The war in Iraq began with a campaign entitled “Shock and Awe”. The attack was to be so swift, so intense, and so decisive that the enemy would be overwhelmed. Communications, supply lines, and military equipment was targeted and destroyed with the goal of eliminating the Iraqi Army’s will to fight. Much of the Iraqi army was scattered without any connection to their battle leaders and this strategy did lead to the surrender of numerous Iraqi battle groups in the field. The Iraqi army was easily defeated, with few Coalition forces lost. The attack on the foundations of our faith has been much more deliberate. The ELCA has been moving toward the creation of a new Lutheranism for decades. Using the hot button issue of homosexuality as a smoke screen, the ELCA has contrived doctrine to allow us to commit sin without remorse. Many were shocked after the 2009 ELCA Church Wide Assembly actions. The leadership of the ELCA stood by and allowed the Assembly to vote to disregard God’s law, knowing full well that all that chose to speak out against these actions would be looked upon as homophobic, intolerant and hateful. The leadership of the ELCA then used this to their advantage. The doctrine of bound conscience, invented to bolster the argument for the Human Sexuality statement, was utilized in a much more insidious way.
Bound conscience is the ELCA's way to justify their argument that we must not break fellowship simply because we have “differing viewpoints.” This false doctrine enables the ELCA to have a "Big Tent" and to draw in a new and diverse membership. You see, the ELCA has been hemorrhaging members almost from the day that it began. The ELCA has lost almost one million members since their inception in 1988. As they have moved further left, pursued a stated goal of social justice, and have left our Lord behind, there is little left to attract new members. Those looking for Jesus need not look to the ELCA to advocate for our Lord when there is so much else that is more important in this world. Filling your heart with the love of Christ is not on the radar screen of these enlightened leaders of the ELCA. It is indeed shocking, that a Lutheran Church would betray the Lord, relegate Him to a place secondary in their ministry, while publicly refuting God’s word, the Holy Bible. This is just beyond our comprehension. This church, in which many of us found the Lord, has fallen away from Him. As shocking as this “fall from grace” that has overtaken the ELCA, know this, God has a plan for us and nothing happens that is not part of that plan, including the troubling times in the ELCA.
Part of that plan is the work that the Holy Spirit is doing with Christians that were complacent in their faith. This includes many of us that attended Sunday services regularly but did not take the time or have the interest to dig into God’s word. I am awestrck as to how, in these troubling times, so many Christians have awakened and have been invigorated in their Spiritual lives. You can count the writer of this blog as one those Christians that has been awakened from his slumber. So many traditional, Bible based congregations have seen a marked increase in congregants reassessing their relationship with the Lord and are now attending Bible studies and getting involved in the church. You see, sometimes it takes a veritable slap in the face to awaken those that take their faith for granted. Indeed, when times are tough, it is difficult to discern why God does the things that He does. Romans 8:28, “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” Everything that happens, does so because God intends for it to happen in that way. God’s purpose may not always be evident, but rest assured, He does those things to benefit those that love Him.
The direction that the leadership of the ELCA is taking their membership is contradictory to what faithful Christians have been taught since they were old enough to attend Sunday School. This attempt to transform the ELCA into this welcoming, tolerant, and all accepting social club that denies the very foundation of our faith has fueled the righteous anger of many faithful Christians. Ephesians 3:10-12, “His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, 11 according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. 12 In him and through faith in him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.” Now that this church, the ELCA, is ignoring our Lord’s intent and is spreading a gospel other than the Gospel our Lord taught, we must seek out a new church, true to the Lord, in which we can “walk together” in our faith journeys. We must also be diligent in our efforts to expose the heresies being promoted by the leadership of the ELCA so that no more of God’s children will fall prey to these false teachings. Continue to pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ so that they too may see the truth.