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6 years ago  ::  Jun 05, 2008 - 6:22PM #11
CalKnox
Posts: 330
[QUOTE=AppleMan;543630]The point you are missing, Cal, is that those words were carefully chosen because the Bible is not inerrant.

Unique, yes, of course.
Authoritative - yes, it is our single best source, but it speaks with many voices and must be discerned.

Inerrant - nope[/QUOTE]

OK, put inerrancy aside.

As you say, “...it speaks with many voices and must be discerned.”

Are these possibly contradictory or errant voices?  What is the standard for “discerning” which ones are correct?

I’m trying to find your hermeneutic?
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 05, 2008 - 7:19PM #12
jedithom
Posts: 45
PC(USA) Constitutional Questions for Ministers of Word and Sacrament asked in the year I was ordained (2000)...
1.  Do you trust in Jesus Christ your Savior, ackowledge him Lord of all and Head of the Church, and through him believe in one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit?

2.  Do you accept the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be, by the Holy Spirit, the unique and authoritative witness to Jesus Christ in the Church universal, and God's Word to you?

3.  Do you sincerely receive and adopt the essential tenets of the Reformed faith as expressed in the confessions of our church as authentic and reliable expositions of what Scripture leads us to believe and do, and will you be instructed and led by those confessions as you lead the people of God?

4.  Will you be a minister of the Word and Sacrament in obedience to Jesus Christ, under the authority of Scripture, and continually guided by our confessions?

5.  Will you be governed by our church's polity, and will you abide by its discipline?  Will you be a friend among your colleagues in ministry, working with them, subject to the ordering of God's Word and Spirit?

6.  Will you in your own life seek to follow the Lord Jesus Christ, love your neighbors, and work for the reconciliation of the world?

7.  Do you promise to further the peace, unity, and purity of the church?

8.  Will you seek to serve the people with energy, intelligence, imagination, and love?

9.  Will you be a faithful minister, proclaiming the good news in Word and Sacrament, teaching faith, and caring for people?  Will you be active in government and discipline, serving in the governing bodies of the church; and in your ministry will you try to show the love and justice of Jesus Christ.

Alot of our discussions on this and other threads seem to center around your interpretation of our second vow through your understanding of your first vow.  They are not one and the same.  Note also your second vow and how that too is not the same as our third vow.  Our two sets of vows clearly do not take us to the same place.  I notice how nowhere your vows use the word "love".  Should I surmise then that there is no love to be found in the OPC?  I would hope not.
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 05, 2008 - 7:26PM #13
jedithom
Posts: 45
Cal,
We seem to be cross posting this evening/afternoon.  Hermeneutic?  I would point you to the last of our vows since that's where we are in the discussion on this thread.  That's probably not as solid as an answer as you may like, but again looking at our vows we do make sure to inject the work of the Spirit.  Since your vows are on a different page now, I don't have a quick reference to how much the Spirit is invoked in yours.
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 06, 2008 - 9:45AM #14
greenponder
Posts: 1,395
Jeidithom,
The third vow of the PC(USA) states:
3. Do you sincerely receive and adopt the essential tenets of the Reformed faith as expressed in the confessions of our church as authentic and reliable expositions of what Scripture leads us to believe and do, and will you be instructed and led by those confessions as you lead the people of God?
The Westminster Confession, which is one of those confessions, states the following:
Chapter 1 Section 5
our full persuasion and assurance of the infallible truth and divine authority thereof,
Chapter 1 Section 9
The infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture, is the Scripture itself;
It would seem that the logical conclusion is that if you take the vow, you are agreeing with the view that the Bible is infallible.
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 06, 2008 - 12:47PM #15
Verdugo
Posts: 5,258
[QUOTE=greenponder;547298]Jeidithom,
The third vow of the PC(USA) states:
3. Do you sincerely receive and adopt the essential tenets of the Reformed faith as expressed in the confessions of our church as authentic and reliable expositions of what Scripture leads us to believe and do, and will you be instructed and led by those confessions as you lead the people of God?
The Westminster Confession, which is one of those confessions, states the following:
Chapter 1 Section 5
our full persuasion and assurance of the infallible truth and divine authority thereof,
Chapter 1 Section 9
The infallible rule of interpretation of Scripture, is the Scripture itself;
It would seem that the logical conclusion is that if you take the vow, you are agreeing with the view that the Bible is infallible.[/QUOTE]



Infallibility is not the same thing as inerrancy.  I personally believe in infallibility but not inerrancy.
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 06, 2008 - 3:42PM #16
AppleMan
Posts: 348
[QUOTE=Verdugo;547647]Infallibility is not the same thing as inerrancy.  I personally believe in infallibility but not inerrancy.[/QUOTE]

You are Catholic?

(Just kidding)
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 06, 2008 - 4:10PM #17
jedithom
Posts: 45
Green,
True, Westminster says this, but since it is not our only Confession I must also balance its view of scripture with the Confession of 1967.  It is an inexact process and puts us always in a state of theological discernment.  Granted, it would be much easier if we had one Confession, because then there would be no confusion but one interpretration from one document.  But that simply is not the PC(USA).  Homogeneity of theological perspective is not a priority of our denomination as it is with the OPC.
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 06, 2008 - 10:24PM #18
greenponder
Posts: 1,395
[QUOTE=Verdugo;547647]Infallibility is not the same thing as inerrancy.  I personally believe in infallibility but not inerrancy.[/QUOTE]
What do you believe the difference to be?
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 06, 2008 - 10:44PM #19
greenponder
Posts: 1,395
Jedithom or any one else that would like to reply,
I read the Confession of 1967. It did not specifically say that the Bible is fallible or errant as far as I could tell. What do you think it is saying?
If that is what it is saying, how do you subscribe to two statements that are antithetical?
As far as theological homogeneity of the OPC is concerned, as I understand it, we are free to believe in either supra or infra-lapsarianism. (Strange what passes for humor in theological circles.)
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6 years ago  ::  Jun 07, 2008 - 8:44AM #20
jedithom
Posts: 45
Green,
Specifically, no.  But the Confession does reflect the critical/literary/historical approaches to Biblical studies of the last hundred years, a significant change from the Westminster period. 

Having multiple confessions means I can appreciate and affirm different understandings of the faith in different times and places, but that the work of discernment continues for today and tomorrow.  No one confession is perfect and above critique and I am not bound by the letter of the confessions.
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