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[Covenanted Reformation] Re: The North American Reformed Seminary (TNARS) - free seminary

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  • Larry Bray
    I believe that images of God, any person of the Triunity, are against God s will and a sin. I wasn t defending Frame s position, simply giving his reasons for
    Message 1 of 19 , Aug 9, 2008
      I believe that images of God, any person of the Triunity, are against
      God's will and a sin.

      I wasn't defending Frame's position, simply giving his reasons for the
      position, which were derived from Scripture.

      Reading Calvin's work i don't think that he held to the Sabbatarian
      view that the Westminster Standards adhere to. I adhere to the
      Westminster view.

      There is not one person who doesn't hold to a wrong view...that was my
      initial point in saying that i most likely don't agree 100% with
      anyone's theology. That doesn't mean that they aren't brothers in
      Christ, not does it mean that i would spurn their endorsement of godly
      education.

      The Sabbath of God is part of the same commandments that idolatry is a
      part of. I would never suggest, as you have, that the Sabbath command
      is not vital but the idolatry command is. We don't have the authority
      to pick and choose what we consider vital "parts" of the
      Scripture...they are all vital.


      --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Gary Milne"
      <garnetmilne@...> wrote:
      >
      > Hi Larry, Here is Moses warrant (Nu 21:8,9.). Can you give me your
      > revelation please? Of course you do not have to because you do not agree
      > with JF. You say you disagree with Frame over images and yet you support
      > him? If you disagree then you can only do so on biblical grounds.
      Can you
      > kindly clarify whether you think it is right to make images of God
      or not?
      > If you disagree with the use of images of God, do you do so on biblical
      > grounds? What are those grounds?
      >
      >
      >
      > As to Calvin and the Sabbath - Scholars disagree whether he held to the
      > modern 'continental view' you are using as an example/analogy.
      However if
      > Calvin or anyone else holds to a position which is not sanctioned by
      > Scripture the he is wrong.
      >
      >
      >
      > It is not a question over whether JF does not seek to argue from
      Scripture,
      > but whether he does so successfully. He does not do so successfully and
      > instead undermines a vital aspect of the Christian faith. No, Calvin
      did not
      > undermine vital aspects of the Christian faith in my view.
      >
      >
      >
      > Since you disagree with JF Larry, why are you being so defensive?
      >
      >
      >
      > Here is Calvin on the 2nd commandment. I encourage you to read it and
      > prepare to be edified.
      >
      >
      >
      > Every blessing,
      >
      >
      >
      > Gary
      >
      >
      >
      > 4. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image. In the First
      >
      > Commandment, after He had taught who was the true God, He
      >
      > commanded that He alone should e worshipped; and now He defines what
      >
      > is HIS LEGITIMATE WORSHIP. Now, since these are two distinct things, we
      >
      > conclude that the commandments are also distinct, in which different
      >
      > things are treated of. The former indeed precedes in order, viz., that
      >
      > believers are to be contented with one God; but it would not be
      sufficient
      >
      > for us to be instructed to worship him alone, unless we also knew the
      >
      > manner in which He would be worshipped. The sum is, that the worship
      >
      > of God must be spiritual, in order that it may correspond with His
      nature.
      >
      > For although Moses only speaks of idolatry, yet there is no doubt
      but that
      >
      > by synecdoche, as in all the rest of the Law, he condemns all fictitious
      >
      > services which men in their ingenuity have invented. For hence have
      arisen
      >
      > the carnal mixtures whereby God's worship has been profaned, that they
      >
      > estimate Him according to their own reason, and thus in a manner
      >
      > metamorphose Him. It is necessary, then, to remember what God is, lest
      >
      > we should form any gross or earthly ideas respecting Him. The words
      >
      > simply express that it is wrong f79 for men to seek the presence of
      God in
      >
      > any visible image, because He cannot be represented to our eyes. The
      >
      > command that they should not make any likeness, either of any thing
      >
      > which is in heaven, or in the earth, or in the waters under the
      earth, is
      >
      > derived from the evil custom which had everywhere prevailed; for, since
      >
      > superstition is never uniform, but is drawn aside in various directions,
      >
