Author Topic: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go  (Read 8323 times)

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #30 on: September 09, 2008, 06:44:45 PM »
In a certain sense, you are correct; however Paul does speak to homosexuality as being somewhat different, in that it represents a particularly nasty hardening of the heart towards God...
Paul talks even more about the sin of greed than he does homosexuality -- and he calls that idolatry (Eph 5:5; Col 3:5) -- and that is what usually raised God's wrath against Israel.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #31 on: September 09, 2008, 06:50:56 PM »
The government is in the business of legislating moral behaviors.

I'm guessing here, Brian, that this statement is related to your description of how the first use of the Law works.
Yup.

Quote
But I gotta say, regardless of its motivation, this is as indefensible an assertion as any I have ever read on this forum.
Note I stated moral behaviors, not morality. The state can legislate laws and punishment against adultery, murder, etc. What do you think would happen if a church followed the OT commands and stoned someone they caught in adultery or one who had killed another person? We can and need to preach about moral behaviors and obedience to the Ten Commandments especially as defined by Luther. However, we do not have much power to punish people for acting immorally. That power is given to the state.

If you have another position about the state's authority to legislate moral behaviors, please give it.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Layman Randy

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #32 on: September 09, 2008, 07:19:35 PM »
So are you willing to proclaim from the pulpit as strongly that those who are anti-homosexuals are sinning and those who are anti-abortion are sinning just as much as the homosexuals and the women who seek abortions?
Pr. Stoffregen,
1. Your sentence structure and word use indicates you are stating that being anti-abortion is a sin.  How did you arrive at this conclusion?
2. Anti-homosexual?  Define your terms!  Are heterosexuals not "anti-homosexual"?  If you mean discriminatory in acceptance of sinners under God's grace, whilst condemning the sin, of course that is a sin, but does not require you to celebrate the sin!

ghp

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #33 on: September 09, 2008, 07:45:08 PM »
In a certain sense, you are correct; however Paul does speak to homosexuality as being somewhat different, in that it represents a particularly nasty hardening of the heart towards God...
Paul talks even more about the sin of greed than he does homosexuality -- and he calls that idolatry (Eph 5:5; Col 3:5) -- and that is what usually raised God's wrath against Israel.

I said nothing about quantity, or number of times Paul mentioned a sin, did I? Of course not. So please stop with the red herrings. Greed is bad, no doubt. Heck, corporate and/or governmental greed could being denounced from the pulpit could also cause backlash. But you know that. You just wanted to yank my chain because you didn't like my line of argument/choice of words. You're too predictable, Brian -- bob, weave, & exegete to taste...

-ghp

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #34 on: September 09, 2008, 07:48:05 PM »
So are you willing to proclaim from the pulpit as strongly that those who are anti-homosexuals are sinning and those who are anti-abortion are sinning just as much as the homosexuals and the women who seek abortions?
Pr. Stoffregen,
1. Your sentence structure and word use indicates you are stating that being anti-abortion is a sin.
Nope, my sentence structure says that they are sinning. It is part of our nature that whatever we do -- whether opposing abortion or promoting choice -- involves sinning. We are sinners. One cannot get out of bed without sinning.

Quote
How did you arrive at this conclusion?
All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.


Quote
2. Anti-homosexual?  Define your terms!  Are heterosexuals not "anti-homosexual"?  
Sexual orientations have been defined often before. Heterosexuals are folks who primarily have sexual thoughts, fantasies, dreams with people of the opposite sex. Homosexuals are folks who primarily have sexual thoughts, fantasies, dreams with people of the same sex. The sexual thoughts, fantasies, dreams of bi-sexuals are about equally divided.

There is a large group of heterosexuals who are not "against" homosexuals -- or even homosexual behaviors within with mutual loving, life-long committed relationship. "Anti-homosexuals" are those who are against homosexuals, homosexuallity, and homosexual behaviors. If they had their way, homosexuals would be kept out of the church. Certainly same-sex couples would be barred from attending or assuming any leadership positions in a congregation.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #35 on: September 09, 2008, 07:52:19 PM »
In a certain sense, you are correct; however Paul does speak to homosexuality as being somewhat different, in that it represents a particularly nasty hardening of the heart towards God...
Paul talks even more about the sin of greed than he does homosexuality -- and he calls that idolatry (Eph 5:5; Col 3:5) -- and that is what usually raised God's wrath against Israel.

