Wednesday, March 7, 2007

Proposal to Delay the Gospel until 2009

My unworthy response to “The Resolution to Wait for 2009 Social Statement” put forward by the Lutheran Churches of the Common Confession. See text at

If this [resolution] could be amended to suspend Pr. Schmeling's removal from roster until after the 2009 Churchwide Assembly, you may get broad cooperation. It would remove urgency created by Schmeling's case.

The final "whereas" should also be re-written. The Synod's counsel prosecuting Pr. Schmeling could have presented "evidence supporting the current guidelines" had they deemed it useful to their case.

Counsel for Pr. Schmeling presented evidence and expert theological testimony against the current guidelines. So the prosecution had opportunity to call counter witnesses. Why would they choose not to?

Without such modification, this proposed memorial smacks of personal attack against Pr. Schmeling and the congregation of St. John's Lutheran Church. This is not about abstract principle, godly or otherwise. It is about real persons and real congregations who are seeking to live out the gospel.

To say that these people should be swept aside because this addressing conflict is "divisive and distracting" is an affront to the gospel.

Did not our Lord instruct us to leave our offering at the altar until we first go reconcile ourselves with our brother? You hypocrites who want to brush your brother aside so you can go play church!

Do you not understand that with brushing aside Pastor Brad you are driving out thousands of baptized believers and placing stumbling blocks before millions? How many souls are you willing to deprive of the gospel so that you can feel secure in your legalistic reading of scripture?

I speak only as a layperson with no authority in the church. What do I know of the gospel?

Tell me you experts in the confessions and scripture. What shall I say to my Lord when he says, “I was hungry, but you sent me away, saying, ‘The bible clearly says homosexuals will not inherit the kingdom’”?

This “continuing conflict” is no less than a first-order question of the gospel.

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