Daily Archives: 11 Nov 2017

When There’s No King…

In those days there was no king in Israel, and everyone did as he saw fit. (Jdg. 21:25)

There Are a Lot Of Perverted Men in ‘Evangelical’ Christianity- And Roy Moore is Just One of Them

Everyone needs to read this excruciating essay in the LA Times, which contains, among other bits, this grotesquery-

Prominent conservative Reformed theologian Doug Wilson has a documented history of mishandling sexual abuse cases within his congregation. Nevertheless, he continues to be promoted by evangelical leaders such as John Piper, whose Desiring God site still publishes Wilson’s work. When a 13-year-old girl in Wilson’s congregation was sexually abused, Wilson argued that she and her abuser were in a parent-sanctioned courtship, and that this was a mitigating factor.

There’s no shortage of such stories. A Presbyterian Church in America, or PCA, pastor attempted to discipline a woman who warned home-school parents of the convicted sex offender in his congregation. (The sex offender had gone online to solicit a 14-year-old girl for sex.) Another PCA church allowed that same convicted sex offender to give the invocation at a home-school graduation ceremony. He wasn’t perceived as an attempted child rapist, and he was “repentant.”

And

The allegations against Roy Moore are merely a symptom of a larger problem. It’s not a Southern problem or an Alabama problem. It’s a Christian fundamentalist problem. Billy Graham’s grandson, Boz Tchividjian, who leads the organization GRACE (Godly Response to Abuse in a Christian Environment), believes that the sexual abuse problem in Protestant communities is on par with that in the Catholic Church.

The evangelical world is overdue for a reckoning. Women raised in evangelicalism and fundamentalism have for years discussed the normalization of child sexual abuse. We’ve told our stories on social media and on our blogs and various online platforms, but until the Roy Moore story broke, mainstream American society barely paid attention. Everyone assumed this was an isolated, fringe issue. It isn’t.

Off with you now, read it all.  And repent if you are one of the monsters like Moore cowering behind religion to feel safe as a sexual predator.

Christmas Is Coming…

And I want this shirt (the guy version, of course, not the lady version)

15 Years Ago, Here

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The storms hit after dark and we didn’t know the full extent until the next morning.  Power was our for almost 4 days and several lives were lost.  Those who lived through it are still affected by ominous weather when it comes.

It feels like it was just last week.

The Difference Between Patriotism and Nationalism

Patriotism is good. Nationalism is bad. It is the notion that we are better than anyone else and more deserving of everything. It is inherently anti-Christian and John 3:16 is the proof.

Good For You, Larry Hogan

The Truth About Roy Moore’s Pedophilia Is Coming Out

Martin Luther: Making Friends With The Ladies

When he [Martin Luther] was arguing with his wife he said, “You convince me of whatever you please. You have complete control. I concede to you the control of the household, provided my rights are preserved. Female government has never done any good. God made Adam master over all creatures, to rule over all living things, but when Eve persuaded him that he was lord even over God she spoiled everything. We have you women to thank for that! With tricks and cunning women deceive men, as I, too, have experienced.” – Table Talk.

Table Talk From Luther I Bet You Don’t Hear Around Your Own Table…

A Eunuch Regrets His Castration
(Between December 11, 1532, and January 2, 1533)

Master Forstemius said that a certain brother named Lawrence, a Waldensian minister, had had himself castrated in his youth and confessed that in his old age he regretted it, for he burned more with desire then than before.

Dr. Martin [Luther] replied, “Yes, indeed, eunuchs are more ardent than anybody else, for the passion doesn’t disappear but only the power. For my part I’d rather have two pair [of testicles] added than one pair cut off.”

Luther’s table conversation was colorful… to say the least.

The GOP Has a ‘Clam’ Problem…

There’s Still Time for You To take Advantage of the Sale

the-person-the-pew-commentary-series

From now till midnight on Sunday the 12th of November you can purchase the entire Commentary for $99.  Yup.  You read that right.  For the next 3 days you can acquire the entire Commentary in PDF format for less than half price.  How?  Just by clicking my PayPal Link.  It’s that simple.  It really is an exceptionally useful work for the layfolk in your life (even if it isn’t aimed at academics).  Here’s what a normal person thinks:

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This commentary set is written and designed exactly for the average person. The person who hasn’t spent years in book learning and writing papers. Rather, it’s for a person who feels a yearning to know a bit more so they can grow spiritually and intellectually in the faith. The average person might not know where to start on the journey. This set does it beautifully. – Doug Iverson

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Melanchthon and Bucer: On the Jews

Disputation zwischen christlichen und jüdischen Gelehrten. Holzschnitt von Johann von Armssheim (1483).

