Thursday, July 5, 2018

Inching closer to the ordination of women. . .

From Down Under. . .

As some of you may know, the Lutheran Church in Australia has been moving slowly but deliberately toward the ordination of women.  The General Church Council of the Lutheran Church of Australia (LCA) not long ago released a Draft Doctrinal Statement (DDS) on the ordination of women and men, together with a draft statement on why the ordination of women and men need not be church divisive. Both documents were prepared at the behest of the church’s Commission on Theology and Inter-Church Relations (CTICR) as requested by the 2015 LCA General Convention.   In other words, the CTICR was asked to provide a BIBLICAL basis for the ordination of women and to provide a rationale for proceeding for this even in the context of grave division within the LCA that had rejected the ordination of women several times previously (well, rejected may be too strong a word since the motion for did not reach its required super majority to proceed).

Four faculty members of the Australian Lutheran College (Adelaide) now (25 June 2018 - the Anniversary of the Presentation of the Augsburg Confession) released a letter of appeal and encouragement to the LCA. In it they point out the dangers of adopting the two documents issued by the CTICR re women's ordination. The authors, Adam Hensley, Stephen Hultgren, Stephen Pietsch, and Thomas Pietsch, put this document out to express their concern for the doctrinal integrity and the unity of the church.  For their courage they are to be commended and for their faithfulness but it may be impossible to stop the train for the ordination of women and, perhaps, the implosion of the Lutheran Church in Australia. Read the whole thing here; I have copied two paragraphs below:
Holding the church’s historic teaching of a male-only pastorate is, despite its lack of popularity in some quarters, biblically credible and faithful. It does not imply a narrow, “fundamentalist” mindset about scripture, but an openness to hearing the word of God speak on its own terms rather than ours. As a church of the Reformation, we study scripture deeply and listen to it humbly and patiently. Reformation means returning to the mind of Christ set forth in scripture and living joyfully under its authority, not overturning its mandates and subverting its authoritative claims.

At this critical stage of the debate regarding the possible ordination of women, it is vitally important that we all, as members of the LCA who are concerned for her unity and spiritual health, understand what is at stake. We need not, however, be timid or give way to fear at the challenges our church faces. Rather let us be of good comfort knowing that Christ has overcome the world (John 16:33), and that the life-giving truth of his word can and will sustain us now as it has sustained Christians throughout history (John 8:31‒32). Placing confidence in God in this way, we need to make our confession publicly by speaking, acting and teaching in accord with his word. It is not a matter of private thoughts and opinions but of conscience and public confession.


Carl Vehse said...

• One of the Letter of Appeal authors is Rev. Dr. Adam Hensley, the son-in-law of Dr. Gene Veith

• The LCA has 540 congregations, 450 pastors, and 70,000 members.

• The LCA is headed by a pro-pastrix, anti-Lutheran Bishop John Henderson, elected in 2013.

• Several pastrix-advocates are members of the LCA's Commission on Theology and Interchurch Relations (CTICR).

• The CTICR has created a pro-pastrix website, Ordination - We're Listening, with a "Message from the LCA Bishop" John Henderson.

• The LCA is not in altar and pulpit fellowship with the LCMS.

• The LCA has voted on ordination of women in 2000, 2006, and 2015, the last time the vote was 63.6%, not meeting the required two-thirds majority by thirteen votes (3%).

• When publicly asked, "Had they decided to ordain women what would that have done to any hope of pursuing real fellowship—real unity—with that Australian Lutheran Church?", LCMS President Matt Harrison said, "It would be over!"

Carl Vehse said...

If, as expected, the LCA votes to have pastorettes, it is likely that some pastors and congregations will break away from the LCA to form a new Lutheran church body in Australia.

If such a small, formative, emerging confessional Lutheran church body requests A&P fellowship with the Missouri Synod, such recognition may be declared by the President of the Synod, following consultation with the Praesidium and approval by the CTCR, subject to the rubberstamp... er... endorsement of the subsequent Synod convention, as specified in Bylaw (c).

This assumes other Australian Lutheran doctrinal issues, which have kept the LCA and the LCMS apart since the LCA formed in 1966, are corrected.

Anonymous said...

Denominations that promote the ordination of women have never had
the Biblical mandate for it. The New Testament is clear that women
are not to become pastors. The push for female clergy comes from
our culture which wants women to have equal rights and opportunities
in the work place. The Feminist movement is alive and well around the

Anonymous said...

The LCA will simply need to divide itself back into the two bodies which formed it. The "ELCA" branch of the LCA and the "LCMS" branch just need to call it quits.

