Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Me and the FV

Me and the Federal Vision

In 2003 I became a member of Pacific Northwest Presbytery of the PCA. The Auburn Avenue controversies were 2 years old. Lo and behold I was on a committee with Peter Leithart! As a member of several Reformed email lists who were spoiling to become a web-linked Inquisition, Leithart's name kept coming up in the inevitable "he reads this, sounds like so and so, so he must be a heretic" discussion that is now coin of the realm in our Reformed circles.

I was in a wonderful and awkward position depending on who you were talking to - - I was within spitting distance of Leithart and we could get him and forever stop this deadly creep of Romanism, sacramentalism, pomo noodling with words, etc. And then I met Peter face to face. There is not a more gentle, servant soul than Peter Leithart. He answers critics with grace. He offered me unfettered access to him and any question I would want to ask him via email or phone or face to face. As I have found out to my chagrin in this and other Presbyterian squabbles: no one was calling him, including me. We were taking him to task and never taking time to understand the brother, his views, and we had acted as if we had known his motives. I apologized to him as a brother and began work in a new way as part of the ad interim committee investigating his views. Our committee report was blasted as being soft on him and passing him as orthodox, as if Leithart was the Trojan horse par excellence.

Granted, Leithart is so smart and we are so crosseyed from concern for the church's purity that sometimes he is hard to understand. Leithart is getting clearer. In a recent response to Sean Lucas' review of Against Christianity, you can see his heart and his tone and begin to hear some of the themes of correction and reformation that Leithart among others seeks to bring to the Reformed Church and the catholic Church he loves so much.

Read and decide for yourself. I'm sure Leithart, though weary of the strife, is still accepting apologies and answering substantive questions.


Anonymous said...

I'm not buying it. So Peter is a nice guy. It is great that he has such an amenable spirit and gentle approach. What does that have to do with doctrine? Jacobus Arminius was probably a great guy too. Why not Pelagius? John Wesley and George Whitefield were great brothers in the Lord and accomplished amazing things for the kingdom of God in their day, but Whitefield end up Presbyterian, not Wesley. That's awesome that Leithart is a great guy - but let's keep our eyes on doctrine, not personality please.

Anonymous said...

"Granted, Leithart is so smart and we are so crosseyed from concern for the church's purity that sometimes he is hard to understand."

Oh, yeah. I forgot. Whitefield was cross-eyed too. And I'm sure he would have understond the good Dr. Leithart.

RevGoT said...


Your tone sort of proves my post. If you'd like to stand by your comments and treat me and these men like brothers with whom you disagree, you could use your real name so we could have real fellowship around the truth.