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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

I'm sorry... but don't you believe? (The Lutheran Difference), Part 1

This post begins a short multi-part series providing comments concerning prominent writers and theologians for Concordia Publishing House and the LC-MS.
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I'm sorry that you went through a suicidal time in your life... so did I.  I remember you... you were the one (in the 1990s) who gave me some details on the history of the OLC and other events in the downfall of the LC-MS.  Could it be your synod caused you to doubt that God is already reconciled to youThat is what Walther taught as the basis for all his teachings, including "Church and Ministry".  Could it be there were valid reasons for those of the Orthodox Lutheran Conference (OLC) to separate themselves from your LC-MS?  Could it be that Walther's counsel to President Friedrich Wyneken (your role model, page 1) was Walther's wonderful teaching on the Doctrine of Justification... and that this teaching was the real basis of Wyneken's strength through his trials and struggles [Anfechtungen]? ... And so could it be that neither Wyneken or you or I had any reason to doubt God's grace, especially since God gave us the receipt of His pardon on Easter morning?  ––  I can tell you it was a dark road indeed for me, not so much when I was feeling suicidal, but rather before that, when I figured God couldn't smile on me anymore, for I had left Him long before this.  But God did not forget me and showed me by Walther's teaching that He should, instead of being tucked away in my back pocket in the training of my youth, be my Savior from sin, death and the power of the Devil.  Only then did my thoughts of suicide, my schizophrenia, my paranoia, my feelings of "depression" go away.  But then I no longer needed the medicines (lithium?), the group therapies, the spiritually empty clinical psychologists and psychiatrists.  They were just empty husks and never helped me spiritually... they rather showed me how empty the world's counsel is.  And so telling anyone that I was suicidal won't help anyone spiritually, except that it was only the pure Gospel that brought me back, by the Word of His Grace – the Lutheran Doctrine of Justification.  Wyneken (your role model) is my witness to the truth of this – read his letter to Walther in Harrison's book At Home in the House of My Fathers, page 425:
I have found in this doctrine [of Justification] my only stay in the midst of my difficulties.
Also on pages 410-411 is recorded the following from President Wyneken to the old (German) Missouri Synod in 1860 as he gloried in the heart of the Lutheran Confessions:

I especially regard the past year as an outstanding and richly blessed year for this reason: because the article of justification was quite properly brought into the arena of our synodical circles.

This exceedingly important, foremost article of all the Christian doctrines, which also above all else serves to clarify the correct understanding of the entire Holy Scriptures, alone shows the way to the indescribable treasure and the true knowledge of Christ. Also, it alone opens the door to the entire Bible. Without this article, also no conscience can have a true, solid, certain comfort, or know the riches of Christ’s grace [Book of Concord, Apology IV 2–3, German].

––> Don't you, Todd Peperkornbelieve that because Christ died for the sins of the whole world, that He did it all on the cross, that God is reconciled to the whole world even before our faith, ... that God is reconciled to you also?

The next post Part 2 continues my commentary especially on those writers for the book The Lutheran Difference.

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