How to Make Wise Ethical Decisions – Wayne Grudem

photo creditChristians often wonder, „How can I find out God’s will for me?” – about a job, about marriage, or about many smaller decisions in everyday life. This talk discusses how to consider information from the Bible, from the situation, and from personal advice, changed circumstances, a subjective sense of what to do, and following guidance from the Holy Spirit. All of this is viewed from a perspective that God clearly wants us to know his will in each circumstance, and that there will always be at least one right choice that he wants us to make.

See more at http://www.FOCLonline.org

VIDEO by FOCL Online

Boundaries: How Maintaining Doctrinal and Moral Clarity Protects Christian Organisations – Wayne Grudem

photo creditBoundaries: How Maintaining Doctrinal and Moral Clarity  ,Protects Christian Organisations , Wayne  Grudem

New members are continually joining Christian organisations, bringing with them new ideas. Do we need to establish some doctrinal and moral boundaries to keep our organisations from going astray? When should we add new boundaries? What boundaries should be drawn? This talk proposes some general principles to consider along with some specific recent examples.

See more at http://www.FOCLonline.org

VIDEO by FOCL Online

Prayer and Ministry in the Power of the Holy Spirit – Wayne Grudem

Wayne Grudem gives very specific examples on how to pray, for ex. how should you pray for a neighbor who has just lost his job and is not a churchgoer…

wayne grudemHow can New Testament teachings and pastoral experience combine to help us follow the Holy Spirit’s guidance when praying for individuals in need, whether one-on-one or in small groups? This talk also discusses questions about miraculous spiritual gifts today, how to affirm both subjective perceptions of guidance and the sufficiency of Scripture, praying for physical healing and other needs, and praying for non-Christians as well as for Christians.

See more at http://www.FOCLonline.org

VIDEO by FOCL Online

Salvation without Repentance from Sin: A Critique of the Free Grace Gospel – Wayne Grudem

 

Salvation without Repentance from Sin:

A Critique of the Free Grace Gospel – W. Grudem

photo credit

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The “Free Grace” movement (especially as promoted by the late Zane Hodges) claims that we should not include a call to repentance from sin in our gospel presentations, and we should not tell people that genuine faith will always produce good works in a person’s life, because these things add “works” to the gospel. This session will explain how the Free Grace movement (1) misunderstands the classic Reformation principle of “justification by faith alone,” (2) weakens the gospel message as taught in the New Testament, (3) gives false assurance of salvation to many unconverted people, (4) adopts numerous highly unlikely interpretations of the New Testament, and (5) overemphasizes mental assent to propositions while underemphasizing heartfelt trust in the living person of Jesus Christ.
See more at http://www.FOCLonline.org

Wayne Grudem – Lucrarea Duhului Sfant (2)

In Partea 2 Wayne Grudem discuta :

* Duhul Sfint curata

* Duhul Sfint reveleaza

  1. Revelatie data profetilor si apostolilor
  2. Duhul Sfint da dovada prezentei lui Dumnezeu
  3. Duhul Sfint isi calauzeste si isi directioneaza poporul
  4. Cind isi manifesta presenta, Duhul Sfint asigura o atmosfera plina de evlavie
  5. Duhul Sfint ne da asigurarea.

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Wayne Grudem – Lucrarea Duhului Sfant (1)

sursa pozei http://www.MoldovaCrestina.net

In acest capitol teologul Wayne Grudem arata:

Care sunt modurile specifice prin care Duhul Sfint aduce credinciosilor binecuvintarea lui Dumnezeu? Putem deosebi patru aspecte prin care lucrareaDuhului Sfint dovedeste prezenta lui Dumnezeu si prin care da binecuvintarea:.
  1. Duhul Sfint imputerniceste.
  2. Duhul Sfint curateste.
  3. Duhul Sfint reveleaza.
  4. Duhul Sfint unifica

Le vom examina pe fiecare din aceste patru activitati.

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Dr. Wayne Grudem – The Interpersonal Relationship among the Members of the Trinity

This lecture is from an Academic Conference at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. Dr. Grudem’s presentation is the 5th lecture of this series and it is titled:

Troubling Doctrinal Deviations in Evangelical Feminist arguments about the Trinity.

Several recent evangelical feminist authors have denied that the Son is eternally subject to the authority of the Father within the Trinity. These authors include Gilbert Bilezikian, Rebecca M. Groothuis, Kevin Giles, Millard Erickson, Phillip Carey, Linda Belleville, and Dennis W. Jowers.

In reading these arguments, I noticed that they contained important doctrinal deviation either in what is said, or what is implied in the form of the argument. The argument deviated from the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity, in some cases and they rejected the authority of Scriptures, it seems to me, in other cases. So, those are going to be 2 parts of my paper:

  1. Evangelical feminist arguments that deviate from the orthodox  doctrine of the Trinity,
  2. And, Evangelical feminist arguments that reject the authority of Scripture.

Arguments that deviate from the orthodox doctrine of the Trinity

1. Denying the Trinity by denying any eternal distinctions
between Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

Essential to the doctrine of the Trinity, as affirmed by all four previous speakers, and is taught in the Bible is the idea that the distinctions between the persons of the Trinity- the Father is not the Son. Father is not the Holy Spirit, and the Son is not the Holy Spirit. They are 3 distinct persons. They’re equal in deity, and there’s only one God. But, within the being of God Himself, there are three distinct persons. Several recent evangelical authors are unwilling to specify any distinction between the persons. For example, rather than agreeing that the names Father, and Son indicate a distinction between the persons , a number of evangelical feminist authors argue that the names only show that the Son is like the Father, not that He is distinct from the Father in any way.

