Thank you for pointing this out brother. It reminds me of something Herman Bavinck wrote in his work "The Certainty of Faith":I've commented here before about the dangers of an overly objective view of the Christian faith and Church, one that downplays the ministry of the Holy Spirit, an ecclesiology that swallows up soteriology--this and other matters are involved in such defections.
There is no room for [certainty] in Rome's system, for it does not see salvation as assured in Christ and sealed in the heart of the believer by the testimony of the Holy Spirit
I do not believe I used a sledgehammer where a tack needed to be driven. The point was that the focus on debating "who owns the ECF's" can obscure the real issues and I was reminding you of the fundamental issues that led to the Reformation. I'm well acquainted with Church history. I don't claim to be a scholar but have interacted with Rome's anachronistic use of the ECF's as well as their selective use of not only the ECF's but also their dogmatic statements of the past that they have taken back up to declare new dogmas that are not only to be believed and held but presented as if it has always been the case that the Church has believed and held the things they dogmatically define.Rich,
Not sure if you're giving me the benefit of the doubt here--or if anyone here is. You're using a sledgehammer to set a tack. I affirm all the Solas and subscribe to the WCF as the clearest (though fallible) summary of Christian doctrine. If you have spotted a delinquency in doctrine or life, I can give you my Session's address.
I do think history matters, though. It can never vindicate one's beliefs but at the very least it can belie the claims of others to represent a linear development. Do you never react to something like Open Theism with "nobody has ever thought that before!" even as you base your rejection of it on Scripture and the small-t tradition of argument about Scripture? Most on here do seem eager to rebut RCC claims of unbroken doctrinal development, as did the Reformers. I don't see how something that features so prominently in Catholic apologetics can be ceded to them, even as we view history, tradition, and authority as authoritative only insofar as it is formed by the Word.
Thank you Alan. I believe this to be the case as well. My very first post in this thread was to note a concern that we remain, each of us, fixed upon evangelical graces as our anchor and not upon our own strength. I have been careful as well not to call out any one man. Even if this was precipitated by a blog entry we are fools to attack a single man as if he is of a species we do not recognize in our own hearts was not the power of Christ through His Word keeping us. My prayer is that men and women will see not in us an attempt to set ourselves apart as more intelligent or more wise or better men because of the theological choices we have made but as beggars who have laid hold of a perfect Savior and as simply saying: "Come to Christ! Cast off your heavy burdens. His yoke is easy and His burden is light."David Jolley:
Where have the members of this board transgressed with respect to Jason Stellman? Where has there been a lack of kindness and respect?
I certainly do not claim sinlessness with respect to my interaction with anyone. My sinful self, my only shame, to be sure. I, too, deeply care for those in Rome and want to see them delivered from that confusion into the clear light of the gospel. I appreciate your desire to interact in a loving way. I, too, want to do that, as well as speaking the truth. I want to speak the truth in love.
I may well have missed something, but I have heard no one here doing anything but speaking the truth in love. This is a very important matter. If someone here has clearly transgressd with regard to this, I think that we would like to know where so that we can make it right.