A Mormon on the Glenn Beck rally

Here is a discussion of the Glenn Beck rally–what it means and what it achieves–from Mormon official Greg West:

I believe that Glenn Beck’s desire, in some measure, was to create a “King Benjamin moment.” The Book of Mormon relates a landmark gathering of some of the ancient inhabitants of the Americas to hear the words of one King Benjamin. Benjamin declared principles of piety, humility, service, and faith to his people. He preached to them repentance and faith in Jesus Christ, who would be born in centuries to come, relative to his time. The result was a turning back to God by his audience that brought the Holy Spirit upon them. It was a moment of national renewal and personal recommitment to do good in God’s name. This was Beck’s template for the event that took place today.

As a Mormon, I have to consider an unintended message throughout Beck’s work, which has culminated in this event. That message is: “Mormons are Christian believers.” Despite nearly two centuries of misrepresentation and religious envy by sectarian Christianity, Beck has achieved the visibility, prominence, and has had the time day after day, week after week, to speak openly and truly about his core beliefs. Those statements of faith have disoriented and confused those who had previously believed the lies about Mormons. Just a few weeks ago, Beck discussed the heresies evident in “Liberation Theology” and declared his belief of individual salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. One confused person commented on Free Republic, a frequent forum for open Mormon-bashing, that “this would mean that Beck is ‘born-again.”

Jim Garlow, a popular and influential pastor who partnered with the Mormon faithful in California to defend traditional marriage was quoted recently in CNN’s Belief Blog, saying, “I have interviewed persons who have talked specifically with Glenn about his personal salvation – persons extremely well known in Christianity – and they have affirmed (using language evangelicals understand), ‘Glenn is saved…’ He understands receiving Christ as Savior.”

Hallelujah! The light bulb has been switched on after nearly two centuries! Every single member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believes that a person must be “born again” and receive Jesus Christ as his Savior and Redeemer. Our holy books teach that salvation comes only in and through the atonement of Christ and that there is no other way a person can be saved. Those beliefs obligate us to do our best to keep God’s commandments and to follow the example of Jesus in doing good. Glenn Beck’s beliefs are mainstream Mormon beliefs. Joseph Smith, the Church’s founder, was a Christian prophet. He was an apostolic witness of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.

As Rev. C.L. Jackson said in his speech today after accepting the medal for faith, “God sent his Son to this earth so that we could all gather, and I think that’s the dream and the vision of Glenn Beck.” I myself have reacted, defensively and perhaps provocatively, to the attacks of Christian pastors on Mormons in the past. If anything, Glenn Beck has brought mainstream Mormonism into the public eye and has reached out to our fellow Christians in a powerful way. Perhaps it signifies the crossing of a threshold where Mormons and our fellow Christians can work together for good, to revitalize our country, and enshrine the principles of faith, hope, and charity–restoring honor once again to our familes, our communities, and our nation.

Indeed, lots of evangelicals are saying that Glenn Beck is a Christian because he has “accepted Christ” and believes he is saved through Christ’s “atonement.” It turns out that Mormons in general believe that. So, if that’s all there is to it, Mormons must be Christians. Belief in the Trinity, the Deity of Christ, and the other tenets of historic Christianity are being dismissed as just “theological differences” and thus not all that important. (See, for example, what David Barton is saying. [HT: Rich Shipe])

HT: Brannon Howse

About Gene Veith

Professor of Literature at Patrick Henry College, the Director of the Cranach Institute at Concordia Theological Seminary, a columnist for World Magazine and TableTalk, and the author of 18 books on different facets of Christianity & Culture.

  • Pete

    There’s definitional shift going on here. “Christianity” used to imply “orthodox Christianity” but now, it seems, the two are their own separate categories. Much the same as with “marriage” – now we’ve refined it to “traditional marriage” and a multitude of sub-categories.

  • Pete

    There’s definitional shift going on here. “Christianity” used to imply “orthodox Christianity” but now, it seems, the two are their own separate categories. Much the same as with “marriage” – now we’ve refined it to “traditional marriage” and a multitude of sub-categories.

  • Winston Smith

    So you can believe that Jesus and Lucifer are half-brothers, and still be Christian?

    If you don’t believe that Jesus is the sinless Son of God, then how can He atone for you?

    Mormonism is a steaming cauldron of lies from the pit of hell.

  • Winston Smith

    So you can believe that Jesus and Lucifer are half-brothers, and still be Christian?

    If you don’t believe that Jesus is the sinless Son of God, then how can He atone for you?

    Mormonism is a steaming cauldron of lies from the pit of hell.

  • Reg Schofield

    This is so sad to see happening . But when one wants political power , shaking hands with a heretic comes easy . I think people need to read Dr. James Whites book “Is the Mormon My Brother?: Discerning the Differences Between Mormonism and Christianity”. Satan has to be laughing with glee to see this .

  • Reg Schofield

    This is so sad to see happening . But when one wants political power , shaking hands with a heretic comes easy . I think people need to read Dr. James Whites book “Is the Mormon My Brother?: Discerning the Differences Between Mormonism and Christianity”. Satan has to be laughing with glee to see this .

  • http://www.redeemedrambling.blogspot.com/ John

    Back’s SSN begins with 666…

  • http://www.redeemedrambling.blogspot.com/ John

    Back’s SSN begins with 666…

  • Joe

    This is a direct result of the lack of catechesis among Christian laymen and an intentional focus away from doctrine and toward emotion by clergy. The result is sad but not surprising.

  • Joe

    This is a direct result of the lack of catechesis among Christian laymen and an intentional focus away from doctrine and toward emotion by clergy. The result is sad but not surprising.

  • River

    Are any of the non-Sacramental churches Christian? That’s not a pejorative question–really, are they? I’m sad to think it, but I’m none the less beginning to think that we should start sending missionaries to the “born again” peoples. I’ve already started trying to work with my non-denom friends, because I’ve become convinced that the Jesus they’re worshiping isn’t Jesus Christ, Son of God, second person of the Trinity.

    What makes the “work” interesting is that my friends are convinced that I am not a Christian because I confess that Baptism now saves us. And because God doesn’t speak to me in visions.

    Either way: Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us all, for we are sinners.

  • River

    Are any of the non-Sacramental churches Christian? That’s not a pejorative question–really, are they? I’m sad to think it, but I’m none the less beginning to think that we should start sending missionaries to the “born again” peoples. I’ve already started trying to work with my non-denom friends, because I’ve become convinced that the Jesus they’re worshiping isn’t Jesus Christ, Son of God, second person of the Trinity.

    What makes the “work” interesting is that my friends are convinced that I am not a Christian because I confess that Baptism now saves us. And because God doesn’t speak to me in visions.

    Either way: Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on us all, for we are sinners.

  • Dan Kempin

    This says more about “evangelical” Christianity, I think, than about Beck, the Mormons, or the current culture. Mormons, after all, have always protrayed themselves as maligned Christians, and Mr. Beck no doubt believes this honestly. None of that is surprising.

    The interesting part, as Dr. Veith points out, is that at least one Christian pastor has published a reasoned opinion that Glenn Beck IS a Christian. This opinion clearly reflects two of the dangers that Lutherans have always pointed out in Reformed (reformed evangelical, painting with a broad brush) theology, namely:

    1) Theological Reductionism, and,
    2) Decision Theology.

    Consider the thoughts of pastor Jim Garlow in an interview by Eric Young: http://www.christianpost.com/article/20100827/evangelical-megachurch-pastor-defends-support-for-glenn-beck/index.html

    “ . . . if your theology is off slightly, but you still trust exclusively in Jesus Christ’s death on the cross for your salvation, and in his resurrection, are you still saved? Going to heaven? Yes,” Garlow argued. . . ”

    “And according to Garlow, Beck has said “unequivocally” that that he relies on the atonement of Jesus on the cross for forgiveness for his sins.”

    “I have interviewed persons who have talked specifically with Glenn about his personal salvation – persons extremely well known in Christianity – and they have affirmed (using language evangelicals understand), ‘Glenn is saved,’” Garlow reported. “He understands receiving Christ as savior.”

    So theologically it is enough that someone understand that Christ’s death was an atonement. Understanding WHO He is or affirming the Trinity is a theological “difference.” Is that sufficient?

    (Here’s where the theological chickens come home to roost. . .)

    Apparently what really matters is that he DECIDED. Theological differences become secondary as long as “You still trust exclusively.” Evangelical leaders (uncited) conclude that Beck is Christian (saved) because he understands “receiving Christ as Savior.”

  • Dan Kempin

    This says more about “evangelical” Christianity, I think, than about Beck, the Mormons, or the current culture. Mormons, after all, have always protrayed themselves as maligned Christians, and Mr. Beck no doubt believes this honestly. None of that is surprising.

    The interesting part, as Dr. Veith points out, is that at least one Christian pastor has published a reasoned opinion that Glenn Beck IS a Christian. This opinion clearly reflects two of the dangers that Lutherans have always pointed out in Reformed (reformed evangelical, painting with a broad brush) theology, namely:

    1) Theological Reductionism, and,
    2) Decision Theology.

    Consider the thoughts of pastor Jim Garlow in an interview by Eric Young: http://www.christianpost.com/article/20100827/evangelical-megachurch-pastor-defends-support-for-glenn-beck/index.html

    “ . . . if your theology is off slightly, but you still trust exclusively in Jesus Christ’s death on the cross for your salvation, and in his resurrection, are you still saved? Going to heaven? Yes,” Garlow argued. . . ”

    “And according to Garlow, Beck has said “unequivocally” that that he relies on the atonement of Jesus on the cross for forgiveness for his sins.”

    “I have interviewed persons who have talked specifically with Glenn about his personal salvation – persons extremely well known in Christianity – and they have affirmed (using language evangelicals understand), ‘Glenn is saved,’” Garlow reported. “He understands receiving Christ as savior.”

    So theologically it is enough that someone understand that Christ’s death was an atonement. Understanding WHO He is or affirming the Trinity is a theological “difference.” Is that sufficient?

    (Here’s where the theological chickens come home to roost. . .)

    Apparently what really matters is that he DECIDED. Theological differences become secondary as long as “You still trust exclusively.” Evangelical leaders (uncited) conclude that Beck is Christian (saved) because he understands “receiving Christ as Savior.”

  • Winston Smith

    River @6: As one of this site’s token non-Lutherans, let me assure you that yes, quite a lot of us evangelical types actually are true Christians. We even read the Bible (when we’re not handling snakes).

    Dan Kempin@7: ““ . . . if your theology is off slightly, but you still trust exclusively in Jesus Christ’s death on the cross for your salvation, and in his resurrection, are you still saved? Going to heaven? Yes,” Garlow argued. . . ”

    The question becomes, who is Jesus Christ? If He is not the Son of God, can His death and ressurection save you? If the inerrant, inspired Word of God that tells us Jesus died for our sins is given equal weight with the dubious Book of Mormon that contradicts the real scriptures in all kinds of other ways, how much can you trust the saving Gospel?

  • Winston Smith

    River @6: As one of this site’s token non-Lutherans, let me assure you that yes, quite a lot of us evangelical types actually are true Christians. We even read the Bible (when we’re not handling snakes).

    Dan Kempin@7: ““ . . . if your theology is off slightly, but you still trust exclusively in Jesus Christ’s death on the cross for your salvation, and in his resurrection, are you still saved? Going to heaven? Yes,” Garlow argued. . . ”

    The question becomes, who is Jesus Christ? If He is not the Son of God, can His death and ressurection save you? If the inerrant, inspired Word of God that tells us Jesus died for our sins is given equal weight with the dubious Book of Mormon that contradicts the real scriptures in all kinds of other ways, how much can you trust the saving Gospel?

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Rev. Charles Lehmann

    Mormon’s don’t believe that Jesus and Satan are half-brothers. There ain’t no half about it.

    I figured I’d throw some gas on the fire at my blog. I said what I haven’t seen anyone else say yet (though I suppose it probably has been said somewhere that I don’t read):

    Glenn Beck is an Antichrist.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Rev. Charles Lehmann

    Mormon’s don’t believe that Jesus and Satan are half-brothers. There ain’t no half about it.

    I figured I’d throw some gas on the fire at my blog. I said what I haven’t seen anyone else say yet (though I suppose it probably has been said somewhere that I don’t read):

    Glenn Beck is an Antichrist.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Joe @ 5
    “This is a direct result of the lack of catechesis among Christian laymen and an intentional focus away from doctrine and toward emotion by clergy. The result is sad but not surprising.”
    Nice and succinct account of the problem. And it is an uphill battle for us pastors.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Joe @ 5
    “This is a direct result of the lack of catechesis among Christian laymen and an intentional focus away from doctrine and toward emotion by clergy. The result is sad but not surprising.”
    Nice and succinct account of the problem. And it is an uphill battle for us pastors.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    There is no tangible difference between the way Mormon’s talk about their burning bosom, and evangelicals talk about “baptism in the Spirit.” None.
    You think this doesn’t create a problem?
    Everything after this is morality, and how to live the Christian life, I’d like to say that they are even taught the Ten Commandments, but then that isn’t true. The christian life has nothing to do with the first two or three of those, and the second table, aside from murder is all but ignored after that.
    The Christian life becomes about expanding your vocabulary to include Ned Flanderisms, not smoking, and not drinking.
    And as River says, they think your off your rocker when you actually believe what their inerrant inspired book says about baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Most are totally confused about the Trinity, and quite frankly I’ve read books by many evangelicals and reformed who want to talk on that subject and fall into just about every heresy there ever has been on that issue. No one thinks to just go read Athanasius, or Gregory of Nazianzus on these issues.
    Winston you say you guys are reading your Bibles when your not handling snakes. No doubt it is true, but I think you might need to adopt a different hermeneutic, like one the Bible recommends, John 5:39.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    There is no tangible difference between the way Mormon’s talk about their burning bosom, and evangelicals talk about “baptism in the Spirit.” None.
    You think this doesn’t create a problem?
    Everything after this is morality, and how to live the Christian life, I’d like to say that they are even taught the Ten Commandments, but then that isn’t true. The christian life has nothing to do with the first two or three of those, and the second table, aside from murder is all but ignored after that.
    The Christian life becomes about expanding your vocabulary to include Ned Flanderisms, not smoking, and not drinking.
    And as River says, they think your off your rocker when you actually believe what their inerrant inspired book says about baptism and the Lord’s Supper. Most are totally confused about the Trinity, and quite frankly I’ve read books by many evangelicals and reformed who want to talk on that subject and fall into just about every heresy there ever has been on that issue. No one thinks to just go read Athanasius, or Gregory of Nazianzus on these issues.
    Winston you say you guys are reading your Bibles when your not handling snakes. No doubt it is true, but I think you might need to adopt a different hermeneutic, like one the Bible recommends, John 5:39.

  • River

    Winston @8

    Oh, I get that non-Lutherans are Christian. Amazingly, even Lutherans can be saved. ;) What I’m wondering is about non-Sacramental CHURCHES. AND! I’m not saying that all those individuals who attend non-Sacramental congregations are damned, or that they like snakes, or that they insist their widows be burned with them on their funeral pyres. You know: Election, and God elects whom He will, whether I understand it or not.

    But the churches themselves. Are they Christian? I mean, can and should Sacramental churches continue to shrug and wink at those churches who bash the Sacraments and who outright say that those who confess Sacramentally are outside of the Church?

    And, more to the point at hand, is anyone really surprised that a Baptist preacher would say that Beck is confessing Christian beliefs? If the Baptist is comfortable with the Mormon confession, what does this mean about the Baptist confession?

    I know that asking these things makes me a bad person, but I’m just drawn that way.

  • River

    Winston @8

    Oh, I get that non-Lutherans are Christian. Amazingly, even Lutherans can be saved. ;) What I’m wondering is about non-Sacramental CHURCHES. AND! I’m not saying that all those individuals who attend non-Sacramental congregations are damned, or that they like snakes, or that they insist their widows be burned with them on their funeral pyres. You know: Election, and God elects whom He will, whether I understand it or not.

    But the churches themselves. Are they Christian? I mean, can and should Sacramental churches continue to shrug and wink at those churches who bash the Sacraments and who outright say that those who confess Sacramentally are outside of the Church?

    And, more to the point at hand, is anyone really surprised that a Baptist preacher would say that Beck is confessing Christian beliefs? If the Baptist is comfortable with the Mormon confession, what does this mean about the Baptist confession?

    I know that asking these things makes me a bad person, but I’m just drawn that way.

  • saddler

    ” Mormons, after all, have always protrayed themselves as maligned Christians” says Dan. I’m not so sure. Not so long ago, I am told that Mormons did not refer to themselves as Christians.

    Also, one might ask the LDS folks what is meant by what Joseph Smith described as the “Great Apostasy”. Smith’s mission was to restore the true church on earth. He claimed that he had looked at all of them and found nothing but apostasy. Indeed, even now one of the things that Mormons confess is that the Mormon church is the only true church. But then we hear all this stuff about:”can’t you guys see that we’re all buds?” The LDS folks want desparately to be considered Christians just like all the rest of us, but that was certainly not what Joseph Smith said.

    I have dear friends who are LDS whom I love and worry about frequently.

  • saddler

    ” Mormons, after all, have always protrayed themselves as maligned Christians” says Dan. I’m not so sure. Not so long ago, I am told that Mormons did not refer to themselves as Christians.

