From the Covenant Presbytery, Reformed Presbyterian Church in the United States.
With reference to the "New Perspective on Paul" Movement


Be it resolved that:

Any doctrine of justification that denies that faith alone, sola fide, as a resting upon Christ alone for salvation, is the only instrumental means of justification is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of justification by faith that defines faith as faithful obedience to God is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of justification that denies the forensic nature of justification is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.  Therefore to define "to justify" as "to make righteous" and not "to declare and constitute as righteous" is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of justification that teaches that justification is a process beginning with baptism, which is contingent upon continual obedience to the Law of God, which can be lost by apostasy, and which is not completed until Judgment Day is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of justification that does not teach that immediately upon believing in Jesus, God instantly imputes the perfect righteousness of Christ to that believing sinner, so that on that basis he stands forgiven and accepted by God forever is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of justification that blends justification and sanctification, or the imputing of righteousness and the imparting of righteousness, into one is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of the atoning death of Christ that does not teach that the death of Christ was a satisfaction of God's justice and a propitiation of His anger by the merits of Christ's life and death as the substitute of God's elect is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of baptism that teaches that all who are baptized with water are by that baptism incorporated into Christ and are recipients of all the benefits of Christ's accomplished work, e.g., regeneration and justification, is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of baptism that explains water baptism as the moment in which we are regenerated or as the point of transfer from death to life is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of election that teaches that the elect can apostatize or that baptism is the proof of election is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine that believers in Jesus can lose their justification and salvation is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine that teaches that God accepts less than perfect obedience by Christ in behalf of the elect for fulfilling the conditions of salvation is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine that denies the Covenant of Works is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine that denies that the covenant of grace was made with Christ as the second Adam, and in Him with all the elect as His seed is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of the covenant that denies that the Lord's Supper is to be served only to such as are of years and ability to examine themselves or that all ignorant and ungodly persons, as they are unfit to enjoy communion with him, so are they unworthy of the Lord's Table, and cannot, without great sin against Christ, while they remain such, partake of these holy mysteries, or be admitted thereunto is contrary to the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any doctrine of Biblical revelation that denies the propositional and systematic nature of the verbal and written revelation of God is contrary to the bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any ridiculing of the doctrines of sola gratia, sola fide, solo Christo, sola scriptura or Soli Deo Gloria is ridiculing the teaching of the Bible and the Westminster Standards.

Any ridiculing of the Westminster Standards as being a Greek and Hellenisitc, and therefore inadequate, interpretation of the Bible is ridiculing of Biblical Christianity in it purest human expression.

--Adopted unanimously by Covenant Presbytery, Reformed Presbyterian Church in the United States, June 22, 2002.



A Call to Repentance

June 22, 2002

Covenant Presbytery of the RPCUS declares that teaching presented in the 2002 Auburn Avenue Presbyterian Pastors Conference, involves a fundamental denial of the essence of the Christian Gospel in the denial of justification by faith alone.

That the teaching of the various speakers: Douglas Wilson, Steve Schlissel, John Barach, and J. Steven Wilkins, has the effect of destroying the Reformed Faith through the introduction of false hermeneutic principles; the infusion of sacerdotalism; and the redefinition of the doctrines of: the church, the sacraments, election, effectual calling, perseverance, regeneration, justification, union with Christ, and the nature and instrumentality of faith.

That the rejection of the Bible as propositional and the introduction of an illegitimate post-exilic Jewish mindset as an interpretive scheme, denies the role of Scripture in interpreting itself.  This view, while affirming the written work, yet gives license to reformulate and reinterpret that word through the glasses of an unrevealed and antipropositional mindset that is closely akin to the old liberal higher criticism of the early 20th century.

The denial of the distinction of visible and invisible church and the introduction of an historical and eschatological church, opens the door to new and mystical meanings being applied to the sacrament of the Lord's Supper that are sacerdotal in orientation; makes justification an eschatological process instead of a definitive legal act; obscures the reality and necessity of the new birth; and corrupts Gospel preaching by eliminating the call to repentance and faith within the congregation.

That baptismal regeneration constructed upon the principle of linking the sign and the reality in effect differs little from Roman Catholicism.

That the doctrine that maintains union with Christ is a external position and place in the church confounds regeneration, union with Christ, and the outward ordinances.

That the maintenance of the language of Calvinism in these speakers is superficial and misleading: their doctrine of perseverance is made to deny effectual calling; their doctrine of corporate election is made to deny particular redemption; and the native depravity of man is made to be removed in the outward administration of water baptism which thereby sufficiently qualifies the recipient for the Lord's Supper.

We therefore resolve that these teachings are heretical.  We call these men to repentance.  We call upon the church of Jesus Christ to hold these teachings in contempt.  We call upon the courts of the churches that are responsible for these men to institute judicial process against them and to vindicate the honor of Christ and the truth of the Christian Gospel by bringing judgment upon them, suspending them from office, and removing them from the communion of the church should they not repent.

May God have mercy upon their souls.

-- Adopted unanimously by Covenant Presbytery, Reformed Presbyterian Church in the United States, June 22, 2002.