The Bayly Blog published some keen observations on the current state of the Federal Vision. A highly recommended read for all those following the Federal Vision debate in the PCA.
“What are the primary differences between the Federal Vision and traditional covenant theology?”
Someone asked Pastor Doug Wilson if he would be willing to debate the theologian R. Scott Clark, professor of Historical Theology at Westminster Seminary California over the Federal Vision theology. Scott Clark is a critic of the Federal Vision.
Jeff Meyers has been cleared of all allegations brought against him by the Missouri Presbytery. Read more about it HERE.
UPDATE: For those who would like to read the full report, it may be found HERE
Doug Wilson weighs in:
Over the last number of years, since the eruption of the FV controversy, we have of course been involved in the public back and forths that such a controversy involves. Much of it has been the doctrinal interaction, and the rest of it has been (mostly unsuccessful) attempts to clarify what we are in fact saying. But for some, these latter attempts are just like rubbing the spot on the wall -- it just won't clarify. Take, for example, Scott Clark's most recent foray into fog. His summary of our position is this: "Get in by grace, stay in by cooperation with grace." Forsooth, and double heh.
But throughout the course of this controversy, I have frequently been asked why the controversy exists, and why it has continued. This question comes from people who hear our qualifications, and note (accurately) that we are within the historic Reformed mainstream, and yet they have good reason to respect and take seriously those voices that are calling for our ouster from the historic Reformed mainstream. And so the question that most naturally occurs to them is why.
I have hesitated to answer the question in a public setting (like this one) because I have not wanted... (Continue Reading)
I had the privilege of connecting Pastor Wes White and Pastor Steve Wilkins on the phone for a discussion about the Federal Vision. This conversation was to give Wes White, a theological blogger and critic of the Federal Vision, the opportunity to ask Steve Wilkins directly about some of his positions relating to the Federal Vision. During the course of this controversy, there has been very little direct communication, and very much talking past each other. It was a real blessing to hear these brothers in Christ talk about their positions, differences, and concerns to each other directly.
Thank you to Luke Nieuwsma for arranging this call.
Wes White and Steve Wilkins on the Federal Vision (download link)
Edit: Steve Wilkins let me know of a correction to something he said: "I need to correct something I said regarding the number of AAPC members who have left here for the Roman Church. I said one man had done this and actually that's not correct -- the correct response is that no one has left AAPC for the Roman Church. The individual I was thinking about left AAPC to join the Episcopal Church and about a year later joined the Roman Church. Just for the record."
From Doug Wilson on Blog and Mablog, Easter Sunday:
"As many who read this blog know, it has a been a season of controversy. But fortunately, it is also the Paschal season. The Lord is risen; He is risen indeed.
We have been brought up from the dead, and our present possession is life, just as our final destination is life. Newness of life now, eternal life now, and life everlasting. This life is sheer unadulterated gift -- we cannot do anything to merit it. Salvation is all of grace.
And this means that it has to delight my soul that God loves those on the other side of our particular theological divides more than I have ever loved anything or anybody. It needs to delight me that we will all spend eternity together, as it does. And so I pray God's blessings on the resurrection celebrations of all God's children, and I pray for a double blessing on the celebrations of my adversaries. This resurrection life is a powerful thing, and gets into everything . . . even our disputes.
Happy Easter, then, and may you all stand in the overflow of God's abundant blessings."
To which I can only add: Amen and amen!
Doug Wilson responds to the accusation that his view of Law and Gospel imply a denial of Sola Fide. He includes a great quote from Turretin's Institutes.
So once saving faith comes, with regard to the broad intention and design of God, the believer principally rests in Christ alone, as He is offered in the gospel. But saving faith also understands the parts and relations of law to gospel, and sees God's overarching gracious intent. He sees totus lex. This is why he can now tremble at the threatenings without that trembling being an example of unbelief. This is why he can render obedience to the laws without that obedience being a form of works-righteousness. In order to have the pedagogical use of the law and the didactic use of the law functioning at all, it is necessary that a man be able to transition between them. That transition is called getting saved.
Read full post HERE. Well worth the read!
"Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned: From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling; Desiring to be teachers of the law; understanding neither what they say, nor whereof they affirm. But we know that the law is good, if a man use it lawfully" (1 Tim. 1:5-8).
Steve Wilkins, Pastor of Auburn Avenue Presbyterian Church, explains how his words have been twisted once again:
...I always thought it was sort of a rule required by the 9th commandment that we try to understand one another’s statements in context. Is that so?
I’ve always assumed it was and that is why I had no qualms about writing what I wrote on page 261 of The Auburn Avenue Theology Pros & Cons. I didn’t have any idea anyone would twist my words on page 261 in such a way as to ignore what I said a few lines before on page 260 where I affirm the historic Reformed definition of election and seek to distinguish what I’m talking about in the paper from this historic doctrine (which, by the way, I fully embrace and believe to be totally biblical).
Read the rest of his post HERE.
Pastor Wes White, a critic of the Federal Vision, recently posted an imaginary conversation with an Federal Vision minister, which he claims represents the Federal Vision. He was challenged on his understanding of what a pastor and advocate of the Federal Vision would say, and therefore put together a series of quotes to back up his claims here. We believe that he does not treat these texts in their proper context. Pastor White appears to be unwilling to admit that he has taken quotes out of context, and he also is unwillling to contact the individuals who wrote them to clarify what they meant.
We felt that the best way to illustrate his faulty understanding was to replace his imaginary Federal Vision Pastor with a real one.
Pastor Douglas Wilson, of Christ Church, in Moscow, Idaho answers these same questions. Pastor Wilson is a proponent of the Federal Vision, and drafted the Joint Federal Vision Profession. Prior to the following recording, he had not read Pastor White's imaginary conversation.
note: I apologize for the typo at the beginning. A new version is being created, but will take a while to upload.