Friday, February 29, 2008

WELS Layman Spots UOJ/CGM by Koelpin


Dog Notes


The words "the world" is high lighted. CGM

The important item is missed "that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life"

Justification by Faith


------------------------------------------------

Rev. Dan Koelpin, Administrator

WELS Board for World Missions

2929 N Mayfair Road

Milwaukee, WI 53222

Phone: (414) 256-3233

E-mail: Dan.Koelpin@sab.wels.net



"God so loved the world that he gave his gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

***

GJ - The Wisconsin sect never tires of contradicting itself. The emphasis implied in bolding "the world" is difficult to parse. The Little Gospel is hardly a UOJ passage. But of course, there are no UOJ passages in the Bible or the Book of Concord, only here and there after the 19th century and in the yellowed dog notes of J. P. Meyer, Decision Theologian of the Sausage Factory.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Pietism 101



Spener, Thou Hast Conquered


A reader asked, "What is Pietism?"

Officially, Pietism began with Jacob Spener (1635-1705) when he published "Pious Wishes" as an introduction to an orthodox Lutheran book. Pious Wishes became a separate book and a movement, centered in Halle (where Muhlenberg came from). Muhlenberg began the General Synod, Pietistic and Unionistic from the beginning.

Several key components of Pietism are:

  1. Accommodation with the Reformed, including compromise about the efficacy of the Word, baptismal regeneration, and the Real Presence in Holy Communion.
  2. An emphasis on lay-led cell groups or conventicles - the real church. The Sunday worshiping and sacramental church is a corrupt shell for the pure, the noble, the far superior cell groups. New terms are prayer, share, care, koine, home Bible study, and affinity groups. WELS Prayer Institute, etc.
  3. Cooperative (unionistic) missionary activity, often through separate para-church groups.
  4. Opposition to Lutheran orthodoxy by teaching love as superior to pure doctrine, works as superior to justification by faith.
  5. Eleemosynary activity in the form of hospitals, orphanages, old age homes, soldier and sailor missions.

  • Prayer as the means of grace.
  • A code of conduct, such as not drinking alcohol (even communion wine), not smoking, not watching any form of theatre, not playing cards. The German Pietists never gave up alcoholic beverages. The Swedes were very eager to promote the Temperance Movement.

    The Reformed, unionistic tendency of Lutheran Pietism always wins out. The next stage after Pietism is Universalism - a doctrine dear to the hearts of UOJ fanatics. In the Wisconsin sect and the Little Sect on the Prairie, everyone is saved, everyone is forgiven.

    WELS, Missouri, the ELS, and ELCA all had Pietistic roots. That is why all four groups have found the Church Growth Movement so harmonious. No one has been scandalized by CGM in Holy Mother Synod. Everyone who openly embraced CGM is promoted and extolled as wise man or woman, no matter how many scandals, arrests, and lawsuits follow.

    We could argue that the liberal tendency in each synod is really a Pietistic urge, a deeply felt desire to return home to unionism, salvation by works, and rejection of the Means of Grace.

    Readers, the Pietists have won.
  • Use a Name with Your Comments



    Cat, Looking for Mouse


    Bailing Water seems to have sunk with the notion of registering. If I were WELS, I would say, "No I am not turning my ID over to the WELS KGB." In fact, I believe that was the plan, to end any discussions even hinting that WELS is less than perfect, heaven on earth, a synod so glorious that eternal bliss will seem to be a bit disappointing in comparison.

    I did like one idea from BW. That is - adopt a name for your anonymous posts and stick with that name. I can tell a friendly Anonymous from the ever-wrathful and petty Rev. Mouse, but a host of readers may become confused. What happened to Anonymouse? Why is he so intelligent and friendly today? Did the prunes start working? Did they switch therapies? Did he reconcile with his Life Partner?

    I am not going to register people.

    Participants are welcome to use their real names, but are not compelled.

    All comments come to me first as email. I have had background information sent to me but not posted. Some send email that I do not post, quote, or discuss. As I have told many, "I don't burn sources. That is why I have so many."

    I have to save some for later commentary. Some days are too busy for writing.

    Stanley Hauerwas, Yale Alumnus
















    Yale Divinity School and Stan Hauerwas


    Dateline: Rock Island, Illinois. Augustana College, 1967.

    I obtained a coveted job at the Denckman Memorial Library. The Denckman family was related to the Weyerhause clan, who began in the Quad-Cities, and built a fortune in lumber. Later a Weyerhaus funded the apostate trend at Fuller Seminary.

    I was moving books from the old stacks to the newly expanded section. Standing nearby was a skinny new graduate of Yale's doctoral program and my future editor for my dissertation/book, published by the Augustana Historical Society. I used to move those books in and out of the storeroom. One Augustana College president (Andreen) had been a famous professor at Yale, but he left that sinecure to run a nearly bankrupt school no one knew existed.

    Stan Hauerwas was the new hire from Yale. He lasted one year. He was not an Augustana graduate and suffered from being different from the rest. Non-Augie almost guaranteed not fitting in. That is why a parochial school system yields parochial graduates with a long list of unwritten rules for conformity. Nobody knows who wrote the rules, but every insider knows the rules.

    Stan took a job at Notre Dame at a considerable decrease in income. My sister-in-law babysat his son while she was earning a master's at Notre Dame, so the Hauerwas name was often mentioned. I met with him when I considered attending Notre Dame since he was the only person I knew by name.

    Notre Dame accepted me and I enjoyed taking an ethics course from Hauerwas. He was famous for his Texan descriptions of life in general, so colorful that I cannot print them. He repeatedly said in class, looking at me, "Lutherans are not good at sanctification." I waited for him to repeat his witticism and added, "Or sanctimony."

    Hauerwas became famous for the extent and volume of his publications. They began as essays and ended as collections of essays. Notre Dame loved professors who published, but he was the star of them all. I followed his example and Bainton's in publishing. Trying to write about a subject means learning far more about it than will ever reach print. I found that a tiny publication had a huge audience compared to a congregation. I made money from writing while studying at Notre Dame, serving also as an agent for my program supervisor.

    Notre Dame was ordered to get rid of the non-Catholics in the theology department, so Hauerwas left, even though he had tenure. Robert Wilken and the Schussler-Fiorenza couple left too. (All were pushed out.) Wilken went to Duke and became Roman Catholic. Hauerwas went to Duke and became world famous. The Schussler-Fiorenza theology team both obtained endowed professorships at Harvard Divinity. They were Roman Catholic, but Frank was a liberation theologian, a category hated by Pope John Paul II, loved by Harvard Lefties.

    Hauerwas is one of the most famous theologians in the world. I imagine most academic bookstores would have his latest books on display. He has been mentioned in Time.

    Hauerwas was raised United Methodist but now attends the Episcopal Church. He was a pacifist long before that was popular. He once mentioned abortion to me. I did not want to find out he was pro-abortion. In fact, he was pro-life when no one else seemed to be.

    Wednesday, February 27, 2008

    William F. Buckley Died Today





    William F. Buckley, Jr. below,
    The Harkness Bell Tower above


    William F. Buckley, Jr. died today at the age of 82. Born in 1925, he invented the conservative movement in America.

    After he graduated with honors from Yale University, Buckley made himself famous with God and Man at Yale. Yale was born conservative, as Roland Bainton, wrote, but the Left worked its way into the faculty and board. George H. W. Bush was on the Yale Board. Both men were members of Skull and Bones, the secret society and birthplace for many a CIA agent.

    The faculty did not like Buckley's book, so they challenged him to debates. He won the debates and the invitations stopped.

    I was disappointed that his magazine, National Review, caved on important issues. Buckley was yet another celebrity who promoted marijuana. Nevertheless, Buckley's circle became the center for conservative thought in America and did much to help Reagan become president.

    Buckley was the commencement speaker when I finished the MA at Notre Dame, 30 years ago. I skipped three graduations in a row, including that one. PM Trudeau spoke at the doctoral commencement. He spoke past us to the world at large, but no one was listening to him.

    Lutherans Should Follow Suit



    Pope John the Malefactor (l.), Ukrainian Bishop, SP Schroeder (r.)


    Pennsylvania Bishop Charles Bennison Faces 155 Charges in Civil Court Action

    News Analysis

    By David W. Virtue
    www.virtueonline.org
    2/26/2008

    PHILADELPHIA - When the inhibited Bishop of Pennsylvania, Charles E. Bennison, goes to court in May in Philadelphia, he will face 155 charges which were brought against him by Fr. David L. Moyer. Bennison, and those who assisted him, will be confronted by hard questions that he can no longer hide from or spin. A jury of his peers will then determine his guilt or innocence.

    The vacuous smile that plays so easily on Charles Bennison's face will vanish in the harsh light of a courtroom drama that will play out his ecclesiastical life. The outcome could see the revisionist bishop forced to pay millions of dollars for behavior so egregious, that only his present inhibition by the church's Presiding Bishop for failing to stop his brother (a former priest), from engaging in sex with a minor, can top it.

    The days of playing blind, deaf and dumb for Charles Bennison are over. In addition, Bennison faces a second charge, brought by the Diocesan Standing Committee, for his financial oversight of the diocese that saw millions of dollars squandered on property for youth in the State of Maryland. As a bishop, his days are seemingly numbered.

    If he is found guilty, the fantasy that has been Bennison's life as a bishop of America's premier Protestant denomination will come to a grinding halt, his status reduced in church and society. His life will be subject to public scorn and ridicule as a sociopath incapable of feeling either guilt or shame for the sins he has committed.

