February 2016 Ordained Servant

A Journal for Church Officers

E-ISSN 1931-7115

Ministering Out of Bounds

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From the Editor. No, “Out of Bounds” is not the same as Outward Bound, although there are similarities as you will see in Allen Tomlinson’s article “Ministers Laboring ‘Out of Bounds.’ ” And yes, I know that the phrase “out of bounds” is not in our Form of Government. Here in the Presbytery of New York and New England we had a number of ministers “labor in churches other than those of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church” (FG 28.1). Our Form of Government adequately addresses the danger of compromising polity and theology (FG 28.2.a).

When I became a Christian in 1971, there were very few NAPARC churches in New England and none in New Hampshire. There were a few Reformed pastors who were working at reforming Congregational churches in Woodstock, Vermont; Limington, Maine; and Merrimack, New Hampshire. In 1980 a Reformed Congregational church was started in Upton, Massachusetts. Today three out of the four have become part of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church. I have had the privilege of watching the church in Merrimack slowly move toward the OPC. It has taken nearly half a century of ministerial labor. The last half of that time was spent by Pastor Tomlinson, who patiently taught the Reformed Faith and Presbyterian church government beginning in 1988. In 1996 I met Allen for the first time and invited him to presbytery. Having already been convinced of our doctrine and practice, he joined the presbytery soon after. In December 2014 the congregation was particularized.

In his review article “Preachers, Take Aim!” Craig Troxel reviews Capill, The Heart Is the Target. A shorter review appeared in April 2015, but I thought a review article by the author of a book on the heart would be a nice addition to Pastor Lems’s excellent review. Pastor Troxel’s book is due out in 2017.

Sherif Gendy offers another in a series of review articles on Old Testament works with a new Old Testament theology by Fuller Theological Seminary professor John Goldingay, OT Theology Volume One: Israel’s Gospel. Gendy raises a number of serious concerns.

If you are tired of the news media and others muting the differences among the world’s religions in the name of tolerance, you will enjoy John Muether’s review of Stephen Prothero’s God Is Not One and want to read the book.

I review one of Packer’s latest: Puritan Portraits in which he surveys the ministries and writings of several major Puritans. These portraits form a rebuke so sweetly conveyed as to win every pastor’s heart.

Finally, don’t miss our poem this month. John Milton’s “On Time” reminds me of missionary Jim Elliot’s remarkable statement: “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain that which he cannot lose.”

Blessings in the Lamb,
Gregory Edward Reynolds


Subject Index

  • “Baseball and the Supernatural.” (Gregory Edward Reynolds) 15 (2006): 28–30.
  • “The Spirituality of Mission Work.” (Gregory Edward Reynolds) 18 (2009): 20–22.
  • “Seven Lessons for Missionaries from the Ministry of John Paton.” (Gregory Edward Reynolds) 20 (2011): 20–24.
  • “Evangelism and the Local Church.” (John S. Shaw) 23 (2014): 87–92.
  • “The Orthodox Presbyterian Church and the City.” (John S. Shaw) 23 (2014): 92–97.

Ordained Servant exists to help encourage, inform, and equip church officers for faithful, effective, and God-glorifying ministry in the visible church of the Lord Jesus Christ. Its primary audience is ministers, elders, and deacons of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, as well as interested officers from other Presbyterian and Reformed churches. Through high-quality editorials, articles, and book reviews we endeavor to stimulate clear thinking and the consistent practice of historic, confessional Presbyterianism.

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Contact the Editor: Gregory Edward Reynolds

Editorial address: Dr. Gregory Edward Reynolds,
827 Chestnut St.
Manchester, NH 03104-2522
Telephone: 603-668-3069

Electronic mail: reynolds.1@opc.org

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