I’m changing up my DHD this week. It’s going to be “All Al.”
I’ve mentioned Albert Mohler, president of Southern Seminary, in past blogs. With Dr. Mohler conducting an “Ask Anything” Facebook Live production this week, I decided to dedicate four topics from the hour-long Q&A session. You can watch “Ask Anything” here:
The two final topics related to his commentary on his latest edition of The Briefing, Mohler’s daily analysis of news and events.
- Neutral stance on Social Justice & the Gospel
Mohler was asked more than one question relating to a recent statement titled “Social Justice & the Gospel,” that was engineered by Pastor John MacArthur and other well-known Christian leaders. Currently, there are more than 7,000 signees endorsing this statement that mostly addresses concerns of Christians being involved in current issues relating to Social Justice.
I confess, I have not read the entire statement, but I understand why it has drawn both support and opposition among Evangelical Christians.
Mohler demonstrated neutrality when he spoke about the statement, even though he admitted he did not sign it. As far as the term “Social Justice,” Mohler said he is “reluctant to use the term generally.” Instead, he prefers to focus on justice, which he said “always in a biblical frame means an individual responsibility.” He said the Bible teaches that Christians are to live as “resident aliens” who reflect God’s attributes.
Mohler did recognize the concern of the Church being involved in issues that involve secular causes or have political affirmations. He said, “The caution always was to make sure, in the context of social justice issues, to make the Gospel a focal point or else veer toward liberal Protestantism and abandoning Christ.”
He did emphatically say the priority of the Church is “the urgency of the preaching of the Gospel” and should not replace this priority with a political or transformationalist vision.
- People on Either Side of Social Justice Issue
Mohler said he has friends on both sides of the Social Justice issue. He said MacArthur is a “good friend.” He also demonstrated respect for Tim Keller who appears to favor a supportive view of being involve in current Social Justice issues. And Mohler did confirm he believed the Gospel was being preached in both MacArthur’s and Keller’s churches.
Mohler also dispelled the rumors that he told Southern Seminary faculty members not to sign the statement or else be terminated. He said he did not give such an order and would not consider doing so.
Mohler did encourage discussion of Social Justice and said it “can be and should be a productive conversation among persons who love the Gospel.”
He said the reason he did not sign the statement is “I would not express, even some of the concerns I share with those who framed the document, in the way the document was written.”
- Abuse in the Church
Someone asked Mohler about recent issues involving sexual abuse in church and other Christian institutions. He said, “The church must be a safe place.” And he admitted there were not any adequate discussions about this when he became a seminary president 26 years ago.
“It’s a conversation that needs to happen in every Christian church, with Christian parents and children,” he said. He also emphatically stated with any kind of abuse authorities must be alerted immediately. “Call the authorities RIGHT NOW,” he exclaimed.
Mohler said the Church is the institution that “knows our responsibility to protect the vulnerable and the innocent. Call sin what it is in every manifestation, defend the defenseless.”
- Other topics Mohler addressed
There were other interesting “Ask Anything” questions Mohler answered. He said Christians facing terminal conditions should exhaust all viable medical remedies that have the chance of enhancing or extending life.
He said, when asked about administering the Lord’s Supper to homebound church members to make clear that such members are a part of the local church, and that church members, not directly the pastor, should provide elements for such members in order to avoid this ordinance be observed as sacramental or sacerdotal — in other words, the appearance of priestly or officiated by priests.
I also appreciated Mohler’s response to a question on divorce, on whether the “guilty party” is permitted by Scripture to remarry. Basically, he said the focus needs to be on the “guilty party” being restored in the faith with the help and council from the local church before considering remarriage.
Finally, when asked should the Christian be involved in politics, Mohler said, “Humanitarianism won’t save anybody, but you would rather live in a society that promoted humanitarianism than murderous hatred.” Basically, he said Christians are to be involve in culture with the purpose of sharing the Gospel through any means.
- Mohler on new Planned Parenthood president
In Friday’s edition of The Briefing, Mohler offered commentary on Planned Parenthood naming a new president. The significance about the president is that she is a medical doctor. Mohler stated:
“…what’s going on here is the attempt to argue that there is now a leader at Planned Parenthood whose expertise and authority is medical. Now, this is a huge development because it tells us just how the pro-abortion movement thinks it’s going to have to redirect its argument. Increasingly, as we have tracked, there is the effort to stop talking about abortion as abortion and instead to try to redefine abortion as part of reproductive health. There is no better or perhaps more sinister way to rebrand Planned Parenthood or at least to attempt to do so than by naming a doctor as the head of Planned Parenthood in order to try to say over and over again, this really isn’t about killing babies, this about reproductive health.”
I reiterate, the saddest and most foolish philosophy involving those who favor abortion is how they view the process of human birth as a “reproductive right” without any consent to a sovereign Creator, the Author of Life. I appreciate Mohler addressing this recent change at Planned Parenthood.
- Mohler on hurricane commentary
As everyone is aware of Hurricane Florence having a major effect on the east coast, Mohler reported in the Friday Briefing about commentators bringing up the issue of climate change as it relates to this natural disaster:
“I am not denying the reality of climate change… There are serious questions to ask about the degree to which human beings might actually be contributing to it. I’m not denying that there is a human contribution to this kind of climate change. I am saying that is not so simple as the ideologues would have us to think. Furthermore, there is no adequate human understanding of exactly how the climate works. It is interesting to note that when this storm reached category four, the explanation was made by many that this is all due to climate change. When it slowed, there did not appear to be an adequate explanation of how that system of causality would explain what happened over the next couple of days.”
May God protect those who are affected by Hurricane Florence.