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General discussions discuss RPCNA, WPCUS and RPCUS in the General Forums forums; At some point I may have to move to America and am considering what church I could go to if I left Ireland. With regards ...

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    Reformed Covenanter's Avatar
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    RPCNA, WPCUS and RPCUS

    At some point I may have to move to America and am considering what church I could go to if I left Ireland. With regards to the above denominations I have a number of questions:

    RPCNA:

    1. How common are 'Christmas' and 'Easter' Services in the denomination?

    2. Can an office bearer be a Theonomist?

    3. Are women deacons on the way out?

    4. Does the RPCNA hold that the pope is the man of sin and require this of office bearers?

    WPCUS

    1. Is women's head-dress held to be a principle of worship, and if so is it imposed?

    2. Do you have to agree with the Received Text to hold office?

    3. Is the denomination explicitly Theonomic?

    4. Do office bearers have to believe that the papacy is the man of sin?

    RPCUS

    1. Are any congregations exclusive psalmody?

    2. What is the position on papal antichirst?

    Thanks to all who can help me out.
    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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    Coram Deo is offline. Inactive User
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    Since I go to a RPCNA I can answer those questions....

    1. Christmas and Easter services are unheard of... It would violate the RPW..
    2. RPCNA hold to a Establishment Clause, I guess the answer would need alittle more details on the type of theonomy since there are a few types.
    3. I have heard they accept women deacons and that they are on the way out, I have never seen one myself.... I think I would be shocked if I ever did see one... I hear it is rare and becoming to a head to get rid of the practice.
    4. Our Pastor has aleast said he is AN antichrist, not THEE antichrist. Not sure about office bearers and what oaths they must take...

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    RPCNA:

    1. How common are 'Christmas' and 'Easter' Services in the denomination?

    2. Can an office bearer be a Theonomist?

    3. Are women deacons on the way out?

    4. Does the RPCNA hold that the pope is the man of sin and require this of office bearers?
    Michael Daniels
    Reformed, RPCNA
    Denton, Maryland

    [i][b]As For Me And My House, We Will Serve The Lord[/i][/b]

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    Reformed Covenanter's Avatar
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    Thanks for your help Michael.

    I am a Theonomist in the Greg Bahnsen mould; I have heard that some (but not all) people in the RPCNA are as well, so I presume the position is accomodated.

    I did hear an WPCUS minister complain that the RPCNA celebrated Christmas, but perhaps he meant non-ecclesiastically.

    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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    Coram Deo is offline. Inactive User
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    I would say I am in Bahnsen mould myself... I heard our pastor having trouble with the Rushdoony sort......

    As for christmas... he must of meant non-esslesiastically... Some in our church does and some don't... I know none of our elders do in their own houses either.... But some liberty is given for families of the church.....



    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    Thanks for your help Michael.

    I am a Theonomist in the Greg Bahnsen mould; I have heard that some (but not all) people in the RPCNA are as well, so I presume the position is accomodated.

    I did hear an WPCUS minister complain that the RPCNA celebrated Christmas, but perhaps he meant non-ecclesiastically.

    Michael Daniels
    Reformed, RPCNA
    Denton, Maryland

    [i][b]As For Me And My House, We Will Serve The Lord[/i][/b]

    [SIZE="1"][I][FONT="Century Gothic"]Unum Deum in Trinitate: Pater, Filius, et Spiritus Sanctus [RIGHT]Sola scriptura - Sola gratia - Sola fide - Solus Christus - Soli Deo gloria - Solum psalterium - Lex talionis[/RIGHT][/FONT][/I][/SIZE]

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    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    Have you also considered the RPCGA and the PRC (Presbyterian Reformed Church; NOT Protestant Reformed Church).

    Presbyterian Reformed Church:

    1. No holy days but the Lord's Day
    2. No female deasons
    3. Headcovering is both practiced AND preached from the pulpit
    4. All congregations are Exclusive Psalmody
    5. The TR has to be accepted


    Ask VirginiaHugenot these:

    1. Can an office bearer be a Theonomist?
    2. Hold that the pope is the man of sin and require this of office bearers?
    3. Is the denomination explicitly Theonomic?
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
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    Davidius is offline. Inactive User
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyFlynt View Post
    Have you also considered the RPCGA and the PRC (Presbyterian Reformed Church; NOT Protestant Reformed Church).

