May We Dare to Hope…?

January 20, 2009 at 3:32 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | 181 Comments

By Robin G. Jordan

“Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.” (1 Kings 19:18 ESV)

 

In 1869 B.B. Leacock wrote then Assistant Bishop of Kentucky George David Cummins:

 

“The fact is impressing itself more and more fully on observant minds in the Evangelical party that we are not only to have a Revised Prayer Book but a Reformed Church. This means a new Church. The Lord is working out the problem. Our Evangelical bishops must not think that they can stand in the way and stay the progress of this movement. Before they know it, the swelling wave will sweep over them, and past them, and will leave them high and dry, without friends and supporters, in the old Romanized Church.In my judgment the new Church is a fixed fact. The men are deeply in earnest who are working and praying for this thing, and their numbers are on the increase, and when we get our new Church we want its foundations laid solid on the Word of God, and its doors opened wide enough to receive within them all who love the Lord Jesus Christ. We hope to see it, with God’s blessing, the Church of this land.”

 

Cummins would found the Reformed Episcopal Church in 1873. But one wonders whether he would recognize that church today.

 

When the 2005 revised Constitution and Canons of the Reformed Episcopal Church are compared with the Constitution and Canons of the Reformed Episcopal Church as adopted by the Seventeenth General Council of 1903 and revised by subsequent Councils through the Forty-fourth General Council of 1984, one is struck by how sweeping have been the changes in the Reformed Episcopal Church. In a space of less than twenty-five years the Reformed Episcopal Church has shed its Protestant and Reformed identity.

 

In 1984 the Constitution of the Reformed Episcopal Church did not contain any affirmation of the doctrine in the three Ecumenical Creeds, the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion in their 1801 form, or the Lambeth Equilateral of 1886-1888. Article VIII—Of Erroneous Direct or Symbolic Teachings states:

 

“Nothing calculated to teach either directly or symbolically that the Christian Ministry possesses a sacerdotal character, or that the Lord’s Supper is a sacrifice, shall ever be allowed in the worship of this Church. No Communion Table shall ever be constructed in the form of an altar, no retable erected, and no candle, candlestick, or cross shall ever be placed upon any Communion Table.”

 

In 2005 the General Council replaced the provisions of Article VIII with those of Article IV, Section 1 of the new constitution:

 

“Nothing calculated to teach that in the celebration of the Lord’s Supper, the elements of the bread and wine are changed into the natural Flesh and Blood of Christ, shall ever allowed in the worship or teaching of this Church. Nor shall any practice that teaches or promotes doctrines or practices specifically prohibited by the Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion be permitted in this Church.”

 

These provisions take advantage of the fact that the Thirty Nine Articles specifically prohibit only one particular doctrine of eucharistic sacrifice, the doctrine of “the Sacrifices of the Masses” that claims that the Church repeats Christ’s sacrifice or adds to it. Under the provisions of the new constitution Reformed Episcopal clergy can teach and promote the 1958 Lambeth Conference’s doctrine of eucharistic sacrifice that claims that the Church does more than commemorates Christ’s sacrifice: the Church participates in it. However, J.I. Packer has shown in The Thirty-Nine Articles: Their Place and Use Today that, while the Articles say nothing about this twentieth century development directly, they say a good deal about it indirectly. The Articles rule out the Lambeth doctrine of eucharistic sacrifice as misshapen. [1]

 

Reformed Episcopal clergy are also free to teach and promote the idea that they act as intermediaries between God and humankind.

 

In contemporary Reformed Episcopal parishes one can now find altars and retables with candlesticks and candles upon them. One can see clergy in stoles and eucharistic vestments.

 

In 1984 the Reformed Episcopal Church was not organized into dioceses but synods like a number of Lutheran church bodies in Australia, Canada, and the United States. The parishes within a synod elected lay deputies to the General Council. A synod consisted of at least ten parishes and at least ten presbyters. It could adopt its own constitution. Its ecclesiastical authority was its standing committee or its bishop if it had one. The boundaries of Reformed Episcopal parishes were not geographical.

 

In 1984 the Constitution of the Reformed Episcopal Church did not state that bishops held their office and ministry for life. An ordained minister in good standing of another denomination could become a presbyter of the Reformed Episcopal Church without being reordained. A deacon could be licensed to administer the sacrament of the Lord’s Supper, or Holy Communion under special circumstances. This included consecrating the bread and wine. The Reformed Episcopal Church had no licensed lay eucharistic ministers who brought the reserved sacrament to the sick and to shut-ins. Indeed Reformed Episcopal presbyters did not reserve the sacrament.

 

These are just a few examples of how the Reformed Episcopal Church has retreated from the Protestant and Reformed doctrine and principles of its founders.

 

How would B.B. Leacock react if he were to visit a Reformed Episcopal parish this coming Sunday? He would think that he was in a Protestant Episcopal parish of his day. He would take one glance at the Prayer Book now used in Reformed Episcopal churches and call for a revised Prayer Book. He would hear the parishioners addressing their pastor as “Father” and referring to him as their “priest” and call for a reformed Church.

 

The intention of this article is not to bash the Reformed Episcopal Church. Rather it is to draw attention of one of the realities of the twenty-first century. We have no Anglican church in North America like the one Cummins founded that seeks to be thoroughly Protestant and Reformed in its doctrine and principles. The emerging Anglican Church in North America has no judicatory that fully espouses such doctrine and principles. The Reformed Episcopal Church has abandoned its Protestant and Reformed heritage. The Anglican Orthodox Church and the Traditional Protestant Episcopal Church, while they claim to be Protestant and Reformed on their websites, belie their claim with their continued use of the Protestant Episcopal Church’s 1928 Book of Common Prayer, a service book that is decidedly not Protestant and Reformed in its theology of the Lord’s Supper, Baptism, and confirmation. This leads to our next question: Do we need a Protestant and Reformed Anglican Church in twenty-first century North America? 

 

The answer to this question depends upon how much we personally value the Protestant and Reformed tradition in Anglicanism—evangelical Christianity as Anglicans have understood that faith and practiced it, whether we believe that it is valuable enough to pass on to another generation, and whether we think that another generation can get along without it. Does it matter if no Anglican Church in North America accepts and unfeignedly believes all the Canonical Scriptures of the Old and New Testament, as given by inspiration of God, and containing all things necessary to salvation” and continue profess to the faith of Christ as professed by the Primitive Church? Does it matter if no Anglican Church in North America continues to minister the doctrine, and sacraments, and the discipline of Christ, as the Lord has commanded? Does it matter that no Anglican Church in North America as a Protestant and Reformed Church maintains a constant witness against all the innovations in doctrine and practice by which the Primitive Faith has been from time to time defaced and overlaid, and which at the Reformation the Church of England did disown and reject?

 

We need to reflect upon these questions in the coming year. We need to pray over them. At the same time we should not give too much time to reflection and prayer. We must make up our minds. Where do we stand?

 

Do we have any less observant minds than those of the Evangelical party of B.B. Leacock’s day? Are we to have a revised Prayer Book and a reformed Church—a new Church? May we dare hope to see that new Church, with God’s blessing, the Church of this land? 

 

Endnotes:

J. I Packer and R. T. Beckwith, The Thirty Nine Articles: Their Place and Use Today, (Vancouver, BC: Regent College Publishing, 2007), 81-85.

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  1. Christians are either growing up or growing cold. The REC, and most of North American Anglicanism has compromised and grown cold, sliding into ritualism/Romanism, ignoring the Word of God and abandoning their first love.

  2. Hindsight being 20:20, I’d say that the REC made two fatal errors.
    :
    The first was in the hubris of believing that they could be a church of any significance in splitting from the Communion (or what it was at that time). The global interconnections and accountability, the link to the patrimony and heritage of the Anglican Reformation, the validation conferred by integration, were all lost in leaving the global church.
    :
    The second was the hubris of believing that they could make a “better prayer book” that what was already there. If, instead of making their own, little schismatic book, they had adopted the 1789 or 1662 (with the only changes made being to the prayers for leadership), they would have positioned themselves as smack in the tradition of accepted Reformation Anglicanism, instead of an eccentric group of BCP nerds.
    :
    The increasing irrelevance of the St. Louis mini-sects reflects this first error, and indicates the wisdom of a parallel province under conservative leadership and within the Communion (bravo, Greg Venables!).
    :
    The messing around the the BCP that Robin has documented in detail indicates that the ACNA hasn’t learned from the second REC error.

  3. I don’t want to comment on the larger questions raised here (which are about the future)until I have more time to put my thoughts on the screen, but Dom Walk I do have an immediate question for you.

    I was somewhat surprised, and puzzeled by your suggestion that the REC should have adopted the 1789 BCP. I understand your suggesting the 1662 BCP, but why the 1789 BCP? Did you mean to write ‘1786’ instead of 1789? The 1786 BCP was much more inline with the 1662 BCP, whereas the 1789 BCP was a break from the 1662 BCP, and the foundation for the 1892, and 1928 BCP’s.

    John

  4. Hi, John.
    :
    In mentioning the 1789, I was just referring to the first official</i< American book. I don’t think the 1786 was ever approved, was it?
    :
    I don’t know that picking a proposed and un-ratified book would have been much better than making up one’s own. If the 1789 were unacceptable, then it seems the thing to do would be to go with the 1662.
    :
    The point being to go with something that’s established and well-accepted rather than rolling your own. I’d guess that sticking with the 1928 rather than making their own has been one thing that’s saved the "continuum" from total extinction.

  5. Oops, sorry about the poorly-closed italic tag above! :-)

  6. I truly lament the direction that the REC has taken.

    But to the question, “Do we need a Protestant and Reformed Anglican Church in twenty-first century North America?”

    Yes, we do.

    Bishop Cummins would be just as startled going into an AOC parish or a TPEC parish. It is not only the 1928 BCP. It’s the altars, candles, ceremonies, etc. All this is defended by the present bishop of the TPEC.

    Our efforts must and should be put into what we believe, and not go to support to that which we believe is abhorrent to God and to us.

    We must behave as people of faith and not just be pragmatic. The latter does absolutely nothing to stop the slide down the slippery slope.

  7. Friends:

    Great questions by Robin, Dom, John and others.

    Joe, why a 1928 BCP versus the 1892 BCP? We don’t know that history…or I don’t. Why?

    Cummins and associates were NOT baptismal regeneration men, but like the evangelicals of England vis a vis the Gorham judgement of 1850, were influenced by Article 17 (of the XXXIX Articles) and were non-Lutheran. Cummins and associates adjusted the baptismal office accordingly. I can only sympatheize with that effort.

    Do we need a Prot, Confessional, Anglican Church in the US? Thus we are asked.

    Cicero was wont to ask all difficult questions of his own assertions, as a prelude to offering answers. That strategy still obtains in the legal world, to wit, being able to answer all the objections against one’s own position.

    Why Anglicanism in the US? Are they not an embarrassment, nationally? What about the tolerance of PnAs (Papal non-Anglicans, otherwise called Anglo-Catholics)? Why would anyone want to be affiliated with Venables while he tolerates Iker, an SSC-man, Schofield, and while he presided over the REC-APA “Unity Mass”? Does anyone want to go near this? Explain this to one’s children? Why would children want the 1928 BCP when the 1892 had merit? Or the 1662 BCP? And why would a thinking, reading, rational, historic Christian associate with the reductionistic XXXIX Articles–compared to the fuller, justifiable Westminster Confession (with exceptions throughout)? What are the credentials of the new leaders in the ACNA? Or the Primates?
    Have they read the English Parker Society series? All 55 volumes? If not, wny not? As international leaders, one would like to know that they are schooled in the English Reformers. As to TPEC and AOC, why do they have the 1928 BCP? Why do they resist discussion about the REC BCP of old and the issues that gave rise to the REC? Are either of those presiding Bishops conscious of the REC history? FCE? If so, why did they not join the REC? Should we join some ill-defined Anglican network? Are you willing to put your money, time, and effort into such? If so, why? What organs of publication would there be? Seminaries for continuity? Funding? Why is an Anglican congregation preferrable to a PCA or LCMS work? How can you sell Elizabethan language in a media-byte culture? Or a 1940 Hymnal? Should we use that hymnal, or was that infected with Tractarian, Oxfordian, Ritualistic Romanizing (TORR)? These are but a few Ciceronian objections to be answered.

    Answer these preliminary questions and perhaps Robin’s inquiry will have merit.

    (Just in from 14-hr run south from MI to NC. More later.)

    Veitch

  8. “…dare we dream?” Do we have choice? We do, but if we are who we say we are then we need to say YES in order to maintain that integity.
    :
    I do not see any viable jurisdictional option for Reformed, Protestant, Evangelical Anglicans in the United States. There is not one single Anglican body within this country right now, in the birthing process, or up and running, that any of us would be comfortable within. In actuality we would be very uncomfortable.
    :
    If the REC had not abandoned their birthright we would not be having this discussion. The Anglican Heritage Network would not even exist. We would all be members of the REC. Therein lies the problem. There is a vacuum. There is nothing present for us.
    :
    So we dare to dream, and begin to act on that dream. It’s at this point that the going gets tough: hard questions pop up that have to be asked, and answered.
    :
    The question Robin is asking is so huge that I am having hard time getting a handle on it so the only way I can begin working on it is in small batches. Here are my initial thoughts.
    :
    Sometime in December when this question was indirectly posed both Jeff and Phil responded. Jeff said above all else we need to pray. Stephen Leacock said the same in his letter to Bishop Cummins that Robin quoted, and Robin himself wrote of the same need. I couldn’t agree more.
    :
    If we had a collect, or collects, written expressly for this dream we dare, we would all be able to pray during the Morning and Evening Offices for God’s direction on our uncharted journey.
    :
    Phil wrote that we need be grounded (educated) in our history, and theology. We may think we are already, but I don’t think there is a one of us who does not recognize that he/we can learn a lot more than we already know.
    :
    If we had ‘a foundational list’ of books and documents that we all should be familiar with as we ask, and try to answer, the hard questions we will be in a better position to come up with reasonably good answers….God willing. Without a working awareness of our history and theolgy we will be handicapping ourselves.
    :
    Just coming up with the questions, and prioritizing them correctly, seems overwhelming, and absolutely necessary. It is the prioritizing that I am most concerned with: that the First Questions be asked, and answered, at the beginning, and that all further questions be asked, and delt with, in the order of their importance.
    :
    Anyone else?
    John

  9. John, great post.

    By posing my own questions above…this does not entail that I endorse abandonment of the BCP-Anglican, but rather, it constitutes an Ciceronian inquiry as to “first things” that need decisive answers, amongst ourselves. We need to know the questions and the objections. We need to ruthlessly know why we hold to what we do. And we need crisp, well-researched answers with conviction.

    “Dare we dream” asks Robin…initiating a good crisis of concern and inquiry amongst us. For we have a crisis that will not go away.

    In MP this AM (1662 BCP), a few answers to my own questions…hence, giving a few clues to my own answers (hopefully to allay concerns).

    First, the 1662 BCP has fuller Biblical readings for the daily offices. Why, pray tell, did the 1928′ compilers “reduce” Biblical readings compared to the 1662 BCP, when Cranmer sought to advance, enhance, pursue, develop and argue for a literate, biblically literate, Churchman? The 28 BCP lectionary, upon preliminary review—again, I am not a liturgical scholar–is far fuller and complies with the spirit of Cranmer. Was this reduction anti-Reformational? Was this a TORR effect (TORR = Tractarian, Oxfordian, Ritualistic Romaniser)? Why reduce the lections?

    About all…the TORRs pressed for liturgical ritual as “signs” of a much-lusted-for-catholicity. That distinctive, at least in the Newman-Keble-Pusey writings, is clear.

    Aha! No, rather than say compliance with Cranmer as to enhanced biblical literacy (and contra the TORR impulse of reducing biblical readings) shall we say it–the fuller agenda of 1662 lectionary– complies with the spirit of the Psalmist in 119? I would suggest re-reading Psalm 119, to wit, the hunger, quest, prayer for, desire for, longing for, search of, meditation upon God’s Word. The entire chapter exhibits the longings of the justified saint. Does the 1928 lectionary move in the direction of the Berean Church, who put Paul’s writings to biblical scrutiny?

    I could, but won’t, argue a case that there was an implicit negative impetus (albeit invisible) to the 28′ construction of lectionary.

    That lectionary difference exists and should be explained. Accountability, historically, is in order re: the 1928 BCP. An historical scrutiny is in order. If the 1892, or REC 1873 BCP, is better, why has it not been embraced? If we love God’s Word, why would we not want the enlarged biblical lections for the daily office?

    Yet, is the lectionary infallible? Necessary? One could argue that Halley’s Bible Handbook, with a prescribed table for Bible readings which are fuller than the 1662 BCP, satisfies the need. How should we answer such questions that will come our way in the discussion?

    And before we leave off with the lectionary, with the TORR-shift to Communion every Sunday, what became of MP and EP with those readings? Was biblical literacy the loss? Did that matter to the TORRs?

    So, to another question, why a BCP at all? Why this for this nation? Or for any nation? Isn’t the book rather demanding? Daily offices and prayers?

    Ahh, ever attend a non-liturgical church? What’s missing? For one, an amnesiacal, ahistorical, and indifferent relationship to the Apostles, Nicene, Athanasian Creeds for one. Is that enough? And yes, Presbyterians should be held accountable here for hardly a mention of it during their services. Baptists, absolutely. Pentecostals as well. Pray tell, Psalm 145.4ff, should we not teach our children the great Christological discussions and creeds over which “our” catholic church presided? That we have that connection? Yes. Every time I confess the Nicene Creed during Communion (not the “Eucharist” or the “Mass” so as to avoid TORR or Papist associations), I am reminded of our inexorable connection to the true church of the ages.

    Let me throw this out from another perspective re: the lectionary and the creeds. Yes, the BCP is demanding in daily readings. But that is EXACTLY what is needed in this biblically illiterate day. The lectionary is very useful in this respect. A value for any Churchman if he uses it.

    THIS is exactly what charismatics and Pentecostals need…and we need to say it to them. Read, mark, learn and inwardly digest.
    THIS is what Papists need to hear.

    BUT, we need to say it aright. Humbly and thankfully. One might well make a case that “hubris” in US Episcopalianism was integral to their fall. ????

    Robin thoughtfully noted that we need a good year to pray and turn these questions over in our minds.

    And yes, we need several good collects on the matter.

    Excuse the randomness of the points. My son and I will travel north to an AMiA church in the AM. We have started to talk this over between us, to wit, why a Prayer Book?

    The answer this afternoon with him? An excellent schedule of Bible readings in the lectionary. Second, it is demanding and not for wimps (we are influenced by the USMC ethos). We must break up the crusty soil of our hearts and plead with His Majesty for a new day.

    I hope others will engage the questions. Thoughts? Why should your children be raised on the BCP? Because of tradition? Why not a Presbyterian or Reformed Baptist Church? How will you present your arguments to a Montanist-enthusiast like Benny Hinn? Creflo? Country-singers? That’s right, Gospel-Country folks? Red-necks? Marines? Why should they “endure” a prayer book service? Is it adiaphora, to wit, the specific BCP form? Could it be one among many other equally solid liturgies? Or, is or does Anglicanism rest simply upon tradition? (I think it does and is a good tradition…but it is not infallible, so????)

    More later.

    John, as to a reading list, books.google.search. You can get most of the Parker Society series there. I especially commend Bishop John Jewel’s Apology for the Church of England.

  10. Jesus said, “Follow me.”

  11. Phil,
    I’m reading ARCHBISHOP CRANMER’S IMMORTAL BEQUEST, THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER OF THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND: AN EVANGELISTIC LITURGY by Samuel Leuenbereger. Forward by J.I.Packer. Wonderful book!
    :
    I’ve picked up P.E.Hughes’ THEOLOGY OF THE ENGLISH REFORMERS, and will read that next.
    :
    I’ll follow up Hughes with Jewell. Thanks for the recommendation.
    John

  12. John, sounds good. Hughes had mastered the Parker Society series as you soon will see.

    One of the answers to my own posted questions–why be concerned about a Protestant, Reformed, Confessional and Evangelical identity via the BCP—it preaches, teaches, leads in the Gospel. Far better than what is offerred in other evangelical circles. Where’s the Confession and Absolution? Where’s the LORD’s prayer? Where’s the ten commandments? Where are the magnificent, thoughtful and biblical collects? We need to put these and other questions to other evangelicals.

    On the other hand, association with these Anglicans makes for bad press, to wit, connections with these out-catholicizing Continuuers, uncritical charismatics, and worse.

    Here’s an interesting artice on Anglican identity at http://www.churchsociety.org/churchman/documents/Cman_120_3_Atherstone.pdf

    Retouring John Jewel’s Apologia. I would love to see you do a book review on both Hughes’s and Samuel Leuenbereger’s works. Would be interesting to get another take and interpretation.

    Phil

  13. Re: the reduced 1928 Lectionary compared to the 1662.
    :
    It’s important to remember that the mood in TEC in the aughts and twenties was as much modernism and liberalism as Anglo-Catholicism. And, interestingly, feminism. Just two years later, the church became the first of all the Protestant mainline to abandon the teaching against contraception.
    :
    The readings removed include not only those especially graphic, but also those affirming traditional sex roles, such as Paul’s comments regarding wives submission to husbands.
    :
    The marriage ceremony is especially gutted, notably in the removal of “love, honor and obey” and in procreation and avoidance of sin as the two primary reasons for God’s ordination of the institution.
    :
    As much as it it Anglo-Catholic, the 1928 is also modernist, liberal and feminist.

  14. I recommend Robin’s article on Anglo-Catholicism and Liberalism on VirtueOnline (whiny ritualist comments optional):

    http://www.virtueonline.org/portal/modules/news/article.php?storyid=9235

  15. Dom, this is helpful commentary on the 1662 v. 1928 lectionary. I was an REC Churchman for twenty years, schooled in their seminary, ordained with them for fifteen years and schooled in their book.

    With TPEC, turned to the 1928 BCP for a few years.
    But noticed the disheveled (??), disconnectional, non-sequential, and sundered sequences of texts.

    After reading some of Robin’s works, using the 1662 for MP and EP and have noticed the contrast with the 1928 BCP. As to the lectionary, will never go back to the 28. In fact, I find the MP and EP more serious about sin and the Gospel, not fearing to describe our Romans 7-experiences with sin in the life of the justified saint. I find the opening sentences also deficient compared to the 28 BCP.

    I am sorry that AOC and TPEC Churchmen and leaders won’t look at these things. Maybe they will.

    Will check out Robin’s comments.

    Still working up a review of Walter Walsh’s Secret History of the Oxford Movement. Will post when done. Hoping John might do likewise with the recommended books he suggested.

  16. I realize that this probably won’t get much reading, being at the bottom of a week-old post, but what do folks think about the FCA (formerly infelicitously known as FOCA)?
    :

    http://www.fca.net/

  17. Phil,
    I’ll take up the challenge. Give me a month with each book, and I’ll have something.

    John

  18. Hello all. It is indeed wonderful to see so many with the same concerns I have. I’m working on my rector to start using more of the 1662 BCP in the services. So far I have been unsuccessful. His reasoning is that it uses the archaic King James English. Does anyone know of a good modern edition of the 1662 BCP which does not delete or change the wording in any significant way?

    Charle

    http://www.reasonablechristian.blogspot.com

  19. Charlie, too.

  20. Good to see everyone here. Hope to see the conversations continue. I thought for awhile I was the only one with these kinds of concerns.

    God bless!!!

  21. Philip, I was ordained as a deacon with the REC for over a year. Then I realized how Anglo-Catholic the denomination had become and resigned. I would be interested in hearing your story with the REC.

    God bless!

    Charlie

  22. Dom,
    I can’t write for anyone else on this list, but I suspect the following will not meet with a lot of disagreement. From everything I have read, and especially from conversations I have had, and the two services I have experienced at a local FCA affiliated mission the new ‘North American Province’ is made up of variegated parts of the old, pre-Robinson ECUSA, and a wandering REC.
    :
    I suspect there will be few ‘takers’ on this list for what is already an unresolved, theological and ecclesiastical, mish-mash.
    John

  23. John and Dom:

    John, would love to see the writeup, for another take on these works. I will do the same with Walter Walsh’s works (interestingly, Peter Toon does not mention Walsh’s solid works in his Evangelical Theology, 1833-1856: A Response to Tractarian Theology). Walsh is freely downloadable also at books.google.search. A must read on TORRs and their agenda (TORR=Tractarian, Oxfordian, Ritualising Romanisers).

    Dom, don’t know enough about FOCA or FCA. Appears to be led by the AMiA bishop, a charismatic am told. Is that so? Also, what is your take on FCA?

    Phil

  24. An interjection to the streams of thought in the current thread.

    Take a look at http://www.virtueonline.org/portal/modules/news/article.php?storyid=9851

    The Anglo-Romanising bloggers appear to be drooling at the possibility of TAC’s potential prelature with Rome. If this happened, I suspect many PnAs (Papal non-Anglicans, otherwise known as Anglo-Catholics) in CoE, TEC, and ACNA would do as they should have years ago—swim, swam and swum the Tiber (grammatical error intented). Newman would have rejoiced.

    Poor Duncan in the ACNA with WO and three (of four) dioceses that are PnA. Ft Worth is led by two SSC-Churchmen. (SSC was once the shock-trooper version of PnAs).

  25. Robin,

    You have asked the right question. I believe your Scripture verse is appropriate as well. God always reserves a remnant which has not bowed the knee to Baal.

    I am all for a new denomination. However, since Evangelicalism at large is likewise going in the direction of Rome (i.e. Evangelicals and Catholics Together), it will take great faith to plant new churches and to organize into a fellowship of truly Reformed/Calvinistic/Augustinian Anglicans. I personally believe that Arminianism itself has an incipient seed of Romanism within it because of its emphasis on man’s “cooperation” in salvation. It is only when we come to the end of our own resources that we realize that except the Lord saves us we shall not be saved. Likewise, except the Lord builds the house they that build it build in vain. (Psalm 127:1-2).

    I have developed a relationship with my pastor here at Christ Episcopal Church, Longwood, Florida. He is from the Sydney Diocese in Australia. He wants to pull out of TEC but can’t do so without losing the church property here in Florida. The congregation is small because most of the Anglo-Catholics left when he began to emphasize the Bible over tradition.

    Unfortunately, if the church did leave the denomination, the senior warden and others who were raised in TEC want to join with the common cause movement or ACNA. The reason is they do not understand the dangers of the Anglo-Catholic heresy. Part of the reason is that the rector, though staunchly anti-Tractarian, is not willing to call it a heresy or deny that those teaching such nonsense are truly converted. As I see it a gospel of works righteousness is no gospel at all. As Dr. Michael Horton and others have said, the Council of Trent officially condemned the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Basically, Tractarianism for all practical purposes represents the Roman Catholic view. Until the laity realize this there will never be change. This is why I am an outspoken critic of Anglo-Catholicism and of Evangelicals like Billy Graham and Charles Colson who wish to mix the heresy of good works with the doctrines of grace. The two do not go together at all.

    Choose you this day whom you will serve. Will it be Jesus Christ? Or will it be Rome? (Joshua 24:15).

    I told David that if he allows that Anglo-Catholics are truly converted then what he is really saying is that the Protestant versus Anglo-Catholic theology is just a matter of preference. “I like the doctrines of grace while he likes the Roman Catholic/Anglo-Catholic gospel.” But if it is a matter of propositional truth and the very Gospel itself is at stake, then the matter is an entirely different light. Anglo-Catholics are master manipulators who will claim to be Reformed and catholic and a middle way between Rome and Geneva. But the reality is the Anglo-Catholics are nowhere near Geneva or Wittenberg or even Christ!

    I pray that God will raise up a few men who are willing to suffer loss in order to preach the Gospel and to reform the Anglican Communion. The Anglican Churches in North America ain’t it.

