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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Ron Pederson and Jay Webber Try To Lead WELS Discussions Readers into the Abyss of Rationalistic Pietism.
Boycott the Emmaus Conference

Stephan allowed two responses to his cultic revelations -
agree or apologize,
just like the Synodical Conference today.

Walther learned justification from Halle University trained Martin Stephan.
Stephan was not qualified to be a pastor but was ordained because of his affiliation
with the Bohemian Pietists.
The Walther circle gathered around one abusive guru of Pietism,
switching to Stephan when the first one died.

“God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not counting men’s sins against them” (2 Cor 5:19).

What did Jesus accomplish by His life, death and resurrection? Did He accomplish a potential forgiveness that is true only when we believe it? Is our faith like some kind of magical genie that brings the forgiveness of sins into existence? If the forgiveness of sins is not already there, what is faith to believe? [Circular reasoning with a platoon of straw men]
Our faith does not bring the forgiveness of sins into existence. On the contrary it is the forgiveness of sins that brings our faith into existence. Our Catechism has a name for it: The means of grace. St Paul writes: “How can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?… Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ” (Rom 10:14, 17). [But Ron is teaching grace without the Means of Grace.]
In human relationships one person sins against another person. Sometimes the person sinned against forgives the person who sinned against them (sic). Whether or not the person who sinned believes it or accepts the forgiveness has nothing to do with the fact that they have been forgiven by the person they sinned against. The person who sinned had no part in the other person forgiving them. The forgiveness came from the heart of the person who was sinned against. [False analogy]
We sinned against God. The whole human race sinned against God. God says to the whole world, in Christ, [false, "in Christ" only means believers]  because His atoning sacrifice for your sin, I forgive you. [<--Incoherent sentence] You may not believe it or accept it but that doesn’t change what God has determined in His heart. [JP Meyer's Decision Theology]
That does not mean that the whole human race is saved and will be heaven. Only those who put their personal trust in God’s forgiveness will be saved. Those who reject it will have to pay for their own sins in the torments of hell for all eternity.
That is what Jesus accomplished by His life, death and resurrection. We sinned against God and He says to us, to all people, to the whole world, I forgive you in Christ. Confess you (sic) sin and believe it, trust in it and “Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world” (John 1:29). [John 1:29 does not teach UOJ.]
Like · 
  • 11 people like this.
  • Daniel Baker What heretical nonsense. God did not say "I forgive you" to the whole world. He has and continues to say "you are condemned" (St. John 3:18) because the whole world is not, in any sense, "in Christ," nor does it have faith in Him.
  • Christian Schulz Yeah, don't remember the lepers being healed before their faith. But go 'head and keep peddling that Huberianism.
  • Daniel Baker Very salient example, Christian. "Thy faith hath made thee whole." Or as the Lord said to the sinful woman: "Thy faith hath saved thee. Go in peace." Faith does not create forgiveness; the Word of God does that. But it is the God-given method whereby sinners are declared righteous, made whole, and saved.
  • David Jay Webber You can't criticize objective justification because you think it contradicts the law - which condemns all who reject Christ and do not believe. Objective justification is a species of the gospel. And the gospel ~always~ "contradicts" the law!
  • Joel Dusek Rev. Pederson, your argumet is self-contradictory. If sin is what separates us from God, and all sins of all men for all time are ALREADY forgiven, it does not follow that not all men will be saved. If all people have been already been declared righteous, no one will have to "pay for their own sins in...hell...." Is not "put[ting] their personal trust in God's forgiveness" the very definition of Faith? Therefore, by your own argument, it is Faith (personal trust) which delivers the forgiveness, atonement, redemption won on the cross. Without Faith there is no forgiveness; only those with Faith are forgiven.
    Happy Easter, He Is Risen!
  • David Jay Webber " Rev. Pederson, your argument is self-contradictory." That's like saying that the gospel contradicts the law. Yes, it does.
  • Daniel Baker I for one am not criticizing universal justification because it contradicts the Law. I'm criticizing it because it negates the Law entirely for the unbelieving. But Scripture is clear that the unbelieving world is condemned on account of the Law on its heart, which it has failed to follow. Jesus is clear that the unbelieving world stands condemned ALREADY; it is not re-condemned after rejecting its universal pardon of its initial condemnation.
  • Ron Pederson Ron Pederson Luther writes. “Even he who does not believe that he is free and his sins forgiven shall also learn, in due time, how assuredly his sins were forgiven, even though he did not believe it ... He who does not accept what the keys give receives, of course, nothing. But that is not the key’s fault. Many do not believe the gospel, but this does not mean that the gospel is not true or effective. A king gives you a castle. If you do not accept it, then it is not the king’s fault, nor is he guilty of a lie. But you have deceived yourself and the fault is yours. The king certainly gave it.” LW 40, 366f [This means Christ atoned for the sins of the world, not that sins of the unbelieving world were all absolved and everyone saved.]
  • Joel Dusek Rev. Webber, interesting thesis. How does the Gospel contradict the Law? Isn't the Gospel – the life, death and resurrection of Christ for the forgiveness of sins – the fulfillment of the Law, not a contradiction of it?
  • William Miller Perhaps those who object to the doctrine of universal justification would like to provide a persuasive exegesis of I I Cor 5:19. If it means something other than what it says, this will surely be revealed by your scholarly analysis of the grammar. In the absence of this, I will happily bear the accusation of heresy along with Ron Pederson and St. Paul, and sing praise to the lamb of God who took away the sins of the world, yes, even those of this heretic. [This argument comes from Pietists like Rambach, Stephan, and Walther, but the Word of God does not support the assumptions.]
  • Ron Pederson Objective and subjective justification. [The OJ and SJ terms come from the Calvinist translator of Knappe's Halle University lectures.]
  • Each doctrine is one complete whole but that whole can also have different sides and angles. And it has proved necessary for the church dissect a doctrine in order to keep the whole undefiled and to expose false doctrine as Martin Chemnitz has done in great detail in his classic “The Two Natures of Christ.” [Yes, Chemnitz teaches justification by faith and does not use 1 Timothy 3:16 to advocate universal forgiveness and salvation.]

