Reminiscent of the late Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain’s betrayal of the people of Czechoslovakia in 1938, are the 350 Church of Scotland evangelicals who met in Perth recently and voted to remain within the Church of Scotland. In doing so, they cravenly broke all unity and solidarity with their brothers and sisters in Christ of the evangelical congregations who had already left the denomination.........effectively ‘hung out to dry’ and abandoned.
The decision to remain in the Church of Scotland was announced in a press release which reads: “Many evangelicals within the Church of Scotland are deeply concerned about the current crisis over the ordination and induction of those in same-sex civil partnerships. Some have left the Kirk and others are considering doing so.
Today in Perth there was a large gathering of 350 evangelicals from the Church of Scotland (ministers, elders and members). The result of this was the formation of a network of evangelicals who have made the clear decision to remain in the Church of Scotland and to work for its reformation and renewal. We believe that the Church of Scotland remains an important vehicle for reaching the whole population of Scotland with the Gospel and, despite recent decisions, believe that God is still at work among us. We also believe that we can remain with integrity.
We urge others to join with us and to remain in the Church of Scotland, as we seek to restore and rebuild our Church.
Our vision for this network of evangelicals within the Kirk will be developed over the next few months.”
An Economist article on May 25 anticipated some defections from the denomination, predicting: “It is still possible that the Kirk will divide formally into traditionalist and reformist synods. But its leaders suspect that tempers will cool as the slow process of changing church law grinds on, and that most will stay put. As David Fergusson, a divinity professor at Edinburgh University, notes, the vote means enough traditionalists have “crossed the Rubicon” to some acceptance of gay clergy. Those who remain are a minority.”
As a born again Christian I like to be absolutely clear about language and meaning, and for me, this means ‘calling a spade a spade’.
Accordingly, in the context of the Economist article above, the ‘traditionalists’ are those who are ‘born again’ and who accept the Bible in its entirety as the infallible Word of God. The ‘reformists’ are the liberal thinkers, who do not accept that the Bible in its entirety is the infallible Word of God and are not born again believers......in other words they are not Christians!
Sadly, by choosing not to follow the congregations which have already left the Church of Scotland, the so-called ‘Evangelical Network’ will, as the Economist article says, remain a minority.
From the press release, it would appear that the leaders of this Church of Scotland Evangelical Network are: Rev Professor Andrew McGowan, Alistair Morrice, Kenny Borthwick, and Colin Sinclair. They all spoke at the Perth meeting and seem to have had a major input into the unfortunate outcome.
There is clear guidance on the matter from the Bible. Writing to the Church in Corinth, the Apostle Paul said: ‘Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness’.
Whether ignorant of the scriptures, or deliberately choosing to ignore Biblical truth, the Church of Scotland Evangelical Network ought to be ashamed. History shows that those who betray the genuine people of God always end up being consigned to the dustbin of history.