Confused Christians

For the record, I grew up in a church affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA).  For those of you who don’t know much about the ELCA , it prides itself on being “Catholic-Lite” (kind of like Budweiser vs. Bud-Lite).  It offers all of the ritualism and traditions of the Roman Catholic Church but with more of a Unitarian flare.  At its core, it is essentially a “good-works” club that invokes the name of Jesus without actually believing he has any personal involvement in our lives.  As long as a person is willing to sit/stand on cue, read soul-less canned prayers from a book, listen to an uninspired “Social Gospel” sermonette, and talk about the weather over coffee and cookies, they will fit right in.

That said, in an effort to witness to the lost within the ELCA Lutheran Church, I occasionally read their material.  Today I came across an article titled, “Can Evangelism be Redeemed” that clearly demonstrates how lost these people really are.  In this article, Javen Swanson explains how he wants nothing to do with “saving souls.”

From the article:

“Despite Christ’s Great Commission to “go and make disciples of all nations,” evangelism is a task I have most often avoided.”

Here Javen openly admits that he disregards the commands of our Lord and Savior.  He would be wise to read Luke 6:46,  “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?”

“I usually associate evangelism with an effort to convert nonbelievers to Christianity, something that makes me very uncomfortable. Too often the desire to bring about conversions grows out of a belief that nonbelievers need to be “saved” from eternal damnation by adopting the Christian faith.”

Javen next correctly associates evangelism with an effort to convert nonbelievers to Christianity.  Sadly, he finds this “very uncomfortable.”  I would assume that he also finds the words of Jesus Christ himself to be uncomfortable as Jesus tells us in Mark 16:16,  “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.”

“To the extent that evangelism is about “saving souls,” I want nothing to do with it.  I approach matters of faith and belief with humility, unwilling to assert the superiority of my own religious beliefs over those of others.”

This is probably the saddest comment he makes in his article.  He’s a professing Christian that wants nothing to do with witnessing to the lost (Luke 10:2).  This is like a firefighter who sits in his fire truck while watching his neighbor’s house burn down with his neighbor inside it.  When asked why he isn’t helping his burning neighbor, he blithely replies:  “I’m humble, I want nothing to do with that hero stuff.”  Javen fits the description of the blinded mind of 2 Corinthians 4:4,  “In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”

“The most I am willing to say is that it is the Christian story that has claimed me and helps me to make meaning of my own life. I recognize that other stories have claimed other people in a similar way, and I want to respect that.”

This is the statement of a nonbeliever, a false convert.  The Bible is no mere “story.”.  Either it is literal history and Jesus literally died on the Cross and literally died for your Sins, or it is all a fairytale.  As Paul explains in 1 Corinthians 15:14-17,  “And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins.”

If the Bible is just a story then you are wasting your time reading it.  You might as well be out there with the world living the rock and roll satanic mantra: “do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law.”

Sadly, the “E” in ELCA stands for “Evangelical.”  If you know anybody caught up in an ELCA Lutheran Church, please pray for them and bring them our testimony in sincerity (2 Corinthians 1:12).  Witness slowly as ELCA Lutherans flee from both Bible believers and the Bible itself like a vampire flees from garlic and sunlight.  John 3:19,  “And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.”  It is up to us as Bible believers to bring these lost souls the Gospel so that they may be saved as Jesus Christ is the only way to the Father:  John 14:6,  “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”

  • Magellan

    Yes, that ELCA pastor is confused–poor guy is “married” to a male UCC pastor.