Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Deep Thought for Evangelicals on Their Birthday

October 31st, 1517

This is Protestantism's birthday, and conservative Evangelical's supposed birthday as well--at least nominally...

Well, I'll let others make my point, since they are more eloquent:

“With what right may we call ourselves children of the Reformation? Much modern Protestantism would be neither owned nor even recognized by the pioneer Reformers. The Bondage of the Will fairly sets before ui what they believed about the salvation of lost mankind. In the light of it, we are forced to ask whether Protestant Christendom has not tragically sold its birthright between Luther’s day and our own. Has not Protestantism to-day become more Erasmian than Lutheran? Do we not too often try to minimize and gloss over doctrinal differences for the sake of inter-party peace? Are we innocent of the doctrinal indifferentism with which Luther charged Erasmus? Do we still believe that doctrine matters? Or do we now, with Erasmus, rate a deceptive appearance of unity as of more importance than truth? Have we not grown used to an Erasmian brand of teaching from our pulpits a message that rests on the same shallow synergistic conceptions which Luther refuted, picturing God and man approaching each other almost on equal terms, each having his own contribution to make to man’s salvation and each depending on the dutiful cooperation of the other for the attainment of that end? As if God exists for man’s convenience, rather than man for God’s glory?”

Packer and Johnston’s Introduction to Luther’s Bondage of the Will, p. 59

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