Saturday, October 03, 2009

Where does the Light come from?

I was just watching episode number 9 of Defying Gravity, a show that was running on ABC until a couple of weeks ago. Click here to learn more information about the show. Now, why am I interested in this show? Because there seems to be some theological questions being asked that are interesting, at least to me. Without spoiling that much of the storyline of the show, I'll tell you this; The "beta" object, as it represented on the show, is as much like God as you can get without actually calling it God. It can heal on whim, and can also cause arteries to develop plaque. It can induce visions. It can manipulate gravity, reality and DNA. And, it would seem, it can reveal itself to whomever it wants, while hiding itself from others.

Pretty amazing.

But the reason I mention this is because the last scene in Episode 9 features two of the astronauts looking at the beta object. As it turns out, all the astronauts, save one, can see it, has had visions, and can hear the music that seems to serve as it's method of communicating. The one astronaut who can't see it can only see the light that is coming from it.

This made me think. When we "see" the light, which is Christ, we also see God by eyes of faith. The unbeliever sees the light, but can't see God at all. In fact, the unbeliever wont even entertain attributing God as the source of the light, literally because they CAN'T see it. They'll find anything as an explanation of why the light is there, even suggest that the light is us. But since they can't see the object of faith, they will always attribute the light to something other than that which it comes from, thus shunning the light itself. After all, what good is light if you can't actually nail down it's source?

This should give pause to any unbeliever. The light of Christ is upon you, but because you can't see the source of the light with natural eyes, you reject the light. Those who can see the light and know it's source have had the source revealed to them by the source itself. You who cannot see the source, conversely, cannot know the source because the source has not revealed itself to you. All you can see is the light, and you attribute that light to everything but the source of the light itself.

How sad.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

When do we make an idol a "real" idol?

I was just preparing to do this blog post when I decided to find some clip art to illustrate the point that I'm going to attempt to make concerning idolatry. I did a Google search, and then clicked on "images" (how ironic), and found myself presented with a number of pictures, many of which pertain to American Idol.

Now, I find that funny, because it's my sincere doubt that anyone who follows the program actually trusts their favorite "idol" to rescue them from times of need and distress. They do, however, trust in their favorite idol to give them pleasure. And herein begins the point I want to try to make.

Anytime we trust in something other than God, we make that something into an idol. Boy, it's not like no one else on the planet or in history has ever said that, right? But the simple statement "anytime we trust in something other than God, we make that something into an idol" cannot convey the true power of the sin behind it. So we have no other choice but to either attempt to unpack the statement, or to try and restate it in a way that actually can convey the sin behind that statement.

Now I could spend some time unpacking this statement, or some time trying to restate it, but instead I think what I'll do is look at what it's not saying. I don't think it's that bad a thing that you "trust" that your car will start and be able to go in gear in the morning to get you to work. I don't think it's even about spending a Saturday afternoon cleaning said car, getting into every nook and cranny and removing every speck of dirt; shooing off the birds as they attempt to drop avian fecal matter on the fresh wax; I don't think that watching your television, or waiting in anticipation for your favorite TV show, or even setting up the DVR to record it; I don't think ANYTHING like that is a problem of idolatry.

Oh, but brother Matthew... OK, hold your horses, don't get yer undies in a bunch... These things can get in the way of your relationship with God. To which I say, sure, the world has a tendency to do that, doesn't it? It get's in the way. Just like wondering what you're going to make for dinner gets in the way, or having to sit down and pay the bills gets in the way.

No, we can drop all pretense and false dichotomies now! Here are the things we Idolize: The volunteer work we did at the local food bank. The cleanup work we did around the neighborhood. Or how we show up in Church to worship God. And how many times we pray in a day, or even an hour. Or how much we read our Bible. Or how many trips we made to the latest revivals. Or how many youth gatherings we helped to plan. Or how many years we were in the choir. Or how many praise bands we helped to form, or how many songs our bands could play. When we trust in our works before God in the grand scheme of things, we make our very works in the supreme idol that, with time, will eventually get us out of trouble. Or worse, we see our works as divine currency with which we buy or sell blessings from God in the very temple that God put forth on the Cross!

And worst of all? Some of us worship mans reason and knowledge. There in lies apostasy. Elevating such things above God will do nothing more than bring wrath and destruction on us for it is the very fallen reason of man that makes us believe such ignorance. This is why when I hear the words "we need to" feel a cringe ready to happen because I know that the next lines will be something other than "trust God who gives us all good things". (And before the word of faithers rejoice, see to it that you understand that the word "trust" and the phrase "speaking to the situation" are as diametrically opposed to each other as apple pie and arsenic.)