    Scripture teaches that there is only one Christ but that one Christ also has two natures: God and man. The Athanasian Creed says: “Who although he is God and Man; yet he is not two, but one Christ. One; not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh; but by assumption of the Manhood into God. One altogether; not by confusion of Essence; but by unity of Person.” 

    The same could be said of the doctrine of justification. We can speak of one, whole justification by faith. But yet when we examine the Scriptures we see that there are two sides to that one justification: objective justification and subjective justification. [False analogy, moving from a Confession to a dogma of Pietism, Universalism, and Adventism.]
  • Ron Pederson I think it is important also to note that I wouldn’t necessarily make a judgment on anyone’s personal faith when they disagree with what I have said about objective justification. In the end they very likely are in agreement in their own hearts (a fortunate inconsistency which I and probably every Christian has experienced and will experience again). But yet it is important to clearly articulate what a doctrine is, so that it can be more firmly cemented in the heart (the heart and mind in agreement) and so that a doctrine or all doctrines as a whole, remain intact and pure. [Gee thanks, Ron, but you qualify judgment, as you must, because you specialize in attacking faith and promoting falsehood.]
  • David Jay Webber The law says, you are condemned because of your sin. The gospel says, you are forgiven because of Christ's redemption. In a certain sense, these two statements contradict each other. The overall ~doctrines~ of law and gospel do not contradict each other, but the bare statements of condemnation and forgiveness, in effect, do. These statements are each telling me something different, as the law drives me to repentance, and as the gospel then draws me to Christ. This is the mystery of law and gospel - the distinction between the righteousness that God demands, and the righteousness that God gives. Objective justification is a reality in Christ, for all for whom he died and rose again. It is a component of the gospel - a component of the righteousness that God gives. Objective justification is not a component of the law, or a negation of the law. It is not a component of the righteousness that God demands. [Luther warned that the three great attacks against Christianity focused on the divinity of Christ, the humanity of Christ, and justification by faith. Jay, you constantly mislead everyone by pretending "in Christ" means something other than those who believe in Him. Hindus and atheists are not "in Christ."]
  • Joel Dusek Interesting. Thanks.
  • David Jay Webber If you're anywhere close to the Pacific Northwest, please do come! (Dates: April 22-23)

    A paper on Objective Justification, presented by Rev. Jon Buchholz to the WELS Arizona/California District,...
  • Daniel Baker I'll share the response of the opponents of Huber, your forbear in the doctrine of universal justification, concerning what 2 Corinthians 5:19 actually means: 

    Paul never teaches universal justification. For with regard to the passage
     in 2 Cor. 5, those words, “not imputing sins to them,” are not to be understood universally concerning all men without respect to faith. For although the Apostle does not expressly mention faith there, nonetheless no mention is ever made in the Scriptures of an imputation where a consideration of faith is excluded. For just as God imputes righteousness to no one except for the believer, so also it is to believers only that He does not impute sins.
    Paul expressly teaches this very thing in Rom. 4: “Not to the one who works, but to the one who believes in Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is imputed as righteousness.” And: “Blessed is the man to whom the Lord has not imputed sin.” Paul refers these words to the justification of faith, through which sins are remitted to a man, or in other words, not imputed. And such a man is pronounced blessed. But no one is blessed and saved without faith. Now, if those words are to be understood universally concerning all men, according to Huber’s opinion, then all men would be blessed and saved, for he is said to be blessed to whom God does not impute sins.
    How is it, then, according to the declaration of Christ, that “he who does not believe has been condemned already”? How does the wrath of God remain on him (John 3)? And since unbelievers have already been condemned, therefore their sins are imputed to them, and consequently those words of the Apostle are not to be understood universally and simply concerning any and all men, both believers and unbelievers. Rather, they include the means revealed in the Word of God, namely, a consideration of faith. That is, that God does not impute sins to men if they believe in Christ the Propitiator. If they do not believe, their sins are imputed to them, and they are condemned on account of them.
    The same thing is revealed in the Book of Concord, page 657, where it says this: “For justification, these things are required and necessary: the grace of God, the merit of Christ, and FAITH, which embraces these very benefits of God in the promise of the Gospel. In this way (that is, through faith), the righteousness of Christ is imputed to us.” And shortly before: “The righteousness of faith before God consists in the free and most gracious imputation of the righteousness of Christ (apart from any merit of our works). That is, that sins have been remitted to us and covered, nor are they imputed to us.” The meaning, therefore, of the Apostle’s words is: “not imputing sins to them by the means ordained in God’s Word.” Indeed, if the words are to be understood simply, without a consideration of faith, then why does God condemn the world to which God, according to Huber’s opinion, does not impute sins?


  • David Jay Webber The false teaching of Huber, which Hunnius correctly says St. Paul never teaches, is summarized by Hunnius as follows:

    "Huber professes such a justification, for the sake of which Christ has properly, actually and practically conferred redemption on t
    he entire human race in such a way that sins have been equally remitted to all men, including the Turks, and that all men (including unbelievers) have received remission of sins, and that the whole human race has, in actual fact, been received into the grace and bosom of God."

    The orthodox Lutheran doctrine of objective justification does not maintain that redemption has been ~actually conferred~ on the human race, or that all men have ~received~ remission of sins. So, Hunnius's arguments against Huber's incorrect teaching on these points cannot simply be brought to bear against the sound teaching of orthodox Lutherans today. What they teach regarding objective justification is in fact comparable to what Hunnius himself taught in his Theses Against Huberism, where he stated that "we steadfastly teach that Christ, by the decree, counsel, ordination, good pleasure and command of the eternal Father, has freed each and every mortal, without any exception at any time or in any place, from sin, death and eternal damnation." [How is Huber different from you, O Jay? How does he differ from Knappe, Schleiermacher,  Martin Stephan, the Great Walther, JP Meyer?]
  • Steven E. Anderson Scripture says the wrath of God abides upon the unbeliever. To say that the grace and forgiveness and justification of God abides upon the unbeliever would be a denial and perversion of scripture.
  • David Jay Webber Which is why no Lutheran teaches this.
  • Daniel Baker Regardless, it is clear from the orthodox opponents of Huber that 2 Corinthians 5:19 can NOT be referring to all men. So I would like to see a different proof passage proving the universal declaration of righteousness for all men.
  • Christian Schulz Huber's words:

