Thursday, October 25, 2012

The current debate in the WELS concerning universal, objective Justification

Christian News, October 29, 2012, Vol. 50, No. 42

The conference of presidents, on the recent call list, Oct. 2012, reports that Paul Rydecki has been suspended from ministry of the WELS. No further information is given, and one is left to wonder what did he do????

On the Intrepid Lutherans web page there appeared the announcement that one of its contributors, Rev. Paul Rydecki, has been suspended from the WELS. Following articles and an explanation from Rydecki explained that the reason was because of Rydecki’s views concerning objective, universal, justification. He stated and defended his position in a paper given last June in Oshkosh, “Are You A Dresden Lutheran?” A copy of the DP letter of suspension to Rydecki was also posted.

One wonders why more information concerning suspensions for doctrinal reasons cannot be given. It seems that in order to understand what is going on in the Synod one must go to unofficial sources.

What Paul Rydecki (also the egocentric synergist Greg Jackson) is teaching on justification is nothing new to the Lutheran Church and something which Confessional Lutherans have always rejected.

The position that Rydecki is promoting has its origin back in Melanchthon’s teachings on the three causes of conversion — the Holy Spirit, the Word of God, and the will of man. In the discussions in the 50s between the old American Lutheran Church and the LCMS concerning justification, the ALC wanted to teach that God had secured and provided salvation for all people. This is objective or universal redemption, not objective justification. The LCMS along with the WELS insisted on the words, that God has not only secured and provided salvation for all, but that God has declared the whole world righteous in Christ Jesus. This they called objective Justification. (A term that is preferred over universal justification, which can cause some misunderstandings.) By only saying “secured and provided salvation” the door is open for some cooperation or contributions on the part on man. Good, God has provided it, how do I get it? But by insisting on the term God has DECLARED the whole world righteous, all works or cooperation on man’s part are removed.

The men in the ALC, from the old Ohio Synod, wanted to teach “Erst muss der Mensch glauben, dann wird er gerechtfertigt (first must the man believe, then he becomes justified). This old error taught that first one must believe that Christ died for all, then he will be justified. This puts the cart before the horse, my faith before my justification. Against this old heresy Walther and others maintained the formula – Justificatio non post fidem, sed per fidem (Justification not after faith, but through faith). This is the position of Lutheran Orthodoxy. Today we use the term objective justification to teach this truth. God has declared the whole world righteous in Christ Jesus (God so loved the world, John 3:16; The Lutheran church sings, “Christ thou Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world, have mercy on me.”)

Of course now, the other side, the Holy Spirit working through the means of Grace must now change the hard and disobedient will of man which is dead in sin and an enemy of God. The Holy Spirit moves the will of man to accept and believe this objective justification. This we call subjective justification. The two must go together; — and you can’t have one without the other!!! If one rejects the objective, universal justification, he cannot be saved. He is lost. We do not believe in universalism, everyone is going to heaven.

The Bible connects universal redemption and universal, objective, justifi- cation and treats them as the same.For when we were still without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. Romans 5:5-7. Christ died for all. This Rydecki does not reject. But in the same book, a chapter earlier, Paul writes, But to him who does not work but believes on Him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is accounted for righteousness, Romans 4:4-6

God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:18-20 Therefore, as through one man’s offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man’s righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. 19 For as by one man’s disobedience many (i.e., all) were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many (i.e., all) will be made righteous. (Rom 5:18,19)

The Lutheran Confessions, although not using the term objective justification, teach this concept.

But when the Lord Jesus Christ came, He forgave to all people the sin, which no one could avoid. … Christ took away the sin of the whole world, as John testified saying in John 1:29, “Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” Apology, Art IV, Justification, 103 Concordia, page 99

Just as the preaching of repentance is universal, so also the promise of the Gospel is universal, that is, it belongs to all people. Formula of Concord, Art XI, 28, Concordia, p. 606

All have sinned and (all) are justified freely. Smalcald Articles, second part, Art. I,3, Concordia, page 263.

By way of illustration: A man pays my entire debt, gives me a check, and declares me debt free. But I must believe this, cash the check. It does me no good until I cash it. But I cannot cash it before he declares me debt free.

This clear teaching that God has declared all people righteous, Objective Justification (WELS catechism, question 253) Rydecki refuses to accept and teach. Thus he is rightly to be removed from the ministry of the WELS!