I was reading in Luther's Larger Catechism:

"And just because of such hardened heads who imagine because God connives and allows them to rest in security, that He either is entirely ignorant or cares nothing about such matters, He must deal a smashing blow and punish them, so that He cannot forget it unto children's children; so that every one may take note and see that this is no joke to Him. For they are those whom He means when He says: Who hate Me (Exodus 20:5), i.e., those who persist in their defiance and pride; whatever is preached or said to them, they will not listen; when they are reproved, in order that they may learn to know themselves and amend before the punishment begins, they become mad and foolish so as to fairly merit wrath, as now we see daily in bishops and princes."

Do we not see it daily now?

Friday, July 17, 2009

Lazy and overwrought pastors

I was just watching a "Sermon Jam" of a sermon by Paul Washer. In this message, Pastor Washer asks the question, "How do you know that you believe"... Paul Washer is another of those preachers who are law light, but he fancies himself a Neo fire and brimstone preacher. He often admonishes his congregation to look inside themselves, examine themselves, which is good as far that will take a Christian. But he goes too far in asking the question, "How do you know that you believe?"

Now, why do I say that? Because Paul Washer hasn't thought his argument through. All of his arguments start with the idea that a sinful child of Adam can hear the law and obey it. He thinks that the law is user friendly, and mixes the Law and the Gospel in his sermons. He tells his parishoners, for instance, that they should be reading God's word and applying it to themselves while he doesn't realize that his congregation isn't really qualified to do that.

What do I mean, "the congregation isn't qualified to do that?" The Bible tells us that we are like sheep. We wander far afield. We do things that sheep do and act like sheep do. Left to our own devices we'll follow the herd to our deaths. Sheep are incapable of taking care of themselves. In fact, it would have been an insult to call someone a sheep in Jesus' day. Similarly, a congregation is just as incapable of doing for themselves. Where Sheep cannot take care of themselves physically, fallen sinners are incapable of taking care of themselves spiritually. They need a shepherd. One who will do for them what they themselves cannot do. The congregation does not have what it takes to properly apply God's Law to themselves. Left to their own devices, they will dumb down the law, especially if their example is a preacher who dumbs down the Law himself. Their fallen sinful hearts will tell them they are keeping the Law when in fact they are breaking the Law. They need a Pastor who will preach the Law of God in all it's severity and properly apply to his congregation.

But what Paul Washer and Pastors like him do is rely on their congregations to do what he should be doing for them. At Willow Creek, Bill Heibels does exactly the same thing. When a poll of his congregation told him that his people are saying they are not being fed, Bill Heibels concluded that he needed to teach them to become "self feeders". Paul Washer and pastors like him do this all the time. His commandment to his congregation is to read the word of God themselves and apply it to themselves. These types of Pastors, who think they are the new fire and brimstone preachers, have fallen for the idea that as long as the Holy Spirit is there to witness to his congregation, everything will be fine. But, everything is imperically not fine. The Law is regularly dumbed down by congregations and believers to the pointed that many of them believe they are keeping the Law.

Pastors like Paul Washer are fond of telling people they need to be careful if they say they know they are saved because they believe it in their hearts. Paul Washer is right when he points out from Jeremiah that "the heart is exceedingly wicked above all things and who can know it?" (Jer 17:9) But the heart doesn't just decieve us into false hope Paul. It also decieves us concerning the Law. When we tell people to merely open God's word and apply it to themselves, we encourage a problem called heterodoxy, which basically means to be at variance from the accepted positions of orthodoxy, namely what the Bible teaches clearly. Anytime a pastor becomes lazy and relies on his congregation to do what he should have done himself, he encourages his parishoners to come to conclusions for themselves, which leads them often times to conclusions that at variance to what is accepted orthodoxy.

A Pastor, as charged by St. Paul to Timothy in 2 Timothy, Chapter 4, should "Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry." But Pastors like Paul Washer are anything but careful. They confuse Law and Gospel and most startlingly, the only time they will pull authority on a person is if someone disagrees with them... Like I'm doing right now. In fact, many will come at me and say, "You're not saved. You teach that all you have to do is believe. You teach false hope".