    But I called universal justification that by which God, considering the satisfaction of Christ, became favorably disposed toward the entire human race because of that satisfaction, and thus he accepted it just as if everyone had made sa
    ...See More
  • Christian Schulz And Pieper:

    "God no longer looks upon sinful man with wrath, but 'before His divine tribunal' forgives the sins of mankind, does not impute their trespasses unto them (2 Cor. 5:19). (CHRISTIAN DOGMATICS, by Francis Pieper, Volume 2, pages 398 & 399)
  • David Jay Webber A part of the problem back then was Huber's confused understanding and use of certain terms. But a part of the problem was also that Hunnius was influenced too much by Aristotelian causation thinking, which departed from Luther's way of doing theology in general, and from Luther's way of explaining justification and forgiveness in particular. The same weak scholastic tendency that caused Hunnius to overcorrect Huber, is what caused him to overcorrect Calvinism by teaching intuitu fidei, and to overcorrect Roman abuses of the sacrament by teaching receptionism. Hunnius's teaching that faith is a "cause" of justification is a prime example of how he didn't really get this completely straight, even as Huber didn't get this straight either.
  • Ron Pederson For me it all comes down to two positions:

    1. The sins of the world are forgiven in Christ and I am saved when I place my faith in that forgiveness. (The orthodox Lutheran position) [Ron, you are watering down the Pietist tradition, making it appear to be in harmony with the Christian Faith. Jay's catechumen, Jon Buchholz, says the entire unbelieving world is saved. Besides that, "in Christ" only applies to believers, so your confused muddle goes nowhere.]

    2. The sins of the world are not forgiven in Christ, but if I believe I am forgiven in Christ, then I am. (The synergistic position) [Is Paul a synergist? Romans 4:24 - "if we believe"]

  • Steven E. Anderson Doesn't #2 assume faith is a work of man?
  • Ron Pederson Good observation Steven. It sure does.
  • Joel Dusek And it's a good thing no Lutheran (at least in this current controversy) is advocating the second option. That would certainly be fideism, a work of Man. 
    I believe you set up a false dichotomy in those two positions, sir. I think the points would be:
    1. All sins are atoned for and all men are already justified, and when a man is brought to faith by the Spirit he realizes his justification. 
    2. All sins are atoned for, and when a man is brought to faith by the Spirit he receives his justification. 
    To stick my toe in the pool of terminology, my take is that Justification is always and only objective - that is, solely because of Christ's work, not Man's. It is not, however, universal. 
    I think this is a very narrow theological point, and worthy of discussion. As others have stated, neither side of the debate (mostly) in WELS, LCMS, ELS, or ELDoNA are advocating Universalism – all are saved no matter what – or Fideism – faith itself saves.
    It would have been great to have discussions before accusations, dismissals, and marking-and-avoiding were done. [Luther called himself a fideist, but the UOJ heretics keep making "faith" something evil. Do not catch their contagion.]

    April 6 at 8:03pm · Edited · Like · 1
  • Joe Jewell It's an excellent idea not to allow caricatures to overtake the reality of a confession as expressed by those who are actually making it.

    I've noticed a tendency to do this on both sides of this debate (indeed in just about any debate). As a slightly 
    less emotive example, go visit LutherQuest and watch W/ELS and LCMS pastors go at it over Church and Ministry. Hammer and tongs, much of it very "definitional" (each side insisting on defining the others' terms, then making an argument based entirely on the pet definition)--and this on a doctrine for which there was apparently broad (enough) consensus even at the time of the Synodical Conference breakup! [Joe - is justification by faith a caricature? Please document one example, but do not include Luther, because he has a wealth of names for false teachers, compromisers, and backpeddlers.]

