So here is my assessment of the Lusaka meeting:
1. The Primates earlier (in a January meeting) offered absolutely the most minimal discipline that could be done without totally losing credibility. TEC was not supposed to vote or deliberate about polity, doctrine, or ecumenical affairs.
2. TEC came to Lusaka.
3. TEC voted at Lusaka.
4. TEC fully participated in the meeting in Lusaka.
5. TEC reported that they fully participated and voted, claiming themselves that they did not follow the decision of the Primates Meeting.
6. Many institutional leaders gave a litany of reasons why the Primates don’t have authority.
7. Many utterly distorted the context of the desire to “walk together” and completely ignored the discipline that is necessary for that to happen.
8. The focus of the meeting (made clear by the resolutions) was institutional- rather than Gospel-centered, and a close examination of most of what came out of the meeting reveals that even when Gospel language is used, it means different things to different people.
In dramatic contrast was the meeting of the GAFCON Primates in Nairobi, which I did attend and which met shortly after the ACC. It was originally scheduled to be in Chile, but there were problems getting visas for some of the people, so we had to move it to Nairobi at the last minute.
The atmosphere in Nairobi was very, VERY different from the many “institutional” meetings I have attended. The most dramatic difference was that the undergirding principle of the GAFCON Primates meeting was the Gospel. By that, I mean people being saved, forgiven, discipled, and transformed. The Primates are in absolute agreement about the supreme authority of Scripture, but even though everyone knows it is a shared value, it is repeated constantly, not because those speaking are trying to convince people to accept Biblical authority, but because the life-giving power of the Word is being celebrated…