Problems with klineanism?

Discussion in 'The Law of God' started by arapahoepark, Nov 16, 2019.

  1. arapahoepark

    arapahoepark Puritan Board Graduate

    As I read Kline and am aware that there differences, what should I look out for?
    I have been told it leads to antinomianism but how? I just read a fair bit of a recent Galatians commentary that was supposedly written by a Klinean that came across as a hybrid dispensationalism and new perspectivist (yeah anti law + Paul not arguing against legalism) go figure...:drool:
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2019
  2. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    That is very new to me. I have not seen that. Whose commentary are you reading? I have seen those who depart from the paradigm or hermeneutic of Klineanism (which I find to have problems confessionally) react against it and go Anglican or Roman Catholic. But those guys who react against Klineanism really don't seem to have a grasp on understanding the Mosaic Covenant and its relationship to the Covenant of Grace. I believe that is a problem with Klineanism also. It misses the Mark concerning the Mosaic Covenant. They are two reactions that oppose each other and miss the mark.

    I have seen the anti law or antinomian slant in various situations to be from the extreme to very mild. Lee Irons and his wife Misty are of the Extreme view in my estimation (extremely dichotomizing law and grace) and there are those who oppose their views that I would consider to propagate some language of antinomianism but are not antinomian.

    Whose Commentary are you referring to? How does it sound Anglican? When you say Anglican that can mean so many things.
     
  3. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    :rofl::rofl::rofl::rofl:

    That's the funniest thing I've read all week.

    Klineanism's main problem is that it is an amillennial version of Dispensationalism.

    Kline's Images of the Spirit, though, is genius.
     
  4. arapahoepark

    arapahoepark Puritan Board Graduate

    Stupid autocorrect! I meant antinomianism. I even use antinomianism more than Anglicanism when using the kindle keyboard. Also instead of sensationalism, I used dispensationalism. I am turning off autocorrect...
     
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  5. arapahoepark

    arapahoepark Puritan Board Graduate

    See above. Corrected.
    Interesting.
     
  6. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    In that case, there might be a grain of truth to it. The problem is when people take ideas that are true in themselves, "Like Jesus is the Great {Y} and he ____." That's fine. But then they are in trouble with the ethical demands. That's the problem with the Misty Irons debacle.

    No one disciplines their kids by saying, "Jesus took the Great Spanking for us."
     
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  7. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    My take on Kline:
    *Images of the Spirit is foundational reading. Mix of top-level scholarship and devotion.
    *God, Heaven, and Har-Magedon is magnificent at first, and then it gets on this bizarre "Amillennialism or Death" motif.
     
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  8. kainos01

    kainos01 Puritan Board Senior

    Your take doesn't interact at all with the whole suzerain/vassal paradigm?
     
  9. RJ Spencer

    RJ Spencer Puritan Board Freshman

  10. BayouHuguenot

    BayouHuguenot Puritan Board Doctor

    I think he is generally correct on that, and those insights aren't new with him, and it is a more or less accepted paradigm today.
     
  11. RJ Spencer

    RJ Spencer Puritan Board Freshman

  12. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    I’ll disagree with you here. While I agree that republication is an issue, the bigger issue to me is what is at the root of that false teaching. That being a faulty view of the Covenant of Works where Kline and many of his followers (not all) believe that at the moment of man being created he was already in covenant with God denying WCF 7.1. This leads to errors in the full theology of the CoW, the CoG, The law, the belief that God is accepting of an imperfect merit, Mosaic Covenant, republication, ethics, etc. In this you’ll find great errors today included by Michael Horton, T. David Gordon, and others.
     
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  13. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

  14. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    This is an issue that led to my becoming Reformed instead of a Reformed Baptist. The extreme dichotomizing of Law and Grace caused me to start looking into these issues a decade ago. I did slowly make the change. This is the first public post I made to really inquire more intently into the subject.
    https://www.puritanboard.com/thread...ional-concerning-the-mosaic.69258/#post887863
     
  15. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    I waded through this thing a few years ago. And I had a lot of opposition. But I think it was worth it.

    Depraved Christianity may be Antinomian Christianity
    https://rpcnacovenanter.wordpress.c...-christianity-may-be-antinomian-christianity/

    Deprave Christianity may be Antinomian Christianity pt 2
    https://rpcnacovenanter.wordpress.c...ianity-may-be-antinomian-christianity-part-2/

    (What is the Gospel?) Depraved Christianity might be antinomian Christianity
    https://rpcnacovenanter.wordpress.c...ianity-might-be-antinomian-christianity-pt-3/

    https://rpcnacovenanter.wordpress.c...ividjian-depraved-christianity-antinomianism/
     
  16. Dachaser

    Dachaser Puritan Board Doctor

    Do you mean that we RB tend to see too much of a clean break between Old and New from your perspective then?
     
