Author Archive -- Steadfast Lutherans

Guest Article — The Supreme Court Non-Decision

October 11th, 2014 19 comments

By now just about everyone has heard that the Supreme Court of the United State has declined to hear the appeals of multiples cases where lower courts had ruled against states holding to the traditional understanding of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. I live and serve as a pastor in Oklahoma, one of the states whose people have been overruled by unelected judges. Now because a federal court has spoken and the Supreme Court will not hear the case even more states will have to abide by this judicial legislation. I know that there are   More…

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We need pastors not pansies — Guest Article by Vanessa Rasanen

September 30th, 2014 25 comments

The following was submitted by Vanessa Rasanen, who runs Bible, Beer, and Babies blog. I became a Christian nearly a decade ago, attending church regularly with my husband. Okay. Mostly regularly. We spent many of those years giving into the world’s priorities, skipping church whenever we were out of town or sick or woke up late or simply didn’t feel like it. And when my husband was gone for deployment or drill? Yeah. I hated going alone, so I often wouldn’t go. But that changed. Our move following flight school saw us settling our family in a new community and seeking membership at   More…

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Guest Article — Grace and the Corrupter

September 28th, 2014 1 comment

Posted by Rev. Edward A. Engelbrecht, Concordia Publishing House O you sons of men, return, And you their daughters, come. And abandon the ways of that Corrupter, And approach me. (Ode of Solomon 33:6–7) This beautiful plea for repentance from an early Syrian Christian is one that should resonate with us Lutherans. This late first or second century poem speaks the language of the ancient Near Eastern “Two Ways” tradition by contrasting the foolishness of the Corruptor with the wisdom of Grace, “the perfect Virgin” (cf. Proverbs 8:1–21 where King Solomon gives voice to wisdom’s appeal). Two ways—the binary contrast   More…

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Twice More to John 6: An Analysis of the Sacramental Interpretation

September 11th, 2014 40 comments

Twice More to John 6: An Analysis of the Sacramental Interpretation Rev. Philip Hale – St. Paul, Bancroft and St. John, Lyons NE   John 6 is a controversial touchstone because it is here that different understandings and methods of interpretation meet so concretely.  Both Charles Gieschen and David Scaer, from their essays in the January/April 2014 CTQ, have similar views of the text, though they argue in different ways [Gieschen, "Baptism and the Lord's Supper in the Gospel of John,'' 23-45; Scaer, "Once More to John 6,'' 47-62].  The result appears to be in line with Lutheran theology, but   More…

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The Church and the Single Mom — A guest post by Dcs. Ellie Corrow

August 20th, 2014 53 comments

When I was in college a couple of friends were brainstorming about where I could meet a nice, Christian man, since it was clear to them that I was single, 25, and committed to my faith. The face of one of them suddenly lit up as she exclaimed “I’ve got it! You should go to church, I’m sure there are lots of Christian men there!” She smiled at me, the satisfaction obvious in her face, and when I told her that I did go to church, every Sunday, she looked confused. She frowned slightly, and asked with a certain degree   More…

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Guest Article — Just what do you say when others experience crosses?

August 1st, 2014 10 comments

by Holly Scheer There are defining moments that stick with us, both of the good and bad variety. When things go well we can share our joy with others. When things go sour we can share our heartache.Sometimes it’s hard to know what to say when things are bad. Sometimes the words aren’t there. Sometimes you try to say something and it comes out wrong.  The feeling of causing additional pain to someone already suffering is terrible.What do you say when a situation defies easy platitudes? What do you say when there’s no quick comforting verse on the tip of   More…

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Building up the Body of Christ (by rebuilding the laity core) — Guest article by Gene White of the CLCC

March 20th, 2014 41 comments

 Hopefully the title clarifies a concern of many clergy and laity within Lutheranism over a trend of the last few decades. All those concerned can clearly see the need for reversal of the trend. Allow me to clarify what this title means from my personal interaction with clergy and laity over the past five years serving with CLCC. These observations are not representative of the so-called “missionals” as I have had no interaction with them in this area. Specifically, what is the problem and how do we proceed with a solution, or more correctly, a number of solutions? The problem   More…

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ACELC — We Need to Learn from History

March 15th, 2014 16 comments

On February 19, 1974, a little over 40 years ago, most of the faculty and students of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis took a short trip down the driveway leading to a small park. There they gathered in protest to a decision that was made by the board of regents of their institution. It was not a long trip, maybe a couple of hundred yards, nor did it really last all that long. Most will admit that the gesture was at best symbolic. The faculty and students believed that this was the only way that they could be heard by the   More…

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Who Really Gets Saved?

