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A Confessionalist Piety

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The Gospel Coalition has released another video discussion involving Mike Horton. In this installment Mike talks with Ligon Duncan and Kevin DeYoung about whether or not pietism and confessionalism need to be mutually exclusive--or if that is a false dichotomy to begin with in the history of Reformed churches.


Piety and Confessionalism: Friends or Enemies? from The Gospel Coalition on Vimeo.

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  • Guest - Chris E

    As I said over on the other site. Given that the Scots Presbyterians divided into ever smaller factions - driven by a desireto define a church within a church - I'm not sure how well their brand of Pietism worked out for them in the long run.

    This can also be seen in many of the colonies that they sent missionaries to.

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  • [...] A Confessionalist Piety  White Horse Inn Blog [...]

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  • Guest - Hoyt Roberson

    The problem here is our penchant to believe that Jesus founded an institutional church rather than a people. And so we find ourselves arguing that Bible study groups are somehow less "real" than what goes on in the Sunday morning liturgy. The simple truth it seems, is that God is after a people that claim Him rather than a "church" as we know it. Bible study groups are not anti-church, but they may well down play the importance of liturgical activities. I suspect that this defending of the "church" against "a bunch of Christians who get together" comes from the theologians whose very existence as a profession depends on the insitutional church.

    People reform as best they can. It is difficult for those who want to more emphasize Bible study groups to reform the liturgical forms of the church. To suggest that reformers who eventually become a church within a church are somehow inappropriate is to miss the very clear lessons of history that liturgical churches do not reform themselves - usually.

    That, it seems, was one of Luther's main challenges - to the extent that he not only formed a church within a church, but started a completely different one.

    It is interesting how our views change when we come to power, isn't it? It seems to be a human thing.

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  • [...] video was posted on both the Gospel Coalition and White Horse Inn sites. There are some helpful observations regarding the notion that the antidote to nominalism in [...]

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  • Guest - Paul

    "Cold, Dead, Orthodoxy." I have been an active listener to the WHN broadcast for almost 8 years. Although I've heard of "Cold, Dead, Orthodoxy" it is beginning to remind me of those programs on the Discovery Channel and National Geographic Explorer that go off on expeditions in search of the Loch Ness Monster, Big Foot or even the Louisiana Skunk Ape. At the end of the show I always ask myself why watched because I knew they'd never find anything.

    I've seen quite a lot of "clouds and wind without rain" and more than a few "emperors running around without any clothes." And, unfortunately I can't turn on Christian T.V., radio or even the internet without hearing the gospel redefined.

    If I am, in fact, a hateful Calvinist, brimming with "Cold, Dead, Orthodoxy" yet I rightly announce the good news and support others in this endeavor, the power of God in that news will trump my bad behavior and cold demeanor. On the other hand, even if am the most loving, cheerful, enthusiastic person on planet earth, yet I modify the gospel, I fully expect to produce converts 2x the child of Hell as me.

    1 Cor. 15:3 is a very simple verse. To see it subverted should make every Calvinist an angry Calvinist. Do we suppose that Paul was smiling and winking when he penned Galatians 1:8 & 9? The Gospel is the answer to the penalty of sin and the answer to the power of sin. It will save the vilest unregenerate soul and sanctify the meanest Calvinist, of whom I am chief.

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  • Guest - Lily

    As a Lutheran, these never ending arguments over sanctification seem fruitless. Generally speaking, the impression I am left with is that to gaze upon Christ and to feed upon him is never enough for the Calvinists. How much easier it is to be Lutheran, to be fed a steady diet of Christ crucified for me, and to rest in the fact that the Holy Spirit is at work sanctifying each of us. I am often struck by wondering why Calvinists' can't seem to be satisfied with focusing on food like this for our daily fare and to rest in Christ for all we need:

    Upon the Cross

    That head, before which the angelic spirits bow in reverential fear, is pierced with crowded thorns;

    That face, beautiful above the sons of men, is defiled by the spit of the ungodly;

    Those eyes, more luminous than the sun, darken in death;

    Those ears, accustomed to the praises of the angelic hosts, are greeted with the insults and taunts of sinners;

    That mouth, which spake as never man spake, and teaches the angels, is made to drink vinegar and the gall;

    Those feet, at whose footstool the profoundest adoration is paid, are pierced with nails;

    Those hands, which have stretched out the heavens, are extended upon the cross and fastened with spikes;

    That body, the most sacred abode and habitation of the Godhead, is sourged and pierced with spear;

    Nor did aught remain in it uninjured but His tongue, that He might pray for those who crucified Him.

    He who rules in heaven with the Father is most shamefully abused upon the cross by sinners.

    God suffers, God sheds His blood.

    Sacred Meditations - Johann Gerhard

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  • [...] on Calvinists. I found this under comments at the White Horse Inn blog A Confessionalist Piety - White Horse Inn Blog As a Lutheran, these never ending arguments over sanctification seem fruitless. Generally [...]

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  • [...] A Confessionalist Piety-  Mike [Horton] talks with Ligon Duncan and Kevin DeYoung about whether or not pietism and confessionalism need to be mutually exclusive–or if that is a false dichotomy to begin with in the history of Reformed churches. [...]

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  • Guest - M.J. Prufrock

    I don't think the Lutheran tradition is quite as bifurcated as Horton argues. Theologians such as Johann Gerhard, Bo Giertz, Martin Chemnitz (especially in the Enchidrion), and Luther himself obviously do care about "Christian life" or the "new obedience" (Chemnitz), but what that looks life is different than what, say, Jonathan Edwards would say it looks like. Horton argues that the Reformed scholastics married doctrine and experiential practice, but I think the prayerbooks by the likes of Luther and Gerhard show the same impulse on the Lutheran side.

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