One of this week's highlights was Friday's roundtable discussion between John MacArthur, R.C. Sproul, Mark Dever, Al Mohler, and Steve Lawson. They spent the largest portion of their time discussing the purpose and distictives of the upcoming Together for the Gospel Conference (visit the blog here). MacArthur, who was leading the discussion, repeatedly referred to their intentions to create "a new movement of faithfulness to the truth."
The details are still rather unclear to me, but the men at the center of all this are formulating a set of affirmations of what is essential to the gospel—truths for which we must contend. MacArthur pressed the point, expressing hopes that some method might be devised for finding out who will or will not sign these affirmations. "There ought to be a price to pay if you don’t get inside the box of orthodoxy," he said. At this very moment Mohler is speaking and expanding on that quote. He just said that a true Christianity and a true Christian pulpit must be composed of both affirmations and denials. A Christianity without denials is dangerous.
The discussion was marked by clear optimism. Just before moving on to the next topic, MacArthur said, "I think God is starting to build a phoenix out of this evangelical wreck that’s going to fly." This has been a major theme of the conference—that a renewal of authentic biblical preaching (not that which masquerades as such) may be heralding a new Reformation. Steve Lawson summed up this theme well when he said Friday in his exegesis of Nehemiah 8 that every true reformation and every great revival has been ushered in by a recovery of great preaching.
That's what these men want. I pray they succeed. I hope you will too.