I am the pastor of Providence Church in Pensacola, Fl. I am the husband of Melinda and father of Abigail, Ezekiel, and Ephraim. I am a lover of life and liturgy, and I assume that life is liturgical. I believe Jesus is Lord and King. Biblical theocracy is true and necessary. The Lord’s Day Worship is the most important part of the week. The Genevan Psalter is magnificent. Feasting is good and right. Technology is not evil. God loves wine. Books are God’s gifts to man. Apostasy is real. Baptism is baptism. The Eucharist is God’s food for hungry people. And the Triune God is the pattern for all of life.
I am the editor of The Church-Friendly Family (purchase the printed book here) and author of the pastoral essay The Trinitarian Father (currently available in kindle only). I am the founder and contributor to The Kuyperian Commentary, and I am also a guest contributor at The Christian Post.
nice! Uri in PRINT! thanks for adding me on the blogroll! you are da bomb
I see you chose a good name for your blog 😉 By the way, could you please define the difference between classical and modern theonomy? I know others, like myself, who hold to a form of theonomy more akin to the Reformers and Puritans, but are reticent to call themselves “theonomists”, not only because of the sinful misrepresentation of Bahnsen and others, but also because of the (bizarrely!) antinomian and hyper-covenantalist nature of much of the modern movement (and now the New Perspective on Paul, etc.).
Greetings Timothy, You have a fine blog yourself. I have a feeling though we are in agreement with much, but are in disagreement with much.
You use strong words in your description; that can be a quality and a great flaw at the same time. To say what Dr. Greg Bahnsen thought is sinful is bizzare and to say that the modern theonomic movement is antinomian is strangely contradictory.
The classical theonomic movement has its roots in Calvin (see sermons in Deuteronomy). The modern theonomic movement which grew in proliferation of books in the 70’s is a continuation of the early theonomic movement in the 16th century. The Rev. Joe Morecraft who is utterly opposed to the FV crowd, holds to that classical theonomic view as well.
You may be simply confusing ideas. In my mind, there are only nuances between the Puritans and modern theonomists that are considered different. I apply that same principle with the Puritan view of Postmillenialism and Modern Postmillenialism like myself (Rev. 20 as an example). I hope this helps.
You have defined the historical context of your use of the terms “classical” and “modern”, but I’d be interested in the theoretical distinction between the two.
By the way, you seem to have misunderstood me. Please note that I said that Bahnsen was sinfully misrepresented, not that Bahnsen’s theonomic beliefs are sinful. I have a very high regard for Bahnsen, Gentry and Morecraft, and basically agree with their thesis.
The issue I’m raising is that some are reticent to use the label, lest they be associated with the misrepresentation, e.g. there have been articles filled with error in the main Calvinist newspaper in the U.K., the Evangelical Times, who have persisted in these lies despite letters with clear quotes from Bahnsen and others’ views refuting these misrepresentations.
An example of the antinomian nature of some of the modern movement is the often low view of the 4th Commandment that is exhibited as opposed to the theonomists of the past. The paradoxical nature of espousing a high view of the Law and at the same time having such a low view of some aspects of the Law does indeed seem bizarre to some of us. (Of course I understand that what one man calls “antinomian”, another man calls “being more consistently Biblical”.)
Also some of the views of covenant theology expressed by Rushdoony in IBL, and extended by some more recent men, is in opposition to the covenant theology of ‘Puritan’ theonomists. This hyper-covenantalism has led to the recent opinions that have divided the theonomic movement.
Another major issue is the intemperate and uncharitable statements made by some modern theonomists, which again some ‘Puritan’ theonomists are anxious not to be associated with. We all can get too hot under the collar on occasions (from which we all need to repent), but some have a major problem with it, that undermines the message of theonomy. (Men are too influenced by ad hominems, sadly.)
I know that others who should really call themselves ‘Puritan’ theonomists have an issue with some of the minimalist views of civil government expressed by some modern proponents as well. Government’s role should be restricted by the bounds of Scripture, but sometimes the minimalism of some does not take into account the post-Israel nature of the Church, or indeed appears to be more restrictive than Scripture is itself. The great difficulty is applying the case law in a modern environment.
I guess what fundamentally unites all theonomists, whether they feel comfortable using the label or not, is the belief that the general (or common) equity that continues from the Mosaic Civil Law into the NT age consists in not merely the morality of the civil law, but also the penology.
I am not advocating a fully fledged return to the “bad old days’ of theological controversy which I heard described as “odium theologicum” while at College. Nevertheless it is important to remember that God wants us to hold firmly to the faith once delivered to the saints. And that means we are devoted to it both in thought and heart.
