Sunday, July 15, 2007

Praying for One's Pastors and Leaders

It appears that LCMS Synodical President Kieschnick was re-elected.

When I was in the LCMS, I bashed him as often as I could.

I am in my second year of being in the WELS and to be brutally frank - I have continued to bash him.

I'm done now. We all need to be done now. We should pray for him and pray that he does well and leads in a way that is true to the Scriptures and the Confessions. And in the spririt of this blog I put out the call for less Kieschnick bashing and more praying. This doesn't mean that we shouldn't speak the truth in love and even cut with the Law - but the club we confessionals have been using ain't working folks. We need to pray. We need to pray that in the course of the next three years his eyes are opened and that a return to Lutheran orthodoxy rises up amongst all of us.

However, this is no reason we cannot think ahead is there?

Rev. Matt Harrison.

The LCMS has a real talent in this man. Street cred as the leader of LCMS Human Care and more important the man can preach- I mean an honest to goodness Lutheran sermon that Walther would be proud of!!!

Be patient. Three years isn't that long.

Who knows - my WELS exile may be over by then.


Erich Heidenreich, DDS said...

Absolutely correct, Jon. We must apply the Fourth Commandment to our attitudes toward President Kieschnick.

But this includes the fact that public sin requires public rebuke, regardless of who has committed the transgression. Approving of Dist. Pres. Benke's syncretism is public sin. It has been rebuked publicly. But it has not been repented of to my knowledge. Am I wrong to publicly state that this single incident is unrepented sin, not to mention the propagation of false doctrine? Am I wrong to publicly state that I declare that I am in a state of confession against the man?

All other issues aside, I believe we must continue to call upon President Kieschnick to repent of this sin.

But other than calling him to repentance, we must at the same time honor him in his office as president of the Missouri Synod - honor him in line with the Ten Commandments, especially the Fourth and Eighth. We must pray for him and for the Missouri Synod.fnztpa

William Weedon said...


Many, many people were praying for our Synod in convention and they were praying: "O Lord, Your good, perfect, and gracious will be done among us!"

We can't look at this election then in any other way than that God's will was done. He answers His children's pleas.

And what is needed on our part is more prayer for the same. That His will would be done and that our plans, our bright ideas, might be crushed to smithereens and His goodness triumph. Maybe we're following the steps of Joseph the Patriarch. But sitting in prison and wondering what was up, he hadn't the first clue how near he was to God's promises coming to full fruition. So may it be with us always - when we are perplexed or wonder. We need to remember 1) our God is almighty and does what He pleases; 2) our God is merciful and His gracious will toward us is always manifest through the Cross and Resurrection of His Son; 3) our puny ideas and dreams are most often far too small for whatever it is that God has up His sleeve; so it always behooves us to pray 4) Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.

"...always ready to give more than we either desire or deserve..."

Tim the Enchanter said...

"But other than calling him to repentance, we must at the same time honor him in his office as president of the Missouri Synod..."

Mea culpa. I certainly sinned in my failure to do this on Beggars All. Some of my satire went way over the line. Had I realized how many people read that thing, I would have been much more prudent in my posting in general as well.

Either Erich or I must soon post on Pastor Feuerhahn's rebuke and instruction on 'speaking the truth in love' at the CCA conference. I think that it applies to many of us.


Erich Heidenreich, DDS said...

Had I realized how many people read that thing, I would have been much more prudent in my posting in general as well. ~Tim

We mustn't forget that even our private thoughts fall under the same judgment of God's law. But public accountability helps us place our private attitudes in check. For this reason, I too wish I had considered how many people were reading Beggars All. To be honest, Rob, we weren't ignorant of how many people were reading it. We had a site meter.

I think it is a very healthy thing to pretend that all private discussions are public, thinking "what if my mother (pastor, friends, family, neighbor, etc.) were listening?"

I'm reminded of many stories I've heard (and even experienced first-hand) of people being greatly hurt by hearing conversations that occurred when the speakers didn't know that others really were listening.

All our words and even our private thoughts are heard by our Father in Heaven. That in itself should be enough to temper all our doings.

Listen to Thomas á Kempis, in The Imitation of Christ:

The Tenth Chapter

Avoiding Idle Talk

SHUN the gossip of men as much as possible, for discussion of worldly affairs, even though sincere, is a great distraction inasmuch as we are quickly ensnared and captivated by vanity.

Many a time I wish that I had held my peace and had not associated with men. Why, indeed, do we converse and gossip among ourselves when we so seldom part without a troubled conscience? We do so because we seek comfort from one another's conversation and wish to ease the mind wearied by diverse thoughts. Hence, we talk and think quite fondly of things we like very much or of things we dislike intensely. But, sad to say, we often talk vainly and to no purpose; for this external pleasure effectively bars inward and divine consolation.

Therefore we must watch and pray lest time pass idly.

When the right and opportune moment comes for speaking, say something that will edify.

Bad habits and indifference to spiritual progress do much to remove the guard from the tongue. Devout conversation on spiritual matters, on the contrary, is a great aid to spiritual progress, especially when persons of the same mind and spirit associate together in God.

And again, listen to this:

Chapter 9

On Obedience and Discipline

It is an excellent thing to live under obedience to a superior, and not to be one's own master. It is much safer to obey than to rule. Many live under obedience more of necessity than of love and such people are often discontented and complaining. They will never attain freedom of mind unless they submit with their whole heart for the love of God. Go where you please, but nowhere will you find rest except in humble obedience under the rule of a superior. Preference for other places and desire for change have unsettled many.

Everyone gladly does whatever he most likes, and likes best those who think as he does; but if God is to dwell among us we must sometimes yield our own opinion for the sake of peace. Who is so wise that he knows all things? So do not place too much reliance on the rightness of your own view but be ready to consider the views of others. If your opinion is sound, and you forego it for the love of God and follow that of another, you will win great merit. I have often heard that is safer to accept advice than to give it. It may even come about that each of two opinions is good; but to refuse to come to an agreement with others when reason or occasion demand it is a sign of pride and obstinacy.

Thomas á Kempis' last name was Hämerken, "Little Hammer." I consider him a big hammer, because his writings convict me of so much that is sinful within me. For that reason I find it beneficial to read him.