Portrait of a “Lutheran” Liberal

This was submitted by a friend of mine ..

 

These days, the Lutheran Witness is very much worth reading: It’s a much better, much more substantial publication than it was a few years ago. So tonight I’m reading the May issue’s letters section this evening and I run across one of a couple of letters that hated the March issue. One of them;’s not online, but here’s the other one:

The March 2013 number of The Lutheran Witness is one of the most troubling I have ever read. It is filled with innuendo, false claims, defamation of fellow Lutherans and other Christians. Believe me, the reader of The Lutheran Witness in our homes is not as religiously ignorant as you may think; many of them, and myself, know where this unChrist-like approach is coming from. You will only be able to go so far with your “truths.”

Rev. Richard W. Patt (retired)
Wauwatosa, Wisc.

http://witness.lcms.org/pages/wPagex.asp?ContentID=1346&IssueID=77

This is in response to this issue.

I wondered: Where’s this guy coming from? So I Googled his name and ran across the following letter he wrote to the Milwaukee Sentinel:

Photos celebrated joy of religion

Thank you for the series of pictures in the May 23 Journal Sentinel that record the celebration of the completion of a new Torah scroll in a sector of Milwaukee’s Jewish community.

The main photograph depicting the two rabbis with a young boy looking on at the left of the picture is a classic. The photograph of two men embracing Torahs recalled, for me, the words from the biblical book of Psalms that both Judaic and Christian traditions recite: “Oh, how I love your Law (Torah), my God! I meditate on it all day long” (Chapter 119, verse 97).

And the third photograph, depicting Jewish men dancing along N. Marietta Ave., was a summary of the joy that our religions bring us.

Rev. Richard W. Patt
Retired Lutheran pastor
Wauwatosa

http://www.jsonline.com/news/opinion/95151119.html

How revealing. “The joy that our religions bring us.” Ah, yes. What does truth matter? All that matters is that “our religions” (whatever they are) “bring us.” Why, oh why, must we speak of distinctive doctrines that get in the way of us all coming together for one big kum-bay-yah? Surely those who do so are the true enemy.

Put the two letters together and I think we’ve got a nice example of where many such people are coming from.

About Norm Fisher

Norm was raised in the UCC in Connecticut, and like many fell away from the church after high school. With this background he saw it primarily as a service organization. On the miracle of his first child he came back to the church. On moving to Texas a few years later he found a home in Lutheranism when he was invited to a confessional church a half-hour away by our new neighbors.

He is one of those people who found a like mind in computers while in Middle School and has been programming ever since. He's responsible for many websites, including the Book of Concord, LCMSsermons.com, and several other sites.

He has served the church in various positions, including financial secretary, sunday school teacher, elder, PTF board member, and choir member.

More of his work can be found at KNFA.net.

Comments

Portrait of a “Lutheran” Liberal — 109 Comments

  1. Nicholas :@Matthew Becker #48
    Your comments here have only confirmed everything that I said, and that you are not, in fact, a Christian. You have asserted errors and contradictions in the Bible, even in this last comment, and you have admitted that you deny the sinfulness of homosexuality. You should have been defrocked and excommunicated a long time ago, but late will still be better than never.

    Of course, repentance would be better still. Not only for the sake of the lambs he daily leads to the slaughter, but for his own soul as well.

    “Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel?” (Ezekiel 33:11)

  2. Pastor Ted Crandall :

    Nicholas :@Matthew Becker #48
    Your comments here have only confirmed everything that I said, and that you are not, in fact, a Christian. You have asserted errors and contradictions in the Bible, even in this last comment, and you have admitted that you deny the sinfulness of homosexuality. You should have been defrocked and excommunicated a long time ago, but late will still be better than never.

    Of course, repentance would be better still. Not only for the sake of the lambs he daily leads to the slaughter, but for his own soul as well.
    “Say to them, As I live, declares the Lord God, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die, O house of Israel?” (Ezekiel 33:11)

    Amen.

  3. @Matthew Becker #48

    Thank you for speaking to my concerns and doing so with diligence and attention.

    i have to say i’m familiar with a host of origin myths, i’ve read gilgamesh, babylonian job, have done graduate work on canonization, patristics, – though i have no doctorate or tenacity to attain one. i do love to dig and to read.

    i will have to read your book, or continue on in a conversation to fully understand your vantage point. i’ve heard similar, though with some noteworthy differences, with elca, pcusa, and some non-denominationals.

    as an aside – i do not understand the loophole for bloodsausage.

    as a point of contention, i have not been able to reconcile a “this is offensive” as an opening for the gospel. the lines that get crossed in that rationale (granted they are often used in conjunction with the ministerial use of reason) often lead to some other form of intolerable heresy.
    i have heard the term “gospel reductionism” used frequently.
    – edit – the example i was looking for is the scandal particularity. i think that’s it.

    it is extremely difficult for me to see the apostles, the early church, the writers of the augsburg confession, or the waltherians advocating your (total)position – though i can track how you are using scripture and setting those things in line under the confessions.

