Dominion Rule or Life as Sacrament?

This blog posting is a response to Erik’s excellent comment to the previous blog posting “An Orthodox Critique of the Cultural/Dominion Mandate.”  Thank you Erik for contributing to the Reform-Orthodox dialogue! From Erik: As for the key to CR, Rushdoony states that “Because we are not God, for us the decisive power in society must be the regenerating power of God and the work of the Holy Spirit in and through us. Not…

An Orthodox Critique of the Cultural/Dominion Mandate

  Within the Reformed Christian tradition arose a small but influential movement in the mid/late 1960s known as Christian Reconstructionism.  While based on Reformed theology it contains some significant and unique twists.  Reconstructionism is marked by certain distinctives: the cultural mandate, sphere sovereignty (soevereiniteit in eigen kring), presuppositional apologetics, and the rejection of an otherworldly pietism.  Among its key thinkers are: R.J. Rushdoony (considered the movement’s founder), Gary North (his son-in-law), James…

Christian Unity Amidst Reformation Wars & Seminary Wars

  “Missional ecumenicist” John Armstrong has two parallel passions: church unity and church missions.  Pastor Armstrong’s Protestant catholicism (small c) is characterized by his gracious, warm-hearted relationships, openness, and appreciation for both Roman Catholic and Orthodox traditions.  He is relatively new to the Reformed tradition having come from a broad Evangelical background.  He wrote: I entered the Reformed Church in America, about ten years ago, out of growing conviction that I could…

Standing During Liturgy Could Lead To Better Worship

                      Traditionally Christians stood to worship God.  This has been the historic practice of the Christian Church.  This began to change during the 1200s when backless stone benches appeared in English churches.  Then in the 1300s and 1400s they were replaced with wooden benches. Churches were not commonly furnished with permanent pews prior to the Protestant Reformation.  With the rise of the sermon as the high…

Back to the Future for Protestantism?

    On 29 April 2014, Biola University hosted “The Future of Protestantism,” a panel discussion comprised of Peter Leithart, Fred Sanders, and Carl Trueman.  Brad Littlejohn gave the introduction and Peter Escalante moderated the discussion.  The event was prompted by Leithart’s essay “The End of Protestantism” which appeared in First Things in November 2013.  The essay generated quite a bit of discussion among Evangelicals and this event was designed for Leithart…

Taking the Incarnation Seriously

  In a recent blog posting Pastor John Armstrong wrote about his paradigm shift on the Incarnation.  I found his article very helpful for illustrating the different ways Protestants and Orthodox approach the Incarnation.  Armstrong wrote: For now I have been thinking about how the Orthodox Church has a doctrine of salvation that includes the whole world, or the teaching of cosmology. Simply put the Orthodox do not treat the incarnation, the…

TF Torrance and Reformed-Orthodox Dialogue

Review: Participatio – Centennial Volume 4: T.F. Torrance (2013)   Thomas Forsyth Torrance, 1913-2007, commonly known as TF Torrance, was a Scottish Presbyterian theologian.  He served as Professor of Christian Dogmatics at New College, Edinburgh, University of Edinburgh.  He is widely known for his pioneering works on science and theology.  He also played a key role in the theological dialogues between the Reformed and Orthodox communities. In 2013, the Thomas F. Torrance…