Thoughts on Gavin Ashenden’s Critique Over Michael Curry Royal Wedding Invitation To Preach

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Reverend Dr Gavin Ashenden (GA)  has been spilling a bit of cyber-ink over Michael Curry’s speech at the royal wedding. I’ve responded with a few thoughts to some select comments which grabbed my attention.

GA: And at one level, the choice was brilliant. Michael Curry is a gifted preacher and black. What a great way of signalling the coming together of American and British culture, white and coloured.

Surely the marriage of Meghan and Harry was the fusion of American and British culture. The fusion of BLACK and “coloured”.

For Gavin Ashenden’s benefit,  “white” people are  “coloured” too. Every human is “coloured” so to use the word simply for non-white people implies “white” is the default as highlighted in the BBC article explaining why the word “coloured” could be deemed problematic.

The use of the word “coloured” seems archaic. Next time, perhaps it will be wiser to just use the colour of the person you’re talking about: black (Michael Curry), white (Justin Welby), and brown (Jesus). Let’s not be seeing the word “coloured” to describe black people again. Yes, I just slapped Gavin’s wrist. Ever so lightly. No big deal.

GA: So when Justin Welby suggested Michael Curry as the preacher on this astonishing world-wide stage, he was also signing up one of the most effective street fighters for progressive, distorted Christianity who – with great charm and verve – presents his own preferred version of Jesus to the real one we find in the Gospels.

The 4 Church gospels are not reliable, Gavin Ashenden needs to stop being so bold in his claims he can find the “real” Jesus in there. Likewise with Church traditions such as the 4th century belief of the Trinity, this is clearly a belief Jesus never knew about never mind believed in.

In sum, just don’t take the Church ‘s doctrines as authoritative  nor the texts it claims to be “inspired”.

GA: This matters very much. Curry’s Jesus is preoccupied with social Justice and the celebration of romance and sexual love wherever it finds you. The real Jesus warned that social justice would never happen in this world, that heterosexual marriage [sic] was to be between a man and a woman, and that equality had nothing to do with the Kingdom of Heaven.
Curry twists that round and turns it upside down. He says Jesus likes homosexual marriage and favours the quest for equality that left-wing politicians have made their life’s work.  Curry says wherever you find ‘love’ you have found God.  But when Jesus defines love it sounds very different from Curry.

This is Gavin Ashenden blowing his bugle. He’s really up for the scrap to halt the gay marriage juggernaut which is running through the CofE. This is admirable as it’s obvious marriage can only be between male and female. Folks who are trying to subvert this rule are folks who are pushing the envelope of an agenda which has nothing to do with any religion at all (no matter how assidually shills operating in religious organisations, churches mainly, toil for that irreligious agenda)

I’d like to posit hree points for consideration:

  1. Michael Curry did not mention gay marriage in his speech but he did mention Martin Luther King. Martin Luther King rejected the idea of Jesus being deity (amongst other doctrines) and thus was not a Christian. Why is Gavin Ashenden not out to bat for the idea of Jesus being deity, Trinity doctrine and other beliefs King rejected?
  2. Gavin Ashenden may want to aim his bugle at folks closer to home. It’s the members of the CofE who will ultimately decide to usher  gay marriage in to the Church of England, which looks increasingly likely. More CofE members believe gay marriage is right than those who say it’s wrong. [YouGov suggested45% of Church of England followers felt same-sex marriage was right, against 37% who believed it wrong[stats sourced from Huffington Post].   Get blowing that bugle long and loud, Gavin. Knock on the doors of the mosques to get a crowd behind you against the concept of gay marriage (Muslims really don’t want the LGBTQ pressure lobby to begin taking aim at mosques after they’ve finished with the churches and a churchmen). Once the churchmen capitulate, it’s the Muslims and the Jews who will be targeted.
  3. Was there not a sinful union taking place according to the biblical injunction forbidding divorce and remarriage (Matthew 5:32) as Meghan Markle has been divorced and thus this was a “further marriage”. And who was there to deliver that message to Charles and Camilla despite their union having been “blessed” by the CofE ‘s Rowan Williams? It all seems a little odd that we see little opposition to the surrendering of faithfulness to the Bible in favour of secular and social affirmation in the regard of the bolted horses (divorce-remarriage) but the horse which is about to bolt (heterosexual marriage) is the one which the bugle blowing is all about. If the churchmen blew their bugles and waved them around enough in the past (on divorce and remarriage, before that church silence on sex before marriage) perhaps they would not be seen as people who are ready to sell out their traditions and beliefs for worldly acceptance. I wonder if Gavin Ashenden has ever preached a sermon against sex before marriage, that’s something the CofE seems quite silent on. Very little bugle waving and blowing there. The vast majority of the CofE probably reject or are ignorant about the 4th century doctrine of the Trinity, how much bugle blowing are we hearing about this? The volume is as low as those preaching against divorce. Almost complete silence.

GA: There is a civil war raging at the moment in Anglicanism (and elsewhere) between progressive Christianity that takes its priorities from the zeitgeist, the present culture, and a faithful orthodox belief

“A civil war”? From an outsider looking in, it looks more like a few mealy mouthed Anglicans speaking in opposition to  gay marriage (with a few folk less mealy-mouthed, like Gavin Ashenden) just like they are/were doing so with respect to opposing female bishops. If you want to listen to a typical mealy mouthed effort against female bishops pull up the archive of CJ Davis’ session on female bishops at St Nicholas Church Tooting. The man seemed to me, at least, to be uncertain, lacking confidence and afraid of stepping on egg shells placed there by present culture. That is what the zeitgeist does to churchmen.

One thing is true, serving the present culture will make a hypocrite out of everyone and anyone.
Ashenden Curry

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