By Rev. Marq Toombs
28 Sept. 2018

Here’s an exchange between me and a minister from my former tradition. His question was prompted by my fb post about my 25th year of ministry. It’s not the first time I have been asked a question like this, and it probably won’t be the last. I was not offended in the least, but welcome Qs like this, especially from sincere inquirers.

Question: I was curious what has led you away from the Lord’s church* to where you are currently? P.S. – I am genuinely curious and not trying to cause strife in any way. Thanks

Answer: Good to hear from you. Thanks for reaching out. It’s a long story summarized In the links below.

https://newhopec.wordpress.com/2013/05/01/ssop20/

https://newhopec.wordpress.com/2013/05/02/2020/

The (short) story of the church I serve is here.

https://christcovenantc.wordpress.com/2018/02/02/retrospect/

Btw, I’m still part of the Lord’s church.

*The question stems from the fact that some professing Christians believe that their 19th-century movement and/or system constitutes the one true church of Christ the Lord. From their point of view, those who leave their movement/system for (say) a denomination or a creedal/confessional church are apostates — people who have fallen away from the faith or left the Lord’s (true) church.

By way of analogy, Calvin’s letter to Sadoleto is surprisingly relevant in principle and addresses this matter quite well.

We show that the only haven of safety is in the mercy of God, as manifested in Christ, in whom every part of our salvation is complete. As all mankind are, in the sight of God, lost sinners, we hold that Christ is their only righteousness, since, by his obedience, he has wiped off our transgressions; by his sacrifice, appeased the divine anger; by his blood, washed away our sins; by his cross, borne our curse, and by his death, made satisfaction for us. We maintain that in this way man is reconciled in Christ to God the Father, by no merit of his own, by no value of works, but by gratuitous mercy.

Read the whole letter here: A Reformation Debate