Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Let's change the Bible. No, let's silence it!

Glynn Cardy. Clay Nelson. Both licensed clergy of the Diocese of Auckland, both working with St. Matthew's-in-the-City. The former featured last week in General Synod promoting change to our theology of marriage. Now the latter has "joined a secular campaign against Bible lessons in schools." Is there no end to the mischief these two get up to in the name of Christ?

Frankly, it sounds like Clay's concern about imposing the Christian faith on others is one American concerned to impose American values about the separation of religion and state on Kiwiland. He should butt out of the Kiwi way of doing things. We do not need re-colonisation! For goodness sake, even the NZEI sees nothing to see here. Move along.

It is embarrassing to have to be collegial with colleagues who will not defend the Bible and its role in society, who seem to have no concept of public theology based on promoting the Bible rather than publicly mocking the Bible and God's living Word spoken through it.


But don't worry, fellow Kiwi Anglicans, the future of our church via General Synod is in the hands of such as these who would progress our faith forwards in ever liberalising freedom based on a new gospel of the Bill of Rights. I will save for another day the way in which the Treaty is an alternate gospel driving our theology forward into ever new territory.

Oh, and by the way, don't miss reading in the article the not so subtle elitism and clericalism of this particular form of progressive Christianity in its attitude to the ministries of lay people: ""New Zealand has changed a lot and frankly Christianity is too diverse for a volunteer in the community to come in and teach a class with really no vetting.""


Talk about the ironies of cultural Marxism: this is a new form of dictatorship of the proletariat!


Dear God, 
Save us from these High Priests of this new and somewhat foreign religion which has infiltrated our church with its precious ideas about what Christianity is and who may be entrusted to teach it. 
Thank you for the loving and generous ministry in schools from so many faithful Christian laity over many generations. 
Thank you for the training and support given to these ministers by the Churches Education Commission. 
May we never be ashamed of the gospel and may we ever hold to the fact that there is one and only one gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Unbelievable. When I saw the headline on Stuff this morning my first thought was WHAT!!?!?!? Bible lessons "un-Christian" says church leader" What sort of church leader would say something like that? And then before I clicked the link the answer occured to me. Sure enough....Thanks for nothing once again St Matthews in the city

the sheer arrogence and the undermining of the faithful work of all who contend for the Gospel in this part of the world really angered me.

Absolutely unbelievable :(

Ben

Anonymous said...

igitur ex fructibus eorum cognoscetis eos.

Martinus Antitrollus

Andrei said...

It is of course a great irony that in the Lands of Russia where martyrdom for the Faith has occurred within living memory that religious education, the curricula developed by religious leaders, is now compulsory in all schools.

The Russian Federation being multi-confessional provides six streams from which parents may choose as appropriate for their children - Orthodox Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, these being the major religions of the Federation or for the secular either Ethics or World religions.

Of course many of those who espouse secularism also lament the fall of the Soviet Union.

Father Ron Smith said...

One of the problems with 'Bible in Schools' arises from the fact that many 'teachers' (in state schools) are often from fundamentalist biblical literalism sects, whose understanding of the Bible is more geared towards the 'Thou Shalt Not' and the Fire and Brimstone school, than the advocacy of the Gospel of God's love for all who come to God for redemption. This does little to encourage 'the great love of God as revealed in the Son'

When I was a B.i.S. teacher in Brisbane, as a habited Franciscan (SSF), we were able to catch the imagination of our kids because of the Franciscan spirit of inclusion of all humanity under the blessed provenance of Jesus in the Gospel.

Scary Bible Teachers can do more harm than good to non-believers.

Shawn said...

Brilliant post Peter!

I was prepared to come here with all guns blazing, but you have said clearly and forthrightly everything that needs to be said.

I have one small critique.

Please don't confuse Clay's views with American values, and keep in mind that many, probably most Americans, both in the USA and here in NZ would be just as outraged about this as you are.

Clay does not represent true American values. He represents the views of a minority of elitist Northeast liberals, most of whom despise their own country and the Faith of their forefathers. True Americans are found in the heartlands of the West, Midwest and South.

That said, on behalf of real Americans I would like to apologize to New Zealand for this wolf in sheep's clothing who has infiltrated Godzone to promote the vile disease of Cultural Marxism. May God ave mercy on his soul.

On to the issue. It must surely be time to deal with the false teachers of this so-called "church". Just how far are they going to be allowed to go before our spineless leaders take action and expel them?

Andrei said...

One of the problems with 'Bible in Schools' arises from the fact that many 'teachers' (in state schools) are often from fundamentalist biblical literalism sects, whose understanding of the Bible is more geared towards the 'Thou Shalt Not' and the Fire and Brimstone school, than the advocacy of the Gospel of God's love for all who come to God for redemption

Balderdash Fr Ron - they do not get deep theology and nor do they get "fire and brimestone".

They color in pictures of Moses in the bull rushes and Jesus preaching in the Temple when he was a boy.

The Bible is part of our cultural heritage which the "year zero" types would love to airbrush out of existence (see the post about cultural Marxism below).

It is very sad that maybe the majority of New Zealanders today would not understand the reference to St Paul's "Road to Damascus" experience for example - alluding to it would provoke a blank stare in most.

And everybody is the poorer for that

Shawn said...

Ron,

Once again you are falsely accusing fellow Christians with your woefully inaccurate deas on what conservative Evangelicals believe and teach.

The "sects" as you call them do teach the love of God for all who repent and come to Christ with saving faith.

A personal friend of mine from an Open Brethren Church taught Bibles in Schools. A more loving and caring person would be hard to find.

It is the false "gospel" of so-called "inclusive Christianty" wIth it's unBiblical universalism which does far more harm than good.

It is sad to hear to hear "Christians" attack the good work being done for the true Gospel by those people who teach the Bible on Schools program, sad but not surprising.

Once again we see where the true loyalties of Liberals lie as they side with Christianities "cultured" despisers to condemn the mission of Christ being carriedyour by those brave and hard working Christians who care more for the truth of Scripture than the shallow and superficial fashions of latte liberals.

Father Ron Smith said...

"That said, on behalf of real Americans I would like to apologize to New Zealand for this wolf in sheep's clothing who has infiltrated Godzone to promote the vile disease of Cultural Marxism. May God ave mercy on his soul.
- Shorn -

Now, Mr web-master, if this is not 'ad hominem, I don't know what is!

(One wonders if the writer would like this to be said of him?)

Peter Carrell said...

Yes, Ron, it is an ad hominem compassion which Shawn's prayer has. We can only hope that God will have mercy on our ordained colleague who has systematically set out to undermine and belittle an important mission in the name of Christ among the children and future of our increasingly secular nation.

Frankly, Title D should be expanded to include a specific offence of "aiding and abetting secularization."!

Glynn Cardy said...

Why don't you use Title D Peter on everyone who disagrees with you. Then you'll be really following the litigious Americans???

Peter Carrell said...

Hi Glynn,
It is not people who disagree with me that worry me, it is people who set up Christianity in such a way that only the elite and learned are allowed to speak for it. Part of being Anglican is to escape the Pope and his Magisterium :)

As for Title D: you know and I know that it is really hard to make the kinds of things you and Clay get up to neatly fit the prescriptions of that legislation. I don't believe in wasting energy or lawyer's time :)

Shawn said...

"(one wonders if the writer would like this to be said of him)"

Well I'm neither a Cultural Marxist nor am I attacking an important mission of the Church to aid and advance the secularization and Biblical ignorance of New Zealand, so ......

Shawn said...

It is not simply "people we disagree with", but liberal elites who spend their time insulting and offending Christians for publicity and promoting attacks on orthodox Christianity and God's Word, not to mention trying to deprive children of the opportunity to colour in a few Bible pictures.

