Mark Fitzsimmons is the senior pastor at the ELCA’s Lutheran Church of the Nativity in Arden, North Carolina. On August 14, 2011, the Gospel lesson was from Matthew 15 where Jesus is asked to heal a Canaanite woman's daughter, and here is what Pastor Fitzimmons had to say in his sermon:
“In the lesson we see a little prejudice, we see a little racism. And unfortunately it’s coming off the lips of Jesus, our Savior, our messiah. Did you hear it?”
Pastor Fitzsimmons then focuses in on Jesus’ comment to the Canaanite woman in which He says, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel...It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.” Pastor Fitzsimmons responds, “In Jesus day, ‘dog’ is the derogatory, racist slur that a Jew would use for a Gentile. Jesus said that.” (Listen here. Also, sermons from church here)
This isn’t the first time an ELCA leader criticizes Jesus’ words in Matthew 15. Last year we reported on Rev. Dr. Wil Gafney, associate professor of Hebrew and Old Testament at the ELCA’s Lutheran Theological Seminary at Philadelphia (LTSP) make some audacious statements:
“Jesus said to a woman kneeling at his feet begging for help for her child, 'Let the children be filled first, for it is not good to take the children’s food and throw it to the dogs.' Did Jesus just call that woman a b----? I know this is Jesus and we’ve been trained to read him and hear him religiously, more than religiously, divinely, incarnationally. But where I come from you cannot call a child a dog without calling her mama a dog and you cannot call a woman a dog without calling her a b----.”
“How human, how divine is your Jesus? Is he human enough to be bigoted and biased? Or does your preconceived notion of the divinity of Jesus mean that whatever he said was holy.” (read here)
Jesus is bigoted, biased and racist? Jesus sinned? That’s the claim of these ELCA leaders. These leaders are teaching about the Son of God? God incarnate.
Are these the words of God or those of the devil?
"Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.” - Matthew 7:15
Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.
1 Thessalonians 5:21
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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Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness, but rather expose them. - Ephesians 5:11