When Lutheranism isn’t enough

A reader pointed out that a Lutheran congregation in Nebraska is hosting a “Beth Moore” simulcast. Beth Moore is a Christian evangelist and writer who was the next big thing a few years ago. Issues, Etc. had a great critique of her theology a few years ago. Fighting for the Faith also looked at her recently.

If you’re not familiar with her, here is a portion of a Presbyterian critique of one of her books. It ran in Modern Reformation four years ago:

Although she wants to be theological and Christ-centered, too much of Moore’s material is about her take on her experience with God. Her writing tends to be undisciplined and shallow. She is far too willing to gloss over uncomfortable theological implications in favor of feel-good stories and quick explanations. Knowing God comes through experience; most sin is the result of failing to believe and be delivered; repentance is rarely mentioned. Her bent toward mysticism permits her to circumvent traditional theological interpretations and indulge in explanations of her own design that are more reasonable and satisfying to her sensibilities.

Basically she says, don’t let theology and doctrine confuse you when you can figure it out with God for yourself in a way that works for you. Unfortunately, people who use her materials can’t help but absorb some of that reasoning. Even more troubling is that they think they’re doing Bible study when they are really getting a heavy dose of mysticism, storytelling, psychology, and prosperity gospel. In the introduction to Believing God, Moore shows her true, but mistaken, agenda when she says, “I know I’m going to make it to heaven because I’ve trusted Christ as my Savior, but I want to make it to my Canaan on the way. I want to finish my race in the Promised Land, not in the wilderness. You too? Then we have to cash in our fear and complacency and spend all we have on the only ticket out: BELIEF.”

So why would a Lutheran church have a simulcast of a non-Lutheran touting non-Lutheran doctrine? I don’t know. Here’s the announcement from Holy Savior in Lincoln:

Beth Moore Simulcast Event

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Kiss your insecurities good-by and discover the joy of living with confidence!

Join Beth Moore for a day that will transform and liberate you!

And they’re not the only LCMS church that’s doing this. Here’s another one in Trenton, Michigan.

Get this — the senior pastor at that parish is John Bush and he’s on the Board for Communication Services that oversees KFUO. You can’t make this stuff up!


When Lutheranism isn’t enough — 54 Comments

  1. @Helen #50

    Congratulations! You have earned admission into the “Her-mudgeons” club with your attitude towards “Bible Studies for women”. You obviously don’t accept the idea that many of these studies assume that the participants’ theological IQ is not very high. I suggest you also consider one of my patented flak jackets. You can check out the colors on the SP “Perspectives” string, #67.

    Johannes (Grumpy to the max)

  2. I’m honored!
    I noticed a “custom” offer, though.

    Burnt [up] Orange would be just the thing where I live. 🙂

  3. I just sent this link to our LCMS congregation’s “outreach leader” who thinks it’s a “God thing” that two people suggested Beth Moore’s “Bible study” on the book of James for the next women’s Bible study. I am looking forward to her response. I am thankful for this site’s search function which helped me find the article. This site has provided me with a good Lutheran education which has been lacking lately in my LCMS congregation.

  4. Some women in my LCMS church love Beth Moore. Before I signed up for one of her studies I thought I should check her out. Thanks for the warning. I really think these women are taken in by her style and are not being critical of her theology. Many have come from various Christian backgrounds and, although they have been through new members classes and attended our church for years, they do not seem to have absorbed Lutheran doctrine. There still seems go be a lot of decision theology and works righteousness going around. Sad.

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