But similarly, I rarely hear from Paul Washer and his types a clear preaching of the Gospel, namely Christ and him Crucified for sinners. All I ever hear them preach is "The believer and him obeying". Do any of you think that God will put up with that in the end? Do you think that the Father is happy when we usurp the Glory of His son? We will not be saved by crying over our sins, we will not be saved by examining ourselves, we will not be saved by reading the Bible, we will not be saved by spending time in fervent prayer, for there is no other name under heaven by which we will be saved. And that name is Jesus Christ.

Our Sinful nature resonates with the law. But the Gospel is not something that we resonate with. Only after having the law rightly preached to us and properly applied to us will the Gospel make sense to us, and it is the solemn duty of a pastor to do exactly that. The answer to the problem of sinners do wrong things is not to preach a lighter for of the law for them to keep, but rather to give them the only thing that will work faith in them and therefore save them, and that it preach the Gospel. Anything else is pure laziness.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Law and Gospel: The special Brillian light

C.F.W. Walther wrote a series of Lectures on Law and Gospel, but not to be overlooked are the essays that are recorded in the CPH editions called Essays for the Church, Volume 2. On page 64 we find Theses on the Distinction of Law and Gospel, given by Franz Pieper* at the Iowa District Convention in 1880. What we find listed there is a great presentation of nine ways in which law and gospel are confused.

The first and certainly the most obvious and most flagrant way of intermingling Law and Gospel is to make Christ a new Moses or lawgiver and thus turn the Gospel into a doctrine of works, meanwhile condemning and cursing those who teach the Gospel as a message of God's free grace in Christ.

Second, God's Word is not correctly divided when one does not preach the Law in its total severity nor the Gospel in its full sweetness, but instead minges Gospel elements with the Law and Law elements with the Gospel.

Third, God's Word is not correctly divided when one preaches first the Gospel and then the Law; first sanctification and then justification; first faith and then repentance; first good works and then grace.

Fourth, God's Word is not correctly divided when, instead of directing sinners who are struck and terrified by the Law to Word and Sacrament, one tells them to work their way into the state of grace by prayer and striving--that is, to keep on praying and striving until they feel that God has pardoned them.

Fifth, God's word is not correctly divided when one preaches concerning faith either as if the mere acceptance of faith justifies before God and saves in spite of mortal sins, or as if faith justifies and saves because of the love and renewal that it works.

Sixth, God's Word is not correctly divided if one wants to comfort with the Gospel only those who through the Law have come to repentance not out of fear of God's anger and punishment, but out of love for God.

Seventh, God's Word is not correctly divided if one teaches in such a way as if repentance, besides faith, is a joint cause for the forgiveness of sins.

Eighth, God's Word is not correctly divided when one makes a false distinction between awakening and conversion, and not being able to believe is mistaken for not being permitted to believe.

Ninth, God's Word is not correctly divided when one tries to move the unregenerate by the demands or threats or promises of the Law to put away sins and do good works and thus make them pious, and tries to drive the regenerate to the good by commanding them legalistically instead of admonishing them evangelically.

Obviously in the first statement we can see strains of Rome, whose theologians have often revered to Jesus as "the most perfect lawgiver" while at the same time condemning in the council of Trent those who would preach this Gospel. And we can easily see many of today's teachers such as Joel Osteen, who commit what is recorded in the second statement. But these other theses seem to be more subtle. I'm going to make a study of the Evangelical horizon to see how the preaching and teaching stacks up. We're already planning a program on Law and Gospel in the scriptures themselves. I've been doing a study on how the New Testament writers often make Law and Gospel distinctions themselves, and it's been quite and eye opener.

*Walther had apparently given a presentation on these 13 Theses two years earlier at a Southeastern Pastor's Conference.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Show Digest, Episode 89

Hello everyone,

This afternoon episode 89 of Radical Grace Radio went out over the airwaves. First out of the gate was listener emails. We get some really good ones, and some with some good questions. One was about our Calvinism show where Pastor Gary Held used an analogy where salvation is like a valve that we turn off and God turns on... The listeners may not like the answer to that one, but we gave an honest answer.

But on the back half of the show Pastor Greg LeSieur told us about his experiences at at ELCA Seminary in Gettysburg, and this is one where everyone needs to hear what goes on in these schools.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Conflict of interest: How the LCMS is killing itself.

