The Gospel Coalition Shake-Up – Tullian Tchividjian and Too Much Grace for The Gospel Coalition?

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Tullian Tchividjian is booted from The Gospel Coalition (TGC) website while C.J. Mahaney and Josh Harris quietly leave TGC council amidst ongoing sex abuse lawsuits in which a former Sovereign Grace Ministries volunteer is found guilty of sex abuse charges.

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Confirmation bias regarding one’s friends can become a powerful weapon against the truth. It gives way to black and white thinking which makes the hard work of discernment easier. “This person is my friend and has given me quite a bit of money in their kindness towards me, so I am more inclined to believe that they are incapable of gross wrongdoing.” But people are not simply all or nothing – much the way children understand people when they are very young. Complicated people are quite messy, and the more complicated they are, the more we need to work at figuring out “who” they are. We may agree with them on A,B, and C – but not on D,E, or F. And the more reason we are given to like someone, the greater our bias. Could the Gospel Coalition hold a more favorable opinion of Mahaney than of Tchividjian because of attitude polarization? Could the “Mahaney Money Machine” be a factor?

 

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There has been a lot of activity going on at The Gospel Coalition.

Dee at The Wartburg Watch recently reported in her article, Twitter Wars and Predictions Surrounding SGM and the Nate Morales Conviction:

Over the weekend, a firestorm erupted on Twitter. #IStandWithSGMVictims was started by Zach Hoag. A number of people sent tweets to The Gospel Coalition which promptly blocked a number of people using the hashtag.

This was indeed a firestorm. The hashtag:  #IStandWithSGMVictims was quite popular and became a Twitter “trend.” Take a peek at the scores and scores of people in solidarity for the SGM victims and also those who are tired of church leaders not taking action against sex abuse in church.

The sad part about this was response by Joe Carter, spokesman at The Gospel Coalition. One of the most common signs of high-controlling behavior is when someone attempts to control conversation by shutting it down.  That is exactly what happened over the weekend.  Many people were “blocked” from following The Gospel Coalition after they sent out a tweet that included #IStandWithSGMVictims in the tweet.  I’ve been blocked a long time ago from The Gospel Coalition (@TGC), but this time, Joe stooped to a new low and personally blocked me.

Here is the tweet where he accused me of slander.  If you click on Source,  you can see where I asked Joe to provide proof.  He never did.  Instead he blocked me.

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Keep in mind, shutting down communication is nothing new at The Gospel Coalition. It has been reported here and at Wartburg Watch numerous times that if anyone mentioned anything regarding C.J. Mahaney and the Sovereign Grace case on TGC blogs, many (if not most) of the time these comments were removed. And why would they be removed?  Because they have long defended Mahaney who until this last weekend was on The Gospel Coalition council.

That brings us to another unfolding event over the weekend.  Along with a newly designed website at TGC, some noticed that C.J. Mahaney and Josh Harris were no longer listed as council members.  Several have reported this story.  Harris responded about it on Twitter:

Harris voluntarily left TGC apparently because of the current sex abuse legal case his church is involved with (and its former ties with sex abuse cases within Sovereign Grace Ministries).  We have not heard a statement from C.J. Mahaney as to why he has left TGC. This was long overdue, if you ask me.

However, Harris and Mahaney are not the only ones to be missing from the council. Late last night, I read this note from Tullian Tchividjian about how he was apparently booted from TGC. He mentioned that he had earlier told TGC of his plans to move his blog from TGC and transition to his own blog site, but TGC gave him no notice that they were booting him now:

None of the powers that be, however, ever mentioned anything to me (either by email or phone) before Thursday when I was simply told that the transition needed to happen now. I know I have had some differences with some of the other contributors to this site but my goal has always been to do nothing but preach the Good News with every post, to bring relief to the burdened and broken, and rest to the weary and heavy laden by fixing the readers’ eyes on the finished work of Jesus. You’ll have to judge for yourself if I succeeded or failed in this regard. (Source)