And sadly, the most prominent writer in this regard is Millard Erickson, whom I respect in many ways for much of what he has written. Erickson says, „There is considerable biblical evidence that the primary meaning of the biblical term Son as applied to Jesus is likeness, rather than subordinate authority. So, for example, he says the jews saw Jesus’s self designation as the Son of God as a claim to deity or equality with God. I should say in parenthesis- I agree that Sonship does imply equality of Being, because, just as a human son is human and the father is human; so, in the Trinity, the Father is divine, therefore, the Son of God is divine. That’s true. But, the question is whether that is all that is affirmed.

Similarly, Kevin Giles objects: ‘The name Father and Son are not used in the New Testament to suggest the divine Father always has authority over the Son. He said, these names speak, rather, of an eternal correlated relationship, by intimacy, unity, equality, and identical authority.

My response: If intimacy and identical authority were all that Jesus wanted to indicate by calling Himself a Son, calling God His Father, He could have spoken of ‘My friend in heaven‘, or ‘my brother in heaven‘, or even ‘my twin in heaven‘. These images were ready at hand. But, He did not. He spoke of ‘My Father in heaven‘. Emphasizing likeness in deity only, while failing to specify the distinctions between the persons of the Trinity is a failure to affirm the distinctions between the 3 persons, which is one important aspect of the doctrine of the Trinity. It seems to me that is a significant doctrinal deviation.(6:00)

2. Denying the Trinity by claiming an act of any one person
is actually an act of all three persons

Even more troubling is the tendency of evangelical feminists to claim that any action, taken by any person in the Trinity is an action of all three persons of the Trinity, when faced with many biblical texts that show that the Son is always subject to the Father (I have over 30 texts that I will allude to, later), and that the Father is not subject to the Son. When faced with many of these texts, Millard Erickson produces a different solution to suggest that the act of any one person in the Trinity is actually an act of all three persons. Here is what Erickson says is an overall principle. I’m quoting from his book ‘Who’s Tampering With The Trinity‘, pp 137-138. Erickson says this, „Although one person of the Trinity may occupy a more prominent part in a given divine action, the action is actually that of the entire Godhead‘- I would agree with him, up to that point. Then he says, ‘and the one person is acting on behalf of the three,” I would agree with him to that point. But then, listen, „This means that those passages that speak of the Father predestining, sending, commanding, and so on, should not be taken as applying to the Father only, but to all members of the Trinity. Thus, they do not count as evidence in support of eternal supremacy of the Father and eternal subordination of the Son.’

How does Erickson argue for this? The way he argues for it is to point out that some of the actions of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are done by more than one person. For instance, the Father and Son are involved in sending the Spirit into the world. The Father and Son are both involved in judging the world. Both the Son and the Holy Spirit intercede before the Father. The Father  and the Son both love the world. Both the Father and the Son receive prayer. Erickson concludes, „The various works attributed to the various persons of the Trinity are in fact works of the Triune God. One member of the Godhead may in fact do this on behalf of the three, and be mentioned as the one who does that work; but, all participate in what is done.’

But, these verses that he quotes, hardly prove Erickson’s point. Yes, it is true that both the Father and the Son sent the Spirit into the world. But, the Holy Spirit does not send the Holy Spirit into the world. And yes, both the Son and the Holy Spirit intercede before the Father. But, the Father does not intercede before the Father. As for actions that are directed toward people in the world, such as loving, judging, indwelling people, it is true that all three persons are involved in a way in these activities, but, that does not prove Erickson’s point because the real issue is the relationship between the Father and the Son in the Trinity. In that issue, the testimony of the Scripture is clear: The Son continuously, throughout eternity, submits to the will of the Father. This is clear, even in some of the passages that Erickson appeals to. At one point, he says, „It is not only the Father who predestined some to be saved, but Jesus also elects some to salvation. As Jesus said in John 5:21 ‘Even so, the Son gives life to whom He is pleased to give it and  no one knows the Father except the Son. And those to whom the Son chooses, reveal Him (John 5:21 and Matthew 11:27). Erickson concludes, „It appears that Jesus chooses those whom He reveals to the Father.” What he is saying, is, „The Father predestines. Yes, but the Son also predestines. They both do this action.”

It is remarkable that  Erickson mentions John 5:21 and Matthew 11:27, because the very context of both of them, Jesus attributes supreme authority to the Father. In John 5:21, he says, „Yes, He gives life to whom He is pleased to give it, but 2 verses earlier, Jesus says, „The Son can do nothing of His own accord. But only what He sees the Father doing. For, whatever the Father does, so the Son does likewise. For the Father loves the Son and show Him all that He is doing.” Nine verses after this, Jesus says, „I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge. Judgment is just cause I seek not my own will, but the will of Him who sent me.” Erickson did not mention these verses, although they occur in the very same context. Therefore, the Son only chooses, in conjunction with what has been shown of the will of the Father.

