A new confession of the Image of God, the Creation Order, and sexuality...

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Confessions weren't meant to sit pristine across time receiving fealty. They were bloody useful and their usefulness consists in calling men to show their commitment to the authority of Scripture by requiring them to describe and subscribe to the specificity of the Word of God in matters of controversy. But controversies change.

We must continue to confess our own faith in our own language and time. Dead men were faithful in this work in their own time and the battles of the past are not over. No heresy is ever dead, so we are privileged to stand on the shoulders of our fathers promising allegiance to the paths they've left for us. Along with Clearnote's officers I subscribe to the Wesminster Standards because they are a faithful exposition of the Word of God, removing many of the weasel paths unprincipled men might otherwise get away with were they not accountable to those standards.

That said, the Westminster divines were not intending their work to stand alone across time. All of us confess our faith in the words of other confessions inherited from other centuries. We take those confessions, also, to be faithful expositions of Scripture.

But what of today?

The attack against Biblical anthropology--Scripture's doctrine of the Image of God in man and the meaning and purpose of sexuality--is demonic and gaining ground across the Protestant, Reformed, and Evangelical Church. This attack against these doctrines is unprecedented across Church history and it requires the hard work of a new confession...

This new confession needs to be written by an inclusive group of churchmen representing many different congregations both large and small. Each man should be there representing and accountable to his session and congregation. The council must not be sectarian. It must not exlude church officers from the north or south, east or west. It must not exclude Presbyterians or Baptists or Congregationalists or Anglicans or Charismatics who subscribe to historic Reformed Confessions.

Men not serving in a particular call as the pastor of a particular congregation (or the equivalent of a bishop over a number of congregations) must be exluded. Those guarding the good deposit should be men who shepherd a particular flock having been called to that office by the Holy Spirit and confirmed in that office by the vote of men. Those who make a living off books and lectures are not doctors of the church in the sense Calvin was and should not be included. Every man working on this new confession needs to have his call on the line with this work defending Scripture's anthropology.

Women are excluded from this work by virtue of their sex. This is intended to be an authoritative body of church officers working together to declare God's truth authoritatively in the language of our time addressing the heresy of our time. It's a reflection of how desperately this work is needed that it must be said that this council on Biblical manhood must be comprised of male church officers.

Privately I've been speaking to churchmen about this for years and there are a number who have indicated interest. Is anyone willing to help? Please pray with me toward this end.

Tim Bayly

Tim serves Clearnote Church, Bloomington, Indiana. He and Mary Lee have five children and big lots of grandchildren.

Want to get in touch? Send Tim an email!