  17. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    This is kind of off topic so let's not get away from the OP as it relates to Meredith Kline. But there are differences in how the Covenant of Grace and the Mosaic Covenant are perceived. That is even true amongst those who are not Baptist and say they are Reformed. I first started to post on that here back in 2012.
     
  18. Reformed Covenanter

    Reformed Covenanter Puritan Board Doctor

    Discussions of Klineanism (somewhat ironically) suffer from the same problem as discussions of theonomy: balance and fairness tend to get lost in all or nothing hysteria.
     
  19. Susan777

    Susan777 Puritan Board Freshman

    IRONically.....hmmmm.Interesting word choice.:lol:
     
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  20. Reformed Covenanter

    Reformed Covenanter Puritan Board Doctor

    It took me a while to get that one (perhaps your reply was too Misty for my liking), but, yes, I tend to keep plenty of Irons in the fire when commenting on this board. ;)
     
  21. Susan777

    Susan777 Puritan Board Freshman

    You’re good! Wasn’t sure anyone would get it.
     
  22. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    I think I have been fair. If I haven't been please let me know.
     
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  23. Kinghezy

    Kinghezy Puritan Board Freshman

    The Glory of your responses have Clouded any doubt of partisanship.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
  24. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    Chris,

    It is just a study I was involved with. I tried to get all the facts straight. Above I noted the variances of others. We are discussing Kline here and some of the ramifications of his later teachings.

    I am not sure what you mean by partisanship. In the past I have strove to be honest, open for correction, and factual. I came out of thinking Kline and dichotomizing Law and Grace the way he does was correct. I have not had many theological changes in my life. In fact, I made sure I was not doing this study without good Elder support from those here on the Puritanboard (and they had to reel me in a bit), my Elders at my Church, and interaction with good Professors and a few Presidents of at least 4 Solid Reformed Seminaries. Can you direct me to where I have missed the mark? Can you tell me how I have been unfair?

    In 2011 I did note to myself how things could get confusing and how the facts could be skewed in my original post concerning this topic. Kline had written on the topic of the Mosaic Covenant in various ways. It was confusing for a lot of us. But after looking into the topic I did note how the confusion was exacerbated (made a problem). I will allow the quote below to help explain.

    The Journal of Northwest Theological Seminary pp. 22-23
    "Since the Irons trial, debate and discussion over the republication issue has continued from a variety of voices. Perhaps the most noteworthy has been D. Patrick Ramsey’s article in Westminster Theological Journal (66:2 [2004] 373-400) entitled, “In Defense of Moses: A Confessional Critique of Kline and Karlberg.” Ramsey argues that Kline and Karlberg contradict the Westminster Confession in their mature teaching regarding the republication of the covenant of works in the time of Moses. His key historical-theological argument is that Kline and Karlberg articulate a position that is essentially identical to the “subservient covenant” view of John Cameron, Moise Amyraut, and the later “Amyraldians”—a view he maintains was explicitly rejected by the Standards.

    A few months later, a response was written by Brenton Ferry, one of the contributors to this present volume, entitled “Cross-Examining Moses’s Defense” (67:1 [2005] 163-68). In it, Ferry defends Kline and Karlberg, arguing that they are not guilty of contradicting the Westminster Confession. Ferry’s key point is that in the 1968 publication, By Oath Consigned, Kline argues that the Mosaic covenant is renewed in the new covenant. As Kline writes:

    Hence, for Jeremiah, the New Covenant, though it could be sharply contrasted with the Old (v. 32), was nevertheless a renewal of the Mosaic Covenant.22 Thus Kline is vindicated from the charge of teaching an “Amyraldian” view of the covenant.

    The problem with Ferry’s argument is that what Kline taught in 1968 is not what Kline taught twenty, or thirty, or fourty years later. No less than Mark Karlberg himself (whom Ferry proposed to defend in his WTJ article) has critiqued Ferry for his failure to recognize this point. And with respect to the Westminster controversy in particular, [Ferry’s] failure to acknowledge change and development in Kline’s thinking on the covenants only distorts an accurate reading of the history of Reformed interpretation,
    past and present.23

    Karlberg points to an important principle in reading Kline’s works: the later works correct and revise the earlier works. Kline’s student, Lee Irons, has also noted this important principle, arguing that Kline’s position on the relationship between the Mosaic Covenant and the new covenant in By Oath Consigned is revised in his later work, Kingdom Prologue. Irons argues:

