Friday, June 13, 2014

Just Be Liberal, And Get It Over With

This is flying around the internet (and my Facebook Feed). I don't necessarily care how John MacArthur reads the Bible, (Holy Orders, cough, cough) but I watched the video within, and I had a few thoughts:

Firstly, since he believes in Sola Scriptura, no one has any idea what he means by "church". He wants to mean "my visible community," but alas, the progressive lackeys who wrote this post have obviously found a visible community that believes whatever they think is right. And the point is this: Unless your community speaks infallibly by the Holy Spirit, your discipline ultimately means 2 things: Jack and Squat. I hate the invisible "Church." I hate it, and these situations are the reason. Which is not to say that everyone holding a "conservative" position on this, or any other issue, is being completely arbitrary. It's an ad hoc morality and exegesis, but it's also correct in many respects. Just pull on the rope; Frank the Hippie Pope is at the other end. Put it this way: The Catholic Church will NEVER, EVER, teach that homosexual practice, abortion, pornography, adultery, re-marriage, "open" marriage, masturbation, etc. are OK. Where do you think those "traditional" views came from? From Sacred Tradition, faithfully explicated by the Church! And God love the "Reformers," they hadn't chucked all of it by then. And many separated Christians, with the sure aid of the Holy Spirit and Natural Law, maintain the truths of Tradition in their lives and communities (even unknowingly).

Secondly, I respect the ongoing discussion among the "Same-Sex Attracted" community about whether people seeking to preserve continence and chastity should use the word, "gay". I can't give you an answer. What I can point out is, the purveyors of the zeitgeist are using the word to mask the discussion about virtue and temptation that is at the heart of the matter. Do you sense it? It's not a sin per se, to have a sexual desire or thought of some kind, even if it's viewed as weird, different, or downright deviant. But the question really is, "In light of the fact that Jesus Christ loves me, and died for me, what will I do?" Insofar as he talked about that making all the difference, and that a Christian ought to respond to the heavy crosses of temptation in a particular way, he's absolutely right. If I were unrepentant in serious sin, I should excuse myself from Communion, until such a time as I've resolved to make a definitive break with whatever it is, and received pardon in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. That is not a man-made hoop to jump through; it is Jesus Christ literally meeting me and leading me out of the darkness and into the light! I will not apologize for it, be shy about it, or be ashamed. We the members of His Body the Church have a power through this sacrament that those separated from us do not have. It cannot be mimicked or fabricated.

To conclude, I might believe John MacArthur is being pastorally insensitive, depending on the situation. And besides the fact that John MacArthur cannot speak or act definitively in the person of Jesus Christ on account of being separated from the Church, he's not entirely wrong, either. Everybody has to decide: Do I endeavor to be accepted by others, or accepted and pleasing to God? (This post has been changed from its original version; I originally misidentified the person in the video as John Piper. I regret the error.)

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