We can only say, Church and Continuity was an enormous success, especially given that it was our first Conference – and we simply could not have pulled it off without the generous support of our donors, to whom we offer special thanks. As a result of this success, a second Conference is certainly in the works, which our readers can expect to hear about shortly after the turn of the New Year.
Of course, it will be asked, What has attracted our readership? What had attracted interest in attending our Conference in 2012? The answer: our content – substantive and compelling, and sometimes controversial. Over the past thirty months the following twenty posts have been the most popular:
|Page Title||Page Views||Date||Author||Comments||Observations|
|1.||Dear Pastors Jeske and Ski: You are clearly in the wrong||4830||02/15/11||Intrepid Lutherans||13||Juicy controversy – everybody was interested, relatively few had the courage to comment.|
|2.||Fraternal Dialogue on the Topic of "Objective Justification"||3681||09/26/11||Mr. Douglas Lindee||54||Rev. Webber (ELS) recommended “Fraternal Dialogue” on the topic, so we opened it with a position and a series of questions to debate, and attempted to keep the ensuing “dialogue” civil and centered on Scripture and the Confessions.|
|3.||The NNIV, the WELS Translation Evaluation Committee, and the Perspicuity of the Scriptures||3549||07/28/11||Mr. Douglas Lindee||71||The catch-phrase, “There is no perfect translation,” ultimately devolves into a denial of Scripture's clarity and an affirmation of the Roman position that the literate Christian still needs a “Priest” to explain it to him. The sufficiency and authority of Scripture being one of the planks of the Protestant Reformation, this will never happen among Protestant Christians. Not directly. Translators now take on this role in the Protestant world, under the translation ideology of Dynamic Equivalency.|
|4.||Change or Die – Update||3194||02/24/11||Intrepid Lutherans||13||The “juicy controversy” continues, as does both interest in the controversy and reluctance to become involved.|
|5.||Why I No Longer Attend My [WELS] Church||3148||02/06/11||Intrepid Lutherans||26||Cross-post from Mr. Ric Techlin's blog, Light from Light, publicly revealing difficulties he was having in his congregation, namely, the refusal of his congregation to address his concerns regarding error in doctrine and practice that was being promoted in his congregation. A handful of local pastors volunteered to work with Mr. Techlin, his congregation and district to resolve these difficulties...|
|6.||The WEB: A viable English Bible translation?||2746||09/19/11||Rev. Paul Rydecki||94||Discussion over an unsuitable version of the Bible degenerates into a melee over Universalism, and this version's mistranslation of certain sections which support it.|
|7.||Emmaus Conference – Recap||2607||05/10/11||Rev. Paul Rydecki||17||Were some people excitedly thinking that perhaps this event represented the reunion of Missouri and Wisconsin?|
|8.||Suspended from the WELS – Why?||2527||10/09/12||Rev. Paul Rydecki||0||More “juicy controversy...”|
|9.||The whole flock won't survive 'jumping the shark'||2448||02/02/12||Mr. Brian Heyer||42||Thoughtless and ridiculous last-ditch efforts to “save the congregation” by abusing the term evangelism are transparently pathetic acts of desperation, make the congregation a laughing stock in the community and bring shame upon the name of Christ. The methods of the Church Growth Movement are not methods, they are antics, and kill the church by trivializing Scriptures' teachings. Shame on Lutheran congregations who do such things!|
|10.||NNIV – the new standard for WELS?||2325||07/15/11||Mr. Douglas Lindee||62||Yup, it sure looks that way...|
|11.||Thoughts on Gender-Neutral Language in the NIV 2011||2310||09/15/11||Intrepid Lutherans||9||Intrepid Lutherans aren't the only ones in WELS concerned that whitewashing gender differences in the Bible, by way of imposing a feminist ideology of translation over the entire text, will lead not only to doctrinal error, but to a culture of thought among supposedly “conservative” Christians that is at war against the Nature of God itself and incompatible with His message to Man.|
|12.||The Silence Is Broken: An Appleton Update||2269||05/08/11||Rev. Paul Lidtke||17||An update on Mr. Techlin's difficulties, from one of the pastors personally involved in his defense. After formally objecting to what he was concerned were unscriptural practices and teachings in his congregation – and asking to be corrected where he might be in error– Mr. Techlin was simply removed from fellowship: no discussion with him over the issues he raised was entertained, no brotherly attempt was made to work with him through these issues, no example of Christian humility was displayed by his “brothers” which might have suggested they were themselves open to correction. Instead, without Mr. Techlin's or his family's knowledge, the congregation scheduled a meeting, and without even offering him the opportunity to defend himself, voted to remove him and members of his family from fellowship. To his surprise, he received a “Certified Letter” in the mail informing