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

Sunday, May 03, 2009

David Virtue: New North American Anglican Province Will Pose Major Threat to Anglican Unity

David Virtue's article, "New North American Anglican Province Will Pose Major Threat to Anglican Unity," updates the news on the forthcoming new Anglican province in North America. It is interesting to note that the Reformed Episcopal Church is going to become a full member of the new province and no mention is made of the Anglican Province in America being a part of that new province. Some have indicated that the issue of women's ordination is keeping the APA out of the new province by their own choice.

What I find troubling is that the issue of Tractarianism and Anglo-Catholicism is not even being mentioned in the formation of this new province. This means that the roots of the theological defection of the Anglican Communion in England, the United States and Canada still exist in the so-called "new province." What we will be getting is another Anglo-Catholic jurisdiction which undermines the biblical doctrines of total depravity, unconditional election, particular atonement, irresistible grace, and the perseverance of the saints. The Anglo-Catholic position is inherently opposed to the five solas of the Protestant Reformation, including sola Scriptura, sola gratia, sola fide, solus Christus, and soli Deo gloria.

I have had it reported to me in private that the talks of union between the Reformed Episcopal Church and the Anglican Province of America are now a moot point since the REC is included in the new province of North America. In some ways this is a relief but since it is my opinion that the so-called new province is no better than the liberal mainline Episcopal Church USA it is leaving I can only lament the further degradation of the Reformed faith in Anglicanism.

What will it take to turn Evangelicalism, Anglicanism, and the Christian world back to the foundational and apostolic message of the Holy Scritpures? The current sell out to cultural relativism on the part of Evangelicalism as a whole is cause for concern to those of us who are dedicated to a confessional grounding in Holy Scripture and the foundational confessions of the Protestant Reformation. It is my opinion that the only thing which can turn the tide is a return to the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, the Thirty-nine Articles of Religion, and the Holy Scriptures. At this point the doctrines of law and grace, total depravity, and justification by faith alone--all of which are essential to true Christianity--are being undermined or completely abandoned by Evangelicals at large and by Evangelicals within the Anglican Communion.

Samuel Leuenberger's book, Archbishop Cranmer's Immortal Bequest, points out these problems as far back as 1986 when the book was originally published in German under the title, Cultus Ancilla Scripturae. The 1979/1980 books of alternative services are a capitulation to a de-emphasis on the doctrine of original sin and the need for the atonement. The catechism in the American 1979 Book of Common Prayer or alternative services is completely pelagian. As Leuenberger points out, when the emphasis becomes horizontal relationships with one's neighbor the vertical emphasis on reconciliation with God and where an individual will spend eternity becomes obsolete. As far as I can tell, Anglo-Catholicism has laid the roots for this theological defection to liberalism and relativism and Leuenberger's book has well documented the theological affinity between Anglo-Catholicism and the inevitable slide into liberalism. Those Evangelicals who have forgotten the Scriptures are easily duped into joining in a new province which is founded upon the same shifting sand that led to the current atheism rampant in the western provinces of the Anglican Communion. What is needed is a return to a neo-fundamentalism and a restoration of the theological confessionalism of the Protestant Reformation. Anything short of this is merely a bandage placed on a wound left unsterilized and oozing with gangrene and blood poisoning.

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