Emil Bartos – Rolul crestinului in diaspora – partea 1.1 Recomandare de carti si Disputa dintre Martyn Lloyd-Jones si John Stott (14 Februarie, 2014)

emil-bartosCate ceva despre mine, pentru cei care nu ma cunoasteti. Sunt credincios Domnului din tinerete, la 17 ani am facut legamantul cu Domnul, ca urmare a unei lucrari de trezire spirituala in Oradea, in vremea fratelui Liviu Olah, pastor atunci la Oradea. Am facut inginerie, dar la 30 de ani, ca Domnul Isus, m-a chemat Domnul in lucrare. Am lasat ingineria si am intrat pastor in perioada comunista, 1987. Am inceput studii teologice, mi-am luat toate gradele acestea care erau necesare. Tocmai atunci, la Oradea, a inceput Universitatea Emanuel de astazi si am fost prins in echipa de profesori. Am ajuns sa studies, sa devin profesor, practic din 1981 sunt profesor de teologie. Am fost 10 ani profesor la Oradea, 11 ani la Institutul Teologic Penticostal din Bucuresti si de cativa ani sunt acum la Facultatea Teologica Baptista din Universitatea Bucuresti. Locuiesc in Timisoara,  impreuna cu a doua mea sotie, Tatiana. Prima mea sotie a murit intr-un accident de masina in anul 2005, la doua saptamani dupa ce am sarbatorit 25 de ani de casnicie. Cu ea am avut 6 copii. Unul dintre copii, un baiat de 21 de ani a murit in 2009. M-am casatorit dupa 2 ani de vaduvie cu Tatiana. Ne-am stabilit in Timisoara acum; predau cursuri modulare la nivel de masterat, dar sunt invitat la toate scolile posibile din Romania, exceptand una de la Oradea. In rest, peste tot, usa-i deschisa si slujesc cu bucurie peste tot. Salutari de la toti profesorii de la toate aceste scoli de la bisericile care le-am vizitat in ultimul timp. In ultimii 5 ani de zile am primit de la Domnul o lucrare noua: sa intaresc bisericile, sa le intaresc cu darul meu de dascal / invatator. Si asta am facut.

Dupa ce am trecut prin aceste mari incercari  in viata, nu mai puteam face anumite lucrari pe care le-am facut inainte. Si Dumnezeu mi-a aratat ca aceasta e noua lucrare, noua traiectorie a mea si am acceptat-o si sunt implinit in ceea ce fac. De aceea m-ati invitat, pentru ca… nu stiu exact de ce, dar Domnul a deschis usa. Nu trebuia sa fiu acum aici, trebuia sa fiu in Republica Moldova, dar s-a inchis acolo usa, s-a deschis la voi. A fost providential. Ma bucur sa fiu cu voi aici. N-am auzit multe despre voi dinainte, dar mi-ati produs, pana acuma, o impresie calda deosebita.

Imi place sportul, am jucat fotbal- mijlocas, fratilor (cand eram cu vreo 30 kg mai putin). Am jucat handbal vreo 3 ani, acuma joc sah. E o gluma. Imi plac cartile. Va spun hobi-urile mele, ca sa stiti ca am o parte umana, sa n-o auziti de la altii. Ce auziti la altii nu-i corect.

Photo credit si comanda aici – http://www.logos.ro/

Imi plac cartile, mai ales teologice, evident. „Preaching & Preachers”, cartea lui Martyn Lloyd-Jones- s-a tradus in Limba Romana deja? Da, s-a tradus acum.

Apropos, de Martyn Lloyd-Jones, a fost primul autor englez. A fost medic al Casei Roiale din Anglia, a parasit medicina pentru pastorala. Pe urma a devenit predicator la Westminster Chapel si a fost unul dintre cei mai mari predicatori ai secolului XX. Minunat predicator. Aceasta carte , despre predicare, cred ca e tradusa in Limba Romana. Pute-ti verifica. E una dintre cele mai bune. Am citit-o cand eram mai tanar decat tine, Adi. (Nu am gasit cartea- daca cineva o gaseste, va rog frumos sa ne anuntati si adaugam linkul) M-a hranit foarte mult aceasta carte si cartea  lui John Stott despre predicare- Puterea Predicarii. E tradusa la Editura Logos din Cluj.

Photo credit si comanda aici – http://www.clcromania.ro

Aceste doua carti sunt fundamentale, pentru ca, daca tot am inceput- John Stott a fost anglican. A murit de curand, nu s-a casatorit niciodata. Un om extrem de inteligent, Doctor in Teologie si profesor, dar mai mult s-a dedicat lucrarii cu studentii. Toate cartile pe care el le scria aveau trecere, se vindeau foarte bine. Esentialul Crestinismului a fost cea mai vanduta carte, Zeci de milioane de exemplare s-au vandut in lume, si alte carti. Toti banii primiti din drepturile de autor de la aceste edituri,el le punea intr-un fond special, se numeste Langham Partnership care sprijinea educatia in tarile mai putin dezvoltate- Africa, Europa de Rasarit. Asa, foarte multi Romani, talentati, buni,  au ajuns sa studieze masterate, doctorate,  in Vest din cauza acestui fond de bani de la John Stott. L-am cunoscut personal. Am fost chiar la el in casa, in birou. Era pasionat de pasari. A scris si doua carti din perspectiva crestina despre pasari. Da, fratilor, se poate si asa. Insa cartea despre predicare merita citita de toti.

In paralel, a trait Lloyd-Jones, mai in varsta de John Stott. El era, nu anglican, atat cat era Metodist Calvinist. O combinatie imposibila doctrinar. Dar, in el s-a putut. Foarte bun predicator, s-au certat. Cei doi s-au certat. Da, s-au certat si ei. Prin anii ’60 – ’66, parca, a avut loc o disputa si iata care era disputa. Evanghelicii din Biserica Anglicana nu erau de acord cu ce facea ‘High Anglican Church’, cum se spune- Biserica care avea legatura cu statul, care avea liturghie, care nu prea era evanghelica. O mare parte, poate o treime din biserici, din pastorii anglicani erau evanghelici. Credeau in necesitatea nasterii din nou, in sfanta Scriptura ca autoritate finala si Lloyd-Jones, la Congresul Evanghelicilor, a propus iesirea evanghelicilor din Biserica Angliei.

Citeste despre aceste conferinte in intregime aici (L. Engleza) –

Argumentul lui (Lloyd-Jones) a fost ca nu poti sta intr-o biserica care se compromite. Inca de atunci erau semne ca Biserica Angliei va fii de acord cu hirotonisirea femeilor. Si iata ca asa a fost. Plus, au inceput sa accepte si homosexualii, [au] preoti si episcopi homosexuali. La asta s-a ajuns. De atunci, Lloyd-Jones a vazut  ca directia bisericii nu era buna si a zis: „Iesim si formam o alta denominatie evanghelica.” John Stott era de partea cealalta. Era mai tanar, credea ca biserica se poate innoi din interior. El a spus: „Daca noi plecam din Biserica Angliei, nu mai este speranta pentru ei. Ramanem.” S-a supus la vot. Au votat mai multi cu John Stott- cu ideea lui, nu cu el. Ideea, sa ramana in Biserica Anglicana si sa incerce sa o schimbe din interior. NU AU REUSIT. Lloyd-Jones s-a separat; n-a reusit nici el prea multe. Erau prea putini sa formeze o alta denominatie. Si asta a fost disputa.

Ce faci cand biserica in care tu esti nu merge in directie buna, din punct de vedere doctrinar?

Nu-i vorba ca iti place sau nu de un lider. Doctrinar slabea, erau semnele compromisului. Unul a spus: „Iesim.” Celalalt a zis: „Ramanem ca s-o schimbam.” Celalalt a zis: „Iesim, nu ne compromitem.” Ce ai fii ales?

Stii cum s-au format Baptistii? Baptistii au iesit din Biserica Anglicana, pentru ca nu erau de acord cu compromisul Bisericii Anglicane si aveau alta doctrina. Deja botezul adultilor era profilat, separarea Bisericii de Stat. Astea erau doctrine de baza. Preotia tuturor credinciosilor, fara o baza ierarhica. Stiti cum s-au format penticostalii? O, vreau sa va spun ceva. In fruntea primilor penticostali in miscarea Church of God (1901) si apoi Assemblies of God  (1906) din America (in anii astia s-au format), in fruntea Bisericii Church of God au fost 2 metodisti. Si in fruntea Bisericii Assemblies of God a fost un pastor Baptist. Deci, Penticostalii s-au format iesind din Metodisti si din Baptisti pentru ca aveau alta doctrina. Nu a fost alt motiv. Nu au fost dati afara. Baptistii au ramas pana au fost alungati. Au trebuit sa fuga la Amsterdam si asa s-a format Biserica. Sa stiti, mentalitatile acestea se simt in istorie, daca te uiti. Ele sunt formate deja. Nu trebuie mult.