Shameful Glynn.

Anonymous said...

I am not surprised by Mr Cardy's antics, only dismayed that a man who has publicly mocked (in a semi-pornographic way) the Mother of Christ still holds office in a church. Has the diocesan leadership never read Matthew 18.17?
I say this as an ordained Anglican of many years standing.
As for Mr Smith, he out-shallows himself in his latest comment, and I urge Shawn (whose comments I value) as I have urged Carl, not to rise to vexatious provocation.

This is something I would in particular appreciate from Shawn: am I right in thining you are enrolled at Otago? If you are au fait with the thriving churches (of all descriptions) of Dunedin, where institutional Anglicanism is in crisis, could you share your insights and observations of why they may be going against the tide? Some descriptive-analyitcal account would be enormously helpful.
Martin the Antitroll

Anonymous said...

Since I saw the News today I been searching to see just who is this man? Have emailed Clay Nelson today and as I did not know of the antics he and his mate have got up to before. I was in shock that a man of the cloth trying to stop Bible in school. Now I see they are really atheist hiding behind the cloth. How can they do this? Why does the Anglican church let them rubbish their good name? What does it take to get them taken out of St Mathews and replaced by true honest God fearing priest? I am glad I am a Baptist and will pray for all my fellow Christian no matter what church they belong to, after all as Christians we all worship the same one and only true God. I also pray God will have mercy on their poor souls too.

Father Ron Smith said...

"could you share your insights and observations of why they may be going against the tide? Some descriptive-analyitcal account would be enormously helpful."
- Martin the Antitroll -

I wouldn't hold my breath on this possibility if I were you. You actually need someone who is resident in the Diocese of Dunedin, who actually knows something about the Church there - not a part-time student in Auckland.

Zane Elliott said...

Outstanding post Peter, thank you for saying what so many of us feel deeply.


My suggestion is that everyone who is upset by this write to the Bishop of Auckland, the Right Rev Ross Bay and express their concern. Perhaps he will exercise episcopal discipline and silence these false teachers who continue to cause division in the Church.

Chris Spark said...

I am a person who became a Christian at around 19 years old, but wass probably first exposed to Jesus when I was in bible in Schools. I had some great teachers, and one in particular I remember not being so great. She scared me quite a bit actually in some ways.

But as it turns out, I continued to grow into an adult human being, and lo and behold I became able to sift and consider my experiences and things I had heard - I rejected some things, and acepted others, as well as learning and expanding on them. In the end, by God's grace, I became a Christian. Now I would identify myself as an evangelical Christian. Many of my class mates I am still in touch with did not (or at least have not yet!).

So it clearly follows that Bible in Schools has tarnished me forever, and should not be inflicted on any child - they simply can't think for themselves in any real sense, and as they grow older they will similarly be unable to reflect on what they have been taught and make decisions about what they will take on. The best thing is to keep them isolated from anything connected with their cultural heritage if it is even a little bit influenced by religion.

I've tried to tell my six year old this, but unfortunately she questions too much, and as she gets older I don't think she's going to buy it.

MichaelA said...

"One of the problems with 'Bible in Schools' arises from the fact that many 'teachers' (in state schools) are often from fundamentalist biblical literalism sects, whose understanding of the Bible is more geared towards the 'Thou Shalt Not' and the Fire and Brimstone school, than the advocacy of the Gospel of God's love for all who come to God for redemption."

I suspect that most bible-in-school teachers in New Zealand are exactly the same as those which most of us grew up with: gentle, sincere and understanding Christians, who truly love the children.

But they are guilty of the 'crime' (in liberal eyes) of teaching the true catholic and apostolic idea that we must read and obey the whole of scripture.

In other words, they reject the modernistic liberal doctrine that Father Ron would prefer, that we just pick and choose what we want from scripture, and ignore the rest! Yet this is a doctrine guaranteed to lead to spiritual death.