Federal Vision blues, part 4 of 4

FV objection 6
“FV denigrates evangelism, focusing the Church on herself as an elite club of the “baptized.”

First, we should recognize that we are criticizing God’s own way of dealing with His world and people. He began His plan of redemption – with Abraham, more fully in Israel, completely with the Church - by setting up a distinction between His people and the world (Ex 19:5; Deut 14:2; Titus 2:14; 1 Peter 2:9). Jesus and a Gentile woman both agree to this distinction in words that make us uncomfortable. “It is not good to take the children’s bread and throw it to the little dogs.” 27 And she said, “Yes, Lord, yet even the little dogs eat the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” 28 Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” (Matthew 15:26-28). Notice there is a distinction and a boundary, but that that boundary can and should be overcome and crossed by believing in Christ. The Church is to reach into the world and bring them to Christ and to His Body, the Church. The two are supposed to go together, so that we experience fully life in Christ on this side of eternity as well, in His Body, the Church. Nothing in FV works against crossing this boundary into Christ, into the Church. We need not say the normal means of grace in the Church are unimportant, in order to affirm our activity outside the church to bring people to Christ. On the contrary, at the end of the Bible we find the Spirit and the Bride (the Church) inviting all to come to the marriage banquet of the lamb, which is signified in the Lord’s Supper. We need not be anti-institutional Church to be genuine believers. God means for the Church to be the community of believers (Ephesians 4:11-13; 1:22-23).

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