    Also, one might ask the LDS folks what is meant by what Joseph Smith described as the “Great Apostasy”. Smith’s mission was to restore the true church on earth. He claimed that he had looked at all of them and found nothing but apostasy. Indeed, even now one of the things that Mormons confess is that the Mormon church is the only true church. But then we hear all this stuff about:”can’t you guys see that we’re all buds?” The LDS folks want desparately to be considered Christians just like all the rest of us, but that was certainly not what Joseph Smith said.

    I have dear friends who are LDS whom I love and worry about frequently.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    River @12,
    I think it is good that you ask the questions.
    What is becoming increasingly more and more difficult for us pastors is assuming that these evangelical churches are Trinitarian, especially of Non-denominational types. It used to be that you could look at a churches official published doctrine and determine such things. But when I have to do that for every store front chapel across the states this becomes problematic. And increasingly I am talking to Evangelicals who will deny such statements as “Jesus is God.” There goes Christianity. But they can tell you when the butterflies hit their tummies and they were “saved.”

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    River @12,
    I think it is good that you ask the questions.
    What is becoming increasingly more and more difficult for us pastors is assuming that these evangelical churches are Trinitarian, especially of Non-denominational types. It used to be that you could look at a churches official published doctrine and determine such things. But when I have to do that for every store front chapel across the states this becomes problematic. And increasingly I am talking to Evangelicals who will deny such statements as “Jesus is God.” There goes Christianity. But they can tell you when the butterflies hit their tummies and they were “saved.”

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Saddler,
    you are right, they didn’t always want to be known as Christians. Even in the Eighties they would deny the term Christian.
    This began to change in the 90s as I remember Mormon neighbors of mine saying that they were Christians because they use the name Jesus Christ in their name even.
    It seems everyone has forgot what the term Blasphemy means, or that one can use a persons name to slander them too.
    Since the Olympics in Salt Lake their has been an even greater push to go this route.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Saddler,
    you are right, they didn’t always want to be known as Christians. Even in the Eighties they would deny the term Christian.
    This began to change in the 90s as I remember Mormon neighbors of mine saying that they were Christians because they use the name Jesus Christ in their name even.
    It seems everyone has forgot what the term Blasphemy means, or that one can use a persons name to slander them too.
    Since the Olympics in Salt Lake their has been an even greater push to go this route.

  • The Jones

    A Mormon can sincerely say that he believes Jesus Christ is God and that Jesus is our Savior. But after minimal investigation, we find that Mormons mean something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, not different details but something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, when they say “Jesus,” “Christ,” “God,” and “Savior.” It doesn’t mean a thing when Christians and Mormons both say, “Jesus is our Savior.”

    As Winston pointed out, Mormons believe that Jesus is Satan’s half brother. So either Jesus is not God or Satan is, too. So we mean something completely different by “Jesus.”

    We also find that Jesus is just the “favorite son” of all God’s spirit children. (or maybe just the first, I don’t really know) God had a special plan for him, which was to save us, so he’s kind of a “special” son who saves us by his death. But he’s not the “only begotten” son who saves us by his death. So, we mean something completely different by “Christ,” too.

    If you go further a little bit, you’ll find that according to Mormanism, Jesus IS God, but everybody else is going to be their own God if they live a faithful life. That’s actually how God became “God.” As a matter of fact, Mormons believe God is an actual man, with flesh and bone, who at one point didn’t exist, but was born, lived a good life and became God, which is what Jesus allows us to do ourselves. With this in mind, we see Mormons mean something completely different by the words “Savior” and “God,” too.

    So, do Mormons think they’re Christians? Of course they do. Are they? Of course not. Mormonism is a religion that feeds off of Christianity, uses the same language, has the same feel, uses much of the same scripture (plus a little bit more), goes the same places, but is something completely different. It’s rather parasitic.

  • The Jones

    A Mormon can sincerely say that he believes Jesus Christ is God and that Jesus is our Savior. But after minimal investigation, we find that Mormons mean something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, not different details but something COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, when they say “Jesus,” “Christ,” “God,” and “Savior.” It doesn’t mean a thing when Christians and Mormons both say, “Jesus is our Savior.”

    As Winston pointed out, Mormons believe that Jesus is Satan’s half brother. So either Jesus is not God or Satan is, too. So we mean something completely different by “Jesus.”

    We also find that Jesus is just the “favorite son” of all God’s spirit children. (or maybe just the first, I don’t really know) God had a special plan for him, which was to save us, so he’s kind of a “special” son who saves us by his death. But he’s not the “only begotten” son who saves us by his death. So, we mean something completely different by “Christ,” too.

    If you go further a little bit, you’ll find that according to Mormanism, Jesus IS God, but everybody else is going to be their own God if they live a faithful life. That’s actually how God became “God.” As a matter of fact, Mormons believe God is an actual man, with flesh and bone, who at one point didn’t exist, but was born, lived a good life and became God, which is what Jesus allows us to do ourselves. With this in mind, we see Mormons mean something completely different by the words “Savior” and “God,” too.

    So, do Mormons think they’re Christians? Of course they do. Are they? Of course not. Mormonism is a religion that feeds off of Christianity, uses the same language, has the same feel, uses much of the same scripture (plus a little bit more), goes the same places, but is something completely different. It’s rather parasitic.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    jones,
    It is more precise to say that a Mormon can say “Jesus is a god,” They will not unless being sloppy say he is god. But yes they actually believe we are all brothers with Jesus and Satan for that matter, and that there is no real difference between our adopted sonship and his begotten sonship. Typically they refer to “heavenly Father” as being god, and Jesus as being the son of god, but then hey so are you.
    Now how they reconcile the father being flesh and bone begetting spirit children, in light of John 3:6 John 3:6 (ESV)
    That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
    Is beyond me. they do “say” they believe the Bible. But they believe the Bible about as much as they believe the “Book of Mormon”, which is to say not at all. I’ve read the book of Mormon and it espouses completely different heresies than the ones espoused by the LDS faith.
    The only thing that matters to them and most Evangelicals I run into is a liver shiver.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    jones,
    It is more precise to say that a Mormon can say “Jesus is a god,” They will not unless being sloppy say he is god. But yes they actually believe we are all brothers with Jesus and Satan for that matter, and that there is no real difference between our adopted sonship and his begotten sonship. Typically they refer to “heavenly Father” as being god, and Jesus as being the son of god, but then hey so are you.
    Now how they reconcile the father being flesh and bone begetting spirit children, in light of John 3:6 John 3:6 (ESV)
    That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
    Is beyond me. they do “say” they believe the Bible. But they believe the Bible about as much as they believe the “Book of Mormon”, which is to say not at all. I’ve read the book of Mormon and it espouses completely different heresies than the ones espoused by the LDS faith.
    The only thing that matters to them and most Evangelicals I run into is a liver shiver.

  • Rich Shipe

    Lutherans gone wild!! Easy guys, can we keep our guns aimed downrange?

    Just because some evangelical pastors and laymen (David Barton is not a pastor) are off doesn’t mean that all are off. Do all Lutherans have it together? No. Does that prove the inherent problem with being Lutheran? No.

    Don’t forget that the best article written so far on the Beck rally was by Russell Moore who is a Southern Baptist. Dr. Veith linked to it yesterday.

    I love being a part of this blog and learning from you guys. Some great and thoughtful discussion that really challenges me. But the inflammatory language isn’t helpful. This is the first time my faith has been questioned because I’m non-denominational. First time I’ve even heard that argument. To equate evangelicalism with Mormonism is not only wrong but also gives continued credence to Mormonism.

    Can we use a less polemic tone and keep our guns aimed at Mormonism and its supporters? If you can’t, that’s fine. Maybe it is just part of the personality and culture of Lutherans? If so, forget what I wrote and fire away!! :)

  • Rich Shipe

    Lutherans gone wild!! Easy guys, can we keep our guns aimed downrange?

    Just because some evangelical pastors and laymen (David Barton is not a pastor) are off doesn’t mean that all are off. Do all Lutherans have it together? No. Does that prove the inherent problem with being Lutheran? No.

    Don’t forget that the best article written so far on the Beck rally was by Russell Moore who is a Southern Baptist. Dr. Veith linked to it yesterday.

    I love being a part of this blog and learning from you guys. Some great and thoughtful discussion that really challenges me. But the inflammatory language isn’t helpful. This is the first time my faith has been questioned because I’m non-denominational. First time I’ve even heard that argument. To equate evangelicalism with Mormonism is not only wrong but also gives continued credence to Mormonism.

    Can we use a less polemic tone and keep our guns aimed at Mormonism and its supporters? If you can’t, that’s fine. Maybe it is just part of the personality and culture of Lutherans? If so, forget what I wrote and fire away!! :)

  • BW

    Pr. Erickson @ 17

    “But they believe the Bible about as much as they believe the “Book of Mormon”, which is to say not at all. I’ve read the book of Mormon and it espouses completely different heresies than the ones espoused by the LDS faith.
    The only thing that matters to them and most Evangelicals I run into is a liver shiver.”

    This seems to jive with what I’ve seen, admittedly online only in comments on articles or posts where an odd Mormon doctrine or theological belief is discussed, and several LDS chime in and say that no one believes this or that doctrine anymore and how the author isn’t doing his homework or research on what LDS actually believe. Even though it’s in their doctrinal statements.

  • BW

    Pr. Erickson @ 17

    “But they believe the Bible about as much as they believe the “Book of Mormon”, which is to say not at all. I’ve read the book of Mormon and it espouses completely different heresies than the ones espoused by the LDS faith.
    The only thing that matters to them and most Evangelicals I run into is a liver shiver.”

    This seems to jive with what I’ve seen, admittedly online only in comments on articles or posts where an odd Mormon doctrine or theological belief is discussed, and several LDS chime in and say that no one believes this or that doctrine anymore and how the author isn’t doing his homework or research on what LDS actually believe. Even though it’s in their doctrinal statements.

  • River

    Rich @18

    Ha! Truth is, I’m glad to hear from you. In all honesty, I don’t question whether or not you are a Christian. I don’t know anything about anything. My questions are inspired only by my narrow experience with the non-denominational people in my social circle, and I do understand that one non-denom church is very different from another. So tell me things. I want to know more.

    But I am still curious about the impact of a non-Sacramental worldview. I’ve been told by more than one Baptist that I am NOT A CHRISTIAN precisely because I confess with my church body that Christ is really present in the Eucharist, and that Baptism is a washing of rebirth for our salvation. I have been told by a non-denominational that my faith is in question because I do not hear the voice of God in my head when I pray. I’m not making this stuff up.

    So, if the “born again” are questioning my Christianity when what I confess is what has by and large always been confessed by the Church (and when I practice a quiet piety) what on earth does this mean about the confession of those born again people? And, sure, not all Baptists love Beck–this is because God is gracious and merciful to His elect. But what of the confession of the church bodies themselves??? What of that??? What does it all MEAN???

  • River

    Rich @18

    Ha! Truth is, I’m glad to hear from you. In all honesty, I don’t question whether or not you are a Christian. I don’t know anything about anything. My questions are inspired only by my narrow experience with the non-denominational people in my social circle, and I do understand that one non-denom church is very different from another. So tell me things. I want to know more.

    But I am still curious about the impact of a non-Sacramental worldview. I’ve been told by more than one Baptist that I am NOT A CHRISTIAN precisely because I confess with my church body that Christ is really present in the Eucharist, and that Baptism is a washing of rebirth for our salvation. I have been told by a non-denominational that my faith is in question because I do not hear the voice of God in my head when I pray. I’m not making this stuff up.

    So, if the “born again” are questioning my Christianity when what I confess is what has by and large always been confessed by the Church (and when I practice a quiet piety) what on earth does this mean about the confession of those born again people? And, sure, not all Baptists love Beck–this is because God is gracious and merciful to His elect. But what of the confession of the church bodies themselves??? What of that??? What does it all MEAN???

  • S Bauer

    “He preached to them repentance and faith in Jesus Christ, who would be born in centuries to come, relative to his time. The result was a turning back to God by his audience that brought the Holy Spirit upon them.”

    This, at least, certainly isn’t a Christian statement of conversion.

  • S Bauer

    “He preached to them repentance and faith in Jesus Christ, who would be born in centuries to come, relative to his time. The result was a turning back to God by his audience that brought the Holy Spirit upon them.”

    This, at least, certainly isn’t a Christian statement of conversion.

  • Dan Kempin

    Rich, #18, regarding my post at #7,

    I don’t know if you were speaking to me in particular, but as one who “took a shot” at broad-brush evangelical theology, let me explain my aim.

    My point is not that Churches in this theological family are not Christian, they are. (Thesis VIII of Church and Ministry, for those of an LCMS bent.) My point is that theological errors are truly dangerous. Several of the theological errors to which lutherans have formally objected can be seen in the reasoning that led this pastor to conclude that Glenn Beck is “saved.”

    Doctrine matters. I’m sure you’d agree. And here we have one example of just how it matters.

    [Action open and clear . . . stepping back . . .]

  • Dan Kempin

    Rich, #18, regarding my post at #7,

    I don’t know if you were speaking to me in particular, but as one who “took a shot” at broad-brush evangelical theology, let me explain my aim.

    My point is not that Churches in this theological family are not Christian, they are. (Thesis VIII of Church and Ministry, for those of an LCMS bent.) My point is that theological errors are truly dangerous. Several of the theological errors to which lutherans have formally objected can be seen in the reasoning that led this pastor to conclude that Glenn Beck is “saved.”

    Doctrine matters. I’m sure you’d agree. And here we have one example of just how it matters.

    [Action open and clear . . . stepping back . . .]

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Rich,@ 18.
    Listen, if you click on my name, you will see that I am in the thick of it here. I live in Utah, I’m a pastor here. I talk to Mormons and live in a Mormon culture. It does not help the evangelism efforts that 90% of the evangelical tactics to reach Mormons and convince them of Christianity is based on comparing liver shivers and whose moral code is better i.e. stricter.
    If what I describe here doesn’t fit you than don’t wear the shoe.
    I like River know that some evangelicals are more doctrinally sound than others and the same goes for different non-denominational churches. But I hope what I have said has given you some time to think about what it means to be non-denominational, and why denominations can actually be quite helpful.
    perhaps, and I haven’t read them all so I can’t say, the best article on the Beck rally was written by a baptist. But i dare say a large part of what he wrote could be leveled back at him and his cohorts. And that greatly complicates the problem.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Rich,@ 18.
    Listen, if you click on my name, you will see that I am in the thick of it here. I live in Utah, I’m a pastor here. I talk to Mormons and live in a Mormon culture. It does not help the evangelism efforts that 90% of the evangelical tactics to reach Mormons and convince them of Christianity is based on comparing liver shivers and whose moral code is better i.e. stricter.
    If what I describe here doesn’t fit you than don’t wear the shoe.
    I like River know that some evangelicals are more doctrinally sound than others and the same goes for different non-denominational churches. But I hope what I have said has given you some time to think about what it means to be non-denominational, and why denominations can actually be quite helpful.
    perhaps, and I haven’t read them all so I can’t say, the best article on the Beck rally was written by a baptist. But i dare say a large part of what he wrote could be leveled back at him and his cohorts. And that greatly complicates the problem.

  • James Hageman

    If the Christians think the Mormons are Christians, have the Mormons become Christian, or the Christians ceased being Christians?

  • James Hageman

    If the Christians think the Mormons are Christians, have the Mormons become Christian, or the Christians ceased being Christians?

  • Tom Hering

    “Glenn Beck is an Antichrist.” – Rev. Charles Lehmann @ 9.

    Accompanied by signs and wonders.

  • Tom Hering

    “Glenn Beck is an Antichrist.” – Rev. Charles Lehmann @ 9.

    Accompanied by signs and wonders.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    BW@19.
    Yes. Discussing Mormon doctrine is frustrating for that reason. Doctrinal statements don’t really mean anything. The institution is right. “When the “prophet” speaks the thinking has been done.” They are encouraged not to think, just follow.
    And it doesn’t matter if the man who wrote the systematic (Kimball) later became their “prophet”. He doesn’t speak officially for the church either!
    In the end, the best book for dealing with Mormons is “Speaking the Truth in Love to Mormons” By Mark Cares. It is a bit more of an existentialist approach, but it hits home with them. Later you can go through the long arduous task of cleaning up the doctrinal problems, and repairing their cerebral malfunctions.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    BW@19.
    Yes. Discussing Mormon doctrine is frustrating for that reason. Doctrinal statements don’t really mean anything. The institution is right. “When the “prophet” speaks the thinking has been done.” They are encouraged not to think, just follow.
    And it doesn’t matter if the man who wrote the systematic (Kimball) later became their “prophet”. He doesn’t speak officially for the church either!
    In the end, the best book for dealing with Mormons is “Speaking the Truth in Love to Mormons” By Mark Cares. It is a bit more of an existentialist approach, but it hits home with them. Later you can go through the long arduous task of cleaning up the doctrinal problems, and repairing their cerebral malfunctions.

  • Booklover

    So experience trumps doctrine. Yup. He is a present-day evangelical.

