Opinion: The yeast of compromise

Who will stand up for the Bible,and for the great truths gained by Anglicanism at the cost of much blood?

Amidst a show of religious splendor, we witnessed an acceleration of the capitulation to Rome by the Anglican Church during the pope’s recent visit to the UK. It was truly sad to see the Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams, bowing to the Pope. It seems that for some four decades now, discussions to reunite the two churches have been underway in Rome. This supposedly will give new credibility to the churches in the world! But will it, and at what cost?
Whatever dubious start the Anglican Church had 500 years ago, the sovereign hand of God was evident, as it led to:
1. THE REDISCOVERY OF BIBLICAL TRUTH The 39 Articles which form the theological foundation of Anglicanism are biblically sound, and can in large part be embraced by Evangelicals.
2. THE PRINTING OF THE BIBLE Britain’s break with Rome enabled ordinary people to finally read the Bible in their mother tongues and grasp its heavenly and saving message. The role that the King James Bible of 1611 has played in reaching the world is immense. It was, by the way, a Puritan initiative!
3. A GREAT REVIVAL The Wesleyan Revival came out of the Anglican Church. It was effective because it ignited a flame of truth that was in the Church but had been long neglected. As a result, millions were swept into the Kingdom of God.
4. A GREAT MISSIONARY ZEAL In the 19th Century, the reality of Jesus within Anglican circles drove countless men out into the world to preach his message of love and forgiveness. This included men like Hudson Taylor, William Carey (the father of modern missions), William Wilberforce (who abolished slavery), Dr.David Livingstone (who opened Africa to the message of Jesus), and many more.
5. AN EXPLOSION OF GREAT WORKS OF MUSIC AND LITERATUREThe Anglican prayer book is a wonderful document, as are the hymn books and musical arrangements that filled the churches in Britain and the world. Jesus was glorified in word and song.
6. AN APPRECIATION OF THE SIGNIFICANCE OF ISRAELIn the 19th century, great Anglican figures like Bishop Ryle of Liverpool, Rev. William Hechler and many more recognized that a day of Jewish restoration to the land of Canaan was shortly to take place. They were right, and they were all great Anglicans! They were in fact called Restorationists! Today they would be considered “on the fringe” for such beliefs. The truth is they were simply reading scripture in context and could not help but come to this inescapable truth.
7. THE LIBERAL TAKE-OVER The beginning of the 20th century witnessed the ‘yeast of compromise’ gaining a foothold in the Anglican Church. This wickedness is always couched in lofty terms, but it is the same problem that has afflicted many church movements, which all have one thing in common – empty churches! Across England, Anglican churches are closing or being turned into mosques.
Yet the Church of England remains undeterred in its march to abandon biblical truth. The Gospel of Jesus is now nothing more than social justice and an obsession with good works.
Now there is a desire to reverse the Reformation and return to Rome. Does this really mean Anglicans now accept such doctrines as: Transubstantiation – a denial of the once-and-for-all death of Jesus on the cross; Purgatory and indulgences; Exaltation of Mary as the Mother of God, one to whom prayer is to be directed; Veneration of saints through homage and prayers made to them; Salvation is found in the Church of Rome alone; That the Pope is the Vicar of Christ on earth and thus speaks with infallibility.
What’s unfolding before our eyes is truly remarkable, and in the Bible is called apostasy! Those who oppose it, however, will be accused of intolerance.
Who will stand up for the Bible,and for the great truths gained by Anglicanism at the cost of much blood?
Rev. Hedding is Executive Director of the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem; www.icej.org/