Friday, March 26, 2010

Who can preach the Gospel?

From the Westminster Larger Catechism:

Q. 158. By whom is the Word of God to be preached?

A. The Word of God is to be preached only by such as are sufficiently gifted, and also duly approved and called to that office


I guess if we in the laity are asked “What we must I do to be saved?”, our answer should be “Go find an ordained preacher, one who is good at it, and ask him”.

Egad. Proof positive that Rome doesn’t have a monopoly on error.

(I am feeling a bit puckish today. Can you tell?)

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Jonspach said...

I can tell, but please don't tell me that when you're asked "What must I do to be saved?" That you give an answer that ignores context and proof texts as badly as this post does. ;)

Arthur Sido said...

I actually reviewed the prooftexts for this question in the catechism and found them as inapplicable as prooftexts normally are. When I talk to the lost about how they can be justified before a holy God, going to see an ordained minister never even enters the conversation. I guess I understand that the Gospel is the Gospel, whether preached by an ordained minister or by me.

Jonspach said...

The Westminster divines would agree with you on the practice of giving the gospel... what this question is referring to is the preaching of the Word to the church as it gathers for worship. So the proof texts detail the qualifications the Scriptures put forth for elders who are filling that role - standards which I assume you would agree to (women should not be giving the sermon at worship, elders should be able to teach, not new converts, etc.)

The context and proof texts points to the specific teaching of the elders to the congregation. It makes no claim on whether the laity should be allowed to share the gospel. Historically this should be seen as speaking against the Roman error of putting unqualified men in the priesthood on the basis of family standing or pay-off, something which the Church of England, having come out of Rome (though not entirely or all together willingly, depending on the clergyman) still saw.