  • Booklover

    So experience trumps doctrine. Yup. He is a present-day evangelical.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    By existential approach, with Mark Cares.
    It is not your normal Mormon apologetic accusing them of believing there are 10 foot quakers on the moon, (which Joseph Smith believed, and I have had Mormons defend) but he recommends hitting them hard with law, to follow up with gospel but not until the law has fully done its work, and doing this with carefully chosen Bible passages. It would not be right to say that experience trumps doctrine for Mark Cares. Though this is true of Mormons, and he finds you have to hit them there before you can get the doctrine to them. He doesn’t recommend liver shivers, but the exact opposite.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    By existential approach, with Mark Cares.
    It is not your normal Mormon apologetic accusing them of believing there are 10 foot quakers on the moon, (which Joseph Smith believed, and I have had Mormons defend) but he recommends hitting them hard with law, to follow up with gospel but not until the law has fully done its work, and doing this with carefully chosen Bible passages. It would not be right to say that experience trumps doctrine for Mark Cares. Though this is true of Mormons, and he finds you have to hit them there before you can get the doctrine to them. He doesn’t recommend liver shivers, but the exact opposite.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I am also “in the thick of it” with Bror and completely concur and agree that the book “Speaking the Truth in Love to Mormons” by Pastor Mark J. Cares, is the best resource a Christian who is concerned for their Mormon neighbors and/or loved ones could pick up. I love his Law/Gospel approach to evangelism and think it a great template for Lutheran Missions in general.

    Oh, and do watch out for those “liver-shivers” – they melt men into gooey lumps all over the place around here.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    I am also “in the thick of it” with Bror and completely concur and agree that the book “Speaking the Truth in Love to Mormons” by Pastor Mark J. Cares, is the best resource a Christian who is concerned for their Mormon neighbors and/or loved ones could pick up. I love his Law/Gospel approach to evangelism and think it a great template for Lutheran Missions in general.

    Oh, and do watch out for those “liver-shivers” – they melt men into gooey lumps all over the place around here.

  • Rich Shipe

    Thanks guys, I appreciate your kind words and backing off the larger generalizations. I’d love to dialogue on the questions you guys ask but I don’t really have the bandwidth in my life for doing it online. Would rather do it locally and am in fact doing that with another pastor who is local to me and confessional.

    Couple additional notes:

    -David Barton is not a pastor. I think he’s been referred to as such a couple times. Or maybe he wasn’t who was being referred to.

    -I’m generally in agreement with most of what I read here theologically. My disagreements are in areas where, like you, I consider myself on the right side but I also don’t consider your views to be outside of Christian orthodoxy. We wouldn’t be in the same local church, but I’m ok with that and consider you all brothers and hope to be refined and challenged by you.

  • Rich Shipe

    Thanks guys, I appreciate your kind words and backing off the larger generalizations. I’d love to dialogue on the questions you guys ask but I don’t really have the bandwidth in my life for doing it online. Would rather do it locally and am in fact doing that with another pastor who is local to me and confessional.

    Couple additional notes:

    -David Barton is not a pastor. I think he’s been referred to as such a couple times. Or maybe he wasn’t who was being referred to.

    -I’m generally in agreement with most of what I read here theologically. My disagreements are in areas where, like you, I consider myself on the right side but I also don’t consider your views to be outside of Christian orthodoxy. We wouldn’t be in the same local church, but I’m ok with that and consider you all brothers and hope to be refined and challenged by you.

  • Booklover

    A problem with the “born-again” or experience approach is that the warm fuzzy feeling, the liver shivers, can be experienced in just about any religion. Doctrine flies out the window.

    Another problem with the “born-againers” is that they approach traditional church members and tell them they must be born again. They don’t often approach the atheists or the buddhists or the muslims and give them the same command. In other words, they prefer to tell a Christian that they are really not a Christian; they build upon a foundation which has already been laid. I think there is a biblical admonition against that.

    In these churches, the focus is on how I have changed and isn’t it great, rather than on Christ. If our focus is on us, we then become our own god. This, too, sounds close to Mormonism.

    When one goes from a church which teaches word and sacrament, and then goes to a church which preaches changed life only, and treats sacrament flippantly; one comes to see that there really is no need for a church, just a striving for your best life now.

    I think if one would return to stories of the early church, one would see its focus on Jesus Christ, and this might teach one something.

  • Booklover

    A problem with the “born-again” or experience approach is that the warm fuzzy feeling, the liver shivers, can be experienced in just about any religion. Doctrine flies out the window.

    Another problem with the “born-againers” is that they approach traditional church members and tell them they must be born again. They don’t often approach the atheists or the buddhists or the muslims and give them the same command. In other words, they prefer to tell a Christian that they are really not a Christian; they build upon a foundation which has already been laid. I think there is a biblical admonition against that.

    In these churches, the focus is on how I have changed and isn’t it great, rather than on Christ. If our focus is on us, we then become our own god. This, too, sounds close to Mormonism.

    When one goes from a church which teaches word and sacrament, and then goes to a church which preaches changed life only, and treats sacrament flippantly; one comes to see that there really is no need for a church, just a striving for your best life now.

    I think if one would return to stories of the early church, one would see its focus on Jesus Christ, and this might teach one something.

  • http://gslcnm@juno.com Pastor Philip Spomer

    Talking to Mormons about doctrine is like nailing Jellow to the wall. But as I wrote elsewhere, next time I talk to a Mormon I’ll ask him who god worshiped before he became god, and why don’t we worship that?

  • http://gslcnm@juno.com Pastor Philip Spomer

    Talking to Mormons about doctrine is like nailing Jellow to the wall. But as I wrote elsewhere, next time I talk to a Mormon I’ll ask him who god worshiped before he became god, and why don’t we worship that?

  • Pingback: A Mormon Perspective on the Beck Rally » First Thoughts | A First Things Blog

  • Pingback: A Mormon Perspective on the Beck Rally » First Thoughts | A First Things Blog

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Thanks, booklover, for giving me a practical definition of “liver-shivers.” Never heard that term before.

    Pr. Spomer gives a great point about Mormonism; if their god became a god by good works, basically growing out of a “universe system,” well, then, Mormonism is essentially a cross of moralistic atheism and paganism–which explains Joseph Smith taking unto himself dozens of temple prostitutes, many of them who were already married. It is, strictly speaking, not a theistic religion.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Thanks, booklover, for giving me a practical definition of “liver-shivers.” Never heard that term before.

    Pr. Spomer gives a great point about Mormonism; if their god became a god by good works, basically growing out of a “universe system,” well, then, Mormonism is essentially a cross of moralistic atheism and paganism–which explains Joseph Smith taking unto himself dozens of temple prostitutes, many of them who were already married. It is, strictly speaking, not a theistic religion.

  • Bryan Lindemood

    “liver shiver” = “warm fuzzy feeling” = “mountain top experience” = “burning in the bosom” = “that tingly feeling you get when you’ve been emotionally manipulated”

    The “liver shiver” comes from within. The Holy Spirit, on the other hand, comes through the Word of God – from without. Word and Sacrament is where the Lord, Jesus has promised to be & it is where He has promised to deliver His gifts to you. Anywhere else and you just can’t trust it. Enjoy the feelings and tingles, sure, but don’t trust them or base any knowing (Doctrine) on anything but the revealed Word of the Old and New Testaments of Holy Writ.

    “I can’t fight this feeling anymore…” :)

  • Bryan Lindemood

    “liver shiver” = “warm fuzzy feeling” = “mountain top experience” = “burning in the bosom” = “that tingly feeling you get when you’ve been emotionally manipulated”

    The “liver shiver” comes from within. The Holy Spirit, on the other hand, comes through the Word of God – from without. Word and Sacrament is where the Lord, Jesus has promised to be & it is where He has promised to deliver His gifts to you. Anywhere else and you just can’t trust it. Enjoy the feelings and tingles, sure, but don’t trust them or base any knowing (Doctrine) on anything but the revealed Word of the Old and New Testaments of Holy Writ.

    “I can’t fight this feeling anymore…” :)

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Here is a piece I did about a year ago, a recounting of an encounter I had with a couple Mormon “missionaries.” Others have found it both helpful and funny.
    http://utah-lutheran.blogspot.com/2009/10/mormon-conversation.html

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Here is a piece I did about a year ago, a recounting of an encounter I had with a couple Mormon “missionaries.” Others have found it both helpful and funny.
    http://utah-lutheran.blogspot.com/2009/10/mormon-conversation.html

  • Tom Hering

    C.F.W. Walther, Law and Gospel, Nineteenth Evening Lecture

    “… we shall have to warn against a misunderstanding of the doctrine that a person must not base his salvation and his state of grace on his feeling. For this doctrine is abused by many.”

    “There are people who regard themselves as good Christians although they are spiritually dead. They have never felt a real anguish on account of their sins; they have never been filled with terror on account of them, have never been appalled by the thought of the hell which they have deserved, have never been on their knees before God, bewailing with bitter tears their awful, damnable condition under sin. Much less have they wept sweet tears of joy and glorified God for His mercy. They read and hear the Word of God without being specially impressed by it. They go to church and receive absolution without feeling refreshed; they attend Holy Communion without any inward sensation and remain as cold as ice. Occasionally, when they become inwardly agitated because of their Indifference in matters concerning their salvation and because of their lack of appreciation of God’s Word, they try to quiet their heart with the reflection that the Lutheran Church teaches that the lack of spiritual feeling is of no moment. They reason that this lack cannot harm them and that they can be good Christians notwithstanding, because they consider themselves believers.”

    “However, they labor under a grievous self-delusion. People in that condition have nothing but the dead faith of the intellect, a specious faith, or, to express it still more drastically, a lip faith. They may say with their mouths, ‘I believe,’ but their heart is not conscious of it. No, indeed; a person who cannot say, in accordance with Ps. 34, 8, that he has tasted and seen that the Lord is good must not regard himself as being in a state of true faith. More over, the Apostle Paul says, Rom. 8, 16, ‘The Spirit indeed beareth witness with our spirit that we are the children of God.’ Can the Holy Spirit bear this witness in us without our feeling it? The witness in court must speak loud enough for the judge to hear. The same is necessary in this case. According to God’s Word any person who has never felt the testimony of the Spirit that he is the child of God is spiritually dead. He can offer no testimony in his favor and does wrong by considering himself a Christian nevertheless.”

    “Again, the apostle says, Rom. 5, 1 ‘Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ Objective peace, established through the shedding of Christ’s blood, exists prior to our justification. Accordingly, the apostle must be speaking of a peace that is sensed, felt, and experienced.”

    “Furthermore, the Apostle Paul writes, Rom. 14, 17 ‘The kingdom of God is … righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.’ The joy of which the apostle speaks is not worldly, or carnal, joy, but spiritual Joy. A person that has tasted all the other joys except the last, is spiritually dead.”

    “The examples of the saints recorded in the Bible corroborate this point. We behold them continually aglow with the praise of God because of what He has done for them. That presupposes that their hearts were conscious of the mercy which the Lord had shown them. Could David, without an inward experience, have exclaimed: ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, Oh my soul, and forget not all His benefits; who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases’? He certainly had a very lively feeling of these matters when he spoke those words.”

    “Lastly, ask any person who has all the criteria of a true, living Christian whether he has experienced all the things of which he speaks, and he will answer in the affirmative, telling you that, after experiencing the terror which God sends to a sinner whom He wants to rescue, he had an experience of the sweetness of God’s grace in Christ. He will tell you that his heart is melting within him at every remembrance of his Savior’s love. Again, he will also tell you that, spite of the fact that he knows he has obtained grace, he is frequently seized with fright and anguish at the sight of the Law.”

    “Note, then, that our statement that no one must base his salvation and his state of grace on his feeling does not mean that he can be a good Christian without having experienced any feeling in regard to religious matters. That is not what we teach.”

  • Tom Hering

    C.F.W. Walther, Law and Gospel, Nineteenth Evening Lecture

    “… we shall have to warn against a misunderstanding of the doctrine that a person must not base his salvation and his state of grace on his feeling. For this doctrine is abused by many.”

    “There are people who regard themselves as good Christians although they are spiritually dead. They have never felt a real anguish on account of their sins; they have never been filled with terror on account of them, have never been appalled by the thought of the hell which they have deserved, have never been on their knees before God, bewailing with bitter tears their awful, damnable condition under sin. Much less have they wept sweet tears of joy and glorified God for His mercy. They read and hear the Word of God without being specially impressed by it. They go to church and receive absolution without feeling refreshed; they attend Holy Communion without any inward sensation and remain as cold as ice. Occasionally, when they become inwardly agitated because of their Indifference in matters concerning their salvation and because of their lack of appreciation of God’s Word, they try to quiet their heart with the reflection that the Lutheran Church teaches that the lack of spiritual feeling is of no moment. They reason that this lack cannot harm them and that they can be good Christians notwithstanding, because they consider themselves believers.”

    “However, they labor under a grievous self-delusion. People in that condition have nothing but the dead faith of the intellect, a specious faith, or, to express it still more drastically, a lip faith. They may say with their mouths, ‘I believe,’ but their heart is not conscious of it. No, indeed; a person who cannot say, in accordance with Ps. 34, 8, that he has tasted and seen that the Lord is good must not regard himself as being in a state of true faith. More over, the Apostle Paul says, Rom. 8, 16, ‘The Spirit indeed beareth witness with our spirit that we are the children of God.’ Can the Holy Spirit bear this witness in us without our feeling it? The witness in court must speak loud enough for the judge to hear. The same is necessary in this case. According to God’s Word any person who has never felt the testimony of the Spirit that he is the child of God is spiritually dead. He can offer no testimony in his favor and does wrong by considering himself a Christian nevertheless.”

    “Again, the apostle says, Rom. 5, 1 ‘Being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.’ Objective peace, established through the shedding of Christ’s blood, exists prior to our justification. Accordingly, the apostle must be speaking of a peace that is sensed, felt, and experienced.”

    “Furthermore, the Apostle Paul writes, Rom. 14, 17 ‘The kingdom of God is … righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Ghost.’ The joy of which the apostle speaks is not worldly, or carnal, joy, but spiritual Joy. A person that has tasted all the other joys except the last, is spiritually dead.”

    “The examples of the saints recorded in the Bible corroborate this point. We behold them continually aglow with the praise of God because of what He has done for them. That presupposes that their hearts were conscious of the mercy which the Lord had shown them. Could David, without an inward experience, have exclaimed: ‘Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, Oh my soul, and forget not all His benefits; who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases’? He certainly had a very lively feeling of these matters when he spoke those words.”

    “Lastly, ask any person who has all the criteria of a true, living Christian whether he has experienced all the things of which he speaks, and he will answer in the affirmative, telling you that, after experiencing the terror which God sends to a sinner whom He wants to rescue, he had an experience of the sweetness of God’s grace in Christ. He will tell you that his heart is melting within him at every remembrance of his Savior’s love. Again, he will also tell you that, spite of the fact that he knows he has obtained grace, he is frequently seized with fright and anguish at the sight of the Law.”

    “Note, then, that our statement that no one must base his salvation and his state of grace on his feeling does not mean that he can be a good Christian without having experienced any feeling in regard to religious matters. That is not what we teach.”

  • Grace

    Rich Shipe – 18 – - “This is the first time my faith has been questioned because I’m non-denominational. First time I’ve even heard that argument. To equate evangelicalism with Mormonism is not only wrong but also gives continued credence to Mormonism.” – -

    My faith has been questioned too – I am non-denominational as well. Many in our midst refer to themselves as “Born Again” – I have to ask…… why would anyone be offended by those words when Jesus Christ told Nicodemus he must be “Born Again” but yet many are uncomfortable with the statement Jesus made very clear.

    I’ve had numerous conversations with Mormons, regarding Mormon doctrine. Some consider themselves Christians, while believing what the Book of Mormon states.

    Two quotes below from Joseph Smith are difficult for any Mormon to dispute, although they become very uncomfortable when they find Christians who have studied their religion, ask they why they believe in Mormon doctrine, both being contrary to the Word of God.

    “I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.”

    (History of the Church, Vol. 4, page 461)

    “God is in the still small voice. In all these affidavits, indictments, it is all of the devil–all corruption. Come on! ye prosecutors! ye false swearers! All hell, boil over! Ye burning mountains, roll down your lava! for I will come out on the top at last. I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I. The followers of Jesus ran away from Him; but the Latter-day Saints never ran away from me yet”

    (History of the Church, Vol. 6, p. 408-409). Click here to see this quote in context.

    When ads are introduced through the media (TV) notice that the Book of Mormon sits along side the Bible. It’s TWO BOOKS, not the Word of God.

  • Grace

    Rich Shipe – 18 – - “This is the first time my faith has been questioned because I’m non-denominational. First time I’ve even heard that argument. To equate evangelicalism with Mormonism is not only wrong but also gives continued credence to Mormonism.” – -

    My faith has been questioned too – I am non-denominational as well. Many in our midst refer to themselves as “Born Again” – I have to ask…… why would anyone be offended by those words when Jesus Christ told Nicodemus he must be “Born Again” but yet many are uncomfortable with the statement Jesus made very clear.

    I’ve had numerous conversations with Mormons, regarding Mormon doctrine. Some consider themselves Christians, while believing what the Book of Mormon states.

    Two quotes below from Joseph Smith are difficult for any Mormon to dispute, although they become very uncomfortable when they find Christians who have studied their religion, ask they why they believe in Mormon doctrine, both being contrary to the Word of God.

    “I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and a man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book.”

    (History of the Church, Vol. 4, page 461)

    “God is in the still small voice. In all these affidavits, indictments, it is all of the devil–all corruption. Come on! ye prosecutors! ye false swearers! All hell, boil over! Ye burning mountains, roll down your lava! for I will come out on the top at last. I have more to boast of than ever any man had. I am the only man that has ever been able to keep a whole church together since the days of Adam. A large majority of the whole have stood by me. Neither Paul, John, Peter, nor Jesus ever did it. I boast that no man ever did such a work as I. The followers of Jesus ran away from Him; but the Latter-day Saints never ran away from me yet”

    (History of the Church, Vol. 6, p. 408-409). Click here to see this quote in context.

