I wanted to inquire about the RE (Reformed Episcopal) church. Initially, as one who had attended (grudgingly) an Episcopal church, I was a bit interested in the RE denomination. However, when I actually attended, I noticed the following Romish elements:<br>1) Sign of the cross given during prayers<br>2) Crucifixes<br>3) "God in a box" (for those of you who don't know what that means, it is a little "box" on the altar where the elements -bread and wine- are kept. The statement "God in a box" refers to the Romish belief that the bread and the wine physically become the body and blood of Christ. Yes, I know there is more to it than this, but I wanted to keep it brief.)<br>4) The altar was back against the wall, with the "Priest" facing the altar, away from the congregation<br>5) Use of the word "Priest", "father", etc.<br>6) Use of the word "mass"<br><br>Frankly, #3, #4, and #6 were more "Romish" than previous apostate Episcopal (EC-USA) churches I have seen.<br><br>Additionally, about the Reformed Episcopal church in general. <br>a) John Stott teaches at their seminary. <br>b) They are attempting to "expand their witness". To this end, they acquired the AEC (Anglican Evangelical Church), an anglo-Catholic denomination that was not reformed.<br><br>Thus, the general question is this...can we even consider this a "reformed" denomination anymore (or could we ever)?<br><br>Steve
Do they hold to the 39 articles of faith? I've met a few Episcopal Priests on PalTalk and when I mention the 39 articles they either become enraged or they mention something about having a button or two undone. (this is a reference to their black robe having thirty-nine buttons on it and unbuttoning the articles they don't subscribe to.)
I have only limited experience of this denomination. Check out their web site though.<br><br>I think you will find they do subscribe to the 39 Articles and have a mixture of evangelicals (such as Ray Sutton) and Anglo-Catholics. I was also saddened and a bit confused with tier tie-up with an Anglo-Catholic denomination. I guess you just have to take each congregation individually.<br><br>James.<br><br>PS Mike Horton was a Reformed Episcopal minister at one time, so it does have evangelicals within it.
My main concern wasn't that it has Evangelical members in it, but does it exclude non-evangelicals (even the EC-USA has evangelicals, although, to be honest, I have never actually seen one). Sadly, I would say this is not the case with the RE church.<br>Steve
I am Reformed Episcopal, and even RECUSA. I'll need an explanation as to "evangelical". However, I can assure you that all the priests within our denomination are TULIP oriented, and adhere to the 39 Articles.<br><br>Sign of the cross, as far as I understand, is a matter of religious freedom. I cannot speak for the entirety of the church, but I know of no priests who would ask you to leave for not doing it.<br><br>Unsure as to the stance on crucifixes. However, I can say that the church holds tradition in high order. However, we are Sola Scriptura. Again, a matter of freedom I would assume.<br><br>God in a box-we don't hold to transubstantiation. We are probably closer to the WCF on this matter. Holding the elements in this place is again a tradition we opt to retain. We also take communion in both kinds.<br><br>Since we are not the largest denomination, each parish will arrange their furniture differently, as allowed by available space and architectural considerations.<br><br>We use the words priest and father to denote their roles. Again, tradition we opt to hold to.<br><br>Mass is also a traditional term we opt to continue to use.<br><br>Yes, we are reformed. However, if you mean more than soteriology, you'll have to explain, and elaborate. I know the church takes apostolic tradition seriously. However, we also allow for Christian freedom, and do not require people to do or hold to all the same exact beliefs we do. Please realise that I am also only a layman. I understand some of the deep ideals involved, but have only been reformed myself for about two years. You may contact any parish father or bishop for further explanation.<br><br><br>God bless,<br><br>william
Averagefellar,<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]I am Reformed Episcopal, and even RECUSA. I'll need an explanation as to "evangelical".</font><hr></blockquote><p>Evangelical means to present the Gospel of salvation by faith in Jesus Christ. A church that emphasizes faith in the atonement of Jesus makes it very clear that the Gospel is the power of God for salvation for everyone who believes. <br><br>William Webster writes:<blockquote>The Church and our culture are in great need of revival. If we long to see it happen we must stand against the legalism of Rome and the easy-believism of much of evangelicalism and return to the proclamation of the biblical and Reformation gospel. The Reformers preached the gospel. They were bold and uncompromising and witnessed the power of God in great revival. Wherever the true gospel is preached and given its place of primacy and priority, wonderful transformations occur in the lives of individuals. We need a new Reformation today — a return to the biblical gospel message and a commitment to its proclamation in the power of the Holy Spirit. Paul’s words are as true today as when he first penned them:<br><br>The Gospel is the power of God for salvation for everyone who believes.</blockquote>Is your church evangelical?<br><br><br>Wes<br><br>