      > some thought that God was represented under the form of fishes, others
      >
      > under that of birds, others in that of brutes; and history especially
      >
      > recounts by what shameless delusions Egypt was led astray. And hence
      >
      > too the vanity of men is declared, since, whithersoever they turn their
      >
      > eyes, they everywhere lay hold of the materials of error,
      notwithstanding
      >
      > that God's glory shines on every side, and whatever is seen above or
      >
      > below, invites us to the true God.
      >
      > Since, therefore, men are thus deluded, so as to frame for
      themselves the
      >
      > materials of error from all things they behold, Moses now elevates them
      >
      > above the whole fabric and elements of the world; for by the things that
      >
      > are "in heaven above," he designates not only the birds, but the
      sun, and
      >
      > the moon, and all the stars also; as will soon be seen. He declares,
      then,
      >
      > that a true image of God is not to be found in all the world; and
      hence that
      >
      > His glory is defiled, and His truth corrupted by the lie, whenever
      He is set
      >
      > before our eyes in a visible form. Now we must remark, that there
      are two
      >
      > parts in the Commandment - the first forbids the erection of a graven
      >
      > image, or any likeness; the second prohibits the transferring of the
      worship
      >
      > which God claims for Himself alone, to any of these phantoms or delusive
      >
      > shows. Therefore, to devise any image of God, is in itself impious;
      because
      >
      > by this corruption His Majesty is adulterated, and He is figured to be
      >
      > other than He is. There is no need of refuting the foolish fancy of
      some,
      >
      > that all sculptures and pictures are here condemned by Moses, for he had
      >
      > no other object than to rescue God's glory from all the imaginations
      which
      >
      > tend to corrupt it. And assuredly it is a most gross indecency to
      make God
      >
      > like a stock or a stone. Some expound the words, "Thou shalt not make to
      >
      > thyself a graven image, which thou mayest adore;" f80 as if it were
      >
      > allowable to make a visible image of God, provided it be not adored; but
      >
      > the expositions which will follow will easily refute their error.
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > From: covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > [mailto:covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
      Larry Bray
      > Sent: Sunday, 10 August 2008 8:45 a.m.
      > To: covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > Subject: [Covenanted Reformation] Re: The North American Reformed
      Seminary
      > (TNARS) - free seminary
      >
      >
      >
      > I find it interesting that you speak of erecting images of Calvin, and
      > yet you condemn him as attacking Scripture (since he held to a
      > continental view of the Sabbath).
      >
      > So i would presume that you wouldn't be o.k. with schools that Calvin
      > endorsed either...i guess i'm in good company then.
      >
      > You say that using images for religious purposes is a violation...what
      > about the bronze serpent? Certainly that was used for religious
      > purposes...to point to Christ and show the healing power of God. Yet
      > it wasn't until the people actually worshiped it that it was a sin.
      >
      > As to your last points...i do not advocate the use of images, i was
      > simply stating that Dr. Frame has come to a different conclusion - one
      > that i believe is wrong - and why he comes to his conclusions.
      >
      > I can't think of anybody that would be "good enough" to give an
      > endorsement if that meant they had to agree on every point of
      > Scripture...and every point of it is important.
      >
      > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > <mailto:covenantedreformationclub%40yahoogroups.com> , "ghowmil"
      > <garnetmilne@> wrote:
      > >
      > >
      > > Hi Larry (May I?),
      > >
      > > Points noted below for you consideration.
      > >
      > > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > <mailto:covenantedreformationclub%40yahoogroups.com> , "Larry Bray"
      > > <larryicr@> wrote:
      > > >
      > > > First let me just say that Dr. Frame is anything but arrogant.
      > >
      > > I am sure JF is a pleasant fellow and respectful of others, but there
      > > is such a thing as academic arrogance.
      > >
      > > >
      > > > You claim that his teaching on images of Christ is an attack on
      > > > Scripture. Do you also believe that teachings outside of the
      > > > Westminster Standards like the continental view on the Sabbath
      is also
      > > > an attack on Scripture?
      > >
      > > Yes anti-sabbatarian views are an attack on Scripture
      > >
      > > >