I said nothing about quantity, or number of times Paul mentioned a sin, did I? Of course not. So please stop with the red herrings. Greed is bad, no doubt. Heck, corporate and/or governmental greed could being denounced from the pulpit could also cause backlash. But you know that. You just wanted to yank my chain because you didn't like my line of argument/choice of words. You're too predictable, Brian -- bob, weave, & exegete to taste...
But you pulled out only that one particular sin of the lists that Paul uses. Why? Why is there such a concentration on that one particular sin, while something like greed (wanting and having more than one needs) is quite acceptable in our churches. It seems that you are straining out the tiny gnat of homosexuality and missing the large camel of all the other more common sins among our folks.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Layman Randy

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #36 on: September 09, 2008, 07:55:45 PM »
In a certain sense, you are correct; however Paul does speak to homosexuality as being somewhat different, in that it represents a particularly nasty hardening of the heart towards God...
Paul talks even more about the sin of greed than he does homosexuality -- and he calls that idolatry (Eph 5:5; Col 3:5) -- and that is what usually raised God's wrath against Israel.

I said nothing about quantity, or number of times Paul mentioned a sin, did I? Of course not. So please stop with the red herrings. Greed is bad, no doubt. Heck, corporate and/or governmental greed could being denounced from the pulpit could also cause backlash. But you know that. You just wanted to yank my chain because you didn't like my line of argument/choice of words. You're too predictable, Brian -- bob, weave, & exegete to taste...
But you pulled out only that one particular sin of the lists that Paul uses. Why? Why is there such a concentration on that one particular sin, while something like greed (wanting and having more than one needs) is quite acceptable in our churches. It seems that you are straining out the tiny gnat of homosexuality and missing the large camel of all the other more common sins among our folks.
Would you share your sin score card and rating system with us?   All sins, no matter how large or small are "fatal" in God's sight.
In our sinful society, after considering God's system, do you not see a range of effects upon self, family, community, earth?
Don't squash the ant in a mean-spirited way does not equate with don't kill the clerk when you hold up the convenience store.

PrSabin

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #37 on: September 09, 2008, 08:26:09 PM »
I may lead a sheltered existence, but I find it difficult to imagine cases where a pastor would be accused of hate speech by the civil authority (I’m not talking about demagogues) for espousing the theology category of Law or condemning sin. It seems to me that the problem arises when pastors move on from naming sin into the realm of attempting to remedy or punish sin. The rights of fellow citizens are not dependent on their state of grace as defined by that particular pastor nor are Christians free to substitute their theological beliefs as an excuse to exceed or contravene the Law of the Land as enacted by God’s instituted lawmakers. Moreover, if the argument is that civil disobedience is necessary to serve God’s higher calling, then the consequences must be borne.

I am not always comfortable with the limits the state puts on the Church by means of the tax law. I also know that tax law could also be used to destroy the visible expressions of the Church through punitive taxation to silence unpopular proclamation.

Any tool is only as “good” as the intention of the hand guiding it.


ghp

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #38 on: September 09, 2008, 09:21:33 PM »
In a certain sense, you are correct; however Paul does speak to homosexuality as being somewhat different, in that it represents a particularly nasty hardening of the heart towards God...
Paul talks even more about the sin of greed than he does homosexuality -- and he calls that idolatry (Eph 5:5; Col 3:5) -- and that is what usually raised God's wrath against Israel.

I said nothing about quantity, or number of times Paul mentioned a sin, did I? Of course not. So please stop with the red herrings. Greed is bad, no doubt. Heck, corporate and/or governmental greed could being denounced from the pulpit could also cause backlash. But you know that. You just wanted to yank my chain because you didn't like my line of argument/choice of words. You're too predictable, Brian -- bob, weave, & exegete to taste...
But you pulled out only that one particular sin of the lists that Paul uses. Why? Why is there such a concentration on that one particular sin, while something like greed (wanting and having more than one needs) is quite acceptable in our churches. It seems that you are straining out the tiny gnat of homosexuality and missing the large camel of all the other more common sins among our folks.

Because it's a hot-button topic these days, that is quite germane to the topic at hand of politics. It was at the center of the hubbub in Canada when there was the spectre of hate speech charges if homosexuality was condemned from the pulpit.

And it's pretty clear that when Paul mentions it in Romans, he's using homosexuality as an illustration of total revolt against God - total, persistent, active rebellion against one's Creator. I know that this view has lost favor among recent revisionist exegetes (as I'm sure you're itching to point out), but I hold them in the same contempt that I do revisionist historians -- they are almost agenda-driven rather than striving to be more objective (again, I know you're itching to say that objectivity is impossible - I disagree, especially wrt to God's Truth) in discerning and accepting that which has previously been discerned.

