Respond to the Challenge

“New Testament teaching on the church is opposed to so many of the currents of modern culture: it places a premium on age and experience; it is doctrinal in that it connects to notions of truth and to the teaching of the truth; and it articulates a hierarchal structuring of the church as an institution. Of course, a careful study of all of New Testament teaching on church leadership would reveal that leadership and authority in the church are not to be conceived of in quite the same way as we find in the world around us. Church leadership is to be marked by service to others, by suffering, by a distinct lack of glory and prestige as the world understands it. It is the church’s failure to embody these ideals that has given some traction to those who place organized religion and its institutions under the same cloud of suspicion as secular institutions such as governments and big businesses. But abuse of church office does not mean that church office ceases to be a biblical idea, and it behooves the church to respond to the challenge of her cultural despisers not by capitulation to the culture or repudiation of the Bible’s teaching but by repentance, reformation, and a renewed commitment to the biblical notion of church government and authority.”

– Carl Trueman, The Creedal Imperative (p. 71)


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