Doug Wilson’s Imaginary Covenant
Wilson: Who’s Harvey?
Miss Kelly: A white rabbit, six feet tall.
Wilson: Six feet?
Elwood P. Dowd: Six feet three and a half inches. Now let’s stick to the facts.
It is a pity that this imaginary Covenant-of-obligations cannot be photographed and fingerprinted, let alone identified in the New Testament. Oh wait, it is mentioned in the New Testament. It is called the Law.
The best place to learn about biblical Covenants—what they are, what they look like, and how they operate—is the hallowed halls, past and present, of Reformed Theology. Strangely, this is also the worst place to learn about the New Covenant. It seems somebody did not get the system upgrade.
“Paedofaith is like the New Testament, but with midichlorians.”
Doug Wilson likes to quote the Proverb that says God draws straight with crooked lines, so my post title is a little cheeky. Anyhow, I thought it would be helpful, for myself at least, to work through his thoughtful list with a red marker. A red, permanent marker. Continue reading
If you are a regular reader, you will have some idea of how I feel about the practice of paedobaptism. But that is only half the story. I have just as much distaste for “baptist” Christianity without a spine. I myself need a Church with a spine, a Church full of grace and light because vows are not only made by baptizands but also understood.
I believe baptists get the “vow” part right, but neglect solid accountability to that vow. Paedobaptists, on the other hand, get the accountability right, but allow the priestly vow to be taken by proxy. This is why I have used the analogy of knighthood to describe New Covenant baptism. Although paedobaptism truncates the New Covenant “boundary,” I’m in agreement with my Federal Vision friends on just about everything else.
So, with that understanding, here is a guest post by a reader, Sarah Culbertson, who, like me, has learned a great deal from the Douglas Wilson camp, where the “front end” of the Christian vow is skewed but the “back end” is right on target.
or What Are You Looking At?
by Steven Opp
I feel their eyes all over me
Itʼs lookinʼ like conspiracy
Iʼm outta friends that I can trust
Maybe theyʼre onto us!
- Needtobreathe: “Maybe Theyʼre Onto Us”
Everybody knows what the word “paranoid” means. Itʼs when somebody is irrationally afraid of something. People who are paranoid are always on the lookout for what might jump out and get them. Comedian Richard Lewis understands this: “Even at home, on my stationary exercise bike, I have a rearview mirror.”
For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Corinthians 4:6).
A Picture for Doug Wilson’s 1000 Words
Doug Wilson writes:
We honestly have very little idea what Jesus Christ looked like. We worship Him as the visible image of the invisible Father, and yet we do not know what that visible image looks like. What kind of visible image is that? We know what the paintings of Him look like, and they generally all have something in common with one another, but the fact remains that if you ever passed Jesus Christ on a crowded city street, you would have no idea that you had done so.
Nevertheless, we all still think of Him as a recognizable figure. But He is only “recognizable” because of the various forms of shorthand shifts we have come up with that prevent us from recognizing Him properly. And so what do I mean by “properly?”
I mean the way God intended for us to recognize Him—in and through the proclamation of the gospel. We are supposed to see the face of Jesus Christ in and through the declaration of what Scripture describes as good news—gospel truth. This is where we are supposed to find the only authorized portrait of Jesus.
This is a profound truth, and Doug illustrates it with a long list of other profound truths (in over 5000 words). For me, however, he has failed to tie it all together. What is the significance of the face of Jesus Christ? Could the reason we have no description of his looks be the fact that He has more than one face?
or Nailed to the Mast
Rachel Held Evans is a writer who likes the challenge of “asking tough questions about Christianity in the context of the Bible Belt” while consulting the howling void of modern culture for the answers. That is indeed a challenge. She takes Christians to task for referring to the de-Christianizing of Christmas as “persecution”, offering a helpful chart.
What is the referent of “body of Christ” in 1 Corinthians 11:29?
“For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself.”
A Guest Post by Chris Oswald, a pastor in the St. Louis, Missouri area
Gospel Proximity: Credo- and Paedobaptism and Pneumatological Signage
In the shadow of a tall bookshelf containing all 144,000 Douglas Wilson books, next to the covenantal family sing-a-long piano which held the covenantal tea set on a covenantal doily, I sat on a covenantal couch trying to explain our credo-baptist position to some dear Christian friends who wished to join our church without getting wet.
From Douglas Wilson’s Why Ministers Must Be Men:
Any discussion of women’s ordination will obviously revolve around the direct Pauline statements on the subject, and we will certainly spend the lion’s share of our space there. However, the Pauline instructions were not delivered in a vacuum and when he makes his appeals outside his immediate situation, he makes those appeals to the Old Testament, ground his appeals in both the history recorded there and the law given there.