been falsely accused?

  49. Ron Says:

    Anybody who hasn’t left the PCA, myself included, according to Eric, and approved of by Sean, above:

    “Anyone who is a Christian in that denomination is now responsible to leave as a little leaven leavens the whole lump.

    Open your eyes and repent, Ron.”

  50. Ron Says:

    By the way, the leaven reference has to do with putting the erring out, not leaving the erring to go elsewhere. Jesus acted rightly; others act wrongly. By the argument being made that it is a sin to remain in an apostate assembly Jesus was in sin.

  51. Ron Says:

    Just occurred to me, that the same argument, that the guilt of some is the guilt of all, was made by Exodus International’s President when he recently made his public apology. So, there are other Christians just as confused as those here. But, his statement makes YOU here complicit. Do you accept his premise? Why is your argument true and his not?


  52. By exonerating open adherents and teachers of the Federal Vision’s false gospel of all theological error in this area, the PCA is acknowledging the validity of a false gospel. This amounts to a pluralistic interpretation of the Westminster Standards, as the Federal Vision’s “gospel” and the gospel of Christ are logically incompatible. Of course the PCA has given its stamp of approval on these men and therefore their false doctrine. Actions speak louder than words, no? If I shout from the rooftops my fidelity to my wife, yet welcome whores to share our bed, does not not constitute a departure from my first love?

  53. Ron Says:

    The analogy fails, because what Sean is saying is that everybody in the PCA is sleeping with the Whore. Try again and we can perhaps progress.


  54. Restrict your reply to my comment, please. My only point is that the PCA, as a functioning body, most certainly has given its stamp of approval to the Federal Vision, by its exoneration of teachers who openly espouse its perversion of the gospel. Of course that doesn’t mean that every PCA member therefore endorses Federal Vision; that would be a fallacy. But current PCA members who remain faithful to Christ need to ask themselves why they would align with a body who – as a functioning body – has endorsed Satan’s lie, and what does it say about them if they are content to exist within a body which allows such things?

  55. Sean Gerety Says:

    I guess, Ron, Calvin should never have opposed the Nicodemites and I was wrong for leaving an Arminian church once I came to understand and believe the doctrines of grace. I should have waited until I was excommunicated for denying free will and affirming God’s sovereignty alone in salvation. Is that it?

    If you think it is biblical for someone to remain in a church which sanctions, by it’s official actions and by its highest courts, the continued promulgation of an easily demonstrable false gospel, then I would love to hear your arguments? Also, I didn’t know you were PCA. I thought you were OPC. My mistake. Regardless, I guess I know what your decision is.

  56. Sean Gerety Says:

    Oh, yeah, and if you use Jesus as your example again, then explain for me the disciples? Why didn’t they continue to worship God in the temple instead of retreating to the upper room? Maybe they should have tried to reformed temple worship like Luther attempted to do with Rome. Yet, last I checked when Paul was called he left the Jewish faith of his own accord and later cursed to hell those Jews who would compromise the Gospel.

  57. Ron Says:

    “Of course that doesn’t mean that every PCA member therefore endorses Federal Vision.”

    Thank you.

    My syllogism:
    The PCA existed before the FV; the FV is an error; therefore, the FV must be expunged.

    not
    Sean’s syllogism:
    The FV is in the PCA; the PCA is apostate; the FV must be left.

    perhaps it will become:
    The PCA fought the FV; The FV remains; the PCA is apostate.

    But, that day is not yet. (reference to OCT SJC meeting here)

    What staying says about me (and others) is that I believe God is able to turn the few from their destruction; that the majority is not in error; that we shall be put outside the camp as Jesus was.

    The tack of separation is the tack of the errorists, not of those who believe in the Communion of the Saints.

  58. Ron Says:

    Sean, uhm, the disciples did still go to the temple….John and Peter…silver and gold have I not…acts 5:42 or thereabouts, Scripturalists.

  59. justbybelief Says:

    The gospel is of primary importance, and apart from it there can be no Christian and therefore no Church. The PCA has embraced a doctrine which cancels out, negates, and makes void, the Church and the Christian. They’ve embrace a doctrine in which environment there can be NO Church and NO Christian. Anyone, especially a professing Christian, who would remain in an environment that through its teachings cancels out the things of God at the root ought to have his/her head examined. I suppose one could say that you (one who remains) are of the kind that if having a brain you would take it out and play with it.

    When I left the PCA in 1996 it was obvious to me by the actions of the local elders and the presbytery that it would be the next denomination to fall, i.e., have its lampstand removed.

    Eric

  60. Ron Says:

    Nicodemites post 1535. Another fail, for my argument was for Tridentine 1535 apostasy.
    Yes, you should always be willing to walk where Jesus walked. Maybe you were a coward, through up your hands, grabbed your ball off the playground, and went home. Your call, not mine.