    May God have mercy!

    Sincerely in Christ,

    Charlie

  26. Phil,
    I’m going to cancel out the book reviews. I haven’t got the time I need to do them.
    John

  27. Charlie:

    Your post on the situation in Florida with your rector is troubling. As to Arminianism, as reviewing Laud’s writings, diary, letters, and Autobiography to assess his conflicts at Oxford, as a student, then head of St. John’s College (I think), as Bishop of several dioceses, and then ABC—who then gave preferrments and promotions to Arminians. If memory serves me here, a certain Rev. Morley was asked by an interlocutor, “What about the deaneries and prebendaries in the Church?” Morley, noting Laud’s influence, responded, “They’ve gone to the Arminians.” This transitional period needs more work on my end. Am doing it.

    As to the Tractators, as William Goode called them, I find myself where you are, namely, Scriptures as the Divine Rule of Faith and Practice. This puts the heavy squeeze on Anglo-Romanisers. Am researching this also, more fully.

    Your rector is in a tough place, as is your congregation. I see little hope of a Reformed, Protestant, Confessional Anglicanism coming from the ACNA…not with Iker, Schofield, and Ackerman integral to it. Nothing less than divine judgment and wrath is unfolding before our eyes, I believe. My own personal solution—to stay in Jerusalem or go off with the exiles to Babylon, as it were—is to keep reading Romans, Galatians and Hebrews weekly, to keep hope alive, personally.

    Thus far, not very impressed with the exegetical work of Newman, Keble, Pusey, etc., in Pauline theology. Will be reading Newman and Pusey’s works on the ante-Nicene authors.

    Personally, attending an AMiA Church, but trying to figure out the rector’s theology quietly.

    More to follow and thanks for your comments about Arminianism and Anglo-Catholicism.

  28. Beloved brothers;

    Am re-reading Luther’s Bondage of the Will (1525) and much encouraged by his courage. Erasmus parades the long and illustrious list of the divines who advocated “free will” in contrast to the lonely Luther, who may advert only to Laurence of Valla (Erasmus does not include Augustine).

    Perhaps Luther was lonely in this matter, yet, Romans is divine fiat. It is the Vox Dei. Romans consists of the Divine Assertions of the Holy Spirit. The Christian has the duty to confess and assert what the Holy Spirit has asserted re: sin, depravity, election, justification and the several benefits that do follow and accrue therefrom,, in this life and the next.

    The point: hope and courage, grounded in the Holy Spirit’s College of Sacred Scriptures.

    I doubt the ACNA will be advocating the publication of Luther’s fine work…a work that Luther himself deemed his finest contribution of all and transcendant to other writings.

    Dare we hope? Yes, even if in small ways, we still have His Majesty’s assertions and, despite all appearances good or bad, we have our duties to preach in season and out of season…and in the off season also, such as we are in.

    Hoping that Charlie’s congregation and rector will find relief and God’s blessings in the way forward…to safety and biblical fidelity.

  29. Hi Phil,

    The trouble with our local church is many of the Anglo-Catholics have left and most of the congregation is aging. There are couple of young families but the income for the church is dropping and the pastor is facing a pay cut this year.

    I don’t know for sure but it seems to me he’s in the mode of preserve what you have. At some point I believe one must let go and just simply preach the law and the Gospel and let the chips fall where they may.

    I would love to plant a genuinely Reformed and Anglican church based on the 1662 BCP. But so far the Lord has not seen fit to open that door for me.

    However, I would like to note that the rector allowed me to preach 3 times thus far. All three times I tried to put forth the Gospel in a straightforward way. The last sermon dealt with Ephesians 1 and predestination. I also tied that in with Article XVII on Predestination. I was somewhat surprised to learn that a couple to whom I had been trying to explain the doctrine without much success suddenly said they now understood what I had been trying to say.

    I’ve been trying to push the rector into being more upfront with his Reformed views. In the past one had to strive to hear anything in his sermons which was directly biblical and Reformed.

    Anyway, thanks for your prayers. I’m now working againg after a three month layoff so my blogging time has been cut short.

    God bless,

    Charlie

  30. Brother Charles:

    You, as well as your rector, will inform daily prayers for Christ’s Church. Regrettably, monies are often directive of theological application…the reformation suggests such. I, for one, praise His Majesty to have a comfortable retirement with no ecclesiastical attachments that amounts to freedom.

    May we steel ourselves, as did the English Reformers, who sealed and attested to their faith with their blood.

    The departure of ill-taught Romanisers is expected. Reformational, or I will be bold and Lutheran here, reformational theology teaches humility before the throne of grace. Romanism appeals to the pride of the heart.

    May God assist you in your efforts for employment.

    Phil

  31. Dare we hope? Has the theme dropped in our midst?

    A few things.

    Just off the line with a PECUSA minister in Miami, FL, who gets about 150 people per Sunday. He was a former PCA minister who joined the PECUSA (www.reformer.org, 1928 BCP) and now has an overflowing ministry with a school to boot, am told.

    He has four young postulants (who currently are in college). Where do they go to school? I CANNOT RECOMMEND ANY EPISCOPAL SEMINARIES. Not sure about TESM, since charismania is optional and Anglo-Catholics are tolerated.

    I’ve been ask to craft a reading list for college students (as collateral reading for the present, but also, should they attend a Reformed Seminary…which is advisable.) The exegesis will be far superior, to wit, work in the original languages. Since the young men are in Miami, they may attend Jim Kennedy’s school, Knox Seminary. If they overlay their readings with solid English Reformers—up through Laud—they shall be well. I fear Episcopal schools gloss over the Reformation, emphasize the Caroline divines through Anglo-
    Roman lenses.

    Dare we dream?

    I commend Storr’s John Wycliffe, available and freely downloadable through books.google.search. You will see a man whom the Scriptures touched and who was a major-change agent not just in England but in Western Civilization. By the time of the English Reformation, one wag noted that 1 of every 2 Churchmen were Lollards. Perhaps overstated, but we still have about 170 manuscripts from the first 40 years after Wycliffe’s death.

    By the way, his attacks on the wealth and non-intellectual activity of the Bishops–had CoE listened to him, they might have averted the ultimate showdown in the Civil War. Wycliffe was a sola scriptura man. Also, probably Berengarian–Lutheran–on the Table headed in a Calvinistic direction and this following the Fourth Lateran Council of 1215 that mandated Transubstantiation. He believed in the power of God’s Word to gather the elect. He was double-predestinarian and who could not be after reading St. Paul.

    Dare we hope?

    I, for one, have little confidence in ACNA. Ergo, no hope. Imagine trying to teach Bishop Iker Reformed theology? Or Ackerman?

    I, for one, will not be involved in my twilight years supporting the 79 BCP, difficulties over women’s ordination, toleration of Anglo-Catholics, etc.

    I will, however, support young men who are Protestant, Reformed, Confessional and Anglican…such as the phone call today over literature.

    I note that Cranmer, as an Examining Chaplain at Cambridge, prior to getting sucked into Henry VIII’s orbit and travels to the Continent, sent many men away from ordination. They knew the Schoolmen, but not the Scriptures. He told them, “Take a few years off to learn the Scriptures.” In the quiet halls of Cambridge, he made many enemies. However, many later were grateful for Cranmer’s insistence on learning the Scriptures. NO BETTER EXAMPLE EXISTS THAN THIS FOR OUR DAY. Wycliffe, same ethos and practice.

    MASTER THE ENGLISH BIBLE. Read Romans weekly, aloud if possible. Hebrews weekly. John’s Gospel. It will keep you from those “wishing to make a show in the flesh,” as Paul termed it in Galatians, and keep you in the Gospel.

  32. Unfortunately, the PECUSA is a misnomer. It’s really the TPEC. And, as Robin pointed out, they use the 1928 BCP. The other problem is the minister in question is using the seeker sensitive approach, contemporary music, etc., etc.

    I would strongly suggest you listen to some of the Christless Christianity series at The White Horse Inn. The seeker sensitive/church growth approach is based more on pragmatics than Gospel preaching. It is a watering down of the preaching of the Bible to draw in seekers. Whatever works.

    Sorry, but I think such approaches are asking for liberalism and armininianism to creep in. I would much rather preach the Gospel and let the chips fall where they may. Who cares what the color of the carpet is or how moving the music is? God isn’t your girlfriend or boyfriend. He is God.

    Charlie

  33. Also, my opinion of the AMiA is very low. They are essentially charismatic Anglo-Catholics trying to blend in the broadest view of evangelicalism possible. You won’t hear much about justification by faith alone or any other biblical doctrine. It’s all about your “experience” of the Holy Spirit.

    Charlie

    • Charlie,

      While the AMiA has its share of charismatics with a High Church background, it is inaccurate to characterize all AMiAers as being “essentially charismatic Anglo-Catholics.” I am acquainted with a number of AMiAers that are neither. This included pastors from Reformed backgrounds who joined the AMiA because they were attracted to the Book of Common Prayer and liturgical worship as well as candidates for holy orders who are attending Reformed seminaries. The AMiA is a mixed bag from a theological perspective. A number of the Reformed pastors with whom I am acquainted would like to see the AMiA move in a more Protestant and Reformed direction but do not expect to see that happen under its present leadership.

      Robin

  34. “Our age is without passion. Everyone knows a great deal, we all
    know which way we ought to go and all the different ways we can
    go, but nobody is really willing to move.” – Soren Kierkegaard

    Hello, hello….anybody out there?

  35. Following on Phillip’s comments, read the whole thing, including every word of the OT. From Leviticus for holiness and atonement to Ruth for the love of a redeemer and on and on and on.
    :
    I stumbled across an excellent history of the English Bible, “The Bible in English”, by David Daniell, pretty much the leading scholar in this area. The first half, through the KJV, is just outstanding. My library system has a few copies, yours may, also.
    :
    Read somewhere that a number of the great 19th Century Episcopal bishops did their seminary work at Old Princeton. Agree with Phillip, send ‘em to Reformed seminaries and give them a couple of Independent Studies on Anglican history and doctrine.
    :
    There’s a very good, and very Biblical, study of Hebrews by Jim Reimann, a Reformed guy affiliated with that Anglican mega-church in Atlanta. Highly recommended, in podcast form: http://jimreimann.com/podcasts/
    :
    Happy LINCOLN’S BIRTHDAY to all. :-)

  36. I’m impressed with the Bible study you posted. However, I have to say that Dr. Michael Youssef is just another broad evangelical. Superficial and no depth. One of his books is titled 15 steps to something or other. Vague, bland, and self help Christianity. Christless Christianity.

  37. Charlie:
    :
    As Sinclair Ferguson does well to point out, we need to keep in mind the Grace in the Doctrines.

  38. I would certainly agree that we need to be as gentle and reasonable as possible in disagreeing with those who oppose the Gospel on either primary or secondary issues. However, “grace” is a sovereignly bestowed gift. It most certainly doesn’t compromising the Scriptures or the Gospel for the sake of ecumenical unity.

    There is a tension between denominationalism, sectarianism, and ecumenicalism. Too sectarian and we’re no earthly good. Too broad and the salt loses its distinctive taste.

    I would tend to agree with Archbishop Peter Jensen that I would rather err on the side of sectarianism than to compromise the Gospel. That doesn’t mean that we cannot dialogue with “friends” on the Anglo-Catholic/Roman Catholic and charismatic side of things.

    However, if we’re too willing to sell out the Gospel for the sake of popularity, the end result is theological liberalism. I was at the Wycliffe Hall Conference here in Orlando this week and today I had the chance to ask Dr. James I. Packer a question about the fundamental differences between Anglo-Catholics and low church Evangelicals regarding the interpretation of the 39 Articles. I will be posting his response shortly on my blog.

    I also have the audio if anyone wants me to e-mail it to a gmail address. Gmail can handle larger file sizes.

    Charlie

  39. Doesn’t “mean”….

  40. Dare we hope?

    Charlie, I guess I would need to get a gmail account to get the file. I would like to hear it. Also, where is your blog where I can read your account of Packer’s response? Tell me more about the Wycliffe Conference.

    Am attending an AMiA work here two times a month (distance-constricted). Pentecostal-low-lite, barely noticeable. Sewanee man. Thin theologically, but a wonderful, kind, egregarious, approachable, and pastoral. Experienced. But we got a pitch to “think out of the box” which implied prophetic words. I was looking for quality roast beef and got a McDonald’s burger. The music’s good compared to what’s on offer in a Marine town.

    I may head south on Sunday to an APA work in Wilmington, NC. All Saints. Associated with the incredible wunder-scholar, Archbishop Wally Grunsdorf…friend and associate of Cardinal Leonard Riches of the REC—he sports a red cardinal’s hat these days.

    I can’t see Reformed, Confessional, Protestant Anglicanism emerging in the AMiA under its current leadersip. I suspect they’ll one day merge with the ACNA. I can see it being tolerated in the ACNA, but little more.

    Hate to sound cynical, but are there signs that would suggest an affirmative to the question posed by Robin, “Dare we hope?” Should we spend time developing something?

    I suppose if there were conferences like the Philadelphia Conference on Reformed Theology with top drawer men as speakers, it might give visibility. Planning to go to that in Phila. Whala! Justification by faith alone is the theme. Imagine Bob Duncan’s leaders sponsoring that…a conference of Reformation theology? NEVER. But Anglicanism is mushily comprehensive.

    Or a serious seminary for continuity. Where’s the leadership?

    I’m too old, retired, and have–unless called otherwise—gone off to Babylon with the other exiles.

    BTW, the Millenary Petition of 1603-1604 appears to get a bad rap in the literature. The proposed corrections had some important elements. Worse, the failure to work out arrangements for a comprehension of dissenters in 1688.

    Please, don’t allow my pessimism to dampen hopes, but the question of counting the cost is essential prior to moving forward.

    Ah yes, PECUSA is the new name for TPEC. They use the 1928 Book with that inexplicable lectionary…I will not use the book any more. Prayers for the departed? Nope. Priests instead of minister? 79 BCP appears to have that too.

    Back to Niel’s little work on the BCP.

  41. Hi, Philip…

    I don’t think you’re going to find the APA congregation helpful, quite honestly. I live here in Orlando and Wally has a cathedral here called St. Alban’s. In fact, the REC had a synod here a year or two back and all the Anglo-Catholics in the REC were practically drooling all over themselves.

    The pastor of the mission sponsored by the REC here, Jim Reber, finally closed the REC work and switched to pastor an APA church in Kissimmee, Florida. He did this without having to switch his ordination since the APA and the REC have a concordat of open communion and exchange of ministers between the two denominations. So in spite of all the double talk, the merger between the two is already in action even though it is still a concordat.

    The APA is extremely Anglo-Catholic and the only “evangelicals” who are tolerated are those who agree to say that Anglo-Catholicism is not preaching a deficient gospel.

    Likewise, I fear that James Packer has compromised too much in this area for at the recent conference he held up the Lambeth Quadrilateral as the true source for unity among Anglicans while the 39 Articles are given lip service. When I pointed out the obvious differences between Anglo-Catholics and Evangelicals on how to interpret the 39 Articles, he was visibly stressed. He basically evaded the question with a very brief answer.

    At any rate, the more I learn about the Sydney Diocese in Australia I have to say that I like them. They have no qualms about speaking out against Roman Catholic additions to the apostolic kerygma handed down to us through Holy Scripture alone. They also have no problem putting Anglo-Catholics in their place.

    If only such were the case here in the USA! We might have avoided this whole fiasco with the Episcopal Church. While protestant and evangelical theology is no guarantee against defection to theological and moral relativism, at least the protestant side has the possibility of reform. As Emil Brunner put it, however, Roman Catholicism, and by implication, Anglo-Catholicism has institutionalized error.

    Sincerely in Christ,

    Charlie

    • Charlie,

      I am not surprised that he was “visibly stressed” since he has in his writings defended the Evangelical interpretation of the Thirty-Nine Articles while criticizing the Anglo-Catholic interpretation. He has also argued for a greater place for the Articles in the Anglican Communion and the contemporary Church.

      Robin

  42. My blog is http://www.reasonablechristian.blogspot.com

  43. Robin, I agree that Packer’s “personal” opinions lie with the Evangelical and Reformed interpretation of the 39 Articles. However, he also signed the document, “Evangelicals and Catholics Together.” RC Sproul was critical of that and so was the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals.

    I might add that the Sydney Diocese in Australia is also critical of that document. The problem with Packer, like most low church Anglicans, is that he is willing to sacrifice truth for the sake of ecumenical unity. Phillip Jensen, the brother of Peter Jensen, said that the Sydney Diocese recognizes that they are “co-belligerents” with Anglo-Catholics against the theological liberalism sweeping the Anglican Communion. That being said, Phillip also said that Anglo-Catholics and the Sydney Diocese are worlds apart.

    That’s putting it nicely. If Anglo-Catholicism is not a heresy, then it’s all just a matter of personal preference. I like vanilla ice cream and you like chocolate. However, if the very Gospel of grace is at stake, then it is an entirely different matter. I can be co-belligerent with Roman Catholics on the abortion issue. That does not however entail that I believe they are truely “Christian” in any sense of the word other than they belong to a visible church which adheres to some of the universally accepted doctrines.

    I for one do not believe the so-called Lambeth or Anglican quadrilateral is sufficient. It is in fact inspired by theologically liberal Anglo-Catholics. The fact that Packer would hold this document up as an organ of unity is revealing.

    I tend to agree with the Sydney view of it. I am an Evangelical/Reformed Christ first and an Anglican second. Anyone who hangs their hat on ecumenical views before their commitment to God is apt to error.

    That is not to say that I don’t have great respect for James Packer. I do. I have great respect for Billy Graham as well. Graham has done much good in the world. However, Graham has also defected to the “Wider Mercy” view and has irreversibly damaged the Gospel and missionary efforts on that point. Likewise, Packer, despite his popularity, has compromised too much with Anglo-Catholics for the sake of a false unity which will eventually end up back in theological liberalism.

    I was surprised to hear Phillip Jensen say the same thing in his interview with 9 Marks. I said it without knowing that Sydney is saying the same sorts of things. In fact, I was suspicious of my pastor because I have heard so many compromisers say they are Reformed only to later discover they were lying Anglo-Catholics.

    If Anglo-Catholics were honest, I could understand them much better. Instead, they act like other cults. They will agree with whatever you say in order to entice you to compromise the Gospel.

    I see nothing at all wrong with looking deeper.

    Sincerely in Christ,

    Charlie

  44. Charles:

    I have the DVD of Cardinal Leonard Riches and fellow REC dupes at the REC-APA “Unity Mass” on or about Summer 2005. Wally was dubbed by one cradle Episcopalian–who knew him very, very well back to his unfinished graduate school days—as a “car salesman.” “Slick Wally” was the unflattering appellation. She also as the episcopal files on him during those days. His wife left him. He ultimately remarried. All I could infer about the REC from the DVD was, to wit, compromise. Wally’s Cathedral had an adjunct area for the BVM with an inscription on the wall instructing readers how to invoke Mary. It had the Agnus Dei with elevation/adoration following the prayer of consecration.

    I still will attempt to get to the APA work, as a matter of personal inquiry rather than an attempt for personal instruction. Hahaha, why would I seek that from them (APA) while I have a library full of towering intellects–that tower over Jim Packer also…that sell-out and weak man!!!!! Toon included.

  45. Well put, Philip. You sound like a real brother in Christ. Would to God I had meet folks like you when I was in the REC. You might have been able to warn me about the duplicity going on.

    Shoot me, I’m stupid. hehehe.

    God bless,

    Charlie

  46. met

  47. Charlie,
    “The problem with Packer, like most low church Anglicans, is that he is willing to sacrifice truth for the sake of ecumenical unity.”

    A sage statement. Lincoln was willing to sacrifice the constitution for unity and the lives of countless men women and children as well. This view seems to have taken over the minds of churchmen in these united States. Unity is central. It is necessary. Everything else can be sacrificed for it. Even the Gospel. It is a plague not only of the Anglican church but of many others as well. People often stay put even if they dislike the minister, what he preaches and all the changes that are introduced. After all unity is the most desirable thing in the world. Those who cannot sacrifice the Gospel truth for unity are forced to leave their parish to seek another. Few find enough people to go with them and form an new congregation. This must change. But the question for Protestant Episcopalians is, “how do we find each other and in sufficient quantity to form a new church?” and, “How do start a new church if we cannot find enough Christians in our area?” Since the Reformed Episcopal Church has gone astray under the present wolves in sheep clothing there is really no ready make church. By the way, my head is still spinning at the rapidity of the apostasy of the REC and how meekly the congregations have gone along with it. I guess it’s still unity at all cost.

  48. Joe, you pose a “crisis” to the “crisis” in Robin’s query, “Dare we hope…?” Robin posts the critical question and, Reformed, Confessional, Evangelical, Biblically-driven, historical conscious Anglican have no home. As to the REC, remember that Cardinal Leo gathered power to himself, repressed opposing voices (like Dr. Geoff Hubler, and others), nurtured and marshalled canonical changes to centralize power, and was left with “yes men” around him (Jon Abboud, and a few others whose names will come to me later). Fortunately,haha, I was in better places—ships, Norwegian snows, unbearably hot deserts, and foreign countries…while Cardinal Riches was DESTROYING his diocese (about 6 churches left), DESTROYING his seminary (and a dozen students now), PICKING UP wandering Anglo-Romanisers, and climbing into bed for shows of affection with “Car Salesman” Wally Grunsdorf. Crisis.

    Then ACNA with 3 of 4 dioceses led by AC’s. And their men trained in Episcopal Non-Seminaries (meaning weak). Let Protestant and Reformed Churchmen recognize this is a forlorn option.

    Then Virtue, who has no historic definition for “orthodox, evangelical Anglican” other than the soup du jour, veggie-mix, charismatico-AC-international, sometimes XXXIX-sometimes not XXXIX Articles. Theologically, dare we hope? Not here.

    Then AMiA, whatever that is. The wider center appears to be evangelico-charismatic with AC’s and few more reformed types in pockets. Upon extremely good authority, their lead Bishop (what’s his name? Chad or Thad something?) was VERY CONCERNED about the academic credentials and backgrounds of those crossing into AMiA.

    TESM? Dare we hope? I dare say not.

    Dare we hope? No, not a good dare, unless shown otherwise.

    Christ is our only hope, not churchmen, not denominations, not seminaries, not media-reps, no one. Our best days were in Virginian before the Bishops got into it….especially in Connecticut with Seabury. All we had was our BCP and the AV.

    Is there a crisis on the crisis of Robin’s question?

  49. Phil,
    My questions were more in the nature of asking suggestions. Please do not take them as despondence. It is obvious that we must do something. We cannot compromise that which Christ has not given us to compromise. The truth is the truth and God is truth. But we must not behave as politicians who do something just to show that we are trying. It is true that we must discuss, bring forth ideas, which are consistent with the teachings of Holy Writ and with a Christian life redeemed in Christ our Lord and Saviour. Poor Leo who has overseen the apostasy of the Reformed Episcopal Church did what he thought was necessary to get that body out of stagnation. Never mind that he sacrificed just about every principle that was held dear to a Biblical founded Church just to show that he was a leader and that he would have a legacy. But he forgot that Jesus is the Good Shepherd who does not lose any of his sheep. Leo did not care how many sheep were lost as long in the end that the tally was greater than before. He behaves as a hireling and not as the owner. He has scattered the flock as as wolf in sheep’s clothing. I am truly sorry. But we must be called to do something different. We must be called to gather the sheep, to care for them,and to feed them. But first we must find them. We must establish foals. We all face difficulties. But yes we do dare to hope. We do dare to have faith. We do dare to do this because of love.

  50. I just had an epiphany. No Way APA? Isn’t that Phil’s website?

    Charlie

  51. I posted a short article about James I. Packer on http://www.reasonablechristian.blogspot.com if anyone is interested.

    Soli Deo Gloria…

    Charlie

  52. Charlie, not my website, but I do know the owner…who is a cradle REC-er. But has nowhere to go.

  53. Joe:

    First, as to the Gospel, there is no despondence here. The resurrection life of Christ is alive, present and operational for His Kingdom and Church. In the ballgame on that score.

    Second, I speak of His Majesty routinely as opportunity is afforded, as was done tonight at Books-a-Million with an elderly lady.

    Third, you ask or state. “We must do something.” What? “Network?” Pass good book suggestions? The post by Pierce, citing Zahl, indicates that Protestant Episcopalianism is DEAD. Bp Charles Morley would agree that a small band, 10 rectors?, exist willing to commit to Protestant and Reformed theology. (I support him wholeheartedly, although recent inquiries on the BCP have raised questions.) I wholeheartedly support this brother. But what shall we do?

    Fourth, as to the Right Reverend, the Father in God, His Eminence, and His Lord, Doctor Leo…he evinced such despair and political machinations such that…on my view…he lost confidence in the Protestant, Reformed, Confessional, and Evangelical witness. The REC was poised to recover his credentials through Bishop John Jewel, Charles Simeon and Bishop J.C. Ryle. He blinked in war. he drove off solid talent. He capitulated. He gets no breaks from the former officer who served in war. NONE. U may freely quote me.

    Fifth, as to gathering sheep. Yes, indeed…the obligation exists.

    Sixth, yet my question stands as previously posted. Why should we argue, proceed, present, defend, use and advance the Anglican tradition? Why this, rather than a Baptist Church that loves God’s Word? Or a PCA church? This we must define.

    Good brother, lest you think me depressed about Christ….no way.
    Yet, AMiA, ACNA? Ummmmmmmmmmmmmm…..

    Why not TPEC or AOC? Is the 1928 all that bad? (The lectionary is horrible compared to thye 1662.)

    Thoughts? Is the question, “Dare we hope…” of merit? (Be careful, to wit, that I am playing an antagonist? To prompt thought? Or, am I?)

  54. I am pushing the question here because that is the title of Robin’s article, “Dare we hope….?” I hope I am not being pushy, or perceived as hostile, yet, it seems that we need to articulate to ourselves why IT IS SO important to proceed or seek a Protestant, Reformed, Evangelical and Anglican witness.

    Beloved brothers, I use the 1662 BCP daily, so, presuppositionally, am in your corner. Yet, as one writer–name eludes me now–said, “Both High and Evangelical Churchmen agree that the BCP could be improved.”

    BTW, as an aside, Burnet on the XXXIX Articles (1699) is as dreary as they come. Rather orthodox, but weak at points. On Article XI, please. Give me some Luther or Calvin for clarity, depth, and liveliness. I gave my jaw muscles a work-out from yawning. I hung in there, but too Hookerian–who is dreary too. Dreary, I tell you. If this represented CoE preaching in the late 17th century, no wonder the Wesley’s woke up and demanded more—and I am a Dortrechtian Calvinist (as were all the Profs at RES prior to His Eminence’s makeover and pushing out the professors—Fischer, Guelzo, Arndt, Zeller, Bech and others).

    AMiA, ACNA, REC, CANA, TPEC, AOC? Thoughts.

  55. Hi, Phil….

    It’s good to know you’re a 5 point Calvinist! I was pleased to discover that Peter Jensen from Sydney is also a 5 pointer. Actually, this is the point where I have the greatest difficulty with my rector. He’s from the Sydney Diocese but says that his father, David Broughton Knox, was a 4 pointer. My rector, following his father, is a 4 pointer who does not believe in particular atonement.

    Also, his understanding of Reformed theology is a bit imprecise in other areas as well. I think this is partly because he thinks the 39 Articles is all one needs to know. I myself have dedicated myself to studying all the Reformed confessions of faith and integrating them into my theology. I also recommend that all Reformed Anglican ministers should read widely in the Reformed systematic theology today and the classical Puritan theology out there.

    I’m no genius but I have to agree with John Wesley on at least one point. Wesley, as you know, ordained lay preachers who were farmers, etc. On one occasion Wesley told them that a minister who is unwilling to study should go back to the plow. There is really no excuse for a man who doesn’t understand the differences between the Puritans and the English Reformers who chose to stay in the Church of England.

