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THURSDAY, APRIL 24, 2014 | TIPS Subscribe to the breaking newsWhat is RSS?
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Choice News WEDNESDAY, DEC 9, 2009| 28 comments| 4 commentaries
Sproul: The Manhattan Declaration: Why didn’t you sign it, R.C.?
R. C. Sproul's comment on the Manhattan Declaration. Here is the excerpt:

In answer to the question, “R.C., why didn’t you sign the Manhattan Declaration?” I offer the following answer: The Manhattan Declaration confuses common grace and special grace by combining them. While I would march with the bishop of Rome and an Orthodox prelate to resist the slaughter of innocents in the womb, I could never ground that cobelligerency on the assumption that we share a common faith and a unified understanding of the gospel.

The framers of the Manhattan Declaration seem to have calculated this objection into the language of the document itself. Likewise, some signers have stated that this is not a theological document. However, to make that statement accurate requires a redefinition of “theology” and serious equivocation on the biblical meaning of “the gospel” (2 Cor. 11:4). ...

The Manhattan Declaration puts evangelical Christians in a tight spot. I have dear friends in the ministry who have signed this document, and my soul plummeted when I saw their names. I think my friends were misled and that they made a mistake, and I want to carefully assert that I have spoken with some of them personally about their error and have expressed my hope that they will remove their signatures from this document. Nevertheless, I remain in fellowship with them at this time and believe they are men of integrity who affirm the biblical gospel and the biblical doctrines articulated in the Protestant Reformation.

Lastly, I stand with the sentiments expressed by my friends Alistair Begg, Michael Horton, and John MacArthur, and I appreciate their willingness to say “no” to the call to get aboard this bandwagon as they continue to stand firm in their proclamation of the gospel and the whole counsel of God as it pertains to all matters of faith and life, including the sanctity of life, the meaning of marriage, and the nature of religious liberty. It is only in our united proclamation of the one, true gospel of Jesus Christ that any heart, any mind, or any nation will truly change, by God’s sovereign grace and for His glory alone.


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· Page 1 ·  Found: 28 user comment(s)
News Item12/22/09 4:28 PM
B Newman | Michigan  Contact via emailFind all comments by B Newman
It is too bad that the writers of the Manhattan Declaration had such short vision with their weak ecumenical theology. I believe they could have made their appeal using Christian language if written properly – and I agree with most who state the document as it stands does not honor the gospel of Christ.

Now they have a measly 300K+ signatures for our politicians who only care about the majority vote and tax dollars anyway – what is right or wrong does not register any more.

Is it too late for the declaration writers to do a re-write or will they just admit defeat and call it quits?

It is too bad. I wanted to see this thing go places.

If anyone is interested, I am willing to throw in my two cents at another effort – I feel it is a worthy endeavor and that it can be pleasing to God.

28

News Item12/21/09 4:11 PM
Ken Love | Papillion, NE  Find all comments by Ken Love
I think many today seem to overlook the fact that the church was over 1500 years old before Calvin or Arminius ever showed up. I've found there are two kinds of Calvinists, Arminians, and various catholic bodies: sin-loving and sin-hating. I will stand with those of the MP trusting I'm agreeing with the sin-haters of all bodies in stating we, as part of 'We the people...' in the US Constitution, will stand for our God-given rights against God-haters of all stripes.
27

News Item12/21/09 11:32 AM
Realism  Find all comments by Realism
CV wrote:
Now that’s SCARY. The MD supersedes the Gospels. The MD can do what God cannot.
Ultimately, this is what everyone is signing on to.
The most important thing isn’t that we can make laws to suppress homosexuality, or define a marriage. (Islamic countries “have no homosexuals”.) ...........

The church is called to proclaim Jesus, who changes lives, which produces better societies. Reverse doesn't work.

The MD and the Gospel have TWO different aims. Isn't that obvious?

Don't forget the advice of the Lord who said...........
Luke 16:8 And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light.

26

News Item12/20/09 8:44 PM
CV | Australia  Find all comments by CV
Realism wrote:
After all if the gospel did work in these areas of society then the Manhattan Declaration would not have been necessary, would it?
But clearly there is an identifiable need here …, which is not being addressed by the gospel or church.
Now that’s SCARY. The MD supersedes the Gospels. The MD can do what God cannot.
Ultimately, this is what everyone is signing on to.

The most important thing isn’t that we can make laws to suppress homosexuality, or define a marriage. (Islamic countries “have no homosexuals”.) The most important thing is that we have been spared the wrath of God and instead have become HIS very own. Without this Gospel message, which the MD had to strip out, all you have are favourable laws. Eternal life can only come from the word of God, not from a morally good society.
The MD starts off, and thru n thru, states "we Christians". This is joining together on a theological basis. But the Gospel is deliberately striped out because there is no consensus amongst the RC's and evangelicals. If Chuck Colsen didn't want ecumenism, he would've said, "we Americans..", as you think that it does.

The church is called to proclaim Jesus, who changes lives, which produces better societies. Reverse doesn't work.

25

News Item12/20/09 8:38 AM
Elected | Pennsylvania  Find all comments by Elected
After looking at the list of signers,it does not suprise me one bit who signed it. The Reformed people who signed are just Tolorant Calvinists who believe the lie of Arminian free will works religeon as an expression of the truth. They need to repent of this and AV come to the truth of God's Soveriegn Free Grace In Jesus Christ!
24

News Item12/19/09 5:35 PM
John UK | Wales  Contact via emailFind all comments by John UK
Realism wrote:
Perhaps the point which this Declaration has highlighted is that we should not give up on society, even if they don't all believe the Bible - and receive the truth.
Quite right sir

It is my policy never to give up on any person until they breathe their last. Up until that point I am hopeful of a conversion to Christ, when they will receive eternal life. Many have been saved very late in life, even in their 80's, 90's and even over 100 years old.

23

News Item12/19/09 3:46 PM
Realism  Find all comments by Realism
John UK wrote:
Thank you
I refer you to the pps that I added to my post in answer to your question.
Perhaps the point which this Declaration has highlighted is that we should not give up on society, even if they don't all believe the Bible - and receive the truth.
22

News Item12/19/09 3:40 PM
John UK | Wales  Contact via emailFind all comments by John UK
Realism wrote:
There are many non Christians who are still abhorrent of the current state of moral standards, or indeed the lack of them in society. They may never be converted but they might listen and be supported in their moral position by "anyone" who comes to their aid on these problems. The elect of God are always only going to be a remnant of the church - never mind society. But this does not mean that the non Christian majority all join in the current amoral mind set.
Thank you
I refer you to the pps that I added to my post in answer to your question.
21

News Item12/19/09 3:36 PM
Realism  Find all comments by Realism
John UK wrote:
I wonder about your use of the words, "if the gospel did work.." Are you saying that the gospel has not "worked"? That it has not achieved that which God designed it for? Then what is the purpose of the gospel?
Just asking questions, don't you know.
There are many non Christians who are still abhorrent of the current state of moral standards, or indeed the lack of them in society. They may never be converted but they might listen and be supported in their moral position by "anyone" who comes to their aid on these problems. The elect of God are always only going to be a remnant of the church - never mind society. But this does not mean that the non Christian majority all join in the current amoral mind set.
Look at the bunch at Matthew 7:21-23, they were rejected by Christ - but they did try.
20

News Item12/19/09 3:18 PM
John UK | Wales  Contact via emailFind all comments by John UK
Realism wrote:
After all if the gospel did work in these areas of society then the Manhattan Declaration would not have been necessary, would it?
And what will be your position when this initiative has no effect on society? Will your Realism moniker still stand, or will you in embarassment seek a better one?

p.s. I wonder about your use of the words, "if the gospel did work.." Are you saying that the gospel has not "worked"? That it has not achieved that which God designed it for? Then what is the purpose of the gospel?

Just asking questions, don't you know.

p.p.s.

You asked: "Or take some action to "Declare" our position and abhorrence against societies promiscuous and perfidious ways? Reminding them there is another way?"

Sure we take action. We do what God told us to do and get out into the world and preach God's law, God's ways, the character of God, the justice of God, the sinfulness of man, the dire condition man is in, eternal judgment, and the gospel of Jesus Christ as the only remedy for sin.........not simply hoping it might have a good effect on society, but because God has chosen this way to save his elect and to temper the antics of the ungodly.

19

News Item12/19/09 2:54 PM
Realism  Find all comments by Realism
So what do we do?
Sit back on our haunches and bleat about moral decline in secret?

Or take some action to "Declare" our position and abhorrence against societies promiscuous and perfidious ways? Reminding them there is another way?
No?

All that Sproul, and others, have achieved by complaining that they are "above" the statement in the Declaration is some form of intellectual elitism, (holier than thou), which is completely inappropriate in this debate of society.

