I am a lifelong member of WELS. I am very happy that the WELS is a Bible teaching church, but I have a problem with the end of the Athanasian Creed - "Those who have done good will enter eternal life, but those who have done evil will go into eternal fire." That statement is not the true Christian faith as the next sentence in the creed calls out. I've read your responses to others who had made similar comments concerning the Athanasian Creed. The reader of the Athanasian Creed is to understand that the statement "Those who have done good will enter eternal life, but those who have done evil will go into eternal fire" implies that those who believe in Jesus as their Savior will receive forgiveness for their sins, and thereby be saved, while those who do not believe that Jesus is their Savior will receive eternal damnation. I was hoping that the new WELS hymnal will either eliminate the Athanasian Creed altogether, or add an explanation below the creed clarifying the questionable statements at the end. The WELS does a very good job preaching and teaching that salvation is only obtained through faith in Jesus, and not by good works, but then once every year on Trinity Sunday they kind of contradict that good and solid doctrine by using the Athanasian Creed. Is there any plan to address this issue in the new hymnal?
Your question is one that many people ask when they read the Athanasian Creed. Your question also demonstrates the value of providing an explanation—in the service folder or by way of verbal announcement—when congregations use the Athanasian Creed in a worship service. The section of the creed you cited reflects the language of Scripture regarding Continued.
I am hearing about contemplative prayer and centering prayer. Because I can’t find a crystal clear definition of either, I’m not certain whether they’re the same or different things. If either involves emptying the mind, I realize that’s of Eastern religion and not biblical. Yet I hear of so-called Christians doing these practices, and want to respond biblically. Please enlighten me on these terms.
The terms are often used interchangeably. The terms describe an approach to prayer associated with Christian mysticism. That approach seeks to affect one’s consciousness by means of repeating words and employing breathing techniques. This has the supposed purpose of assisting people to listen to the voice of God. Considering this, you have reason to be Continued.
A friend gave me books by Joseph Prince, describing how we can give ourselves Holy Communion every day if we choose during this COVID-19 time. I am skeptical about this. Is this approved by WELS? Is it vital that we continue even in different times to administer the body and blood of Christ to ourselves? I had never heard of this. Thank you.
Thankfully, restrictions on gathering for corporate worship, which includes receiving the Lord’s Supper, are easing. When there were tighter restrictions two months ago, a Together newsletter contained information about the celebration of the Lord’s Supper. This link will take you to that newsletter. Look for the section titled “Communion.” You can subscribe to Together newsletters Continued.
Angels are created beings, created during the six days of creation. As the eternal Son of God, Jesus was involved in their creation (John 1:1-3). Rather than being an angel, Jesus created the angels. What can confuse people, I imagine, is that the Bible sometimes calls Jesus “the angel of the Lord.” When he appeared Continued.
Was the Baptism of John the Baptist the same as the Baptism done by the disciples after the ascension of Jesus?
Through John the Baptist’s preaching, God changed the hearts of people. Sinners were led to confess their sins and acknowledge Jesus of Nazareth as the promised Messiah, the Lamb of God (John 1:29). The Baptism John performed sealed God’s forgiveness to people. The Baptism John performed provided the vehicle through which the Holy Spirit could Continued.
1 Cor 3:2 "I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able." What is the meat and where can I get it? I still feel like all I am fed is milk.
The apostle Paul used the imagery of milk and solid food to describe how he ministered to spiritually immature Christians in Corinth. That imagery is what the writer to the Hebrews also employed (Hebrews 5:13-14). The “meat” of the Christian faith refers to the deeper doctrines of the Bible and the scriptural truths that are Continued.
Hi, I am having a bit of problem that I am not sure how to solve in regard to correcting wrongs. You see when I was a college student, my friend lent me his Netflix login info for about a year. I used it on a few occasions throughout the year and went on to get my own Netflix account. But I still feel guilty because I did not pay for it when my friend lent me his. You see lending someone else your Netflix info is a violation of the Terms of Service (which I did not while I was using my friend's account). I want to try to pay Netflix back, but my family says that seems crazy since Netflix is a transaction based business and does not take donations (This would cost $192 total). Similarly, for the last 3 years of my college education I have had an Amazon Prime Student Account which is half the price of a regular prime account. I was unaware of this until last week, but I found out from the Terms of Service that I am not supposed to share my account or account benefits with my family (My mom runs the account). I feel guilty and want to pay Amazon for those three years as a regular account (Which would cost $360 total). I know that God forgives me and I know that I cannot correct everything I have done wrong. I just want to correct the things I can. I do not know if I am doing this to please God or instead appease my guilty conscience and sense of pride. I just want your opinion on if trying to pay the money back is an idea that makes sense, or should I just ask God for forgiveness and move on?
As Christians, we confess our sins to God (Psalm 32:5). We know that such confession is not meaningless; God forgives sins (1 John 1:9). Your question concerns fruits of repentance: undoing a wrong or making amends for what we have done. Since you stated that you cannot make donations to the companies you mentioned, I Continued.
I have been reading about the Reformation concept "Sola fide" (justification by faith alone), and I have a question for the WELS leadership. If one could become more lackadaisical with this mindset, knowing they would go to heaven regardless of following God's rules, what would your argument be against their thinking, other than appeals to emotion? I am genuinely curious about this, because I read in one post that 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 commands God's followers not to do a multitude of wicked actions, but wickedness and the baring from the Kingdom of God was due to impenitence. I suppose my question is ultimately, can a Christian be wicked, while simultaneously having faith in Jesus and being saved, since salvation comes about by being justified by faith alone, not actions, and if not due to the mere faith of the wicked, how would their disobedience to God's commands have denied themselves entry into heaven? To rephrase this in a less scrambled manner, how immoral can one be, with a 100% chance of being saved, if they espouse faith in Christ?
A starting point with your questions is to recognize from the Bible that Christians are saints and sinners at the same time. Those whom the Holy Spirit has brought to saving faith in Jesus Christ are holy in God’s sight (1 Peter 2:9). In spite of that gracious status, Christians do the evil that God Continued.
The Bible provides information about the martyrdom of the apostle James (Acts 12:2). Beyond that, historians and other writers offer accounts of the deaths of Jesus’ disciples. It is thought that all the disciples, with the exception of John, were put to death for their faith in Jesus Christ. Prior to their deaths, Judas Iscariot Continued.
The Solid Declaration, Article viii, paragraph. 72 reads..."For upon Him [Christ] the Father poured without measure the Spirit of wisdom and power, so that, as man, He has received through this personal union all knowledge and all power in deed and truth." and "...so that He [Christ, according to His human nature] not only knows some things and is ignorant of others, can do some things and is unable to do others, but [according to the assumed human nature] knows and can do all things" How do we reconcile this with the teaching that Christ doesn't know the hour of His return, and that we say Christ 'veiled" Himself according to His humanity? Doesn't that go against our own confessions that say He "knows and can do all things"?
Some of the words you cited describe Jesus’ state of humiliation—that time in Jesus’ earthly life when he did not always or fully use his divine powers and attributes. We get an idea of what that state was like from Jesus’ words of not knowing the day or hour of his visible return to this Continued.
WELS members, past and present, have served in local, state and federal government positions. I do not have a list of those individuals and their positions, however.
Scripture of course does not address your question directly, so we need to look at scriptural principles and seek to make application from them. There is the overarching principle of selfless leading (loving head) and selfless yielding (loving helper) as men and women work together in God’s world (1 Corinthians 11:3). Scripture makes general applications Continued.