    When ads are introduced through the media (TV) notice that the Book of Mormon sits along side the Bible. It’s TWO BOOKS, not the Word of God.

  • Grace

    River – 6 – “’m sad to think it, but I’m none the less beginning to think that we should start sending missionaries to the “born again” peoples. I’ve already started trying to work with my non-denom friends, because I’ve become convinced that the Jesus they’re worshiping isn’t Jesus Christ, Son of God, second person of the Trinity. “

    Why would you believe people who state they are “Born Again” attending a non-denominational church need missionaries?

    How can you state the Jesus they worship isn’t God the Son?

  • Grace

    River – 6 – “’m sad to think it, but I’m none the less beginning to think that we should start sending missionaries to the “born again” peoples. I’ve already started trying to work with my non-denom friends, because I’ve become convinced that the Jesus they’re worshiping isn’t Jesus Christ, Son of God, second person of the Trinity. “

    Why would you believe people who state they are “Born Again” attending a non-denominational church need missionaries?

    How can you state the Jesus they worship isn’t God the Son?

  • Porcell

    Bror, at 35, I carefully read your account of dealing with the two snot-nsed Mormon “elders” and found it acutely written and fascinating. They more than met their match. I learned from it that Mormons are Arians, quite lacking in an understanding of Christ as God, to say nothing of the meaning of the Cross. The idea that Joseph Smith was the last and true prophet is just as silly as Mohammed’s claim; it’s interesting that both suffer the illusion that their “prophet” received the direct word of God.

    I had a similar experience with some Pentecostal folk, though frankly my, also, attractive wife took part; they preached the good message but had a hard time keeping their eyes off her while staying on message. Personally, while I respect the enthusiasm of these fervent folk, like my favorite Protestant, Melanchthon, I prefer a synthesis of the Reformation and Renaissance that emphasizes rational Christian doctrine and sacraments.

    This fellow, Glen Beck, is a Mormon charlatan, preying on the legitimate concerns of Americans regarding the federal government colossus and the decadence of the liberal Left.

  • Porcell

    Bror, at 35, I carefully read your account of dealing with the two snot-nsed Mormon “elders” and found it acutely written and fascinating. They more than met their match. I learned from it that Mormons are Arians, quite lacking in an understanding of Christ as God, to say nothing of the meaning of the Cross. The idea that Joseph Smith was the last and true prophet is just as silly as Mohammed’s claim; it’s interesting that both suffer the illusion that their “prophet” received the direct word of God.

    I had a similar experience with some Pentecostal folk, though frankly my, also, attractive wife took part; they preached the good message but had a hard time keeping their eyes off her while staying on message. Personally, while I respect the enthusiasm of these fervent folk, like my favorite Protestant, Melanchthon, I prefer a synthesis of the Reformation and Renaissance that emphasizes rational Christian doctrine and sacraments.

    This fellow, Glen Beck, is a Mormon charlatan, preying on the legitimate concerns of Americans regarding the federal government colossus and the decadence of the liberal Left.

  • Grace

    Dan Kempin – 7

    I read the article you referenced at the Christian Post.

    Comment from article: “I have interviewed persons who have talked specifically with Glenn about his personal salvation – persons extremely well known in Christianity – and they have affirmed (using language evangelicals understand), ‘Glenn is saved,’” Garlow reported. “He understands receiving Christ as savior.”

    I would like to know the names of those he is referring. ‘Evangelical language’ ? – that depends on whether they are Emergent Church, Pentecostal, and others. In my opinion, no one would buy into Beck UNLESS he left the Mormon Church. The Mormon doctrine is contrary to Scripture. One cannot stand on the fence, with one foot in a quasi cult and the other as a Born Again Christian. If I were talking to Beck, I would ask him why he hasn’t left, what’s keeping him in the doctrine of the Book of Mormon, Official LDS/Mormon doctrine and The books which contain the LDS/Mormon doctrine. No one can avoid these doctrinal books in the LDS church.

    Salvation would include leaving behind false doctrine – In post #37 I used to quotes from the ‘History of the Church’ – there are many more - the question is; would Glenn Beck denounce this doctrine, making it public?

  • Grace

    Dan Kempin – 7

    I read the article you referenced at the Christian Post.

    Comment from article: “I have interviewed persons who have talked specifically with Glenn about his personal salvation – persons extremely well known in Christianity – and they have affirmed (using language evangelicals understand), ‘Glenn is saved,’” Garlow reported. “He understands receiving Christ as savior.”

    I would like to know the names of those he is referring. ‘Evangelical language’ ? – that depends on whether they are Emergent Church, Pentecostal, and others. In my opinion, no one would buy into Beck UNLESS he left the Mormon Church. The Mormon doctrine is contrary to Scripture. One cannot stand on the fence, with one foot in a quasi cult and the other as a Born Again Christian. If I were talking to Beck, I would ask him why he hasn’t left, what’s keeping him in the doctrine of the Book of Mormon, Official LDS/Mormon doctrine and The books which contain the LDS/Mormon doctrine. No one can avoid these doctrinal books in the LDS church.

    Salvation would include leaving behind false doctrine – In post #37 I used to quotes from the ‘History of the Church’ – there are many more - the question is; would Glenn Beck denounce this doctrine, making it public?

  • River

    Grace @38

    Honestly, because it makes me so sad that the Born Again peoples do not have and do not want the Sacraments. I think the Sacraments are that big of a deal.

    And because I have been told unequivocally and often by many Born Again people that I am not a Christian precisely because I confess with my church body that Christ is where He says He is in the Sacraments. My church body confesses what the Church has always confessed to be true about the Sacraments–historically, teachings that deny the real presence of Christ in Communion and the salvific nature of Baptism are declared, in time, to be heretical. I am concerned, because, as I said, so many people do not want these gifts of God, instituted by Christ for the benefit of His dearly beloved. I don’t understand why they don’t want the Sacraments. I really don’t understand why they have decided that the Sacraments are dangerous and unChristian. And, like I said, I do think the Sacraments are a really, really big deal.

    And I worry that they aren’t worshiping the Second Person of the Trinity because they do not confess the Trinity. At. All. They confess “God.” I wish I knew what they’re trying to get at with this, but I don’t.

    Unlike those “born again” people who accuse me of being not a Christian because of my catholic (Lutheran) confession, I do not think the Born Again are damned. When you say you believe in the Triune God, that Christ was born, died, and resurrected in history, that He is coming again, I don’t call into question your confession. I don’t know anything at all about matters purely of the heart and of the spirit. Christ died for you, and that’s good enough for anyone.

    But! But, Grace, there’s so much more to God than the Law and moral living. There are the Sacraments! The sweet, Gospel-soaked, life-changing Sacraments! And the Sacraments are for all of God’s children.

    That’s why.

  • River

    Grace @38

    Honestly, because it makes me so sad that the Born Again peoples do not have and do not want the Sacraments. I think the Sacraments are that big of a deal.

    And because I have been told unequivocally and often by many Born Again people that I am not a Christian precisely because I confess with my church body that Christ is where He says He is in the Sacraments. My church body confesses what the Church has always confessed to be true about the Sacraments–historically, teachings that deny the real presence of Christ in Communion and the salvific nature of Baptism are declared, in time, to be heretical. I am concerned, because, as I said, so many people do not want these gifts of God, instituted by Christ for the benefit of His dearly beloved. I don’t understand why they don’t want the Sacraments. I really don’t understand why they have decided that the Sacraments are dangerous and unChristian. And, like I said, I do think the Sacraments are a really, really big deal.

    And I worry that they aren’t worshiping the Second Person of the Trinity because they do not confess the Trinity. At. All. They confess “God.” I wish I knew what they’re trying to get at with this, but I don’t.

    Unlike those “born again” people who accuse me of being not a Christian because of my catholic (Lutheran) confession, I do not think the Born Again are damned. When you say you believe in the Triune God, that Christ was born, died, and resurrected in history, that He is coming again, I don’t call into question your confession. I don’t know anything at all about matters purely of the heart and of the spirit. Christ died for you, and that’s good enough for anyone.

    But! But, Grace, there’s so much more to God than the Law and moral living. There are the Sacraments! The sweet, Gospel-soaked, life-changing Sacraments! And the Sacraments are for all of God’s children.

    That’s why.

  • Grace

    River – 41

    I don’t know one Bible believing church be it non-denominational who do not believe in the Trinity, they all do.

    Baptism is part of the non-denominational church. Many of the churches which have strayed from Biblical teaching believe differently, but that doesn’t make non-denominational church members un-Christian.

    As for being Born Again, ….. Jesus Christ Himself made that crystal clear, yet many so called denominational churches either ignore, or make fun of those who say they are Born Again Believers. This to me is mocking the very words of Jesus Christ.

  • Grace

    River – 41

    I don’t know one Bible believing church be it non-denominational who do not believe in the Trinity, they all do.

    Baptism is part of the non-denominational church. Many of the churches which have strayed from Biblical teaching believe differently, but that doesn’t make non-denominational church members un-Christian.

    As for being Born Again, ….. Jesus Christ Himself made that crystal clear, yet many so called denominational churches either ignore, or make fun of those who say they are Born Again Believers. This to me is mocking the very words of Jesus Christ.

  • Grace

    Samuel,

    I don’t understand a lot of churches at this time. Baptism is very important -

  • Grace

    Samuel,

    I don’t understand a lot of churches at this time. Baptism is very important -

  • Grace

    I organized a charity that helped people in many different ways. One of the young women who called the hot line was in the hospital, she was diabetic, 35 years old and almost blind – the doctors told her she would only live another year. When I took the call, I wasn’t able to go directly to the hospital, …. I called a woman in our church who was a true Believer, she went straight away to the hospital room, telling the woman about Christ and His dying for her sins. She accepted Christ…. she was thrilled, ….. my friend called me back telling me how it went.

    This young woman who could hardly see – - when returning home a short time later, WALKED to a church, asking the pastor to Baptize her. I often marveled at her, ….. she KNEW that she needed to be Baptized.

    The woman who was diabetic and I became good friends, she died in a hospital room. Her mother called me, and we talked many times, ….. one day her mother during one of these conversations Believed on the LORD Jesus Christ for Salvation.

  • Grace

    I organized a charity that helped people in many different ways. One of the young women who called the hot line was in the hospital, she was diabetic, 35 years old and almost blind – the doctors told her she would only live another year. When I took the call, I wasn’t able to go directly to the hospital, …. I called a woman in our church who was a true Believer, she went straight away to the hospital room, telling the woman about Christ and His dying for her sins. She accepted Christ…. she was thrilled, ….. my friend called me back telling me how it went.

    This young woman who could hardly see – - when returning home a short time later, WALKED to a church, asking the pastor to Baptize her. I often marveled at her, ….. she KNEW that she needed to be Baptized.

    The woman who was diabetic and I became good friends, she died in a hospital room. Her mother called me, and we talked many times, ….. one day her mother during one of these conversations Believed on the LORD Jesus Christ for Salvation.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Samuel, we would have to ask that of our Lord, who told the thief on the cross that he was about to enter Paradise without being immersed or taking the Lord’s Supper. If we’re going to argue that immersion is necessary for salvation, we face a steep uphill battle, Biblically speaking. Moreover, if we are to argue that faith is imparted via baptism….well, I can’t exactly find a passage in Scripture that says that, either. It’s rather inferred from the “you and your household” passages, as well as (sometimes) an analogy to circumcision, which has its textual problems as well.

    So to elevate the ordinances to a central role in soteriology is….really to try to make the Scriptures say a lot more about the subject than they do.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    Samuel, we would have to ask that of our Lord, who told the thief on the cross that he was about to enter Paradise without being immersed or taking the Lord’s Supper. If we’re going to argue that immersion is necessary for salvation, we face a steep uphill battle, Biblically speaking. Moreover, if we are to argue that faith is imparted via baptism….well, I can’t exactly find a passage in Scripture that says that, either. It’s rather inferred from the “you and your household” passages, as well as (sometimes) an analogy to circumcision, which has its textual problems as well.

    So to elevate the ordinances to a central role in soteriology is….really to try to make the Scriptures say a lot more about the subject than they do.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Regarding “liver shivers”, I believe some people’s livers (not just Mormons!) are shivering because they haven’t been warmed up with alcohol. :)

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Regarding “liver shivers”, I believe some people’s livers (not just Mormons!) are shivering because they haven’t been warmed up with alcohol. :)

  • Louis

    Bike – one should not argue from special cases.

    tODD – absolutely!! :) :)

  • Louis

    Bike – one should not argue from special cases.

    tODD – absolutely!! :) :)

  • Anonymous

    The name of that Rally with Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and other Christian Religious leaders should have been named Restoring dishonor of Christ. Everyone that knows anything about Authentic Christianity understands that the Mormons and Christians doctrine and Theology is diametrically in opposition. According to the tenets of the Christian faith Jesus was not married and died to offer payment of the sins for all who believe this by faith. Mormon Founder Joseph Smith had a completely different Jesus and declared the Christian bible a fraud after his vision of an angel named Moroni (not joking) told him Christians had the wrong bible and wrong God. This qualifies as heresy because Beck believes this he is a false prophet. He has a hell of alot of nerve questioning Obama’s Christianity and the Christian leaders who are allowing him to get away with it.
    In every Christian bookstore in the section labeled false and other religions you will find Mormons listed with Islam and Jehovah W.

  • Anonymous

    The name of that Rally with Glenn Beck, Sarah Palin and other Christian Religious leaders should have been named Restoring dishonor of Christ. Everyone that knows anything about Authentic Christianity understands that the Mormons and Christians doctrine and Theology is diametrically in opposition. According to the tenets of the Christian faith Jesus was not married and died to offer payment of the sins for all who believe this by faith. Mormon Founder Joseph Smith had a completely different Jesus and declared the Christian bible a fraud after his vision of an angel named Moroni (not joking) told him Christians had the wrong bible and wrong God. This qualifies as heresy because Beck believes this he is a false prophet. He has a hell of alot of nerve questioning Obama’s Christianity and the Christian leaders who are allowing him to get away with it.
    In every Christian bookstore in the section labeled false and other religions you will find Mormons listed with Islam and Jehovah W.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Bubba (@46), if we’re going to “have to ask that of our Lord”, why would you think Jesus’s words spoken directly to that particular thief would be more applicable than, say, Jesus’ commands to his disciples (which I would assume includes you) to “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”

    Kinda seems clear which one is a command to you, eh?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Bubba (@46), if we’re going to “have to ask that of our Lord”, why would you think Jesus’s words spoken directly to that particular thief would be more applicable than, say, Jesus’ commands to his disciples (which I would assume includes you) to “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”

    Kinda seems clear which one is a command to you, eh?

  • Louis

    tODD – exactly, and hence my comment about special cases to Bike.

  • Louis

    tODD – exactly, and hence my comment about special cases to Bike.

  • Anonymous

    Mormons do not have the same Jesus or God as the Christian. Mormons have a married Jesus who was the result of sex with God and Mary. They also believe Jesus and lucifer were brothers.

    This is Heresy and blasphemy according to the genuine Christianity!

  • Anonymous

    Mormons do not have the same Jesus or God as the Christian. Mormons have a married Jesus who was the result of sex with God and Mary. They also believe Jesus and lucifer were brothers.

    This is Heresy and blasphemy according to the genuine Christianity!

  • Anonymous

    Glenn Beck is a false prophet and liar. He should stick to politics and quit lying about being a genuine Christian. Mormons and Christians have distinct beliefs about Jesus and God! To qualify as a Christian you must believe in the key essential that Jesus died for the sins of anyone who believes and has received him as their Lord and Savior.
    Mormons do not believe Jesus died on the Cross to pay for the sins of all believers! Glenn you need to admit the truth. You are not a Christian by the tenets of the Christian doctrine~

  • Anonymous

    Glenn Beck is a false prophet and liar. He should stick to politics and quit lying about being a genuine Christian. Mormons and Christians have distinct beliefs about Jesus and God! To qualify as a Christian you must believe in the key essential that Jesus died for the sins of anyone who believes and has received him as their Lord and Savior.
    Mormons do not believe Jesus died on the Cross to pay for the sins of all believers! Glenn you need to admit the truth. You are not a Christian by the tenets of the Christian doctrine~

  • Anonymous

    You will never see a Cross over a Mormon Church. They simply do not believe Jesus died on the Cross to save all who believe this.
    Nor do they believe in the gift of Grace which means that God sent Jesus to die and pay for the sins of all who believe. Jesus is the only way to Heaven and only bridge to God. To qualify as a true Christian you must believe in his death burial and bodily Resurrection. Joseph Smith in 1859 denounced the Christian bible and said the book of Mormon is the only true bible. There is a name for this in the real Christian circles (false prophet)!

  • Anonymous

    You will never see a Cross over a Mormon Church. They simply do not believe Jesus died on the Cross to save all who believe this.
    Nor do they believe in the gift of Grace which means that God sent Jesus to die and pay for the sins of all who believe. Jesus is the only way to Heaven and only bridge to God. To qualify as a true Christian you must believe in his death burial and bodily Resurrection. Joseph Smith in 1859 denounced the Christian bible and said the book of Mormon is the only true bible. There is a name for this in the real Christian circles (false prophet)!