Pastor M.F. Bartling
Onalaska, WI, Oct. 2012

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Vote Your Faith Not Your Fear

by Dr. Laurence L. White

Christian News, October 22, 2012; Vol. 50, No. 41

  Houston - Texas It’s that time again. In the midst of a heated presidential campaign - portrayed, as always, as the most important election in the history of the republic -pro-life voters are confronted with a choice between an ambivalent Republican and a pro-abortion Democrat. I, for one, believe that it is high time we stopped settling for “the lesser of two evils.” I believe the time has finally come for us to vote our faith and not our fear. My vote for president on this Election Day will be a write in.

As we debate support for the current moderate Republican nominee, abortion is already a well-established part of American culture. We have gradually grown accustomed to the killing of 4,000 babies every day. The 40th birthday (how’s that for irony) of Roe vs Wade is just a few months away. We talk about nearly 60 million murdered children.

What we don’t often consider is that also means is that there are nearly 60 million women out there who have had abortions and nearly sixty million men who fathered a child in a one night stand without ever knowing it or helped to arrange for the removal of an inconvenient pregnancy. Those awful numbers mean that there are very few families left in America which have not been directly touched by the slaughter. The spiritual degradation and damage which these numbers represent is terrifying. The sad truth is that after forty years we are farther away from stopping abortion today than we have ever been. With every year that passes it becomes less likely that we will ever be able to end the killing. Most Americans today, especially the younger ones, have come to view sex as just another form of casual recreation. They are convinced that anyone who believes that sex should be the expression of love between a husband and wife within the lifelong commitment of marriage is a judgmental hypocrite who wants to impose his own repressive hang-ups on everybody else. As that perspective becomes increasingly dominant, the practical necessity of abortion will become ever more compelling.

I am convinced that Bible Christians – especially those of us who have been actively involved in politics as citizens –have failed to stop abortion because we have failed to consistently put our faith into practice and be true to our convictions. We have known from the beginning what God says about the precious life of the unborn. Our pro-life rhetoric has proclaimed over and over again for forty long years that the death of every one of these defenseless babies breaks God’s heart. And yet we have gone on about our business as usual throughout those forty years as though we were not in the middle of a life and death catastrophe. We have been gradually conditioned to co-exist with abortion. “Sure, we are pro-life,” we have assured ourselves, but then we have realistically hastened to add, “but we really can’t expect abortion to end anytime soon.”

Our patient willingness to allow this abomination to continue year after year is a contradiction and a denial of everything we say we believe about the God of love and life whom we profess to serve.

We got involved in the political process with good intentions for the best reasons –the unborn were being slaughtered, marriage and family were being devastated. But politics changed us more than we changed politics. We rightly rejected the devil’s lie of the absolute separation of church and state and recognized our God given responsibility to fight for Biblical values in the public square. But our persistent Adversary didn’t give up and go away. Instead, as usual, he found a different point of vulnerability. He tempted us to confuse our own political opinions with the absolute truth of God. We failed to maintain a clear consistent distinction between – “This is what I think” and “Thus saith the Lord.” By so doing we have allowed God to be reduced to the status of a mascot for the Republican Party. All too often we have bowed down before the pagan altar of the GOP when we should have been standing steadfastly for GOD. We seem to have forgotten that abortion is unlike any other issue. This single issue is a direct confrontation between life and death, God and Satan. Any Christian who will not stand boldly for life is guilty of betraying and denying the Lord Jesus Christ. Thousands of babies die with every delay and every concession. Politics is the art of the possible, the world told us. We were endlessly reminded that in order to accomplish anything in politics you have to be practical and realistic. There are no perfect candidates, the experts have advised us. In politics we have to settle for what we can get. Bit by bit our politics have been seduced by worldly games of power and success, politics as usual, and all the while the babies have gone on dying.

