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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Rast–Pt 5c: LC-MS historians/scholars (conclusion)

This post continues from Part 5b reviewing the writings of Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.) This Part 5c concludes the whole series ... it compares Prof. Rast with past church historians of the LC-MS.
I was going to hold off doing this series of reviews of Rast, but Walther's writings, especially on the proper form of a Christian congregation, cornered me... I could not let Rast's false teaching presume to speak for Walther.
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I think Prof. Rast wants to be known as an extra good Lutheran Church Historian.  There have been others before him who also wrote about Church History, Lutheran and otherwise.  Let us look at a few to see how Lawrence Rast compares to them:

------------------  F. Bente  ---------------------
Dr. Rast – why is it that you never seem to quote Friedrich Bente in your writings of American Lutheranism?  I also wonder why CPH would not publish his last volumes of "American Lutheranism"... (more on this some other time.)

------------------  Jaroslav Pelikan-"Traditions" -------------------
Are you, Prof. Rast, trying to live up to the legacy of Jaroslav Pelikan († 2006), the great "religious" scholar of the LC-MS, and beyond?...  the great "General Editor" of Luther's Works who left Lutheranism for "Orthodoxy"?  Maybe you call Christianity "the Christian Tradition" like Pelikan did?  Is Christianity not rather the Christian religion?  You are all too free with your use of the word "Tradition", a Pelikanish "tradition".  Maybe Pelikan should be called a scholar of "traditions" instead of a scholar of "religion"... and what about you?  Jaroslav Pelikan said this:
Despite their protestations of "sola Scriptura," the Reformers showed that the "Scriptura" has never been "sola." (The Christian Tradition: A History of the Development of Doctrine, Volume 4, page vii)
Perhaps you could expand on this with your Ph.D. from Vanderbilt... maybe you could outdo Pelikan on this statement?   Yes, it took quite a bit of "scholarship" for Pelikan to make the above statement... but maybe you can surpass him?  Maybe you and Dr. Christopher Boyd Brown (the new CPH Pelikan) could have a contest on this?

-------------  C.S. Meyer  -----------------
Are you just another C.S. Meyer, the great LC-MS "Church Historian", who had the power to judge those who left fellowship with the LC-MS as "little historians"?... who sat in his tower of "scholarship" and pleaded (in a 58-page essay!) with the other members of the Synodical Conference (ELS & WELS) in its last substantive meeting to not leave fellowship with the LC-MS. (1956 – "The Synodical Conference – The Voice of Lutheran Confessionalism" – download PDF w/ notes, 3.4MB)  Didn't it make you feel all "warm and fuzzy" when one of those members, the ELS – The "Little Norwegian" – invited you to present a paper on Franz Pieper in their 2004 Reformation Lectures?  Doesn't that prove that C.S. Meyer was right in his plea for "Unity in Love" before the breakup of the Synodical Conference?  Doesn't this prove that the great teachers of the ELS, S.C. Ylvisaker and Norman Madson Sr., were wrong in their cries against the LC-MS before and after the ELS left fellowship?  Or does it rather prove just how pernicious the errors are of today's heterodox LC-MS in infecting almost all Lutheranism worldwide?  Hmmm... just why did Norman A. Madson Sr. leave the ELS?... while he was its head teacher?  Could it have been that he saw how deadly your LC-MS errors were infecting his beloved ELS synod... and so had to leave them?  And why is it that Erling Teigen ignores the polemical writings of S.C. Ylvisaker, the great teacher of the early ELS, against the LC-MS in his historical synopsis of him?  Don't you feel good that your LC-MS has turned the mighty "LITTLE Norwegian", those whom Franz Pieper taught to stand for the Biblical Lutheran doctrine of Conversion and Election (Zur Einigung) against the erring larger "Norwegian Synod" (now today's ELCA), into a "little Norwegian"... a "little Norwegian" synod who has succumbed so far that they now sponsor you, an LC-MS theologian, to tell them about Franz Pieper? ... Franz Pieper, who in essence was their father in the faith?

-----------------  Erwin Lueker  ------------------
Are you going to be another Erwin L. Lueker?... you know, the Erwin Lueker who attacked Pieper's teaching of "church fellowship" (you seemingly defended Pieper against him)... the Erwin Lueker who edited the last Christian Cyclopedia– a massive effort to catalog the information on people and organizations,... the Erwin Lueker who wrote the article "Justification in the Theology of Walther" (CTM Vol. 32, Oct. 1961, pgs 598-605), but who left the LC-MS during the Seminex walkout.  Did Lueker leave the LC-MS because of Theodore Graebner's attack against Walther and Pieper's defense of UOJ since 1872?  No?  Well, you already know, don't you... that Erwin Lueker left with the other Concordia Seminary faculty who formed Seminex because of the boycotters manifesto Faithful to Our Calling, Faithful To Our Lord, not because the LC-MS had already fallen away on the Doctrine of Objective Justification.  Yes indeed, the boycotters held up Lueker's essay on Walther just like today's LC-MS – ScaerPlessHarrison, etc. – holds you up as evidence that it teaches rightly... because you seem to hold up Walther and Pieper.  Indeed, you write the prefaces to their books!

------------  Lawrence R. Rast Jr.  -------------
Is the reading of Dr. Lawrence A. Rast Jr. worthless?  Not necessarily.  The following story about C.F.W. Walther should be considered:
There was Herman Cremer of Greifswald, who contributed a dictionary of the New Testament Greek, recommended by Professor Walther to his students although the author was a rationalist. (Dr. Walther excused this recommendation with the somewhat caustic remark that we are permitted to make use of the works of rationalistic authors even as the Israelites were instructed to make use of the Canaanites as hewers of wood and carriers of water.) [Joshua 9:21, 23, 27]
This was written by Theo. Graebner in his book Dr. Francis Pieper, A Biographical Sketch (on page 7) about his teacher, Prof. C.F.W. Walther.
Do you hear that, Dr. Rast?  You are just a "hewer of wood and drawer of water" for true Christians.  The services of Concordia Historical Institute have also been largely limited to this function from its beginning. Why? Because your "church history" of the old (German) Missouri Synod largely lacks the true spiritual purpose required for true Church History.
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No, the LC-MS could not fully praise Walther in October 1961 (CTM Vol. 32, October 1961), and neither can it praise him today for his 200th anniversary.  Neither can it praise Franz Pieper.