  • http://geochristian.wordpress.com/ Kevin N

    Yesterday’s post here on Cranach was right on topic, and as others have pointed out, it was written by a Southern Baptist. A great many evangelicals have a strong grasp of the historic doctrines of the Church as expressed in the ancient creeds, such as the doctrine of the Trinity. Many of us look at the ecumenism of conservatives, as expressed by the Beck rally, as just as disastrous as the ecumenism of the liberals, such as the World Council of Churches. Ignorance of the core doctrines of the faith plagues many denominations, including I suspect the LCMS, opening many up to acceptance of heresy, such as Mormonism.

    Unfortunately, much of the characterization of evangelicals here has been no different than if one were to say, “All Lutherans ordain homosexuals, allow goddess worship, and eat lutefisk.”

  • http://geochristian.wordpress.com/ Kevin N

    Yesterday’s post here on Cranach was right on topic, and as others have pointed out, it was written by a Southern Baptist. A great many evangelicals have a strong grasp of the historic doctrines of the Church as expressed in the ancient creeds, such as the doctrine of the Trinity. Many of us look at the ecumenism of conservatives, as expressed by the Beck rally, as just as disastrous as the ecumenism of the liberals, such as the World Council of Churches. Ignorance of the core doctrines of the faith plagues many denominations, including I suspect the LCMS, opening many up to acceptance of heresy, such as Mormonism.

    Unfortunately, much of the characterization of evangelicals here has been no different than if one were to say, “All Lutherans ordain homosexuals, allow goddess worship, and eat lutefisk.”

  • http://geochristian.wordpress.com/ Kevin N

    Christianity Today has a poll entitled “Does Glenn Beck’s Mormon faith affect your interest in his call to “turn America back to God”?”

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/

    Unfortunately, the “It doesn’t matter” answers outnumber the “I don’t pay attention to him because of his Mormonism” answers by about 3:2 right now. 8% didn’t know he was a Mormon.

  • http://geochristian.wordpress.com/ Kevin N

    Christianity Today has a poll entitled “Does Glenn Beck’s Mormon faith affect your interest in his call to “turn America back to God”?”

    http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/

    Unfortunately, the “It doesn’t matter” answers outnumber the “I don’t pay attention to him because of his Mormonism” answers by about 3:2 right now. 8% didn’t know he was a Mormon.

  • River

    Grace @42

    Girlfriend, I totally do not have an opinion of “Born Again” as a moniker. Did my quotation marks make you sad? I hope not. I do not wish to make fun of anyone’s moniker. I mean, who am I to talk: Lutheran? What is that supposed to mean? ;D

    Additionally, I want to clarify: I have said repeatedly throughout the day in these here comments that I DO NOT THINK NON-DENOMINATIONAL PEOPLES ARE DAMNED. Which is to say, I do not think you are unChristian. Non-denominational/Evangelical-type folk have told me that I am unChristian, because, as I’ve written ad nauseum now, I confess what I confess about the Sacraments. Even though I read the Bible! Because the Bible isn’t good enough for them! They want me to ascribe to their doctrines before they’re comfortable with calling me a Christian! THEY! Not I! Just so we’re all clear.

    Those who confess the Trinity have the Trinity, and I do not have an opinion about their very personal relationship with Christ. I have an opinion about their very public opinion of the Sacraments, and my opinion is, “They could have it so much better than they do.” NOT, “They’re damned! HA HA HA!” Not that! NOT THAT!

    OK.

    Additionally, there are Bible reading non-denominational people who do not confess the Trinity. Each man his own pope, you know? It happens, and given the non-denominational nature of non-denominational congregations, I daresay both you and I would be hard pressed to offer much beyond anecdotal proofs for what we both know from experience.

    Overall, this comment thread has been most revelatory for me, in a non-prophetic sort of way. I thank you all for your time.

  • River

    Grace @42

    Girlfriend, I totally do not have an opinion of “Born Again” as a moniker. Did my quotation marks make you sad? I hope not. I do not wish to make fun of anyone’s moniker. I mean, who am I to talk: Lutheran? What is that supposed to mean? ;D

    Additionally, I want to clarify: I have said repeatedly throughout the day in these here comments that I DO NOT THINK NON-DENOMINATIONAL PEOPLES ARE DAMNED. Which is to say, I do not think you are unChristian. Non-denominational/Evangelical-type folk have told me that I am unChristian, because, as I’ve written ad nauseum now, I confess what I confess about the Sacraments. Even though I read the Bible! Because the Bible isn’t good enough for them! They want me to ascribe to their doctrines before they’re comfortable with calling me a Christian! THEY! Not I! Just so we’re all clear.

    Those who confess the Trinity have the Trinity, and I do not have an opinion about their very personal relationship with Christ. I have an opinion about their very public opinion of the Sacraments, and my opinion is, “They could have it so much better than they do.” NOT, “They’re damned! HA HA HA!” Not that! NOT THAT!

    OK.

    Additionally, there are Bible reading non-denominational people who do not confess the Trinity. Each man his own pope, you know? It happens, and given the non-denominational nature of non-denominational congregations, I daresay both you and I would be hard pressed to offer much beyond anecdotal proofs for what we both know from experience.

    Overall, this comment thread has been most revelatory for me, in a non-prophetic sort of way. I thank you all for your time.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    bike bubba…

    “So to elevate the ordinances to a central role in soteriology is….”

    Lutherans do not feel that the sacraments are ordinances as do evangelicals, some baptists and mormons. This needs to be clear.

  • http://www.thirduse.com fws

    bike bubba…

    “So to elevate the ordinances to a central role in soteriology is….”

    Lutherans do not feel that the sacraments are ordinances as do evangelicals, some baptists and mormons. This needs to be clear.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace @ 37,
    “My faith has been questioned too – I am non-denominational as well. Many in our midst refer to themselves as “Born Again” – I have to ask…… why would anyone be offended by those words when Jesus Christ told Nicodemus he must be “Born Again” but yet many are uncomfortable with the statement Jesus made very clear.”
    Oh boohoo.
    your faith hasn’t been questioned. Your doctrine has. And there is a difference. On top of that, you are not non-denominational, you are a Calvary Chapelite. Calvary Chapel is every bit a denomination. They don’t want to be but they are. They have a congregational polity, and a heterodox confession. They are with in the realm of trinitarian doctrine, and so are Christian. But their soteriology leaves a lot to be desired.
    As for all you running around calling yourself “Born Again” it isn’t the term we take issue with, it is what you normally mean by it. When Jesus is talking about being born again with Nicodemus he is talking about baptism, you know water and all. What was it he said again, something about water and spirit….
    So get off your high horse, Grace, playing the victim doesn’t become you. If you want to have the conversation we can, but you seem to just want to call everyone antinomians and flee the scene like some sort of theological drive by, except your using a pop gun.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace @ 37,
    “My faith has been questioned too – I am non-denominational as well. Many in our midst refer to themselves as “Born Again” – I have to ask…… why would anyone be offended by those words when Jesus Christ told Nicodemus he must be “Born Again” but yet many are uncomfortable with the statement Jesus made very clear.”
    Oh boohoo.
    your faith hasn’t been questioned. Your doctrine has. And there is a difference. On top of that, you are not non-denominational, you are a Calvary Chapelite. Calvary Chapel is every bit a denomination. They don’t want to be but they are. They have a congregational polity, and a heterodox confession. They are with in the realm of trinitarian doctrine, and so are Christian. But their soteriology leaves a lot to be desired.
    As for all you running around calling yourself “Born Again” it isn’t the term we take issue with, it is what you normally mean by it. When Jesus is talking about being born again with Nicodemus he is talking about baptism, you know water and all. What was it he said again, something about water and spirit….
    So get off your high horse, Grace, playing the victim doesn’t become you. If you want to have the conversation we can, but you seem to just want to call everyone antinomians and flee the scene like some sort of theological drive by, except your using a pop gun.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Porcell,
    Glad you liked the peace.
    Melenchthon is at best an enigmatic figure. Not my favorite reformation theologian, though he did a good job with the AC.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Porcell,
    Glad you liked the peace.
    Melenchthon is at best an enigmatic figure. Not my favorite reformation theologian, though he did a good job with the AC.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Mean Melanchthon. Sorry.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Mean Melanchthon. Sorry.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Yes Fw.
    Bike Bubba is going to have a hard time with John 3. Not to mention many other verses of the Bible. I think there is one out there, oh yeah here it is 1 Peter 3:21 (ESV)
    Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
    And lets not forget that the thief on the cross died before Christ instituted Baptism in Matthew 28.
    And he was circumcised. so there is that whole hurdle. One might want to read the second chapter of Colossians.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Yes Fw.
    Bike Bubba is going to have a hard time with John 3. Not to mention many other verses of the Bible. I think there is one out there, oh yeah here it is 1 Peter 3:21 (ESV)
    Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ.
    And lets not forget that the thief on the cross died before Christ instituted Baptism in Matthew 28.
    And he was circumcised. so there is that whole hurdle. One might want to read the second chapter of Colossians.

  • Grace

    River – 57 - “I totally do not have an opinion of “Born Again” as a moniker. Did my quotation marks make you sad? I hope not. I do not wish to make fun of anyone’s moniker. I mean, who am I to talk: Lutheran? What is that supposed to mean?”

    The definition of “moniker” is:

    ( Slang )

    A personal name or nickname.

    River, when Jesus Christ answered Nicodemus that he must be Born Again, the LORD was very clear. You don’t make me sad whatsoever, it is your choice to believe and behave as you wish. When you make the remark “moniker” it’s a reflection as I see it, mocking the one who said it first, Jesus Christ my LORD and Savior, that too is your choice.

  • Grace

    River – 57 - “I totally do not have an opinion of “Born Again” as a moniker. Did my quotation marks make you sad? I hope not. I do not wish to make fun of anyone’s moniker. I mean, who am I to talk: Lutheran? What is that supposed to mean?”

    The definition of “moniker” is:

    ( Slang )

    A personal name or nickname.

    River, when Jesus Christ answered Nicodemus that he must be Born Again, the LORD was very clear. You don’t make me sad whatsoever, it is your choice to believe and behave as you wish. When you make the remark “moniker” it’s a reflection as I see it, mocking the one who said it first, Jesus Christ my LORD and Savior, that too is your choice.

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Grace (@63), I don’t know if you weren’t more familiar with the word “moniker” before now or something, but you appear to be drawing dubious conclusions about River’s use of it, all the same.

    “When you make the remark ‘moniker’ it’s a reflection as I see it, mocking the one who said it first.” Wow. Really? That strikes me as remarkably uncharitable. Or possibly just unaware of what the word means, in spite of having posted a definition. Oh, and about your definition: “moniker” is not “slang”. And both the Oxford English Dictionary and Merriam-Webster agree with me. It’s been around since 1851, for heaven’s sake! I’d suggest a new dictionary for you.

    Anyhow, regardless of however it is that you’re taking offense at the word, the fact remains that “born-again” has two uses. The first is as Jesus used it in John 3: “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. … No one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.” Please note, as Bror has already pointed out, that Jesus equates being “born again” with being born “of water and the Spirit” — something that many Born-Again types don’t actually agree with.

    Which brings us to the second use of the phrase, which is the one that River referred to (correctly) as a “moniker”. This one is sometimes capitalized as “Born Again” and refers to a person holding a collection of beliefs, typically Baptist in nature, only one of which involves being born again of the Spirit (but, typically, not of water as well).

    If we’re going to throw around the accusation of people mocking Jesus, I’d say it applies better to those who refuse to believe his words, wouldn’t you?

  • http://www.toddstadler.com/ tODD

    Grace (@63), I don’t know if you weren’t more familiar with the word “moniker” before now or something, but you appear to be drawing dubious conclusions about River’s use of it, all the same.

    “When you make the remark ‘moniker’ it’s a reflection as I see it, mocking the one who said it first.” Wow. Really? That strikes me as remarkably uncharitable. Or possibly just unaware of what the word means, in spite of having posted a definition. Oh, and about your definition: “moniker” is not “slang”. And both the Oxford English Dictionary and Merriam-Webster agree with me. It’s been around since 1851, for heaven’s sake! I’d suggest a new dictionary for you.

    Anyhow, regardless of however it is that you’re taking offense at the word, the fact remains that “born-again” has two uses. The first is as Jesus used it in John 3: “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. … No one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.” Please note, as Bror has already pointed out, that Jesus equates being “born again” with being born “of water and the Spirit” — something that many Born-Again types don’t actually agree with.

    Which brings us to the second use of the phrase, which is the one that River referred to (correctly) as a “moniker”. This one is sometimes capitalized as “Born Again” and refers to a person holding a collection of beliefs, typically Baptist in nature, only one of which involves being born again of the Spirit (but, typically, not of water as well).

    If we’re going to throw around the accusation of people mocking Jesus, I’d say it applies better to those who refuse to believe his words, wouldn’t you?

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    OK, let’s deal with some things:

    1. First of all, a specific case can disprove a general axiom. If I say that all deer are brown, and you find a green deer, that disproves you. End of story. The criminal on the cross is extremely important here. He was clearly saved without baptism.

    2. Second of all, those who refer to John 3:5 must note that it doesn’t say “baptizo.” It says water, and there is water in the womb. If it refers to immersion, then Jesus changes the subject twice in about ten seconds’ conversation with Nicodemus. Sorry, I can’t go there. The clear meaning here is the water of the womb, not baptism.

    3. “whosoever does not believe shall be condemned.” Notice something missing there? Thank you.

    4. I Peter 3:21: “not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God.” I’ve got to point out here that an infant is incapable of answering a good conscience before God.

    5. Finally, if you’re going to argue for immersional regeneration, then baptize, don’t sprinkle. If references to water and baptizo refer to what you claim they do, then by all means do what the Scripture says; immerse.

    Sorry, but there are no clear examples from Scripture which would demonstrate that the sprinkling of an unbelieving infant imparts anything. There are, however, numerous examples of believer’s immersion.

  • http://www.bikebubba.blogspot.com Bike Bubba

    OK, let’s deal with some things:

    1. First of all, a specific case can disprove a general axiom. If I say that all deer are brown, and you find a green deer, that disproves you. End of story. The criminal on the cross is extremely important here. He was clearly saved without baptism.

    2. Second of all, those who refer to John 3:5 must note that it doesn’t say “baptizo.” It says water, and there is water in the womb. If it refers to immersion, then Jesus changes the subject twice in about ten seconds’ conversation with Nicodemus. Sorry, I can’t go there. The clear meaning here is the water of the womb, not baptism.

    3. “whosoever does not believe shall be condemned.” Notice something missing there? Thank you.

    4. I Peter 3:21: “not the removal of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God.” I’ve got to point out here that an infant is incapable of answering a good conscience before God.

    5. Finally, if you’re going to argue for immersional regeneration, then baptize, don’t sprinkle. If references to water and baptizo refer to what you claim they do, then by all means do what the Scripture says; immerse.

    Sorry, but there are no clear examples from Scripture which would demonstrate that the sprinkling of an unbelieving infant imparts anything. There are, however, numerous examples of believer’s immersion.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Rev. Charles Lehmann

    Bike,

    A couple of points.

    1- We don’t know if the thief was baptized. This passage doesn’t prove anything, one way or the other.

    2- This doesn’t demonstrate we’re wrong, just that we’re reading the Scriptures in a very different way.

    3- Lutherans don’t say that the lack of baptism condemns.

    4- 1 Peter 3:21 doesn’t say that the person who is being baptized is doing anything.

    5- Baptidzo doesn’t mean what you think it means. The Scriptures also have furniture being baptized. It means wash.

  • http://chaz-lehmann.livejournal.com Rev. Charles Lehmann

    Bike,

    A couple of points.

    1- We don’t know if the thief was baptized. This passage doesn’t prove anything, one way or the other.

    2- This doesn’t demonstrate we’re wrong, just that we’re reading the Scriptures in a very different way.

    3- Lutherans don’t say that the lack of baptism condemns.

    4- 1 Peter 3:21 doesn’t say that the person who is being baptized is doing anything.