Now, why would TGC want Tchividjian to leave?  Some have suggested it is because Tchividjian’s gospel has too much “grace.”  Dee of The Wartburg Watch mentioned this in the following Twitter conversation:

 

Tullian Tchividjian, The Gospel Coalition Screen Shot 2014-05-20 at 9.38.17 AM

 

 

Dee noticed something unique about Tullian Tchividjian in her excellent article, Grace and Obedience: Why I Agree With Tullian Tchividjian and Not With Jen Wilkin and posted this quote from Tchividjian.  Tchividjian’s grace message is not the same kind of message we hear from other Neo-Calvinists:

So when I say “Because Jesus succeeded for you, you’re free to fail”, I’m NOT saying “go out and sin more so that grace may abound.” I’ve never heard anyone say that. What I AM saying is that you ARE failing and that if you are in Christ, your failure does not condemn you (Rom. 8:1). Furthermore, your failure cannot separate you from God’s love (Rom. 8:31ff). So, because Jesus succeeded for you, you’re free to fail without fear of being cast out, abandoned. Even our most cataclysmic failures won’t tempt God to “leave us or forsake us.” Perfect love casts out all fear.

 

Jonathan Merritt interviewed Tchividjian about his book, One Way Love: Inexhaustible Grace for an Exhausted World and once again, also notice the grace theme:

Merritt reports:

Tchividjian takes Christians to task for their legalistic focus on performance. But he also casts a vision for a more grace-filled future. Here, we talk about what he thinks is wrong with the Christian church today and what he believes the answer is.

I love this quote from Tchividjian on morality and free grace.

The fact is, that the solution to restraint-free immorality is not morality. The solution to immorality is the free grace of God. Only undeserved grace can truly melt and transform the heart. The route by which the New Testament exhorts sacrificial love and obedience is not by tempering grace but by driving it home.  (Source)

Tchividjian continues by touching on a common issue that we have dealt with in high-controlling church environments:

Furthermore, it seems that the good news of God’s grace has been tragically hijacked by an oppressive religious moralism that is all about rules, rules, and more rules; doing more, trying harder, self-help, getting better, and fixing, fixing, fixing–—ourselves, our kids, our spouse, our friends, our enemies, our culture, our world. Christianity is perceived as being a vehicle for good behavior and clean living and the judgments that result from them rather than the only recourse for those who have failed over and over again. (Source)

It’s interesting.  The Gospel Coalition has never had any problem with C.J. Mahaney on their council all this time – even through this sex abuse case has been:

“American evangelicalism’s biggest sex scandal to date.” ~Janet Mefferd

 

Throughout the Sovereign Grace lawsuit and sex abuse cases there has been one underlying theme that seems to be prevalent.  It is the idea that as long as someone has the right doctrine, nothing else matters.  It seems that The Gospel Coalition has long sided with Mahaney because he has the “correct” views on complementarianism, he has the right views on Reformed doctrine, he has the right views on the Cross, and sin, and the Gospel.  Since Mahaney had all of those really important doctrinal matters correct, it seems they were willing and have been willing to overlook the fact that C.J. Mahaney likely knew about sex abuse cases that occurred in his church and that he and his pastors failed to address those problems appropriately.

T. F. Charlton in his article, Sovereign Grace Sexual Abuse Lawsuit Just Got More Complicated remarks:

T4G and TGC’s defense of Mahaney have left critics asking what it would take for evangelical leaders to consider the possibility that one of their own might be complicit in the coverup of child abuse. (Source)

 

I’m really struck at the irony here.  It seems that C.J. Mahaney should have been the one booted from The Gospel Coalition, not Tullian. We’ve heard nothing but crickets from The Gospel Coalition on these issues. It does seem to appear that “correct” doctrine over grace and victims is what counts for The Gospel Coalition.