As far as I know we are. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/cheers.gif" alt="cheers" title="cheers[/img] Our website says we are, and my parish fathers business card says we are. <br><br><br>God bless,<br><br>william
The main reason I brought up the points that I did is because the Reformed Episcopal denomination claims to have purged all of the Roman leaven. When the sign of the cross remains, the mass remains, the term priest remains, the altar, not the preaching, is the focus, when God is in a box and people are bowing to the elements (thus, at least outwardly, indicating that Christ is being sacrificed on the altar and the congregation is physically eating and drinking the body and blood of Christ), I have to wonder. <br>Again, this was ONE church. But this was an Anglo-Catholic church before it was Reformed Episcopal. I am simply curious as to why the Reformed Episcopal church is "acquiring" Anglo-Catholic churches, when the express goal of many of these Anglo-Catholic churches is to reunite with Rome.<br>Steve
You'd have to ask somebody else about that. However, restoring unity should be a concern for all of us. I'm not sure the preaching is the focus, but only a part of worship. Where does your church keep the elements? I think that to put forth that everything from Rome is wrong would be false. What do you call people in charge of your church? Where is the sign of the cross outside Christian liberty? The problem is that we all follow some type of tradition. We just prefer ours to be from the catholic church. <br><br><br>God bless,<br><br>william
Well, being Presbyterian/Reformed, we prefer our "tradition" to be from the Bible.<br><br>Unity must be doctrinal, not denominational. Denominational unity without doctrinal unity is hideous.<br><br>Where in the Bible is the sign of the cross?<br><br>Steve<br>
<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Well, being Presbyterian/Reformed, we prefer our "tradition" to be from the Bible.<br><br>Unity must be doctrinal, not denominational. Denominational unity without doctrinal unity is hideous.<br><br>Where in the Bible is the sign of the cross?</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>Well you won't mind if we ask the same of you will you Steve? Can you tell us how you keep the bread for communion? The wine? The interior of your church does it have a table in front of an empty cross? Or none at all? Why? An example of the liturgy would be nice too. Also why and how you have arranged it the way you have.<br><br>BTW just out of curiosity under what authority does the Presbyterian/Reformed denomination have to determine how the Reformed Episcopal denomination worships?
PrestorJohn,<br><br>Your first set of questions to Steve were fair and relevant points. However, when you ask: "BTW just out of curiosity under what authority does the Presbyterian/Reformed denomination have to determine how the Reformed Episcopal denomination worships?", I believe you deviated into absurdity. Steve never claimed authority to determine how they worship, he was calling into question the legitimacy of how they worship. If someone must have authority over a particular person or persons in order to call into question the biblical legitimacy of their beliefs or actions, then we might as well close this whole forum down.<br><br>Sincerely in Christ,<br><br>Jason
Believe what you will Jason but when Steve said this:<br><blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Well, being Presbyterian/Reformed, we prefer our "tradition" to be from the Bible</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>It appears to me that he is placing his "denomination" in authority when questioning about the Reformed Episcopal Church.<br><br>If he had said "I/We prefer my/our "tradition" to come from the Bible" then I would not have asked the question. Now I am willing to admit I may have interpreted his words wrong but I still do want an answer to all my questions.<br><br>