As a former Evangelical, I have been witness to may different types of "Christian" worship over the years. Some of it has merit, while others have some particularly devastating consequences on the souls of those who participate. For instance, there are some aspects of Pentecostal worship that can stir the mind, usually manifest in their tendency to emphasize the Imago Dei, by way of expressing that we are children of God called to worship Him and to express that worship in daily service to others. But keep in mind, I'm expressing to you now this aspect of Pentecostal worship using language more common to the theologians of our past than to the theologians of our day. Yes, how I'm expressing it would confuse most Pentecostals, but once you unpack the language for them they typically understand it. A Pentecostal would say "I'm a child of God and I can do what God does in my neighborhood because it gives Glory to God and Jesus! Amen!"

The reason I bring this up is thus: The LCMS is inadvertently killing itself. It's death by conflict of interest. Now what do I mean by that? It's simple. Although a Pentecostal can be made to understand the concepts behind the Imago Dei and to understand the implications behind it, I wouldn't expect them to adopt that more precise way of expressing it just because I told them to. No, that would be ridiculous. I would expect them to try to understand it in the same way I'd expect them to understand one of the Ecumenical Creeds, but I wouldn't expect them... Well, I might as well say it. I wouldn't expect them to just become Lutheran.

It doesn't seem at this point like I'm unpacking this very well, but hear me out. There was a time when the Lutheran Heritage was closely tied to German Heritage. The congregations were German, they spoke German, the liturgy was in German... But as time has gone by, the German Heritage has been falling away and to some extent the Lutheran Heritage goes with it. Fair enough. This is what happens with the passing of generations and time. But to a growing number of former outsiders, the "Lutheran Heritage" has quite an appeal for a number or reasons.

Let's look at one of the primary reasons why the idea of "Lutheran Heritage" would appeal to someone becoming Lutheran. First and foremost, the appeal comes from the fact that it's fundamentally different from everything else. Evangelicals who are fed up with what is going on in their own churches look outside and recognize something authentic, and they cling to it because they get a sense of having moorings in a ecclesial culture that is all too often infatuated with itself.

But after that, there's another reason. Beyond authenticity, there is quickly recognized a maturity of the Faith. A maturity that wishes to understand all aspects of the faith, however intimidating much of it may be at first glance. This reason soon reaches beyond mere liturgical matters, and soon begins to expose the raw doctrine of what it means to be a Lutheran. Scratch the liturgical surface of Lutheranism and you have what the Formula of Concord calls, "that special brilliant light" beginning to ooze out like the life blood of Christ himself.

Law and Gospel. Not much is said these days about this. We hear a lot about Peace, unity, compassion, speaking truths with love... But not much about God's law or God's Gospel. The practices of the historic Lutheran Church reflect a proper distinction between Law and Gospel. Our pastoral edge often is grounded in this distinction. In fact, there would absolutely be no Lutheranism whatsoever if there were no right division of God's word.

The minute someone begins to tell us, as a synod, that there is something else that is more important than dividing Law and Gospel, the Synod is in conflict of interest with itself. Without God's word rightly divided, we have no heritage to speak of, for God's word confused by the acts of sinful men can be dangerous. The practices of the Lutheran Church, when cut loose from Law and Gospel, are nothing but a confused mess of laws to keep. If they are just laws to keep, then they can be set aside under the same premise that all laws are ultimately disobeyed. The Historic Liturgy can be set aside in favor of Rock concert style worship, or theatre worship, or pseudo Buddhist/Islam/Judaism stylings... All of which amounts to a slow death of Lutheran Heritage, and perhaps even Christian heritage. A death, I might add, that is totally unnecessary.

So why talk about Pentecostalism and aspects of the worship practices of those who call themselves by that moniker? To highlight the fact that there are only aspects of their worship that is beneficial. Scratch the surface of Pentecostalism and you don't have Law and Gospel rightly divided. For the most part, there is nothing but confusion of Law and Gospel evidenced in their worship practices. The same emphasis on the Imago Dei also winds up resulting in an emphasis on the person and work of the children of God over the person and work of Jesus Christ. That's a very dangerous place to be.

The LCMS is in that same position even now. There is a conflict of interest. Law and Gospel is not rightly divided. The latest communiques from many of our leaders, be they congregational pastors, district presidents, or synodical leaders, betray a steadfast forgetfulness of what it means to be who we are. As a layperson, I don't expect those who don't use the language of our Lutheran heritage to adopt such language, but I do expect them at least understand it. Understand what it means to divide Law and Gospel. Understand that the Cross has, as it does Christ's own blood, the Law of God and the Gospel of God splattered upon it. Understand that the Law of God condemns and instructs but does not have the power to create a Church. Understand that the Gospel of God Forgives and instructs and has all power to create faith, to create hope, to create believers and to build a Church on that foundation alone.

