Martyred for the Gospel

Martyred for the Gospel
The burning of Tharchbishop of Cant. D. Tho. Cranmer in the town dich at Oxford, with his hand first thrust into the fyre, wherwith he subscribed before. [Click on the picture to see Cranmer's last words.]

Collect of the Day

The Second Sunday in Lent.

The Collect

ALMIGHTY God, who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves; Keep us both outwardly in our bodies, and inwardly in our souls; that we may be defended from all adversities which may happen to the body, and from all evil thoughts which may assault and hurt the soul; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The Collect from the First Day of Lent is to be read every day in Lent after the Collect appointed for the Day.

Daily Bible Verse

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Westminster Captivity of Evangelicalism? Charismatics See the Traditional Reformed View as a Threat

I'm posting this comment on the blog in case the moderator does not post it at his site, Renewal Dynamics.  The original title is, "The Westminster Captivity of Evangelicalism."  I am pleased to see that the charismatics see the biblical view of justification as an imputed righteousness as a challenge to their view of justification as an infusion of the Holy Spirit.    Charlie
Hi Dale,
As a former pentecostal/charismatic and a former Arminian I have to disagree with your post. First of all, your emphasis on "healing" borrows its theology mostly from the Word of Faith movement which is essentially a syncretism of Christian Science/New Thought with Pentecostal/Arminian theology. It is a subtle shift between the synergism of Arminianism to a full blown positive confession that changes reality in the matters of health and prosperity.

Secondly, arguments for non-cessationism beg the question since there is no direct evidence in Scripture for the ongoing signs, wonders, and miracles of the apostles to continue until the return of Christ. Since the majority of healings and miracles today cannot be documented and/or do not meet the same criteria as the astounding miracles Jesus and the original apostles did, I don't think they are the same at all. This is particularly true when the miracles recorded in Scripture are obligatory to the believer while modern anecdotes are fallible at best.

And lastly, the de-emphasizing of the forensic nature of justification goes beyond what even John Wesley taught in the 52 Standard Sermons. Having studied at Asbury I can tell you that Wesley did teach the doctrine of a forensic justification by faith alone and a penal substitutionary atonement, although modern Methodists are not comfortable with that doctrine. The move away from justification by faith alone by a forensic declaration by God on our behalf is in fact contradictory to Scripture and is a move in the direction of Rome. If salvation is something infused into the heart by the dynamic experience of the Holy Spirit, then what you are really saying is that justification is based on our performance, our keeping of the law, and our sanctification. To confuse justification with sanctification is to commit the error of semi-pelagianism and to deny the very Gospel itself as it was condemned in the canons of the Council of Trent.

This is why traditional Reformed theology opposes your pentecostalism. It is because your view is inherently a pelagian one. Despite all the talk in charismatic circles about "sovereign moves of the Holy Spirit" and "miracles" the real truth is you think you have to work up all these things yourself by your "cooperation" with God. This cooperation really amounts to man being sovereign over God and thus God becomes your heavenly bellhop who jumps at your command.

No, I became a Calvinist in 1995 after my experience at Asbury precisely because I saw through all the smoke and saw the Pentecostal/Charismatic/Arminian view for what it really is: Works righteousness and a performance trap.

I would much rather trust in all the promises of God which are in Christ, yea and amen!

For all the promises of God find their Yes in him. That is why it is through him that we utter our Amen to God for his glory. (2 Corinthians 1:20 ESV)

 Charlie J. Ray says:

April 29, 2010 at 9:41 am

I might add that the cage fight mentality exists in the charismatic movement as well. It's really a form of triumphalistic theology that says anyone who dares to disagree is out. Charismatics dare not question their leaders or what they say.

  Glory be to the Father, and to the Son : and to the Holy Ghost;
    Answer. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be : world without end. Amen.

1662 Book of Common Prayer

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