  61. Sean Gerety Says:

    But, that day is not yet. (reference to OCT SJC meeting here)

    Fair enough. Here are the overtures:

    OVERTURE 20 from Gulf Coast Presbytery (to SJC [BCO 15-4, RAO 17-2])
    “Assume Original Jurisdiction per BCO 34-1 and Direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear ‘Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart’”

    Therefore, be it resolved that Gulf Coast Presbytery overtures the 41st General Assembly to:

    Assume original jurisdiction and direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear “Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart,” because PNWP has “refused to act” per the provision found in BCO 34-1, by not declaring a mistrial in this case because of its chief prosecutor’s conflict of interest, stemming from his transition into membership of the Roman Catholic church. SJC should not fail to take into consideration the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms in hearing the case.

    OVERTURE 21 from Calvary Presbytery (to SJC [BCO 15-4, RAO 17-2])
    “Assume Original Jurisdiction per BCO 34-1 and Direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear ‘Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart’”

    Therefore, be it resolved that Calvary Presbytery overtures the 41st General Assembly to:

    Assume original jurisdiction and direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear “Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart,” because PNWP has “refused to act,” per the provision found in BCO 34-1, by not declaring a mistrial in this case because of its chief prosecutor’s conflict of interest, stemming from his transition into membership of the Roman Catholic church.

    SJC not fail to take into consideration the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms in hearing the case.

    OVERTURE 22 from Mississippi Valley Presbytery (to SJC [BCO 15-4, RAO 17-2])
    “Assume Original Jurisdiction per BCO 34-1 and Direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear ‘Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart’”

    Therefore, be it resolved that the Presbytery of the Mississippi Valley overtures the 41st General Assembly to:

    Assume original jurisdiction and direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear “Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart,” because PNWP has “refused to act,” per the provision found in BCO 34-1, by not declaring a mistrial in this case because of its chief prosecutor’s conflict of interest, stemming from his transition into membership of the Roman Catholic church.

    SJC not fail to take into consideration the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms in hearing the case.

    So, let me ask you Ron, if all three overtures are denied in Oct. and the SJC refuses to “assume original jurisdiction and direct the Standing Judicial Commission to hear ‘Pacific Northwest Presbytery vs. Peter Leithart,'” will you join me in telling your fellow PCAers to “come out from her”?

  62. Ron Says:

    Israel had departed when Jesus came. Eric. They had substituted the Gospel for their idols, unbelief, works righteousness.
    You are wiser than your teachers in condemning the Savior for needing to have his head examined.

  63. Ron Says:

    Let us not say, tomorrow we will do this or that.

  64. Sean Gerety Says:

    Very brave response Ron.

  65. Ron Says:

    Probably I will take the fight public and get put under discipline. I will have to submit myself through the courts. Which is when I will wish I had remained in the New England, Puritan, Reformed, Edwardian, Elder-rule Congregational tradition I was raised up in….glad you find Scripture “brave”


  66. This is why I’m not a Presbyterian.

    So what if the PCA dissolves? If all the godly churches leave so that only FV churches remain, the Bride of Christ remains intact. By publicly and formally separating from an apostate body while maintaining biblically constituted churches, the leaven has been purged. Is the PCA “too big to fail”?

    The PCA is obviously not synonymous with the Bride of Christ. When a human institution like the PCA has shown itself to be opposed to the exclusive nature of Christ’s gospel, then that human institution is fit to be burned.

  67. Ron Says:

    I am only Presbyterian by providential placement. I cannot stand it most times. All people are practical congregationalists when they determine to throw off whatever bonds they feel they should, right or wrong.
    I agree with the second paragraph, except I say, let God burn it down in his time, and if I am a faithful witness bearing pile-of-sticks they start the fire with, so be it.
    The difference seems to be that I believe the time “is not yet” that you say “is.”

  68. Sean Gerety Says:

    Actually, I don’t want to let you off that easy. Above you say the fight is not over and that these 3 overtures need to be decided. I think that’s fair.

    You then say that the syllogism “the PCA fought the FV; The FV remains; the PCA is apostate” is premature and “that day is not yet” making reference again to the Oct SJC meeting and these 3 overtures.

    I’m just trying to see if you are just one of those who likes to draw lines in the sand and think it’s an act of valor when you keep drawing them until you just run out of beach and drown in the ocean.

    It seems to me that your concern is not for the sheep who suffer under the teaching of men like Meyers, Leithart, Moon, Lawrence and others. So I’m just trying to figure out if you think there is ever a time when it is right and proper to leave? I’m just trying to see if you can stop speaking out of both sides of your mouth.

  69. Ron Says:

    Since I haven’t said anything contradictory, I deny the double-talk you accuse me of. I have answered all questions with consistency.

    God forbid Sean Gerety should “let anyone off.” A true tyrant and charlatan couldn’t show his colors any better.

    What “seems” to you is a dream. I was born a Romanist, renounced it at the cost of family, friends, and otherwise; have given up position, goods, and gain to defend the Gospel (at TF and elsewhere), and find your suggestion I do not care for His sheep an insult to Christ, not me.


  70. Ron, in case I missed it above (I haven’t read every post on this thread), do you think the flipside is wrong, that churches ought not to leave the PCA, and to do so is the sin of rebellion or something else?

  71. Ron Says:

    No, I think a local church is more autonomous than not. The Spirit speaks in the Body though its individual members. So, if Christians in a place decide to leave, I believe they are free under and for the Gospel to do so. Depart in peace.
    Note, I have not said it is sin for any one person to leave, either. I only say it is sin to act so un-charitably toward those who do not leave when you do.

