The Ecumenical Movement in Present Day Professing Christendom: Revelation 17:5 -- By: Herman A. Hoyt

Journal: Grace Journal
Volume: GJ 06:3 (Fall 1965)
Article: The Ecumenical Movement in Present Day Professing Christendom: Revelation 17:5
Author: Herman A. Hoyt

The Ecumenical Movement in Present Day Professing Christendom:
Revelation 17:5

Herman A. Hoyt

President, Grace Theological Seminary

The ecumenical situation today is accurately described as a jigsaw puzzle. Its vast dimensions, its multiplied details, its complex doctrines, its strange divisions, its subtle devices, its motivating dynamics, and its intertwining and interlocking relationships reach beyond that point where any unaided human being is quite able to comprehend the total situation. Apart from the floodlight of the Word of God the ecumenical movement would continue to remain a jigsaw puzzle.

The ecumenical situation today is manifestly displaying itself in remarkable progression. At the turn of the century no right minded person could have envisioned what we see on the horizon today. Men dreamed of an ideal situation in which the segments of Christendom would be brought together in one gigantic organization. But this was placed in the far distant future. The doctrinal frame of reference forbad imagining this within the near future. But at last, developments in every sphere have moved forward with such amazing speed that we witness today something that frightens every Bible believing Christian.

The ecumenical situation today is gradually fulfilling the Scriptural prediction. As never before in the history of the Church over the past 1900 years, the woman clothed in purple and scarlet is taking shape before our eyes. This is a clear indication that the closing days of the age are upon us. With indomitable purpose the segments of professing Christendom are pushing toward the achievement of one ecclesiastical organization. Almost every conference is surcharged with message and meditation on this theme. Merging and super-merging of communions, organizations, and mission are the order of the day.

The ecumenical situation today is essentially composed of many oddly-shaped pieces. And we must be interested in the pieces. The first reaction is to assign this statement to three great segments of professing Christendom: Catholicism, Liberalism, Neo-Evangelicalism. But why should we exclude Fundamentalism, Judaism, Cultism, and Paganism? But more important, why should we imagine that the pieces of Ecumenism are to be restricted to structure? Do not the pieces of Ecumenism also include doctrine, ethic, and nature? Do not philosophy, psychology, sociology, and science also constitute a part of the jigsaw puzzle?

The ecumenical situation today is spiritually comprehended only by Scripturally-taught people. “He that is spiritual judgeth all things” (1 Cor 2:15), “not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which th...

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