    April 6 at 8:28pm · Edited · Like · 3
  • David Jay Webber JoelYour option two, as far as it goes, is the correct view. One of the main evangelical points of the objective justification teaching, is that justification is ~received by~ faith. It is not ~created in~ faith. And I think it is too intellectual to say that receiving justification by faith is "realizing" one's justification. Christ himself is justified on behalf of the world for which he died and rose again, and therefore in Christ the world is justified. To receive this as an individual, is to be justified by faith as an individual. I suppose there is some intellectual "realization" going on. But that's not the essence of the faith by which an individual is justified.

    And there certainly are some people in this debate who would take strong exception to the statement that "the sins of the world are forgiven in Christ." [The camel toe is at the door of the tent, ready to push all the way in, and this page welcomes the effort. Once again, Jay is bouncing off the UOJ of Rambach and other misguided Pietists.]

  • Ron Pederson Joel, you say that God has atoned for the sins of the world and there is other terminology too that falls short of saying the sins of the world are forgiven in Christ. And as Jay said, all of that is correct “as far as it goes”. I would add that it is even good and useful terminology when presenting the gospel. 

    But to say that God has only atoned for the sins of the world and has not forgiven the sins of the world in Christ creates a problem, maybe even an inconsistency. 

    On the one hand it is said that faith is not meritorious to forgiveness and does not create the forgiveness but then when my faith is added a change takes place in the heart of God. Now, not only is my sin atoned for, It is also forgiven. So my faith, something in me, produced a change from atonement to forgiveness in the heart of God. 
    On a personal note, Joel, I struggled with this issue too. And I can certainly understand why someone would have questions regarding it. The false teaching of universalism is probably the main concern most people have. But in the end it always has to be “what does the bible say?”. [They pretend to be Christians, but eventually the fangs come out and the claws reach for their victims. Not the constant false use of "in Christ." UOJ is nothing more than belittling justification by faith, replacing it with their odd, rationalistic, Pietistic, and Calvinist dogma.]

    19 hrs · Edited · Like · 3
  • Ron Pederson Jesus said "it is finished". [UOJ fanatics turn Jesus' dying words into an endorsement of their false doctrine. They find UOJ in Romans 4, which is all about Abraham and us being justified by faith. They yell Romans 4:25! and omit Romans 4:24 on purpose.]
    22 hrs · Edited · Like · 1
  • Joel Dusek Thanks for your thoughts, Revs. Webber and Pederson. For the record, though, I'm not struggling with this. I had my moments of inquiry and study a couple years ago when a pastor in New Mexico was removed from his fellowship after he suggested that Justification was being taught incorrectly. Not being a trained theologian myself, I had to study it using materials and references from a variety of sources. Both sides cited the Scripture and Confessions to support their position, and much meaning was lost in a squall of terminology. 
    In the end, I am confident that Christ suffered, died, and rose to vicariously atone for the sins of the entire world, to propitiate God's wrath and justice, and to secure the forgiveness of sins for all people. However, I am confident that any statement that implies or asserts that ALL people are ALREADY forgiven is incorrect, as forgiveness and righteousness are only received through Faith in Christ's substitutionary sacrifice. Faith alone justifies, although Faith itself is not a work of Man but of God. Thus, I disagree with Huber, Bivens, Buchholz, and others who assert that all people are forgiven separate from faith.
    No struggle here!

    18 hrs · Like · 3
  • Ron Pederson Thanks for your kindly worded response. I am aware of the situation you refer to where a WELS pastor was removed from the WELS because he denied objective justification to mean the sins of the world are forgiven in Christ. 