Sa zicem, uitati care e diferenta de gandire. Sa luam un om de afaceri Baptist. Esueaza, nu-i iese ceva. Ce face un om de afaceri Baptist cand nu reuseste? Intra in el insusi ai spune: „Eu sunt de vina. Eu am gresit ceva. Eu, eu, eu…” Ce face un om de afaceri penticostal, daca nu reuseste? „Diavolul e de vina.” Doua atitudini diferite. Mentalitati diferite. Unul introspectie, celalalt nu are asa mari probleme cu … Cauta. Ah, atacul celui rau. Astea se pastreaza in istorie, sa stiti. Acuma, sunt si amestecuri. La Crestini dupa Evanghelie nu ma pot pronunta.

Dar, vedeti? Suntem pusi in astfel de situatii. Ne tot intrebam, ca deja incep prezentarea mea despre liderul crestin in diaspora. De ce se impart asa de des bisericile in diaspora?  (1-16)

Va urma…

 

 

Did Marx get his idea for socialism from the Gospels?

Does Acts 2-5 command socialism?

Having been born and raised in a communist country, with first hand knowledge of the impact of socialism, I found this article very interesting and on target. It is an article posted on the Gospel Coalition website, in which Art Lindsley discusses the claim made on a Washington Post blog, by writer Gregory Paul that ‘Marx likely got the general idea for socialism from the Gospels’.

„A truly strange thing has happened to American Christianity,” Gregory Paul writes for The Washington Post’s „On Faith” blog. He claims that Christians who defend the free market are in a profound contradiction because Acts 2-5 is „outright socialism of the type described millennia later by Marx—who likely got the general idea from the Gospels.”

Acts 4:32-35, referring to the early congregation, says,

Now the full number of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one said that any of the things that belonged to him was his own, but they had everything in common. . . . There was not a needy person among them, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold and laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

Though these passages may sound like socialism to the average reader, such a superficial reading may miss what a closer examination of the text reveals. There are three major reasons why Acts 2-5 does not teach socialism. 

Lindsley quotes Craig Blomberg from his study  Neither Poverty nor Riches, in which Blomberg comments on  Acts 4:34b-35 and states:

The periodic selling of property confirms our interpretation of Acts 2:44 above. This was not a one-time divesture of all one’s possessions. The theme „according to need,” reappears, too. Interestingly, what does not appear in this paragraph is any statement of complete equality among believers.

Lindsley also points out that –

John Stott affirms Blomberg’s conclusions on property in the early church, also underscoring Luke’s use of the imperfect tense:

Neither Jesus nor his apostles forbade private property to all Christians. . . It is important to note that even in Jerusalem the sharing of property and possessions was voluntary . . . It is also noteworthy that the tense of both verbs in verse 45 is imperfect, which indicates that the selling and giving were occasional, in response to particular needs, not once and for all.

Finally, Lindsley gives 2 reasons why, even if  all believers sold all their possessions and redistributed them among the community, this still would not prove socialism is biblical.

  1. The act in Acts was totally voluntary — Socialism implies coercion by the state…
  2. The narrative was not a universal command. — To prove Acts 2-5 commands socialism, you would have to show that this historical precedent is a mandatory prescription for all later Christians.

Click here to read the entire article at the Gospel Coalition website.

Brian Robinson – Show no pity

Brian Robinson is a Pastor in Ontario,Canada and Editor of the Sovereign Grace Journal of Canada. The article was published in the Banner of Truth Trust, United Kingdom, January 2011 edition.

The adoration of the calf

In Deuteronomy 13:8 God tells Israel to show no pity. The situation is this: a dear one, whether father, mother, brother or sister is enticing other family members ‘to go and worship other gods’. God tells Israel, ‘. . . do not yield to him or listen to him – show him no pity.’ We are all aware of the importance of compassion, mercy and forgiveness. James 2:13 informs us that ‘Mercy triumphs over justice.’ And certainly we all need lessons in forgiveness and pity. But is there a time to show no pity. A time when the quality of mercy is strained? I wonder!

For example, we are all familiar with Eli and his refusal to discipline his sons. His boys were priests of the Most High God, but were violating the sacrifices and corrupting the morals of God’s people. Eli was warned by God to rein his sons in (1 Sam. 2:22ff.), but all he did was give a stern lecture. Also, in David’s own household one of his own sons raped his sister, but tragically David held his peace (2 Sam. 13) and showed ‘pity’ rather than meting out proper punishment. In both cases the failure to act and do the hard work of discipline, ended in tragedy for both families. Often a pastor in observing his congregation can recognize parents making a terrible mistake in the raising of their children by their failure to discipline as an act of love or kindness.

Churches can also fall into the same trap and show pity when no pity ought to be shown. Even though it is a violation of God’s will for his church, friendship, sentiment and false compassion can undermine truth and righteousness. It can also cause those who are observers to distrust and even lose their awe of God. Peter’s quick response to Ananias and his lie caused ‘great fear’ to all who heard what happened (Acts 5:5). I recall early in my ministry urging my congregation not to attend a ‘Women’s World Day of Prayer’ in the United Church of Canada, because the guest speaker was a Jewish lady. Following the service my hand was squeezed very forcibly as I was reprimanded for picking on a dear little Jewish lady. The truth is there were times in Scripture where God taught his people to show no pity, no matter how close or how dear that person was or is to us.

Certainly, one of the ways heresy makes its way into our churches is by false pity. The professor is a very nice person with a very loving personality, and so we can make allowances. Sincerity is also a quality that demands ‘pity’. This is also true in the sentimentalizing of the Gospel. We hold back certain truths of the gospel because they are unpalatable, or we deem them rather harsh. Funeral services are the worst. Granted one needs to tread softly, and wishes to be kind and comforting, but to say things that are patently false causes unbelievers to think that heaven is gained simply by dying.

One place where we are to show no pity is the cross of Jesus Christ. The temptation to sandpaper the cross was very strong even in Paul’s day. But his response was to show no pity. So in Galatians 1:9, ‘As we have already said, so now I say again: if anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!’ Strong words, but words that need to be heard again in our meeting places. To show false pity marks us out as men pleasers, which in the long haul does harm to the message and those for whom it was intended.

John Stott in his book The Cross of Christ warns about reducing Christ’s cross work to something to be pitied. He writes,

The essential background to the cross, therefore, is a balanced understanding of the gravity of sin and the majesty of God. If we diminish either, we thereby diminish the cross. If we reinterpret sin as a lapse instead of rebellion, and God as indulgent instead of indignant, then naturally the cross appears superfluous. But to dethrone God and enthrone ourselves not only dispenses with the cross; it also degrades both God and man (p. 110).

False pity is also rampant in our society as a whole. We find that justice is weighed now with considerations of someone’s rearing, poverty or some social aberration, or a minority status. Judges hand down sentences that in no way do justice to the crime or the criminal. In Israel a man was to be given stripes not over forty depending on the offence. God commanded men to shed the blood of those who shed blood (Gen. 9:6), but because of false pity we allow killers access to the streets to kill again. We may out of ‘pity’ abrogate capital punishment and feel good about it, but our failure to obey God by shedding the blood of killers has caused untold pain and sorrow.

Mercy is a wonderful thing, and our Lord taught us to pray for forgiveness only as we ourselves forgive others. So when is pity false pity? When we see what God has commanded, and fail to apply both the precept and the punishment for disobedience. Pity can be freely given where offences are personal, but there should be no pity when God’s commands are deliberately violated. In some cases it may mean time in prison, or even the death penalty. In some cases discipline administered in the church, so that others might fear. In other cases it may mean a public rebuke as we see in Galatians (Gal. 2:11-14). But in the Bible there is a case for no pity. And while we may well pity those who know not our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they must be warned that there is no pity for those who reject God’s gracious offer of salvation.

