Perhaps you have already heard but Rev. Steve Wilkins and his entire church have left the PCA and are seeking union with the Confederation of Reformed Evangelical Churches (CRE). This is not surprising per se as the CRE is the final destination for all FV men or at least it will be.
It is a little bit of a surprise that Rev. Wilson seems to call it a victory. He is quite happy about the church joining his denomination, but a few months ago he seemed excited about the PCA being exposed by having this process done out in the open. The PCA did seem to encourage the strategy finally employed by Rev Wilkins in their ‘Leave or else’ declaration. Both sides decided in the end to avoid a fight, and what exactly happens now is up in the air. Does the PCA continue to prosecute the Louisiana Presbytery? Will other members of that presbytery flee to the arms of the CRE? Will the PCA turn its attention to others like Rev. Leithart? The issue is not dead, but it is ducked for another year or so.
Another interesting post is the one at Reformed Catholicism. Read the interaction in the comments especially response #9 from Rev. Sandlin. Sandlin has a very large rebuke for the CRE.
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Perhaps you have already heard but Rev. Steve Wilkins and his entire church have left the PCA and are seeking union with the Confederation of Reformed Evangelical Churches (CRE). This is not surprising per se as the CRE is the final destination for all FV men or at least it will be.
Sunday, January 20, 2008
I have been reading one of my Christmas gifts lately. It is An Emergent Manifesto of Hope. This book is a collection of essays by leaders in the Emergent Church movement. It is an attempt to drive home their viewpoint and their goals to those who are unfamiliar with the Emergent Church. I will be blogging about some of the individual chapters because there is so much in this book worthy of blog posts al there own. However, one thing is standing out and coming across as an underlying and unifying factor in the Emergent movement. One theme continually pops up that unites these very different men and different theologies. Well, two themes if you count ‘missional’ as a theme, but really what is ‘missional’ and what does that mean seems to be different for each writer, but another post for another time.
The main unifying factor seems to be an open rebellion against the Religious Right. And by that I mean a rebellion against those religious leaders who jumped into the political arena like Jerry Fawell, Pat Robertson, and Dr. Dobson, but also the more theological leaders like Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins. This is one of the reason these people like to call themselves ‘post evangelical’. The word evangelical is as much a political word today as it is a religious one. These people do not like the politics of the ‘evangelical movement’ and its leaders and have rejected the whole system. Listen to the words of Brian McLaren:
Here in the United States we see large sectors of the Christian community associated with American hyperconfidence, white privilege, institutional racism, civil religion, neocolonialism, and nationalistic militarism – often fortified by a privatized faith in a privatized nationalistic/tribal god. (pg. 148)
Other writers make similar comments. In fact, Tony Jones specifically mentions the hope of the Emergent Village being something that can counter the work of Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins (pg.130). These men and women really seem to be the next step in evolution of the Liberals and their Social Gospel from the early part of the 20th Century. Then the Social Gospel took over and the message was changed from one of salvation to one of helping the needy. However the Social Gospel took over the institutional churches and made few other changes besides the message. Thus, people sang the same sort of songs, sat in the same pews, and worshipped in the same manner while hearing the social gospel message. The Emergent Church wants a return to the social gospel of liberalism, but they are also throwing off the system itself. Why keep the same old trappings? Why not throw off all vestiges of that old authoritarian system and find a new way more in keeping with the message? This group is on board with Progressive/Democratic politics and it is angry at the Republican domination of the Evangelical message.
While I can agree that Evangelical as a political term is a bad thing and the mixing of the Republican Party with Christianity as is done by Robertson and others is a serious error, I do not agree with the radical solution. There is of course a middle ground, the ground always held by the church. Preaching Christ and Him crucified along with being living sacrifices of thanksgiving. I am against the ‘Republican Party will save us’ mentality that pervades so many, I am equally appalled at the ‘throw everything overboard and hope the Democrats can save us’ mentality taken by the Emergent church as well.