  72. Ron Says:

    Thank you.

  73. Sean Gerety Says:

    Since I haven’t said anything contradictory, I deny the double-talk you accuse me of. I have answered all questions with consistency.

    You’ve implied that there may come a time (OCT) when people will be justified in leaving the PCA and have also suggested that it is always wrong to leave. Seems contradictory to me.

    God forbid Sean Gerety should “let anyone off.” A true tyrant and charlatan couldn’t show his colors any better.

    Oh brother. Where did that high horse come from? You don’t have to answer me. Only it does appear that you are speaking out of both sides of your mouth.

    I was born a Romanist, renounced it at the cost of family, friends, and otherwise

    Really. Well, assuming you’re not speaking from the grave, did you remain a Romanist until you were excommunicated? Or, to put it another way, “were you willing to walk where Jesus walked. Maybe you were a coward, through up your hands, grabbed your ball off the playground, and went home.”

  74. Ron Says:

    ” have also suggested that it is always wrong to leave.”

    No proof given, or available.

    What I have said is the argument ya’ll make that one must leave convicts Jesus of sin.

    Rome has been no Church since 1535.

    Please try harder. Or maybe you are trying as hard as you can. No matter.

  75. justbybelief Says:

    …let God burn it down in his time…

    God has already burned it down.

    “Burned it down” = “Rejected the gospel”

  76. justbybelief Says:

    Galatians 1:8,9
    But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.

    Galatians 5:1-11
    Stand fast therefore in the liberty with which Christ has made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Behold, I Paul say to you, that if you be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing. For I testify again to every man that is circumcised, that he is a debtor to do the whole law. Christ is become of no effect to you, whoever of you are justified by the law; you are fallen from grace. For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness by faith. For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision avails any thing, nor uncircumcision; but faith which works by love. You did run well; who did hinder you that you should not obey the truth? This persuasion comes not of him that calls you. A little leaven leavens the whole lump. I have confidence in you through the Lord, that you will be none otherwise minded: but he that troubles you shall bear his judgment, whoever he be. And I, brothers, if I yet preach circumcision, why do I yet suffer persecution? then is the offense of the cross ceased.

  77. Ron Says:

    Galatians 7:1 Youse guys betta get yo behinds out dat burning house, you unrepentant-whore-sleeping idolatizers.

  78. Sean Gerety Says:

    OK Ron, that’s enough.

  79. Ron Says:

    I really thought you would appreciate that: it was tongue-in-cheek. I will desist.

  80. Hugh McCann Says:

    Wait a minute… how did Norm Crosby slip in here? 😉

    Yet, you ought to know better than to suggest I am anything akin to FV, or Rome, in anything, but it seemingly alleviates you somehow to cast such dispersions on the character of those who don’t take your methods (the message we hold is actually much the same)…

  81. Hugh McCann Says:

    Sean & I both referenced 2 Cor. 6:14-7:1 in regards to people leaving false churches/ assemblies.

    As I have argued elsewhere, ordained elders are in a different position, as they have sworn to protect and serve the flocks under their care. Laity do not so vow. Laymen must if the church is apostatizing.* Elders do not have the luxury –in my opinion– to walk away without a fight.

    And this, in order that either (1) the church (or denom) be saved, or, (2) the elder be dismissed (again, Machen and Luther are noble examples). IN the 2nd case, he should have no qualms about trying to take every saint with him that he can.

    Calvin’s Nicodemites were laity as I recall, whom he urged to flee Romish assemblies. Fine. Rome had apostatized.

    Sean leaft an Arminian church once he came to understand and believe the doctrines of grace. Fine, he saw it as teaching falsehood.

    Now comes the PCA sanctioning, “by it’s official actions and by its highest courts, the continued promulgation of an easily demonstrable false gospel” [SG],

    And of course Jesus and his disciples didn’t continue to worship God in the temple, and Paul left the Jewish faith, because of course God abandoned that covenant for the new.

    Once Luther saw the irreformability of Rome, he fought it as Machen later would the PCUSA.

    Faithful elders in the PCA should follow Luther and Machen’s examples and fight, repeatedly exposing, denouncing, and preaching against the false gospel now sanctioned in their ranks. All the while, of course, lifting high the cross and the doctrines of God’s amazing grace. Whether they are defrocked or see repentance and reformation is up to God alone. Ours is but to strive to be found faithful.
    ——–

    * I realize the point of no return differs for different folks. Believing Episcopalians –both clergy & laity– for example (as Charlie and I can testify from first-hand experience), were able to justify staying in ECUSA (now, TEC) until the founding of ACNA, because the 39 Articles were still on the books (or, in the prayer books!). Of course, few priests or bishops would agree with them, but they were and are technically the doctrine of Anglican & Episcopalian churches. Such a stay for laity was a mistake, imho.

  82. Hugh McCann Says:

    Should read: “Laymen must leave if the church is apostatizing.* Elders do not have the luxury –in my opinion– to walk away without a fight.”

