Thursday, November 07, 2013

"Why I Cannot Sign the Family Integrated Church Confession" by Shawn Mathis

Earlier this year Shawn Mathis, pastor of Providence Presbyterian Church (OPC), Denver, Colorado, wrote an article entitled What Is a Family Integrated Church? which I alerted this blog's readers to here. Now I would like to bring to your attention a follow-up article written by Shawn entitled Why I Cannot Sign the Family Integrated Church Confession.

In this article Shawn criticizes the confession of the National Center for Family Integrated Churches (NCFIC) and argues that "There are a number of reasons I will not sign the online family integrated church confession. And it has nothing to do with animosity. It has to do with principled objections to the substance, nature, purpose, and effects of this confession."

In the conclusion to the article, Shawn writes:
There are various other problems with the confession: vague generalizations, undefined terms, simplistic proof-texting, questionable assertions and the like.  These alone would prevent me from signing the confession. But throwing all churches under the evolutionary-secular-unbiblical bus for practicing age-segregation goes too far.
Whatever a church or Christian believes about the FIC movement as a positive or negative, all should agree that the NCFIC in particular has certain definable and public views that are codified in this confession. It is my hope this essay will bring these views to bear so that churches may prayerfully reconsider their association with this confession and organization.
In my continuing endeavor to keep this blog's readers informed about the issues and debate surrounding the Family Integrated Church Movement, I recommend that you read Shawn's article in its entirety. As always, comments are welcomed here.

1 comment:

  1. Upon reading the confession recently, it bothered me that Article IX refers to "father-directed" and "father involvement." I believe it would be more biblically accurate -- since we want to be particularly accurate about what the Bible teaches -- to insert parent for father in both cases. One thing which really, really bothers me about this group, even more so now than in the earlier years of our homeschooling involvement, is they seem to ignore the fact that not all children have a father in their home. Though they will readily offer to and do encourage churches and extended-family members to help provide father figures for those homes, the choice of words for their confession leaves a lot of believers on the outside of their ideal.