(VIA) Banner of Truth Trust


(4) Martyn Lloyd-Jones – The Third Assembly of the World Council of Churches at New Delhi – What the Newspapers and Books Reported 18th October 1966

Foundations a journal of Evangelical theology for the British Evangelical Council (18th October 1966 edition)
What some papers and books have said Eryl Davies

Evangelicals -Leave your denominations” was the startling headline on the front page of The Christian weekly newspaper on the 21st October 1966. While quoting extensively from the address ofDr Lloyd-Jones, the article was not strictly accurate in places. For example, part of the opening sentence of the article was: „An impassioned appeal to Evangelicals in Britain to leave the major denominations and to form a united Church was made by Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones…”.As we have seen in earlier articles, Lloyd-Jones did not suggest or desire „a united Church”; his appeal was for Evangelicals to come together in a loose fellowship or association of churches. The article states that „many people to whom our reporter spoke after the meeting thought that Dr Lloyd-Jones was right in his arguments, but that nothing would happen unless men like the Rev. JRW Stott took the lead”.

David Winter, reporting the Assembly also in The Life of Faith of 27th October emphasised how the public rally „in dramatic fashion, dragged into the open a subject normally avoided in evangelical debate- secession. Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones made an eloquent plea to Evangelicals to leave their denominations and join a United Evangelical Church and the Chairman, the Rev. John Stott, publicly (firmly but politely) disagreed with him…”. The Baptist Times (27th October) was more forthright, reporting „A sharp clash of views…with Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones seeming to be encouraging Evangelicals to secede from their denominations and the Rev. John Stott challenging his address by claiming that division was not the way forward.. .it was clear that Evangelicals are divided theologically…”.

A more supportive and accurate report was given in the English Churchman (28th October). Lloyd-Jones, the article emphasised, „was not putting forward some negative scheme into which we are to be reluctantly forced, but rather was pointing us to the glorious opportunity of taking positive action because we realise we ought to if we are to be true to our evangelical convictions…Anglican Evangelicals would appear, on the evidence of the Assembly to be the most intransigent on this matter…But is it not a misunderstanding to look at this problem only as one of secession? Does entry into a Scriptural union with other Christians deserve that name?…Who is really giving a definite lead in the Church of England at this time? Who will define the line beyond which we will not go? We have already surrendered on a number of issues which in earlier days would never have been accepted…”. This is well said and even more true of the situation in more recent years. It was the Evangelical Times from its launch in 1967 which championed the principles which Lloyd-Jones had identified and argued.

Christianity Today! in 1990 devoted twelve full pages to the subject of The Remaking of English Evangelicalism but only four sentences to what it calls the „major public showdown” in 1966 when, after Lloyd-Jones’s address, a „surprised” John Stott „rose and rebuked Lloyd-Jones and rallied Anglican Evangelicals to their churchly duty’? Once again, the authors misunderstood the message ofLloyd-Jones by claiming that instead of addressing the subject of unity he „called instead for Evangelicals to leave the historic churches”. This is grossly misleading and inaccurate.

From this sample ofChristian newspapers which reported the 1966 meeting, I want to turn to a sample of more recent books and note how these authors regarded the significance and nature of the Doctor’s message on that occasion.

In his readable Five Evangelical Leaders, 3 Christopher Catherwood devotes nearly four pages to this event which he calls 1966: Crossing the Rubicon.4 He refers to „a change of emphasis” in his grandfather’s thinking concerning the doctrine of the Church, but, as we have documented in earlier articles, this new emphasis was not sudden or unexpected but had been apparent for some time prior to 1966. One wonders how well the author understood the background to the 1966 address. For example, he claims that the Evangelical Alliance „had no idea how explosive the Doctor intended to be…”5 and refers to Lloyd-Jones’s „vision of a United Evangelical Church”.6 Later, Catherwood sees the „tragedy ofthe split” as being divided over what was „essentially an ecclesiastical issue”.7 But the prior and major issue for Lloyd-Jones was the Gospel itself; it was from the Gospel that he insisted on the importance ofthe nature and unity ofthe Church. Soteriology and ecclesiology were inextricably bound up, not only in the thinking of Lloyd-Jones but also in the New Testament itself. Kenneth Hylson-Smith’s useful book Evangelicals in the Church of England 1734-1984 is disappointing in its treatment of 18th October 1966. Barely two pages are devoted to the subject9 and, unfortunately, it is based on secondary sources, primarily Christopher Catherwood’s Five Evangelical Leaders. 10 The author is correct in claiming that the effect of the disagreement between Stott and Lloyd-Jones „was immediate and long-standing”.11

Even less space is given to the subject by DW Bebbington in his Evangelicalism in Modern Britain: A History from the 1730s to the 1980s. 12 For Bebbington, this incident was „to dramatise a fracture in the evangelical world”,13 but the call for Evangelicals to leave their mixed denominational churches „was dismissed by nearly all those in the Church of England as being… ‘nothing short of hare-brained’ and in other mixed denominations Lloyd-Jones was little heeded”.

As expected, Hywel R Jones provides a detailed account of the „Doctor’s relationship with the British Evangelical Council” in Unity in Truth14 which is a collection of addresses given by Lloyd-Jones in BEC sponsored meetings between 1967-1979. This is a valuable introduction which throws light on the „Doctor’s thinking on the subject of unity as well as his decision to involve himself in the work and witness of the BEC”. One paragraph is reproduced here because of its helpful reference to the now famous 1966 address:

It is worth pointing out that not once in this address did the Doctor use the terms „separate/secede”. His call was to associate or unite. While it is granted that this necessarily involved secession, the basis of the call was the Gospel, the scope of the call was to those who professed to believe the Gospel and the purpose in view was the spread of the Gospel. It was therefore neither schismatic nor exclusivist, but truly Christian and evangelical. In addition, as the Doctor pointed out, it was timely because in the wider setting denominational attachments were being questioned and new alignments were being considered. Should not Evangelicals, of all people, take up the challenge, notwithstanding the difficulties, and seize the opportunity to stand together for God’s truth?

This address, as well known, met with an immediate negative reaction. The positive response surfaced later, most noticeably in the Luther meeting. On 1st November 1967 over 2,500 people gathered in Westminster Chapel to commemorate the 450th anniversary of Luther’s promulgation of his Ninety-Five Theses. 15

Hywel Jones concludes that „It is still the case that the BEC is the only body of churches in the United Kingdom which ‘cannot, on grounds of conscience, identify with that ecumenicity which lacks an evangelical basis’ .It takes this position because it stands for the unity of all those churches which believe the one and only Gospel which saves”.16

Who Are the Evangelicals?17 is an interesting account by Derek Tidball „tracing the roots of today’s movements” in which he also shows the varied spectrum of contemporary evangelical belief and practice. Regrettably, Tidball only devotes three brief sentences to the 1966 incident.18 He does remind us, however, that „Evangelicals in other mainline denominations have trodden a path similar to Anglican Evangelicals. Among the Baptists, Mainstream was formed; among Methodists, Headway and among the United Reformed Church, Gear. In each, Evangelicals have become more committed to their denominations”. 19

In his autobiography entitled A Man Under Authority,20 Leith Samuel provides some interesting background and insights regarding the 1966 address together with the response. 21 He describes it as „that tragic night for British evangelicalism” and „a tragic parting of the ways…We needed unity at Church level but it was torn from our grasp”.22 Leith Samuel insists that Lloyd-Jones „was not concerned primarily about changing structures. It was the purity of the Gospel that was of paramount importance to him”. What Lloyd-Jones longed to see was „an umbrella” large enough to cover Anglican and Free Church Evangelicals.

Alister McGrath also refers to the 1966 event, albeit briefly, in his Evangelicalism & the Future ofChristianity.23 McGrath claims that it „was widely seen to centre on the issue of separatism”.24 Again, McGrath is another writer who partly misunderstands the call of Lloyd-Jones in his 1966 address; for McGrath, it was a „passionate call” for Evangelicals in mixed denominations to „form a denomination of their own”.25 McGrath is correct in viewing the National Evangelical Anglican Congress at Keele in April 1967 as having „endorsed and consolidated”26 Stott’s opposition to Lloyd-Jones. He continues: „It sealed this development and marks the beginning of the positive role of evangelicalism within the Church of England”. Keele was determinative and is „widely regarded as marking the end of a numerically significant ‘separatist’ party within Anglican evangelicalism…”.

