Author Topic: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.  (Read 11015 times)

James_Gale

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2010, 03:44:08 PM »
WordAlone and Sola Publishing are the sponsors of the website, and most authors are ELCA/formerELCA, so it appears to not be an LCMS site.

What's the point in posting this?  I don't find it at all "thought provoking."  On the contrary.  

 I'll return to the questions I led with:  What's the point of this post?  It seems to me to be just one more thread in which people can bitch about the state of the ELCA.  We've already got plenty of those.
So, why pick on me?  Why not Pr. Buechler, who started this thread.

I didn't mean to "pick on" anyone.  But I did hit the wrong "quote" button.  I apologize for that.  I've fixed my initial post.

Jim
« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 03:46:04 PM by James_Gale »

LutherMan

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #16 on: October 22, 2010, 03:46:57 PM »

I didn't mean to "pick on" anyone.  But I did hit the wrong "quote" button.  I apologize for that.

Jim
Oh, that's fine.  It left me confused, however.
Thanks for clearing it up.

George Erdner

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #17 on: October 22, 2010, 03:48:25 PM »
But those who honestly and seriously want to understand the ELCA should avoid that website like the plague and do two things.
1. Read the ELCA's own description of itself.
2. Get to know several - and I mean several, even many, even 20-30 or more - ELCA congregations in various locations, and pastors of various ages and interests.
3. Then make up your mind. I guarantee you will still be able to despise, criticize, denounce and condemn; but at least you will be doing it with information you gathered yourself rather than crap from a biased source.

These are the links included in that "biased source". Could you please tell us which ones are to websites that are not either "the ELCA's own description of itself" or the website of an ELCA congregation?

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/The-Bible.aspx

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/The-Holy- Trinity.aspx

http://www2.elca.org/questions/Results.asp?recid=58

http://www.herchurch.org/

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/The-Holy- Spirit.aspx

http://www2.elca.org/questions/Results.asp?recid=4

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/Salvation.aspx

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/The- Resurrection.aspx

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/Virgin-Birth.aspx

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/Satan.aspx

https://www.elcabop.org/Home/UnderstandMyBenefits/Health/ELCAPrimary/HospMed/~/

http://www.elca.org/What-We-Believe/New-or-Returning-to-Church/Dig-Deeper/Homosexuality-and-the- ELCA.aspx

Explain to me how getting first hand information about the ELCA is dangerous and why getting biased information from ELCA opponents is better.

As I note above, the links in that article of "biased information from ELCA opponents" are all to ELCA websites. Of the 12 links, 10 are to pages on WWW.ELCA.ORG. The other two are to WWW.ELCABOP.ORG or to an ELCA congregation.

How are those links "biased information"?

pbnorth3

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #18 on: October 22, 2010, 04:07:57 PM »
Pastor Buechler writes (re my last comment):
Ah yes, please remember that there are no absolutes!
I comment:
I never said that, and I do not agree with that statement.
Pastor Buechler writes:
One could say the same about Mormonism. They are just one more Christian religion with a different interpretation of things. Or one could say that of Jehovah's Witnesses as well.
I comment:
I would not say that about either of those two groups. And I do not see the relevance.
Pastor Buechler:
This is a very dangerous position to take, and one of the reasons going to the website I posted is truly important to those who come looking to ALPB for answers.
Me:
Explain to me how getting first hand information about the ELCA is dangerous and why getting biased information from ELCA opponents is better.

Because you asked Charles here are the answers to the bolded:

1) Since you are making the statement that all the "issues" are about interpretation, you are in fact saying that there are no absolutes, just people's own definitions of what truth is. That sounds alot like Pontius Pilate who answered our Lord by saying, "What is truth?" Disagree with that all you want. It doesn't change the truth. (Of course you are free to interpret any way you like ;))

2) The relevance is that Mormons and Jehovah's Witnesses will start conversations very much as you did. It is all about interpretation of Scripture. Who are you to say they are wrong if it is all about interpretation anyway?

3) George has just posted the salient points on the third bold. This website is in fact posting links directly to the ELCA website. You get to see what the ELCA says on their own pages. So going to the site posted on this thread gives you information directly from the ELCA. Of course you would have known that if you would have gone and actually read the web page. I at least admit when I goof and don't read something all the way through.