What? Not even Rast's praise of Pieper in his essay on Pieper?  Not the praise of Pieper in Scaer's article "Francis Pieper", not Marquart's praise of Pieper... not the praise of Pieper by C.S. Meyer and a host of others who lack the true praise of Pieper?  Not the praise of Walther that Rast gives him at times?

No, Dr. Rast, Pastor Jack Cascione's defense against you (also blogger "Carl Vehse") is too mild and your admittedly heterodox LC-MS... could the "tangles" in your LC-MS be largely a pack of "ravening wolves", dressed in "sheep's clothing", ... that the sheep should be wary of? ... "ravening wolves" who can't get the Doctrine of Justification right?... and so cannot properly teach the doctrines Church and Ministry, Church Government, Baptism and Communion, the Election of Grace, the proper distinction of Law and Gospel, Antinomianism, ... cannot properly teach against the error of Pietism?... and yes, not even Christology? ... and who knows what other errors lurk in your heterodox LC-MS?   Indeed, Dr. Rast, the only surety a Christian can glean from your theological writings is where you give verbatim quotations from Pieper and Walther.  But why not just read them and dispense with you... because you might falsify them where you quote them?  How so?
  1. by offering no praise of Engelder and PEK for their attempts to uphold the veracity of Holy Scripture, even though there may have been weaknesses in their defenses.
  2. by having an essay of yours included in a book that masks the true heart of Christian teaching, the Doctrine of Justification – e.g. by Richard John Neuhaus, a book honoring Prof. David Scaer and his "All Theology is Christology".
- - - - - - - - - - -   Distinguendum Est   - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Dr. Rast, you should take a "hiatus" and read Franz Pieper's essay "Distinguendum Est" – you will find it on my blog post here.  There you will learn the proper distinctions in Christian teachings... when to praise the Princetonian/Fundamentalists and when to admonish them... how to first praise Engelder & Kretzmann before any admonishment of them... how to observe the proper distinction of Law and Gospel... There you will be reminded that "the entire Christian doctrine is revealed in such Scripture passages which do not even require interpretation, to which access is open to the learned and unlearned".   How Pieper impresses the students of Concordia on the divine responsibility of the Public Ministry to remain faithful to the Word!  Oh, that's right... you are the President of a Seminary (just like Pieper was)... where men are to be trained for this very Office of Public Ministry!  Should you not also sit at the feet of Franz Pieper and learn the proper distinctions in Christian teaching?  Then Walther will no longer be "fascinating" to you but rather his Church History will be the truth that strengthens your Christian faith...  and his Church History will be your Church History.

Maybe then you will be able to warn your students that Ph.D. degrees from places like Vanderbilt, Yale, Oxford, Harvard, University of Chicago, Princeton, Boston University, etc., etc., will never advance their theology, but rather show them how horrible the darkness is away from the pure Lutheran Doctrine of Justification.

1)  I tell you, Dr. Rast, that Walther's analysis of Pietists applies to you and your LC-MS:
Pietists admit the thesis, that faith alone justifies without works, and they do not deny this expressly any place. But to admit this is not the same as saying that they teach justification in a pure way
2)  I tell you, Dr. Rast, that Prof. Roland Ziegler's analysis of the Reformed and pietists (here, pg 306) applies to you and your LC-MS:
The error of the Reformed or the pietists is that they point to an experience of grace which assures one of salvation instead of pointing them to word and sacrament.... The inexperienced is deceived by pious phrases and the seeming sincerity, how sin in such a case is taken seriously, how "cheap grace" is avoided. (page 306 here)
3)  I tell you, Dr. Rast, that your own analysis of Samuel Schmucker (see hereapplies to you and your LC-MS:
For Schmucker, there is a universal atonement, but it does not equal the justification of the sinner before God. Something must happen personally, individually, before one can said to be justified.
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==>>I tell you, Dr. Rast, that all praise of Christ, of grace, of the means of grace — and all praise of Franz Pieper, C.F.W. Walther, and Martin Luther — is nothing without the right doctrine of justification.
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I am taking leave of discussing today's LC-MS for now – it depresses me too much.  I need further refreshment from the writings of
Luther – Martin Luther
Walther – The American Luther

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Rast–Pt 5b: Ironies of Prof. Rast

This post continues from Part 5a reviewing the writings of Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.) This Part 5b points out a number of ironies as I consider the case of Prof. Rast, Ph.D. Vanderbilt University.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.)
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--------------------   Prof. James Barr   ----------------------
Hmmm... Dr. Rast, were you ever under the teaching of Prof. James Barr while you were at Vanderbilt?  You know, the one who fought against the truth of Scripture? ... the one who attacked Martin Luther's Biblical chronology?   You were at Vanderbilt when he was still there... he was a Prof. of Hebrew Bible. Hmmm... Vanderbilt University, the home of Prof. James Barr. Wikipedia says of him
He was also an outspoken critic of conservative evangelicalism, which he attacked in his 1977 book Fundamentalism. In particular he criticized evangelical scholars such as J. I. Packer for affirming the doctrine of scriptural inerrancy, the teaching that the Bible is without error. 
I wonder, Dr. Rast, do you think Barr would have some praise for you since he had "high praise for evangelicals thought by him to deserve to be treated as serious scholars"?  Surely you consider yourself to be a "serious scholar", don't you?  Maybe Vanderbilt University is proud that one of their graduates is now President of a "Missouri Synod" seminary?   Or do you rather consider yourself a follower of Franz Pieper, another President of a Missouri Synod seminary?  Hmmm, tough choice, isn't it?   Maybe the title of "serious scholar" of "American Lutheranism" from Vanderbilt is your preference?  Yes, I think that is your preference.

-----------------   Pieper & "Princetonians"   -------------------
There is irony in that Rast quotes from the "The Presbyterian & Reformed Review" (TP&RR) as the periodical that published Franz Pieper's essay "Luther's Doctrine of Inspiration".  Shouldn't Rast be chastising Franz Pieper for accepting a request from these "Princetonians" and "fundamentalists"..., since these  "Princetonians" and "fundamentalists" trouble his LC-MS with their doctrines?... their (former?) doctrine that the Bible is "inspired" and "inerrant"?  (I wonder if the Princetonians fell away from their "inspired" and "inerrant" doctrines because the LC-MS did?)
I don't recall being aware of this publication in the TP&RR of Franz Pieper's essay before...  a largely "Princetonian" publication with Prof. B.B. Warfield as its primary editor.  I am very glad to have discovered this essay of Pieper on "Luther's Doctrine of Inspiration"!  Prof. Rast is a good "hewer of wood and drawer of water" – his "beat reporting" and cataloging helped me find this!  He is a good librarian.   Although he attempts to praise Pieper, he falls short.  But as long as he continues to make the attempt, I may look in on him in the future for his reference material to see if I have missed anything.  But to learn true theology, true Christian theology, I go to Martin Luther, C.F.W. Walther, and Franz Pieper – my "go to" theologians, not Professor Rast.