As for Erickson’s other verse, Matthew 11:27, the beginning of the verse, which Erickson does not quote, says, „All things have been handed over to Me by My Father.” And then Jesus goes on to say, „No one knows the Father, except through the Son, and those whom the Son chooses to reveal Him.” The testimony of Scripture on this matter is consistent. When the Son chooses people for salvation, He is simply following  the directives of the Father. He’s not acting independently of the authority of the Father, yet, both the Father and the Son participate in their choosing, yet their actions are not identical, but distinct. The Father chooses, the Father shows the Son who has been chosen, the Son chooses those who have been given Him by the Father.

What is even more troubling about Erickson’s argument is he seems to be denying that there is any difference between the persons of the Trinity. He’s arguing against the idea that we can say that the Son has eternally been subject to the authority of the Father. Erickson is trying to nullify that idea, by denying that we can say anything that is done by the Son is not also done by the Father and the Spirit. Erickson wants to make that kind of discussion impossible. But, in order to make his point, he is apparently saying that the actions of any one person of the Trinity are the actions of not just the whole being of God, but of every person in the Trinity. And to say that is to deny what is taught by really hundreds of passages of Scriptures that speak of different actions, carried out by different members of the Trinity.

For example: At the baptism of Jesus, God the Father was speaking from heaven, „This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased.” God the Son was not speaking from heaven in those words, nor was the Holy Spirit speaking from heaven and saying those words. God the Son was being baptized, the Holy Spirit was descending like a dove coming to rest upon Him. God the Father was not being baptized, nor was the Holy Spirit being baptized. The Father was not descending like a dove, nor was the Son descending like a dove. It simply confuses the teaching of Scripture to say or imply that all three persons of the Trinity are doing any one action. But that is what Erickson seems to be saying.  (12:35 min mark – with 44 minutes remaining)

Wayne Grudem – Which Bible Translation to use – commentary on the ESV & NIV

One of the most frequently asked questions related to the Bible is, „Which Bible translation should I use?” People often wonder what is the all-around best English Bible translation available. In this book, Douglas Moo, Wayne Grudem, Ray Clendenen, and Philip Comfort make a case for the Bible translation he represents: the NIV 2011 (New International Version), the ESV (English Standard Version), the HCSB (Holman Christian Standard Bible), and the NLT (New Living Translation) respectively.

In each case, the contributors explain the translation philosophy under- lying these major recent versions. They also compare and contrast how specific passages are translated in their version and other translations.

Which Bible Translation Should I Use? is ideal for anyone who is interested in the Bible and wants to know how the major recent English translations compare. After you’ve read this book, you will be able to answer the title question with confidence. You will also learn many other interesting details about specific passages in the Bible from these top experts.

Some examples from:

  • Psalm 1:1 (in first 3 min video)
  • Luke 17:3 (gender issues with the NIV, specifically using ‘brothers and sisters’ where the greek word specifically means ‘brother’ – this is in the second, 4 min video)
  • Nahum 3:13 (problematic translation in the NIV- changing the word ‘women’ to ‘weaklings’ – in 3rd video)
  • 1 Timothy 2:12 (in 4th video)

In this playlist (all videos under 5 min each):
~Videos 1-4 Wayne Grudem (from ESV translation committee)
~Video 5 Douglas Moo (from NIV translation committee)
~Video 6 ESV panel debating the 4 instances of word ‘slave’ in 1 Corinthians 7:17-24 passage at Tyndale House UK

 

Wayne Grudem – Lucrarea Duhului Sfant (3)

In Partea 2 Wayne Grudem discuta cum :

* Duhul Sfint curata

* Duhul Sfint reveleaza

  1. Revelatie data profetilor si apostolilor
  2. Duhul Sfint da dovada prezentei lui Dumnezeu
  3. Duhul Sfint isi calauzeste si isi directioneaza poporul
  4. Cind isi manifesta presenta, Duhul Sfint asigura o atmosfera plina de evlavie
  5. Duhul Sfint ne da asigurarea.

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Day of Pentecost and Spiritual Gifts

We may define spiritual gifts as follows: A spiritual gift is any ability that is empowered by the Holy Spirit and used in any ministry of the church. This broad definition includes both gifts that are related to natural abilities (such as teaching, showing mercy, or administration) and gifts that seem to be more “miraculous” and less related to natural abilities (such as prophecy, healing, or distinguishing between spirits). The reason for this is that when Paul lists spiritual gifts (in Rom. 12:6-8); 1 Cor. 7:7; 12:8-10, 28; and Eph. 4:11) he includes both kinds of gifts. Yet not every natural ability is included here, because Paul is clear that all spiritual gifts must be empowered “by one and the same Spirit” (1 Cor. 12:11), that they are given”for the common good” (1 Cor.12:7), and that they are all to be used for “edification”(1 Cor. 14:26), or for building up the church. Read more here – (1) What are spiritual gifts?

Grudem: The New Testament lists specific spiritual gifts in six different passages. See table here –1 Corinthians 12:28 , 1 Corinthians 12:8-10, Ephesians 4:11, Romans 12:6-8, 1 Corinthians 7:7, 1 Peter 4:11.

