Creedal and Confessional subscription.

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  • Creedal and Confessional subscription.

    Just a discussion I think Protestants need to have.

    In an article elsewhere on this sub-forum, Dr Kim Riddlebarger (great teacher) is quoted as writing:

    Protestants do not believe that creeds, confessions, and catechisms are infallible — that can only be said of Scripture. But confessional Protestants do believe that creeds, confessions, and catechisms are authoritative insofar as they accurately summarize the teaching of Scripture, which is their primary purpose.
    As a Confessional Protestant, I find this a rather interesting statement. Let me explain.

    In my tradition (Lutheranism), there are two types of Confessional subscription- quia and quatenus subscription. Two Latin words that need to be understood.

    "Quia" means "because". In other words, those who hold to quia subscription to the Confessions do so because they believe that the Confessions (and Creeds) are accurate and faithful representations of scripture. The Confessions and Creeds are subscribed because they are faithful to scripture.

    "Quatenus" means "insofar as". In other words, those who hold to quatenus subscription do so insofar as they are faithful to scripture.

    I'm rather surprised to find Dr Riddlebarger holds a quatenus position and that this would be what his church would require of him. In almost every Confessional Lutheran church, we are required as pastors to hold a quia position, thus stating our belief that our Confessions are faithful explanations and representations of the teachings of scripture.

    What does your church require of its pastors? What does it require of its laity? Also its teachers and lecturers?



  • #2
    No takers?
    Comment>

    • #3
      Originally posted by RevT View Post
      Just a discussion I think Protestants need to have.

      In an article elsewhere on this sub-forum, Dr Kim Riddlebarger (great teacher) is quoted as writing:



      As a Confessional Protestant, I find this a rather interesting statement. Let me explain.

      In my tradition (Lutheranism), there are two types of Confessional subscription- quia and quatenus subscription. Two Latin words that need to be understood.

      "Quia" means "because". In other words, those who hold to quia subscription to the Confessions do so because they believe that the Confessions (and Creeds) are accurate and faithful representations of scripture. The Confessions and Creeds are subscribed because they are faithful to scripture.

      "Quatenus" means "insofar as". In other words, those who hold to quatenus subscription do so insofar as they are faithful to scripture.

      I'm rather surprised to find Dr Riddlebarger holds a quatenus position and that this would be what his church would require of him. In almost every Confessional Lutheran church, we are required as pastors to hold a quia position, thus stating our belief that our Confessions are faithful explanations and representations of the teachings of scripture.

      What does your church require of its pastors? What does it require of its laity? Also its teachers and lecturers?

      Unless I'm much mistaken, you and I belong to the same Confession, so anything I would have to say might not really edify you too much. My church requires that a man be ordained by a regular call and the oaths taken at ordination include an unconditional subscription to the Lutheran Confessions. It's demands on the laity are set forth at confirmation/ affirmation of faith that we all need to have for full church membership, which is a promise to abide by the teachings of the Evangelical Lutheran Church and never fall away from them, even when we are threatened with death. As a Church Council Secretary, I take an annual vow to fulfill the duties of my office and to abide by the Lutheran Confessions. The teachers and lecturers seem to take the same vows, as Christian Education is a Church Board. That's my humble offering. :)
      Comment>

      • #4
        Originally posted by ConfessionalLutheran View Post

        Unless I'm much mistaken, you and I belong to the same Confession, so anything I would have to say might not really edify you too much. My church requires that a man be ordained by a regular call and the oaths taken at ordination include an unconditional subscription to the Lutheran Confessions. It's demands on the laity are set forth at confirmation/ affirmation of faith that we all need to have for full church membership, which is a promise to abide by the teachings of the Evangelical Lutheran Church and never fall away from them, even when we are threatened with death. As a Church Council Secretary, I take an annual vow to fulfill the duties of my office and to abide by the Lutheran Confessions. The teachers and lecturers seem to take the same vows, as Christian Education is a Church Board. That's my humble offering. :)
        Excellent response brother. Yes, your LCMS pastors (and I think seminary lecturers also) hold to a quia subscription of the Confessions. It's awesome to see the laity who are workers also hold to them!

        I'm still surprised none of our Reformed friends have chipped in here.

        Comment>

        • #5
          Originally posted by RevT View Post

          Excellent response brother. Yes, your LCMS pastors (and I think seminary lecturers also) hold to a quia subscription of the Confessions. It's awesome to see the laity who are workers also hold to them!

          I'm still surprised none of our Reformed friends have chipped in here.
          I'm sure they won't be long in coming. :)
          Comment>

          • #6
            Still no takers from any other posters?
            Comment>

            • #7
              I really haven't anything to add. Especially because I am not a clergyman, holding any office in our church. As members, my wife and I took a vow, submitting to our church's government.

              However, I cannot emphasize enough the importance and weight of Creeds and Confessions. I imagine a fair share if not all bodies that reject Creeds and Confessions eventually end up left or unwittingly absorbed into the culture. From the little history I know of the denomination the OPC was formed from, the first thing the liberals tried to accomplish was dissolving the Creeds and Confessions, but men had vowed to the Westminster Confessions of Faith. It is probably a good time to leave a body when they have abandoned all orthodoxy and begin disciplining Reformers for bringing her back to any vows taken!

              Sorry I haven't more to add than that. But I have only been poking seriously in our Confession for around a year.

              God bless,
              William
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