NEW

CDM Insurance from Ecclesiastical

CDM Insurance Clergy in the Church of England and Church in Wales can now purchase insurance to insulate them from the expenses associated with charges stemming from a Clergy Disciplinary Measure (CDM).  For £25 per year, Ecclesiastical Insurance now offers an...

Church of Scotland and Scottish Episcopal Church OK Saint Andrew Declaration

Church of Scotland and Scottish Episcopal Church Ok Saint Andrew Declaration The Declaration gives formal recognition of the way that both churches have ministered to the whole of Scotland for many years, and how they will continue to work together. It was also backed...

Jewel the Obscure: Advice to New Anglican Converts

Advice From Jewel the Obscure to New Anglican Converts I am often asked by those new to Anglicanism how to come to know what authentic Anglicanism is, in light of the confused mess that we see in North America, the UK and other places. I hope this helps. Unlike many...

Bishop of Burnley Trekking for Fundraising

Bishop of Burnley Trekking for Fundraising The Bishop of Burnley, Rt Revd Philip North, will be pulling on his walking boots this Friday and trekking east to west across the County of Lancashire … raising money towards the reopening of a redundant church hall as a...

Murcott: 12 Infallible Proofs

Murcott Twelve Infallible Proofs Ever since Christ’s Resurrection, the most unlikely tales and feeblest of fables have been propagated in an attempt to fracture the Christian faith. Yet, Acts 1:3 says that Christ showed Himself alive “by many infallible proofs”, being...

JC Ryle on Sickness

Bishop JC Ryle on Sickness Lord, he whom You love is sick!" John 11:3 The chapter from which this text is taken, is well known to all Bible readers. In life-like description, in touching interest, in sublime simplicity — there is no writing in existence that will bear...

Editorial: Church Matters Worthy of Further Notation

Church Matters Worthy of Further Notation Try as we might, we inevitably find ourselves not able to print all the stories that really are worthy of publication.  Such a matter is merely the by-product of limitation of space.  The ink is willing but the paper is weak. ...

John Calvin & The Church of England

John Calvin and the Church of England By Chuck Collins His writings and ideas so significantly influenced the Church of England that Anglicanism can be fairly described as not only generally Protestant, but “reformed.” John Calvin died on May 27, 1564, in Geneve,...

Anglicanism Explored: On Predestination

Anglicanism Explored: On Predestination By The Revd Dr Mark Pickles Popular evangelicalism is awash with “Arminianism”.  (Arminianism denies the doctrine of predestination claiming that although human beings are sinful they do have the ability to respond to the...

Chinese Communist Government Cracks Down on Christian Social Media

Communist Chinese Government Cracks Down on Christian Social Media China has continued its crackdown on Christian social media content, with the accounts of churches and Christian ministries removed from social media platform WeChat on 7 June. These include registered...

Gospel-Driven Anglicanism

Gospel-Driven Anglicanism
By The Revd Dr Mark Pickles

In his book, Gospel-Driven Anglicanism, author Mark Pickles does a good job of keeping the focus on the main things—what is the gospel and how does Anglican Christianity factor in to the Christian faith? Pickles has spent many years ministering in Church of England parishes and in theological training. For a number of years, he was the Director of Anglican Ministry Training at Oak Hill. This excerpt from pages 16 & 17 of his 2017 book, Gospel-Driven Anglicanism, does a very good job of explaining basic differences.

“The Tractarian Movement of the 19th century famously argued that Anglicanism is the ‘via media’, the middle way of between Roman Catholicism and Reformed Protestantism.

“However, even a cursory glance at the 39 Articles and the BCP reveals that is quite simply untenable.

“The Articles clearly articulate a Protestant Reformed theology and that theology finds liturgical expression in the Prayer Book.

“It is important to note that historic Anglicanism is ‘Reformed’ in contradistinction to Roman Catholicism but also at some significant points in contradistinction to other parts of the broader modern evangelical world.

“Firstly, to make clear its Reformed theology over against Roman Catholicism — in particular in its understanding of authority and the content of the gospel — there are two vital questions that need to be addressed and clearly answered, in every age. They are, ‘What is the gospel?” And, “How do you know what the gospel is?”

“Paul’s letter to the Galatians deals with both these questions. The Galatian churches had been infiltrated with false teaching, in fact, with a false gospel. Of all Paul’s letters, this is Paul at his most passionate and forceful. The very life and health of the church is at stake because they have been taught a different gospel to the one Paul preached to them, “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the Grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel — not that there is another one” (Galatians 1:5-7).

“There is only one gospel, there is no other gospel. The gospel is the Good News of God’s salvation won for us through the person and work of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. If this gospel is changed, distorted, if anything is added to it or removed from it, the gospel is lost and if the gospel is lost men and women will not be saved. It is impossible to overstate its importance and thus the need for clarity and faithfulness in proclaiming this gospel.

“Paul is almost beside himself because these Galatians have been led astray, have allowed themselves to have been led astray by these false teachers and their false gospel. In all of his writings, he never writes with such vehement passion and strong denunciation as he does in these opening verses of Galatians. He could not express himself more forcefully than he does with these words, “if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the we preached to you, let him be accursed” (Galatians 1:8). Literally, ‘let him be anathema’. This a strong word:

“… it thus … means being delivered up and devoted to the judicial wrath of God.” (Fung, Ronald Y.K. The Epistle to the Galatians Eerdmans, Grand Rapids, Michigan, 1988 p47)

“To be anathema is to be under divine curse, like the Canaanite cities that God utterly destroyed. Paul is saying that he would be damned if he ever preached another gospel. Anyone who teaches another gospel is subject to the wrath and curse of God.” (Ryken, Philip G. Galatians P&R Publishing: Philipsburg, New Jersey 2005 p23)

“There is so much at stake, so the denunciation is so strong. In case his readers thought this was simply Paul writing in the heat of the moment, the fury of a passionate outburst rather than a thoughtful, measured response, he then repeats himself for clarity and emphasis, “As we have said before, so now I say again: If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed” (Galatians 1:9).

Used by the kind permission of the author, The Revd Dr Mark Pickles.

Previous

Next