------------------  CTQ issue "honoring Walther" ---------------------
Dr. Rast, why were you not in the line-up of essayists honoring Walther in the July/October 2011 issue of Concordia Theological Quarterly?  If your essay "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" had been included in that issue, I might have counted it on the positive side and said "3 of 8" honored Walther, instead of "2 of 7". Ah, but I think one of the other essays actually honored Walther more than this essay of yours... it was the essay of Prof. Roland Ziegler who wrote his essay that others might believe and be strengthened in their Christian faith – not to be "fascinating".   Now that was an essay to truly honor Walther.  I submit to you that Prof. Roland Ziegler is working hard to not be deceptive in using the "Lutheran" name, but is avoiding the "miserable fear of man" by bearing "a faithful witness" within today's LC-MS.  Maybe you should wander over to his office and encourage him to write more essays that truly honor Walther, Luther, and Pieper.  Maybe you should also do this instead of listening so much to Prof. David Scaer's "All Theology Is Christology" and writing "Demagoguery" essays.

-----------------  To: Prof. Roland Ziegler  ---------------------
Prof. Roland F. Ziegler, since one of your special interests is on Luther and "the doctrine of justification", I suggest that you begin to instruct your colleague Prof. Lawrence R. Rast Jr. on ... the doctrine of justification.  You should also be turning Scaer away from his "All Theology Is Christology" since you said "justification... is the true subject of theology" (page 5).  Oh, and if you think Rast has it right because he seemed to speak so eloquently in his essays "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" and "Francis Pieper", then maybe you should recognize the warning signs:
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The concluding Part 5c will continue my final comments on Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr. – in comparisons to other LC-MS church historians.

Rast–Pt 5a: "Demagoguery"- Loose ends (Merely?)

This post continues from Part 4g reviewing the writings of Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.)  Part 5 will provide further comments on a number of subjects as I close the case of Prof. Rast.  This Part 5a ties up some loose ends on Rast's "Demagoguery... " essay discussed in Parts 1 & 2.
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Hmmm, Dr. Rast – did you know that August Suelflow also wrote an essay on this subject called "Walther and Church Polity" for CTM, 1961, pgs 632-640? (download PDF for your reference; OCR'd DOC file here)   Of course you do.... but why didn't you quote him?  He also spoke on the same subject as your "Demagoguery... " essay, but he did not once mention "democracy" in his essay, certainly not "demagoguery".  Perhaps you are tacitly saying that you disagree with Suelflow on Walther's teaching of "church polity" or "church government"?  Or maybe you could apply your theological scholarship and "historical context" to find agreement between Suelflow and you?  (I suggest the reader downoad Suelflow's essay to get better information, for example on Sihler whom Rast mentions in his essay.  Indeed, August Suelflow is a witness for Walther and against Dr. Lawrence A. Rast, Jr.)

But you, Dr. Rast, have confirmed Profs. David P. Scaer and John T. Pless in their errors by your "Demagoguery or Democracy?" essay (Scaer–"Rast, Vehse, and Walther" article [Logia, Holy Trinity 2000, pgs 47-50], and Pless–Book Review of Authority Vested).  Oh! You even received the "Award of Merit" for this essay from Concordia Historical Institute in 2000!  Such an honor!  The poor pastor Jack Cascione, who was mild in his initial defense against the errors of the CTS-FW faculty, must now cry out loudly against the manifest errors of not only CTS-FW, but all the LC-MS now.  And he is broadsided by your essay and its preposterous attempt to falsify (interpret? "historical context"?) Walther's (and Pieper's) teaching on the importance of the right doctrines of Church and Ministry, of an apostolic congregation.  Dear God!... a "misinterpretation of the nature of polity" (pg 267)? ... so you, Prof. Rast, are the great "interpreter of Walther"?   Wow, we had better listen to you...  instead of Walther, because Walther needs an interpreter... like you!   Maybe CPH should stop printing more volumes of Walther's sermons and other works because these "misinterpretations of Walther" are hurting the Church!... right, Dr. Rast?
Rast says (pages 267-268):
Synod is merely "advisory," having no say whatsoever in the affairs of its radically independent local congregations. 
"merely advisory"?  Merely advisory?  What do you mean, Prof. Rast?  Walther showed the world the beauty of the synod being "advisory" in relation to its congregations – its power was based solely on the Word of God!... and you say that power is "merely advisory"?... that the power of the synod is merely the Word of God?  Hasn't Dr. Rast just shown the world how little he thinks of the power of the Word of God in his LC-MS?  (The Sheep had better start judging their shepherds if they covet their souls salvation...) 

Were you, Dr. Rast, maybe trying to atone for the travesty of your 1999 CTQ "Demagoguery..." essay with your 2004 essay for the ELS Reformation Lectures on Franz Pieper? You said there on page 26:
"So is Pieper relevant anymore? My answer, obviously, is a hearty yes."
Relevant for what, Dr. Rast?  Relevant for some things... except maybe Church Government?  Let us compare statements on Walther's Church Polity between Rast and Pieper:
Walther clearly believed that, while the doctrine of church and ministry was clearly settled in the Scripture and Confessions, polity was an adiaphoron. (Footnote # 36)
The so-called constitutive power, that is, the ordering of all things which are not ordered through God’s Word (adiaphora) belongs to the congregation itself, not to the pastor...  The local congregation possesses the supreme jurisdiction in its own sphere.
Now Prof. Rast may say that I'm "comparing apples and oranges".  My answer is that he has setup "Carl Vehse" as a "straw man" for his argument and is confusing the issue.  Franz Pieper never confuses the issue and so I say to all Christian readers --> listen to Prof. Franz Pieper (and Walther), not Prof. Lawrence Rast.
One will note the difference – that Pieper says the "adiaphora" or "things indifferent" (e.g. how often to have Holy Communion, etc.) are under the power of the congregation (i.e. adult male voting members), not the pastor.  Prof. Rast does not seem to want to say the same thing, and then has the audacity to claim "Walther clearly believed that..." — I do not claim to fully understand all matters of "Church Government" or "Church Polity".  But I know that Luther, Walther and Pieper stay with the Scriptural teaching and do not lead astray in these matters of "congregations", "clergy", "synods" and "adiaphora".  I will take Pieper's "interpretation" in his essay on Walther's teaching of Church Government.  Maybe you, Dr. Rast, think that Pieper misinterpreted Walther?  But with Pieper, you would realize that you should set aside your readings of Walter Forster (Zion on the Mississippi), Carl S. Mundinger (Government in the Missouri Synod), even Walter Baepler (Century of Grace) and W.G. Polack (The Building of a Great Church), and all the host of other sources you referenced for your "Demagoguery..." essay and just sit at the feet of Walther and Pieper.  I looked up "Democracy" in Pieper's Christian Dogmatics, Vol. 3, pg 417 (PNG image), just for the learning experience...  nothing there about church government, only civil government.  