    5- Baptidzo doesn’t mean what you think it means. The Scriptures also have furniture being baptized. It means wash.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Bike,
    1.David, Solomon, Abraham, Samson, Samuel, and a host of others were saved without baptism before Christ mandated it in Matthew 28. The thief on the cross is no exception there.
    The thing is that the discourse between Christ and the the thief on the cross has nothing to do with baptism. Nothing. Why are baptists always trying to argue for there theology from texts that have nothing to do with baptism while ignoring the texts that are clearly talking about baptism?
    But again, as Charles says above in point number 3, there is a difference between saying with the Bible that baptism saves and saying that lack of baptism condemns. It is subtle. Faith alone ultimately saves. Faith that refuses the blessings of baptism is not faith.
    2. Baptism is not immersion. Luke 11:38
    “The Pharisee was astonished to see that he did not first wash before dinner. ” (Luke 11:38 (ESV)
    the word translated wash here, is Baptidzo. This is done else where in Scripture, Charles Lehmann, has pointed out Mark 7, where baptidzo and other words for wash like nipto are used interchangeably. For you to continue with the assertion that baptism means immersion would be dishonest. I would leave a church pronto where the pastor was such a bad exegete as to think anything like this.
    Which now brings us to the John 3 discourse between Jesus and Nicodemus. Your maintenance of the idea that being born of water and the spirit is referring to natal birth and then baptism proper is ludicrous. I’ve heard it before. I realize you are not the only baptist incapable of letting a text speak for itself, and have probably been brainwashed into this interpretation to protect your unscriptural dogma that baptism doesn’t do anything. However, aside from the fact that the phrasing of the Greek makes it abundantly clear that the water and the Holy Spirit are tied together, and not separate.
    Nicodemus had just pointed out to Christ that he could not be born of his mothers womb a second time. He needed no instruction on being born the first time. Jesus does not need to disinvest him of this idea.
    But at the time, Jesus has just been baptized, John is baptizing and Jesus disciples are baptizing, and in fact the whole course of John chapter 3 is being formed in the context of baptism, even to the point of alluding to the death and resurrection of Christ into which Christians are baptized, (Romans 6:4).
    If you get over your false idea that the Holy Spirit cannot communicate to people through the waters of baptism you can see Jesus does not go back and forth at all. He talks of being born again, and explains this by pointing to what happens to a person in baptism, he/she is regenerated (born again) as Titus Chapter 3 also explains.
    You are quite right in your understanding of 1Peter 3:21. It is impossible for a baby to “answer a good Conscience to God” whatever that means. ESV more accurately translated appeal to God for a Good Conscience. But we are agreed, and infant really can’t do this anymore than an adult can, mostly because they are spiritually dead. But then God is quite able to give a good conscience to whoever he wants, such as infants. jesus seemed to be quite fond of infants and said something about the kingdom of God belonging to such as these. Seems to think that the adults should be imitating the infants in this. When it comes to faith, infants are as incapable of it as adults are. But all things are possible for God.
    Now, when your doctrine requires you to ignore what scripture says, and requires you to read what scripture you do read only in the English translation so as to get quasi support for it, requires you to use texts that have nothing to do with baptism when discussing baptism, and ignore texts that are speaking of baptism, well then you need to abandon the doctrine.
    You might read “Scriptural Baptism” by Saarnivaara, there is a new edition out with a foreward by Dr. Rod Rosenbladt.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Bike,
    1.David, Solomon, Abraham, Samson, Samuel, and a host of others were saved without baptism before Christ mandated it in Matthew 28. The thief on the cross is no exception there.
    The thing is that the discourse between Christ and the the thief on the cross has nothing to do with baptism. Nothing. Why are baptists always trying to argue for there theology from texts that have nothing to do with baptism while ignoring the texts that are clearly talking about baptism?
    But again, as Charles says above in point number 3, there is a difference between saying with the Bible that baptism saves and saying that lack of baptism condemns. It is subtle. Faith alone ultimately saves. Faith that refuses the blessings of baptism is not faith.
    2. Baptism is not immersion. Luke 11:38
    “The Pharisee was astonished to see that he did not first wash before dinner. ” (Luke 11:38 (ESV)
    the word translated wash here, is Baptidzo. This is done else where in Scripture, Charles Lehmann, has pointed out Mark 7, where baptidzo and other words for wash like nipto are used interchangeably. For you to continue with the assertion that baptism means immersion would be dishonest. I would leave a church pronto where the pastor was such a bad exegete as to think anything like this.
    Which now brings us to the John 3 discourse between Jesus and Nicodemus. Your maintenance of the idea that being born of water and the spirit is referring to natal birth and then baptism proper is ludicrous. I’ve heard it before. I realize you are not the only baptist incapable of letting a text speak for itself, and have probably been brainwashed into this interpretation to protect your unscriptural dogma that baptism doesn’t do anything. However, aside from the fact that the phrasing of the Greek makes it abundantly clear that the water and the Holy Spirit are tied together, and not separate.
    Nicodemus had just pointed out to Christ that he could not be born of his mothers womb a second time. He needed no instruction on being born the first time. Jesus does not need to disinvest him of this idea.
    But at the time, Jesus has just been baptized, John is baptizing and Jesus disciples are baptizing, and in fact the whole course of John chapter 3 is being formed in the context of baptism, even to the point of alluding to the death and resurrection of Christ into which Christians are baptized, (Romans 6:4).
    If you get over your false idea that the Holy Spirit cannot communicate to people through the waters of baptism you can see Jesus does not go back and forth at all. He talks of being born again, and explains this by pointing to what happens to a person in baptism, he/she is regenerated (born again) as Titus Chapter 3 also explains.
    You are quite right in your understanding of 1Peter 3:21. It is impossible for a baby to “answer a good Conscience to God” whatever that means. ESV more accurately translated appeal to God for a Good Conscience. But we are agreed, and infant really can’t do this anymore than an adult can, mostly because they are spiritually dead. But then God is quite able to give a good conscience to whoever he wants, such as infants. jesus seemed to be quite fond of infants and said something about the kingdom of God belonging to such as these. Seems to think that the adults should be imitating the infants in this. When it comes to faith, infants are as incapable of it as adults are. But all things are possible for God.
    Now, when your doctrine requires you to ignore what scripture says, and requires you to read what scripture you do read only in the English translation so as to get quasi support for it, requires you to use texts that have nothing to do with baptism when discussing baptism, and ignore texts that are speaking of baptism, well then you need to abandon the doctrine.
    You might read “Scriptural Baptism” by Saarnivaara, there is a new edition out with a foreward by Dr. Rod Rosenbladt.

  • Grace

    Yes the word “moniker” has been in existence since 1851, that fact is well established, it isn’t an argument worth pursuing to make any point. – Using “moniker” to define Born Again is unlearned. Belittling those who define themselves as Born Again Believers, is citing what our LORD and Savior made clear to anyone “he cannot see the kingdom of God – Unless they are “born again” –

    “Our Saviour spoke of the necessity and nature of regeneration or the new birth, and at once directed Nicodemus to the source of holiness of the heart. Birth is the beginning of life; to be born again, is to begin to live anew, as those who have lived much amiss, or to little purpose. We must have a new nature, new principles, new affections, new aims. By our first birth we were corrupt, shapen in sin; therefore we must be made new creatures. No stronger expression could have been chosen to signify a great and most remarkable change of state and character. We must be entirely different from what we were before, as that which begins to be at any time, is not, and cannot be the same with that which was before. This new birth is from heaven, ch. 1:13,. and its tendency is to heaven. It is a great change made in the heart of a sinner, by the power of the Holy Spirit. It means that something is done in us, and for us, which we cannot do for ourselves.” Matthew Henry

    Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. John 3:3

  • Grace

    Yes the word “moniker” has been in existence since 1851, that fact is well established, it isn’t an argument worth pursuing to make any point. – Using “moniker” to define Born Again is unlearned. Belittling those who define themselves as Born Again Believers, is citing what our LORD and Savior made clear to anyone “he cannot see the kingdom of God – Unless they are “born again” –

    “Our Saviour spoke of the necessity and nature of regeneration or the new birth, and at once directed Nicodemus to the source of holiness of the heart. Birth is the beginning of life; to be born again, is to begin to live anew, as those who have lived much amiss, or to little purpose. We must have a new nature, new principles, new affections, new aims. By our first birth we were corrupt, shapen in sin; therefore we must be made new creatures. No stronger expression could have been chosen to signify a great and most remarkable change of state and character. We must be entirely different from what we were before, as that which begins to be at any time, is not, and cannot be the same with that which was before. This new birth is from heaven, ch. 1:13,. and its tendency is to heaven. It is a great change made in the heart of a sinner, by the power of the Holy Spirit. It means that something is done in us, and for us, which we cannot do for ourselves.” Matthew Henry

    Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. John 3:3

  • Grace

    Those who stylize themselves as Lutherans, Methodist, Calvinist, etc., make it clear they identify with men who preached and wrote books 1500 years after Christ’s death and resurrection – To this day, there are disputes, identity with men, rather than Christ – we are told to “study to show ourselves approved” it is the Word of God, – Jesus words who trump all the books, all the division within the body of Christ.

    Paul made clear these errors in 1 Corinthians 1 and 1 Corinthians 3.

    1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
    2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
    3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
    4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?
    5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
    6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
    1 Corinthians 3

    “The most simple truths of the gospel, as to man’s sinfulness and God’s mercy, repentance towards God, and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, stated in the plainest language, suit the people better than deeper mysteries. Men may have much doctrinal knowledge, yet be mere beginners in the life of faith and experience. Contentions and quarrels about religion are sad evidences of carnality. True religion makes men peaceable, not contentious. But it is to be lamented, that many who should walk as Christians, live and act too much like other men. Many professors, and preachers also, show themselves to be yet carnal, by vain-glorious strife, eagerness for dispute, and readiness to despise and speak evil of others.”
    Matthew Henry

  • Grace

    Those who stylize themselves as Lutherans, Methodist, Calvinist, etc., make it clear they identify with men who preached and wrote books 1500 years after Christ’s death and resurrection – To this day, there are disputes, identity with men, rather than Christ – we are told to “study to show ourselves approved” it is the Word of God, – Jesus words who trump all the books, all the division within the body of Christ.

    Paul made clear these errors in 1 Corinthians 1 and 1 Corinthians 3.

    1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, even as unto babes in Christ.
    2 I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able.
    3 For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?
    4 For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal?
    5 Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers by whom ye believed, even as the Lord gave to every man?
    6I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.
    1 Corinthians 3

    “The most simple truths of the gospel, as to man’s sinfulness and God’s mercy, repentance towards God, and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, stated in the plainest language, suit the people better than deeper mysteries. Men may have much doctrinal knowledge, yet be mere beginners in the life of faith and experience. Contentions and quarrels about religion are sad evidences of carnality. True religion makes men peaceable, not contentious. But it is to be lamented, that many who should walk as Christians, live and act too much like other men. Many professors, and preachers also, show themselves to be yet carnal, by vain-glorious strife, eagerness for dispute, and readiness to despise and speak evil of others.”
    Matthew Henry

  • Louis

    Grace – I am of Luther, you are of Matthew Henry eh? :)

    Or more correct, are you a follower of Chuck Smith, founder of Calvary chapel – I remember Bror mentioning something like that?

  • Louis

    Grace – I am of Luther, you are of Matthew Henry eh? :)

    Or more correct, are you a follower of Chuck Smith, founder of Calvary chapel – I remember Bror mentioning something like that?

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace, glad you are still here.
    I want you to consider something carefully. When you and others call yourself born again christians what are you saying about other christians? That they aren’t born again? Why because you had a liver shiver? Because you dedicated your life to Christ? Ever consider that for the majority of the churches history Christians found it enough to be called christians.
    As for your slander that we follow the teachings of men and not christ. I’ve studied the Bible quite extensively. I’ve studied my doctrine and can tell you, you find no more a Biblical doctrine than that Luther, the man who translated it into the vernacular and made it possible for you to read it at all, taught.
    Second, going to a non-denominational church does not protect you from following the teachings of men. Many non-denoms end up being cults. studying your bible and discussing it comparing your doctrines does.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace, glad you are still here.
    I want you to consider something carefully. When you and others call yourself born again christians what are you saying about other christians? That they aren’t born again? Why because you had a liver shiver? Because you dedicated your life to Christ? Ever consider that for the majority of the churches history Christians found it enough to be called christians.
    As for your slander that we follow the teachings of men and not christ. I’ve studied the Bible quite extensively. I’ve studied my doctrine and can tell you, you find no more a Biblical doctrine than that Luther, the man who translated it into the vernacular and made it possible for you to read it at all, taught.
    Second, going to a non-denominational church does not protect you from following the teachings of men. Many non-denoms end up being cults. studying your bible and discussing it comparing your doctrines does.

  • Grace

    Louis – 70 – “Or more correct, are you a follower of Chuck Smith, founder of Calvary chapel – I remember Bror mentioning something like that?”

    We have attended Calvary Chapel, there are almost 1000 in the US – that does not mean we are followers of Chuck Smith or any other pastor within that church group, nor does it mean we agree with all of their beliefs. Much of what they preach and teach is sound – their outreach within the community, and the US has been fruitful, many believing on the LORD Jesus Christ, going forth to preach and teach themselves, after Bible school and Seminary.

    I learned long ago to study the Word of God for myself. It takes a great deal of time to study, not relying on another’s words. The Holy Spirit lives within every believer, it is up to the individual to seek the truth through the Scriptures. This doesn’t mean I don’t read what other men have written, that would include many biblical scholars, or those who fashion themselves as such.

    It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. Psalm 118:8

    Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15

    Some theologians start out with sound teaching, much of which I have learned a great deal – the problems with some of these men is…… taking John Calvin first – became angry, and sought vengeance against those who didn’t agree with his rendition of the Bible, even to the point of wanting them burned at the stake. (Servetus) – - Then there is Martin Luther, who in the beginning began a good work, however, at the end of his life wrote a most damnable book titled – “On the Jews and their lies” 1543 at age 60, three years before he died. Luther much like Calvin (those who didn’t agree with infant baptism and the Trinity) became hateful of the Jews, as they did not convert and believe in Christ. Martin Luther’s anti-Jewishness germinated and grew writing – - “If we wish to wash our hands of the Jews’ blasphemy and not share in their guilt, we have to part company with them. They must be driven from our country.” – - Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies.

    Jesus didn’t tell anyone to hurt the Jews, nor did He tell anyone to burn someone at the stake because they didn’t believe in infant baptism, or His Deity. This was done by men, who either didn’t understand the teachings of Christ but instead erupted, unbridled hatred against others including the Jews. Did Calvin forget Christ’s words? – Did Luther understand that Jesus was born of a Jewish mother, that the Jews were the chosen people?

  • Grace

    Louis – 70 – “Or more correct, are you a follower of Chuck Smith, founder of Calvary chapel – I remember Bror mentioning something like that?”

    We have attended Calvary Chapel, there are almost 1000 in the US – that does not mean we are followers of Chuck Smith or any other pastor within that church group, nor does it mean we agree with all of their beliefs. Much of what they preach and teach is sound – their outreach within the community, and the US has been fruitful, many believing on the LORD Jesus Christ, going forth to preach and teach themselves, after Bible school and Seminary.

    I learned long ago to study the Word of God for myself. It takes a great deal of time to study, not relying on another’s words. The Holy Spirit lives within every believer, it is up to the individual to seek the truth through the Scriptures. This doesn’t mean I don’t read what other men have written, that would include many biblical scholars, or those who fashion themselves as such.

    It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man. Psalm 118:8

    Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. 2 Timothy 2:15

    Some theologians start out with sound teaching, much of which I have learned a great deal – the problems with some of these men is…… taking John Calvin first – became angry, and sought vengeance against those who didn’t agree with his rendition of the Bible, even to the point of wanting them burned at the stake. (Servetus) – - Then there is Martin Luther, who in the beginning began a good work, however, at the end of his life wrote a most damnable book titled – “On the Jews and their lies” 1543 at age 60, three years before he died. Luther much like Calvin (those who didn’t agree with infant baptism and the Trinity) became hateful of the Jews, as they did not convert and believe in Christ. Martin Luther’s anti-Jewishness germinated and grew writing – - “If we wish to wash our hands of the Jews’ blasphemy and not share in their guilt, we have to part company with them. They must be driven from our country.” – - Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies.

    Jesus didn’t tell anyone to hurt the Jews, nor did He tell anyone to burn someone at the stake because they didn’t believe in infant baptism, or His Deity. This was done by men, who either didn’t understand the teachings of Christ but instead erupted, unbridled hatred against others including the Jews. Did Calvin forget Christ’s words? – Did Luther understand that Jesus was born of a Jewish mother, that the Jews were the chosen people?

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace,
    Glad you brought up Luther and the jews thing. It actually shows that Lutherans are not followers of teachings of men. In that almost every Lutheran church body has condemned those writings. And actually of the ten documents we find to be Binding confessions of faith only three were written by Luther.
    We still find that he was correct on justification by faith alone, and the sacraments.
    Would you like to have a relevamnt conversation now?

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace,
    Glad you brought up Luther and the jews thing. It actually shows that Lutherans are not followers of teachings of men. In that almost every Lutheran church body has condemned those writings. And actually of the ten documents we find to be Binding confessions of faith only three were written by Luther.
    We still find that he was correct on justification by faith alone, and the sacraments.
    Would you like to have a relevamnt conversation now?

  • Grace

    Both Calvin and Luther preached and then turned from the Word of God, advocating both murder and hatred. These facts are relevant to the discussion.

    When I read constantly of the garbage that is slung at those who say they are “Born again” and those who are “Evangelical” not following the Emergent church, or any of its relatives, or other un-Biblical teachings, I believe strongly that the one’s throwing the trash, should look at their own roots, and why they seem to think they can do as they please, without any regard for other Believers.

    Those who call themselves by their ‘leaders/founders names’ are doing no different than the passages of Scripture I posted earlier in 1 Corinthians – the DIFFERENCE IS – Paul didn’t preach the gospel, and then advocate the murder of anyone who disagreed, nor did he want the Jews thrown from their land, or their places of worship burned to the ground.

    - – “Did I not tell you earlier that a Jew is such a noble, precious jewel that God and all the angels dance when he farts? And if he were to go on to do something coarser than that, they would nevertheless expect it to be regarded as a golden Talmud. Whatever issues from such a holy man, from above or from below, must surely be considered by the accursed Goyim to be pure holiness.” – - Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies

    - – “First, to set fire to their synagogues or schools and to bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them. This is to be done in honor of our Lord and of Christendom, so that God might see that we are Christians, and do not condone or knowingly tolerate such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of his Son and of his Christians. For whatever we tolerated in the past unknowingly_and I myself was unaware of it_will be pardoned by God. But if we, now that we are informed, were to protect and shield such a house for the Jews, existing right before our very nose, in which they lie about, blaspheme, curse, vilify, and defame Christ and us (as was heard above), it would be the same as if we were doing all this and even worse ourselves, as we very well know.” – -
    Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies

    “If you are a preacher of grace, then preach a true and not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true [p. 282] and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly. . . . as long as we are here [in this world] we have to sin. . . . No sin will separate us from the Lamb, even though we commit fornication and murder a thousand times a day.” – - Martin Luther – -
    Epistle of August 1, 1521 to Melanchthon (This translation is taken from the official Lutheran American Edition of his complete works, vol. 42, pp. 281-82:

    Martin Luther obviously believed that he could do as he wished, and be pardoned.

