J.I. Packer: The Pagans are Coming

You know, I agree with him.

Influential theologian J I Packer wants evangelical churches to recover catechesis, or systematic instruction in the essentials of the Christian faith.

Packer believes the idea is an alien concept to most evangelicals.

“We are drifting back into paganism, that’s the truth,” he said in a lecture last Saturday at St Matthew’s Cathedral in Dallas, according to The Living Church News Service.

The 83-year-old Anglican priest has co-authored a new book, Grounded in the Gospel: Building Believers the Old-Fashioned Way, in which he makes the case that catechesis is a non-negotiable practice of churches and is of no less value than Bible study and expository preaching.

During Saturday’s lecture, he said he yearns for “Bible-based, Christ-centred, declarative in style”. But recovering catechesis in churches will be a challenge, he added. Earlier, he called it the greatest challenge for the 21st century church.

It’s “ridiculous to think that no more learning of the faith is necessary after confirmation has taken place,” the renowned theologian noted, as reported by The Living Church News Service.

Church is drifting into paganism, says Packer.

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13 Replies to “J.I. Packer: The Pagans are Coming”

  1. Yep. That’s what they need, fer sure. More emphasis on “correct beliefs” and proof texts, lest they become like them nature loving, tolerant pagans.

    1. I dunno, Toney, I think it might depend on what is taught. I happen to like the environment, viewing it as an inheritance to our grandchildren and generally tolerate a lot of people. Of course, that isn’t popular.

  2. Correct. I don’t see much difference between, say, pagan gods and goddesses and Christian saints. Indeed, the Irish goddess Brigid was so difficult to get rid of the church finally just canonized her. I find it interesting that the Church of the Holy Sepulcher in Jerusalem was built atop a temple dedicated to Aphrodite.

    I dislike the pejorative use of the word, pagan. To the extent the word has any clear meaning left, it means countrified. Pagan is as pagan does, I suppose.

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