Author Topic: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop  (Read 20417 times)

Dan Fienen

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #150 on: August 23, 2019, 02:03:21 PM »
Much as how I regard the Lutheran Confessions although I would prefer without error to infallible with reference to the Confessions.
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Dave Likeness

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #151 on: August 23, 2019, 04:57:28 PM »
In the 18th century, J.S. Semler insisted the Holy Bible merely CONTAINS the Word of God,
rather than the Holy Bible IS the Word of God. Semler believed we are to "treat the Bible
like any other book", rather than the inspired Word of God.

In the 19th century, J. Wellhausen published his Documentary Hypothesis that the Pentateuch was
written by J,E.D.P rather than Moses.  The alleged four source hypothesis was based on vocabulary.
However, the four documents (J,E,D,P) have never been found.

Both the Old Testament (Deut. 31:24) and the New Testament (John 7:19-23) ascribe the Pentateuch
to Moses. There are other passages in the 4 Gospels which ascribe the Pentateuch to Moses
« Last Edit: August 23, 2019, 04:59:33 PM by Dave Likeness »

Coach-Rev

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #152 on: August 23, 2019, 05:20:09 PM »
I believe the Bible is infallible when it comes to telling us how God has dealt with us and saved us through Jesus. I do not believe it is infallible with regard to astronomy, cosmology, geology, all history or biology.
If you want to believe in a 6-24 hour day creation, that’s OK with me. That’s how you read the Bible. But if I say I don’t believe in that, you claim I’m not reading the Bible.

No, I claim you don't read or know your Bible when you agree with the ELCA pronouncements that the sin of Sodom was that of "inhospitality."  (which of course, completely ignores both the OT witness as well as Jude 7 which articulates what it's sin was, and "inhospitality" was not included on the list.

Shall I go on?  There are plenty of examples just like this.  Sophistry was the term I think Luther used for such "interpretations."
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Charles Austin

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #153 on: August 23, 2019, 07:24:44 PM »
Did I say I agreed with that interpretation, Pastor Cottingham? I’m not sure I did.
Do you want to checklist me on other aspects of interpretation of Scripture which might not meet your “standards”?
Retired ELCA Pastor. Parishes in Iowa, New York and New Jersey. LCA/LWF staff. Former journalist  Writer for many church publications.

readselerttoo

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #154 on: August 23, 2019, 08:20:55 PM »
The opinions of the people who signed the Joint Declaration seem not to be the opinions of their Church bodies.  What can then be said about the JD?  Is it of any effect, if so on whom?  Does it accurately the theology of anyone other than the few involved?  What exactly is a re-envisioned papacy anyway?  What would such a pope do?  This is trying to put a square peg in a round pin hole and it will never work.  Salvation is by grace through faith without the works of the Law and most of us believe James would have agreed with that statement.




You would have to show me where James indicates "without works". He states clearly that faith without works is dead. Is a dead faith really faith?

A true and saving faith is never without works but, of course, you've probably been told that 100 times but you continue to bring forth this bug-a-boo as if we're all a bunch of ignorant confirmands

This is my bug-a-boo as well.  When is a person without works anyway?  James has a tendency to confuse the issue with a false premise or pre-condition.  The tree comes first not the fruits. 

readselerttoo

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #155 on: August 23, 2019, 08:23:37 PM »
Pastor Bohler writes (to Pastor/Bishop Benke):
And then, of course, came your obligatory shot at the LCMS as simply being too "politicized" (ignoring the doctrinal issues, again).

I comment (Prepare for a shot.)
Get real, Pastor Bohler. Being “politicized” is, and always has been “doctrine” in the LCMS. The focus shifts, but politics stays.
But we love you anyway. ;)

I get it: you do not like doctrine.  You can take it or leave it.  And you have.  So, for those who DO take doctrine seriously, it must be mere politics.  It's the only way you have of making sense of such people.


For those who do take doctrine seriously, it sounds a lot like salvation by doctrine.