We’ve compromised, we’ve adjusted, we’ve settled. We’ve supported candidate after candidate who was–at best–ambivalent about abortion. We’ve settled for the lesser of two evils over and over again, even though deep in our hearts, we’ve always known that these guys didn’t understand the horror of abortion and would never be willing to take any personal or political risk to actually try stopping it. We should learn from our enemies. Can you imagine the Democrats ever nominating a presidential candidate who was not passionately committed to a woman’s right to choose? Can you image Obama, or any other Democrat president, ever nominating a Supreme Court justice who was not unequivocally, absolutely pro-abortion? It could never happen. Unfortunately those who are pro-death understand the crucial importance of this single issue to their world-view much more clearly than those who are pro-life. The Republican Party establishment views pro-life voters with scornful contempt. Based on our past cowardice, they confidently assume that we “have nowhere else to go” and will continue to vote Republican because the Democrat will always be worse. They deride us as useful fools who will settle for vague promises and an occasional scrap tossed their way. As long as we continue to submit to their cynical manipulation, and to allow fear, not faith, to determine our vote, the killing of the unborn will continue.

We have got to finally deal with reality. The sad fact is that anyone who is only nominally pro-life, uncommitted or indifferent on this issue is, in effect, pro-abortion. This is true because the challenge that confronts pro-lifers is infinitely greater than that which confronts abortion supporters. Pro-aborts don’t have to change anything. All they have to do is leave things the way they are, maintaining a well-established status quo. Pro-lifers, on the other hand, have to bring about a cultural revolution. They have to challenge what has come to be defined by all of our cultural elites - media, entertainment and academia - as “reproductive freedom” and then overturn forty years of history. Pro-lifers have to transform a culture of death back into a culture of life. The Republican establishment and their moderate stalking horses are determined to avoid this issue, whenever possible. Their strategy has been the same for decades and it works! They say as much as they have to during the primaries in order to placate Christian voters while they eliminate real pro-life candidates. Once the primaries are over, they immediately run for the center, studiously avoiding the dreaded social issues. When they do manage to win an election that same craven pattern continues - minimal talk and no action. The consequence of these sad facts is that the same number of babies will die during the administration of a nominally pro-life Republican coward, as during the administration of a radical pro-abortion Democrat.

We’ve made these expedient choices over forty year because we wanted to win elections. We’ve made these choices because we were afraid of what would happen to the country if our personal conservative views on government, taxes, the economy, foreign policy, etc, etc. did not prevail. We have soothed our consciences with the thought that at least with a Republican president we have the possibility of moderate/conservative Supreme Court appointments. The record of Republican court appointments contradicts that hope. But more basically, we have allowed so much ground to be lost in the battle for the soul of America, that we are well beyond the point where the Supreme Court can solve this problem for us. We need a president who is passionately committed to life; a president who hates abortion and recognizes the dire threat that it poses to the survival of America. We need a president who will fearlessly articulate his own firm convictions on this issue again and again, to rally the nation, and recall America to its most basic belief – “that all men are created equal and have been endowed by their Creator” with an unalienable right to life. All long as we are content to settle for the docile servants of the party establishment as the lesser of two evils that will never happen. As long as we allow ourselves to be used and manipulated by cynical party bosses we will never succeed in rousing the people of God who sense the lack of spiritual integrity in our efforts. We’ve been practical and realistic for forty years and every single day of those forty years 4,000 more babies have died. It ought to be plain to anyone by now that our lesser of two evils strategy has failed. We must finally stop being practical and realistic. The time is long past due for us to be faithful, to stand for truth and life without compromise or concession, come what may, and entrust the outcome to God.

I will never entrust the lives of unborn children into the hands of another milk-toast weathervane Republican again. On this Election Day I am going to vote my faith not my fear.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

CN's Disgusting Political Opinions

Christian News, Vol. 50, No. 40, October 15, 2012

Former First Things editor, Anthony Sacramone, comments on Dr. Martin Noland’s review of Power, Politics, and the Missouri Synod – A Conflict That Changed American Christianity (Fortress Press, 2011, Foreword by Martin Marty) in Logia. Note “Former First Things Editor – Anthony Sacromone Says That Herman Otten Is a ‘Crank’“, “CN’s Response to Blogger Praised by McCain, Wilken, and Veith”, and “Differences Between Neuhaus and Otten” in the October 8, 2012 CN.
CN has not yet received a response to the questions CN asked the former First Things editor and defender of Father Neuhaus who is being praised by LCMS conservatives critical of CN. (CN, October 8, 2012, p. 13).

