Tuesday, March 4, 2008

God help us to be reasonable

Read the following, posted on Titus One Nine recently:

QUOTE: Canon law expert Perry says, however, that the 39 Articles also spell out that a priest must be appointed by the local bishop to be allowed to preach within a diocese, something the Network churches have relinquished by voting to split.

"The notion that a parish could be freestanding and claim to be Anglican is perverse in the Anglican structure," he said. "It just wouldn't exist."

Liberal Anglicans also argue that theological understanding continues to evolve.

"It's an ongoing revelation," Niagara Archdeacon Michael Patterson says.

And there is no requirement that the revelation be the same for everyone, says Perry, adding that a founding principle of the church was that, unlike the Catholic Church from which it split in the 16th century, there is no central authority decreeing the beliefs that define an Anglican.

Says Perry, "Somebody once said that the good thing about the Church of England is that it doesn't tend to interfere with your religion."

In fact, he says, the openness to diversity of opinion has traditionally been its strength, enabling it to span divergent cultures around the world. UNQUOTE.

So, says this Bear of Small Brain, Perry and Patterson understand that on matters of Anglican theology, revelation changes, develops, and can be contradictory (providing not occurring in the same place). But on matters of Anglican polity there can be no change, no development, and no contradiction.

The logic is somewhat baffling to this BoSB. But let's suppose I have it correct. How can it be, I feel compelled to ask, that we can etch in concrete the law of the church but write in sand the Word of God? Should it not be the other way round?

This is not the only occasion recently when I have noticed 'liberal' Anglican voices on the internet proclaim the irrevocable character of Anglican polity while sitting light and loose to what God has said through God's written Word.

Here's the thing: one cannot treat God's Word lightly. Judgement follows prophecy. My hunch is that many parts of the Anglican Church are doomed to die within the next 50 years ... unless there is a reawakening to the import of Scripture!

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