A liberal seminary is countering John MacArthur's statement on social justice and the Bible.
In 1930, as storm clouds were gathering over Europe, Dietrich Bonhoeffer traveled to New York City and ran into two life-changing institutions: a black church in Harlem and Union Theological Seminary. The first brought soul to his faith, the latter to his mind. He was offered a teaching position at Union in 1939 when his life was in jeopardy in Hitler's Germany and he accepted; but after a week or two he quit and returned to his homeland and his fate at the end of a Nazi noose six years later.
Christian apologist and author Dr. Alex McFarland says it's not likely Bonhoeffer would recognize his alma mater in 2018. "Union Seminary's theological history has long been a subject of discussion among those of us who do affirm the Bible for what it says and classical Christian orthodoxy," he tells OneNewsNow.
Union responded to John MacArthur's Statement on Social Justice and the Gospel with a string of tweets, denying that the Bible is inerrant or infallible, denying that salvation can only be found in Christ, and asserting that God created humans "to live into various sexual orientations and genders." McFarland calls that heresy.
"It's important to remember that the gospel is, according to Jude 3, the faith once delivered to the saints," he explains. "We don't revise the gospel, we don't reinvent the gospel – and we dare not deny the gospel."
And to the point of social justice and the gospel, McFarland agrees with MacArthur.
"The gospel includes the message that all people are sinful and apart from the new birth experience through Jesus Christ, people are lost," says McFarland. "And salvation, biblically, is not just social reformation and it's not leveraging the culture politically. Salvation is accepting that the Son of God shed his blood on the cross to wash our sins away."
Union Theological Seminary was founded in 1836 by members of the Presbyterian Church in the U.S.A.