I think “Martin Luther’s Disciple” sums it up succinctly in his comment over at Phoenix Preacher blog regarding this situation:

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175 comments on “The Gospel Coalition Shake-Up – Tullian Tchividjian and Too Much Grace for The Gospel Coalition?

  1. It’s sad what T.G.C. has morphed into. As happens sometimes with coalitions, the phenomenon which Richard John Neuhass described in an article about Christian Reconstructionism occurred here, in which the more militant elements in the coalition end up being the driving force. It became about power and money, and protecting an increasingly narrow set of theological positions, though I seriously don’t buy the claim that Tsavidgion was booted out for doctrinal reasons, and I don’t believe in coincidences, especially this one, which is too convenient. I read the TGC explanation for the shakeup, and it doesn’t even ring true.
    On a separate note about listening to sermons and pronouncements from the pulpits and on blogs, it may take a while to catch on but it is possible to distinguish between truth and propaganda. A pastor who is complicit in sexual abuse or tells victims not to go to the police may speak flowing words and flowery oratory about moral rectitude, but it is vastly different to hear the same words spoken by someone like Jeff Crippen, PCAPastor on The Wartburg Watch or Sam Powell. One is telling the truth and living out Christian integrity while the other is preserving an appearance of virtuous Christian character.

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  2. In Doug Wilson’s article he wrote:

    “So those who have embraced the false gospel of therapy hate the fact that we have forgiven sex offenders in church now…”

    Have at it – have all the sex offenders in your church, Doug. I’m truly all for sex offenders attending the assembly. Yes, God forgives. Yes, He commands us to forgive. But He also gave us brains to use. Mark the sex offender – don’t let him spend any time with children. Watch him like a hawk. Forgiveness does not do away with living in reality. And if it’s current: Call The Authorities while you are praying for help to forgive him!

    Talk about diversion!

    All the TCG supporters I am in contact with throw the third law theory at me. I don’t think they really have any clue what’s gone on with SGM. I agree with the red herring theory.

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  3. A Mom and Ed,

    I’m on cup of strong tea #2, so hopefully I’ll make better sense than I did about this time yesterday.

    I see this issue going back to how Covenant Theology appropriates the Old Law for the Believer. My understanding of salvation and its elements is strongly Lutheran, and I just can’t wrap my head around the issue any other way. In short, I have a big problem with what I see as Covenant Theology’s down playing of the role of the Holy Spirit, Paul and John talked about concerning the way that the Believer is transformed spiritually after conversion. The Word is foolishness to the unbeliever without the revealing of it that comes only by the Holy Spirit. I think that, based on what I understand of what Calvin wrote on the issue, what Luther(ans) assigned to the Spirit, the Calvin(ist) assigns to the Law.

    What emerges for me, more in New Calvinism than in the Old, is a downplaying of that New Creation change that happens in Christ. I think that part of this is also some fear on the part of Calvinists that if they assign any role at all to man in the process of salvation, they’re bearing witness against God’s sovereignty — even if man is just experiencing salvation as a beneficiary. This is more of a focus for New Calvinists.

    Luther, or perhaps Lutherans that thought about this after he did, said that before conversion, the Law serves to constrain bad behavior in society and it teaches man about what sin is (Paul’s “schoolmaster”). Teaching man about his sinfulness shows him his need for Christ. After conversion/regeneration, the Law only serves as a standard, like a ruler to which one goes back to see if one’s own estimate of an inch is really and truly an inch. From there onward, it is the Holy Spirit that woos and motivates us to be in compliance with the Law. We are translated into the Kingdom where the Law is love. We do right because we love God, not by following rules. For the Believer, the Law serves only to curb, mirror, and guide through it’s function as the fixed standard/ruler.

    Now, Calvin said that there is one additional function of the Law — to admonish a person to be holy. That flies in the face of what Luther believed (and what I think Paul did, too). So while the Law absolutel does admonish us as a fixed standard of right and wrong, Calvin also saw it as a motivator. For me, that extends the use of the Law from that of a fixed standard/ruler to that of a rule book.

