12/20/2011

Presbyterian

I have just read a post over at Kevin DeYoung’s blog that I find interesting. He laments some of the things that have bothered me most about the “Young, Restless, and Reformed” (YRR) movement. He takes careful aim at the one item that has bothered me most of late: the fact that many in this movement seem to downplay denominational ties. DeYoung writes:




…it’s better to live in a specific ecclesiastical room instead of in the hallway of evangelicalism…We need to learn to be good churchmen, investing time in the committees, assemblies, and machinery of the church. We need to publicly celebrate and defend important doctrinal distinctives (e.g., baptism, the millennium, liturgical norms) even as we love and respect those who disagree. We should delight in our own histories and confessions, while still rejoicing that our different vehicles are ultimately powered by the same engines of the Christian faith–justification, the authority of Scripture, substitutionary atonement, and the glory of our sovereign God.




I have found myself comfortable in the Presbyterian church, specifically the Presbyterian Church in America. I define Presbyterian as one who believes and follows the Westminster Standards.

Why did I settle here? I have always had a degree of respect for the Westminster Confession, from the first day I read it. Even when I disagreed with their answers, I liked the questions that they asked.

I have read the Bible through several times. I have read the Standards and their Scripture proofs many times over. The Standards make more sense of the Bible than anything I have ever read. I have respect for many for the other reformed confessions and catechisms, but I choose to make Westminster my own.

Does this mean that I will not participate with some of the inter-denominational efforts? Of course not. I have benefited greatly from The Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals, Together for the Gospel, The White Horse Inn, and especially Ligonier Ministries.

I do not want to do without those ministries, but I do not rely upon then for expositional Bible teaching, the administration of the sacraments, and church discipline. For those things, I turn to my local PCA congregation. I cannot do without those things.

I hope that everyone within the YRR movement takes the step to join a church and actively participate in its life. Of course, I hope they join the PCA (That is the correct church after all.). But at least display colors and stand on a detailed confession (Please, not a confession that can be written upon a single sheet of double-spaced, 8.5 by 11 piece of paper. Get a real confession.).

Will I ever change denominations again? Possibly. I will follow the Bible’s teaching wherever it leads me. The Bible is my ultimate authority. Here I stand; I can do no other. But, I don’t think I’ll ever move again.

Join a particular church and submit to its authority. Support a particular denomination and follow its direction.

I pray YRR people will make the right choices.

2 comments:

Steve Martin said...

ittesI believe that we ought join in with others of like mind when it comes to matters of faith.

I happen to belong to a Lutheran congregation that disagrees with most Lutherans on doctrine.

The pure gospel and Christian freedom are key.

If there's some chains hanging onto your church because of something they are adding to Christ, then maybe it's worthwhile investigating churches that are 'Christ ALONE'.

Thanks, J.K..

A very Merry Christmas to you aand yours!

J. K. Jones said...

Merry Christmas to your and yours as well, Steve.

I have found a home for now, but I am still studying the Scriptures.

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