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ECUSA House of Bishops, Adding Insult to Injury
Anglican Essentials Canada ^ | 10/13/2005 | The Rev.Canon Dr. Bill Atwood

Posted on 10/13/2005 4:56:22 PM PDT by sionnsar

I suppose I naively believed that the depths of heartbreak in the Episcopal Church had already been plumbed, but I was gripped by a new wave of grief when I read the communication from the Episcopal leadership after their gathering in Puerto Rico.

Most painful was the unanimously supported task force to maintain control of property in situations where there is conflict with clergy and parishioners who refuse to accept unbiblical innovations in the Episcopal Church.

They said they acted to limit the "profound loss [which] does harm to the past generations who contributed to the mission of the Episcopal Church and denies future generations rightful resources."

These same leaders have failed to give any thought to their actions that repudiated the Gospel of transformation that was the heart and soul of the faith of past generations who consecrated property to serve Biblical mission. To hijack the sacrifices previous generations made to erect Gospel serving buildings and divert those resources for the vapid and spiritually bankrupt message of uncritical "acceptance," may sound good to them, but it squanders the opportunity for redemptive change offered by the Cross. It forfeits the chance to become more like Jesus and know His peace. Picking and choosing which parts of our heritage to preserve is selective responsibility and it is reprehensible.

Though it is obviously possible for those ordained in apostolic succession to go off into error, the historic promise has been that the church catholic will reject false teaching and restore Biblical order. The inability of ECUSA to either maintain orthodox teaching or to correct dramatic theological errors speaks volumes. It raises the question as to what, if any, part of ECUSA is part of the church catholic.

While the ultimate judgment of that is not ours, we have a responsibility to point people to safe spiritual ground. However welcoming, nostalgic, or magnificent parts of the life or pageantry may be in ECUSA, the evidence against its agenda is damning. Today, there is absolutely no assurance that life under the Episcopal shield is spiritually safe.

The flow of teaching from the historic (and Biblical) church is the heart of what determines what "right" teaching is. When the institution is spiritually healthy, it manifests and authenticates Biblical teaching. We can have confidence in teaching when it has been guarded by the apostolic line who have measured it against the Biblical plum line. Sadly, we are in a season in ECUSA where the bishops are not the guardians of the faith they swore to be, but the source (or at least the promulgators) of much of the problem. Interesting to note that the Quadrilateral which was intended to describe the minimal basis around which we can have full Eucharistic fellowship, has now been wounded, perhaps mortally, in all four of its areas. (Scripture, Creeds, Sacraments, Episcopate)

• ECUSA has departed from the historic understanding of Biblical authority
• "Re-interpreted" parts of the Creeds
• Departed from disciplined administration of the Sacraments with the new "open communion teaching," and
• Ravaged the meaning and ministry of the episcopate. With reckless abandon, the bishops have distorted the faith, have allowed faithful congregations to be dismantled, and have exported poisonous divisions into the Communion.

No wonder the church is in a mess. But God will not be mocked. He is raising up new structures that proclaim the Gospel of transformation in Christ and are faithful to Scriptural truth. While we pray for the repentance of errant Episcopal leaders, the kyrigma proclaiming the Gospel will not wait for their repentance. The news of Jesus Christ is just too good to ignore, replace, or keep secret.

TOPICS: Mainline Protestant

1 posted on 10/13/2005 4:56:25 PM PDT by sionnsar
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2 posted on 10/13/2005 4:57:04 PM PDT by sionnsar (†† || (To Libs:) You are failing to celebrate MY diversity! || Iran Azadi)
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