This past Saturday morning, The Andrew Fuller Center for Baptist Studies, now located at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (www.sbts.edu) , teamed up with Toronto Baptist Seminary (www.tbs.edu ) to present a mini-conference of two lectures by Dr Liam Goligher of Duke Street Church in Richmond-on-Thames, London (see www.dukestreetchurch.co.uk ). This conference had been planned before the move of the Andrew Fuller Center to Louisville, but it is hoped that the Center will be able to hold a similar event annually in southern Ontario. Dr Goligher superbly and succinctly analyzed the Emergent Church in his first lecture and then looked at the deviations from a solid biblical focus on penal, substitutionary atonement in his second talk. Coming from a position Goligher described as “Catholic [that is rooted in the patristic era], Protestant, Reformed, and Evangelical,” he examined Emergent thinking in relation to Scripture, humanity, Christ, salvation, ethics, and Christian orthodoxy. He urged his hearers that while we must be humble in the way we present the truth, we should not “be humble about the truth” itself. Truth can be known—though obviously not all the truth about any given topic. Insightfully he suggested that the opposite of humility today for many people—even Christians—is not pride, but conviction.
Goligher’s second lecture looked at the doctrine of the cross in the New and Old Testaments. He ably responded to Steve Chalke’s recent argument that viewing the cross as God’s judgment on sin is simply cosmic child abuse and rightly pointed out that the charge is not a new one. Goligher powerfully argued that the cross achieves propitiation, reconciliation, redemption, and victory over evil.
It was a morning well spent. We hope, DV, to have another set of lectures next year at roughly the same time. On that occasion, Dr Stephen Wellum of Southern will be with us lecturing on the person of Christ. Plan on joining us!
For another report of the lectures by Dr Goligher, see Kirk Wellum: Post Lecture Thoughts.
The audio of Dr Goligher's lectures can be found here on the Toronto Baptist website: