Thinking Anglicans

Conservative reactions to General Synod debates

Updated again 22 July

Here’s a round-up of responses from people for whom the recent General Synod debates and voting were not welcome news.

First, an article that was written before the synod, but as the author is not only a General Synod member from Oxford diocese, but also a member of the new Pastoral Advisory Group, it is of interest: Sam Allberry wrote Same sex relationships: should we just agree to disagree?. Here’s a sample of his answer (but read all of it).

…The fate of homosexual people

Paul is very clear that the “unrighteous” will not enter the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6 v 9-11). Among the very various examples of unrighteous behaviour he lists is homosexual practise. Paul is delivering a profound warning: those who do not repent of such behaviour will not enter heaven. Eternity is at stake. To say the issue does not matter is to say that the eternal destiny of people does not matter. This is not the case with secondary issues like infant baptism or women’s ordination…

The Chair of the GAFCON Primates, Archbishop Nicholas Okoh in his July letter wrote this:

…False teaching is restless and relentless, and the Church of England itself is in grave spiritual danger. It is much to be regretted that there has been far more concern about alleged ‘boundary crossing’ than about the contempt of God’s Word that made a missionary bishop necessary. In fact, the Bishop of Edinburgh, who has strongly supported the Scottish Episcopal Church’s adoption of same sex ‘marriage’ was invited as a guest of honour to the Church of England’s July General Synod meeting.

Although the Church of England’s legal position on marriage has not changed, its understanding of sexual morality has. Same sex relationships, which were described by Lambeth Resolution I.10 of 1998 as ‘incompatible with Scripture’ now receive approval at the highest level. For example, Vicky Beeching, a singer, songwriter and activist who advocates homosexual marriage was honoured with the Archbishop Thomas Cranmer award for Worship in a ceremony at Lambeth Palace…

Rob Munro a General Synod member from Chester diocese, wrote a long reflection for Church Society entitled Radical Christian Inclusion…? which includes this:

…Shifted Middle. In previous synods, the non-aligned middle, the roughly 1/3 of synod who don’t self-identify as either conservative or radical, could usually be relied on to be social conservative, to be slow to bow to the pressures that political correctness has always brought. No longer! It was clear that an unqualified inclusion agenda is now seen as the mainstream. Ten years ago, the LGBTI lobbyists were clearly only a vocal minority; today, if you speak out for the previously received biblical understandings you are made to feel like the minority. The radicals have the confidence that their stories now resonate with more people; conservatives speak with the fear we will be misheard or misunderstood – that disagreement on the sexuality issues for theological reasons will be heard as whichever phobia it can be labelled as…

Susie Leafe a General Synod member from Truro diocese, who speaks for Reform wrote an even longer reflection which concludes:

…In the space of four days, the General Synod of the Church of England have, in effect, rejected the doctrines of creation, the fall, the incarnation, and our need for conversion and sanctification Instead we have said that we are ‘perfect’ as we are, or as we see ourselves, and that the Church should affirm us and call on God to validate our choices. No wonder we do not want to proclaim Christ’s unique identity and significance for all people.

We have chosen to understand the world through secular reports, unconscious bias training, the teaching of other religions and the results of polls and media headlines, rather than the unchanging word of God.

Paul warns us what happens when we do this in Romans 1:28: “And since they did not see fit to acknowledge God, God gave then up to a debased mind to do what ought not to be done.”

But God does not abandon his people. In his mercy, just a week before this Synod, Andy Lines was consecrated by ACNA, as a missionary bishop to Europe by 11 Primates (leaders of Anglican provinces) and 3 Archbishops. This had been requested by the Gafcon Primates Council, who represent the vast majority of the Anglican Communion. Don’t fear – we are not alone – but decisions will need to be made.

