Evangelicals today are being torn by some major theological controversies. The debate between Calvinists and Wesleyans is getting more and more heated. Then there is a related debate between “Traditionists,” who believe Christians should hold onto the traditions of the historic church (particularly the decisions of the early church councils0 and the “Meliorists,” who reject holding onto traditions and believe the church can get better and better. The Calvinists tend to be Traditionists (who themselves can be divided between “Biblicists” and “Paleo-Conservatives”) and the Wesleyans tend to be Meliorists.
We confessional Lutherans have our own theology worked out, of course, and in many ways might think of ourselves as above this particular fray. And none of the debates, as far as I can tell, even bring Luther into the picture at all. And yet I would suggest to the contending parties of both sides that they study how Lutheranism resolves Wesley and Calvin, the Bible and Tradition, Orthodoxy and Reformation.