No, Thomas Jefferson (father of American Democracy, "I am an Epicurean") was not the father of the old (German) Missouri Synod. (Ha, ha, ha, ha! – Psalm 37:13)
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The next Part 5b will touch on a number of ironies as I further consider the theology and church history of Prof. Rast.

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Rast–Pt 4g: Justif./Walther- "Conclusion"

This post continues from Part 4f reviewing the 2001 essay "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" by Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.)
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- - - - - - - - - - - - -   "Conclusion"   - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
So how will Prof. Rast conclude his  history of the doctrine of Justification in America?  Rast said at the top of page 56:
Walther ... proposes a program for recovering the doctrine of justification in the church. Because I think his remarks in this regard are so viable, I will return to this point later and conclude the lecture with his outline.
Rast said that he considers Walther's remarks to be "so viable" that he "will return to this point later and conclude...".  Very good.  Rast seems to hold Walther quite high by this remark.  Let us see if Rast keeps his promise in his "Conclusion" section.
Rast begins by saying (page 58-59):
Recall that by the 1830s much of American Lutheranism had compromised the central article. The story of the next generation, 1840-80, is a remarkable one in which confessional Lutheranism not only appeared on the American scene in force, but actually came to dominate.
Rast says "confessional Lutheranism... appeared on the American scene".  He seems to imply in part that this was caused by C.F.W. Walther, although earlier he had mentioned other German Lutherans.
But Rast's choice of words is somewhat grating...  he seems to be talking about a theatrical play with various "scenes" and "stages"... so now we have reached the "American scene".  Is true Church History just a theatrical play?  Rast borrows phraseology used by modern theologians that think of "Church History" as just "fascinating", with various "scenes"... maybe a movie should be made about it? ... maybe with the American stage, Act 2 – the scene "Confessional Lutheranism"?  This reminds me of Luther's description of Erasmus:
Erasmus of Rotterdam looks upon the Christian religion and doctrine as if they were a comedy or a tragedy, in which all the events described therein never actually happened or really took place,...
I wonder that Erasmus would have made a great movie maker.  But surely Rast is not like Erasmus, he seems to want to grasp Walther's meaning...  But let us proceed...

Rast attempts to summarize "American Lutheranism" by saying (on page 59) that Schmucker's spirit, the spirit at war with Luther's On The Bondage Of The Will, ... that this spirit
 lay somewhat dormant for nearly a century...
Rast is attempting to paint "a kinder, gentler" American Lutheranism that maintained separation from the Synodical Conference.  But Rast is incorrect because "Schmucker's spirit" never left American "Lutheranism" and so Franz Pieper, George Stoeckhardt, Friedrich Bente and others of the Synodical Conference tirelessly defended true Lutheranism, i.e. true Christianity, from what Rast calls "Schmuckerism".  But the above true defenders of Christianity (Pieper, Stoeckhardt, Bente, etc) had to fight against the multitude of errors of  "American Lutheranism" in their days, the period that Rast claims was "dormant for nearly a century".
Rast then says (page 59):
Beginning in the 1950s and 60s a Schmucker revival began. A modified version of Schmucker's ecumenical platform has provided the means, in spirit and perhaps also in methodology, for the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's [ELCA] agreements with the Reformed, Anglicans and...
... and who?
... and–and this would be to Schmucker's horror, but I believe there is a consistency here as Walther has rightly pointed out–the Roman Catholics.
Prof. Rast, the church historian, is incorrect again, for Schmucker would not be in "horror" over today's ELCA's agreements with the Roman Catholics [JDDJ].  Any "horror" that Schmucker might show would be a feigned "horror" for Walther exposed the serious error of this American "Lutheran" as essentially Romanist.  Rast recovers somewhat from his "horror" remark by saying "I believe there is a consistency as Walther has rightly pointed out".  If only Rast would stick to the true Church History of Walther and not have to recover from his own ideas and that of his LC-MS... if only he would stop being "fascinated" with Walther's teaching and follow it consistently.
Rast continues by recounting the sad history of the ELCA and its abominable agreements with Rome, Reformed, etc.  But then, to his credit, Rast brings it home to his own LC-MS (page 59):
However, in Missouri, things are not all well either. The Church Growth Movement's compromise ... The influx of Evangelical assumptions ...  "Lutheran Altar Calls." ... Such language is absurd and shows how little the doctrine of justification is regarded in our midst at times.
The last phrase is more than a little distressing, and touches on the most horrible aspect of true Church History since the death of Franz Pieper.  Rast could have brought a testimony from Franz Pieper's writings that would have been appropriate to counter the "tangles" in today's LC-MS.  But instead Rast brings in the testimony of a theologian of one of the synods that formed the ELCA, G.H. Gerberding who wrote in his book The Lutheran Catechist:
Emotionalism, under the form of so-called "New Measurism," or Revivalism, took the place of catechization. Indifference to doctrine fostered indifference, if not hostility, to catechization...
Rast is using this to highlight his former point of a "properly trained clergy".  Now it is difficult to fault what Gerberding says here, but isn't Rast shifting the focus from the Doctrine of Justification to that of "catechization"?  Certainly Walther was a strong proponent of proper "catechization", but that is not what Walther is highlighting here.  But if "catechization" is important, then on what are students to be catechized if not on the pure Doctrine of Justification?  Cannot one "catechize" on the importance of "proper exercise", "eating right", "cleanliness (is next to godliness)", "proper care of pets", "prudence in financial matters", etc.?  Oh, but Prof. Rast means "catechization" in Lutheran doctrine, but what else is it but on the pure Doctrine of Justification?... the proper distinction of Law and Gospel?
But Rast recovers with this statement on page 60:
What kept Missouri from confusion at the end of the nineteenth century? Clarity on the doctrine of justification!
Well said.  I might add the phrase "and until the death of Franz Pieper". – Rast continues (pg 60):
What has led to the confusion in Missouri at present? Its loss of a sense of catholicity informed by the Confessions' doctrine and practice, most certainly in the doctrine of justification.
"Catholicity"?  Rast throws in the word "catholicity".  This sounds like Berthold von Schenk, who harped against Missouri's lack of "catholicity" even while he was utterly confused on the doctrine of Justification!  Why does Rast bring this term "catholicity" here?  Does it clarify the real "confusion in Missouri at present"?  I think not.