    I am also troubled by the way that Calvinism breaks down the law and then says that only the moral law applies. But what one man might think is ceremonial law, another says is really the moral law. Even Gary North admits that this is true and that no one can agree. Who is right? I have to read some Calvinist expert to tell me which law goes into what category?

    (I’d rather take my chances with the Holy Spirit to curb, mirror, and guide me.)

    Luther also wrote a little somewhere about how there is an intrinsic element of the Gospel in the Law, and of the Law in the Gospel. They aren’t mutually exclusive, but Calvinism tries to make them exclusive in many respects. So I see it as a theoretical problem.

    That said, whatever way of looking at it helps you understand Christ better and causes you to grow in love for Him and others, then I don’t think it matters that much IRL how you make sense of the Law and the Gospel.

    I hope that helps a little.

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  4. Andrea,

    I agree with you. They didn’t even need to make a choice between victims and CJ or a choice between CJ and Tullian T. They could have just made general statements about God’s sovereign plan to work justice and to bless His own, knowing that our sins will find us all out in time. For what ever reason, be it money or God knows what, they made a bold confession to the world:

    In a choice between wounded lambs and our favorite friends who allegedly care for lambs, we’re choosing our friends. I am just in awe that they jackbooted one of their own. Complete awe. I am in awe at their low opinion of good people who are expected to just parrot the party line as they say, “Move along. Nothing more to see here.” Keller has indeed played the role of the Wizard of Oz this week, saying “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.” And I don’t think that they have rightly estimated the ability of people to see exactly what they’re doing. But enough will stick with them, and I guess that’s good enough.

    They would garner more support if they were up front and honest.

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  5. Cindy,

    I was going to mention Luther, but I didn’t. He was on a correct premise, as far as I am concerned. He, from being a Catholic, understood what grace was all about. Still, he didn’t give up everything Catholic, as I would have hoped, but he was right in regards to grace.

    The Catholics slam him, however, because he said these words: “Sin boldly”. But if you see it from the context of why he wrote those words, he was embracing grace, showing that grace means a lot to those who have sinned a lot.

    Much like when Jesus asked who will love him more, those who didn’t have that many sins, or those with a multitude of sins.

    As far as I am concerned, Luther was the pioneer and a legit father of the reformers. Calvin hijacked it.

    Ed

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  6. Ed,

    Luther had his issues — like his anti-semitism.

    To mix things up with me and make me crazier to the hardline Calvinist, I grew up in Moravian land, was baptized Moravian as an infant, and was influenced by those teachings, too — because that influence also drew my mother to conversion. The Moravians descended from John (Jan) Hus who was burned alive in 1415, predating the other Reformers. The Roman Catholic Church condemned him as a heretic for teaching the Word to the common man, speaking against the papacy and their control of the Word, opposing their understanding of the Eucharist, and against the selling of indulgences. I so loved that about my own journey and how that influenced my faith.

    I received so many blessings in my spiritual life that ultimately come from the truth of the Word and God’s divine intervention. Whether from Hus or Luther or Calvin or Wycliffe, I’ll take it. 🙂 I just wish that all believers could lighten up on the uniformity and could rest in God to find true unity (which tolerates if not celebrates diversity).

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  7. Cindy,

    It has and still is taking time for me to embrace the diversity that you discuss. But I am getting there. Slowly. But as for now, I cannot tolerate anything Calvin, or Catholic. I haven’t delved into Wycliffe yet, so I do not know much about him. I have heard of a few derogatory things about him, but not to the extent of people like Calvin. My focus right now is on Calvin, mainly because the majority of the physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual abuse is coming from that particular camp.

    Ed

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  8. I went over to Doug Wilson’s blog to read his post on pedophilia and it sickened me. Just about everything that man says sickens me. How can he call himself a Christian and be do wrong, so hateful, and so damaging in his directions to others? It is just mind boggling. I thank God for Ed’s being able to make comments over there. I am shaking too much and I am too angry to write anything to Wilson and his mean followers.