No, the Bible is the authority, not the Presbyterian/Reformed churches. <br><br>You never answered where, in the Bible, is the sign of the cross, nor where, in the Bible, do you obtain authority to do what you do doing worship?<br><br>Of course I do not speak for the Presbyterian/Reformed churches, nor do the Presbyterian/Reformed churches have any right to "lord it over" the Reformed Episcopal church. Being an individual, HOWEVER, I think I have the right to ask just how "Reformed" is the Reformed Episcopal church. If nobody cares to answer that, then that is fine. I will simply go on my merry way with my uninformed opinion on the Reformed Episcopal church. If the Reformed Episcopal church wants me to think that it is basically a sister church to the Roman Catholic church, then great. <br><br>As for me mentioning Presbyterian/Reformed, you know as well as I do what I meant by that. We try to follow the Biblical mandate for worship, instead of relying on tradition. <br>That means a table, not an altar. What happens on an altar? Sacrifice. Why do we need an altar if Christ is our one-time sacrifice? And why use the word "Mass" if we are not "re-sacrificing Christ?"<br>That means no idolatrous crucifixes, hideously picturing a crucified Christ. Our Christ is risen!<br>This means that, following the New Testament example, preaching is to be the focus. <br>This means that we are not to bow to the elements of the Lord's Supper. Why bow, unless Christ is really physically in the elements? Reformed Episcopals claim not to believe in Transsubstantiation, so why bow?<br><br>There are others here with more time than I have currently who could explain the Regulative principle in detail. I am actually surprised nobody has done so.<br><br>As an FYI, I attended ANOTHER Reformed Episcopal recently while on vacation. The experience was practically the same as before.<br><br>Steve
Steve,<br><br>I am realizing more and more the necessity of having a Biblical basis for what we "do" in worship. We are in the process of looking for a church and we are realizing that we need to take a closer look at the regulative principle of worship. Can you recommend a book or perhaps and article that explains not only the general support for regulative worship (I think I have a fairly good handle on that) but also an explanation of what it "looks like."<br><br>
Kim,<br><br>Here are some excellent links for you to read about Reformed Worship and the regulative principal.<br><br><br>Worship in the Melting Pot by Dr. Peter Masters
<br><br>Biblical Worship by Kevin Reed
<br><br><br>Enjoy! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img]<br><br><br>Wes<br>
Kim,<br><br>I cannot refrain from commenting that Reg Barrow and Kevin Reed's views (interpretation) of the "Regulative Principle" is, IMHO, extreme. Dr. Master's book, Worship in the Melting Pot
, is far more in accord with the biblical teaching on worship. As I hope you are aware, there are several chapters from his excellent book on The Highway which you can access here: Worship Series
<br><br>In His Grace,
Kim,<br><br>As Pilgrim has pointed out Barrow and Reed are ultraconservative. However I think they are a good study anyway and make many good points as compared to what many American's call worship today.<br><br>I respect Pilgrim's opinion so be prepared.<br><br><br>Wes
I am starting with the Worship series and may start a thread to discuss it if I have any questions. Thank you both for your help.
Kim,<br><br>I think that is an excellent decision on your part! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/evilgrin.gif" alt="evilgrin" title="evilgrin[/img] Realize also, that the "Series" that I have online is only PART of the actual book itself, Worship in the Melting Pot. There are several other chapters which deal with such subjects as "Instruments in Worship", etc. If would contact the Metropolitan Tabernacle using one of the references that appear at the bottom of any of the pages online, I'm sure they will probably send you a copy of the book. When I asked them what the price was for this book should someone inquire about it, they didn't say. It could be that they are distributing the book for free........ but don't quote me on that! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/rofl.gif" alt="rofl" title="rofl[/img] It would be worth contacting them, regardless and obtaining a copy for yourself. IMHO, it is a great book. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/smile.gif" alt="smile" title="smile[/img]<br><br>In His Grace,
Here is an interesting link on Master's book:<br><br>Worship in the Melting Pot
<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]And why use the word "Mass" if we are not "re-sacrificing Christ?"</font><hr></blockquote><p><br><br>I do hope you realize that the word Mass <span style="background-color:yellow;">[Middle English masse, from Old English mæsse, from Vulgar Latin *messa, from Late Latin missa, from Latin, feminine past participle of mittere, to send away, dismiss.]</span> has nothing to do with sacrifice. It is only your perception of what the liturgy portrays that makes it seem that.<br><br>Never the less I really didn't get an answer from you with regards to what the biblical source for your liturgical tradition.<br><br>And please don't quote to me the regulative principal give me scriptures for the table, etc..
