Lutheranism?

For the discussion of the distinctives of the various mainstream Christian denominations
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darinhouston
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by darinhouston » Sun Jul 03, 2011 1:58 pm

I am synergistic (though not medieval Roman Catholic) -- again, as it relates to specific doctrinal issues, I recommend you begin a topic in the appropriate area -- this area is for discussion of denominational positions and the like, this thread in particular pertaining to what Lutherans believe and why, but as we address very specific doctrines, and especially what the reformed position generally would be as opposed to arguments uniquely held by Luthers it would be good to treat those separately and in the relevant forum. You may not be aware that these issues have been addressed in some detail in this forum over the years, so it's not new to us. You may have a different spin or new arguments, and we'd be pleased to discuss/address those in the appropriate forum.

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Homer
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by Homer » Sun Jul 03, 2011 4:42 pm

Hi FM483,

Perhaps you never noticed, but in reply to Darin you responded to something I said while ignoring my comment regarding 1 Peter 3:21. Perhaps you will answer if you can.

I am puzzled why you keep referring to concords and creeds from hundreds of years after the time of the apostles. Why not be a good Berean and go back to the scriptures? You have a false belief concerning what repentance is. If you would look up the Greek words you might see your error. And you might understand why repentance is commanded. "God has commanded men everywhere to repent", Acts 17:30 (and numerous other places). Why would God command men to do what you say they are unable to do, only God can do? That makes no sense.

You wrote:
does God create repentance and faith in a person or does the sinner somehow participate in their salvation? In other words, are you monergistic or synergistic theologically?
You say an infant, who has no understanding what is going on, and may even be asleep, can be baptized efficaciously. Could an adult be baptized while asleep or otherwise unconscious? Why or why not?

FM483
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by FM483 » Sun Jul 03, 2011 4:55 pm

Homer,

I will try to converse intelligently with you. Regarding repentance, my question still remains: is it God's work or man's? I would still like a response to the definition given in Luke 15:10. This chapter in Luke shows that for both the Lost Sheep and Lost Coin, it is God's work, not man's work. The entire Reformation was about this critical issue: Grace versus works.

Regarding baptism, the same issue arises: is it God's work or man's work? I have given numerous bible references, including Acts 2:38, which show the forgiveness of sins and the Holy Spirit as gifts of God bestowed in baptism. I can only assume that both Homer and Darin still somehow believe sinful man contributes to his salvation. Apparently, your theology is synergism instead of monergism. This is the core of the Reformation: how is aman made right with God? Is it based partly on man's works or is it 100 percent pure giftof God?

FM483
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by FM483 » Sun Jul 03, 2011 5:25 pm

Daarin. I read your comment about posting things in the correct pigeonhole. I would like to respond to certain questions here if possible. Otherwise, it seems that I am being unresponsive? Let me know and I will stop posting here.

FM483
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by FM483 » Sun Jul 03, 2011 5:32 pm

Homer, you raised a very interesting issue earlier. You thought that God would never demand something which sinful man was not capable of. That is exactly what God does in His Law. A good exampleis the following:

Matthew 5:48
You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.



The Reformation brought to light God's Law and the Gospel. If it were possible for sinful man to obey God's Law as demanded, which is perfectly in thought, word, and deed, then there woyld be no need of a Savior! The primary theological purpose of God's Law is not as a challenge for man to keep, but as a mirror to show us just how depraved we are and how needful we are for the Savior.

Romans 3:20
For by works of the law no human being will be justified in his sight, since through the law comes knowledge of sin.

FM483
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by FM483 » Sun Jul 03, 2011 5:42 pm

Darin - you say you are "synergistic"? Don't you realize that it is God Who gives you the very breath and strength to even make this statement? God is ALL powerful. There is no power apart from the Lord. We do not live in a dualistic universe where the devil and God tamgle. Even Satan has no power and authority unless God allows him. God came down from heaven and entered the human race all on His own. God is love and justice and mercy and demonstrates grace by His Son. Just as in the Luke passages of the Lost Sheep, the stupid sheep didn't even know he was lost. But God knows everything and went after the sheep, picked up the filthy 100 pound animal on His shoulders and brought it to safety. In the Middle East this picture would be absurd. No shepherd ever does such a thing, but instead uses the crook of his staff. At any rate, the correct theological position is monergism: God does everything. The Father created, the Son saved, and the Holy Spirit sanctifies. I just had to say this in response to your claim to be a "synergist".

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Homer
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Re: Lutheranism?

Post by Homer » Sun Jul 03, 2011 9:56 pm

Hi FM483,

You wrote:
Hi Homer, you raised a very interesting issue earlier. You thought that God would never demand something which sinful man was not capable of. That is exactly what God does in His Law. A good exampleis the following:

Matthew 5:48
You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. :
While I await your response to 1 Peter 3:21 (I'm beginning to think you are stumped, or trying to ignore my question), I will reply to your query.

Here is the full text of Matthew 5:43-48 :

43 "You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (ESV)

If you take the time to go back to Matthew 5:20, you will find Jesus informing His hearers that their righteousness must be greater than that of the scribes and Pharisees for them to be able to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. He then proceeds to list a number of ways that they can accomplish the required righteousness. Do not lust, do not divorce and commit adultery, do not manipulate people with your oaths, be generous to those who ask of you, etc. And we come to v. 43 where we are told we must love our enemies and pray for them.
There is nothing in the context that would lead to the idea of perfection. The "therefore" refers back to the commands Jesus just gave, and they are not too big of a burden. It is nonsense to say that Jesus had in mind that we can attain the perfection that is God's nature. But we are to be kind to all men just as God is. He makes no exception to His kindness, and neither should we.

The basic meaning of the Greek word teleios, found in Matthew 5:48 and translated "perfect" means "complete". It may mean "finished, complete, having reached its end," and implies being fully grown or mature. It also might mean "perfect". I have a woodshop where I make various things, including some furniture. I have made three tables and they are "finished, complete", and entirely suitable for their purpose. In biblical Greek they could be said to be teleios. But they are not perfect as we think of perfect when we use the word today.

The commands Jesus gave in the Sermon on the Mount are doable. If we do them we are teleios. I hope you are not one who makes void the commandments of our Lord, or who thinks He only gave them to make us feel bad about ourselves.

I am curious about your derisive attitude toward those who believe Jesus must be obeyed and try hard to do so. Did He not say "If you love me you will obey me? Do you love Him? Apparently you think of them as legalists. How are you able to judge the hearts of men?

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