“[W]e must remember that liberalism is not primarily a rejection of the supernatural; it is a reconfiguration of the nature of Christianity in such a way as to highlight religious psychology or experience and downplay or marginalize doctrine” (Carl R. Trueman, The Creedal Imperative, 142).
“The school has replaced the church as the center of the community in most urban and rural areas today. . . . Over a 120 years later, we see the consequences of this vision. The average high school graduate is barely literate, but he knows how to use a condom. He is far more likely to support socialism and homosexuality than his parents and grandparents in their generations. But he can’t name two men who signed the Declaration of Independence, and he probably can’t tell the difference between Groucho Marx and Karl Marx” (Kevin Swanson, Apostate, 164).
“It is no small joy to be able to sing Psalm 46 in the dark and cloudy day.” – John McCheyne
“Historically, one could make the argument that Christian theology as a whole is one long, extended reflection upon the meaning and significance of that most basic doxological declaration, “Jesus is Lord!” and thus an attempt to provide a framework for understanding Christian praise” (Carl R. Trueman, The Creedal Imperative, 135).
“[John] Dewey’s educational theory is really quite simple: education is all about training the individual to fit into the social entity of the state. . . . Centralized, institutionalized systems are not built for the individual child’s needs, talents, and abilities. Inevitably, centralization and standardization of educational systems ruin individual academic achievement. Parents should know that the schools are not ultimately committed to academic excellence. Their chief purpose is to plug the children into the ‘social consciousness'” (Kevin Swanson, Apostate, 162-163).
Blogging through and answering the questions from G. I. Williamson’s The Westminster Confession of Faith for Study Classes for personal review and comprehension.
WCF. VI. Of the Fall of Man, of Sin, and of the Punishment Thereof.
1. State the basic facts concerning our lost condition?
Adam rebelled in the Garden of Eden, and his sin is our sin. Thus, Adam’s penalty is our penalty–Romans 5:12, Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.
2. Are these facts simple to understand or to explain?
No. As WCF. VII. notes, Adam was both the natural and federal head of all mankind, and this is so because God declared it to be so.
3. How do we know that it is right for God to condemn us for Adam’s sin?
We know it is right because we take God at his word–“and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.” “And we know that it is just for God to do so, because he always does what is right” (74).
4. What teaching in the Bible is often overlooked in this matter?
It is often overlooked that there is a corporate aspect to mankind’s existence. “The Bible does not regard the human race as so many isolated individuals, each separately created by God (as were the angels), but as an organic unit created in one man–and then, one pair–having the power to produce offspring in their own likeness and image. Adam and Eve were the ‘root of all mankind.’ God has made ‘from one blood every nation’ (Acts 17:26)” (74-75).
5. What does the “creationist” teach as to the derivation of the soul?
A “creationist” believes that a man and woman generate the organic body, but that the derivation of the soul is a new creation of God that is infused or placed into the body.
6. What does the “traducianist” teach as to the derivation of the soul?
A “traducianist” (Latin for transmitter) believes that a man and woman generate both soul and body of their progeny, albeit this is a mysterious process that is not fully understood by man. This is consistent with the belief that Adam and Eve were the root of all mankind, as well as what the Bible says regarding human generation, e.g. Hebrews 7:10, For he [Levi] was yet in the loins of his father [Abraham], when Melchisedec met him. Genesis 46:26, All the souls that came with Jacob into Egypt, which came out of his loins, besides Jacob’s sons’ wives, all the souls were threescore and six.
7. Which do you favor, and why?
I favor the “traductionist.” Why? In addition to Biblical reasons given above, the teaching of the “creationist” seems deficient: if original sin is an imprint upon both soul and body, then a “creationist” implicitly teaches that God creates a new, sinful soul and places it in a body generated/begat by a man and woman. “How could the soul be created sinful by God?” (45) The answer to this rhetorical question is that it could not! for God is good!
8. In either case, what other principle helps explain our guilt in Adam’s sin?
Our guilt in Adam’s sin follows from the Biblical principle of representation. Adam was both the natural and the federal head of all mankind. “The act of Adam was the act of all men because he represented them” (76). Again, Romans 5:12: Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.
9. Why was only the first sin of Adam our responsibility?
The reason only the first sin of Adam was our responsibility is because “Adam terminated his representative actions with that one sin” (75).
10. How are all other sins related to this one?
All sins are related to this one because “by that one act he (and we) became corrupt and guilty. . . . He and we became totally depraved. And because our condition was that of being ‘wholly defiled in all faculties and parts of soul and body’ (WCF. VI. 2.), it followed that continual transgressions proceeded out of this condition” (75). All other sins are related to this one because will/desire/affections flow from nature, i.e. sinful will/desire/affections flow from depraved nature.
“Another fundamental element of the humanist agenda [e.g. the Humanist Manifesto of 1933] is man’s complete sovereign control over his own destiny. . . . One simple proverb destroys the grand proclamations of the Humanist Manifesto: “A man’s heart deviseth his way, but God directeth his steps” (Proverbs 16:19). It is not brute chance in an indeterminate universe that controls man’s destiny, nor is it man himself. God and only God is sovereign over reality. This is the very essence of a Christian worldview” (Kevin Swanson, Apostate, 162).
“Since the advent of the secular universities from the 12th century in Europe or from the 17th century in America (Harvard College), these academic institutions have formed the juggernaut for undermining the Christian worldview in the West. This is hardly debatable, and the majority of public and private universities would admit this to be the case” (Kevin Swanson, Apostate, 156).
“The words of the Bible and the Word made flesh [John 1:14] are distinct, but they are also inseparable. Every act of redemption–from the exodus, to the return from exile, to the cross itself–is also revelation. They tell us something about the nature of sin, the way of salvation, and the character of God. Likewise, the point of revelation is always to redeem. The words of the prophets and the apostles are not meant to make us smart, but to get us saved. Redemption reveals. Revelation redeems” (Kevin DeYoung, Taking God At His Word, 50).