    With regard to the Episcopal Church situation: Like the silence of TOO MANY in Rome over its child-raping clergy, those Episcopalian priest and bishops who refused to denounce their brother (or sister!) priests and bishops in TEC were derelict in their duty.

    So too, faithful PCA TEs & REs had better make a squawk for Jesus and the gospel!

    Naming names of bad guys is also helpful as we call folks to repentance and faith.

    Thank you.

  83. justbybelief Says:

    Naming names of bad guys is also helpful as we call folks to repentance and faith.

    Hugh,

    Shouldn’t it be naming names (commanded) and condemning those men (commanded)?

    If done properly, it shouldn’t take long to be expelled, like Luther.

    Eric

  84. Hugh McCann Says:

    Yes, Eric. Thank you for the godly clarification and expansion.

  85. Lauren Kuo Says:

    Having been on the mission field all over the world for the last several years, I can testify that the PCA is not the only church on the block. And, God’s church is alive and well. Of the seven churches mentioned in Revelation, I believe only two remain today. The PCA glory days may be dying out like so many others, but God’s true church still prevails.

  86. Denson Dube Says:

    Ron,
    You are hissing, snarling, flashing a forked toungue and spitting vernom. Is this the charitableness you lament Sean and company lack? The irony seems lost to you!
    The Gospel is of and from God. No one may alter it even in the slightest, not the PCA courts nor an angel.
    I doubt if charity(whic you show little of it) and the timing of leaving an apostate organinsation is what is at issue with you. This could be just a smokescreen for some nefarious intents, even if unwittingly.

    … and by the way, it’s “…casting aspersions…”, not “dispersions”.

  87. Ron Says:

    Some meddling troublemaker woke up feeling his oats.
    What nefarious intent is yours to come in so late in such a manner?

    Behind their keyboards pusillanimous people
    Think they would topple, the PCA steeple.
    The Gospel’s unaltered by a PCA court.
    An argument that has no valid support.

    Men get treated in the manner they treat
    Neither for victory, nor defeat,
    Why should you feel another man’s hurt
    When he only receives his just dessert?

    Neither is suspicion a spiritual gift.
    The Lord hates a man who will rift
    Or join the fray that is between others
    (Not to say, they are in any way brothers.)

    When answering fools according to folly,
    Denson the Dube, couldn’t well volley
    He would accuse my tongue to be double
    Yet, when did with him, I cause any trouble?

    Away then with his grammatical quibbles
    Let them be seen as juvenile scribbles
    Go back again and read the thread
    And, try to use the brain in your head.

  88. Ron Says:

    BTW,
    Sean’s recognition that the work of the SJC to come in Sept. forestalls the PCA “endorsing” the FV is a concession.
    The astute will recognize that any action towards removing the error trumps the claim that PCA is lost to the FV.
    Few men, percentage wise, hold the FV in the PCA.
    Again, fallacy of composition.
    Who is in denial, then?

  89. Ron Says:

    Sorry, SJC in OCT, for Denson. Hate to see anybody choke on a gnat, for pity’s sake.

  90. Ron Says:

    Then, there is the adoption of the fallacy, to answer according to folly: the composition of the PCA is that the majority do not hold to FV. How can you argue that the minority in failing to exorcise the FV have cause the whole to apostatize? Why cannot I argue that the majority not holding to the FV means the contrary? I am not, just pointing out the inconsistency and confusion.
    Worse, it is all induction, which Scripturalists hold to be false. Or, used to.

  91. Ron Says:

    Sorry, this should all be one post, but I am getting ready for work, feeding children, trying to serve the wife, etc.

    What most concerns me, that started me here on this thread (when it was brought to my attention), was the condemning of the innocent with the guilty.
    Proverbs 17:15
    He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous are both alike an abomination to the LORD.

  92. Sean Gerety Says:

    Sean’s recognition that the work of the SJC to come in Sept. forestalls the PCA “endorsing” the FV is a concession.

    That’s true, it is a minor concession as long as past history is no indicator of future results (which, as you point out, would be an induction).

    Few men, percentage wise, hold the FV in the PCA.

    I think it’s more than most people think and growing. But, you forget the entire presbyteries like Louisiana, Pacific NW, Souixlands, Missouri, and there are others, that not only tolerate things like paedocommunion and justification by covenant keeping, but actively and aggressively defend and protect those who teach these things. I know Louisiana “repented” but where is the fruit of that repentance? I think the problem is bigger than you realize Ron. Besides, you know what Paul said about a little false teaching (Gal. 5:9)..

  93. Ron Says:

    Lauren
    there is an admixture of the leaven of error in your post at the url given.
    the second half of the first sentence is true. it is grievous.
    the first sentence of the second paragraph is questionable as to its veracity
    the first sentence of the last paragraph is foolishness.
    the pca is not in apostasy. As long as the courts of a denom have before them something looking for redress, there is hope.
    when the courts no longer hear appeals, or they give their opinion in favor of the FV error, you will be correct.
    until then, you are guilty of violating the second part of Proverbs 17:15.

  94. Lauren Kuo Says:

    Ron,
    We began our battle with the Federal Vision in 2004. It is now 2013 – 9 years later and no court has yet to stop this false teaching. The track record is abysmal. When should we expect the courts to change direction and actually do something? And, based on this most recent GA decision – ruling three overtures out of order, why should anyone expect the PCA to change course at all? It seems to me that the PCA has reduced itself to political agendas.

