The world tempts you with insane words about “trying harder”, “doing better”, “trusting yourself”. Confession, however, is the act of coming into the Light of the sanity of Christ’s kingdom of peace. All sin is insanity, but confession is walking in the truth, walking in reality, walking in the Kingdom of Christ. The Gospel speaks a clear word of sanity: your sins are forgiven through Christ.
The Christian faith is not a privately held religious belief. As if we could fold up the greatest news which has ever occurred upon this planet, stuff it in our coat pocket & go whistling along as if nothing has happened. Christ is the great fork in the road of history.
You don’t get to ignore Him, or go around Him, or avoid Him. He is the immovable fact which must be reckoned with. He came to mankind, and you must either fling wide the gates, or bar them in stubborn unbelief. Christ entered Jerusalem, the City of David, to assert His right to earth’s throne. And then He won it by dying the death which you deserved.
Thus, the question that is perpetually before each of us is this: what have I done about Jesus? You either cling to Him in faith, fleeing from all your sin and unbelief in so doing. Or else you have determined to live in the house of mirrors which is your unbelieving pride.
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PCA Grace Presbytery Sends Request to GA to Assume Original Jurisdiction Over TE Greg JohnsonBy Staff — 1 year ago
After a number of whereas statements, Grace Presbytery concluded with the following request: “Therefore, be it resolved that Grace Presbytery requests that the General Assembly assume original jurisdiction in the case of the doctrinal error of Teaching Elder Greg Johnson, per BCO 34-1.”
On May 10, 2022, Grace Presbytery approved an overture to submit to General Assembly. This overture requests that the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church in America assume original jurisdiction of TE Greg Johnson to investigate his views on alleged doctrinal errors on biblical human sexuality.
The Book of Church Order 34-1 states that at least two presbyteries must request the General Assembly to assume original jurisdiction over a minister to act in cases of doctrinal issues or public scandal. Grace Presbytery is the second one to approve the overture. They join Southeast Alabama Presbytery in requesting the General Assembly to assume original jurisdiction.
Here is the Overture:
OVERTURE from Grace Presbytery“BCO 34-1 Request to Assume Original Jurisdiction over TE Greg Johnson”
Whereas in his responses to Missouri Presbytery’s July 21, 2020, BCO 31-2 investigation of allegations against him, TE Greg Johnson affirmed in some matters he was either unclear, imprecise, or his perspectives have matured over time (SJC Judicial Case 2020-12, pg. 10, lines 40-45),
Whereas in his responses to the Standing Judicial Commission’s additional questions, TE Greg Johnson affirmed his belief in the Bible’s teaching on human sexuality regarding same-sex attraction (homosexual orientation, inter alia) and qualifications for ordained ministerial office, as summarized in the Westminster Standards (e.g., SJC Judicial Case 2020-12, pg. 14; lines 25-30; lines 42-45, pg. 15; lines 1-20, etc.),
Whereas in his responses to the Standing Judicial Commission’s additional questions, TE Greg Johnson specifically denied identifying as a “gay Christian,” including using this couplet of words (SJC Judicial Case 2020-12, pg. 17; lines 42-46, pg. 16; lines 1-11),
Whereas in his responses to the Standing Judicial Commission’s additional questions, TE Greg Johnson affirmed the necessity of a man ordained to ministerial office to be above reproach (SJC Judicial Case 2020-12, pg. 24; lines 38-46, pg. 25; lines 1-46, pg. 26; lines 1-30),
Whereas in his responses to the Standing Judicial Commission’s additional questions, TE Greg Johnson affirmed that some of his public comments had upset the peace of the PCA, and offered a commitment to repair such harm and work to commit no further harm (SJC Judicial Case 2020-12, pg. 27; lines 25-34),
Whereas since the record of the case of the original Missouri Presbytery investigation of him (July 21, 2020), and even after the Standing Judicial Commission judicial case 2020-12 (October 21, 2021), TE Greg Johnson has made numerous public comments that appear to either contradict or at least offer confusion to his previous affirmations in these matters (see examples in the attached addendum),
Whereas the Standing Judicial Commission found Missouri Presbytery did err by “failing to do what it needed to do to protect the peace and purity of the broader Church, particularly in light of the responsibilities set forth in BCO 11-3, 4” pertaining to Revoice 18 (SJC Judicial Case 2020-05; lines 26-35),
Whereas TE Greg Johnson uses the same confusing and misleading terminology as Revoice 18, throughout his book, Still Time to Care: What We Can Learn from the Church’s Failed Attempt to Cure Homosexuality (Zondervan, 12/7/21),
Therefore, be it resolved that Grace Presbytery requests that the General Assembly assume original jurisdiction in the case of the doctrinal error of Teaching Elder Greg Johnson, per BCO 34-1.
Approved by Grace Presbytery on the 10th day of May, 2022.Attested by Samuel J. Duncan, Stated Clerk of Grace Presbytery
Attachment: Addendum, examples of public comments from TE Greg Johnson either contradicting or offering confusion to his affirmations to Missouri Presbytery’s BCO 31-2 investigation (July 21, 2020), and the Standing Judicial Commission judicial case 2020-12 (October 21, 2021).