    Among the charges he faces are fraud, collusion, concealment, bad faith, denial of a church trial for Fr. Moyer despite protests by the Anglo-Catholic priest, his congregation, numerous bishops throughout the U.S., Presiding Bishop Frank Griswold, Archbishops from the Anglican Communion, and the Archbishop of Canterbury, the leader of the Anglican Communion. Bennison was personally rebuffed by four overseas Archbishops when they visited Philadelphia. Bennison's detractors read like a Who's
    Who of global Anglicanism.

    Even as Bennison sought to deprive Moyer of his chosen profession, he joked about it and had his picture taken while signing the "Sentence of Deposition" against the priest. In addition, others who assisted Bennison also told jokes about Fr. Moyer as the persecution of the orthodox priest continued.

    When all attempts to get the bishop to back down and rescind the inhibition were exhausted, Moyer fired back with a lawsuit in April 2002, charging the bishop with "wrongful acts", fraud and bad faith.

    Undaunted, Bennison "deposed" Moyer from the ministry in Sept. 2002, and told the priest he was terminated as rector of Church of the Good Shepherd on Philadelphia's historic main line.

    Then Moyer turned the tables on Bennison suing him for extreme physical and emotional distress.

    Bennison's outrageous behavior knew no boundaries. He reneged on promises he made during his campaign, when he ran for Bishop of the Diocese of Pennsylvania, that he would allow other bishops to preside at services at the Church of the Good Shepherd.

    The promises made to the "seven sisters", a group of orthodox Anglo-Catholic parishes, that they could have a flying bishop in place of the more liberal diocesan bishop was abruptly terminated by Bennison.

    (The irony here should not be missed. Bishop Allen Bartlett, who gave the priests the right to have a flying bishop, has now returned as the bishop pro tempore in place of the inhibited Bennison).

    There was also a spiteful edge to Bennison. He pushed himself on Moyer's parish, demanding he be allowed to preside at services while at the same time admitting he could not affirm some of the most basic doctrines of
    the Christian Faith.

    Bennison was apparently motivated by personal animus towards Moyer. He began a fraudulent and collusive scheme to remove Moyer by deposing him from the priesthood. When challenged, Bennison said "this is between David and me."

    Bennison's refusal to give Moyer a public trial for his "crimes" arose from the fact that he could not control the outcome and also because he would have to testify. Moreover, he believed the outcome would be unfavorable to him.

    It was the essence of Bennison's plan that he "convict" and

    "sentence" Moyer without a church or civil trial. As detailed in the document filed by Father Moyer's attorneys, Bennison was assisted in his scheme by others. That assistance, according to the document, included providing
    false testimony and affidavits, concealing information from Fr. Moyer, and destroying important evidence.

    Bennison began to look elsewhere for an alternative route to get rid of Moyer. He used Canon IV.10 ("Canon 10") "Abandonment of the Communion of the Church by a Priest" - a canon used only for priests who have left The Episcopal Church for another denomination - to try and rid himself of

    Moyer's presence in the diocese. That, too, failed to oust Moyer from his parish, even though six months later Moyer was automatically "deposed". Bennison admitted that the use of Canon 10 was "novel."

    To cover his tracks, Bennison set about using others, a website, and a public and media relations campaign to besmirch Moyer using diocesan funds and staff resources to focus on Moyer even as the diocese got more heavily into debt.

    By using Canon 10 and quietly deposing Moyer, Bennison had hoped to divert attention away from his fund–raising efforts to keep the diocese afloat and to pay for programs that had little chance of succeeding. That, too, failed. Bennison failed to raise the necessary millions he
    needed to run the diocese.

    Ironically, some of Bennison's biggest supporters on the Standing Committee began to turn on him, with three of them saying they had been manipulated by Bennison and that the Standing Committee should seek independent legal counsel.

    Now Bennison faces his day in the court of public opinion. He will no longer be able to hide behind the robes of his office or his own self-righteousness. He has been inhibited by his own church leaders for his brother's sexual abuse of a minor - his days as a bishop seemingly over.

    It will be an ignominious end for an unbelieving, pathological bishop whose beliefs and actions stand to bring him down. He deserves it.

    For the full statement of the evidence against Bennison and those who assisted him as filed in the court records click here: http://www.virtueonline.org/portal/content/second_amended_pretrial_statement_.pdf

    ***

    GJ - A note for the language-impaired: the headline is a play on words. I want to save several people from posting outraged, misspelled comments.

    Someone did not read my note and posted another misfired. We all know him as Rev. Mouse, always anonymous, always nasty.

    The point of my headline is - "Lutherans should follow this lawsuit, because it is an important break in Episcopal tradition."

    Church officials are above the law in most jurisdictions. They destroy church finances and ruin lives without fear. The system gives them the benefit of the doubt. When a Catholic bishop in Phoenix ran down an Indian carpenter, killing the bloke, he skipped and pretended he did not know about the accident. He got off with community service. Two radio hosts gushed, "Why his whole life has been one of service." The same bishop transferred gay predator priersts into Mexican parishes and...lied about it.

    Civil suits are a good remedy when the criminal justice system fails. It worked for OJ and may work for Natalie Holloway. The low state of the Episcopal denomination is proven by the need for a civil suit.

    Conservative Lutherans still want to know: Where did all the Schwan loot go?

    Tuesday, February 26, 2008

    Snakes Making Hiss-story:
    Church and Change



    KJV Acts 28:1 And when they were escaped, then they knew that the island was called Melita. 2 And the barbarous people shewed us no little kindness: for they kindled a fire, and received us every one, because of the present rain, and because of the cold. 3 And when Paul had gathered a bundle of sticks, and laid them on the fire, there came a viper out of the heat, and fastened on his hand. 4 And when the barbarians saw the venomous beast hang on his hand, they said among themselves, No doubt this man is a murderer, whom, though he hath escaped the sea, yet vengeance suffereth not to live. 5 And he shook off the beast into the fire, and felt no harm. 6 Howbeit they looked when he should have swollen, or fallen down dead suddenly: but after they had looked a great while, and saw no harm come to him, they changed their minds, and said that he was a god.


    I decided to revert to the normal way of spelling Church and Change, see below.

    I forgot the favorite WELS defense of false teachers: "He is not a false teacher. He is a nice guy." The most dangerous vipers are not the menacing ones but the ones with the winsome personalities, like Saruman, soft and soothing. Of course, they strike when one's back is turned, but very few realize that.

    One pastor asked questions in the typical, inoffensive WELS way. Actual confrontation is not allowed since it suggests fallibility. The result of asking a few questions was the threat that he would be forced out of his call. Soon he was a nervous wreck because he could not land another job.

    The genius of Church and Change is this: WELS offering money funded a group so blatant that they had to cancel a conference. WELS has telescopic orthodoxy, spotting error thousands of miles away but never in its own midst. The cancellation proved how horrid Church and Change is. Church and Change was not even next door - the last conference was booked off the WELS.net website.

    All that happened after connected people assured me that C and C was deader than Hillary's best friends and her worst enemies.

    How does C and C work? They have their UPS drivers and coveted list of WELS jugglers (Gurgel?), but the real work is guiding people back to WELS Pentecostal Services (aka WELS Parish Services).

    If someone objects to C and C, he is told, "They are separate." But lo, C and C is the conjoined twin of Pentecostal Services, implying a royal blessing from the next SP, Wayne Mueller. Questioning C and C is tantamount to dissing Wayne, who always has the last word. Always. He is the only church officer known to be voted out of office and return, Lazarus-like, to reign again.

    A cursory glance at the Church and Change website shows that they are apostates who loathe Lutheran doctrine.

    The next time someone mentions pure doctrine or orthodoxy in the Wisconsin sect, try to suppress a wry smile.

    Is Mueller's Influence on the Wane?
    Chruch and change "Not Vipers"



    You must remember this,
    A kiss is just a kiss,
    A hiss is just a hiss,
    The fundamental things apply,
    As time goes by.


    Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Typical WELS/ELS Reaction":

    Gergory (sic) Jackson,

    Wayne Mueller has remained in his current postion (sic). There is however a new WELS church president.

    I know the men and women who lead Chruch (sic) and change (sic), and am confiedent (sic) that they are not "vipers".

    I pray for you and your family.

    ***

    GJ - I love how patronizing WELS people are. If only they could spell...and learn when to capitalize.

    More about vipers later.

    ***

    rlschultz has left a new comment on your post "Is Mueller's Influence on the Wane? Chruch and ch...":

    So it is business as usual for Wayne Mueller. He can still operate in the stealth mode and pull puppet strings. It's a small world after all, in the WELS. It is not what you know, but who you know. "I drank beer with him", "He is married to my wife's third cousin" or "I knew him when he was just a principal, now he is a synod Tetzel". The Chruch and change folks are not vipers, they are a brood of vipers.

    Monday, February 25, 2008

    Lutheran Notes NIV Embrace of UOJ



    This Reformer was once influential
    in the Lutheran Church.


    Lutheran Notes:

    NIV easier to misconstrue as teaching UOJ than KJV in Romans 5

    If one reads Roman 5:18 in the NIV, it could be easily misconstrued to support UOJ (Universal Objective Justification). However, the KJV is not so easily misconstrued as teaching UOJ:

    KJV Romans 5:18 Therefore as by the offense of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life.

    NIV Romans 5:18 Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men.

