Beliefs of Fundamentalists Christians

Started by Dave Likeness, April 21, 2013, 09:44:24 PM

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Terry W Culler

The definition of fundamentalism is different depending upon the period of U.S. history you're dealing with.  The Fundamentals essays were written to counteract what was going on in liberal Social Gospel sections of the church in the US.  By the late 'teens the term fundamentalist was being applied to the conservatives at Princeton who were trying to maintain its conservative Calvinist character.  But that didn't last and by the 1940's it was being used to describe all or most conservative Christians.  This caused many Evangelicals heartburn because they thought those who were proudly fundamentalists were becoming too anti-intellectual and withdrawing too much from interaction with the culture.  Thus began the Neo-Evangelical movement which featured people like Carl Henry and Billy Graham.  They worked long and hard to separate themselves from those who continued to call themselves fundamentalists.  Now all of the terms have become so mushy that it's hard to define anyone very clearly.  Of course, the idea of fundamentalist Moslems is simply nonsense, created by secularists who know no better.
"No particular Church has ... a right to existence, except as it believes itself the most perfect from of Christianity, the form which of right, should and will be universal."
Charles Porterfield Krauth

Matt Staneck

Quote from: John Mundinger on April 23, 2013, 10:02:12 AM

My earliest memory of learning something about the theory of evolution was in a grade school science class.  The school happened to be an LCMS parochial school.

John, I'm going to put something forth here and I hope you don't take this personal (which means clearly that the comment I take will be taken personally, inevitably, but I do not intend it in that sense, rather your comment triggered a thought I've had for a while).

As someone who is weeks away from entering the Office, and a week and change away from receiving my first call (prayers are appreciated), I follow these discussions closely and with great interest.  Something I am noticing is that these old battles are still happening for many in our Synod.  When one person cites a heyday without higher critical methods there is surely another LCMS member who puts forth how profitable such methods were.  I feel that I need to be honest in stating that my generation is not going to be a part of these conversations.

We're not interested in a rose-colored repristination of LCMS history, nor are we interested in the days of doubts with the historical critical method (an outdated mode of interpreting scripture if there ever was one).  Since every generation has problems I'm sure we will stumble across our own, but repristinating in one way or another is not in view for us.  It's not even in the rear-view.  While students of history (and appreciators of even our own history), we're just looking to be faithful pastors tackling the challenges that the 21st century presents. 

M. Staneck
Matt Staneck, Pastor
St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church
Queens, NY

John Mundinger

Quote from: Matt Staneck on April 23, 2013, 10:25:52 AMWe're not interested in a rose-colored repristination of LCMS history, nor are we interested in the days of doubts with the historical critical method (an outdated mode of interpreting scripture if there ever was one).  Since every generation has problems I'm sure we will stumble across our own, but repristinating in one way or another is not in view for us.  It's not even in the rear-view.  While students of history (and appreciators of even our own history), we're just looking to be faithful pastors tackling the challenges that the 21st century presents

Matt - first of all, I wish you and the people whom you will shepherd in your call many blessings.  I appreciate and whole heartedly agree with the attitude reflected in the part of your post that I bolded.

In my opinion, the short-coming in the LCMS is that there are too many interested in a rose-colored repristination of not just LCMS history but Lutheran history.  The notion of promoting the idea that we are still worshiping in "my grandfather's church" is bogus.  We ought to be the church in which our grandchildren will be worshiping!

Please note that my comment was not an effort at respristination except to suggest that there was a time that the debate about evolution was not an LCMS issue.  And, it wasn't so much a question of higher criticism as it was the fact that there was not a compelling need to resolve the apparent contradiction between the creation accounts in Genesis and science.  It was sufficient to be content with the ambiguity.  More important, it was sufficient to put our confidence that the central purpose of God's Inspired Word is to reveal to us God's Incarnate Word and, relative to that purpose, the creation v. evolution debate verges on the irrelevant. 

To the extent that repristination is a legitimate exercise, it is to never let our attention be diverted from the truth that God has spoken with us so that we might have life in Jesus' name.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

Jay Michael

Quote from: John Mundinger on April 23, 2013, 10:02:12 AM
My earliest memory of learning something about the theory of evolution was in a grade school science class.  The school happened to be an LCMS parochial school.
No doubt the context of the theory of evolution in a LCMS grade school was that it is a unproved theory contrary to God's Holy Word.

George Erdner

Quote from: Pr. Don Kirchner on April 23, 2013, 10:06:37 AM
Quote from: George Erdner on April 23, 2013, 09:49:43 AM
I'm still waiting for some indication of just who fit and who do not fit into the category you're calling "Fundamentalists". While there were (to the best of my knowledge) any members of the LCMS on the anti-evolution teaching side in that famous trial, more than a few of those posting in this forum are in complete agreement with the anti-evolutionists. Does that mean they are fundamentalists?

Not necessarily.

One Lutheran pastor wrote: "The creation account is not the key doctrine on which the church stands or falls, but once you start dismissing the historicity of one part of scripture (the parts that were written as history, granted) than you inevitably undermine the key claims of scripture which are also falsifiable historical claims.

Lots of people believe lots of things about the origins of the world, but the account of Genesis is either literally true as history or it is not. And if it is shown to be not true than the entire redemption metanarrative of the Bible unravels; our faith is in vain and we're still in our sins."




