The Glory Has Departed

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I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. 1 Timothy 2:1-4

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Luther on False Teachers

False Teachers Use Work of Others


"Note the master hand wherewith Paul portrays the character of false teachers, showing how they betray their avarice and ambition. First, they permit true teachers to lay the foundation and perform the labor; then they come and desire to do the work over, to reap the honors and the benefits. They bring about that the name and the work of the true teachers receive no regard and credit; what they themselves have brought—that is the thing. They make the poor simple-minded people to stare open-mouthed while they win them with flowery words and seduce them with fair speeches, as mentioned in Romans 16:18. These are the idle drones that consume the honey they will not and cannot make." Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 110. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9; Romans 16:18.

False Doctrine Tolerated


"And such false teachers have the good fortune that all their folly is tolerated, even though the people realize how these act the fool, and rather rudely at that. They have success with it all, and people bear with them. But no patience is to be exercised toward true teachers! Their words and their works are watched with the intent of entrapping them, as complained of in Psalm 17:9 and elsewhere. When only apparently a mote is found, it is exaggerated to a very great beam. No toleration is granted. There is only judgment, condemnation and scorn. Hence the office of preaching is a grievous one. He who has not for his sole motive the benefit of his neighbor and the glory of God cannot continue therein. The true teacher must labor, and permit others to have the honor and profit of his efforts, while he receives injury and derision for his reward."
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 110f. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9. Psalm 17:9.

God Punishes Ingratitude by Allowing False Teachers


"In the second place such teachers are disposed to bring the people into downright bondage and to bind their conscience by forcing laws upon them and teaching works-righteousness. The effect is that fear impels them to do what has been pounded into them, as if they were bondslaves, while their teachers command fear and attention. But the true teachers, they who give us freedom of conscience and create us lords, we soon forget, even despise. The dominion of false teachers is willingly tolerated and patiently endured; indeed, it is given high repute. All those conditions are punishments sent by God upon them who do not receive the Gospel with love and gratitude."
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 111. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9. John 5:43.

False Teachers Flay Disciples to Bone


"In the third place, false teachers flay their disciples to the bone, and cut them out of house and home, but even this is taken and endured. Such, I opine, has been our experience under the Papacy. But true preachers are even denied their bread. Yet this all perfectly squares with justice! For, since men fail to give unto those from whom they receive the Word of God, and permit the latter to serve them at their own expense, it is but fair they should give the more unto preachers of lies, whose instruction redounds to their injury. What is withheld from Christ must be given in tenfold proportion to the devil. They who refuse to give the servant of truth a single thread, must be oppressed by liars." Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 111f. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9.

Avarice in False Teachers


"Fourth, false apostles forcibly take more than is given them. They seize whatever and whenever they can, thus enhancing their insatiable avarice. This, too, is excused in them."
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 112. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9.

They Lord It Over Us


"Fifth, these deceitful teachers, not satisfied with having acquired our property, must exalt themselves above us and lord it over us...We bow our knees before them, worship them and kiss their feet. And we suffer it all, yes, with fearful reverence regard it as just and right. And it is just and right, for why did we not honor the Gospel by accepting and preserving it?"
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 112. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9.

We Are Dogs and Foot-Rags


"Sixth, our false apostles justly reward us by smiting us in the face. That is, they consider us inferior to dogs; they abuse us, and treat us as foot-rags."
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 112. Second Sunday in Lent. 2 Corinthians 11:19-33; 12:1-9.

False Teachers Are Peacocks


"The peacock is an image of heretics and fanatical spirits. For on the order of the peacock they, too, show themselves and strut about in their gifts, which never are outstanding. But if they could see their feet, that is the foundation of their doctrine, they would be stricken with terror, lower their crests, and humble themselves. To be sure, they, too, suffer from jealousy, because they cannot bear honest and true teachers. They want to be the whole show and want to put up with no one next to them. And they are immeasurably envious, as peacocks are. Finally, they have a raucous and unpleasant voice, that is, their doctrine is bitter and sad for afflicted and godly minds; for it casts consciences down more than it lifts them up and strengthens them."
What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 642.

