Showing posts from April, 2022

OK, Groomer

I highly, highly recommend you subscribe to Matt Cochran's blog. From a recent post,  OK Groomer :   And that final point is what all the pearl-clutching by craven conservatives is ultimately about. They just want to be left alone and enjoy what they have. They don’t want to lose it all in a culture war. That desire, at least, is quite appropriate. In Romans, Paul writes “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all” and in 1 Thessalonians, he says “aspire to live quietly, and to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you.” What they forget is, “so far as it depends on you.” They would not risk culture war, but war is upon us whether we would risk it or not. They’re all-to-willing to lie to the themselves about the current state of America if it means they can hold onto their comforts. This is the fundamental failure of American conservativism. They can bloviate all they want to try and turn “ok groomer” into a sin. But the real si

Walther on Feminism: Is American Christianity functioning as a state church?

" Women's emancipation is making more and more progress. As was to be expected, it is also penetrating the church in America. For as much as one boasts that America has no state church , as Germany does, but that church and state are strictly separated here, church and religion are often used here to achieve political ends, or political principles and measures are also applied in the ecclesiastical field . Evidence for this assertion is that recently, among others, in the penitentiary of Johnson County in the state of Kansas, a woman named Lydia Sexton, who belongs to the fellowship of the United Brethren, has been employed as a chaplain. " - C F W Walther Back To Luther... and the old (German) Missouri Synod.: Walther on women's emancipation (Der Lutheraner 1870)

Bathsheba's #MeToo Moment

I'd like to examine WELS seminary professor John D Schuetze's "Bathsheba and the Nature of David's Sim" published in Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Vol 116, No. 4 (Fall 2019). This is a copyrighted work of five pages which of course I cannot reproduce in its entirety.  Prof. Shuetze poses the question in his opening paragraph: When people mention the account of David and Bathsheba, we usually hear them call it an "affair," a "one-night stand," or "adultery." David had an affair with Bathsheba. David had a one-night stand with Bathsheba. David committed adultery with Bathsheba. This is how most Bible commentators describe the events of 2 Samuel 11. But do these words capture what transpired that dark spring night in Jerusalem? The issue is that these ways of describing David's sin put at least some of the blame on Bathsheba." Prof. Shuetze proceeds to consult a number of commentaries and study Bibles with quotes regarding Baths

An Excerpt from "A Meditation on Christ's Passion"

 "4. They contemplate Christ’s passion aright who view it with a terror-stricken heart and a despairing conscience. This terror must be felt as you witness the stern wrath and the unchanging earnestness with which God looks upon sin and sinners, so much so that he was unwilling to release sinners even for his only and dearest Son   V 42, p 9  without his payment of the severest penalty for them. Thus he says in Isaiah 53 [:8], “I have chastised him for the transgressions of my people.” If the dearest child is punished thus, what will be the fate of sinners? It must be an inexpressible and unbearable earnestness that forces such a great and infinite person to suffer and die to appease it. And if you seriously consider that it is God’s very own Son, the eternal wisdom of the Father, who suffers, you will be terrified indeed. The more you think about it, the more intensely will you be frightened. 5. You must get this thought through your head and not doubt that you are the one who is

Decorum and the 'Childrens' Sermon'

A really great article at Gottesdienst  by Pr Beane with several excellent follow up comments related to decorum in general and the childrens' sermon in specific: "It is little surprise, given that our grandfathers and grandmothers went to dinner, sports events, the airport, and even to church as gentlemen wearing coats and ties and as ladies clad in dress, hat, and gloves, whereas people of all generations now regularly go out in public in sweats, yoga pants, pajamas, sports bras, hair curlers, clothing with intentional rips, tears, and holes, and with underwear and abdomen visible - it is little wonder that we are culturally bereft of distinction and contextual propriety, even within the sacred spaces of worship." "Multiple sermons for different demographics has never been done until very recently in church history. That said, I might consider special boomer sermons, where we invite them all to take their places up front, and we can use age-appropriate props to tea

The exercise of the Royal Priesthood

 " This the exercise of the royal priesthood.  Not all the foolishness about everyone a minister or others having a right to their place in the spotlight of Sunday morning or voting on this or that.  No, the real exercise of the spiritual priesthood spoken about by St. Paul is the simple and yet very profound  amen  that affirms what is prayed and the rest of the liturgy whose parts belong to the people and not to the pastor.  From from being merely symbolic, I cannot think of a more meaningful role for the people of God that to give their  amen  to the prayers and praises spoken by the pastor.  Either that or we are back to private masses in which people are extraneous or merely spectators of things not meant for them." -Pr. Peters at Pastoral Meanderings


Following up on the posts C.S. Lewis on Ceremony , Gerhard: On Change and Ceremony , Walther on Customs , we have one of our Magpies, Fr. Peter Berg, on decorum in the Divine Service: "Simply put, worship is to be dignified and orderly. After all, our God is a God of order. He called all things into being in six ordered days. We are beholden to Him since we are part of that order. He is to be feared. Though grace triumphs in the end, this side of the Jordan we never leave the burning bush of Sinai. Throughout scripture we read of people better than us taking off their shoes and falling face down before this God. Today's ecclesiastical comedians, who weekly wander from their pulpits with their cute, self-deprecating humor, are wholly out of place before this Holy Other. They have no decorum." with footnote "Again, if the Old and New Testament are to be paradigmatic, which they should be, we must ask this about the endemic use of humor in sermonizing, "Where in al

proof texting

"Proof-texts are necessary for establishing the doctrinal foundation, but hardly the exhaustive use of the Bible... Faith is based on God's words, specifically the assurances found in divine promises. Lutheranism is built on proof-texts . The Small Catechism grounds the human words of Luther in specific divine passages. It asks for proof in a citation: "which are these words and promises of God?" Only if the words are divine is the discussion closed and certainty assured: "This is most certainly true." A critic, who has the modernist spirit, cannot utter this confession." -Pr Philip Hale (editor, Christian News ), in his book "Confessing the Scriptural Christ against Modern Idolatry" pg 168-169.