    For example, my rector didn’t understand the difference between supralapsarianism and infralapsarianism. Because I said that God’s decree to election takes place before the foundation of the world he thought I was a supralapsarian! I’m an infralapsarian as most Reformed folks today are. Robert Reymond is about the only supralapsarian I’m aware of.

    I suppose I could overlook this one because even Boultbee’s commentary on the 39 Articles confuses the distinction between the logical order of God’s decrees and the temporal order of the events which have been decreed. (See the section on Article XVII).

    BTW, I’ve been reading Thomas Cranmer’s writings on the Lord’s Supper and I have to say that Cranmer is as good as any of the Lutheran, Puritan or Zwinglian reformers of his day. It is indeed sad that his life was cut short. Personally, I think modern Anglicans have much to learn from the Presbyterians and the Puritans. Rather than scoffing at the Westminster Standards, as my pastor does, we ought to be studying them and trying to understand how to integrate them into our understanding of the 39 Articles.

    Amyraldianism, or 4 point Calvinism, was condemned by the Formula Consensus of Helvitica and is a rather late heresy. I pointed this out to my rector and the response was more scoffing. However, I let him know up front that I intend to speak what I believe. I will not compromise the truth for his sake and I told him frankly that I’m willing to leave the church if he had a problem with that.

    The Canons of Dordt and the Formula Consensus are responses to heresies arising from disagreements with Calvin and NOT the other way around as the Amyraldians try to frame it. Calvin was in no way an Amyraldian and neither was J. C. Ryle, though we often hear that. Ryle said that Christ died for the sins of the whole world and that the atonement is sufficient for the sins of the whole world BUT the atonement is only EFFICIENT for the elect. That automatically puts the reprobate out of the atonement.

    Sloppy theology eventually leads to heresy. Reformed Anglicans should uphold the 1662 BCP and the 39 Articles of Religion alone. Any changes to those documents should be Reformed in nature. Any capitulation to Arminians, Amyraldians, pragmatism, or Anglo-Catholicism/Tractarianism is just asking for trouble.

    I think the 1662 BCP is fine just as it stands. However, my friend from Sydney complains that the he and the people don’t like King James English. I said, fine, so use a modern version of the 1662 from the Church Society or something?

    I must tell you that I absolutely hate the 1979 BCP. Honestly, I was a bit deceived about the compromises in the 1928 BCP as well. I’m learning from my rector about some of those differences. I’ve also learned quite a bit from Robin’s articles on the compromises/changes in the prayer book. I’m still learning. I haven’t arrived.

    My only objection to the Sydney approach is they sometimes throw out the Prayer Book altogether. This is like throwing out the baby with the bathwater. I must say that I liked the language in the REC prayer book. It is mostly based on the 1662 BCP but I later learned that the REC book incorporates some elements of the 1928 book and has alternatives readings from the 1928. This is why I use only the 1662 BCP in my personal devotions and studies now.

    When the rector is reading the 1979 book I follow along in the 1662 just to see how great the differences are. Small omissions here and there in Rite One and then major differences at the reading of the service for the elements. And the catechism in the 79 book is openly pelagian and liberal. I cannot see how anyone being taught from that catechism could be called a Christian in any sense of the word.

    Personally, I have to agree with the Samuel Leuenberger book, Cranmer’s Immortal Bequest. We should use the 1662 BCP and we ought to preach it with evangelistic fervor and read the services with conviction. My own rector rushes through the readings as if he is in a hurry to get it over. Of course, part of the reason for that is it’s the 79 book.

    However, I personally preferred the more liturgical approach. The genius of Cranmer was that he and the other reformers contributing to the 1552/1662 BCP was that he incorporated the Protestant faith into the liturgy so that people learned the law and Gospel by rote through the services! I understand that we also need a “true and lively faith.” However, just as I learned the Lord’s Prayer in public school, seeds are planted which lead the people in the direction of a true and lively faith.

    Now here is where I’m going to be controversial. I believe in sound expository preaching. Expositional preaching. But I must say that I disagree with the typical Reformed response that preaching doesn’t have to be interesting or powerful as long as you are preaching expository sermons. I have enough Baptist and Pentecostal left in me to say that this is just an excuse for poor preaching. Not only should preaching be expository and precise BUT good preaching should ENGAGE the listeners and CHALLENGE them to BELIEVE the Gospel and to UNDERSTAND the Bible.

    Anyone who is just talking over or past the people is wasting both their time and his own time. I believe every minister should be a modern day Chrysostrom. Our preaching should never be shallow or dry. It should teach, inform, and persuade. Of course, good orators are not necessarily orthodox. But the fact is the men who made the greatest difference in the church were BOTH expository preachers AND GREAT orators who knew how to effectively convey the truth AND persuade people with the truth. Men like Charles Spurgeon, George Whitefield, Martin Lloyd-Jones, Howard Eddington, etc.

    The days of ordaining wimpy preachers should be over. I believe every preacher ought to aspire to excellence in preaching and not just go through the motions. We can become as dry and ritualistic as any Catholic if that is the case. Pentecostals likewise become dry and ritualistic and shallow. I can go to a Pentecostal/charismatic church and be bored to tears because it is RITUAL. I can tell you when they will speak in tongues; when the music will reach a crescendo; when there will be a message in tongues and an interpretation; when there will be an “altar” call. It is so predictable. It is so obvious that it comes from Finneyism.

    Really, the 1662 BCP has so much potential IF it were rightly used, read with authority and sincerity. And if you combine that with excellent preaching of God’s word, authoritative preaching of the law and the Gospel, you have something! This is the kind of church I would LOVE to see.

    Since I don’t have my own church, I’m doing what I can to reform the one I’m a part of. But I’ve decided to have courage. I will do everything I can to persuade people of the truth. And since I’ve done my share of street preaching and prison ministry I’ve learned to be bold in what I say.

    My rector, for example, started pushing that Amyraldian junk at several of his Bible studies. He was openly testing me on that. At first I didn’t say much. But then I realized God put me there for a purpose. SO I openly rebuked him in front of the senior warden and whoever else was there. I even told him that he isn’t a 4 point Calvinist. He’s a one point Arminian!

    And I also started correcting his theological gaffs in other areas as well. I think it has pushed him to be better prepared in his Bible studies. No one likes to have their sermons critiqued. However, when he makes remarks that sound more like moralism than law and Gospel, I confront him later. I call him on the phone and say, “What did you mean by that?” His typical response is, “I’m dumbing it down so they can understand.” I then say, “WHY?” The REASON they don’t understand is YOU HAVE NOT DONE YOUR JOB! TEACH them!

    Ok, enough preaching for today. You get my drift. I guess I’ve just had enough of churches where the ministers are in an ivory tower. For the first time I’m on a friendly basis with the minister and have an opportunity to influence him in the right direction. I know confrontation isn’t always pleasant. But sometimes it is necessary. Sometimes we just have to have the courage to speak the truth in love.

    In the end, I think they will appreciate it and realize that the Gospel is worth standing for.

    As you can see, at the conference question and answer, I did not hesitate to challenge Dr. Packer indirectly. I also e-mailed Dr. Peter Turnbull and Dr. Frank James of RTS and told them they were compromising the doctrine of justification by faith alone because they did not say “alone.” There is a world of difference between the doctrine of justification by faith and the doctrine of justification by faith ALONE. Sola fide!

    Soli Deo Gloria…

    Charlie

  56. That should have been Dr. Richard Turnbull of Wycliffe Hall.

  57. Charlie:

    Much encouraged by your courage and postings. Encouraged too that Dr. Richard Turnbull corrected the record re: the XXXIX Articles with respect to Packer’s unacceptable and poor performance.

    Glad to hear Philip Jensen is a five-point Calvinist, to wit, an Anglican who even understands that as an issue. Imagine Virtue running articles on that?

    I have a good article on the 28 BCP from C o E cont Bishop. I know he views the AC-serpentine behaviours pre-1928 with small regard. I can email you that if you post your address here. Mine is reformationtoday@yahoo.com.

    Beloved brothers, let us out-read, out-think, out-write them, out-preach, out-present them. Gal.6.1ff…may we be gentle, peradventure we fall. 2 Tim.2.24ff, let us instruct, peradventure, God may lead some to repentance. Yet, with boldness and gentleness, with Athanasius of old, overwhelmed by Arians and semi-Arians throughout the Empire, let us hold forth!

    Charles, you are a source of encouragement.

    Back to reading.

    Phil

  58. Hi, Phil….

    My e-mail address is cranmer1959@gmail.com.

    I find it encouraging that there are actually former REC folks like you around. There is one fellow here in Orlando I met through Jim Reber but I don’t remember his name. He didn’t agree with the APA concordat or merger either. He’s an older fellow who has been with the REC for most of his life and is an ordained presbyter.

    I’m a bit suspicious of the Anglican Orthodox Church and the TPEC/PECUSA. the AOC does not have anything on their website that specifies exactly where they stand on the interpretation of the 39 Articles or on the Arminian versus Calvinist view. The latter has a new video advertising their church. You should go to their website and view that. See what you think.

    Sincerely in Christ,

    Charlie

  59. Hmm. Apparently the TPEC has had to remove their other site where they called themselves the Protestant Episcopal Church USA. That’s still the title used by The Episcopal Church. Anyway, the TPEC had a video on their forwarding site where they were all dressed in Anglo-Catholic looking ministerial vestments. Delbert Murray was wearing a purple and collar with a cross and chain in his shirt pocket.

    I suspect the “other” Episcopal Church made them remove it again. Murray, I hear, keeps pushing this name change from TPEC to PECUSA. This is deliberately confusing to say the least.

    Charlie

    • Charlie,

      Can you post a link for us to this video. I have not been able to find it.

      On a number of its fundamental documents The Episcopal Church is still the Protestant Episcopal Church USA and the General Convention has never changed those documents due to the legal problems that it might create. The Episcopal Church is only the alternative name of the Protestant Episcopal Church USA. The PECUSA is within its legal rights to challenge in court the use of the name “The Protestant Episcopal Church USA” by any other church body.

      There is really no point to trying to appropriate this name as it is not going to give the Traditional Protestant Episcopal Church any more legitimacy in the eyes of the public and it is certainly not going to attract new members to the TPEC. If I was establishing a new Anglican church body, especially one that was evangelical and Protestant in its principles, I would want to distance myself from The Episcopal Church in as many ways as possible. This includes not using one of its names or its last two Prayer Books. I would adopt a name like the “Reformed Church of England, North American Synod.” I like the “Reformed Church of England in North America” but the last person who adopted that name for an Anglican church body was a lunatic. There is already a “Reformed Anglican Catholic Church” which is inclusive and pro-gay, if not gay.

      Robin

  60. Charlie,
    The TPEC/PECUSA’s two websites that I know of are still on the web.
    http://www.reformer.org
    http://www.pecusa.us
    The introduction is still in tact with Charles, Del and all.
    I don’t know what direction the TPEC is going in. It tolerates an armininian, the churches have the appearance of anglo-catholicism though the leadership profess protestanism and reformed theology. I still don’t know why they have flags in the churches and turn to them when they sing “Our fathers’ God to thee.” It’s kind of a mixed bag, in all probability if it doesn’t make a concerted and definite determination to become completely reformed, it will slide down the slippery slope of anglo-catholicism or liberalism. It cannot remain static.
    I’m still distraught over the direction of the REC under the false shepherds that have crept in. Why the congregations haven’t all revolted, I’ll never know. But as my advice to Phil is and will always remain, we must do what we can and as God gives us opportunity. It is not enough to just compalin and lament the destruction. We are called to preach the Gospel and make disciples not just sit around reading.

    • Joe,

      A member of a former church of mine attended an Episcopal church in South Carolina that had a similar practice. The people’s “alms and oblations” were not only escorted to the Holy Table by acolytes with torches and proceeded by an acolyte with a processional cross, it was flanked by ushers carrying American flags. This exercise was patriotic rather than religious. All this ceremonial gave a Pelagian cast to the offertory especially the actions of the minister, who upon receiving the alms basin, wave-offered it before the Holy Table with his back turned to the congregation, holding the basin high above his head. The inclusion of the flags in the procession not only gave a triumphalistic air to the offertory but suggested that the real object of the congregation’s devotions was the flag. Remember before the 1662 Book of Common Prayer there was no offertory in Anglican services. In the 1552 Communion Service the churchwardens and the sidesmen gathered the people’s alms and deposited them in the poor man’s box. The minister is not directed to present and place the alms basin on the Holy Table until the High Church liturgy of the 1637 Scottish Prayer Book, the infamous Laudian liturgy.

      Robin

  61. Robin,

    Good point. Maybe the offertory should be dismissedd with to preclude this sort of nonsense. It would also be more in keeping the the teaching of Jesus on giving.

    Joe

    • Joe,

      Hope Church, a Southern Baptist new church plant with which I sojourned for about two years, dispensed with the collection of offering. Hope Church had a basket on a table at the back of the worship area in which members and regular attendees left their offering envelopes and checks but no offering was collected during the service. One of the common complaints one hears from the unchurched is that churches are only interested in money and collecting an offering tends to suggest that this is indeed the case. Consequently a number of churches have done away with the collection of an offering during the service on Sunday morning. Hope Church is one of them. On the other hand, one hears the view that the collection and presentation of the offering is a part of the worship. I lean toward dispensing with the collection of an offering because it is emphasizes what we are doing for God instead of what God has done for us. The offertory is also one of those places in the service that tends to attract all kinds of clutter in form of redundant or superfluous ceremonial and devotions.

      If an offering is collected and presented it should be done unobtrusively and without fanfare. If the offering is placed on the communion table, it should not be left there during the Prayer of Consecration since doing so suggests that the Holy Communion is a sacrifice. The only things that should be on the communion table should be the bread and the bread platter or other container, the common cup or chalice, a wine flagon, the Prayer Book, and a small pillow or unobtrusive stand for the Prayer Book. My preference is the small pillow. It may be the same color as the covering of the communion table over which is laid the “fair white linen” for the Holy Communion. In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries in the Church of England the color of this covering was usually red. There should be nothing else on the communion table, no candlesticks, candles, crosses, hymnbooks, or anything else. The communion table should be placed in the body of the church for the Holy Communion so that the people can hear the minister’s words and observe the manual acts. The minister should stand at the north end of the table. When the Holy Communion is administered in a private house or a building or a part of a building not a church or in the open air, the table should be placed close to the congregation. While a portable wooden table is desirable for the Holy Communion when it is administered in a church, a folding table with a laminated or composite wood top or plastic top is acceptable for the Holy Communion when it is not administered in a church or when it is administered in a church of another denomination that does not have a communion table or the communion table of which too closely resembles an altar.

      A gold or silver common cup or chalice is not necessary. Pewter, ceramic, or glass works just as well. As far as the receptacle for the wine, a flagon or small jug is preferable to a cruet. The bread should look like bread and the wine like wine. The Holy Communion is a visual presentation of the Gospel. I do not see how this can be done with pasty white wafer bread and pale sacramental wine. But I am off topic.

      Robin

  62. I was going to post the link to their new website along with the video but it apparently disappeared. I have a feeling the TPEC was pressured by the TEC to remove the new name and the website because it violated their right to the name.

    I could be wrong.

    Charlie

  63. Robin,

    You have described exactly what the English reformers intended. That is before Laud. The services of the Church should be about the worship of God and not man. It should be priase to Him for when He has done and not about what man attempts to do good. Thing have gotten out of hand. In many churches man is really the center. It has a lot of entertainment features, sometime lik a talent show. The Reformer want to do all things that would please God according to what He has determined. The Old Testament must have weighted very heavily on their minds and yet they were every bit New Testament churchmen. It was God’s righteousness and not man’s righteousness. They undertstood the meaning of grace, an unmerited grace, undeserved and totally from God. There was no work righteousness here and the Prayer Book and its rubrics reflected this great truth. All the churches need to purge themselves of the tradition that they have developed over these many centuries.

  64. Charlie,

    http://www.pecusa.us. At the moment it’s just a page holder. If you want the video, http://www.ResurrectionPEC.org. I’ve been out of town so I haven’t had a chance to put the updated video online sans Bp. Murray. It will be there soon. Once I have the new website up and operating it will have lots of informational videos and audio downloads. As to TEC/PECUSA and them complaining about the use of the name. Never happened. If they have a problem, they can sue me… They lost the last time they tried… The legal registered name differs slightly, so it’s moot. If you still have a concern, go to the resurrection website and call me, my number is listed. I will be glad to speak with you.

    Joseph, haven’t heard from you in a while. Missed you at synod. I rarely get to these blog’s. Too busy building a church. Next time I’m in your area maybe I can drop by your church see how things are going with you and your congregation. Lunch is on me… How was Asheville? Cold this time of year I’ll bet.

    Phil, good to see your still on your game. I miss your missives.. Finished the Parker Set as you recommended. Great read, took me 14 months. Tough to find… Doing a little Goode re-read “Protestant Truth”, Needed something light.

    Gents, In the words of J.C. Ryle

    But I repeat emphatically, we must be true to our old principles—the principles revived by Henry Venn, Romaine, Berridge, and Grimshawe, kept alive by Newton, Scott, Milner, and Cecil, handed down to us by Simeon, Daniel Wilson, Legh Richmond, and Bickersteth, kind and courteous to everybody, but stiff as steel in our adhesion to the old lines. We must steadily refuse to exalt things indifferent and secondary to the same level with the primary verities and weightier matters of the Gospel. We must beware of trimming, compromising,
    and conceding, under the vain hope of conciliating our rivals and catching them by guile, or keeping our young people from adopting what we disapprove. It is wretched policy to try to out-manoeuvre our opponents by borrowing their uniform and imitating their drill. It is a policy which gains over no enemy and disgusts many friends. Saul’s amour will not fit David. It is useless to go down to Egypt for chariots and horses. We cannot do better than stick to our sling and stones—the Word of God and prayer. We cannot improve on our old
    principles; then let us not lightly forsake them. We cannot make them popular; they never were and never will be. Let us put up with unpopularity if conscience tells us that Christ and
    truth are on our side.

    • Ian,

      Just a quick question. If you subscribe to evangelical and Protestant principles, why do you use a service book that embodies unreformed Catholic and incipient liberal principles, namely the 1928 Book of Common Prayer. Why do you want to cling to the name of a theologically bankrupt church body? Even before the Protestant Episcopal Church adopted its alternate name of the Episcopal Church of the USA and then The Episcopal Church, it was no longer a Protestant and Reformed Church. It abandoned its Protestant and Reformed heritage in the nineteenth century.

      Robin

  65. Good to hear the replies here. By all means, pursue the inquiry here. I throw this out. Was asked by the (well) someone well placed in the RES to coordinate a discussion forum, to wit, “Free Reformed Episcopal Seminary” site for students. Mr. Riches Junior had me removed, although had maintained—I believe–good decorum. In fact, enjoyed the good give and take along with book recommendations, etc. But the reccomendations appear to have not met with Riches Junior’s approval. I was advised by few forum members and quiet emails as to the issue.

    However, may do some fishing and writing. No one appears to have raised their voices much over the comprising direction of the REC. At least I can offer some kind of networking this way. Good to hear from Ian, Joe, and Robin here.

    Dare we hope? In the name of the High Priest-King-Prophet at the right hand of God the Father Almighty.

    Phil

  66. I had an Anglo-Catholic Bishop–well-educated one too–lament REC’s “sellout.” While he disagrees with the old REC, at least he respected their lengthy integrity. The lust for respectability, methinks, and a certain Sir Walter Scott-istic flavour.

    Phil

  67. Robin,

    Let me be blunt, And I say this with all brotherly love… I owe you no explanations. My churchmanship is none of your business. I am not a member of what ever group you belong to nor you to mine. All of this “my prayerbook can beatup your prayerbook” is vanity, and chasing after the wind. Use whatever prayerbook you think Jesus would approve off and the one that makes you happy.

    If you think for one moment those of us who use the 1928 think it to be handed down from heaven or it was secretly valadated by the pope then you have erred. If you don’t like the way the TPEC/PEC worships of governs itself then quit (if you are a member) or don’t join it. No hard feelings.

    I have no problem with stating 5 point Calvanism is a valid expression of the faith. I am not foolish enough to belive it’s the only one. I think you’ll find we believe much the same things about the God we serve. Using the 1928 BCP isn’t a hell worthy trespass.

    TPEC/PEC isn’t apostate. Are you kidding me, we are complaining about a prayerbook that maintains a valid history and line with every one ever written and used (save the 1979) or what end of the table we stand next to… I would venture a guess that some of you would have no idea what end of the table North is…

    The TPEC/PEC isn’t ordaining chickens or baptising ducks or any other oddity valid in the TEC… No one is parading around in pointy hats or kissing rings, or genuflecting. I was at Synod last week. Despite our bumps and bruises , and yes gents, you have them too… it was about the gospel. Prayerbooks be damed… You know I would venture a guess that if you hang up a sign “1662 BCP used here” no one would have a clue or care. It’s your responsibilty to teach them the way that they should go. Not some prayerbooks… It’s a tool boys, not the gospel.

    You know the BCP argruments as well as I do Robin so let’s not waste each others time. It’s old and tiresome. I does nothing to bring men to the saving knowledge of our creator.

    What really has me bothered about this “Blog” is to label a man who has done nothing but try and follow Christ and further His kingdom a heretic because he does not use the 1662 or whatever praybook du jour is in favor with this crowd is disgusting.

    Some of these “writtings” remind me of the Eunic at a Roman Orgy. When it comes to classical anglicanism. You see it, you talk about it. But you can’t really do it yourselves… Go build a church, help build a church but stop bitching about it…

    TPEC/PEC is doing fine and is alive and well. Like it or not that was the inquiry from Charles. If you gents have a problem with the name, or think it’s too close in identity to TEC, noted… Frankly guys, I don’t care. If you want a voice. Join the church. Otherwise, back off. None of us are bothering you.

    Robin, if you want to talk with me, call me… Are we such a threat that folks have to hide behind a computer screen and throw flaming arrows… I am always looking for friends and brothers. If you want to agree to disagree and get on with serving God then I am your best friend. I will defend to the death your right to believe whatever you like and use whatever prayerbook best suits you. If not, God Bless…

    But never ever I will I ever use a format such as this to malign the work of good men… Shame on some of you, and you know who you are. Shame on you…

    I don’t know why have been complaining about womens ordinations… After reading some of your comments it appears we have been ordaining Old Women for years…

    If you want to talk, have the manhood to dial a phone. Get to know someone first before you crucify them. My number is on the ResurrectionPEC website.

    • Ian,

      I must wonder why you are so defensive about your particular church. Did I touch a nerve? I prefer public conversations on the Internet to private one on the telephone. The issue is not a question of “manhood.” Indeed questioning someone’s virility is an old strategem, one might expect to hear in a bar. However, I am surprised to hear such an assertion from someone who is a minister of the Gospel. The real issue is one of accountability. On public forums individuals can be held to account for what they say. This is not the case in private telephone conversations. If you want to join the conversation here on the Heritage Anglican Network and explain your church’s position on the questions I raised, you are welcome. But any discussion of those issues must in my opinion be a public one, to which the posters on this blog are party, not a private conversation in which things can be said that are denied later or what was said can be misinterpreted to others who were not party to that conversation. Personally I think that it takes more “hutzbah” to share one’s views in a public forum than in a private conversation. As far as asserting that I am hiding behind the anonymity of the Internet, may I suggest that is a dodge. What I suspect is really at issue is that your own concern that you might make public statements that you may later regret. As a public spokesman of your church, that is a reasonable concern. On the other hand, a carefully articulated explanation of why your church takes its particular positions would shed some light on the subject.

      Robin

  68. Whoa! I take it that Canonian is Ian. I think there is perhaps an over-reaction here, Ian?

    First, I have profitted from Robin’s inquiries on the 1662 BCP. I hope the forum continues its thoughts along these lines. Of course, this is not a condemnation of TPEC-men. I noted some criticisms, but no wholesale despatch or comdemnation? I didn’t take Robin’s comments as questioning your Churchmanship or attempting to do a “holier than thou prayer book” attitude. He has a different view than you. OK, that’s that. He’s been far too thoughtful. I don’t think anyone has labelled TPEC as heretical? At least I hope not. That’s why I say “Whoa!”

    Second, if one followed your line of thinking, then inquiry would stop, to wit, “I have a church–you don’t–all this Anglican talk is vanity…otherwise stop.” Ian, there was a reaction here that was a bit much? A little too defensive? The practical suggestion is that analysis should stop unless you’re building a church. I suspect you don’t believe that. However, that has been implied by a few in TPEC and that is a fact. THAT I will never, ever support. I don’t think TPEC supports non-inquiry of issues.

    Third, there has been a larger set of questions here beyond TPEC. Robin has appeared to be casting about more widely. ACNA? AMiA? Mere networking? What? I’ve been a resident cynic–not condemnatory of the questions–but fostering them, hopefully. “Dare we hope?”

    Fourth, you have my support in this respect, that you are doing something about it. Building a church. Criticism is cheap and easy. Build a church and show some results. But where’s the leadership on the larger front, nationally? I think this is where Robin is asking his questions. In public visibility? We’ve noted that and other questions before. TPEC at least, as has AOC, attempted and attempts to do something. God bless Himself in their midst and may their tribe be strengthened. And there are some good men among them…the ones I’ve known, especially Geoff Hubler. Top drawer.

    Fifth, glad you express your points so vigourously. The points and questions you raised are to be noted and addressed. So, let the points be disentangled and answered. Manly men aren’t afraid of tough questions and inquiries. We have such here from Ian.

    Sixth, our Prayer Book invites us to self-examination and self-analysis, including ecclesiastical matters. We shouldn’t fear reforming the Book of Common Prayer. Indeed, it is not infallible. Ergo, I can’t be TPEC since the 1928 BCP is required (yet with appreciation of the antecedents). I would support a revision of the BCP, including modern language. I don’t think TPEC feels the same way. That’s OK, which is why I’m not TPEC.

  69. canonian, the prayer book your church uses for worship is important. The liturgy used to worship instructs people in theological matters and if the liturgy is downplaying God’s law and God’s wrath against sinners, then the seeds are there for compromise. Also, the 1928 BCP has been clearly revealed as Anglo-Catholic and has watered down the service by removing the penitential sentences, etc., etc.

    The fact that virtually no genuinely Reformed Anglicans exist anymore is no reason to compromise with prayer books that lead back in the direction of “tolerance” and other such attempts to water down the law and the Gospel. Arminianism is not much better than Anglo-Catholicism but at least it does teach justification by faith alone.

    In Christ,

    Charlie

  70. That’s an excellent question, Robin.

  71. By the way, much encouraged and impressed that Ian has read the English Reformers in the Parker Society series, 54 volumes. Awesome!

    Now that’s some leadership, I tell ya! And this is a TPEC clergyman!

    Can that be said more widely in AMiA, CANA, or ACNA circles? WOW!

    Love it.

    Phil

  72. Ian,
    you said,
    “What really has me bothered about this “Blog” is to label a man who has done nothing but try and follow Christ and further His kingdom a heretic because he does not use the 1662 or whatever praybook du jour is in favor with this crowd is disgusting.”

    Who has labeled Charles a heretic? It has come to my ear that I have done so. Please show me where I have labeled Charles a heretic.

