In Defense of Reggie Kidd…

The fiery comments keep coming in response to Reggie’s post. My friend and fellow cigar smoker John Muether wrote a clarifying comment when he said:

At some point before the comments reach triple digits it might be helpful to remind readers that your views do not represent the faculty at RTS Orlando, some of whom may still consider themselves to be Machen’s warriors.

Muether is correct. RTS/Orlando has rarely made absolute statements concerning Reformed debates. In fact, many were irate to find out that RTS/Orlando did not make an official statement concerning Evangelicals and Catholics Together. Sproul and others were not very happy as you can imagine. Nevertheless, RTS is what it is. It does not claim to be strictly confessional, in the sense that exceptions are not allowed, (As far as I know, Joseph Pipa’s seminary is one of the more strictly confessional seminaries) however, all faculty must annually sign a pledge of fidelity to the Westminster Confession and Catechisms as containing the system of doctrine found in Scripture (Thanks to John Muether for the clarifying statement). RTS is undoubtedly committed to the proclamation of the Reformed faith throughout the world as Richard Pratt (See Third Millennium Ministries) has so strongly defended. In fact, I remember clearly when he told us in class that the hope of the world is in and through Reformed theology.

This is not, however, a truncated Reformed faith based on particularities of infra or supra-lapsarian debate or even the typical Puritanesque (not meant pejoratively) regulative form of worship, though we do have our small TR guys around. You can always identify them on campus smoking their expensive cigars. I certainly do not speak for the faculty, but only give you my perspective as a student after attending RTS for over three years. I have seen much and know much; after all, I have lived inside that library more so than my own home.

The reason RTS/Orlando does not have a position on every debate under the sun is because every professor is highly aware of the nuances and the catholicism of the Reformed tradition. We have closet Postmillenarians and your typical Vosian Amillenialist; we have low-church types and high-church types; we have cigar smokers and those who think cigar-smokers are a threat to the church; we have Jack Miller guys (Steve Brown, are you reading this?) and we have those quasi-theonomists (I am not naming any names here); we have the political lefts (for those from WTS California, you may need to do a google search on what the word “politics” mean) and political rights; we have baby baptizers and those credo-baptists (who, by the way, only teach preaching classes). We invite D.A. Carson one year to teach a one- week class, then we invite J.I Packer to comfort us with Puritan dreams. We have Tony Campollo one year and then we have David Wells another. Is this diverse enough for you? Reggie understands this diversity and he lives in light of this diversity. This is why his circle of friends go beyond Presbyterian pals.

In the end of the day, RTS/Orlando (with a few exceptions) cherishes diversity. This is not a wishy-washy diversity; it is a diversity committed to the three words this blog stands for: Orthodoxy, Catholicity, and Lordship. This is how I want it and how I like it. You mess with Reggie, you mess with me.

About Uri Brito

I am the Pastor of Providence Church (CREC) in Pensacola, Fl.
This entry was posted in Seminaries. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to In Defense of Reggie Kidd…

  1. Ben Loos says:

    Well stated brother. Thanks for expessing my own thoughts so clearly.

    Benjamin Loos

    P.s. You mess with Reggie, you mess with me as well.

  2. John Muether says:

    Uri,

    Who’s got the expensive cigars and how can I get in on that action?

    You are right about diversity at Orlando, and I would agree that much of that diversity is a good thing. But to clarify one point: RTS-O is, in fact, “strictly confessional,” at least in this way: all faculty must annually sign a pledge of fidelity to the Westminster Confession and Catechisms as containing the system of doctrine found in Scripture. What we sign is not, in any sense, a loose subscription formula. The beauty of confessionalism, faithfully exercised, is that it cherishes diversity, and indeed it safeguards liberty, within its confessional boundaries.

    Best,
    John

  3. Uri Brito says:

    Thanks John…I remember Richard telling me once about the annual pledge…is it in blood or just ink? I am gonna add that little piece of info for clarification…the advantage of a blog is: you screw up, you can always fix up. Blessings brother…
    I guess Gary’s got the expensive cigars…leave it to the Maintenance dude to provide the wealth.

  4. Barb says:

    My only question is: how are female cigar smokers received at RTS O?

  5. Uri Brito says:

    Barb, you would be received as a great spokeswoman for the OPC in the United States. You would receive the J. Gresham Machen award for excellence in smoking and the John Muether award for favorite female OPC historian.

  6. John Muether says:

    Sorry, Uri and Barb, but my daughter Joy (history major at Covenant College) is my favorite female OPC historian.

  7. Uri Brito says:

    Barb, maybe second best female OPC historian.

  8. Barb says:

    Uri, lol. Thanks, but honesty requires me to say that the only award I’m likely to receive is “Best Female Black Sheep.”

    😉

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