Gifts of the Holy Spirit:

    1. apostle   – (1-8 from 1 Cor. 12:28)
    2. prophet
    3. teacher
    4. miracles
    5. kinds of healing
    6. helps
    7. administration
    8. tongues
    9. word of wisdom   – (9-13 from 1 Cor. 12:8-10)
    10. word of knowledge
    11. faith
    12. distinguishing between spirits
    13. interpretation of tongues
    14. evangelist        –   (14-15 from Ephesians 4:11)
    15. pastor-teacher
    16. serving    –  (16-20 from Romans 12:6-8)
    17. encouraging
    18. contributing
    19. leadership
    20. mercy
    21. marriage     – (21-22 from 1 Cor. 7:7)
    22. celibacy

1 Peter 4:11 whoever speaks (covering several gifts) and whoever renders service (also covering several gifts).

What is obvious is that these lists are all quite different. No one list has all these gifts, and no gift is mentioned on all these lists: in the context of speaking of marriage and celibacy, Paul says, “Each has his own special gift from God, one of one kind and one of another.”

Click here to read more…  (2) How many gifts are there?

Grudem: Paul says that if we have the gift of prophecy, we should use it “in proportion to our faith” (Rom. 12:6), indicating that the gift can be more or less strongly developed in different individuals, or in the same individual over a period of time. This is why Paul can remind Timothy, “Do not neglect the gift you have” (1 Tim. 4:14), and can say, “I remind you to rekindle the gift of God that is within you” (2 Tim. 1:6). It was possible for Timothy to allow his gift to weaken, apparently through infrequent use, and Paul reminds him to stir it up by using it and thereby strengthening it. This should not be surprising, for we realize that many gifts increase in strength and effectiveness as they are used, whether evangelism, teaching, encouraging, administration, or faith.

Texts such as these indicate that spiritual gifts may vary in strength. If we think of any gift, whether teaching or evangelism on the one hand, or prophecy or healing on the other, we should realize that within any congregation there will likely be people who are very effective in the use of that gift, perhaps through long use and experience, others who are moderately strong in that gift, and others who probably have the gift but are just beginning to use it. This variation in strength in spiritual gifts depends on a combination of divine and human influence. The divine influence in the sovereign working of the Holy Spirit as he “apportions to each one individually as he wills” (1 Cor. 12:11). The human influence comes from experience, training, wisdom, and natural ability in the use of that gift. It is usually not possible to know in what proportion the divine and human influences combine at any one time, nor is it really necessary to know, for even the abilities we think to be “natural” are from God (1 Cor. 4:7) and under his sovereign control.

But this leads to an interesting question: how strong does an ability have to be before it can be called a spiritual gift? How much teaching ability does someone need before he or she could be said to have a gift of teaching, for example? Or how effective in evangelism would someone need to be before we would recognize a gift of evangelism? Or how frequently would someone have to see prayers for healing answered before he or she could be said to have a gift of healing?

The state of prophecy for our times

Wayne Grudem and Ian Hamilton:

The state of prophecy today

A debate between Ian Hamilton (Cambridge Presbyterian Church and formerly a minister in the Church of Scotland) and Wayne Grudem (Phoeniz Seminary, Arizona, formerly at Trinity International University in Deerfield, Illinois) about the role of prophecy in the church today. Chaired by Adrian Reynolds. Recorded at the 2010 EMA. From The Proclamation Trust on Vimeo. From 2010, Phoenix, Arizona.

Ian Hamilton is currently teaching at Cambridge and Wayne Grudem did his doctoral studies there. The aim is to talk about some of the things we know we don’t agree about, but, we think that it’s mature and the time is right as Evangelical Christians who love Christ, who love His word and believe firmly in His word and hold firmly to it; to be able to talk about some of the things we disagree about in a constructive mature way; to gently challenge one another. To think about some of the implications about how these things affect church life. That’s the reason for having these two dear brothers here with us.


I managed to transcribe notes from the first 38 minutes of a 76 minute discussion; the first of its kind (videotaped and publicly posted) between two  Godly men, who are also widely respected theologians, and who both believe in the continuationist position on the gifts of the Spirit, however, Ian Hamilton believes prophecy is not one of those gifts that continued after the New testament canon was closed.

Wayne Grudem:

I have not spoken much about this gift of prophecy question or taught much about it for several years… As I came back to the discussion, I thought it might be helpful to start out with an overview of the whole Bible, Genesis to Revelation.

There is a view that I am going to call cessationsim. A cessationist position that with regard to the gift of prophecy would argue that God doesn’t communicate information directly to us today, apart from the words of the Bible or in addition to the words of the Bible and that’s the viewpoint I’m going to be disagreeing with.

I think what strikes me the most as I look from Genesis to Revelation on this question, is what seems to me the absence of any clear biblical evidence to prove the heart of the cessationist position. I don’t think there’s any passage in scripture, or any combination of passages that should lead us to think that God doesn’t communicate directly with His people throughout all of history, in individual, personal ways that occur, in addition to in and through the written words of scripture. If we look at the whole scope of biblical history, we see that from beginning to end, God had a personal relationship with his people; a relationship in which he communicated directly and personally with them. And, this communication was never limited to the words that He gave all of His people in the book of the covenant, or the writings of the canon of scriptures.  God had a personal relationship and a direct communication with people from the beginning of the Bible and throughout its history.

So, think of his personal relationship and communication with Adam & Eve,  with Cain & Abel, with Enoch, who walked with God (Genesis 5:24), with Noah, with Abraham and Isaac, and Jacob; the narratives of which are filled with discussions of God appearing to them and speaking to them, personally. With Moses, and David, with Solomon, and with many old testament prophets and kings to whom God communicated directly, individually and personally.

