Confessionalism Is Beautiful Too

My purpose is, however, to highlight how men on the more confessional or “traditionalist” end of the PCA spectrum have done a poor job using language to communicate the beauty, loveliness, and grandeur of simple, ordinary, plain, vanilla, Old School, Reformed, Westminster, Confessional, Ordinary Means of Grace Presbyterianism.
. . . Certainly, we ought to shun the use of bare slogans and meaningless platitudes and cringey attempts to be relevant. But on the other hand, we on the Old School, confessional, ordinary means of grace (or as Chapell put it, traditionalist) end of the PCA need to work harder at highlighting the beauty of Reformed orthodoxy; we need to be better at using language.
It is regrettable to me that many on the Old School, Ordinary Means of Grace wing of the PCA have avoided the use of terms such as beautifulwinsome, and missional. We have missed an opportunity to draw attention to the beauty and winsomeness of the historic Reformed Faith as expressed in the Westminster Standards.
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Ryan Biese | “Beautiful Gospel Centered Ministry in the PCA” | Sept 15th, 2023


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One comment

  1. As the word “fetus” has been co-opted by the pro-abortion movement, so have “winsome” and “missional” been so co-opted by therapeutic moralism. Dr. Harold O. J. Brown said in testimony that the word “fetus” simply means “offspring,” but as it is used generally, many take it to mean in utero, the object that exists before birth. The same damage has been done to the wonderful, old word “winsome.” In contemporary evangelical circles, it is used to mean “seeker-friendly,” “non-confrontational,” comfortable rather than content-ful, with truth giving way to being “winsome.” I’m not so familiar with the use of “missional,” but I take it to mean “really, Really, REALLY concerned about the lost,” as opposed to doctrine and fidelity to Scripture. Perhaps “nuance” can still be saved if it used sparingly, rather than as a signal of being on-trend. I find the Ordinary Means of Grace unutterably beautiful. I am moved to worship, joy, and a desire to grow in grace by the so-called traditionalist order of worship. I recognize my position as a redeemed sinner with certain hope that “makes [me] not ashamed,” in a setting of dignity in the presence of holiness. Indeed, I agree with Pastor Biese that we who delight in the legacy of the Reformation should declare its beauty, its redemptive beauty, unapologetically. At the very least, by so doing, we contend for reasoonable faith in the triune God, who is the sole basis for beauty, truth, and goodness.

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