By Pastor Tom Brock of pastorsstudy.org. Facebook users can follow Pastor Brock by going here or twitter users here.
Rachel Swenson is a 2013 graduate of the ELCA’s St. Olaf College, Northfield, Minn. This year she is serving in Vryheid, South Africa, with the ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission program. She recently wrote an item for the ELCA’s blog “Living Lutheran” (find it at https://www.livinglutheran.org/2014/02/accompaniment). Here is part of what she said:
For those of you who are unaware, accompaniment is the ELCA Young Adults in Global Mission buzz word. While my technical job title is missionary of the ELCA, I am not a traditional missionary. The job of the 60 YAGM scattered across the globe is to accompany — to walk with the people in our new communities, to share their sorrows, their victories…
Yes, she said “God in all her splendor.” If you read her entire article, she doesn’t mention the word “Jesus.” There is no word about evangelism or bringing people to saving faith in Christ. Its all about “accompaniment.” Put this alongside the fact that the ELCA’s national magazine “The Lutheran” recently printed an article by Pastor Peter Marty called “Who Gets Saved?” His answer is that pretty much everybody is saved, whether they believe in Jesus or not. Little wonder young adult ELCA missionaries are confused and unable to share the Gospel.
For the record, Lutherans believe that we are saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone (Ephesians 2:8-9). At least we have believed that for 500 years, but things are changing in the ELCA.
4/1/2014 12:09:42 am
Even though the ELCA is busy deconstructing Jesus, voting in its conventions to nullify His Word, and peddling heretical universalism, other Lutheran denominations take the Lord of the Church, His Word, and His Great Commission seriously.
4/1/2014 04:14:25 am
When I first read this article about being nice to people in other countries, I missed "God in all her splendor." (Guess it's not a typo.) Are ELCAites allowed to use pronouns in reference to God? Here is part of a newsletter from Pastor Gladys Moore of St John's (ELCA) in Summit, NJ. --
4/1/2014 06:52:37 am
ELCAnites, masters of Bible-nullifying traditions, disdainfully eschew Jesus' choice of pronouns for His Father: "You've never known Him, but I know Him. If I were to say I don't know Him, I would be a liar like you. But I do know Him, and I keep His word." [John 8:55]
4/7/2014 02:06:29 am
In my Japanese Bible, the pronouns for God are not "he," though gendered pronouns do exist in Japanese. Rather (to use the John 8:55 reference) it is the neutral (neither masculine nor feminine) "that one." Other passages would use what could perhaps be translated into English as "its" (note: this is not as impersonal as it may sound in English). So is my Japanese Lutheran (Christian) tradition disdainful in not using a masculine pronoun for God? Or is this all a matter of linguistics? [Same would go for French or German, with masculine and feminine pronouns used for the context of masculine or feminine nouns]
4/1/2014 08:03:10 am
When I was in an ELCA seminary, and this was nearly 30 years ago, we were given guidelines telling us not to write papers or sermons using personal pronouns for God, especially male personal pronouns. Some of the older professors still said "He," but many went through the linguistics contortions like the above comment shared, and some professors reveled in calling God "Her." In chapel when we prayed "Our Father," you could hear some people shout "Our Mother." Hymns were similarly bowdlerized. It was tough being an orthodox Lutheran then, and we know it is worse now.
I've been a Lutheran pastor for 32 years beginning in the ALC and then three difficult years in the ELCA. In my estimation the reason the ELCA and other mainline denominations are 'dismantling Jesus' and the gospel is because of a very low view of scripture beginning with Genesis 1:1 to Rev. 21:22. As I was taught at Luther Seminary the bible has mistakes, contradictions and insertions from the early church, it is NOT inerrant or infallible. Man's opinion has more authority than God's word. So open bible insert mistakes and pull out immorality and universalism and a whole lot more. Any denomination that does not view the bible as inerrant in headed down the same slop as the ELCA.
4/7/2014 04:31:09 am
4/7/2014 01:26:08 pm
Jesus regularly, frequently refers to His Father as, well, His Father:
4/7/2014 02:11:32 pm
Well, Didaskalos, how do you answer the critics who say that biblical Israel was a patriarchal society therefore God is presented in masculine terms. You can't just fall back on "The Bible says so."
4/7/2014 09:28:09 pm
I say it's a red herring, Kathy. The kind of society Israel was is not the determiner for the Bible's saying exactly what the Bible says. And, yes, I can and and will fall back on "the Bible says so" because it's a matter of what the Bible is to a Christian. Is it the Word of God or does it (as the apostate liberal churches say) CONTAIN the Word of God, in which case a liberal church denomination can sit in judgment on the clear language of the Bible, just as those denominations have sat and continue to sit in judgment on what's sin and what isn't sin. Dan's website has a profusion of instances in which the ELCA has capriciously amended God's Word.
4/8/2014 05:12:29 am
"It's a matter, Kathy, of Who has the right and authority to decide: God or me. I pick God. The ELCA picks . . . the ELCA."
4/8/2014 09:13:46 am
I think the answer is three-fold, Kathy. I think it involves the historic, faithful Christian Church; the present, faithful Christian Church; and the individual born-again believer in Jesus Christ.
4/9/2014 03:39:35 am
It is true that "No one church or denomination possesses the whole counsel of God," but we believe in one holy catholic and apostolic church. There is one Church that has the fullness of counsel. From the beginning, in the counsel of the saints, the faithful Christian/Catholic/Universal Church has taught the Virgin Birth, the male Priesthood, and that homosexual acts are a sin. You and I both believe what the faithful Christian Church has taught for 2,000 years.
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Former ELCA seminary student and former ELCA member who is fed up with the ELCA's consistent mockery of God's Word.
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