    In a previous post I commented on how common German translations of 2 Co 5:18-21 could easily be misconstrued as teaching UOJ. This might explain why UOJ took hold, and has staying power, in certain German American synods (LCMS, WELS, ELS, CLC*), but not anywhere else that I know of. Specifically, German speaking immigrants saw UOJ in German translations of 2Co 5:18-21. Later, by the time UOJ came under serious question in the 1970s and thereafter, the NIV New Testament, which first came out in 1973, had a translation of Rom 5:18 that could be easily misconstrued as teaching UOJ.

    *Concordia Lutheran Conference, not to be confused with the Church of the Lutheran Confessions.

    ***
    GJ - The Church of the Lutheran Confession (sic) is ambiguous about UOJ, but the Concordia papists are demented about it. Does anyone know where Concordia's portable seminary is now?

    The Feminist Living NIV is a joke of a translation.

    Generations of in-bred Lutherans have not improved on the KJV or The Lutheran Hymnal.

    J. P. Meyer Still Admired on the Holy Hill




    From Thy Strong Word, the J numbers help people find the quotations in the chapter.
    J-586

    I. "Objectively speaking, without any reference to an individual sinner's attitude toward Christ's sacrifice, purely on the basis of God's verdict, every sinner, whether he knows about it or not, whether he believes it or not, has received the status of a saint. What will be his reaction when he is informed about this turn of events? Will he accept, or will he decline?"
    J. P. Meyer, Ministers of Christ, A Commentary on the Second Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1963, p. 103f. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21.

    II. "Before Christ's intervention took place God regarded him as a guilt-laden, condemned culprit. After Christ's intervention and through Christ's intervention He regards him as a guilt-free saint."
    J. P. Meyer, Ministers of Christ, A Commentary on the Second Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1963, p. 107. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21.

    III. "This applies to the whole world, to every individual sinner, whether he was living in the days of Christ, or had died centuries before His coming, or had not yet been born, perhaps has not been born to this day. It applies to the world as such, regardless of whether a particular sinner ever comes to faith or not."
    J. P. Meyer, Ministers of Christ, A Commentary on the Second Epistle of Paul to the Corinthians, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1963, p. 109. 2 Corinthians 5:18-21.

    ***

    Brian P Westgate has left a new comment on your post "Universal Objective Justification Primer":

    Believe it or not, I never read "Ministers of Christ."
    Could you perhaps put up a section some time where he mixes in decision theology? Dr. Meyer is still revered on the "holy hill".

    ***

    GJ - I put his Baptist statement in bold print above. No Baptist would accept this wacky parody of justification, but the old Synodical Conference gradually made it their Rosetta Stone.

    Three of the four Kokomo Statements are directly from Meyer. The fourth is from the Norwegian/Augustana conflict in the 19th century.

    UOJ is a clear case of false doctrine growing. The hyperbole of Walther's Easter Absolution sermon has morphed into the Little Sect on the Prairie agreeing with Wisconsin - everyone is saved. That is the ELS position and the foundation for the last failed Wisconsin evangelism program.

    Sig Becker is now considered the Fifth Evangelist at the Sausage Factory in Mequon. His lectures are podcast to the innocent. Those who despise Becker's opinion on Receptionism (he loved it) should consider his position on UOJ (huge fan, huge). Both errors require a denial of the efficacy of the Word.

    Lutherans Confess This




    284 All this has been said regarding secret sins. But where the sin is quite public so that the judge and everybody know it, you can without any sin avoid him and let him go, because he has brought himself into disgrace, and you may also publicly testify concerning him. For when a matter is public in the light of day, there can be no slandering or false judging or testifying; as, when we now reprove the Pope with his doctrine, which is publicly set forth in books and proclaimed in all the world. For where the sin is public, the reproof also must be public, that every one may learn to guard against it.
    The Book of Concord, The Large Catechism, The Eighth Commandment

    ***

    GJ - This must be the least known section of the least used book in the Lutheran Church, for everyone acts as if Luther never wrote it, the Concordists never approved it, and Lutherans never subscribed to it.

    This Luther paragraph covers two areas.

    First, where a judge has ruled, it is not slander to say (for instance) that Al Just murdered his wife (WELS, Arizona) or Scott Zerbe (WELS, Michigan) had an affair with a minor girl in the congregation where he vicared, or DP Ed Werner (Dakota Montana, WELS) molested a host of girls in his own congregation. All three men went to state prison for their crimes. WELS never admitted to the crimes.

    Second, when false doctrine is public, it is not slander to say someone is a false teacher. False doctrine is almost always public because servants of their Father Below cannot keep quiet. They solemnly intone about a wide range of topics, always in the wrong, always eager to silence anyone who contradicts their prattle.

    The Eighth Commandment is falsely applied by false teachers in two ways. The most dangerous way is their constant excusing of toxic doctrine:


    1. This is a g-r-e-y area of Scripture.
    2. It c-a-n be understood correctly.
    3. He was in my class. I drank a lot of beer with him. (This is the strongest defense in WELS.)


    A murderer destroys himself and ends one person's life. A false teacher murders the souls of many. The corruption of WELS in the carnal sin department is simply testimony to their foundation of false doctrine, which is far more serious and almost beyond remedy.

    Synodical Minders have no problem with gossiping about people they consider their enemies. They do not even stop with the main target, but move on to menace and abuse the family members as well. Friends are afraid to be seen with the official pariah because they know they will be tainted as well. Since every synod considers itself the One True Church, no one wants to be on the outside looking in, frozen out by former friends and current relatives. When Joel Gerlach left the WELS temporarily (as recorded in official minutes) his father-in-law threatened to disown him. He came back to the fold - the wolf-pack of Fullerites.

    A favorite ELS taunt is "Teigenite," which is used to threaten someone. "Are you a Teigenite?" Being a Teigenite means losing out on synodical perks and trips, perhaps feeling the Left Foot of Fellowship administered with papal firmness.

    All the synods would benefit from wide open discussion of doctrine. That would clarify a host of problems steadily getting worse. Instead, there is a universal fear of dealing with anything beyond governance.

    Are voters the answer (Cascione) or do we need a bevy of bishops to bless our benedictions (ELDONA)? Yes, hordes of Lutherans traveled to Minnesota in the winter to solve that dilemma. OK, a few trekked there.

    The Word of God must be applied to all examples of false doctrine. The response may be Satanic rage and threats or seductive flattery. If we believe the Word is effective, we will use the double-bladed sword of Hebrews 4. The other matters will take care of themselves.

    Sunday, February 24, 2008

    Feel Free, Rev. Mouse


    A. Nony Mouse has left a new comment on your post "Is There a Real Doctor in the House?":

    I wonder if your doctorates (sic) are legit. I think I'll contact the schools you claim to have attended and I'll check and see what earned degrees you really have.

    ***

    GJ - Rev. Mouse also said I invented comments and posted them myself, thus insulting all the people who did comment.

    Feel free, Rev. Mouse, to contact each institution. Report the results with your name and email attached. You seem to be in a constant state of agitation and bad information. I only have one PhD - from Notre Dame. I have four master's degrees and I am working on a fifth. No, not the way you work on a fifth. I mean a fifth master's degree.

    Rev. Mouse's motto: "I would rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy."

    When I asked about the members of the North American Society for Church Growth, the Fuller group said the list was a secret. I had to join to get the list.

    Denying the Obvious



    Lamb of God, by Norma Boeckler


    3. In consecrated wine and bread
    No eye perceives the mystery dread;
    But Jesus' words are strong and clear:
    "My body and My blood are here."
    The Lutheran Hymnal, #304

    We were singing this hymn during the worship service this morning when I began to wonder how the ELS and WELS could deny the obvious and obfuscate the Real Presence with these oily words: "We do not know the Moment of Consecration." Perhaps it was a burst of honesty for men trained against and training against the efficacy of the Word. They would not know anymore than Zwingli or C. Peter Wagner.

    However, even the girly-men of WELS/ELS need to face a contradiction. If they do not know the efficacious Word consecrates, then how can they sing this glorious Holy Communion hymn? Have they crossed their fingers each time, objected to the worship commission, or left during the singing of this verse?

    Current State of WELS Apostasy


    Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "Brief Autobiography":

    I have to say I stumbled across this site a few nights ago and was really amazed that I am not the only one out there that feels that the WELS isn't the perfect church that it portrays itself. I was a called worker cut down before I even had a chance to truly get into the ministry. The stories I have about the District Pope I had to deal with make some cringe to know that is what the WELS leadership has come to. I was just wondering if you had an email so I could send some of my other thoughts about the Holy Hill and the current state of the WELS.

    ***

    GJ - Comments go to my email first, so I can read anything you want to send. If you do not want it published, just say so. I do not want my email posted on a blog because I get unwanted ads for medicines, million-dollar estates from Africa, and online nursing schools.

    Someone noted that seminary costs are low enough to keep people attending but far too high for its value, leaving graduates in a state of dependency upon the synodical popes. Their degrees are useless except in their own synods.

    The Wisconsin sect is unique in having the lowest standards of clergy behavior (letting a murdering pastor move to a new call) and the most sanctimonious attitude about its immaculate clergy. Even worse, they behave as if they are too pure doctrinally for anyone, including the Little Sect on the Prairie, while their leadership is trained at and enslaved to Fuller Seminary and Willow Creek.

    Is There a Real Doctor in the House?