  • Grace

    Both Calvin and Luther preached and then turned from the Word of God, advocating both murder and hatred. These facts are relevant to the discussion.

    When I read constantly of the garbage that is slung at those who say they are “Born again” and those who are “Evangelical” not following the Emergent church, or any of its relatives, or other un-Biblical teachings, I believe strongly that the one’s throwing the trash, should look at their own roots, and why they seem to think they can do as they please, without any regard for other Believers.

    Those who call themselves by their ‘leaders/founders names’ are doing no different than the passages of Scripture I posted earlier in 1 Corinthians – the DIFFERENCE IS – Paul didn’t preach the gospel, and then advocate the murder of anyone who disagreed, nor did he want the Jews thrown from their land, or their places of worship burned to the ground.

    - – “Did I not tell you earlier that a Jew is such a noble, precious jewel that God and all the angels dance when he farts? And if he were to go on to do something coarser than that, they would nevertheless expect it to be regarded as a golden Talmud. Whatever issues from such a holy man, from above or from below, must surely be considered by the accursed Goyim to be pure holiness.” – - Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies

    - – “First, to set fire to their synagogues or schools and to bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them. This is to be done in honor of our Lord and of Christendom, so that God might see that we are Christians, and do not condone or knowingly tolerate such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of his Son and of his Christians. For whatever we tolerated in the past unknowingly_and I myself was unaware of it_will be pardoned by God. But if we, now that we are informed, were to protect and shield such a house for the Jews, existing right before our very nose, in which they lie about, blaspheme, curse, vilify, and defame Christ and us (as was heard above), it would be the same as if we were doing all this and even worse ourselves, as we very well know.” – -
    Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies

    “If you are a preacher of grace, then preach a true and not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true [p. 282] and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly. . . . as long as we are here [in this world] we have to sin. . . . No sin will separate us from the Lamb, even though we commit fornication and murder a thousand times a day.” – - Martin Luther – -
    Epistle of August 1, 1521 to Melanchthon (This translation is taken from the official Lutheran American Edition of his complete works, vol. 42, pp. 281-82:

    Martin Luther obviously believed that he could do as he wished, and be pardoned.

  • Grace

    People aren’t blind to church history – it used to be, that one would need to visit the university, seminary, or public libraries – however the internet has made it possible for anyone to research anything, and they do.

    Christians wonder why people leave church, want nothing more to do with it – it doesn’t take a genius to logically conclude – they see through it, whether it’s a leader, pastor, or blasting music without even a trace of reverence, making entertainment the focal point rather than Christ Jesus – discarding the cross from prominence, either on the outside or inside of their church – using foul language – worst of all, turning a BLIND EYE to sinful practices within the church, not owning up to those things that are evil – then to those who are truly wanting to know the truth, watching the church descend and change their stance on important doctrine.

    I believe this blog is an asset, Dr. Veith has provided a good place to discuss issues, I believe it serves no Godly purpose to purposely attack anyone because they say they are Evangelical, or Born again then making fun of them, as I have witnessed on this blog.

  • Grace

    People aren’t blind to church history – it used to be, that one would need to visit the university, seminary, or public libraries – however the internet has made it possible for anyone to research anything, and they do.

    Christians wonder why people leave church, want nothing more to do with it – it doesn’t take a genius to logically conclude – they see through it, whether it’s a leader, pastor, or blasting music without even a trace of reverence, making entertainment the focal point rather than Christ Jesus – discarding the cross from prominence, either on the outside or inside of their church – using foul language – worst of all, turning a BLIND EYE to sinful practices within the church, not owning up to those things that are evil – then to those who are truly wanting to know the truth, watching the church descend and change their stance on important doctrine.

    I believe this blog is an asset, Dr. Veith has provided a good place to discuss issues, I believe it serves no Godly purpose to purposely attack anyone because they say they are Evangelical, or Born again then making fun of them, as I have witnessed on this blog.

  • colliebear06

    “Christians wonder why people leave church, want nothing more to do with it – it doesn’t take a genius to logically conclude – they see through it. . .”
    Grace @ 75

    No doubt that this is true, but equally true, I think, is the case where people reject the gospel and point to all the hypocrites in the church. As the saying goes, “There’s always room for one more”.

    If churches were perfect, we wouldn’t need Christ; or to put it into bumper sticker lingo, “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven”.

    As for Martin Luther, I love him. No one does a better job of explaining God’s love for us in Christ. I don’t know why he wrote that little screed, and as a pastor above has pointed out, no Lutheran church embraces what he said. Just because he wrote it near the end of his life doesn’t cancel out the volumes and volumes of good theology he wrote before it. People don’t become less sinful as they age. They may struggle more with sin, becoming more aware of it, but we are promised by scripture that we are already saints, even as we are sinners. See the apostle Paul re: struggling against the flesh, doing the things he doesn’t want to do.

  • colliebear06

    “Christians wonder why people leave church, want nothing more to do with it – it doesn’t take a genius to logically conclude – they see through it. . .”
    Grace @ 75

    No doubt that this is true, but equally true, I think, is the case where people reject the gospel and point to all the hypocrites in the church. As the saying goes, “There’s always room for one more”.

    If churches were perfect, we wouldn’t need Christ; or to put it into bumper sticker lingo, “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven”.

    As for Martin Luther, I love him. No one does a better job of explaining God’s love for us in Christ. I don’t know why he wrote that little screed, and as a pastor above has pointed out, no Lutheran church embraces what he said. Just because he wrote it near the end of his life doesn’t cancel out the volumes and volumes of good theology he wrote before it. People don’t become less sinful as they age. They may struggle more with sin, becoming more aware of it, but we are promised by scripture that we are already saints, even as we are sinners. See the apostle Paul re: struggling against the flesh, doing the things he doesn’t want to do.

  • Louis

    Grace – ie, you prove the Catholic position on Protestantism – no longer 1 pope, but 200 million….

    Grace – open your Bible. Look at the first page. No, not Genesis 1. The one before that. The table of contents. Where does that come from?

  • Louis

    Grace – ie, you prove the Catholic position on Protestantism – no longer 1 pope, but 200 million….

    Grace – open your Bible. Look at the first page. No, not Genesis 1. The one before that. The table of contents. Where does that come from?

  • Grace

    It’s late on the West Coast, however this comment needs adjustment. Such a sad statement on understanding of God’s Word. All the more reason for people to search out the Scriptures, rather than depending on some one else to do it for them.

    “As for Martin Luther, I love him. No one does a better job of explaining God’s love for us in Christ.”

    But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

    The explanation you have stumbled past is the CROSS, it is the most important explanation of God’s love for us, His only Son, dying for us, our sins –

    Christ died for our sins, was that not enough – does anyone believe that Martin Luther did “a better job of explaining God’s love for us in Christ.” ? —— Luther in the place of Christ? The Word of God trumps Luther, and all his followers. The Bible is the inerrant inspired Word of God.

  • Grace

    It’s late on the West Coast, however this comment needs adjustment. Such a sad statement on understanding of God’s Word. All the more reason for people to search out the Scriptures, rather than depending on some one else to do it for them.

    “As for Martin Luther, I love him. No one does a better job of explaining God’s love for us in Christ.”

    But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

    The explanation you have stumbled past is the CROSS, it is the most important explanation of God’s love for us, His only Son, dying for us, our sins –

    Christ died for our sins, was that not enough – does anyone believe that Martin Luther did “a better job of explaining God’s love for us in Christ.” ? —— Luther in the place of Christ? The Word of God trumps Luther, and all his followers. The Bible is the inerrant inspired Word of God.

  • colliebear06

    Well Grace, I don’t know why you engage in conversation with other Christians. All you need is your bible and you.

    Why even go to church and listen to that man up there talk about Jesus? You’ve got you and your bible. You could also stop reading any books that discuss the Christian faith.

    Martin Luther is a fellow saint, and although dead in this world, his words still speak to me centuries later. It’s no different than listening to my pastor tell me about Jesus on Sundays. That doesn’t mean I elevate my pastor over the Word of God or that my pastor trumps the Word of God. It also doesn’t mean that Luther’s words trump the Word of God.
    There are many men and women who eloquently talk about God’s love for mankind and his redemption for us through Jesus Christ. All I said was no one does it better than Martin Luther, not that there’s no one who does it as well or that Martin Luther himself is the word of God.

  • colliebear06

    Well Grace, I don’t know why you engage in conversation with other Christians. All you need is your bible and you.

    Why even go to church and listen to that man up there talk about Jesus? You’ve got you and your bible. You could also stop reading any books that discuss the Christian faith.

    Martin Luther is a fellow saint, and although dead in this world, his words still speak to me centuries later. It’s no different than listening to my pastor tell me about Jesus on Sundays. That doesn’t mean I elevate my pastor over the Word of God or that my pastor trumps the Word of God. It also doesn’t mean that Luther’s words trump the Word of God.
    There are many men and women who eloquently talk about God’s love for mankind and his redemption for us through Jesus Christ. All I said was no one does it better than Martin Luther, not that there’s no one who does it as well or that Martin Luther himself is the word of God.

  • Tom Hering

    “All the more reason for people to search out the Scriptures, rather than depending on some one else to do it for them.” – Grace @ 78.

    Why has God appointed some to be teachers in His church? (Re: 1st Corinthians 12:28.)

  • Tom Hering

    “All the more reason for people to search out the Scriptures, rather than depending on some one else to do it for them.” – Grace @ 78.

    Why has God appointed some to be teachers in His church? (Re: 1st Corinthians 12:28.)

  • Grace

    Tom – 80 – “Why has God appointed some to be teachers in His church? (Re: 1st Corinthians 12:28.)”

    God has given each Believer a gift/gifts within the body of Christ. This doesn’t mean however, that we are to idolize them ie: excessive admiration or love shown for somebody or something.

    The LORD is to be our focus, …. we need pastors, teachers and all the gifts mentioned in the passage you cited below.

    And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
    1 Corinthians 12:28

  • Grace

    Tom – 80 – “Why has God appointed some to be teachers in His church? (Re: 1st Corinthians 12:28.)”

    God has given each Believer a gift/gifts within the body of Christ. This doesn’t mean however, that we are to idolize them ie: excessive admiration or love shown for somebody or something.

    The LORD is to be our focus, …. we need pastors, teachers and all the gifts mentioned in the passage you cited below.

    And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
    1 Corinthians 12:28

  • Tom Hering

    Grace @ 81, no, we aren’t to idolize them. But would you agree we’re to be instructed by them? In God’s Word? What with them being teachers and all? And would they be good teachers if they kept us focused on Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins found in Him? The way Luther, Chemnitz and others did?

  • Tom Hering

    Grace @ 81, no, we aren’t to idolize them. But would you agree we’re to be instructed by them? In God’s Word? What with them being teachers and all? And would they be good teachers if they kept us focused on Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins found in Him? The way Luther, Chemnitz and others did?

  • colliebear06

    “God has given each Believer a gift/gifts within the body of Christ. This doesn’t mean however, that we are to idolize them ie: excessive admiration or love shown for somebody or something.”
    Grace @81

    You know, I love pizza, I love ice cream and I love my husband, sons, daughter-in-law and my granddaughter (Not in that order).
    Hopefully, I’m not idolizing any of them. To ‘love’ something means different things depending on the context.

    I’ve found it’s always best, and ultimately serves me better if I give someone the benefit of the doubt when they say something that sounds curious to me. Which leads me to your comment
    re: making an idol of Martin Luther: I haven’t read anything by him in years. I have, however, recently opened my bible. In my better stretches, that’s daily or maybe even several times a day.

    A little charity goes a long way.

  • colliebear06

    “God has given each Believer a gift/gifts within the body of Christ. This doesn’t mean however, that we are to idolize them ie: excessive admiration or love shown for somebody or something.”
    Grace @81

    You know, I love pizza, I love ice cream and I love my husband, sons, daughter-in-law and my granddaughter (Not in that order).
    Hopefully, I’m not idolizing any of them. To ‘love’ something means different things depending on the context.

    I’ve found it’s always best, and ultimately serves me better if I give someone the benefit of the doubt when they say something that sounds curious to me. Which leads me to your comment
    re: making an idol of Martin Luther: I haven’t read anything by him in years. I have, however, recently opened my bible. In my better stretches, that’s daily or maybe even several times a day.

    A little charity goes a long way.

  • Tom Hering

    We kind of get to the heart of the matter with “On the Jews and Their Lies.” Nothing was more important to Luther than the Gospel – the forgiveness of sins found in Jesus Christ. And nothing made him angrier than those who blocked the way to the full forgiveness of all sins – whether it was the Pope or a Rabbi. I not only understand Luther’s anger, but forgive him for sinning in his anger. I have to, as God forgives me for sinning in my anger – which happens every day.

  • Tom Hering

    We kind of get to the heart of the matter with “On the Jews and Their Lies.” Nothing was more important to Luther than the Gospel – the forgiveness of sins found in Jesus Christ. And nothing made him angrier than those who blocked the way to the full forgiveness of all sins – whether it was the Pope or a Rabbi. I not only understand Luther’s anger, but forgive him for sinning in his anger. I have to, as God forgives me for sinning in my anger – which happens every day.

  • Louis

    Grace – would you care to answer my question?

  • Louis

    Grace – would you care to answer my question?

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace,
    I second Louis and would greatly appreciate it if you would engage in conversation by answering questions. we have been “Gracious” not to mention patient towards you in answering yours. But you don’t care to answer ours.
    Further more, I, like Tom and others here, find what Luther wrote in “On the Jews and the Lies” to be disgraceful, and indefensible. Further more we find it inconsistent with the rest of what he wrote on Jews early in his career, and even more so inconsistent with his theology. So it is rather a mystery as to why he wrote it. Tom hints at his frustration with their theology. I imagine that is part of it. Sometimes I find it hard to distinguish between Mormons and their theology. Hate the sin, love the sinner bit.
    However, antisemitism was common in Luthers day. I imagine he also imbibed in the common, distasteful vitriol that was been thrown about. In large part then he wrote it because he got caught up in the same hysteria that is today levelled at Mexicans in general and illegal aliens in particular. Jews had their own culture, and language, their own food, sense of morality and so forth. Further more they engaged in as a society something most of the people found to be grossly immoral at the time, that is banking, or loaning with interest. Which in my opinion is far more immoral than jumping a border to pick water mellons and onions. Quite frankly I think they ought make Payday loan businesses illigal, or sharply regulate them more than they do, and I tend to detest credit cards too. But none of this excuses Luther’s writings. None of it. There were better ways to deal with those things in his day, and there are better ways to deal with the problems we have today, than to sling the same hatred towards others.
    In short, I find it ironic that you have such a problem with Luther on this issue. You’re guilty of the same thing, just towards a different group. You can’t have your cake and eat it too.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    Grace,
    I second Louis and would greatly appreciate it if you would engage in conversation by answering questions. we have been “Gracious” not to mention patient towards you in answering yours. But you don’t care to answer ours.
    Further more, I, like Tom and others here, find what Luther wrote in “On the Jews and the Lies” to be disgraceful, and indefensible. Further more we find it inconsistent with the rest of what he wrote on Jews early in his career, and even more so inconsistent with his theology. So it is rather a mystery as to why he wrote it. Tom hints at his frustration with their theology. I imagine that is part of it. Sometimes I find it hard to distinguish between Mormons and their theology. Hate the sin, love the sinner bit.
    However, antisemitism was common in Luthers day. I imagine he also imbibed in the common, distasteful vitriol that was been thrown about. In large part then he wrote it because he got caught up in the same hysteria that is today levelled at Mexicans in general and illegal aliens in particular. Jews had their own culture, and language, their own food, sense of morality and so forth. Further more they engaged in as a society something most of the people found to be grossly immoral at the time, that is banking, or loaning with interest. Which in my opinion is far more immoral than jumping a border to pick water mellons and onions. Quite frankly I think they ought make Payday loan businesses illigal, or sharply regulate them more than they do, and I tend to detest credit cards too. But none of this excuses Luther’s writings. None of it. There were better ways to deal with those things in his day, and there are better ways to deal with the problems we have today, than to sling the same hatred towards others.
    In short, I find it ironic that you have such a problem with Luther on this issue. You’re guilty of the same thing, just towards a different group. You can’t have your cake and eat it too.

  • Grace

    Tom – 82 – “no, we aren’t to idolize them. But would you agree we’re to be instructed by them? In God’s Word? What with them being teachers and all? And would they be good teachers if they kept us focused on Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins found in Him? The way Luther, Chemnitz and others did?

    Tom, I have already agreed by my post #81 and to the passage of Scripture. There is no reason to ask me the same question again regarding 1 Corinthians 12:28.

    I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety, burn their
    synagogues, run them out of Germany, claiming they were worse than devils. That isn’t the love our LORD Jesus taught, there is no excuse for what Luther did. Luther is one of the most anti-semitic men of history, yet he is revered as someone to look up to – his hatred is slid under the carpet, his deeds are explained away.

