Last spring our denomination published a strategic plan to help it avoid a plateau in its growth. Whether there is an actual plateau has been a matter of serious debate. One of the most stunning things that came out of the plan was this statement:
Means (Specific #4): Partner with national & international ministries with whom we can most effectively participate in God's global mission...
a. Seek union or appropriate levels of cooperation with Reformed movements making Gospel progress and in harmony with our ethos & goals.
b. Withdraw from organizations with whom we share doctrinal history, but not ministry priorities currently draining our ministry energies (e.g. NAPARC).
c. Find new ways to give away our knowledge & resources to bodies of believers being spiritually blessed.
I've written about item b (NAPARC) here and here so no need to repeat that information. And it should be noted that in the final draft of the plan the language about leaving NAPARC was removed. But a question remains: Who or what is being identified in item a? I believe it is groups like The Gospel Coalition. I have nothing against that group per se, but it is no secret that they are a fairly moderate representation of the reformed faith.
Dr. Carl Trueman has written a helpful post on one aspect of this group: Looks like a job for a taxi driver...... - Reformation21 Blog. That the PCA leadership would propose dropping our affiliation with other confessional reformed denominations in order to affiliate with this crowd is stunning.
Trueman's article and the original piece remind me of a saying I picked up years ago when traveling through Israel: "Haifa works, Jerusalem studies, Tel Aviv plays." Sorry - artists do not make the world go around nor are they essential to the church. Faithful pastors who study and teach God's Word along with faithful elders who shepherd God's people are essential.
Our NAPARC brethren must be scratching their heads.