    I wrote this,
    “I don’t know what direction the TPEC is going in. It tolerates an armininian, the churches have the appearance of anglo-catholicism though the leadership profess protestanism and reformed theology. I still don’t know why they have flags in the churches and turn to them when they sing “Our fathers’ God to thee.” It’s kind of a mixed bag, in all probability if it doesn’t make a concerted and definite determination to become completely reformed, it will slide down the slippery slope of anglo-catholicism or liberalism. It cannot remain static.”

    and I stand by it. But in no way does it call Charles or anybody a heretic. It is a prediction based on past experience. Keep doing the same old same old and do you really expect a different result. It is simply this get rid of all bad theology and liturgies and ceremonies and ornaments and practices, discipline those who bring in the strange fire and strange doctrines or they will infect you. They will lead you down the same bath that Jeroboam led Israel. An anglo-catholic walking into Charles’s church will see things there that he will interpret as anglo-catholic and he will tell others that that is what it means. That thing sticking against the wall is no table; it’s an altar. And I bet that you call it an altar. And even the 1928 BCP says that in it place is to be a TABLE. But then I guess that as some in the TPEC say, the rubrics are just suggestions.
    Defend Charles but don’t LIE about it. No one called Charles a heretic, just that he tolerated bad practices. Sorry that you are touchy about the 1928 BCP, it isn’t the Bible you know so criticism of it is fair and discussion of it should not be shut down as Charles has done in the past. Don’t take up that paranoia. It is an anglo-catholic document produced by and Episcopal Church who was dominated by anglo-catholics and progressives (liberals). It shows it. Charles says that the Irish Prayer Book of 1926 is the best. I have checked it over and it is pretty good. Let’s adopt it in place of American 1928, he has the power and influence. Let’s adopt the practices of the Irish Church that Charles seems to think so highly of. I’ll support him in this.
    By the way can you distinguish between the north and south end of the table when it is pulled out from the wall and turned 90 degrees? Don’t be trite with us, it’s not necessary. But I’m sure you will have disagreements with us, but no one here will shut down your discussions. You may laud the 1928 and point out the faults in the 1662. That would be good. But this is a fact Charles shut down every discussion on the 1928 BCP. I’m sure he doesn’t want anyone outside the TPEC to know that he did that. But then he shouldn’t do anything that he is ashamed of. I’m here discussing the Prayer Book because Charles won’t let me discuss it within the TPEC. But then he told me in an e-mail that he did not inhibit discussion of the Prayer Book. Lapse of memory I guess.

  73. I think the forum has raised good points about Ian’s post.

    Having said that, however, there remain within those few posts some excellent points and some commended authors that he noted. Excellent authors to be pursued. And those books are available through books.google.search for those with time, calling, interest and need.

    Also, it is clear to me that TPEC was not being denigrated and most certainly not as a heretic. Horrors! However, discussion is fair game, if charitable and with a view to moving forward.

    Joe, was unaware that Charles closed discussion on the BCP. He stated he would allow use of the 1873 if desired. But practically, I suspect there was fear of allowing dissension or unbrotherly discord, a laudable impulse although perhaps an expression of fear? In Charles’s defense, he has been a godly churchman and servant of Christ who does embrace Reformed theology, has established a Protestant witness (see the bibliography at http://www.reformer.org), and separated from the Anglo-Catholics with whom he was largely associated through the post-1977 movement. I appreciate Ian’s defense of him. Yet, Joe’s observations about certain practices merit quiet and thoughtful discussion.

    And with Robin, I share the view that writing offers accountability rather than phonecalls.

    My view? Let the reading, thinking, discussing and networking continue. I’m all ears.

    Working through Preserved Smith’s Life and Letters of Luther today and hope to finish it.

    As an aside, I visited Ian Anderson’s website per the above. I note that he and Rev. Castrillo identify themselves as “Father.” Now that I thought TPEC opposed? Charles did AVER that, liturgically, TPEC would “never go higher.” But then, the old REC professors affirmed that and warned of it as a “danger” and “temptation” that Anglicans have always faced. We were warned to avoid it and stick with the Gospel. Mr. Riches Senior, their senior presbyter, primes inter pares, changed all that and throughout the REC, their clergy are called “Father.”

  74. Brethren,

    My blogging career is over… Let me make it easy… 904-540-4843…

    Tough to do isn’t it… Robin, I enjoy a good single malt in an old dusty pub. Epecially one that is loud and full of laughter and bagpipes. I do both. I am an old scotsman. And I am not delicate in speech or manner. Now I am more than happy to buy the first round.

    Didn’t mean to offend anyone’s delicate sense of decorum. Do Calvanists have a sense of humor? For clarification, that’s a joke.

    Ryle said something particularly telling. Footnote to page 18, Knots Untied. “If anyone supposes that I want to narrow the pale of the Church of England to one party, he is totally mistaken. I am quite aware that my church is eminately liberal, truly comprehensive, and tolerant of a wide differences of opinion. But I deny that the Church ever meant its members to be downright Papists.”

    Bp. Ryle goes on to talk about the room allowed for the views of Ridley, Hooker and the like. He denounces the practise of Real presence,(transubstantiation) the sacrifice of the Clergy and auricular confession. Then he says something very telling about the church of his day, and sadly lacking in the remnant we call the “continuing church”. “Between the old High churchman and the ritualists I draw a broad line of distinction. With all his faults and mistakes, in my judgement, the old High Churchman is a true Churchman, and is thoroughly and heartily opposed to Popery. The Ritualists on the other hand, scorn the very name of Protestant; and if words mean anything, are so like Roman catholics, that a plain man can see no difference between their tenents and those of Rome.

    You guys see popes in every corner. Ever been to a big baptist church. They have more decorations than the Cistine Chapel. have any of you considered how dangerous this “New Province” Dr. Toon wants us all to make “Fraternal Overtures” to… Yes I am mad as hell that good men waste time wringing hands over prayerbooks and what title some clergyman uses or what end of the Holy Table we should celebrate from, when the “New Province” is emerging right under your nose. to.

    Lastly. Yes, someone who writes on this blog called +Charles a heretic. It stops, or we fail… All of us.

    My churchmanship isn’t popish. Neither is yours. Neither is Charles. Joe more than anyone, you need to call me or give me your number and I will call you. reverendanderson@aol.com

    Blogging is done… wasted enough time already…

  75. I have not seen anyone call me a heretic. I am a “confessional” Evanelical who adheres to the 39 Articles as my primary “confession” of faith. I also believe the Lambeth Articles and the Irish Articles as supplementary statements. And James I. Packer has said that the Westminster Standards are a fuller statement of the 39 Articles.

    Anyway, I hardly think being a 5 point Calvinist makes me a heretic.

    In Christ,

    Charlie

  76. From the video I saw, the TPEC is already looking “high church.” Purple shirts? Father?

    Really, the temptation is easy to fall into. Wearing the vestments and all that makes one feel important. However, the reality is that every Christian is a prophet, priest and king. Wearing the clerical collar really says nothing.

    The bottomline is the Bible is the final word on every matter. I’m not happy with the TPEC for personal reasons which I won’t state here.

    A truly “Reformed” Anglican denomination would never endorse the church growth movement or Arminianism. Reformed means Protestant and Calvinist. I.E. 5 point Calvinist. Why in the world would I want to join with those who oppose what I believe????

    The fact of the matter is that the episcopal polity is a dismal failure. Becoming a member of any denomination is no guarantee of orthodoxy. I’m beginning to wonder if congregationalism isn’t a better way to go. At least then the pastor is free to preach the unadulterated Gospel without criticism from incipient liberals.

    Charlie

  77. Not talking about you Charlie… Bishop Charles Morley, Presiding Bishop TPEC…

    Phil. I got dropped off your bang list a while back. I would like to be put back on if it’s OK with you…

    reverendanderson@aol.com

  78. Ian, have started an email-discussion list at FreeREC-RECStudentsAlumChurchmen-subscribe@yahoogroups.com.

    If we get some old REC-ers there, there is going to being some “banging” there…but polite, Christian, exploratory and, for some, we hope healing…given the abusiveness evinced by some REC leaders. I have some acquired skills in dealing with abusive people and it doesn’t take long to get rid of them.

    As to TPEC, it’s raised questions here. Those are worth exploring in the same spirit noted above. Thus far, I believe questions–legtimate ones–have been raised. Unfortunately, you are withdrawing.

    Ergo, the TEPC voice goes away with your departure. Regrettably, TPEC thus far has not had much of a voice anywhere.

    In fact, given your new, enlarged accusations in the last post, to wit, we see Popery everywhere, take it elsewhere Ian. That’s reckless and irresponsible. If your spirit continues here like this, expect a fellow Scotsma to start doing some banging. And Robin will need to intervene.

    I hope this is your final blog here if this is the spirit with which you conduct yourself and with which you represent TPEC, as its Director of Communications.

  79. Dare we hope? Quite an audacious question by Robin that has engendered, thus far, collegial inquiry.

    However, the TPEC-matter has arisen over the last week. The posts have caused me to do some hunting around.

    I got an offline email this week from a non-TPEC clergyman and friend that TPEC Bishop Del Murray resigned as a Bishop. I did some poking around. http://www.reformer.org was an offical TPEC website and http://www.pecusa.us that has a new look.

    I notice that Dr. Geoff Hubler’s name has disappeared from the first website. On that one, friends, there will be a phone call. Geoff is a former REC clergyman, an highly successful one. He left the REC and joined TPEC. We were classmates at RES and both of the 1987 class of graduates. He has a PhD from Oxford. Runs a very, very successful classical Christian Academy in Appommatox, VA. Also, a current Rector of Christ Anglican Church. He’s, for me, the ideal of a Rector. And yes, Protestant, Calvinistic, Reformed, Confessional, Evangelical and Anglican. And yes, highly respected in the wider
    Appommattox community, mayor, businessmen and among others. As a friend, Geoff will be getting a call.

    But he disappeared from the TPEC website?

    Dare we hope? Some of these changes are disconcerting. Is it unravelling? I hope not.

    And yes, this is fair game for inquiry and Christian concern and compassion.

  80. Phil,

    Ok my friend. Color me gone. Hard to communicate when no one is listening. I wish you all the best God has to offer. Rest assured of my continued prayers for you all… My number is still up there. I don’t bite… Much… Oh and Robin, I carried a 1928 BCP Hymnal Combo with me everywhere I went in the military. It was given to me by Bp. Rivera before I left home for the first time. It was recovered 4 times, I grew up with it. Carried it through seminary, even when I had to hide it from my liturgics prof. It was stolen in 1996 at my last cure. Taken right out of my office. I was heart broken. For me,
    it’s the best expression of orthodox american anglicanism available. I have no problem with the 1662. It’s a fine BCP, just not american… I may be a second generation scot. But I was born here.

    Semper Paratas. And Phil, Semper Fi
    As one who knows. Welcome home.

  81. Here’s a link to a great article–http://www.lectionarystudies.com/parish/anglican16.html

  82. Charlie,

    I am so surprised at your inconsistency. You speak out of both sides or your mouth. You fault me for having a praise band and therefore equate me with the seeker sensitive movement, but you Praise Archbishop Peter Jensen (on Thursday, February 12, 2009, you posted a video link on your blog, Look closely at the video and you will notice drums and electric guitars). I wonder what kind of music he plays at his church?

    You speak against wearing clerical collars, yet you proudly wore your clerical collar after you were defrocked.

    You criticize ECUSA, but you worship at one of their churches. You bash your pastor and brag about how you had to correct him during a Bible study. Sadly, this is the only person who gives you a chance to preach. I wonder if he reads this blog?

    You have taken inconsistency to a new level!!!

  83. Ian,

    You said, “What really has me bothered about this “Blog” is to label a man who has done nothing but try and follow Christ and further His kingdom a heretic because he does not use the 1662 or whatever praybook du jour is in favor with this crowd is disgusting. ”

    Now, Ian, this is an accusation. You have made it public. You said this blog has labeled Charles Morley a heretic. Now, you need to publically show that this statement is true. You cannot run and hide and say that this is a point to be discussed privately. From this blog it should be of no difficulty for you to prove your statement. If you cannot not, then you need to publically retract it. I think there is the Ninth Commandment to be reconned with here. It is not a Prayer Book issue but a Biblical one and a moral one. Don’t prove youself a son of Belial. If you are wrong be man enough to confess. God has stated clearly that He hates lying lips.

    Joe

  84. Jorge,
    Me gusta que leas este blog. ¿Cómo estás y tu familia? ¿Qué piensas del Libro de Oración Común 1662? ¿Has contrastado los libros de 1662 y 1928?
    Jose

  85. Jose (el Pintor),

    Que bueno oir de ti otra vez. Mi familia esta de lo mas bien, anticipando la llegada de mi segundo bebito. Como estan tu y tu familia? No he tenido oportunidad de estudiar el Libro de Oracion Comun de 1662, pero planeo hacerlo pronto. Tengo en mi posesion varios comentarios sobre este libro. Sabes de alguna pagina web que la tenga en espanol?

    Muchase Bendiciones.

    Jorge

    P.S.

    You will have to show me how to do the reverse question mark and exclamation point.

  86. George Findley,

    I have no wish to bring private disagreements into the public realm. However, you do not know me or what I’m doing.

    But to answer your two accusations let me say that I do not and have not worn a clerical collar after I learned that the REC defrocked me around 2003 for taking a stand against Anglo-Catholicism and for the Reformed/Evangelical faith.

    Secondly, I posted the Peter Jensen items because of what Jensen said. I do not necessarily endorse everything that goes on in the Sydney Diocese, including contemporary worship.

    The fact of the matter is that I confront whomever and whatever I see as unbiblical. That would include my own pastor who is off base on several matters. For one thing, he is a 4 point Calvinist and does not believe in particular atonement. For another, he doesn’t believe the sacraments were instituted by Christ and that they are merely human traditions read back into Scripture. I have confronted him on this in private and in my blog. Despite all this, however, we still have a good relationship and he has allowed me to preach several times.

    I support the 1662 Book of Common Prayer because it retains the Decalogue, the penitential sentences, and the exhortations before receiving the Lord’s Supper. I also support traditional worship because the traditional hymns, properly reviewed beforehand, teach traditional theology which people need to know. I did not grow up in a Christian family but I did visit churches where hymns were sung and the message of those hymns stuck with me. Modern contemporary music is simply atrocious and is merely repeating a mantra as if God were your girlfriend or boyfriend.

    I preach and teach the magisterial Protestant Reformation theology because I believe it is the teaching of the Bible and does not water things down for “seekers.” As Michael Horton has said, the Apostle Paul clearly says that the unregenerate sinner is not “seeking” God but running from Him as hard as he can. Making the service suit unbelievers and sinners does nothing except lead people away from God. The mature Christians are not being taught the meat of the Word and the “seekers” are more into their own needs than learning the Bible and obeying God.

    I’m sorry that you think I am somehow obligated to join a denomination which seems to be heading in the same direction as the REC, the AMiA, etc., who are not only not faithful to Scripture but have no clue what the English and the Continental Reformations were about. Sorry, but I will stand on God’s Word and my convictions rather than give in to the bullying of denominational allegiances.

    I have no idea where you got your information but it is wrong.

    Sincerely,

    Charlie

  87. Joe if I knew who it was I’d be on it… It was in an email and it was one of the folks that blog here… Charles won’t say who and I won’t press it. Buy the way Joe’s Morely is still your Bishop, TPEC is still your church… What no support for your Church and your Bishop??? My problem with you specifically since you won’t call is you give three cheers for the old 1662 and complain about the 1928. Well since you want it aired on the blog… It seemed OK when the Bishop ordained you… Now it isn’t? If you don’t support your church Joe then resign. No hard feelings. The great experiment here was this. I put my phone number out there and tried to get you folks mad enough to call me. Can’t do it. Then it becomes relational. A real person, not a screen and a keyboard.

    You need to call your Bishop Joe… You owe it to him and to your Brethren… That to hard to do. Mad enough to call me now???

    Do the right thing…

  88. Charlie,

    My information came directly from your posts and what you have told me. If it is wrong, then you should be more truthful. Your comments, “…you do not know me or what I’m doing.” Apply to you as well. When was the last time you visited a service in my church? There is a 9th commandment we are all accountable too (as stated above). I am also convicted to stand with God. That is why I pointed out the areas you are inconsistent.

    You mentioned the “bullying of denominational allegiances”. I am not the one who attends an ECUSA parish. By the way, ECUSA is notorious for bullying and suing churches that try to stand for the gospel and leave. I am glad you have chosen the hymns over the true gospel. I guess this is just another inconsistency in your life.

  89. Ian, why don’t you call Joe instead of making yourself look unchristian here? Your attitude certainly isn’t the biblical approach. You should call him in private and not air this publicly.

    Sincerely,

    Charlie

  90. George Finlay:

    I can prove that I have disagreed publicly with my pastor, David Knox, who is the son of David Broughton Knox. If you will examine these two links you can see that clearly. I have other links from months past where I have dealt with the Amyraldian or 4 point Calvinist view. You can do a search on my blog if you wish to see that. Here are the two links concerning the compromising of the two sacraments: http://reasonablechristian.blogspot.com/2009/02/david-broughton-knox-denies-sacrament.html#links

    and:

    http://reasonablechristian.blogspot.com/2009/02/what-is-sola-scriptura.html#links

    I might add that another reason I reject contemporary worship is that it comes from the pentecostal/charismatic movement and so does the church growth movement. Basically, all of those approaches are appropriations of the Charles Finney revivalistic method which is based more on pragmatism and pelagianism than Biblical approaches to evangelism and the Gospel

    Sincerely,

    Charlie

  91. If I had, I would…

  92. Unchristian, Charlie have your read some of your posts???

  93. George,

    I never told you that I wear a clerical collar. Since I left the REC I have not worn one and I may never wear a collar again just for the reason that it leads people to the wrong impression.

    I have nothing against collars per se. However, when you start to see Anglo-Catholic prayer books and paraphernalia it makes you suspicious about the motives of those utilizing the Anglo-Catholic symbols.

    I have consistently challenged the contemporary worship approach and the church growth movement in my blog. I have also consistently argued against the errors of Anglo-Catholicism.

    To me, however, it speaks volumes that the TPEC is willing to accept contemporary worship and utilize a program sponsored by Charles Colson as a “hook” to start new churches. Charles Colson signed the “Evangelicals and Catholics Together” statement. Perhaps I’m reading too much into it?

    Also, it seems from Ian’s comments that he is hostile to Reformed theology and is an Arminian. I could be wrong.

    But from the looks of things, the TPEC is not as committed to the English Reformation as it would at first appear. I hope and pray I’m wrong.

    BTW, I object to the AMiA for the same reason. In general it is a charismatic church and has overtly Anglo-Catholic vestments and theology in many respects.

    Sincerely,

    Charlie

  94. Charlie,

    You told me, you were asked to stop wearing the clerical collar at the APA Cathedral, after Trinity closed down.

    I ask again, how many times have you visited my church? On which visit did you decide we were seeker sensitive?

    As far as what Ian believes, he is more than capable of speaking for himself, and I think he even left you a number you can reach him at.

    If you recall our last conversation you quoted,

    KJV 2 Corinthians 6:17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,

    I think its time you took your own advice. You are worshipping in an “apostate church” and supporting a church that attacks and persecutes those who follow the gospel. Your very fond of quoting Paul. I think he would be appalled.

    What seeker sensitive material from Chuck Colson are you referring to? I think you are misinformed. We have done no such thing in my church.

    Are you aware that ECUSA uses the Rt Rev. Robinson and Presiding Bishop Schori as their hook?

    Let’s be consistent. The gospel demands it.

  95. George,

    If you only knew my pastor you would recant. haha. He’s NOT an ECUSA person. EVEN his e-mail address is “xpecusa@gmail.com”!!!

    I am NOT ECUSA nor will I EVER be ECUSA. I attend a local church which preaches the GOSPEL.

    It is incidental that it is ECUSA. Furthermore, none of the parish contributions to the Central Florida Diocese goes to the national office by the request of the local church and by agreement with Bishop Howe and the Central Florida Diocese.

    The fact of the matter is your own denomination is no better than the REC or ECUSA. The compromises are already visible and it won’t be long before you’re a full blown Anglo-Catholic denomination. 1928 BCP? Give me a break!

    BTW, WHY is your suffragan bishop so eager to look like ECUSA??? There is only ONE letter difference: PECUSA??? Why was the PECUSA site removed and what happend to the promotional video posted there???? I would LOVE for everyone here to see that one.

    Charlie

  96. Ian said:

    Joe if I knew who it was I’d be on it… It was in an email and it was one of the folks that blog here… Charles won’t say who and I won’t press it.
    —————-
    PV: Ian, you stated a few times that someone here called Charles an heretic. Some on this forum. Yet, in your last post, as cited above, you claim to not know who it was or is…or you’d be on it.

    How can you make the assertion that someone “on this blog called Charles an heretic,” yet you don’t know. I read your claims. Then, this?

    There are some 9th and 5th commandment violations going on in this forum. NOT FUNNY! IAN, ANSWER UP OR GET CALLED ON IT HERE! You need to stand down. This forum was calmly and quietly discussing things until you came.

  97. Charlie,

    Once again you are inconsistent. I will take the 1928 BCP over the 1979 BCP any day of the week. Which one does your church use? Do you realize the wonderful point you just made? “If you only knew my pastor you would recant. haha.” That is hilarious because I would venture to say you don’t know any of the people you tend to criticize. I think that is being inconsistent. If you think being in the TPEC will lead to Anglo-Catholicism, then I wonder what being in ECUSA will lead too (since they are so happy with alternative lifestyles). Do you still go by Guapoduck? :-)

  98. George,

    I told you that I was unaware that I had been defrocked until AFTER I visited the APA church. After that point in 2003 I NEVER wore a collar again. And since you have made it such a point of issue, I probably never will again. It leads people to the wrong impression.

    I admire the archbishop of Sydney. He’s an archbishop and YET he wears only suit and tie except when it is absolutely necessary.

    SECONDLY, the church I attend IS NOT APOSTATE. There IS a difference. The pastor teaches the Gospel. AND at some point the church plans to leave ECUSA. However, that is not possible at this point since it is only a small congregation.

    Your lack of charity is appalling, George. The fact that you became angry with me for deciding NOT to join TPEC speaks volumes. You just couldn’t let it go, could you?

    After the way you and Delbert Murray have acted toward me, I would never recommend TPEC to anyone. Murray e-mailed me several times claiming that TPEC is really the PECUSA and insisted that I not call ECUSA PECUSA. The fact of the matter is that just about everyone knows that TEC, ECUSA and PECUSA are in fact the same title for the LIBERAL denomination. Why is it so important to Delbert Murray that TPEC be known as PECUSA???? Do a Google Search and you will find that PECUSA is TEC and not TPEC.

    That was a red flag right away to me. He’s more interested in grandeur than the Gospel.

    The second red flag was that after I e-mailed Delbert Murray and said I was no longer interested in TPEC YOU called me in a fit of rage and anger and gave me a verbal lashing just as you are now doing here.

    Count me out. I won’t take that sort of abuse from anyone.

    At least my current pastor and I both agree that ECUSA is apostate AND despite our theological differences, we do get along. I cannot say the same for you. If you continue to treat people the way you have treated me in private and now in public, I can assure you that folks will not continue to put up with it.

    Sincerely,

    Charlie

  99. Joe, you claimed that an Arminian was tolerated in TPEC. You claimed it publicly, you own it publicly, as Robin has wisely noted. You need to resolve this with Charles privately prior to posting here, if you haven’t already. If it is true and TPEC allows that, to wit, an “anti-Calvinist,” you might want to reconsider the relationship with TPEC. If you remain TPEC, publicly make such a claim without internal resolution with TPEC, you expose yourself to violations of Matthew 18.15-20. In other words, resolve it within prior to entering the public domain.

    On the other hand, I am no longer with TPEC. Ergo, fair game to discuss. I know of one whose constant refrain within TPEC is against “Calvinists.” He needs to be counselled and, on my view, without correction invited to find another home.

    We need some Law and Gospel in this forum. There have been sins committed here and repentance is needed. If anyone needs me to sort through and offer comment–publicly–one on one, here–please advise. Thus far, I am not amused by the ugly tone that has been introduced in this forum.

  100. George, the 1928 is the 1979’s precursor and IS NO BETTER!

    Even the REC prayer book is better than the 1928!

    AND I’m pushing my pastor in the direction of the 1662. He wants to use a modern English version of it and that has been discussed in the vestry meetings.

    Again, you have no clue.

    AND you might note well that the Sydney Diocese most often uses no prayer book at all! I would say that is better than using the 1928 BCP!!!!

    the 1928 is pushed by the Prayer Book Society because the PBS is ANGLO-CATHOLIC!

    HELLO.

    And WHY was Delbert Murray wearing a PURPLE shirt and collar WITH the cross and chain in his pocket???? Isn’t that ANGLO-CATHOLIC????

    I was quite honestly “duped” by Jim Reber and his deacon, Kevin Burke, into wearing that junk because the church purchased it for me and I didn’t know better at the time. Since that time I have been talking about these issues with David Knox who has let me know much I did not know before about what these “vestments” represent.

    That was over 6 years ago. Hello?

    And you yourself told me that you are using contemporary music, George. And if you will recall, I let you know right up front in no uncertain terms that I did not and never will agree with such an approach. I suppose you’re going to say I did not tell you that in our first telephone conversation?

    I find it ridiculous that you have the audacity to attack me publicly when I have kept private matters private. However, now that you’re showing your true colors, I will not hesitate to say and write exactly what I think of the TPEC.

    Arminianism and the 39 Articles are incompatible for one. The 39 Articles are a calvinistic statement of faith and not Arminian at all.

    Sincerely,

    Charlie

  101. Charlie:

    In my experience, Murray liked PECUSA over TPEC early on, without synodical discussion, ratification, or inquiry. I can only surmise as to the reasons, but he can answer for himself. I suspect he preferred the historic connection from 1789 onwards. He’s welcome here to counter the surmisal or answer for himself. Your claim above about Murray, interest of “grandeur” on Del’s part is uncharitable, reactionary, and borders on the violation of the ninth commandment. You need to stand down on that point. As to the name-change, that spirit was never evident that you assert.

    I think this entire discussion, in fact, raises lawful, curious, interesting, fair, just and necessary inquiry about the TPEC. It’s representation here has not been impressive; that needs to be discussed.

    Since the original question was, “Dare We Hope?” Thus far, if this blog were visited by outsiders, reading what has been posted here re: TPEC, the answer to the question on TPEC would be negative.

    Perhaps Charles Morley or Del Murray would come, discuss their church, and these issues. I would love to see it. I maintain my earlier posts re: Morley. He is a godly Churchman and servant of Christ. Murray is as well.

  102. George, is it a sin to use the nick, “GuapoDuck” or “PogiDuck”? If so, where is that in the Bible?

    Help me please? I would REALLY like to know!

    I am not ECUSA. I think the denomination is apostate. I attend a local church where I am seeking to reform the congregation and teach the gospel. Hopefully, at some point the congregation will be able to step out of ECUSA.

    If not, I am not afraid of man. I am not one of the compromisers. I’m quite willing to risk excommunication. You don’t know me at all. I say what I think and I would tell John Howe to his face exactly what I think if given the opportunity.

    In fact, I even put James Packer on the spot at the Wycliffe Hall question and answer session. Perhaps you should read my blog again? But at least I have the social skills to interact on that level, George. I seriously doubt you have that ability judging from your behavior here and in private.

    Charlie

  103. Charlie,

    What BCP do you currently use? How many times have you visited my church? What Chuck Colson video? Are these questions too tough? BTW, you made it public by referring to the church in Miami being seek sensitive, etc, etc.:-) The 1662 in modern English is also pushed by the PBS—Hello…be consistent!!!

    You seem to have a set of standards for yourself and higher set for everyone else. Very inconsistent.

    Thanks for the laughs, Guapoduck!!!

  104. Charlie,

    talk about social skills, have you examined your private life???

    BTW, I only poked fun at Guapoduck (good looking Duck, in English), when you said that being in the TPEC would lead to Anglo-Catholicism. I was simply implying that using your logic being in ECUSA would lead to some form of an alternative lifestyle. I know you wont like to hear this, but you’re in ECUSA, the last time I checked the RT Rev John Howe was an ECUSA bishop.