    Paul Kelm, D.Min., Concordia Seminary, St. Louis


    The Wisconsin sect has always been allergic to earned doctorates, even to honorary ones. Some say it is because the intellectuals like Richard Jungkuntz went liberal, joining the LCMS and eventually the ELCA. Others say it came from the Protest'ant split (long story) where the intellectuals left or experienced the Left Foot of Fellowship.

    Lately I have noticed a surge in Dr. titles around the sect.

    Long ago, while letting his pal deny it, Larry Olson got a D.Min. from Fuller Seminary. All he had to do was write a paper to get the degree. (And pay some money.)

    Dr. Larry Otto Olson, D.Min. Fuller

    Dr. Paul Kelm, D.Min. Concordia Seminary, St. Louis

    Dr. Steve Witte - D.Min. - Gordon Conwell.

    Dr. John Parlow - D.Min. - Denver Babtist.

    Dr. James Witt, D.Min., Concordia Seminary, St. Louis

    Dr. Rich Krause, D.Min., Ohio Ecumenical Consortium. Larry Oh! was his advisor in Church Growth - the bland leading the blind.

    David Valleskey, Forrest Bivens, and most of the WELS leaders studied at Fuller Seminary, some Fuller extension, and/or Willow Creek.

    Tim Glende and his bartender, Ski, left no stern untoned as they toured the highway of false teachers, from Andy Stanley and Mark Driscoll, to Groschel and Sweet.

    Dr. Floyd Luther Stolzenburg, Jr. He lets people call him "Dr" but he never earned the degree. DP Mueller and VP Kuske tried to get him into their sect, but the facts prevented it. Then the Little Sect on the Prairie adopted him and Roger Kovaciny, the Batman and Robin of the Norwegians.

    Dr. Waldo Werning. LCMS. Known as Agent X at Christian News, Waldo never earned a real doctorate but always pretended, crowing like a rooster on a dunghill. His favorite dunghill was Fuller Seminary, and they rewarded him with a tin-plated title. He is honorary WELS because he spent so much time selling his Church Growth books to sect officials. WELS DMB chair Wally Oelhaven loved Werning's deep, deep theology and promoted Church Growth without shame or hesitation. Church and Change invited the wise old man of Church Growth to speak, but integrity prevailed for one, brief shining moment.

    Dr. Kent Hunter, the Church Doctor. LCMS. He has a seminary degree from an ELCA seminary and a coveted D.Min. from Fuller Seminary. His books are so silly that he makes Werning look profound. They work together, probably trading newly discovered Church Growth principles over the Internet. Hunter was invited to be a key speaker for Church and Change, so he is also honorary WELS. Alas, his invitation was also canceled, but do not worry. He is definitely more popular in WELS than Martin Luther.

    Oculi
    Third Sunday in Lent



    Chalice, by Norma Boeckler


    Oculi – The Third Sunday in Lent

    KJV Ephesians 5:1 Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; 2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. 3 But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints; 4 Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting, which are not convenient: but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God. 6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things cometh the wrath of God upon the children of disobedience. 7 Be not ye therefore partakers with them. 8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light: 9 (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;)

    KJV Luke 11: 14 And he was casting out a devil, and it was dumb. And it came to pass, when the devil was gone out, the dumb spake; and the people wondered. 15 But some of them said, He casteth out devils through Beelzebub the chief of the devils. 16 And others, tempting him, sought of him a sign from heaven. 17 But he, knowing their thoughts, said unto them, Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation; and a house divided against a house falleth. 18 If Satan also be divided against himself, how shall his kingdom stand? because ye say that I cast out devils through Beelzebub. 19 And if I by Beelzebub cast out devils, by whom do your sons cast them out? therefore shall they be your judges. 20 But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you. 21 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: 22 But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.

    Collect
    Lord God, heavenly Father, who hast sent Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to take upon Himself our flesh, that He might overcome the devil, and defend us poor sinners against the adversary: We give thanks unto Thee for Thy merciful help, and we beseech Thee to attend us with Thy grace in all temptations, to preserve us from carnal security, and by Thy Holy Spirit to keep us in Thy word and Thy fear, that unto the end we may be delivered from the enemy, and obtain eternal salvation, through the same, Thy beloved Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one true God, world without end. Amen.


    The Hymn #246
    The Invocation p. 15
    The Confession of Sins
    The Absolution
    The Introit p. 16
    The Gloria Patri
    The Kyrie p. 17
    The Gloria in Excelsis
    The Salutation and Collect p. 19
    The Epistle and Gradual Eph 5:1-9
    The Gospel Luke 11:14-22
    Glory be to Thee, O Lord!
    Praise be to Thee, O Christ!
    The Nicene Creed p. 22
    The Sermon Hymn #657
    The Sermon
    Given to a Stronger Man

    The Offertory p. 22
    The Hymn #304
    The Preface p. 24
    The Sanctus p. 26
    The Lord's Prayer p. 27
    The Words of Institution
    The Agnus Dei p. 28
    The Nunc Dimittis p. 29
    The Benediction p. 31
    The Hymn #53

    Given to a Stronger Man

    Luke 11 . 21 When a strong man armed keepeth his palace, his goods are in peace: 22 But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.
    This Gospel has many verses worthy of a sermon, but these two verses are especially good to think about. They describe the victory of Jesus over Satan.

    When we read through a Gospel, some verses seem very strange. This is one of those passages. Who is the strong man and the stronger man?

    The context is the casting out of a demon. One reaction was wonder. But others made accusations against Jesus, that he was using Satanic powers to cast out demons. Beelzebub is one of many names for Satan. Jesus responded by pointing out that Satan cannot drive out Satan. If Satan did that, his kingdom would be engaged in civil war and would fall. (In fact, Abraham Lincoln used this image from the Bible in his famous speech. According to one account, Lincoln became a Christian and even taught the Scriptures to servants at the White House.)

    Jesus went on to say that if He could drive out demons “by the finger of God,” then the Kingdom had come upon them. Liberals are always whining that Jesus did not consider Himself the true Son of God. But this expression, “I by the finger of God” implies that the finger of Jesus is the finger of God. Some do not want to see this.

    The demons saw Jesus as the Son of God and confessed Him as such. They seem to know the meaning of the miracle better than the liberal professors.

    KJV Mark 1:24 Saying, Let us alone; what have we to do with thee, thou Jesus of Nazareth? art thou come to destroy us? I know thee who thou art, the Holy One of God.

    James makes a distinction between saving faith and simply knowing something is true.

    KJV James 2:19 Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

    This is something we have to realize when dealing with apostates, the people who have lost their saving faith and yet remain in the visible church. Their knowledge is great enough to hate the Word of God when it is spoken to them. This mystifies people who are innocent and those who do not pay attention to Scriptural warnings. They see a man who is an ordained pastor, a professor of religion, or a synod official and they think he will respond positively to a discussion about the Scriptures. Instead they find someone who tries to wiggle out of any discussion, then tries sugary flattery, then loud abusive language or threats. The James text says, literally, “They believe and their hides bristle.” They know enough to feel the threat and respond accordingly.

    This world is divided into two kingdoms. One is Satan’s and one is God’s. The two are at war with each other, even though our side does not seem to think so at times. Someone cannot give up the Christian faith and simply be neutral. He will be antagonistic toward the true Gospel.

    The comparison drawn by Jesus is very compelling. We see in our minds a strong man who is armed and has plenty of goods. He is guarding his house. This is Satan. Then a stronger man overcomes him and takes away “the armor in which he trusted”. And then he divides the spoil. This is Jesus.

    The description is startling at first, but then it is very comforting. As much credit as we may give to Satan as “the prince of this world,” there is One Man who is stronger. Satan does seem to have everything in his house at peace. The vast majority of people do not believe in Christ, if we judge by worship attendance. Paganism is growing at a record pace. It is no longer startling that people worship the occult and openly worship Satan himself. When we see how terrible things are in the visible churches and in society, we can only conclude that Satan’s goods are well guarded and at peace.

    Anyone who does not believe in Christ as his Savior is part of Satan’s household and serves him in some way. There are ravening wolves outside of the flock and apostate wolves within the flock, all eager to devour the flock. It seems as if Satan has every advantage.

    And yet in one verse, the entire ministry of Jesus is summed up as a victory:

    22 But when a stronger than he shall come upon him, and overcome him, he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted, and divideth his spoils.

    Jesus came in the form of an ordinary man. Satan had been waiting for Him ever since the first promise of the Gospel in Genesis 3:15. Luther pointed out that God was deliberately vague about the identity of the One who would crush the head of Satan, so the devil pursued Israel until nothing was left of it except a stump when Jesus was born.

    Jesus is the stronger Man Who alone can defeat Satan. This shows us clearly that God alone can defeat Satan. No ordinary person can defeat sin and Satan. All those who attempt to become righteous through the Law alone will fall victim to the devil either through despair or through pride and self-righteousness. Those are the only possible outcomes of righteousness through the Law, or by works.

    Satan thought he was defeating Jesus when he gathered his allies and crucified the Son of God. It wasn’t enough to kill him. A rock on the head would have done that. Jesus was betrayed by his own disciple Judas, arrested as a criminal, tried as a criminal, denied by his disciple Peter, tortured within an inch of His life, forced to carry His cross as another stage in His public humiliation, and then crucified in public, with no disciples (except John) present. To the world Jesus appeared to be humiliated in the most terribly way, tortured, and finally executed with common criminals as an enemy of the state and as a heretic.