Sin is, certainly, sin, and all sin kills. Paul, and thus the Holy Spirit, seemed to have a particular reason for hammering the point home so hard using the example of unrepentant homosexuality. We may not like it, but that lessens neither the import, nor the validity of the point.

-ghp

MaddogLutheran

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #39 on: September 09, 2008, 09:40:22 PM »
[snip] ...Why is there such a concentration on that one particular sin, while something like greed (wanting and having more than one needs) is quite acceptable in our churches...
Huh?  Greed is acceptable in our churches?  Since when?  I've heard many a sermon reminding me that it's not.  Greed is subjective, but homosexual acts are objective--they are either performed or not.  Who gets to decide when we have more than we need?  It was interesting that in another thread active in the past day or so that Pastor Austin was again recommending that pastors insist on fair financial compensation.   I hope this isn't like the old saying that everyone who drives slower than me is an idiot, and everyone driving faster is a maniac.

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Charles_Austin

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #40 on: September 09, 2008, 11:16:22 PM »
Sterling Spatz comments:
It was interesting that in another thread active in the past day or so that Pastor Austin was again recommending that pastors insist on fair financial compensation.

I ask:
But you are not equating that concern with "greed," are you? 

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #41 on: September 10, 2008, 02:03:08 AM »
Would you share your sin score card and rating system with us?   All sins, no matter how large or small are "fatal" in God's sight.
In our sinful society, after considering God's system, do you not see a range of effects upon self, family, community, earth?
Don't squash the ant in a mean-spirited way does not equate with don't kill the clerk when you hold up the convenience store.
Sins certainly have different consequences under the first use of the Law. However, preaching the first use does not lead anyone to salvation. It is the second use that drives us to salvation by God's grace through faith in Jesus Christ.

Preaching first use stuff can help make a better society, but it doesn't make or nurture Christian faith.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

TravisW

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #42 on: September 10, 2008, 02:20:07 AM »
"And TravisW was grieved in his heart that he had created the post which had spun the thread unto perdition." 

As far as tax-exempt status, it's nice that the church in and of itself doesn't have to render unto Caesar.  Also, I don't believe that politics needs to be preached from the pulpit.  There are enough pundits that I hear day in and day out.  At least one day per week I need to hear about how I'm a sinner, how Christ died for me, how I am joined in His death and resurrection through the waters of baptism, and how I am saved by grace through faith.  I don't hear enough of that.  I don't think I can hear enough of that.  The Law and Gospel message is timeless while politics are merely transitory. 

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #43 on: September 10, 2008, 02:21:49 AM »
And it's pretty clear that when Paul mentions it in Romans, he's using homosexuality as an illustration of total revolt against God - total, persistent, active rebellion against one's Creator. I know that this view has lost favor among recent revisionist exegetes (as I'm sure you're itching to point out), but I hold them in the same contempt that I do revisionist historians -- they are almost agenda-driven rather than striving to be more objective (again, I know you're itching to say that objectivity is impossible - I disagree, especially wrt to God's Truth) in discerning and accepting that which has previously been discerned.

Sin is, certainly, sin, and all sin kills. Paul, and thus the Holy Spirit, seemed to have a particular reason for hammering the point home so hard using the example of unrepentant homosexuality. We may not like it, but that lessens neither the import, nor the validity of the point.

Paul talks about same-sex behaviors -- I'm not going to argue against that. However, it is only one illustration of those whom God has given over (Rom 1:24, 26 & 28). 1:29-31 is a long list of sins that come from the same "giving over" that God did earlier:
"filled with all wickedness, evil, greed, depravity, full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, meanness; gossipers, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventers of evil deeds, disobedient to parents, senseless, untrustworthy, inhuman, unmerciful."

If we are guilty of any of those defects, we are in the same category as those whom God gave over to disgraceful passion in v. 26.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Charles_Austin

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Re: More proof Law/Gospel is only way to go
« Reply #44 on: September 10, 2008, 03:47:40 AM »
TravisW writes:
At least one day per week I need to hear about how I'm a sinner, how Christ died for me, how I am joined in His death and resurrection through the waters of baptism, and how I am saved by grace through faith.

I comment:
I need to hear that, too (and actually, more than one day per week). But I also need to hear how Christ died for others, and I need to hear how my being saved by grace through faith links me to those others - the saved and unsaved - and how my relationship with Christ's death and resurrection impels me, through every means at my disposal (including political ones) to seek their good.
Otherwise, I will languish in a me-and-my-Jesus fog that will make me feel good, but will not help me be a blessing to those others or share Christ with them.