Andrew Symes of Anglican Mainstream wrote: Synod supports ban on ‘conversion therapy’ – what it means. His conclusions:

…There is now an area of incoherence in the Church of England’s doctrine that even the most radical adherents of ‘plural truth’ philosophy will not tolerate for long. Those who have same sex attraction are told they cannot change, but they also can’t get married or have their relationships blessed in church. Is it now surely a matter of time before the Church of England decides that while it can’t deny LGBT orthodoxy (sexual orientation is innate and unchangeable, trying to alter it is harmful), it can and must deny and change bible based doctrine that marriage is between a man and a woman and homosexual practice is sinful, because these teachings are ‘harmful’?

This decision on ‘conversion therapy’ was not made for reasons of Christian theology. It was made on the basis of fake science (as many of the articles here demonstrate), fear of the LGBT lobby and the dreaded “Tim Farron question”, and emotional manipulation by apostate activists within the church leadership. The governing body of the main church in the land has capitulated to powerful ideologies in secular culture, the ‘stoicheia’ of Colossians 2:8, providing no protection for those who wish to be obedient to God’s word and resist those ideologies, serving people in love and calling them to repentance and faith in Christ.

The consecration of a ‘missionary Bishop’, ministering to faithful Anglicans outside the official structures, has surely come at the right time. We will need several more.

Updates

Ian Paul has asked Is Synod competent? A sample of his reasoning:

…There are several reasons why these two motions should never have been debated. The first and most obvious is that both issues will certainly be addressed in the teaching document that the Archbishops have commissioned, so the motions are trying to short-circuit a wider discussion. The second is that both take the form of false binaries; essentially they say ‘Do you agree with me—or do you hate gay and transgender people?’ No matter how faulty the wording, failing to pass either motion would not have looked like good PR, and there would have been howls of protest from various quarters. In the voting, it was evident that the bishops were acutely aware of this, and taking both motions by a vote of houses (so that they had to pass separately in each of the bishops, clergy and laity) which would normally make it harder for a motion to pass, in fact made it easier, since the bishops could not afford to be seen to be the ones who were blocking.

The third reason was the poor wording of both motions. The PMM talked of ‘conversion therapy’ but used this as an ill-defined catch-all which made proper debate very difficult. Every single speaker, including those who proposed and supported significant amendments, agreed that any form of forced or coercive treatment of people who are same-sex attracted (whether they are happy with that or not) is abusive and must be rejected. But another part of Jayne Ozanne’s agenda is to have significant movements in the Church, including New Wine, Soul Survivor, HTB and Spring Harvest labelled as ‘spiritual abusive’ and therefore illegal. This is why the motion was seen as a Trojan horse. Her motion was also asking Synod to ‘endorse’ a medical opinion, and a controverted one at that, which is simply not within Synod’s competence to do so. But suggesting that Synod ‘does not have the competence’ to express a view is like holding up a red rag to a bull (or any colour rag—bulls are colour blind). In the end we passed an amended motion that ‘endorsed’ a different medical view—but few had read the details, still less understood the issues within it, and such endorsement is meaningless except as tokenism…

Chik Kaw Tan, General Synod lay member from Lichfield diocese: Fundamental shifts in the General Synod

..Loss of giants in the House of Bishops
I respect the faithful orthodox bishops who are quietly working behind the scene to ensure Biblical teachings are adhered to. Yet I lament the loss of some of the true giants that I had the privilege to know when I first entered Synod. One can immediately think of Bishops Michael Scott-Joynt and Michael Nazir-Ali. A present bold figure and rising star is Julian Henderson of Blackburn but we need more orthodox prophet-bishops to speak to our times.