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  9. Ed,

    I think that what makes unity hard is the fact that it takes constant work and doesn’t come easily. As this stuff with TT and the TGC has played out as an example, we can’t just stick people in a “They’re okay and solid” (uniform) category without ever having to think about them anymore. We all grow and change, and we have to consider that this is true for everyone else. I guess that they don’t call it “fear and trembling for nothing.”

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  10. Anon for a good reason: it also reminds me of what Jeff Crippen and Barbara Roberts called “flat-affect theology,” where mature Christians never get angry at all, but unbelievers and baby Christians get all emotional over things like child and spousal abuse.

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  11. Taylorjoy:

    That’s an interesting theology for followers of Someone who flipped a few tables and pulled out a whip. 🙂 However – I know that to be true. Any and all outrage is a “lack of self-control.”

    What kills me is the authoritarian thread running through all the troubled camps making abuse able to be pulled off for so long – and all the tactics of silencing that allow for everything we’ve seen lately… be it Phillips, Gothard, SGM. The “You must submit to your elders” card is the ruin of so many Christian lives. And yet… and yet – there it is in the Bible.

    So, how do we articulate to a naive but sincere Christian when NOT to submit to their elders?

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  12. oneh20, >>>And yet… and yet – there it is in the Bible.<<< Where? That line in Hebrews? Why is someone obligated to obey some line on "obey your leaders" written to a specific situation we really don't know anything about? What about Jesus' "call no one Teacher or Father for you have one Teacher"? Submission to local church leaders, in my mind and from studying original language and culture and history, is an abused concept. The overall message of Jesus was egalitarian, not hierarchical.

    I always ask the question, is the root problem some control-freak, authoritarian leader who abuses his biblical authority, or the way we look at the Bible as some legalistic Rulebook and then allow leaders to hit us over the head with it and spiritually abuse us?

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  13. You’re preaching to the choir 🙂

    My question was “So, how do we articulate to a naive but sincere Christian when NOT to submit to their elders?” When one lives in the camp of “Obey the authority God has placed over you” (like I do), how do we LOVINGLY engage in these conversations?

    I’m not ready to jump ship – I love these people as much as I disagree with much of what they believe.

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  14. Oh, good. I wasn’t sure what you meant by “there it is in the Bible.” I always try to LOVINGLY (I lose patience a lot though, lol), share with them that God hasn’t really placed an authority over them. That there are misapplications of those lines “there in the Bible” and give examples. The problem is, if you don’t jump ship, is you risk them demonizing you for being too liberal regarding the Bible and then they won’t listen. People need to be open to looking at the Bible a different way or else they are stuck. I try to challenge people that they are actually being “unbiblical” being so line-item obedient to the Bible… it never says, nor was meant to be used that way, and in fact Paul, says we no longer live “the way of the written code.”

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  15. “The Catholics slam him, however, because he said these words: “Sin boldly”. But if you see it from the context of why he wrote those words, he was embracing grace, showing that grace means a lot to those who have sinned a lot.
    Much like when Jesus asked who will love him more, those who didn’t have that many sins, or those with a multitude of sins.” Ed Chapman on Luther

    I vehemently reject this “folks go sin boldly” mentality. I absolutely embrace grace. I DO NOT embrace: “Sin boldly”. I would never teach this “sin boldly to follow Jesus” religion to a child. That is total depravity. That is not Christian, IMO.

    Yes, Jesus has grace for a criminal turned away from their sin. We forgive that person. But there is repentance & consequence & right action to follow, NOT MORE BOLD SIN. And yes, that person will be & should be exceedingly grateful. That does not equate to a “go & sin boldly” message so you can be exceedingly grateful. Really? Think about what you are telling victims of these bold sinners who hear this “sin boldly” message, Ed.