Friday, January 18, 2008
Fred Thomson is right, this primary season is a battle for the soul of the Republican Party. And since I am not a Republican, I can view this war for the soul of the party from a distance and analyze what I see.
First, there is always talk of the Reagan Coalition that really helped the Republicans start winning Presidential elections. That coalition grafted into the Republican Party Libertarians, PaleoConservatives, and Theoconservatives. What it also did was place some of the budding NeoConservatives in a places of power in the administration. Thus, Reagan held together a large coalition of people. President Bush the Older continued that tradition by trying not to change much, but his appointments show a growing power for the NeoConservatives, who were not making much hay on the campaign trial, but doing a good deal of work in the backrooms of the White House. The Republican Revolution of 1992 was primarily a PaleoConservative Revolution with great help from the TheoConservatives and the Libertarians. The 1996 race for the White House ended in disaster for PaleoCon Bob Dole and with the fall of Newt, another PaleoCon thinker the Neocons forged a new alliance with the TheoCons to take the White House with President Bush the Younger. As Younger President Bush continued his term in office the NeoCons showed complete control leading to great disenchantment from the Libertarians first, the PaleoCons second, and finally even the TheoCons are getting nervous.
That brings us to this year’s historic run for the White House. Each candidate really represents a different slice of the pie and a different attempt to forge bonds between the four separate groups.
Mitt Romney – Romney tries to be the complete package and is making overtures toward the TheoCons, but he is not really their man. Romney is stuck somewhere in the middle. He is trying to forge an alliance with the PaleoCons, TheoCons, and NeoCons. He is promising less government spending for the Paleo branch, he is promising anti-abortion activism for the TheoCons, and a continued foreign policy laid out by the NeoCons. His attempts at this have so far fallen a bit flat, but he is the best at naturally appealing to al groups.
John McCain – McCain has a long career as a NeoCon. He has some PaleoCon tendencies such as a hatred of wasteful spending, but his willingness to increase government in education, Medicare, and restrict freedoms in campaign reform shows he is really the establishment NeoCon candidate. The reason he is not fully supported by the NeoCons is his constant criticism of how the first true NeoCon administration ran things has hurt him. The PaleoCons and Libertarians are not behind him because of the above reasons as well as opposition to tax cuts. The TheoCons are not with him because of how he insulted them when he lost South Carolina in 2000.
Rudy Guiliani – He is purely a NeoCon candidate and was counting on big support from the White House and from 911. He has no credentials as a PaleoCon, Libertarian, or TheoCon. His presence in the race has also hurt McCain. Although Guiliani really angers the TheoCons by hjs open support of abortion.
Mike Huckabee – Huckabee is a smooth talker, but his version of the Republican Party contains only NeoCons and TheoCons. He has completely abandoned the PaleoCon and Libertarian wing of the party. President Bush always kept up a veneer of tax cuts to try and placate the PaleoCons, but Huckabee has never done that. The other difference between Huckabee’s version of the Republican Party and the President Bush/John McCain version of the party is that Huckabee will invert the power structure. Huckabee wishes to keep a coalition of NeoCons and TheoCons, but would put the TheoCons in the driver seat of the party for the first time.
Fred Thomson – Fred is the best attempt to keep alive the old Reagan Coalition. Unlike Romney, Fred keeps trying to bring in Libertarians and has a smaller place for the NeoCons and TheoCons, although he clearly tries to keep them by not renouncing President Bush’s foreign policy. Instead of giving the TheoCons what they want in Federal Amendments he actually tries to appeal to the forgotten Libertarian wing of the party by rejecting the need for such amendments. His pro-life stance may not be enough to make TheoCons happy and the NeoCons do not want to be replaced in the driver seat by a PaleoCon such as Thomson. Thus, his attempt to keep the Reagan Coalition alive is almost dead.