Not without sympathy, I think there are now many Christians, Synod members included, who have chosen the path of self-censorship. It is increasingly difficult to be counter-cultural and it is telling that our own church leaders are avoiding making any statements that will cause conflict with the LGBT lobby in society, and even within Synod itself. Who are the prophets of our times in the Church of England? Where are the Elijahs? Certainly not our archbishops, one of whom was conspicuous by the absence of any contribution in the two major debates on sexuality and the other notable by his support of the LGBT-inspired motions. This has raised serious concerns about the future of our beloved church.,,

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Jeremy Pemberton
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Jeremy Pemberton

Interesting to read A Symes’s take on “LGBT orthodoxy”. This is that “sexual orientation is innate and unchangeable, trying to alter it is harmful”. AFAIK this is not in any way LGBT orthodoxy. We don’t yet know the reasons (NB plural) for people’s sexual orientation. It is clear that they are complex, probably have some genetic component, and almost certainly some epigenetic factors, and may be influenced by social factors as well. We also know that for some people there is some fluidity, but that for most people their sexual orientation *feels* innate, and is certainly not either originally consciously… Read more »

Interested Observer
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Interested Observer

Symes has obviously been studying the more unhinged end of conservative Islam, because the technique of accusing your opponents of being apostates is straight from their playbook. Although rather less effective, given apostasy from the Church of England means having to find your own weak instant coffee, rather than a risk of being killed. The vision of Symes saying that he and his friends are unable to “serv[e] people in love” would be funny were it not so pathetic. There is nothing of “love” in Symes’ vision of Christianity, or indeed of society. There will be no curiosity, no enjoyment… Read more »

Kurt Hill
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Kurt Hill

More Pietistic fretfulness over personal “holiness” and “purity” issues from Symes et al. This is what English Anglican “Evangelicalism” has been reduced to…At one time it was concerned about great moral issues such as abolitionism. No more; now it’s only concerned about about sex (and miters, I guess).

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY

Stanley Monkhouse (Fr William)
Guest

Let them at it. Let them do what they will. We’re all on a spectrum. The gonads of the early embryo can develop into either testes or ovaries. The female is the default setting. Very rarely an individual may have an ovary on one side and a testis on the other, or a gonad may contain both ovarian and testicular tissue. The ovary stays more or less where it started, but the primate (apes not archbishops) testis descends into the scrotum. Undescended testes. In a sense, are a reversion to a more female state.The clitoris and penis both develop from… Read more »

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

It is sad that the likes of Sam Allberry chooses to live his life according to a naive and totally wrong view of scripture. Being same-sex attracted, he must find it a constant struggle with guilt to obey the rules his god has written because a fictitious woman ate an apple in an imaginary garden. This is a completely different religion from the freedom and joy Jesus brings to set us all free. Is it not time the Church of England declared that this repressive religion of these evangelicals is not Christian?

Edward Prebble
Guest
Edward Prebble

Thank you, Jeremy, for your beautifully worded refutation of Symes’s argument. There is one point he makes, though, that is absolutely right. “There is now an area of incoherence in the Church of England’s doctrine…those who have same sex attraction are told they cannot change, but they also can’t get married or have their relationships blessed in church”. The more we (and here I would include the Anglican Church in Aotearoa, New Zealand and Polynesia) inch toward acceptance of LGBTi people as being the blessed folk that God created them to be, the more we are faced with the incoherence… Read more »

robert
Guest
robert

Very interesting that the Rob Munro piece talks about the bishops ‘staying really quiet’ but doesn’t mention at all how the bishops overwhelmingly voted – in favour of the motions!

John Wallace
Guest
John Wallace

Sam Allberry’s reading of I Cor 6, like so many conservatives who are anti-gay, is a masterpiece of dissection. He sieves out all the sexually related ‘sins’ but ignores the others. What about the greedy, what about the drunkards. By his interpretation, those who have trouble with moderating their intake of food and drink are also damned as are the ‘revilers’ – from some of their comments, a good number of conservatives fit this label. Similarly, when they invoke the OT on this subject, it is very selective. You either take on the whole Levitical dietary and social prohibitions which… Read more »

rjb
Guest
rjb

I think I agree with Jeremy Pemberton: there is a vast difference between saying “conversion therapy is likely to do a lot more harm than good” and saying “sexual attraction is fixed and innate and in no way malleable.” I suspect that many people – perhaps most – actually find that there is a certain amount of fluidity in their sexual and romantic attractions. And it seems we are living in a culture where there is increasing awareness of this; to the point where the old fixed categories of ‘sexual orientation’ (and the interminable search for the aetiology of homosexuality)… Read more »