Rast takes my breath away, saying (pg 60.):
There is no longer consensus on what our doctrine and practice are, which certainly has implications for the veracity of our claim to be a confessional church.
Is Rast implying that today's LC-MS may not be a truly confessional church?  Maybe he is getting too close to Walther here...  I can hardly breathe as I continued to read Rast:
In the end, I believe Walther was right. We will continue to run in circles, never really getting anywhere, until we find a linear starting point from which to move truly forward into the future. Where is that starting point? Confessional doctrine and practice. A divided Missouri will only be reunified when its congregations and pastors once again take seriously their quia subscription to the Book of Concord.
Ah, Prof. Rast, although this could be a "starting point", I believe there is an even more important "starting point" than even highlighting The Book of Concord, the Lutheran Confessions.  I believe things are so bad in today's LC-MS that it must begin at square one – the "gist" of what Christianity is – The Doctrine of Justification, Universal and Objective.  Repeat after me:
  1. Objective Justification (you know, what Marquart avoided)
  2. Universal Justification 
  3. Now, all together: UniversalObjective Justification! (UOJ)
Prof. Rast, haven't you heard how Dr. Walther A. Maier Jr., your colleague, actually fought against this doctrine?  Haven't you heard that Prof. Harold Buls († 1997), another former colleague, wanted to bring charges of heresy against W.A.M. Jr., but was prevented by President Robert Preus?  Yup, I believe Walther was right!  Get his Doctrine of Justification right.  And so you should properly, publicly discipline Dr. Maier and all other teachers in the LC-MS who do not wholeheartedly teach UOJ.  You cannot solve your problems with "catechization", "proper training" or even "quia subscription to the Book of Concord" if you cannot deal with those in your fellowship, nay, within your own seminary, who actually fight against the true Doctrine of Justification!  It is impossible.  How can I be so firm in my conviction?  Because Luther, Walther and Pieper taught me (by faith) the true Gospel.

But Dr. Rast, you almost agree with me, don't you?... for on page 61, you say:
Yet there is still good reason for hope. For wherever the Law and Gospel are rightly distinguished and the doctrine of justification holds the center, there is renewal for the church. Solid teaching at our seminaries coupled with solid Lutheran catechesis in the parishes can transform the Lutheran church from its current morass.
Dear God!  I did not want to give Prof. Rast the "last word" on this post... but I will.  I will repeat these words of Prof. Rast:
For wherever the Law and Gospel are rightly distinguished and the doctrine of justification holds the center, there is renewal for the church. 
    – President Lawrence Rast Jr., President, CTS-FW
Dear God, May it be so for the LC-MS and so may it return to the true Gospel.  Amen!
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The next Part 5a will begin my summary of Prof. Lawrence A. Rast, Jr. – beginning with his notorious essay "Demagoguery or Democracy?" essay.

Rast–Pt 4f: Justif./Walther- "No Pietists Allowed"?

This post continues from Part 4e reviewing the 2001 essay "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" by Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.)
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- - - - - - - - - - - - -   Pietists   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
On page 58, Rast introduces another group that was antagonistic to the Doctrine of Justification:
...the history of the church in the post-Reformation period shows that confusion over this doctrine has consistently been present. Nowhere is this more obvious than with the pietists, the predecessors of the American Lutherans, who, in fact, confused Law and Gospel and thereby compromised the central article.
Did you hear that?  Rast is calling the Doctrine of Justification "the central article".  But Dr. Rast, I thought Pieper held that "justification was subsidiary to Christology"(?).  Then Rast presents an extended quote from Walther concerning the Pietists that I will reproduce:
Pietists admit the thesis, that faith alone justifies without works, and they do not deny this expressly anyplace. But to admit this is not the same as saying that they teach justification in a pure way. For to this belongs such a distinction between Law and Gospel that would include the concept of a human being turned completely away from his own works to Christ alone. This is the point that is missing in our dear Pietists..... These all indeed adhere to the basic emphasis that man is justified alone through faith, but with that they emphasize repentance and crushing of the heart to such a degree and the particular circumstances in which a person would dare to believe, and they identify so many signs of a truly penitent heart, which then first can dare to approach Christ, to such a point that Christ and His grace and mercy must be pushed into the background. (Correspondence of C.F.W. Walther, 1980, tr. Roy Suelflow, p. 20-21)
Prof. Rast, there are Lutheran pastors today who proclaim "No Pietists Allowed".  I wonder, have they learned that phrase from you?  But it seems their idea of what was wrong with the Pietists is different than Walther explains above, for Walther nails their error on an impure teaching of Justification... and therefore a lack of distinction between Law and Gospel.  Walther does not speak of cigars and cognac...  Maybe you should be correcting these erring LC-MS pastors who are so prominent on Lutheran forums...
Indeed, Dr. Rast, as you say on page 58,
Clarity on the right distinction of Law and Gospel and keeping the central article central was one of the basic purposes of the Synod.
Yes! "keeping the central article central" – that is what I am trying to do with you, Dr. Rast.  I'm trying to pull you away from the fork in the road that you and your seminary have gone down.  Why is it that you keep repeating Scaer's teaching that "All Theology Is Christology" and that "Pieper's doctrine of justification was subsidiary to Christology"?  Why is it that you falsify Walther's teaching of a Christian congregation as "American democracy" and not apostolic?  You give great offense to Scaer and Pless when you confirm their errors.
Prof. Rast follows this with his analysis and formulation to correct the "tangles" in his LC-MS (page 58):
... solid, confessional pastoral formation had to occur at the [old German Missouri] Synod's seminaries so that the preaching and practice of the Synod's pastors would be good and salutary. Without a properly trained clergy that was apt to teach, the Law and Gospel would soon be confused, the doctrine of justification redefined, ...
Again, Rast here seems to do a good job of making a plea that his Synod's clergy by "properly trained" to avoid confusion between Law and Gospel and to avoid redefining "the doctrine of justification".  Does Rast mean that clergy should be "properly trained" at a university of higher learning like Vanderbilt University... like he was?  Does Rast think that Walther only furthered the Gospel in America? – Or does Rast here consider that Walther actually is more than "fascinating"?  Does he consider that it was only Walther who restored the Gospel in America?  Is Rast on the edge of grasping "The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel".  Dear God!  MAY IT BE SO!!  May I offer you, Dr. Rast, the advice of Franz Pieper (see here):
The knowledge and preaching of this doctrine [of Justification] outweighs many a shortcoming in external education and endowment.  If the Church had only the choice between externally inadequately educated [!] preachers, who, however, live in the article of justification and preach it, and externally highly cultivated preacherswho, however, do not understand the article of justification and therefore also do not preach it, it would necessarily choose the former without any hesitation.
Would I be going too far to suggest that in Rast's LC-MS today there are many "externally highly cultivated preachers who do not understand the article of justification"?  Surely...... Dr. Rast is not one of them, is he?