Over the past couple o f years, I have been interested to meet Christians, even academics, who have spoken disparagingly oflain Murray’s two-volumed biography ofMartyn Lloyd- Jones.27 To me, their response is a superficial and prejudiced one. Allow me to reply to their criticism. Murray’s biography is an official one, based largely on primary sources, and written by a man who knew Lloyd-Jones extremely well. He had served under and alongside the Doctor and then remained in close contact with him over the years. A competent historian and possessing an excellent grasp of the contemporary evangelical situation in the United Kingdom, Murray is eminently suited to write the biography of Lloyd-Jones. The second volume especially is „a primary text on evangelicalism in the twentieth century”.28 And this

can be easily substantiated. No other serious book, for example, examines the background, context, significance and consequences of Lloyd-Jones’s 1966 address in such detail or depth as Murray does in this second volume. Earlier chapters such as Unity: Ecumenical or Evangelical (pp. 427-450), Conversations and Journeys (pp. 453-471), Cross-Winds (pp. 472-492) and 1965:The Approaching Crisis (pp. 495-511) are well researched and they are invaluable in providing a meaningful background to the three crucial chapters dealing with 1966 and the assessment of the controversy.29

In his assessment, Murray counters the criticism that Lloyd-Jones was responsible for „dividing Evangelicals” by referring to the latter’s view that the main denominations were in an extremely serious theological and religious condition not „seen in England before”30 and that Anglican Evangelicals had „deliberately introduced a new policy on ecumenism”Y He shows how Stott had changed his position by referring to his former view expressed in his 1958 publication What Christ Thinks ofthe Church:32 „We cannot have Christian fellowship with those who deny the divinity of Christ’s person or the satisfactoriness of His work on the cross for our salvation…to preach any other gospel than the Gospel of Christ’s saving grace is to deserve Paul’s anathema…”.33 Another criticism of Lloyd-Jones’s 1966 address that Murray considers is that he was creating a „new sectarianism”34 and an exclusive form of unity. However; Murray shows effectively that Lloyd-Jones wanted „a third altemative”,35 „a way forward…more honouring to God than an acceptance of the existing conditions”. The Doctor, we are reminded, „frankly accepted the limitations of his own understanding”;36 he opted finally for a wider unity through the BEC „largely because, when he urged others to take on a more active role, none came forward with any alternative”. He himself did not want to assume the role of leader in the new wider association of churches. Was it a lack of interest in this aspect? Possibly, but „in part, also”, insists Murray, „it was because he knew that the essential need at this stage…was for on-going reformation and a true revival in all churches. Secession, as such, was no solution”_37

In Murray’s view, Lloyd-Jones was „open to some criticism”38 in this controversy. First o f all, Murray thinks that the argument in places depended over-much on the Doctor’s interpretation of the contempary situation so that it „looked more like a matter ofjudgement than ofBiblical principle”. This, however, is open to debate but Lloyd-Jones put no pressure at all on individuals to secede. In my own experience, he discouraged me initially from seceding and wanted to know precisely which Biblical principles I was seeking to honour. It is also a fact that Lloyd-Jones left it to individual ministers and churches to decide the correct and wisest time for secession.

A second criticism in Murray’s opinion is that the lack of a clear plan in which to express this wider unity of churches post-1966 „had regrettable consequences”.39 In this context, Murray sees that the question of „schism” was complex and somewhat difficult to relate to for Lloyd-Jones challenged „the adequacy”40 of an inter-denominational evangelical unity expressed through an organisation like the Evangelical Alliance. This, however, served to focus „attention upon the alternative…” envisaged with the ability to exclude or discipline those who were in error. Furthermore, Murray suggests that on the Doctor’s view of schism, those who stayed outside the BEC were thereby guilty of the charge. „Some damage might have been averted”, Murray thinks, „if the alternative unity presented…in 1967hadbeenunderstoodtobemorefluidandopen…”41 andiftheDoctor had been less „hurried than he would otherwise have been”.42

Murray’s assessment, ofcourse, is itselfopen to criticism but I want to confine myself to two observations. One, it was notthe Doctor’s Welshness orinterpretation of the situation or his understanding of the sin of schism which were at fault, but possibly his and our failure to appreciate the stranglehold of Anglican sub-culture on its leaders thus making it difficult for them to contemplate the possibility of working outside their denomination. As Alan Gibson rightly points out: „With hindsight, most of us did not fully understand how strong was the grip of the ecclesiastical sub-cultures in which we had been brought

24

up. The 1967 Keele Conference showed how hard it was for Gospel men in the Church of England to contemplate working in any other context. Subsequent attempts to reduce the height of denominational walls, even between wholly evangelical free church groups, were not conspicuously successful. Some who agreed that the Doctor’s appeal was based on Scripture principles found reasons not to act upon it”.43

My second observation is that the Doctor’s 1966 appeal was rejected by Stott and other leaders, including EA officers, because they disagreed with its message. To blame Lloyd-Jones, and him alone, is to fly in the face of the facts. Again, I quote Alan Gibson who was present on the occasion and who attempted to submit a motion the following morning proposing discussion of the practical implications arising from the first meeting. „To our huge disappointment”, Gibson writes, „the organising committee had decided that no such motions would be accepted. Responsibility for closing down any real consideration of steps towards evangelical church unity does not belong to John Stott alone. It lies also with the 1966 officers of the Evangelical Alliance who changed the advertised programme and denied the Assembly, set up for that very purpose, any opportunity for practical consideration of the issues the Doctor had raised”.44

A reference to two other recent publications conclude this article. Clive Calver and Rob Warner in their Together We Stand, 45 a volume marking the 150th anniversary of the Evangelical Alliance, deal with the 1966 division in a disappointing way. Once again some of the facts are wrong: for example, the 1966 address ofLloyd-Jones is supposed to have argued for „a single united evangelical church”.46 Butthat is clearly wrong. Nor is it helpful or accurate to speak ofLloyd-Jones’s „impassioned eloquence … in the heat of the moment”.47 I am afraid that even in this book Lloyd-Jones is pictured as the culprit who shattered evangelical unity in Britain in 1966. When will those writing on this incident be at least fair to the facts? Please, please give us history and not fiction.

The second and final publication I refer to is For Such a Time as This: Perspectives on Evangelicalism, Past, Present & Future48 which commemorates the founding of the Evangelical Alliance in 1846 and also serves as a tribute to Gilbert Kirby on his 80th birthday. Two chapters are immediately relevant to our theme. Peter Lewis writes on Renewal, Recovery & Growth: 1966 onwards and reports accurately the thrust of the Doctor’s message. A useful outline is provided of later developments, namely, NEAC 1967, emergence of Tear Fund in 1968, Berlin 1966 and Lausanne 1974, the Evangelical Missionary Alliance, UCCF, Spring Harvest- Keswick, Evangelical Leaders Conference, evangelical unity and co-operative evangelism. Another relevant chapter is AIan Gibson’s The Role ofSeparation. The title is misleading for it is a consideration of „principles of separation and cooperation among today’s churches”.49 The chapter deserves careful study.

This sampling of papers and books which refer to the 1966 address by Lloyd-Jones is now complete. Other books like Chosen Vessels could have been referred to but, hopefully, the sample has been adequate to stimulate you to think and read some of the primary sources. But, please, get the facts right and then wrestle prayerfully as well as Biblically with the matters raised. We all still have much to learn from the Doctor’s 1966 message.

References

  1. 1  Christianity Today, February 5, 1990, volume 34, no. 2, pp. 25-36
  2. 2  Idem, p. 33
  3. 3  Christopher Catherwood, Five Evangelical Leaders, Hodder & Stoughton, 1987 ·
  4. 4  Idem, p 83

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(3) Martyn Lloyd-Jones – The Third Assembly of the World Council of Churches at New Delhi from those that were there (Lloyd-Jones vs. John Stott)

Pentru traducere automata, fa click aici – Romanian

Read Part 1 here – a history

Read Part 2 here – 1962 Address by Lloyd-Jones

Here is a sampling of this chapter in the history of the English Churches and the debate going on between Martyn Lloyd-Jones and John Stott:

Five years before, almost to the day, I had sat in the Free Trade Hall, Manchester, trembling and gripping the seat, as I heard the Doctor preach for the first time, and was rescued from the emptiness of liberal theology. Now I was gripping the chair again! Oh that we had more preachers today who could make us tremble.