Dr. Noland wrote in his Logia review of the Burkee book:
“When Herman Otten saw what the Lutheran Witness was doing, he replied with his own political opinions. Most LCMS conservatives found Otten’s journalistic ethics and political opinions noisome, and his opinions on the Jewish people particularly reprehensible. That is the reason that the synod’s conservatives formed other organizations and other news sources, beginning in 1964.”

Noisom – Disgusting
The unabridged edition of the Random House Dictionary of the English Language” defines noisome: “1. offensive or disgusting, as an odor. 2. Harmful, injurious, or noxious.”

CN wrote to Logia and Dr. Noland on October 8:

An LCMS theologian during his liberal days wrote a graduate thesis for the Lutheran School of Theology to show that Otten began Christian News to get Barry Goldwater elected U.S. President. “Politics and Religion?”, a front page editorial in the October 19, 1964 Lutheran News (now Christian News), said at the height of this election: “Which candidate does Lutheran News endorse for election. Neither one. This is a Lutheran newspaper, and we intend to keep it that way. We do not publish with the intention of influencing the election.”

CN has for fifty years published many articles opposing communism and socialism and supporting what the Bible says about private property. CN did no more than what C.F.W. Walther did with his Communism and Socialism. CN sold thousands of copies of this Walther booklet. Could you tell me what “journalistic ethics and political opinions” most LCMS conservatives found “noisome?”’

What are “the opinions on the Jewish people” expressed in Christian News which “most LCMS conservatives” found “particularly reprehensible” and for that reason formed other organizations and news sources beginning in 1964? What organizations and news sources did they form?

Here CN broke no new ground. It simply defended what Article XVII of the Augsburg Confession says about “Certain Jewish opinions which are even now making an appearance.” CN has repeatedly offered to publish a statement from anyone who can show where CN has not told the truth about anything including the Jewish people, Israel, war, Millennialism, the Holocaust, Communism, Islam, Mormons, Joseph Barbour, who was defended by Affirm, etc.”

Note CN’s Statement of Policy on page 4 of each issue of CN. It was written by Kurt Marquart. Point 5 says: “The writers of Christian News claim no sort of infallibility for themselves, they therefore invite readers to notify them of any errors of fact, judgment, or theology, which may occur from time to time so that suitable corrections may be made.’

Hopefully, Logia will publish CN’s entire letter and answer CN’s questions.

Journalistic Ethics
What were CN’s “noisome, disgusting” opinions which most conservatives opposed beginning in 1964 found in CN and therefore found it necessary to avoid any association or promotion of Christian News. Check the record. What were the “disgusting” journalistic ethics? CN photographed articles written by liberals for purposes of evidence only and not to make money but simply to show CN was not quoting out of context. CN wrote to many liberals to ask them just where they stood on the theological issues in controversy. CN sent a copy of CN to any liberal theologian mentioned in CN and gave him an opportunity to show where CN had not told the truth.

Many did at least at first consider CN’s anti-communist position along with CN’s position that no supporter of abortion, evolution, or higher criticism of the Bible should be permitted to remain on the LCMS clergy “politics”.
The facts show that the conservatives Noland defends were worried about their careers in the LCMS and did not want to name liberals as CN was doing.

When the International Council of Churches held a world congress in Geneva, Switzerland, in 1965, the ICCC placed a copy of CN’s Baal or God in the registration packet of all delegates. They came from scores of nations and denominations around the world. CN soon had readers in more than 60 nations. After the editor spoke at other ICCC congresses on justification, Luther’s theology, the papacy, a Twentieth Century Reformation and Formula of Concord, etc., he was invited to speak in Australia, the Philippine’s, Chile, Holland, Germany, India and throughout the U.S. Unfortunately, he had to refuse most invitations since he was the fulltime pastor of a congregations and also thought it was more important to have a family of children faithful to God’s Word. He noted that the family life of at least some Christian leaders constantly on the road had suffered. While they were trying to save the world they were losing their own children.

Major Foundations
Unfortunately, major foundations which helped others send Christian literature overseas were not interested in helping CN fulfill all the requests CN received from overseas for subscriptions and books CN published. The foundations kept their distance from any editor who dared challenge the liberalism at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis and elsewhere in the LCMS. Anyone who supported Luther’s scriptural position against birth control was considered “noisome.” CN’s stand on unscriptural divorce and womanizing did not help.