It is a conflict of interest to hold anything above the Gospel. May it never be with us that the Gospel be forgotten.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Crushed by God's blessing

This evening I'm sitting here, listening to an old episode of Issue's etc. It's a Sunday night episode, and Dr. Rod Rosenbladt is the guest. The topic is "Justification". It's one that I called into, mainly at first because it was Rod on the show. It was before I was on the Radio myself.

It was a devastating night. The reason it was devastating is because I was on the phone, listening to Rod say something to this effect: "There is something about the work of Christ in us that is so gentle and so loving, like the scripture says, 'A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he leads justice to victory.' " By the time it was my turn, I was an emotional wreck. But it was good, because once again, the blessings of God had crushed me.

That sounds weird, but it's true. For this Christian, God's overwhelming blessings and goodness toward him daily are part of what causes repentance. God blesses me with lots of good things, and sometimes I'm floored because... How could he give these things to me? I'm such a broken reed, I don't deserve his good blessings at all. I deserve eternal condemnation. I sit in front of a radio microphone, and I'm crushed. Lots of people would kill to get in that position, to talk on the radio, to be in the driver seat. But for me, each blessing is another crushing blow. And when the Gospel hits my ears again, and I hear "A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out, till he leads justice to victory", I realize the depth of His riches and goodness.

Without the doctrine of Justification, one can't have a true relationship with Jesus. You don't understand his goodness towards you till he crushes you with his blessing. You don't know his mercy till he lifts you up from that sorrow and weeping, and gives you new life. And it's not even about temporal tears most times, but rather a sense of awe and wonder. Tears can be involved indeed, but the word remains the same.

This smoldering wick is forever thankful.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Evangelicalism at a Crossroads.

I used to be an Evangelical. What that means is, I subscribed to all the doctrines that Modern Evangelicals believe. Whether is was the doctrine of "make a sincere decision for Christ" doctrine, or the "age of accountability" doctrine, or "believer's baptism" doctrine, I was staunch in not only believing them, but in proclaiming them.

But with all of my certainty over these teachings, there was something about all of this that made me worry. After all, as much sense as everything made, all the doctrines seemed to line up very well, I didn't seem to have any peace. I remember back during my days as a moderator at, that with all the people who would sign up daily to the forum and start posting, the majority of them were almost looking for a fight, and many of them actually were looking for a fight.

Now being what I called a "thinking evangelical", I liked taking on the ones who were spoiling for a fight. I remember one individual who billed himself as a "Messianic Jew", who called himself SolaScriptura. He was all about proclaiming to everyone that they needed to start being Jews as soon as possible because that is what pleases God. Of course, when you tried to pin him down for proof that being a Jew, keeping all the commandments and Holy Days and Festivals actually is pleasing to God, he had none. Not pragmatic proof, anecdotal or biblical proof. We eventually wound up banning him from the forums altogether for teaching false doctrines.

But the thing that got me about all of that was, no matter how many times you banned them, they would sign up again and come back for more. The fighting still goes on at the Forums at There's a thread there that is a debate between so called "Arminians" and "Calvinists" that is currently on 29379 replies with no end in sight! Nothing solved, no doctrines ironed out.

But, after a while of having to deal with this kind of thing, I was challenged by someone to listen to "the White Horse Inn". I accepted the challenge, and that led me to Issues etc, which led me to the confessions and the LCMS. That's the nuts and bolts of it, but the reality was that I was tired of the bickering, tired of always having to defend something that I knew wasn't robust and fully fleshed out... That being Evangelicalism.

Don't get me wrong, there are some wonder Evangelicals out there who know there stuff pretty well. In such cases you can tell talk about the finer points of doctrine; The Lord's supper, Holy Baptism, Monergism, the Holiness of God... But for the most part, Evangelicals are either one of two types: They are as close to perfectly happy as they can get with where they are spiritually, or they are growing tired of what's going on. The ones who are growing tired of Evangelicalism are the ones I identify with the most.

