Contending for The Faith

July 2, 2011 by  
Filed under A Monday AM BLOG

Paul’s letter to Titus makes it crystal clear that Elders must embrace sound doctrine and also rebuke those who contradict it. One of the observations I have made over the 42 years invested in acquiring some proficiency in interpreting the text of Scripture is this:

The church is usually 20-25 years behind the cultural changes that relentlessly take place. Change is constant but the church seeks to live in a cocoon and implements change only when it is literally forced upon her.

The result of this is engaging issues with outdated and ineffective responses. The church is anachronistic in much of what she attempts to do and is maligned and mocked accordingly. This is true in the realm of rebuke issued for doctrinal error. What would the Apostle Paul have thought of Boyd’s “Open Theism”? What would Luther have said about Dave Hunt’s soteriology? To be effective we must be current. Wickedness escalates as we approach ‘the end’ and our knowledge of error and response to same must be mature, sharp and current.

I was recently the recipient of some ‘left-handed sarcasm’ because I even mentioned the priority of doctrine over methodology (read David Wells 5 Volumes written between 1993 – 2008). The Pslamist wrote that the word of God is forever settled in heaven (Ps. 119:89). Long after methods have changed repeatedly, the Scripture and Doctrine stands.

The link provided below is an article posted by Phil Johnson. He seeks to define what is and what is not a “primary doctrine”. All doctrine is essential. How we rebuke those who error must be defined by the consequences of any given error. Join me in grappling with this issue and above all may we as pastor/scholars be engaged with the armor and issues that are current and not anachronistic.

He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it. (Titus 1:9, ESV)

??????    fut. ??????; 1aor. ??????; 1aor. pass. ????????; (1) in the NT, generally as showing someone that he has done something wrong and summoning him to repent bring to light, expose (JN 3.20); convince, convict (JA 2.9); (2) in the sense of setting right reprove, correct (1T 5.20); in an intensified sense rebuke, discipline, punish (HE 12.5)

http://phillipjohnson.blogspot.com/2005/09/sometimes-fellowship-is-better-than.html

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