The Anglican Church around the world, and The American Episcopal Church in particular, is in turmoil. Everybody knows about it. For weeks there have been articles about the trouble in The San Francisco Chronicle nearly every day. 
      The trouble has to do with the desire of the Church’s leadership to ordain homosexuals to their priesthood and to ‘bless’ homosexual unions.
Many faithful people in the Episcopal Communion are upset about this. And I do not wonder at it. Anyone who has read Romans chapter one, or similar New Testament Scriptures like 1 Corinthians 6:9, knows that homosexual practices are sinful in the sight of God. 
      It is not complicated. These faithful Anglican believers know that their Church has long upheld this.

Marriage

      For generations, Anglicans were well established on the great foundations of marriage and the family. They could depend on their clergy to stand behind these principles. But now the rules seem to be changing. 
      Not only is marriage and heterosexuality being attacked, but also pastors who are avowed and practicing homosexuals are being installed as their leaders — without their consent, no less. 
      The Church’s leadership seems to be saying: ‘Here take this, and let us not hear a word about it’.
If I were an Episcopalian, I would be very upset. Giving my tithes and offerings, regularly attending services, volunteering at various levels, rendering service year in year out — and now the paid professionals want to change the rules.

Betrayal

      Here is a way to look at all this — it is a betrayal. The leadership knows the historic position of their Church. They know that a sizeable group of the most faithful are in serious disagreement, but never mind. 
      In their mad effort to advance what I believe is a political and social agenda (even if it is disguised as an ‘equality’ issue), the leaders have thumbed their noses at those who value Scripture over contemporary mores. They hope these ‘conservatives’ will continue to give and attend — and eventually fall into line.
      I am both a player and manager of a baseball team. In baseball, the rules are the rules. I would not play in a game where, for whatever reason, someone wanted to materially change the rules. 

Respect

      Baseball is a game. The church is not a game, but it too has rules and laws and agreements and spiritual contracts — which are all being violated. 
      Let me be clear. I would not play along in a baseball game if the rules were substantially changed, because I would know that further down the road the game itself would become unrecognizable, something altogether different. This is exactly what is happening in the Anglican Church.
      Let me suggest a way to solve this problem. Instead of high-jacking the Church, let those who want to change the rules start their own church (or join one that has already abandoned all semblance of obedience to Scripture). Then they can have whatever rules they want.
      But leave the faithful alone, those who have put their lives into their church and trust in the plain Bible doctrines. Show a little respect!

Kent Philpott

November, 2003

 

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