Attachment(Overture to 49th General Assembly)Examples of public comments from TE Greg Johnsoneither contradicting or offering confusion to his affirmations toMissouri Presbytery’s BCO 31-2 investigation (July 21, 2020),and the Standing Judicial CommissionJudicial Case 2020-12 (October 21, 2021)
11/05/21 Comments in an article, published in the Washington Post, “Traditional ‘Side B’ LGBTQ Christians experience a renaissance,” by Kathryn Post (originally published by Religion News Service, https://religionnews.com/2021/11/05/traditional-side-b-lgbtq-christians-experience-a-renaissance/).
11/18/21 Comments in a blog post, published on The Center For Faith, Sexuality & Gender blog site, “Equivocation and the Ex-Gay Script” (https://www.centerforfaith.com/blog/equivocation-and-the-ex-gay-script).
12/03/21 Comments in a podcast interview, published on The Hole in My Heart Podcast, “Episode 189: The Church Wasn’t Always So Bad at the LGBTQ Conversation with Greg Johnson” (https://lauriekrieg.com/podcast/the-church-wasnt-always-so-terrible-at-the-lgbtq-conversation-with-greg-johnson/)
12/07/21 Comments in his book, Still Time to Care: What We Can Learn from the Church’s Failed Attempt to Cure Homosexuality (Zondervan, 12/7/21).
12/22/21 Comments in an article, published in USA Today, “I’m a gay, celibate pastor of a conservative church. Here’s a trick for de-escalation.” (https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/voices/2021/12/22/family-holidays-god-patience-compassion/6496994001/?gnt-cfr=1)
12/29/21 Comment on Facebook page, “As you consider final year end giving, please support Revoice. No movement has done more to shift conservative Christian thinking from the false hope of ex-gay cures to the great tradition of care for non-straight people committed to living out the biblical sexual ethic within the church. This ministry has meant a great deal to me, and your consideration will be deeply appreciated.”
01/02/22 Comments in a podcast interview, published on The Hopper Podcast, “41 Greg Johnson, Still Time to Care / Linus in the Resurrection” (https://podcasts.captivate.fm/media/4b17fc7d-79da-4c3a-8ab0-74ebf4a0cb92/02-greg-johnson.mp3).
01/04/22 Comments in a podcast interview, published on Conversations About Life, “Being Gay and Christian w/ Pastor Greg Johnson” (https://willjackson.com/ being-gay-and-christian-w-pastor-greg-johnson/).
01/25/22 Comments in a podcast interview, published on The Learner’s Corner with Caleb Mason, “Episode 269: Greg Johnson On What We Can Learn From the Church’s Failed Attempt to Cure Homosexuality” (https://podcast.app/greg-johnson-on-what-we-can-learn-from-the-churchs-failed-attempt-to-cure-homosexuality-e202358953/).
02/12/22 Comments in a booklet, On Mission with the LGBTQ+ Community (Zondervan, supplement to Still Time to Care). (https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?%20story_fbid=3140676279584649&id=100009269249854&__cft__=AZXHombYoEDWNCvkRpzWlYG8mCooDtS2qQk_KzE6Lcn8KadXolEqezT3elg4dvGvKFRISxCyDHC6LcfCIunLwthjBCwcxaJKRSz2aABvF0_GC-5IvMsxxmlCyTGwR41H7x0&__tn__=%2CO%2CP-R%2Chttps%3A%2F%2Fdrive.google.com%2Ffile%2Fd%2F1gu0ZH6igfWes0vyp%20OUnEtnTEMigw9fVu%2Fview).
Does 1 Corinthians 6:9 Really Condemn Homosexual Sex?By admin — 2 years ago
The filmmakers insist 1946 is “not an attack on Christianity or the Bible” but rather “a quest to discover biblical truth and honor God’s Word.” However well-intentioned the film might be, its ultimate claim does not stand up to linguistic and historical critique.
“What if the word ‘homosexual’ was never meant to be in the Bible?” That is the question the new documentary 1946: The Mistranslation that Shifted a Culture is dedicated to answering.
The documentary explores the linguistic history of the word “homosexual” and its appearance in the Revised Standard Version (RSV) of the Bible, first published on February 11, 1946. In short, the film seeks to show that the RSV’s use of the term “homosexuals” instead of “sexual perverts” is an inaccurate translation of the Greek words malakoi and arsenokoitai. (It is worth noting that although recent editions of the RSV have reverted to using “sexual perverts,” many other translations still translate it as “homosexuals.”) According to the documentary, homosexual sex is biblically permissible, and the RSV’s “mistranslation” has influenced subsequent English translations of the Bible, resulting in Western society believing that “sexual and gender minorities must choose between their faith and their identity.”
The filmmakers insist 1946 is “not an attack on Christianity or the Bible” but rather “a quest to discover biblical truth and honor God’s Word.” However well-intentioned the film might be, its ultimate claim does not stand up to linguistic and historical critique. 1946 undermines biblical sexual ethics under the guise of honest hermeneutics.
