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Discussion in 'Defending the Faith' started by WrittenFromUtopia, Sep 25, 2005.
Going back to your original question, what Wright means by "Jesus is Lord" being the Gospel is different from what you mean. That is all I was getting at. (I assumed you were familiar with Wright's view of the Gospel, so maybe I assumed too much ).
Thankfully, you are correct. I morphed insufficient to defend the faith against real life opponents into sheep to the slaughter.
I still disagree concerning the sufficiency of the orthodox folks.
It is true that Christianity has the best solution for the evidence, but it is also true that Christianity has the only solution.
If one can make the case that they are the only game in town, then how is that not sufficient?
Jacob, I think your explanation proves the point that some of us
are trying to make. To say that the Gospel is "Jesus is Lord" and leave it at that **alone** is reductionistic and inadequate. That Jesus is Lord certainly is true and is an aspect of the Gospel, but "Jesus is Lord" without a context (btw, which you did supply in your explanation) might be bad news instead of good news. Again, the point isn't that there is something wrong with saying that the announcement that Jesus is Lord is central to the Gospel, what I think we can't do is simply leave it at that *alone*.
Ditto to Jacob's summation of redemptive history. Added to that Christ's Lordship deals with his ascension and his reigning. That is definitely a culimination of his work but not the totality. I hesitate to split apart his pre-incarnation glory, his incarnation, life (active/passive obedience), death, burial, resurrection, ascension, and return. Or another way of looking at it is to exalt his Kingship over his prophetic and priestly offices. I think they are all tied together and necessary. When you look at it wholistically, you indeed have propititation, justification, etc.
As Master Frame so eloquently teaches us, the nature of theology is to apply the Bible's teaching to various areas. It is impossible to say everything at once. I have found Frame/Poythress to be great on these issues.
See...I was trying to allude to multi-perspectivalism without saying Frame. Now Fred is going to trounce me!
**Puritanhead lurks quietly**
Puritanhead has been referencing himself in the third person more lately and needs to be checked out...
Multiperspectivism is not bad in and of itself, however those who espouse it seem to be too willing to say everyone is okay and no one is wrong, just a different perspective. Not everything is a different perspective.
VirginiaHuguenot noticed that as well.
Where is the smiley throwing rotten tomatoes?
With due respect to both men (far less to Nash then to Machen) this statement is tantamount to... "Why consult Copleston on Aquinas when I can reach for Gordon Clark."
Regardless of the heat Wright has drawn from the Reformed Community over justification and several others issues (that Fred pointed out); He is the absolute top "conservative" scholar on the origins of Christianity and the Resurrection of Christ. It is hard to imagine that anyone could think otherwise once he has perused Wright's voluminous works and penetrating arguments against the once dominant liberal paradigm. I think this as already been mentioned, but if we are to take an "avoid Wright" stance, we could hardly be competent in any field of study because the fact remains that the majority of innovative work in fields like philosophy, sociology, psychology, history, natural science, etc......have been written by pagan scholars.
In order to redeem these disciplines unto Christ we cannot afford to avoid the preeminent scholars in ANY field, much less N.T. Wright on origins and resurrection.
There is a difference between not being able to say everything at once, and being so reductionistic that the enemies of the gospel are given a foothold to attack the nature of the gospel itself.
That is why Wright can say that the gospel is "Jesus is Lord" and also say that Christians must have communion with all who say *only* that and have a false understanding of the gospel. It is also how Wright can get away with saying that eccelsiology (Jesus is Lord) is more important than soteriology (Jesus died for my sins).
Every passage I can think of, where Paul "sums up" the gospel in as concise or terse an expression he can (e.g. 1 Cor. 15:1-8; Gal. 1:3-6), I have yet to see him boil it down to "Lord reigns." What does even Rom. 10:9 say? The mouth's confession flows out of faith in the death of Christ (resulting in the resurrection). Basic to the message of the gospel is the Cross, the Sacrifice, the Blood, the Altar. It is Christ the Priest. You need Christ the Prophet to tell you what the Priest did (and does). You need Christ the King to take you into his kingdom (finish your salvation) on the basis of the work of the Priest.
"Christ reigns" is cumulative of the gospel. But "Christ died" is the gospel in fine.
But to be fair, a great deal of innovative work in the various fields listed is quite muddleheaded and Christians are desperately needed to clean up the mess.
Also to be fair to myself, I did attempt to clarify what exactly I was directing my fire up (the view of lack defense of Christianity from the various attacks that it faces.)
There is a wide difference between being considered the best with other people at a somewhat lower level. And considering there to be one person who has their game together and everyone else insufficient.
