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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Pilate & Piepkorn: Truth? Inerrancy?: Crime against God's majesty (Part 1)

     Earlier in Part 3 of my series on "Dr. F. Pieper as Theologian", Ludwig Fuerbringer reported that Dr. Franz Pieper
“would not be tired of reproaching modern theology, ... with their apostasy from this supreme principle of theology, from the divinely inspired and therefore inerrant Scripture”.
Then in the last installment, Part 5, we heard Pieper's ultimate charge against those who deny the full divinity of the Holy Scripture, a charge of a
crime against the divine majesty.  
Of the approximate 40 theologians who publicly, (Faithful, p. 41), repeatedly (1972 CTM “Editorial: A Declaration of Protest and Confession”) protested their right for a “freedom” to use the “historical critical method” to interpret (and overturn) Holy Scriptures, there are many who deserve “honorable mention”.  But there is particularly one who is still greatly honored in today's LC-MS, among its prominent teachers.  That “award” clearly goes to…
Arthur Carl Piepkorn.

You can read about it in their books. Prof. Charles Arand, in his 1995 book Testing the Boundaries pp. 208-232, repeatedly reports on Piepkorn's teachings yet never once defends against them.  He then (p. 265) strongly implies that, along with ELCA theologians, the LC-MS should “promote an evangelical-catholicism, traceable back to Piepkorn, as our best hope for the future.”  That J. A. O. Preus II encouraged this book (p. 11) is quite saddening.

You can hear about it in their 2010 video lectures (Prof. Erik Herrmann, 14:00 - 24:04: “05b. ‘A Very Different Understanding of What Lutheran Is’: 1969 Part 2).  Herrmann essentially exonerates Piepkorn from the errors of the other faculty members.

I have come across no teacher in the LC-MS since 1974 who has publicly reprimanded the teaching of... Arthur Carl Piepkorn.

So I, BackToLuther, as a son of the LC-MS who lost his Christian faith in large part because of the theology behind the “historical critical method”, behind Piepkorn's so-called “confessionalism” (but by God's grace was brought back to the faith), will do so now:
“What Is Truth?”
Pontius Pilate
Arthur Carl Piepkorn, LC–MS theologian
John 18:38

Prof. Arthur Carl Piepkorn’s article title is a question and it was meant in exactly the same way that Pontius Pilate meant his question.  Neither of them was asking the question – they meant it as a rhetorical question, or as Wikipedia explains it:
“A figure of speech in the form of a question that is asked to make a point rather than to elicit an answer.”
There are no scholarly arguments that could convince me otherwise. Piepkorn's real intent, as boldly communicated in just the title of his CTM essay above, is to question the truth of the Holy Scriptures.  This is confirmed in Piepkorn's “I Believe” “confession” in the 1972 Concordia Seminary faculty “majority” publication Faithful to Our Calling, Faithful to Our Lord, Part II, pp. 112-113, where he essentially affirms what the old Iowa Synod taught as “Open Questions”. And I, a son of the LC-MS, fell from my Christian faith over this... apostasy.

This blog grew to be too long for one post, and so it will be continued in the next Part 2. (Part 3, Part 4)

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