The issue is simply whether a literal interpretation of Genesis is the litmus test for whether or not one is a "fundamentalist". As for our faith being in vain if we interpret the creation story in Genesis as a poetic account of the truth rather than a literal one, that makes no sense at all.

NCLutheran

Quote from: John Mundinger on April 23, 2013, 10:50:22 AM
The notion of promoting the idea that we are still worshiping in "my grandfather's church" is bogus.  We ought to be the church in which our grandchildren will be worshiping!

I just want to give this thought a hearty AMEN!!

Donald_Kirchner

Quote from: George Erdner on April 23, 2013, 11:13:38 AM
The issue is simply whether a literal interpretation of Genesis is the litmus test for whether or not one is a "fundamentalist".

And the answer is "No."

Quote from: George Erdner on April 23, 2013, 11:13:38 AM
As for our faith being in vain if we interpret the creation story in Genesis as a poetic account of the truth rather than a literal one, that makes no sense at all.

I know. As I wrote, that's a Fundamentalist view, not a Lutheran one.
Don Kirchner

"Heaven's OK, but it's not the end of the world." Jeff Gibbs

John Mundinger

Quote from: Jay. on April 23, 2013, 10:58:53 AM
Quote from: John Mundinger on April 23, 2013, 10:02:12 AM
My earliest memory of learning something about the theory of evolution was in a grade school science class.  The school happened to be an LCMS parochial school.
No doubt the context of the theory of evolution in a LCMS grade school was that it is a unproved theory contrary to God's Holy Word.

Hardly.  Very much in the context as I described for Matt and very much in the context of the LCMS tradition of providing, in addition to Christian education, a secular education that significantly exceeded accreditation standards.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

Jay Michael

Quote from: John Mundinger on April 23, 2013, 10:50:22 AM
The notion of promoting the idea that we are still worshiping in "my grandfather's church" is bogus.  We ought to be the church in which our grandchildren will be worshiping!
What is you concept of the term "my grandfather's church"?

John Mundinger

Quote from: Jay. on April 23, 2013, 11:31:40 AM
Quote from: John Mundinger on April 23, 2013, 10:50:22 AM
The notion of promoting the idea that we are still worshiping in "my grandfather's church" is bogus.  We ought to be the church in which our grandchildren will be worshiping!
What is you concept of the term "my grandfather's church"?

As the folks at the Brothers of John the Steadfast.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

Matt Staneck

Since I don't need help in coming off as arrogant, allow me to clarify where I feel my generation is coming from:

We are very interested in learning at the feet of pastors in the field who have gone before us in terms of pastoral ministry.  That type of learning is simply invaluable.  We are not interested in joining the ranks on either side of a matter still unsettled between previous generations.  This is not our fight, so we just won't join it. 

M. Staneck
Matt Staneck, Pastor
St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church
Queens, NY

Weedon

I do NOT want my grandchildren worshipping in my grandfathers' church: one was Methodist Episcopal Church-South and one was Primitive Baptist. :)

I want my grandchildren worshipping in the Church of the Augsburg Confession. I want that for them, because that Confession is 100% in agreement with God's Holy Word, and where the Word of God is proclaimed according to those Symbols and the Sacraments of our Lord administered as therein described, they will have what they need (forgiveness, life, and salvation) to make the pilgrimage through this fallen age to the light of the age to come, and to make that pilgrimage with both joy and confidence.

Dave Likeness

Matt, it is probably idealistic distortion to think that
the entire graduating class of 2013 at St. Louis will
be of one mind when they hit their first parish.

My class had about 140  graduates and they were
diverse in practical application after they became pastors.
My prayer for the class of 2013 is that the Lord would
bless their pastoral ministry and make them faithful
servants of His Word and Sacraments.

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis gave us the tools to
become life-long learners of the Word and to proclaim
Jesus Christ as the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

Matt Staneck

Pr. Likeness,

I'm very confident that my class is not interested in these fights. I offered those comments because from time to time I see around here a grasping at repristination that we're just not interested in.  In other words, tell us everything you know about preaching, hospital visits, communication in the parish, etc.  But these other things are not on our radar.  All I'm saying.

M. Staneck
Matt Staneck, Pastor
St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church
Queens, NY

John Mundinger

Quote from: Weedon on April 23, 2013, 11:39:39 AM
I do NOT want my grandchildren worshipping in my grandfathers' church: one was Methodist Episcopal Church-South and one was Primitive Baptist. :)

I want my grandchildren worshipping in the Church of the Augsburg Confession.

My grandfather was a pastor in the Church of the Augsburg Confession and I want the same for my grandchildren.  However, I do not expect them to hear the Gospel preached and the catechism taught auf Deutsch and I do not expect them to compensate the pastor by feeding his cattle and chickens.  In short, I expect the Church of the Augsburg Confession to be relevant in their 21st Century community, not 16th Century Germany, not 1850 St. Louis and not 1900 Luxemburg, Wisconsin.

For some reason, I think Matt understands that.  I also hope that his parishioners understand that, instead of feeding his cattle and chickens, they ought to help him pay off his student loans.
Lifelong Evangelical Lutheran layman

Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbour, does not yet understand them as he ought.  St. Augustine

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