    Satan thought he had finally won the battle that began when he was cursed by God. The promised Messiah was dead. His disciples were hidden away and afraid. Satan can seem all powerful but he is also blind to God’s ways. He believes, but his hide bristles. So he can only perceive part of what God does, only enough to rage against it. The cross defeated Satan, sin, and death. On the cross Jesus paid for the sins of the world and conquered death forever. Because we sin, we must die. But because we receive the righteousness of Christ in faith, we also receive the promise of eternal life.

    You will notice in this one little verse some words to add even more comfort and encouragement to the Gospel.
    he taketh from him all his armour wherein he trusted…

    Satan’s kingdom is a stronghold, well guarded and armed against attack. But God takes away that armon through Christ. Who are the greatest enemies of God? Jesus converts them and uses them against Satan.

    Paul raged against the Christian church, actively persecuting it, until Christ Himself appeared before him and converted him by the Word. From Satan’s point of view, he lost his best agent at the time, who not only betrayed the devil, but went throughout the civilized world spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ, sowing the seeds of a world-wide Christian Church. The Word of God was so effective in Paul that the entire Roman Empire was converted to Christianity, from the bottom up. Not that everyone was a believer. But the Roman Empire was pagan at the death and resurrection of Christ, but Christian at the time of the Emperor Constantine, when he saw to it that the Nicene Creed was established. That would be like seeing the premier of China working on Sunday School material in a few years.

    God still works that way. Those people who seem to be the best agents for Satan are converted by the Word and work for Christ instead. I recall when Charles Colson was converted in prison. He had been Richard Nixon’s hatchet man, so his conversion was greeted with disbelieving laughter. Nevertheless, he devoted himself to helping prisoners with the Christian faith.

    One of the early pioneers of the LCMS had been in prison for six years. He was as tainted by his early life as Paul was. Imagine this on a resume for someone you want as a seminary president – in prison for six years for crimes against the state. Such people know about their sins and weaknesses, far better than those of us who imagine we are pretty good, or at least above average. Satan accuses night and day, “How can you be a leader of young men. You were in prison. You should resign.” This only shows the strength of the Holy Spirit in the Gospel. Satan is not only defeated by the forgiveness of sins received in faith. He also rages that a puny man with so many sins could be victorious over a mighty man.

    Alexander the Great was taunted by the Persian emperor before a major battle. He was sent toys because he was so young. Alexander wrote back, “Thank you for the toys. Now, if you win, it will mean nothing, because you defeated a mere boy. But if I win, then everyone will say, A boy defeated the mighty Persian emperor in battle.”

    So we should answer the taunts of Satan, “I know I am nothing. And yet in Christ I am strong against you. In Him I have placed all my hope. I have no righteousness of my own, but Christ is my righteousness, my strength, my hope, my comfort.”

    This is very important, because Satan does not defeat people by drawing blood but by draining them of hope, happiness, and peace. It is an emotional battle, a spiritual war. When Satan can get people thinking along the lines of defeat, they are defeated. I recall how some in WELS struggled against the closing of Northwestern College, the closing known to be a liberal ploy. The opponents of the closing said from the beginning, “We will lose.” They dropped their heads and moped around. It is not difficult to defeat people who defeat themselves first. Secondly, no one was honest about the doctrinal issues, so the Word was never brought into play. If I had an Abrams tank against two men with slingshots, I would not hold back the tank. I would use it. The Word cannot be defeated by any human weapon. We will always be victorious with the Word.

    Here are a few more words that add to the comfort of this message of hope:
    and divideth his spoils…

    Why do people end up following Satan instead of Christ? Because Satan has all the stuff, all the fun, all the money. Our experiences and feelings tell us that orthodox Christianity is always losing. The ministers are poor. The churches are small. If the building is large, the congregation is tiny. This is true of all the groups trying to gather people according to their original confession of faith, whether it is traditional Anglicanism, Methodism, or Presbyterianism.

    When Christ overcomes Satan, he takes away the treasures of the devil’s kingdom and gives them to Christians. Oh how clever and wise the disciples of Satan are. God takes such gifts and turns them over to His people to use. Whenever Christianity has been at its lowest ebb, God has given certain people amazing abilities to overcome Satan. We often think of Luther, but we should also remember those who served immediately after Luther’s death. The Reformation was defeated after Luther’s death. The Lutherans were conquered by military might and divided in their confession of faith. And yet for that time, God provided Chemnitz and Chytraeus, both among the greatest theologians and Biblical teachers of all time.

    One person wrote recently, “Why are you the only one quoting Chytraeus?” I suspect the reason is that no one else has read Chytraeus. They may own a volume by Chytraeus, but they are busy with recent books and never take the time to see how valuable this almost-forgotten theologian is. Chemnitz was the giant of the Book of Concord, but little is said about him by anyone. How often is Luther quoted by Lutherans?

    When Lutheranism came to America, every group was small and weak, with nothing in the bank. No land. No status. Foreigners speaking in a foreign language. And yet when I look at an old black and white photograph of the early days in the LCMS, I see men who wrote books all of us struggle to obtain today. There they are, in a faculty photograph: W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, L. Fuerbringer, F. Pieper, J. Fritz, J. T. Mueller, M. S. Sommer, Walter Maier, Th. Engelder, W. G. Polack, P. E. Kretzmann. All of them wrote books worth having today. (Arndt and Graebner became unionists.) And then I look at other faculty lists of the current seminaries of the LCMS and try to recall if anyone has written a book I would keep or recommend to others. Marquart yes. The others, no. The old St. Louis faculty did not co-author books with apostates. The current faculty does, without shame.

    God chooses to do the most with very little, to show that His grace is sufficient. One time a slug got a ride on a turtle’s back. He had never traveled so fast. He said, “Wheeeee!” We think we are slugs, going nowhere and accomplishing nothing. But Jesus has invaded and taken over the palace of Satan. He has given His Church the spiritual gifts needed to preach and teach the Gospel. And He has shown that the finery of Satan’s palace is nothing but a vain show. We ourselves are not doing much, but God does a lot through us.

    I have noticed in church politics that people wait to see if Christ or Satan is going to win. Then they jump in on the winning side. That is a bad mistake. Jesus is always the winning side. We should never feel defeated or act as if God went away on vacation. His promises are certain and true. He will keep His promises and give us far more than we ever expected.

    When we experience feelings of defeat and despair, we should turn to the Gospel, especially John’s Gospel and read the simple message of Jesus’ victory over Satan. John’s Gospel is often called the Gospel of love, because God’s love for us is emphasized so often. And also, joy is a major emphasis. Jesus came that our joy might be complete.

    KJV John 15:11 These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full.

    KJV John 16:20 Verily, verily, I say unto you, That ye shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice: and ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.

    KJV John 16:22 And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you.

    KJV John 16:24 Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.

    KJV John 17:13 And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.

    The Book of Concord, The Lord’s Supper, Formula of Concord, Solid Declaration

    20] Dr. Luther has also more amply expounded and confirmed this opinion from God's Word in the Large Catechism, where it is written: What, then, is the Sacrament of the Altar? Answer: It is the true body and blood of our Lord Jesus Christ, in and under the bread and wine, which we Christians are commanded by the Word of Christ to eat and to drink. 21] And shortly after: It is the 'Word,' I say, which makes and distinguishes this Sacrament, so that it is not mere bread and wine, but is, and is called. the body and blood of Christ. 22] Again: With this Word you can strengthen your conscience and say: If a hundred thousand devils, together with all fanatics, should rush forward, crying, How can bread and wine be the body and blood of Christ? I know that all spirits and scholars together are not as wise as is the Divine Majesty in His little finger. Now, here stands the Word of Christ: "Take, eat; this is My body. Drink ye all of this; this is the new testament in My blood," etc. Here we abide, and would like to see those who will constitute themselves His masters, and make it different from what He has spoken. 23] It is true, indeed, that if you take away the Word, or regard it without the Word, you have nothing but mere bread and wine. But if the words remain with them, as they shall and must, then, in virtue of the same, it is truly the body and blood of Christ. For as the lips of Christ say and speak, so it is, as He can never lie or deceive.
    "An Awe-Full Mystery Is Here"
    by Matthias Loy, 1828-1915
    Text From:
    THE LUTHERAN HYMNAL
    (St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941)



    1. An awe-full mystery is here
    To challenge faith and waken fear:
    The Savior comes as food divine,
    Concealed in earthly bread and wine.

    2. This world is loveless, -- but above,
    What wondrous boundlessness of love!
    The king of Glory stoops to me
    My spirit's life and strength to be.

    3. In consecrated wine and bread
    No eye perceives the mystery dread;
    But Jesus' words are strong and clear:
    "My body and My blood are here."

    4. How dull are all the powers of sense
    Employed on proofs of love immense!
    The richest food remains unseen,
    And highest gifts appear -- how mean!

    5. But here we have no boon on earth,
    And faith alone discerns its worth:
    The Word, not sense, must be our guide,
    And faith assure, since sight's denied.

    6. Lord, show us still that Thou art good
    And grant us evermore this food.
    Give faith to every wavering soul
    And make each wounded spirit whole.


    Notes:
    Hymn #304 from The Lutheran Hymnal
    Text: 1 Cor. 11: 23-25
    Author: Matthias Loy, 1880
    Composer: George J. Elvey, 1862
    Tune: St. Crispin

    Saturday, February 23, 2008

    Universal Objective Justification Primer


    Someone asked who has published against UOJ.

