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RWANDA: Anglican Theologian says separation is the only course in face of false gospel

RWANDA: Anglican Theologian says separation is the only course in face of false gospel

By David W. Virtue in Kigali
April 18, 2023

If the indictment is true that GAFCON truthfully identify a false gospel, then we have no choice but to separate from it and its promoters and enablers, said Anglican theologian Dr. Stephen Noll.

Speaking to some 1300 orthodox Anglicans in Kigali at a GAFCON conference, the evangelical ACNA author said the choice to separate is not new. "It was made by the Anglican martyrs, including Thomas Cranmer, who died in the fires at Oxford. It was enunciated by the great apologists of the church." Noll called this charge "the prophetic indictment."

To be a member of the Anglican Communion is to confess the faith of its founders. Loyalty to the truth of the Gospel takes priority over institutional or historical loyalty, however robust, he said.

"While acknowledging the nature of Canterbury as an historic see, we do not accept that Anglican identity is determined necessarily through recognition by the Archbishop of Canterbury."

"We reject the authority of those churches and leaders who have denied the orthodox faith in word or deed. We pray for them and call on them to repent and return to the Lord."

Noll said that church discipline, including the necessity of separating from those who openly defy God's Word, is found in the Old Testament and in Jesus' and the Apostles' teaching. It is an integral part of "doctrine, discipline, and worship" in the Articles and the Homilies. The Anglican Reformers claimed that their church was a true church while the Church of Rome had gone astray.

"In setting up an authoritative 'Primates Council' distinct from its Lambeth counterparts, GAFCON signaled its claim to recognize Anglican churches in places where faithful Anglicans were departing or expelled from heretical bodies."

GAFCON took the bold and necessary step in the formation of a new Global Anglican Communion. The Global South Fellowship of Anglican Churches, which has overlapped in many ways with GAFCON, has likewise accepted these new churches.

In a recent essay, I asked: "What Is God Saying to Global Anglicans?" And I replied: "Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it?" (Isaiah 43:19). The first Global Anglican Future Conference proclaimed that it was "not just a moment in time but a movement in the Spirit." Fifteen years later, Global Anglicans are being called to assume leadership of a revived, reformed, and reordered Anglican Communion worldwide.


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