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Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:10-13 KJV

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Friday, December 31, 2010

Welcome To The Waffle House - Missouri's Response To ELCA's Abortion and Sodomy Advocacy

ELCA News Release

As background reading for the meeting, Collver offered two papers he authored - one that discusses natural law and finds that it does not allow for homosexual behavior; and another that calls for "re-examination of the principle of 'cooperation in externals' … to consider what 'externals' can be cooperated in without compromising confession."

     Collver also offered what he developed as five "theses for cooperation in externals on the basis of natural law." The first two state that cooperation in externals "can only occur when there is agreement in natural law" and "when there is agreement in doctrine and practice, because such agreement constitutes agreement in natural law."
The Rev. Dr. Marcus Kunz, executive for discernment of contextual and theological issues with the ELCA Office of the Presiding Bishop, provided "A Brief Response" to Collver's papers for discussion at the meeting.
Kunz expressed appreciation for Collver's papers, but placed greater emphasis on the need for acts of Christian love that result from faith.

"The motivation for Lutherans in the United States to form and support these organizations -- Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, Lutheran Services in America and Lutheran World Relief -- has been a confident faith created by the Holy Spirit that, trusting God's promises in Christ, has liberated Lutherans to respond graciously, generously and joyfully to the needs of their neighbors in the United States and throughout the world," Kunz wrote.

The Rev. Matthew C. Harrison, president of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, told the group that while Collver's papers are not an "official response" to the ELCA, they address a "significant question." He said that question has to do with how to be sure that activities in which the two churches carry out cooperative ministries "aren't dominated in a way that is impossible for us (in the LCMS) to accept."

This was Harrison's first meeting with the Committee on Lutheran Cooperation as president, following his election by Missouri Synod's convention delegates in July. 

He said that while actions of the convention show that "the Synod is overwhelmingly in pain" over the ELCA's sexuality decisions, "the convention also said that it did not desire to discontinue all cooperative work."


GJ - Thrivent, WELS, ELCA, LCMS, ELS, CLC (sic) - all work together promoting the ELCA/Thrivent agenda - the sanctity of homosexuality and the necessity of abortion on demand.

The inter-locking Lutheran organizations (Thrivent, Lutheran World Relief, Lutheran World Federation) also share a communication of attributes with the National and World Council of Churches.

In other words, when WELS and the ELS commune with other sects, they suffer from all the sects those sects have had fellowship with. The WELS and ELS do not need to join the NCC, WCC, or LWF to suffer from the same sectsually transmitted diseases.

The ecumenical urge is a biological need for all apostate church bodies, as Brett Meyer observed in another context -

Brett Meyer has left a new comment on your post "Taize Information Center":

The Charis essay exposes an important fact concerning the New Age Emergent apostasy that is consuming the (W)ELS, "The key for this liturgical renewal is a clear proclamation of Christ crucified flowing from a means of grace theology. At the forefront of this movement, however, there seems to be a great deal of support and encouragement for a form of liturgical worship known as Taize."

The Satanic practice of Taize is at the forefront of the (W)ELS' liturgical renewal. The (W)ELS is not going to renew using the historic Liturgy which is Scriptural and Confessional. The (W)ELS is going to renew using New Age mysticism and the occult.

Consider this in light of the (W)ELS continued involvement in the Ecumenical movement (abolishing the critical importance of doctrine in order to have unity with people who hold to different doctrines - we could accomplish so much more for Jesus if we all work together!), their claim that the church of the Antichrist is Christian, their financing of worldwide murder of men, women and children through Lutheran World Relief, their financing the murder of unborn babies through Thrivent, calling Satanist Leonard Sweet to teach them how to do evangelism and worship, calling the New Age Emergent church growth experts to teach them like Reggie McNeal, continued fellowship with the well rounded apostasy of Pastor Ski and Glende, their confession of the false gospel of Universal Objective Justification with forgiven saints in Hell, the Roman Catholic Pope's (all Antichrists) having been declared by God's divine verdict to be forgiven and justified by Christ etc. etc. etc...

More Whoosh Needed


The Arena Culture


Academic life encourages specialization and technical thinking, and, oddly, there are few fields in which this is more true than philosophy. The discipline that should be of interest to everybody is often the most impenetrable.
Josh Haner/The New York Times
David Brooks
Go to Columnist Page »

The Conversation

David Brooks and Gail Collins talk between columns.

Readers' Comments

Readers shared their thoughts on this article.
But occasionally brave philosophers do leap out of their professional lanes and illuminate things for the wider public. Hubert Dreyfus of Berkeley and Sean Dorrance Kelly of Harvard have just done this with their new book, “All Things Shining.” They take a smart, sweeping run through the history of Western philosophy. But their book is important for the way it illuminates life today and for the controversial advice it offers on how to live.
Dreyfus and Kelly start with Vico’s old idea that each age has its own lens through which people see the world. In the Middle Ages, for example, “people could not help but experience themselves as determined or created by God.” They assumed that God’s plans encompassed their lives the way we assume the laws of physics do.
For the past hundred years or so, we have lived in a secular age. That does not mean that people aren’t religious. It means there is no shared set of values we all absorb as preconscious assumptions. In our world, individuals have to find or create their own meaning.
This, Dreyfus and Kelly argue, has led to a pervasive sadness. Individuals are usually not capable of creating their own lives from the ground up. So modern life is marked by frequent feelings of indecision and anxiety. People often lack the foundations upon which to make the most important choices.
Dreyfus and Kelly suffer from the usual Cambridge/Berkeley parochialism. They assume that nobody believes in eternal truth anymore. They write as if all of America’s moral quandaries are best expressed by the novelist David Foster Wallace. But they are on to something important when they describe the way — far more than in past ages — sports has risen up to fill a spiritual void.
Spiritually unmoored, many people nonetheless experience intense elevation during the magical moments that sport often affords. Dreyfus and Kelly mention the mood that swept through the crowd at Yankee Stadium when Lou Gehrig delivered his “Luckiest Man Alive” speech, or the mood that swept through Wimbledon as Roger Federer completed one of his greatest matches.
The most real things in life, they write, well up and take us over. They call this experience “whooshing up.” We get whooshed up at a sports arena, at a political rally or even at magical moments while woodworking or walking through nature.
Dreyfus and Kelly say that we should have the courage not to look for some unitary, totalistic explanation for the universe. Instead, we should live perceptively at the surface, receptive to the moments of transcendent whooshes that we can feel in, say, a concert crowd, or while engaging in a meaningful activity, like making a perfect cup of coffee with a well-crafted pot and cup.
We should not expect these experiences to cohere into a single “meaning of life.” Transcendent experiences are plural and incompatible. We should instead cultivate a spirit of gratitude and wonder for the many excellent things the world supplies.
I’m not sure this way of living will ever prove satisfying to most readers. Most people have a powerful sense that there is a Supreme Being over us, attached to eternal truths. Though they try, Dreyfus and Kelly don’t give us a satisfying basis upon which to distinguish the whooshing some people felt at civil rights rallies from the whooshing others felt at Nazi rallies.
But Dreyfus and Kelly might help invert the way we see the world. We have official stories we tell about our culture: each individual is the captain of his own ship; we are all children of God. But in practice, willy-nilly, the way we actually live is at odds with the official story. Our most vibrant institutions are collective, not individual or religious. They are there to create that group whoosh: the sports stadium, the concert hall, the political rally, the theater, the museum and the gourmet restaurant. Even church is often more about the ecstatic whoosh than the theology.
The activities often dismissed as mere diversions are actually central. Real life is more about serial whooshes than coherent meaning.
We can either rebel against this superficial drift, or like Dreyfus and Kelly, go with the flow, acknowledging that the autonomous life is impossible, not seeking totalistic theologies, but instead becoming sensitive participants in the collective whooshings that life offers.
This clarifies the choices before us. This book is also a rejection of the excessive individualism of the past several decades, the emphasis on maximum spiritual freedom. In this, it’s a harbinger of future philosophies to come. Our culture is defined by arenas. Our self-conception just hasn’t caught up.

