The Federal Vision Heresy

by Mike Ratliff

“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.” (John 15:1-6 ESV)

If you haven’t read last night’s post, The Doctrine of Unity and Separation, I suggest that you do so now. I also suggest that you read all of the comments especially those of my friend Daniel Chew. In them, he brings out his experience of debating Frank Turk a few weeks ago. He (Frank) and many other bloggers and Christian apologists have, over the last several years perplexed us with their very strange stands against the application of what should be clear cut examples where we should be applying the doctrine of Separation from those who say and do things that are clearly unbiblical in nature nor do they square with the doctrines of orthodox evangelical Christianity. Daniel’s response in the comments last night shed a great deal of light in that area. I confess that I was surprised. I had heard of the Federal Vision, but, as I shared with Daniel, I am no expert on it. I know who the New Calvinists are. I know who the Emergents are. I know who the New Evangelicals are. However, their theology seems incoherent to me with no solid basis in fact. I just could not find it, much like it took me several years to understand where Rick Warren was coming from (he is a Pelagian).  Continue reading