It seems like almost a decade ago that D.A. Carson came to our church offices in Rolling Meadows, IL, and shared his vision for The Gospel Coalition, then unnamed. It was clear and compelling to me, and I joined in to do all I could to help him and others rally gospel men around the preservation and extension of sound biblical theology.
Though never entirely comfortable with the title ‘reformed,’ and unable to score higher than 3.8 on the “C” test, I believe in these important biblical distinctions as protections against a man-centered gospel. I also believe strongly that local pastors benefit from an association that holds a high standard for churches in preserving—even contending for—sound theology. Our church’s Doctrinal Statement has only strengthened during this helpful association and will remain unchanged, as will the Doctrinal Statements of Harvest Bible Fellowship and our church plants. We are resolutely committed to biblical fidelity and gospel proclamation. We are deeply committed to the exposition of Scripture as the centerpiece of our church planting work around the world.
As our church’s support for the Coalition grew, I was invited to serve on the board and got to witness the wonderful organizational integrity which supports the Coalition work. I have grown to appreciate men who share our passion for the Word of God, but have very different views on baptism, ecclesiology, and how best to advance the mission Christ has given us. What we hold in common has been of greater value than any ministry method that separates us. Most of the friendships I have with Council members preceded my joining, and I am assured they will continue long into the future.
I have always believed in the institutional maxim: “the whole is more important than the part.” I am actually a very small, small part of the work God is doing through the Coalition, and I believe their work will be assisted by my absence, given my methodological convictions. I have very different views on how to relate to the broader church and how the gospel must impact every relationship. I don’t want my minor role on the Council to hinder their work as a whole or to give the impression they agree with all God has called me to do. Ben Peays, the primary leader of the Coalition, accepted my resignation with regret and understanding, and Don Carson thanked me for my efforts these last years. I wish the Coalition well in the pursuit of their goals, and I feel greatly blessed by the impact this association has had, and will continue to have, upon my ministry.