    As you slide Luther into the mix – ….. IF I had a pastor who preached the gospel, and then became anti-semitic, writing a book filled to the brim expounding on his hatred of the Jewish people, I would LEAVE the church.

    We don’t allow pastors today, no matter how great they began the work they were given as a gift from God …. IF, they begin to sin, and continue doing that which is against the teaching of the Bible. There are men and women who turn from the teachings of Scripture, who were once held in high esteem – we’ve witnessed them in our life time -

  • Grace

    Tom – 82 – “no, we aren’t to idolize them. But would you agree we’re to be instructed by them? In God’s Word? What with them being teachers and all? And would they be good teachers if they kept us focused on Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins found in Him? The way Luther, Chemnitz and others did?

    Tom, I have already agreed by my post #81 and to the passage of Scripture. There is no reason to ask me the same question again regarding 1 Corinthians 12:28.

    I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety, burn their
    synagogues, run them out of Germany, claiming they were worse than devils. That isn’t the love our LORD Jesus taught, there is no excuse for what Luther did. Luther is one of the most anti-semitic men of history, yet he is revered as someone to look up to – his hatred is slid under the carpet, his deeds are explained away.

    As you slide Luther into the mix – ….. IF I had a pastor who preached the gospel, and then became anti-semitic, writing a book filled to the brim expounding on his hatred of the Jewish people, I would LEAVE the church.

    We don’t allow pastors today, no matter how great they began the work they were given as a gift from God …. IF, they begin to sin, and continue doing that which is against the teaching of the Bible. There are men and women who turn from the teachings of Scripture, who were once held in high esteem – we’ve witnessed them in our life time -

  • Grace

    Tom – 82 – “And would they be good teachers if they kept us focused on Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins found in Him? The way Luther, Chemnitz and others did?”

    Luther didn’t continue to keep anyone focused on Jesus Christ, he focused on his hatred for the Jewish people, hence the ugly book against the Jews.

  • Grace

    Tom – 82 – “And would they be good teachers if they kept us focused on Jesus Christ and the forgiveness of sins found in Him? The way Luther, Chemnitz and others did?”

    Luther didn’t continue to keep anyone focused on Jesus Christ, he focused on his hatred for the Jewish people, hence the ugly book against the Jews.

  • Grace

    Tom – 84 – ” I not only understand Luther’s anger, but forgive him for sinning in his anger. I have to, as God forgives me for sinning in my anger – which happens every day.”

    It’s not a matter of you forgiving Luther, only God can forgive sins.

    Luther was very sure of himself when he wrote:

    “”If you are a preacher of grace, then preach a true and not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true [p. 282] and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly. . . . as long as we are here [in this world] we have to sin. . . . No sin will separate us from the Lamb, even though we commit fornication and murder a thousand times a day.” – - Martin Luther – -
    Epistle of August 1, 1521 to Melanchthon (This translation is taken from the official Lutheran American Edition of his complete works, vol. 42, pp. 281-82:

  • Grace

    Tom – 84 – ” I not only understand Luther’s anger, but forgive him for sinning in his anger. I have to, as God forgives me for sinning in my anger – which happens every day.”

    It’s not a matter of you forgiving Luther, only God can forgive sins.

    Luther was very sure of himself when he wrote:

    “”If you are a preacher of grace, then preach a true and not a fictitious grace; if grace is true, you must bear a true [p. 282] and not a fictitious sin. God does not save people who are only fictitious sinners. Be a sinner and sin boldly, but believe and rejoice in Christ even more boldly. . . . as long as we are here [in this world] we have to sin. . . . No sin will separate us from the Lamb, even though we commit fornication and murder a thousand times a day.” – - Martin Luther – -
    Epistle of August 1, 1521 to Melanchthon (This translation is taken from the official Lutheran American Edition of his complete works, vol. 42, pp. 281-82:

  • Grace

    Regarding illegal activities, illegal entry into the United States vs. Luther’s hatred:

    There is no comparison, it’s a non sequitur -

  • Grace

    Regarding illegal activities, illegal entry into the United States vs. Luther’s hatred:

    There is no comparison, it’s a non sequitur -

  • colliebear06

    “[Luther]. . .made every attempt to undermine their safety, burn their synagogues, run them out of Germany. . .” Grace @87

    Do you know this for a fact? Did he do something other than write these things? Please provide citations. I’m not saying you’re wrong, I just want you to point me to the facts.

    Have you never heard of hyperbole? Luther was a master at it, a concept you seem to have failed to grasp. Something tells me you haven’t read very much of Luther.

  • colliebear06

    “[Luther]. . .made every attempt to undermine their safety, burn their synagogues, run them out of Germany. . .” Grace @87

    Do you know this for a fact? Did he do something other than write these things? Please provide citations. I’m not saying you’re wrong, I just want you to point me to the facts.

    Have you never heard of hyperbole? Luther was a master at it, a concept you seem to have failed to grasp. Something tells me you haven’t read very much of Luther.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    I think what we have learned is that we are supposed to hate the people Grace hates. But it is not forgivable to for anyone to hate someone Grace doesn’t hate. Grace is to be our barometer in such things.

  • http://www.utah-lutheran.blogspot.com Bror Erickson

    I think what we have learned is that we are supposed to hate the people Grace hates. But it is not forgivable to for anyone to hate someone Grace doesn’t hate. Grace is to be our barometer in such things.

  • Grace

    -91-

    I wrote in post #87:

    “I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety. burn their
    synagogues, run them out of Germany, claiming they were worse than devils.”

    It should have read:

    I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety. Making mention of burning their synagogues, running them out of Germany, claiming they were worse than devils in his book “On the Jews and Their Lies”

    The quote below from Luther’s book is enough to make any Bible believer sick within their heart.

    <blockquote."- – “First, to set fire to their synagogues or schools and to bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them. This is to be done in honor of our Lord and of Christendom, so that God might see that we are Christians, and do not condone or knowingly tolerate such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of his Son and of his Christians. For whatever we tolerated in the past unknowingly_and I myself was unaware of it_will be pardoned by God. But if we, now that we are informed, were to protect and shield such a house for the Jews, existing right before our very nose, in which they lie about, blaspheme, curse, vilify, and defame Christ and us (as was heard above), it would be the same as if we were doing all this and even worse ourselves, as we very well know.” – -
    Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies

  • Grace

    -91-

    I wrote in post #87:

    “I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety. burn their
    synagogues, run them out of Germany, claiming they were worse than devils.”

    It should have read:

    I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety. Making mention of burning their synagogues, running them out of Germany, claiming they were worse than devils in his book “On the Jews and Their Lies”

    The quote below from Luther’s book is enough to make any Bible believer sick within their heart.

    <blockquote."- – “First, to set fire to their synagogues or schools and to bury and cover with dirt whatever will not burn, so that no man will ever again see a stone or cinder of them. This is to be done in honor of our Lord and of Christendom, so that God might see that we are Christians, and do not condone or knowingly tolerate such public lying, cursing, and blaspheming of his Son and of his Christians. For whatever we tolerated in the past unknowingly_and I myself was unaware of it_will be pardoned by God. But if we, now that we are informed, were to protect and shield such a house for the Jews, existing right before our very nose, in which they lie about, blaspheme, curse, vilify, and defame Christ and us (as was heard above), it would be the same as if we were doing all this and even worse ourselves, as we very well know.” – -
    Martin Luther, On the Jews and Their Lies

  • colliebear06

    “It should have read:

    I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety” Grace @93

    “made every attempt to undermine their safety”

    I ask again, how did he make every attempt, outside of writing these things, to undermine their safety?

  • colliebear06

    “It should have read:

    I would consider him heretical as he hated the Jews, and made every attempt to undermine their safety” Grace @93

    “made every attempt to undermine their safety”

    I ask again, how did he make every attempt, outside of writing these things, to undermine their safety?

  • Grace

    94 colliebear06

    Isn’t the book Luther wrote enough? – do you need more proof of his heart which denied the love of God to the Jews?

    What part do you think Luther played in anti-semitism after his death? Do you think the German people embraced his beliefs?

  • Grace

    94 colliebear06

    Isn’t the book Luther wrote enough? – do you need more proof of his heart which denied the love of God to the Jews?

    What part do you think Luther played in anti-semitism after his death? Do you think the German people embraced his beliefs?

  • colliebear06

    Grace – first of all ‘it’ wasn’t a book. If my memory serves me correctly, it was more of a paper. Still doesn’t make it right, though, I agree with you.

    Second of all, I was challenging you to either provide proof that Luther “made every attempt” as you put it, to undermine the Jews (you implied there was more than the words he put to paper).

    Thirdly, you are stating that Luther is a heretic:
    ” I would consider him heretical. . .” Grace@93. Heretics make claims that are outside the established beliefs of the faith. I don’t think Luther crossed that line in his treatise. Where did he err on Christian doctrine? Yes, he was belligerant and ranted away. I would call it sin. I would not call it heresy.

  • colliebear06

    Grace – first of all ‘it’ wasn’t a book. If my memory serves me correctly, it was more of a paper. Still doesn’t make it right, though, I agree with you.

    Second of all, I was challenging you to either provide proof that Luther “made every attempt” as you put it, to undermine the Jews (you implied there was more than the words he put to paper).

    Thirdly, you are stating that Luther is a heretic:
    ” I would consider him heretical. . .” Grace@93. Heretics make claims that are outside the established beliefs of the faith. I don’t think Luther crossed that line in his treatise. Where did he err on Christian doctrine? Yes, he was belligerant and ranted away. I would call it sin. I would not call it heresy.

  • colliebear06

    “What part do you think Luther played in anti-semitism after his death? Do you think the German people embraced his beliefs?” Grace @95
    The sin of anti-semitism in early 20th cent Germany was magnified greatly by the totalitarian government and used for their ungodly political ends. The fault lies with those who took Luther’s words, put to paper 300 years earlier, and used them for evil.

    As for sin having horrendous consequences, duh. Look what happened after Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the garden.

  • colliebear06

    “What part do you think Luther played in anti-semitism after his death? Do you think the German people embraced his beliefs?” Grace @95
    The sin of anti-semitism in early 20th cent Germany was magnified greatly by the totalitarian government and used for their ungodly political ends. The fault lies with those who took Luther’s words, put to paper 300 years earlier, and used them for evil.

    As for sin having horrendous consequences, duh. Look what happened after Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the garden.

  • Grace

    96 colliebear06

    - – “first of all ‘it’ wasn’t a book. If my memory serves me correctly, it was more of a paper. Still doesn’t make it right, though, I agree with you.” – -

    “I had made up my mind to write no more either about the Jews or against them. But since I learned that these miserable and accursed people do not cease to lure to themselves even us, that is, the Christians, I have published this little book, so that I might be found among those who opposed such poisonous activities of the Jews who warned the Christians to be on their guard against them. I would not have believed that a Christian could be duped by the Jews into taking their exile and wretchedness upon himself. However, the devil is the god of the world, and wherever God’s word is absent he has an easy task, not only with the weak but also with the strong. May God help us. Amen.”
    Martin Luther (On the Jews and Their Lies)

    Luther calls it a book, maybe that was another MISTAKE on his part?

    Have you read the book, do you know what it says?

  • Grace

    96 colliebear06

    - – “first of all ‘it’ wasn’t a book. If my memory serves me correctly, it was more of a paper. Still doesn’t make it right, though, I agree with you.” – -

    “I had made up my mind to write no more either about the Jews or against them. But since I learned that these miserable and accursed people do not cease to lure to themselves even us, that is, the Christians, I have published this little book, so that I might be found among those who opposed such poisonous activities of the Jews who warned the Christians to be on their guard against them. I would not have believed that a Christian could be duped by the Jews into taking their exile and wretchedness upon himself. However, the devil is the god of the world, and wherever God’s word is absent he has an easy task, not only with the weak but also with the strong. May God help us. Amen.”
    Martin Luther (On the Jews and Their Lies)

    Luther calls it a book, maybe that was another MISTAKE on his part?

    Have you read the book, do you know what it says?

  • Grace

    97 colliebear06

    “As for sin having horrendous consequences, duh. Look what happened after Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the garden.”

    Twisting what I said in post #95 is a “duh” – LOL

  • Grace

    97 colliebear06

    “As for sin having horrendous consequences, duh. Look what happened after Adam and Eve disobeyed God in the garden.”

    Twisting what I said in post #95 is a “duh” – LOL

  • Grace

    Below is the link to:

    On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
    by Martin Luther (1483-1546)

    http://www.humanitas-international.org/showcase/chronography/documents/luther-jews.htm

  • Grace

    Below is the link to:

    On the Jews and Their Lies, 1543
    by Martin Luther (1483-1546)

    http://www.humanitas-international.org/showcase/chronography/documents/luther-jews.htm

  • colliebear06

    Grace, I read the “book” online somewhere years ago. I don’t remember it being particularly long, especially when compared to the other works of Luther, which are quite long and wordy, therefore I remembered it more as a paper. But okay, Luther refers to it as a book. I stand corrected.

    The consequences of sin are great. That is my only point. You seem to have a firm grasp of the obvious. Unfortunately, no one is immune to sin, in this life, not even your own cherished church leaders. That is why we have Christ’s forgiveness given out to us from the CROSS (Grace @78), as you have stated, and given to us through His Word, Baptism, The Lord’s Supper and the Pastor’s absolution.

  • colliebear06

    Grace, I read the “book” online somewhere years ago. I don’t remember it being particularly long, especially when compared to the other works of Luther, which are quite long and wordy, therefore I remembered it more as a paper. But okay, Luther refers to it as a book. I stand corrected.

    The consequences of sin are great. That is my only point. You seem to have a firm grasp of the obvious. Unfortunately, no one is immune to sin, in this life, not even your own cherished church leaders. That is why we have Christ’s forgiveness given out to us from the CROSS (Grace @78), as you have stated, and given to us through His Word, Baptism, The Lord’s Supper and the Pastor’s absolution.

  • Grace

    101 colliebear06

    RE: “Pastor’s absolution.”

    I pray to God in Jesus Name to forgive me of my sins. I don’t go to the pastor to receive “absolution” –

    If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

  • Grace

    101 colliebear06

    RE: “Pastor’s absolution.”

    I pray to God in Jesus Name to forgive me of my sins. I don’t go to the pastor to receive “absolution” –

    If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

  • colliebear06

    Well, we part ways here when it comes down to how God delivers his forgiveness. Let us agree that Jesus has won it for us and graciously offers it us, that we will believe.
    Peace.

  • colliebear06

    Well, we part ways here when it comes down to how God delivers his forgiveness. Let us agree that Jesus has won it for us and graciously offers it us, that we will believe.
    Peace.

  • Grace

    103 colliebear06

    “Well, we part ways here when it comes down to how God delivers his forgiveness. Let us agree that Jesus has won it for us and graciously offers it us, that we will believe.”

    The passage of Scripture I posted makes it clear as to “forgiveness” of sin.

    If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

    How do we part ways?

  • Grace

    103 colliebear06

    “Well, we part ways here when it comes down to how God delivers his forgiveness. Let us agree that Jesus has won it for us and graciously offers it us, that we will believe.”

    The passage of Scripture I posted makes it clear as to “forgiveness” of sin.

    If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

    How do we part ways?

  • Tom Hering

    “We don’t allow pastors today, no matter how great they began the work they were given as a gift from God …. IF, they begin to sin, and continue doing that which is against the teaching of the Bible. There are men and women who turn from the teachings of Scripture, who were once held in high esteem – we’ve witnessed them in our life time -” – Grace @ 87.

    So, how do Lutherans deal with Luther any differently? Insofar as he preached and taught the Gospel, we praise him. Insofar as he sinned, we condemn those sins. What more do you want?

  • Tom Hering

    “We don’t allow pastors today, no matter how great they began the work they were given as a gift from God …. IF, they begin to sin, and continue doing that which is against the teaching of the Bible. There are men and women who turn from the teachings of Scripture, who were once held in high esteem – we’ve witnessed them in our life time -” – Grace @ 87.

    So, how do Lutherans deal with Luther any differently? Insofar as he preached and taught the Gospel, we praise him. Insofar as he sinned, we condemn those sins. What more do you want?

  • Louis

    Grace, get of your high horse and at least do us the honour of answering our questions!

  • Louis

    Grace, get of your high horse and at least do us the honour of answering our questions!

  • Tom Hering

    Louis, Grace back @ 37 & 38 was offended. She has decided to offend in return. “You think we’re not Christians we should be? I’ll show you how you’re not the Christians you should be!”

  • Tom Hering

    Louis, Grace back @ 37 & 38 was offended. She has decided to offend in return. “You think we’re not Christians we should be? I’ll show you how you’re not the Christians you should be!”

  • Louis

    That could be it, Tom. That could be it.

  • Louis

    That could be it, Tom. That could be it.

  • http://www.WeUsedToAgree.com Tom Jones

    If Joseph Smith was a Christian prophet, why did he, at first, teach attributes of God in accordance with the Bible which he said must be known in order to have salvation — and then, nine years later, change those very attributes of God which he had said can never change? (for documentation see a brochure titled “We used to agree…What happened?” at http://www.WeUsedToAgree.com

  • http://www.WeUsedToAgree.com Tom Jones

    If Joseph Smith was a Christian prophet, why did he, at first, teach attributes of God in accordance with the Bible which he said must be known in order to have salvation — and then, nine years later, change those very attributes of God which he had said can never change? (for documentation see a brochure titled “We used to agree…What happened?” at http://www.WeUsedToAgree.com


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