Kinnaird Wilkening Complaint

A Complaint


To the Rev. John W. Mallin, Moderator of the Session of Bethany Orthodox Presbyterian Church:
And now, this seventeenth day of June, A.D. 2002, comes Arlyn A. Wilkening and Wanda J. Wilkening to complain against the action of the Session of Bethany OPC in connection with not allowing the admission of their charge against Elder John Kinnaird.
In bringing this complaint we affirm that we believe that the Session has erred and that this error is serious; that we have tried to understand the Session=s point of view; that we have seriously examined, in prayer before the Lord, our willingness to be in subjection to our brothers in Christ; and that we have made a serious effort to correct the error short of entering a complaint.
In support of this complaint we set forth the following grounds:
1. The Majority report of the Investigative committee that was adopted on April 29, 2002 does not deal with the relevant portions of the charge when they state that there is no teaching of faith and works in the specification.  They simply wave the specifications away by saying Elder Kinnaird is referring to the fruit of our justification and they ignore the clear words of Elder Kinnaird.  For example, specification 1 deals with Elder Kinnaird=s statement that we have need of a real and personal righteousness that is ours apart from imputation.  This statement is totally ignored and not answered by the adopted report.
The majority report is particularly confused regarding the use of the law as a standard of righteousness. 

In specification 1 it is stated AIt is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous on that Day of Judgment.@  For the statement to say what the committee purports it to say it would have to have been written something like: It is those who are righteous (because of their justification) who desire to obey God=s law.  However, the statement by Elder Kinnaird is clear and was not at all addressed by the majority report.

The Session by adopting the majority report concludes that Romans 2:13 (quoted by Elder Kinnaird in this section) is not describing the universal condemnation of man apart from the grace of God, but rather the way of salvation. The majority report quotes John Murray regarding good works and salvation to specification of the charge.  Yet John Murray wrote the following in his commentary on Romans regarding these verses:

AIt needs to be noted, however, that at this point the apostle restricts himself to the judgment of condemnation.  And this advises us that he is dealing now with the equity of God=s judgment of damnation as it is brought to bear upon men who fall into these two categories.  This is significant.  Whatever is meant by those who are >without law= there is no suggestion to the effect that any who are >without law= attain to the reward of eternal life.@  Page 69 - The New International Commentary on the New Testament - The Epistle to the Romans - Published by Eerdmans
In specification 2 the law is referred to as the standard by which admittance to heaven is granted.  To keep the law you need to be perfect.  This is not just works that adorn the gospel.  This is the language of requirement which is in addition to believing the gospel.
In specification 3 again it is stated that Athose who obey the law will be declared righteous.@   The same reasoning applies that is detailed above for specification one.
2. Elder Kinnaird, by formulating and distributing the Aplans@ documents found in the Bethany church copy machine on March 22, 2002 violated the Book of Discipline Chapter IV: A: 3:a.  By this act he helped formulate the judgment of the Session and as such Asat in judgment on his own case.@
3. Elder Kinnaird further violated the Book of Discipline Chapter IV:A:3:a by lobbying his case to the Session on April 29, 2002, the evening the decision of the Session was rendered to not admit the charge.  This was done by distributing the paper titled ADo these specifications, which are true, support the charge?  See BOD III.7.b(5)@
4. The Aplans@ documents found in the copying machine at Bethany church on March 22 authored by Elder John Kinnaird were never investigated to determine the extent of collusion among Session members to not admit this charge.   The duplication, distribution and partial implementation indicates a concerted effort to not allow the charge to be prosecuted in a fair and unbiased manner.
The following amends are requested of the Session.
1. An investigation be conducted to determine which member(s) of the Session received the Aplans@ documents directly or indirectly from Elder Kinnaird prior to their being made public by Pastor Foraker and Elder Whiteman.  Any who received these Aplans@ and did not seek to make public disclosure of them should recuse themselves from any and all deliberations regarding the validity of the charge and any subsequent trial.
2. The charge should be allowed to move to trial. 
____________________________________, Complainant 
Arlyn A. Wilkening   
____________________________________, Complainant 
Wanda J. Wilkening
Date: ____________________________
Attached documents referred to in this complaint
1. The charge by the Wilkening dated March 18, 2002.
2. Investigative Committee Report - Majority report - Dated April 25, 2002.
3. The Aplans@ written by Elder John Kinnaird and found in the church copy machine March 22, 2002.
4. The document ADo these specifications, which are true, support the charge?  See BOD III.7.b(5)@


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