Peace in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Rob Buechler

Richard Johnson

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #19 on: October 22, 2010, 05:11:56 PM »
Here are some thought provoking pieces about the differences between ELCA and LCMS (and other orthodox Lutheran churches) with regards doctrine. Take a look and see what you think. The website is: http://gnesiolutheran.com/elca-lcms-2/

Peace in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Rob Buechler

What I think is that whomever writes the crap on the ELCA website probably flunked confirmation.

And whoever compares "something from the ELCA website" to official statements of the LCMS is doing everyone a disservice.
The Rev. Richard O. Johnson, STS

ptmccain

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #20 on: October 22, 2010, 05:38:07 PM »
And whoever compares "something from the ELCA website" to official statements of the LCMS is doing everyone a disservice.

Not so, Richard.

The ELCA alone bears the responsibility for its public statements about what it believes, posted on its web site. How can anyone be faulted for citing what the ELCA itself posts on its own web site?

Perhaps you should contact the ELCA webmaster and inform him/her of the problems the web site is causing you as an ELCA pastor.
« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 06:03:36 PM by ptmccain »

A Catholic Lutheran

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #21 on: October 22, 2010, 05:42:49 PM »
But those who honestly and seriously want to understand the ELCA should avoid that website like the plague and do two things.
1. Read the ELCA's own description of itself.

The trouble is that the "ELCA's own description of itself" may or, as likely as not, not be accurate.  Sometimes the best answer as to who somebody is does not come from themselves, but others who can answer the question from an outside perspective.  Hence why you have to provide other references when you apply for a job and I never trust anybody's "personal" ads on a dating site...

Quote
2. Get to know several - and I mean several, even many, even 20-30 or more - ELCA congregations in various locations, and pastors of various ages and interests.

The funny thing is, the more ELCA parishes people get to know, the more confused people tend to get.  We have become such a broad and divergent group, it is almost impossible to get any common thread between 20-30 congregations besides generics.  Weekly celebration of the Sacrament, monthly, or even less?  "Traditional," "Contemporary," or some other variety of worship?  

Though I do have to admit, the CWA 2009 decisions have done wonders at winnowing out a lot of that diversity...

Quote
3. Then make up your mind. I guarantee you will still be able to despise, criticize, denounce and condemn; but at least you will be doing it with information you gathered yourself rather than crap from a biased source.

Yet, no matter where the "source" comes from, you traditionally don't brook any negative critique of the ELCA...  Which all brings us back to the beginning again.

Pax Christi;
Pr. Jerry Kliner, STS

pbnorth3

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #22 on: October 22, 2010, 05:54:26 PM »
And whoever compares "something from the ELCA website" to official statements of the LCMS is doing everyone a disservice.

Not so, Richard.

The ELCA alone bears the responsibility for its public statements about what it believes, posted on its web site. How can anyone be faulted for citing what the ELCA itself posts on its own web site?

Your point makes little sense.

Indeed.

Peace in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Rob Buechler

pbnorth3

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #23 on: October 22, 2010, 05:57:50 PM »
Here are some thought provoking pieces about the differences between ELCA and LCMS (and other orthodox Lutheran churches) with regards doctrine. Take a look and see what you think. The website is: http://gnesiolutheran.com/elca-lcms-2/

Peace in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Rob Buechler

What I think is that whomever writes the crap on the ELCA website probably flunked confirmation.
And whoever compares "something from the ELCA website" to official statements of the LCMS is doing everyone a disservice.

It is quite true that it is garbage. The problem is that the person writing this stuff on the website is writing it with the authority of the National Office. Indeed one of the people writing this garbage is a former bishop of the Rocky Mountain Synod. So it is garbage, but it is also official garbage. It cannot be that those in charge no NOTHING about what is on the website. So you cannot pass this off as some "nut" who is writing unbeknownst to the ELCA brass.

So yes, it is official on an official website. Therefore it is open to being compared "officially" with the LCMS statements.

Peace in the Lord Jesus Christ!
Rob Buechler

ptmccain

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #24 on: October 22, 2010, 06:12:54 PM »
Note to Erma, the Gnesio site added the words "The LCMS believes..." and then quoted The LCMS web site:

4. On the basis of the Holy Scriptures we teach the sublime article of the Holy Trinity; that is, we teach that the one true God, Deut. 6:4; 1 Cor. 8:4, is the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost, three distinct persons, but of one and the same divine essence, equal in power, equal in eternity, equal in majesty, because each person possesses the one divine essence entire, Col. 2:9, Matt. 28:19. We hold that all teachers and communions that deny the doctrine of the Holy Trinity are outside the pale of the Christian Church. The Triune God is the God who is gracious to man, John 3:16-18, 1 Cor. 12:3. Since the Fall, no man can believe in the "fatherhood" of God except he believe in the eternal Son of God, who became man and reconciled us to God by His vicarious satisfaction, 1 John 2:23; John 14:6. Hence we warn against Unitarianism, which in our country has to a great extent impenetrated the sects and is being spread particularly also through the influence of the lodges.