    This action by the WELS w
    as only consistent with what they and the ELS believe and practice in other situations as well. There have been many pastors who have applied for membership in the ELS or WELS who were turned down because they could not accept our position on objective justification. No seminary graduate would be allowed to become a pastor in either the WELS or ELS if it became known that they did not agree with our position on OJ. Any pastor in either the WELS or ELS would not be allowed to stay if he persisted in a different view of OJ. 

    I understand that the pastor you refer to now belongs to a different synod. It is a synod that believes almost exactly the same as we do except for OJ. And I am sure that that synod would also practice what they believe and remove any pastor who persisted in his disagreement with the synod’s position on OJ. 

    Again, thanks for a good and civil discussion . I understand the hurt that you feel regarding of this situation. But remember, let scripture, not a man or your loyalty to him, be your guide. [The portion is red is an outright lie, because Kuske denied the precious dogma of UOJ, and he was not removed. Those who remember the Gausewitz catechism realize justification by faith - not UOJ - was taught to WELS members for decades.]

    14 hrs · Edited · Like
  • Steven E. Anderson My main objection to UOJ is the idea that God declares a person justified and forgiven outside of faith because God's declarations have weight, purpose and efficacy. Scripture teaches that the unbeliever is still in his sins, condemned, and the wrath of God abides upon him. Simple law and gospel distinction.
    13 hrs · Like · 2
  • Daniel Baker "Let scripture, not a man or your loyalty to him, be your guide." 

    Could not have said it better myself. "He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him."
    12 hrs · Like · 4
  • David Jay Webber The same person who said that (John the Baptist) also said that Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. That's also a part of the gospel.
    11 hrs · Like
  • Steven E. Anderson John 9:41 
    Jesus said unto them, If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth.
    11 hrs · Like · 1
  • David Jay Webber "My main objection to UOJ is the idea that God declares a person justified and forgiven outside of faith..." The only "person" - in the singular - who is declared justified in objective justification is Jesus. Jesus is justified on behalf of the world, and therefore the world is justified in Jesus, but no individual person as such is justified in the objective sense except for Jesus. Objective justification is first about the justification of Jesus, and second it is about the world's justification in Jesus - since Jesus died and rose again for the world. Apart from Jesus, objective justification is not about the justification of "a person." That is subjective justification.[Jay presents the position of Halle Pietism as Lutheran orthodoxy, but what can we expect from an MDiv trying to earn an STM from a unionistic mini-seminary?]
    11 hrs · Like · 1
  • Daniel Baker "We believe that God has justified all sinners, that is, he has declared them righteous for the sake of Christ." ~ This We Believe.
    11 hrs · Like
  • Steven E. Anderson You speak of "in Jesus." Not all are in Him, and only those in Him are justified.

    Romans 16:7 

    Salute Andronicus and Junia, my kinsmen, and my fellowprisoners, who are of note among the apostles, who also were in Christ before me. [Well said and documented.]

