Its spring, which means ELCA synod assemblies are beginning. These annual, boring, waste-of-money gatherings usually include a wide variety of attacks on God's Word and the ever popular anti-Semitic based attacks on Israel. The ELCA's Rocky Mountain Synod has already gone on record at their assembly last weekend passing a resolution called “Accompaniment, Awareness-Raising, & Advocacy For The People Of The Holy Land.” (see here)
In the Resolution the Assembly resolved to “affirm our support for sisters and brothers in the ELCJHL as they remain faithful to the Gospel amid the oppression of Israeli military occupation”. Saying Israel is oppressing people and occupying land is a fallacy which is often repeated by those who are anti-Semitic.
The Assembly then encouraged people to use the ELCA Peace Not Walls resources claiming that it has “reliable information about the situation” (in Israel). In no way is the ELCA a reliable source for what is happening in Israel.
The passed resolution also seeks a congressional investigation into Israel's use of U.S. aid. The ELCA's aim in that request is to cut or end aid to Israel so as to hurt the Jewish nation. Remember, the ELCA views Israel as oppressors and occupiers of land that they think the Arabs should have. Stopping U.S. aid to Israel would increase the chances of that happening.
And finally, the Assembly resolved, “that this assembly urges members of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America to consider investing their retirement and other funds in a manner consistent with the Peace Not Walls campaign.” This is another attempt to hurt Israel financially by cutting personally financial investments going to Israeli companies. The ELCA would rather have those investments go to entities within the terrorist controlled Gaza strip.
The Rocky Mountain Synod also had a workshop during the assembly called, “Peace Not Walls: Why are we involved in the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict? Faces of the Occupation” (see here).
Satan's desire, shown throughout history, has always been to destroy God's chosen people, the Jews. Today he is using the ELCA, who claims to follow Christ, to try to accomplish that purpose.
Bible-believing Lutherans were upset a few years ago when they learned of numerous heretical and unorthodox articles from the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. They were posted on the ELCA's official website under a section meant to explain the ELCA's beliefs and teachings, called “Dig Deeper.” The ELCA leadership took a great deal of well deserved heat for what the articles said and even though they never repudiated the articles or the teaching, with no apology, they removed them from elca.org.
Now with the help of a website which archives old web pages you can view the articles as they looked in 2009.
- Propagating the idea of Universalism (that all people go to heaven) is the ELCA article titled “Salvation” - See here.
- The ELCA questions the “Virgin Birth” in this informational page – See here.
- The ELCA's “The Bible” page (see here) has a section in which they say “Because Biblical writers, editors and compilers were limited by their times and world views, even as we are, the Bible contains material wedded to those times and places. It also means that writers sometimes provide differing and even contradictory views of God’s word, ways and will.”
The page also tells a few of the forms of study (biblical criticism) which the ELCA uses when studying Scripture. The article describes Redaction Criticism in this way, “understanding how writers creatively shaped material they inherit and how, perhaps, they brought nuances from their own context and culture.”
Here is a better description from a Christian apologetics website -
“Redaction Criticism of the Bible is the theory that different copyists and commentators of the early biblical writings embellished and altered the biblical texts throughout early Jewish and Christian history to make them appear more miraculous, inspirational, and legitimate. An example of redaction theory would be the claim that Old Testament prophecies were modified by redactors after the fact to make them appear as miraculous prophecies. Redaction criticism reduces the quality of the biblical record, casts strong doubt on its inspiration, and implies that the Bible is not trustworthy as a historical document." (read here)
- The ELCA's “The Resurrection” page promotes universalism and doubt about Christ's physical resurrection. See here.
Gnesio, an online magazine of Lutheran theology, addresses the ELCA's “The Resurrection” page saying:
“The resurrection for the ELCA does not necessarily have to be a historic event, but something of faith. From their website: 'All of this has led some scholars to write that the risen Jesus (and apparitions of the risen Jesus) is a supernatural reality which does not belong to this world and cannot be the object of historic investigation. Rather, Jesus’ resurrection is an object of faith.
Accordingly, ELCA members believe that what history does is to demonstrate the disciples’ faith in the resurrection. Their witness and testimony to Jesus’ post-death appearances make it abundantly clear that the resurrection was a primary object of the apostolic proclamation from Christianity’s very beginning.'
This view then means that it is not important whether Jesus is still dead in a tomb or not, just that you believe that He rose." (see here)
- The ELCA's page on “Satan” tells us that believing or not believing in Satan is a-okay. See here.
The ELCA took down these teaching webpages, but Exposing the ELCA has extensive evidence which shows that the ELCA leadership continues to believe, teach and allow these same heretical beliefs.
For Halloween, Concordia College (ELCA) in Moorhead, MN hosted a haunted house. The haunted house was put on by two resident hall councils. Part of the festivities for the night was offering students the chance to use an Ouija board.
An article by the school paper said, “A Ouija board (a board with letters, numbers, and ‘yes’ and ‘no’ that is often used in scary movies) was placed outside the entrance for students to try to get in touch with spirits if they chose to do so.” (see here)
For those of you that may not know, Ouija boards are occultic, and a form of sorcery and divination. Those type of things are “forbidden by Scripture for Christians to participate in. . .” (See Can a Christian use an Ouija board?)