Die vorliegende Untersuchung über das Verhältnis der beiden Reformatoren Bucer und Melanchthon zum Judentum impliziert die Frage, ob ”aus dem oberdeutsch-schweizerischen Ansatz der Bundeseinheit und der Wittenberger Gegenüberstellung von Gesetz und Evangelium eine je spezifische Haltung gegenüber dem Judentum abzuleiten” sei. Detmers zeigt anhand von theologischen Texten und politischem Urteilen des Mitarbeiter Luthers in Wittenberg und des Reformators in Straßburg, dass theologisch-exegetische Erkenntnisse, die eine Toleranz gegenüber Juden hätten begründen können, in der Reformationszeit von antijüdischen Vorurteilen überlagert wurden.

Read Achim Detmers scintillating essay here.

Blind Adherence to the GOP

The church has always had more than its fair share of fake disciples. Those many ‘Evangelicals’ demonstrating blind adherence to the GOP are just exposing who they are quite plainly. They are not Christians. They are political opportunists.

Bucer, Luther, Zwingli, and Translation Bias: Or, Be Careful Who Does Your Translation For You

bucerThe situation between Bucer and Wittenberg was further exacerbated by Bucer’s translation of Luther’s Church Postil. Before the theological differences between Bucer and Wittenberg had become manifest, Luther himself had requested, through the Strassburg publisher Johann Herwagen, that Bucer should undertake the translation of Luther’s Postil into Latin, especially for the use of Evangelicals in France and Italy.

Bucer’s translation was issued from Herwagen’s press in six volumes from 1525–27. Luther was well pleased with the first three volumes of the translation. Bucer’s translation of the fourth volume, however, which appeared on July 27, 1526, provoked a new crisis.

luther4At this point in the work, having become inclined to Zwingli’s views on the Lord’s Supper, Bucer had hesitated about how to continue. He felt obligated to the publisher, Herwagen, to complete the translation, and in general he found Luther’s teaching excellent, but he did not want to spread Luther’s views on the Lord’s Supper to the churches of France and Italy.

Despite another warning from Zwingli, and even though he knew the Wittenbergers were already angry about his interpolations in Bugenhagen’s work, Bucer proceeded to make his own additions to Luther’s text, offering his own opinions on the Supper, though this time clearly distinguished from Luther’s view. Bucer’s insertions took three forms: a preface “to the brethren in Italy”; notes on some of Luther’s statements in the postil sermons; and a letter to the reader giving an exegesis of 1 Cor. 9:24–10:5 (in opposition to Luther’s sermon on the Epistle for Septuagesima Sunday).

zwingli_opitzThe preface was especially irritating to Luther. On one hand, Bucer spoke of Luther as a great man, and on the other hand, he tried to discredit Luther as fallible and to spread his own views on the Lord’s Supper instead.*

It’s always best to get a sympathetic translator.  Otherwise…

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*Open Letter to Johann Herwagen and Preface to the Fourth Volume of Martin Bucer’s Latin Translation of the Church Postil (LW Vol. 59, pp. 164–165).

Signs of the Times

On the Anniversary of Martin Bucer’s Birth

He’s a guy really worth celebrating. Here’s what Schaff says, briefly-

bucerThe chief reformer of Strassburg was Martin Bucer (1491–1552). He was a native of Alsace, a Dominican monk, and ordained to the priesthood. He received a deep impression from Luther at the disputation in Heidelberg, 1518; obtained papal dispensation from his monastic vows (1521); left the Roman Church; found refuge in the castle of Francis of Sickingen; married a nun, and accepted a call to Strassburg in 1523.

Here he labored as minister for twenty-five years, and had a hand in many important movements connected with the Reformation. He attended the colloquy at Marburg (1529); wrote, with Capito, the Confessio Tetrapolitana (1530); brought about an artificial and short-lived armistice between Luther and Zwingli by the Wittenberg Concordia (1536); connived, unfortunately, at the bigamy of Philip of Hesse; and took a leading part, with Melanchthon, in the unsuccessful reformation of Archbishop Herrmann of Cologne (1542). Serious political troubles, and his resistance to the semi-popish Interim, made his stay in Strassburg dangerous, and at last impossible.

bucer2Melanchthon in Wittenberg, Myconius in Basel, and Calvin in Geneva, offered him an asylum; but be accepted, with his younger colleague Fagius, a call of Cranmer to England (1549). He aided him in his reforms; was highly esteemed by the archbisbop and King Edward VI., and ended his labors as professor of theology in Cambridge. His bones were exhumed in the reign of Bloody Mary (1556), but his memory was honorably restored by Queen Elizabeth (1560).

