Quoting Quiverfull: John Piper on Papal Heresy

John Piper at desiring God on what he would say to the Pope about the Pope’s heresy.

A few years ago, I was asked on camera what I would say to the Pope if I had two minutes with him. I said I would ask him what he believed about justification. The video ended with me putting the question to the Pope and then responding as follows:

“I would ask him about his cool hat and those bitchin’ tissue-lame dresses he wears and if he wouldn’t give up the name of his designer I would accuse him of heresy.”

Comments open below

QUOTING QUIVERFULL is a regular feature of NLQ – we present the actual words of noted Quiverfull leaders and ask our readers: What do you think? Agree? Disagree? This is the place to state your opinion. Please, let’s keep it respectful – but at the same time, we encourage readers to examine the ideas of Quiverfull honestly and thoughtfully.

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Actually, that’s not what he said. Happy April Fools Day! Real quote below.

A few years ago, I was asked on camera what I would say to the Pope if I had two minutes with him. I said I would ask him what he believed about justification. The video ended with me putting the question to the Pope and then responding as follows:

“Do you teach that we should rely entirely on the righteousness of Christ imputed to us by faith alone as the ground of God being 100% for us, after which necessary sanctification comes? Do you teach that?”

And if he said, “No, we don’t,” then I’d say, “I think that right at the core of Roman Catholic theology is a heresy,” or something like that.

“Heresy” is a strong word. The problem with it is that its meaning and implications are not clear. Dictionary.com defines heresy, for example, as:

  1. opinion or doctrine at variance with the orthodox or accepted doctrine, especially of a church or religious system.
  2. any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs, customs, etc.

You can see how fluid such definitions are.

So what did I mean in the video?

I meant that the rejection of 1) the doctrine of the imputation of the righteousness of Christ as an essential part of the basis of our justification, and 2) the doctrine that good works necessarily follow justification but are not part of its ground — the rejection of those truths is a biblical error so close to the heart of the gospel that, when consistently worked out, will undermine saving faith in the gospel.

The reason for saying, “when consistently worked out,” is because I think it is possible to inconsistently deny the truth of imputation while embracing other aspects of the gospel (blood bought forgiveness, and propitiation, for example), through which God mercifully saves.

I am thankful that God is willing to save us even when our grasp of the gospel may be partial or defective. None of us has a comprehensive or perfect grasp of it.

Nevertheless, God’s mercy is not a warrant to neglect or deny precious truths, especially those that are at the heart of how we get right with God. And the teachers of the church (notably the Pope) will be held more responsible than others for teaching what is fully biblical.

Thus, any church whose teaching rejects the imputation of the righteousness of Christ as an essential ground for our justification would be a church whose error is so close to the heart of the gospel as to be involved in undermining the faith of its members.

NLQ Recommended Reading …

Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment‘ by Janet Heimlich

Quivering Daughters‘ by Hillary McFarland

Quiverfull: Inside the Christian Patriarchy Movement‘ by Kathryn Joyce

 

About Suzanne Calulu
  • http://campuskritik.blogspot.com Malte

    I was pretty stunned by this, inasmuch as he classifies *all* non-Calvinist soteriologies as heresy. Requiring imputation (presumably double imputation, although he doesn’t say so) and *necessary* sanctification after justification as a test of orthodoxy makes the orthodox a tiny group and condemns the vast majority of Christians to heretic status. That’s more combative than evangelicals are – in line with Piper’s theological trajectory, though, as he seems to be heading towards a sort of neo-fundamentalism.

  • http://alisoncummins.com Alison Cummins

    Whatever happened to “in my father’s house are many mansions”?

  • Stacey B.

    Shows that this man knows absolutely NOTHING about the Catholic church.

  • Kimberly

    Loved your April Fool’s joke. I was the fool this time! Would love to comment on the deeper subject, but will have to wait until I’m more awake to be able to really think clearly! :-)

  • syfr

    Dude, as far as the Pope is concerned, *you* are the heretic.


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