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Discussion in 'A capella Exclusive Psalmody' started by Von, Feb 12, 2020.
What the title said.
What is a "Romans 14 issue"?
Are you enquiring as to my own understanding of a Romans 14-issue or are you asking out of ignorance of what the issue was in the 14th chapter of Romans?
For the sake of discussion, I think it'd be helpful if you'd define what you mean.
It's no accident that the chapter of the Westminster Confession on Worship follows the section on Christian Liberty, as the topics are related. That said, I would be inclined to say this is a yes and no answer. What God command us in worship to sing is related to the 2nd commandment, but how we approach that and the questions that come about it relate to Paul's teaching on Christian liberty in Romans 14.
If psalms only or inclusive psalmody is a matter of one being weak in faith while another is strong, yes.
If not, no.
Are you really up to sorting that out?
For me to define what exactly a Romans 14 issue is, runs the risk of derailing the thread for I would inevitably be accused of defining a Romans 14 issue to suit the topic at hand.
But, because you asked nicely, I would agree with the concise summary given by @RPEphesian : "psalms only or inclusive psalmody is a matter of one being weak in faith while another is strong"
Nice subject line OP.
One time years ago I mentioned something about or from Iain Murray in a post here. I have no recollection of what the topic was, but I know that I was speaking favorably of Iain Murray because he has long been my favorite author. His biographies and church history books are superb in my opinion. This is the Puritan Board, he wrote "The Puritan Hope", he ought to get respect here.
Some guy got on and replied to me that I should not respect Iain Murray because he was not EP and included a link where I.M laid out his personal thinking on the subject, which, horror of horrors, included singing hymns in church.
This does not make I.M or anybody else right or wrong about EP. But it does demonstrate that a poster here was capable of rejecting a very fine brother with much to offer, labeling him as not worthy of respect, just because of this one subject. I don't remember the guy getting rebuked or adjusted for it either (I could be forgetting). If that is your position, ie, EP is the standard by which men are respected or not, then I think you've gone too far and yes, ventured into what Romans 14 warns against.
My church has been making a valiant effort to introduce "psalms", which are paraphrases that rhyme and have meter, but are NOT the same as psalms I've memorized, ie, word for word. They don't seem any different than plenty of hymns. If it was all Hebrew maybe I'd be more appreciative....but I doubt anybody besides my husband has any Hebrew fluency. In the meantime I enjoy the modern hymns like the Getty songs, full of rich theology centered on the work of redemption, that focus my heart and mind on the Lord Jesus Christ.
So Iain Murray is weaker in faith than EPs here? I guess Lloyd Jones was too?
LOL. I think such an opinion is arrogant.
@lynnie has exposed the can of worms.
So on one side we have Calvin, Rutherford, Gillespie, Covenanters, the Puritans, Westminster Divines, M'Cheyne, Dutch Reformed ...
Lloyd-Jones, Iain Murray, Spurgeon, Bonar, Reformed Baptists, Particular Baptists, George Whitefield, the OPC, PCA, many others....
Are you really ready to assert that one group or other is composed of those with a weak conscience? Or guilty of something along the lines of Judaizing? These aren't Joe Nobody's of Church History.
You may be right. But this question has really big ramifications, just to bring it out there.
Actually, the definition seems rather diplomatic.
I take this to mean:
A) "psalms only" is a matter of one being weak in faith while another is strong
B) "inclusive psalmody" is a matter of one being weak in faith while another is strong
In other words, stalemate? (According to the definition, that is)
Romans 14 involves things supposedly indifferent. Worship song is an element of worship and requires God's prescription and thus is not a Romans 14 issue. You believe the Scripture warrant only the psalms to be sung in public worship, or you believe the Scripture warrants new uninspired songs to be added to public worship song. There's no weak nor strong but disagreement.
I am trying to stay out of these EP discussions since I am just horrible at online debating, but against my better judgment I would like to share a thought.
It seems to me that many on either side are trying to prove the other wrong and proving themselves right. Now this is a perfectly acceptable motivation, but it is not my chief end to be “in the right”, or God forbid, on the right side of history.
My motivation is reformation, to see the Church reformed and renewed to its original state.
I believe that it can be argued that the introduction of hymns has ultimately lead to the introduction of Hillsong and others. Please keep in mind that our Churches are solidly reformed regardless of our mode of worship. However we are in the minority, most Churches in the West have all fallen into the error of high energy, high entertainment worship filled with at the very least questionable theology and sing no hymns or psalms at all. This is tragic and if not countered with a more God honoring alternative will only increase, to the detriment of the whole body.
Perhaps I am wrong about EP, perhaps I am not. But I do hope that our discussions are seeking to promote the good of the people of God, and not just our own desire to be right.
Closed by request of the thread author.