==>> But one thing is certain – Rast cannot grasp Walther (or Luther or Pieper) unless he quits getting on the fence and falling off so often (DemogogueryCollecting Autographs).  Sitting on the fence (like a "beat reporter") will only make Rast "fascinated" with Walther, and he will be just another "Lutheran" who is not a Lutheran.

 Let me tell you, Dr. Rast, that when God strengthened my faith far beyond what I deserved, my hesitation about which kind of preacher I wanted vanished.  And so I'm sitting at the feet of Pieper, Walther, and... Luther.  You will know where to find me...  because I'm about to leave you.
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The next Part 4g begins Rast's "Conclusion".

Rast–Pt 4e: Justif./Walther- "Evangelicals?" or Enthusiasts

This post continues from Part 4d reviewing the 2001 essay "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" by Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.)
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- - - - - - - - - -  Evangelicals?  - - - - - - - - - - - 
On page 56, Rast gives the following perspective of one of Walther's worst antagonistic groups:
But even with all of the obvious evils of Rome, in America there is a greater threat than the papacy. Walther immediately turns to the American Evangelicals, i.e., the Methodists, whom he calls the "most bitter enemies of the doctrine of justification" and castigates them in no uncertain terms.
The confusing nature of this statement is that Rast calls the Methodists "American Evangelicals".  But that is not the name given to them by Walther.  Nowhere did either Walther or Pieper call Methodists "Evangelicals".   How could they?  In the quote of Walther immediately following, it reads thus:
Here one can clearly see that basically the Enthusiasts are as much like the papists as one egg is like another.
Walther called the Methodists "Enthusiasts".  So why does Rast here call them "Evangelicals"?  Rast had earlier in this essay used the term "Enthusiasts", but not here.  Is it because Rast thinks Walther's term is too harsh by today's standards?  Or does Rast perhaps think that today's Methodists have toned down their "enthusiasm"?  Ah, but Walther uses the term "Enthusiast", not "Evangelical", the same we find in the writings of Martin Luther.  And the extensive quote of Walther shows the bitterness of true Methodists against the doctrine of Justification...  one only has to read of both men and see that Luther and Walther understand "Enthusiasm" better than our modern theologians.  A search of my blog here gives more of Walther's sayings against "Enthusiasm".  And Franz Pieper elaborates even further about "Enthusiasts" and "enthusiasm" in dozens of places in his Christian Dogmatics books.

==>> Dr. Rast:  Don't you agree that it is a great irony that the General Editor for the "New Series" of Luther's Works teaches at Methodist theological seminary?

But Rast does a credible job by giving the following summary of Walther (on page 57):
Why are both the Romanists and the Methodists without comfort? Because they have traded the objective Gospel for subjective experience–something human to add to the grace of God.
Prof. Rast should now go to Dr. Christopher Boyd Brown, General Editor of Luther's Works – New SeriesProfessor of Church History at Boston University (Methodist / Enthusiasts), and explain to him that he teaches among those who fight against the true Doctrine of Justification, those who fight against the central doctrine of Christianity.... and that Dr. Brown cannot possibly teach true Church History in that institution... don't you agree, Dr. Rast?  Don't you agree that CPH (managing editor Dr. Benjamin Mayes) should chastise Dr. Brown instead of praising him?  Maybe you would agree that Dr. Brown has a poor understanding of Martin Luther?... just as poor of an understanding as the editors of the "Old Series" of Luther's Works?  Maybe you should correct Dr. Benjamin Mayes who claims the "truth" when he said that Luther was not "the lone hero of the Reformation", ... or is Luther just another "fascinating" character in the Reformation to you, Dr. Rast?
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Now Rast reaches the heart of his essay (on page 57) as he brings Walther's testimony against American Lutheran teachers who have adopted this "Evangelicalism", oops, I mean "Enthusiasm" which robs the poor sinner of the comfort of forgiveness brought by the objective Word of the Gospel.  "Enthusiasm" wants the poor sinner to turn to his own "feelings".  Now since Rast can freely quote from an out-of-print CPH book, so can I.  Here is Walther (on page 57):
Alas! also in the Lutheran Church there often are false teachings and false beliefs about absolution, in that absolution is all too often made to depend on repentance and is given no credence if the repentance is not complete. While the pope and the Enthusiasts condemn our pure doctrine about this, man in general does not want to stake his salvation on something outside of but only within himself. 
Does the reader see why Walther must be called "The American Luther"?  It is because "American Lutheranism" was not Lutheran and needed "The American Luther" to establish the true Lutheran Church in America... and it came to be known as the "Missouri Synod" and later the "Synodical Conference".  Now, for the first time in America, the teaching of Absolution was grounded in the Lutheran Doctrine of Justification – Objective and Universal.  Rast says on page 57:
The result [of enthusiasm, or synergism] is disastrous for the pure Lutheran confession. In the place of the objective declaration of the full remission of sins by the all-sufficient work of Christ, there is doubt and uncertainty. Those who make this catastrophic move have given up the right to call themselves Lutheran in any real sense.
Ah, Dr. Rast... hmmm, what about those teachers in today's LC-MS mentioned above in Part 4c who began this very same "catastrophic move" – Th. Graebner, Walter A. Maier Jr., David Scaer, Kurt Marquart, and yes, even Robert Preus?  How did their actions against the pure teaching of Objective Justification, a teaching that gives the poor sinner what he needs from God, not be catastrophic?
Rast presents a quote from Walther commenting on this catastrophe within the "General Synod", a forerunner of today's ELCA (on page 57).  Walther's point should make all true Lutherans shudder:
...it [the General Synod, old ELCA] beguiles many with [its] Lutheran name. Many of its members indeed still want to be pure Lutherans; but that is precisely the most frightful abomination, when these now, out of miserable fear of man, do not bear a faithful witness within their Synod.
"a miserable fear of man"... hmmm, a frightening term for these Lutherans in an erring fellowship... but who are the erring fellowships today?  Didn't Rast say that there are "tangles" in today's LC-MS?  Didn't Rast say  in another essay that
"It is certain that with Pieper’s passing, things changed in Missouri."
Isn't Rast admitting that at least some form of "faithful witness" is needed in his own LC-MS today?  Shouldn't somebody in today's LC-MS step away from the "miserable fear of man" and testify to the truth?  Dr. Rast, isn't Walther speaking to you, the President of Concordia Theological Seminary-Fort Wayne?
At the top of page 58, Rast calls out a wonderful plea:
Would that we would have Lutheran leaders who would speak as clearly today!
Dear God!  Dr. Rast, again, you are the President of Concordia Theological Seminary... what higher leader is there in your LC-MS than you?  Should you not be filling that role now?...  God has given you such a position to further the true Gospel...  use it!!
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The next Part 4f covers the "Pietists".

