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

Friday, February 18, 2011

Vincent Cheung Re: Gordon H. Clark, The Incarnation

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: Gordon H. Clark, The Incarnation
Date: Wed, 22 Dec 2010 21:02:19 -0500
From: Vincent Cheung <vincent@rmiweb.org>
To: cranmer1959@hotmail.com

I was made aware of the debate on Gerety's web site a while ago. Although I still have not read the debate itself, a number of people have asked me about it. It appears that some people consider me a small authority on Clark, and so when there is a controversy, they consult me about it. But I am not an expert on Clark, and have never claimed to be, although I have read his works and I think that they are overall very good and correct. 

I read his Incarnation and Philippians about 9 or 10 years ago. If I recall correctly, the Incarnation was released after Philippians, and there is a note by John Robbins in Philippians that says Clark changed his view (from a one-person to two-person view). The Incarnation indeed gave me the impression that Clark held a two-person view. Again, this is an impression that I got from reading these books 10 years ago. Whether Clark meant something very different by "person," so that even a two-person view would not essentially contradict Chalcedon, or whether he really rejected Chalcedon, I cannot say. 

Also, I understand that, at least as stated in your message, this controversy, or this part of the controversy that you mention to me, is over the correct interpretation of Clark, and not over the correct interpretation of Scripture, or the correct theological formulation based on Scripture.  Because of this, I regard the significance of the debate quite limited. 

Reasonable Christian Blog 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


Drake Shelton said...

The clearest evidence that Clark's view was a two person view and heresy is in his dealing with the human person's role in redemption. He clearly denied that the divine person suffered and he asserted that the righteousness that we participate in being united to him is a created righteousness, i.e. the obedience of a create human person.

I am a scripturalist and believe in his view of philosophy but this issue has kept me from man worship. At least that is the only good I see coming from this huge error he made and convinced me to make for quite a while. I do not know of any influential writer in the history of Christianity that didn't get himself into some kind of false teaching. That is the risk we run in writing.

methinks the best evidence to demonstrate his view is the view that was rejected by the early Church is in phrase they used as a test of Orthodoxy: The 'Theopaschite' Formula: “One of the Trinity Has Suffered"

Charlie J. Ray said...

The problem with The Incarnation is it deals only with the confusion of terms in the creeds and not with an exegesis of Scripture.

If Clark's view is truly a "scripturalist" view then he should have stayed with the Scriptures in telling us who Jesus really was.

He didn't.

Charlie J. Ray said...

God cannot suffer. Clark is correct on that point. Jesus suffered in his humanity but His deity never suffered.

How that can be was not solved by Clark's final book. We're left hanging. Too bad he didn't live longer. But ultimately God providentially intervened and it seems that God did not want us to know what Clark's conclusion would have been.

African Forum said...

Greetings -I continue to have a problem with this word heresy as it seems to be bandied about describing almost any error. Is it possible to arrive at a definition where we use the term heresy as 'any form of teaching that would prevent a person from coming to saving faith'. All else we should describe as error emphasizing the gravity or seriousness of the error thus leaving the errant one at least 'in the camp' and not rejected as an heretic. There are in the scriptures heresies and 'damnable heresies' and the use of the term must be used as pejorative only under those very serious errors that qualify as heretical. Just another opinion.

Charlie J. Ray said...

African Forum, the problem is that Nestorianism was officially condemned as a heresy. It's also against the Reformed confessions. Since the doctrine of the incarnation is critical to salvation via the doctrine of Christ as our Mediator, this one is non-negotiable.


Charlie J. Ray said...

In retrospect I'm not sure that Clark could be charged with overt Nestorianism. But his view certainly opens the door for others to step in that direction. I prefer to withhold judgment since Dr. Clark died before finishing the manuscript.

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