    Oh the inconsistencies!!!
    :-)

  105. Where in the Bible are drums and electric guitars prohibited???

    be consistent Charlie.

  106. George,

    There IS NO modern English version of the 1662 BCP!!!! I was planning to do one myself with the approval of the pastor and the vestry!

    Charlie

  107. George, I don’t set the standards. God does. Read the Word. Take it up with God, not me. I’m just the messenger.

    Charlie

  108. I will send you the link.

  109. Charlie,

    I read the Word but I am little more honest with it than you are. I actually try to apply it to myself. Isn’t that a novel thought.

  110. Phil,

    I have not said much about TPEC until George Finlay publicly attacked me here. I’ve tried to respectfully disagree.

    However, the fact of the matter is that Delbert Murray attacked me in e-mail simply because I used PECUSA in reference to TEC. I was unaware that it was an issue until he repeatedly e-mailed me correcting me that PECUSA was only applicable to TPEC, etc. I found it irritating, especially since ECUSA/PECUSA is an apostate denomination, which is not in dispute by anyone here.

    Also, what IS the big deal that my church just “happens” be in the ECUSA denomination by no fault of their own. The people are being taught the Gospel in the sermons and in Sunday school classes. What’s wrong with reforming an ECUSA church? I thought this is what we are SUPPOSED TO DO????

    My point about the TPEC is they are inconsistent. They say one thing and do another. They claim to be reformed yet they allow Arminians. They claim to be traditional but allow contemporary worship. They have a KJV only statement on their website but allow individual churches to use modern translations like the ESV. Not that I object to modern translations. It’s just that it seems inconsistent to me to promote a KJV only view and then contradict that stance.

    I have not yet stooped to the level of open ridicule but after being publicly attacked I have responded in kind.

    Charlie

  111. George,

    Where in the Bible does it say that we are to cater to sinners and not to confront them with the law and the Gospel?

    Charlie

  112. One of the greatest shames in Church History was the horrendous fights between Wesley and Toplady over Calvanism. Not a real promotional bell ringer for the church. It came as a result of each man’s inability to define his terms. As an apologist I have dealt a lot with Psuedo-Christian, and Non-Christian cults. The problem with any approach is to understand what they believe in light of what their interpretation is of a specific word.

    Evangelical means something different to a Roman Catholic as it does to a Baptist but neither of them is able to articulate what it truly means. It’s an ambiguous word.

    Let me say this before I continue. It is harder to call a man a papist, or a heretic, or un-Christian when you have shaken their hand. Or at least talked with them. My father taught me that, he’s an EV Free Minister. AH, the great experiment. And yes Charlie, give me your number and I’ll call you. And the thing is, you know I’ll do it.

    And stop moaning about “who struck John,” Joe… There are brothers here who love you, despite what you think… No one is accusing you of anything. Oh, yes you got spanked. None of us TPECers have a problem with honesty and forth right disagreement. But you blog about the TPEC’s use of the 1928 BCP like we tied you up and beat you with it… Morley never forbade you talking about the 1662 or your preference for it. I read the emails back then.

    You joined TPEC, it was the book we use. It wasn’t objectionable or AC to you then I am assuming…

    You act like the guy who just bought a house in the middle of the freeway and begins complaining to the state because they won’t re-route the traffic.

    And Joe, I have no idea who sent that letter to Charles, I only know it was someone who blogs here. Nuff said…

    We can have opinions about prayer books. Fine, which one of you is qualified to re-write it? Who among us is! Call me if you are as I would love to speak with a man of such great wisdom.

    Let me define my terms as a Christian and as one of her Priests, yes we use the “P” word. And give me a break with the collar thing. Why is it every REC minister I see has a dog collar 4 inches tall.

    Acts 4:12 “Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

    The Apostle Peter spoke those words not long after he denied Jesus… He was talking to the priests and Sadducees and tells them the truth. There is none other than Jesus.

    Article 18 reads, “They also are to be accursed that presume to say that everyman shall be saved by law. Or sect or profession, so that he be diligent to frame his life. According to that law and the light of nature. For Holy Scripture doth set out unto us only the name of Jesus Christ whereby men must be saved.”

    This curse is the only one found in our Articles. None of us can be saved by sin, its condemnation and death except by Christ…

    From Genesis to Revelation there is only one way to God and that’s through Christ…

    He is all and sufficient. You need nothing more. And when I spoke last I was labled by my friend Charlie as Un-Christian. Am I also to assume because I use the 1928 BCP many of you call me an Anglo-Catholic? Curious…

    If you see your neighbors child about to be backed up over in the driveway do you say nothing? What about the man who is about t take a poison by mistake. Not your problem??? If doing nothing but telling the world on your blog “No good man but a Calvanist” Then I say you are in fact no better than the Roman Catholic.

    Acts 4:12 “Neither is there salvation in any other; for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

    For years Rome has told us that Our Lord’s salvation isn’t sufficient, we need auricular confessions, we need to pray to Mary or some saint. How about the Hyper Baptist who will preach that Christ is sufficient as long as your baptism is by immersion. Or the turbo-Christian who says yes it’s sufficient as long as you have the second baptism of the Holy Spirit.

    Or the Calvanist who says yes it’s sufficient as long as you’re a 5-pointer… Unless you use my prayer book, unless you read my bible…

    From what I have read here, you have added to and taken away from what is sufficient gents… “No true faith save it be Calvins?” No true worship unless it be 1662? No true church unless it be the REC of yester year? If that makes me uncharitable… Guilty…

    Robt Traill wrote and I subscribe:

    I know no true religion but Christianity; no true Christianity but the doctrine of Christ; the doctrine of His divine person, of His divine office, of His divine righteousness, and of His Divine Spirit, which all that are His receive. I know no true ministers of Christ but such as make it their business, in their calling, to commend Jesus Christ, in His saving fullness of grace and glory, to the faith and love of men.; no true Christian but one united to Christ by faith and love, unto the glorifying of the name of Jesus Christ, in the beauty of the Gospel, holiness. Ministers and Christians of this spirit have been for many years my brethren and companions, and I hope shall ever be, whithersoever the hand of God shall lead me.”

    It’s harder to demean someone when you know them by their first name, when you have shaken their hand, when you have spoken to them man to man… I seek a relational experience with honest men. Men who live by Acts 4:12 Are you here? The Church is in danger, shall we opine over what the church would look like if you were in charge of it. Bash those who don’t subscribe to a certain “orthodoxy.” 5 point Calvanism, is a valid expression of Classical Anglicanism… It’s not the only one… Remember your Ryle?

    I am guessing no ever challenged you gents this way before? “Is this Ian guy crazy…” Always having someone chime in with some derogatory comment about Calvin or favor the 1928 BCP and you rally round the flag and hit those keys typing like mad…

    My name is Ian, I’m a Christian… I seek a relational experience with honest men. Our church, Classical Orthodox Anglicanism is being taken over by persons who could care less about Calvinism, Anglicanism or prayer books. They have no Orthodoxy, no creed, no faith.

    Perhaps the experiment ends here. Can’t seem to get anyone mad at me enough to pick up a phone. Or even one who has the courage to pick up the phone, and just tell me your name. If we can’t do that, we fail…

    My name is Ian, I am a Christian. 904-540-4843

  113. George,

    Misdirection doesn’t prove that TPEC is any good at all. It’s no better than REC. You’re using the 1928 BCP. That’s the same prayerbook used by APA and ACC. And didn’t Charles Morley belong to an Anglo-Catholic denomination prior to this one? Anglican Catholic Church or something or other???

    The seeds are there.

    Charlie

  114. Ian,

    I did notice that the Anglican Orthodox Church has little to no information about its doctrinal commitments posted on its website.

    I for one do care about Calvinism. I was an Arminian for years before coming to the Reformed/Calvinist side of things. I graduated from an Arminian college and a Wesleyan/Arminian seminary. I know Arminian theology firsthand. Also, A.A. Hodge’s systematic theology accurately deals with the Arminian side of things and then gives the Reformed response.

    Doctrine matters.

    Charlie

  115. Phil,

    904-540-4843 or you can email me, reverendanderson@aol.com and I will call you. No one is breaking any commandments here. I jumped in for several reasons. I have large fingers and I have carple tunnel from my last post. You want to scream at me… Call

    Ian

  116. George:

    You are using contemporary music with the 1928 BCP? I take it that that is acceptable? How does that work? I’ve never attended a contemporary-praise Anglican service, so quite unfamiliar with it.

    Although attending an AMiA Church, I only attend the 11 AM service. it is traditional or classic hymns with pipe organ. They have a 9 AM service that is reportedly “contemporary.”

    Curiously, when I called the office for worship times, the secretary told me, “If your really want worship, then you should come to the 9 AM service.” I haven’t, but should give it a shot.

    Have a sea story about a congregation with a contemporary worship service (Assembly of God) from the Navy. Although I did not understand at the time, I was very troubled when the Papist senior told me that my purpose, as an REC Chaplain, was to frustrate them and get them off the worship schedule. I was new to the command and took the assignment. I informed him that it was illegal to attempt to shut down such a service and would violate their First Amendment rights. He went silent. I had no choice. I took the assignment. In the first “council meeting” with their leaders, at which I wore a collar, the fat lady–literally–informed me that they wanted only “five minutes of preaching” and the rest devoted to testimonies and contemporary worship. The sermon, on her view, their view, was to be at a high school level for the teenagers and young people. I informed her that they could worship as they pleased, but am in command when in the pulpit. There would be 30-40 minutes and there would be Bible Exposition. I had them for 18 months. First, the domineering fat lady and family left. BTW, all the ladies did the talking that night while the husbands sat there silently, a curiosity to me. Second, I endured 18 months of that music. Third, after about 6 months, in a meeting with them, I told them–out of mercy–please let us cut that sappy and worthless song, “When I stare into Your holiness…” Syruppy lyrics followed. I gave them an exposition on the holiness of God that night from Ex 20, 34, Jud 13, Is 6, Mt 17 and Rev 1. No syrup there like that genuinely illiterate song. I begged them to leave off with it and allow one grand, stately hymn. Overwhelmingly, they agreed. The ditty was dropped. One stately hymn allowed. 30-40 minutes of preaching. The place grew to about 150. Started teaching Calvinistic theology. As a result, they began to be less narcissistic, calmer, quieter and thoughtful. They were some of the finest people I’ve ever met. But I must confess, 7-11 music is not for me. 7 words repeated 11 times, written by many out of Nasheville, by adults, but at a level of children. I don’t see how it fits with the BCP, but then, that’s my unresolved issue. I really ought attend an AMiA work where this is practiced.

    I suppose TPEC allows that. It wasn’t an issue for them when I was there.

    From what Robin has posted on AMiA (aside from the 79 BCP and some using the new contemporary 1662-2008 revision), there are charismatically-driven congregations. The degree and extent of which I am unfamiliar. And yet, some, not being charismatic, are simply “Contemporary Praise” congegations. That’s what I suspect where I’m at.

  117. Charlie,

    You said, “Where in the Bible does it say that we are to cater to sinners and not to confront them with the law and the Gospel?” It doesn’t, and I never made that claim.

    I have asked several questions you have been unwilling or unable to answer.

  118. George,

    I’m not gay. The fact that you implied that about me speaks volumes about your intellectual honesty.

    The fact is the TPEC is using an Anglo-Catholic prayer book. If that doesn’t bother you, I don’t know what to say.

    I am not comfortable with the 1979 pb. However, I am being given a chance to teach the doctrines of grace and educate people…. AND we’re planning to move away from the 1979 bp as soon as that is feasible.

    Do I need to answer to you on this? come to our vestry meetings and voice you opinion.

    Charlie

  119. Phil,

    I guess you are going to have to visit one day and see!!! I will invite you for lunch afterward. I agree, there are some really horrible contemporary songs. We don’t do those. We also do hymns. Del really liked the way we sounded when he visited.

    How are you doing? I owe a Fed Ex shipment ASAP.

    Blessings,

    Jorge

  120. Charlie,

    I never accused you of being gay. If it was the comment about your private life, I was referring to your ability to see the wrong in everyone else but yourself.

    If your honest intention is to reform ECUSA then I wish you well, but don’t accuse me of being seeker sensitive. I am not.

    Wasn’t it your girlfriend that gave you that name?

  121. George,

    Now you’re going to attack me because I have a girl friend? Is that a sin?

    Give me a break!

    Charlie

  122. Charlie,

    No that was not an attack. But you sure are defensive. Did I hit a nerve? That was not my intention.

  123. George,

    What you have done is launched personal attacks against me. It’s called “ad hominem.”

    You can ask whatever you like. May I ask you a question? When did you stop beating your mother?

    Charlie

  124. Charlie,

    You are over reacting!!! If it came across as a personal attack that was not my intention. If you were to meet my Cuban Mother you would know who beat who :-)

  125. George,

    You obviously don’t understand the point. I can ask you inane and silly questions which do not prove anything. I’m not taking the bait. Baiting with endless questions which cannot be answered is stupid.

    I could ask worse questions. But I won’t because I’ve made my point.

    Stick to the issues.

    My position is the 1929 BCP is unacceptable. The 1979 is unacceptable.

    I’m a 1662 BCP person. I use it for private devotions and I will be using it to teach a Sunday school class the first Sunday after Easter. I’m going to go through the 39 Articles, the catechism, and the differences in the liturgy between the 1662 and 1928/1979 pb.

    And before you judge David Knox, why don’t you give him a call at the church. He’s very approachable.

    Charlie

  126. Charlie,

    You wrote, “why don’t you give him a call at the church. He’s very approachable”. Heed your own words. Ian is write it is easy to attack a person you have not met.

    I hope it goes well for you in reforming ECUSA. I am certainly not against that.

  127. Ian:

    If Charles Morley is out there making loose statements about people on this forum and blog, he shall be called on it. I am unamused. If Charles has grounds, fine, let him proceed openly and manfully.

    I’m going to drop Bishop Morley a note. Stand by. This is going to stop. Be right back.

    Veitch

  128. To: Bishop Charles Morley (Protestant Episcopal Church in the United States of America)”
    cc: “Revd. Joseph Mahler (Protestant Episcopal Church)” , “Robin Jordan” , reverendanderson@aol.com, “Jorge Finley” , “Charlie J. Ray” , “Ken Howes” , “Art Schulz” … more

    Charles:

    I recommend you checking in/at http://heritageanglicannetwork.wordpress.com/2009/01/20/may-we-dare-to-hope%e2%80%a6/#comment-398.

    Your Communications Director–Ian–has and is stirring an interesting the pot. We were having curious and thoughtful exchanges until he arrived. It has been problematic since.

    First, Ian alleged that a forum member was calling you “an heretic.”

    Second, there were some efforts to ferret that out. Ian never cleared it up.

    Third, Ian finally offerred that you, Charles Morley, had made the claim in an email, but would not identify the person, that he would not press you to so do, and yet…the accusation lingers.

    Fourth, I shall post this email at http://heritageanglicannetwork.wordpress.com/2009/01/20/may-we-dare-to-hope%e2%80%a6/#comment-398. The public needs answers.

    Fifth, two things here. I hope no one has said that about you. I hadn’t seen it on the forum. It came as a surprise. Also, if someone has said that you should deal with it openly and clear it up. Or, your Communications Director for the denomination, if speaking without your permission, should be addressed. If he is authorized to make these public statements without substantiation, we are free to draw our own conclusions about you, TPEC, and your Communications Director.

    Sixth, if you don’t clear that up, you are open to the allegation that you injuring good name or names. If you don’t clear that up, I will charge you with failure to be open, forthright, and direct. Charles, I will get to the bottom of this.

    I shall not tolerate the attitudes evinced in this blogosphere. Either clear it up or we’ll draw our own conclusions in the forum.

    BTW, we have started to discuss TPEC there as well, legitimately, although originally, it had a far wider cast. TPEC was incidental throughout until Ian arrived. Also, the BCP and other matters. As I indicated, it had been more brotherly and thougtful until Ian arrived.

    All the cc: line are participants in the blog. Ken Howes and Art Schulcz, two friends, two Christian men, and two lawyers are included–not for legal purposes I add.

    Cordially,

    Phil

  129. Phil

    904-540-4843

    Ian

  130. Ian said in a post above:

    Robin, if you want to talk with me, call me… Are we such a threat that folks have to hide behind a computer screen and throw flaming arrows… I am always looking for friends and brothers. If you want to agree to disagree and get on with serving God then I am your best friend. I will defend to the death your right to believe whatever you like and use whatever prayerbook best suits you. If not, God Bless…

    But never ever I will I ever use a format such as this to malign the work of good men… Shame on some of you, and you know who you are. Shame on you…

    ———————
    PV: Shame on us???? Who are you to come in here and same “shame on some of you?” “Shame on some of you…” Who’s the “some,” a plurality? Son, we were rather calm until you came and started a fight. Fight it is, lad.

    You owe this forum a retraction and an apology.

    Also, two additional emails were sent to me by Anderson after these above…which I did not answer. No, I SHALL NOT call you. You will apologize here first for your accusation. Yes, you have stated that someone “on this blog” called Charles “an heretic.” You’ve been asked to clarify that. You have failed to do that. You have broken a divine commandment, unless you show otherwise. You are being handled as a discipline-case. You are being publicly spanked for rash and unwarranted speech. You have challenged us about manlinessness because we don’t reach for a phone.

    We await your clarification and substantiation of the charge.

  131. Phil,

    I don’t owe you an explanation. Or an apology. I am not under your jusridiction, or your charge, and the person who I think made the claim didn’t take the bait… I have broken no commandments and I have no guilt or guile for my comments. Did you even read the last one… If you want to know more call… You want a debate rent hall and show up. You want to threaten lawyers as you did, sue me… What I did was tell the truth. If that bothers you, tough…

    You have my number, or shall I just chock it up to being a Wimp…

  132. We await your clarification of your charge that someone called Charles an heretic. This recent post by you constitutes an evasion. You made a charge publicly. Clear yourself publicly. You have not substantiated it. You appear to be willing to sully someone’s name on this list. Let’s keep it simple for you: have you heard of the ninth commandment?

    Put up or shutup, in this public hall, not a rented one. If you can’t sustain the charge, you’re exposing yourself as impenitent and afraid. The forum readers can and will draw their own conclusions. I’m drawing mine. We’ll see what Charles has to say. If nothing, we’ll continue to pursue this, ferret out the facts, and draw conclusions.

    Stand by.

  133. Ian said:

    I am not under your jusridiction, or your charge, and the person who I think made the claim didn’t take the bait… I have broken no commandments and I have no guilt or guile for my comments.
    —————–
    PV: Anyone see a problem here? Ian comes here under the pretext of “baiting” someone. Whoever it was didn’t take the “bait” he says. Why don’t you just be a man–a non-Wimp to use your language–and publicly identify your “suspect.” We didn’t even see that as bait, since we all sat around scratching our heads. Then, TPEC’s Communications Director, self-exculpates himself in his very next sentence by claiming to have no “guile.” People aren’t stupid and will draw their own conclusions. My conclusions are firming up.

  134. From Ian, an email recent after these exchanges above:

    Phil. There are some things I posted that you are getting wrong in your time line of my postings. We had a recent coup, more than just a simple parting of the way. It was nasty and it was evil. Vicious emails and personal attacks. There is something larger here that I would be more than happy to discuss with you on the phone, not on a blog. It has to do with TPEC and those recent events, and I am trying to ferret out a couple of things. Not the least of which has nothing to do with you or Robin. Am I stirring the pot on purpose, yes… And for a good reason. I am sorry if you are offended. Call me or give me a number and I will call you. Call Charles, if you like he reads the blog every night. Call me unchristian, threaten me with lawyers, but only after you talk to me, privately. Ian
    ————–
    PV: Ian, your words. That’s right. You have offended me by your words and actions. You deny having guile above, yet by your email to me, you affirm you came here to “ferret out a couple of things.” You came to “bait” people. You “stirred the pot on purpose.” That’s right, pal, don’t email me. I’ll post it. I have committment to you or confidenitality with you, by law or any other reason. This is a justifiable inquiry about your ethics, integrity and self-knowledge. Why don’t you tell us–all of us–what these “few things” are. Be a man–Ian–and tell us.(BTW, I had no idea about any coup in the TPEC. That’s not the issue here.) It’s about a public accusation by a TPEC clergyman about someone in this forum. It is about one who will assert a charge, but not sustain the allegation; and then, retreat while “throwing dust and sand” in everyone’s eyes. The readers will draw their own conclusions. I know what mine is.

  135. From Ian, an email recent after these exchanges above:

    Phil. There are some things I posted that you are getting wrong in your time line of my postings. We had a recent coup, more than just a simple parting of the way. It was nasty and it was evil. Vicious emails and personal attacks. There is something larger here that I would be more than happy to discuss with you on the phone, not on a blog. It has to do with TPEC and those recent events, and I am trying to ferret out a couple of things. Not the least of which has nothing to do with you or Robin. Am I stirring the pot on purpose, yes… And for a good reason. I am sorry if you are offended. Call me or give me a number and I will call you. Call Charles, if you like he reads the blog every night. Call me unchristian, threaten me with lawyers, but only after you talk to me, privately. Ian
    ————–
    PV: Ian, your words. That’s right. You have offended me by your words and actions. You deny having guile above, yet by your email to me, you affirm you came here to “ferret out a couple of things.” You came to “bait” people. You “stirred the pot on purpose.” That’s right, pal, don’t email me. I’ll post it. I have no committment to you nor confidenitality with you, by law or by any other reason than a standard of truth and the ninth commandment. What you have said can and will be used against you. This is a justifiable inquiry about your ethics and self-knowledge (making false charges and denying it). Why don’t you tell us–all of us–what these “few things” are which you were “ferretting out?” Be a man–Ian–and tell us what “your purpose” was.(BTW, I had no idea about any coup in the TPEC. That’s not the issue here. Regrettable, but not an issue in this forum to date.) It’s about a public accusation by a TPEC clergyman about someone in this forum calling Bishop Charles Morley an heretic. It is about one who will assert a charge, but not sustain the allegation; and then, retreat while “throwing dust and sand” in everyones’ eyes. Mission objective: put up or shut up. Mission objective two: be committed to mission one until achieved.
    The readers will draw their own conclusions.

  136. To all:

    I expect little from Ian at this point. I await Bishop Charles Morley’s response or non-response tomorrow. It is my intent to then close that loop. I intend to complete that mission in light of the mandates of the ninth commandment from which I shall not leave. Then, complete the mission, including conclusions.

    After that, I would suggest we repair elsewhere for inquiry, e.g. Robin’s last two posts. At least, we’ll know there are or has been a hidden agenda, purpose, and baiting by Ian. A two-by-four on the side of the head won’t work on a rock with lips.

  137. For those interested in why I was defrocked by the REC click here and read the article I posted some time ago: http://reasonablechristian.blogspot.com/search?q=defrocked

    If you want to get the other side of the story, I suggest you contact the Southeast Diocese of the Reformed Episcopal Church and ask them. Canon Moock will be more than happy to assist you: http://www.recse.org/

    I have to agree with Luther’s famous statement: “Here I stand. I can do nothing else.”

    I stand for the doctrines of grace, not high church heresies, pentecostal/charismatic heresies, or church growth/emergent church errors. Pelagianism rears its ugly head everywhere.

    Charlie

  138. Received an excellent communication from Bishop Charles Morley. Excellent points raised. (1) Joe, if you complain about the 1928 BCP, remain a presbyter in good standing with TPEC, yet (see 1/23) charge him with things “abhorrent to God,” you need to evaluate your relationship with TPEC. I did. (2) As I have said before, Bishop Charles Morley is a godly Churchman and servant of Christ, with over thirty years of Protestant pulpit ministry, planting of churches, and the establishment of TPEC. (3) Two presbyters, still within TPEC, have allegedly called Charles “an heretic.” Ergo, Mr. Anderson appeared here sniffing and attempting to provoke people. This was entirely inappropriate. He should have stated his case openly. Poor. Also, I have chastised Mr. Morley for his failure to address these two presbyters, unless he already has. Perhaps so, since there appears to be an effort to establish a Reformed and Protestant Anglican Church. (4) It’s pretty clear that Mr. Anderson will carry on public represenation of his Church when his own Bishop retains these presbyters and they remain in good standing—while calling him “an heretic.”

    Mr. Anderson’s only apparent evidence is from his Bishop. He personally offers and has nothing–unless shown otherwise–to offer. His witness is impeached and nugatory.

    Bp Morley had a suggestion. In Lent, let us give up blogging. I suggested he pass that to Mr. Anderson.

    Finally, Bishop Charles Morley has addressed the issue. He tolerates a presbyter or two who allegedly, on his witness, call him “an heretic.”

    Bottomline: TPEC decisively has leadership problems. “Dare We Hope?” Probably not.

  139. Re: TPEC leadership, Mr. Anderson, and Bishop Morley, on my end, as promised, the case is closed in terms of personally addressing them. Unless Blunderbluss starts his shot-gun blasting at everyone again, he’ll be called on it. Thus far, he has acquitted himself well by his silence.
    However, the founding of another Protestant Anglican witness and work is of interest for discussion here. From my own experience, I know there is an “anti-Calvinist” in TPEC. As to ACNA and AMiA, another reason why it would not be possible for me to affiliate with them–they don’t understand or teach Reformed soteriology openly, widely, or well. Willing to be shown otherwise and would be to be wrong, but…..

  140. I am finished with the spirit and shenanigans here. The truth has emerged and folks will draw their own conclusions, as have I.

    I would suggest that other readers drop this blog and take up their inquiries at “Can an Apple Tree Produce Oranges?” Some productive exchanges are beginning to occur there.

  141. Upon reconsideration, perhaps this forum should remain open. “Dare we hope?” This HAN site has us thinking. If there is another denominational alternative developing, we should hear about it. Provided it is balanced, evinces a love of His Majesty and Gospel, and engages the issues thoughtfully and factually. Any takers? This last small blow-out should not diminish inquiry, while we bid TPEC well and offer them our love, support and prayers. Actually, TPEC was not at the forefront–at all–until the Scotsman arrived and met another one. Let’s keep talking—here. And let’s let Romans and Galatians inform our inquiries.

  142. 48 hours later, looks like the Blunderbuff-Blunderbuss-Shotgun-shooter has departed. Conclusion? He has no evidence. He attempted to use inadmissible hearsay and failed. “Dare we hope…?” still remains as an admissible and important question, raised by Robin. As to AMiA and ACNA, I remain the inhouse, resident cynic unless shown otherwise.

  143. Traditional hymns, like everything else, have to be evaluated by Scripture to see that the theological content is accurate. Even R.C. Sproul has commented about a hymn which portrays God as “dying” on the cross. This is a bit ambiguous and would suggest the patripassionism heresy unless it is more fully explained.

    Charlie

  144. Charlie:

    There are some absolutely grand hymns by Chas Wesley that we can learn from.

    Veitch

  145. “Dare We Hope?” asked Robin. We asked it. “Dare we do nothing?” might be asked as a corollary. As to TEPC, with the passage of time, “Dare we hope?” Probably not, if the past is an indicator of the future. All they offer is a website and small-to-no leadership or oversight. But that’s there problem. “Dare We Hope?” in relationship to the REC? No. Here’s an open, if somewhat antagonistic, letter to Mr. Grote. I am tired of these Bishops. My days of patience with some of them are near ending. Here’s the open letter. Dare we hope? No, we dare not. Dare we trust Christ as our Sovereign and Saviour? You bet. Some hand-to-hand combat is overdue.
    —————-
    OPEN LETTER TO REC BISHOP ROY GROTE: 19 MAR 09

    Two bishops in conflict from the Tractarian period. Two quotes. One from Bishop Doane, citing Pusey, and another by Bishop MIllvaine. Subject matter: Requiem Masses and Justification by Faith Alone

    “The church has no second baptism to give, and so she cannot pronounce a man altogether free from his past sins. There are but two periods of absolute cleansing, Baptism and the day of Judgment.” Dr. Pusey, quoted by a Tractarian-defender, Bishop Doane. Hence, other views are fed by this thinking: purgatory, a very different view of sin and atonement, and Requiem Masses. Roy, we are waiting your explanation of the Requiem Mass held at Christ the Redeemer REC Church in Atascadero, California within the last forty days.

