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Oct 04, 2005

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will spotts

Michael,

Ok . . . first, Amen.

But I'm curious -- do you realize exactly how radical the implications of what you are saying are?

I wholeheartedly agree that this is what the Bible indicates -- but what does this say for the entire guild of clergy/heierarchy that exists? Or, for that matter, for property?

You are pushing in the polar opposite direction from that which is currently being encouraged in the PC(USA).

Michael Kruse

I think my next post may address some of the questions you are raising. So I will not give a lengthy response here, but in short you are exactly right. I think what I am proposing is likely very radical in the eyes of many Presbyterians and yet is very much an extension of our Reformed heritage. The Reformers were successful in removing the priest as mediator between us and God concerning sotierology, but they left the priest as mediator in our ecclesiology. The clery/laity dichotomy is just an extension of this mediating role with in Protestantism. They gave us half the Reformation. It is time to complete the other half.

Neil Craigan

Yes, yes and yes again. The priesthood of all believers means just that, ALL believers. The differentiation between clergy and laity is not only not helpful, it is unbiblical. As a minister of word and sacrament I fully understand my call to be that of equipping... imagine a worshipping community where the pastor truly equipped the saints and everyone utilized their gifts for ministry! What an impact that would have on the world and what a transformation that would bring to the church.

will spotts

I'm convinced this is a result of what Jesus taught. But this also has ramifications for our reactions to the "secular" world. One would also be led to reject rank in that arena as well.

Both Methodists and Quakers kind of picked up on this (though Methodists had a church heierarchy). The Methodist emphasis that all are equal before God was very poorly received by aristocrats who wanted a Christianity that taught that they were better than others.

I always thought the Quakers were wrong to choose the informal, less respectful, thee/thou form. You would have been more correct -- it would have treated everyone respectfully -- but by virtue of treating everyone the same regardless of social station, this would have infuriated the social heierarchy.

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