    11 hrs · Like
  • David Jay Webber "All sinners" = the world of sinners. "All sinners" ≠ "a person."
    11 hrs · Like
  • Steven E. Anderson The world of sinners is comprised of individual sinners. What applies to the group must apply to each part of the group. It can't be that a group is affected but no individual member of the group is affected.
    11 hrs · Like · 1
  • Daniel Baker "Them" implies a group of "persons." The word "them" does not, in any use of the English language, evoke a singular "it."
    11 hrs · Like
  • David Jay Webber "In Christ" means different things in different contexts. John the Baptist says the sins of the world were taken away by Jesus. Taken away from where? Taken away to where? What did Jesus vicariously do for the world as its substitute? What did he do for the world when he died for the world? What did he do for the world when he rose again for the world? he actually did something for the world. He took the sins of the world away from the world, and took them upon himself, and died for them. And then, in his resurrection, God took the sins of the world away from Jesus. In Christ, therefore - and this is a component of our Christ-centered gospel - the sins of the world are no longer on the world, and they are no longer on Jesus either. They are gone. This is so, and is objectively true, in Christ, because of who Christ is, and because of what Christ has actually done. Apart from Christ, according to the law, and according to the state of all unbelieving individuals as such, the sin of unbelievers remains on them, and they remain under wrath. They don't have Christ, and therefore they do not have what Christ has for them - namely, their justification. But Jesus really has this for them. It exists for them, because Jesus did die and rise again for them. Jesus was condemned for the world, so that in Jesus the world was condemned. And Jesus was justified for the world, so that in Jesus the world was justified. [More smoke and mirrors, using passages to mislead everyone. This is the Halle Pietism argument all over again.]
    11 hrs · Like · 1
  • Daniel Baker The problem with that logic is that Jesus wasn't justified. He was condemned. He died. And then He swallowed condemnation and death in the totality of His righteousness. He overcame the sins of the world with the completeness of His perfection. He didn't have to be declared righteous because He is Righteousness incarnate. He didn't have to be pardoned from iniquity because He bore the fullness of iniquity's penalty and then crushed it.
    10 hrs · Edited · Like
  • Steven E. Anderson 1 Peter 3:18
    For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:
    10 hrs · Like
  • David Jay Webber The focus of our salvation in Christ is on the righteousness of his obedience - his actions of living, dying, and rising again - and not on the righteousness of his person. Certainly Luther and others use various images to describe what happened when Jesus died, and when Jesus rose, and the Bible itself describes these acts in various ways, from different angles. But his resurrection was an intrinsically important saving act, just as was his death. [More Pietism, thinly veiled.]
    10 hrs · Like · 1

  • ...we should preach also forgiveness of sins in his name. This signifies nothing else than that the Gospel should be preached, which declares unto all the world that in Christ the sins of all the world are swallowed up, and that he suffered de
    ath to put away sin from us, and arose to devour it, and blot it out. All this he did, that whoever believeth, should have the comfort and assurance that it is reckoned unto him, even as if he himself had done it; that his work is mine and thine and all men’s; yea that he gives himself to us with all his gifts to be our own personal property. Hence, as he is without sin and never dies by virtue of his resurrection even so I also am if I believe in him... [Is UOJ the Chief Article, the Master and Prince, the judge of all other articles of the Christian Faith? Using Luther to topple Luther is shameless.]
    10 hrs · Like · 1
  • David Jay Webber Luther also preaches that the resurrection

    "presents to us Christ no longer in woe and misery, weighed down with the ponderous mass of our sins, which God has laid upon Him, but beautiful, glorious and rejoicing; for all the sins have disappeared from
     Him. From this we have a right to conclude: If our sins, on account of the sufferings of Christ, lie no longer upon us, but are taken from our shoulders by God Himself and placed upon His Son, and if on Easter, after the resurrection, they are no more to be seen, where then are they? Micah truly says: They are sunk into the depth of the sea, and no devil nor any body else shall find them again (Mic. 7:18-19)."

    10 hrs · Like · 1
  • Steven E. Anderson That sermon speaks of faith.
    9 hrs · Like
  • David Jay Webber Of course it does. Faith receives what Jesus established as an objective reality for the world through his death and resurrection.
    9 hrs · Like · 3
  • Joel Dusek Forgive me for jumping back in late, but I do want to address Rev. Pederson's last comment to me. " I understand the hurt that you feel regarding of this situation. But remember, let scripture, not a man or your loyalty to him, be your guide."

    I appr
    eciate that sentiment, Rev. Pederson, but this issue was not personal or an emotional response for me. I did not become aware of the Justification controversy until I had already left the WELS. I simply assumed that the standard, accepted teaching was Justification by Grace through Faith, and had never heard the term "Universal Objective Justification" until it came up in regard to Pastor Rydecki's situation. When I heard of it, I studied. 

    I have never met Pastor Rydecki in person, though I count him among my friends. Overall, I agree with your point about a synod - any synod - desiring its members to be in agreement. However, I believe Pastor Rydecki was not given the benefit of inquiry and discussion, and his dismissal was political and bureaucratic, not doctrinal. I don't mean to open another can of worms, but just want to stress that I (and from my experience others on "this side", as it were) do not approach the Justification question from a personal alliance or faction, but from Scripture and the Confessions as we have read them and had them explained. 