I take math and science and music seriously, but never does that get in the way of salvation by grace. They aren't connected.


I don't take cooking or gardening seriously, but that never jeopardizes my salvation by grace.

Christ's life/death/resurrection IS doctrine.  But I guess you don't see the connection between that and salvation by grace.


Nope. Christ's life/death/resurrection is history. "It happened,." It's proclamation. "It happened." When you start attribute meaning to his life, death, and resurrection, e.g., "by his death we are saved," you are creating doctrine.

Not necessarily.  Jesus' death, etc. is both history and doctrine.  To play one off of the other doesn't work in my book.

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #156 on: August 24, 2019, 01:39:13 AM »
This way of thinking demonstrates why you and some of us are often on such different pages theologically.  You begin with a much more human, fallible view of scripture.  You anticipate errors, mistakes and irreconcilable contradictions. You see the writers going off on their own contrary to God's direction. Thus, you are not willing to assume that James and Paul might actually agree.  You will not look for a reason to explain it that way.  Our differing views of Scripture put us in very different places on such questions.


I came to this way of looking at scriptures by studying scriptures - not reading doctrines about scriptures. The attempt is to approach scriptures without any pre-conceived notions about it. It isn't anticipating errors, mistakes, and irreconcilable contradictions. Neither is it assuming that there can't be any errors, mistakes, or contradictions. It is an approach that expects to hear God speaking through his Word.


Read what Paul says. Read what James says. Study Romans. Study James. Look at what's actually in the text, rather than what other people write about the text. Thus I ask, show me where James talks about faith without works - actual words from the biblical writer; not interpretations by some other person.
"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: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #157 on: August 24, 2019, 01:46:03 AM »
Doctrine is not our attempt to describe what God is and does. It is God's self-revelation. If you can't preach and teach in the name of God, that is, affix God's signature, as His called and ordained servant, to what you have preached and taught, you ought to stop. Nobody is interested in your personal explorations of the mysteries of the universe. Save that for your journal or book group. They come to church to hear the Word of the Lord.


And yet, each denomination ends up with different doctrines based on that same self-revelation. Thus, there is human interpretation of what God's revelation means for our lives today. There are very few words in scriptures that God spoke directly to the people. Usually, God's word came through human agents.


If people come to church to hear the Word of God, why preach? Just read scriptures. Sermons are your words. Sermons were my words. I wrote them down. I spoke them. Are my words inspired like those of scriptures? Should sermons be called "the Word of God"?
"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: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #158 on: August 24, 2019, 01:55:46 AM »
Obviously, you and I disagree as to what is doctrine.  Doctrine is what is taught.  For me, Jesus' life/death/resurrection IS doctrine; it is what I teach.  And that message DOES give life.  Not because it is my teaching, but because it is God's -- as Rev. Speckhard posted, what we teach and preach had better be God's message and not simply that of the teacher/preacher.


Do you also teach that two other men were crucified with Jesus. Is that doctrine? Is there anything salvific in that historical information. Did their deaths do anything for us?

Quote
However, for you (and others) doctrine apparently is merely our striving to explain God's message.  Such a view of doctrine, I agree, would make doctrine susceptible to error and uncertainty.  Of course, if that is all your doctrine/teaching is (your best efforts and not God's revelation) then why should I listen to it with any urgency or trust?  In a similar way, if the Bible is merely man's fallible attempts at explaining God and His work, then why is it to be believed over any other religious book?  If Moses or Paul or any of the other writers merely conveyed God's word as THEY understood it, then so what?  But because the Bible IS God's Word -- and our doctrine faithfully articulates that Word -- then it must be true and life-giving.


Methinks that you have the order backwards. People heard the words from Moses and from prophets and from Jesus and from the apostles and from Paul and they found them life-giving. Then they concluded that these words must be God-breathed because they gave life. They made great efforts to preserve those inspired, life-giving words. They can be handed on to following generations.


