Sunday, January 16, 2005

Anglicanism's unassisted suicide

WorldNetDaily: "'Anglicans are not united on whether we should legalise euthanasia,' Gill contended to the London Observer. 'The bishops have consistently shown they don't believe in changing the law, but the majority of churchgoers think it should be amended.'"

The article also reports that the Archbishop of Canterbury is still solidly pro-life, but I wonder if that is still the case since he gave up hope. The leadership of Western Anglicanism is an object lesson. It shows how fast a church can spiral downward to irrelevance and obsolescence once it replaces the inerrant Word of God with conventional human wisdom; that which is cutting edge and enlightened today is (to put it generously) quaint tomorrow. By contrast, historic, orthodox Christianity, as expressed in the Bible and encompassed in what Vincent of Lerins described as, "That which is believed everywhere, at all times and by all" has survived the tide of history without having to be propped up by the coercive power of the state. Yes, medieval Roman Catholicism resorted to force in the Inquisition and Crusades, but Christianity has never been coterminous with the Roman Church.

For a long time I have been bemused and saddened at the puzzlement of the leaders of "liberal" churches. For all their educated sophistication, they can't understand why their pews continue to be vacated. Maybe one must be "unsophisticated" to see this, but it seems to me that if "Christianity" is something that we are making up as we go along, and so implicity is neither divine nor objectively true but is rooted in our imaginations, then there are much better uses for a Sunday morning than gathering with others to engage in activity that is the metaphysical equivalent of a role-playing game. Just as there is a fringe who is into Dungeons & Dragons, there will be a handful who actually enjoy what Francis Schaeffer described as contentless connotation words and symbol manipulation. Many, however, will continue their pursuit of objective reality that exists byond themselves and their little group, and that pursuit will take them elsewhere.

For since, in the wisdom of God, the world did not know God through wisdom, it pleased God through the folly of what we preach to save those who believe. For Jews demand signs and Greeks seek wisdom, but we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. 1 Corinthians 1:21-25