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Hypothetical Situation re: Conversion

Discussion in 'Theologia Crucis - Lutherans' started by ViaCrucis, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. ViaCrucis

    ViaCrucis Evangelical Catholic of the Augsburg Confession

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    All things considered I'm a Lutheran n00b. Been attending a Lutheran church for the last three years (still not Confirmed, I should really get on that). I've had my nose in the Book of Concord for quite some time now and have identified as Lutheran for longer than I've actually been worshiping in a Lutheran community because Lutheran theology is, well, biblical.

    Having said all that as a preface, my question doesn't really have anything to do with that. It's more that I wanted to make clear my newness to the Lutheran tradition so perhaps my question might be be seen still in that context.

    I've been swirling a question in my head for sometime, as it would relate to a hypothetical situation. If someone were to come up to you and say, "I wish to become a Christian" what would be the right response?

    As my understanding is now, there's simply no way one could want to be a Christian apart from God working through Word and Sacrament to create faith in a person. So it would seem to me I would ask such a person if they believed the Gospel, and if they did, fantastic, I would also point them to go and talk with a pastor about going through the process of becoming a candidate for baptism.

    Is my thinking off base here?

    As someone who is still a recovering Pentecostal/Evangelical, it's one of those questions that I had a very fast and dirty answer to through my years of being trained in the "Four Spiritual Laws" and similar; but not one that has come up specifically in my entryway into Lutheranism.

    For what it's worth, the situation remains a purely hypothetical one, but one I'd nevertheless like to have some grounding in.

    Thanks for hearing me out.

    -CryptoLutheran
     
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  2. Mediaeval

    Mediaeval baptizatus sum

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    Your response seems to be a good one. It is in fact the approach I used with a friend a few years ago who all on her own initiative started showing up at church, asked for a Bible, and began taking Communion. She didn't understand until later that she needed to be baptized, and so she was.
     
  3. PreachersWife2004

    PreachersWife2004 by his wounds we are healed Supporter

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    My thought is that if someone is expressing the wish to become Christian then they probably already are, because it means the Holy Spirit is working that faith in them.

    I believe your response is pretty much on target, VC. :thumbsup:
     
  4. Tangible

    Tangible Decision Theology = Ex Opere Operato

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    ROFL ^_^

    Coming from a similar background, VC, I've struggled with this too. Last year or so I invested some time listening to a series of presentations from Heath Curtis, a young LCMS pastor, linked below. There are both text files and audio, according to your preference. This did more for me to help me understand how to view evangelism through Lutheran eyes than anything else I've ever found.

    http://gottesdienstonline.blogspot.com/2011/05/freed-from-shopkeepers-prison-in.html
     
    Last edited: Dec 31, 2013
  5. Moses Medina

    Moses Medina Layman

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    Your question has been answered very well and by others, so I have nothing to contribute, but I to am a n00b and converted from Pentecostalism.
     
  6. Sword of the Lord

    Sword of the Lord In need of a physician.

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    Is Lutheranism where ex-Pentecostals run to? I'm an ex-Pentecostal myself.
     
  7. Tangible

    Tangible Decision Theology = Ex Opere Operato

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    Ex-Baptist here. In my mind, Pentecostalism is pretty much the antithesis of Lutheranism.
     
  8. Aibrean

    Aibrean Honest. Maybe too Honest.

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    Ex-C&MA which is pretty mom dispensationalist non-denom. Closer to Baptist than anything else.
     
  9. Tangible

    Tangible Decision Theology = Ex Opere Operato

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    OTOH, SDA is pretty antithetical to Lutheranism as well, just in a different direction.

    How many antitheses can something have? ^_^
     
  10. Aibrean

    Aibrean Honest. Maybe too Honest.

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    Ironically my husband comes from SDA. His family on both sides for the most part are SDA.
     
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