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Why did you choose to be a Lutheran?

Discussion in 'Theologia Crucis - Lutherans' started by Ave Maria, Sep 22, 2009.

  1. kdm1984

    kdm1984 LCMS Lutheran

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    I was originally raised in a WELS church, bu my parents left in 1993, and then started doing mostly random and inconsistent "home church" where they got led away by their own whims and notions, including an unhealthy obsession with trying to figure out the year and month of the End Times. My mom in particular got very Pentecostal-ish during this time, obsessed with watching TBN, thinking Benny Hinn did real miracles, etc., and my dad let her get into these things without discernment. This sort of thing lasted a long time, bore very little fruit, and led me to being an agnostic in my late teens and early twenties. I wasn't taught any deeper theology, very little about Biblical morality (porn, fornication, etc.)...my family was loving, but was (and still is) extremely weak theologically, and should have never left organized church (my mom passed away last year; dad is still around, but I no longer consult him on theological issues, and he admits to not thinking about them very much anyway).

    I eventually came back to the faith in 2005 when God convicted me I was leading a sinful life that would lead to hell if I didn't turn from it. Still, it was a long road until I came back to the Lutherans, LCMS in particular in 2018 (confirmed just over a year ago). There were several years spent in Calvary Chapel, a half a year spent with Independent Fundamental Baptists, many years spent online getting influenced by Vision Forum Calvinists...none of these had the balance and stability I remember from Confessional Lutheranism. CC was too emotive and too unstructured in their understanding and application of Scripture, IFB was overly obsessed with getting large numbers of converts that never materialized due to their faulty 'salesmanship' soteriology and poor discipleship, and the Calvinists were too arrogant, self-congratulatory, and self-righteous, always pointing back at themselves and how much more moral and scholarly they thought they were compared to every other type of Christian.

    I've been in an LCMS church for over a year now, and it's been wonderful. There is a good balance of both the mind and the outward working of the Christian life.
     
  2. Newtheran

    Newtheran Well-Known Member

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    EO = Coke...
    Lutheran = Diet Coke...
    RCC = New Coke?

    :)
     
  3. Resha Caner

    Resha Caner Expert Fool

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    I don't think that works. I'm Lutheran; I love Coke - despise Diet Coke.
     
  4. tampasteve

    tampasteve Lutheran Staff Member Purple Team - Moderator Supporter

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    Coke Zero - or "Zero Sugar" for me! Coke Zero Cherry is even better!
     
  5. Resha Caner

    Resha Caner Expert Fool

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    I'm not sure we can be friends.
     
  6. tampasteve

    tampasteve Lutheran Staff Member Purple Team - Moderator Supporter

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    Some things are just non-negotiable ;)
     
  7. MarkRohfrietsch

    MarkRohfrietsch Unapologetic Apologist Supporter

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    Lutherans drink beer, not Coke products.
     
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  8. FireDragon76

    FireDragon76 En cuanto lo hicisteis a uno de estos mis hermanos Supporter

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    I'm a ginger ale or wine kind of guy.
     
  9. Brigid63

    Brigid63 Traditional High Church

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    Root Beer or wine, here.
     
  10. tampasteve

    tampasteve Lutheran Staff Member Purple Team - Moderator Supporter

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    I can get on board with that :)
     
  11. Newtheran

    Newtheran Well-Known Member

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    I was a Southern Baptist for over three decades after - to use Baptist terminology - "getting saved". Over the years I grew increasingly concerned about the direction that Baptist worship was going. The final straw was, after a move, visiting two churches...leaving one without hearing the word "Jesus" once in the first 40 minutes of praise band music...leaving the second after discovering the worship leader was a dude with a ponytail, shirt unbuttoned to his belt, and wasn't a Christian. They had just hired him to up the game when it came to their praise team. I saw nothing holy or worshipful about what had devolved into entertainment to tickle culturally compromised ears.

    So I stopped going to church for about a year and started doing a lot of reading about church history. At the end of that period, I realized that there were only two rational options: to become Eastern Orthodox (the original church) or Confessional Lutheran (the church that attempted to correct the errors of Roman Catholicism after the schism).

    The videos at Lutheran Satire Website gave me a good introduction to Lutheranism online as did Journey to Orthodoxy for Orthodoxy.

    There was one LCMS church locally, an ELCA church (which was out of the question given their stand on moral issues), and a Greek Orthodox church. There were no WELS churches. I reached out to the LCMS and Greek Orthodox church by phone and email and only heard back from the LCMS church. The rest is history.

    The depth of communion with God that I've found in liturgical worship and regular communion is really something.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
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  12. James Murphy

    James Murphy LCMS Lutheran

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    I would point out that there's contemporary worship in the LCMS too. It's not ALL liturgical worship.
     
  13. Newtheran

    Newtheran Well-Known Member

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    Yes, that is an unfortunate trend in the LCMS, and something I believe to be a mistake. Had the local LCMS church been involved in that, I probably would not have become a Lutheran for as much as I liked Luther's writings, philosophical arguments have little value in the face of disordered worship.

    In trying to be everything to everyone, you end up being nothing to anyone...and you're never going to outdo evangelical entertainment based worship so long as you hold on to any remnant of that liturgy.

