Author Topic: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies  (Read 9419 times)

John_Hannah

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #75 on: October 25, 2021, 01:25:35 PM »
In my copy of the book, page 372 is in the "Topical Index" section, after the text of the book concludes.
Looking at the table of contents for the Google Books version, the snippet that I quoted is in chapter VII, section 2b, under the subheading "Word and Sacrament."

Footnote 28:

Peter Brunner, Grundlegung des Abendmahlsgesprachs (1954), 28-33, gives some very well-considered theses on the possibility of a renewed colloquy between Lutherans and Reformed on the basis of modern biblical and historical theology in both churches.  He rejects the superficial unionism of former times which did not realize the depth of the issues, and the seriousness of the authority of Holy Scripture.  As a Lutheran theologian in a union church (Brunner is professor at Heidelberg), he leaves open the possibility that Lutherans may admit that in a congregation which follows the Heidelberg Catechsim the body and blood of Christ may be received, because this Catechism teaches a presence of the body and blood, though in the sense of Calvin (according to question 79, 'we partake of His true body and blood through the power of the Holy Ghost as certainly as we receive the holy signs -- i.e., bread and wine -- orally').  However, Brunner, as a clear and sincere thinker, adds in a footnote (p 32) that Luther, had he known the Heidelberg Catechism, would not have agreed with Brunner's view.  The author himself admits that he could not recognize the Sacrament as valid where the Real Presence was completely denied: 'Darin hat Luther doc whole recut geschen, dass Dort wo eine Prasenz des Leibes und Blutes Jesu Christi bestridden word, die Substanz des Sakraments selbst zerstort wird'.  He also agreed with Luther in admitting that such heresy would be worse than the Roamn doctrine on transubstantion.  This means that while the sacrament of the Zwinglian cannot be recognized, it is possible to recognize that of the Calvinists.  This is the view of the Lutherans within union churches, otherwise they could not be members of such churches.  Peter Brunner himself must admit that Luther would not share his view.  The question whether a Lutheran in danger of death could receive th Sacrament from a Reformed minister was denied by Luther and all dogmaticians, as was also the case in the pastoral advice given in th books on casus conscientiae, e.g., Balduin, Tractatus de casabas conscientiae, edition of 1654, 345, where it is made clear that the Lord's Supper must not be received from a minister who is known to be a Calvinist.

-------------------------------

I do not think this footnote says what Rev. Hannah wants it to say.

That is not the footnote. Nor do I disagree with it. Sasse did not say that the Reformed were anywhere nearly correct nor that Lutherans could receive from them, even in danger of death. He was clear that we should not. What he said is that the Lutherans dogmaticians (meaning those through the 17th century) did not deign to say what God gave the Reformed in their observance of Communion.

I don't think I know enough to declare what God does in that circumstance. Others may know more about God's work in this instance than than I or Dr. Sasse.

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

peter_speckhard

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #76 on: October 25, 2021, 01:25:43 PM »
Peter writes:
These are seminary classroom questions. I think “intent” is another factor.
I comment:
Hogwash. Again, makes the sacrament and its efficacy dependent upon us.

It appears that Charles is now confessing another reformed view that Lutherans reject:  irresistible grace, a theme that Brian continually touts.
So Charles, a first grader in my school is learning to read, but needs a time-out in my office. My communion set is on the shelf and a hymnal is open my table. The kids starts sounding out the words and ends up reciting the words on Institution. Are the wafers and wine stored on my shelf now the Body and Blood of Christ?

Dan Fienen

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #77 on: October 25, 2021, 01:26:40 PM »
Peter writes:
These are seminary classroom questions. I think “intent” is another factor.
I comment:
Hogwash. Again, makes the sacrament and its efficacy dependent upon us.

It appears that Charles is now confessing another reformed view that Lutherans reject:  irresistible grace, a theme that Brian continually touts.
Is it communion if nobody says anything and the elements have not been provided or consumed. Does that mean that for it to be the sacrament it is dependent on people providing and doing things? Is God in giving us His sacrament dependent on our actions?
Pr. Daniel Fienen
LCMS

peter_speckhard

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #78 on: October 25, 2021, 02:28:35 PM »
Peter writes:
These are seminary classroom questions. I think “intent” is another factor.
I comment:
Hogwash. Again, makes the sacrament and its efficacy dependent upon us.

It appears that Charles is now confessing another reformed view that Lutherans reject:  irresistible grace, a theme that Brian continually touts.
Is it communion if nobody says anything and the elements have not been provided or consumed. Does that mean that for it to be the sacrament it is dependent on people providing and doing things? Is God in giving us His sacrament dependent on our actions?
This is the real question. Someone (I forget who, but it is something I read and agreed with, just so you know I'm not claiming the idea is original) made the point that many arguments about whether some word or gesture has eternal, spiritual significance are really arguments about whether any word or gesture or anything in this world at all can have eternal, spiritual significance. The entire sacramental approach of Christianity hinges on God working through means, and the ability of the finite to contain the infinite, so to speak, for real things, words, gestures, or other finite, human things to bring about eternal, spiritual results.

