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Saturday, June 1, 2013

Walther as Theologian – Part 1: Theology (not biography)

I have in a previous post offered downloadable PDF files for the complete series of translated articles "Dr. C.F.W. Walther As Theologian" from the monthly periodical Lehre und Wehre authored by Prof. Franz Pieper in the years after Walther passed away.  These were translated by Prof. Wallace McLaughlin of the old Orthodox Lutheran Conference, a splinter group that left the LC-MS. Because of its importance, I have decided now to publish all 23 installments in a series of blog posts.  There are 3 reasons that this fresh publication will give even more value than just from downloads:
  1. most of the Lehre und Wehre volumes are now available online via Google Books, so hyperlinks have been added that point directly to the volumes in Google Books (which also have translatable "Plain Text").
  2. embedded, scrollable documents within blog posts conserve screen space, and
  3. the entire series will be searchable in Google search within my blog (I think)
As Pieper begins his series, he says
We do not intend to write a biography of the sainted Dr. Walther...
What did Pieper write about Walther if it wasn't his biography?  He wrote exclusively about his theology.  One sentence from Part 10a sums it up:
We believe we are not asserting too much when we say that after Luther and Chemnitz probably no teacher of our Church has given more vital witness of the doctrine of justification than Walther.
Today's theologians love to dig into Walther's life for more information of what pertains to his biography.  Especially now Rev. Charles P. Schaum (Editor, Professional and Academic Books) of CPH tries to give us a picture of Walther in the prefacing articles and appendices in the new Law & Gospel book.  But he is weak at best.  Why?  Because he and his associates in the LC-MS do not focus on the heart of Walther – the Doctrine of Justification, i.e. the Gospel.  Why don't you, Rev. Schaum?  Your STM thesis was "on biblical interpretation in the early LCMS".  How is it that you (and all the LC-MS) seems to overlook this?  Pieper didn't.  All the younger generation (and older ones too) who want to know about Walther and what he taught should put aside the comments of Schaum, Matthew Harrison and associates (and Concordia Historical Institute) and just read this account by Prof. Franz Pieper on the theology of C.F.W. Walther.  (Then read the long version in Pieper's Christian Dogmatics.)

Some of these installments will be grouped together since they were split apart into different months due to length.  My original post in December 2011 can serve as the Table of Contents for now.  As mentioned in that post, the Greek and Hebrew words have not been rendered, but are displayed as ????s (question marks).  These can be discovered from the hyperlinks to the original text in Lehre und Wehre.

Highlighting is my own.  Underlining is in original.
Hyperlinks within this document should be opened in a new tab (or window).

CPH is trying to make a show of their "celebration" of Walther by recent publishings of Walther's Law & Gospel, The Church and The Office of The Ministry, and newly released Gospel Sermons.  And they are proud to have [corrected 2015-11-29a "Lutheran" theologian tenured at a Methodist institution, Dr. Christopher Boyd Brown, as the General Editor of Luther's Works! What a travesty!  But I have the better publishing among all these new books of Walther – since all of these were previously available in English for over 25 years.  I have Franz Pieper's series C.F.W. Walther As Theologian.  And it was not translated by anyone in the LC-MS or CPH... it was translated by the dear Prof. Wallace McLaughlin who left the LC-MS because of its doctrinal errors – heterodoxy.  Yet having said this, everyone should purchase CPH's newest publishing of Walther's Gospel Sermons – not because of all the LC-MS tardy recommendations, but because these are the best published sermons since the days of Martin Luther.  I suggest that the reader first read this series by Pieper on Walther, then read Walther's Gospel Sermons and see who the better judge of Walther is – Franz Pieper or today's LC-MS/CPH.

The next post is Part 2 – How To Be A Theologian.
Table of Contents
Part 1 – Theology (not biography)           Part 10 – Justification–General, Universal
Part 2 – How to be a Theologian             Part 11 – Justification-Means of Grace
Part 3 – Inspiration & Open Questions       Part 12 – Justification-Faith
Part 4 – Luth. Dogmaticians, Repristination Part 13 – Conversion and Election I & II
Part 5 – "Scientific" (modern) Theology     Part 14 – Conversion
Part 6 – The Church–I & II                  Part 15 – Election of Grace
Part 7 – The Ministry–I & II                Part 16 – Election and Faith
Part 8 – Church Government                  Part 17 – Election–Wide or Narrow
Part 9 – Church and State                   Part 18 – Election, Assurance of Faith

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