When CN was opposing abortion during the 1960s and insisted that pro-abortionists should be removed from the LCMS clergy roster, few conservatives joined CN. Hardly any complained when CPH published a book supporting abortion, when the LCMS’s Lutheran Family Services of Illinois allowed for the murder of unborn infants, when Lutheran hospitals were performing abortions, and when Jesus First listed a prominent LCMS pro-abortion clergyman as one of its supporters. When CN filed charges of false doctrine vs. a prominent LCMS clergyman who publicly promoted abortion, CN received no support.

In 1977 the editor was invited by the Lutheran Editor’s and Manager’s Association to a meeting at Concordia Publishing House to speak on “Why Christian News?” He concluded: “Why Christian News? If you Lutheran journalists on the staff of official Lutheran publications continue to support abortion or remain silent about this tremendous sin, Lutherans surely need an independent publication which warns that abortion is sinful and which exposes the fact that thousands of unborn infants are being killed in ‘Lutheran hospitals.’”

CN’s position that abortionists among the LCMS clergy should be removed was a “noisome” political opinion.

Bonhoeffer and the Holocaust
During the 1960’s CN said no more about the Holocaust than Winston Churchill and Dwight Eisenhower did in all of their voluminous writing about WWII. The myth of the 6 million along with the Bonhoeffer myth among non-thinking churchmen, who blindly follow the crowd and refuse to study the evidence, came in later years. The index to the Concordia Theological Monthly from 1930-1959 shows that nothing in the journal edited by the faculty of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis and published by the LCMS said anything about the Holocaust, Bonhoeffer, or any of his writings.

Now the seminary, the LCMS administration, the conservatives who blast Christian News for its “noisome” views claim Bonhoeffer as the greatest Lutheran theologian since Martin Luther. Was the faculty formerly so ignorant that it failed to recognize this?

The “noisome – disgusting” views expressed in CN in the 1960s was what CN was writing about communism, socialism, the captive nations, Christian martyrs suffering under communism. Some of the hundreds of articles CN published on these matters are in The Christian News Encyclopedia and a Christian Handbook on Vital Issues. A footnote at the end of “The Forgotten People – Stand With Persecuted Christians” lists a few of the CN “noisome” articles on communism (p. 13).

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Scriptural View of Creation - Sex - Marriage Taught at Camp Trinity

Dr. Pamela Moehl – Cedar Hill, Missouri, Lutheran Church

Christian News, October 8, 2012; Vol. 50, No 39      
What the Bible teaches about creation, sex, and marriage was emphasized at a retreat held at Camp Trinity, New Haven, Missouri, September 28-30. Educational Consultant Dr. Pamela Moehl was the primary speaker at the gathering.(

Some 50 youth and their leaders from Cedar Hill, Missouri Lutheran Church attended the gathering. Dr. David A. Bilgreen is the pastor of the Missouri Synod Lutheran Church congregation. LCMS’s 2012 Lutheran Annual reports that the congregation has 278 baptized members, 213 confirmed members and an average attendance of 205.

Dr. Moehl’s lectures are summarized in a 26 page booklet she distributed at Camp Trinity. It is titled “Sanctification 2012” and shows a youth with these words on his shirt: Psalm 119:9: “How shall a young man keep his way pure. By living according to your Word.

The cover has this prayer: “Give me one pure and holy passion, And give me one magnificent obsession. Give me one glorious ambition for my life, To know and follow hard after you. To grow as your disciple in the truth. This world is empty, pale, and poor compared to knowing you my Lord. Lead me on and I will run after you.”

Dr. Moehl begins with the “7 C’s of History” promoted at the Answers In Genesis Museum in St. Petersburg, Kentucky. They are:
Creation, Corruption, Catastrophe, Confusion, Christ, Cross, Consummation.

In a section on “God’s Design” Moehl says:
“The Bible portrays healthy sexuality as more than just purity. There is a beauty, a joy and a God-centeredness to sex in marriage according to Scripture. Whether single or married, healthy sexuality grows out of an understanding of God’s perspective on sex as described in His Word.

“The first two chapters of Genesis describe God’s perfect purposes for humankind and positive view of human sexuality” (7).

Moehl comments on healthy and unhealthy relationships. Moehl made it clear that for Christians there is to be no sex outside of marriage. She noted:

“Myth: If you’re still a virgin, there must be something wrong with you!