The idea that somehow making Communion depend on us in some way ruins the pure grace aspect of it makes Quakers of us all. As people called in God's plans and purposes, we His people do things that are really God working through us, but still depend on our actually doing them. That is part of the glory of redeemed mankind.   

Steven W Bohler

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #79 on: October 25, 2021, 02:41:06 PM »
In my copy of the book, page 372 is in the "Topical Index" section, after the text of the book concludes.
Looking at the table of contents for the Google Books version, the snippet that I quoted is in chapter VII, section 2b, under the subheading "Word and Sacrament."

Footnote 28:

Peter Brunner, Grundlegung des Abendmahlsgesprachs (1954), 28-33, gives some very well-considered theses on the possibility of a renewed colloquy between Lutherans and Reformed on the basis of modern biblical and historical theology in both churches.  He rejects the superficial unionism of former times which did not realize the depth of the issues, and the seriousness of the authority of Holy Scripture.  As a Lutheran theologian in a union church (Brunner is professor at Heidelberg), he leaves open the possibility that Lutherans may admit that in a congregation which follows the Heidelberg Catechsim the body and blood of Christ may be received, because this Catechism teaches a presence of the body and blood, though in the sense of Calvin (according to question 79, 'we partake of His true body and blood through the power of the Holy Ghost as certainly as we receive the holy signs -- i.e., bread and wine -- orally').  However, Brunner, as a clear and sincere thinker, adds in a footnote (p 32) that Luther, had he known the Heidelberg Catechism, would not have agreed with Brunner's view.  The author himself admits that he could not recognize the Sacrament as valid where the Real Presence was completely denied: 'Darin hat Luther doc whole recut geschen, dass Dort wo eine Prasenz des Leibes und Blutes Jesu Christi bestridden word, die Substanz des Sakraments selbst zerstort wird'.  He also agreed with Luther in admitting that such heresy would be worse than the Roamn doctrine on transubstantion.  This means that while the sacrament of the Zwinglian cannot be recognized, it is possible to recognize that of the Calvinists.  This is the view of the Lutherans within union churches, otherwise they could not be members of such churches.  Peter Brunner himself must admit that Luther would not share his view.  The question whether a Lutheran in danger of death could receive th Sacrament from a Reformed minister was denied by Luther and all dogmaticians, as was also the case in the pastoral advice given in th books on casus conscientiae, e.g., Balduin, Tractatus de casabas conscientiae, edition of 1654, 345, where it is made clear that the Lord's Supper must not be received from a minister who is known to be a Calvinist.

-------------------------------

I do not think this footnote says what Rev. Hannah wants it to say.

That is not the footnote. Nor do I disagree with it. Sasse did not say that the Reformed were anywhere nearly correct nor that Lutherans could receive from them, even in danger of death. He was clear that we should not. What he said is that the Lutherans dogmaticians (meaning those through the 17th century) did not deign to say what God gave the Reformed in their observance of Communion.

I don't think I know enough to declare what God does in that circumstance. Others may know more about God's work in this instance than than I or Dr. Sasse.

Peace, JOHN

Well, I would venture to say that unless/until you can provide the actual footnote, or at least where one may find it exactly, your recollection of what you think it says is not really very helpful to a discussion.

Rev. Edward Engelbrecht

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #80 on: October 25, 2021, 03:47:13 PM »
Quote
That person is truly worthy and well prepared who has faith in these words: “Given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.”

But anyone who does not believe these words or doubts them is unworthy and unprepared, for the words “for you” require all hearts to believe.

Luther is saying in the Catechism that faith is key to receiving the Sacrament and its benefits. Without faith, one might receive the Sacrament but under the warning of condemnation and without the promise of its benefits. With my catechism students, I use Hebrews 11:6.

https://youtu.be/haTWX2LdVYI

Cited at 4:15 or so. I go on to talk about persons who doubt or struggle with their worthiness, using a few of the Christian Questions with their answers. Keeping it simple for our people is important. Luther emphasized the words of institution and faith in those words.
I serve as administrator for www.churchhistoryreview.org.

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #81 on: October 25, 2021, 04:27:00 PM »
I believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament even among those Christians who see it as nothing but a memorial meal.

Lutherans do not.