Does anyone even know who the Gnesio folks are?
« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 06:49:55 PM by ptmccain »

Charles_Austin

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #25 on: October 22, 2010, 06:15:59 PM »
Pastor Kliner writes:
The trouble is that the "ELCA's own description of itself" may or, as likely as not, not be accurate.  Sometimes the best answer as to who somebody is does not come from themselves, but others who can answer the question from an outside perspective.  Hence why you have to provide other references when you apply for a job and I never trust anybody's "personal" ads on a dating site...
I comment:
The official documents say what they say. They are accurate.
You may have more experience with "personal ads" on a dating site than I do, but I don't see the parallel.

Pastor Kliner writes:
The funny thing is, the more ELCA parishes people get to know, the more confused people tend to get.  We have become such a broad and divergent group, it is almost impossible to get any common thread between 20-30 congregations besides generics.  Weekly celebration of the Sacrament, monthly, or even less?  "Traditional," "Contemporary," or some other variety of worship?  
I comment:
What confusion? We are diverse. Congregations are not all alike. Worship services are not lock-step uniform. What is wrong with this? Some LC-MS congregations practice closed communion, some do not. Does this alone make the LC-MS "confusing"?

Pastor Kliner writes:
Yet, no matter where the "source" comes from, you traditionally don't brook any negative critique of the ELCA...  Which all brings us back to the beginning again.
I respond:
Actually, I brook quite a lot. But I have little tolerance for silly, uninformed criticism or for the "gotcha-bombs" hurled by people like "Lutherman" or the sniping by those who have - sometimes years ago - left the ELCA in a snit.

James_Gale

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #26 on: October 22, 2010, 06:16:41 PM »
And whoever compares "something from the ELCA website" to official statements of the LCMS is doing everyone a disservice.

Not so, Richard.

The ELCA alone bears the responsibility for its public statements about what it believes, posted on its web site. How can anyone be faulted for citing what the ELCA itself posts on its own web site?

Your point makes little sense.

Pr. Johnson's point makes perfect sense.

The linked document purports to be a "primer to some of the differences that exist between the ELCA and the LCMS in regards to what we believe, teach, and confess."  It's not.  If it were, it would use the officially approved statements of both church bodies as a starting point.

You're right that the "ELCA alone bears responsibility" for what's posted on its web site.  However, the fact that the ELCA has been negligent or reckless in carrying out this responsibility does not mean that the ELCA "believes, teaches, and confesses" what is posted.  

I do think that it would be fair in a "primer" to cite the linked material as evidence that in practice, the ELCA with some frequency deviates from its official teachings.  But only after laying out the official teachings.  And in order to be fair to the reader, an author must clearly identify the author and source of the deviating text.  If a text has been approved by a churchwide, synodical, or congregational body, the primer should say that.  If it has not been, the primer should say that as well.  If a primer does not follow these practices, it will be inherently misleading.

LutherMan

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #27 on: October 22, 2010, 06:18:39 PM »
Some believe this, and some believe that.  Big tent....

ptmccain

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #28 on: October 22, 2010, 06:21:30 PM »
James, the statements stand, until corrected, as the public witness of the ELCA.



« Last Edit: October 22, 2010, 06:50:33 PM by ptmccain »

Charles_Austin

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Re: Differences between ELCA and LCMS doctrinally, an interesting look.
« Reply #29 on: October 22, 2010, 06:28:06 PM »
So which group should I look to in order to get at the "real" LC-MS? The Jesus One people? The Blazings? Those who stumped for the current president and thumped the previous leader or those who wanted him re-elected? The pastor who invited me to preach when he goes on vacation, or the pastor who would not commune me? Those who don't want ELCA hands on the food or supplies they give to the poor or those who send offerings to Lutheran World Relief and Lutheran Disaster Response? A pastor who won't commune with fellow winklearians or someone who does? Those who have canonized the "official" hymnal, or a congregation with the dread COWO and two or three praise bands? A campus pastor at Valpo or someone whose theological tome is published by CPH?
My goodness, the LC-MS is confusing! How can you know what it really stands for? And it sure seems that some congregations take a different approach to their "walking together" than others.