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John Miller (28/01/2013 11:30)
That all depends on the message that he preaches and the doctrine that he teaches. If he is true to the Holy Scriptures, and I sincerely trust that this will be his position, his main opposition will be the liberals.
Incidentally, I suppose that when you refer to "liberals" you mean those who have a liberally loose and careless way of reading, believing and applying the word of God.
BeM.CRC. (Guest) (28/01/2013 15:20) Well now. It would be unthinkable that "evangelicals" would have a liberally loose and careless way of reading, believing and applying the Word of God. Especially with regard to church finances and the integrity of Scripture.
I am. A bemused, cynical, reformed, calvinist!
Alasdair (Guest) (28/01/2013 16:33) Well, John, I certainly don't think his main opposition will be from the liberals at all. Sadly, it's a bit like politics. The liberals (and this description is so wide as to be meaningless, but it is a convenient shorthand) could be regarded as the "opposition" (if you like) but any politician will tell you that his/her real enemies are not the "opposition" but are to be found in his/her own party. I suspect that Alastair Duncan's main opposition will be from people who consider themselves to be Bible believing Christians and rejoice in their own impecable doctrinal soundness. This tired and unedifying debate (if it can be called such) has little now to do with Scripture or with doctrine. It's much more a matter of human pride, who wins and who loses. For those who have spent the past few months pouring out their bile on the C of S, it would be intolerable for St George's Tron now to rise from the ashes. But maybe it will. Personally, that is my hope and prayer.
John Miller (28/01/2013 18:48)
Alasdair if you think that "this tired and inedifying debate has little to do with scripture or (biblical) doctrine I'm afraid that you and I are very far apart in our judgement of the situation that existed in the C of S's dispute with Wm. Philip and his flock in particular and the denomination's stance on the issue of homosexuality in its membershipa and ordination in general.
I agree that human pride in its independance from God is the issue, but the teaching of the Holy Scriptures, God's inerrant and infallible word, have created a division between good and evil.
Just as in the days of Moses we have a clear choice between good and evil, life and death (Deut 30:15-20). We either choose the good, which results in the enjoyment of spiritual life according to God and all the rich blessings that it affords, or we choose the evil which leads to spiritual starvation and a moribund state of separation from the enjoyment of what the Holy Spirit offers us for our nourishment, feeding on the Bread of Heaven.
charis (Guest) (29/01/2013 19:09)
THERE WAS A MOVEMENT IN THE LATE 70'S, EARLY 80'S CALLED CONCERN FOR THE KIRK.IT SEEMS TO ME ALL THEIR PROPHESIES HAVE BEEN FULFILLED.I SEEM TO RECALL THEY FILLED THE USHER HALL ON THE EVE OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY
Alasdair (Guest) (30/01/2013 08:23)
John - just to clarify, you missed out the crucial word "now" from what I said: "This tired and unedifying debate (if it can be called such) has little now to do with Scripture or with doctrine." I stand by that statement but the "now" is crucial. The whole debacle has taken on a life of its own and has moved miles away from what it was originally all about. It is now mostly to do with human pride, being right and being vindicated. To be fair, this applies to all sides.
For those correspondents who, over the past few months, have heaped fire and brimstone on the C of S, it would be unthinkable that the Lord might actually bless the new ministry in St George's Tron without their express permission! Have a nice day.
Editor (30/01/2013 10:58)
John M is right.
The Lord will bless any faithful teaching and preaching of His Word; irrespective of the surrounding circumstances. And we will all have to wait and see if this (fidelity to His Word) is what transpires in the C of S Tron.
Alasdair also is right in pointing out the self-justification that is going on; from and on all sides.
However,the fact remains that every Bible-faithful preacher, believer and congregation within the Church of Scotland must surely have to accept that they 'sit' within a denomination which is in outright rebellion regarding God's righteousness; and one which is a disgrace to the faith it purports to propagate.
As a 'national' church it is difficult to imagine any greater way in which it could fail the nation.
Away beyond the vital prayers for any one congregation, we need to pray for those believers still within the denomination - that their faith will be protected within a spiritually toxic environment.
John Miller (30/01/2013 14:16)
Ultimately there is no protection if a believer chooses to remain within a "spiritually toxic environment". The word of God is clear. We are commanded to withdraw from iniquity.
In Paul's second letter to Timothy, ch.2:19-21, he likens the profession of Christianity to a large house in ehich there are vessels for honour and vessels for dishonour. The divine requirement is to cleanse oneself from what is dishonouring to Christ therefore by separation.
We cannot remain in a "toxic" or poisonous environment without being harmed or even killed spiritually and rendered incapable of worship or witness. The Apostle underlines this in 2.Cor.6:17, quoting from Isaiah 52:11, and also in 1 Cor.10:21. In these verses the clear issue is the challenge of with wom we can be associated in Christian fellowship.
I believe that every effort must be made to convince those who refuse the clear teaching of scripture, of their error. If such efforts are rejected then separation must take place.
The congregation of the Tron Church, following what I would perceive to be godly counsel and Bible based leadership felt that they had arrived at that point and took the difficult decision. They have now moved on and are enjoying God's blessing and the Holy Spirit's guiding in their new circumstances.
I do not hear of any self justification from them, but rather a simple desire to move on in obedience to God in His word and faithfulness to Christ.
As far as the replacement minister for St Georges Tron is concerned, will it have been made clear to him by his employers that to question the policy of the C of S on practising homosexuality in the ordination and membership of the denomination is not an option?
Alasdair (Guest) (31/01/2013 08:42)
“As far as the replacement minister for St Georges Tron is concerned, will it have been made clear to him by his employers that to question the policy of the C of S on practising homosexuality in the ordination and membership of the denomination is not an option?” Well, as a member of the C of S I certainly wasn’t aware of this “policy”. All ministers are asked the same basic questions at the time of induction – or did I miss something?
In practice, unlike the situation in some of the “tighter” evangelical churches, there is no “thought police” or shepherding. There is an honourable tradition of dissent and liberty of opinion on matters of conscience. For example, no one asked the breakaway Tron congregation to modify their sincerely held views nor were they put under any pressure to do so before they decided to head for the hills.
Editor (31/01/2013 10:15) Thanks to all for their contributions to this thread.
I think all that has to be said has now been said. So unless there is any further developments (which will probably warrant a new article anyway)further posting meanwhile is better discontinued.
Questions of a non-Tron-specific nature can utilise the 'Forums' section of the website. There are two of these allocated for 'discussion'. One is viewable and accessible to site members only. The other is 'open' to all site visitors.
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