Ducan Hunter – Hunter is an old fashion PaleoCon who does not try to keep the NeoCons in his alliance. Hunter has the pro-life positions to satisfy the TheoCons, and although he is not advocating a withdrawal from Iraq focus his foreign policy more on economics and returns to the threat of Communism as a main talking point. Hunter is an old fashion PaleoCon who barely tries to reach out to anyone else. His view of the party is solidly PaleoCon.
Ron Paul – Ron Paul is the attempt by the Libertarians to gain footing again in the Republican Party. Paul’s positions are considered extreme today because they are solidly libertarian. He does appeal to PaleoCons as well, but stands more in the Libertarian position than the Paleo. He out right rejects the NeoCons as true conservatives and will not give the federal government to the TheoCons. Paul’s version of the Republican party is Libertarianism in control with PaleoCons sitting shotgun.
Thus, this race is real interesting when seen as a fight for the future and soul of the Party. Will it stay with the Reagan Coalition, is that even possible? Will it become the party of TheoCons? Will the Libertarians win, or will they run off and make Paul a third party candidate? It is an extremely interesting primary season on the Republican side. The question on the Democratic side is whether or not they will hide their Progressivism behind nice rhetoric or not? That is the only thing going on the Democratic side.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
I would like to draw attention to a post over at the new Evangelical Catholicity blog that is very helpful in understanding the mission and thinking of the modern ‘catholicity movement’ for lack of a better term. This post by Mr. Bonomo has 12 principles for Protestant Catholicity. I find them honest and the post is a great starting point for discussion regarding Protestant Catholicity. I hope that this response will be seen as an attempt to further that discussion by asking some refining questions and making a few comments on each of the 12 Principles.
1. The Centrality of Jesus Christ – I do not have any disagreement with this one. I do question the need to add the phrase ‘and not mere speculation about him’, but I agree with the point. We are unified only in Jesus Christ, He alone is our center.
2. The Essential Unity of the Church – Again, I have no objections here. Another good point.
3. The Diversity of the Church – Here again I agree. However there is a problem. That problem is in how one defines ‘secondary matters’. I agree that secondary matters should be left up to the individual and should not bar union and unity with fellow believers. I also know of no one who does not agree with that statement. The problem lies in defining ‘secondary matters’.
4. The Supremacy of Historic Creedal Orthodoxy – Here I must depart for a moment. The argument here is that the original historic creeds of the Apostle’s, Nicene, and Chalcedonian creeds should be the basis for unity. I suppose this is the attempt to define what is an essential and what is a secondary matter of faith. I have two main objections: one historical and one theological. The historical objection is that those creeds were not meant to serve that purpose ever. The Apostle’s Creed was originally a baptismal creed and the other two were written in response to specific heresies, not as a source of unity. Plus, which Nicene Creed are we talking about. Do we include the Filoque clause that teaches the Spirit proceeds from the Son or not? This is a serious matter to the Eastern Orthodox church. This, in my opinion , is forcing something on these creeds that they were not made to do, namely be the definition of the essentials of the Christian faith. My theological objection is that I do not believe these creeds sufficiently cover the basics of Christianity. Paul makes clear in Galatians 1:8-9 that the gospel is essential and those who reject it or pervert it are to be accursed. That book goes on to talk about the gospel and deals mainly with justification by faith, a subject not covered in any of those three creeds. Thus, if I am to be faithful to Paul’s words, I need more than those historic trio of creeds.
5. The Heinousness of Schism – Here I will claim ignorance. The claim is made by Mr. Bonomo that division in the body of Christ is as bad as propositional heresy. This I have not thought over enough to comment upon. I also would like to investigate the idea of schism without some sort of underlying sin and/or heresy being involved. Is it possible for a schism to occur without some deeper issue being involved? I prefer to ask for more time to study this issue before I agree or disagree with this one.