Taize Information Center

Father Pietissimus will be with you in a moment.
He is downloading from YouTube.

Brett Meyer has left a new comment on your post "Taste of Taize - WELS":

Additional information concerning the New Age Satanic practice of Taize Prayer and how it has been promoted within the (W)ELS.

Charis Institute, WLC, was the predecessor to the well financed and promoted Church and Change (C&C) New Age group in the (W)ELS. Here is a quote from the 2005 Charis essay on Taize which promoted the occult practice as one option among others if it were "Lutheranized".

Our birthright of confessional orthodoxy has not been sold for a bowl of liturgical pottage. The key for this liturgical renewal is a clear proclamation of Christ crucified flowing from a means of grace theology.
At the forefront of this movement, however, there seems to be a great deal of support and encouragement for a form of liturgical worship known as Taize. Proponents of this liturgical style have cited the popularity of this form of worship on college campuses and with young people. It has been used at WELS youth rallies, worship conventions, and has been the center of discussion for more than one issue of Worship the Lord.

The best words to describe Taize worship are "disciplined freedom."ii The idea is based on repetitive simplicity: simple music, simple texts played over and over. The repetition, with no firm beginning and no firm end, allows the individual worshiper to at one time be an integral part of the community while at the same time being individually connected to God.
Page 22 (1)

MLC promoting the satanic practice of Taize -

This (W)ELS church started practicing Taize in 2003 and was highlighted in FIC

More (W)ELS promotion


Brett Meyer has left a new comment on your post "Taste of Taize - WELS":

Another (W)ELS Church practicing the occult for New Years

Pastor Dan
6869 Wildwood Road
West Bend, WI 53090
Holiday Worship

New Year's Eve. Taize
Fri, Dec 31 6:30 pm


Brett Meyer has left a new comment on your post "Taste of Taize - WELS":

"It is possible for music and words to coexist or reside independently in the human mind. Taize’ prayer discovers and uses that. You may find that once your lips have repeated a simple line of words and music several times, that you can also harbor simultaneous yet independent thoughts. Use the sung words to join with the gathered community here and use your private thoughts to communicate with God."

Taize was started by New Age Roman Catholic monks who, faithful to Satan, began the Ecumenical community in Taize, France. Taize is part of the New Age religion along with Contemplative Prayer, Prayer Labyrinths and other Satanic practices which promise to tap into the godlike qualities of man, expand his power and link it to others in order to build and create a new world.

"During the recent European meeting in Brussels, Cardinal Danneels spoke to the participants in these terms: “I give thanks to God because every night, close to the Atomium, which is the symbol of human beings who investigate matter down to its depths, 40,000 young people came here to investigate the things of God. In the moments of silence at the heart of the celebrations, the Holy Spirit creates in us a hollow, a kind of little manger where the Child Jesus can be born.” This is a quote from the Taize website

The description used by this (W)ELS Emergent church (in the main post above) is actually quite accurate. To practice this prayer as it's designed the congregation is encouraged to empty their mind, repeat simple, short phrases which are meant to allow the congregation to communicate to God and God to them through the absence of specific thought and without the Means of Grace - God's Word and Sacraments. The expectation is that God will provide the practitioner with Extra-Biblical inspiration and communication with "god". In actuality they are opening themselves up to inspiration and communication with Satan and his demons as God does not come to us, or communicate to us, through any other means than the Word of God.

This is not new in (W)ELS as their Worship Committee's have been dabling in the Occult for many, many years using the deceptive goal of "finding new ways to reach the lost for Christ, using the tools of this world and culture that are relational, relevant and real."

Destroy the central doctrine of Christian faith, Justification by Faith Alone, with the false gospel of Universal Objective Justification and all God given discernment is gone and the Synods and churches will fall for anything.

This New Age Emergent (W)ELS church's website -

Rogue Lutheran provided some great information on Taize -

More Info on Taize from their own satanic lips -

Joe Krohn Dusts Off the Tu Quoque Fallacy

LutherRocks has left a new comment on your post "Bethany Rap Video:More Proof That Straight White G...":

I think really there are two issues, I don't think there is any 'artistic' property being stolen here. They aren't taking the song as their own. This kind of stuff has gone on for decades. Is it wrong? Probably in the narrowest sense, but if no one is getting sued over it and losing, the general consensus is who cares? Its (sic) not much different than you changing lyrics of songs for parody when poking fun of synod officials here. Do you ask permission to do this?

The bigger issue to me is the choice of material and the way they carry on in the video. The Bethany vid is tame in comparison to the WELS one, but this prudent behavior for Christian students many of whom are destined for ministry.


GJ - One could also call this the Moral Equivalence fallacy. For example, a Marxist nun excused Liberation Theology by saying "America had a revolution." Sure, we killed British women and children in their beds, threw bombs into inns. I heard in one class that the Boston Tea Party "might have been called terrorist" at the time.

"Everyone does it" is another fallacy (ad populum), the one used by DP Englebrecht to excuse the plagiarism in his benighted district.

When I publish my delightful song parodies, I am not copying the songs themselves but using their themes to make a point. For example, "Let It Snow" lends itself to a Global Warming parody during a ferocious blizzard. I use the rhythm of the lyrics and count out syllables so the words fit the music. I was writing them long before Weird Al, who is a genius at it, but I never monetized them.