Having read through about half of the material provided here on the Highway wrt Worship in the Melting Pot, I logged back in to ask about the content of the rest of the book. You have anticipated my request! I found it on amazon for $10.79 and am placing my order tonight.<br><br>This is something that has been impressed upon my heart increasingly. I love my church but a Biblical refrain continues to run around in my head during the "praise and worship" portion of our service; "God is Spirit and they who worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth. "In spirit and in truth!" That is my heart's cry. I weep when I consider the awesome, transcendent majesty of our Lord and God and I long to please Him in all my ways. I feel like Isaiah in the temple--undone in His presence, having unclean lips and living among people of unclean lips. <br><br>I am going to sign off, go back to Amazon and order the book, and read the rest of the article that I printed out. In the meantime, is there anyone here who attends a church that affirms and practices the regulative form of worship? If so, would you be willing to share with me how that informs your worship and what your service is like? I have so much to learn. . .<br>
Oh, I forgot to ask, would you recommend Pleasing God in Our Worship by Robert Godfrey and James Montgomery Boice?
Thanks, Joe! It's getting late here in the Eastern time zone, but I have bookmarked your site and will spend some time there in the morning! Looks good!
I hope you have not already ordered it.<br><br>Trinity Book Service
Kim,<br><br>You can read that booklet here: Pleasing God in our Worship
<br><br>In His Grace,
Too late! I did order it before retiring last night! [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/hairout.gif" alt="hairout" title="hairout[/img] I ordered the pamphlet, too. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/grin.gif" alt="grin" title="grin[/img]<br><br><br><br>
Sorry, I did not get to you on time.
No need to patronize me with the word "Mass". I was raised Roman Catholic. The words Sacrifice and Mass have always gone hand in hand. <br>Lest you think I lie, at www.catholic.net
, I read "it must be Jesus Christ whose death on the Cross is re-enacted in the Sacrifice of the Mass", and "The Sacrifice of the Mass communicates, you might say radiates, the divine assistance that our wills need to surrender themselves to the mysterious and often demanding will of God", etc. etc. <br>Another interesting source is http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10006a.htm.
<br>Furthermore, read any official Papal proclamations, and you will see phrases such as "The Sacrifice of the Mass". <br>Additionally, I notice you have still not answered any of the other questions, such as regarding crucifixes, the altar, preaching as the focus, etc.<br><br>Let me PLEASE reiterate, I asked questions about the Reformed Episcopal Church. Instead of answering said questions, you have attempted to change the subject and ask about Presbyterian worship of the Lord's Supper. This would be akin to an attorney asking the defendant where he was at 6:30PM on March 1st, and the defendent saying, "No, Mr. Attorney, where were YOU at 6:30PM on March 1st". <br><br>Steve C<br>
<blockquote><font size=1>In reply to:</font><hr>[color:"blue"]Let me PLEASE reiterate, I asked questions about the Reformed Episcopal Church. Instead of answering said questions, you have attempted to change the subject and ask about Presbyterian worship of the Lord's Supper.</font><hr></blockquote><p>[img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/laugh.gif" alt="laugh" title="laugh[/img]Actually Steve, what Prestor did was nothing more than what Jesus Christ did when they questioned Him..... ask them by what authority they asked their questions. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/tongue.gif" alt="tongue" title="tongue[/img] And, as any "good attorney" (oxymoron) would also iterate, YOU broached the subject when you came on so strongly and demanded to know "where in the Bible" does one find the sanction for using an altar, etc... It is only right that someone else, picking up on your question (asked as if it were directed to a hostile witness), should ask the same of you, i.e., where in the Bible do you find the warrant, command, etc., for a pulpit, table, etc.. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/evilgrin.gif" alt="evilgrin" title="evilgrin[/img] You remember that old saying don't you? "What goes around, comes around." or perhaps.... "What's fair is fair!"?? [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/rofl.gif" alt="rofl" title="rofl[/img]<br><br>So, let's play nice shall we. [img]http://www.the-highway.com/w3timages/icons/wink.gif" alt="wink" title="wink[/img]<br><br>In His Grace,
You know, you are RIGHT! I do have no authority to question. I guess I should have never left the Roman Catholic Church, because it was my erring questioning of the Roman Catholic Church that caused me to leave.<br>Steve