This talk by Dean Phillip Jensen comes from a series of talks on Genesis 1-12 sometime ago at a conference. The title of this video is “The Promise of Marriage” and it is based on Genesis 2:4-25.
Following up on that recent pronouncement by the Archbishop of Canterbury that the ACNA was an ecumenical partner of the Anglican Communion and was not Anglican, George Conger reports on the investiture of Archbishop Foley Beach that the Primates who attended that event sent a different message:
The Anglican Church in North America is Anglican and its primate is an archbishop of the Anglican Communion, declared seven archbishops last night.
At the close of the prayer of investitute of the Most Rev. Foley Beach at the Church of the Apostles on 9 Oct 2014, the primates of Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, Rwanda, Myanmar, Jerusalem and the Middle East and South America, and bishops representing the primates of the Congo, Sudan and South East Asia laid hands on Archbishop Beach. Giving him their primatial blessing, they also acknowledged him by word and through laying on of hands to be a fellow primate of the Anglican Communion.
I will reiterate that in my opinion Justin Welby could wind up marginalizing himself, and I hope he will rethink this matter.
I wanted to mention the book A Treatise on Baptism by the Rev. Edward Bickersteth, which can be accessed in PDF at the link – or if you prefer, one can also access it via this Google Books link. Bickersteth was a priest in the Church of England who served as rector of Watton-at-Stone Church in Hertfordshire. He was a staunch evangelical who was actually commended by J.C. Ryle in some of his writings. If you are interested in how the subject of baptism was regarded by evangelical Anglicans around 1840 (when this book was published), this is worth a look.
Another free book in Kindle format: R.C. Sproul’s The Promises of God: Discovering the One Who Keeps His Word
Tonight I wanted to mention a free book available in Kindle format – The Promises of God: Discovering the One Who Keeps His Word by R.C. Sproul. The Amazon notes say this about the book:
From Kevin Kallsen and George Conger of AnglicanTV we have their latest report, Episode 127, and it is quite interesting as they discuss the recent pronouncement by the Archbishop of Canterbury about ACNA not being Anglican. I think this is by no means over, for certain, as it will become clear that the Primates and dioceses have the final say about such matters.
From Fr. Bill Klock of Living Word REC in British Columbia comes this remarkable sermon on the Parable of the Good Samaritan, Who is My Neighbour?, based on Luke 10:25-37. In this message, Fr. Bill talks about boundaries and what they really mean to us as Christians:
The lawyer was committed to boundaries. God’s kingdom and God’s love were for the people who were committed to his law. And yet Jesus gives him a picture of the danger of drawing boundaries around love. If that’s the way we see God’s law. If that’s the way we interpret it and put it into practise, then the priest and the Levite did the right thing when they walked by. Jesus told the story so that the lawyer would put himself in the place of the man beaten by robbers and now he’s telling him: “If you want to insist on those boundaries, you’re a dead man. No one’s going to stop to help you. But if you’re willing to let that awful, no good, unclean Samaritan touch you, if you’re willing to risk impurity yourself, you’ll live.” And here we see the kingdom. The parable isn’t just a morality play about helping people in need. The parable is a picture of a kingdom in which Jesus’ people understand that they’ve been blessed—we’ve been blessed—because through him, through the Messiah, God has revealed himself to us, he’s forgiven and regenerated us, and he’s given us his love—and in the process of all that he’s given us life. And the first thing every one of us ought to notice as a result of God loving us in this way is that we never deserved it. We were dead in sin. We were rebels. We were Samaritans or Hells Angels of our own sort. But God loved us anyway, drew us to himself, and redeemed us. The second response we ought to have after that is a desire to carry his message of love and grace to all the other dead and rebellious people we know—to all the other Samaritans and all the other Hells Angels still living on the outside in darkness and sin.
This is just what God had done for the Jews. And he did it intending for them to go out in joy to share his love and redemption with the nations, but instead they used the Scriptures, they used his love-letter, to draw a boundary around themselves and they used it to condemn and damn everyone on the outside. I think back to that day when the Hells Angels stopped to help us on the side of the road and I think about all the times we make the same mistake Israel made. We have God’s love and we have his forgiveness. Maybe we were born into Christian families. Maybe we’ve never known what it’s like to be outsiders, and so we start thinking like the priest and Levite, that God loves us because of who we are. We forget that we were once sinners. We forget that it’s only by God’s grace that we’re members of his kingdom. And instead of sharing Jesus with the world, we draw a Jesus-shaped boundary around ourselves and our church. God’s love is inside. God’s redemption is inside. We’ve got to keep ourselves pure and spotless from the sinful and unclean people on the outside. Someday Jesus will come back and he’ll high-five all of us for our faithfulness to him and for keeping ourselves “unspotted from the world” and all the outsiders will get their just comeuppance in hell.
But brothers and sisters, that’s just the mistake Israel made and that Jesus came to correct. And it’s just the mistake that blinded the majority of Israel to the Messiah when he came. It’s just the sort of mistake that made outsiders of all those people who thought and who were convinced that they were on the inside of God’s kingdom. Woe to us if we do the same. Brothers and sisters, if our faith, if the Scriptures, if the Creed, or even if Jesus himself ever becomes a reason for us to draw boundaries the way the Jews did. If those things ever become a reason to pat ourselves on the back for our faithfulness to God while abandoning dying sinners on the side of the spiritual road, we will have lost Jesus himself. If the Gospel ever becomes a reason to leave a sinner to die, condemning him to his fate lest we become unclean by contact with him, Jesus warns us in the parable that we’ll turn out to be the ones left in the ditch on the Last Day. Friends, there is a boundary. There really is an inside and an outside. But the boundary has nothing to do with defining our neighbours. The point of the boundary isn’t to keep us safe, it’s not to keep people out. The boundary is there to show us who needs the love of God, who needs to hear that Jesus is Lord, and who needs to be drawn from the place of darkness and death into Jesus’ kingdom of light and life.
And I do think this is what Jesus was saying in this parable: that rather than drawing a boundary to keep people out, the boundary is to show us who needs the Gospel. If you’d like to hear the message, it can be heard below.
In this latest installment of “Preaching Matters”, William Taylor, Rector of St Helen’s Bishopsgate reminds us why sitting at Jesus’ feet is all about our convictions.
Contrasted to the recent pronouncement of the Archbishop of Canterbury on ACNA, the Diocese of NW Australia has recognised ACNA as “a member church of the Anglican Communion”:
The Diocese of NW Australia, meeting in synod this weekend, passed the following motion,
That this synod:
- welcomes the impending investiture of the Most Reverend Dr Foley Beach, the Archbishop of The Anglican Church in North America;
- recognizes the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA) as a member church of the Anglican Communion, in full communion with Diocese of North West Australia; rejoices that the orthodox faith is proclaimed in word and deed through ACNA and its member churches;
- continues with ACNA to pray for and call for repentance from those churches which have turned to a different gospel;
- calls upon faithful Anglicans around the world to join us in joyful praise to God for the renewal and rebirth evident in ACNA and the Global Fellowship of Confessing Anglicans. …