    Someone who has committed horrid wrongdoing can receive grace for their sin. But be clear, grace requires repentance & turning away from sin. Grace does not embrace a sin boldly mentality. That cheapens grace, IMO. And emboldens the very criminals committing these heinous crimes discussed in this post & blog. Ugh….

    Bottom line, sin boldly is present tense continuous action. That message does not stop evil, it says go ahead, go on with it. It is shocking to me that this message is assigned to Jesus Christ.

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  16. Those who aren’t Christ-followers can’t wrap their minds around this thinking: what Christians do doesn’t matter BECAUSE of grace. Those that care about themselves & other run from this representation of Jesus.

    Christian victims also can’t reconcile this & some end up ultimately reject Jesus.

    I find both situations VERY tragic, because Jesus doesn’t offer a “get in the boldly sin for the rest of your life” club.

    Question… How does one love God, themselves, others AND embrace a “go & sin boldly” message? Wrongdoing is always hurtful to ourselves, others, God, right? I say it’s impossible.

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  17. A mom, Another reason I reject Luther’s sin boldy in that letter IN CONTEXT is because of his belief in infant baptism. How does “sin boldly” work in that scenerio for an adult who was baptized as a baby? Was the baby baptized for imputed guilt for Adam’s sin and the baptism takes them to Christ in case they die as a baby? But the baptism cover over sin boldly for an adult “believer” in that paradigm?

    There are so many inconsistencies in Reformed thinking I cannot keep up.

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  18. A Mom,

    Whoever says “Sin Boldly” has ripped the original sarcastic comment from Luther entirely out of context. He was bold and used what could almost be called “vulgar” or base tactics in sarcastic comments if not sardonic ones. He was German, after all, and he was angry at the tyranny imposed by the leaders. Look up what he wrote to Henry Tudor some time. Calling him a “cheeky fellow” doesn’t even come close to describing him. He spoke a guttural language and lived among the guttural.

    The Catholics who hated Luther claimed that he created lies about “by faith alone” and characterized him as a rebel who couldn’t find peace in the Roman Catholic Church (RCC) because of his tragic sins. They said that his doctrines of demons about “not of works lest any man should boast” were his attempt to continue to be licentious (which was another way they tried to smear him).

    Luther wrote stuff like “Faith is a living, restless thing. It cannot be inoperative. We are not saved by works; but if there be no works, there must be something amiss with faith.” (I found that in the book “Here I Stand,” and you can’t read more than two pages of Luther’s “Bondage of the Will” and believe that he came up with Reformation ideas to give people license to sin.)

    If I’m not mistaken, Luther wrote this letter to Phillip Melanchthon while he was hiding out at Wartburg following the Diet of Worms ordeal (“here I stand, God help me”) when his life was in grave danger and the RCC was out to kill him. Only pieces of the letter remain, but you can definitely discern the contest. He wrote about how the Apostle Paul was against celibacy for priests (a big cause for the RCC’s angst against Luther), calling it something about a contract with demons that should be “boldly broken.” He also wrote about how happy he was that the people of Wittenberg were not following the RCC eucharist practices but were partaking of both the bread and the wine in the way that Paul set forth. (Remember that the details about the eucharist are a big deal at this time, too.)

    In the context that the RCC had called marriage for clergy sinful and anything other than their communion practices sinful, Luther says in sarcasm and in that context to continue to go against the sins declared by the RCC by “sinning boldly.” It was a badge of honor of sorts if Melanchthon “sinned” (per the RCC) by following the truth of the Gospel.

    Of course, when the Catholics found this document, all they focused on was “sinning boldly” against God, not against the “sins” that they established and declared — and those who disobeyed were called heretics. They just exploited this to support their mischaracterization of him as a flagrant sinner.

    (Not that he got everything right, but in context of “sin boldly,” he was right on the money. I apparently “sin boldly” every day according to TGC, and have been doing so for some time.)

