Thursday, April 8, 2010

'D' Student Ruling Elders

Pastor Reed DePace has posted an article over at Green Baggins, commenting on Doug Wilson's reference to "C" students grading the work of "A" students (this is in reference to critics of the Federal Vision (the C students) critiquing proponents of the Federal Vision (the A students). I, by no means, wish to enter into that discussion other than to day this: If you are a Ruling Elder who is intimidated by the academic prowess of teaching elders with graduate-level seminary education, then you need to read what TE DePace has to say. Here is a sample, to get you interested:

I want to offer some biblical insights as to why even C students actually do get to grade everybody else’s papers.
  • 1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.
  • 1 Corinthians 14:29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others weigh what is said.
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good.
  • Acts 17:11 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so.

Hopefully it is relatively clear that the Bible expects Christians to grade each other’s papers. In fact, it wouldn’t be going too far to observe that such exercise of faith is a means God promises the Spirit will grace with insight unto blessing in Christ.

Now, I'm not saying that all Ruling Elders are C students (far from it!), but I am saying that it is easy to be intimidated by "Dr. Theology" when you are "just a C student Ruling Elder" or even "no formal theological training at all Ruling Elder." And Biblically, we have every right to call into question the teachings of our fellow elders, with or without PhDs.

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