    In contrast, with the biblical assurances of justification and the book of Romans, Bishop Charles Pettit M’Illvaine said in his Oxford Divinty, 250 and 256, “Blessed be God, who has spared us such bondage, and showed us a more excellent way, even the `new and living way,’ whereby we have `boldness of access’ to his mercy-seat, and rejoice in the certainty that `the blood of Jesus Christ cleanseth from all sin.” Or, as Bp. M’Ilvaine reminds us, “Hear what comfortable words our Saviour saith: `Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy leaden, and I will give you rest.”

    Roy, what say you? Or Mr. Foos? Or Mr. Hail? Or Mr. Boyce? You fellows do this stuff and then fail to respond when challenged? We want to understand your underlying view and theology of the Requiem Mass? Roy, are you afraid? Let’s wake up. Several hundred are getting this email.

    We’re coming up to week three here with no response from you. Readers will draw their own conclusions about you. One they shall draw of me: tenacious and in just pursuit of wolves in Christ’s sheepfold. I trust you are not the latter, but we shall see. If you are a False Shepherd allowing and tolerating a false gospel of Rome, count me as your enemy—and, given my background and training, I assure you this will get tough. I hereby give you my notice. Are we clear? The Tractarian Gospel is a false Gospel.

    Veitch

    For theological Marines, time for some hand-to-hand combat in tough street-fighting, block-by-block. “One shot, one kill.” For theological Sailors here, “Hit em’ hard, hit em’ fast, and hit em’ often.” (ADM “Bull” Halsey, Pacific Fleet Commander, United States Navy, WW2). As Guardian-Warriors, wolves are to be driven off with charitable rigour, and, if they resist, shoot to theologically kill, lest further injury befall the elect. Liking this onerous duty is optional; doing it is non-negotiable. We’re in combat. Let us “maintain course and bearing.” No time for sap, sugar, lace and effeminacy.http://www.cyberhymnal.org/htm/f/a/fallthes.htmFreeREC-RECStudentsAlumChurchmen-subscribe@yahoogroups.comProtestantAllianceofConfessingEvangelicals-subscribe@yahoogroups.comhttp://heritageanglicannetwork.wordpress.com/

  146. I have drawn my own conclusion as to the question, “Dare We Hope?” “Dare I Hope?” The answer is “No.” I will not be invested or involved with any body that is not Protestant and Reformed. That means “Calvinistic.” The ACNA is not, will never be, and cannot be Protestant and Reformed. Here’s an article that draws my answer to the question to a close. Anglican leadership is woefully short on the Reformation.
    ————
    From Cortlandt Van Resnealear, Bishop Doane versus Bishop M’Illvaine, pp.59-61. The caps and italics are in the original. The conclusion of this section of the work is to show that both Calvin and Luther were revered in the Church of England. Further, it shows the profound Calvinism of the English Church until Laud, but even thereafter, Calvinism has been a mighty force in its midst, especially as an hermeneutical tool for the Articles. Well would have been the Anglican Church had they continued to use Jean Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion as the foundational systematic theology textbook. There is no reason why this could not be recovered in our times. As Ken noted from Bishop John Jewel, the English Reformers rejoiced in their Lutheran and, predominantly, Calvinistic heritages. If you read the Tractarian and modern AC literature, you will hear anti-Lutheranism and anti-Calvinism. We lament the REC’s declension and failure to be true to her Protestant and Reformed heritage. Here’s Van Resnealear:
    “As to CALVIN, his influence upon the theology, and even the Liturgy, of the Church of England was perhaps greater than that of Luther—certainly it was very extensive. The first Liturgy under King Edward, containing a number of things at variance with the opinions of the Continental Reformers, Calvin wrote to Somerset, the Lord Protector, objecting to prayers for the dead, chrism, and extreme unction,–which were accordingly expunged at the revision of the Liturgy in 1551. Even Heylin, a High Churchman of the strictest sort, admits: `Here the business might have rested [without being revised] if Calvin’s pragmatic spirit had not interposed.’ `The first Liturgy, being disliked by Calvin, was brought under revision. This was done to give satisfaction to Calvin’s cavils.’ And again, says Heylin: `The great business of this year was the taking down of Altars by public authority; the principle motive whereunto was in the first place, the opinion of some dislikes, which had been taken by Calvin against the first Liturgy.’ So high was Calvin in King Edward’s favor, that Archbishop Cranmer wrote to him, saying that he not do anything more profitable than to write often to the King. Indeed no writer speaks disrespectfully of Calvin, until the rise of Arminianism 60 or 70 years after his death. Inasmuch as Calvin’s Form of Church government, differed from that of England, the ground of respect entertained for him must have been his doctrine. Certainly the great body of our early Reformers was predestinarian. The martyrs, Tyndal, Barnes, Patrick Hamilton, John Rogers, Bradford, &c. were all predestinarians in doctrine. So were Cranmer, Ridley, Latimer, Hooper, Bucer, Martyr, &c. The 39 Articles were drawn up by men who very evidently professed Calvin’s doctrine. Bishop Burnet, who was himself an Arminian, say (on the 17th Article): `It is not to be denied but that the Article seems to be framed according to St. Austin’s doctrine. It is very probable that those who penned it meant the decree to be absolute. The Calvinists have less occasion for scruple [than Arminians;] since the Article does seem more plainly to favor them. The three cautions, that are added to it, do likewise intimate that St. Austin’s doctrine was designed to be settled by the Article.’ P.226. If any doubt existed as to the theology of those who framed the Article, it would be dissipated by reading Nowell’s Catechism, a thoroughly Calvinist production, which was sanctioned by the same Convocation that decided on the Articles, and which [according to Bishop M’Illvaine, p.473] `may be received as a most authentic vouches of the doctrines of the Church, as understood in the reign of Queen Elizabeth.’ Heylin himself admits that `it was safer for any man in those times to have been looked upon as a heathen and publican than an anti-Calvinist.’ Parker, Grindal, Whitgift, the three Archbishops of Canterbury during the reign of Elizabeth, were all Calvinists. The celebrated LAMBETH ARTICLES put forth by Whitgift, were rooted and grounded on Scriptural Calvinism; and `wherever occasion offered, Whitgift labored to countenance his own writings by those of Calvin; and especially out of Calvin’s Institutes, yielding him the title of famous and learn man.’ Strype’s Whitgift, p.583. This Archbishop of Canterbury boldly says of the Calvinistic Lambeth Articles, `I know them to be sound doctrine and uniformly professed in the Church of England and agreeable to the Articles of Religion established by authority.” P.462. Under James 1, who was himself a Calvinist, the Church of England continued to adhere to the principles of the Reformers; and the divines who represented her at the Synod of Dort were Calvinists. Laud, however, at this time began to broach Arminianism; but even in the following reign of Charles I, the great majority of the clergy had not swerved from the Articles. Every Archbishop of Canterbury, up to Laud, was a Calvinist; the Puritans and their supporters had still a large majority in Parliament; and the Court faction of Arminians was very inconsiderable in numbers. An Arminian clergyman was refused his degree at Cambridge as late as the 10th year of Charles 1. Oxford also continued to teach the doctrines of the Reformation. Indeed the Universities taught Calvinism from the days of Elizabeth until the civil wars. Heylin says: `It cannot be denied but that, by the error of those times, the reputation Calvin had attained to in both Universities, and the extreme diligence of his followers, there was a general tendency unto his opinions.’ He also adds that `Calvin’s Book of institutes was, for the most part, the foundation upon which the young divines of those times did build their studies.’ Heylin Hist.627-7. Even after the Restoration, under Charles II, BISHOP SANDERSON (who wrote the Preface to the English Prayer Book) says `Calvin’s Institutes were recommended to me, as indeed they were generally to all young scholars in those times, as the best and perfectest system of divinity and the fittest to be laid as the groundwork of that profession. And indeed my expectation was not at all deceived, in the reading of those Institutes.’ In latter years, we do not doubt that Arminianism became the prevailing religion of the divines of the established Church….Dr. South, also, in allusion to Bishop Burnet’s principle interpretation of the 39 Articles, which opened the door not only to the Arminians but to Arians and others, declared that the prelate had given the Articles `forty stripes save one.’ Notwithstanding the general decline into Arminianism which has taken place since the Restoration, a large number of the most pious and learned divines in the Episcopal Church, both in England and American, revere the name of Calvin as a great theologian and noble Reformer.
    Such, being the influence of LUTHER and CALVIN upon the Reformation in England, (as well as upon the revival of religion on the Continent) is it not singular that some Christian men and Church should be found in the 19th century willing to unite with Papists in reviling their character, depreciating their services and disowning their Churches?

  147. I have drawn my own conclusion as to the question, “Dare We Hope?” “Dare I Hope?” The answer is “We Dare Not Hope in the Karlstadt’s of today for a balanced reformation.” I will not be threatened or bullied by any one that uses Protestant and Reformed to further their own sectarian agenda and to promote the spirit of Andreas Bodenheim von Karlstadt. Calvinism is not the only viable expression of Protestant. Anglicanism (with the great Dean John William Burgon) and Lutheranism are Protestant as well. I will not copy and paste a long article to detract from how I am engaging anyone. Theological soundness with Christian meekness is woefully short these days.
    Rev. Paul

  148. Paul,
    What is this? Are you here to continue to promote your so called Anglicanism. Your positions are shared by many who call themselves Anglican. The Protestant Reformation has two sides. The Protestant side is the Lutheran side of the Protestant Reformation. It began with Luther but it did not end with Luther. The Reformation side began with Calvin but it did not end with Calvin. It is true that there is more than Calvin on the Reformed side. But, Paul, Calvin is accepted. The XXXIX Articles are expressions of Calvin clothed in Protestant language. The Lutherans were neither deceived by this neither were they amused. The Council of Dort and the 5 points of Calvinism were formulated, Jean Calvin had nothing personally to do with this council. The Westminster Confession which was formulated by the Church of England in the 1640’s were also Calvinistic. The Church of England though not directly established by Calvinists never the less was Calvinistic with the few Lutheran protesters and a high and low church wings.
    As you may have guessed most of us here on this blog are desirous of an Anglican Church which is Protestant (in respect to salvation) and Reformed (Calvinistic) in respect to salvation, the sacraments and church government. Both the Protestant and the Reformed sides are in opposition to Arminius.
    I hope you have not come here to Heritage Anglican Network for the purpose of venting you anti-Calviinistic frustrations. I know you describe yourself as a recovering Calvinist. Your bishop claims to be a Calvinist, go convince him. Here we want a Prayer Book that is in fact more Calvinist than that which your church uses.
    By the way has all forums in the TPEC been shut down so that you cannot express your opinions among the clergy of your church?

  149. Joe
    Protestantism covers the Lutheran tradition, the Anglican tradition, and the Calvinist tradition.
    I believe the beauty of the Anglican tradition is you can see Calvinist and Lutheran influences in her liturgy and her confessions.
    Anglicanism was never a calvinist church. It has a calvinist influence (as a lutheran one as well). What I find frustrating is when one influence seeks to dominate or conquer the whole identity. It wants to dominate the Anglican narrative.
    There were solid Anglican Protestant Churchman like Hooker, Samual Wilberfore, and Dean Burgon who affirmed the articles, opposed Rome, but who did not want the Anglican church to become Genevan. They affirmed the influence. But they didnt want it to become the sole voice of Anglicanism.
    You can read this is the books for pastoral candidates by Wilberforce and Burgon (both on my web site and can be ordered thru Amazon).
    Plus, believing in election and justification by faith alone is not calvinism. That is Protestantism-because Luther affirmed these truths. “Calvinism” or “Puritianism” carries much more than election and grace alone. I know this because I was a calvinist (a consistent one in a denomination that made the PCA and OPC look liberal). It was the ecclesiastical system of Calvinism I left. Not the belief in election or justificagtion by faith alone. And the late Dr. Letis pointed out to me that Anglicanism would ahve the benefits of a Protestant tradition wihtout all the baggage of the Calvinist tradition (Ted never pushed his own Lutheranism).
    I am not venting any calvinist frustrations unless I see that tradition attempt to conquer other Protestant traditions for their own sectarian agenda.
    In that case…I simply remind others of the great Protestant Anglicans who were not enchanted with Geneva but who were sound Protestant Churchmen.
    Rev. Paul

  150. Paul,
    True, Protestantism covers both the Lutheran and the Calvinists. But Reformed covers only the Calvinists. The unmerited lection by God of those who are saved is Biblical, not to be denied and is part of the XXXIX Articles that you has signed that you affirm. It is not a point of argument. The Church of England adopted a strictly Calvinist view of the two sacraments (baptism and communion). Read the rubric at the end of the Lord’s Supper (it is known as the black rubric because it was originally printed in black instead of red). It put away any Lutheran concept of the in the Lord’s Supper. The government of Anglicanism is in fact different from both the Lutherans and the Calvinists. Episcopacy as a form of church government as we know it today is not exactly biblical. There is no biblical distinction between the presbuteroi and the episcopoi. Apostolic succession is a man made up tradition. It glorifies man has has always tended toward a high church concept. The end result is almost always tyranny in churches that believe that doctrine of man. Episcopal churches tend to believe that without a bishop, there is no church. Again Paul, if you don’t like Calvinism, you will be quite unhappy at this site.
    joe

  151. Joe

    I disagree with the following:

    “The Church of England adopted a strictly Calvinist view of the two sacraments (baptism and communion).”
    The Articles, on the sacraments, do not sound strictly calvinist. They sound Protestant.

    “There is no biblical distinction between the presbuteroi and the episcopoi. Apostolic succession is a man made up tradition. It glorifies man has has always tended toward a high church concept.”

    I disagree which is why I am not Presbyterian anymore.

    “The end result is almost always tyranny in churches that believe that doctrine of man.”
    If you look at the history of Presbyterianism and Puritanism….you will find tyranny….I have seen clergy brutalized by Presbyteries…and clergy who have lost everything due to tyrannical presbyteries….and it leads to bullying…group think….attack.

    “Episcopal churches tend to believe that without a bishop, there is no church.”
    Some…some dont. I prefer to say there is not a proper church without a Bishop.

    “Again Paul, if you don’t like Calvinism, you will be quite unhappy at this site.”

    I am very fond of justification by faith alone and I certainly believe in election.
    Rev. Paul

  152. http://www.anglicananswer.org/anglican-resources/

    Historic Protestant Anglicanism had many champions. But two from the 18th century who resisted Romanism and Puritanism were Dean John William Burgon and Bishop Samuel Wilberforce. Please consider exploring their works.

    Dean John William Burgon Titles
    available from http://www.kessinger.net or Amazon

    A Plain Commentary On The Four Holy Gospels V2, St. Luke-St. John: Intended Chiefly For Devotional Reading (1859)

    A Treatise On The Pastoral Office: Addressed Chiefly To Candidates For Holy Orders Or To Those Who Have Recently Undertaken The Cure Of Souls (1864)

    Ninety Short Sermons For Family Reading: Following The Course Of The Christian Seasons (1865)

    Ninety-One Short Sermons For Family Reading V1-2: Following The Course Of The Christian Seasons (1867)

    Bishop Samuel Wilberforce Titles
    available from http://www.kessinger.net or Amazon

    The Conflict Of Christ In His Church With Spiritual Wickedness In High Places: Sermons Preached During The Season Of Lent, 1866 (1866)

    Speeches On Missions By Samuel Wilberforce (1874)

    Six Sermons Preached Before The University Of Oxford, In St. Mary’s
    Church In The Years, 1837-1839 (1848)

    Sermons Preached On Various Occasions (1877)

    Sermons Preached Before The University Of Oxford: Second Series, From 1847 To 1862 (1863)

    Sermons By Samuel Lord Bishop Of Oxford (1849)

    Heroes Of Hebrew History (1874)

    Half-Repentance: A Sermon Preached In The Church Of St. Mary-The-Virgin, Oxford (1857)

    Delivered At The Request Of The Christian Evidence Society (1873)

    Addresses To The Candidates For Ordination, On The Questions In The Ordination Service (1878)

  153. Excellent article by the Late Dr. Ted Letis

    Contemporary Bible Translations: Anabaptist Victories in the New World
    A Lecture Delivered Before the Annual Symposium on The Lutheran Confessions
    at
    Concordia Theological Seminary
    Ft. Wayne, Indiana 20 January 1999
    By Theodore P. Letis, BA, M.T.S., Ph.D.
    Director The Institute for Renaissance and Reformation Biblical Studies
    Philadelphia (U.S.A.) and Edinburgh (U.K.)

    OUTLINE
    I. Prolegomena
    A. A Real Problem Exists (e.g. World Magazine and Lutheran Witness)
    B. Complications in Addressing the Issues Because of Previous Mishandling
    1. Anabaptist Extremists (Irresponsible Historiography)
    2. Christian News and the Beck Bible (Irresponsible Sectarianism)
    3. The Axis of the Not-For-Profit Bible Society Network and the Profit-Making So-Called “Modern Language” English Bible Publishing Industry (Irresponsible Monopoly)
    4. The Twofold Phenomena Under Consideration:
    a. Text Criticism
    b. Translation Philosophy
    C. The Two Great Ecclesiologies That Are Determinative:
    1. Catholic-Preservationism
    2. Primitivist-Restorationism
    II. Catholic-Preservationism:
    A. Traditio
    1. Biblical Notion
    2. Roman Notion
    B. Apostolic Succession
    1. Early Church
    2. Medieval Church
    C. Polycarp
    III. Implications for Biblical Authority
    A. Three Great Issues Settled in the Fourth Century by Appeal to Apostolic traditio
    1. Christology
    2. Canon
    3. Text
    B. Saint John of Damascus
    1. Augustine (LXX)—traditio
    2. Jerome (Vulgata Latina)—traditio
    3. Ecclesiastical Scripturia
    G. Erasmus—the Culmination of the Catholic-Preservationist Consensus in the Early Modern Era
    H. The Protestant Reformation Nurtured on Erasmianism (ad fontes): the Triumph of Catholic Consensus
    IV. Primitivist-Restorationism
    A. Traditio Almost Always a Corruption of the Original Faith: the Premise of all Non-Catholic Sects and Contemporary Cults—A Journey into Krister Stendahl’s “First -Century Bible Land”
    B. Gnosticism, Manicheism, Arianism, Montanism, in the Early Church
    C. Mohammedism, Albigensianism, Paulicianism, in the Medieval Church
    D. Joseph Smith, Mary Baker Eddy, Charles Taze Russel at the Turn-of-the-Century, etc. All Claim “True” Apostolic Succession E. Heresiologists Never to be Trusted
    F. Ecclesiastical Scriptoria Editions of Scripture and Lectionaries not to be trusted
    G. Modern Advocates of Primitivist-Restorationism
    1. Post-Enlightenment Biblical Historical Criticism
    2. Anabaptist Evangelicals
    I. Both Communities Begin With the Quest for the Historical Text: the Quintessential Primitivist Impulse Based on the Assumption that the Text Has Been Corrupted (title of Metzger’s text)
    J. Erasmus the Progenitor of the Primitivist-Restoration Impulse in the Early Modern Era
    V. The Lower Critical Enterprise and the Rise of Historical Consciousness
    A.. Erasmus, the Received Text, and His Annotationes: The Comma Johanneum and I Tim 3:16: Paradigmatic for Text Critical Framework
    B. The Non-Conformist, Antitrinitarian Communities and the Quest for the Historical Text
    C. The Orthodox (Eastern, Western and Protestant) Uninterested in the Quest for the Historical Text
    1. Aland
    2. Dogmaticians
    3. Confessions
    D. Non-Conformists Begin the Quest in Earnest: Presumed Dogmatic Corruption of the Text
    1. Socinianism
    2. Unitarianism
    3. Cambridge Platonism
    4. Deists
    5. Isaac Newton
    6. Wettstein
    7. Joseph Priestley
    VI. Annotations, Paraphrases and Sola Scriptura (Dissertation Research: Thirty Paraphrases)
    A. Textual Variation Negates Verbal Inspiration
    B. Textual Variation Suggests Dogmatic Alteration
    C. Ideology of Harmless Engagement
    1. Richard Bentley (18th Century)
    2. Samuel P. Tregelles (19th Century) VII. The Evangelical Non-Conformists and the Birth of the Bible Society
    A. Archbishop Marsh and the Prayer Book
    B. The Revised Version 1881 and Fenton John Anthony Hort’s Final Appeal to the Ideology of Harmless Engagement
    C. Burgon’s Response
    D. James Moffatt’s Comments
    E. The American Response: Warfield and the First Neo-Orthodoxy—The Appeal to Inerrant Autographa
    1. Warfield Concedes Corruption Warfield Concedes Dogmatic Corruption: Mark 16: 9-20
    2. Warfield Advocates a Reformed Restorationism With the High Incentive of Inerrancy as the Driving Engine
    3. Contrast of Warfeild’s Restorationist Language with the Language of the Protestant Dogmaticians on Preservationism
    4. Results: The Quest for the Historical Text at Princeton Becomes the Quest for the Historical Jesus
    VIII. Warfield’s Influence on the Missouri Synod
    A. Piper Attempts to Retain Catholic Identity
    B. William Arndt Embraces Warfield’s Reformed version of Restorationism i.e. the Quest for the Historical Text
    C. The Quest for the Historical Text Raises a New Historical Consciousness Within the Missouri Synod
    D. RSV Introduced to the Missouri Synod: Restorationism Officially Endorsed
    IX. Contemporary Situation: Catholic Confessional Communities Seduced by an Extra-Ecclesial, Non-Theological, Anthropological Approach Provided by the Bible Societies
    A. Bozeman, 19th Century Protestantism and the Age of Science
    B. Nida and Soteriology C. The Inclusive Language Lectionary
    D. The Inclusive Language NIV
    E. Bart Ehrman’s The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture and the Death of the Ideology of Harmless Engagement (Quote from Lutheran Witness Article)
    F. Gordon Fee’s Sectarianism and the Art of Conjectural Emendation: Restorationism with a Vengeance
    G. The Jesus Seminar and the Admission that the Quest for the Historical Jesus Begins with the Quest for the Historical Text (same methods)
    X. Reclaiming the Bible for the Church
    A. Brevard Childs and the Canonical Method
    B. Most Recent SBL Text Criticism Section Meeting and the Historical Text
    C. Canonical Approach Post-Critical: Hence, Still Interested in the Earliest Form of the Text but the Church the Final Arbiter with Regard to the Ecclesiastical Form of the Text, i.e. the Canonical Form
    D. The Ecclesiastical Text the Only Historical Text.

    I. Prolegomena
    A. A Real Problem Exists: “Shoddiness can be found easily, in quantity: The road is smooth and it lies close by, but in front of excellence the immortal gods have put sweat, and long and steep is the way out.” So spoke Winston Churchill to his countrymen during the last great European war. As it happens this quote presently appears on the otherwise mundane cover of a brochure put out by the Boston Cigar Cutter Company, but it applies equally to our topic under consideration. We Lutherans know a little something about excellence: We gave the literary world high-German via Luther’s Bible; we gave the world of art the matchless work of Cranach and Dürer; we gave the music world Bach. But we have, however, fared far worse in the New World Context. This is because American religious culture knows nothing, really, of Continental traditions. Rather, our new world context is the peculiar backyard of that third-wing of the Reformation, the so-called Radical reformation, or Anabaptism. This is not a petty sectarian comment. It is a descriptive, sociological assessment. Butler and Noll have each recently documented the dominant principle of radical Anabaptist “democratization” within what amounts to a “sea of faith” on the American landscape. The largest theological seminary—not just in this country, but in the world—is a Southern Baptist seminary in Ft. Worth, Texas, a fair indication of who rules the roost religiously in the New World. And as a hard core of German theologians and philosophers convinced themselves in the late 30s that their academic pursuits would be best served during the second world war by legitimizing, in various degrees, the ideology of the Third Reich, so we Lutherans have been found, in various degrees, in pragmatic league with the values and practices of the New World Anabaptists. Through sheer dominance they have beat us down until we gave up our German Bible, much of our catholic identity; and the superb classical basis of our parochial educational system. But make no mistake about it, our crime is no less shameful than that of Kittle, et al. during the darks days of the Third Reich, if the implications, for the moment, are less ominous. In fact, all the major in-house discord within the Synod since our spring-cleaning of the mid-Seventies can be traced to the steady drip, drip, drip, of Anabaptist cultural influences, from church-growth debates, to the languishing of the liturgy, to the advocacy of “priestesses in the Church” (to borrow a C.S. Lewis essay title), to our association with Christianity Today Evangelicalism–all can be traced to the impact on us by this alien, New World environment in which we find ourselves. But I am here only to address one aspect of this problem: contemporary English translations of the Bible. We are presently in a crisis regarding the vernacular Bible. The Academy has been on a quest for the historical text for nearly two hundred years now, and what we have at present has been demythologized by the Bible societies. All of this while the Church has not even been consulted on either project The Bible is, in fact, no longer in the hands of the Church, to whom the Oracles of God were entrusted, but rather it is in the hands of the Bible landlords who throw up cheap tenement housing, or pretentious high-rises, as the winds of the market dictate. The Academy and the Bible societies now speak ex cathedra and the Church listens. When some one as safe as J.I. Packer, decries from the pages of World magazine that the so-called Inclusive Language NIV represents: “Adjustments made by what I call the feminist edition [which] are not made in the interests of legitimate translation procedure,” you can be certain we have a problem on our hands. He, of course, later blunted this near prophetic announcement, but that is another chapter in Evangelical politics. And our own Lutheran Witness, in November of last year (1998), offered a gallant but rather weak attempt to sort out the confusion about why we have so many Bibles on the market. In this instance I fear the author simply failed to “grasp the nettles,” to use an apt Scottish turn of expression. The looming ghost of 16th century Roman Catholic polemics against heretical Protestants putting the Bible “in the language of the people” has come to haunt us here in our New World context. We presently live in a house of horrors surrounded by the barbarous cacophony of a century’s worth of dead Bibles, found in abundance in the graveyards of every used bookstore in the English-speaking world. And their contemporary progeny scream at us from the modern corporate Christian bookstore, “please buy us” so that they might live on the tongue and in the short-term memories of the hapless thousands looking for easy access to the mind of God. They then join their ancient tribe in the dust of unwanted collections like so many old stacks of faded and discarded newspapers. Where is our concept of a sacred text? And yet we have convinced ourselves, or rather, we have been convinced by, the architects of this madhouse that we are living in the most chic of surroundings: the cobwebs, the rotting wood, the infestation of vermin, all signal to the modern situation that the Bible, while no longer univocal in its message, or even poetic in its voice, will, at least, no longer frighten away the pagan, but rather, make him feel rather at home. Thank you very much, Professor Nida. We are in fact that generation who cheered the rebuilding of the second temple only because we have forgotten, or indeed, have never experienced the beauty that was Solomon’s. We are, in fact, the modern Philistines, and I mean this in both the Biblical as well as the Nietzschen sense. The sacrifice of the beauty of holiness for contemporary relevance has seemed to us in our muddled judgment a fair exchange. What it is in fact, is a kind of subtle Bultmannianism by the back door–demytholization, ad populum. We may have chased Barth away in the 70s, but by parading the NIV into our churches, may I ask, have we not invited Bultmann in to take his place? Bleach-out the pungency of Ancient-Near Eastern patriarchy, and allow the sanitized Bible to speak to us in our own modern, comfort zone. But where does one begin to offer a kind of history-of-religions explanation for this development in the New World context—and make no mistake about it, the reason Zondervan and other American publishers have over 100 modern editions of the English Bible in their past and present catalogues is because this experience is unique to the American consumerist Sitz im Leben; there is no parallel for this in any other country in the developed world. This is, in fact, a “new world” phenomenon. We begin, as any good historian would, by returning to the old world. But before I venture into a panoramic-like historical sweep I have to address three problems that stand in our way at the outset, keeping us from getting a fresh grasp of the issues, namely, those groups that have hitherto addressed this subject in a flawed fashion. I have grouped them into three categories:
    1. Those who practice irresponsible historiography
    2. Those who practice irresponsible sectarianism
    3. Those who practice an illegitimate monopoly Irresponsible historiography.

