Recent Questions

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After Satan's fall from heaven, why did God put Satan on earth in Paradise with Adam and Eve instead of another part of the universe without life?

God banished Satan and all the evil angels to hell after they rebelled against him (2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6). In his wisdom, God allows the fallen angels and their leader to roam the earth (Job 1:7; 2:2; 1 Peter 5:8). In his wisdom, God allowed Satan to tempt Eve in the Garden of Eden—as you noted.

In the Bible, God does not explain his actions, nor does he need to (Romans 11:33-36). What the Bible does teach is that God controls Satan’s activities (Revelation 20:3), and the day is coming when Satan and all the evil angels will be confined to hell forever (Revelation 20:10). That ultimate confinement will take place because Jesus successfully carried out his mission of destroying the devil’s work (1 John 3:8).

I am curious about the WELS stance on use of the enneagram, which has become popularized in many churches. Thanks.

There is no official position or stance of our church body regarding the use of the enneagram. While I am not in a position to endorse fully this assessment of that practice, the information illustrates how a confessional Lutheran church body approaches the subject.

What is our (WELS) official position on Critical Race Theory?

You will find “official position” statements of our church body here. Those statements do not address the subject of your inquiry.

What does the Bible say about necromancy?

The Bible clearly condemns the practice of trying to communicate with those who have died. Consider the following sections of Scripture.

“Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire, who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the LORD; because of these same detestable practices the LORD your God will drive out those nations before you. You must be blameless before the LORD your God. The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the LORD your God has not permitted you to do so” (Deuteronomy 18:10-14).

“When someone tells you to consult mediums and spiritists, who whisper and mutter, should not a people inquire of their God? Why consult the dead on behalf of the living? Consult God’s instruction and the testimony of warning. If anyone does not speak according to this word, they have no light of dawn” (Isaiah 8:19-20).

One of my closest friends told me that Satan can be redeemed and still have some good inside him even though he's pure evil. I had some conflicts because of her explanation and I wanted to be sure: is this true?

There is no possibility of redemption for Satan and all the evil angels. Jude 6 explains: “And the angels who did not keep their positions of authority but abandoned their proper dwelling—these he has kept in darkness, bound with everlasting chains for judgment on the great Day.”

Revelation 20:10 describes that judgment: “And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.” Jesus also spoke of that judgment in Matthew 25:41.

If a Christian is cremated and their ashes are, say, sprinkled all over the place (e.g. little in WI, MI, SD, MN) etc...where will our body come out when we hear Jesus? Should a Christian's ashes not be sprinkled around, but rather kept together in one burial place?

The Bible describes the resurrection—and transformation of the bodies of all Christians—as being instantaneous (1 Corinthians 15:51-52). The God who made all things from nothing (Genesis 1) will raise the bodies of all who have died and reunite bodies and souls (John 5:28-29). Nothing is impossible for our all-powerful God (Jeremiah 32:27).

Followers of the Lord enjoy Christian freedom to choose between cremation or traditional burial. The Bible does not address the subject of dividing the cremains.

What can you tell me about Todd Friel [Wretched Radio], John MacArthur, or Colin A. Miller? I have watch several of their YouTube videos and they seem sound, but I would like a WELS opinion. Thank you.

Like the apostle Paul (Philippians 1:18), we can rejoice whenever—and by whomever—the gospel of Jesus Christ is proclaimed. At the same time, Scripture instructs us to “watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them.” (Romans 16:17)

A brief look at the websites of the ministries of the first two individuals reveals errors regarding the Bible’s teaching of the End Times. There is also the denial of the sacraments as means of grace. I was not able to find doctrinal statements for the third individual you mentioned.

Why doesn’t WELS promote The Chosen series on the life and ministry of Jesus?

Not promoting that series is consistent with our church body’s policy of not taking an official position on books, movies or television shows. Occasionally, Forward in Christ offers reviews of books published by Northwestern Publishing House.

How do I respond to a family member’s gay wedding invite?

Romans 14:14, 23 teaches us not to act contrary to our conscience. If you are convinced that it would be wrong for you even to attend the ceremony, then it would be wrong for you. On the other hand, you might be convinced that you can, in good conscience, attend the ceremony.

Your attendance or absence from the ceremony is not the most important matter here. More important is what you communicate to your family member about your presence or absence.

If you choose to attend, you can explain that you came because you love your family member, not because you agree with same-sex marriages.

On the other hand, if you choose not to attend, you can explain to your family member that you thought through how best to show love to him or her and also stand up for the truths of Scripture, and you settled on not attending.

The decision on what to do with the wedding invitation is entirely yours. Most important is what you communicate to your family member regarding your decision. Speak the truth in love to your family member (Ephesians 4:15), provide Christian witness and example, and keep your relative in your prayers. God bless you.

Why did God make the world belong to the devil when He was able to defeat the devil?

Because God is all-powerful, he certainly could have prevented the fall of the angels and the subsequent fall of Adam and Eve. God does not explain why he did not prevent those falls—nor is he obligated to do so (Romans 11:33-36).

After the devil led Adam and Eve into sin, God promised a Savior (Genesis 3:15). That Savior would crush Satan one day. By his holy life, sacrificial death and glorious resurrection, Jesus did crush Satan. The devil’s final defeat will take place on the Last Day, when he will be confined to hell forever (Revelation 20:10).

Until the Last Day, Satan retains power and influence as allowed by God (Job 1:12; 2:6). Because of his power and influence, the devil has the title “the prince of this world.” (John 12:31). As mentioned previously, the day will come when that “prince” will be crushed completely and be unable to bother God’s people anymore.

Until that time, God’s people recognize the power and evil intent of Satan (1 Peter 5:8), and they use the spiritual weapons God has given them to be successful in warding off the old evil foe (Ephesians 6:10-18; James 4:7).

If I get cremated, will my soul go to heaven and on Judgment Day my ashes be made back into my body even though I have no skeleton? If I choose cremation, is that OK with God?

When a Christian dies, the soul immediately goes to heaven (Ecclesiastes 12:7; Luke 23:43; Hebrews 9:27). Burial or cremation take place after that. Choosing cremation over traditional burial will not affect your eternal relationship with God.

After sin entered the world, God announced to Adam, “By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground, since from it you were taken; for dust you are and to dust you will return” (Genesis 3:19). As the wages of sin (Romans 6:23), death would be the common experience for people, and the body would begin the process of decomposition at death. In the end, cremation essentially speeds up the process that occurs with burial.

Regardless of cremation or burial, “…a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his [Jesus’] voice and come out” (John 5:28-29).

Since the Bible is silent on the subject of cremation, Christians are free to choose burial or cremation.

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