Thanks for posting the link to that article. Do I hear the sound of an "echo" of the things I and others have written in criticism of the "Auburn Avenue" theology? <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/evilgrin.gif" alt="" />
Claiming to find unresolved problems in the traditional Reformed faith, it has in fact created problems of its own that are far greater than any it had imagined. It has strained at a gnat and swallowed a camel.
I think that about sums it up. <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" />
When I survey the wondrous cross on which the Prince of Glory died, my richest gain I count but loss and pour contempt on all my pride. - Isaac Watts
It does sum it up. But just try and get any of its followers to admit it. You will get a ton of double talk.<img src="/forum/images/graemlins/chatter.gif" alt="" />
If you look at the last few editions of veiwpoint it would appear that Pilgrim's friend, Dr. Armstrong, is (sadly) getting more and more cozy with this bunch.
I heard a lecture by Cal Beisner a couple of months ago and talked to him afterward about this subject. I asked him what actions did he think the PCA would take and he said for the time being they don't appear to be taking any, because the terminology being used is so hard to get a handle on most elders don't understand how big of a problem it really is. ( btw, that's a paraphrase from memory--not a direct quote of Cal)
My last church in the US which I attended for a long time was a PCA church and the pastor was a graduate from WTS. Fortunately, he didn't follow the theology mentioned in the article, but remained true to Scripture. I do find it a little distressing that this kind of error originated at WTS and has infected the PCA (and possibly other churches). You mentioned that the PCA hasn't taken any overt action against this yet. I'm curious about Westminster Theological Seminary. Is this theology still being taught by some people there, or have the people who espoused that view left? The article mentioned that one professor who taught this view left in 1981, so hopefully it's no longer being taught there, but if any one knows more details I would be happy to hear them. I hope the PCA and any other reformed denominations that this is being taught in will come be able to come to action quickly on the matter because it is obviously unscriptural.
By the way, could you tell me a little more about who Dr. Armstrong and Cal Beisner are? I'm not familiar with their names.
Honestly, there may be some things in which the terminology is hard to get a handle on, but a few of the points seem so obviously wrong I don't see how people could not get a handle on them. For example, points 11 and 12.
I was at WTS (Philadelphia), when the professor in question, Norman Shepherd, was removed from his teaching position at the seminary. Many of us had the opportunity to discuss these novel ideas with Prof. Shepherd during our time there. It was very obvious to me and not myself only, that Shepherd's view was one that changed the doctrine of Justification by Faith from that which was formulated during the Protestant Reformation and took on a form which was more akin to that hold by Rome.
His views were not taught thereafter at the seminary, however, in recent days, a couple (or more?) very highly-respected professors there, e.g., Dr. Richard Gaffin, have "come out of the closet" and have now made it public that they agree with Shepherd's views. I am not privy, however, to whether Gaffin is actually teaching these heretical views at the seminary or if any other professor there is doing so either. But the fact that there are teachers at the school that are sympathetic with Shepherd and his views is more than disturbing to me.
John Armstrong is a professing Calvinistic Baptist who publishes a monthly magazine called, The Reformation and Revival Journal. He mainly writes books and travels around speaking at various conferences. You can visit his website here: http://www.randr.org.
I just wanted to thank you for the article. I have just about finished it and have found it most helpful/revealing.
As you might expect from me, it is the attack on the assurance of faith that I find especially interesting. I say that because it, assurance, deals with the witness of the Spirit which only the Spirit can give.
As I see it, if undue emphasis is put on resulting works, an objective measure, to the exclusion of the work of the Spirit's witness, then the result is inevitably the kind of distortion that we find in The Auburn Heresy or it's kin, Roman Catholicism. This, in my opinion, is why right in the middle of John's first epistle, where he is emphasizing works resulting from love, he emphasizes, the Spirit's "anointing", and "having given an understanding" so that we are to consider BOTH, TOGETHER, as our evidence of assurance.
If works are the primary or only significant measure, then the Papists do quite well at this, and, I would suspect, some of the Auburn crowd are working quite hard too.
Please don't missunderstand me, I believe that the measure of a changed life is absolutely crucial, as Edwards, in His Religious Affections, and all the Reformers, made clear, but to emphasize this to the exclusion, or minimization, of the witness of the Spirit is a slippery slope on which the Auburn people and all who neglect the "whole counsel" of God's Word find themselves.
You may also be interested in the NPP theology that is behind the "Federal Vision" of the Auburn theology, so called. Here is an article in the 3rd quarter Blue Banner Quarterly, http://www.fpcr.org/pdf/Bluebanner12-3.pdf. Page down to page #19 to read Jerrold Lewis' article "Thinking Inside the Box." There is also an article by yours truly in a back issue of Pulpit and Pew, which you can find at http://www.pastoraltheology.com/Pulpit%20and%20Pew-summer-2003.pdf, then page down to page 10 for a review of Dunn & Suggate's The Justice of God.
Last edited by Antikathistas; Tue Mar 23, 200411:31 AM.
Antikathistas, Welcome to the Highway! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/hello.gif" alt="" /> Thanks for posting those interesting articles. You have done nice work on your review. I also read the link under your name and think you need to join our discussion on the Faith of Our Fathers - Study Center forum!
Susan said: Antikathistas, Welcome to the Highway! <img src="/forum/images/graemlins/hello.gif" alt="" /> Thanks for posting those interesting articles. You have done nice work on your review. I also read the link under your name and think you need to join our discussion on the Faith of Our Fathers - Study Center forum!