Archives for November 2008

everybody sing!

Back in May, Scott Aniol posted Leading Music at the Conference on the Church for God’s Glory on his site, Religious Affections.

In the article, he commented on the music at the Together for the Gospel conference he had attended earlier in the year. Among other things he said this:

Although every hymn choice for that conference was in and of itself conservative, and although the accompaniment was simple in theory, a completely different underlying philosophy bled through. The leader of the singing, who led from the piano, was a master at emotional manipulation stimulation. How he accompanied the hymns moved and swayed the audience in certain emotional directions. He constantly shouted out unintelligible exclamations that further roused the audience. And the audience did respond. Hands waving in the air, enthusiastic shouting, vigorous singing, and even some jumping around.

I would recommend you read Scott’s entire article. There is some discussion following, but the article is the main thing. Now, I don’t have the time, the $$$, nor the interest to attend such conferences. I didn’t really have a full picture of what Scott was describing, but I had an idea what it was like. Now you can get a sense of exactly what Scott is describing…

[Read more…]

some good words from Southern Baptists on alcohol

I recently posted a review of a book by my good friend, Randy Jaeggli, on the subject of the Christian and alcohol consumption. As Calvin Coolidge is said to have said about a preacher’s attitude toward sin: “He was agin it.”

I came across an article in the Criswell Theological Review today. The article is by Richard Land and Barrett Duke. In The Christian and Alcohol, they appear to be ‘agin’ it also. The whole issue of the CTR is devoted to the subject of Christians and alcohol use. I commend Land and Duke’s article to you, I think they present a well-reasoned position for adopting a policy of total abstinence. [Read more…]

11.23.08 gbcvic sermon summaries

The Rite judged by the Un-Rite if the Un-Rite is Right (Rm 2.26-27)

In this message we look at what good our religion is if we have the right rites but the wrong lives. Paul proposes a situation where the uncircumcised (the Un-Rite)nevertheless keeps the righteousness of the Law. He asks, will not his law keeping equal the value of your circumcision? Moreover, will not his law keeping judge your law breaking? Jesus gave examples, the men of Nineveh and the ‘queen of the south’ (Mt 12.41-42). The same problems attend our religion today. We have the Bible,we have baptism, we have the customs and practices of Christianity, but when we sin (as professing Christians) we stand judged by the lives of non-Christians who don’t sin in the same ways we do.

All of this builds the case that neither morality (Rm 2.1-16) nor religion (Rm 2.17-29) can exempt us from the judgement of God and the sentence of wrath that has fallen on mankind. (Rm 1.18-32). We need something superior to morality and religion.

Pilgrim’s Progress: Ignorance Ignores Christian (pp. 174-187)

In this session we see the renewed attempt by Christian and Hopeful to evangelize Ignorance. Ignorance is completely confident in his own obedience, he has no sense that he needs more than his own self-justification. He does not know he needs the merits of Christ. Leaving him to his own deserts, Christian and Hopeful talk of another man, Mr. Temporary, who made a show of going on a pilgrimage, but turned back when his mind was not changed, he feared other men, could not bear the shame of religion and was grieved to feel guilt for his sin.

Cultivating the Fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5.16-24)

Our message this afternoon returns to a theme we considered eight years ago, the fruit of the Spirit as taught in Galatians. Today’s message looked at the whole idea of spiritual fruit, the desirability of spiritual fruit, and the method of cultivating spiritual fruit. For cultivation, we must crucify the flesh — weed the garden, and so enhance the working of the Spirit in our own lives.

~~~

We had a visiting couple today… lots of visitors lately, but not many returnees. That’s what we would really like, but so far our many visitors lately have been just visitors.

don_sig2

is fellowship the same as unity

We are in a series of posts which serve as commentary on Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture on the subject of Biblical Separation, delivered at International Baptist College September 15-17, 2008. This is post number 7. Earlier posts on the lecture series can be found here:

Posts specifically regarding Lecture 10:

  1. is separation a fundamental doctrine
  2. indifferentists defined
  3. not indifferent, but not allies
  4. how should we proceed
  5. the danger of theological drift
  6. NE is dead, long live NE

In concluding this series, I am first going to discuss one remaining point of philosophical difference that may or may not be important. After that discussion, I’d like to add a few summary thoughts.

~~~

I have no clips to play for you for this post. I am just going to quote a statement made frequently throughout the lecture series, almost as a defining mantra:

“Unity is a function of that which unites; fellowship is a function of that which is held in common.”

Are unity and fellowship really synonymous terms, as the statement (and much of the lecture series) implies?

[Read more…]

NE is dead, long live NE

We are in a series of posts which serve as commentary on Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture on the subject of Biblical Separation, delivered at International Baptist College September 15-17, 2008. This is post number 6. Earlier posts on the lecture series can be found here:

Posts specifically regarding Lecture 10:

  1. is separation a fundamental doctrine
  2. indifferentists defined
  3. not indifferent, but not allies
  4. how should we proceed
  5. the danger of theological drift

My last two posts (including this one) concern what may seem to be niggling points of difference.These differences are perhaps minor — only semantics? Nevertheless, they seem significant enough to me. They reflect what may well be deeper philosophical differences between the Dr. and me. Since Bauder holds the position he holds, and carries the amount of influence he does, his philosophy has the potential to have a fairly wide impact on the fundamentalist world at large. So the differences that may seem niggling may in fact speak to very serious issues concerning the future of fundamentalism. [Read more…]

update to article 3

I just want to highlight an update to the third article in my current series. I added a link to the article not indifferent, but not allies in this paragraph:

The next clip, [36:38] New Evangelicalism is Evangelicalism is Indifferentism, describes this equation: Old New Evangelicalism = Mainstream Evangelicals = Indifferentists. The mainstream Evangelical institutions are unable to break their ties with some who are apostates. Bauder cites the Evangelical Theological Society, for example, who are unable to oust the Open Theists, essentially because of Indifferentism. (It is interesting to hear him cite this example when Fundamentalists continue to hold memberships and publish papers in the ETS. But that is another post!) In this clip, Bauder is asserting that Indifferentism has become the Evangelical mainstream.

