Author Archive -- Pastor Clint Poppe

Why the ACELC?

February 20th, 2014 27 comments

It has been several years now since the formation of the Association of Confessing Evangelical Lutheran Congregations (ACELC). For a detailed account of the formation of the ACELC please see the essay, “ Barking Dogs and a Three-Legged Hog.” Since that time (2010) we now have 24 congregational members (literally from coast to coast), 74 associate members, and 204 signers to our Fraternal Admonition. When our Fraternal Admonition was mailed to every congregation in the LCMS, some questioned our motives, some cried foul, some saw the letter as a political maneuver, and some actually took the time to read our   More…

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A Lutheran Response to the Duck Dynasty Uproar

December 23rd, 2013 42 comments

Soon, very soon, millions of people will hurry to their Christmas Tree to see what Santa or one of his helpers has brought.  As the paper flies and the ribbons and bows are either saved or discarded, Duck Dynasty will once again have a very good Christmas.  Duck Dynasty clothing of every shape, size, and design will be unwrapped.  People will be busy assembling and watering their Chia Beard Duck Dynasty figures; did you get all four?  Some will be drinking their Duck Dynasty wine, while they smoke a Duck Dynasty cigar, and their children run and play while wearing   More…

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Sasse speaks…today!

March 27th, 2013 2 comments

Many in the LCMS are familiar with the name Hermann Sasse. Sadly, many know the name but have not read anything by him.  Thanks to Concordia Publish House and many faithful translators like Norman Nagel, Ronald Feuerhahn, and Matthew Harrison, Herman Sasse speaks today; we would do well to listen. My first exposure to Sasse was in the little paperback “We Confess” volumes published by CPH in the mid 80’s (now available together as an anthology). Here we read of Sasse’s clear confession of Christ, Sacraments, and Church.  In the Translator’s Preface of Volume 1, Nagel writes, “Student, pastor, scholar,   More…

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The Holy Spirit puts round pegs in square holes — Not a good fit!

January 15th, 2013 101 comments

This article was originally published in LOGIA Forum 18:1 (Epiphany 2009).  It is just as timely today, especially given the recent discussions here at BJS. It is certainly not uncommon for strife to exist between pastor and people. Many factors can be involved, ranging from worship style and format to the number of times a particular shut-in member gets a home visit. Pastoral decisions regarding cohabitating couples seems to be a dangerous land mine these days. These problems are often great opportunities for communication to increase and reconciliation to flourish between the under-shepherd and the flock entrusted to him. God   More…

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Doctrine and Practice — Part 2 “Spiritual but not religious”

September 27th, 2012 30 comments

 For many years much of Lutheranism has suffered from a disconnect with regard to doctrine and practice and their relationship. A few years ago at a Circuit Winkel, a suggestion was made for a joint study of the then new CPH book, The Fire and the Staff (2004).  One of the pastors became visibly agitated; “Doctrine and practice have nothing to do with each other; why waste our time with a study like that?” What happens when doctrine and practice are separated?  Simply put, all kinds of naughtiness can and will creep into the church.  When practice alone is driving   More…

The Evangelical Lutheran Church- Doctrine and Practice (Part 1)

One of the first district pastors’ conferences that I ever attended, and certainly one that I will always remember, was in the late 80s in Omaha, Nebraska. There was much buzz about this specific conference because of the main presenter, Rev. David S. Luecke, and his recent book, Evangelical Style and Lutheran Substance (CPH 1988).  Lutheran Church Extension Fund had purchased and provided the book for everyone in attendance (along with George Barna’s Marketing the Church) and we were encouraged to read it before the conference. I must admit, at the time I didn’t fully grasp what all the fuss   More…

The Evangelical Lutheran Church — Understanding Purpose

The word “purpose” has become quite a money-making industry. Ever since Rick Warren’s blockbuster book The Purpose Driven Life: What On Earth Am I Here For? hit the shelves in the fall of 2002, the landscape of American Christianity has been driven by purpose.  Videos, music, workbooks, study guides, evangelism programs and more all promise to help you find your purpose. Not only can your life be purpose driven, but also your church, youth group, community, recovery, small group, and even chiropractic care (Eagle, Idaho-check it out!). This new fad is not really new; just a modern twist on an   More…

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The Evangelical Lutheran Church — True to Our Identity

April 22nd, 2012 12 comments

 It is not easy to be a Lutheran.  At times we seem to have no identity of our own.  While Roman Catholics see us as just another type of  Protestantism, Protestants look at us as watered down Romanists.  Lutheranism is a unique theological system with an identity all our own.  When we forget this basic premise, we always get ourselves into theological trouble.  When we fail to keep God’s theological tensions in balance, we not only lose our identity, we fall into error. The now sainted Dr. Kurt Marquart gives us helpful advice: It has become popular in the wake   More…

The Evangelical Lutheran Church — A No Guilt Zone.

March 30th, 2012 6 comments

This past week the University of Nebraska announced that a new men’s basketball coach had been hired. Tim Miles, formerly at Colorado State University, would replace the recently fired lovable looser, Doc Sadler.  With the NCAA basketball world deeply focused on the Sweet 16, Elite 8, and Final 4, the news barely caught the eye of anyone outside the two schools. On Saturday, March 24 the new coach was introduced and the questions soon became pointed.  How can an unproven coach from a mid-major school who posted a losing record over the last five seasons lead Nebraska to the Big   More…

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Steadfast LCMS — Lutheran by conviction.

March 12th, 2012 10 comments

Several years ago, on a mission trip to Haiti, I had an opportunity to spend some extra time with the now sainted Rev. Dr. Doris Jean Louis.  Many consider him to be the “father” of the Lutheran church in Haiti (the church there has been in great turmoil since his brutal murder in the earthquake aftermath).  We talked about many things during my visit including the massive rural flight which was adding to the unspeakable urban plight.  We talked about the importance of quality education and the hope that it brought to children of Haiti.  We talked about ways to   More…