The Church didn't start with the Bible; but with people telling the stories that gave the life-giving Spirit to those who heard. Those that conveyed this life, they sought to preserve. For 400 years there were discussions about what writings should be preserved and what should not.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2019, 02:00:33 AM by Brian Stoffregen »
"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: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #159 on: August 24, 2019, 02:00:15 AM »
The opinions of the people who signed the Joint Declaration seem not to be the opinions of their Church bodies.  What can then be said about the JD?  Is it of any effect, if so on whom?  Does it accurately the theology of anyone other than the few involved?  What exactly is a re-envisioned papacy anyway?  What would such a pope do?  This is trying to put a square peg in a round pin hole and it will never work.  Salvation is by grace through faith without the works of the Law and most of us believe James would have agreed with that statement.




You would have to show me where James indicates "without works". He states clearly that faith without works is dead. Is a dead faith really faith?

A true and saving faith is never without works but, of course, you've probably been told that 100 times but you continue to bring forth this bug-a-boo as if we're all a bunch of ignorant confirmands


And yet, you still haven't answered my bug-a-boo: show me where James says it. You have given a perfectly good answer that I agree with, but it doesn't answer the question I asked. Where does James say 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]

MaddogLutheran

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #160 on: August 24, 2019, 09:19:46 AM »
The opinions of the people who signed the Joint Declaration seem not to be the opinions of their Church bodies.  What can then be said about the JD?  Is it of any effect, if so on whom?  Does it accurately the theology of anyone other than the few involved?  What exactly is a re-envisioned papacy anyway?  What would such a pope do?  This is trying to put a square peg in a round pin hole and it will never work.  Salvation is by grace through faith without the works of the Law and most of us believe James would have agreed with that statement.




You would have to show me where James indicates "without works". He states clearly that faith without works is dead. Is a dead faith really faith?

A true and saving faith is never without works but, of course, you've probably been told that 100 times but you continue to bring forth this bug-a-boo as if we're all a bunch of ignorant confirmands


And yet, you still haven't answered my bug-a-boo: show me where James says it. You have given a perfectly good answer that I agree with, but it doesn't answer the question I asked. Where does James say it?
Why do you require James to say what you want it to say?  It is not the only book in the Bible.  With apologies to Pr. Rahn (and Luther), this is a terrible way to read the Bible, yet another form of proof-texting.  Given the relatively uneducated population which Luther was dealing with, and the medieval church's unhelpful teaching, I can certainly understand his rejection of James--the challenge of providing context is a high hurdle.

The point I hear James making, because he's addressing an early Christian community, is that because a human is not God and cannot know what is in the heart of another, it's one of the few metrics we have to determine one's faith.  That's the reality in which most of the epistles were written, addressing real life issues arising in a community.  Not abstract doctrinal statements.  If there's a commentary on James which provides educated speculation as to the specific contemporary reason it was written, I'd be interested in someone sharing it.
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D. Engebretson

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #161 on: August 24, 2019, 10:28:23 AM »
This way of thinking demonstrates why you and some of us are often on such different pages theologically.  You begin with a much more human, fallible view of scripture.  You anticipate errors, mistakes and irreconcilable contradictions. You see the writers going off on their own contrary to God's direction. Thus, you are not willing to assume that James and Paul might actually agree.  You will not look for a reason to explain it that way.  Our differing views of Scripture put us in very different places on such questions.


I came to this way of looking at scriptures by studying scriptures - not reading doctrines about scriptures. The attempt is to approach scriptures without any pre-conceived notions about it. It isn't anticipating errors, mistakes, and irreconcilable contradictions. Neither is it assuming that there can't be any errors, mistakes, or contradictions. It is an approach that expects to hear God speaking through his Word.


Read what Paul says. Read what James says. Study Romans. Study James. Look at what's actually in the text, rather than what other people write about the text. Thus I ask, show me where James talks about faith without works - actual words from the biblical writer; not interpretations by some other person.