Lutherans do, too. The issue is whether Christ is present with salvation or with condemnation. We do not believe that Christ's promise: "This is my body," suddenly means, "This is my body only if you correctly believe." Or, even worse, "This is my body … just kidding if you don't really believe it." It is not our beliefs, whether orthodox or faulty that determine Christ's ability to keep his promises.
"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]

Donald_Kirchner

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #82 on: October 25, 2021, 04:37:56 PM »
Note to Brian:

Quote
That person is truly worthy and well prepared who has faith in these words: “Given and shed for you for the forgiveness of sins.”

But anyone who does not believe these words or doubts them is unworthy and unprepared, for the words “for you” require all hearts to believe.

Luther is saying in the Catechism that faith is key to receiving the Sacrament and its benefits. Without faith, one might receive the Sacrament but under the warning of condemnation and without the promise of its benefits. With my catechism students, I use Hebrews 11:6.

https://youtu.be/haTWX2LdVYI

Cited at 4:15 or so. I go on to talk about persons who doubt or struggle with their worthiness, using a few of the Christian Questions with their answers. Keeping it simple for our people is important. Luther emphasized the words of institution and faith in those words.

Very nice presentation.

One minor point on "Without faith, one might receive the Sacrament but under the warning of condemnation..." It appears that the warning is not that strong.

"For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died. But if we judged ourselves truly, we would not be judged. But when we are judged by the Lord, we are disciplined so that we may not be condemned along with the world." 1 Cor 11:29-32

Note that the word is krima or judgment, leading to discipline, not condemnation, so that we not be condemned, i.e., katakrima. See Romans 8:1 where what is translated as condemnation is  katakrima, not krima. As stated above,

As the beloved Dr. Nagel stated, "Yes, it's a krima/judgment. But, a krima/judgment can become a katakrima/condemnation."
« Last Edit: October 25, 2021, 04:39:44 PM by Donald_Kirchner »
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John_Hannah

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #83 on: October 25, 2021, 04:41:28 PM »

I believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament even among those Christians who see it as nothing but a memorial meal.


You cannot know that for sure. It is speculation just as the opposite is speculation.

Peace, JOHN
Pr. JOHN HANNAH, STS

peter_speckhard

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #84 on: October 25, 2021, 04:47:38 PM »
I believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament even among those Christians who see it as nothing but a memorial meal.

Lutherans do not.


Lutherans do, too. The issue is whether Christ is present with salvation or with condemnation. We do not believe that Christ's promise: "This is my body," suddenly means, "This is my body only if you correctly believe." Or, even worse, "This is my body … just kidding if you don't really believe it." It is not our beliefs, whether orthodox or faulty that determine Christ's ability to keep his promises.
Separate issues. Whether one receives the body and blood for salvation or condemnation is not the same question as whether the body and blood is even there. In other words, the question is whether it is even efficacious if someone who doesn't believe in the Real Presence goes through the motions of saying the words. Then it would be an ex opere operato question, as though one were doing a Harry Potter trick. That's why the words themselves, the human understanding of them, and intent of speaking them all play into the actual meaning of them. 

Donald_Kirchner

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #85 on: October 25, 2021, 04:59:46 PM »
I believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament even among those Christians who see it as nothing but a memorial meal.

Lutherans do not.

Lutherans do, too. The issue is whether Christ is present with salvation or with condemnation. We do not believe that Christ's promise: "This is my body," suddenly means, "This is my body only if you correctly believe." Or, even worse, "This is my body … just kidding if you don't really believe it." It is not our beliefs, whether orthodox or faulty that determine Christ's ability to keep his promises.
Separate issues. Whether one receives the body and blood for salvation or condemnation is not the same question as whether the body and blood is even there. In other words, the question is whether it is even efficacious if someone who doesn't believe in the Real Presence goes through the motions of saying the words. Then it would be an ex opere operato question, as though one were doing a Harry Potter trick. That's why the words themselves, the human understanding of them, and intent of speaking them all play into the actual meaning of them.

Thanks, Peter, for keeping us on point.
Don Kirchner

"Heaven's OK, but it’s not the end of the world." Jeff Gibbs

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #86 on: October 25, 2021, 05:13:02 PM »
Found this. There truly is nothing new under the sun!  ;)

"For Zwingli there was room for compromise. He disagreed with Luther that Jesus is present with His true body and blood in the Lord’s Supper, believing it to be a mere memorial meal. Zwingli did not see this as church-divisive, though."

https://lutheranreformation.org/history/the-marburg-colloquy/
Don Kirchner

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Dave Likeness

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #87 on: October 25, 2021, 05:18:28 PM »
Concerning the title of this thread:

The LCMS Reporter November 2021 makes the following statement,

"50% of the Synod's current, active pastors are 55 years or older.
If seminary enrollment and pastor retirements continue at their
current rates, the Synod could go from 6,000 to 3,000 pastors in
the next 15 years."