Rast–Pt 4d: Justif./Walther- Teachers, Philosophy, Fascinating

This post continues from Part 4c reviewing the 2001 essay "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" by Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr.  (Table of Contents in Part 1.)
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 - - - - - - - - - - -   Teachers?;  Philosophy?   - - - - - - - - - - - - 
On page 55, Rast continues to pour out his lamentations and corresponding quotes from Walther:

Walther then turns to the question of why the Lutheran church has lost this doctrine. The answer is simplethe teachers have largely lost this doctrine. I quote at some length, because Walther here describes our contemporary situation, even within the Missouri Synod:
One part of them still embraces vulgar rationalism and the Pelagian so-called supernaturalism. Another part preaches a Christianity modified by many assumption of recent philosophy.... A third part has drunk from the intoxicating goblet of the contemporary spirit of unionism (Unionsgeist) and, inebriated by it, this part considers purity of doctrine unimportant and constitutes true Christianity [1] in a love that is not zealous for the truth, even indifferent to it, and [2] in external cooperative projects for the extension of God's kingdom.... A fourth part seeks salvation in enthusiastic stimulation of feelings through all sorts of new regulations that downplay the means of grace instituted by God. A fifth part consists of those who have indeed recognized the ungodly nature of union (der Union), but now, over against the Reformed, lay the main stress–instead of on the pure doctrine of justification–on outward churchianity.
Well done, Dr. Rast, to have quoted Walther so extensively.  Did you know that your quote from Walther is from the same section that I used against CPH's warning letter to me... you know, Walther's essay that is no longer available from CPH?

Walther above speaks of "a Christianity modified by many assumptions of recent philosophy".  It seems I have heard of this effect of philosophy on Christianity before... Oh yes, it was by Rev. Martin Noland in his essay "honoring" Walther in CTQ.  Noland "honored" Walther by giving Christianity the great wisdom "suggested by American [and Jewish] philosopher Alvin Goldman".  Indeed, Dr. Rast, the teachers have largely lost this doctrine.  Dr. Rast, the "answer is simple"!  Return to Walther's Doctrine of Justification!  Too simplistic?

 - - - - - - - - - - - - -   Fascinating?  - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
On page 56, Rast uses a revealing word to describe his reaction to Walther's true Historical Theology of Germany and America:
The last part of [Walther's essay]... is fascinating, for here Walther ... offers a running commentary on the state of the Lutheran church both in Germany and in America.
Rast finds Walther "fascinating"...
  • "Fascinating"?  Rast has a Ph.D. degree from Vanderbilt University, so why is Walther fascinating to such a highly trained, educated theologian and church historian as Rast?  Maybe Walther is just one "fascinating" theologian among many "fascinating" theologians? Surely Muhlenberg and Schmucker had some "fascinating" aspects.   
  • "Fascinating"?  Another "fascinating" Lutheran theologian was Joseph A. Seiss who was "Confessing and Conserving the Faith" with his "pyramidology", "dispensationalism", "millenialism" and other teachings that "fascinated" the founder of Jehovah's Witnesses.  Since Rast says that Joseph Seiss was "confessing and conserving the faith", maybe Seiss too was a "confessional Lutheran"?
  • "Fascinating"?  Was Walther really so "fascinating"?  Then why didn't Hermann Sasse, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and most of Germany's theologians listen to him if he was so "fascinating"?
  • "Fascinating"?  Maybe today's LC-MS also finds Martin Luther "fascinating"?  Surely Dr. Christopher Boyd Brown of Boston University School of Theology (Methodist), the general editor of the "New Series" of Luther's Works, also finds Luther "fascinating"?
  • "Fascinating"?  Maybe I should call Prof. Lawrence Rast Jr. a "fascinating" theologian and church historian?
  • "Fascinating"?  ==>>
Walther did not write his commentary to be "fascinating", he wrote it so that others might believe and be strengthened in their Christian faith.
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The next Part 4e covers a discussion of "Evangelicals" and Enthusiasts.

Rast–Pt 4c: Justif./Walther- Why lost? Trained clergy?

This post continues from Part 4b in a series (Table of Contents in Part 1) that reviews several essays of Prof. Lawrence A. Rast Jr., president of Concordia Theological Seminary in Fort Wayne, Indiana (CTS-FW).  Part 4 is a review of the essay "The Doctrine of Justification in American Lutheranism" from a series of essays published in the book A Justification Odyssey (2001) – Congress on the Lutheran Confessions (Luther Academy).  Part 4c continues the section dealing with C.F.W. Walther.
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To forewarn the reader, my narrative will switch at times between commenting on Prof. Rast and directing my comments to Prof. Rast.  Also my review may be a bit confusing as to whether I am quoting Prof. Rast or Walther.  To clarify this, I am making the name of the quoted person bold in the sentence preceding each quote.