Sometimes those who are concerned about “intemperate” and “uncharitable” would even find fault with the Saviour himself. He actually dared to call the opposition “whited sepulchers” and how about some of the descriptions of Paul and the other apostles. We need to accept that sometimes there will be things said which (after we cool down) we might decide we could have been a little less hot about – like Paul’s treatment of Barnabas over John Mark – but if we allow that in others and are careful ourselves people notice and make a distinction.
Calvin was not a Zwingli, nor a Luther yet he was known to have some outspoken things to say about heretics. That we don’t see it quite that way doesn’t stop us appreciating him, nor will it stop us appreciating those who may be a little intemperate or uncharitable where they teach the truth.
Thank you both for making the discussion fruitful to all 🙂
Yes, I did misunderstand your comments about Professor Bahnsen. My apologies Timothy.
Your final statement is well summarized: I guess what fundamentally unites all theonomists, whether they feel comfortable using the label or not, is the belief that the general (or common) equity that continues from the Mosaic Civil Law into the NT age consists in not merely the morality of the civil law, but also the penology.
I concur. It is the penology that we are mostly concerned about. Of course, even in this area there are some varying disputations such as Murray’s view that the penalty for adultery is now divorce and so on. I would place Murray within the theonomic camp, though he would decidedly differ with some crucial areas of penal sanctions.
As for Bahnsen being misrepresented, it still continues today from Kline’s disciples. Thankfully, Gentry continues to be a strong force in rejecting the flawed presuppositions. Frankly, I think Bahnsen al
ready answered them long ago. I would love to continue this conversation. Do you have an MSN account INSTANT MESSENGER or something like it?
Sadly I think you are right about the Bahnsen and Kline division – doesn’t it make thing hard when you gained huge benefits from both men? I guess it’s a little like loving Luther’s views on justification and having to side with Zwingli’s views on the Lord’s Supper.
I do have an MSN Messenger account. You have my e-mail, so you can get me that way. Please note that at this precise moment, I’m behind schedule for getting to bed, but do try any other time that I’m on-line.
I still think it would be helpful to define the “classical”/”modern” distinction.
Tim, I am not sure I have your e-mail. E-mail me: email@example.com
Correct me on my sterotypes here, but a Brazilian who is into plainsong??? Maybe you grew up with too much rhythm and needed to get away?
I think Brazil is the world capital of rhythm. But problem is, they are also so good at melody too. So yeah , its obviously too much music that has driven you into the culture of the dark ages. (I joke – it’s all good!)
Hans Kung is still alive and well.
well, indeed you have radical positions, but this is important for a man´s life. You have to defend something and make sure you´re living. And about the beer I hope to take some with you next you come to Brazil or in the time that I may visit you…kkkkkkkk…
Of course i´m sure you weren´t expecting my message…..so that´s I good surprise….Don´t forget. I really love you brother. And….I´m happy about your comments….that´s my frogoface brother…
its awesome to see your blog on the net, well its very interesting too.
Thank you Andy. Have we met?
Your blog showed up on mine as “other sites in which my readers might have interest.” Not sure how that came about, but I read with interest some of your thoughts some of the responses. You’re obviously a very careful student, with potential as a scholarly theologian. I respect that. My approach is quite different. In my blog (scripturestudent.wordprss.com, for example, my entire approach is committed to being a devotional approach to Scripture. I’m not avoiding or demeaning anonther approach. This just seems to be what I should do. I avoid denominational, political issues and the like. I attempt to avoid controversial or divisive issues and try to use the tools an investigative journalist would use in my approach to the study. Wish you’d take look and feel free to offer any comments or suggestions. You may also want to visit firstname.lastname@example.org. He’s pastor of a historic old Quaker Church in North Carolina…but, trust me, very, very astute. If that address gives you any problems, I can be reached at email@example.com
Uri, found your blog through the Bright Light web site. It was great reading your bio. I’m glad you are in Pensacola. I know many of the churches are heavily dispensationalist and we’re not talking modern-day DTS either. Being in that part of the panhandle, in central time, it really is more like lower Alabama than Florida. The southern hospitality may be there, but some of the bad stuff that often occupies the South are there as well, culturally and theologically.
Three cheers for mentioning any of the guys from Old Princeton! I realized I had a lot of stuff from that era, so I decided to devote a whole shelf (and growing!) to it. I like how you said, “Though I have gone through various theological transitions, I find myself fixed in the Classical Puritan Theonomic position” because too often we’re seeing those who go through transition and don’t ever identify with a position and stick with it. I think McLaren falls into this mold.
Kedric, how is Bright Light these days? Are you still in the Oviedo area?
“Ism Smism” What would Jesus do?
Sorry, I gave up on religiosity and all the theological dead end roads the day my dogma ate my karma. I do enjoy reading your post and I do understand that you have devoted your life to the study of Gods word and I respect that.
Although, a mans outlined view of Gods word is just that, and does not open the truth to those with an ear to hear Gods “Word” or, Logos, Living JESUS. I have done a bit of studying other peoples versions of what He has to say to me in the Bible for many years and came to realize when He spoke through His “Word” to my heart that no man’s religion will ever save anyone.
The 5 point hyper-calvinistic belief is only one of those many far fetched forms of “Denominational Narcissism” built on an out of context view of Gods word.
I implore you to take a closer look sometime, while you are in Romans chapter 9 through Hebrews 13, and listen to see if you can hear the slightest echo to these words:
(The time of the Gentiles:)
(The Fullness of the Gentiles:)
When that fullness is fulfilled the “Scales will fall from the eyes of the part of Israel that were blinded, as the scales fell from Pauls eyes, when God gave the Ministry to him on Straight Street, at the onset, or the begining of the “Time” of the Gentiles.
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I’ve seen you in BH’dom and at Bully’s blog. Good to get to know you here. I, too, am an RTS grad ’01 from Orlando. Maybe we will chat later as I rummage through your archives. Keep walking (how long did you have to walk to get through Jordan’s Rev. series? I was driving a truck and did it in a month and a 1/2!!), listening, and loving.
Do you have any posts on preterism? As I am teaching through Thess I am constantly struggling to keep a non-1st C interpretation “in” the text. I hear Paul addressing in both letters what Jesus itemises in Matt 24. What thinkest thou? Oh! I was so disappointed with the RTS (C. Hill) version of Revelation’s meaning. You?
Hey, where are your top 5 movies? The link’s a bust.
Travis, pleasure to get to know you as well. I hope you can attend AAPC in 2011. Here’s the link to the top 5: https://apologus.wordpress.com/2010/01/01/the-five-best-movies-of-2009/
I had a chance to challenge Hill on a few occasions during his Hebrews-Revelation. The guy is brilliant, but holds on to his Dutch Amillennialism real tight.
I am slowly working through Jim’s stuff on Revelation. Ya know, he’s my Sunday School teacher here at Providence, so I get to interact with him regularly…but his Revelation stuff is better than Gentry. Have you heard my on-line interview with him on Revelation?
As for I Thes., I am still thinking through it.
Great to read a bit of your story, Uri. I’ve been poking around the blog a bit. Interesting stuff so far 🙂 God bless, sir.
Blessings to you, Aaron. Thanks for stopping by..I had a chance to visit your blog as well…will continue to do so.
Uri, I assume that you are aware that the title of your blog is the Jesuit motto and is most likely a anti-protestant slur?
Of course. i am also aware that Roman Catholics see “This is my body” as an anti-protestant text, but it doesn’t keep me from interpreting it as I think properly. Anyhow, thanks for your concern.
I didn’t mean any disrespect, challenge, or rebuke. Simply wondering if you knew. I’m a friend.
None taken, but who art thou? I went to seminary with five or more Tim’s. Are you any of those?
I am a pastor.my name is prasanth kumar. how r u bro? i need your help . at 40 members poor chilsrans & 23 old age persons . I mean sons or daughter get up & forget people .10 handicapeds .2 persons blind mens. pls send word to me .
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5 months ago I opened my heart to the Lord and understood the meaning of “forgiveness”. on 20 Feb 2011 (Spirit filled), the Lord has blessed me with several visions and messages since. The messages and visions come in within a minute and usually during the day and I just write them as is…I tell everyone….its not me…but the Lord’s message. I live in Australia….I never read the bible till 5 months ago…now I read morning and night… I’m so excited as I’m on a journey of peace and serving the Lord my God!! I hope you enjoy the power of this message… This message came last week mid july 2011.
King over Kings
I am your God
and King over Kings
Your crown is of
Gold and stones
My crown is the universe
and the stars
are just ingots
of my glory!
sits above you
and you bow
at my feet in
praise of me!
cannot be counted
as they fill my
holy temples throughout
King above all kings
cant be measures only
My hand can
reach out and
lift and deliver any
of my children
out of trouble
for I hear every cry and
feel their pain!
My angels watch
over them day and night!
is in you
no man is the King
over my children!
For I am
King over kings
and my kingdom
reigns for eternity!
my email is firstname.lastname@example.org I believe that messages should be spoken and shared so everyone can enjoy the glory of God. May god bless you all… Shalom, Shalom.
What Theocracy are you talking about?
Christian Theocracy = Rule of the Trinitarian God
It’s so rare to see a nice post like this one these days. There sure has to be some kind of really addictive quality about your website because I can not go for more than a few hours without visiting. You might have just saved me a ton of work just now. Your perspective is really refreshing.
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Touche. Great arguments. Keep up the amazing work.
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