Professor Rob Gagnon: Time for a Change of Leadership at Exodus?

Be forewarned. This is not for the hurried reader. The body of Dr. Gagnon’s paper is 25 pages long. He does not do anything half-heartedly and that is one of the reasons I admire him so much as a scholar. Dr. Gagnon does not suffer fools lightly precisely because he has taken the time to do the hard exegetical work and he expects those who disagree with him to do likewise. Sadly most do not, and many do not to the point of embarrassment.

But if you care at all about your relationship with God in Christ–not to mention the fate of those who are not in Christ, surely the most important concern  of all!–and how far astray our culture has gotten from understanding the basic Christian tenets of grace, repentance, and sanctification, please do grab a cup of coffee, a pen and paper to write down questions/challenges, and read on.

Having read most of Professor Gagnon’s stuff over the years, I have noticed a change in the tone of his writing. He is still an exquisite, brilliant, and thorough scholar, thanks be to God! But in this piece he is becoming more and more a pastor in what he has to say, never a bad thing in my opinion. Make no mistake. Dr. Gagnon has some hard, hard things to say and for us to hear. And any self-professed Christian will necessarily be challenged by what he says. Why? Because Dr. Gagnon speaks the truth in love.

The problem with the incestuous man was that the grace of God, which not only brought forgiveness of sins but also empowered a transformed life, had become “empty” (Gk. ken?) in him: “in vain, ineffective, for nothing, wasted.” Why? His life was given over to an egregious form of sexual immorality: incest (here of an adult- consensual sort). This was all the evidence that Paul needed to deduce an absence of a sufficiently transformed life and a severely truncated (or possibly non-existent) faith. There was now a real danger that the grace poured into the incestuous man’s life was becoming “empty, for nothing, in vain.”

The problem with the incestuous man was that the grace of God, which not only brought forgiveness of sins but also empowered a transformed life, had become “empty” (Gk. ken?) in him: “in vain, ineffective, for nothing, wasted.” Why? His life was given over to an egregious form of sexual immorality: incest (here of an adult- consensual sort). This was all the evidence that Paul needed to deduce an absence of a sufficiently transformed life and a severely truncated (or possibly non-existent) faith. There was now a real danger that the grace poured into the incestuous man’s life was becoming “empty, for nothing, in vain.”

So please do read it all and listen if you have ears to hear.

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About Kevin Maney

Fr. Kevin Maney completed his studies for a Diploma in Anglican Studies at Trinity School for Ministry in Ambridge, PA, and did his coursework almost entirely online. He was ordained as a transitional deacon in the Convocation of Anglicans in North America (CANA) on February 9, 2008 and as a priest in CANA on May 1, 2008. He is now the rector for the new parish plant, St. Augustine's Anglican Church in Columbus, OH, part of the Anglican Diocese of the Great Lakes and the Anglican Church of North America (ACNA).

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