Intown's Brian Prentiss comes out of the closet...

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For those of us who find the SCOTUS decision something to be celebrated, we should remember Romans 14, where the Apostle Paul advises those of us with less scruples to be gracious towards our brothers and sisters with more. (The "weaker" brother language is unfortunate here, because it seems to suggest one is right and the other is wrong...)

- Brian Prentiss, pastor of Intown Presbyterian Church, Portland; member of Pacific Northwest Presbytery, Presbyterian Church in America; M.Div. Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, Mississippi; former Campus Director at Campus Outreach and Collegiate Director at Briarwood Presbyterian Church. (On LinkedIn, Prentiss is commended for his pastoral leadership by Andrew Field, former pastor at Redeemer (NYC) and present board member of CCEF—David Powlison, Steve Estes, Ed Welch, etc.)

The above is excerpted from a post on the Intown Presbyterian Church (PCA) web site written by her pastor, Brian Prentiss. The post is scandalous. When the Supreme Court issued its pro-sodomy ruling, Bergefell v. Rhodes, Pastor Prentiss decided not to battle the wolf in defense of the sheep, so he wrote a bunch of gobbledigook to cover his abandonment...

of his calling:

I'm a pastor of a church where members are not uniform in their response to this ruling, and I actually find that to be one of the most beautiful things about our church. Some of us are putting rainbow filters on our Facebook avatars while others are disappointed in the SCOTUS decision but are holding our tongues on social media for fear or being labeled in an unfortunate way.

And both of these "sides" will show up tomorrow and worship together!

As a pastor of a beautifully-diverse church like this, I find myself wanting to offer counsel to both sides of this debate (even while lamenting the unfortunate bifurcation of this issue into two sides aligned against one another.) 

This is a perfect specimen of pastoral betrayal. The godly are looking for a safe haven from the oppression of their wicked civil magistrates and Pastor Prentiss tells them it's all an unfortunate misunderstanding; that everything's beautiful in it's own way—especially Intown Presbyterian Church where the sodomite lies down with the lamb.

Pastor Prentiss dispenses with his duty to give his life in defense of the sheep by declaring victory. No need to guard the good deposit passed down to him. No need to do anything risky at all.

Look at me. I'm the pastor of a beautifully-diverse church. I'm so very hip.

Did you hear me? I said "beautifully-diverse." Hey, listen to me! I said "beautifully diverse." Beautifully diverse!

The academy started blathering about it thirty years ago and on the occasion of Bergefell v. Hodges, Pastor Prentiss finally catches the wave.

The supreme judicial authority in his land has declared open season on God's character and law, as well as the consciences of every one of God's sheep, and here is how the shepherd responds:

I find myself wanting to offer counsel to both sides in this debate...

He finds himself?

Most assuredly not. Pastor Prentiss has no clue about himself. He's parading his cowardice, indicating he has either no self-knowledge or no capacity for shame.

He's wanting to offer counsel?

Most assuredly yes, and this is why he should come under the censure of his presbytery. Pastors are shepherds—that's the meaning of the word 'pastor'—and our first duty is to guard God's sheep from Satan's wolves. Homosexualism is such an attack. The whole world knows it, so surely it's come to Pastor Prentiss's attention, also?

Yet this moment is met by the sheep's shepherd "wanting to offer counsel." Is this a joke? Is he serious?

True shepherds do not speak to God's flock in this way. Such paraded weakness is immodest from a man to whom God has delegated His authority. Pastor Prentiss might think he is only giving away his own authority by talking in such an effete manner, but Pastor Prentiss has no authority to give away or hide. His authority is delegated by God and delegation always carries with it accountability. The day will soon come when every pastor and elder will give an accounting to God for his use or abuse of the authority God delegated to him for the defense of His flock. Not many of us should desire to be preachers for we may be certain that we ourselves will be judged more strictly.

We have here one abdication of God-ordained authority confirmed by another. The civil magistrate has denied an essential truth of God's moral law and the church magistrate responds by mincing and prancing, saying he finds himself wanting to offer counsel to both sides of the debate and that he is "lamenting the unfortunate bifurcation of this issue into two sides aligned against one another."

This "unfortunate bifurcation"—is he referring to the kings of the earth and God? Our rulers and the Lord Jesus Christ? The Puffington Host and God's Moral Law? SCOTUS and all people of good conscience?

Are the two sides arrayed against one another Tim Cook and Apple against a Ma and Pop pizza shop? Calvin College's theology professors against simple dairymen out in Lynden, Washington?

Precisely what bifurcation is Brian Prentiss calling "unfortunate"?

No one with the fear of God still residing within his breast needs an answer to this question. Pastor Prentiss is one of that tribe of pastors whose commitment is to himself—certainly not his sheep. When the wolf comes to devour those in the bondage of sexual sin as well as the people of God proclaiming the Gospel to them, Pastor Prentiss runs for his hipster life. But as he turns tail and flees, he pauses long enough to camouflage his cowardice as something beautiful. "Beautiful diversity" he calls it. With all his transformationalist "in the city, for the city" buddies, Pastor Prentiss appears to be culturally and contextually and missionally clueless.

Last night I was talking with a relative who works in higher education and he was explaining to me that sex is gender, and gender should not be reduced to simplistic notions of what is and is not male and female. That's not scientific, and so on.

For ten or fifteen minutes I tried, but it was a fool's errand. There was no possibility for God's Creation Order to gain even a basic hearing because of the darkness of his mind. We continued into other subjects where Satan had not yet established so effective a stronghold, but before moving on, I said this to my dear friend: "You should be concerned that the whole world agrees with you. That's not usually a good thing to the man who claims to be a scientist rendering objective judgments based on an impartial consideration of the data. Anyhow, I find your views on sex predictable and utterly boring."

If they bring themselves to admonish Pastor Prentiss, his fellow presbyters might simply say to him, "the whole world agrees with you and finds you boring."

And yet, in the back of my mind, I find myself wondering if this would not please Pastor Prentiss?

For this reason I also suffer these things, but I am not ashamed; for I know whom I have believed and I am convinced that He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day. Retain the standard of sound words which you have heard from me, in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus. Guard, through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to you.

You are aware of the fact that all who are in Asia turned away from me, among whom are Phygelus and Hermogenes.  - 2 Timothy 1:12-15

Tim Bayly

Tim serves Clearnote Church, Bloomington, Indiana. He and Mary Lee have five children and big lots of grandchildren.

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