6. The Hope for Inter-Confessional Unity – To this one I must strongly object. Mr. Bonomo argues “All Christians ought to hope for a day when believers in Christ from all the various orthodox confessional traditions can exist in one visible Body while yet retaining their confessional identities. This may seem impossible from our perspective, but with God all things are possible.” What I do not understand is why? Why cannot I hope for a day when people from various confessional traditions exist in one Body and share the same confession? I believe that Baptist churches are Christian churches. However, why would I ever hope to have a church where some people believed in baptizing children and some did not? Why should we not hope for a day when Baptists give up their position and join in agreement with the Heidelberg Catechism? As Mr. Bonomo says, ‘with God all things are possible’. I do not think that visible unity should come at such an obvious theological disunity. Can real unity be based on so little? I don’t think so.
7. The Catholicity of the Reformation – Here we are reminded that the Reformation was a movement within the catholic Church. Now, if ‘catholic’ here means ‘universal’ or ‘historic’, then I am in agreement. If it is meant ‘Roman Catholic”, then I disagree. I do not believe the Reformation was really a movement within the Roman Catholic Church. Luther burned the papal bulls, which is just revolutionary as it was reformatory. Others left their monastic vows being convinced they were completely wrong. Other disobeyed their bishops and ran the churches according to the Word of God rather than the word of the bishops. There were plenty of reform movements within the Roman Church. See the Cluniacs for example. They never rejected the fundamentals of their church such as the primacy of Rome, and they were successful reform movements. The Reformation was not like that at all.
8. Non-Protestant Communions are Christian Churches – Again this I believe is wrong. Perhaps this one goes back to my earlier disagreement about the nature of the essentials of the gospel. However, I do not believe that the Eastern Orthodoxy nor the Roman Catholic have valid ministries of the word or sacraments. While some in those churches may trust Jesus Christ for their salvation and be saved, it does not validate the system of those churches just as God speaking through Balaam’s donkey does not validate taking advice from farm animals.
9. Sola Scriptura not Solo Scriptura – Here I would like to see some clarification. Things that concern me in this section are the tendecy to talk about the Church as an institution and not as people. If the Scripture is given to the Church for Her to interpret, how is that different from saying that Scripture is given to the people of God for them to interpret? Are we saying that only the professionals of the Church have the right to make applications and interpretations from the Scripture? Are we saying that the Church is something different than the people of God called out from the world? This phrase also concerns me, "The Scriptures are for the Church, to be interpreted and expounded upon within the context of the church’s life, as she is led along by the working of the Spirit to reveal to her the glorious truths contained therein." Here it seems like one is arguing for theological development throughout time, but it is unclear especially when considered next to the claim that we should hold historic truths in reverence. I would like this phrase parsed out more. I am against the idea that new truths within the word will be revealed that previous generations could never have known or understood. I am not against the idea that new technologies will lead to new applications of age-old truth.
10. The Need for an Apologetic for Our Times – An apologetic for unity is not a bad idea, but this list is a search for exactly what that means. Also I see the verses listed where unity is commended, but there are also verses where disunity is commended. ‘What fellowship does Christ have with Belial?’ or that Jesus came to ‘divide mother and daughter, brother and sister’ or that the Word is ‘sharper than a two-edged sword able to divide bone and marrow’. The Word is a sword and swords cleave not unite. I wish that would be taken into consideration more in any future apologetic for unity.
11. The Need for a Proper Christian Epistemology – I am all in favor of sound Christian Epistemology. I do not consider myself a follower of Enlightenment thought nor do I think I am a Foundationalists. These are popular critiques right now. However, what confuses me is this phrase, "From a proper Christian perspective, truth ought to be conceived irreducibly as an incarnate, crucified, resurrected, divine Person, through faith in whom all of our seeking of understanding must be mediated." What exactly does that mean? Is this a denial that truth is propositional? Is it stating truth is only relational? What exactly is in view here?
12. Moving Past a Hermeneutic of Suspicion – I can agree with this. We need not always think the worst of one another. Christian brothers and sisters ought to be given benefit of the doubt at all times and that Reformed People can find great biblical insights in the words of a Baptist minister or a Presbyterian pastor. It should be pointed out that part of the disagreement here is over who exactly should be considered Christian and that debate has impact in this section, but I can agree that too often people glory in controversy.