“Truth: Studies show that virgins have better life outcomes in the areas of high school graduation, college attendance, marriage, finances, and general health” (11).

She quoted Tom Lickona: “Not long after the sexual revolution was underway, clinicians observed that the new sexual freedom was creating a psychological disaster. We began to study Harvard students who complained of emptiness and despondency. There was a gap between their social conscience and the morality they were practicing in their personal lives. The new sexual permissiveness was leading to empathy relationships and feelings of self-contempt. When some of them moved away from moral relativism to a system of clear values – typically embracing a drug-free lifestyle and a strict sexual code – their relationships with the opposite sex improved, as did relations with peers in general, relationships with parents, and their academic performance.” – Tom Lickona (12).

Moehl said: “Satan’s plot was to divorce sex from the intimacy of marriage. What was created to be both a physical and relational expression of oneness became an act of mere physical pleasure – devoid of God and focused on self. To be sure, the physical pleasure of sex is alluring and even addiction. But sex outside of God’s boundaries has destructive spiritual, relational and physical repercussions” (13).

Moehl continues: “This passage describes the progressive sexual perversion of humanity. Paul’s reflection on sexual immorality underscores one crucial forgotten factor in most discussions on the subject. Sexual immorality starts with a wrong view of God. Idolatry is the root of sexual immorality.

“This sexually perverse environment has confronted the people of God throughout history. From the homosexuality of Sodom and Gomorrah, to the sexually degrading fertility rites of the Canaanites in the Old Testament, to the temple prostitutes of Corinth in the New Testament, God’s people have always been bombarded with sexual temptation. What we face in today’s world is nothing new” (13).

In a section on “Sex and the Brain” Moehl said:

Medical educator and physician Dr. Gary Rose has a lot to say about the neurochemistry of sex, and how it enables the permanent “warping” of young minds by exposure to a hyper-sexualized culture. In a recent interview, Dr. Rose explains the mechanism by which the damage is done.

Dr. Rose: “This is so important because in young people their brains are still being molded. If they are getting the wrong flood of chemicals— if their neural pathways are being developed in an abnormal way, those parts of the brain will be superhighways that can’t be changed when they come into adult life. People who have multiple sexual partners at a young age are likely going to continue to have multiple partners all their lives. Certain synapses of the brain will be pruned off— and risk avoidance and delayed gratification may be affected” (14).

Mark Kastleman, in his landmark book, The Drug of the New Millennium-The Brain Science Behind Internet Pornography Use, sheds light on the addictive power of porn. His research, with the help of leading neurologists, uncovered the truth about pornography: it alters the brain and is addicting. Pornography addiction is real.

“Here’s what happens - During the sexual process the brain releases neurochemicals that, in a healthy marriage, significantly enhance the couple’s relationship. The same chemicals are released in the brain when viewing pornography, but the effect is anything but positive!

“What is created is an actual chemical dependency on those natural chemicals to provide a ‘high’ or an ‘escape.’ In a healthy marriage, sexual intimacy has the powerful effect of strengthening the bonds of marriage. It makes the couple more equipped to lead happy, healthy, productive lives. Viewing pornography releases the same natural chemicals but in an environment that is completely sterile of anything uplifting or good. Very different from a healthy marriage. A married couple comes together in a warm, mutually beneficial experience. The relationship is bound together in love, sacrifice, and commitment.

Viewing porn is a powerfully negative experience that leaves the viewer less able to cope with life’s stresses, less equipped to lead a happy, healthy, productive life. There is nothing that comes from viewing it that has positive, long lasting value, like peace or strength.

“Until an addiction to porn is stopped, the user only faces a future of more negatives: despair, self-loathing, and a tendency for more deviant material and behavior to satisfy the unbridled urge for more, more, more” (14).

The Reality of Porn
“Exposure to Pornography - The Justice Department estimates that nine of 10 children between the ages of 8 and 16 have been exposed to pornography online. Software company Symantec found that 47 percent of school-age children receive pornographic spam on a daily basis, and representatives from the pornography industry told Congress’ COPA Commission that as much as 20 to 30 percent of the traffic to some pornographic Web sites are children.

