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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Justification – The Larry Darby Situation (Part 3 - Darby)

In the previous post Part 2, I introduced my involvement in "The Larry Darby Situation".  (See Part 1 for Table of Contents)  In this Part 3, I will continue publishing my correspondence with Larry Darby with my 2nd letter to him.
Mr. Larry Darby
XX Xxxxx Xxxxx
St. Louis, MO  XXXXX
This is a letter in response to something I heard about you recently.  It concerns the teaching of people associated with the Kokomo, Indiana area.  I became familiar with their doctrine first through two papers given to me by my pastor (then WELS) when I had questions about remission/forgiveness of sin.  I thought I had forgiveness but sometimes doubts would come- what EXACTLY does the Bible have to say?  He gave me the two papers I've enclosed.  I think both were written by Siegbert Becker, although only one is identified with his name.
I studied these in great detail and the supporting Scripture passages.  Could it be true- all men's sins are forgiven?  This would seem to be "too good to be true" according to what most would say.  Most would say there is something that must be done first, even if it is to believe it (cp. R.C.H. Lenski).  My Bible (then NIV) became drastically marked on the pages of Romans chapter 5 showing clearly that the word many means ALL.  I was translated into God's Kingdom- I no longer had to doubt that my sins are forgiven- because all men's sins are forgiven.  I no longer had to believe that it was anything in me that I had to live up to.
I now understood what Jesus meant when He said to Judas, the betrayer: "Friend" (Matt 26:50)   A few years ago, as I started re-attending church with Dad, I entered a Bible study of the book of Matthew.  We approached the section of the Lord's Passion.  I remember thinking: "Jesus, here comes Judas.  You know what he is going to do to you.  You know everything.  You know he was a thief.  WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO?  Then Jesus said "Friend".  How could Jesus call Judas "Friend"?  It was because the Savior loved even Judas and would suffer and die for Judas' sins as well.  That was not fair Jesus.  Jesus said "You're right.  That's grace."
Now I knew Jesus loved even me.  I knew in my heart I was no better than Judas.  How many times I had turned my back on Him.  How many times I had denied Him.  There was no way He would take me back.  Then He called me "Friend".  He is my Savior, Redeemer.  I knew there was absolutely no reason to doubt that I had forgiveness of my sins.
Larry Darby - the one who has written so beautifully regarding the dangers of psychology (esp. in the church), the one who clings to the Scripture doctrine on women in the church, the one who counsels to stay with the orthodox fathers: Luther, Walther, Pieper, Chemnitz and cautions on Stoeckhardt, Kretzmann, Preus.  If you have corresponded with Mr. David Hartman or Elmer Boniek and have any thoughts regarding fellowship with them, I have one quote of Mr. Hartman to share with you:
"I ... find no comfort in the words of men like Dr. Becker, Dr. Pieper, etc., when they contradict the clear Word of God."
This response was regarding the specific doctrine of universal grace that Becker and Pieper clearly taught from Scripture.  The following was stated in my earlier letter to Mr. Hartman:
"The doctrine which I think you hold to denies universal grace- just like the Calvinists which I heard with their "particular grace" and "limited atonement".  As Franz Pieper said it:  "As the Calvinists must forget their limitation of the universalis gratia, so the synergists must forget their limitation of the sola gratia if the truth that the Scriptures are God's own Word is to be of any practical value for them." Christian Dogmatics Vol. 1, page 276  "Whoever considers himself as being better before God, or less guilty than other men, is eo ipso excluding himself from grace (Luke 18:9-14; Romans 11:22)" Volume 1, pg 276.
I confess to you as I did to Hartman:
If Jesus didn't die for the sins of the whole world, then I am going to hell.
If there is any truth to the report of your uniting with this group, then I would say to you also that you would be robbing me of heaven.  God had the Scriptures written that I might believe and not doubt of my forgiveness.  He also did it for you.
If the report was totally in error, then I rejoice greatly and may you rejoice also in John 3:16 -
"For God so loved THE WORLD, that He gave His only begotten Son, so that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life."  John 3:16
[Signed] Xxx Xxx [BackToLuther]
Although my first letter in Part 2 expressed joy over the "conservatism" of the writings of Larry Darby in the newspaper Christian News, now I had some serious misgivings about this writer.  And at some point, Herman Otten stopped publishing the writings of Mr. Darby, surely because of the controversy Darby caused with his attacks on Objective Justification.

In Part 4, I present my 3rd letter to Mr. Darby – after receiving a copy of his magnum opus "The Historical Development of Objective Justification" and letters that refused my concerns and warnings... but not yet saying "Go to Hell".

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