New district presidents and their important role

Earlier this month four new men were elected to serve as presidents of their respective districts. Three of the positions became vacant because of retirements; one position had been filled temporarily after its occupant accepted a call to serve as professor at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary.
The following men have been installed as district presidents:
Nebraska District: Rev. Phil Hirsch of Manhattan, Kan.
Western Wisconsin District: Rev. Michael Jensen of Watertown, Wis.
South Atlantic District: Rev. Charles Westra of Columbia, Tenn.
Southeastern Wisconsin District: Rev. David Kolander of Brookfield, Wis. (GJ - They welcomed the all-gay St. John Lutheran Church,  8th and Vliet, Milwaukee.)
A turnover of one-third of the district presidents is rare. It seems good to step back and review exactly what the role of the district president is and what weighty responsibilities are entrusted to these men.
The district president is, in many ways, the pastor of his entire district. He is elected to his position by delegates at a district convention who represent every congregation in the district. His election is not just a selection by called worker and lay delegates. It is, in fact, a divine call from God himself.
First and foremost, the district president is charged with the responsibility of overseeing the doctrine and practice in the congregations of his district. Doctrine is what is taught; practice is how doctrine is applied and carried out. For a synod to remain faithful to the Word of God and to the Lutheran Confessions, its doctrine must faithfully reflect scriptural truth, and its practice must carefully apply the teachings of Scripture in the life and ministry of the congregation. The district president carries out his responsibility of overseeing doctrine and practice in two ways: proactively, as he sets the tone through teaching and instructing by his words and example; and reactively, as he addresses situations in which false teaching may occur or in which the practice of a called worker or congregation departs from faithfulness to the teachings of the Bible.
If a called worker or even an entire congregation begins to stray from the truth, it is ultimately the responsibility of the district president to provide evangelical admonition and correction. Circuit pastors and district officers assist and advise him in this, but ultimately, faithful teaching in his district is a responsibility that rests on his shoulders.
The district president has a very important role in the call process. When congregations experience a vacancy—of pastors, teachers, or staff ministers—it is the district president to whom they turn. He consults with the congregation to determine its specific needs, and then he provides the congregation with a call list. The district president places candidates on that list because, after extensive research and much prayer, he is convinced that any one of them can meet the needs identified and outlined by the congregation.
The synod’s constitution has charged the Conference of Presidents (which includes the district presidents, along with the synod president and two vice presidents) of encouraging congregations and individuals to provide the financial support necessary to carry out the work we do together as a synod. In that role, the district president is the primary voice in the district making congregations aware of the financial needs of the synod and then encouraging congregations to support that work through their Congregation Mission Offerings.
Not least, in his role as the pastor of the district, the district president provides individual counsel and encouragement to the workers in his district. He spends much time getting to know the called workers he serves and makes himself available when they have questions, concerns, or struggles. He offers words of admonition and correction when it’s needed. He also takes time to be sure that called workers are receiving the care and support that ministers of the gospel should receive from those whom they serve with the Word.
The 12 men who serve as district presidents receive no additional compensation for their important work. (GJ - False. They receive all kinds of extras, such as a free assistant pastor, a deluxe vacation in the Carib in winter, etc.) They have been asked by God and his people to fill a very important role. They do so with a deep sense of awe at the trust that people have placed in them. They carry out their duties faithfully, spending many hours in meetings and many days on the road. And we would not want to neglect the faithful support of their wives, who provide encouragement to their husbands as they carry the weight of their office and who willingly sacrifice time with their husbands for the good of God’s church.
Take a moment in prayer to thank God for these faithful servants and to ask God to give them wisdom, strength, and joy in their service.
Serving in Christ,
President Mark Schroeder

Mark Schroeder - proud sponsor of Luther Days.

Look at their "art" which includes a blob on a cross called "Earth Jesus."
This came from WELS and Fuller Seminary training.
They will artify every verse in the Bible, but the artists are not necessarily believers. UOJ all the way.


Hi Greg,

You know that the leaders of this are WELS, right:

GJ - My response. Yes, I knew but I hate to give this stuff too much space. With Mark Schroeder - anything goes - except justification by faith.


A Reader - About WELS

So true!  Saw it in my years in the WELS.  Could name a few names, but what is the use - most know them anyway.  Whatever they say is true and they are honored and awarded like gods, while the quiet, hard, in the home workers are slaughtered and abused.  Been there.

God only knows the changes new district presidents will have.  It is significant and I hope for the better.