Tim Chesterton
Guest

To my evangelical brother Sam: On your blog post you make a great deal out of accurate biblical interpretation, which i applaud. I couldn’t help noticing, therefore, that in discussing a passage about who can and who can’t enter the kingdom of God, you commented: ‘those who do not repent of such behaviour will not enter heaven’. But Paul doesn’t mention heaven. He talks about ‘entering the kingdom of God’, and we have it on Jesus’ authority that the kingdom of God is about earth, not heaven (‘Your kingdom come, your will be done on earth, as in heaven’). I… Read more »

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

I scanned the samples but I have no intention of reading the full articles. I know what I’m going to see. Why would anyone waste time reading these reactionary rhetorical narratives? You can find this kind of increasingly panic stricken reaction on any apoplectic Anglican website. “Being openly gay is effectively illegal in more than 70 countries — and can result in severe punishment, sometimes even death.” So, tell me who your friends are and I will tell you who you are. Churches in open democratic western countries have a lot to answer for in their continued complicity with hetero-sexism.… Read more »

Jo
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Jo

I think it’s possible to go too far the other way and claim that sexuality is completely fluid. Yes, for some people their sexuality may evolve over time, and that makes conventional labels hard, but the thing about a spectrum is that it does have ends. Regardless of what you think of Kinsey, the two ends of his 7 point scale were complete heterosexuality and complete homosexuality. I frequently come across claims (usually from anti-gay campaigners) that “everyone goes through a phase of being attracted to people of the same sex” and think: really? Speak for yourself!

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

Could Tim Chesterton please explain what “being faithful to scripture” actually entails? Since he disagrees with Sam Allberry’s exegesis, what is the point of arguing who is being subjectively ‘faithful’? Quoting scripture at each other is futile and totally pointless. This is why evangelicals are so irrelevant in the modern age.

Fr Andrew
Guest
Fr Andrew

“I think it’s possible to go too far the other way and claim that sexuality is completely fluid” Way to go Jo. Imperfect thought it is, with the Kinsey scale most research finds almost everybody at 1 or 7. Sexual orientation is complex with many components: behaviour, identity, desire etc. By far the most fluid is behaviour- many people experiment at various times (I even experimented with other-sex behaviour when I was an adolescent- just a phase obviously): but the desire component (who one desires regardless of how one behaves) which in a sense is the ‘core’ part of orientation… Read more »

crs
Guest
crs

“If the hundred-year-reign of homosexuality is indeed coming to an end – and I for one think that it would probably be a good thing – then this will cast a lot of our theological debates about sex in a slightly different light.”

I’d be curious how this judgement is received here at TA. And perhaps rjb could answer the questions he poses, or give his own nod. How does ‘marriage’ work if the fluidity is the ground reality?

T Pott
Guest
T Pott

Sam Allberry’s article is a masterpiece of its genre, a biblical conjuring trick. He quotes 1 Cor 15 verse 3 to prove some things are of first importance, and others are not. This is an introduction to verse 4 in which Paul tells us exactly what is of first importance (not, as it happens, sex); but Sam directs our attention quickly away. So the reader knows that Sam has it on St. Paul’s authority that some things are of first importance; we now look to Sam, not Paul, to tell us what they are. Curiously he contrasts gay sex with… Read more »