    As I have written on previous blogposts, it will take a change of heart conviction to really bring an end to this false gospel. It would appear that such a heart conviction is lacking in the leadership.

  95. Ron Says:

    For clarity, who is “we?”

    JR at TF went to Auburn Ave Conf. in 2002, with my brother-in-law and another elder from Midway.
    When they returned, John almost immediately began working with his Session on it.
    The first review directly addressing it from TF was The Biblical Covenant of Grace, co-authored (actually, John generally did the yeoman’s work) by JR and Sean.
    As I understood it, it was a tactical attempt to address the aberrant theology just rooting after a long time seeding, Vantilianism, Postmillennialism, Wilkins, etc.

    The track record is an induction, but, you fail to address the pertinent fact that we are fighting it in our house via the structure we have taken vows to uphold (we who have been or are elders).
    You are fighting it from outside of the house, via your keyboard?

    You could try recognizing the fact there are still means available, we are praying and hoping for proper redress, and we who serve the PCA’s best interests are far from done trying.

    Now, what gets me fired: I believe men can turn from their errors. It does not appear to be the belief of those who have tried and convicted the PCA without due processes being exhausted.
    There are still “7000” who have not bowed the knee to Baal.

  96. Hugh McCann Says:

    Ron, et. al.,

    Why bother reading Mrs. Kuo? Are there not men who can tell us the story? Aquila, Gerety, Keister, etc.?

    She is not an ex-elder in the PCA, but the spouse of one. Where is her husband’s blog or at least an occasional insight? Instead, we get his wife. Over and over and over again. Good grief!

    Now damning the PCA, she earlier gave us whining about persecution therein.

    Where is Mr. Kuo?! Anyone ever hear from him? Or is it just Lauren who’s “Just Ventin'”?

    The ruling elder Kuo was fed up, so he left his post. Where does the Bible allow (much less, commission!) elders to bail when all around them gives way?

    Show me in Paul or in Acts 20 where elders’ marching orders include a provision to abandon the flocks committed to their care because some rotten fruit is festering in Zion? Jude3f? (Compare John 10. Just sayin’.)

    Machen and Luther charted a different course. They were excommunicated for standing for truth. Noble, these. Good role models for you PCA faithful (both of y’all!).

    Running away and having one’s wife write endless shrill attacks is not so biblical.

    No one’ll listen: The noble are too busy fighting the fight you’ve forgone, the complicit are capitulating, some are wavering and need encouragement (à la Luther & Machen), but who needs the incessant blogging from wives of those who walk away?

  97. Ron Says:

    Mr. McCann,
    Is this your work? “The Works of Agency: On Human Action, Will, and Freedom”

  98. Hugh McCann Says:

    Ron, No. No relation to Hugh of Texas.

    I am an ex-PCA member; under care when at WSC in 1990s.

  99. Ron Says:

    Thanks.

  100. Ron Says:

    Hugh, tried emailing you. wondering if you know Fred Hofland?

  101. justbybelief Says:

    It’s quite a site to see how vigorously a beheaded chicken flails around, its bodily members quite unaware that it is dead.

  102. Denson Dube Says:

    Ron,
    Your rapping gifts not withstanding, which I quite enjoyed by the way, as you said, self righteousness can be hard to spot in one’s self. You seem to have come here to show off what you think is your dazzling plummage, not because you care about the incalculable damage to precious souls error does such as in the PCA.

    The decisons of the PCA courts concerning the FV are not just a fluke. They are a symptom of a rot in the core.The rejection of Christ and the Gospel in the PCA occured ages ago. I would even go as far as to say, this could be God’s providential way of telling his people, escpecially those who are slow, the true nature of the PCA, the FV issue being just an occassion.
    People entrusted with that level of responsibility such as the PCA courts are not expected to behave so irresponsibly. The Gospel is a very serious matter. In a spiritually healthy organisation, the men who made these decisions would either all have been forced to resign with immediate effect, or people would leave the PCA. The fact that this is not happening is further proof that the PCA as an organisation has rejected the Gospel and the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Your exegetical gifts are appalling. Church membership or so called “relationships” or organisations, no matter how seemingly auspicious, do not take precedence over the truth. There is something deficient, inverted and sinister about your thinking Ron. You have chosen the wrong thing(the Gospel) to be dim witted about.

  103. Ron Says:

    Glad the poem (not a rap) gave you some subsequent catharsis. Hope you feel better soon.

  104. Sean Gerety Says:

    The ruling elder Kuo was fed up, so he left his post. Where does the Bible allow (much less, commission!) elders to bail when all around them gives way?

    Your evident misogyny and disdain for the testimony of your sister in the Lord notwithstanding, I don’t recall you squawking to JR about “leaving his post” when he left the PCA over this same issue.

  105. Hugh McCann Says:

    Sean,

    I hadn’t come to the conviction I currently hold as John Robbins was going through his saga. If there are circumstances I am unaware of, I would like to hear them. All I had was his testimony @ Trinity Foundation. Like Mrs Kuo’s (I don’t know Mr Kuo’s) testimony, it didn’t convince.