And then, in the New Testament, in the person of Jesus, God the Son, communicated individually  and personally with many people while he was on earth. And then the New Testament promises a personal relationship that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit will have with each individual believer. Here are some verses:

  • John 14:23 „If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him and we will come to him and make our home with him”. The imagery of making the home of the Father and Son with us, that imagery implies personal fellowship.
  • Revelation 3:20 „If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come into him and eat with him and he with me”. The imagery of eating with one another implies ongoing personal fellowship.
  • Paul in Philippians 3:20 „Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that to you also”. That implies personal communication from God, revealing sin in the lives of individual Philippian Christians.
  • Romans 8:14 „For all who are led by the spirit of God are sons of God”. The present indicative verb for „all who are led”, indicates that this leading is a regular or ongoing process; being led by the spirit of God.
  • Galatians 5:16,18 „But I say, walk by the spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. But, if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law”. Again the verb (in Greek) indicates ongoing activity- being led by the spirit of God.

My point is that from the beginning to the end, the Bible tells us of a God who relates individually and personally to His people. And now, it seems to me that some in the cessationist position are coming and telling us: Contrary to the experience of all of God’s people throughout all the books of the Bible, that God no longer communicates personally and individually with any of his people except through the written words of the canon of Scripture. So it seems to me that a cessationist position asks us to believe

  1. that throughout the Bible, God communicated to His people both through written scripture, as much as they had at any point, and through additional, direct, personal interaction with people.
  2. But then it asks us to believe that God now only communicates through the written words of the canon and no longer with direct, personal fellowship and interaction with people. This is quite strange in light of the fact that the new covenant seems to be better in every way, but how can it be better if we’ve lost that element of personal relationship with God and personal communication with God in addition to the words of the canon. That element that characterized all periods of history that the Bible talks about. Where is anything in the Bible that would lead us to believe that?

Of course, I understand that cessationists believe that the canon is closed and I agree with that. But the question is not that of the canon. The question is what about communication, from God to specific individuals that is not part of the canon? If the Bible is the book of the covenant, that stipulates the terms of the relationship between God as king and us as His covenant people. Then, are we to say that the king can never communicate with His people in any additional ways, besides the covenant document? Can he who created speech, and loves His people,  never speak to them  directly and personally? A cessationist view, if I understand it correctly, allows no element for individual, personal guidance from the Holy Spirit in the life of a Christian, ever. Our guidance is simply to be taken from reading the Bible and using mature wisdom to apply it to our lives. But surely, the vast majority of Christians, throughout history have known and experienced the guidance of the Holy Spirit in making decisions, especially while they are praying and reading the words of scripture, but in other times as well. Apart from the concentrated times of reading scripture and prayer. And, they have known that this guidance includes not only the direction and commands and principles of scripture, but also subjective impressions of God’s will and additional thoughts and specific memories the Lord brings to mind. It seems to me that a position that rules out personal guidance from the Holy Spirit today is so completely different from the whole course of Biblical history and from the New Testament teaching on personal fellowship that we have with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Specifically with regard to the gift of prophecy, we have … and I think it is a sub category of that broader category of personal fellowship and communication from God to believers and so I would look at passages like 1 Thessalonians 5 19-21, and in that passage Paul says, „Do not despise prophecies, but test everything, hold fast to what is good”. And, so I think that he is implying here and in 1 Corinthians 14, when he says, „Let two or three prophets speak and let the others way what is said”, that God can bring things to mind, and when we report something that God has suddenly brought to mind, that Paul would call that the gift of prophecy functioning in the church. But it is always to be tested by Scripture. Paul says, „Do not despise prophecies, but test everything. Hold fast to what is good”. It is to be tested by scripture and by what we know about our lives and the word in general and we may be mistaken by those kinds of things, but of course , sermons can also be mistaken and advice from others can also be mistaken, but they have a useful role in the Christian life.

I think this element of prophecy, as well, is something that the New Testament talks about; views as commonly functioning, in the churches in Rome, in Corinth, Ephesus and Thessaloniki and is something that ought to be appreciated and valued today.

Click below for the rest of the notes…….

Mai mult

Wayne Grudem – Biblical Issues for the election

Cover of "Politics - According to the Bib...

Cover via Amazon

Published on Oct 25, 2012 by 

Jim Garlow interviews Wayne Grudem (author of Politics According to the Bible) concerning 2012 election.

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John Piper panel – Complementarianism: Essential or Expendable?

Panel led by Ligon Duncan of Ligonier.org, Russell Moore, Greg Gilbert and John Piper from the Together for the Gospel T4G Conference 2012:

Here’s a small excerpt from the discussion where Piper discusses the texts he would use in order to explain complementarianism. For its context, you will find the complete answer down at the very bottom of this post. Piper:

„Now, here’s Adam, why did He create him and then the woman later. Why did He give him the rules of the garden like „don’t eat here”? Apparently he’s had to tell her because she was never told that. And why does he name her and why in the world didn’t he step up to the plate, because it says he was there while she was being tempted and he blew it from the first point and I think, probably, what Paul is getting at when he says ‘the woman was deceived and not the man- is that simply she was taking initiative and dealing with the tempter, and the guy (Adam) was not saying a word, like he should have been, to protect his woman from this tempter and you just walk through 8 or 9 evidences in Genesis 1 & 2 that this is from the beginning what wrecked the world. That the beauty of his headship wasn’t owned by him. Maybe he fell first. In the real fall there, they fell together. She didn’t fall and then he fell, they fell together cause they’re both there at the tree and he’s not doing his role and she’s not doing her role and the whole sin collapse is happening as they reject their roles, which is right at the heart of it.”

