Wednesday, May 5, 2010
Should We Hold All the Truth with Equal Tenacity?
Short answer: We should not.
Long answer: Picture a man living in a city-state. This man is opposed to two things currently against the law: smoking in public buildings, and human trafficking.
There are several groups in the city, working for change. One group thinks it is wrong to ban smoking --that it ought to be up to the business owners, and not the city, to make that determination. The other group is working to make human trafficking legal.
The man who opposes both --should he equate the two issues? Should he be at every city council meeting arguing, "Smoking in public is a tantamount evil to human trafficking." Should he spend his fire on both issues?
To my fellow PCA conservatives: not all issues are created equal. Yesterday, at Presbytery, tearful arguments were made that the PCA was founded to stand against two things: alternate views of creation days, and prohibiting women deaconesses.
Really? Because if I thought those were the issues behind the PCA's founding, I would have stayed in the RCA, thank you very much. I thought the issues were, oh, I don't know, the inerrancy of Scripture, the resurrection, the doctrines of grace.
It is a sad character flaw to treat all issues as if they were equally ultimate. B.B. Warfield, the champion of inerrancy and doctrinal fidelity, believed in deaconesses. J. Gresham Machen, the champion of the fundamentals and truth of Scripture, was not a 6/24 man. Neither was Charles Hodge.
The truth is: we are losing the battles for what is important by fighting battles over what is unimportant. And, quite frankly, it is tearing at the fabric of the PCA.
I will fight battles. I am involved in one now, over an issue that I believe pertains to the gospel of free grace itself. But, that is an important battle. Far more important than these little ones that invite scorn and derision, and drive thoughtful men away from, and not towards, the conservative cause.
God help us all.