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Sunday, June 24, 2018

4-Briggs Heresy, then Concordia's Heresy

[2019-02-11: add link to Rast 2016 CTQ essay; 2018-08-05: added link to 2nd Robt. Preus Logia article (1993); added link to 4 YouTube videos/audios below; 2018-07-19: updated link; 2018-07-02: additional reference noted in red below]
      This concludes from Part 3 (Table of Contents in Part 1), a series concerning Dr. Franz Pieper's review and comments on the Great American Heresy Trial, the Briggs Heresy Trial of 1893
      As I translated Pieper's comments on the 1893 Presbyterian Trial, I could not help but wonder about the similarities, and differences, with the events that 80 years later led to the so-called “Exodus from Concordia” or the 1974 “Walkout” of Concordia Seminary-St. Louis.  Synod President J.A.O. Preus ordered a Fact Finding Committee to investigate doctrinal aberrations.  According to reports, (p. 60) the October 1, 1970, issue of the St. Louis Globe-Democrat characterized the inquiry as a heresy trial.  One can get a fair overview of this event by reading the 1977 account of it by the Concordia Seminary Board of Control =====>> HERE <<.  The following collage of images taken from this book mimics the same kind of mental disorder that our defrocked Presbyterian Dr. Briggs suffered from (more images here) [2018-08-05: YouTube: (1) "Seminex Exile newsreel" - student president (now Rev.) Gerald Miller, who left ELCA in 2011 (3:03) — (2) "Conflict at Concordia KTVI" (29:37) — (3) Frakes' Seminex documentary promo (3:25); (4) 2014 CTS-FW "Seminex Convocation"- David Scaer, Lawrence Rast Jr. (1:04:04); (5) Rast's 2016 CTQ essay "Forty Years after Seminex"]:

These images would just be like so many other images of the 1960s and 1970s except these occurred at the same Concordia Seminary that was founded by C.F.W. Walther, where Prof. Franz Pieper taught for nearly 53 years, where Luther's Reformation was renewed again... in America.  Every history that I have read of the theological situation surrounding the above event in some way or another did not fully address the multiplicity and magnitude of heresies involved because almost all historians were to a certain degree fooled by the deceptiveness of the perpetrators, whether it be Herman Otten, or E. Clifford Nelson, or Kurt Marquart, or David P. Scaer, or even... Robert Preus (1992 Logia vol. 1, # 1, p. 67-71 [TW]; [2018-08-05: 1993 Logia vol. 2, # 4, p. 55-58 [TW]]) and  J. A. O. Preus. [2018-07-19: updated JAOP link2018-07-02: see also Tom Baker's Watershed at the Rivergate].
And even the “final word” of Paul A. Zimmerman, president of the Fact Finding Committee, is weak at times as he said (A Seminary in Crisis, p. 48):
“…while a significant number of faculty members gave no evidence of any departure from the Synod’s doctrinal position, these same professors did not object to others using the new hermeneutic and using the historical-critical method. They believed that some degree of latitude should be allowed in such matters.”
One must ask how Zimmerman could make the former assertion while admitting the latter statement.
I wonder that Walther Cronkite gave the best synopsis on the CBS Evening News (Exodusp. 128) since he was “more interested in the fact that Lutheran seminarians would be studying at a Jesuit [Roman Catholic] seminary”.  As Mr. Cronkite would say:

      No, no, we have not yet heard Dr. Franz Pieper's final word of Christian judgment on those who either deny or, what amounts to the same, question the Inspiration of Holy Scripture.  Especially this applies to theologians who do not wholeheartedly defend all aspects of the Inspiration of Holy Scripture. We will come to Pieper's “Final Word” as we return again to Prof. Ludwig Fuerbringer's series “Dr. F. Pieper as Theologian”, Part 5Later I will single out one theologian among the 40+ theologians removed from Concordia Seminary who is most deserving of Pieper's sarcastic epitaph of “8th Wonder of the World”.

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