I hope that this post furthers and prompts much discussion. I will try to make sure and send a trackback to the Evangelical Catholicity blog in an attempt to have a fruitful discussion about some of these principles. I look forward to any comments.
Monday, January 14, 2008
I think that there is a story that is not getting discussed enough on TV, and it is about politics. I found extremely interesting the major polling malfunction prior to the New Hampshire Primary. Almost every poll had Hillary Clinton losing by at least seven and usually double digits. The Clinton camp itself seemed assured of defeat. Yet, Clinton won by 2 to 3 percentage points. A stunning turn around. What exactly happened? There are several theories.
Rasmussen puts forth several theories. They are the standard theories that more independents went to John McCain and the Republican Primary rather than the Democratic one which hurt Obama. This article also claims that they saw the upswing in support for Hilary in their Monday Night polling where she was only behind by seven rather than double digits. Yet, this is still a massive swing of 9% points in less than 24 hours.
The New York Times prefers to go with the standard story that women came out in droves because of the tears shed by the usually calculating Mrs. Clinton. The Cable news pundits seem to think this is the case as well. However, if this is true it is more of a reason to revoke a woman’s right to vote rather than cheer a political miracle. It paints all women as those who cannot resist a sob story. I know a lot of women who don’t think like that, and so I find this a hard to believe explanation as well.
I have still not yet really found a credible reason for this malfunction of not just one poll, but all major pollsters in America. Every single one. Zogby, Rasmussen, Gallup, and countless more local polls. The best reasons have not been mentioned by major media except in the crawl lines at the bottom of the screen, if then.
One is that anyone can vote in New Hampshire even those who live in Vermont or New York or any place at all. The rules are non-existent and meant to be so. I admit I heard this fact from Rush Limbaugh, but that does not mean it is not true. What makes me wonder why more people are not talking about this factor is that I heard Joe Scarbrough of MSNBC comment on how Hilary Clinton was in big trouble because he attended a rally she held the night before the elections and over half of the cars in the lot were from out of state. That sounded like nice reporting by Joe, but now it turns out all of those people could have stayed around and voted. Did Clinton use a law to here advantage? Did New Hampshire get out voted by Clinton workers from New York? Someone ought to at least ask.
The biggest thing that the news is not covering is the allegations of fraud that were immediate. Not surprisingly Ron Paul supporters started the fury, and have some actually admitted cases of deception under their belt. However, the fury increased when it looked as if those places that used a voting machine or optical vote reader to count the votes favored Hilary and all hand counted placed favored Obama. As one can see this is not a new controversy with these machines or New Hampshire HBO, Lou Dobbs, and You Tube have all talked before about how easy it is to hack into these machines and even shown someone do it. Thus, the silence of the media is amazing. I think it is because it is sparked by bloggers and the media hates bloggers. Thankfully, Congressmen Kucinch asked for a recount and it has been authorized. There are sane reasons out there that this fraud is probably wrong, but I still think it would have gotten more press. Plus, the reason given just leads us back to what happened to make all of the polls so wrong.
At any rate, I am interested to hear how the recount goes. I am surprised that people have not spent more time looking into it. My distrust of government tells me that this could have been rigged. My distrust of pollsters tells me they probably just make stuff up to put in their polls. Over all I would just like to see some real journalism by someone. Somebody ask some real questions, please.
