December 29, 2010

The Best of 2010

Dear Guests of IDOTG:

It is time for the 5th Best of IDOTG (2010) series. What qualifies an article for Best of status? A number of factors including a particularly credible theological piece or a review of significant events that affect the Christian (IFB) community. With well over 100 articles to choose from it is difficult to narrow the list to ten, but here are the Top Ten from 2010.

Northland International University’s Convergence with Evangelicalism: What Does This Mean For Impressionable Students?

“In April 2010 Matt Olson, Sam Horn, Les Ollila and Doug McLachlan traveled to the Grace Community Church (GCC) to meet with John MacArthur, Phil Johnson and Rick Holland. After a day of discussions the NIU men came away finding no reason not to have and increase fellowship with them. Inviting GCC’s executive pastor, Rick Holland, to speak in chapel confirms a new alliance for NIU with evangelicalism.”
John Piper to Feature Rick Warren at Desiring God
“John Piper hosts and endorses the ministry of Mark Driscoll who has preached at Robert Schuler’s Crystal Cathedral and is notorious for disgraceful filth speech in the pulpit. Now Piper adds Rick Warren to his approved list of keynote speakers. No one can understand or explain why Piper embraces Rick Warren except Piper himself. This is a huge disconnect from what Piper writes in his books. One must question that Piper believes what he writes in his own books.” (Continue to, John Piper, “I’m Going to Need Help to Know Why I Should Feel bad About This Decision.”
Sharper Iron Sizzles In and Over the Iron Skillet
“I would encourage the few current or potential advertisers who feel strongly about Fundamentalism to consider if SI is the best place to invest the resources God has entrusted to you. SI is a site that frequently allows for, promotes, and its leadership happily joins in on, the redefining, castigation and besmirchment of fundamentalism.... To any fundamentalists who still has their membership with or participates at SI: I understand that you feel you may be posting for the lurkers, posting to represent what the best of fundamentalism has to offer. That is very noble and primarily why myself and others used to participate at SI putting up with the moderator’s bias, shrill complaints and gang-tackling. There comes a time, however, when you have to consider whether or not you can post at a site that does not cherish the fundamentalism you do and instead of building up fundamentalism redefines and besmirches it with impunity.” For additional commentary on SI see, I Had to Ask, “How Does This Sharpen Me?”)
A two part series by Dr. Manfred E. Kober, Lordship Salvation: Forgotten Truth or a False Doctrine?
“If you were Satan, which doctrine would you want to undermine? Which area of theology would you pervert, to prevent people from being saved? An individual may be wrong about the doctrine of the church or deny the millennial kingdom and yet doubtless be gloriously redeemed. However, if a person is wrong on the doctrine of salvation, specifically, the prerequisites for salvation, he misses the very heart of the gospel. One would expect Satan to attack in the area of soteriology. Indeed, he has! The informed and discerning believer soon realizes that there is a battle raging among evangelicals and fundamentalists over the matter of the conditions for salvation.”
Kevin Bauder & Dave Doran to Join Mark Dever at Lansdale: Is This a Fundamentalism Worth Saving?
Anyone believing this cooperative fellowship with Dever is going to be the full extent “limited form of fellowship,” is mistaken. Dever is just the latest step toward greater compromise of genuine biblical separatism for expanding the boundaries of limited fellowship. Dever is the bridge that will take Bauder, Doran and those they are seeking to influence to completely embrace the entire T4G/Gospel Coalition community.
Salvation and Discipleship by Dr. Rick Flanders
One of the most hotly debated issues in the Lordship Salvation (LS) controversy revolves around the doctrines of salvation and discipleship. Most LS advocates see these as one and the same. LS advocates blur the lines of distinction, which creates an evangelistic message that conditions the reception of eternal life on a lost man’s upfront commitment to what should be the results of a genuine conversion in discipleship. Dr. Rick Flanders wrote an article in 2007 titled, Salvation and Discipleship that addresses this vital issue in the Lordship Salvation controversy.
Let’s Get Clear on This: A Response to Kevin Bauder’s “Cannonball” Cogitations: “Foremost Defenders of the Gospel Today?”
“In this series we have thoroughly reviewed Let’s Get Clear on This by Dr. Kevin Bauder who has become conservative evangelicalism’s chief apologist in and to Fundamentalism. We have discussed a series of disconcerting issues with the so-called conservative evangelicals. While all of the issues are highly troublesome there is a single great danger that trumps all of the others combined. In this article we are going to discuss conservative evangelicals and a segment of [Calvinistic] Fundamentalists, “converging around a particular interpretation of the Gospel.”
Do Fundamentalists and Evangelicals, “Believe, Preach and Defend the [Same] Gospel?
“There is no universal ‘mutuality in the gospel’ among evangelicals and fundamentalists. ‘Evangelicals and fundamentalists are [NOT] united in their allegiance to the gospel,’ because there is a vast difference between what evangelicals and non-Calvinists in Fundamentalism believe to be the one true Gospel. It is irrefutable, and Kevin Bauder is well aware, that many men in Fundamentalism reject Calvinistic soteriology in the form of Lordship Salvation as a false, works based Gospel. It is, furthermore, indisputable that virtually every man in ‘conservative’ evangelicalism is a passionate advocate for Lordship Salvation, which Bauder is also well aware of. Men in Fundamentalism who reject Lordship Salvation as a false works-based message are as aware as Bauder is that evangelicals are almost universal in agreement on Lordship Salvation as John MacArthur defines it.”
Faith Baptist-Central Seminary Merger Talks Shelved: An Opinion Piece
Much could be said here, it is probably enough to say that elements from the institutional ethos/culture statements of each school would have yielded contributing factors for the cessation of merger talks.
Can an Unregenerate Person Believe the Gospel?
“Those who insist that God must regenerate a person before that person can believe define total depravity as man’s total inability to respond positively to God. They believe that an unregenerate person cannot even understand and believe the gospel. This view is held by Reformed theology and strong versions of Calvinism…. Many biblical arguments show that man’s sinfulness does not require regeneration before faith…. To say that a person goes from being spiritually dead to eternally alive before he believes in Jesus Christ is both absurd and contrary to biblical teaching.”

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