I've been having the fear of Judgement Day recently. What will it be like? Doesn't it say in the Bible that those living today will be judged more harshly than those who died in Sodom and Gomorrah? What does that mean? How will I be judged? Does that leave for a chance that I won't enter heaven?
1 Thessalonians 4:13-17 describes what we can expect on Judgment Day. Jesus’ parable of the sheep and the goats (Matthew 25:31-46) informs us that the judgment that took place at people’s death will be made public, and those who are alive on the earth at the time of Jesus’ visible return on the last day Continued.
I respect WELS position on close(d) Communion, but don't fully understand the logic. In numerous posts you've stated that only God can look into a person's heart, that Christians of other denominations may have saving faith, and the like. Further, denominations other than WELS believe in the Real Presence of Christ in Communion. It only makes sense that people should be regularly communing in their own church. But why do you insist on complete doctrinal agreement on every point before you allow someone to commune? After all, at family reunions, not everyone gets along perfectly, but no one is denied the meal.
Perhaps it can be helpful if I build off your closing analogy. There is one family of believers, known only to God (1 Corinthians 3:16; Ephesians 1:23; 4:12; 2 Timothy 2:19). Because God alone knows who belongs to that church family, we call it the “invisible church.” You and I live in the world of Continued.
We do have a connection. WELS is in doctrinal fellowship with the Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Australia. WELS and the Evangelical Lutheran Synod of Australia are member churches of the Confessional Evangelical Lutheran Conference.
I have a friend who invited me to their church (ELCA) to have my dog blessed. I have heard of other churches doing this, but is there any biblical reason for this type of blessing? I turned the invitation down because I'm not in fellowship with my friend's church and it seems strange to be blessing animals. What is the WELS view on blessing animals?
We do not have a practice of blessing animals, nor does the Bible lead us to establish such a practice. We recognize that animals are part of God’s creation (Genesis 1), and pets can provide wonderful companionship. Considering all of God’s creation leads us to praise him: “Lord God, open my eyes to the beauty Continued.
While they may not use the title of “precentor,” some of our churches will utilize individuals to lead singing during worship services. “Cantor” is a term more likely to be found in some of our congregations.
The Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America criticizes WELS' use of the NIV, allowance of contemporary worship and “praise bands,” and the WELS “functional” doctrine of ministry as liberalism. What is the WELS response?
I can offer you a personal response. By synodical convention resolution, our church body has taken an “eclectic approach” toward the use of Bible translations in publishing our materials. That means authors can indicate which translations they would like used in their works. Individual congregations have always determined for themselves which Bible translation(s) they are Continued.
I am a practicing WELS member. Is there any chance the Wisconsin and Missouri Synods reunite in fellowship?
You may or may not be aware that representatives of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod (WELS), The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) and the Evangelical Lutheran Synod (ELS) have met annually for the past six years. Together updates from WELS have noted that “The main purpose of these meetings is to provide the synods with the Continued.
The Lausanne Covenant was ratified at the International Congress on World Evangelization, held in Lausanne, Switzerland, in July 1974. 2,300 people, representing 150 nations, attended the Congress and were involved in the ratification of the Covenant. Since that time, the Covenant has become a confession of faith for many evangelical ministries and associations. Following are Continued.
How many Ecumenical Councils are recognized by Lutherans? Historically I think there are seven, however, so far I can only say I understand the doctrinal issues debated and clarified in the first four. 1st Council of Nicaea (325 – Arian Heresy). 1st Council of Constantinople (381 – rejected Apollinarianism; confirmed Divinity of the Trinity; re-affirmed Nicene Creed). Council of Ephesus (431 – rejected Nestorianism & Pelagianism; re-affirmed Nicene Creed). Council of Chalcedon (451 – Affirms Christ is fully God and fully human; Rome and Constantinople Patriarchs are equal). Trying to figure out if the 2nd Council of Constantinople (553), the 3rd Council of Constantinople (680), and the 2nd Council of Nicaea (787) are recognized Lutherans as Ecumenical.
The Second Council of Constantinople (553) affirmed previous creeds and condemned heresies that were plaguing the church at that time. The Third Council of Constantinople (680) addressed the human and divine natures of Jesus Christ and his will. The Second Council of Nicea (787) addressed the veneration of objects. If you are interested in reading Continued.
Where does it say in the Bible that women can’t vote within the church? In a congregation, who decides when Communion is held, pastor, church council or congregation ?
The Bible does not specifically address your first question. The organizational structure of congregations today is quite different from the first-century church. Because of that, we need to take broad scriptural principles and apply them to the organizational structure we enjoy in our congregations today. Those scriptural principles include that of loving head and loving Continued.
Our son and his wife were both raised Lutheran, he as WELS, and her exact denomination I am uncertain of. They have not attended WELS church for years, and recently he asked for release from the WELS. They currently attend a free church. They now have a child and have not yet had him baptized. I am concerned for my grandchild and believe that baptism is commanded and necessary under God's word. We ourselves as grandparents are not active members in our current congregation, but are both WELS. How can we work and support to get the grandchild baptized without causing friction or concern? I assume that since they don't belong to a WELS and because he requested a release that a WELS pastor will not perform a baptism at this point. How do we proceed? Can I do the act of baptism as a confirmed member of the WELS? Thank you.
You are correct in observing that “baptism is commanded and necessary under God’s word.” Your concern for your grandchild is very much in place. While you stated that your son asked for a release of membership, I do not know if he has already been released from membership. Your son may want to contact the Continued.
What does the writer of Hebrews mean here? Hebrews 4:9ff - "There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will perish by following their example of disobedience."
The writer is referring to the spiritual and eternal rest that Christians can look forward to in heaven. The Old Testament Sabbath day pointed ahead to Jesus. He said, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28). The rest that people can find in Jesus Continued.