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

Re Tim Chesterton, ” …a desire to be faithful to scripture … clarification as to how to interpret…” Direct appeals to Scripture by either the political right or the political left are problematic. Such appeals solve little with regard to contemporary issues. Note what Noam Chomsky says in a recent interview, “One can contrive a religious motivation for virtually any choice of action, from commitment to the highest ideals to support for the most horrendous atrocities. In the sacred texts, we can find uplifting calls for peace, justice and mercy, along with the most genocidal passages in the literary canon.… Read more »

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

I neglected to include the reference for the Chomsky quote in my previous post.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/05/opinion/noam-chomsky-on-trump-and-the-state-of-the-union.html

David Runcorn
Guest

I have just returned from an ordination service at which we were reminded of the church’s faith as ‘uniquely revealed in the Holy Scriptures’ and which we are called to ‘proclaim afresh in every generation’. I would expect such a church to give priority to the reading, study and exploring together of scripture – what it teaches and reveals for the life of faith and discipleship. I assume FrDavidH does this as part of his ministry? So I am puzzled when he scorns other ministers for attempting to do the same. Except that Tim and Sam are evangelicals and FrDavidH… Read more »

Tim Chesterton
Guest

Thank you David Runcorn. I would add that I want to be faithful to scripture because of my Anglican ordination vows, which in the (rather liberal catholic Canadian) Anglican ordination services I went through included a statement that ‘I believe the Holy Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments to be the Word of God containing all things necessary to salvation’. I do not believe that statement commits me to fundamentalism, but I do believe it commits me to the view that the Scriptures are in some sense a revelation from God. If that is true, I think faithfulness to… Read more »

Tim Chesterton
Guest

‘Conscience is our guide, whatever trappings we might choose to clothe it in’.

Rod, if that’s true, then Sam Alberry’s conscience is just as good as yours or mine. Who’s to decide? What about (to use a rather contemporary Canadian example) those whose conscience was formed in families committed to violence and terrorism? What is their guide to be? Are they to educate their conscience somehow? And if so, where is the standard to be found?

Tim Chesterton
Guest

‘This is why evangelicals are so irrelevant in the modern age’. That’s the sort of sweeping statement that I’d expect of an ideologue. It reminds me of Christopher Hitchens’ ‘Why Religion Poisons EVERYTHING’. The fact is that a fairly large section of the ‘modern age’ apparently finds evangelicalism very relevant. I’ve been to St. Mary’s Maidenhead (as one of my best friends and his family are members there). The place is packed to the doors for three services on Sunday, mainly with younger people, and they’re currently worshipping in rented space while they enlarge their building. So, baptism policy notwithstanding,… Read more »

Susannah Clark
Guest

We do not need to demonise one another’s consciences. The true challenge is the call to love and grace, and loving one another. As one of the Sisters of the Love of God wrote recently, “Unity is not a matter of choosing one above the others; it is a matter of changing our hearts.”

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

Thank you, Rod Gillis, for the quote from Noam Chomsky. He illustrates better than I how people who inform their consciences mainly from scripture can often reach diametrically opposed conclusions, often simply to reinforce their prejudices to the detriment of other people. A packed Church can sometimes preach hateful words to those who are young and vulnerable. Happily, such places are unlikely to commend themselves to the wider, unchurched populace who are subject to equality law (unlike the CofE).

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

David Runcorn: I would simply reiterate what T Potts writes above: “Probably it is fine for Evangelicals to disagree with others, but it is not fine for others to disagree with them” Or as Fr Andrew (above) succinctly puts it “our bishops seem to have ever-open ears for the poison these conservatives spew”.

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

Re Tim Chesterton, “Rod, if that’s true, then Sam Alberry’s conscience is just as good as yours or mine. Who’s to decide? ” Which is why Chomsky’s point about appeals to sacred writings by one side or the other is so valid. One decides on the basis of evaluating harm, which is a fundamental principle of adjudicating a justice issue, and which requires an empirical component with a clear understanding of the specifics of the phenomena under consideration. Tim, you may wish to take care. The dilettante political economic left in the Anglican Church of Canada is advocating disinvestment policies… Read more »

RevDave
Guest
RevDave

FrDavidH said “… Sam Allberry chooses to live his life according to a naive and totally wrong view of scripture. Being same-sex attracted, he must find it a constant struggle with guilt to obey the rules his god has written…”

FrDavid, given that the only *rules* about same-sex sex are found in the Hebrew Scriptures, didn’t your god give the OT Law to the Jewish people? The Jesus of the NT certainly thought He did.