    Here are the basics of the false doctrine commonly known as UOJ:

    1. God declared the whole world righteous when Christ died on the cross, or else when Christ rose from the dead. (UOJ)
    2. Everyone is forgiven, without faith. All the pagans of the world are forgiven.
    3. Those who believe in Christ are forgiven again (Subjective Justification).

    Walther got this pernicious doctrine from the Pietists, who converted him. He established it with F. Pieper and their acolytes. However, this doctrine is not found in the 1905 LCMS Catechism, proof that it was not widespread or even institutionalized.

    The LCMS Brief Confession in 1939 made UOJ an article of faith.

    J. P. Meyers (WELS) taught UOJ mixed with Decision Theology in Ministers of Christ.

    Norm Madson (ELS, then CLC) taught UOJ. The common thread seems to be education at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis.

    In the 19th century, the Norwegians taught UOJ and the Swedish Augustana Synod argued against it. The General Council taught justification by faith but did not seem to argue against UOJ specifically.

    Lenski rejected UOJ in his New Testament commentaries.

    Robert Preus earlier emphasized UOJ and denied it was the same as the Atonement.

    Preus' last book, Justification and Rome, never mentions UOJ and clearly states that people are only forgiven when they come to faith.

    Before that LCMS Pastor Vernon Hartley published against UOJ. No one was able to refute him. (I met with him before he died.)

    The advocates of UOJ admit that the term is new, that the Book of Concord teaches only justification by faith. They also admit that the New Testament term justification only means justification by faith.

    Typical WELS/ELS Reaction



    WELS/ELS Attack Dog


    A friendly reader said, "You are their worst fear. You have a good education and you are independent of them." That may explain a recent, anonymous, threatening comment.

    Why are you picking on a pastor's wife who runs her own blog? You are shameless. Maybe someone should start one so they can attack your wife. Better yet, I think someone should start a blog to denigrate your son and your your (sic) grandkids.

    Apparently it is a sin to quote a public blog verbatim. Earlier I was criticized for not distinguishing the blog comments from the inspired words of CHARIS. I even got a gender wrong. Horrors. I hastened to correct those errors, but the rage continues.

    My wife does not publish a blog. My son does not publish a blog. My grandchildren do not publish blogs. If I quoted my wife's comments about the adulterous WELS pastors and the murdering WELS church workers, the anonymous reader would be even less pleased. I find the threats lame but typical. LCMS President Jack Preus commented about the WELS KGB, his term.

    Quoting someone is not picking on an individual, except in WELS/ELS circles (and some mini-micro synods).

    I found years ago that WELS did not want me to quote their favored Church Growth leaders, their favorite Pentecostal teachers, or Luther. Who is left, I wonder?

    Feel free to quote me verbatim, Anonymous. Tell the world how you disagree with Luther and the Book of Concord, why you cling to justification without faith, unionism, and others fads of your sect.

    The WELS/ELS style is the personal attack, especially against family members. Their idea of reform is meddling with someone's divine call.

    ***

    John J. Wonders has left a new comment on your post "C.E.O. Ministries":

    I don't understand the purpose of your post. If you have questions or want to know more about C.E.O. Ministries, just get in touch with us. We have nothing to hide.

    ***

    GJ - If I had questions, they were answered by copious information provided on the Internet. I wanted people to know that WELS offering money was used to provide a nest for the vipers of Church and Change, who are nothing but stand-ins for Fuller Seminary and Willow Creek. No wonder so many WELS pastors have left the Lutheran Church for Pentecostalism and Evangelicalism. They are only following the doctrinal lead of their teachers at the seminary.

    I noticed for the first time that Church and Change is loaded with leads into WELS Parish Services, the synodical division once headed by President-in-Waiting Wayne Mueller. Does anyone need more proof that The Love Shack needs a thorough house-cleaning?

    The WELS Council of District Popes even passed a resolution against the heart and soul of Church and Change/WELS Pentecostal Services. I would quote it verbatim, but that would be picking on the District Popes.

    Friday, February 22, 2008

    Valleskey, Bivens, Olson, Huebner, Roth, Werning, Kelm, Hunter:
    Behold Your Work




    Doctrine of Fellowship Misapplied?

    February 17th, 2006 | 12:45 pm | Posted in General

    Church Door Symposium Cancelled!

    Due to the brotherly concerns expressed by numerous clergy and Synod officials around the issue of church fellowship, the 3rd Annual Church Door Symposium has been cancelled. Although the Executive Director and the members of the CHARIS Board of Directors disagree with the judgments that hosting non-WELS speakers represents a violation of Scripture and WELS doctrine, concern for maintaining harmony in the church, coupled with concern for the continued success and vitality of CHARIS and Wisconsin Lutheran College, override any reasons for taking a stand on this issue at this time.

    Moose Commentary: I’m not quite sure how hosting non-WELS speakers constitutes prayer fellowship and a violation of Scripture. Pretty soon we’ll get to the point where just talking to people who are non-WELS will be breaking fellowship.

    It is an unfortunate fact that great confusion exists among clergy and laity alike around applications of the church fellowship principles.

    Moose Commentary: “Confusion” is an understatement.

    Rather than contribute to this confusion, the leaders of The CHARIS Institute have decided to cancel this year’s symposium. Our prayer is that we will find a way to resolve this confusion about church fellowship so that CHARIS can again host outstanding scholars on relevant subjects in the future without controversy.

    May God guide us to live and work in the freedom of His Gospel so that we can be salt and light to a dying world.

    Moose Commentary:
    This symposium was on evangelism. Apparently it is breaking fellowship by bringing in those who have effective evangelism programs that actually work because they are not WELS. Our synod is losing members faster than they are gaining them. You’d think they’d be open to new ideas. There is a serious danger here in this fellowship misapplication. Those planning to attend have lost the opportunity to learn about other evangelism methods to win souls for Christ.

    Here is the link I have quoted.

    7 Responses to “Doctrine of Fellowship Misapplied?”
    The Rev. David M. Juhl
    February 17th, 2006 at 6:50 pm
    Kent Hunter and Waldo Werning are two Missouri Synod pastors who are far from being Confessional Lutherans.

    See Kent Hunter’s work for yourself here:

    http://www.churchdoctor.org

    Jon
    February 18th, 2006 at 4:48 pm
    I quote from: “A Tale of Two Synods: Lessons from the Dissolution
    of the Synodical Conference” by Dr. Mark Braun.

    “Do the previously mentioned allegations [referring to other topics mentioned in Braun’s document] actually violate scriptural passages on fellowship and the 1959
    WELS “Statement on fellowship?? Or do they demonstrate our discomfort at stepping outside the busy, all-encompassing “WELS–world? we have created of congregation, school, social activities, familiar customs, and extended family and friendship
    networks? Rather than risk the censure of our ministerial “brothers,? it may be safer and simpler for us to avoid any such contacts with other Christians entirely, even though they offer us opportunities to encourage others in their faith, testify to the truth, and—most controversial—even learn something
    useful from them.”

    Elle
    February 18th, 2006 at 9:24 pm
    It’s interesting that it was cancelled because of the cited fellowship reasons as opposed to the expected content of the presentations. Why did they say that listening to someone who isn’t WELS is a bad thing when what they perhaps ought to have said was that they took issue with what would have been presented?


    Daniel Sellers

    February 18th, 2006 at 9:30 pm
    Dr. Wearing isn’t exactly a guy you want to hang around with. There are accusations floating around that he has taught false doctrine about the Trinity and a faulty Christology.

    Mike Thom
    April 26th, 2006 at 8:50 am
    For a better understanding of the Scriptural basis for not inviting men such as Werning and Hunter, you might read some of the articles posted at www.welsincrisis.blogspot.com.


    Mike Thom

    May 18th, 2006 at 4:55 pm
    The basic idea of Romans 16:17 and 2 John 10 is that God does not want Christians sitting at the feet and learning from false teachers. The passages do not say that we should avoid them only when they are teaching their false doctrine. To invite them to speak at events sponsored by WELS groups is ignoring this word of God.

    ***

    GJ - The original Moose Report did not distinguish between the inspired words of CHARIS and the blog commentary (norma normata). I have copied the CHARIS passages reverently in italics.

    I still marvel at the feigned sorrow of CHARIS, the prayerful hopes. Apparently the breach has been healed by all the Church Growth disciples bending their knees. The 2009 Church and Change Conference is approved and planned. Eager hearts await Brian Lempe delivering another one-two punch to the devil.

    Here are some boasts from Church and Change:

    Innovation in methodology is yesterday's news in the WELS. Pastors, teachers, synod administrators, worker training leaders, home and world missionaries, worship leaders, computer buffs, and countless local laymen and laywomen, have been tweaking (and/or radically changing) ministry methods for years. In every WELS generation God has raised up men and women, for reasons known only to Him, who are interested in pushing the envelope of "gospel delivery systems." And this, long before concepts like "English" or "radio ministry" or "Parish Assistance," or "paradigm" or "long distance learning" entered WELS thinking or culture.

    No surprise - Church and Change was artificially inseminated with WELS offering money:

    History of Church and Change

    In 1995, a group of about 10-12 men gathered at Wisconsin Lutheran College to discuss current methods of sharing Jesus which were commonly being used in the WELS at that time. Many at the first meeting felt that those methods of sharing Jesus were not “keeping up with” the rate of change in society. The message of the Bible was not, therefore, penetrating society very well.

    In 1998 two men who had attended the first meeting planned a Church and Change conference in Green Bay, Wisconsin. The next year there was a second conference in Green Bay. About 20 people attended each year.