    Presbyterian Reformed Church:

    1. No holy days but the Lord's Day
    2. No female deasons
    3. Headcovering is both practiced AND preached from the pulpit
    4. All congregations are Exclusive Psalmody
    5. The TR has to be accepted
    Are you sure about #5? The PRC uses the Authorized Version in all of its pulpits for uniformity's sake, not because it must be accepted by members as superior.
    Davidius
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    Student: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, German and Classics

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    Davidius is offline. Inactive User
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    Thanks for your help Michael.

    I am a Theonomist in the Greg Bahnsen mould; I have heard that some (but not all) people in the RPCNA are as well, so I presume the position is accomodated.

    I did hear an WPCUS minister complain that the RPCNA celebrated Christmas, but perhaps he meant non-ecclesiastically.

    This is true. In the RPCNA we do not celebrate holidays other than the Lord's Day ecclesiastically but celebrating in one's home is left to the individual's conscience. And yes, some are Theonomists but not all.
    Davidius
    Husband of Emily
    Member of All Saints Anglican Church - Chapel Hill (AMiA / Anglican Church of North America)
    Student: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, German and Classics

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    LadyFlynt is offline. Inactive User
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarolinaCalvinist View Post
    Are you sure about #5? The PRC uses the Authorized Version in all of its pulpits for uniformity's sake, not because it must be accepted by members as superior.
    I apologise. I'll ask my husband to confirm this with our pastor, or perhaps Andrew can clarify the position better. Thanks for the note
    JC - PCA - PA...homesick for SC
    A we n' de Ya, ho; I mak sikker; Deus juvat

    Indicabo tibi o homo quid sit bonum, et quid Dominus requirat a te: Utique facere iudicium, et diligere, misericordiam, et sollicitum ambulare cum Deo tuo. Michaeas 6:8

    "Who says you can't go back, been all around the world and as a matter of fact. There's only one place left I want to go, who says you can't go home" Bon Jovi

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    VirginiaHuguenot is offline. Puritanboard Librarian
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarolinaCalvinist View Post
    Are you sure about #5? The PRC uses the Authorized Version in all of its pulpits for uniformity's sake, not because it must be accepted by members as superior.
    The PRC does require the Authorized Version to be read from the pulpit:

    The Authorized King James Version shall be the text used in the public reading of the word, and the Scottish Metrical Psalter the text for singing in worship.
    and does not make the same requirement of members in the pew.

    But, the PRC does teach that other versions should be evaluated in light of their underlying texts and principles. A good sermon on that subject is by our pastor, Steven Dilday: Providential Preservation of the Inspired Scripture: Part 4 - Why Use KJV?.
    Andrew

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    I would think any flavor of Theonomy would be 'iffy' in the PRC. Also, if I read Daniel's RPW book correctly, he would be looking for a denomination that did not require holding to headcoverings for public worship. If I'm wrong on either account, pardon all around.
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    Reformed Covenanter's Avatar
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    Thanks for your help everyone.

    Personally, I would not be that keen on making holding to Theonomy an absolute requirement for office. Firstly, due to the differences between Theonomists; and secondly, I think it is better to promote Theonomy through education rather than coercion.

    If the RPCNA keeps Christmas etc out of their churches then the fact that some families have Christmas trees or exchange presents would not put me off.
    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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    ADKing is offline. Puritanboard Junior
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    At some point I may have to move to America and am considering what church I could go to if I left Ireland. With regards to the above denominations I have a number of questions:

    RPCNA:

    1. How common are 'Christmas' and 'Easter' Services in the denomination?

    WPCUS

    1. Is women's head-dress held to be a principle of worship, and if so is it imposed?

    2. Do you have to agree with the Received Text to hold office?

    3. Is the denomination explicitly Theonomic?

    4. Do office bearers have to believe that the papacy is the man of sin?



    Thanks to all who can help me out.
    As to the WPCUS questions:

    1. The presbytery does believe and teach that I Corinthians 11 instructs women to cover their heads during worship. In our short existence this has not been a matter of any "imposition" or discipline.

    2. Yes, the WPCUS holds to the Received Text and requires all officers to do so as well per WCF 1.8

    3. The term "theonomy" is very troublesome to me. The denomination is opposed to the "theonomy" of Bahnsen Rushdoony et.al. who seek to redefine WCF 19 with regard to the traditional three-fold distinctionof the law (moral, ceremonial, judicial). We do however belive that the moral law (both tables of the 10 commandments) is binding on the magistrate and nations. Our covenant of union states:

    In order to further the biblical truth of the kingship of Christ (that God has appointed the divine-human Mediator as the King over all nations), we promise to maintain the rightful dominion of Jesus Christ. Therefore, we promise to adhere to and teach that all nations have a moral obligation to explicitly recognize Jesus Christ as King and supreme lawgiver in their constitutions, courts, legislatures, etc. Civil government has the duty to legislate in conformity with God’s moral law summarized in both tables of the Ten Commandments. We hereby pledge to work for the restoration of the establishment of the Christian faith in the United States and reject religious pluralism, secularism, and arbitrary governmental authority in accordance with the Westminster Standards and the principles of the Solemn League and Covenant.

    Within this, I believe there is flexibility among us between how this should look. Some hold a position closer to Gillespie's others closer to Rutherford.

    4. The WPCUS is a full subscription denomination and office bearers must affirm WCF 25.6 There is no other head of the Church but the Lord Jesus Christ: nor can the Pope of Rome in any sense be head thereof; but is that Antichrist, that man of sin and son of perdition, that exalteth himself in the Church against Christ, and all that is called God.

    I would be happy to interact with you more in this thread or privately about the WPCUS. Just one question...Why would you want to leave Ireland?!?!
    Last edited by ADKing; 09-06-2007 at 04:34 PM.
    Adam King
    Reformed Presbyterian Church
    Wichita, KS

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    Reformed Covenanter's Avatar
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    Thanks for your input Adam; with regards to Theonomy, I believe that the WCF 19:4 has been so debated that it is pointless to appeal to it either way. From my reading of Scripture the Bahnsen form of Theonomy is Biblical (but I realise others disagree).

    As for Christmas and the RPCNA, are not those congregations disobeying the denomination?
    Last edited by Reformed Covenanter; 07-16-2007 at 08:26 AM. Reason: Spelling mistake
    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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    ReadBavinck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ADKing View Post
    2. Yes, the WPCUS holds to the Received Text and requires all officers to do so as well per WCF 1.8
    Is this over and against the UBS critical text? If so, what part of WCF 1.8 point to this?
    Rev. Christopher Chelpka
    Covenant Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Pastor
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    Christopher

    People who adopt this position usually argue that the words 'by his singular care and providence, kept pure in all ages' refers to the received text.

    Though I do not think this is the place for a debate on the issue.
    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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    Hello Daniel! As an ordained minister in the RPCNA and a ruling elder, I would offer the following answers to your inquiries...

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    1. How common are 'Christmas' and 'Easter' Services in the denomination?
    Extremely rare, but not unheard of. The denomination has an official position against the observance of holy days other than the Christian Sabbath. The public testimony for this position has been growing over the past several years. Nevertheless, there are a few congregations where one might find a Christmas Eve service or an acknowledgement of Easter.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    2. Can an office bearer be a Theonomist?
    Yes. There is no prohibition against theonomy, per se, as long as it comports with the Westminster Confession's position on the civil magistrate and civil laws. There are a good number of officers who would consider themselves Bahnsen-type theonomists.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    3. Are women deacons on the way out?
    Several years ago, my session brought a study paper before the Synod asking for the ordination of women to the office of deacon to be rescinded. This was the first time since the practice began (in 1888) that it had been considered in the church courts. The paper's recommendations failed. But a straw vote indicated a near majority in support of discontinuing the ordination of women deacons. Many believe that the momentum is very much in favor of discontinuing the ordination of women deacons in the not-too-distant future.