The chairman, John Stott, sensed that many men were being stirred to action and feared that some Anglican clergy might leave their church. Although he had already been given a ten minute slot earlier in the meeting to state his own views, he rose, at the end of the Doctor’s address not to close the meeting, but to counter what had been said. Being a young, impetuous non-conformist at the time, I secretly hoped that Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones would get to his feet again and make mincemeat of the Anglican leader, but he was wiser and more gracious than I shall ever be…

Is it too late now? New factors, besides liberalism and ecumenism, have come into the religious scene, ranging from the ridiculous to the rigid. The difficulties will be enormous but should that prevent us from attempting what is right? After all, trying to live a holy life can be difficult. Am I wrong to dream that one day there might be a closeknit Fellowship or Association of Bible Churches with English, Welsh and Scottish branches, to include all who have a serious view of the Bible and a commitment to a robust evangelicalism? Dr Lloyd-Jones ended his appeal with the prayer “May God speed the day”.

Foundations a journal of Evangelical theology for the British Evangelical Council (18th October 1966 edition)
 18th October 1966: I was there…

Stan Guest, then of the Congregational Evangelical Revival Fellowship

By 1966 I had been a member for some 12 years of the Westminster Fellowship. We met monthly under Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones and shared thoughts on many different subjects. From a letter I wrote to him on 2nd February, 1966, it is clear that, at the January meeting, he had spoken about „coming out” of the denominations. In my letter I said I was ready to do so but not yet persuaded that the time was „now”. I recalled his earlier advice that we should stay in as long as we can. I was preparing a statement for the Annual Assembly of the Congregational Union in May.

I was present at meetings of the National Assembly ofEvangelicals 1966 and was aware of the deep sadness and confusion felt by so many. This resulted in the Doctor closing the Westminster Fellowship for a time. My own personal position, however, had been greatly helped by the Doctor’s stand and this, no doubt, encouraged me to accept, in 1967, the position of Secretary to An Evangelical Fellowship of Congregational Churches.

Evangelicals in congregationalism had a situation to face in 1966 that was different from their brethren in other denominations. The Congregational Union of England and Wales was changing its form in very significant ways. After several years of discussion it invited churches to covenant together as the Congregational Church of England and Wales. This commenced in 1966 and it was a clear move towards the further step of uniting with the Presbyterian Church of England to form the United Reformed Church. This took place in 1972. It was hailed as an important move towards ecumenical oneness. Though it is difficult to see it as such when one realises that over 200 more congregational churches stayed out of the URC than the number of Presbyterian churches that went in.

Not all the churches that remained congregational did so on evangelical grounds. Many saw that the URC was, in fact, really a Presbyterian body. They compared, for example, the Congregational Union declaration of 1833 with the URC constitution. The former stated that in no way was the Union to assume authority or become a court of appeal. The latter had as its closing statement: „The decision of the General Assembly on any matter which has come before it on reference or appeal shall be final and binding”.

Evangelicals recognised these changes of church policy, of course, but they believed they had even stronger grounds for separation. For decades the CUEW had been drifting away from the final authority of Scripture and the true declaration of the Gospel. This had already led, in 1947, to the forming of a Congregational Evangelical Revival Fellowship, drawing together individual members of churches. The call to covenant as the CCEW required an affirmation of oneness in doctrine with those who were fully liberal in their teachings. There were churches who could not do this and, in 1967, there was formed an Evangelical Fellowship of Congregational Churches.

One question that had to be faced was whether or not simply to join the Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches. Some churches did, in fact, take up joint membership. It was recognised, however, that churches would be more easily encouraged to take a stand if they could see they were continuing in a congregational denomination. One important consequence of this has been that, because an EFCC was legally recognised as a continuing congregational body, it has received substantial funds from the former national and county Congregational Unions, thus preserving their benefit for evangelical purposes.

The call for wider evangelical unity was not ignored, however. The first EFCC constitution booklet stated: „In no way is it the intention to set up a permanent body as a separate continuing denomination. We see ourselves as a ‘bridging Fellowship’ until such time as the Lord may prepare the way for a wider grouping of Bible-believing Christians from all denominational backgrounds”. Its first statement of purpose reads: „To seek the welfare and express the faith and the true unity of the whole Church of Jesus-Christ”.

Basil Howlett, then at Hesters Way BC, Cheltenham

The scene is indelibly etched on my mind. The occasion was the opening night of the Second National Assembly of Evangelicals arranged by the Evangelical Alliance which followed hard on the heels of a Commission to „study radically the various attitudes of Evangelicals to the Ecumenical Movement, denominationalism and a possible future United Church”. Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones had been asked by the leaders of the Evangelical Alliance to „say in public, what he had said in private” when speaking to them. The Central Hall, Westminster was full, the platform was occupied by evangelical leaders of various persuasions – two rows of them. At first, as far as physical stature went, Dr Lloyd-Jones was dwarfed by them, but as the meeting went on he seemed to become a giant!

I felt sorry for Derek Prime that night! He gave the introductory Bible Study on Philippians 2, and it was very good, but what followed was so electrifying that nobody had a hope of remembering what he said! The Rev. A Morgan Derham’s remarks, which had eulogised the Doctor with feint praise brought forth the following response when he arose to speak: „It would be churlish of me not to thank Mr Morgan Derham for the remarks he has made, but I wish he had not done so; he has robbed me of my valuable time!”

This gathering must be seen against the background of the increasing liberalism and mounting ecumenical pressures ofthose days. Two dreadful books which undermined Gospel truth had but recently been published. Honest to God by John Robinson (the Bishop of Woolwich) closely followed by Down to Earth written by Howard Williams (then President of the Baptist Union). In most of the doctrinally mixed denominations, Evangelicals were, at best, marginalised and ignored, but often mocked and discriminated against. Many young, evangelical ministers were fighting for survival, and would often find that a denominational official was working in league with disaffected members, to get them out of their churches. Numerous good, evangelical, theological students, looking for a church, were passed over. The Ecumenical Movement was marching forward to conquer, with strident voice and big steps, but with little sympathy for those who stood in the way. Evangelical churches had little hope of getting sites for church planting; Ecumenical Centres were the talk of the day.

Against that backcloth, Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones stood to make his impassioned plea for Evangelicals, who were divided up among the denominations, to come together „as a fellowship or association of evangelical churches”, and to stand together for the Gospel. In actual fact, the words „separate” and „secede” were not mentioned.lt was a positive appeal for Evangelicals to stand together, not just occasionally, but always. I went to the Central Hall, that night, disillusioned with the Baptist Union, desiring closer unity with Evangelicals, but scared about the way forward. How do you leave a major denomination and its security when you have a young family? Suppose the denomination evicts your church from its premises and throws you out of the manse! Yet as. the message drew to a close I was convinced, along with others, that to be true to Scripture and conscience I had no alternative but to ask God to give me the strength to do what was right, no matter what the cost. The preacher knew there would be a cost for many and sympathised:

There are great and grievous difficulties: I am well aware of them. I know there are men, ministers and clergy in this congregation at the moment, who, if they did what I am exhorting them to do, would have a tremendous problem before them, even a financial, an economic and a family problem. I do not want to minimize this. My heart goes out to such men. There are great problems confronting us if we act on these principles. But has the day come when we, as Evangelicals, are afraid of problems? The true Christian has always had problems. The early Christians had grievous problems, ostracized from their families and the threat of death ever facing them. They were not daunted: they went on, they believed, they knew, they would rather die than not stand for the truth.

Five years before, almost to the day, I had sat in the Free Trade Hall, Manchester, trembling and gripping the seat, as I heard the Doctor preach for the first time, and was rescued from the emptiness of liberal theology. Now I was gripping the chair again! Oh that we had more preachers today who could make us tremble.

The chairman, John Stott, sensed that many men were being stirred to action and feared that some Anglican clergy might leave their church. Although he had already been given a ten minute slot earlier in the meeting to state his own views, he rose, at the end of the Doctor’s address not to close the meeting, but to counter what had been said. Being a young, impetuous non-conformist at the time, I secretly hoped that Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones would get to his feet again and make mincemeat of the Anglican leader, but he was wiser and more gracious than I shall ever be…

In spite of the interjection, many of us left the Central Hall feeling that we were on the verge of something new and exciting. We honestly believed that if we left our mixed denominations it would not be a matter of going out into the wilderness, but into this new grouping of churches. We also felt, quite justifiably, that just as men were willing to make sacrifices to come out of mixed denominations, so evangelical bodies like the FIEC and the Strict Baptists, etc, would be prepared to make changes in pursuit of this greater evangelical unity. Sadly, it has not happened. Our failure to heed the appeal, in my view, is one of the greatest tragedies and disappointments of the past 30 years. I sometimes wonder whether the increased confusion and contention within evangelicalism, not to mention the comedy, is a judgement of God upon us because of our failure to take evangelical unity seriously.

