Bonhoeffer uses a similar phrase 'worldly Christianity'. It's J Gresham Machen that I want to line up most closely with. See his Christianity and culture here. Having done commentaries on Proverbs (Heavenly Wisdom) and Song of Songs (Heavenly Love), a matching title for Ecclesiastes would be Heavenly Worldliness. For my stance on worldliness, see 3 posts here.

Affinity Conference 3-5

Greg Beale


Dan Strange
So another day of it yesterday. We began with Greg Beale's paper which was a development of previous work on hermeneutics and the question of whether the NT use of the old is legitimate and to be followed. He made a good and scholarly contribution on this, focusing in the latter half of his paper on the use of Hosea 11:1 in Matthew 2. We found it difficult to discuss the paper in our group but were glad to hear someone setting out what I think most of us agreed with.
Stephen Clark spoke next (and I chaired). This was a more practical paper on the use of the Bible in church life (originally Martin Downes was to have done a paper on use and abuse so this was a different paper to the one intended). So we said various useful things about reading the Word, preaching, personal Bible study, etc.
The third paper of the day was from Dan Strange who outlined the contrasting views held within the Reformed world over involvement in public life. On one hand, there is the more Lutheran seeming two kingdoms approach and, on the other, what Dan called a transformational approach (chiefly growing out of Van Til), the view he himself favoured. We had a lively discussion on the question of how we argue in the public sphere - from natural law or straight from the Bible. We did not come to any firm conclusions and there was some disagreement, for example, on how Christians should deal with the challenges we are currently facing in the public sphere.
Another good day then.

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