Complementarianism: Essential or Expendable? from Together for the Gospel (T4G) on Vimeo.

Duncan asks Piper: Where did the term ‘complementarianism’ come from?

Piper: Wayne Grudem and I were a part of the production of the Danvers statement, which happened in the late 80’s in Danvers Connecticut, in which we tried to articulate a vision about how men and women are equally, gloriously, in the image of God with that worth and that dignity and yet complement each other in their differences, both in their marriages and in church and in their societies and in such a way that the flourishing of manhood and womanhood happened best when those complementary differences are honored rather than minimized in what we saw happening in feminism and evangelical egalitarianism was a minimizing at best or a nullifying of those differences. And, over on the other side, we saw a historic abuse  of women kind of machismo that would define manhood as mishandling or bossing, or putting down and we said: The egalitarianism- we don’t see that in the Bible. This abuse and beetling of womanhood, we don’t see that in the Bible. This goes on under various names like hierarchicalism , the more traditionalism, or whatever… so we said, „We need another name otherwise we’re just gonna be called traditional, otherwise, there will be no distinction between this”. I don’t remember who thought it up, but it came into being at one of those conversations, „Why don’t we take the word complement, complement with an ‘e’, not an ‘i’, we are not paying one another compliments, we are completing one another – ‘It is not good for man to be alone”, here is a fit. She is a complement for him. That is the origin and the essence of the term.

So, the just of it today is it’s a vision that stirs, we hope, a biblical path between the nullification or minimization of differences that are to be lived out in church, and home, and society, and the abuse of those differences that I think the New Testament has written to correct and it seems to me that in the garden, and then corrected in Ephesians 5, the abuses can be either men domineering or being passive and the women being domineering or being doormats, mindless and coquettish and we want to call women to full, articulate, creative personhood and men to step up to the plate where they kind of Christ-like sacrificial leadership in the home that enables the woman to flourish in all that she is and him to flourish in a Christ like demeanor.

Duncan:  Egalitarianism has been around in evangelicalism from the beginnings of neoevangelicalism. Why, in the late 80’s, did what became the Council of Biblical Manhood and Womanhood and what became the Danver’s statement, why did a group of folks get together (to say) ‘It’s important for us to articulate this now’. What was pushing that particular issue?

Piper: I don’t remember, except personally. You (Duncan) probably know culturally. I was teaching at Bethel College between ’74 and ’80 and the speakers that were coming in were increasingly strident in their feminism, so that Virginia Mollenkutt, for example, called our view obscene, in the Bethel Chapel and it was that kind of rising tide of aggressiveness of the evangelical wing that caused me, at least, to say, „I’m going to say something about this because I don’t see any of that in the Scriptures”.

Duncan: Russell (Moore), you are now the chairman of The Biblical Council of Manhood and Womanhood. Given where they were then, can you assess where we are now? Give us an idea where evangelicalism, the culture  is on this?

Moore: Well, what I fear is we have many people within evangelicalism who can check off ‘complementation’ in a box, but who aren’t really living out complementation lives. Sometimes I fear that we have marriages that are functionally egalitarian because they’re within the structure of the larger society and if all we are doing is saying ‘male headship’ – wives submit to your husband, but we’re not really defining what that looks like in a Christ centered way of discipleship in this kind of culture when those things are being challenged, then it’s simply going to go away. People are going to conform to the pattern of this age, which means we have an increasing struggle when it comes to questions that previous generations never had before in the same way. I have had in recent years- a woman came to me once and said, „My husband has told me he wants to be a woman, he wants to have gender reassignment surgery and become a woman. He doesn’t want to leave me, he wants to stay together. Martin Luther never had to deal with that. I can only imagine what he would have said, but he didn’t have to deal with that. Pastors now have to deal with that.

Duncan: Greg (Gilbert) you’re a pastor, what kind of issues do you see going on with regard to what Rusell has just talked about in the local church?

Gilbert: I do a lot of premarital counseling. The functional egalitarianism among the people that I counsel is just all over the place. So, you have men who think that being a complementation and leading their wives really has no feet on it until they come to a decision that they’re disagreeing about. But, up until that moment it is just an egalitarian way of living together without male leadership and headship in creating the atmosphere of the home.

Duncan: A lot of folks have said, „Why include this issue in a conference called Together for the Gospel? Aren’t there wonderful people that hold high views about God, high views of the doctrine of grace that are egalitarian? Why would we want to highlight this, given that it divides some parts of evangelicalism?

Piper: It is a good question because I don’t think you have to be a comlementarian to be saved and so it’s not essential at that level. But, as soon as you move beneath that level and ask: What are the implications of not following through with what Ephesians 5 seems to say or 1 Timothy 2 seems to say; those would be classic marriage/church texts. The implications… let me just mention 2 or 3. The implications, hermeneutically for the Gospel, are significant. If you do the kind of gymnastics that I think you have to do in order to escape Ephesians 5, you’re gonna get the Gospel wrong. That’s an overstatement. You will tend to go in that direction and sooner or later you’re gonna get the Gospel wrong. Second thing: Marriage, as it’s described there is the Gospel, in portrayal. The husband is to love like Christ loves the church and suffer for her, die for her and she is to submit to him, as the church submits to Christ. If you come along and say, „There is no head and there is no submission, you just cancel out the visible Gospel in marriage. And then, I would say, in the church where the Gospel is the pillar and bulwark of the Gospel and if you, at the core of its structure, and therefore deny that man, because of their call of God to be men, should be the leaders here and women should be leaders, it’s going to malfunction along the way. And I would say that in spite of the fact that I know Bible women in China and I know there are major women pastors in charismatic renewal in the global south, I would say: Not withstanding, it is written on male and female hearts to malfunction long term where the church is not being led by strong male proclaimers and leaders, the way Christ would lead. I would say, for those 3 reasons at least, it gets very close to the center in the kinds of things that are around the Gospel, protecting it and making it spread and vital in the world.

