COTK, CREC, & Tyranny: Part 15
As you watch Wilson gyrate around Steve Wilkins and the PCA court, please notice how he carefully avoids the two words that represent the issue at hand — “honest subscription.” Consider the conclusion to his latest post:
I got distracted. The central point remains this: read Steve’s written responses to the questions put to him by presbytery. Listen to the audio if you need to. Without any judgment on these responses having been made by any judicial body, make up your mind on what Steve is teaching and saying. And then wait for the decision of the Lousiana Presbytery next month. After that wait and see what the SJC does, if anything. (Blog & Mablog)
Of course this depiction is less than honest. Wilson pretends that Wilkins’ answers to the Louisiana Presbytery constitute the sum total of the issue. But the SJC will not answer the question “Do Wilkins’ answers correspond to the PCA standards?” The question the SJC will answer is “Does Steve Wilkins honestly subscribe to the PCA standards that he vowed to uphold?” And the SJC will determine this by carefully comparing the answers that Wilkins gave to his presbytery’s soft-ball questions with the massive record of contrary statements he has compiled since 2002, when the Monroe Four debuted. Ironically, Wilkins’ trial will represent “the objectivity of the covenant” in a way that Wilson has never experienced and probably cannot conceive.
Wilson sells “objectivity” by appealing to real-life events, such as baptism, but since he has successfully evaded accountability for his entire ministry, he has no concept of answering for his objective words or his objective deeds in objective time. Not so for Wilkins. He objectively affirmed honest subscription to the Westminster Confession of Faith and Catechisms as well as the form of government in the PCA’s BCO, and if he cannot hold the truths in these documents with honesty, then honesty obligates him to admit his objections rather than dissemble. Wilson once put it this way:
If his convictions at any point change, he has, again, a moral responsibility to bring that fact to the appropriate authority. Failure to do any of this does not indicate doctrinal problems primarily but rather shows a failure of character. Heterodox men do present a problem to the Church, but the central problem is their very common dishonesty. (Douglas Wilson, Mother Kirk [Moscow: Canon Press, 2001] 199–200, emphasis original)
This leads to the point that Wilson’s little distraction helped him avoid. He cannot call the Wilkins matter by its real name — “dishonest subscription” — because of his latest scandal involving COTK. You may recall that COTK recently severed its relationship with the CREC, charging Wilson’s puppet confederation with “dishonest subscription” to its constitution, after Wilson’s yes men sanctioned injury to COTK contrary to their constitutional authority. Of course, the CREC leadership had to violate its constitution because they wanted to avoid disciplining their founder, leader, and most holy prophet, Douglas Wilson, who has never lied and who cannot sin. But I digress.
Just as Steve Wilkins vowed to uphold the PCA’s standards, so Douglas Wilson and his CREC confederates vowed to uphold the CREC’s standards:
Do you, with all the officers of your church, sincerely receive and adopt the Doctrinal Standards of this Confederation, subscribing to those standards with honesty and in full submission to the Word of God, which is the only infallible rule of faith and practice?
Do you, with all the officers of your church, commit yourselves in faithfulness to the churches in this Confederation: to keep with them the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace, to pray for them, to comfort them, to encourage them, to admonish them, and to rule with them in accordance with the Constitution of this Confederation and in full submission to the Word of God? (CREC Constitution, III/O/3/a/iii & iv)
In Wilkins’ case, the PCA appears resolved to objectively enforce their constitution. However in the CREC’s case, they objectively resolved to ignore their constitution (an objective document) after Douglas Wilson deliberately and objectively split a CREC church in good standing because he had a personal disagreement with its pastor. These are real-life events that could be photographed, like a baptism or like a church breaking loose from a confederation after the leadership sanctioned injury to member churches.
Finally, the Federal Vision term for violating a vow is “covenant breaking.” In fact, the FV crowd regularly pounds this theme, making much ado about the “objectivity of the covenant” and “covenant breakers” in the church. Consequently, the CREC leadership’s recent decision to defy their constitution compels every objective onlooker to note the obvious. The CREC leaders care nothing about their promise to honestly subscribe to their confederation’s standards; they hold their vows and their standards in contempt. In other words, the CREC leaders are a bunch of hypocritical covenant breakers.