7 December 2022

Founders’ Lecture set to challenge faith priorities

The Reverend Dr Fergus King will be presenting on passages in Romans and their implications for today at the Founders’ Lecture. Image: Supplied.

Kirralee Nicolle

19 October 2022 

Taking Scripture seriously sometimes means rethinking how important some issues are, says a lecturer from the University of Divinity.

Reverend Dr Fergus King of Trinity College is set to speak at a Founders’ Lecture at St Stephen’s Gardenvale on Thursday 27 October.

The event is an initiative of the Brighton Covenant of Churches, a group which includes Baptist, Catholic, Anglican, Uniting and Church of Christ congregations. The topic will be “Live and Let Live: How Paul Settled the Difference Between the Weak and the Strong”.

Dr King said the focus of the talk would be on the passage in Romans 14 which dealt with food laws. He said this was a major point of contention in the church in Rome, and Paul sought to address the issue by rejecting black and white ethical categories. Dr King said the core of faith could be found in Romans 10:9, through believing and confessing in Jesus. He said the principle behind Paul’s depiction of the problem of food laws had implications for the church today.

Read more: Interdenominational collaborations fruitful for Anglican Christians

“We get so tied up between denominations and within denominations about having a different point of view,” he said. “Perhaps we need to bear in mind Paul’s view that it’s that core confession of Romans 10:9 that matters, and that if we have that in common, we can live with a wide number of differences of opinion on ethical and doctrinal issues.”

“If we take Scripture seriously, sometimes we need to rethink how important issues really are.

“We fight over what is secondary in importance over what is really crucial. Paul asks us what the priorities of our faith [really are].”

St Stephen’s Gardenvale vicar Reverend Paul Carr said he hoped the event would highlight how different denominations didn’t need to feel there were barriers between them.  

“I think it will offer people a sense of fellowship,” he said. “Despite our denominational variance, there is such beauty in us all coming together and sharing testimony and faith. That’s very important for the world we are living in today.”

To find out more about the Founders’ Lecture, see here.

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