Zoomtard may well be read by millions of instances of spiders trawling the web for dubious purposes but I know that the core readership also happens to be the core group of people who are likely to gather round my kitchen table for a meal. They all seem to be preoccupied with what church is. It’s a hot topic for us in Maynooth and probably for you too. So the smarter Kevin wrote this:
… this raises one striking curiosity: the Bible itself, as a particular canon of texts, is a confession. The same justifications that give a denomination the authority to bind churches according to a confession (e.g., Augsburg or Westminster) are the same justifications that gave rise to a canon of Scripture. The local church needs other churches. It needs the witness of other churches to know “where to look” for the promises of God. It needs the discernment and accountability of other churches when it points to these texts, and not other texts, as the Word of God. As such, the testimony of the early church is given priority even as the Reformation re-evaluated the discernment of the early church in this matter, as in other matters. The Reformation churches, through her confessions, recognized the authority of the prophetic and apostolic texts as they have been handed to us, with the assumption that the Word of God was to be found there and, indeed, it was found there! From generation to generation, this assumption and this awakening sustain the church’s confidence in her Holy Scripture.
I think we should chew on this for a while and then batter it out over a picnic. All the non-Maynoothians are welcome of course. All those times when we wonder “Would we not be better off getting rid of the denominations because we have the Bible and that is what counts,” we need to remember that the Bible itself is the product of unions of local churches coming together to produce an agreed upon standard that would form and represent their shared identity.
Your Correspondent, There must be 50 ways lovers have left him.