An Ouija board “is a portal that leads straight into the dark side where Satan and his demons roam. . .this device will literally, and I mean literally, open up a door and invite in some of the nastiest, foulest, and meanest demons that are in Satan’s kingdom.” This is real and it is not something to “play around” with. You should read this article if you doubt the danger involved with Ouija boards - The Extreme Dangers of the Ouija Board.
The article in the Concordia College paper included a picture which shows students using the Ouija board. The caption under the picture says, “Residents Matthew Burian and Alexander Hagen try out the Ouija board provided in Livedalen’s haunted maze.” (Another picture included in the article shows a male student holding a knife to a bloodied female’s neck.)
This story is a prime piece of evidence that ELCA colleges, even though they love to advertise themselves as Christian colleges to financial contributing Lutheran church goers, often walk in opposition to Christian teaching, principles and practice. In this instance, Concordia College is placing the spiritual well being of their students at risk, opening their lives up to spiritual darkness, demons and the devil. This is pure evil. Yet, Joe Dlugos, hall director of Livedalen is quoted as saying in the haunted house article, “Hall council is happy to offer a variety of activities and events to our residents.”
Alfred Hoerig is the pastor of Grace Lutheran Church, a new ELCA mission congregation in Texas.
In the ELCA magazine, The Lutheran, we read this from an interview Pastor Hoerig had with the magazine, “Grace could emerge as a model of the ELCA church of the future, with its diversity and openness to letting people make up their own minds about their beliefs, he added.”
“(L)etting people make up their own minds about their beliefs” sounds like something a Unitarian Universalist would say, and here we have this ELCA magazine publishing this disturbing statement, a statement many members of the denomination will read. Followers of Christ are not made by telling people to “believe anything they want to believe, it doesn’t matter to God.”
Elsewhere in the article Pastor Hoerig is quoted saying, "The [new] congregation is made up of people who've been ostracized or alienated from other congregations, and people who've been burned by overzealous Christians and judgmental people who've said unkind things or insisted that [Grace members] live a certain way in order to be members of the church." (The Lutheran no longer has the entire article available to read on the internet. Here is the beginning of the article.)
This is the typical line and sentiment from the pro-ELCA, edit-the-Bible-to-say-what-I-want-it-to-say crowd. They love to label those who believe homosexuality is a sin, based on Scriptural evidence, as not “welcoming” and “judgmental.” Their definition of "welcoming" is "endorsing the homosexual lifestyle." The truth is Christian churches welcome sinners, they do not (should not) endorse sin. Satan has deceived the ELCA leadership and supporters. True love helps people out of sin and certainly does not encourage them to fully engage it. That is what Satan wants. Sadly, many in the ELCA are working with the devil.
Please take a few minutes to read this survey conducted by The Barna Group, in 2009, on what Christians believe. (read here)
Many Christian denominations in America are failing to teach the truth of scripture. The study says almost 60% of “Christians” do not believe Satan is a real being? Almost 40% think that Jesus sinned while on Earth?
How does this happen? The Bible is clear on Jesus being sinless and Satan being real, yet a lot of Christians think otherwise. This happens when denominations and pastors are not teaching Scripture correctly.
Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr. said, "We have the Bible and all of the Bible. We are accountable to it all, and it is all true, trustworthy, authoritative, sufficient, and, with the aid of the Holy Spirit, clear in its message." Churches in America, including the ELCA, need to be teaching and preaching the truth of Scripture. It is God's Word.
Sadly, this isn’t happening. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America’s worldly teaching of Scripture, in their seminaries, leads their future pastors (many of them) to reject much of what the Bible says. This has been happening gradually for over 20 years. Subsequently, the pastors, who are now serving congregations, will rarely uphold the truth of Scripture in the sermons they give. (But they sure know how to deliver some enlightening social justice and self-help sermons.) Through these tactics, the devil has silenced God’s Word and replaced it with damnable heresy.
Universal salvation, the view that all people will be saved, is taking over the ELCA as the prominent belief regarding salvation, thanks to the leadership of the denomination. (see here and here) This anti-Biblical, dangerous belief is thriving and leaders in the ELCA are not only doing nothing to stop it, but they are promoting it. All at the expense of billions of souls.
Truth be told, there is no reason to be preaching and teaching universal salvation. First and foremost, it goes against God’s truth revealed to us in the Bible (see here ). Secondly, if it was true, a person would be saved no matter if he/she believed in universal salvation or not.
We know that universal salvation is unfounded and false, yet the ELCA is promoting this belief. The ramifications of this wrong teaching have eternal consequences. 1) Because those that believe this are not telling people about their need for our Savior. 2) People do and believe whatever they want because they think they are “saved know matter what.” Sorry, but universal salvation in the gospel of Satan.