    God's Peace be with you! [Behind DP Buchholz blundering gambits was his Iago, Jay Webber.]

    7 hrs · Like · 1
  • William Miller As I read through the comments made by those who object to the doctrine of objective justification, it appears to me that those objections are not based upon a disagreement regarding what the relevant verses actually say, rather, the objections are based on perceived incompatibility with other doctrines. Is that correct? In other words, it is not a translation issue, but a systematic theology issue. If this is true, it may be helpful for one of our pastors to present a brief synopsis of how we (WELS) develop doctrines from scripture. It is my understanding that we extract from scripture all of the verses that treat a particular doctrine, then develop a doctrinal statement based only upon what those particular verses tell us. It is further my understanding, that we make no effort to reconcile doctrines which may appear to conflict with one another, but simply allow what may appear to us to be a conflict to stand. With all due respect to my Christian brothers who object to this OJ, I have to tell you that your objections baffle me. For me, the meaning of these verses are clear, and they comfort me greatly. It comforts me to know that Jesus took away the sins of the world, and it comforts me again to hear pastor's absolution in which my sins are forgiven again, and then to receive that forgiveness all over again in the sacrament. It comforts me to know that the Lord taught us to pray for forgiveness, and so I do pray for that forgiveness, and again feel that comfort knowing my sins have been forgiven again. It comforts me that Jesus cried out, it is finished, because I know what it is that he had finished doing. The doctrine of objective justification is a doctrine of comfort. It is precious. Without it, my peace would surely be diminished. We are like dogs chasing their tails. Remorse comfort, remorse comfort, remorse comfort. I need all the comfort God offers. God so loved the world that he sent his son, Jesus came to destroy the work of the devil, and to undo what Adam did. Don't let your reason rob you of the peace that God has declared. [What a load of fresh Dreck! WELS began in Pietism, had professors trained in Walther's Pietism, and asserted that Pietism through UOJ and Church Growth. The Scriptures are only a rabbit's foot for these people, and the Book of Concord is something mention without knowing its contents.]
    5 hrs · Like · 1
  • Seth Bode  Even by those who deny universal justification, it has been conceded that faith is God's work. Doesn't a declaration of not guilty and a promise of forgiveness create faith in an unbelieving heart? Are those who do not believe not offered a true promise until they believe it? It is gospel. John named the Lamb of God that men might believe that he takes away their sins. Paul tells the Corinthians the message of reconciliation for those who need to hear it is also a message of non-imputation. Justification by the understanding of Scripture has really a universal promise by virtue of Christ alone. But Christ alone does not negate faith alone just as he does not negate Scripture alone or grace alone. Saying justification doesn't come before faith logically is like saying we can't have three or four solas. [Note that denying the dogma of Pietism is considered a grave error. Once anyone begins with that wobbly foundation, the rest of the story will be just as shaky.]
  • Is that why your Queen Creek mission closed, Jay?
    Too robust? Or could they not untangle your weird dogma
    of grace without the Means of Grace?

  • David Jay Webber One of the weirdest things about this debate is the erroneous claim made by a very few, that there is some kind of connection between adherence to objective justification, and a minimizing of the means of grace as is often seen in "church growth" or "contemporary worship" congregations. Just the opposite is the case. [ GJ See the ELS, WELS, and LCMS CoWo circuses as contrary proof.] A proper teaching of objective justification is what makes the means of grace truly to be the means of grace. Word and sacrament carry, deliver, and confer a real forgiveness that already exists in Christ for everyone, and do not just propose that forgiveness may or will happen or be brought into existence under certain conditions. A robust theology of justification, and a robust theology of the means of grace (with a corresponding appreciation for the liturgy and hymns of the church, which are shaped and defined by the means of grace), go hand in hand.

  • Let's Ask the Theologians Formerly Cited (not quoted) as UOJ Enthusiasts

Quoted by Dr. Robert Preus in his final book.