The effort at union was noble and has produced tremendous theologians, and it is to be noted the best theologians in that church body are those who have remained and continue to be the confessional and orthodox Lutheran.

It is unfortunate that the "ELCA" group in the LCA continued to cozy up to the Seminex era theology and now the ELCA, inviting the old LCMS liberals into their country and infecting their church with the vile poison of their false doctrine.

Cliff said...

It's called the separation of the sheep and the goats. Mt. 25:36-48

Anonymous said...

I hope that the LCMS will make all preparations *now* to engage in altar and pulpit fellowship with the breakaway congregations in Australia.

On another note, how many *weeks* after a successful vote by the LCA to ordain women will the campaign for advocating homosexual inclusion commence?

Anonymous said...

If they wouldn't listen to their great theologian, Rev. Kleinig, they won't listen to anyone.

Carl Vehse said...

The full press hype is on in the LCA, which has a 2018 convention website, "Ordination of Women and Men," showing an image of two pairs of bare legs (presumably a man and a woman) walking into a large body of water. The hype includes links to two documents:

A theological basis for the ordination of women and men
A theological basis for why the ordination of women and men need not be church divisive

In the latter document, the last two theological reasons aimed at those who object to pastorettes essentially present the actual basis of "get with the program or get out."

The LCMS convention next year will probably need to consider a resolution declaring that the LCA is no longer recognized as "Lutheran" in any meaningful sense of the word. And, of course, the ILC should revoke the LCA's associate membership.

Anonymous said...

We were having a Bible study on “The feminine side of God” at my church. I tried to bite my lip but after an irrelevant point was laboured for some 5 minutes, I said, “In 1452AD, the synod of the Eastern Church debated whether angels had wings. The next year they were under the scimitar, doomed to extinction. In 1917, the Russian Orthodox debated whether they should have black or white robes. The next year they had no robes in the gulags. The scimitar is raised and we’re debating this nonsense.” The country is going to hell in a big way and women are worried about looking important in the church. What about your grandchildren?
Prov 24:21 "My son, fear thou the LORD and the king: and meddle not with them that are given to change:" Those pushing relentlessly for women’s ordination are those given to change
It was Eve who wanted to make herself like God some 6000 years ago. Her husband followed compliantly. So it has always been that a woman can always twist a man around her fingers. To my surprise, I found women more prone to ok sin than men. They generally will support leftist causes like LGBT, environmentalism, feminism and so on. It’s the same disease the feminists have - nothing to do with feminism – yeah, right.
On domestic abuse: Ask the woman why she chose that man. Was it because he was a bad-arse with a bit of charm? Women tend to gravitate to these types of men, they are exciting.
After the suffragettes won all the basic rights men had, you’d think they’d be satisfied, but no, along came the feminists. Here’s an excerpt from the meetings one of them used to hold – Kate Millett – the sort of things taught in tertiary Women’s Studies:
"Why are we here today?" she asked. "To make revolution," they answered.
"What kind of revolution?" she replied. "The Cultural Revolution," they chanted.
“And how do we make Cultural Revolution?" "By destroying the American family!" they answered.
"How do we destroy the family?" she came back. "By destroying the American Patriarch," they cried.
"And how do we destroy the American Patriarch?” "By taking away his power!"
"How do we do that?" "By destroying monogamy!" they shouted.
"How can we destroy monogamy?" "By promoting promiscuity, eroticism, prostitution and homosexuality!"
That victory was won in the 1970’s with most churches being complicit, including the Lutheran church. That was when the marriage laws were rewritten to make sure that women would have final dominion over men in Australia. Now at marriage or even cohabitation, a man has signed over complete control of his children and financial affairs to his wife who in any divorce settlement, will get the lions share of the spoils, leaving him destitute and in debt paying exhorbitant amounts for support.
I remember a movie, the owner-boss took the staff to dinner. One asked, “How’s the divorce going Boss?” He replied “Oh, that’s over, she got half of everything, 250 million quid – no kids you see. Now let me see, … that’s over 2 million a shag, [expletive], I could have hired a high class London prostitute for a thousand quid nightly.” That’s the effect women’s liberation has had on morals in the Western world.
Isaiah 3:12 “Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. My people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path. 13 … 14 The LORD enters into judgment against the elders and leaders of his people: It is you who have ruined my vineyard.” Church leaders have ruined the vineyard. One of the judgements of God is that women (and youths) will have authority over men. That’s how it is today.
So, before the scimitar falls, having put men under their feet, women must now conquer the last domain, the church.