(The following article was written by Rev. Tom Brock of pastorsstudy.org. You can follow Pastor Brock on Facebook - here and Twitter - here.)
Bishop Lowell Erdahl, retired Bishop of the St. Paul Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, died this month. He and I were on opposite sides of moral issues back in the days when I was still in the ELCA. He and former head ELCA Bishop Herbert Chilstrom, who died last year, co-wrote a book entitled “Sexual Fulfillment: For Single and Married, Straight and Gay, Young and Old”. The book endorsed homosexual behavior in ‘loving, committed relationships” and also stated that “self-pleasuring” (masturbation) can be a gift from God.
I have personally struggled with same sex attraction for most of my life, but for the sake of Christ and my eternal soul, I abstain. Thus, I was grieved that Erdahl and Chilstrom promoted the acceptance of homosexual behavior in the Church. And they won. Since 2009 the ELCA has ordained practicing homosexuals and transgender persons and many ELCA congregations now perform homosexual “weddings.” In May, the ELCA elected the world’s first transgender bishop.
Today, Erdahl and Chilstrom stand before God to answer for denying the Bible which teaches “homosexuals will not inherit the Kingdom of God” (I Corinthians 6:9-11). Romans 1:32 talks about people who give “hearty approval” to sin. I am sad to say, I think these two bishops did that.
Sincerely in Christ,
Pastor Tom Brock
(Here is Bishop Erdahl's obituary)
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America continually demonstrates their departure from Biblical Truth and Christianity, as they encourage people to embrace and participate in sin. On Easter Sunday, the Salt House, a mission congregation of the ELCA, gave out Easter Sunday kits (gift bags) that included lotion.
Pastor Sara Wolbrecht gave instructions for using the lotion during the Easter service saying:
"I invite you to feel the joy of your body today by embracing the pleasure your body provides. So here is some lotion to moisturize and care for your body. You are also commissioned to enjoy the pleasure of your body today. Whether with your partner or on your own. That's right, pleasure yourself and/or your partner today. You heard that right. This is also what resurrection joy can look like in our bodies. Okay? Enjoy." (See video below beginning at the 24:50 mark)
Salt House is an ELCA church in Washington state that is "partially funded by a grant from the ELCA's Congregational and Synodical Mission," (see here).
The Salt House says it is about "radical welcome," which they describe this way:
"We want to take this opportunity to be completely clear about what “radical welcome” looks like here at Salt House by answering a few simple questions:
The New Yorker magazine wrote a feature story on Rev. Bolz-Weber this week, titled "The Lutheran Pastor Calling for a Sexual Reformation," which provides a window into the life, thoughts and vile nature of this beloved ELCA pastor, which I will highlight. The most important revelation came from Nadia's bishop, Rev. Jim Gonia, of the Rocky Mountain Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. He begins by comparing Rev. Nadia Bolz-Weber to Martin Luther, "He talked about farting and drinking and he was kind of like Nadia.” The feature writer continues, "Gonia summed up Luther’s idea like this: 'Now that we don’t need to worry that we’re good enough for God, how do we direct our attention to our neighbor?'”
Then we have the ELCA leadership's public approval of Nadia, who wants to undo Biblical teaching reserving sexual relations to one man and one woman within marriage. Here is the whole paragraph from the article to give you context:
"Bolz-Weber argues that this idea should be extended to sex. For millennia, the Church has taught Christians to deny their physical selves, and to consider carnal urges sinful. 'We keep looking for a set of laws that will save us,' Bolz-Weber told me. 'Relying on grace can feel shaky. If it’s free it must be worthless.' As a result, both men and women lead fractured lives, believing that their sexuality is at odds with their spirituality. 'This idea that salvation comes through sexual repression,' Bolz-Weber said, 'that shit comes out sideways.' In “Shameless,” she sets out to build a sexual ethic around human flourishing rather than around rules encoded by men centuries ago. This begins by recognizing that with sex, as with everything else, 'it’s not about being good—it’s about grace.' This, she argues, is actually just the natural extension of classical Lutheranism. 'She’s the most classical Lutheran preacher you’ll ever meet,' Gonia said, adding that the reformation she’s calling for is long overdue. 'We have so intellectualized our faith—there’s a need to bring head, heart, and body into the forefront of our lives, for the future of the Christian tradition.'"
People of the ELCA, the leadership approves of what Nadia Bolz-Weber is preaching. This is public confirmation, along with ELCA leadership having her speak to 31,000 ELCA youth this summer as they assembled for the church-wide gathering. They are on board with these harmful sexual ethics she and many others preach that clearly go against God's will for people. Why are you still part of this vile denomination?
Here is a run down concerning things from The New Yorker article (in which I am quoted):
- Nadia Bolz-Weber and her two children recently went to a sexually explicit exhibition called "Au Natural" that included casts of penises, nudity, and a sculpture that is masturbating. It also presented a sculpture of Jesus made from cigarettes.
- "When she was twenty, she joined Vox Femina, a feminist performance-art group whose acts, she told me, weren’t so different from Lucas’s egg massage." (referring to one of the art exhibition performances)
- She use to be a call-center psychic.
- She had an abortion, saying she could not afford a child. And she does not think abortion is wrong.
- She divorced her husband and loves having sex with her boyfriend, which has caused her to feel closer to God.
- Her son is gay, and at 16 years old Nadia bought him condoms when she heard he had a new boyfriend.
- She calls the belief, that homosexuality is wrong, "bigotry."
- Bolz-Weber was once a counselor at a Unitarian summer camp where some campers would sunbathe nude.
As you can see below, ELCA pastor Nadia Bolz-Weber is publicizing The New Yorker piece as if she is happy with what it says.
That quote is from Rev. Nadia Bolz-Weber, the most famous pastor, author and speaker in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA).
Nadia Bolz-Weber is a major leader in the ELCA, and she is telling people that it is okay to view pornography. That, of course, is against Scripture. God tells us, and in the words of Jesus, "But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart." - Matthew 5:28
This is what the ELCA has become.
Many ELCA leaders, members and unchurched people fawn over Rev. Bolz-Weber. She was even picked to speak to 31,000 ELCA teenagers at last summer's ELCA youth gathering despite the high volume of heretical statements she has made in the past. (see here and here)
ELCA Pastor Bolz-Weber went on in the same article to say:
"If we took shame out of the fact that people like to view erotic imagery, the compulsive behavior around consuming pornography would decrease."
"The church is saying that the Creator of the Universe, God in the heavens above, knows if you’re masturbating, and God is super disappointed. How ridiculous. That causes harm because these teachings are done in God’s name."
"The Bible’s not clear about shit!"
"If the teachings of the church are harming people, then we need to rethink those teachings."
The last two quotes are a good description of what the ELCA believes about God's Word. This is false teaching and people need to get out from under their leadership. If you will not do it in honor of God, do it for your children.
And things are even going to get worse. With the approaching release of Nadia's new book, you can be assured that this is just the beginning of troubling and Bible-defying teaching ELCA leaders and members will consume.
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