    Like

  19. The crux of Luther’s argument in that letter was about grace and sin. The Catholics had made up sins and were offering face grace to absolve those fake sins, or perhaps just cover them. This was also a reference to the purchase of indulgences. Luther wrote this in that letter:

    “If you are a preacher of Grace, then preach a true, not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly. For he is victorious over sin, death, and the world. As long as we are here we have to sin. This life in not the dwelling place of righteousness but, as Peter says, we look for a new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. . . . Pray boldly-you too are a mighty sinner.”

    I have read some commentaries that he was not only talking about indulgences here, but also about the perceived infallibility of the higher clergy who claimed that they had the right to be the mediator middle men between sinners and God. Like Jesus said of the Pharisees, they thought that they didn’t sin, but they were white washed tombs full of dead men’s bones. Some also consider this a statement against the deification or demigod status given to religious leaders. Like CJ….

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  20. A Mom,

    Your post of May 23, 2014 @ 7:40 AM

    You totally misunderstand Luther’s reasoning behind the “sin boldly” statement, just like the Catholics.

    The Catholics took those two words, and said almost the same thing that you said. But I read it all, and in the context he really isn’t telling people to go out and sin, as you and the Catholics may think.

    What he was conveying is that Grace means nothing without sin being involved. And that, I agree with. He was conveying that Righteousness is NOT obtained by obeying any law, but is obtained by our faith alone, THEN we get grace, and our sin is wiped clean.

    As you will note, I provided you with a verse that states that the law was given SO THAT sin would “increase”. And where sin INCREASED, grace increased even more.

    To me, that is exactly what Luther was saying. He wasn’t saying that about Christians sinning, of course.

    Since Christians are not under the law, grace produces no sin at all in regards to eternal justice. Jesus took it all. The only thing that produces sin is the law.

    You can’t break a law that doesn’t exist. Either it exists, or it doesn’t. For non-Christians, it exists. For Christians, it doesn’t.

    A thief is only a thief under the law. A thief is NOT a thief under grace.

    FLESH needs law. Spirit doesn’t. Life is both spirit and flesh. However, we have the body of Christ, and our spirit is free.

    Some serious Bible words to study (word study…WITHOUT a concordance, and WITHOUT commentary of anyone but yourself, and a Bible) are:
    1. Law
    2. Faith
    3. Grace
    4. Righteousness
    5. Flesh
    6. Spirit
    7. Body
    8. Body of Christ
    9. Bondage
    10. Freedom
    11. “DO, doer”
    12. “works”
    13. Death
    14. Life
    15. Soul

    A hint to the above list…Where do Christians “live”? In Christ. That is why we are called Christians. Christ is a residence. We (our spirit) lives, or resides, in the Body…Body of Christ…ON EARTH.

    Likewise, Christ’s Spirit (Holy Spirit) lives, or resides, in the Body of Christ…ON EARTH.

    There is ONE Spirit…of Christ, and ONE Body…of Christ.

    I’m giving a hint to spiritually dissect words, and don’t even think to use a dictionary, and in cases such as this, I could care less about Hebrew/Greek, Latin, etc. Just use your native tongue. Do not use commentary. Make your own.

    Ed

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  21. Hey all, we’re driving home from family camp in which the topic was love vs law. It was so good. (I just read Ed’s old comment on law.)

    The wifi at camp unexpectedly crashed on Saturday, so I have been completely out of the loop.

    A huge thanks to the SSB elves, Brad and Cindy, for keeping an eye on things.

    Like

  22. Don’t know if I am stating the obvious:

    Does ‘The Gospel Coalition’ actually understand and proclaim the Good News about Jesus?

    I just went to their home page and couldn’t find anything ‘Gospel’ related. No “read about what Jesus did for you!” stood out.

    They seem to promote Platt, who is a certified Lordship “are you suuuure you are really saved?!” Salvationist.

    I’d mark and avoid.

    Like

  23. Pingback: Resource Bibliography on System Issues Related to the Tullian Tchividjian Situation | Spiritual Sounding Board

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