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Al Mohler

Al Mohler Peddles Fake News On Christian Reformed Church

Al Mohler’s The Briefing podcast is one of the more prominent Southern Baptist podcast, likely enjoyed by many pastors. However, an episode that broadcasted last week showcased the seminary president’s blatant lack of research in preparing for his briefing on news. The episode focused on how two reformed denominations, the Christian Reformed Church and the Presbyterian Church in America tackled homosexuality.

Mohler begins the podcast by speaking on the war in Ukraine, giving perhaps one of the laziest yet sophist presentations I’ve seen of the war. He claimed that Kiev was currently besieged by Russia which would place his report months behind the current situation on the ground while simultaneously positing sophist geopolitical dogma. This was, to the normie, more offensively bad than his reporting on the Christian Reformed Church, however, in his reporting on the two reformed denominations he lauds them both despite the fact that the two denominations took an opposite action.

The PCA took steps to ban homosexuals from becoming pastors in an attempt to crack down on side b theology. The Christian Reform Church reaffirmed side b theology, which Mohler condemns.

Al Mohler states:

One of them calls itself reformed, the Christian Reformed Church and the other one is the Presbyterian Church in America. So a reform denomination, a Presbyterian denomination out of the same theological family. Both of them took very important actions to uphold a biblical understanding of sexuality.

I would also state that Protestia got this story wrong as well (but they weren’t the inspiration for this topic so Al Mohler is in the headline). As we will see, the CRC condemned homosexuality in so far as to condemn sodomy itself. They do not condemn homosexual attraction as sinful. In other words this denomination (re)affirmed side b theology.

In the CRC’s synod, they have a report on human sexuality which appears to be the basis for what is confessionalized by the denomination. Simply put, this is the source, in writing, for their understanding of the issue. There are numerous issues in this report.

For instance, the report promotes pronoun hospitality (pg. 398).  It then goes on to talk about giving “thought to how your church might address the injustice of ethnic minorities and other marginalized people being prostituted.” in a section that is supposed to be about parents (pg. 402).

The section on homosexuality immediately affirms side b theology.

Some Christians who are attracted to the same sex are comfortable describing themselves as lesbian, gay, or bisexual. Others do not use these labels to identify themselves because the Bible talks about behavior, not identity; or because they have chosen to live in obedience to the historically orthodox understanding of sexuality and thus do not want to be labeled with a word in any way connected with sinful behavior. Still others simply reject the notion of heterosexuality and homosexuality, believing that all of us are on a spectrum of sexual attraction. (page 404).

But side b is not a something the CRC is getting swept up by. They have been institutionally side b for a long time.

The Christian Reformed Church’s 1973 synodical report on homosexuality broke ground by making a distinction between homosexual orientation and homosexual activity. As the report put it, “We must distinguish between the person who is homosexual in [their] sexual orientation and the person who engages in explicit sexual acts with persons of the same sex.” It also noted that “homosexuality is not the result of any conscious choice or decision on the part of the person.” In other words, there is no sin in being attracted to the same sex. We only sin if we act on our sexual attractions. (page 405).

The CRC implies that they invented side b theology, which would make the reformed roots of the Revoice Movement make sense. At the time, 1973, it seems like the CRC was latching on to the idea of people being born gay, a hypothesis that has not come to fruition as noted in the report.

The church has also harmed people who are attracted to the same sex by promoting the false expectation of orientation change, as if believers who are attracted to the same sex can expect to become attracted to the opposite sex as they are sanctified. (page 408).

It is important to conclude our consideration of Scripture’s teaching on homosexuality by emphasizing the fact that although Scripture condemns homosexual sex, it does not condemn people who are attracted to the same sex. Nor does it condemn all those who have engaged in homosexual activity…. The good news of the gospel is that through his Holy Spirit God enables all his children—heterosexual and homosexual alike—to be freed from the destructive forces of sin and to live a life of holiness to God (1 Thess. 4:3-8). (Page 426)

This does not mean that people who are attracted to the same sex will lose their same-sex orientation this side of Christ’s return. Nor does it mean they will cease being tempted, even as Jesus himself was tempted. All believers can expect to battle our deepest temptations to selfishness, lust, pride, arrogance, violence, and all others sins until we see Jesus’ face. (page 426).

There is very little hope offered by the Christian Reformed Church in the power of the Holy Spirit to overcome sins. Al Mohler comments:

The point is here overwhelmingly. They voted by that margin of 123 to 53, to confessionalize the denominations statement on homosexuality as sin. It’s opposition to homosexual sex and relationships. Now, that’s massive.

The problem is the Christian Reformed Church fought a battle between side a (a for antinomian) and side b theology, and side b theology won. Neither of these positions are orthodox, so this is a rather meaningless struggle. This flies in the face of Mohler’s commentary on the PCA.

Now you look at that and you say, “Well, that seems to be a pretty clear difference.” One affirms homosexual behaviors, the other doesn’t. And yet theologically, the distinction between side A and side B begins to fall apart when you understand the fact that both of them are based in a form of modern ideology and identity politics and a modern understanding of affirming identity in such a way that both side A and side B would use language about being, for instance, a gay Christian. The Presbyterian Church in America in its General Assembly voted that such an identity is incompatible with ordained ministry in the Presbyterian Church in America.

Al Mohler seems to condemn homosexual identity which would seem to contradict his 2014 embrace of homosexual orientation, but I digress. Mohler concludes by stating, “Good news out of the PCA. Good news out of the CRC.” But the CRC took negative steps on the issue of homosexuality and thus proves that side b theology leads to side a, even though the side b larpers were able to fend off their more liberal antinomian counterparts. As for Al Mohler, he may want to quit The Briefing and subscribe to the Evangelical Dark Web RSS feed instead.

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