Gilbert: I would echo that and just push it again and I think that in order to get to an egalitarian position, you have to bring into your hermeneutic some bad DNA. You have to have some principles and ideas, that tend in a certain direction to corrode the authority of Scripture and once you do that, the corrosion isn’t just going to stop on those particular passages that you want it to stop at. It’s going to move on to other passages until you are eventually sitting right at the heart of the Gospel and letting those corrosive principles work on those texts also.

Moore: You know, in the United States military went into Iraq, one of the images that we saw all over the world was that statue of Saddam Hussein being torn down, because that was a repudiation of Saddam Hussein. Pastor Piper is exactly right. Ephesians ch. 5, Paul says, „This is a mystery”. Marriage is designed to show you Christ in the church, not the other way around. God says, „It is not good for Adam to be alone”, not simply because he needs company. He could have designed Adam to subdivide like an amoeba. But He creates Adam to have someone taken from him, who is like him, but who is different from him and the two become one flesh. Paul says – the mystery is Christ and His church. When you strike at that, and the satanic powers always want to strike at that, you are striking at the very sign and picture of the Gospel  itself and in the fulness of time, the Gospel will not be credible when you raise up children who see the image of the Gospel being torn apart in front of them all the time. The second thing- I don’t think it’s a question of whether or not we have male headship. I think it’s a question of what kind of male headship we will have. We live in a culture right now that is dominated by pagan patriarchy in which there are restaurants that are expressly for men to come in and ogle women. Internet pornography is preying upon women. When you have a male headship that is unhinged from the Gospel or unhinged from Christ like discipleship, women and children are going to be harmed and hurt and that is what we see all around us right now. So, part of what complementarianism is saying is not: Women submit. It is saying, „Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands”. When a wife submits herself to her own husband, or when a young woman who is not yet married submits herself to that future husband whose name she does not yet know, she is refusing to submit to men generally. So she is not seeing her identity in terms of how men view her in terms of sexual attractiveness and availability. Which is why the apostle Peter, when he is talking about what it means to be sanctified as a woman says: Not what the culture demands of you in braided hair and external appearance, but, that quiet beauty of the heart. That’s a counter cultural statement and if we don’t preserve that and show the kind of male headship that is self sacrificial, that washes feet, that goes to the cross, then we’re going to wind up with the kind of male headship that is satanic to the core.

Duncan: I still see guys going 3 ways. Some guys will lean into the complementation issue and they’ll recognize: I’m just gonna have to be countercultural here. Others say: We’re gonna back burner this. WHy offend folks up front, eventually we’ll get around to it. And then, I still see, maybe because of the dominant cultural bombardment, there are still others that begin to question the issue itself and say: Have we bought into something that’s traditional and cultural  and we baptized it. How do you respond to that when you’re talking to your generation?

Moore: I think there’s a 4th category too, which is to have a kind of hyper masculinity, hyper femininity that tries to push back on it with the caricatured form of masculinity that really could apply in the Bible to Nimrod, more than it could apply to Jesus of Nazareth and to Joseph. I think there’s an overreaction in a sense that really does take some cultural norm and tries to baptize it. But, I think, when people embrace this issue they are forced to become countercultural in this society. To say: I love what it means to be a man , for a Godly woman to say: I love what it means to be a woman- simply to love children and to love families and do what it takes to love families. So, when you see that man who is working 2 or 3 jobs, so he can provide for his wife and children. When you see that mother who is not seeking her own career advancement, but really sees pouring herself into nurturing the next generation, you’re seeing something that looks increasingly strange to the outside culture, but strange in a glorious kind of way, which means we as the church have to stop mimicking the outside culture even with the kind of pictures we put of women in our printed materials. We give this picture that would say that the ‘supermodel shall inherit the earth’. Instead of saying- what we really value is not that Madison Avenue caricature, (but) something else.

Piper: There’s a line of continuity between simple home spun conservative evangelical complementarianism and so called gay marriage. And in those days I used to say, „You’re gonna quote Galatians 3:28 on me „There’s neither male nor female”. „The way you’re quoting it, I know where that’s gonna go”, and they would just scoff at me, just scoff at me. Nobody’s scoffing today. Here’s the question that I found… the questions egalitarians have never satisfactorily answered for me is: If you’re raising an 8 yr old little boy or little girl and you’re mom or dad and that lithe girl says to mom: Mommy, what does it mean to grow up and be a woman? Or the little boy: Daddy, what does it mean to grow up and be a man? It will not do to just talk in terms of plumbing (biological) because that’s not your personhood and it simply won’t do to just say: courage, humility, righteousness, Christ likeness- cause the little kid’s gonna say, „No, no I mean a woman and not a man”. No answer. And that’s the question I would ask these folks (at conference): What will you say to an 8 yr old or 10 yr old when they ask what does it mean to grow up and be a man and not a woman? What separates me, and I don’t just mean body, is there anything that matters? In personhood, is there any rich, deep sense in masculinity? What are you going to say if you can’t give some articulation to complement parity between them and buy and I read book after book  after book in those days when I was trying to fight those battles. They never would address the issue. They always are talking in terms of personhood in  things that cross over in male and female. If you don’t help a man know what it means to be a man it will show itself.