him of the congregation's action against him. Not so much as a phone call from a “concerned brother” or even from his pastor. Just certified mail. Furthermore, this letter made no mention of any doctrinal error to which he obstinately clung, regarding which the congregation collectively determined “further admonition would be of no avail.” To this day, Mr. Techlin has no idea what his error may have been, as no admonition has ever been attempted, certainly none by a “genuine brother” who was himself open to correction. Moreover, this congregation's action was openly defended by their Bishop, and formally approved by a committee he personally appointed to review Mr. Techlin's appeal, which found that “[his] congregation had Scriptural reasons for removing [him] from membership and, in doing so, acted in the spirit of Christian love.” Mr. Techlin's is not the only recent example of similar processes used to remove “undesirables” from WELS, but his is very well-documented and betrays what seems to not only be acceptable practice but one which Christian congregations are apparently not above employing.|
|13.||"Walking Together Sunday" - The Sermon||2255||09/25/10||Rev. Paul Rydecki||58||Walking together under Law, cooperating in evangelistic efforts because we are commanded to do so. From a commenter on this post: “The unfortunate thing about the 'Walking Together Sunday' sermon, and the entire event, is that Evangelism is the only emphasis. Yet, our 'walking together' is predicated on our standing together. Despite this, there was no emphasis given to our full agreement in all matters of doctrine and practice, nor any mention of our Confessions or Confessional Unity. No explanation or celebration of our 'togetherness' as fundamental to our walking in this togetherness. The clear and sole emphasis was the command of Evangelism followed by an appeal for money. This is entirely the wrong emphasis, in my opinion, leading to the wrong notion that our working rather than our confessing is the essence of our togetherness.”|
|14.||Issues with the NIV 2011: "The saints" are no more||2197||08/15/11||Rev. Paul Rydecki||12||Another example of Biblical and Ecclesiastical language being stripped from the Christian lexicon by liberal feminist and sectarian translators...|
|15.||What Part of the Word "Wrong" Don't We All Seem to Understand These Days?!||2180||12/10/10||Rev. Steven Spencer||47||Is someone who, or something which, is wrong, merely suffering from a misunderstanding? A fantastic series of thoughtful comments follows from this post.|
|16.||Ambivalent||2176||06/27/12||Rev. Steven Spencer||47||Does no one care about the threat of doctrinal error and sectarian practice? One might pardon the laity for not being informed, but what do we make of the silence and inaction of Lutheran clergy?|
|17.||Law and Gospel: What do they teach? – Part 1||2164||10/26/10||Mr. Douglas Lindee||79||The message of Law and Gospel teaches the saving message of Justification, a message which is central to all of Lutheran doctrine and practice, “affirming that, through faith, men obtain remission of sins, and through faith in Christ are justified (AC:IV:1-3).” Thus, Christ is the object of faith: “In order for Justification to be taught correctly, in order for man to make Christ the sole object of his faith... the Law must be stripped from [the Gospel] entirely. That isn’t to say that the Law is not to be taught. On the contrary, in order to understand Justification properly, it is necessary that the message of the Law precede it. In other words, Justification cannot be preached properly unless Law is distinguished and kept separate from the Gospel, and the Gospel has no application unless it follows the message of the Law.”|
|18.||Differences between Reformed and Lutheran Doctrines||2142||04/13/11||Mr. Douglas Lindee||4||The majority of hits on this post are from Reformed and Evangelical sources, as it has been passed around and discussed in a number of different forums.|
|19.||The NIV 2011 and the Importance of Translation Ideology||2049||08/02/11||Mr. Douglas Lindee||25||Functional Arminianism is at the root of observing “The Great Commission” so slavishly as to labour under it as “The Great Law.” As a result, the adoption of translation ideologies like Dynamic Equivalency, which are derived directly from dangerously anti-Truth and thus also anti-Christian post-Modern philosophies, are observed as equally imperative.|
|20.||C.F.W. Walther: Filching from sectarian worship resources equals "soul murder"||2017||03/23/11||Mr. Douglas Lindee||26||Practice and doctrine are not independent of one another. This post saw wide circulation and commentary on the internet, and opened the eyes of many people to the connection doctrine has with practice. They are not independent. They impact each other.|
'via Blog this'
GJ - "Intrepd" is a fine example of hyperbole. They were silent when their own member was excommunicated by Ski, Glende, and DP Deputy Doug.
They were silent when Rydecki was kicked out of WELS. The WELS COP wants to shut them down NOW!
I expect they will silence themselves for good and blame me. I was never any part of IL. I suggested, when asked, a blog for discussion.