They are like me. I started down the Wittenberg Trail because I was tired of all the shallowness, lightness and frivolity that was going on around me. I was tired of feeling beat down. I was tired of seeing people being destroyed by weird doctrines, talk of annointings, extra blessings from God... I was tired of being told how to manipulate God, even though they wouldn't put it in such stark terms as that. I was tired of hearing someone say, "if you do A, B, and C, you will begin to see the hand of God move in your life"...

I'd imagine that there are people out there just like me. I've talked to them a lot in the last couple of years. People like that are at a crossroads. What will they do? Will they find a robust faith? Will they find people to challenge them to dig deeper into God's word than they ever have before? Will they find someone who will enthusiastically proclaim Christ and him crucified, for them!

Oh Heavenly Father. Let me be your sounding board. Let me be the watchman at the Crossroad to point the true way. In the name of your son Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit. One God forever and ever. Amen.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Issues etc. with the Numbers Game

Recently, a letter was posted on the official LCMS website purporting to explain why Issues etc. was canceled. The reasons, in my opinion, are rather spurious, and as someone is more familiar than most what Internet download numbers mean, I have to address something important concerning the reason by David L. Strand, Executive Director Board for Communication Services on the recent canceling of Issues etc.

Some may also be under a misapprehension about the size of the “Issues” audience. In 2005, station management decided it could no longer justify paying for expensive ratings reports in light of the predictably low and static nature of KFUOAM’s audience numbers. At the time, a blending of the spring 2004 and spring 2005 “books” showed an average listening audience during the “Issues” Monday-Friday timeslot of 1,650. There is no indication these numbers have grown appreciably since.

First of all, Mr. Strand, if you aren't keeping track of the numbers because it's not justifiable in your mind to keep track of the numbers, you shouldn't be saying anything about numbers in the first place. If you don't know what the numbers are, don't talk about what the numbers are.

As for the audio streaming of “Issues, Etc.” via the Internet, the numbers are similarly low. During the last full month (February 2008) for which we have reports, the average number of live, streaming listeners during the “Issues” Monday-Friday timeslot was 64.

That's actually pretty high numbers considering people absolutely have to arrive at the website to access the feed. What should have been happening is the station streaming audio should have been MADE accessible in as many places as possible. Plus, someone should have been looking other popular ways in which streaming media is distributed on the Internet. is a place where many radio stations and shows are broadcasting their content, live as it happens.

Also, are you saying that the people who were calling the show, some regularly, and some not so regularly, were not pretty amazing numbers? Shawn Hannity doesn't get as many callers as Issues etc. did, but he's doing rather well for himself.

Now, I want to address an issue that David Strand didn't even address. Radical Grace Radio lives and breaths by downloads per month. We can find out what are ratings are for on the air if we want to, but I personally have decided not to worry about that until after we've been on the air for at least a year. Pastor Gary and myself frequently check our downloads daily, and lately for a show so new and still relatively unknown, we're posting impressive numbers, especially since it's mostly been word of mouth that drives our numbers. I recently came upon numbers by a friend at Wittenberg trail that shows that Issues etc. was having around 300,000 downloads per month, and that figure was very steady. If we at Radical Grace Radio had one quarter of that right now, we'd be considered a huge success in the secular world. Your average secular radio station doesn't do anywhere near that size of downloads for any given show nor for the most part combined downloads for the entire station!

Again, I have to ask... What's happening here people?

Friday, March 21, 2008

What happening people?

This has to be the cheap shot of all time. Let me say something here folks, this isn't about a talk show or the hosts thereof. It's about a Church Body, the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, wanting to throw away it's Lutheran heritage along with the trappings of old world German Culture. In doing so, they are turning from Grace and leaving the word behind.

What am I talking about? Unless I'm sorely mistaken, this is the current model for Lutheran Church.

Take a look at the sermon videos, all the band instruments dwarfing the alter, no space set aside for the work of God, a "youth pastor" styled pastor who's yelling and screaming and giving good advice. He tries to placard Christ and him crucified up before the people, but he winds up driving the verbs the wrong way. It's subtle, but it's there.

Pastor Todd Wilken has taught me too well. Where other world religions are growing by remaining authentic, we're throw any chance at authenticity we have out the window. While Islam and it's Imams still say that Allah is not the Christian God, we are comprimising the Triune God's identity to attract people. While other religions are not concerned about numbers, we are counting the heads and the beans.

What's happening people?

the big test

Since someone, somewhere, has seen fit to deprive the world of Issues etc and take a huge bite out of confessional Lutheranism at the same time, I will not take up the mantle of working to see that those who did it answer for their actions.
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