- there are 3 more sermon books of Walther still unpublished in English, and
- 2 of these have long ago been translated by Pastor Heck and yet unpublished by CPH
|Year of Grace|
by C.F.W. Walther
Tr. by Pr. Donald Heck
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
"May you benefit from the study of these sermons [of Walther] as certainly the translator benefited." – Rev. Donald E. Heck
- You say in your "Foreword": "In these sermons one will read the author of The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel..." (from 1929). Now since that English translation has been available for over 80 years, and made Walther known to his "English" descendants in the LC-MS – that Walther was truly the spiritual father of the Missouri Synod, why is it that none of Walther's many sermon books in German were translated and published like his "The Proper Distinction..." during those same 80 years?
- I wonder Dr. Heck, did your father (Rev. Donald E. Heck (1916–1991) ever openly question why his Concordia Publishing House never published any of his translations of Walther (or Stoeckhardt) during his lifetime?
- You stated in your "Foreword":
- "While the sermonic style of Walther will seem quite different from the typical sermon of today, the theological content of his sermons will remain relevant, since Scripture always remains relevant." – Dr. Joel Heck
- You said a mouthful in that statement! Are you saying the "typical sermons of today" are not Scriptural? Are there none today who preach Scriptural sermons? And if so, should not all of Walther's sermon books have long ago been translated and republished by CPH so the laypeople could have Scriptural sermons to read?
- I expected to maybe see that you would make an effort to have your father's fine translations published... maybe like Pastor Joel Baseley has done (Mark V Publications) with several other sermon books by Walther. But it seems you are kept busy publicizing the work of C.S. Lewis. Would you say that C.S. Lewis taught a "mere Christianity" like Walther does in these sermons? (I could ask many more pointed questions regarding the differences between C.S. Lewis's Christianity and Walther's Christianity...)
- And so I put it to you, Dr. Joel Heck, that if you request that I stop offering this free publication of your father's work, I will comply... but only if you specifically request this. Otherwise, I think I will be following your father's wishes by making his love for Walther's sermons known to the world. — And if you should request that I stop making your father's work freely available, I might just tackle the job of making my own translation available to replace his. I do not have the native German language abilities like your father and mother, but it would not be too difficult today with all the free translation tools available online....
Now I present to the world the sermons of the greatest Christian teacher since the Reformation century, from The American Luther, in this sermon book Year of Grace, Walther's Gnadenjahr. And if the reader should find these sermons beneficial for their Christian faith, then I would recommend that they immediately purchase the recent publications by Concordia Publishing House of Walther's Gospel Sermons, Volume 1 and Volume 2. Then also the reader will want to purchase Pastor Baseley's translations of three other sermon books of Walther.
In the next Part 2 of this blog series, I will publish the balance of this book – Part 2... and add further comments.