    The first group are those contemporary Anabaptists who have, illogically, appealed to the old Anglican Bible of the Church of England, strangely enough, to legitimize their peculiar historiography, and in turn, their distinctive ecclesiology. In the first half of this century a Seventh-Day Adventist wrote a book titled: Our Authorized Version Vindicated. Here he argued that the true line of Biblical text transmission took place not amongst the catholic orthodox, whether Eastern or Western, but, rather, amongst those whom Sir Stephen Runciman termed: the Medieval Manichee . These medieval heretics were, for Wilkinson, this Seventh-Day Adventist author, his own brood. The Anabaptists readily adopted Wilkinson’s historiography, but rather than see these heretical separatists as early Seventh-Day Adventists, for them they became the faithful remnant of first-century Christianity, i.e. the progenitors of modern American Baptist fundamentalism. Hence, from this skewed historiography an entire community of Anabaptist, internet junkies have arisen claiming the most absurd notions about the honorable Anglican Bible. One women by the name of Riplinger seems to imply that the Revised Version of 1883 was channeled through Westcott and Hort during a seance. She is perfectly certifiable. For her efforts an Anabaptist institution of higher learning gave her an honorary Ph.D. A few years earlier this same institution also gave one of these worthless degrees to a horse belonging to a deceased evangelist. Irresponsible historiography.
    Irresponsible Sectarianism. Here it is not my intention to stain the good name or efforts of Beck; nor to indulge in polemics regarding the newspaper Christian News. But let me just say in brief that Beck’s Bible added next to nothing to what we already possess in either the RSV or even the NASV. To claim that to be a Lutheran we must use exclusively a translation produced by a fellow Lutheran is nothing more or less than a rather tasteless sectarianism. The discipline of text criticism has moved on since Beck produced his work. Sectarian options are not a way out of this morass. Irresponsible sectarianism.

    Finally, irresponsible monopoly. By this I mean to address the entire network of non-profit Bible societies and their relationship to both the academic community as well as to the corporate world. We all know the story about how Rupert Murdock acquired the commercial rights to the NIV, but we know far less about the history of the influence of the rise of Bible societies in the 19th century which paved the way for such activity. This story I will cover shortly and briefly in this lecture. For now let me say that since the 19th century the Church has abdicated her proper role as witness and keeper of the sacred text and has been happy to allow Evangelical separatists (who for any number of political reasons were the driving influence behind the rise of the Bible society movement) to act as hirelings in Her stead. For this the Church has paid a dear price. So much so that this arrangement appears to most today to be perfectly natural. It is not.

    Finally this last subject leads us naturally enough to address the decisive issue that is really at the heart of this topic, the sine non quo for understanding what is at stake in this discussion: ecclesiology.

    There really are only two major ecclesiologies: what I call, Catholic-Preservationism, and Primitivist-Restorationism. In terms of genus, Lutherans are the former; Anabaptists are the latter. Everyone else is located somewhere in-between on a sliding spectrum. The fundamental tenet of Catholic-Preservationism is the affirmation of traditio, that is, the transmission of ecclesiastical tradition. This is to be differentiated from the Roman notion, which illegitimately exalts tradition to a co-equal status with Scripture. This latter notion is not catholic Christianity; it is Romanism. Making this distinction as to the proper role of tradition in the life of the Church is nothing more nor less than what the Reformation was all about. The phrase sola Scriptura was meant to communicate this distinction. It never meant that scripture was to be interpreted in some naked or contextless way—“the Bible alone.” Rather, it signified that Scripture was always the norm for what constituted legitimate ecclesial traditio.

    Nearly every tenet that Romanism has distorted has its legitimate counterpart in a valid actual practice of the early church, such as apostolic succession. This concept guaranteed that there would be a legitimate traditio which accompanied the reproduction and use of the sacred text within the matrix of the orthodox (what would become the Nicene) Church. Eusebius gives classic expression to this notion in an account given by Irenaeus about Polycarp:

    Polycarp was not only instructed by apostles and conversant with many who had seen the Lord, but was appointed by apostles to serve in Asia as Bishop of Smyrna. I myself saw him in my early years, for he lived a long time and was very old indeed when he laid down his life by a glorious and most splendid martyrdom. At all times he taught the things which he had learnt from the apostles, which the Church transmits, which alone are true. These facts are attested by all the churches of Asia and by the successors of Polycarp to this day—and he was a much more trustworthy and dependable witness to the truth than Valentinus and Marcion and all other wrong-headed persons…. [H]e stayed for a while in Rome, where he won over many from the camp of these heretics to the Church of God, proclaiming that the one and only truth he had received from the apostles was the truth transmitted by the Church.

    I fully realize I am preaching to the choir here but we are not accustomed to applying these ecclesiological issues to the subjects of textual criticism and the transmission of the sacred text. If anything our notions of ecclesial import in this area tend to be in another direction altogether and that simply by default. We have deliberate notions of ecclesial implications in this realm but they are distinctly Enlightenment in nature. Note the assumptions found in the very sub-title of the standard textbook used in our seminaries and universities, Bruce Metzger’s excellent: The Text of the New Testament: Its Transmission, Corruption, and Restoration 3rd ed. Oxford University Press, 1992. Its corruption? But again, I am getting ahead of myself.

    Before we address in what sense the text became “corrupted,” I want to highlight in what way traditio functioned amongst the early catholics. There are three areas with profound dogmatic consequences in which tradito played a decisive role: In establishing:
    1) the canon;
    2) orthodox Christology;
    3) and the canonical configuration of the Biblical texts.
    We are all agreed on the legitimacy of the role of traditio in the first two instances. We moderns, however, have been conditioned never to think through the last point on the text. All three issues, however, hang together–to establish the boundaries of the canon, is to establish that body of literature from which we derive our Christology; to establish a macro-canon (the books of the Bible), is to establish a micro-canon (the textual form of each book).

    The challenge for those who want to make such a claim is the lack of any hard historical account for this last point about the canonical configuration of the text. We know when and how the canon was ratified; we know when Nicaea ruled in favor of Athanasian Christology. But we have not such an account for the establishing of the text. But that it happened, no one who has ever addressed the subject of text-types has ever denied. Just as we know “Q” existed even though no one has ever discovered it as a document, just so we know the Church made a determination about the micro-canon.

    As early as Griesbach it was recognized that the three major texts types were deliberate recensions produced regionally according to various pre-selected criteria. Eventually, Hort referred to the canonical form of the ecclesiastically sanctioned recension as the Syrian text, thus locating its geographic domain. He believed it was the result of a two-stage process which culminated in the 4th century, the very era that saw the triumph of the orthodox canon and Christology. The process that led to the emergence of this form of the text, however, Hort and all of his Enlightenment predecessors believed to have been an essential act of “corruption.” This was well before the modern consensus was in place that both the Church’s judgment on the canon, and Nicaea’s judgment on who Christ was, were both arbitrary and culturally conditioned developments, that is, that these, too, were early corruption’s of primitive Christianity.

    The chronology of these events is by no means an accident. The early Enlightenment quest for the historical text, which I know something about since this was the subject of my own Ph.D. dissertation research, was predicated upon the notion of the N.T. text’s essential editorial corruption, not just scribal slips of the pen, and as such laid the groundwork for—indeed, gave the very trajectory to—the later quest for the historical Jesus. It was the detection of corruption at the micro-canonal level during the early quest for the historical text, that breed the original hermeneutic of suspicion about the corruption of the canon at the macro level, and consequently opened the door to the quest for the historical Jesus. It was a logical development that next the corruption of all axiomatic theological deductions derived from these defective documents, namely, Nicene Christology, etc. would also be called into question.

    This is development is what Hans Frie called: The Eclipse of Biblical Narrative. How this happened to Missouri I intend to make some sense of before I finish. But before we get lost in the mire of the history of Biblical criticism lets return to the age of faith.

    We have lost a sense of a sacred text. What we have now is “the Bible of your choice”– no authoritative sacred text. As a little reminder of how the Judaeo-Christian Bible use to be regarded prior to the Enlightenment one need only take the measure of modern Islamic practice and belief. The followers of have Mohammed never experienced an “Enlightenment” in the way that we in the West did. For them the Holy Qu’ran is still a medieval document—a sacred text. One does not read the Qu’ran in translation, because it was verbally dictated by the Angel Gabrial in Arabic. Hence, it is only authoritative in its original Arabic dress. Therefore, even young Islamic students being taught the Qu’ran must learn Arabic. We don’t even require our catechumens to memorize Luther’s smaller catechism any longer. I hope everyone can appreciate why a good Islamic holds modern American Christians in such contempt. You dare to attempt to proselytize a follower of Mohammed and the first question they put to you is: “which of your many Bibles is the correct one.”

    Let’s allow John of Damascus, one of the most revered of the Greek Orthodox fathers to remind us of what it use to be like to regard our Bible as a sacred text. It was the Eastern Father, St. John of Damascus (c.675-c.749), who placed together as objects of veneration (???????????–literally bowing down to), the holy books, relics and icons, arguing that a “relative worship” was due to “objects dedicated to God, such as the holy Gospels and other books, for they have been written for our instruction, upon whom the end of the ages has come.” For St. John Damascene, not only was Holy Scripture put in the same category with the sacred icons as an object worthy of veneration, the text itself was seen as a verbal icon which functioned in the same way as a pictorial icon. In his words,….visible things are corporeal models which provide a vague understanding of intangible things. Holy Scripture describes God and the angels as having descriptive form…. Anyone would say that our inability immediately to direct our thoughts to contemplation of higher things makes it necessary that familiar everyday media be utilized to give suitable form to what is formless, and make visible what cannot be depicted, so that we are able to construct understandable analogies. If, therefore, the Word of God, in providing for our every need, always presents to us what is intangible by clothing it with form, does it not accomplish this by making an image using what is common to nature and so brings within our reach that for which we long but are unable to see? With this understanding of the Bible as, indeed, a verbal icon, it is easy to understand how part of the veneration of Scripture would include retaining a fixed form of the Scripture text, just as innovation in the reproduction of icons was taboo.

    Furthermore, this iconographic reverence for the Scripture took on a further tangible expression in the liturgy. The four Gospels particularly were the most elaborately produced manuscripts:

    Unquestionably the most sumptuous manuscripts of any part of the Scriptures produced in the middle ages…the copies of the four Gospels [were] bound in one volume, frequently with splendid covers of ivory and metal work. The Gospels were regarded with particular veneration by the faithful, and an eighth-century writer compares the entry of the gospel book of Mass to the entry of Christ himself (Wormald CHB 2:326).

    Furthermore,
    High esteem for the word of Christ is seen not only in the care and wealth expended on the writing, decorating and binding of the Gospel book, which began with the Celtic and Anglo-Saxon civilizations, but also in the fact that, with the sacramentary or the missal, it was allowed to rest on the altar…. Gradually the carrying of the gospel book to the ambo developed into a formal procession…. To the procession were added, at times, a cross bearer and a cleric carrying a cushion upon which the book was placed during the reading…. After the Gospel, the book was handed round by the subdeacon to the attendant clergy for veneration by a kiss (van Dijk CHB2:229-230).

    It is exceedingly important that one grasp the significance of what is being described here. The existential Bible, those ecclesiastical editions which from the fourth century onward, which were reproduced in cathedral and monastic scriptoria, were regarded as the sacred text. There was no post-Enlightenment bifurcation between some scientifically pristine autographic form of the text and that which functioned as sacred Scripture in the very life of the Church. The latter was the only authoritative sacred text, with apostolic sanction at the root of its transmission process. It is the extant text that is revered, not imaginary archetypal autographa.

    Furthermore, ecclesiastically sanctioned translations served the Church well and were used in opposition to non-approved rivals. Recall the debate between Augustine and Jerome regarding the authority of the LXX. On this Augustine employed his formidable rhetorical talent in defense of this Greek translation of the Hebrew Bible:

    The seventy translators enjoyed so much of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit in their work of translation, that among the number of men there was but one voice.

    Moreover, in his De civitate Dei XVIII: 42-43, he insisted further that,

    the agreement in the words of their versions was marvellous, amazing, and plainly inspired by God…. There was such a unity in their translations that it was as if there had been one translator; for in truth there was the one Spirit at work in them all. And this was the purpose of their receiving such a marvellous gift of God; that in this way the authority of those Scriptures should be emphasised, as being not human but divine…. The Church has accepted this Septuagint as if it were the only version…. For the very same Spirit that was in the prophets when they uttered their messages was at work also in the seventy scholars when they translated them…. The task of translation was achieved not by servile labour of a human bond-servant of words, but by the power of God which filled and directed the mind of the translator.

    To this day the LXX serves as the translation of the Hebrew Bible regarded as authoritative by the Eastern Church.

    And when the kind of confusion which we are experiencing today arose in the Western Church in the late 4th century regarding the Latin New Testament, because, in Jerome’s judgment, “there were almost as many [Latin] versions as codices,” to put a stop to this anarchy Pope Demasus commissioned Jerome to produce one, authoritative Latin translation of the Bible and this he did. Later, of course, the Council of Trent canonized a late version of Jerome’s work and ranked it above that of all extant Greek and Hebrew codices. But again, this is a matter of ecclesiology: the true church will have the true Bible, even if this amounts to exalting a translation over the original sources. Here we have yet another example of a good principle gone wrong in the hands of late medieval Romansim.

    Finally, both the Western as well as the Eastern orthodox branches of the church had their ecclesiastically sanctioned scriptoria for producing editions of the sacred text for use in the universities and in the liturgical life of the Church. The idea of some medieval traveling entrepreneur, a 12th century Rupert Murdock if you will, walking into the deanery of a cathedral attempting to sell some pedigreeless Biblical manuscript to the dean of the cathedral, lacking the ending of Mark, or lacking the account of the women taken in adultery, is absurd in the extreme. The Church, from the acceptance of Christianity in Constantine’s reign, when fifty Bibles were commissioned by him to fill the need required by the Church’s new-found status, to the dawn of the Reformation, the Church was indeed, to quote from the 39 Articles of the Church of England, “the witness and keeper of Holy Writ.”

    The Reformation changed everything and the key figure in this momentous transition was not Luther; it was not Calvin; it was not Tyndale; it was the Roman Catholic Dutch humanist, Desiderius Erasmus.

    Erasmus, while brought up in the ways of the Brethren of the Common Life and deposited in a monastery at an early age, found himself outside of the institutional and theological establishment. His love was for primitive Christianity—pre-Nicene, Origenic Christianity. He lived, breathed, and had his being in the early church fathers and the Greco-Roman classical traditions. With the help of Lorenzo Valla he discovered that the late medieval version of the Vulgata was in major conflict with the extant Greek editions of the Byzantine Church which he had read in his travels across Europe to the major libraries that held such MSS. Hence, his decision to produce a published edition of the Greek N.T–not a critical edition mind you, though he certainly had the materials to do so as his annotationes bear witness–was primarily driven by a primitivist-restorationist ecclesiology. This is ironic in that Erasmus never abandoned Rome formally, though he did in his heart, so to speak. Erasmus was more of an Anabaptist in his sentiment though he remained within the Roman fold; while Luther was decidedly catholic, though he abandoned Rome altogether.

    Nevertheless, the recension of the Greek N.T. that Erasmus gave the world was essentially that which arrived at the age of printing from the late medieval scriptoria of the Eastern Orthodox Church—the Greek Ecclesiastical Text. Hence, in Erasmus, in spite of his own instincts in another direction indicated by his Annotationes we have in his work the culmination of the catholic-preservationist consensus, from which all the Reformers were nurtured. For Erasmus and the Reformers who were all, to the man, indebted to Erasmus’s humanistic endeavors—and on this point the sublime work of Lewis Spitz has made a lasting and decisive contribution—ad fontes did not mean, back to the historical Greek and Hebrew editions, but back to the sanctioned ecclesiastical editions produced by monastic scriptoria and synagogue. This is because they knew of no such distinction between the historical text, and the text of faith, to use an analogy from Leben Jesu Forschung. Aland has captured this sense beautifully in all of its simplicity:

    …it is undisputed that from the 16th to the 18th century orthodoxy’s doctrine of verbal inspiration assumed…[the] Textus Receptus [i.e. Erasmus’s recension], It was the only Greek text they knew, and they regarded it as the ‘original’ text.

    This was the tangible result of the catholic-preservationist principle up to the Reformation. And surely one of the most striking features of this ecclesiology is that of a marvelous continuity from early Nicene, through medieval, to Reformation catholicism on these three vital issue of Christology, canon, and text.

    IV. Primitivist-Restorationism
    Within the parallel universe of the other major ecclesiology, Primitivist-Restorationism, all is reversed: black is white; up is down; orthodoxy is heresy; heresy is orthodoxy. Traditio is nearly always a corruption of original “Biblical Christianity.” The only era that has something to say to us authoritatively is the first century. This is the realm Krister Stendahl calls “First Century Bible Land.” Another word for this is Biblicism. No creed but Christ; no confession but the Bible.

    Every major attempt in the early church to appropriate the Christian message outside of the communities under orthodox episcopal authority was predicated upon the notion that the catholics had distorted, or “corrupted” the original teachings of Christ or of the apostles. Whether it was Gnosticism, Manichaeism, Arianism, Montanism, Nestorianism, etc., the premise was the same: Only these marginal groups, these extra ecclesia had the true traditio with which to unlock the authentic meaning of the first-century and the primary documents of the original Christian community. During the long millennium of the Middle Ages it was Mohammedism, Albigensianism, Paulicianism, etc. that made the same claims of primacy. At the turn of this century, particularly in the new world context, it was Joseph Smith, Mary Baker Eddy, Charles Taze Russell, who all claimed a recovery of the lost traditio of the early church.

    Moreover, the contemporary consensus amongst those moderns convinced that catholic Christianity was purely the result of a culturally conditioned blight of power politics and patriarchalism, is that the heresiologists of the early church were always liars. When treating the various threats to catholic Christianity, Irenaeus, Origen, Hippolytus, et al., always distorted the views of those they were opposing, thus unfairly stacking the deck in their favor. Moreover, these “fathers” of the church in their zeal to defend their Hellenistic speculations about who Christ was “corrupted” the N.T. text, making certain that it was their orthodoxy that was found in the inspired documents themselves.

    Professor Bart Ehrman, the lending N.T. text critic in America today, published a book a few years back while I was finishing up my Ph.D. at the University of Edinburgh. Here he sets forth the first systematic explanation for how this corruption, which Metzger alludes to in the title of his book, took place. It is simply the most important work in the area of N.T. text criticism published in the second half of this century. It is titled: The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture: the Effect of Early Christological Controversies on the Text of the New Testament (OUP, 1993). This work makes clear in a comprehensive way what other text critics since Hort could only hint at, namely, that the text of the New Testament has been altered for dogmatic purposes, as early as the second century, and that by the orthodox.

    An indication of how out of touch the author of the article appearing in the November 1998 issue of the Lutheran Witness is with the current discipline of New Testament text criticism can be found by contrasting his remarks with those of Ehrman in his Orthodox Corruption of Scripture. And it is here where we will begin to find our answer as to why the Missouri Synod has succumbed to Anabaptist values in this area of Bible translations: The Lutheran Witness author said the following about the doctrinal significance of the differences in the various textual renderings of the many modern translations:

    Let me make one further comment about this whole matter of different manuscript readings…. [I]n no case is any doctrine of the Christian faith affected by any of these variant readings.

    The author’s meaning is clear enough. No doctrine is ever affect by the many different readings of the many modern Bibles. Now let’s hear the world’s leading authority on this very same subject: Bart Ehrman says the following:

    The textual problems we have examined affect the interpretation of many of the familiar and historically significant passages of the New Testament: the birth narratives of Matthew and Luke, the prologue of the Fourth Gospel, the baptismal accounts of the Synoptics, the passion narratives, and other familiar passages in Acts, Paul, Hebrews, and the Catholic epistles. In some instances, the interpretations of these passages were understood by scribes who “read” their interpretations not only out of the text but actually into it, as they modified the words in accordance with what they were taken to mean…. Naturally, the same data relate to the basic doctrinal concerns of early Christians—theologians and, presumably, laypersons alike: Was Jesus the Messiah, predicted in the Old Testament? Was Joseph his father? Was Jesus born as a human? Was he tempted? Was he able to sin? Was he adopted to be the Son of God at his baptism? At his resurrection? Or was he himself God? Was Jesus one person or two persons? Did he have a physical body after his resurrection? And many others. The ways scribes answered these questions affected the way they transcribed their texts. And the way they transcribed their texts has affected, to some degree, the way modern exegetes and theologians have answered these questions (pp. 276; 281-82, n. 11).

    Here Ehrman has stated just the opposite of what the author of the Lutheran Witness article maintains. Here Ehrman tells us that everything from whether Jesus was the messiah, to whether or not he was virgin born, or if Joseph was really his father, to his deity, to his resurrection, has been affected by scribal alteration in the N.T. manuscripts. How could our Lutheran Witness author be so out of touch with the facts?

    The fact of the matter is he is laboring under an ideological commitment that is part of the Evangelical legacy from the 18th century. During the English Enlightenment Deists and antitrinitarians, such as Socninians and Unitarians were inconveniently bringing to the attention of the orthodox this sticky matter of textual variants. Richard Bentley, an orthodox text critic working on his own edition of the Greek N.T. at the time, gave an answer to this challenge that has echoed down to our Lutheran Witness author. He said in effect to his Deist antagonist that choose as he would from the mass of available manuscripts, rather, have a nave choose, and no matter which manuscript he lights upon, the very worst of the lot, all of the tenets of the Christian faith will be found there.

    Now this worked for most of the churchman of the day even though Bentley knew he would loose this bet if actually put to the test. You see the greatest mind of the day, a physicist by the name of Isaac Newton, has just written a treatise where he documented his discovery of “Two Notable Corruptions of Scripture.” They were the three heavenly witnesses in I John 5, and the reading “God was manifest in the flesh” of I Tim. 3:16. These textual corruptions led Newton to the following conclusion:

    By these instances it’s manifest that the scriptures have been very much corrupted in the first ages & chiefly in the fourth Century in the times of the Arian Controversy. And to the shame of Christians be it spoken the Catholics are here much more guilty of these corruptions than the heretics…. The Catholics ever made the corruptions (so far as I can yet find) & then to justify & propagate them exclaimed against the Heretics & old Interpreters, as if the ancient genuine readings & translations had been corrupted…. All which I mention out of the great hatred I have to pious frauds, & to shame Christians out of these practices (Newton 1961:138-139)

    Bentley knew of Newton’s text critical work and realized that on the basis of these two variants Newton was confirmed in his antitrinitarianism. And yet Bentley publicly maintained in the heat of polemical debate that no doctrine whatsoever was ever affected by textual variation. I call this stance the ideology of harmless engagement because that is just what it is—an ideological projection, rather than a reality.

    This ideology was taken up once again in the mid-nineteenth century by the Plymouth Brethren disciple, Samuel P. Tregelles in a book titled, An Historical Account of the Printed Text of the Greek New Testament, another propaganda piece meant to calm the fears of the pious. It was taken up one final time by the late 19th century Princetonian, B.B. Warfield. Warfield gave a new twist to his attempt to domesticate of the threat of textual variation to the doctrine of verbal inspiration. He now claimed that no matter the state of the extant text, it was, after all, only the original text that was authoritative at any rate! This was completely out of step with his own 17th century confessional standards as well as out of step with his own continental Reformed dogmatic consensus (as it is with Lutheran dogmatics as well—see Robert Preus) which argued that the extant edition was infallible. And to this innovative adjustment he added a new theological term borrowed from astronomy, “inerrancy,” rather than use the traditional term of “infallibilitas.”

    Hence, on this point Warfield became a genuine restorationist, because if he vested final authority in the autographs alone, one must now go on a search for these lost standards before one can have full inerrancy. The implications for this were nothing short of remarkable. In his quest for the historical text Warfield was quite willing to give up the earliest resurrection account from the earliest Gospel as a fabrication.

    So Warfield abandoned any defense of the existing manuscripts and strictly in order to win the argument, shifted his defense to only the original manuscripts (which were beyond the scrutiny of his critics, you see). Hence, in Warfield’s own words, he had no intention of any longer defending the existing Bible as had his forefather’s and hence would not

    assert that the common text, but only that the original autographic text was inspired. No “error” can be asserted, therefore, which cannot be proved to have been aboriginal in the text.

    Furthermore, he now claimed that science, rather than the church, would now present us, at some future date, with this “original” text:

    The inerrant autographs were a fact once; they may possibly be a fact again, when textual criticism has said its last word on the Bible text. In proportion as they are approached in the processes of textual criticism, do we have an ever better and better Bible than the one we have now

    Science will be the means of their “restoration”:

    The autographic text of the New Testament is distinctly within the reach of criticism in so immensely the greater part of the volumes, that we cannot despair of restoring to ourselves and the Church of God, His Book, word for word, as he gave it by inspiration.

    Furthermore, Warfield’s confidence in science to do this was boundless:

    So far from the Bible being less subject to criticism than other books, we are bound to submit its unique claims to a criticism of unique rigor. Criticism is the mode of procedure by which we assure ourselves that it is what it claims to be.

    So the conclusion we are drawn to by this ecclesiology is that nearly all post-apostolic tradition is corruption (i.e. creeds, confessions, patristic consensus about definitions of orthodoxy and heresy), and that only the first century is normative, Stendahl’s “First Century Bible Land.”

    Ironically enough, today this is the platform of both the discipline of contemporary historical Biblical criticism, as well as that of contemporary Anabaptist-Evangelical ecclesiology. Both communities assume the essential corruption of post-apostolic Christianity, beginning in the second century and reaching its full expression in the seven ecumenical creeds. Hence, it is no surprise that primitivists from the Anabaptist-Evangelical community find the quest for the historical text as necessary to their project, as is the quest for the historical Jesus for the Biblical critics. But in reality, both projects are merely different steps in a single progression leading to the same goal: to repristinate first-century traditions, predicated upon the notion that the Church has corrupted first her documents, and then her theology, and then covered up both facts by creating a false history of the events. It makes perfect sense, therefore, that these religious as well as academic restorationists should be driven by the same noble motivation to obtain this original primitive tradition: only a restoration of first-century realities can save us from this present disaster.

    You see, there is a moral imperative here. We are not simply dealing with another set of options in this wondrous age of pluralism. For both groups, this project is driven by a moral imperative, not simply an abstract academic interest. From whichever of these two vantage points one begins, either the religious or the academic the certainty upon which they are founded is that there is corruption here and it must be set right! Primitive-Restorationism.

    Certainly it is clear enough that this principle is in place amongst these non-catholic, non-confessional groups. But what does that really have to do with catholic, confessional, Lutherans? Well, in light of what happened to Missouri in the post-war era leading to the great exile of the 70s, surely this story touches us at some point. This primitivist-restorationist principle must have entered our ranks at some point. And so it did, via the academic community. What I am arguing today is, however, that we are under threat from the same infiltration, only in this phase it is from the Anabaptist-Evangelical sector.

    Two factors have influenced Missouri toward a restorationist ecclesiology: the adaptation of Warfield’s quest for the historical text, which always culminates in the quest for the historical Jesus. And the relegating of all Bible production and circulation to Bible societies beginning in the 19th century.