Saturday, January 12, 2008
It has been a while since I have reviewed anything. So, I will try to catch up on the books later, but I wanted to talk about some good things to watch. Since the writers are on strike TV is more depressing than exciting right now. There are really only two good shows on TV anyway. Heroes with their wonderful characters and rich imagery, and LOST which follows the same wonderful pattern. Heroes for example has people with names like Nathan, Peter, Noah, and Adam. Although in the last episode Nathan appeared to die, he dies serving as a prophet. Peter is very much the foundation, a rock so to speak. Adam may well be the first hero, although a hero who has fallen, and Noah is trying to save his family. The tension between a higher purpose and outright Darwinism is also fun to watch. LOST is very similar with characters with deep philosophical names like Russeau, Locke, and Hugo. In fact almost every name has significance in LOST and the real greatness of the show is the battle of these ideals. It also has some nice allusions like a man trying to return his love named Penelope, and Benjamin and Jacob serving as the Biblical allusions. It is a very good show. However, while LOST still has shows left, it does not appear that either will get a full season under their belt with the writers going on strike because of good old fashion greed. Thus, we must turn to movies.
And movies are seldom very good these days. Oddly the best are usually comic book remakes or stories from history. Original work in Hollywood usually turns out to be garbage. However, I am Legend starring Will Smith was a refreshing breath of fresh air. The acting was solid, not great but solid. More importantly the story was deep and fantastic. The lesson was a good moral, and the story was ripe with great biblical allusions. I don’t want to ruin too much of the story, but the disease that has ravaged mankind serves as a wonderful image for sin, and the story then becomes a search for salvation. It is a good story that does get explicit about God near the end. And surprisingly for a Hollywood movie it ends with a positive message about God. Not a great or deep message, but one that says He exists and He is working even in the darkest moments. I enjoyed the movie that was suspenseful, dramatic, exciting, and entertaining. I give it two thumbs up.
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
It is the political season again. I always enjoy watching the politics, but I feel much more distance from it this year. This is for two reasons: politics is not the answer to real problems, and there is no difference between Republicans and Democrats.
That being said, I wanted to comment on Andrew Sandlin’s discussion about Republican candidates and the Reagan coalition. Rev. Sandlin has always been a bit more of a pragmatist than I have when it comes to politics, but this time I want to take issue with his historical reading of Reagan. Sandlin proclaims that only McCain and Giuliani are the only two people that can hold the Reagan coalition together. He says the most important point is a ‘muscular foreign policy’. This is what he believes Reagan had and that was what brought the Soviet Union down. He obviously thinks that only the supporters of President Bush have that ‘muscular foreign policy’. The question is whether or not the Neo-Conservative doctrine of pre-emptive strikes on countries that might pose a risk is the same as Reagan’s foreign policy?
The answer is clear. No. Not even close. While I can agree that Reagan had a muscular foreign policy, Reagan had no pre-emptive strikes. With the possible exception of Grenada, Reagan never once invaded a country to prevent war. He defeated the spread of the Soviet Union not by force as previous presidents had done, but by increased defense spending and helping our allies spend on defense. Reagan pushed the ‘Star Wars’ defense program and put defensive missiles in West Germany. But never did Reagan take us to war to end the Soviet Union. Not that he did not have his chances. Many forget the shooting of Korean Air 007. This flight included 60 plus American citizens, and was shot down by Russian aircraft. Reagan took economic action, but no military action. This stands in stark contrast to the foreign policy of President Bush and the neo-conservatives. It is in stark contrast to McCain who supports the Bush Doctrine and Mayor Rudy who also stands in line with the Bush Doctrine of ‘War that Prevents All Wars’.
In the end, I agree with Reagan’s muscular foreign policy. It was one based on a strong military and defense. It was based on calling a spade a spade or in this case an Evil Empire. It was also based on economics and economic pressure. Even beyond that it was based on optimism. Reagan never doubted that the USSR would be put in the dustbin of history and that its last chapters were being written. This is also a far cry from the rhetoric we hear from Neo-cons. Sandlin misrepresents the foreign policy of Buchanan and Paul (and perhaps the others I just don’t know them as well). They are not isolationists. Paul has specifically refuted this many times. He is simply not an interventionist. But he favors the Reagan approach of economic allies and trade and diplomacy all of which Reagan used to bring down the USSR.
If someone wants to defend the Neo-conservative view of foreign policy, fine. Do so. However, let us not pretend that Ronald Reagan is an example, at least not with regards to his policy toward the USSR. It just seems to historically inaccurate to swallow.
