The Centre Must Hold image

The Centre Must Hold

Here's a wonderful couple of paragraphs from Jake Meador at Mere Orthodoxy, explaining why the centre needs to hold in the evangelical church. He is addressing the PCA in particular, but it's not hard to see the relevance for everyone else (emphasis added):

When irresponsible conservatives run rampant, the truth is lost as quickly as it is when progressives are ascendant. Questions that are rightly the domain of prudence and wisdom become theological litmus tests. Complicated discussions requiring precision and nuance instead become ideological battlegrounds. People who should be ministered to with pastoral compassion are instead treated as enemies. And organizations that rely on trust and affection to function well, as Presbyterianism does, collapse down into bickering and in-fighting, leading to a procedural morass in which the only way anything can ever be accomplished institutionally is through the methods outlined in the Book of Church Order ...

The PCA is not the only Evangelical institution facing such a reckoning right now. But the center must hold, not because of some misguided attempt to win over long-gone progressives or out of some bland commitment to niceness, but because the excesses of the right can be as dangerous as the excesses of the left. Indeed, anyone with eyes to see should be able to recognize that we are living in a religious landscape that is, in part, the fruit of the right’s excesses of the past 35 years. Because Gospel fidelity matters, because the peace and purity of the church matter, the center must hold.

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