James notes that someone is saying that he has faith but he has no works.  Apparently this person looks at his brothers and sisters in the faith and has no love for them, sending them on their way with no concern at all. This does not bother them.  Yet he still claims to be a person of true faith. But is this real faith? Is this the correct teaching of faith and works? James would say no.  Paul also knew that his teaching on justification and faith was being distorted in this very way.  There are those who seem to believe that they can live ungodly lives and still claim to be justified in faith.  They were even going to the extreme of saying: 'Let's sin that grace may increase!'  'Let us do evil that good may then come!'  Check out Romans 3 and 5 for some of his rhetorical questioning on these issues.

But faith does not live in isolation. James is clearly concerned about claims that there is such a 'faith' that can live without producing any works; a dead faith being a true faith. In Galatians 6:5 Paul writes that "in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything, but faith working through love."  In his commentary on this very verse and chapter Luther states that "faith must of course be sincere. It must be a faith that performs good works through love. If faith lacks love it is not true faith."   

If you read Paul and James in context you can easily see how each addresses the issues surrounding justification and faith, yet without having to be in contradiction.  Both James and Paul clearly note that faith justifies. James 2, Romans 4. They both use Abraham as an example of this, who "believed God" and "it was counted to him as righteousness." 

The reference to works is seen from two positions.  One is from the position of what declares us righteous before God.  Faith in Christ Jesus. "By grace you are saved, through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God." Eph. 2:8. So are works therefore useless, unnecessary?  Not at all.  True faith will produce them. James is clear on that. Can a man claim that he has true faith while living contrary to that faith? No.  As Luther again said: "Idle faith is not justifying faith."  And Paul is clear on that as well.  Continuing the above quote from Ephesians: "For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."

To me Paul and James are on the 'same page.'  But if you want them to be seen in contradiction, so be it.  Remove James from the canon and keep Paul.  But if you think, as some in Jame's congregation did, that faith without works is okay; that dead faith is true faith, then you are disagreeing with Paul as well as James. 
« Last Edit: August 24, 2019, 10:34:29 AM by D. Engebretson »
Pastor Don Engebretson
St. Peter Lutheran Church of Polar (Antigo) WI

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #162 on: August 24, 2019, 11:44:25 AM »

I came to this way of looking at scriptures by studying scriptures - not reading doctrines about scriptures. The attempt is to approach scriptures without any pre-conceived notions about it.


Pr. Stoffregen, of course you have a pre-conceived notion of how to approach scripture: that you can approach scripture without any pre-conceived notions.  This is one part of the mythology of modern science, including lingusitic science, and determines the proper way to interpret a complex text.  It operates on the pre-conceived notion that you are a neutral observer of the text, and can thus stand back from the text and analyze it without intrusive bias.  But there is no such thing as the "neutral observer."  There is a multitude of layers of pre-conceived notions embedded in everyone's approach to a text, including the Bible.  For instance, you have often referred to the importance of considering the historical and cultural environment in which the Bible was written, organized and established as authoritative.  That's a pre-conceived notion that governs your approach to the text.  You are also possessed of the pre-conceived notion that word studies are the key to discerning the "meaning" of the text.  From nearly everything you have written on this Forum, it is apparent that you adhere to an interpretive ideology that supplies a network of pre-conceived notions, on the basis of which you approach scripture.  Like everyone else, you stand in the midst of a hermeneutical theory as you read scripture; you do not stand outside of any pre-conceived notions.  You are not a "neutral observer."

Tom Pearson

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #163 on: August 24, 2019, 01:53:57 PM »
Why do you require James to say what you want it to say? 


Huh? I want James to say what James says. It isn't what I want nor what you want nor what Luther wants him to say. I'm arguing that we need to listen to James on James's terms. That begins by actually reading and trying to understand his words; not words someone else has written about James.


Quote
It is not the only book in the Bible.  With apologies to Pr. Rahn (and Luther), this is a terrible way to read the Bible, yet another form of proof-texting.