Evaluating the “Mistranslation” Allegation
Alan Shlemon from the Christian apologetics ministry Stand to Reason writes that, despite 1946’s captivating premise where power-hungry white men oppress “sexual minorities” through Bible translation, “Even if the film’s claims are true, it doesn’t matter. The entire documentary is a non sequitur.”
There are many reasons the film 1946 fails to be intellectually compelling, including:
subsequent Bible translators did not use the RSV’s English translation unchecked;
the prohibition of homosexual sex is found elsewhere in the Bible and is well-attested throughout church history, not just since 1946; and
one young seminary student, whom the film follows, would not have had the expertise to truly dispute the RSV translation committee.
Despite these realities, the documentary is often cited as proof that the Bible does not condemn homosexuality and that the church should re-examine its view on sexual ethics.
To address the film’s claim that same-sex relations are not prohibited in the Bible, we will answer three questions:
What do the allegedly mistranslated words in 1 Corinthians 6:9 mean?
What is the biblical sexual ethic?
Why is the biblical sexual ethic good news for everyone?
By answering these questions, Christians can refute the radical claim that the Bible permits homosexual sex with knowledge, clarity, grace, and love.
What Do the Allegedly Mistranslated Words in 1 Corinthians 6:9 Mean?
1 Corinthians 6:9-10 states:
Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.” (ESV, emphasis added)
The contested phrase translated “men who practice homosexuality” comes from the Greek “ο¿τε μαλακο¿ ο¿τε ¿ρσενοκο¿ται,” transliterated as oute malakoi oute arsenokoitai. The phrase oute…oute means “neither…nor,” so the verse is saying “neither _____ nor _____ … will inherit the kingdom of God.” So, we must fill in the blanks. What do malakoi and arsenokoitai mean?
In his book The Bible and Homosexual Practice: Texts and Hermeneutics, Dr. Robert A. J. Gagnon explains that the term malakoi can carry a variety of meanings depending on the author and context. Often it meant “soft” or “effeminate.” In ancient usage, malakos could range from those who had a penchant for “soft” or decadent living, to those averse to the rigor of a philosopher’s life, to the passive partner in homosexual intercourse. Thus, while at first glance it might seem challenging to know exactly how Paul is using the term in this passage, context is key. Based on the context of 1 Corinthians 6:9—a list of unrepentant sins displayed by those who will not inherit the kingdom of God—and Jewish understanding of the term at the time, Paul’s intent is clear. As Gagnon summarizes, “In 1 Cor. 6:9, malakoi should be understood as the passive partners in homosexual intercourse” (p. 312).
My Body, My ChoiceBy Kevin Carson — 2 years ago
The First and Second Commandments to love God and love our neighbors serve as our life ethic. Regardless of whether we talk about abortion or pandemics, we seek to love God most and lovingly serve others well. Why? Because we respect God and respect the image of God.
You’ve heard it. “My Body, My Choice!” or “Follow the Science!”—we’ve all heard both of these statements many times over the years. I’ve only hung out on this planet for half a century; however, the theme of the pro-abortion crowd has been, “My Body, My Choice” for many of those years. Likewise, in the past eighteen months or so, any day of the week you might hear or read someone say to “Follow the science” related to the pandemic. People have told us to live by these mantras, slogans, or mottos—and continue—but don’t look too closely. Many of the people who say these things, as we have observed this week, do not live by them.
My Body, My Choice
Consider how historically the words “My Body, My Choice” stood for those arguing for women’s rights, as people in the 1970s fought for reproductive rights and accessible abortions. Individuals and groups who used this mantra argued for any woman to have a right to end a pregnancy anytime she wanted since it is was her body and her choice whether or not to have a baby. Over the past many months, however, individuals are making this claim against masks and vaccines. People using the same slogan argue against mandated vaccinations by the government and employers, as well as vaccination passports. Seemingly, it is the same crowd, who for years championed the slogan, who now oppose it related to vaccinations.
But, not so fast, this week’s SCOTUS decision to allow a new law in Texas related to abortion to stand brought out these same individuals arguing again with the same slogan for abortion rights. Protestors marched in Austin at the Texas State Capital this week again arguing for “My Body, My Choice.”
How can you argue both? Related to what I want (in this case, abortion), it is My Body, My Choice. However, if you do not want to get a vaccination, then the same argument does not apply.
Follow the Science
Anyone who has lived in the US over the past eighteen months and also followed the pandemic at any level has heard the mantra, “Follow the Science.” Both the Trump and Biden administrations nationally as well as many state and local governments have said ad nauseam to “Follow the Science.” Of course the statement gets more than a little confusing as we try to sort through the science on social media, YouTube, and government websites.
What happens though if the science changes? Related to the pandemic, again, the science tends to change each week. Vaccination efficacy, variants, breakthrough infections, and symptomatic positivity rates frustrate even the best observers trying to determine what is what. Certainly no one can say the science is settled. Yet, some employers, schools, elected and nonelected officials, and others continue to make policy based upon the argument, “Follow the science.”