Much of what passes for pastoral ministry today is nothing other than the application of philosophies and methods of corporate America in the church. Too many pastors think of themselves as doing their jobs, and they don’t think of themselves as God’s men who are called to a whole-life pastoral ministry among God’s beloved people.
“Paragraph 3 in the original Westminster Confession … gives the civil magistrate the power to punish heretics and blasphemers and to correct corruptions in worship and discipline. Paragraph 3 in the Savoy Declaration also says the government has the power to suppress the publication of blasphemy and serious heresies … Baptists strongly disagreed with both the Presbyterians and the Congregationalists that the government is given such powers by the Word of God.”
The root of quarrelsomeness is “covetousness.” Covetousness is discontentment with Christ, a desire to be satisfied in something outside of Him.
This question has to do with the limits of human authorities and more particularly with the jurisdictional boundaries of the civil government.
In his magnificent work, A Treatise on the Law and the Gospel, John Colquhoun has a chapter titled “Rules for Rightly Understanding the Ten Commandments” (pp 85-98), which is similar to Question 99 of the Westminster Larger Catechism, “What rules are to be observed for the right understanding of the Ten Commandments?”
The Reformed confessions of faith all affirm that God made a “covenant of works” with Adam in the Garden of Eden. For...
“A pastoral preacher is not merely concerned with the meaning and theology of the text, but also with the particular people to whom he’s preaching.”
The Bible prohibits unclean language. This includes all language that society understands be obscene or dirty. Obscenities and vulgarities refer to things that are offensively revealing, disgusting, dirty, ugly or crude.
Before critiquing theonomy, we need a good definition. Some people today who use the word “theonomy” don’t mean anything more than “God’s law” because the etimology of the word theonomy is “theos” which means God, and “nomos” which means law. They only want to affirm that God’s law is supreme over man’s law. And they’re right about that. God’s transcendent moral law is the norm that norms all norms. Governmental laws should always be consistent with God’s law and human law must never violate God’s law.
But in this post, I’ll be using the word “theonomy” in a more technical sense, which is rooted in the historic usage of the term.
Some of those who identify as theonomists today refer to themselves as “general equity theonomists,” believing that this identification lands them within the boundaries of Reformed confessional orthodoxy. But if it does, then the term “general equity” needs to be defined the same way the tradition defined it. The technical term “general equity” is used in both the Westminster Confession and the Second London Baptist Confession.