Is it too late now? New factors, besides liberalism and ecumenism, have come into the religious scene, ranging from the ridiculous to the rigid. The difficulties will be enormous but should that prevent us from attempting what is right? After all, trying to live a holy life can be difficult. Am I wrong to dream that one day there might be a closeknit Fellowship or Association of Bible Churches with English, Welsh and Scottish branches, to include all who have a serious view of the Bible and a commitment to a robust evangelicalism? Dr Lloyd-Jones ended his appeal with the prayer „May God speed the day”.

I thank God for the privilege of being at the Central Hall that night and of being allowed to live through those exciting, if scaring, times. Just one small, almost trivial incident indicates how traumatic the Central Hall meeting was. Two days later, as the EA assembly continued, newspaper vendors were selling their wares outside the Central Hall. The paper they were selling was The Christian, and their sales cry was not „Late Final” or „Latest Football Results’, but „Lloyd-Jones in The Christian!”, „Lloyd-Jones in The Christian!”

Derek Prime, then at Lansdowne EFC, Norwood

My memory of the evening of Tuesday, October 18th, 1966, at the Central Hall, Westminster, is not as clear as I would wish it to be. I do not think that any person taking part imagined that it would prove to be so significant. Had we appreciated the consequences that were to follow, I for one would probably have taken greater note of the feelings and convictions I then possessed.

I have clear recollections, however, of our time in the vestry beforehand. I imagine that I had been asked to take part because I was in the middle of my year as president of the Fellowship of Independent Evangelical Churches. The atmosphere was warm and friendly. After prayer together, John Stott, the chairman, suggested that we make our way to the platform, and Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones asked John Stott, where he wanted him to sit. „Sit at my side”, John Stott requested, to which the Doctor quickly responded, with a twinkle in his eye, „Which side? You have two sides, John!”

I had been asked to read the Scriptures early on in the meeting, together with some brief comment. Since the stated theme was Christian unity, I read the first half ofPhilippians 2, and commented on the passage in the light of the subject.

The address Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones gave is well documented, and what he said probably surprised few of us, but what took everyone by surprise, I believe, was the action of the chairman, John Stott, when, after the Doctor’s address, he proceeded to repudiate what he had said. I sensed that this was unpremeditated and certainly not on the programme for the meeting. John Stott was clearly alarmed at the action some might be prompted to take. The lesson I clearly remember from that meeting, which has remained with me, is that a chairman should not be a principal contributor to a meeting, especially if the subject is one where strong feelings are held. The sympathy of many went out to the Doctor who had no opportunity of reply, and especially the sympathy of those who already identified with the Doctor’s position or who were feeling the particular pressures of a false ecumenism in their church situations. I wonder if things would have been different- and the outcome better – if the meeting had been chaired by someone whose task had only been to chair, and not to represent a position or point of view?

It was a sad occasion because of my personal debt to and affection for both men. As a teenager, my school was adjacent to Westminster Chapel, and I was early introduced to the Friday Evening Discussion Meeting. Then as a young pastor, before moving to Edinburgh, I attended for twelve years the Westminster Fellowship. As a student, I was Mission Secretary for the first mission John Stott took for the Christian Union at Cambridge, a mission which was outstandingly fruitful as he preached the series of sermons from which came Basic Christianity. No two men, with their contrasting styles of effective expository preaching, more greatly influenced me with regard to my own understanding of preaching. I owe a great debt to God for their example.

There were many repercussions from the meeting, which others have written about. The Evangelical Alliance lost from its council godly men such as Theodore Bendor-Samuel and John Caiger, and the British Evangelical Council was seen as a preferred alternative for expressing evangelical Church unity. My personal regret was that I lost fellowship with many whose friendship I had appreciated and gained from since student days in the then IVF, particularly with evangelical Anglicans. Evangelical Anglicans and evangelical non- conformists expressed their identity and common concerns in many ways in the early years of my ministry, but that more or less ceased, and both went very much their own ways. It has perhaps only been in recent years, principally through the Proclamation Trust’s activity, that the divide has been bridged and fellowship re-established.

Leith Samuel, then at Above Bar Church, Southampton

Rev. Morgan Derham was the General Secretary of the Evangelical Alliance (EA) when it undertook the task of enquiring whether or not there was a widespread demand for a united evangelical Church in Britain. An Assembly open to all Evangelicals registered with or recognised by the EA was arranged to meet in the Church House, Westminster, with two evening rallies in the Central Hall. John Stott chaired the first evening rally at which the speaker was Dr Martyn Lloyd-Jones, who had discussed with the Council everything he was going to say. A rumour has circulated since that the message he gave took the Council of EA completely by surprise. Not so! They knew, and if they wished to, could have requested him not to say what he came out with. Revelation 18:4 was the Scripture on which the Doctor based his appeal. „Everything is in the melting-pot” is freely admitted all round. „For too long we have been content to go along as the evangelical wings of doctrinally- mixed denominations. Is this not the time to come together?” He did not advocate a new denomination, but „a loose federation of evangelical churches”. When he finished, John Stott got up and, contrary to the generally understood role of a chairman, flatly contradicted

the Doctor’s thesis by saying: „The Doctor has Scripture and Church History against him”, with no reference to any Scripture or incident in Church History. My host for the night, Tim Buckley of the London Bible College, said on the way home to Tooting: „Rugby and Cambridge. I can’t understand it!”, a reference to the chairman’s behaviour.

I rang the Doctor at his home that night, and expressed my grief at the way he had been treated. I did not sleep much that night, because I had to introduce a proposition next morning in the Church House that a fund should be started to help ministers who felt their conscience, enlightened by Scripture, was telling them they ought to leave their doctrinally-mixed denominations. I mentioned in my introduction that the existence of the Church of England was an illustration from Church History of a withdrawal from an apostate Church.

Imagine my consternation when we received at the door of the Central Hall that night a copy of The Christian, containing David Winter’s report of the meeting the previous evening with a heading across the front page saying: „The Doctor had called people out of their churches to form a new denomination”. Rev. HF Stevenson was unwell on the previous night and had asked David Winter to double up for him, so the Life ofFaith came out with a similarly startling heading the next day. In company with the Rev. Roland Lamb and a few others I submitted a letter to both papers asking the editors to correct the misleading impression of the previous week’s issue. The small letter was duly printed by both journals on page 3, totally lacking the impact of the previous week’s streaming headlines.

From personal conversations with the Doctor I gathered that he (and I!, let me hasten to add) were hoping that a banner would be raised at the Central Hall that we could all (true Evangelicals) in Britain come together under. I was informed by Dr Douglas Johnson, a close friend of the Doctor’s, that John Stott apologised privately to the Doctor, but never made public that he was sorry for treating the leading Evangelical in the country in the way he had done.

The next year the Anglicans met at Keele and declared they were committing themselves to a future in the Anglican community. I wrote to John Stott asking him not to overlook his non-conformist brethren. He assured me this would not happen! But ten years later at Nottingham they proceeded further in an Anglican direction. „This was not my scene said the leading Anglican Evangelical to me straight after Nottingham!

On the non-conformist side, the BEC gathering in Westminster Chapel, October 3rd 1967, was a significant moment, 450 years after Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the Church ofWittenberg, though the impetus of that great gathering was never maintained, alas!

Derek Swann, then at Ash(ord Congregational Church

I began my ministry at Ashford in January 1963. My predecessor, but one, the Rev. Gilbert Kirby had left to become General Secretary of the Evangelical Alliance in 1957. Consequently, the Church had strong links with the EA. It was natural, therefore, that I should be present at the October 1966 meeting at the Westminster Central Hall as a Church delegate, and at the various public meetings of the EA prior to that.

All that Dr Lloyd-Jones said that night in October is now well documented. To some, his message came like a thunderbolt, but to those of us who regularly attended the monthly meetings of the Westminster Fellowship of Ministers over which the Doctor presided, it was not. For many months the question of the Doctrine of the Church, unity and schism had been thoroughly discussed, so we were familiar with the Doctor’s position.