March 14th, 2014 63 comments

The following is written in response to an ELCA article in “The Lutheran” entitled “Who Gets Saved” which taught universalism.  You can find it here.  This article is written by Pastor Paul Fries of the Evangelical Lutheran Synod.  The original of this article can be found here. A recent article from another church’s official magazine implies that everyone in the world will go to Heaven, regardless of their beliefs. It is a sad state of affairs when a magazine representing a Christian church body allows this false teaching of universalism to be spread to its membership as a valid opinion   More…

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How to make it through church with children — Guest post by Holly Scheer

February 18th, 2014 11 comments

Sitting calmly in one spot, standing on cue, holding a hymnal without letting it become a projectile, going for communion without scaling the rail- do these sound like your goals for your little ones for church? How can an hour (give or take) seem so long sometimes? When your toddler just wants to run and every few seconds you are blocking the latest escape attempt the time crawls. When your preschooler won’t stop asking questions- loud ones, it’s easy to feel like every eye is on you. When I had one child, I traveled to church will a massive, well   More…

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Lutheran Schools and the Small Catechism — guest article by Andrew Strickland

January 27th, 2014 3 comments

Christmas shopping is always an exciting endeavor. By exciting I mean terrifyingly hectic. By terrifyingly hectic I mean I wish I had gotten it done much earlier. On one of those shopping adventures I ran into a former student. We talked for a short while before we both resumed our separate shopping quests. During the conversation I learned that the student did not remember much of what was learned in my classroom*, but the student did remember much of the lessons we had of the Small Catechism. That student mentioned that through all of the years at a Lutheran school   More…

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Poisonous perfection and the importance of forgiveness — Guest Article by Holly Scheer

January 15th, 2014 1 comment

How often when dealing with a particularly offensive transgression have you asked your child, “Why did you do that?” If they couldn’t answer in a satisfactory way, did it make you even more upset? I have had that happen to me. It feels like if we could just get that “why” answered we would understand where things went wrong and be able to prevent the problem from ever happening again. “First time obedience” is a phrase I see a lot of parents talk about. The idea being that you tell a child, once, and they obey. But the problem is   More…

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Augustana Ministerium

December 22nd, 2013 3 comments

[Please circulate the following far and wide; this need and so many other needs of hurting pastors and their families are so great, and we can only help meet those needs if ‘everyone’ hears about them.] To those who have supported and/or prayed for the Rev. Danny Chambers (and anybody else interested): First of all, Dan wants you to know that he is extremely grateful for your various expressions of loving concern.  Making ends meet on disability is impossible.  Things would be far worse financially without your great outpouring of selfless giving, not to mention the many visits, kind words   More…

Hot for Preacher — The issue of lust in the church.

December 20th, 2013 32 comments

Lust. To be honest, this seems to get a lot more attention as a man’s sin. Men – with their visual-driven minds – are warned against the danger of this sin repeatedly. And we know lust exists in the church. Perhaps you’ve seen the articles and blog posts urging women to dress modestly so as not to tempt their brothers in Christ. But today I’ll let you in on a secret. Women struggle with this sin, too. Even in the church, though perhaps not as you expect. Theocrush – the unofficial term to describe the attraction women develop for a   More…

Advent in the home — Guest article by Holly Scheer

December 5th, 2013 2 comments

Advent has begun again. It’s easy and tempting to treat Advent as a pre-Christmas but it’s so much more. Advent is waiting for the coming of Christ. It’s a time of remembrance and expectation. It’s exciting, all on it’s own. I’d like to share a little of how we try to bring the richness of the season to our children. If you celebrate Advent with your family I’d love you to share that, too. At the heart of any church season is our Lord and so the heart of our Advent is church attendance. Advent affords us extra services to   More…

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