    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    4. Does the RPCNA hold that the pope is the man of sin and require this of office bearers?
    The RPCNA Testimony does not reject the WCF's identification of the Pope as "that Antichrist" but does add this clarifying statement in the parallel column:

    18. Many antichrists will be present
    in the world throughout history. Prior
    to Christ’s coming the final “man of
    lawlessness” will be revealed. He will
    be destroyed by Christ.
    1 John 2:18; 1 John 4:3; 2 Thess. 2:8.
    Douglas W. Comin
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    Upper Burrell, PA
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    ReadBavinck's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    Christopher

    People who adopt this position usually argue that the words 'by his singular care and providence, kept pure in all ages' refers to the received text.

    Though I do not think this is the place for a debate on the issue.
    No debate needed. Thanks for the answer.
    Rev. Christopher Chelpka
    Covenant Orthodox Presbyterian Church, Pastor
    Tucson, AZ

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    Reformed Covenanter's Avatar
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    Douglas

    Your comments are of great help to me, thank you.

    Just out of interest, with regards to the RPCNA testimonies qualification about the papacy, would this allow for someone who believes that Nero was the man of sin to hold office?

    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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    dcomin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    Douglas

    Your comments are of great help to me, thank you.

    Just out of interest, with regards to the RPCNA testimonies qualification about the papacy, would this allow for someone who believes that Nero was the man of sin to hold office?

    I certainly hope so... otherwise I must either resign immediately or be brought up on charges!

    Seriously, though, the generally accepted view in the RPCNA is that the Confession is certainly correct in applying the term Antichrist to the Papacy, but does not take the position that one must be a strict Historicist in order to hold office.
    Douglas W. Comin
    Ordained Minister/Ruling Elder
    Manchester Reformed Presbyterian Church (RPCNA)
    Upper Burrell, PA
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    Larry Bump is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Quote Originally Posted by Daniel Ritchie View Post
    Thanks for your help Michael.

    I am a Theonomist in the Greg Bahnsen mould; I have heard that some (but not all) people in the RPCNA are as well, so I presume the position is accomodated.
    I am, and am an elder in the RPCNA. My session and many in the Prebytery are well aware of my beliefs.
    That said, some are decidedly not, and are equally accepted.


    I did hear an WPCUS minister complain that the RPCNA celebrated Christmas, but perhaps he meant non-ecclesiastically.

    Many hold celebration of the common civil holiday at home. Rarely is it seen in the church, and of course it should not be.

    Larry
    Larry Bump
    Ruling Elder, Belle Center RPCNA
    Logan County, Ohio
    Husband of one wife, father of five children
    Conservative Christian Home-Schooling Gun-Owner

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    dcomin's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Larry Bump View Post
    I am, and am an elder in the RPCNA.
    Hi Larry!


    (Secret theonomist handshake)
    Douglas W. Comin
    Ordained Minister/Ruling Elder
    Manchester Reformed Presbyterian Church (RPCNA)
    Upper Burrell, PA
    My Blog - "Comin Sense"
    Worship From Genesis to Revelation
    http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fAcctID=1047246

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    Larry Bump is offline. Puritanboard Freshman
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    Quote Originally Posted by dcomin View Post
    Hi Larry!


    (Secret theonomist handshake)
    Hi Doug, good to see you.
    I'll be spending more time around here; hopefully it'll help me stay a bit more focussed.

    Larry
    Larry Bump
    Ruling Elder, Belle Center RPCNA
    Logan County, Ohio
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    Reformed Covenanter's Avatar
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    Thanks for your input Larry.
    Daniel
    RPCI
    Northern Ireland
    "May that happy period soon arrive when the unclouded glory of divine revelation will shine from pole to pole; when men every where will see eye to eye, in all things that are connected with divine glory, and with their own eternal felicity." William Stavely (Irish Covenanter), An appeal to light (1796), pp 143-4

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