From the twitter-
Pope Francis Says Atheists Who Do Good Are Redeemed, Not Just Catholics http://zite.to/Ze4Oo8
Well he’s wrong. NO ONE is saved by doing good. No one. The Pope has evidently never bothered to read Galatians 2-
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Paul is right- Francis is not.
A fun post over at Calvinist International suggests
A modern reader might be surprised to learn that Hodge was not a biblical fundamentalist who defended a literal interpretation of Genesis. Although he was a biblical theologian, he accepted scientific evidence and interpreted the “days” of Genesis as geological ages, so biblical chronology played virtually no role in his critique of Darwinism. Like many of his contemporaries, he faulted Darwin’s theory on scientific and philosophical grounds; it wasn’t warranted by the available evidence, and it made implausible assumptions. But his principal objections were theological. First, although Darwin acknowledged that God may have originally breathed life “into a few forms or into one,” he attributed their subsequent evolution to autonomous natural forces instead of to God’s superintending providence. Hodge objected that Darwinism, in this respect, was a form of deism (the view that God created the world but then turned it loose to run by itself).
And more. Enjoy.
Pope Francis is actually a Christian. Piper is a self aggrandizing prat.
But thankfully there are vigilant folk about to remind us that
Vor 80 Jahren, am 20. Mai 1933, nahmen Reformierte im Rheinland mit einer – maßgeblich von Karl Barth verfassten – “theologischen Erklärung zur Gestalt der Kirche” Stellung gegen eine Anpassung der Kirche an das nationalsozialistische Regime. In der ersten “Düsseldorfer These” heißt es: “Die heilige christliche Kirche, deren einziges Haupt Christus ist, ist aus dem Wort Gottes geboren; in demselben bleibt sie und hört nicht die Stimme eines Fremden.”
Unlike Bonhoeffer, Barth and Bultmann and Brunner all acted properly and still managed to decry the horrors of Hitler’s ideology. Thank God for fearless theologians who remain Christian in deed as well as word.
A strange thing has happened to Christian theology: it has become a sort of (Neville) Chamberlain-esque bowing at the altar of concession. No longer do many theologians ‘proclaim’. Now they concede.
They concede to culture and they concede to science and they concede to opinion, even though none of those things have the right or the wisdom to dictate to them about things metaphysical.
And yet the theologians bow the knee and grovel and stoop. And concede. Ever so foolishly and stupidly, for none of those worldly things can ever be sufficiently appeased until faith is dead and secularism reugns supreme.
And still the theologians, hoping for just a scrap of respect from a system which despises it, beg.
As Peter said to Simon, who also wanted respect and approval and thought he could buy it (just as our theologians think they can buy it through always more concessions) I say to the theologians of concession: ‘to hell with you and your gold’.
Only a theology which esteems God as Lord OF ALL can call itself Christian. The rest can perish, and will. Along with those appeasers who profess them.
Civility is a lovely thing. Compromise of basic foundational principles in the name of civility is cowardice and dishonesty.
‘If it feels good, do it’ has, curiously, replaced self control for many naming themselves disciples of Christ. Wholly abandoned are the admonitions of Paul who wrote
Now everyone who competes exercises self-control in everything. However, they do it to receive a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one. Therefore I do not run like one who runs aimlessly, or box like one who beats the air. Instead, I discipline my body and bring it under strict control, so that after preaching to others, I myself will not be disqualified. (1Co 9:25-27).
“Self control? What’s that?” That could be the motto of this age. But it isn’t a Christian attitude and it isn’t even really even remotely Christian. Paul points out that the fruit of the Spirit includes ‘self control’ and he remarks
Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, we must also follow the Spirit (Gal 5:24-25).
Not ‘we ought to follow the Spirit when it suits us or when our culture allows us to do it’ but ‘we must’. It’s that notion of ‘must-ness’ that has disappeared today. No longer do many believers (disciples in name only) subsume their own wishes to the will of God. This is why any semblance of obedience to God disappears more each day from the theological landscape.
Now, instead of heeding God and living in the Spirit rather than the flesh, quite the opposite happens and the practitioners of disobedience excuse themselves with all manner of ‘reasons’- none of which trump one simple truth: it isn’t the will of man that matters- it’s the will of God.
Bending to the will of the flesh may be common practice, but it isn’t a Christian virtue. It isn’t Christian.
Calvin in one of his many “I told you so!” moments
“They who wish to become partakers [of a grace] of so great a benefit must be a part of Israel, that is, of the Church, out of which there can be neither salvation nor truth.”
“Such as forsake the Church … wholly alienate themselves from Christ.”
“…Departing from the Church is a falling away from the living God”.
So Calvin on three separate occasions. No church, no salvation. Know church, know salvation.
Sponsored by the American Bible Society. Check it out and take part. There’s plenty to pray for. Plenty.
Offered without comment (but those of you who are Pastors will know EXACTLY what Luther means)
“In this life Christ is incomprehensible. He rewards his best ministers in such a way that I must say I hardly know what I am about, whether I preach aright or not. This tormented St. Paul too. He didn’t talk much about it to others, I think. He couldn’t talk about it, for who can imagine what he meant when he said, ‘I die every day’ [I Cor. 15:31]. Christ, too, had his temptations.”