    Francis Pieper, who was a contemporary of Warfield’s stood his ground within confessional Lutheran ranks and would not give way to the restorationist mentality. One could say he was catholic in his stance on the text. The following are his judicious statements on the subject: …

    [I]n the seminary we can use the various modern critical editions and the textus receptus side by side without any difficulty. Even if we did not have the results of modern textual criticism and had to rely solely on the textus receptus, on which practically all of Luther’s translation and the Authorized Version are based, the Christian Church would not be poorer in the knowledge of the divine truth. What the Church lacks in our day is not a reliable text of the Bible, but the faith in the sufficiently reliable text ( Pieper, vol.I, p. 340).

    You see how very different is Pieper’s stance to that of Warfield—no claims that unless we have autographa we have no real Biblical authority. Rather, his stress is on our lack of belief in the message of the text handed down to us by the Church, the Ecclesiastical text.

    But by the time Warfield’s seduction of Princeton into the quest for the historical text came to stop in the quest for the historical Jesus–1929 was the year Princeton was reorganized so as to accept the so-called “higher criticism”–William Arndt had made certain that Missouri was now also involved in Warfield’s quest. In an article he had published in the Concordia Theological Monthly in 1934, he now abandoned any idea of an ecclesiastically preserved text and provided Missouri academics and students with the rules with which they, too, could now join in the quest for the historical text On the first page of this essay the title of B.B. Warfield’s manual on N.T. text critical technique is prominently displayed. And here we also hear the echo of Warfield’s influence on Arndt:

    In general, we must remember that this discussion has nothing to do with the doctrine of inspiration, because it was only the original autographs that were inspired and covered by the divine promise of infallibility. The copies present the inspired text to the extent to which they reproduce the original.

    And there is the rub—to the extent that they reproduce the original. This is the post-Enlightenment bifurcation introduced by Warfield at Princeton. It demands that we go on a perpetual quest for the historical text and as long as autographic certainty is in doubt, inspiration is in doubt, and your guess is as good as mine as to how the original read.

    Hence, by 1947, with the arrival of the RSV where Mary is no longer referred to as a virgin in the book of Isaiah, but as a young maiden, Missouri was now ready to also engage the quest for the historical Jesus. A new historical consciousness had arrived.

    THE BIBLE SOCIETIES

    With the rise of the British and Foreign Bible Society in the early 19th century (1804) we discover something without precedent in the history of the Church. An organization made up primarily of non-conformist evangelicals who were in keen opposition to the established Anglican Church of England, which was, of course responsible for producing and licensing the English Bible since the days of Coverdale. This extra ecclesiam Bible society movement was clearly a rival not only to the theology, liturgy, traditions and interpretation of the Bible of the Church of England, but they were even responsible for removing the apocrypha from the established, the Authorized Version, which had appeared in Luther’s German Bible and every English Bible since Wycliffe! It was their strategy to circulate the Bible like an evangelistic tract, with no ecclesiastical associations whatsoever. The Bible minus all traditio.
    In response to this development Bishop Herbert Marsh, then Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity at Cambridge, wrote a not so popular treatise against the Bible Societies. Prof. Marsh was, perhaps the most critically informed churchman in the first half of the 19th century. He is characterized in the Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church in the following terms:

    The early years of his episcopate were marked by controversy arising from his anti-Evangelical measures and his refusal to license clergy of Calvinist beliefs. His profound and extensive erudition, his clear and active mind, his belief in the Establishment [of the church], his ideal of rigid uniformity in matters of doctrine and liturgical practice, and his capacity for business made him the foremost English bishop of his age.

    A significant figure in the tumultuous period of the 19th century and one whom I suspect might feel right at home on this campus.

    In his treatise, An Inquiry into the Consequences of Neglecting to give the prayer book with the Bible Interspersed with Remarks on Some Late Speeches at Cambridge and other Important Matter Relative to the British and Foreign Bible Society, 1812, he let it be known that the work of the Bible Society was anything but helpful to the cause of the established Church of England:

    Whoever objects to the British and Foreign Bible Society is invariably asked: Where is the harm of giving away a Bible? I will answer therefore by saying, None whatever. In the contrary, the more widely the Scriptures are disseminated, the greater in all respects must be the good produced. Having answered this question, and, as I hope, to the satisfaction of every member in the Society, I beg leave to ask in my turn; Where is the harm of giving away a Prayer Book?…. Can it therefore be a matter of indifference, whether the poor of our establishment are provided with Prayer Books? Do we perform our duty, do we properly provide for their religious instruction, if we provide them only with the Bible, and leave them unprovided with the Prayer Book?…. When we further consider, that there is at present hardly a town, or even a village, which is not visited by illiterate teachers, who expound the Bible with more confidence than the most profound theologian, it becomes doubly necessary, if we would preserve the poor of the establishment in the religion of their fathers, to provide them with a safeguard against the delusions of false interpretation. And what better safeguard can we offer than the Book of Common Prayer, which contains the doctrines of the Bible, according to its true exposition; in which those doctrines are applied, throughout the prayers and collects, to the best purposes of religion, and are condensed in a manner, which is intelligible to all, in that excellent formulary the Church Catechism?

    Substitute the TV evangelist for the itinerant preacher, the Book of Common Prayer for Luther’s Small Catechism, and these are the kinds of questions we should also be asking in our contemporary situation.

    **** Currently the Bible societies, which are bound to no confessional standards, and not the Church, provide us with our notion of canon, text, and even our theological understanding of the text. The cross-cultural communications experts and social anthropologists in the employ of the Bible societies have become of new scribes and exegetes. We accept from their scriptoria, their judgments on canon, text and interpretation. A classic example can be found in one of Eugene Nida’s examples of how the content of Biblical theology should be modified for purpose of communicating to the non-churched a consumer friendly Gospel. E. A. Nida, the American Bible Society’s former Executive Secretary for Translations and the major proponent of the dynamic-equivalence theory, gives an example showing why a major tenet of historic Christianity—perhaps its very foundation—such as the dogma of the substitutionary atonement of Christ, should be exchanged for a concept that would be more readily understood in a given culture:

    One of the most common interpretations of the atonement has been substitutionary, in the sense that Christ took upon Himself our sins and died in our place as a substitutive sacrifice. This interpretation, true and valuable as it may be for many, is not communicable to many persons today, for they simply do not think in such categories…. [T]he presentation of the Atonement in terms of reconciliation is more meaningful, since in this way they can understand more readily how God could be in Christ reconciling the world to Himself.

    This example deals with translation. What about the canonical form of the text. Gordon Fee provides us with a most telling example of where we are headed once we begin the quest for the historical text.

    In his massive work, running to nearly a thousand pages, titled: God’s Empowering Presence: the Holy Spirit in the Letters of Paul, 1994, we have what Fee himself might well regard a his magnum opus. Here Fee flies high his Pentecostal colors interwoven with profound and substantive scholarship. But it is a very interesting text critical excursus found in this work that I want to highlight. On pages 272-281 Fee provides us with one of the boldest arguments for the viability of conjectural emendation one will find in all the literature dealing with text critical matters. Fee’s point is that the reading in I Cor. 14:34-35, regarding women keeping silent in the churches, “…is almost certainly not by Paul, nor does it belong to this argument. This means of course, that it offers no help in our search for the place of the Spirit in the Pauline experience of Christ and in his theology,” (p. 281). In short, this prohibition against women speaking in Church, which traditionally has been seen as a proof text against priestesses in the Church, was a corruption on the part of later, patriarchal orthodox scribes who wanted to make certain their power base was safe from the intrusion from, Fee might add, women believing themselves to be empowered by the Spirit to preach.

    Now because Fee is one of the leading N.T. text critics alive today, an authority on John’s text and patristic citations in particular, his argument carries a good bit of weight within the discipline. But were he not an Evangelical Pentecostal, who believes a priori that women should be ordained to the priesthood his argument might carry even more weight. Were he an Greek Orthodox priest making such an argument I might feel more inclined to take seriously what he has to say on this passage. As it stands, to appeal to the weakest of all arguments—a conjectural emendation, a guess really, with no documentary manuscript evidence to speak of– must strike even the most disinterested as rather tendentious. And of course, it is.

    My final example of where the Bible societies have left us, now that they have us, the Church, in their vortex. The so-called Inclusive Language NIV. I will not go into the history of this Bible since it is still a fresh item well documented by World Magazine (bless their souls for being the first institution to take on Zondervan in their near 30 year history of having everything their own way regarding the NIV. I want to dispel the notion that what they did with this Bible was harmless and did no injustice to the text nor the Church. I want to do this by comparing and contrasting what the Committee on Bible Translation who produced both the NIV and the Inclusive Language edition say about the goal of this translation, with what the Inclusive Language Lectionary Committee said in the introduction to their Biblical text, produced by the National Council of Churches back in 1983. First the NCC’s Lectionary, which refers to “Our Mother who art in Heaven” and to the Son of Man as “the Human One.”

    The Inclusive Language Lectionary Committee…revised only in those places where male-biased or otherwise inappropriately exclusive language could be modified to reflect an inclusiveness of all persons ( preface, p. 2).

    Now the Inclusive Language NIV:

    …it was recognized that it was often appropriate to mute the patriarchalism of the culture of the biblical writers through gender-inclusive language when this could be done without compromising the message of the Spirit.

    First allow me to observe that this is the flimsiest of criteria: “the message of the Spirit,” rather than the actual wording of the text? What community subjectively makes that decision to everyone’s satisfaction? Secondly, note that both publications aim to do away with illegitimate first century patriarchalism from which they believe the N.T. authors suffer. The NCC lectionary is a little more thorough-going than is the NIV, actually altering traditional and Biblical male gender pronouns and nouns for God and Jesus, while the NIV holds back here. But what is to say that with barriers coming down and dialogue proceeding apace that in a few years hence, NIV translators might agree with there NCC counterparts and suddenly realize that the “message of the Spirit” has been compromised by male terms for God and Christ. There simply is no one in charge.

    RECLAIMING THE BIBLE FOR THE CHURCH To borrow the title from a most appropriate book title, we simply must reclaim the Bible for the Church, taking it away from the new Bible landlords.
    This must be accomplished in two fields:
    1) that of text criticism;
    2) and dominance of the non-theological, anthropological, and ideological agenda of the Bible societies.

    Regarding the first realm, the canonical method can help cure this insatiable need to continue this futile search for the historical quest. This artificial craving can be defeated by rediscovering our original orthodox paradigm of Biblical authority given to us by our Lutheran dogmatic tradition as wonderfully distilled to us Robert Preus Edinburgh Ph.D. dissertation, the Inspiration of Scripture. Once we rediscover that it was always the extant text, contrary to Arndt, that was the locus of Biblical authority and never the autographa we are a long way down the road to recovering our senses. We then need to take very seriously Brevard Childs program for canonical exegesis. This approach validates in a wonderful way the final form, or, if you will, the ecclesiastical recensions as the only form of the text that can provide us with anything like a Biblical theology. Finally, sober look at the history of the quest for the historical text would certainly be enough for all but the specialist to abandon this task as flawed by design. I have been a regular participant at the Society of Biblical Literature N.T. text criticism section for over 15 years this past years topic was the most gripping to date. “What do we mean by original text? The consensus was that it is impossible to repristinate the original, and Eldon Jay Epp even recommended that the best we can come up with are various expressions of the “canonical” text.

    With regard to the Bible societies, we need to take more seriously the history of the English Bible and the various theological criteria that have historically informed this most sacred of tasks. Do we even teach such courses in our universities and seminaries any longer. In Great Britain, David Daniell, almost single-handedly has been waging a war against the contemporary English Bible landlords through the platform of the Tyndale Society and by means of a modern spelling edition of Tyndale’s Bible. Others such as Gerald Hammand, and Ward Allen, genuine authorities in the Renaissance Bible, have also been on this crusade. It seems the literary communtiy has always felt the loss of the Renaissance Bible tradition with a keener pathos than the jaded and punch-drunk contemporary culture chasers within the American religious community—how very ironic!

    I close with words from one of the most prophetic of 16th century Lutherans, William Tyndale, in his introduction to the laymen who would read his English Bible, as the very sacred text itself:

    Then go to and read the stories of the bible for thy learning and comfort, and see every thing practiced before thine eyes: for according to those examples shall it go with thee and all men until the world’s end. So that into whatsoever case or state a man may be brought, according to whatsoever example of the bible it be, his end shall be according as he there seeth and readeth. As God there warneth ere he smite, and suffereth long ere he take extreme vengence, so shall he do with us. As they that turn, are there received to mercy, and they that maliciously resist perish utterly, so shall it be with us. As they that resist the counsel of God perish through their own counsel, so shall it be with us until the world’s end. As it went with their kings and rulers, so shall it go with ours. As it was wi

  154. Paul,

    On March 21st you stated, ” I will not copy and paste a long article to detract from how I am engaging anyone.”
    :
    Now, please explain you March 22nd post.

  155. That article is about church history and textual issues. Not about a Prayer Book edition or music or liturgy. I thought you all would like it and thuoght it would be useful. Plus, you guys like Ted Letis.
    That is all.
    Paul

  156. Paul,
    :
    Please read the following excerpts from the XXXIX Articles, the 1662 BCP and the 1552 BCP.
    ::
    XXVIII. Of the Lord’s Supper.
    THE Supper of the Lord is not only a sign of the love that Christians ought to have among themselves, one to another, but rather it is a sacrament of our redemption by Christ’s death: insomuch that to such as rightly, worthily, and with faith receive the same, the bread which we break is a partaking of the body of Christ, and likewise the cup of blessing is a partaking of the blood of Christ.
    Transubstantiation (or the change of the substance of bread and wine) in the Supper of the Lord, cannot be proved by Holy Writ, but is repugnant to the plain words of Scripture, overthroweth the nature of a Sacrament, and hath given occasion to many superstitions.
    The body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten in the Supper, only after an heavenly and spiritual manner. And the mean whereby the body of Christ is received and eaten in the Supper is Faith.
    The Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper was not by Christ’s ordinance reserved, carried about, lifted up, or worshipped.
    ::
    ::
    XXIX. Of the wicked which do not eat the body of Christ, in the use of the Lord’s Supper.
    THE wicked and such as be void of a lively faith, although they do carnally and visibly press with their teeth (as S. Augustine saith) the sacrament of the body and blood of Christ, yet in no wise are they partakers of Christ, but rather to their condemnation do eat and drink the sign or sacrament of so great a thing.
    :
    :
    Final rubric of the 1662 Book of Common Prayer (Lord’s Supper)
    :
    “WHEREAS it is ordained in this Office for the Administration of the Lord’s Supper, that the Communicants should receive the same kneeling; (which order is well meant, for a signification of our humble and grateful acknowledgment of the benefits of Christ therein given to all worthy Receivers, and for the avoiding of such profanation and disorder in the holy Communion, as might otherwise ensue;) yet, lest the same kneeling should by any persons, either out of ignorance and infirmity, or out of malice and obstinacy, be misconstrued and depraved: It is hereby declared, That thereby no adoration is intended, or ought to be done, either unto the Sacramental Bread or Wine there bodily received, or unto any Corporal Presence of Christ’s natural Flesh and Blood. For the Sacramental Bread and Wine remain still in their very natural substances, and therefore may not be adored; (for that were Idolatry, to be abhorred of all faithful Christians;) and the natural Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ are in Heaven, and not here; it being against the truth of Christ’s natural Body to be at one time in more places than one.”
    :
    :

    Final rubric of the 1552 Book of Common Prayer (Lord’s Supper)
    :
    Although no order can be so perfectly devised, but it may be of some, either for their ignorance and infirmity, or else of malice and obstinance, misconstrued, depraved, and interpreted in a wrong part: And yet because brotherly charity willeth, that so much as conveniently may be, offences should be taken away: therefore we willing do the same. Whereas it is ordained in the book of common prayer, in the administration of the Lord’s Supper, that the Communicants kneeling should receive the holy Communion: which thing being well meant, for a signification of the humble and grateful acknowledging of the benefits of Christ, given unto the worthy receiver, and to avoid the profanation and disorder, which about the holy Communion might else ensue: Lest yet the same kneeling might be thought or taken otherwise, we do declare that it is not meant thereby, that any adoration is done, or ought to be done, either unto the Sacramental bread or wine there bodily received, or unto any real and essential presence there being of Christ’s natural flesh and blood. For as concerning the Sacramental bread and wine, remain still in their very natural substances, and therefore may not be adored, for that were Idolatry to be abhorred of all faithful christians. And as concerning the natural body and blood of our saviour Christ, they are in heaven and not here. For it is against the truth of Christ’s natural body, to be at one time in more places than one, at one time.
    :
    :
    AS you will notice the positions stated here is definitely not Lutheran. They are Reformed closer to the Zwinglian and Calvinist positions than to that of Luther. Now, you sign your affirmation to the 30 Articles of Religion of 1804 and not that of the 1572??. But there is not essential difference in these two articles. The more anglo-catholic friendly 1928 Prayer Book does not have either of the two rubrics listed. The rubric of 1662 excludes both the anglo-catholic position, the roman position and the Lutheran position. It puts the sacrament squarely in the ballpark of the Reformed side. Lutherans maybe reformed but they are not Reformed. Consider carefully your position in historic Anglicanism. You may not be there and you are not the Anglican answer. I know you are new to Anglicanism, therefore, I would suggest that you learn from those of us who have been in Anglicanism all our life. We have seen what it once was and what it has come to. We know what it can be.

    joe

  157. Joe,
    I have been Anglican since around 2003/2004. I joined out of conviction.
    The Article on Sacraments:
    XXV. Of the Sacraments.
    Sacraments ordained of Christ be not only badges or tokens of Christian men’s profession, but rather they be certain sure witnesses, and effectual signs of grace, and God’s good will towards us, by the which he doth work invisibly in us, and doth not only quicken, but also strengthen and confirm our Faith in him.

    I understand the Lutheran and Reformed influences in the Anglican narrative.There is no “calvinist” understanding of the sacraments. There is an Anglican understanding which is influenced by Lutheran and Reformed.

    I love Cranmer, Hooker, Dean John William Burgon, and Samuel Wilberforce.

    Joe…if you are a calvinist leaning Anglican…great. There is room in Anglicanism for calvinists.
    I prefer Protestant Episcopal.
    Paul

  158. Paul,

    Read Article XXVIII, “The body of Christ is given, taken, and eaten in the Supper, only after an heavenly and spiritual manner. And the mean whereby the body of Christ is received and eaten in the Supper is Faith.”

    This is Calvinistic, so the Lutherans understood it. Then there is this, “For the Sacramental Bread and Wine remain still in their very natural substances, and therefore may not be adored; (for that were Idolatry, to be abhorred of all faithful Christians;) and the natural Body and Blood of our Saviour Christ are in Heaven, and not here; it being against the truth of Christ’s natural Body to be at one time in more places than one.” (Rubric 1662)

    Doesn’t this sound a little on the Zweinglian side?

    Anglican since 2005!!!!!!! and I since 1950. Delta 55.

  159. Cranmer’s view is clearly somewhere between Calvin and Zwingli. The Lutheran view is forbidden by Article XXIX. Sorry, Paul.

    Charlie

  160. Guys,
    I am not saying I hold to a “lutheran” view.
    I am saying that the Articles and liturgy are “influenced” by Lutheran and Reformed.
    You can see this tension in the various articles.
    I agree totally that there is NO change in the bread and wine. It is still bread and wine. And of course the eating is spiritual. No one is debating this.
    But read the Anglican liturgy and Articles on the sacraments and you can see a tension between a calvinist and lutheran view. This tension is unique to Anglicanism.
    I appreciate that tension. We have the influences from the best Protestant communities.
    And let me state again….I think it is great that Anglicanism has had room for calvinists.
    Paul

  161. Paul,

    What you have noticed and call tension was a political ploy by the government of Elizabeth Regina. The articles and other statements are almost pure Calvinism clotherd in Lutheran language. The Lutherans were not fooled by this. It was a dangerous time and England felt a need to be friends on both sides, Protestand and Reformed. History tells us that the Lutherans were so angry at the Reformed side that they made a tready with the papist allowing the overlord to determine the religion of their fiefs but left the Reform areas without any such protection, such was the tension between them. England was in much more danger because of heredity claims. Anglicanism does have its own distinctions which were more in the realm of the liturgical and ecclesiastical.
    :
    However, you did state, “There is no “calvinist” understanding of the sacraments.” But I think that both Article XXVIII and the rubric of 1662 both boldly state a position far from the Lutheran position and well within the Calvinistic sphere.

  162. The language of the Articles and Liturgy is Anglican, not Calvinist. You can feel Calvinist and Lutheran influences.
    And all the Protestant traditions and statements were influenced by the political circumstances of their time.
    Paul

  163. http://www.the-highway.com/supper1_Calvin.html

  164. Joe
    I used to be a Calvinist. In fact, there are a number of things Calvin believed that I still believe. Calvin believed Jesus’ mother did not ahve any other biological kids, I share that view. Calvin believed in weekly communion, so do I.
    I used to read Calvinist stuff all the time. I have been donating my calvinist books to others for the last few years. I have been building my Anglican library.
    Samuel Wilberforce, Dean John William burgon, etc.
    If you are comfortable being a Calvinist that is cool. I am trying to grow my anglican library and allow the Anglican narrative to shape my frame of reference.
    Paul

  165. Paul,

    My purpose is not to be a Calvinist. My purpose is to point out to you that in regard to the Lord’s Supper that the Anglican position is essentially Reformed which embraces Calvinism but not limited to Calvinism. Calvin did in fact have influence on Anglicanism, so you should keep your Calvinist literature if you want to be Anglican. I am comfortable with Calvinism but I do no refer to myself as a Calvinist, Reformed yes, but not Calvinist. My preference is simply Christian.
    :
    Now concerning the Lord’s Supper, if you read the link and the Articles of Religion and the rubric you will see that they all agree essentially. One may say the Anglican position is Anglican, Reformed, and Calvinistic. Though the language borrowed heavily from the Lutherans, changes were made to Lutheran language to make it say Reformed or Calvinistic. Apply the art of logic in reading and do not let you understanding be colored by the Lutheran phrases. Minor changes in words make hugh differences in meaning.
    :
    Now, why would I not want to call myself a Calvinist? Well, you pointed out a good reason. Calvin believed that Mary remained a virgin even after the birth of Jesus. The Scriptures do not bear out this point, in fact logically read Joseph did in fact know his wife but only after the birth of Jesus. “Till” in a past tense sentence says an occurance took place. We have had this discussion before. Calvin was a man and, yes, he could be wrong on points.
    :
    I know that you have accepted so called Anglican positions that actually are post Reformation. The century after the Reformation brought much upheavel in England. The Caroline Divines were actually moving away from Reformed Anglicanism. Laud did the Church no favor. He may have cost the king his head. And, by the way, he lost his own head.
    :
    Now there are those who hail theological diveristy in the Church, even in points of contrary theology. These contrary theologies require, toleration. But the tolerantion tends to convert from being tolerant to being liberal. I believe that Anglicanism has come to be what it is by the accetation of all differences. The Episcopal Church is the logical outcome of this attitude. It accepts every thing but the Biblical position. You know the big tent. Paul, there are churches who hold position similar to yours. Your conversations with them would be a whole lot less combative. I’ll be honest with you; my theology is a strict reading of the Scriptures. Whatever any theologian says, if it does not jive with Holy Writ, it is just so many words. I accept that people have private beliefs, but they have no right to force them on anyone else and especially on the Church. Let all doctrine find it foundation and proof from the Bible. Calvin’s belief in the ever virginity of Mary does not.

  166. ….continued…
    But Calvin’s doctrine of the Lord’s Supper is comfortable with the Scriptures and that is why there is no essential differnce between Calvinism and Anglicanism on this point.

  167. Joe
    I dont see Anglicanism as being inherently calvinist. I see calvinism’s influence. And I dont see a Lutheran influence as being bad.
    Again-no one can doubt the theological integrity and strength of Dean John William Burgon (or Richard Hooker for that matter). They are Protestant, but not Calvinist. This is not bad.
    And I do think the 39 Articles are the sufficient boundaries for Anglican doctrine. I have said again…I believe what the Articles say about the sacraments.
    Paul

  168. Paul,
    Let’s go back to what you wrote<
    “Joe

    I disagree with the following:

    “The Church of England adopted a strictly Calvinist view of the two sacraments (baptism and communion).”
    The Articles, on the sacraments, do not sound strictly calvinist. They sound Protestant”
    :
    The whole point is the distinction between “Protestant” and “Reformed”. Protestant rightly refers to Luther and his followrs. Reformed covers Zwingli, Calvin, Bullinger, Cranmer, Matthews, Jewel, etc. The Doctrine of grace was accepted from the Protestant side. But the two sacraments are Reformed and not Lutheran. They are Calvinistic; that is the purpose of laying the XXXIX articles out beside the writings of Calvin. It is not to say that there is no Lutheran influences in Anglicanism. But the removal of altars, crosses, candles, that is the thread bear ornamentation certainly shows Calvinistic influences in Anglicanism. Far more Calvinistic influences than Lutheran. May I remind you that your bishop brags of his Calvinism and his church which depends of his apostolic lineage must be Calvinistic as well.

  169. Joe,
    I celebrate the different influences within Anglicanism. Those who are Calvinist leaning (Ryle) and those who are High Churchman (Burgon and Wilberforce).
    I do not have difficulty with this. I believe the two influences are what make Anglicanism unique. Let the calvinist influence speak to issues of concern and let the High church Anglicans (still Protestant but more influenced by Lutheran) both sharpen each other and help keep the balance.
    I can celebrate the richness that we have because of the best of both sides taht make up this wonderful faith known as Anglicanism.
    Rev. Paul

  170. Paul,

    It is just that sort of thinking which has led to the situation we’re in now with the Anglican Communion. It’s high time for Evangelicals to stop caving in to such silliness. Anglicanism at the time of Cranmer was Calvinist and Zwinglian on the sacraments. There is no room for any Lutheran view of consubstantiation or baptismal regeneration.

    Likewise, Article 17 on predestination shoots down the compromise view of Melanchthon since Article 17 upholds both the predestination of the elect and the reprobation of the wicked, who have to fear before the “sentence” of predestination.

    Article 17 is thoroughly Calvinistic and even Zwinglian on predestination. And I would argue that Luther himself was closer to Calvin on predestionation than Melanchthon was.

    Likewise, Article 10 clearly says that no one can regenerate himself by turning from his own sin. No, grace must precede a man’s turning to God. This means that God is sovereign over man’s conversion.

    Charlie

  171. I wouldn’t dare part with even ONE of my Reformed resources. I have learned much more from reading Reformed theology than I ever learned in reading Methodist or Anglican sources. Even W.H. Griffith Thomas is a light weight on the dispensational side of things.

    I have to say that the best Anglican theology I have read to date is Thomas Cranmer. And Hooker’s Discourse on Justification is an excellent piece as well.

    Charlie

  172. Charlie
    You and I agree on Hooker’s discourse on Justification.

    Joe-I appreciate your passion for the calvinist voice in Anglicanism.

    Best to both of you.
    Paul

  173. Hope? No, we dare not, if the current ecclesiastical choices are all we have.

    To not affirm boldly and regularly the distinctly Protestant doctrines of the Bible (found in the Articles), and not contend AGAINST all things Roman, is to betray one’s Anglican heritage (pun intended). But more seriously, it is to deny the Apostolic faith once delivered.

    I know none of you personally, nor have had any personal dealings with the religious societies you name. I simply see a downgrade in the REC when they join with the APA and the hopeless ACNA.

    One thing that bears thought: Should we now trust those such as Duncan & Co. who for decades had fellowship in TEC darkness?

    What evidence have we that anything has changed? Have they repented of their compromises, liberal hermeneutics, etc.?

    Have they denounced anything in Anglicanism other than sodomy?

    For truth,
    Hugh


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