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Douglas Abendroth
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Thanks for adding the clarity. This was well said and needed to be said. If Piper had stuck to the language of the Reformed confessions, we wouldn't be having this conversation. When someone chooses intentionally to use idiosyncratic language to express key theological concepts long expressed in conventional language, it's always interesting to ask why. I tend to find one of three explanations. (1) They don't know better (not the case with Piper); (2) they are intending to blaze a new or different theological path and need new language to take them there; or (3) they think that the old, conventional language is not cool and will bore their audience or lose them. I think with Piper we're dealing with #3. I often hear in the PCA advice to pastors that confessional language will lose your audience; put it in your "own words" or make it "relatable"; don't be too "theological" because you won't attract young cool people. I think this is an unfortunate strategy, but a common one. Far better IMO to teach the congregation the conventional language and move them from ignorance to understanding. It is safer, and it insults the intelligence of people to think they can't understand justification or imputed righteousness.
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Dec 14, 2010