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

RevDave; I’m personally not bound by the Hebrew Scriptures since I’m a Christian, not Jewish. Jesus fulfils the Law through Love. If Sam Allberry wishes to live by Jewish rules and regulations, that’s up to him.

Tim Chesterton
Guest

Rod: I voted Green in the last election.

William
Guest
William

‘I’m personally not bound by the Hebrew Scriptures since I’m a Christian, not Jewish.’

The heresy of Marcionism – you need to read more Tertullian Fr David.

Rod Gillis
Guest
Rod Gillis

Tim, Good for you, I voted Liberal last fed election, voted Green on one occasion, but am pretty much a dyed in the wool New Democrat, who was appalled at the Tories’ hostility to climate change policy. Good to hear you are as well. However, the Anglican Church of Canada has a socially conservative right and a enthusiastic progressive left both of which are strong of “biblical” rhetoric but short on empirical analysis. Interestingly, our ACoC voted in favour of same sex marriage last GS. The victory ( which I applaud) can only be seen as a rejection of “command… Read more »

Kurt Hill
Guest
Kurt Hill

“Rod: I voted Green in the last election.”–Tim Chesterton

Right on, Tim! So did I!

Kurt Hill
Brooklyn, NY

Jeremy
Guest
Jeremy

William, do you observe each of the 613 mitzvot?

Bernard Silverman
Guest
Bernard Silverman

Sam Allberry’s piece is explicit: agreeing to differ is not an option. This makes these issues different from the women’s ordination/consecration issues where from the very start it was explicit that those opposed were indeed trying to seek a way to differ amicably. Both Mr Allberry and his colleagues, and those who have written above, view this as being a discussion about gospel imperatives, but the conclusions they reach are incompatible. So, dispassionately, all the shared conversations and discussions seem doomed to failure from the beginning, and can only be the source of greater unhappiness. . Dispassionately, would it not… Read more »

crs
Guest
crs

We are obviously in very bad shape when our choices are “observe 613 mitzot” or “I am a Christian the the Old Testament belongs to Jewish people.” This is so intellectually flat earth as to make one wonder why anglicanism has any serious future.

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

Why on earth would any Anglican decide his gay sexuality is sinful on the basis of Jewish Law? Only someone who believes the earth is flat!

Fr Andrew
Guest
Fr Andrew

“The heresy of Marcionism” So St Paul was a Marcionite? It didn’t seem to me that Fr David was suggesting a dualistic universe or that the OT God was evil and the NT good: but that Christians were not *bound* by the Old Testament, which, has been pretty much an orthodox view from Galatians onwards. Marcion may not have seen himself as bound by the OT: it doesn’t mean that all people who believe themselves not to be bound by the OT are Marcionites. The need here is less for reading Tertullian and more for dipping into an introduction to… Read more »

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

Dr Silverman’s suggestion of ‘separation’ has much to commend it since it might create a much needed sense of harmony in the divided Church of England. The number of evangelicals with views like those of Sam Allberry is pretty insignificant. They just make the most noise. Their departure might leave everyone much happier.

Laurie Roberts
Guest
Laurie Roberts

This may be of interest in providing some historical context for our thinking, here.

http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2017/07/17/the-tragic-story-of-the-last-two-men-in-the-uk-executed-for-being-gay-mercy-could-not-be-expected-of-men-like-them/

(Not for the faint of heart)

Was the state and its culture more ‘conservative’ or would we furnish some other maker for the operation of soceirty in general, and the law in particular ?

