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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 Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany.
The Collect.

O LORD, we beseech thee to keep thy Church and household continually in thy true religion; that they who do lean only upon the hope of thy heavenly grace may evermore be defended by thy mighty power; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Earnestly Contending For the Faith

Judging from recent developments in the Anglican Communion at large and the Protestant Episcopal Church U.S.A., it seems that Anglicanism is in trouble. The so-called via media between the English Reformation and Roman Catholicism, pushed so hard by the Anglo-Catholics and Tractarians of the nineteenth century, has merely opened the door for more theologically liberal Anglo-Catholics to attack the very foundations of the Christian faith.

For decades the Episcopal Church U.S.A. has been ordaining homosexual priests and, some say, even consecrating homosexual bishops. The difference was that in previous times these homosexuals were supposed to be chaste or celibate and not practicing the homosexual lifestyle. However, these days the ECUSA is openly ordaining practicing homosexuals as priests and even consecrated an openly gay bishop.

Not only this but the authority of Scripture and the belief in the supernatural is refuted openly. In a recent news article the new presiding bishop, Katharine Jefferts Schori, a controversial consecration as well, was teaching teenagers that heaven is just a place in the heart and not a real place in the hereafter (see http://www.nevadaappeal.com/article/20060807/NEWS/108070064/-1/rss02). If Christianity is merely a myth, the implication is that all gods and even the God of the Bible are simply constructs of the human imagination, an attempt to find meaning in a materialistic universe.

It is troubling that those who claim to be Christians are actually advocating a form of practical atheism where revelation is all but discounted and the supernatural is in question. If this world is all there is and there is no resurrection, the Apostle Paul says that our faith is in vain (see 1 Corinthians 15:12-19). We are of all men most miserable if our hope is merely in living a good life here on earth, especially since the majority of the Christians in the world have a meager existence and struggle just for the basic necessities of life.

But the problem with apostasy is not limited to liberal mainline denominations. Apparently, even fundamentalist charismatic preachers are leaving the fold. Bishop Carlton Pearson has in the last couple of years decided that universalism is true and that hell is only for those who consciously reject Jesus Christ. Those who are in other religions don't really need to be converted, etc., etc.

The end times are indeed upon us. Let us pray for the whole state of Christ's church!

Peace.

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