Sadly here is another ELCA leader preaching and teaching universal salvation. Mark Thomsen, Visiting Professor of Mission, Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago (LSTC), writes,
“It would appear that if one takes Jesus seriously, faith in the finality of Christ necessarily includes the recognition of God's creative saving work outside of hearing and believing in Jesus Christ!”
“God's universal transforming work identified in the resurrection of Christ has saving significance for the whole of creation and the whole human family, not just for those who hear and respond to the gospel.” (read here)
The universal salvation believing leaders have taken over the ELCA. In our seminaries you have professors that teach pastors, who in turn, affect eternity for millions of people as well as future generations.
Would you tell a Christian, who also practices witchcraft, that
1) It isn't a sin.
2) It's okay to continue practicing it.
3) Even if it is a sin, it's not a big deal because we are saved by grace.
No. Most Christians wouldn't say this. They would encourage the person involved in witchcraft to turn from this sin.
Persons involved in any sin, who have no desire to stop and repent, are in danger of bondage to sin and the devil.
But the ELCA tells people struggling with homosexuality that 1) it isn't a sin, and 2) it is okay to continue practicing it. Some ELCA people will say 3) even if it is a sin, it's not a big deal because we are saved by grace.
Encouraging people to stay in bondage to sin doesn't seem very "loving." In fact, being in bondage to sin can cause spiritual darkness in one's life, as well as put one's eternal destination at risk.
God tells us to turn from sin because He loves us.
The ELCA tells people struggling with homosexuality to keep sinning because, in all honesty, the ELCA has been deceived by the enemy.
When you were slaves to sin, you were free from the control of righteousness. What benefit did you reap at that time from the things you are now ashamed of? Those things result in death! But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves to God, the benefit you reap leads to holiness, and the result is eternal life.
My brothers, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring him back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of his way will save him from death and cover over a multitude of sins.
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America recently held an event called "Sharing the Gospel in a 2.0 World." On day three of the conference Muslim and Buddhist prayers were giving at the invitation of the ELCA.
Two students who were with a group called Interfaith Youth Core, and whose Muslim founder and executive director Eboo Patel (read here) was a keynote speaker for the "Sharing the Gospel" event, gave the Muslim and Buddhist prayers.
Sue Rothmeyer, ELCA Associate Executive Director for Youth and Young Adult Ministries said, "out of hospitality we offered these students the opportunity to pray." Rothmeyer went on to say, "we carefully stated to (the assembly) it was out of the student's tradition and we invited everyone to listen and participate as they felt comfortable."
A conference attendee said of the prayers, "I think everyone in the room thought they were quite beautiful and appreciated people sharing something out of their faith traditions."
I have problems with the inclusiveness gospel the ELCA is preaching and conducting. They sacrifice the Good News for the sake of trying to be accepting, tolerant and understanding. The fact of the matter is, sharing the Good News is the most loving, kind and caring thing they could do. But bringing people to the saving grace of Jesus doesn't matter to these ELCA leaders.
Now they have prayers, to false gods, given at their "Sharing the Gospel" ELCA event. Jesus would NEVER allow that. He would have been filled with holy anger if the prophets of Baal were in the temple leading people in prayers to their god.
Sadly the real Jesus doesn't matter in today's ELCA. Satan has them rejecting the Bible and following his rules. Then the ELCA cloaks everything they do in quasi-christian language and hope you don't notice.
In my last blog I asked the question, "How many times in the last 2 years have you heard your ELCA pastor explain, during a sermon, class or any time, how someone becomes a Christian?"
I know there are a lot of good, Bible-believing ELCA pastors who do not believe in Universal Salvation. Thank God for them. But the fact is, the ELCA seminaries are producing pastors every year and they are taught that all people are saved. If you believe otherwise you're one of the minority in this denomination. As the seminaries go, so goes the church.
But who cares? Right? Well, we all should. This is a dangerous belief. The pastors are playing with people's souls. What if only those who have Jesus as their Lord and Savior are going to heaven? (and that's true) It means a lot of people are NOT going to heaven. And the ELCA is responsible for those they didn't tell. The enemy is winning here. He has God's Church believing a lie and being silent. I heard a stat that says the ELCA is sending out 60% less missionaries than they were 20 years ago. I should be shocked, but the reality is, if the ELCA thinks everyone is saved anyway, why send out missionaries?
Universal Salvation is a lie and a huge risk. Hell is a reality. Nobody wishes their worst enemy be sent there. The Bible says those that don't know Jesus will go there. When ELCA pastors are taught to disregard the Bible, in so many ways, salvation in Jesus can be discarded too, because it feels better to say "everyone will be saved." They say this even though there are hundreds of Bible verses about people going to hell. I guess the Universal Salvation teaching seminaries disregard those verses too.
In light of the ELCA's decisions recently and our discussing it yesterday, I wanted so share a thought from the Experiencing God Day by Day devotional, Sept. 19 -
"It is Satan's practice to convince people that what God calls good is actually evil and what God declares evil is, in fact, good. . .(Satan) continues to deceive people into doubting what God has clearly said.
It is important to hold ourselves accountable to God's Word. God does not need us to find exceptions for His commands. He requires our obedience."
Isaiah 5:20 - Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!