Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Is it me

or, given the current rumblings about penal substitution, Steve Chalke, Spring Harvest, Word Alive and Jeffrey John (an unlikely collection of associates if ever there was one), is it not a bit pointed to choose Stuart Townsend's song "How deep the Father's love for us..." to sing at a Deanery service for the Archdeacon's Visitation? (Non Anglicans, just don't really don't want to know the whys and wherefores here, trust me!)

As one who really sings, it was distinctly embarassing to find myself having to stop singing at regular intervals through the hymn. I remember as a child the sheer horror when my father encountered a hymn which conscience would not allow him to sing. His voice was a loud and beautiful baritone, and when he stopped singing it really showed. I don't think he'd have enjoyed those words any more than I did...I wonder if it was a "here I stand" declaration for the host church, or simply a case of not thinking very hard. Either way, it didn't contribute hugely to my joy tonight, though the tune is wonderful.


Dr Moose said...

I can't say whether it's you or not. I can sing the chorus, as much because I'm happy to acknowledge that all we have regarding the atonement, once it gets beyond "Christ died for our sins" and the results of that death, are effectively theories rather than specific doctrines. So I'm quite happy to sing it as part of a full and varied musical diet. (Although I must admit I was struck last Monday as I had a 90 minute long worship session on my guitar by just how many choruses in Songs of Fellowship and the Source really are centred on Penal Substitution! I tend more towards a Sacramental theory myself, which is ironic as I don't consider myself sacramentally-minded in general!)

You will know better than I how much the choice could be interpreted as the host church taking a stand on the debate. All I can add is that, despite having the Church Times, the only way I picked up the latest spat was via The Cartoon Blog.

*rant warning* It's pointless point-scoring arguments over trivial esoterica such as this which make me reluctant to use the label "Evangelical" about myself. And ultimately it is trivial because it's the result that counts, not the methodology.
*rant ends*

Kathryn said...

A set of good points, Dr Moose...and I should probably have attached a rant warning to the post itself. Posting in anger/distress never a good plan.
Thanks for a sane comment from a different perspective!

Dr Moose said...

If I'm being called sane then there really is something wrong with the world! :)

Adrian said...

One thing this whole debate is NOT is pointless. Over on my blog the comments section is showing how important it all is. Without PSA we end up with some form of legalism as is happening. If Christ didnt take the punishment for my sin and wipe the slate clean what possible salvation have we left?

Caroline said...

oh go on k, what do you think of the Steve Chalke opinon?

Lorna said...

Not relevant to this debate, but there's a good article on female clergy in the Anglican Communion in today's Guardian online here

Kathryn said...

Caroline, let's put it this way. I wouldn't have crossed the road to hear him before that book...but I did try to get in to his GB seminar last year. Does that help? ;-)
Not going to post more, as I so don't want this to become the sort of site where battle lines are drawn, and there is a hint of that potential in the comments here.

The Harbour of Ourselves said...

i certainly hear what you are saying and as for worship songs - don't get me much so i'll stop here

good honest posting kathryn