    Again, isn’t the Scriptural mandate to protect, serve, and fight, not to desert one’s post? And unless I can be proven wrong, I will continue to hold up Machen and Luther as *the best* examples who fought to correct & reform their communions, even though they were failing fast.

    The PCA has not officially apostasized. Pastors, congregations, perhaps entire presbyteries are given over to the FV spirit. In which case, those under their care must weigh the Bible’s call to depart from unbelievers (2 Cor. 6:14-7:1) against the paper orthodoxy of the denomination.

    The PCA seems comatose about correcting the false teachers, while it denounced the errors. But is it irreformable? Perhaps, but its sanctioning of wrong teaching is not universally positive/ pro-active in error, it’s through passivity and phlegmaticism.

    Thank you,
    Hugh

  106. Ron Says:

    Mr. McCann,

    It is a matter of public record that JR was advised by the Shepherding Committee of Westminster Presbytery to step down as an RE for disrupting the peace of Midway Church.

    He could not have stepped down, and simply taken a better approach, but chose not to.

    I have one acquaintance who went to him afterwards and suggested he’d lost a critical foothold, and he took that in silence.

    JR posted one side of the story at the TF website, but to date neither Midway nor Westminster Presbytery has felt the need to defend their action.

    The things we learn after the fact should not keep us from rectifying what we can, but, admittedly, we put our name at stake for defending the name of another.

    Sean isn’t alone, but it is an irony of Providence.

    If TF has any sense of justice, they would pull down the Midway pages, but that would require Christian conviction that only the Spirit could work in the heart.

    Such we ought to pray for all.

    Machen and Luther were good examples, but still my argument that Jesus stayed in the midst of a wicked and perverse generation seems to be stronger.

    Nobody has yet answered it on this thread. That is telling.

  107. Sean Gerety Says:

    I confess, I was under the mistaken impression that Ron here was Ron DiGiacomo a man I do respect, not Ron Gilbert a man I do not.

    I admit I thought some of the posts were odd coming from DiGiacomo and it wasn’t until just today when Gilbert emailed me privately that was I able to put two and two together.

    Gilbert, as some may recall, at one time worked for John Robbins until he was let go for violating a confidentiality agreement he signed with TF and was busy supplying one of Doug Wilson’s associates information behind John’s back. In his recent emails to me he repeated his charge calling John a liar.

  108. Hugh McCann Says:

    Ron (Gilbert?),

    I do not understand your second sentence. Please explain.

    When an RE or TE is convinced that things are going south, he should raise objections and reprove, rebuke, and encourage with all patience and teaching.

    As to Jesus and his ministry, it was of course unique. He stayed in place until they murdered him, but he was also inaugurating a new covenant. I agree he’s the best role model. For elders. I believe Luther and Machen basically followed him (as have millions) in martyrdom. In their cases, it was vocational martyrdom, not physical.

    The Bible does call people to leave apostate fellowships. To first reprove and call to repentance, but then to vamanos if there is no change in direction.

  109. Cliffton Says:

    Hugh: Ron, et. al., Why bother reading Mrs. Kuo?

    Cliffton: Apparently from your reading of her you can tell us all why only you should have read her.

    Hugh: Are there not men who can tell us the story? Aquila, Gerety, Keister, etc.?

    Cliffton: Maybe there is an ass (Balaam’s?) who can “tell us the story.”

    Hugh: She is not an ex-elder in the PCA, but the spouse of one.

    Cliffton: Whoa… great point Hugh! I should have distinguished among persons. And while your at it, why don’t you command those stones not to cry out.

    Hugh: Where is her husband’s blog or at least an occasional insight? Instead, we get his wife. Over and over and over again.

    Cliffton: Christ commissioned His church to bring captive every thought.

    Hugh: Good grief!

    Cliffton: There is a godly sorrow that brings repentance. There is also another sorrow which brings death. With which are you identifying?

    Hugh: Now damning the PCA, she earlier gave us whining about persecution therein.

    Cliffton: Apparently you received it as such.

    Hugh: Where is Mr. Kuo?! Anyone ever hear from him? Or is it just Lauren who’s “Just Ventin’”?

    Cliffton: Apparently Mr. Kou’s word carries more weight with you…even before hearing it.

    Hugh: The ruling elder Kuo was fed up, so he left his post.

    Cliffton: Maybe, maybe not. But because you think Mrs. Kuo (or Balaam’s ass) is not worth listening to, from where did you get your info concerning Mr. Kuo? You hypocrite!

    Hugh: Where does the Bible allow (much less, commission!) elders to bail when all around them gives way?

    Cliffton: Is that what happened? If Mrs. Kuo ain’t worth listening to then from where did you get this info?

    Hugh: Show me in Paul

    Cliffton: You mean the Paul who counted his religious history as loss?

    Hugh: or in Acts 20 where elders’ marching orders include a provision to abandon the flocks committed to their care because some rotten fruit is festering in Zion? Jude3f? (Compare John 10. Just sayin’).

