Thursday, December 27, 2007

The Heidelblog

Dr. Clark furnishes us with an excellent survey of the history of the Federal Vision in a post titled “For Those Just Tuning in: What is the Federal Vision?” As you read it, notice the dearth of colorful metaphors, false analogies, and ad homs, which have been the FVists’ primary means of communicating their message. This is a pastoral piece written by an officer in the church who is also an academic, contra any of the FVists who think themselves medieval ecclesiastics and scholars when they’re more like Elmer Gantry in Roman collars.

6 comments:

Daniel Kok said...

So this is completely off topic but I want to bounce this question off of you and I don't know how to communicate with you otherwise...

I regularly read Mr. Wilson's blog (I know, I am a glutton for punishment). I notice that EVERY time he posts on FV related issues he quickly adds about three or four posts after that as if to hide what he just did.

Why do you think that is?

Mark T. said...

I don’t read Wilson’s blog, though I regularly download the archives of “Auburn Ave Stuff” and “NT Wrights and Wrongs” for my records. So I can’t speak intelligently to the pattern you’ve identified. I do remember a couple of years ago he put up an incredibly shocking and offensive post (I don’t remember what it was), and my phone was ringing off the hook. “Did you see such-and-such post?” But I do remember that while he did not pull the post (which in his mind would reflect “weakness”), he buried it beneath a pile of meaningless posts in the blink of an eye. So the point is that, yes, Wilson has buried posts in the past, which raises the question, “When did this pattern emerge? Does it have a recent origin or has it been the case for more than six months?” If it’s a recent phenomenon, then it’s very telling. If it’s been ongoing then it’s hard to say.

Anonymous said...

He does it to give the impression (OK, this is solely my take) that he 'has more important matters to attend to' than merely this Auburn Avenue hullabellu that merely involves undermining everything won by the Reformation. He has a church to pastor, parishoners to visit and counsel. Legal matter to attend to. Things in his mail box he has to report. He's busy.

Don't know how to spell hullabellu...

It's part of the schtick of the FVists to pretend a nonchalance about the whole mix-up over their doctrine and the reports and all the rest of it. They want to give the impression that, afterall, the differences aren't all that great, and ... people will eventually calm down, see that they are 'brothers in Christ', and eventually come to their Branch Dougidian camp in grateful bondage to their master in good time...

Anonymous said...

That Heidelblog post was one of the few blog posts I actually wanted to be longer...

cib said...

I believe that's "hullabaloo" (or, apparently, "hullaballoo").

cib said...

Mark,

Finished reading the piece by Dr. Clark and I have to say I was struck but this insight:

Along with this package the FV movement also offers paedocommunion (infant communion) which enticed Baptists newly converted to paedobaptism (infant baptism) who do not yet see the Reformed distinction between baptism as a sign/seal of initiation into the visible covenant community and the Supper as a sign/seal of covenant renewal, i.e. taking up the promises of the covenant by grace alone, through faith alone.

I have myself noticed this same thing among many who have taken up with the FV. These folks are simply reversing their previous Baptistic assumptions about the nature of the Church. I think this may also actually be the case with the whole "NECM/ECM" problem in FV. To reduce it a bit, Baptists think that only those who have faith should be admitted to the Church, and therefore infants are not the be baptized; FV reverses this logic and says infants are to be admitted to the Church through baptism, therefore infants who have been baptized have faith. The problem is a fundamental rejection of the visible/invisible distinction.