Duncan: Where do you see as to regards of the receptiveness of the complementarian message, in the places where you are?

Piper: I talk at pretty conservative places so it’s not a fair sample. The answer is yes. It amazes me the difference between the 20’s, 30’s crowd today and the crowd I dealt with in the late 80’s. I fought battle after battle with college students who were  viciously opposed and now you have the likes of these young guys who are down here, all of them embracing this and having churches filled with thousands of  young, articulate, educated, flourishing women who are saying ‘yes’ to what they are saying. That’s new. It’s just amazing to me that that’s the case.

Conclusion

Moore: First of all, you have to deal with those biblical texts: Ephesians 5, 1 Peter 3, 1 Timothy 2. Just in terms of sanctification, there are some things the Scripture gives to all people as persons and then there are specific things for men and specific tendencies that the Scripture warns against: pugilism, quarrelsomeness, and those kinds of things and then specific aspects of womanhood: that quiet spirit, that Titus 2 function and all of those things and specific dangers: „Don’t fear”, Peter says, „that which is  frightening”. So you have to deal with those texts. You also have to deal with biblical complementarianism  in terms of what it is and not in terms of a caricature, whether that’s a caricature from the outside or caricature from people who think they’re complimentarian and what they mean by that is: Woman, get me my chips, which is not Ephesians 5. Complementarianism bears a cross and complementarianism is thinking about what is in the best interest. Male headship is- what is in the best interest  of my bride and of my children and as Christ washed his bride with pure water, when Jesus does that in the upper room, He washes His church, those foundations stones of His church with pure water, the church objects initially. „You’ll never wash my feet”, Peter says. Jesus doesn’t respond with passivity: „Well, try to do something nice…” But, nor does He respond with raw sovereignty. What does Jesus do? He leads and He teaches with His Word, „Unless I wash your feet, you can have nothing to do with Me”. When Jesus is giving Himself up at the cross for His bride, His bride doesn’t want Him to. „We’ll fight for you”, Peter says, „You’ll never go to the cross.” Jesus, always lovingly and gently , but decisively leads through teaching and discipleship in moving forward. So you have to deal with complementarianism in terms of Christ, not simply in terms of who is in charge.

Gilbert: I think the objections I run into with the young people that I pastor most of the time, it’s just a misunderstanding,  an understanding of role between men and women leads to dignity  and I would just shoot at that with everything I have to say: No, God given roles does not speak to God given dignity. Men and women are both created in the image of God; thats just as clear as it can be in Genesis 1 & 2. But, what’s also clear in Genesis 1 and 2 and 3 and then on through the rest of the Bible is that within that context of that equal dignity, God has every right to give out roles to his created people. And He does that throughout the Bible. Sometimes it’s men and women, sometimes it’s different things. But, God as Creator and Lord has every right to give us roles and that doesn’t speak to the dignity of the created person.

Piper: So, the question is (to) help the uncertain with the Bible. Show its in the Bible. I think I would probably start with Ephesians, because I think that’s the clearest: „a woman should submit to her husband and the man should be the head. Even if you don’t know any Greek like Grudem to look up 3800 uses of κεφάλη  (pronounced kefali) for ‘head’, you can just follow the context through on this one and say, „Well, if it means source, source of provision and source of authority, and source of protection and so we’ve got the real deal anyhow, whatever you call it, so I just think Ephesians 5 carefully walks through, beautifies marriage, it’s what every woman wants, a man who cares for her, will be strong for her, lay down his life for her, be strong for her and lead in devotions and open the door, take her to the restaurant and just respect her in every possible way. Then I would go to 1 Timothy 2 and I would say that the two things that a woman is forbidden here: to teach and have authority, or the two things that distinguish an elder from a deacon, governance and teaching, and therefore what he is saying is, elders should be men. That’s the distillation of 1 Timothy 2:12-13 and then he grounds it in the order of creation. Well, what does that have to do with anything… and then you go back to Genesis 1 & 2 and you just walk through there and say, „Now, here’s Adam, why did He create Him and then the woman later. Why did He give him the rules of the garden like „don’t eat here”? Apparently he’s had to tell her because she was never told that. And why does he name her and why in the world didn’t he step up to the plate , because it says he was there while she was being tempted and he blew it from the first point and I think, probably, what Paul is getting at when he says ‘the woman was deceived and not the man is that simply she was taking initiative and dealing with the tempter and the guy (Adam) was not saying a word, like he should have been to protect his woman from this tempter and you just walk through 8 or 9 evidences in Genesis 1 & 2 that this is from the beginning what wrecked the world. That the beauty of his headship wasn’t owned by him. Maybe he fell first. In the real fall there, they fell together. She didn’t fall and then he fell, they fell together cause they’re both there at the tree and he’s not doing his role and she’s not doing her role and the whole sin collapse is happening as they reject their roles, which is right at the heart of it. Those are the 3 places I’d start.

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