There Really is a Difference – Being Truly Confessional

There is a difference between defaulting to a historic confession (Westminster, 2LCF, etc.) and actually submitting oneself to the confession as a faithful summary of Biblical Doctrine. There are some who feign adherence to a confession by proclaiming in their bio that they are WCF or 1689 and then in the next breath declaring a doctrine that is contrary to said confession.

To be clear, this is not the same as naming an exception to secondary or tertiary doctrines within the confession–say claiming a different understanding of what is meant by “recreation” in the sections on the Sabbath. The former seems to be a badge that is flashed when one’s “Reformed” credentials are being questioned. The latter is actually admitting that there are areas where one may have a genuine disagreement or a different understanding than others do concerning one or two areas of the confession itself. There is nuance in the second as opposed to the lack thereof in the first.

If one claims to adhere to the bulk of a confession and yet their preaching, teaching, and ruminating do not fall within the bounds of that confession, they ought to deal in honesty and abandon the claim of adherence. This idea does not contrast the working out of doctrines in theologically constructive ways, but it does constrain that outworking (see my post here).

In summary, we need to be careful that what we claim and what we proclaim is consistent.

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