Wednesday, June 06, 2007

5/23/07, For Your Consideration: Q6. Misinterpretation by Price, Barrow, and Dohms

The other posts in the series are:
For Your Consideration
Q.1 Excommunication by Email?
Q.2 Limits of Modern Technology?
Q.3 Immediate Excommunication?
Q.4 What is the standard Presbyterian procedure for excommunication?
Q.5. Scriptural Justification for a Three Week Excommunication Notice
Q.7 Why Read the Banns?

From: Stan B.
To: List
Cc: Lyndon Dohms ; Greg Price ; Greg Barrow
Sent: Wednesday, May 23, 2007, 9:05 PM
Subject: Q6: Misinterpretation by Price, Barrow, and Dohms

Dear Brethren,

Thanking you for your continued patience, I submit the following for your consideration.

Your brother,

P.S. My private correspondence with Mr. Price, Mr. Barrow, and Mr. Dohms, which is referenced below, is available to anyone who requests it.

6. Did Mr. Price, Mr. Barrow, and Mr. Dohms misinterpret _The Order of Excommunication and of Public Repentance_?

In the last three articles (Questions #3, #4, and #5) I have presented arguments from Scripture, Presbyterian historical testimony, and the light of nature to support the view that multiple public admonitions should precede a pronouncement of excommunication, whether the case is private or public. This analysis, if correct, is sufficient to demonstrate that the proper Biblical and Presbyterian procedure was not carried out in the recent pronouncements of excommunication by Mr. Price, Mr. Barrow, and Mr. Dohms, thus rendering these pronouncements null and void.

Nevertheless, I thought it might be helpful to explain in detail where these men erred in their specific interpretation of _The Order of Excommunication and of Public Repentance_. In their letter of November 4, 2006, they argue that this document allows for someone guilty of public sin to be immediately excommunicated (i.e., without any prior public admonitions). The question of their interpretation of this document is worth its own investigation, because it reveals a clear instance in which these men have distorted historic Presbyterianism beyond recognition, not only in their misapplication to "extraordinary times" but in their very misinterpretation of the historic document itself.

Lest anyone should take offense at my publicly arguing against the doctrine and practice of these men, I offer two points of defense. First, public errors deserve public correction, and my hope is that these articles of mine will assist fellow brethren in distinguishing truth from error. If even one person is saved from having to repeat our lamentable experience, the labor will be worth it. Secondly, I tried in all sincerity to avoid this public route as much as I could. . . . .
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