    Cliffton: Paul’s concern as a shepherd (and an apostle to the Gentiles) was to communicate the whole purpose of God. After Paul delivered that lecture in Acts 20 he split…even after he told them that wolves would arise among them. Are we to claim that Paul “abandoned the flocks”? You hypocrite!

    Hugh: Machen and Luther charted a different course. They were excommunicated for standing for truth.

    Cliffton: “A” occurred. “B” occurred. That’s great Hugh! Thanks for that bit of info.

    Hugh: Noble, these.

    Cliffton: Noble you Hugh for recognizing nobles.

    Hugh: Good role models for you PCA faithful (both of y’all!).

    Cliffton: “PCA faithful” ay? Notice Hugh DID NOT SAY “Scripture faithful.”

  110. Denson Dube Says:

    @Ron
    “Glad the poem (not a rap) gave you some subsequent catharsis. Hope you feel better soon.”
    No, rather, I am somewhat relieved I am not a Presbyterian.
    @Hugh,
    “It is a matter of public record that JR was advised by the Shepherding Committee of Westminster Presbytery to step down as an RE for disrupting the peace of Midway Church.”

    What error was John teaching at Midway that was disrupting the peace of Midway Church?

    Why is John (together with Machen and Luther) not an example to you of people who get kicked out for standing for the truth and to be emulated?

  111. Denson Dube Says:

    @Hugh,
    The questions above under your name are directed to Ron only.
    Apologies.

  112. Sean Gerety Says:

    Denson, Ron Gilbert has continued his scurrilous attack against the good name of John Robbins both here and to me via email. He has attacked me calling me “insane” for, as he said, “receiving” John’s word when John told me why he fired Ron from the Trinity Foundation. This unstable and bitter soul has been harboring a grudge for years and has an ax to grind, but he will no longer grind it here.

  113. Lauren Kuo Says:

    Hugh,
    My husband’s first language is Chinese; he preached in English for ten years in the PCA. We are very grateful for that experience. How many languages have you preached in?

    His preaching the gospel was not wanted after the Federal Vision moved in. We did not leave the flock; we left the false teachers. We had three children that were part of that flock to think about as well as maintaining the truth of the gospel.

    The Westminster upholds the freedom of conscience and last time I checked there was no prohibition for women to express that freedom of conscience in writing.

    My husband does not do blogs because he preaches and teaches the gospel in restricted places and in a different language. His manhood is not threatened by his wife expressing a love for the gospel and for Christ’s church in writing. Much of what I have learned has not only come from personal study but from him.

    If you do not agree or like what I write, you have the perfect freedom to criticize it or not even to read it. But criticizing, insulting, and judging the messenger and not the message is not very productive or helpful for either of us.

  114. Denson Dube Says:

    “If we would hold fast that which is good, we must never tolerate or support any doctrine which is not the pure doctrine of Christ’s Gospel. There is a hatred which is downright charity – that is the hatred of erroneous doctrine. There is an intolerance which is downright praiseworthy – that is the intolerance of false teaching in the pulpit. Who would ever think of tolerating a little poison given to them day by day? If men come among you who do not preach “all the counsel of God,” who do not preach of Christ, sin, holiness, of ruin, redemption, and regeneration, and do not preach of these things in a Scriptural way, you ought to cease to hear them.”

    ~ J.C. Ryle — Chapter 3, ‘Private Judgement’,,(Knots Untied).

  115. Hugh McCann Says:

    Amen, 2D/ JCR!

  116. Hugh McCann Says:

    Lauren, As to your above paragraphs:

    (1) I don’t know why you need to know my c.v. But I’d guess it’s probably not as impressive as Mr Kuo’s. So what’s the point?

    (2) As to point one, that’s what I’m arguing against (for elders).
    Point 2, the family, I get it. If the heresy is in your congregation, then he needs to spirit away his wife and children. If it’s still outwardly faithful in its pulpit ministry, maybe they could stay. But an elder is to fight for ALL the congregation/ presbytery.

    (3) Of course. I am just tired of your tired litany. You are free to go on whining, and I am free to be fed up with it, right?

    (4) Good for him; I am just curious how he would relate the circumstances of his abdicating his eldership. I’ve only found your writings.

    (5) OK.

  117. Sean Gerety Says:

    I do agree with Lauren on a number of her points, particularly her last one.

  118. Denson Dube Says:

    Hugh,
    The first people God chose to be witnesses to our resurrected Savior were women. The boys were out there somewhere, running scared. The Samaritan woman(at the well) called the whole town to Jesus. There were prophetesses in the NT. I doubt if they prophesied silently. The bible only forbids women from holding the office of a teaching elder or assuming leadership over men.
    Lauren is not in breach of any of these scriptural boundaries.

    I have friends(Americans) who are missionaries in places where I cannot communicate with about the gospel. We only discuss culture, food, the weather and our personal lives. It would be idiotic for Lauren’s husband to flaunt his identity on forums on the internet, if he is at any place like some I have heard of.

  119. Hugh McCann Says:

    2D Got it. See my reply to her #3, above. Not arguing that it’s unlawful.

