Counsel of Chalcedon
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1996 Issue 4

"He that lives not by rule, lives not at all" has grown into a proverb, yet many have no settled plan and no fixed principles, They are at sea without a compass, and know not whither they go, but are borne along with every wind and current. This may be an easy mode of life, but can it be safe? Blinded by self-love, such may hope that all is well, but is there cause for such expectations? It may be as mischievous to have no principles as bad ones. A rule not followed is a mere notion, and governs no one.

"Because the scribes were confident in their own righteousness they were incapable of perceiving the call to repentance," (Lane), and the salvation that came with it. "For not knowing about God's righteousness, and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end (goal) of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes," Romans 10:3-4. As long as these scribes and Pharisees believed in salvation by human merit, human worth, and human conformity to Law, with a sense of self-trust, self-confidence, self-esteem, and self-righteousness, they would be hardened to any call to repentance, and therefore could not be "healed" by this Physician. "Jesus had not come to call for the Kingdom of God men like the scribes who considered themselves to be righteous, but outcasts who knew they needed to be made whole." - Lane

The Church by Edmund P. Clowney.

Dr. Clowney presents a multi-faceted examination of the church throughout the Bible. Writing against the backdrop that the Christian's home is in heaven, the author explores how the Christian is to worship God, grow in God and serve God during our sojourn on earth. A multitude of topics are covered. The author defines the church in terms of the Trinity. He writes: "According to the Bible, the church is the people of God, the assembly and body of Christ, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit" (p. 28). He then examines how God is to be worshipped and the church's relationship to the world. There is a two-fold approach of the church to the world. First is the church's relationship with our civil government. Secondly is the church's mission to the world at large and how biblical principles are to be applied.

The language of the Declaration of Independence is such that it can be interpreted two ways: Biblically or rationalistically. It must be remembered that the Declaration was written not for Americans but for Europeans (especially the French). This fact is plain from the first paragraph of the prologue - "a decent Respect to the Opinions of Mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the Separation."