2012 StandPoint Conference Session 2: Inclusivism and the New Universalisms

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SharperIron's picture
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2012 StandPoint Conference Session 2: Inclusivism and the New Universalisms

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Speaker: Tony Bartolucci

  • The inclusivism problem: “evangelicals who maintain… that the work of Christ is essential for salvation, yet belief in Him is not.”
  • “[These evangelicals] attempt to be theologically ‘Christian’… while being culturally inclusive.”
  • [Hell] is the ultimate exclusion, a tough sell in our society.
  • Jonathan Edwards’ “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God” would not be tolerated in most churches today.
Joel Tetreau's picture
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Outstanding!

Way to go T-Bone! You hit it out of the park.......again. Straight Ahead!

jt

Dr. Joel Tetreau serves as Senior Pastor, Southeast Valley Baptist Church (sevbc.org); Regional Coordinator for IBL West (iblministry.com), Board Member & friend for several different ministries;

dmicah's picture
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advanced apology

I apologize if this sounds snarky, but Joel, I don't see how one could view this video as a "homerun."
The material was loosely organized and primarily generalized. Further, it took about 40 minutes to actually get a full Scripture text integrated into the presentation. The conclusions at the end were mainly personal observations. Shouldn't the basis for a defense of the doctrine of soteriology and the integration of epistemology be heavily reinforced with what the Bible says about itself instead of what scholars (many unnamed or uncited) and commentators had to say?

I'm not attempting to be judgmental, my guess is that this is the result of attempting to handle too much material in one session. Perhaps in written format, Pastor Bartolucci can present the material with greater clarity. But this presentation left a lot to be desired in the areas of capturing attention, details & citations, and Scriptural basis.

Mike Durning's picture
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Paper

dmicah wrote:
I'm not attempting to be judgmental, my guess is that this is the result of attempting to handle too much material in one session. Perhaps in written format, Pastor Bartolucci can present the material with greater clarity. But this presentation left a lot to be desired in the areas of capturing attention, details & citations, and Scriptural basis.

Watch for the paper. While this speech doubtless is an overview, the paper will be very thorough. Remember our express goal is to serve as a reboot to the original "Fundamentals" articles, in order to deal with some recent controversies. To serve as such, we will have to be thorough.

Meanwhile, now i want to go back and revisit my own recording before I post it. You're scary, dmicah. ;) It's much easier to preach to a congregation than to other pastors.

dmicah's picture
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scary

that's funny Mike. pastors can be picky. be good.
mp

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good points

It's an important distinction to make that some can insist that "Jesus is the only way to salvation" but then deny that a conscious faith in Him is essential. In Catholicism this is Karl Rahner's approach which is why some evangelicals mistook what appeared to be a greater openness by Catholics to evangelicals when in reality Catholics still believed that you could not have "God as your Father without having the (Catholic) church as your mother." Many Catholics began to simply believe that Protestants and those of other religions were simply unconscious Catholics. Sadly, even C. S. Lewis took up this approach in his "The Last Battle" (the last of the Narnia series) in which he has Aslan saying that when someone is serving the pagan god "Tash", they are in reality serving Aslan. This is the modern idea that every sincerely held religious belief is really just as good as any other.

And you're right about Edward's sermon. At our church, we played "Sinner's in the Hands of an Angry God" in full for a Sunday School class, as preached by Mark Dever. It was an edifying experience.

I would think an exposition of Romans 10 or 1 Corinthians 15 would be a good way to approach these ideas.

Bartolucci's picture
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I'm sorry

Quote:
I apologize if this sounds snarky, but Joel, I don't see how one could view this video as a "homerun."

Neither do I. I'm generally satisfied with singles and doubles.

Quote:
The material was loosely organized and primarily generalized.

I did give a caveat in my intro that this would be more of a shot-gun approach as there is so much data that could be covered.

Quote:

Further, it took about 40 minutes to actually get a full Scripture text integrated into the presentation.

I thought, perhaps wrongly, that an historical and contemporary overview was necessary to fulfill the stated objectives of the topic that was assigned to me. I have spent hours going to texts relevant to the subject, such as a 6-part I did at my church out of 1 Peter 4:6 ("The Deadly Error of Universal Salvation") but I didn't have the luxury of multiple sessions.

Quote:
The conclusions at the end were mainly personal observations. Shouldn't the basis for a defense of the doctrine of soteriology and the integration of epistemology be heavily reinforced with what the Bible says about itself instead of what scholars (many unnamed or uncited) and commentators had to say?

I wasn't giving a defense of soteriology, per se. Rather dealing with the subject given to me (which I quote in the beginning). The soteriological aspects were a necessary corollary, of course, and I had hoped to handle them as well as I could in the time that I had. My three point concluding observations (epistemological; soteriological; doxological) where all buttressed with biblical texts (and, I trust, reasoning that's faithful to Scripture).

Quote:
I'm not attempting to be judgmental, my guess is that this is the result of attempting to handle too much material in one session. Perhaps in written format, Pastor Bartolucci can present the material with greater clarity. But this presentation left a lot to be desired in the areas of capturing attention, details & citations, and Scriptural basis.

Capturing attention? That's discouraging. (I take it to mean "boring.") In fact, I am discouraged by the comments in general and I *truly apologize* that I fell so far below your expectations. I will take it as a confirmation (I've felt this way for years) that I am not a conference speaker and ought to focus on the local congregation God has blessed me with.

Joel Tetreau's picture
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Tony

You did a great job. My original comment about the home run stands. I frankly am disapointed at the comments that your presentation missed. It did not miss - it was a great overview of the issues you were asked to cover. Tony, please don't be too quick to give in to the kind of push back you got here. Often times you need to stop and consider if what they are saying is true at all. Often times it is the result of lack of experience - especially in the area of pastoring or real life ministry and leadership. Some posters who seem to often post a negative response in my view have lost credibility because they seem to be negative in response to everything that is posted - that is not there own - or is outside of their own ministry experience. You ..... not the people posting here at SI ..... know better your own church family and frankly they are in a poor position to comment because they simply don't know the setting of the presentation as you do. Typically from my view there are two kinds of negative respondents: 1) The first kind are good people. The simply had a different set of expectations than you do/did and might have a reasonable issue/disagreement with this or that in which you can learn from. These people are real friends and offer criticism with genuine concern and care. 2) The second kind of negative respondents are just self-centered and often have some kind of a wierd agenda. Anything that is outside of their own conviction is clearly either the result of your not loving God or the result of just being stupid (from their point of view). You are new to SI and I am your friend. You will do well to recognize the different kind of negative respondents. In the end only God knows who is motivated by truth and love and who is motivated by a personal sense of whatever. I sometimes wonder if the people who often are negative should pick up a different hobby - like I don't know - sail boating!

Straight Ahead my man!

jt

Dr. Joel Tetreau serves as Senior Pastor, Southeast Valley Baptist Church (sevbc.org); Regional Coordinator for IBL West (iblministry.com), Board Member & friend for several different ministries;

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