I am quite sure Weird Al gets permission, because he uses the licensed music. Long ago, one TV show ("That Was the Week That Was") used song parodies. I remember them not singing their "Goldwater" song because they could not get permission to use the "Cold Water" music to it.

One concept involving this issue is the reference. Joe is probably quite aware that original music can "quote" other pieces. Recently, Men At Work suffered a huge loss for using too long of a quotation from Kookabura, which is still under license. I believe some nogoodniks bought up that company just to sue MAW, and the bad guys won big time.

Even when I use a few words in a row during a parody I am not doing more than quoting it. Besides, I am not turning it into 100% theft and calling it mine, as WELS pastors Ski and Tim Glende do on a regular basis.

I quote entire blog posts verbatim and give credit. I do my best to distinguish between my words and the words of another. I have run into trouble only twice. One blogger wanted to be paid for her post, so I deleted it. Another blogger said I was short-circuiting the trip to his URL, which was a fair objection. After that I simply linked his post and added a few words.

The "fair use" doctrine means I can use material for scholarly purposes and commentary. If I had ads, that would limit me. Besides, I cannot imagine blogging against unionism and having an ad for Fuller Seminary show up. Or - "Get an online theology degree here!"

If the WELS or ELS students wanted to show creativity, they could perform public domain music or ask for written permission. Ripping a sound track and stealing it is bad enough. Picking an orgy-themed video, as the Bethany students did, is even worse. I had trouble watching the original, trying to pick up what it said with words and images. My impression was that the girl was reflecting the same attitude back at the rapper. However the video is interpreted, the choice is bad.

I find it strange that Lutheran college students find garbage like this worth so much lame labor. The secular culture of hedonism does not need more cheerleaders. They still have Hef at age 84.

Need I say it? The rap culture is heavily involved in violence and hard drugs. Objecting to that makes me unhip, not cool, and legalistic.

Taste of Taize - WELS

Thursday, December 30, 2010

New Year's Service of Prayer in Taizé Style

Join us Friday, December 31 at 6:30pm for this unique experience!

Taize’ is a town in Belgium where a non-denominational Christian community has developed a style of worship that emphasizes sung prayers which are melodic and repetitive rather than hymn-like or chanted.
During the past 50 years, Christians around the world have found peace and community in this kind of worship. In the United States, many Christian churches use Taize’ prayer, including some WELS churches and the WELS National Worship Conference.

It is possible for music and words to coexist or reside independently in the human mind. Taize’ prayer discovers and uses that. You may find that once your lips have repeated a simple line of words and music several times, that you can also harbor simultaneous yet independent thoughts. Use the sung words to join with the gathered community here and use your private thoughts to communicate with God. Perhaps your mind can find a kernel in the sung words upon which your mind can pray or mediate.

The style of Taize’ is less formal than a liturgy, while still structured. It is normal and expected that individuals may wish to stop singing during a sung prayer, perhaps for more intense reflection. It is normal for the sung prayer to build as more join and fade as more stop. The piano will lead the starting and stopping. Sing harmony if you wish. Taize’ prayer is expressive in any number of languages, and Spanish and English or any other tongue may be sung concurrently.


GJ - Cutting edge!

Missouri promotes it, so Taize must be good.

Lenski - "Resist the beginnings." The somewhat more liberal ELCA leaders were asked in olden times to police what was going on. One replied, "I cannot be the keeper of a thousand doors." Later, the same leader lamented what developed after his easy-going reign was over.

Don't worry, WELSians - Church and Change is the doorkeeper. The SP is the figurehead, in place to keep the base happy.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Bethany Rap Video:
More Proof That Straight White Guys Cannot Dance

"It's by rapper Taio Cruz  warning a girl that he will break her heart. When that happens, it is not his fault since he warned her. It's been up on youtube for awhile..."

Wikipedia article on this profound song.


Narrow-minded Lutheran has left a new comment on your post "Bethany Rap Video:More Proof That Straight White G...":

Thanks for posting the lyrics above, since I'm an old, grumpy Lutheran who can't understand this new "music." I would be so proud as a parent to see my kid portraying such a healthy message about relationships for my $27,580 per year. "Karma" must come from the NIV translation.

When are girls going to learn that this culture portrays them as "ho's" and cheap pieces of meat? Since the "Lutheran" synods want to be so relevant about applying the Bible to our daily lives and relationships, how 'bout a study of Ephesians 5?


Brett Meyer has left a new comment on your post "Bethany Rap Video:More Proof That Straight White G...":

Narrow-Minded makes a good point.

The Bethany Values listed above, "Pursuit of knowledge, critical thinking...comprise the essence of your Bethany experience and what we will strive to establish and bolster within you", is similar to the WELS MLC statements.

Yet, exactly who is watching over and taking care of these kids when they are hundreds if not thousands of miles away from their parents?

The words of the song used by Bethany are predatory. The video published by MLC was homoerotic.

All from the "Most conservative Lutheran Synods in the world" reaching the lost for Jesus even if they have to sin to do it.


GJ -
Original linked here.

I am sure the Bethany Lutheran College (ELS) students asked for written permission to borrow the entire soundtrack.

Or did they follow the example of Martin Luther College (WELS)?

Long ago, I cloned the lavender cross logo WELS was using and put it on my website. I immediately got a ferocious email (with Lutheran misspelled) from The Love Shack. The email stated that the lavender cross was the WELS trademark. I could not use it without permission. Since I did not have permission, I had to remove it.

I sought legal counsel from Dewey, Cheatem, and Howe on the trademark issue. My attorney said, "They have to identify the trademark with a tm in a circle or with the words trade mark. That is how a trade mark is protected. If they do not use one indication or another, they have no claim." I am sure The Love Shack knew this. Yet they put forward a spurious claim about their rights, which they gave up. Let's face it. A cross with a trade mark sign is rather tacky, even for WELS.

WELS/ELS - very stuffy about doing things correctly. They insist on a gentle, sit-down Come to Jesus meeting when they are publishing false doctrine all over the world, but they never correct their errors. They retaliate by trashing pastors and members behind their backs.

If someone takes the time to write a letter, which they urge constantly, the letter is not answered or even acknowledged.

The next time they write a letter, asking for money to "reach out with the Gospel," (trans - pay salaries and settle meritorious lawsuits), ask them why their colleges are engaged in stealing music to make bad videos of dubious value.

Doesn't this Bethany video send a nifty message to young people everywhere - a message of unrepentant hedonism with the young woman playing a willing victim? I am dabbing my eyes right now.


[Ludadris intro]
Now I might not be the worst of the best but you gotta respect my honesty so let me break your heart but I dont think theres anybody as bomb as me so you can take this chance and everybodys gonna be wonderin how you feel you might say this is Ludacris but Taio Cruz tell her how you feel.

Now listen to me baby
Before I love and leave ya
They call me heart breaker
I don't wanna deceive ya

If you fall for me
I'm not easy to please
Imma tear you apart
Told you from the start,
Baby from the start.

I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart. (x4)

Woah Woah

Theres no point tryin to hide it
No point trying to evade it
I know I gotta problem
By doin misbehaving

If you fall for me
I'm not easy to please

Imma tear you apart
Told you from the start,
Baby from the start.

I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.
I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.
I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.
I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart. )

Woah woah

And I know karmas gonna get
Me back for being so cold.
Like a big bad wolf im born
To be bad an bad to the bone.
If you fall for me
Imma gonna tear you apart
Told you from the start

I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.
I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.
I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.
I'm only gonna break break ya break break ya heart.


Ask students and alumni why they chose Bethany Lutheran College, and you’ll hear them mention two features again and again: small size and Christian atmosphere. Together, these features create significant benefits for students — close, personal attention from faculty and staff, numerous opportunities for participation and leadership, and an environment in which faith is integrated with learning.

At Bethany, every student is regarded as a valued, unique member of the community. Our small size allows for that. Our Christian mission inspires it. We have excellent instructors at Bethany who are committed to your success. Our graduates find jobs at great companies and enroll in top graduate schools.


The Bethany experience is more than just what goes on in the chapel, classrooms, residence halls, performing or athletic venues. It’s character, values, morals – it’s the fulfillment of each and every graduate in terms of their academic, social, physical, and spiritual development. It’s who they are and what they stand for.

Bethany is a campus community where students, faculty, and staff unite to create an atmosphere of Christian love and genuine concern for one another. Pursuit of knowledge, critical thinking, confidence, leadership, determination, and competitive spirit, trustworthy – these will comprise the essence of your Bethany experience and what we will strive to establish and bolster within you.

Time and again, we hear it from employers, business administrators, and civic leaders – “We want your graduates. We value the Bethany experience.” Hard to support with facts and figures? Yes. So we’ll let others familiar with Bethany tell their story. Looking for evidence?


Total Direct Cost, 2010-2011

Tuition $20,650
Fees 430
Board 3,610
Room 2,890

TOTAL $27,580

Financial Crisis and Apostasy Go Together:
The Anglican Version

Episcopal Bishop for Life Robinson and his partner.
"Where have you gone, Joe DiMaggio
A nation turns its lonely eyes to you (Woo, woo, woo)
What's that you say, Mrs. Robinson
Joltin' Joe has left and gone away
(Hey, hey, hey...hey, hey, hey)"

VIRTUEONLINE'S Choices for Top Twelve Episcopal/Anglican Stories of the Year

By David W. Virtue
December 29, 2010

1. Lesbian Bishop Mary Glasspool elected Bishop Suffragan in Diocese of Los Angeles. Action rocks Anglican world. ABC issues warning of consequences.

2. Continuing court rulings in VA, CA, Ft. Worth, Quincy and Colorado.

3. The flight of more parishes, clergy and laity from The Episcopal Church. ASA shows continued decline.

4. Proposed Anglican Covenant: Nobody wants it, but ABC insists it will work if everyone signs on.

5. Church of England Synod: Mitregate and issues surrounding an Ordinariate for fleeing Anglo-Catholics.

6. Fr. Dan Martins an orthodox priest's election and consents.

7. Anglican and Episcopal Blogs go viral.

8. The return of PA Bishop Charles Bennison - the bishop nobody wants.

9. Episcopal seminaries in decline. Episcopal cathedrals face uncertain future: Washington National Cathedral layoffs.

10. Haiti earthquake. Rebuilding Episcopal presence.

11. Revision of Title IV Canons. TEC more hierarchical. Sovereign rights of dioceses now in jeopardy.

12. Diocese of South Carolina stands up to National Church over property issues.


GJ - At Yale, where the divinity school was merged with the Episcopalian seminary, the students said: "Episcopalian priests fall apart over the three B's: booze, broads, and boys in the choir."

ELCA and the Episcopal Church began living together in sin a few years ago. They did not form a legal, legitimate merger, but invented a way in which Episcopalian polity could be forced upon Lutherans. One example was the sudden necessity to have an Anglican bishop present at all confirmations and ordinations. Why not at Holy Communion too?

Both denominations fell all over each other in affirming homosexual ordination. The Episcopalians got the upper hand by enthroning a homosexual bishop, previously married, who posed with his partner for the press. That was the last straw for many congregations, and even for bishops.

ELCA and the Episcopal Church latched onto the same fad, used the same Stalinistic terror tactics, and reaped the same rewards. The Episcopal response, like ELCA's, is to be even more radical.

Both denominations illustrate the hot air balloon effect. When a hot air balloon starts rising up, out of control, the only escape is to jump. Every person who jumps will make the balloon rise even faster.

Financial Crisis and Apostasy Go Together:
ELCA Version

Worst of all, ELCA Bishop Mark Hanson was featured on Bad Vestments!

From the memory banks, a story repeated via many sources, but originally from the ELCA News Service itself:

Large ELCA Congregation Votes to Leave the Denomination

Via TitusOneNine:

September 27, 2009

CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Community Church of Joy, Glendale, Ariz., ended its affiliation Sept. 27 with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), the largest Lutheran denomination in the United States.

The congregation was the 10th largest in the ELCA with 6,800 baptized members. According to the 2009 ELCA Yearbook, Community Church of Joy's current operating expenses are more than $2.7 million. It gave more than $207,915 to the ELCA and other organizations in benevolence. By a unanimous vote of 129-0, Community Church of Joy terminated the relationship at a congregational meeting following worship.

"I was praying that (the vote) would be a clear direction from the congregation," said the Rev. Walter P. Kallestad, senior pastor of the congregation. Seeking to be consistent with the congregation's decision, Kallestad announced to the congregation his intention to resign from the ELCA's clergy roster.

Two votes were taken as part of a process to end the affiliation. An initial vote took place June 28, when 185 members voted 174-11 in favor of ending the relationship. Also in June, voting members chose to join Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ -- an association of 197 congregations in the United States "rooted in the Lutheran Confessions."

Community Church of Joy's vision, values and mission are no longer aligned with the ELCA, according to Kallestad. "There is such a different direction that the ELCA has chosen, a path they're traveling on, and we really believe that it just was not consistent to where God has called us. And so we're parting," he told the ELCA News Service.

On its Web site, Community Church of Joy cited three documents to help make clear the reasons for the congregation's actions. One document is about Israel and another is about Holy Scripture. A third document references the actions of the 2009 ELCA Churchwide Assembly on the topic of human sexuality.
The assembly approved a series of proposals to change ministry policies, including a change to allow Lutherans in lifelong, publicly accountable, monogamous same-gender relationships to serve as ELCA associates in ministry, clergy, deaconesses and diaconal ministers. The assembly also approved "Human Sexuality: Gift and Trust" -- the denomination's 10th social statement, which addresses a spectrum of topics relevant to human sexuality from a Lutheran perspective.

The Rev. Stephen S. Talmage, bishop of the ELCA Grand Canyon Synod, Phoenix, spoke to members of Community Church of Joy in early September. He said about 40 people were present, and about 20 of them were members of Community Church of Joy. Kallestad was not present.

"In the meeting I affirmed the ministry of Community Church of Joy," Talmage told the ELCA News Service. "I lifted up that Pastor Kallestad and the congregation have had a historical reputation of trying novel and creative things. They also, without a doubt, clearly have a heart for reaching the unchurched. They've pushed the envelope for the ELCA, having us look at how we do worship, how we evangelize and how we reach out."

Talmage said he also listed the ways in which Lutherans engage in mission and ministry across the country and overseas. "That will be lost, and that's sad," he said. "My hope is that, although they're leaving, we can still discover ways we can cooperate in ministry and celebrate our common commitment to growing disciples."

Talmage was not present for the Sept. 27 vote at Community Church of Joy. The Rev. John Q. Cockram, Shepherd of the Desert, Sun City, Ariz., represented the synod.

- - -
Information about Community Church of Joy is at on the Web.


GJ - I hesitate to remind readers - "I have been there too, and I heard Kallestad preach." Community of Joy is in our former suburb of Glendale, Arizona, so Mrs. Ichabod and I went there for a service. The pastor has a DMin from Fuller Seminary and the congregation never features its Lutheran identity - if it has one at all. Kallestad became famous for Entertainment Evangelism, a method used with WELS/ELS approval at The CORE, Latte Lutheran Church, Rock N Roll, and many other Church and Change franchises.

This 2009 news story mentions about 200 congregations in the LCMC.  I believe they have 500-700 congregations now. The situation is so fluid that the facts are evasive. Congregations are in a constant state of looking at the issues, affiliating with dissenting organizations, and voting to join either LCMC or NALC. Some have started re-voting after the initial effort failed. Additional alternative Lutheran groups are also receiving new congregations.

ELCA decided to scare congregations into staying, with harsher rules. That should accelerate the exodus. Supposedly, former executives Crumley (LCA) and David Preus (ALC) think the merger they midwifed was a big mistake. How do you like that, Ichabodians? I have two former denominational executives who agree with me.

They are saying I was right, 23 years ago, and they were wrong. But - do SP Harrison, SP Schroeder, and Pope John the Malefactor listen up?

I wrote previously that Stan Olson was once a divisional head of ELCA (one out of four divisions). The four divisions were dropped and he was demoted to head of an office, the very office used to expedite the blessed reconciliation of ministers previously ousted from ELCA. The office he served so efficiently was liquidated in the latest melt-down of finances. Olson is old enough to retire, but he took on the presidency of Wartburg Seminary, an ELCA seminary in financial meltdown. Eventually, God will look at his resume and say, "Stan, you have been everywhere - professor, pastor, district bishop, senior executive, junior executive, seminary president."

Publishing Plans

Artwork by Norma Boeckler

Jesus, Lord of Creation should be available in print today.

Luther versus the UOJ Pietists, Justification by Faith is almost ready as a proof copy. I am working on a section about the Means of Grace.

Thy Strong Word is available, but needs some cosmetic work. Several people are reading it over.

A children's book is planned, with art by Norma Boeckler.

All this remains under the rubric of "God willing."

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Paul McCain on the ELCA Debacle

I have a friend who is an ELCA pastor whose son was definitely influenced into the homosexual life style by a homosexual pastor in Iowa when he was a youth. Rather than help young people overcome their tempatations toward this particularly evil [STANDARD DISCLAIMER: yes, I know, there is evil of all kinds, we are all sinners, etc.].

When the pastor and a couple of his colleagues attempted to speak out openly against homosexuality in their Synod they were, quite literally, booed, hissed and shouted down at Synod gatherings.

The ELCA has made its choice to throw its hat into the ring of the homosexual agenda in this country and in liberal protestantism.

The consequences will continue to unfold in the next several years.

Already there have been devastating financial consequences. My sources have informed me that at the ELCA headquarters there is generally a sense of shock and surprise at just how drastically the finances are headed in a downward spiral.

And the numbers of congregations leaving are increasing.

Many congregations may choose simply to think they can isolate/insulate themselves from the ELCA's directions, and thus, they will just quietly stop supporting the national church body's efforts and initiatives and put their money where they believe it will be used more responsibly.


GJ - McCain has a good post above.

When I challenged the Lavender Mafia with a resolution, just before leaving the LCA in 1987, one pastor's wife looked at me as if I were the hunter who shot Bambi's mother, but there was no hissing or booing. My resolution at the Michigan Synod (Lower Peninsula) got very few votes, even fewer than than my pro-life resolution. In those days, one person could bring a resolution to the floor and have it voted upon.

I heard a couple of comments. One pastor said that people like me "put a woman in Hell" with such comments. I said, "I think God is directly involved in that decision, not me." One pastor-friend called me a "moral crusader" in talking to some others. I said, walking by, "That's better than being a crusader for sodomy."

All the indications were clear that the Lutherans Concerned group would dominate the future ELCA, including the provision for gay quotas in all the decision-making committees, commissions, and staffing.

ELCA got away with so much for 20+ years that they thought one more step would be accepted. After all, as The Lutheran editor, Ed Trexler, wrote a long time ago, "We have been ordaining homosexuals for years."

WELS and Missouri think they take the high road by looking down on ELCA while working with ELCA. About half of SP Harrison's supporters voted to continue working with ELCA. WELS does it on the sly. The ELS remains in the shadows, saying nothing.

I cannot figure out how WELS can condemn ELCA while their own "College of Ministry" produces and promotes a homosexual parody video, the gay equivalent of blackface. Not long after Party in the MLC appeared on YouTube, another group of MLC boys were filming a transvestite video on the campus.

With straight faces, the Party in the MLC stars told the Wisconsin Lutheran College student paper that they had no idea they were copying a homosexual video. They must still be in a state of shock and surprise that they are being offered free trips to Fire Island.

ELCA Members in Congress

December 29, 2010

ELCA Members Total 15 in 112th Congress

[Click for larger image] The U.S. Capitol, Washington, D.C. (Photo by Architect of the Capitol)     CHICAGO (ELCA) -- Fifteen members of the 112th U.S. Congress are members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), including three in the U.S. Senate and 12 in the U.S. House of Representatives, according to staff with the Lutheran advocacy offices in Washington.

     The ELCA members are among 26 Lutherans in the new Congress, which will convene Jan. 5, 2011, in Washington.

     "We are looking forward to greeting both the new and returning Lutheran members," said the Rev. Andrew D. Genszler, director of advocacy, ELCA Washington Office. "Lutheran members bring a sense of the importance of public service and the vocation of public office. Our Lutheran perspective is that government is one place we find God active in our common life -- preserving order, protecting creation, helping people struggling with hunger and poverty, and building peace."  

     Three returning senators are members of the ELCA:
+ Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio
+ Tim Johnson, D-S.D.
+ Jeff Merkley, D-Ore.
     One current ELCA member in the Senate, Byron Dorgan, D-N.D., did not seek re-election this year and retired. 
     In the House, Rick Berg, R-N.D., who was elected in November, is the newest ELCA member in Congress. He joins 11 returning representatives who are ELCA members:
+ Lois Capps, D-Calif.
+ John Carter, R-Texas
+ Norman Dicks, D-Wash.
+ Martin Heinrich, D-N.M.
+ Tom Latham, R-Iowa
+ Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif.
+ Collin Peterson, D-Minn.
+ Thomas Petri, R-Wis.
+ Chellie Pingree, D-Maine
+ Bill Shuster, R-Pa.
+ Tim Walz, D-Minn.
     Other Lutherans in Congress are members of The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod.


Narrow-minded Lutheran has left a new comment on your post "ELCA Members in Congress":

"Protecting creation" must mean to destroy all industry, manufacturing, and anything petroleum-based to save an exotic tree frog, while ELCA's insurance pays for the murder of unborn babies. Sickening. God forgive me for my past involvement with Thrivent through Missouri.


GJ - Qwik Trip money helped Dayton become Minnesota's governor, and QT is owned by WELS members.


Tuesday, December 28, 2010

2 x 9.5 Theses on Leaving [the ELCA] and Thereafter.
But Women's Ordination Is Non-Negotiable

2 x 9.5 Theses on Leaving [the ELCA] and Thereafter

2 x 9.5 Theses on Leaving [the ELCA] and Thereafter
« on: October 31, 2010, 07:19:44 PM »
These Theses were essentially affirmed this Reformation Day with my congregation's votes to affiliate with the Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ and to "encourage the formation of an Augustana Lutheran Diocese in the Anglican Church of North America".

2 x 9.5 *

1. Our first loyalty is to Jesus Christ, the Son of the living God; our second loyalty is to the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church which He founded; and our third loyalty is to a particular denominational structure within that Church.

2. The fundamental cause of the ELCA’s lapse into apostacy is disobedience to the Holy Scriptures.

3. That disobedience is first and foremost manifested in the reluctance to name God in the Name which He has revealed, “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.”

4. That disobedience is further manifested by the actions of the 1995 Churchwide Assembly in rejecting the threefold office of Ministry (Bishop, Presbyter, Deacon) as recorded in 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and the Acts of the Apostles.

5. That disobedience is yet further manifested by the actions of the 1997 Churchwide Assembly--by the narrowest of margins--in rejecting the Concordat with the Episcopal Church which, had it been approved, would have affirmed the threefold office of Ministry.

6. That disobedience is still further manifested by the action of the 2007 Churchwide Assembly in affirming Evangelical Lutheran Worship (ELW) which removes the Divine Name of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit from most liturgies and hymns.

7. That disobedience reached its ultimate manifestation by the action of the 2009 Churchwide Assembly in willfully, deliberately, and with knowledge aforehand departing from global and historic Christian teaching by affirming that the union of two homosexual persons may be equated with Marriage, again, by the slimmest of margins.

8. In seeking a final destination for this congregation, adherence to the Lutheran Confessions as a true and faithful witness to the Holy Scriptures is non-negotiable.

9. In seeking a final destination for this congregation, the threefold office of ministry is a non-negotiable.

10. In seeking a final destination for this congregation, the provision for women to serve as Deacons and Pastors is a non-negotiable.

11. The only entity maintaining these non-negotiable principles is the Diocese-in-formation to be called the Augustana Lutheran Diocese of the Anglican Church of North America.**

12. This entity has not yet been formed or constituted but serious planning and discussion is underway.***

13. Therefore it will be necessary to have an interim “lifeboat” upon departing the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

14. That interim destination must be a Lutheran church body so that all property remains with this congregation.

15. The North American Lutheran Church (NALC) permits dual rostering and easily allows transfers in, but, even in its provisional constitution, does not easily allow transfers out.

16. The Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ (LCMC) permits dual rostering and easily allows both transfers in and transfers out.

17. The LCMC does not object to being used as a “lifeboat” or way-station en route to another Lutheran church body.

18. THEREFORE, it is our recommendation that the immediate but strictly interim destination of this congregation upon departing from the ELCA be the Lutheran Congregations in Mission for Christ until such time as the Augustana Lutheran Diocese be constituted, and

19. This congregation shall become a founding member of the Augustana Lutheran Diocese.

* The numerical reference in the title is to the “9.5 Theses” published
in 1995, which served as a catalyst for the founding of the Society of the Holy Trinity.

** The LCMC and the NALC do not uphold the threefold office.
The LC-MS does not uphold the threefold office and does not permit the Ordination of women.
Western Rite Orthodoxy, while upholding the threefold office, does not permit the Ordination of women, nor will it accommodate a Lutheran liturgy.
The Seven Marks Society, while upholding the threefold office and the Ordination of women has abandoned its initial vision of becoming a Lutheran body or free Synod.

*** An introductory and exploratory meeting of the Augustana Lutheran Diocese is scheduled for November 11 - 12 in Pittsburgh.

Baptized, Confirmed, and Ordained United Methodist.
Became a Lutheran Pastor by God's grace and the beneficence of Lower Susquehanna Synod, ELCA Bishop Guy S. Edmiston on Reformation Day, 1989.
Charter member of the first chapter of the Society of the Holy Trinity.
Now in transition to the LCMC. - Brandon, SD - Brandon, SD

Some of Us Remember When...

  1. The KJV remained the best selling Bible because everyone still used it instead of that new-fangled Virgin-Birth denying RSV.
  2. Everyone knew the RSV was produced by the Communist National Council of Churches.
  3. Lutheran seminary education was almost free, and the home congregation helped out.
  4. Lutherans had a total of two hymnals, the SBH and TLH.
  5. All services were liturgical.
  6. The pastor did not look like he was just back from mowing the lawn when he led the service.
  7. Lutherans put their denomination on the church sign and did not hide their synod.
  8. Lutheran magazine articles were not written for people with attention deficit disorders.
  9. Only the Pentecostal churches had women ministers.

Still Up for Sale? - CORE Values

bruce-church ( has left a new comment on your post "The CORE - Listed Under Other":

The Core building is still listed for $1.1 million:

Downtown Appleton Opportunity
18,700 SF Bldg
Special Purpose (Other)

Another Fascicle - Justification by Faith Book

UOJ Enthusiasm and Emergent Church Enthusiasm are twins.

Efficacy of the Word

Luther always taught the efficacy of the Word, and this effectiveness is stated clearly and concisely in our Confessions:
For let me tell you this, even though you know it perfectly and be already master in all things, still you are daily in the dominion of the devil, who ceases neither day nor night to steal unawares upon you, to kindle in your heart unbelief and wicked thoughts against the foregoing and all the commandments. Therefore you must always have God's Word in your heart, upon your lips, and in your ears. But where the heart is idle, and the Word does not sound, he breaks in and has done the damage before we are aware. On the other hand, such is the efficacy of the Word, whenever it is seriously contemplated, heard, and used, that it is bound never to be without fruit, but always awakens new understanding, pleasure, and devoutness, and produces a pure heart and pure thoughts. For these words are not inoperative or dead, but creative, living words.[1]

Efficacy is the most neglected characteristic of God’s Word today, although it was central to Luther, the Concordists, the orthodox Lutherans of Europe, and the General Council in America.  The efficacy of the Word was defined by WELS theologian Adolph Hoenecke: “The Word never without the Spirit, the Spirit never without the Word – that is sound doctrine.” Encapsulating the Scriptures and Confessions, that plain and simple formula means God Word and Spirit cannot be divorced from each other. If God’s Word is taught in its purity, without the adulteration of man’s wisdom, that Word will have its effect, whether to save or damn, illuminate or darken, convert or harden. Moreover, the timing of God’s work and will is not ours to judge. The efficacy of the Word is the point of contention in discussing the topic of justification. Enthusiasm—separating the Holy Spirit from the Word—lies behind every error in teaching justification, whether that error is advanced by Roman Catholics, Evangelicals, Pentecostals, or synodical Lutherans. A synodical Lutheran honors and protects the visible church, the synod. A confessional Lutheran values the Scriptures and Confessions above all.
Guilt-free saints in Hell are a staple of the WELS/ELS perversion of the Gospel, but Luther taught otherwise, since it is only the efficacious Word that creates saints (believers).
For the Word of God is the sanctuary above all sanctuaries, yea, the only one which we Christians know and have. For though we had the bones of all the saints or all holy and consecrated garments upon a heap, still that would help us nothing; for all that is a dead thing which can sanctify nobody. But God's Word is the treasure which sanctifies everything, and by which even all the saints themselves were sanctified. At whatever hour, then, God's Word is taught, preached, heard, read or meditated upon, there the person, day, and work are sanctified thereby, not because of the external work, but because of the Word, which makes saints of us all. Therefore I constantly say that all our life and work must be ordered according to God's Word, if it is to be God-pleasing or holy. Where this is done, this commandment is in force and being fulfilled. [2]
Wherever the UOJ wolves prowl, they argue against the efficacy of the Word. Their attacks may not be directly against the Word, because that is too obvious. Instead, they praise and honor their own methods and personalities, realizing that supplanting the Word is preferred. One they have made the ministry man-centered, the outward confessions and doctrines mean nothing.

Doctrine of Creation – Conversion – Efficacy

Before man existed, God fashioned the entire universe through the creating Word – the Son of God. When God spoke through the Logos (the Word), His will was immediately carried out, not in billions of years to allow for random events of infinite complexity. This issue is not antiquarian but essential to justification by faith.

The universe was created by the Word, and every believer is a new creation through the Word. But UOJ advocates would have us understand that God works without the Word in declaring the entire world absolved, free from sin, extending this Enthusiastic decree to the residents of Hell.

The Genesis commands, “and God said,” are the work of the Logos in John. The creating Word—He was in the beginning with God.

Christians can claim that the Word is always effective and that the Holy Spirit always works exclusively through the Word. The classic Isaiah passage alone is enough to refute any attacks against this doctrine, but there are many other passages expressing the same unified truth in different words.

Isaiah 55:8-11

KJV Isaiah 55:8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. 10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: 11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

The Word of God is exactly like rain and snow. The three-fold results are revealed in perfect clarity:
  1. It shall not return unto Me void,
  2. But it shall accomplish that which I please,
  3. And it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.
This passage by itself makes rejection of the Word’s efficacy impossible. No exceptions can be found with a litotes, a double negative – “it shall not return to Me void.” The rain and snow metaphor enforces this teaching.
            God’s Word blesses us with many ways to view this efficacy, to deepen our trust in His Holy Spirit work, to remove our toxic doubts. How often we stop to measure our Christian ministry by the outward marks of success, instead of trusting fidelity to His Word! Satan plagues us by showing off the wealth and honors of his most compliant servants, taunting us with those examples, to take our attention away from God’s Promises.

Abundant Examples

            Nevertheless, the Scriptures provide an abundance witness to the effectiveness of His Word alone:
  1. The Sower and the Seed parable (Matthew 13, Mark 4, Luke ) teaches us that the Word will prosper in spite of difficulties.
  2. The living seed of the Word has life in itself and grows.
  3. An individual is born again by the power of the incorruptible seed, which is the Word (1 Peter 1:21).
  4. The engrafted Word (James 1:21) placed in the believer saves his soul.
  5. The Gospel is a yeast which grows and permeates the life of the believer (Matthew 13).
  6. Those who abide in Christ through the Means of Grace will bear fruit, while those who separate themselves will shrivel, die, and be cast away (John 15:1-10).

Pietism Is Enthusiasm

            The foundation of all false doctrine is Enthusiasm, condemned by the Book of Concord, based upon a correct interpretation of Scripture. The efficacy of the Word alone excludes Enthusiasm, just as Enthusiasm leaves no room for the exclusive work of the Holy Spirit through the Word.

In a word, enthusiasm inheres in Adam and his children from the beginning [from the first fall] to the end of the world, [its poison] having been implanted and infused into them by the old dragon, and is the origin, power [life], and strength of all heresy, especially of that of the Papacy and Mahomet. Therefore we ought and must constantly maintain this point, that God does not wish to deal with us otherwise than through the spoken Word and the Sacraments. It is the devil himself whatsoever is extolled as Spirit without the Word and Sacraments. For God wished to appear even to Moses through the burning bush and spoken Word; and no prophet, neither Elijah nor Elisha, received the Spirit without the Ten Commandments [or spoken Word]. Neither was John the Baptist conceived without the preceding word of Gabriel, nor did he leap in his mother's womb without the voice of Mary. [4]

            As Luther noted then, the Enthusiasts did not trust the Word of God to be efficacious and filled with the Holy Spirit, but they wrote as if their own offerings were directly from God and efficacious. The same evil spirit prevails today, from ignoring the clear message of the revealed Word while proving an evil doctrine from recent synodical essays and theses.
All this is the old devil and old serpent, who also converted Adam and Eve into enthusiasts, and led them from the outward Word of God to spiritualizing and self-conceit, and nevertheless he accomplished this through other outward words. Just as also our enthusiasts [at the present day] condemn the outward Word, and nevertheless they themselves are not silent, but they fill the world with their pratings and writings, as though, indeed, the Spirit could not come through the writings and spoken word of the apostles, but [first] through their writings and words he must come. Why [then] do not they also omit their own sermons and writings, until the Spirit Himself come to men, without their writings and before them, as they boast that He has come into them without the preaching of the Scriptures?[5]

Roman Catholic Enthusiasm

The Roman Catholic Church is pure Enthusiasm, because of the way the pope manufactures new revelations that contradict the Scripture. Lutherans trained in synodical Enthusiasm find the change to Roman  or Eastern Orthodoxy Enthusiasm a blissful transition. No conversion is necessary.
For [indeed] the Papacy also is nothing but sheer enthusiasm, by which the Pope boasts that all rights exist in the shrine of his heart, and whatever he decides and commands with [in] his church is spirit and right, even though it is above and contrary to Scripture and the spoken Word."[6]

            Pietistic cell groups have led people to believe that they receive grace without the Word, without the Means of Grace. Thus we hear that programs and methods are anointed by the Holy Spirit, and even very anointed, while making it clear that the Word alone cannot accomplish such great tasks as the Prayer Warriors, the Off Our Rockers elderly program, the Entertainment Evangelism seeker service, the Children’s Puppets, and liturgical dance. Such training makes it relatively easy to imagine that everyone in the world is forgiven, without faith or the Word. Also, such a perverse doctrine as UOJ guarantees that methods of Enthusiasm will rush in to replace the Means of Grace.
And in those things which concern the spoken, outward Word, we must firmly hold that God grants His Spirit or grace to no one, except through or with the preceding outward Word, in order that we may [thus] be protected against the enthusiasts, i. e., spirits who boast that they have the Spirit without and before the Word, and accordingly judge Scripture or the spoken Word, and explain and stretch it at their pleasure, as Muenzer did, and many still do at the present day, who wish to be acute judges between the Spirit and the letter, and yet know not what they say or declare. For [indeed] the Papacy also is nothing but sheer enthusiasm, by which the Pope boasts that all rights exist in the shrine of his heart, and whatever he decides and commands with [in] his church is spirit and right, even though it is above and contrary to Scripture and the spoken Word.[7]

The Formula Repudiates UOJ

Repudiation of Enthusiasm is rejection of UOJ, as the Formula of Concord states so clearly, since God’s grace comes to man only through His appointed Instruments of Grace.
Also, we reject and condemn the error of the Enthusiasts, who imagine that God without means, without the hearing of God's Word, also without the use of the holy Sacraments, draws men to Himself, and enlightens, justifies, and saves them.[8]

The Missouri Synod recognized this fact, long before UOJ became dominant.
Hence, too, the lack of emphasis, even in the best of Reformed preaching, upon the divine Word as the vehicle of regenerating grace and on the Sacraments.  The office of the Word, then, is merely to point to the way of life, without communicating that of which it conveys the idea.  The Word and Sacraments are declared to be necessary; their office in the Church is a divine institution; but they are only symbols of what the Spirit does within; and the Spirit works immediately and irresistibly.[9]

Muhlenberg Tradition         

The Muhlenberg tradition—General Synod, General Council, ULCA, LCA, and a large segment of ELCA—began in Pietism and wandered into revivalism (General Synod). However, the confessional struggle helped many of its leaders realize the value of the liturgy, creeds, and Means of Grace.

To the Lutheran the sermon, as the preached Word, is a means of grace. Through it the Holy Spirit calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian church on earth.  It is a constant offer of pardon; a giving of life, as well as a nourishing and strengthening of life.  In the Reformed churches the sermon is apt to be more hortatory and ethical.  It partakes more of the sacrificial than of the sacramental character.  The individuality of the preacher, the subjective choice of a text, the using of it merely for a motto, the discussion of secular subjects, the unrestrained platform style, lack of reverence, lack of dignity, and many other faults are common, and are not regarded as unbecoming the messenger of God in His temple.  Where there is a properly trained Lutheran consciousness such things repel, shock, and are not tolerated.[10]
Gerberding was describing the Church and Change leaders of WELS/ELS today, the Jesus First and charismatics of the LCMS. What shocked and repelled the Muhlenberg tradition is now richly rewarded in the old Synodical Conference.

[1] The Large Catechism, #100, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 609. Tappert, p. 378f. Heiser, p. 175f.   

[2] The Large Catechism, Preface, #91-2, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 004 p. 607. Exodus 20:8-11.
[3] Dogmatik, IV, p. 17.
[4] Smalcald Articles, VIII. Confession, 9-10 Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 497. Tappert, p. 313. 2 Peter 1:21.

[5] Smalcald Articles, VIII., Confession, 3-5, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 495. Tappert, p. 312f.
[6] Smalcald Articles, VIII., Confession, 3-5, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 495. Tappert, p. 312.
[7] Smalcald Articles, VIII., Confession, 3-5, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 495. Tappert, p. 312.
[8] Formula of Concord, Epitome, Article II, Free Will, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 789. Tappert, p. 471.
[9] "Grace, Means of," The Concordia Cyclopedia, L. Fuerbringer, Th. Engelder, P. E. Kretzmann, St. Louis:  Concordia Publishing House, 1927, p. 298.
[10] G. H. Gerberding, The Lutheran Pastor, Minneapolis:  Augsburg Publishing House, 1915, p. 278.