The Anglican Divide: A Controversy over Biblical Authority

The Associated Press reports on a meeting in Zanzibar, Tanzania of the Bishops from the worldwide Anglican Communion. As the Anglican Church is embroiled in a controversy over the moral status of homosexuality and gender, many of the orthodox Bishops from Africa refused to take communion with the schismatic Bishops from the west.

The U.S. Episcopal Church, the American wing of the fellowship, consecrated its first gay bishop in 2003, and last year elected its first female leader, Katharine Jefferts Schori, fueling the divide.

Conspicuously absent from Sunday’s [communion] service was Nigerian Archbishop Peter Akinola, who has called the acceptance of gay relationships a “satanic attack” on the church and who now leads a rival network formed by conservative Anglicans in the United States.

On Friday, Akinola led seven conservative archbishops in refusing to take communion with Jefferts Schori.

If you want to understand what’s at the heart of the Anglican divide, consider this sentence from the AP report:

Supporters of ordaining gays believe the Bible’s teachings on social justice take precedence over its view of sexuality.

In other words, the supporters of ordaining gays have an unorthodox view of holy Scripture. They believe the Scripture contradicts itself and that it errs in its view of sexuality. Make no mistake. This dispute is about the authority and the integrity of God’s written word. I’m glad to see that the AP got that much right.

See also: Anglican Prelates Snub Head of U.S. Church Over Gay Issues” – New York Times

One Comment

  • Wesley

    Recent news: See the article on the Christian Post:

    ” the fact that some people in the church, a minority, especially in the United States, have chosen to read the Bible in a new, very controversial way,”

    “The stance of the Anglican Communion is clear: It has never said anything other than that. The ordination of active homosexuals is not acceptable,” Williams said in the interview. “It has never said anything other than that the ‘marriage’ of same-sex couples is not to be admitted.”

    “Since the meeting’s conclusion, some Episcopal bishops have indicated that they prefer leaving the Communion over banning homosexuals from ordination and same-sex unions.”

    Looks like schism in the wind, only it will be the liberals who are forced to “walk apart”.

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