    We're now in a post-Christian culture. Efforts to conform our worship and beliefs to the world's standards are doomed to fail. Instead, the Christian church should offer the timeless truths and practices it has always offered so that when they come to the end of their worldly ropes, we will be able to offer something besides a cheap imitation of what they're already familiar with.
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2019
  14. kdm1984

    kdm1984 LCMS Lutheran

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    In full agreement with this!

    Baptist and Nondenom churches (I've attended both in recent years--IFB and Calvary Chapel) do indeed have a compromise problem where worship and even the sermons from the pulpit can frequently devolve into men thinking they're up on a stage to entertain (lacking reverence--big issue in the "contemporary" churches), or else "storytell" and run five tangential miles with a small portion of Scripture (saw this in both IFB and CC). I read what the Apostle Paul expected of male leadership in the church, and such things aren't fitting. (Neither is the altar call -- the church is for the body of believers; never once saw someone "saved" in an altar call in my years of attending these churches.) That, along with a fruitless host of scandals, and various theological inconsistencies in both kinds of churches, drove me to consider LCMS or EO, as you did. And the LCMS had a better response, as in your case.
     
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  15. TKA_TN

    TKA_TN New Member

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    I grew up in a Reformed church and never had any problems with it. My parents sent me to a Catholic high school and I started learning about the early church, the church fathers, the sacraments, etc. After that, the Presbyterian church just wasn't a fit.

    My wife grew up Episcopalian, so we wanted to find something with a traditional background and sacramental. We found a LCMS church about 15 minutes from our house and haven't looked back. We're involved, I love the liturgy, I love that when I take Holy Communion I'm taking the Body and Blood of our Lord. I love hearing I'm forgiven of my sins every Sunday, and I love that we got our little girl baptized a few weeks ago and that she now belongs to the Holy Christian Church on Earth.
     
  16. Tempura

    Tempura Noob Supporter

    +1,678
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    I was baptized into an evangelical-lutheran church as an infant. Confirmation at age 14. Religion sowed its seeds, but I became serious about Christ only later in my adult life when I absolutely had to. I was never a church-goer (these forums, as well as some people in my "real" life, give me real fellowship) and I always was an introvert. Mostly when I go somewhere where the church is involved, it's a funeral. I am not active in the church, but I've grown to appreciate it when I go. Last year I took the communion after so many years.

    Often, in the church, there has been a peaceful spirit of reverence. Sometimes I have felt weird about things such as woman pastors, I remember when it was new around here. I'm very much a stubborn traditionalist, which can be a problem for me and most of the time I'm just like a 200-year old geezer who can't accept change with anything, but I mean no harm.

    I don't ever remember feeling, when in church, that someone is trying by popular means to influence me too much. Most of the time it has been something that I imagine people easily calling "boring", but I do like how I am not there to be impressed by a performance. Christ has always been the focal point of every sermon I remember hearing. But there is a movement around here, I've heard, to form a REAL Lutheran church, as some people think the church is accommodating itself too much in order to please modern people and to stop people leaving the church entirely. The church has been bleeding and there have been movements encouraging people to leave, but I believe it's more about reactionary atheism than people changing denominations. I do not want the church to conform to the world, so God bless everyone in their efforts to keep the service pure and scriptural.

    Few years ago I began to read the works of Martin Luther. Even through a translation to my language (some of them which were already just imperfect transcripts originally) his way of speaking is easy to recognize, powerful, simple enough but still thorough. The books I have got are mostly collections, but I am planning to get more. I do not treat him as an infallible person, but I am so glad I've read his words. Martin Luther got something through to me, namely Christ and my absolute need for Christ, and right back to Christ Himself again. Christ is glorified in everything, and at the same time I can't afford to give any of it to myself. I can only afford to give my faith and thankfulness to God and His grace in Christ, and love for my neighbor as the result, as natural outgrowth and in God's will, instead of trying to win God over and treating love as labor. It was striking, and relieving. My fluctuating weak faith was changing, and now there was something that I could plainly understand and agree with my soul. I started to read the Bible too in a bit new way. But all of this started as me wanting to get to know better about Luther, this historical person, although I did have faith-based motivation too, but I didn't get far in knowing the person because suddenly I found myself to be in his "audience", so to speak. When I was reading, I could almost envision him there, preaching sternly but with absolutely good will, trying to get something through my skull. I went there in order to learn about Luther, but Luther didn't care and started preaching Christ to me instead!

    So while the church itself did sow some good seeds, and I have liked the quiet reverence, I didn't attend much. Perhaps that will change. I am still on their books, not planning to leave. I didn't choose to be a Lutheran, I just never left. Luther's works have been precious to me though. I might be the least Lutheran here, because other than reading some of Luther's works, I do not have a good grasp of Lutheran theology in practice or knowledge, or even about what's happening in the denomination. I always just think of myself as a plain Christian. But I felt like typing this drivel, so here you go brothers and sisters. Hope I didn't offend anyone in case I said something inappropriate. Sometimes I lurk here, and some of the topics go over my head, because my actual active bond with the denomination and physical church is weak. I enjoyed reading some of your posts.

    Christ be with you all.
     
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