So then, if I claim no righteousness of my own, on what grounds do I dare to criticize others? After all, if I’m no better than anyone else then, by current cultural standards, I have no right to pass judgment.
What I do have is an obligation to testify to the truth, as I have been given grace to understand it, about my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ; to share the gospel as proclaimed by God’s Word (Matthew 28:18-20).
And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.”
How can we possibly teach others to “observe all that I have commanded you” if we don’t actively oppose all that demeans, distorts or disregards what Christ teaches in God’s Word?
Postmodern Christians will likely respond by challenging my assumption that there is such a thing as objective truth to defend, and, the capability of human language to convey objective truth even if it were somehow to exist. They believe this argument creates a position of great advantage. For, while I have bound myself to a standard against which my arguments can be judged, they have freed themselves from any standard. I gladly accept this “disadvantage.” I am joyfully bound to God’s Word, for I have complete trust that it exists for my ultimate good, and to accomplish all that God intends (Isaiah 55:10-13).
“For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
and return not thither but water the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater,
so shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth;
it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
and prosper in the thing for which I sent it.
“For you shall go out in joy,
and be led forth in peace;
the mountains and the hills before you
shall break forth into singing,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress;
instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle;
and it shall be to the Lord for a memorial,
for an everlasting sign which shall not be cut off.”
There are many reasons for the current state of the PCUSA. Cultural, political and personal issues, among others, have been discussed at length elsewhere. Here I will focus on an issue that is less visible, but no less important – the theological crisis that has enabled much that now so disturbs us. This crisis is not the doing of any particular group of Christians. No, it can be traced back to us all. We all bear responsibility. We all must return as Prodigal Sons, trusting in the mercy and love of a Father who has waited patiently for the consequences of our failure to become unavoidably apparent.