It is worth thinking about, this connection of Fundamentalists with the ETS. Is this kind of activity a step forward for Fundamentalism? I don’t think it affects the average pastor, who may be barely aware of the ETS and what goes on there.

But how does this affect the next generation of Fundamentalist (hopefully) pastors in training under the leadership of these professors? Surely they are aware that their professor is away at ETS. Surely they are aware that he is publishing a paper.

What are they to think?

What are they to think especially when their seminary president identifies the ETS as an Indifferentist (New Evangelical) institution?

Are we supposed to now be Indifferent to Indifferentists?

don_sig2

the danger of theological drift

We are in a series of posts which serve as commentary on Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture on the subject of Biblical Separation, delivered at International Baptist College September 15-17, 2008. This is post number 5. Earlier posts on the lecture series can be found here:

Posts specifically regarding Lecture 10:

  1. is separation a fundamental doctrine
  2. indifferentists defined
  3. not indifferent, but not allies
  4. how should we proceed

We come now to my fifth post on Bauder’s tenth lecture [having fun with numbers, aren’t we? – ed.] I’ve given this one the heading “the danger of theological drift”. When I was learning to drive, my dad taught me that when approaching an oncoming vehicle on the highway at night I should keep my eyes on the white line at the shoulder on my side of the road. The idea was that you tend to steer in the direction your eyes are looking. If you become transfixed with the oncoming lights on the other side of the road… well, let’s just say it is better to watch your own side of the road!

In this post, I will replay two previous clips from previous posts and add one more. These clips raise the concern of theological drift. This is a concern for the CE crowd and their upcoming generations and it is also a concern for our own Fundie crowd.

[Read more…]

how should we proceed

We are in a series of posts which serve as commentary on Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture on the subject of Biblical Separation, delivered at International Baptist College September 15-17, 2008. This is post number 4. Earlier posts on the lecture series can be found here:

Posts specifically regarding Lecture 10:

  1. is separation a fundamental doctrine
  2. indifferentists defined
  3. not indifferent, but not allies

This is my fourth post considering Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture at International Baptist College. This post is entitled: ‘how should we proceed‘.

Our analysis of the situation is essentially similar (see especially post #2 and post #3). The New Evangelical Indifferentism that now characterizes the majority of evangelicalism is a travesty that demeans the gospel. The Conservative Evangelicals are not Indifferentists, but they remain closely connected to Indifferentists and even see themselves as ‘indebted’ to them. They are willing to endorse Indifferentists. This attitude constitutes a significant difference between Fundamentalists and Conservative Evangelicals. It precludes unfettered fellowship between them.

Nevertheless, Bauder is going to suggest that some fellowship with Conservative Evangelicals (CEs) is possible for Fundamentalists (Fundies). I will let Bauder speak for himself, but it is here where his viewpoint and mine begin to diverge.

[Read more…]

not indifferent, but not allies

We are in a series of posts which serve as commentary on Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture on the subject of Biblical Separation, delivered at International Baptist College September 15-17, 2008. This is post number 3. Earlier posts on the lecture series can be found here:

Posts specifically regarding Lecture 10:

  1. is separation a fundamental doctrine
  2. indifferentists defined

This is the third in my series of posts concerning Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture. The clips in this section are going to mark out a distinction between conservative evangelicals and fundamentalists. In the last post, we defined indifferentism, the attitude of New Evangelicalism, which thinks it is just fine for true Christians to cooperate with people who deny the essential doctrines of Christianity and to accredit them as ‘our Christian brothers’. Bro. Bauder says the activities of Indifferentists are very serious and very damaging to Christianity itself. I agree with him!

The next point, and the subject of this post, describes the distinctions between the Indifferentists (formerly known as New Evangelicals), Conservative Evangelicals, and Fundamentalists.

I appreciate one aspect of these clips in particular. Bauder makes it clear that there is a distinct difference between Conservative Evangelicals (CEs) and Fundamentalists. He will say that this difference amounts to an insurmountable barrier which precludes almost all fellowship. I agree in the main, but likely see the barrier as larger and the opportunities for fellowship as much, much smaller. [Read more…]

indifferentists defined

We are in a series of posts which serve as commentary on Kevin Bauder’s tenth lecture on the subject of Biblical Separation, delivered at International Baptist College September 15-17, 2008. This is post number 2. Earlier posts on the lecture series can be found here:

Posts specifically regarding Lecture 10:

  1. is separation a fundamental doctrine

The term ‘indifferentist’ is revived by Kevin Bauder in his discussion of Biblical Separation. The term comes from J. Gresham Machen, a warrior in the 1930s for the orthodox cause. He is a man much admired by fundamentalists, though he himself didn’t like the label. My impression is that he was somewhat embarrassed by the shenanigans of some purported fundamentalists. We share his embarrassment, but don’t share his eschewing of the label.

What is an ‘indifferentist’? An indifferentist is a Christian who holds to orthodox doctrines, but is quite willing to work with professing Christians who deny those same doctrines. In other words, though an indifferentist is ‘in the circle’ of Christianity, he is willing to work with some of those who are clearly ‘outside the circle’, and is even willing to call them good Christian brothers.

In order to understand the term more fully, I have assembled a series of clips from Kevin Bauder’s lecture. I’ll summarize Bauder’s argument, then offer a few comments. You will find me generally in agreement with this portion of Bauder’s argument. [Read more…]