    In other words, in KP [Kingdom Prologue] he no longer defines the New Covenant as a renewal of the Old/Mosaic Covenant (i.e., as a law covenant) and instead stresses the contrast between the Old and the New Covenants. The Mosaic Covenant was a covenant of works and was breakable. The New Covenant is a covenant of grace and is fundamentally unbreakable (although the sense in which it is unbreakable must be carefully defined).24 In other words, in Kingdom Prologue, Kline revises the position he articulated in By Oath Consigned, by arguing that “The New Covenant is not a renewal of the Mosaic Covenant but the fulfillment of the Abrahamic Covenant.”25

    But Ferry ignores this development, and (in Karlberg’s words), “distorts an accurate reading of the history of Reformed interpretation, past and present.”26

    In fact, prior to the publication of Ramsey’s article, Lee Irons had argued (both in his General Assembly defense and on his weblog) that the “subservient covenant” view of Amyraldianism does in fact provide the best precursor of the mature Kline’s position on the Mosaic covenant. Irons argued that the Amyraldian “Subservient Covenant” is “A 17th Century Precursor of Meredith Kline’s View of the Mosaic Covenant.”27

    In this respect, Irons argues that “Kline’s understanding of the Mosaic Covenant has significant links with 17th century developments in covenant theology.”28

    This is exactly what Ramsey argued in his WTJ article. In other words, when Kline’s mature view on the Mosaic covenant is precisely articulated, both friend and foe alike have argued that it bears striking and substantial similarities to the Amyraldian view of the Mosaic covenant. The only difference is that the “friends” have argued this to support Kline’s version of the “republication” thesis, while his “foes” have used it to critique it in terms of its confessional fidelity.

    But Ferry ignores this development, and (in Karlberg’s words), “distorts an accurate reading of the history of Reformed interpretation, past and present.”26

    22 By Oath Consigned, 75
    23 JETS 52/2 (June 2009): 410
    24 http://www.upper-register.com/blog/?cat=26
    25 Ibid.
    26 Karlberg, 410

    http://www.kerux.com/pdf/Kerux.24.03.pdf
    "Merit or 'Entitlement' in Reformed Covenant Theology: A Review."
    James T. Dennison, Jr., Scott F. Sanborn, Benjamin W. Swinburnson
    pp.22-24

    So, Can you please help me to know what you mean by Partisan? Do you think I have been unfair? You accused me of something without answering my question. That actually sounds like slinging slop to see if it sticks.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
  25. Dachaser

    Dachaser Puritan Board Doctor

    Is one of the concerns being that while Dr Kline sees himself as being Reformed, his teaching to many appears to read as a Baptist on this issue?
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2019
  26. Romans922

    Romans922 Puritan Board Professor

    From my studies, like Randy’s I’ve concluded the same or similar. Jacob said above it is dispensationali or not that much different. Randy is saying it’s baptist which is essentially the same. I would say that the end result of Klineanism is New Covenant Theology. That’s not to say Kline held that view but the logical end of the view leads to that. So those who come after, Lee Irons, T David Gordon, Michal Horton when they go to defend their view of “Law” who are they quoting? Leon Morris, DA Carson, Thomas Schreiner - NCT theologians. So while they may sound “reformed” use “reformed” lingo they are really NCT in reformed clothing. NCT being no different at the end of the day as dispensationalism and no different than your general baptist.
     
  27. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    In short the answer is no David. There are other Reformers from the 17th Century that also held to varying views similar to Kline's view of the Mosaic Covenant, John Cameron or even Johannes Cocceius. Being a Reformer does not make one a Reformed Theologian. Ruben put it quite concisely that, "Cocceius idea of a gradual abrogation of the covenant of works doesn't make the cut as "Reformed" in that it wasn't included in any of the Reformed confessions." I do not believe that Kline held to a view of gradual abrogation of the Covenant of Works but his view of the Mosaic Covenant being both a Covenant of Works and a Covenant of Grace has some similarities.
     
  28. Kinghezy

    Kinghezy Puritan Board Freshman

    It was a joke (in the vein of Irons, Misty). I corrected a spelling. Sorry for the confusion.:(
     
  29. PuritanCovenanter

    PuritanCovenanter Moderator Staff Member

    I wondered what Glort meant. LOL. I hope I have clouded the Partisanship and not clouded things up with Partisanship. Thanks for the clarification.
     
  30. Dachaser

    Dachaser Puritan Board Doctor

    How close would Dr Kline view on regards to the Mosaic Law and Gospel then be to Reformed Baptist such as in 1689 RB?
     

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