Jeremy
Guest
Jeremy

crs, I asked the question (of William) because there is obviously quite a lot of room between strictly Orthodox Judaism and Marcionism.

If that is your point, then I agree with it. It is also Fr Andrew’s point, or part of it.

Fr Andrew makes a logical argument that seems quite valid.

JCF
Guest
JCF

Either these positions (“Conservative reactions”) die out—though we may pray for conversion!—or the Church does. Beginning in the Global North, but move *inexorably* around the globe. Not because of “unbiblical” attitudes—but because of *GOSPEL* values.

William
Guest
William

There is a difference between ceremonial and moral law in the Old Testament. Ceremonial law points to Christ and is fulfilled when he arrives whereas the moral law remains the same for ever. This is why Jesus states clearly that he came to fulfil rather than abolish the law.

FrDavidH
Guest
FrDavidH

William: ” I, will chastise you seven times for your sins. And ye shall eat the flesh of your sons, and the flesh of your daughters shall ye eat”. (Leviticus 26:27–29 KJV).
Is cannibalism a law which has been fulfilled and one which all anglicans should observe?

Caelius Spinator
Guest
Caelius Spinator

I feel a little timid wading into this conversation, given that crs is a professional exegete of both the OT and the NT. However, I think the general theological rationale that has guided mainstream reconciliation of OT ethics with NT ethics is: (a) Is this commandment intended to differentiate Israel from the nations? or (b) Is this commandment intended to help Israel imitate/participate in God’s holiness? We see this division made in the NT in various ways. The most obvious way concerns food. At a certain point, it seems unlikely that certain foods are more holy than others. Jesus, as… Read more »

RevDave
Guest
RevDave

FrDavidH said “Why on earth would any Anglican decide his gay sexuality is sinful on the basis of Jewish Law?” FrDavidH, well an Anglican who had read his BCP would know that ” … THE Old Testament is not contrary to the New” and “… Although the Law given from God by Moses, as touching Ceremonies and Rites, do not bind Christian men, nor the Civil precepts thereof ought of necessity to be received in any commonwealth; yet notwithstanding, no Christian man whatsoever is free from the obedience of the Commandments which are called Moral.” That’s certainly what Jesus taught… Read more »

MarkBrunson
Guest
MarkBrunson

Oh, good. We’ve gotten to heresy and the argument of “What I want you to obey in the Old Testament applies, what I don’t want to doesn’t.”

Pray God there will soon be an official schism and we can be rid of one another.

JeremyB
Guest
JeremyB

“There is a difference between ceremonial and moral law in the Old Testament.”

That may or may not be true, in and of itself.

But as you describe it, this an interpretive position.

William
Guest
William

William: ” I, will chastise you seven times for your sins. And ye shall eat the flesh of your sons, and the flesh of your daughters shall ye eat”. (Leviticus 26:27–29 KJV).
Is cannibalism a law which has been fulfilled and one which all anglicans should observe?

Obviously scripture does not promote cannibalism. This verse refers to certain terrible events which actually happened later on and which are documented by the Jewish historian Josephus. It is a direct consequence of the sins of the people and the chastisement of God; a prediction rather than a command.

David Runcorn
Guest

Well, well … there we were thinking it was only those ghastly evangelicals who argued and nit-picked over ‘correct’ views of the bible and called people heretics who disagreed.

crs
Guest
crs

Caelius, Thank you for your careful comment. In Acts 15 the laws enjoined on gentiles are those in Leviticus that apply to the ‘sojourner in the midst of Israel.’ So appropos your point, there are in point of fact laws given to Israel that God intended for them and for the sojourner, both. The decisions made in Acts 15 are made on this basis. One can of course reject this logic. One can say that the Jewish Christians who observed this fact within the one Torah were wrong. But even the gentile Christians who followed them tried to understand the… Read more »