      > > > Dr. Frame uses Scripture to back up his teaching on images of
      Christ.
      > > > His interpretation of the command referring to making images for the
      > > > purpose of worship is backed up in Lev 26:1 -
      > > >
      > > > "You shall not make idols for yourselves or erect an image or
      pillar,
      > > > and you shall not set up a figured stone in your land to bow down to
      > > > it, for I am the Lord your God."
      > > >
      > > > where we are told that we aren't to make an image "to bow down
      to it."
      > >
      > > Using any image for any religious purpose is to bow down to it. Yes it
      > > is ok to knock up a statue of Knox or paint an image of Calvin but it
      > > is not ok to use them for religious purposes.
      > >
      > > >
      > > > In 2 Ki 18:4 we see Hezekiah destroying the bronze serpent (a
      picture
      > > > of Christ). Though the image was permitted, the people started
      > > > worshiping it, and that is what broke the command and therefore
      caused
      > > > its destruction.
      > >
      > > Types of Christ are only found in and sanctioned by Scripture. Are you
      > > suggesting we can create new types of our Lord? Where is your biblical
      > > warrant. Where is your special revelation to create a bronze
      > > serpent?God no longer gives such revelations (Heb. 1:1-2). If images
      > > can be pictures or types, what about human beings? The Pope would
      > > agree with you.
      > >
      > > >
      > > > Dr Frame also considers that permitting images in our mind of Jesus,
      > > > since He was in the flesh, keeps us from the heresy of Docetism.
      > >
      > > So without the use of images in the mind we are all prone to docetism?
      > > I am sure Calvin and Knox would be surprised at this revelation!
      > >
      > > Kind Regards,
      > >
      > > Gary
      > > covenantedreformation.com
      > >
      > > >
      > > > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > <mailto:covenantedreformationclub%40yahoogroups.com> , "bob_suden"
      > > > <bsuden@> wrote:
      > > > >
      > > > > The question is not whether we ever can agree 100% with someone,
      > > but on
      > > > > what points we agree or disagree. Frame's argument and doctrine on
      > > > > pedagogical pictures of Christ is an attack on the doctrine of
      > > Scripture
      > > > > - Chapt. 1 of the Confession and one of the two principium of the
      > > > > Reformed faith, the other being the doctrine of God.
      > > > >
      > > > > In other words, the issue comes down to whether we will have the
      > > > > preaching of Christ or pictures of Christ, i.e. deja vu the
      > > Reformation
      > > > > conflict between Protestantism and popery.
      > > > >
      > > > > Of course Frame and his defenders think all the above a non
      > > sequitur -
      > > > > as if Frame's methodology itself is rigorously logical, never mind
      > > > > confessional, which is yet another mark against him regardless
      > of what
      > > > > his "reformed" fans think. Others think it no small thing. Without
      > > > > apology I side with the latter.
      > > > >
      > > > > If a reformed seminary is to equip men to be able like the men of
      > > > > Issachar, to know the times and what Israel ought to do, an
      > > endorsement
      > > > > from a leading theologian of the day who has proudly,
      arrogantly and
      > > > > enthusiastically laid waste to the biblical and confessional
      > > doctrine of
      > > > > reformed worship does not say much for that seminary's reformed
      > > > > theological discernment.
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > >
      > > > > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > <mailto:covenantedreformationclub%40yahoogroups.com> , "Larry Bray"
      > > > > <larryicr@> wrote:
      > > > > >
      > > > > > Although i don't agree with all that Dr. Frame espouses, i most
      > > likely
      > > > > > don't agree with all of what any one man believes. I certainly
      > think
      > > > > > that Dr. Frame falls within the pale of orthodoxy.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > Those who think that everyone must be on exactly the same
      page as
      > > > > > themselves have done great harm to the Church.
      > > > > >
      > > > > > For instance, i believe that theonomy goes too far in making the
      > > > > > application of the moral law normative, when it's really the
      > > moral law
      > > > > > itself that is normative. I think Dr. Frame goes to far the
      > > other way
      > > > > > in believing that even the normative moral law is...for lack
      of a
      > > > > > better word...bendable.
      > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > > > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > <mailto:covenantedreformationclub%40yahoogroups.com> , "bob_suden"
      > > > > > bsuden@ wrote:
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Sorry, in that a seminary - at least IMO - is to train men
      to be