Indeed in their rejection of the Declaration thay may be seen by the public as to identify with the Liberals on this subject.

After all if the gospel did work in these areas of society then the Manhattan Declaration would not have been necessary, would it?

But clearly there is an identifiable need here to reach some of the roots of societies present mind set, which is not being addressed by the gospel or church.

18

News Item12/15/09 10:39 AM
June  Find all comments by June
I am VERY familiar with Richard Bennett & his website 'Berean Beacon' & have read many of his thoughtful, well-researched articles. As a former Roman Catholic, I have an experimental knowledge of the doctrines / traditions / theology of ROME, and as a result, can relate very well to the comparisons he draws between the false gospel of the Romish WHORE with the Doctrines of Christ . . the truth as it is in Jesus . . those set forth in God's precious Word. On a more personal note, I have shared my personal testimony with my brothers & sisters, some who remain R.C. & have included some of R.Bennett's articles in the process, only to have them returned to me in the mail. I oft-times marvel at their rejection of the TRUTH (II Thess. 2:10), as it contrasts with my love for it upon hearing the glorious Gospel of God's free & sovereign grace. (1 Pet. 1:22-23;1 Thess. 2:13)There but by the grace of God go I!
Though they are my brethren in the flesh, they are not my brothers & sisters in the Lord. There has been a real division with us ever since I bore witness to them, even as Christ said there would be. (Matt. 10:35-37)Even so, God has graciously placed many here at Sermon Audio who are of "like precious faith", whom I can call in TRUTH my brothers in Christ.
17

News Item12/15/09 1:17 AM
PuritanDownloads.com  Protected NameFind all comments by PuritanDownloads.com
June wrote:
Some COLD HARD FACTS the evangelical signers of the Manhattan Declaration were willing to overlook in their R.C. contemporaries who they refer to as fellow “Christians”
Some of the prominent R.C. Leaders who signed the Manhattan Declaration, the intent of which was to address MORAL issues in our nation can also be found on a database compiled by the Dallas Morning News in 2002 of those who protected, covered up & relocated known clergy sex abusers to other parishes and/or dioceses where they could continue their pattern of abusing children.
Link: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/700708/posts ... PLEASE... these men do not have the combined MORAL AUTHORITY to denounce MORAL DECLINE in the nation!
For more, from a former insider, hear ex-Roman Catholic priest (who is now a Bible believer), Richard Bennett, in the free MP3 on sermonaudio, entitled, "Roman Catholic Sex Scandals and the Glory of Christ's Priesthood Contrasted With the Immorality of the Roman Catholic Priesthood" at http://www.sermonaudio.com/sermoninfo.asp?SID=9703173424 — the Papacy and Romanism, especially their so-called "priesthood," is a stinking den of iniquity, and anyone who joins hands with them shows that they are lacking in spiritual discernment (at best)
16

News Item12/14/09 10:57 PM
CV | Australia  Find all comments by CV
Cold Hard Facts wrote:
This is not the place for theological debate, it is the time for a loud declaration ..[against] current .. moral declension.
What would have happened if Jesus said .. He came to save the theologically correct and not sinners..
But Jesus IS theologically correct! It IS the theologically correct uncopromised word of God that Saves. The word of God is the ONLY weapon and the very basis for us to make any moral declaration. The Gospel has power and provides hope.

Doe's it bother you that you advocate puting aside the Gospel to tackle the ills of society? God can wait, the world needs fixing first? Let's get together. Kumbaya! .. build a tower..?

As a Christian, I can rally together WITH atheists, Muslims,..etc. But not AS atheists,or Muslims, etc.
The MD says that we are getting together AS Christians - EXCLUSIVELY.
We ARE getting together on a common basis as Christians -- loving Christians who have to love our way to a compromised gospel. But a compromised gospel is a hard sell, so you pick to put aside the gospel. "This is no place for a theological debate.." We have a world to fix.

John Paul's wife wrote:
I invite anyone to stand beside me--maybe even share the gospel.
"MAYBE" indeed.
15

News Item12/14/09 8:51 PM
just a thought  Find all comments by just a thought
Excellent thoughts June.

To CHF- This document claims to be supported by fellow Christians, it contains signatures from all forms of religion, whether they be true to the Gospel or not; it is a document that should NOT be signed by those who've been bought by the blood of the Lamb.
Do you understand the command of God Almighty not to be yoked to unbelievers?