So, Let me bump in here and ask a question. In light of what Paul said in Galatians 1:8-9, how do we look at N. T. Wright?
8) But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.
9) As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.
Does he preach another Gospel?
I am going to dodge that question for the moment. He would counter it, if you asked him, using Alister McGrath's Iustitia Dei, and asking for definitive examples prior to Augustine/Calvin. I am not agreeing with him, per se, but playing devil's advocate.
He has, however, in his lectures explicityly denied that we do anything to merit salvation. These lectures are found at Monergism.com. In fact, he mocks the idea that man can do any good deed and merit his salvation before God.
I am not asking him if he preaches a different gospel. He obviously wouldn't believe he did. I know antinomians who are preaching a false gospel. They deny works also. When do we count someone accursed because they preach a different Gospel?
[Edited on 9-28-2005 by puritancovenanter]
It is hard for me to objectively answer this question. I have taken a lot of what Tom has said and revamped it around Reformed lines. So, what I think he said is probably different than what he actually has said. In other words, I have conditioned what he has said to fit my own system.
He would answer no because:
1)He is not teaching works (however, Dunn and Sanders did to an extent)
2)He says that Galatians uses Justification in the context of fellowship. Whether we agree with that or not, there is the element of fellowship being accessible because we are justififed. Personally, I think Tom has done a bad job in being clear. I can say, sure, I can I have table fellowship with say, "Black people or Indian People" because we are both justified and one in Christ. He needs to immediately say, "But there is more to Justification than x."
There is this section in Bavinck where the theologian must learn to affirm a doctrine and say, "Yes, and also..."
---End Playing Devil's advocate
One of my friends have turned to a form of Covenantal Nomism after reading Wright. My question is what do we do with N. T. Wright if he does preach a different Gospel than the one the scriptures proclaim. Should we count him accursed. I am not saying don't read him. I read total non-sense sometimes because I need to find out the knowledge or truth that someone has placed in between utter stupidity.
I believe we are to account others accursed if a different gospel is preached. It matters not if it is against works righteouness or ceremonial works righteousness. I believe the qualification for being accursed is just in proclaiming a false gospel. In light of this should we account N. T. Wright Accursed? What have the Presbyters said? Or have they said anything at all. Should they say anything? Does he have a false gospel? Covenantal Nomism is definitely a false gospel.
What do we do about Wright? We plunder the Egyptians! Read his works and then use him to butcher Liberal Theology!
Do we count him accursed? Others can. I won't.
I was under the impression from listening to Ligon Duncan/Mark Dever and reading Tom Wright that Tom doesn't teach Covenantal Nomism. That was coined by J D G Dunn, whom Wright critiques. Now, many people who have been taken in by Wright don't fully understand the issues of the New Perspectives on Paul. So, it is only natural that they will attribute to Wright things Dunn/Sanders have said, and vice-versa.
N.T.Wright is Anglican, I believe, and thus out of the purview of presbyters. They can tell you whether what he says is heretical, but it's up to the church of Spong to deal with him, so that probably won't happen.
Spong is no longer active in the Anglican church to my knowledge, and Wright despises Spong.
Why do I insist that for some odd reason Tom might have some good things to say? For four years I had my faith mocked in college. I found Tom's methodology to be a powerful ally, and immediately applicable. I don't care if I am banned for defending the reading of him. I don't accept his views on justification. But if he says something that is good, I will be the first to point it out.
Of course, these are just subjective arguments and have no substantive weight, but given the tenor lately, who cares?
What does Wright say the Gospel is? Is his view biblical? What does he mean when he says the Gospel is Jesus is Lord? I have also heard he believes in imputed righteousness even though he challenges the scriptures that teach it.
If he despises Spong's teaching, he's definitely gone up a notch in my thinking! The reason I broughthim up was to show that the Anglicans will tolerate almost anything, not to actually compare the two men's teaching. I have heard that N.T.Wright is pretty orthodox on the doctrine of the resurrection as well.
[Edited on 9-28-2005 by turmeric]
At some point some Presbytery is going to have to make a decision concerning Wright. Some group of Authority is going to have to put an end to the double speak that is being bantered around.
1) Jesus is the Davidic King whom the Scriptures have promised (Romans 1:3-4).
2) God is reigning now and through his reign the curse of sin is reversed and being reversed.
3) Christ has reoriented the People of God around the Church and is using the Church to save the world.
Judicially? That's just like Lincoln's Emancipation. Unless of course, they say that you can't read Wright, but that's silly. Or, they could say that we, having clearly delineated Wright's beliefs, do not sanction the teaching of them in the pulpit. That is more plausible.