(Both Pastor Mark Jeske and Pastor James Skorzewski have been sent the link to this letter. It is not intended to be gossipabout them, but a loving, public rebuke to them, according to the pattern of Paul’s rebuke to Peter in Galatians 2:11-21.)
First, let it be said that we do not question your motives. We assume that you sincerely wish to see churches grow, and that you think this conference will help to achieve that goal. We further assume that you think you are acting in line with confessional Lutheran doctrine and practice, and that you do not intend to lead the Church astray. We question neither your motives nor your intentions. But we do consider your participation in this conference to be wrong.
1) The premise of this conference – and therefore your involvement in it – is wrong.
“Change or die” is not a Scriptural concept. It is certainly not a Scriptural mandate or counsel either to the Church as a whole or to a particular visible gathering of confessing believers.
The Lord Jesus does say, “Repent or perish!” (“Unless you repent, you too will all perish” – Luke 13:3). Likewise, he says in his Revelation to St. John, “Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place” (Revelation 2:5). Also, Jesus says in Matthew 18:3, “Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.” If the admonition to “change” or face the consequence of “death” were a reference to repentance for rebellion against the Lord, then we could accept it.
GJ - The rest of the article is at the link. I suggest that you read it in its entirely and comment there. Comments here are welcome, but "no one reads Ichabod" and I have "no credibility." I have just written about this since 1988 - with my name signed to the articles and books.
Change or Die! is a good motto for Missouri, WELS, and the Little Sect. If they keep leasing their birthright to Thrivent for small change, there will soon be nothing left to betray.
I would definitely go hear the prez of Thrivent explain how successful he is. AAL was hitting the skids so fast that they had to change their books. They lost 10% of their income per year, three years in a row. Change meant merging with Lutheran Brotherhood and altering the books. I like that kind of creativity.
Thrivent is not ashamed to gather premium dollars from "conservative" Lutherans to market themselves to ELCA.
Jeske is my #1 hero in Change or Die! land. His congregation is not self-supporting. He has sugar daddies from all over WELS and courts Missouri as well. He is up to his neck in government bail-outs and foundation loot. He is the General Motors of Lutherdom, bound to fail when the money runs out.
Interesting comment attached to the Intrepid post:
A person could look at the "Change or Die" brochure and come to the quick conclusion that the WELS is now working hand-in-hand with the LCMS and ELCA.
Rev. Stephen Kurtzahn
(W)ELS has been working with the LCMS and ELCA for years. Was Jeske's dual membership such a Secret Squirrel maneuver that no one noticed? Did anyone in the (W)ELS publicly address Time of Grace gaining RSO status with the LCMS? No. The (W)ELS administration doesn't deal with public error in open and public ways so that the laity and clergy remain well fed mushrooms.
Someone should share with Rev. Kurtzahn that (W)ELS is also working with Baptists, Methodists and New Age Occultists (Reggie McNeal and Leonard Sweet).
GJ - Kurtzahn should take care of his own district, which is a major support for WELS apostasy, with many fine examples of such in his own backyard. The Fabulous Four--the State of Wisconsin DPs plus Minnesota's--are the ones backing all this up. Grace Inaction is in Minneapolis, etc.