Which is exactly what you did with my words. You turned them into something I've never said. You gleaned a meaning that I never intended. God gave us 66 or 73 different books. I take that seriously. The Bible is a book of books; not one book. God could have let a version of the harmonized gospels win out; but didn't. lWe have four of them.


We really don't need Deuteronomy - a second telling of the law; but it's there. 1 & 2 Chronicles repeats much of the history in Samuels and Kings (but only for the southern kingdom). It's not necessary, but it's there. God gave us the similarities and differences in the two readings of the Ten Commandments (Exodus and Deuteronomy). God gave us the similarities and differences in the repeated histories. God gave us the similarities and differences in the Gospels and between the letters.


Walter Brueggemann notes that God's covenant with Abraham was unilateral and unconditional. The covenant with Moses was bilateral and conditional. God is bigger than any box we try and put God in. My "systematic" professors choose to teach theology as "biblical" theology, because neither the bible nor God fit neatly into a system. Each biblical writer has a different nuanced theology - and that's what God has given us.


Quote
The point I hear James making, because he's addressing an early Christian community, is that because a human is not God and cannot know what is in the heart of another, it's one of the few metrics we have to determine one's faith.  That's the reality in which most of the epistles were written, addressing real life issues arising in a community.  Not abstract doctrinal statements.  If there's a commentary on James which provides educated speculation as to the specific contemporary reason it was written, I'd be interested in someone sharing it.


Consider that James, the letter-writer, could be "James, the brother of our Lord" (Galatians 1:19) and leader of the church in Jerusalem; he would have seen the life Jesus lived growing up. What he would have seen was not some inner faith or unique connection with the Father; but the words and deeds that came from Jesus' throughout his life. His works were essential to his faith - not an add-on.


I also, somewhat, classify James as "wisdom literature," like Proverbs. It is not so much a theological treatise as presenting common sense ways of living our lives. Nearly everything James suggests is applicable to living a good Jewish life or good Christian life or even a good moral life. E.g., Watch what you say! Words are powerful.
"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]

MaddogLutheran

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Re: Dan Selbo's election as NALC Bishop
« Reply #164 on: August 24, 2019, 02:05:48 PM »

I came to this way of looking at scriptures by studying scriptures - not reading doctrines about scriptures. The attempt is to approach scriptures without any pre-conceived notions about it.


Pr. Stoffregen, of course you have a pre-conceived notion of how to approach scripture: that you can approach scripture without any pre-conceived notions.  This is one part of the mythology of modern science, including lingusitic science, and determines the proper way to interpret a complex text.  It operates on the pre-conceived notion that you are a neutral observer of the text, and can thus stand back from the text and analyze it without intrusive bias.  But there is no such thing as the "neutral observer."  There is a multitude of layers of pre-conceived notions embedded in everyone's approach to a text, including the Bible.  For instance, you have often referred to the importance of considering the historical and cultural environment in which the Bible was written, organized and established as authoritative.  That's a pre-conceived notion that governs your approach to the text.  You are also possessed of the pre-conceived notion that word studies are the key to discerning the "meaning" of the text.  From nearly everything you have written on this Forum, it is apparent that you adhere to an interpretive ideology that supplies a network of pre-conceived notions, on the basis of which you approach scripture.  Like everyone else, you stand in the midst of a hermeneutical theory as you read scripture; you do not stand outside of any pre-conceived notions.  You are not a "neutral observer."

Tom Pearson
Thank you for this.  Seriously.  Someone needed to say this.  I will add the other problem with this approach, which should be obvious but unfortunately too many Protestants forget:  The Bible did not descend to the Church from Mount Sinai on engraved tablets.  The Bible was a creation of the Church, which we confess was mediated by the work of the Holy Spirit.  To ignore the wisdom the Church Fathers in favor of one's instantaneous intellectual notions is wrong.

P.S.  As the kids say, I wanted to inject your prior posting on related subjects into my veins.
« Last Edit: August 24, 2019, 02:13:35 PM by MaddogLutheran »
Sterling Spatz
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