J.I. Packer’s words were needed in 1958, and, oh heavens, they are needed now:

The honest way to commend God’s revealed truth to an unbelieving generation is not to disguise it as a word of man, and to act as if we could never be sure of it, but had to keep censoring and amending it at the behest of the latest scholarship, and dared not believe it further than historical agnosticism gives us leave; but to preach it in a way which shows the world that we believe it wholeheartedly, and to cry to God to accompany our witness with His Spirit, so that we too may preach ‘in demonstration of the Spirit and of power.’

The apologetic strategy that would attract converts by the flattery of accommodating the gospel to the ‘wisdom’ of sinful man was condemned by Paul nineteen centuries ago, and that past hundred years have provided a fresh demonstration of its bankruptcy.

The world may call its compromises ‘progressive’ and ‘enlightened’ (those are its names for all forms of thought that pander to its conceit); those who produce them will doubtless, by a natural piece of wishful thinking, call them ‘bold’ and ‘courageous,’ and perhaps ‘realistic’ and ‘wholesome,’ but the Bible condemns them as sterile aberrations. And the Church cannot hope to recover its power till it resolves to turn its back on them. (Fundamentalism and the Word of God, 168)

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5 thoughts on “Turn Your Back on Sterile Aberrations”

  1. L. Westerlund says:

    Amen! Thank you for posting these Biblical and relevant words.

  2. Wesley says:

    Amazing the potency of these brief words. Truly, as you say, prophetic and as relevant today as they were when he first wrote them. Many thanks for sharing this.

  3. DA says:

    If Kevin would only heed his own comments and turn his back on the sterile abberations of the Reformed Church in America. His relationship with the RCA seems to be like the Christian that falls in love and marries the non-Christian with the belief he will one day be able to convert them.

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Kevin DeYoung


Kevin DeYoung is senior pastor of University Reformed Church (RCA) in East Lansing, Michigan, near Michigan State University. He and his wife Trisha have six young children. You can follow him on Twitter.

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