    i can fathom a symbolic adam, particularly in regards to how adam is referred in the new testament. what is difficult to place together is the story of God letting neanderthals and dinosivans roam about and saying “Now is the time they will know me and be ready to saved from their sinful condition.” we can talk about mitochondrial eve, and the possibility of the first sinners being born around then. or, perhaps, that God waited till these groups passed and waited till abraham. i think that’s the point where people like to move from mythic to legendary.

    at any rate, i’m glad you stopped by. i understand you’re quite busy. if possible, as you have time, i may ask to continue some thoughts in an email.

    pax vobiscum

  4. @Matthew Becker #1

    Does disagreement about women serving as pastors rise to the level of disagreement in an essential matter of the faith?

    In and of itself, possibly not, but it chronically orbits in common cause with additional errors that do undermine the essentials of the faith.

    In the ELCA and in the Valparaiso School LCMS, Baptism and the Lord’s Supper will cease to be sacraments, and sins will cease to be forgiven because they are not sins, and the sacrifice of Christ will cease to have been necessary, all for reasons that, through some connection, orbit with the ordination of women.

  5. @Quasicelsus #3

    i can fathom a symbolic adam

    As by one man, Adam … so by one man, Christ.

    Fathom all you want, but be careful not to cause the least of these little ones who have faith in Christ to be offended. When they read Paul, they see the argument for redemption dependent on Adam being one man and Christ being one man. Be cautious about wounding their faith because of superior fathoming ability.

  6. @T. R. Halvorson #5

    Certainly 🙂

    I intend with my posts to be sensitive to the beliefs of those with whom i engage in discussion, and as well as those tracking the discussion.

    I hope you understood the entirety of my post in that

    1) i was engaging and making sure i was articulating his position (so we could understand each other)

    2) noting how such a position complicates other matters.

    in any event, yes, great caution not to offend the faith of others.

  7. I respectfully request the moderators close commentary on this. Matthew Becker is an unrepentant heretic that is spreading poison and lies. I would forward all of his commentary to Synod and hope he has some ecclesiastical oversight. As an unrepentant heretic, I also request the moderators ban him from posting his lies–until he repents.

    Mr. Becker, I pray for you that you learn the error of your ways and that you will find in the scriptures (and our LUTHERAN understanding of them) the heart to accept correction with a modest and contrite heart. These men are your brothers, yet you feed them snakes instead of fishes.

    Go in peace.

    -Robert.

  8. Carl Vehse :
    @Joe Strieter #1: “You have stated that LW violated the bylaws”.
    No, that is not true! I did NOT state anywhere that LW violated the bylaws. If you claim otherwise, state where.
    I did question [Post#1] why such a letter was published, and explained [Posts #26 and #32] what was doctrinally wrong with the letters of Patt and Hawkins, and [in Post #32] I quoted the Bylaw’s doctrinal review requirements and said that the letters should not have been approved for publication.
    And I previously explained how the letters could have been published, when I stated [Post #32] parenthetically, “with their heterodoxies clearly identified.”

    Here’s what you said:
    “However, the Lutheran Witness is not simply some corporate rag or political propaganda screed, but is an official periodical of the Missouri Synod. As such its editorial practice must conform to the requirements that have been established by the Missouri Synod, in particular, Bylaw 1.9.1:

    Doctrinal review is the exercise of the Synod’s responsibility to determine that every doctrinal statement made in its or any of its agencies’ or auxiliaries’ materials is in accord with the Scriptures and the Lutheran Confessions.

    and Bylaw 1.9.1.1 (a):

    All official periodicals and journals of the Synod as well as any material with doctrinal content issued publicly by boards, commissions, or other subordinate groups of the Synod except as stipulated in these Bylaws shall be subject to doctrinal review.

    There are certain exceptions specified in Bylaw 1.9 Doctrinal Review. A Letter to the Editor in the Lutheran Witness is not one of those stipulated exceptions.”

    It’s pretty hard to conclude anything but that you’re saying LW broke the bylaws, by not getting doctrinal review, and then your statement that LW did not meet the exceptions in bylaw 1.9, seems to clearly imply that LW broke the bylaws. Perhaps you didn’t say so in as many words, but it sure reads that way.

  9. @Joe Strieter #8: “It’s pretty hard to conclude anything but that you’re saying LW broke the bylaws, by not getting doctrinal review”

    Actually it is pretty easy to conclude that I was not saying or implying “LW broke the bylaws by not getting doctrinal review”.

    I did question [Post#1] why such a defamatory letter was published. I don’t believe the letter or parts of it, should have been published in the LW. Providing the Bylaw excerpts only indicated the process that should be followed, even for LW letters.

    But nowhere did I say or imply that LW published the letter and broke the bylaws by not getting doctrinal review, or that LW published the letter after it was doctrinally reviewed and rejected, or that the letter was approved by doctrinal review and then published.

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