    In May 2001, WELS Parish Services applied for and received a Forward in Christ grant to conduct a three-year pilot program to address the issues surfaced by the previous two Church and Change conferences. The three-year pilot program was designed to be a grassroots gathering of individuals who were pioneering new innovative methods of sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with a changing culture.


    Church and Change is known for its hilarious goofs, which they never seem to catch. Here is a two-fer:

    Everyone in this directory has give (sic) their (sic) approval to be listed here.

    Illiterate in theology. Illiterate in English.


    Just Plain Funny:


    Gifts of Talent

    Church and Change is seeking to compile a list of WELS singers, instrumentalists, songwriters, comedians, jugglers, entertainers, groups and others who are serving their Savior with their personal gifts. If you are such a person and would like to be featured on this website, please click here.


    GJ - WELS jugglers? Do they refuse to juggle with LCMS jugglers? Do they walk away from the stage and juggle behind the curtain? Do they invite ELCA and Willow Creek jugglers to teach them how to juggle?

    I Know This Makes Sense to Someone...

    Strategy - Conference Breakout 111.... Develop the Courage Not to Plan Your Ministry
    Dr. Steve Witte


    Do you carefully plan your ministry and invite God to bless those plans? Do you find it difficult to say “no” to our own “great” plans, while waiting for God to reveal his own perfect plan which he has prepared in advance? It is not always easy to determine which ideas or strategies are based on our own selfish ideas and passions—and which ideas come from God himself. Consider your ministry planning model. How much room is there for God in it? In this workshop consider a planning model based on prayer, patience and preparation—mixed with a healthy dose of common sense.

    The Glove Shack




    In a prophetic move, this blog predicted that the WELS headquarters building could be modified slightly for commercial purposes. Instead of The Love Shack, it would be called The Glove Shack

    Who Told You?



    Hanging Around


    One of the funny effects of Ichabod is reflected in the typical clergy response to the truth: "Who told you?"

    One person asked about The Love Shack being sold. "Who told you?" Are WELS pastors worried about people reading Ichabod?

    No, the rumor came from The Love Shack. They decided--in the midst of a massive real estate meltdown--that they might entertain offers to sell 2929. That was printed in the latest PR release, before the shocking news came out in Ichabod. I think 2929 is what they would get for the building - $29.29.

    One time a WELS pastor sent statistics around to various ministers. The synodical president phoned, "Who told you?" He said, "The figures are from the WELS statistics book." WELS pastors call it The Book of Sins. Larry Olson's congregation never grew, so WELS made him the Waldo Werning Professor of Church Growth at Martin Luther College. Yes, WELS pastors looked up Larry's statistics every year...and laughed.

    When a news reporter asked the former SP about the WELS pastor living in adultery, the SP pounced on a pastor at convention and demanded, "Did you tell?" No denial of the facts. No discipline.

    Thursday, February 21, 2008

    Deming: From Doughnuts to Theology



    Larry Olson Caught Sneaking into Fuller Seminary


    W. Edwards Deming pioneered the concept of quality parts, something he discovered while working on the US Census. He was ignored in the US, so the Japanese car-makers adopted his concept. The idea was simple - If the parts are high quality, the finished product will work well. Before that the auto makers had the parts manufacturers compete for price, so quality suffered. When they made the vendors compete for quality, the final product ran well and lasted much longer.

    Detroit finally caught on. People wanted cars that worked. Now a car can easily reach 100,000 miles without significant problems.

    Deming Doughnuts
    My father applied the concept in his bakery. He used the best flour and paid extra for its shipping from California. The aroma from the 100-pound bags was intoxicating. He used the best cocoa to make chocolate icing. He insisted on cane sugar rather than beet sugar. Both sugars are identical in chemistry, but beet sugar has an odd smell and does not make icing as well as cane sugar does. He used top quality coconut, huge pecans and walnuts, the best peanuts. The shortening was cleaned often and recycled when old. (No, not recycled in the bakery, but by someone who picked it up and sold it to a chemical company.)

    I have never had doughnuts like the ones we made in downtown Moline. They were legendary in the Quad-City area.

    Deming and Theology
    The Deming theory applies to theology. If a student of religion starts with junk-parts, the final result will be junk. The opposite is what Walther quoted: "The nearer to Luther, the better the theologian."

    The Protestants and Catholics during the Reformation started with Luther. For Catholic theologians, he was Public Enemy Number One. For Protestants, he was the gold standard. John Bunyan, who wrote Pilgrim's Progress, the most read book in the English language (after the Bible), Luther was his favorite. He said Luther's Galatians commentary was his most read book, after the Bible.

    How many Lutheran MDiv students have read the Galatians commentary? How many faculty have? Add them together and the total for the whole Synodical Conference is probably close to zero.

    Among the febrile dissenters in the LCMS and ELS, how many are Luther-centric? I read the unshocking claim that Fenton, who repudiates Lutheran doctrine, was a bigwig in creating the newest McCain product, the Lutheran Service Book. Fenton has joined Eastern Orthodoxy. For many in the LCMS, the cure for their ailment is either the Church of Rome or Eastern Orthodoxy. What does that say about the state of seminary education?

    No one can imagine graduates of the Mequon Sausage Factory joining Rome. Why give up total infallibility for Rome's weaker version? Mequon graduates are quite enchanted by the junk-theologians of Fuller Seminary. Their former president recommended the Pentecostal Baptist C. Peter Wagner in their official WELS magazine. One of their other Fuller alums, Reuel Schulz, praised Wagner into heaven in his TELL article. Both men made it clear that Lutherans needed to study the great theologian, C. Peter Wagner.

    I will add some Wagner quotes below. Here are some non-Lutheran objections.

    Wagner believes he is a faith healer. He claimed in one book that a demon lived in an article in his house. Some of his statements would make anyone question his sanity. One of his books was originally called Look Out! The Pentecostals Are Coming!

    The time spent studying the crackpots of Fuller Seminary is lost to the study of classical theologians. I would much rather read the serious theologians of any age than the frauds of Pasadena and Willow Creek.

    Any Protestant student of theology is going to invest his time wisely with Luther because the Reformer is the greatest and most lucid expositor of the Bible. The editors of the Book of Concord should be next on the list - for Lutherans especially, but also for Protestants in general.

    Wagner Was Right About One Thing
    "I don't think there's anything intrinsically wrong with the church-growth principles we've developed, or the evangelistic techniques we're using. Yet somehow they don't seem to work."
    C. Peter Wagner Ken Sidey, "Church Growth Fine Tunes Its Formulas," Christianity Today, June 24, 1991, p. 47. [Psst - Don't tell WELS or Missouri, or Paul Tiefel and David Koenig.]

    "In the words of C. Peter Wagner, Professor of Missions at the Fuller School of World Missions, Jesus at Bangkok was the 'prototype of an ideal social attitude,' the 'man for others' whose resurrection and lordship meant no more than that others should be inspired by His example."
    Ernst H. Wendland, "Missiology--and the Two Billion," Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, January, 1974 71, p. 11f.

    "The preacher, in fact, was a fascinating combination of eloquent and illiterate (by his own testimony). In the services I saw fervent singing, joyous clapping of hands, dancing in the Spirit, speaking in tongues, testimonies, prophecies, preaching of the Word, and as a climax the handling of deadly poisonous snakes and drinking of strychnine. I discussed this with several members of the congregation. When I asked why they handled snakes they replied, simply, 'Because Jesus told us to do it as a sign.' Another sign of the kingdom." [Footnote - See C. Peter Wagner, What Are We Missing?, formerly Look Out, The Pentecostals Are Coming, Carol Stream: Creation House, 1973, 1978.]
    C. Peter Wagner, Church Growth and the Whole Gospel, New York: Harper and Row, 1981, p. 23.

    "Church growth is that science which investigates the planting, multiplication, function and health of Christian churches as they relate specifically to the effective implementation of God's-commission to 'make disciples of all nations' (Matt. 28:19-20 RSV). Church growth strives to combine the eternal theological principles of God's Word concerning the expansion of the church with the best insights of contemporary social and behavioral sciences, employing as its initial frame of reference, the foundational work done by Donald McGavran." [Constitution, Academy for American Church Growth]
    C. Peter Wagner, Church Growth and the Whole Gospel, New York: Harper and Row, 1981, p. 75.

    "Yet this writer is confident we won't go astray in adopting a 'spoiling the Egyptians' approach to the various Church Growth Movement sociological principles and the research that produced them."
    David J. Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement: An Evaluation," Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Spring, 1991 88, p. 116. Exodus 12:36.

    Bob: "..I'd like to share with you a book I came across the other day. It's interesting, easy to read, and may be the answer to our problem..." "Its title is Your Church Can Grow, and it's filled with all sorts of practical hints that could help us turn things around here." Author: "Bob didn't realize it at the time, but in his browsing he had stumbled upon one of many similar books written from the perspective of the church growth movement, books with such titles as How to Grow a Church, Ten Steps for Church Growth, Church Growth: Strategies that Work, and Leading Your Church to Growth."
    Prof. David Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement, Just Gathering People or Building the Church?" The Northwestern Lutheran, May 5, 1991, p. 184.

    "The term 'spiritual breathing' originated with Dr. William Bright in his booklet, 'Have You Made the Wonderful Discovery of the Spirit-filled Life?'"
    David Valleskey, Forest Bivens, New Life in Christ, September, 1981 p. 1.