Is Almighty God pleased if true blood bought Christians join hands with heretics, all for the sake of speaking out against immorality? Again, it bears repeating, if you want to change a reprobate, preach the word, in season or out. Signing some man-made document will accomplish little, especially since some who've signed cover up immoral sinful behavior within their own religion {i.e., the Roman Catholic Church}.
You also say 'some people are worried about this, worried enough to do something about it' ...you seem to be implying this document will 'fix' what's wrong with the world, which leads me back to biblical truth, preach the Gospel. Lost sinners must hear of their need to repent and believe in the finished work of Christ on the cross.

Read your bible, it isn't supposed to get better; as we draw near the return of Christ, things will continue to deteriorate.

14

News Item12/14/09 6:42 PM
June  Find all comments by June
Some COLD HARD FACTS the evangelical signers of the Manhattan Declaration were willing to overlook in their R.C. contemporaries who they refer to as fellow “Christians”

Some of the prominent R.C. Leaders who signed the Manhattan Declaration, the intent of which was to address MORAL issues in our nation can also be found on a database compiled by the Dallas Morning News in 2002 of those who protected, covered up & relocated known clergy sex abusers to other parishes and/or dioceses where they could continue their pattern of abusing children.
Link: http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/700708/posts or Google 'Catholic bishops and sex abuse – Database of Diocese & Bishops Involved'

BISHOP ROBERT BAKER; BISHOP NICHOLAS DiMARZIO; CARDINAL ADAM MAIDA
ARCHBISHOP JOHN MYERS; ARCHBISHOP JUSTIN RIGALI

Information regarding Timothy Dolan, Archbishop, R.C. Diocese of New York, NY, who also signed the M.D. Can be accessed here: http://www.snapnetwork.org/snap_statements/2009_statements/022309_archbishop_dolans_abysmal_track_record_on_clergy_sex_abuse_and_cover_up.htm

PLEASE . . these men do not have the combined MORAL AUTHORITY to denounce MORAL DECLINE in the nation!

13

News Item12/14/09 3:19 PM
Cold Hard Facts  Find all comments by Cold Hard Facts
just a thought wrote:
How is signing some man-made doctrine going to change lost sinners?
The Manhattan Declaration is NOT EVANGELISM in action.

NOR IS IT SEEKING TO REPLACE THE BIBLE.

It is simply a contradiction of the current decline in moral standards in our society,

In that respect it is not trying to put reprobates in heaven - ONLY God can do that anyway.

All it seeks to do is register the fact that some folks around here are worried about the moral decline and make a public stance and Declaration about it.

Obviously **SOME** PEOPLE are worried about this. Worried enough to do something about it.

12

News Item12/14/09 3:01 PM
Paul S | New Zealand  Find all comments by Paul S
I will not be able to trust to the same degree anyone who signs this document. If they can display such lack of discernment here, they can do it again in other places.
11

News Item12/14/09 12:56 PM
just a thought  Find all comments by just a thought
Cold- Do you agree with RCC doctrine [salvation by works], or the doctrine of easy believism so prevalent in this country {usa} and taught in the majority of churches here? How is signing some man-made doctrine going to change lost sinners? Hear this...it is the GOSPEL that changes lost sinners, read Romans 1:16. We are not to be yoked with unbelievers, regardless of how politically correct it may seem. Don't just scratch the surface, but go down deeper and see the underlying cause of such documents as this. It is Satan trying to get true men/women of God to link up with false religions and their false doctrines. Yes, the world is barreling towards more and more immorality and ungodliness, what else is new? What is our weapon against ungodliness and sin? The sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God [Eph. 6]. If you want to see a change, don't sign silly man-made doctrines...preach the Gospel!!!
The bible makes it very clear, it won't get better as we draw near to Christ's second coming, it will get worse. Apostasy and deception will prevail, as will immorality, greed, selfishness, ungodliness {2 timothy 3}, etc. Keep this passage in mind, 'But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived.' 2 Timothy 3:13
10

News Item12/14/09 11:22 AM
Cold Hard Facts  Find all comments by Cold Hard Facts
Shame on you RC

It is sad to see Sproul allow his theological perfection stand in the way of making a sound statement against moral decline in these evil times. This is not the place for theological debate and superior motives, it is the time and the place for a loud declaration and retort of current secular and political moral declension.

What would have happened if Jesus said that He came to save the theologically correct and not sinners like you.

9
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