[Covenanted Reformation] Re: Dissolution of the RPNA(GM)
- Hi Bob!
Thanks for your response.
> > I agree with the 6 Terms of Communion, but the parts in red should be
> > negotiable and open to accomodation if that means achieving the
> > of the Saints. They should not be means of division and even schism.
> The Scotch church could legitimately require them and arguably the
> English speaking nations and presbyterian churches that descend from the
> three kingdoms.
> Again, as I mentioned to Parnell, the substance is what is important.
> The Terms have not remained the same verbatim, but just as the argument
> for singing inspired songs other than the psalms generally seems to be a
> ruse to sing uninspired hymns, so too the objections to the specific
> covenant or the renewals in the terms, might seem to mask a
> disagreement with the principle of covenanting itself, not just a
> specific instance of its practice.
To be clear, I do believe in social covenanting and am not trying to subvert it by my statements that I do not agree with some parts of the 6 Terms any longer. Like you mention above the 6 Terms have undergone several changes and revisions, before it arrived in Steele's day, some good, some bad according to Steele and I would say so as well. So why can it not any longer? Especially if a higher Court would do it? Who crafted the original 6 anyways? A Session? A Presbytery? Certainly not a Synod? If a Synod, what a Synod of 5? Sounds familiar no? Therefore the 6 Terms, by precedence of history are up for grabs for revision for the sake of unity in the Truth not some undefined unity as was performed at the birth of the UCC (United Church of Christ---Presbyetrians and Arminians merging).
My problem is this. If say, the FPCS, since Parnell has brought them up, were to truly live up to keeping and promoting the SL&C as the original framers/authors intended it and as was testified by the actions and words of the subsequent Scottish Presbyterians up and through the Killing Times, but did not embrace say those portions I highlighted of Terms 4 & 5, would that still classify them as an illegitimate Church? Unfaithful to our Scottish spiritual forebears? The 6 Terms are, among other things, a necessary statement of distinction due to the divisions amongst Presbyterians, a declaration that we are RP, you are not. If any Scot church returns to the WS and the SL&C, but does not embrace the 6 Terms, will the Covenanters of today remain separate?
Will this pride prevent unity when the foundation of all Scottish Presbyterians is truly embraced and prosecuted, even though the statements of distinctions that flowed post-divisions/schisms are ignored, discounted, and denied, whether it be the 6 Terms or the Deed of Separation of 1893? What can we all as Presbyterians agree on as foundational as concerns creeds and confessions that we can all have a starting point for discussion towards true organic unity of not just creed but of Church courts? Can we say, "I set aside the 6 Terms, the Deed of 1893, the Protest of 1842, & etc if it we can go back to the root of the divisions amongst us and start to work it out from there? Let's start with the WS, including the SL&C. " Put aside the RP, FP, OP, PC, FR, PR, SR, (and what other combos exist) distinctions, and let us talk as Christians, as Presbyterians which all claim the WS. Put aside our distinctives that emerged post divisions and talk not fight! Talk. As Zwingle and Calvin tried to do with the Lutherans to achieve unity of both camps and merge together, with warts and all, one Table, one Discipline, one Creed. As the Presbyterians tried to pursue the same by making accommodations with the Independents during Westminster and working towards preventing two denominations in the 3 realms, by merging and being one Church with one Synod. This has to start from the leaders, the Elders of the Church; to them it has been given the Keys and the DUTY to pursue this. They will be held accountable for failing to work towards this end. Denominations dominated by personalities and this pride of identity will only fester and promote division and schism...the old Reformers' view of One Church will only be pushed further away from us...their so-called spiritual descendants.
> cordially yours,And yours,
> Bob S
- Mr Suden,It's my understanding that much of the support for the court from Mr. NS is founded in the idea that he(and maybe others) where junior/future members of the court and they were looking out for their own best interest. I know on a very personal level that information shared with the court found its way to certain people, and very swiftly I might add...John Hackler Jr.
bob_suden <bsuden@...> wrote:
--- In covenantedreformati onclub@yahoogrou ps.com, John Hackler <sparenoarrows@ ...> wrote:
> Mr. Suden,
> Thank you for clarifying.
> John Hackler Jr.
Mr. Hackler,While for a lot of people, it might be redundant, further clarification would mention that Mr. NS is our brother that is responsible for Principium 1643, an apology at great length for the RPNA(GM)'s court. (It can also be found here as originally posted 7/8/07.) In defense of his chief proposition that it is not necessary for the officers of a presbytery to actually "brush shoulders" with the members of the church, he not only touts "mercy" as an essential quality of the court, he also takes an ad hominem poke or two at Edgar, which is why they are not quite best buddies at the moment.In my opinion, the crux of the argument though, as mentioned 11/8/06 or as recently as 2/12/08, if not in the 8/20/07 reply to P1643 More Non Sequiturs from Mr. NS, is whether or not, along with "mercy", the personal presence of the officers is necessary to the constitution of a court. Is that presence 'ben esse' and does it only concern the well being of the court - or is it 'esse', of its essence and without which a court cannot exist? The RPNA(GM) and Mr. NS obviously think it 'ben esse' and that officers may attend via the internet or telephone, while at least the undersigned thinks it 'esse'.Regardless, two things can still be said even if the RPNA(GM) position is correct.One, Mr. NS is not a lawful teaching elder and it is negligence on the part of the "lawful spiritual eldership" of the RPNA(GM) to assign, if not tacitly designate Mr. NS to instruct one and all, which they have not been willing themselves to do in response to the material questions and criticisms of the heart of their position (if it is not the throat of its error).Two, even if the RPNA(GM) position is correct, the elders still have yet to construct a reasonable and valid argument for their court. Implicit faith, tacit consent and the superficial and erroneous arguments of the PPSA, some of which appeal to courts with a plurality of ministers, are hardly persuasive regardless if the Tattoo Paper has set the precedent for its confusion in reasoning.Thank you,Bob S
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