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I was sitting in a Calvinist Baptist congregation about 20 years ago. When the Lord re-kindled my old Christian faith, I thought the whole world was Christian. But I knew that my strength was coming entirely from the Bible. And so, along with re-attending the worship services of my old LC-MS congregation, I also attended services of a "conservative" Baptist congregation (with an acquaintance). I knew this was a bit odd, but at least this conservative Baptist (GARBC) congregation held up the divine authority of Scripture... a very Lutheran doctrine.
But then while attending a Sunday evening Bible study at the Baptist church, a member was puzzled by this passage:
2 Peter 2:1 – But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction.This passage puzzled a member because it clearly says that the Lord bought also the "false prophets" and the "false teachers". So the member spoke up and asked the Baptist preacher about this point... and I listened intently. I listened because the week before he seemed to say something that Christ had paid the debt for everyone. But this week, he had brushed up on his readings of Calvin and tried to refute the clear teaching of this Bible passage. How I was stunned... so much for the "conservative" aspect of this Baptist group. I could not in good conscience continue to attend this church, for I knew that my only assurance of salvation was that Christ did pay the entire debt for everyone, including Judas.
But after leaving this Baptist assembly, I turned to the Lutherans around me and their teachers and.... well, this story is too long for this blog post. This whole blog is dedicated to what I found out.
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I have read in other places in the past where Pastor Cascione has defended the doctrine of Objective Justification. His defense of this doctrine is the strength of his forum LutherQuest.org.
But Pastor Cascione associates himself quite extensively with Pastor Herman Otten, editor of the newspaper Christian News.
==>> Pastor Cascione, you took quite a challenge from the Calvinist Baptist preacher when he called you a "Universalist". Do you not realize that Pastor Herman Otten stands in the same line as this "Reformed Baptist" preacher as he too would call this doctrine of yours dangerous because it invites the dreaded error of "universalism". Why did Otten not correct the dying WELS Pastor Mark Bartling when he began to doubt the doctrine of Universal Justification... in his dying days?
I tell you Pastor Cascione, that the Lutherans you speak about, those "Lutherans who reject objective justification", those "Lutheran" teachers that need to be corrected, are a very long line. Could you not admit that these "Lutheran" teachers are actually fighting against the Gospel rather than preaching it? How hard I looked in the materials for the new Walther Theological Seminary (that your congregation supports) to find direct evidence that it teaches the dreaded "UOJ" – (Universal, Objective Justification)... but to no avail! All the "Core Beliefs" are fine but virtually all the "conservative" splinter groups from the old Synodical Conference say the same thing. Where is the reference in the "Core Beliefs" to the Doctrine of Universal, Objective Justification, to the very doctrine that you so beautifully uphold in not only this debate against a Baptist preacher, but also the very doctrine you upheld against the suspended WELS pastor?
Can you not admit that you should be concentrating all your efforts to telling all Lutherans what the true Gospel is? Then you will truly be "Reclaiming Walther".