Thursday, January 03, 2008
Something interesting is going on over at Barb’s blog. She has called Andy Webb (an anti-FV advocate) a tale-bearer and a gossip because he posted a link to a site that reproduced private emails from the Biblical Horizons email group (a pro-FV email group), which apparently includes some sort of confidentiality promise. The debate which carries over into a new post revolves mainly around whether or not it was right for a link to be given out since it spread things meant to be private. Was that gossip? Was it allowing someone who broke their word to be rewarded for his 9th commandment breaking? I am not that interested in the content of the exposed emails. I did read them, or most of them, but frankly found it boring and rather dull. What does interest me is the ethics of the situation. It got me to talking and to thinking, so I want to extend the discussion here into cyber space.
Is it wrong for someone to break a promise of confidentiality? Not just email lists but say working for the government or companies? Do circumstances make it a sin to stay silent? Is a whistle-blower a sinner?
Something that has not been brought up, but should be added to this discussion is the following question:
Is it right for Christians to sign confidentiality agreements? Is it a sin to require them?
Just a few questions that I hope people will respond. I would appreciate all thoughts.
I have long been critical of most things going on at Reformed Catholicism including its basic premise that an honest dialogue can exist between all groups such as Romanists and Reformed as one example. Denominations exist for the most part because of serous divisions that often go to the very nature of the gospsel. Take for example the differences between Calvinistic churches and Armenian churches. They disagree on at least the nature of man’s sin, whether faith is a work, Christ’s work on the cross and what that did, whether God controls all things, man’s role in salvation, and the security coming from salvation. These are fundamental. I am all for dialogue, but not dialogue that pretends such difference are not at the very heart of the Christian faith. Reformed Catholicism thought at first that such things and other controversial issues such as the role of Mary and Images could be discussed in a helpful non-divisive manner. They have been proven wrong as many writers have now split to form Evangelical Catholicity. The split seems to be because of a growing difference between writers like Kevin Johnson and the more Mercersburg oriented group like Jonathon Bonomo. This can be seen in heated exchanges about a wide range of topics in the comment sections.
This brings me to my point about Catholicity or Ecumenism. It is the dirty little secret of Catholicity. It is actually an intolerant movement and spews venom at those who disagree with their Ecumenical or ‘Peaceful’ goals. One only has to look at history to see that what happened between Evangelical and Reformed Catholicism happens every time a movement claims to be about Peace and Ecumenism. In my own personal denominations history one can look at the Peace Movement that tried to bring about reconciliation between the Mercersburg Party and the Old Reformed Party. Those who did not want to participate and still did things like bring people up on trial for heresies were branded as crazies. Just look at James I Good’s take on the German-Russian ‘Kohlbrueggians’ in his History of the RCUS 19th century. Good is a staunch Old Reformed Man, but he has nicer things to say about the Mercersburg group than the intolerant German-Russian group, which would eventually not follow the rest of the denomination into the merger with the Evangelical Lutheran church. The Presbyterian Church also serves as a wonderful example. For years the Princetonians had been fighting to get the Liberal who signed the Auburn Affirmation out of the church. They had some small success then in 1925 a Princeton Professor known for his ecumenical or a peace attitude was elected moderator: Professor Charles Erdman. It was under his leadership that the cause of biblical orthodox ground to a halt. He placated a group of ministers who denied the virgin birth by creating a committee to discover the problems within the church itself. That commission interviewed men like Machen, but rejected their view of the problem. The very next year the appointments of Princeton were held up and the institution was soon destroyed. It was under the guise of Peace that the ‘intolerant’ view of Princeton was eradicated. One could go back further in time to the Counciliar Movement and the Council of Pisa, which was supposed to settle the dispute between the Avingion and Roman Popes, but instead created a third pope. Ecumenism is not a peaceful movement. It never has been. The latest split in Catholicity blogs is just further proof of that.