- - - - - - - - - - - -   Why lost?   - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 
Page 54, Rast on Walther:
Walther not only positively demonstrates confessional Lutheranism's thinking on the doctrine, but also the errors of three groups: the Romanists, the Calvinists, and the Enthusiasts. The second part is a brief treatment of the question "Why has the Lutheran Church largely lost the doctrine of justification?" Walther's answer here is simple: the teachers have lost it, therefore those they teach cannot know the truth. In other words, theological educators have failed to teach pastors the true nature of the doctrine of justification, and therefore these pastors are necessarily failing to teach the flocks entrusted to them the scriptural truth regarding the justification of the sinner before God. The result? Lutherans that are not Lutherans!
I would give Rast high marks on this whole section — "the teachers have lost it"; "Lutherans that are not Lutherans!" – Wow!  That is quite well said!  I will let the reader consider the significance of these statements.  It is a shame that one cannot purchase these books of Walther's essays from CPH any longer, especially because Walther's great LDJ essay that Rast quotes is in these books.

Page 54, Prof. Rast on Walther:
Finally, he poses the question "How can we recover the doctrine of justification?" His burden is to show how the doctrine of justification–which in his mind is a very simple doctrine to articulate in the abstract, but very difficult to make concrete–forms the heart of the biblical, Lutheran confession. All articles are intimately connected with the central article. Therefore, error in the doctrine of justification will affect all the other articles, and the converse is true as well. 
This last sentence strikes me when I contrast it to Scaer's statement that "[Franz] Pieper regarded justification as a subsidiary article of Christology".  Are Scaer & Rast implying that Pieper's doctrine was different than Walther's?

- - - - - - - - -   Heart of Walther  - - - - - - - - - - 
On page 54, Rast works to get at the heart of Walther:
The heart of justification for Walther, is Christ extra nos–Christ outside of us; Christ for us. He consistently believed, taught, preached, and confessed that God has, for Christ's sake, forgiven the whole world of all its sin. Now Christ applies that forgiveness by coming to us through the external Word and in Holy Baptism, who comes to us graciously in Word and Sacrament.
Rast does a good job of summarizing Walther here for he touched on the 2 major aspects of Walther's teaching:
  • the Objective nature of Justification – "extra nos", "Christ outside of us", and "the "external Word"
  • the Universal nature of Justification – "the whole world of all its sin"
-- That's it!... Dr. Rast, hang onto that central teaching of Justification and all your spiritual troubles go away... all the poisons in your Synod would be neutralized... as Luther said to Regensburg 1541.  —  But there is that "beat reporter" nature of Rast in the beginning phrase – he says "the heart of justification for Walther".  But is Rast making this teaching his own teaching?  It sort of seems so... at least in his summary of Walther's teaching... MAY IT BE SO!

- - - - - - - - - - - -   Trained clergy?  Catechization? - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Rast now quotes Walther on the great difficulty in teaching Christianity (on pg 55)
"It is very difficult to teach that we become righteous without works, through faith alone, and at the same time teach that we are to do good works. If you don't have faithful and wise servants of Christ, stewards of the mysteries of God, who know how to dispense the Word of truth correctly, then you will soon see faith and works being confused."[47]
At this point Rast inserts his own lamentation on this quote (footnote [47], pgs 55-56).  Does he capture Walther's point that "faithful and wise" servants are needed?  Does he lament the difficulty in teaching the article of Justification?
   [47]. One is tempted at this point to think of the how the doctrine of justification will fare in the hands of an untrained clergy, should our Synod go forward with its flawed proposal for a new "order" of ministry, variously called "Ordained Deacon," "Assistant Pastor," "Assisting Pastor," and "Auxiliary Pastor." The lack or pared down educational requirements for this office will leave us with pastors who are not "apt to teach" the doctrine of justification clearly. The results for the church will certainly be disastrous as the Arminian tendencies, already obvious in the Missouri Synod, come to dominate its life all the more-largely due to the lack of able catechists.
So Prof. Rast does not lament the difficulty in teaching the central article of Justification, but rather the "lack or pared down educational requirements for this office" (i.e. the Office of the Ministry) in the LC-MS.  He implies that in his LC-MS, the "trained clergy", not the "untrained clergy", are receiving the proper "education" that is not lacking or "pared down" so that they are "'apt to teach' the doctrine of justification clearly".  But Dr. Rast, I wonder – was the training of the clergy proper to make them "able catechists" when:
  • Professor Theodore Graebner said the ALC taught Objective Justification the same as the old Missouri (when it did not)?
  • Professor Walther A. Maier Jr.(WAM Jr.) taught against Objective Justification?
  • Professor Robert Preus talked Prof. Harold Buls out of making formal charges of heresy against Prof. Walter A. Maier Jr.'s false teaching? (anecdotal account here)
  • Professor David Scaer apparently did not bring charges against WAM Jr. as Buls wanted to? (did he want to?)
  • Professor Kurt Marquart put conditions on the Doctrine of  Justification?... and said in essay  "Augsburg Revisited" from the same A Justification Odyssey book that "the terms universal or general ... are much to be preferred... [to] the words "objective" and "subjective."  Marquart was confused on Walther's use of the word "Objective", a word that is quite plain even to most untrained people.
Dr. Rast, how can your "educational requirements" make your clergy "apt to teach" Justification?  Would you say that any of the above teachers were "untrained"?  How can the clergy avoid the catastrophe of "Arminian tendencies" which fight against Objective Justification?  Should you not be more concerned about the "good seed"?... that the clergy be first and foremost taught that Justification is both Objective (sola) and Universal (universalis), and that thereby the Gospel purely preached will provide the power to spiritually do good works, i.e. "keep the horse in front of the cart"?  That is what Luther did at Regensburg 1541.  And Luther said the pure Gospel would eliminate all other poisons, including those causing your "tangles" (or "divisions").  Now Rast might counter that Luther and Walther also wanted well trained clergy, but they started with the "good seed" first, not as an after-thought.  They would not recommend students get their "educational requirements" at Harvard, University of Chicago, Princeton, Boston University, Oxford, or Vanderbilt, because there is no "good seed" in these institutions.  Dr. Rast!... do you not "strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel"? (Matt. 23:24)
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But let us proceed...  continuing Rast's essay on Walther and the Doctrine of Justification – in America – in the next Part 4d covering Teachers, Philosophy, and what is Fascinating to Prof. Rast.