      > > > > > > defenders of the faith, running an endorsement by one of the
      > > premier
      > > > > > > contemporary saboteurs of the same is - shall we say - a
      trifle
      > > > > > > schizophrenic. Not cool, to put it mildly.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > As for the Framites, what about these who aren't? In my
      book, an
      > > > > > > endorsement by JF is the kiss of death. I'd only expect more
      > > of the
      > > > > > > happy clappy cr*p that JF is known for from TNARS. Yes, I
      know,
      > > > > Paul
      > > > > > > tells the Corinthians he caught them with guile 2 Cor. 12:16,
      > > but he
      > > > > > > also tells us that we are not to do evil that good may
      > result Rom.
      > > > > 3:8.
      > > > > > > A false pretence of false amity toward JF's theology
      crosses the
      > > > > line.
      > > > > > > If it is false. Perhaps it is real. How are we to know, in
      > that an
      > > > > > > endorsement usually means someone is glad to get it from the
      > party
      > > > > > > giving it?
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > But to be brutally blunt about it for those without a clue,
      > > > > regardless
      > > > > > > of how arrogant and "unloving" that sounds, what we have been
      > > > > > > witnessing in our day is a full scale assault on the doctrine,
      > > > > worship
      > > > > > > and government of the reformed church by many within the
      camp.
      > > > > Having
      > > > > > > begun with jus divinum church government (Schlissel and
      > > > > > > congregationalism), Frame and all his buddies have been
      > > hacking away
      > > > > at
      > > > > > > reformed worship, (Jordan, Schlissel, Wilson, Leithart, Horne,
      > > > > Meyer,
      > > > > > > Gore) all the time they have had their eye on the crown
      > > jewels, i.e.
      > > > > > > justification by faith. After all, a lot of the Federal
      > Vision cut
      > > > > their
      > > > > > > teeth dissing the RPW
      > > > > > >
      > > > > >
      > > > >
      > > >
      > >
      >
      <http://reformedveritas.blogspot.com/2007/10/federal-visions-fraudulent-\
      >
      <http://reformedveritas.blogspot.com/2007/10/federal-visions-fraudulent->
      > > > > \
      > > > > > > version-of.html> (Jordan, Schlissel, Wilson, Leithart, Horne,
      > > > > Meyer).
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Frame hasn't publicly thrown in with the FV yet, but
      > regardless if
      > > > > he
      > > > > > > ultimately does or not, the modus operandi is the same.
      Distort,
      > > > > > > mischaracterize and misrepresent the confessional orthodox
      > > position
      > > > > and
      > > > > > > then substitute schlock in its place, never mind that if you
      > > can't
      > > > > tell
      > > > > > > us what the confessional position really is in the first
      place,
      > > > > you're
      > > > > > > incompetent to the question to begin with. Frame has played
      > > his part
      > > > > in
      > > > > > > the mess the contemporary reformed church finds itself in,
      > > which is
      > > > > why
      > > > > > > a genuine reformed seminary not only doesn't need an
      endorsement
      > > > > from
      > > > > > > him, but would - if consistent - reject and repudiate it.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > Thank you,
      > > > > > > cordially
      > > > > > > Bob S.
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > >
      > > > > > > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com
      > <mailto:covenantedreformationclub%40yahoogroups.com> , "Dan Fraas"
      > > > > > > <fraasrd@> wrote:
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > I would run in anyway. I think any endorsement by a notable
      > > > > figure
      > > > > > > > among Reformed/Protestant churches would tend to draw
      > students.
      > > > > An
      > > > > > > > endorsement by a professor or pastor does not suggest
      that the
      > > > > > > > seminary endorses him back. If I were running a seminary I
      > > would
      > > > > > > > want Frame-ites to feel encouraged to apply. How else are
      > they
      > > > > > > > going to become Reformed? Although I would exclude it if it
      > > were
      > > > > > > > not likely to draw students for the seminary, like an
      > > endorsement
      > > > > > > > from Grand Inquisitor Joe Ratzinger or Ehud Barak.
      > > > > > > >
      > > > > > > > Riley
      > > > > > > >
      > > > >
      > > >
      > >
      >
    • bob_suden
      ... Come on, Larry. You can do better than than taking cheap shots and making snide remarks. I might just as well say look in the mirror. You yourself said
      Message 2 of 19 , Aug 9, 2008
        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Larry Bray"
        <larryicr@...> wrote:
        >
        > Frankly, i am glad that we don't attract people such as yourself who
        > have so much enmity for others in the Body of Christ.

