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Topics - Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

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Your Turn / Parable of the Prodigal Son
« on: March 26, 2022, 11:33:05 AM »
Our lectionary includes Jesus' longest parable and arguably the most popular and familiar. Any fresh takes on this classic story from the Lord?

Your Turn / Public Religion
« on: March 25, 2022, 09:02:06 AM »
Had a great experience last night attending the 113th Army ROTC Military Ball with my son, Christian, and my wife Susan. Excited for his progress. He will complete a mechanical engineering degree this spring at The Ohio State University, take in either Airborne or Ranger school this summer, and then officer training this fall.

He commented on the events last night, comparing them to church: invocation, speech commending people to faith, and benediction among the other activities. The current leader of the ROTC program also talked about his faith. The religious comments were all general God-talk, not expressly Christian. Nevertheless, I was pleased that the leadership allowed and encouraged that talk over against secularism. I'm thankful that the military (and police and fire departments) gives place to the importance of religious faith for supporting those facing life/death challenges and for their character development.

Your Turn / Legalism, Antinomianism, and Evangelicalism
« on: March 23, 2022, 06:43:02 PM »
I noticed on another thread discussion surrounding these terms. I wonder how participants here understand them. Starting with Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, primary definitions:

Legalism. Strict, literal, or excessive conformity to the law or to a religious or moral code.

Antinomianism. Holds that under the gospel dispensation of grace the moral law is of no use or obligation because faith alone is necessary to salvation.

Evangelicalism. Being in agreement with the Christian gospel especially as it is presented in the four Gospels

Your Turn / Current Best Film
« on: March 14, 2022, 10:21:12 AM »
I have students in catechism who are new to Sunday School and church life. We are studying the second article of the Creed and they are very interested in seeing a movie about the life of Christ. In the past I have shown The Jesus Film (Genesis Project; Inspiration Films, 1979), which follows the Gospel of Luke fairly well. I wonder what is more recent, well done, and faithful, while not being overlong.

Your Turn / The Wording of Baptism: How Flexible?
« on: February 28, 2022, 08:47:32 AM »
The article says thousands of persons are being baptized because of invalid wording from their priest, who said, "We baptize" instead of "I baptize."

If a "We baptize" person comes to your congregation, do you recognize the Baptism?

Your Turn / What Are People Looking for in Religion?
« on: February 17, 2022, 12:12:31 PM »
As I've been reading about Eastern Religions, I've begun wondering this: what do people actually look for and value in religion? I wonder whether we could make an instructive list for considering the goals and values of ministry in the Lutheran Church. I'll start the list with a common element I see between Christian faith and the Eastern Religions:

Growth in self-control and discipline

What else are people looking for?

Your Turn / Reading the Evangelical Heritage Version
« on: February 16, 2022, 07:16:44 AM »
I've recently completed reading the English Standard Version (ESV) in chronological sequence, as presented in the Today's Light Bible. The chronological order of reading is at the end of the book for those who are interested.

I'm now starting on a leisurely reading of the Holy Bible, Evangelical Heritage Version (EHV) from Northwestern Publishing House (2019). I would note my thanks to the layman who gave me this copy.

I will share thoughts about the translation and publication on this thread. If others are reading this new translation, I invite them also to share their thoughts. And as always, where persons wish to comment on topics relevant to the thread, I hope they will.

The text is published in a single column and in paragraph format with content headers in the body of the text. The Bible paper is light grey, making the print clear without glare. Very readable. The footer includes a two sentence introduction to Genesis, regarding authorship, date, and contents. There are translator notes at the foot of the page in a smaller font. If there are other features like this as I read, I may comment on them. Otherwise, this should be enough to describe the basic appearance of the text.
1:9 The text includes a sentence from the Septuagint manuscripts, marked off by half brackets.
1:27 Set as poetry.
2:1 "along with everything in them." Footnote says, "Literally all their armies." The text presents a freer translation; the footnote is more literal, though I think the word for "armies" is actually singular in the Hebrew.

Your Turn / Loving and Delighting in God's Law
« on: February 08, 2022, 02:43:40 PM »
Psa 119:97 MEM. O how love I thy law! it is my meditation all the day.

Psa 119:113 SAMECH. I hate vain thoughts: but thy law do I love.

Psa 119:163 I hate and abhor lying: but thy law do I love.

Psa 119:165 Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.

Psa 1:2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.

Psa 40:8 I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart.

Psa 119:70 Their heart is as fat as grease; but I delight in thy law.

Psa 119:77 Let thy tender mercies come unto me, that I may live: for thy law is my delight.

Psa 119:92 Unless thy law had been my delights, I should then have perished in mine affliction.

Psa 119:174 I have longed for thy salvation, O LORD; and thy law is my delight.

In my study of Luther and early Lutheranism, I found this attitude that is evident in Scripture: the redeemed have a different relationship with God's Law. This is not to deny the second use of the Law but to make room for a third use with those who have received justification, the Holy Spirit, and a new outlook on life. An only-two-uses theology does not account for this changed perspective and relationship with God's Law.

Your Turn / God and Buddhism
« on: February 02, 2022, 11:48:47 AM »
I'm currently reading the Norton Anthology of World Religions (Jack Miles, gen. ed., 2015). The introduction to Buddhism states the Buddha "declared that there is no God" (1:727). Yet as I read further, there is reference to gods of the Hindu pantheon and even to demigods.

I'm wondering whether anyone with direct experience of Buddhism can help me better understand. Is the apparent contradiction due to different schools of Buddhist thought? It appears the editor is stating that Buddha did reject or would have rejected the idea of one God in the personal and Western sense while holding on to the idea that there are gods in the Hindu sense. Is that accurate?

I have read that Buddha rejected the authority of the Vedas as Scripture, which are foundational to Hinduism.

Your Turn / Lutheran Conferences and Workshops
« on: January 21, 2022, 09:21:26 AM »
I'm wondering what Lutheran Conferences and Workshops are available in 2022, apart from the usual district and synod kind. I imagine others might like to learn more, too. If you are aware of such a gathering and would like to share, please list it below so others can learn about it. Include any helpful information such as dates, websites, etc. Here is a possible format for sharing:


Thanks and God bless.

Your Turn / Lutheran Architecture
« on: January 14, 2022, 03:14:07 PM »
Just read "Architecture" in Dictionary of Luther and the Lutheran Traditions. It emphasizes three times the centrality of pulpit (2) and preaching (1). I'm wondering how many of our churches have the pulpit in the center rather than the altar. I invite you to respond regarding your own church and describe others from experience in the comments. Where is the pulpit?

Your Turn / Vesting
« on: December 24, 2021, 09:10:10 AM »
Recently, when I took my alb to the cleaner, I started wearing a cassock and surplice that were in the sacristy here. The surplice has fine embroidery on it and people were excited to see it. Here's a little survey: what ecclesiastical garments are typical at your congregation?

Your Turn / How old was Mary?
« on: December 18, 2021, 07:49:52 AM »
While reading some online articles about Mary, I came across the one below, which states that Mary was likely between 12--16 years old when betrothed and pregnant with Jesus. However, I noticed that articles like this do not document how they reach that conclusion, attributing their answer to cultural norms.

What are the ancient documents or archaeological evidences that address this common question?

Your Turn / Seminex in Print
« on: December 16, 2021, 07:53:48 AM »

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