Bucer figures largely in the history of his age as the third (next to Luther and Melanchthon) among the Reformers of Germany, as a learned theologian and diplomatist, and especially as a unionist and peacemaker between the Lutherans and Zwinglians. He forms also a connecting link between Germany and England, and exerted some influence in framing the Anglican standards of doctrine and worship. His motto was: “We believe in Christ, not in the church.”

bucer3He impressed his character upon the church of Strassburg, which occupied a middle ground between Wittenberg and Zuerich, and gave shelter to Calvin and the Reformed refugees of France. Strict Lutheranism triumphed for a period, but his irenical catholicity revived in the practical pietism of Spener, who was likewise an Alsacian. In recent times the Strassburg professors, under the lead of Dr. Reuss, mediated between the Protestant theology of Germany and that of France, in both languages, and furnished the best edition of the works of John Calvin.*

The best and most thorough biography of the good man was written by Greschat.  And of course you can read most of his stuff here, at PRDL.  Spend some time with Bucer today.  It’s his birthday!

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*History of the Christian church (Vol. 7, pp. 572–573).

Martin Bucer (1491–1551): Collected studies on his life, work, doctrine, and influence

This volume is of interest to all who care about important things.

This present volume aims to stimulate Bucer-research as it brings together a selection of the best of De Kroon’s and Van ’t Spijker’s articles some of which appear for the first time in English translation. In the first section Bucer is described as taking his independent stand in the patristic and scholastic tradition. The next five articles go into the close personal and theological relation between Bucer and John Calvin and make clear how much of Bucer works through in Calvin and Calvinism. Bucer’s efforts to bridge theological and ecclesiastical gaps brought him often in discussion with catholic as well as protestant theologians. How he dealt with this is the topic of the third section in this volume. The two following articles deal with his view on discipline and on the right of resistance. The next articles deal with Bucer’s doctrinal legacy and the last section focuses on sanctification as one of the most important characteristics of his theology.The most important issues of contemporary Bucer-research and the outlines of his theology are convincingly presented in this volume by known experts for this topic.

Luther: On Love of the Bible- Or, How a Theologian is Made

Once when he was a young man he [Martin Luther] happened upon a Bible. In it he read by chance the story about Samuel’s mother in the Books of the Kings. The book pleased him immensely, and he thought that he would be happy if he could ever possess such a book. Shortly thereafter he bought a postil; it also pleased him greatly, for it contained more Gospels than it was customary to preach on in the course of a year.

When he became a monk he gave up all his books. Shortly before this he had bought a copy of the Corpus iuris and I do not know what else. He returned these to the bookseller. Besides Plautus and Vergil he took nothing with him into the monastery. There the monks gave him a Bible bound in red leather. He made himself so familiar with it that he knew what was on every page, and when some passage was mentioned he knew at once just where it was to be found.

“If I had kept at it,” he said, “I would have become exceedingly good at locating things in the Bible. At that time no other study pleased me so much as sacred literature. With great loathing I read physics, and my heart was aglow when the time came to return to the Bible. I made use of the glossa ordinaria. I despised Lyra, although I recognized later on that he had a contribution to make to history. I read the Bible diligently. Sometimes one important statement occupied all my thoughts for a whole day. Such statements appeared especially in the weightier prophets, and (although I could not grasp their meaning) they have stuck in my memory to this day. Such is the assertion in Ezekiel, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked,’ etc. [Ezek. 33:11].”  [Luther’s Table Talk].

And that, good reader, is how a theologian is made. If your theology is empty and soulless (or Emergent and Seeker Sensitive) or your Pastor’s preaching more fluff than substance (or cute stories than the development of exegetical themes), the reason lies in unfamiliarity from and disinterest in the Bible.

Luther was the theologian he was (and the same can be said of Calvin and Zwingli, Oecolampadius and Melancthon, Bullinger and Bucer) because he (and they too) was (were) biblical scholar(s) in the truest sense of the phrase.

Veterans Day