        Come on, Larry. You can do better than than taking cheap shots and
        making snide remarks. I might just as well say look in the mirror. You
        yourself said that what could be called Frame's antinomian or libertine
        view of the moral law troubled you. But nobody else can be bothered
        about Frame's theology?
        Anyway.

        > First let me just say that Dr. Frame is anything but arrogant.

        Garnett nailed it when he referred to "academic arrogance." I've never
        seen a guy so blithely ignore the confession all the while he claims to
        uphold it - at least in spirit, if not in substance or something like
        that - as JF does, all the while in his humble opinion it is wrong.
        Well, if it is, he has no business saying so outside of the church
        courts in that he is sworn to uphold at least the WCF. Yet we see no end
        of popular evangelical theology lite literature gushing forth from his
        word processor contradicting or questioning the WCF. Evidently the 3rd
        and 9th commandment are, as you say, "bendable".

        > You claim that his teaching on images of Christ is an attack on
        > Scripture. Do you also believe that teachings outside of the
        > Westminster Standards like the continental view on the Sabbath is also
        > an attack on Scripture?

        There was and is progress in the truth. The West. Stands. are the last
        of the great Reformation confessions and supersede what went before IMO.
        Further, what is called the continental view at least had a scriptural
        argument for it. Now days what is called the continental view would more
        correctly be called the personally convenient view.

        > Dr. Frame uses Scripture to back up his teaching on images of Christ.
        > His interpretation of the command referring to making images for the
        > purpose of worship is backed up in Lev 26:1 -
        >
        No, Frame abuses and misuses Scripture, as well as reason. As below,
        since God can command an image to be made, ipso facto so too can man.

        > "You shall not make idols for yourselves or erect an image or pillar,
        > and you shall not set up a figured stone in your land to bow down to
        > it, for I am the Lord your God."
        >
        > where we are told that we aren't to make an image "to bow down to it."
        >
        > In 2 Ki 18:4 we see Hezekiah destroying the bronze serpent (a picture
        > of Christ). Though the image was permitted, the people started
        > worshiping it, and that is what broke the command and therefore caused
        > its destruction.
        >

        Above and beyond that, in the larger context again, Frame and the rest
        of the Federal Vision bunch have bought into the fundamental
        presupposition - and have persistently affirmed it - that since we
        have an example of an image in Scripture commanded by God, ergo we are
        permitted to do the same, be it images in the temple or the bronze
        serpent or where ever. But note bene, this is a non sequitur - it does
        not follow. It is to arrogate and presume that what God is permitted to
        do, we are also permitted to do, i.e it is theological confusion.

        But we are not God nor may we presume his prerogatives in worship or
        anything else, however novel that stricture might sound to JF and the
        FV boys. Hence my use of the term arrogant to describe JF's attempt to
        hijack the RPW and hoodwink the reformed church, which object he might
        seem to have accomplished respectfully IMO if this conversation is any
        example.

        > Dr Frame also considers that permitting images in our mind of Jesus,
        > since He was in the flesh, keeps us from the heresy of Docetism.

        But James (Roll) Jordan (Roll) in a typical overheated moment, called
        the RPW and those who would defend it, examples of "Liturgical
        Nestorianism". So what? "Doktor" Frame can consider what he likes, but
        by this time after one has heard his typically casual and sloppy
        arguments majoring in blather on the RPW etc, he doesn't have much
        credibility. Much more as usual he offers no substantial and solid
        reasoning for his opinion other than it is just that, his considered
        opinion.

        Well, thank you very much, but I expect more from a reformed
        theological professor than your average Joe Blow evangelical enthusiast,
        which is who his remarks might reasonably lead one to believe made
        them. Either that or more likely a theological quack.

        cordially in the Word, not the picture, become flesh
        Bob S.

        >
        > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "bob_suden"
        > bsuden@ wrote:
        > >
        > > The question is not whether we ever can agree 100% with someone, but
        on
        > > what points we agree or disagree. Frame's argument and doctrine on
        > > pedagogical pictures of Christ is an attack on the doctrine of
        Scripture
        > > - Chapt. 1 of the Confession and one of the two principium of the
        > > Reformed faith, the other being the doctrine of God.
        > >
        > > In other words, the issue comes down to whether we will have the
        > > preaching of Christ or pictures of Christ, i.e. deja vu the
        Reformation
        > > conflict between Protestantism and popery.
        > >
        > > Of course Frame and his defenders think all the above a non
        sequitur -
        > > as if Frame's methodology itself is rigorously logical, never mind
        > > confessional, which is yet another mark against him regardless of
        what
        > > his "reformed" fans think. Others think it no small thing. Without
        > > apology I side with the latter.
        > >
        > > If a reformed seminary is to equip men to be able like the men of
        > > Issachar, to know the times and what Israel ought to do, an
        endorsement
        > > from a leading theologian of the day who has proudly, arrogantly and
        > > enthusiastically laid waste to the biblical and confessional
        doctrine of
        > > reformed worship does not say much for that seminary's reformed
        > > theological discernment.
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Larry Bray"
        > > <larryicr@> wrote:
        > > >
        > > > Although i don't agree with all that Dr. Frame espouses, i most
        likely
        > > > don't agree with all of what any one man believes. I certainly
        think
        > > > that Dr. Frame falls within the pale of orthodoxy.
        > > >
        > > > Those who think that everyone must be on exactly the same page as
        > > > themselves have done great harm to the Church.
        > > >
        > > > For instance, i believe that theonomy goes too far in making the
        > > > application of the moral law normative, when it's really the moral
        law
        > > > itself that is normative. I think Dr. Frame goes to far the other
        way
        > > > in believing that even the normative moral law is...for lack of a
        > > > better word...bendable.
        > > >
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