It is doesn’t fit, you must acquit.

handbook-INUnless you live under a Lutheran rock, by now you’ve no doubt read Synod President Matthew Harrisons’ statement concerning Dr. Matthew Becker; if the event you do live under a rock, lift here and read the statement. Dr. Becker hasn’t made much of a secret of his dissent within the LCMS, and for those insomniacs, his blog may be found here. Continue reading It is doesn’t fit, you must acquit.

Septuagesima from a Former Incarnation

danger_falling_rocks2Rocks…they just never get any respect. God’s always breaking them apart as a sign of his power and majesty. Moses is taking a staff and smacking them; Pharisees want to use them to teach a woman caught in adultery a lesson, and Stephen is murdered with them.  In the Marine Corps someone who is an idiot or continually does his job wrong is called, among other things, a “rock.” Even outside the military, “rock” is used as a pejorative, for example, “He’s as dumb as a box of rocks.” Continue reading Septuagesima from a Former Incarnation

“Gay Christian”

Brian Patrick Mitchell wrote a piece for Touchstone magazine titled “Gay Christians? The Grave Danger Coming Out Poses to Christian Churches,” and you can read all 20 pages of it here. What I find intriguing about writers, intellectuals, professors, and bloggers who write on the topic of homosexuality from an alleged “Christian” point of view is that they generally aren’t out in the parish trench were questions of “Gay Christians” have moved from the theoretical realm, to that of that practical. Mitchell, according to the internet is an Orthodox protodeacon; he is not a priest, he cannot hear confessions, cannot pronounce absolution, and I suspect for him, based upon his piece in Touchstone, the topic of “Gay Christianity” is largely a rhetorical exercise.   Continue reading “Gay Christian”

Transfiguration 2015

“Families Transfigured”[1]

Matthew 17.1-9

Transfiguration 2015

 

Today’s Transfiguration text presents us with an almost limitless litany of theological applications, so many  that we could start now and next Sunday still be working our way through simply the surface of what St. Matthew relates to us. But many of the area restaurants stop serving breakfast at noon, the lunch queue starts around 11.30AM, and some in attendance hate waiting to be seated; so to that end, I want to focus on just one tiny-perhaps overlooked-practicality of the Transfiguration-for if there is no practicality to it, what’s the point?-and that is family. Continue reading Transfiguration 2015

Culture Club

Culture_Club_-_Greatest_Hits“Culture” has become the newest craze within the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, and once again-as has been the case with almost every social issue “addressed” by the LCMS-the problem is not within, but without. It reminds me of the often mindless and Christ-less discussions Lutherans have on the same-sex marriage, where by virtue of our collective heterosexuality-so at least we think-we presume to sit in judgment on a love we don’t understand, a relationship alien to us, and a stigma that has never been applied to us, meanwhile ignoring or conveniently explaining away heterosexual sin or the very powerful attack on marriage and family that heterosexuality is fully capable of launching. Continue reading Culture Club

Rip Van Church

rip_vanI find myself in a continual state of amazement. Wherever you look within the LCMS, someone is giving a seminar; a talk, writing a blog piece, leading a campus crusade, or holding a meeting and the topic is the same: Christ in/ and/ for/ against/ might be/ maybe/ is/ is not / culture. It’s as if collectively we been asleep like Rip Van Winkle, and only now, just now, awoken to find out that the world has dramatically changed and we’re no longer in Kansas. Continue reading Rip Van Church

Human Sexuality, Israel and Dr. Christopher Seitz

The difficulty in reading articles or books by people that are exceptionally bright is that you’re never quite certain you’ve got the argument or the thesis right. I began some very preliminary work yesterday on the relationship between the Incarnation, Christology and human sexuality/marriage, and came across a piece written by Christopher R. Seitz, “Human Sexuality Viewed from the Bible’s Understanding of the Human Condition,” (Theology Today 52 no 2 Jl 1995, p 236-246). The piece is a decade old and perhaps if Seitz were to revisit the piece today he would make some editorial changes to it, nevertheless, despite its age, Seitz raises a number of points worth consideration, if one is to seek to “privilege, as far as possible, an encounter with the word of God in Scripture over the more prevalent dialectical approach” (236).[1] Seitz is not interested in nuance or in bringing the human experience to scripture, but rather to bring the scriptural reality to human experience and existence. At a minimum, this approach gives the promise of a human sexual reality taken from scripture-albeit not in the way you might initially think-and not one that relies on biology, sociology, or Darwin. Continue reading Human Sexuality, Israel and Dr. Christopher Seitz