Ichabod will become bi-lingual, to comply with the rules of the North American Free Trade Agreement.
Someone asked why I was against the church growing? I have to commend the late, liberal Donald McGavran. He was able to change church language so that people could make his pompous declarations beyond criticism.
McGavran solemnly declared, "God wants His church to grow."
This particular sentiment is nowhere in the Scriptures, but the slogan has much in common with Pentecostal language. For instance, the Holy Spirit had a conversation with John Lawrenz, published on the Internet. John recited it for an interview. John wanted to stay in the Ukraine, but the Holy Spirit told him, "John, I want you in Asia." They went back and forth a little, as good friends should and do, but the Holy Spirit won. After all, how can anyone argue with God?
Pentecostals have that advantage. They walk up to someone and say, "The Holy Spirit told me you should leave the ministry." More likely, they tell everyone but the victim. Doubtless, the Holy Spirit told him to be discreet.
McGavran got everyone to think that anyone against his thriving business was against God. He and his apostle C. Peter Wagner (a Pentecostal) recruited all the world mission executives first, then the American mission executives, so all the denomination bosses went to Fuller Seminary. That is why the Mission/Vision statements of LCMS, WELS, and the Assemblies of God all sounded exactly alike. The statements came from the same source, Fuller Seminary.
I have a high regard for the Holy Spirit, but I am not God's counselor (Romans 8). According to the Scriptures, the Holy Spirit works only through the Word and never apart from the Word. That Word is found in two basic forms: the invisible Word of teaching and preaching; the visible Word of Holy Baptism, Holy Communion, and Absolution. We also list ordination as a sacrament in the Book of Concord. Chemnitz has a fine discussion about sacraments in his Examination.
If people want to be Spirit-filled, they should remain close to the Means of Grace (John 15). Then they will see the fruits of the Gospel. They will never receive or experience forgiveness apart from God's appointed Means of Grace. Despising the Means of Grace, a convenient term for the Gospel in its various forms, is opposition to God's Word.
God's will is accomplished only through His Word. People should let go of their slogans and marketing theories (all of which have failed) and listen to the Word, then apply it.
| Pete Wagner, mentor to Otten's favorite WELS pastor,|
anticipated the dawn of the expert who is wrong about everything
and remains in a highly paid business, like
Karl Rove, Paul McCain, and Larry Olson.