This is from an article on the church worker recruitment initiative
which is now called: "Set Apart To Serve"

peter_speckhard

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #88 on: October 25, 2021, 05:28:21 PM »
I believe that Christ is truly present in the sacrament even among those Christians who see it as nothing but a memorial meal.

Lutherans do not.

Lutherans do, too. The issue is whether Christ is present with salvation or with condemnation. We do not believe that Christ's promise: "This is my body," suddenly means, "This is my body only if you correctly believe." Or, even worse, "This is my body … just kidding if you don't really believe it." It is not our beliefs, whether orthodox or faulty that determine Christ's ability to keep his promises.
Separate issues. Whether one receives the body and blood for salvation or condemnation is not the same question as whether the body and blood is even there. In other words, the question is whether it is even efficacious if someone who doesn't believe in the Real Presence goes through the motions of saying the words. Then it would be an ex opere operato question, as though one were doing a Harry Potter trick. That's why the words themselves, the human understanding of them, and intent of speaking them all play into the actual meaning of them.

Thanks, Peter, for keeping us on point.
Then, of course, there is the opposite issue of how one can be sure a sacrament is efficacious if the pastor/priest’s beliefs are part of the equation. That is why the intent and understanding of the church become crucial for meaning. One person’s private unbelief or belief neither makes nor breaks the sacrament, but the sacrament performed within a community that understands the elements are purely symbolic and has no intent to eat and drink the Body and Blood is not even the Sacrament. All these questions go away among people who are functionally universalists and see God’s grace as equally there and equally efficacious apart from any particular words, gestures, offices, beliefs, teachings, etc.

The crazy soldiers would yell, “Kill ‘em all! Let God sort ‘em out!” The unfaithful pastor says of the sacrament, “Just do whatever. God will figure it out. But for my sake make whatever you do aesthetically pleasing, dignified, and reverent.”

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: Filling Future Pastoral Vacancies
« Reply #89 on: October 25, 2021, 05:43:30 PM »
So the celebration depends upon 1) human words and 2) the “proper” understanding of those words? Otherwise the Real Presence Jesus doesn’t show up?
My understanding is a bit more nuanced than that, perhaps too nuanced for your taste. When we gather for the Lord's Supper, the words of institution are not some form of magical incantation that when intoned produce the effect of the real presence of Christ in the sacramental elements. Rather, what the verba do is to serve as a reminder of the promise that Jesus made when He first gave this meal to His people, with the further command to do this, and an indication that it is that which we are intending to do. Thus, it is not necessary for the verba to be spoken in the Greek as it was originally stated, nor in the exact work order. It is not magic hocus pocus words. However, if by their confession of faith, those who preside change the meanings of the words to something other than what Jesus promised (as, for example, no longer "This is my body" but rather "This symbolizes my body") then arguable they are no longer intending to participate in what Jesus offered and offers.


It's more likely that Jesus spoke the words in Aramaic, the language of the people, or Hebrew, the language of Jewish worship. Greek was the language of commerce and more easily written than the others.


When Jesus instituted the Supper, was he "in, with, and under" the bread and cup; or was he sitting at the table with the disciples? When we celebrate the Supper, how is Jesus "sitting at the right side of Power,"* and "in, with, and under" the bread and cup?


*Matthew 22:44 (quoting Ps 110:1); 26:64; Mark 12:36 (quoting Ps 110:1); 14:62; 16:19; Luke 20:42 (quoting Ps 110:1); 22:69; Acts 2:33, 34 (quoting Ps 110:1); 5:31; 7:55, 56; Romans 8:34; Ephesians 1:20; Colossians 3:1; Hebrews 1:3 (quoting Ps 110:1), 13; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2; 1 Peter 3:22.


Biblical, there are more passages affirming Christ's presence at the right side of God.


In addition, Paul is clear that the resurrected body has to be a different type of body than the one we have on earth. Paul uses a number of different contrasts in 1 Corinthians 15:


perishable || imperishable (vv. 42, 50, 52, 54) (φθορά/φθαρτός || ἀφθαρσία)
dishonor || glory (v. 43) (ἀτιμά || δόξα)
weak || power (v. 43) (ἀσθενεία || δυνάμις)
physical || spiritual (v. 44) (ψυχικόν || πνευθματικόν)
of earth/dust || of heaven (vv. 47ff.) (ἐκ γῆς χοϊκός || ἐψ ούρανοῦ)
mortal || immortality (v. 54) (θνητός || ἀθανασία)


It seems perfectly logical to talk about Jesus' resurrected body as a "spiritual body." So, what's wrong with talking about Jesus' bodily presence in the sacrament as his "resurrected, spiritual body"?
"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]