The sexually immoral in 1 Corinthians are to be put out because Paul had “already pronounced judgment on the one who did such a thing.” There is a similar theme in 2 Thessalonians 3:14, “If someone does not obey what we say “… take note of such a person, and have nothing to do with him.” Though this should be applied pastorally and wisely, two things are clear. Sexual sin is a primary issue of fellowship and false teaching on sexual ethics is anathema to the gospel because it leads people astray.
(Ron Citlau – The Aquila Report) Steve Mathonnet-VanderWel has written an essay about the process unfolding in the Reformed Church in America (RCA) titled, “Moving the Goalposts and Kicking the Can”….
Published in the, Reformed Journal: The Twelve, this essay is a response to what the author sees as the many errors of the conservative movement in the RCA concerning human sexuality and the denomination. Whatever else might be said about the essay, the author is both exasperated and bewildered. He is exasperated because he feels that conservatives are out for a “win” no matter the cost. He seems bewildered because for him conservatives are not playing fair, they are moving the goalposts.
He dramatically misunderstands what is going on in the RCA. This is not a disagreement but a schism.
I want to see if I can help members, leaders and churches in the RCA understand the underlying tension in the denomination and give context to what might seem like conservative desperation. The crux of the issue is this: the denomination is struggling to understand what is Christian unity and what are its limits. Both sides have their views on sexual ethics, what is the gospel for their gay neighbor and biblical hermeneutics. But underneath all the disagreement, Christian unity is the fundamental issue. Or to say it another way, does Christian unity demand that we stay together even as we stand in dramatic opposition on sexuality, the gospel and how we understand our faith?