    "For several years I've been a Pete Wagner fan. Although I don't see eye to eye with him on many important theological points (he approves of faith healing and speaking in tongues as long as it promotes church growth and he comes from a Billy Graham decision for conversion doctrinal background), he is the most eloquent spokesman of the Church Growth Movement. A prolific author on mission/evangelism/church growth subjects, Wagner is also an excellent teacher and a crystal clear writer."
    Reuel J. Schulz, The Evangelism Life Line (WELS) Winter, 1980,

    "Please stop exaggerating the amount of study that I have done at Fuller. After four years of study at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, which involved sixty-two different courses and a year of vicarage, I graduated in 1983. From 1987 to 1989 I took four courses where I was in a classroom with a Fuller instructor. That is the extent of my Fuller coursework...In addition, I have taken two courses at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and one at the University of Wisconsin--Madison. Because of Fuller's liberal (would you expect anything else?) policy on transfer of credit, and because of two independent studies I undertook, I could complete the degree by simply writing a dissertation."
    Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23

    "You may reply that by 'Fuller-trained' you mean anyone who has attended a worshop presented by the Charles E. Fuller Institute of Evangelism and Church Growth, an agency which is independent of the Seminary. If that is the case, your attribution of 'Fuller-trained' is still simply not true. It would surprise me if even half of the two dozen people on your 'WELS/ELS Who's Who' list have attended a Fuller workshop; I personally know of only five who have."
    Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.

    Larry Meets His Holiness, Face-to-Face
    "Donald C. McGavran died at home home in Altadena, California, on July 10, 1990. He was 92 years old. Dr. McGavran is widely recognized as the founder of the church growth movement, a movement which has sought to put the social sciences at the service of theology in order to foster the growth of the church. In August of 1989 I borrowed a bicycle and pedaled several miles uphill up from Pasadena to Altadena. I found Dr. McGavran in his front yard with a hose in hand, watering flowers."
    Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "See How It Grows: Perspectives on Growth and the Church," EVANGELISM, February, 1991, Professor, Martin Luther College (WELS), p. 1.

    Larry Loyal to Lutheran Education?
    "The church growth movement has made inroads into nearly every denomination in America. Once considered only the turf of conservative evangelicals, you will now find church growth practioners in the United Methodist Church, in the Presbyterian Church in the USA, and among the Episcopalians. The LCMS has more pastors enrolled in the Doctor of Ministry program at Fuller Theological Seminary, the seedbed of the movement, than are enrolled in the graduate programs at their Fort Wayne and St. Louis seminaries combined, and most of them include church growth as part of their studies."
    Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "See How It Grows: Perspectives on Growth and the Church," EVANGELISM, February, 1991, Parish Consultant for the WELS Board of Parish Services and his district's Coordinator of Evangelism, p. 1.

    Another Gusher for Church Growth
    "In the autumn of 1985 and the winter of 1985-1986, a truly momentous step was taken by the five Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS) congregations in the metropolitan area of Columbus, Ohio. The five pastors and lay representatives of those churches organized and incorporated Lutheran Parish Resources, Inc., the first Church Growth institute in the WELS."
    David G. Peters, "Lutheran Parish Resources: Pilot Program in Church Growth,"
    Mequon: Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, April 27, 1987, p. 1.

    Wednesday, February 20, 2008

    King James Family of Bibles



    Tyndale was executed for translating and printing Bibles. He died saying, "Lord, open the King of England's eyes." His prayer was answered by the KJV.


    Someone asked, "What is the King James family of Bibles?"

    That is my expression, so it was probably confusing. I use and favor the King James or Authorized Version of the Bible. There are several reasons.

    One is that the Bible is really the Tyndale Bible made kosher by the first Stuart king, James (who followed Elisabeth). Tyndale was closely connected to Luther and his translation.

    Another reason is the New Testament text. The KJV and slightly modernized KJ versions use the traditional Greek text while the NIV boobs treat God's Word as their personal sandbox. Horsing around with the New Testament began with Wescott and Hort, the fraud Tischendorf, and a horde of apostate disciples.

    Modernists were helped by scholars' almost total amnesia concerning the Byzantine Empire's history, a Christian and Greek-speaking empire that lasted 1100 years.

    What? It lasted 1100 years?

    Yes, Greek-speaking Christians (and the most literate ancient nation) did preserve the text with great precision. That is why we have so many Byzantine NT texts, a fact used against the traditional text.

    Tischendorf "found" both of the new texts (Sinaiticus and Vaticanus) that were used to revise and change the New Testament. In other fields the scholars are suspicious of a man who finds an object so sensational that it makes him world famous. No one really knows the origins of Sinaiticus and Vaticanus.

    I wonder how many people know that a committee votes regularly on the text of the Greek NT. If three out of five vote against a verse, out it goes. They make the politicians of the smoke-filled rooms seem saintly in comparison.

    The LCMS and WELS abandoned the KJV for the ecumenical, dumbed-down, impossible to read aloud NIV. Big money was involved. The NIV is perfect for the Church Growth Movement ("make disciples") and women's ordination (pronoun abuse).

    The updates of the KJV are - the New KJV, KJV II, etc. The KJV we use is actually a slightly modernized version of the orginal. A commission took out some of the extra commas and the more ancient words.

    The KJV was made to be read aloud in church. It was intended for memorization. Now the flavor of the month translations have ruined memorization.

    The KJV was overwhelmingly the dominant English Bible until the 1960's or so, a span of many centuries. One billion have been printed.

    The English language is built upon two foundations - the KJV and Shakespeare.

    Tuesday, February 19, 2008

    L P Cruz, etc.



    This UOJ Stormtrooper got his training at Mequon and never let anyone forget it. Dates were awkward and conversation stilted.


    L. P. Cruz has an extended discussion of UOJ on his blog, Extra Nos.

    I wanted to clarify a few things.

    Christians should not add unnecessarily to the Biblical vocabulary. Some terms (Trinity, Means of Grace) are shorthand for decades or centuries of debate. We continue to use them because there is general agreement about their meaning, even though there are variations.

    I object to modifying terms like justification and reconciliation. Chemnitz agreed with the ancient saying that we should return to the sources when the water is muddy. That included dropping the confessions of the time to study the Scritpure itself. (Note that the Wisconsin cheerleaders will yell "Wauwatosa," but this really means the opposite.)

    Too many are tempted to trace every tributary of Christianity or parse the essays of their recently departed professors. For the Synodical Conference types, nothing is better than that to help avoid all issues.

    A Sigh Is Just a Sigh
    The fundamental things apply, as time goes by. Reconciliation is not justification. Using fake logic to fuse the terms will never work, if we still believe that Scripture interprets Scripture. Reconciliation is the Gospel message that converts the unbeliever and strengthens the believer. The New Testament is rich in synonyms for reconciliation: redemption (two different words), expiation, ransom, etc.

    Nevertheless, the New Testament never says that God has declared the whole world forgiven, without faith, without the Word, without the Means of Grace. That is where the UOJ Stormtroopers (Cascione, Bivens, Valleskey, Becker, Pieper, Walther, Pope John the Malefactor, Dan Preus, Rolf Preus) utterly depart from the Scriptures. How do they defend their toxic doctrine? By quoting the writers who agree with them - a fallacy called Special Pleading.

    The Gospel message converts or hardens the unbeliever because the Holy Spirit always accompanies the Word and always accomplishes God's will (Isaiah 55). Speak the Gospel to a Mormon missionary or a JW and he will sneer. Describe the efficacy of the Word to a Lutheran leader and the same thing will happen.

    Calvinism
    Calvinims is wrong because the work of the Holy Spirit is divorced from the Word and Sacraments. That is a consistent theme in Calvin's work. Therefore, Calvinism cannot be rescued from the charge of Enthusiasm.

    The rationalistic component of Calvinism leads to Unitarianism. "Young Calvinist, Old Unitarian." That is a common saying that fits regions, denominations, and nations.

    Luther
    I am not a brand-name Luther. I do not follow Luther for any other reason than this - he is the greatest Biblical expositor of all time.

    Some day in the future, the Recessional Lutherans will have to explain how they led their gullible followers away from the Scriptures and into the fold of Romanism and Eastern Orthodoxy. EO is just a coward's way of embracing Rome.

    The UOJ Stormtroopers are raising up a generation of Unitarians.

    ***

    Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "L P Cruz, etc.":

    I'm in the early stages of exploring Luther and the church that carries his name. It seems like many of the names you list as uopj storm troopers are guys I've read or heard about.(what is uoj??)I am just starting the book of concord (and the theology of the book of concord by Prues)...any other helps you would suggest in my search?
    thanks
    tv


    GJ - Short definition Universal Objective Justification - Everyone in the world was declared forgiven the moment Christ died on the cross--or--the moment Christ rose from the dead. Everyone who died in the Flood - forgiven. Everyone in Hell is a guilt-free saint. Walther began this travesty, which he got from Pietism, in his Easter absolution sermon. Pieper and the Synodical Conference continued it. The Church Growth gurus like Valleskey and Bivens love UOJ.

    Justification by faith means: those who hear the Gospel and believe in Christ as their Savior are forgiven their sins.

    Those who are new to Lutheran doctrine should stick to a good Bible in the King James family of translations, the Book of Concord, and Luther's sermons.

    Advanced Lutherans should stick to a good Bible in the King James family of translations, the Book of Concord, and Luther's sermons.

    Theologians with a PhD should stick to a good Bible in the King James family of translations, the Book of Concord, and Luther's sermons.