  120. Steve M Says:

    I have a question. Should a RC priest who comes to believe in JBFA remain on the payroll of that church until he is excommunicated. Is that the noble thing to do? Or should he immediately renounce his association with that false organization altogether? Just wondering…

  121. Denson Dube Says:

    Steve,
    RC has a long and clear history of apostasy, and I think very few Christians would have any difficulty with deciding what to do in the instance you have given.

    In the present battles in some erstwhile evangelical churches, the situation is not as clear to some. Many have been brought up to believe that there is nothing wrong with what they hear from the pulpit, Sunday after Sunday.
    When it is pointed out to them that what they are being fed with are damnable lies, their first reaction, understandably, is that of disbelief. It may take some time for many to finally understand what is wrong and take appropriate action.

    However, the word says, “My sheep hear my voice”. We must believe that the elect will hear His voice and the voice a stranger they will not heed.

  122. Steve M Says:

    “Steve,
    RC has a long and clear history of apostasy, and I think very few Christians would have any difficulty with deciding what to do in the instance you have given.”

    And what is it they would decide to do?

  123. Hugh McCann Says:

    Steve M asks, “Should a RC priest who comes to believe in JBFA remain on the payroll of that church until he is excommunicated[?] Is that the noble thing to do? Or should he immediately renounce his association with that false organization altogether?”

    No, perhaps, and, yes.

    Steve M, I think I know where you’re wanting to go (prolly more than “just wondering”!), but cannot know for sure until you go there. What is your point?

    Thanks,
    Hugh

  124. Denson Dube Says:

    “And what is it they would decide to do?”
    Immediately part company with those who do not share his new found faith.

  125. Hugh McCann Says:

    Denson – I am tracking with you, & agreeing.

    We’ll see what Mr. M. is wanting to get at.

    Since this is a thread about the PCA…

  126. Steve M Says:

    Hugh and Denson
    I am not trying to be mysterious. I don’t necessarily know the answer to my question, but the question occurred to me because Hugh gave both Machen and Luther as examples of the noble course. Machen was a Presbyterian elder. Luther was a Roman Catholic priest. I am not sure that the answer is the same in both cases. Luther risked his life for his convictions. I don’t think that is the case with Machen.

    I think I agree with Hugh’s position that there is a difference between the responsibility of layman and elders to stay and fight for truth, but there is a limit to the level of deception that an elder can accept in a church before proclaiming it a false church and leaving.

    Clark left the OPC after the Clark/Van Til controversy ended with a decision in his favor. He and others who supported him left rather than be subjected to the continued attacks of those who sought to block his ordination. Maybe this was cowardly. I sure am glad that he continued to expose the errors of his opponents after he left. It has been a wealth of knowledge to me.

    I have read Robbins’ letter to Midway and I believe he was justified in his decision to leave. I could be wrong. It certainly would not be the first time.

  127. justbybelief Says:

    After Clark received a favorable decision the accusers were not brought up on charges for holding doctrine contrary to scripture. The OPC did not do its job and the false teachers were allowed to continue in the denomination and rot it to the core. There was no church discipline even after manifestly gross error of the accusers was in plain site.

    Though I don’t agree with the RE/TE distinction I’ll accept this distinction for the sake of the following statement: No one is required by God to sit under a false teacher, not even an elder. That is, a RE is not required by God to sit under a TE while he preaches and teaches false doctrine. It is his duty to be absent from times of preaching and teaching if having confronted the TE initially the TE remains unrepentant (the confrontation should be during the sermon or other first contact of the false doctrine, a public rebuke if necessary). The faithful are duty bound to follow the example of the faithful elder.

    When the presbytery decides that the unfaithful teacher is allowed to remain it is the duty of the faithful elders and other faithful to leave that local church. They should not attend any churches in that denomination which has publicly embraced heresy.

    You are not required to sit under false teachers of participate with them in their sin.

    The honor of God and His Word is of greater importance than any notions that we might have for the flock and the church.

    Eric

  128. Lauren Says:

    We were asked to find another presbytery because of our opposition to the FV. Even had an offer to buy our house from an elder. So we did the PCA a favor by leaving – it’s a little hard to serve in ministry where you are not wanted.

  129. Hugh McCann Says:

    Obviously, Machen’s course was more akin than Luther’s to those today in the PCA. The PCUSA of the early 20th Century and the PCA of the early 21st Century had/ have heretics in their midst, and errors were/ are rife, but the canons/ standards were/ are orthodox.

    Luther’s Romanism was more wretched in comparison and codified its apostasy @ Trent [1545-1563]. It was institutionally in his day [1483-1546] already abandonment-worthy.

    The questions are: Are there different marching orders/ duties assigned in Scripture for elders and layman? We seem to be generaly agreed there are.

    So, the $25,000 questions are,

    What are these duties of elders? And,

    What is the point-of-no-return for elders with regard to leaving their churches?

  130. Hugh McCann Says:

    Maybe they’re $64,000 questions, actually…

  131. Jon Says:

    When considering the Clark/Van Till controversey, one must realize there is value in each approach. Van Till shows us that it comes down to paradigms, which we hold by faith. And those paradigms are closed systems, more or less. And then we have the Clarkian or evidentialist approach, which works in theory but not necessarily in practice because we’re human. I prefer Lewis’ argument by imagination. I think it’s the best.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: