Two years ago my family and I left Christ the Rock Church in Round Rock, Texas and landed at Holy Word Lutheran Church in Austin. We left for quite a few reasons; all of which were well documented in detail to the circuit pastor, Eric Hartzell as well as the district vice president and our future home church pastor Don Patterson. I summarize our grave concerns at the time:
- An emphasis put on the praise band by Pastor Doebler that the quality in some people's opinion was affecting the attendance of worship.
- That Pastor Doebler was changing the meaning of Scripture for the sake of a dramatic presentation in his sermons. (ie: Boaz was a warrior in the sense of special forces (man of valor); gibbor - when in fact scribes interpreted this as a man of influence and respect.) Or that Christ's entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday was such a comical scene that it reminded him of Shriners on minibikes; in other words...he was making a literal tanslation of colt and donkey to the point that it was a baby donkey that struggled under the weight of Jesus while his feet dragged on the ground; hence a circus...comical even.
- That Pastor Doebler had instituted a control of the Elders by installing himself as an Elder of equal standing and voting member of said group while setting the agenda of Elder meetings.
I am posting a video from Christ the Rock's 2011 Easter service below. I find it hard to believe that anything that was said to Doebler two years ago had any effect. When I saw this I was appalled that being a WELS member I was in fellowship with this. Note the leaning cross in the background as an afterthought with the band front and center. Is the male drummer with a hat on respecting his Lord? Is this orderly, reverent and respectful? (As Scriptures and the Confessions urge us?) What about the outro to the song...is this not drawing attention to the worship leader? (So awesome...I'm sure that was the Holy Spirit coming through apart from the Word!) What a rock show!
In the spirit of Pastor Spencer here (sixth comment down), WELS should either cut Doebler loose, or Doebler should remove himself and join his theological heroes in Seattle.
Link to video.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Words and Actions (Part 2)I must have reviewed the 2011 Easter Sunday Christ the Rock video posted in my last blog at least a half dozen times. Something was there that I just couldn't put my finger on. As I was reviewing some of the correspondences from two years ago for future blogging, it dawned on me.
A little over a year before we left, the band was meeting as a small group before rehearsals. This is typical of churches who follow the emergent church models. The same sort of thing happened in Phoenix with Crosswalk. If you are in a leadership or high profile role with the church, you are strongly
Our Christ the Rock (CTR) band was
"There were two particularly disturbing incidents, when opposition to this book was expressed by the band, both resulting in Pastor walking out on us. The first time, he was irritated that not everyone had read their assigned text. Lisa told Pastor she had not because she had been diligently witnessing to a co-worker that week who was having a lot of trouble with the law, family, addiction etc. She hoped Pastor would offer compassion and encouragement, rather, Pastor continued to be irritated, and Lisa, seeing his displeasure, continued by saying she would not be made to feel guilty about spending time witnessing with the Bible to someone who was lost and in trouble, instead of reading the book. Pastor walked out, leaving us all hanging. The Tuesday before the band’s next rehearsal Pastor sent us an email about his concerns about not being diligent in reading the book and that it should be a period of repentance until we met again and that our attitudes as well as the leadership of Christ the Rock was being dogged by this attitude. In a rebuttal to his email I half jokingly said the reason it probably wasn’t getting read was that it was boring. I was encouraged to be counseled.
At the next meeting we discussed the section that was assigned and some of us voiced some problems we were again having with the attitude of the author of the Humility book (re: trusting God). There was once again a disturbing sentence in the book where the author said he would daily, even several times a day, vacillate back and forth feeling totally “forsaken by God”. Lisa took issue with this by stating that this was such an un-Biblical attitude…, Pastor literally stood up in argument and said “Oh yes, I often feel like that too, even Jesus Himself said it on the cross, and David said in the Psalms many times “my God my God, why have you forsaken me?”, oh yes, it is very Biblical” Lisa responded by saying she disagreed and that it is an attitude of not trusting. God says He will never leave us nor forsake us. He tells us to “be still & know that I am God” and that in Jesus case, as he hung on the cross, He truly WAS forsaken. Unfortunately, Pastor threw his books on the floor and walked out on us again before Lisa even got to finish her point that in the introduction to the Psalms, both the NIV and the Concordia Study Bibles, both categorize the sections (when David questions God, why have You forsaken me) as “complaining against God”. We were sincerely hoping for some closure regarding this. We never met again."...as a small group that is.
It became quite apparent to me after our band disbanded in May of 2009 (20/20 hindsight) that we were a threat to his
When I look at the people who make up the current band (or the Elders for that matter); some of which I know and others I have a passing knowledge of their backgrounds; the common denominator is either a non-Lutheran Reformed background or a disconnect from the symbols of the Lutheran faith; the Church Catholic. This is what Pastor Doebler has surrounded himself with at Christ the Rock.
GJ - Emergent Church is best called Maggot Church because it is designed to draw members from the denomination's established congregations. Maggot Church leaders think of their denomination as dead, so they lay their eggs in the corpse and raise little maggots. For instance, at The CORE, WELS members come over to an evening service from their own WELS congregations. Some transfer to St. Peter, Freedom, which is the actual congregation. "The CORE" is just a ruse to create a Maggot Church. Once the maggots turn into flies, they drive away the traditional Lutherans, as they did with Rick Techlin.
Three things about Maggot Churches are very important to remember:
One - they teach salvation by the Law. As experienced by Joe Krohn, the pastor is a dictator who insists that everyone obey his commands to study false doctrine, to give in to his demands, even his tantrums. Pietistic cell groups are The Law, not just a suggestion.
Two - the leaders are loyal to the Maggot Church Movement alone. They are not Lutherans or Methodists or anything else. They are Maggots who love other Maggots and study other Maggots. They live and breathe Maggotry.
Three - they will not rest until driven out (by Mark Schroeder and Jon Buchholz? - don't make me laugh) or totally destroyed. These Maggots hate the Gospel and suffer from well-deserved self-loathing. If you bother these Maggots, their brethren will fly into your face, buzz up your nostrils, and clog your ears until you beg for mercy. They demand total agreement or apologies. Stomp them. Spray them. Use the best fumigant available - The Word of God.