As Congregationalists we were forced in the early 60s, in way others were not, to consider, and face up to, the subject of Church unity. The Congregational Union of England & Wales was actively working for the formation of the Congregational Church in England and Wales (this came into being in 1966), which was a spring-board for union with the Presbyterian Church of England, which would result in the formation of the United Reformed Church in 1972. The majority of Evangelical Congregationalists were clear about what action they should take, but the discussions under Dr Lloyd-Jones were both strengthening and encouraging. At Ashford, as in many of our churches, the main issue was the Doctrine of Scripture. How could we possibly work with ministers and churches who held the view that „the Bible is not wholly free from error, confusion and contradiction, it must be read with fully critical attention if the Church is to discern the truth which is binding, and not to be in bondage to what is not binding”.1

A colleague had lunch with one of the leading men in the CUEW at the time, and warned that if loose views of Scripture continued to be embraced then Evangelicals could have no part in the proposed EC in England and Wales. His reply was: „We’re ready to lose you, for the sake of wider unity”. Not surprisingly the bulk of Evangelical Congregational Churches did not enter the new body. I must point out, as a matter of fact, that we did not come out of a body, rather we refused to join one.

To go back to the October 1966 meeting. When the Doctor finished his reasoned and passionate address, the behaviour of the Chairman, the Rev. John Stott, came as a shock. That otherwise calm and reasonable Anglican seemed to be visibly shaken by what had been said, and perhaps, fearful lest there should be a flood ofAnglican ministers prematurely leaving the Anglican Church, spoke briefly, but strongly that both Scripture and History were against the position the Doctor had outlined. The atmosphere was electric and one had the sense that from that night onwards a division in evangelicalism was highlighted that would dominate the scene for years to come.

Elogiu lui John Stott (via Persona) Danut Manastireanu

Danut Manastireanu scrie o postare elocventa despre intilnirile sale cu John Stott si despre lucrarea lui John Stott intre Romani. John Stott a plecat la Domnul in data de 27 Iulie,2011:

Elogiu lui John Stott Poza- John Stott & Billy Graham. Miercuri 27 iulie 2011, dimineata devreme, a fost inaltat in slava robul lui Dumnezeu John Stott, la venerabila virsta de peste 90 de ani. S-a nascut la 27 aprilie 1927 la Londra. Tatal sau era un medic agnostic, iar mama lui era o luterana credincioasa. La virsta de 11 ani a trecut printr-o experienta de convertire, in urma predicii capelanului scolii la care studia, numita Rugby School. Acelasi pastor a fost primul … Read More-click aici sa cititi restul

via Persona

Martyn Lloyd Jones – Preacher (Biography and Online book by John Peters)

A BRIEF BIOGRAPHY (source)

David Martyn Lloyd-Jones (1899–1981)

David Martyn Lloyd-Jones (20 December 1899 – 1 March 1981) was a Welsh Protestant minister, preacher and medical doctor who was influential in the Reformed wing of the British evangelical movement in the 20th century. For almost 30 years,  he was the minister of Westminster Chapel in London. Lloyd-Jones was strongly opposed to the liberal theology that had become a part of many Christian denominations, regarding it as aberrant. He disagreed with the broad church approach and encouraged evangelical Christians (particularly Anglicans) to leave their existing denominations, taking the view that true Christian fellowship was only possible amongst those who shared common convictions regarding the nature of the faith.

Lloyd-Jones was born in Cardiff and raised in Llangeitho, Ceredigion. Llangeitho is associated with the Welsh Methodist revival, as it was the location of Daniel Rowland’s ministry. Attending a London grammar school between 1914 and 1917 and then St Bartholomew’s Hospital as a medical student, in 1921 he started work as assistant to the Royal Physician, Sir Thomas Horder. After struggling for two years over what he sensed was a calling to preach, in 1927 Lloyd-Jones returned to Wales, having married Bethan Phillips (with whom he later had two children, Elizabeth and Ann), accepting an invitation to minister at a church in Aberavon (Port Talbot).

After a decade ministering in Aberavon, in 1939 he went back to London, where he had been appointed as associate pastor of Westminster Chapel, London, working alongside G. Campbell Morgan. In 1943 Morgan retired, leaving Jones as the sole Pastor of Westminster Chapel.

Lloyd-Jones was well-known for his style of expository preaching, and the Sunday morning and evening meetings at which he officiated drew crowds of several thousand, as did the Friday evening Bible studies – which were, in effect, sermons in the same style. He would take many months – even years – to expound a chapter of the Bible verse by verse. His sermons would often be around fifty minutes to an hour in length, attracting many students from universities and colleges in London. His sermons were also transcribed and printed (virtually verbatim) in the weekly Westminster Record, which was read avidly by those who enjoyed his preaching.

Lloyd-Jones provoked a major dispute in 1966 when, at the National Assembly of Evangelicals organised by the Evangelical Alliance, he called on all clergy of evangelical conviction to leave denominations which contained both liberal and evangelical congregations. This was interpreted as referring primarily to evangelicals within the Church of England, although there is disagreement over whether this was his intention. As a significant figure to many in the free churches, Lloyd-Jones had hoped to encourage those Christians who held evangelical beliefs to withdraw from any churches where alternative views were present.

However, Lloyd-Jones was criticised by the leading Anglican evangelical John Stott. Although Stott was not scheduled to speak, he used his position as chairman of the meeting to publicly rebuke Lloyd-Jones, stating that his opinion was against history and the Bible (though John Stott greatly admired Lloyd-Jones’s work, and would often quote him in Stott’s own books). This open clash between the two elder statesmen of British evangelicalism was widely reported in the Christian press and caused considerable controversy. Although there is an ongoing debate as to the exact nature of Lloyd-Jones’s views, they undoubtedly caused the two groupings to adopt diametrically opposed positions. These positions, and the resulting split, continue largely unchanged to this day.

Lloyd-Jones retired from his ministry at Westminster Chapel in 1968, following a major operation. He spoke of a belief that God had stopped him from continuing to preach through the New Testament book of the Letter to the Romans in his Friday evening Bible study exposition because he did not personally know enough about „joy in the Holy Spirit” which was to be his next sermon (based on Romans 14:17). For the rest of his life he concentrated on editing his sermons to be published, counselling other ministers, answering letters and attending conferences. Perhaps his most famous publication is a 14 volume series of commentaries on the Epistle to the Romans, the first volume of which was published in 1970.

Despite spending most of his life living and ministering in England, Lloyd-Jones was proud of his roots in Wales. He best expressed his concern for his home country through his support of the Evangelical Movement of Wales: he was a regular speaker at their conferences, preaching in both English and Welsh. Since his death, the movement has published various books, in English and Welsh, bringing together selections of his sermons and articles.

Lloyd-Jones preached for the last time on 8 June 1980 at Barcombe Baptist Chapel. After a lifetime of work, he died peacefully in his sleep at Ealing on 1 March 1981, St David’s Day. He was buried at Newcastle Emlyn, near Cardigan, west Wales. A well-attended thanksgiving service was held at Westminster Chapel on 6 April.

Since his death there have been various publications regarding Lloyd-Jones and his work, most popularly a biography in two volumes by Iain Murray.

Legacy

Charismatic Movement

Martyn Lloyd-Jones has admirers from many different denominations in the Christian Church today. One much-discussed aspect of his legacy is his relationship to the Charismatic Movement. Respected by leaders of many churches associated with this movement, although not directly associated with them, he did teach the Baptism with the Holy Spirit as a distinct experience rather than conversion and the regeneration of the Holy Spirit.[5] Indeed, towards the end of his life he urged his listeners to actively seek an experience of the Holy Spirit. For instance, in his exposition of Ephesians 6:10-13, published in 1976, he says, „Do you know anything of this fire? If you do not, confess it to God and acknowledge it. Repent, and ask Him to send the Spirit and His love into you until you are melted and moved, until you are filled with his love divine, and know His love to you, and rejoice in it as his child, and look forward to the hope of the coming glory. ‘Quench not the Spirit’, but rather ‘be filled with the Spirit’ and ‘rejoice in Christ Jesus'”.[6]

Part of Lloyd-Jones’ stress of the Christian’s need of the baptism with the Holy Spirit was due to his belief that this provides an overwhelming assurance of God’s love to the Christian, and thereby enables him to boldly witness for Christ to an unbelieving world.[5]

Aside from his insistence that the baptism with the Spirit is a work of Jesus Christ distinct from regeneration, rather than the filling of the Holy Spirit, Lloyd-Jones also opposed cessationism, claiming that the doctrine is not founded upon Scripture. In fact, he requested that Banner of Truth Trust, the publishing company which he co-founded, only publish his works on the subject after his death.[5] He claimed that those who took a position such as B.B. Warfield’s on cessationism were ‘quenching the Spirit.’[5] He continued to proclaim the necessity of the active working of God in the world and the need for him to miraculously demonstrate his power so that Christian preachers (and all those who witness for Christ) might gain a hearing in a contemporary world that is hostile to the true God and to Christianity in general.[4]

Preaching

Lloyd-Jones seldom agreed to preach live on television, (the exact number of occasions is not known, but it was most likely only once or twice).[7] His reasoning behind this decision was that this type of „controlled” preaching, that is, preaching that is constrained by time-limits, „militates against the freedom of the Spirit.”In other words, he believed that the preacher should be free to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit concerning the length of time in which he is allowed to preach. He recorded that he once asked a television executive who wanted him to preach on television, „What would happen to your programmes if the Holy Spirit suddenly descended upon the preacher and possessed him; what would happen to your programmes?”

Perhaps the greatest aspect of Lloyd-Jones’ legacy has to do with his preaching. Lloyd-Jones was one of the most influential preachers of the twentieth century. Many volumes of his sermons have been published by Banner of Truth, as well as other publishing companies. In his book, Preaching and Preachers (Zondervan, 1971), Lloyd-Jones describes his views on preaching, or what might be called his doctrine of homiletics. In this book, he defines preaching as „Logic on fire.” The meaning of this definition is demonstrated throughout the book, in which he describes his own preaching style which had developed over his many years of ministry.

His preaching style may be summarized as ‘logic on fire’ for several reasons. First, he believed that the use of logic was vital for the preacher. But his view of logic was not the same as that of the Enlightenment. This is why he called it logic „on fire.” The fire has to do with the activity and power of the Holy Spirit. He therefore believed that preaching was the logical demonstration of the truth of a given passage of Scripture with the aid, or unction, of the Holy Spirit.[9] This view manifested itself in the form of Lloyd-Jones’ sermons. Lloyd-Jones believed that true preaching was always expository. This means he believed that the primary purpose of the sermon was to reveal and expand the primary teaching of the passage under consideration. Once the primary teaching was revealed, he would then logically expand this theme, demonstrating that it was a biblical doctrine by showing that it was taught in other passages in the Bible, and using logic in order to demonstrate its practical use and necessity for the hearer. With this being the case, he labored in his book Preaching and Preachers to caution young preachers against what he deemed as „commentary-style” preaching as well as „topical” preaching.

Lloyd-Jones’ preaching style was therefore set apart by his sound exposition of biblical doctrine and his fire and passion in its delivery. He is thereby known as a preacher who continued on in the Puritan tradition of experimental preaching. A famous quote on the effects of Lloyd-Jones preaching is given by theologian and preacher J.I. Packer, who wrote that he had „never heard such preaching.” It came to him „with the force of electric shock, bringing to at least one of his listeners more of a sense of God than any other man”.

Lloyd-Jones was also an avid supporter of the Evangelical Library in London.

Martyn Lloyd Jones – Preacher by John Peters (via)

Martyn Lloyd-Jones was possibly the greatest British preacher of the twentieth century. His ministry at Westminster Chapel and his writings earned him respect and affection throughout the world. He had a decisive influence on many individuals and on evangelicalism as a whole.

Now John Peters who (like the Doctor) is a Welsh- speaking Welshman, has written the first complete account of The Doctor’s life and achievement. It includes personal reminiscences by men and women whose lives were changed by Martyn Lloyd-Jones.


John Peters is a native of Aberdare, South Wales. He teaches English language and literature at Charterhouse School and lives in Godalming with his wife and three children.

This excellent little book is now out of print, but the text is exclusively presented here for you to freely download by kind permission of the author, John Peters. Copyright © 1986 John Peters

Links to access download of 75 page book:

Rich Text Format (which will load into most wordprocessors)

Microsoft Word Format.

Iosif Ton – ‘Adevaratul Crestinism’

Matei 28:16-20

16Cei unsprezece ucenici s’au dus în Galilea, în muntele unde le poruncise Isus să meargă.17Cînd L-au văzut ei, I s’au închinat, dar unii s’au îndoit.18Isus S’a apropiat de ei, a vorbit cu ei, şi le -a zis: ,,Toată puterea Mi -a fost dată în cer şi pe pămînt.

19Duceţi-vă şi faceţi ucenici din toate neamurile, botezîndu -i în Numele Tatălui şi al Fiului şi al Sfîntului Duh.20Şi învăţaţi -i să păzească tot ce v’am poruncit. Şi iată că Eu sînt cu voi în toate zilele, pînă la sfîrşitul veacului. Amin

Evrei 5:9

9Şi după ce a fost făcut desăvîrşit, S’a făcut pentru toţi cei ce -L ascultă, urzitorul unei mîntuiri vecinice,

Luca 6:40

40Ucenicul nu este mai pe sus de învăţătorul lui; dar orice ucenic desăvîrşit va fi ca învăţătorul lui.

Matei 5 – Ioan 22

Predica din 2009 la Biserica Baptista, Portland, Oregon;  ResurseCrestine.ro

Cartile recomandate de Iosif Ton:

(Tags- Istoria Crestinismului, Anabaptistii, Martin Luter 1517,Anabaptistii (numiti rebotezatori) au aparut in 1525, Martin Luter despre botez (copii vs. adulti), Martin Luter -Mintuirea doar ca act juridic fara ca omului sa  i se ceara sa se schimbe, Isus rabinul, marea trimitere, Navigatorii, sigurante, carti recomandate, John MacArthur,Evanghelia dupa Isus, Evanghelia conform apostolilor, Dallas Willard,omitem si lasam afara invatatura Domnului Isus in marea trimitere)

Iosif Ton – Afirmatii

Am transcris dialogul fratelui Iosif Ton de la emisiunea ‘AlfaOmegaTV’ realizat de Tudor Petan in Decembrie, 2010.

Puteti sa vizionati video clipul pe care l-am mai postat aici.

Fratele Iosif Ton a fost un timp Profesor de Limba si Literatura Romana la clasele Ciclului II (de la clasa a V-a la cl. VIII-a). Ce impresioneaza este modul in care face explicatii pe intelesul tuturor. O bunica care poate nu a citit mult la viata ei sau un copilas de 7 ani, pot amindoi sa priceapa ce spune fratele Ton datorita limbajului folosit.

Pentru ca a trebuit convertita transcrierea  in formatul pdf, am avut constringeri de folosire a semnelor de punctuatie (ex.  ( ) ; ” ) si inca nu am gasit un software cu alfabetul Romanesc, sper sa dau de unul in viitor.

Cu toate acestea continutul interviului este extrem de folositor si merita citit.

Acestea sint afirmatiile Fratelui Iosif Ton (cititi transcrierea pentru detalii:

1 ) De ce trebuie sa dam intiietate  invataturii  Domnului Isus. (Pagina 1)

2 ) Nu e nici o contradictie intre invataturile Domnului Isus si ale apostolilor.   (P 1-2)

3 ) Crucea Domnului Isus nu este centrul. Centrul atentiei noastre este persoana Domnului Isus si invatatura Domnului Isus .(Teologia crucii P 2)

4 ) Cum defineste fratele Ton ‘mintuirea’. (P 3) Mintuirea este actul prin care El m-a eliberat de sub robia diavolului, si m-a invatat sa trec prin crucea Lui si sa  intru in relatia cu Sfinta Treime.

5 ) Poruncile Domnului Isus pot fi implinite fiindca cuvintele Lui sint incarcate cu putere. (P 4)

6 ) Problema fundamentala este ca noi nu luam in serios invatatura cu pacatul.

7 ) Poti sa te descalifici pentru mintuire. (P 6-8)

8 ) Ajungi sa stingi pe Duhul Sfint, staruind in stare de pacat (P 7-8)

9 ) Nu toti cei ce proorocesc sau fac semne si minuni vor fi mintuiti. (P 7-8)

10 ) Cind incetezi sa gindesti, mori si sunt tare  multi care dupa ce au iesit din scoala nu mai studiaza, nu mai descopar lucruri noi, si mor. Noi zicem s-au plafonat.

Optiunea 1 – Click  aici: Transcriere – interviu cu Iosif Ton

Optiunea 2 – Daca link-ul nu vi se deschide click aici pentru  transcriera interviului.

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