“Ralph DiClemente, a behavioral scientist at Emory University, described the danger of this exposure. He said, ‘[Children] can’t just put [porn] into their worldview, because they don’t have one.’ He went on to explain that pornography becomes a building block in a child’s mental and emotional development. When pornography becomes a filter through which the rest of life is understood, serious damage occurs. A 2001 report found that more than half of all sex offenders in Utah were adolescents- and children as young as 8 years old were committing felony sexual assault.

“The porn industry fights laws such as the Child Online Protection Act, which requires pornographers to use age verification systems, because they know this flood of pornographic imagery is creating a new generation of consumers. This increased culture-wide sexualization is generating incredible public health risks. One in five adults in the United States has an STD, and 19 million new STD infections occur annually, almost half of them among youth ages 15 to 24" (15).

Happy Marriage vs. Addiction to Porn
“So, in healthy marriage, sexual intimacy is a gift. You come away from the experience a better person, more committed to your spouse. You are more compassionate and understanding. You are better able to tackle the challenges of life. You’re empowered to be successful in your important roles as an individual, in your family, at work, in the community–everywhere!

“In contrast, with an addiction to porn, viewing it and acting out, leaves you with a mental and emotional hangover that depletes your feelings of self-worth. After the rush that produces the temporary high, there is no one to turn to for love and acceptance. You ultimately feel trapped and depressed.

“Porn narrows the viewer’s perspective of some of the best things in life and greatly limits his ability to appreciate them. This narrowness greatly distorts his view of reality. Truly, the ‘benefits’ of feeling the release of these natural drugs as a result of viewing pornography is a very, very shallow victory.

Healthy Sex in Marriage
Healthy sex in marriage is possible for those who have struggled with pornography addiction. The good news is that you can reverse this problem and find peace as well as appropriate intimacy with your spouse. People are turning from porn every day and working to get their life back. You can too. Believe it can happen for you, and it most assuredly will as you pursue the path that leads to it.

“Pursue the path that leads to new patterns of thought.

“Thoughts of porn and the mental images that are stored in your brain don’t just suddenly disappear. Over many years you have wired your brain to connect to porn as your ‘thought of choice.’ At many different moments throughout the day, particularly when you’re tired, stressed, etc. –moments when you’re not at your best-your brain goes there.

So, the key is to develop new patterns of thought that will replace the old standby thoughts of porn. This way your brain begins to pursue new pathways. Over time, as you continue to pursue them, they become stronger and stronger. New interests begin to take over as old porn habits are replaced with new and positive ones.

“Porn doesn’t just go away. You push it out of your life by replacing it” (16).

What is Secondary Virginity?
“Secondary virginity makes a person emotionally and spiritually whole again. God wants to restore our purity. Even though the physical consequences of premarital sex can be devastating and life threatening, some people underestimate the emotional and spiritual effects of sex outside of marriage. Furthermore, the emotional and spiritual effects of sex can be longer lasting and even more severe than the physical repercussions.

“After having premarital sex, a person may feel lonely, hurt, broken, afraid, guilty, used, unlovable (by God and others), confused, and many other emotions. Although it might seem like these feelings will never go away, eventually they can diminish and sometimes even disappear. Through prayer, counseling, confession, and penance, God has the power heal us. This process doesn’t work like magic. One must be truly sorry, understanding the hurt that has been caused. He or she should sincerely desire forgiveness so they can be made whole again. And, most importantly, one must seriously commit him/herself to a life of chastity (refrain from sexual activity outside of marriage).

“Secondary virginity is a gift from God. It should not be received lightly and it is not something that happens immediately. It takes time for an injured person to heal and it can be a very slow process, but with God’s grace things will get easier. Don’t give up. If you seek out and pray for the gift of secondary virginity, it could be one of the most life-changing experiences of your whole life!” (17).

Choosing a Partner for Life
“Make sure your life partner loves God more than he or she loves you. Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it:

‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ (Matthew 22:37-39, NIV) It is so important to observe your partner’s love for God. Why? Because in time, the way he or she loves and serves Him will be reflected in the way he or she loves and serves you.

“Make sure your life partner is a person of character.’ Blessed are they whose ways are blameless, who walk according to the law of the Lord.’ (Psalm 119:1, NIV) Men and women of character are trustworthy in all they do and have an appetite for righteousness. They will keep their word no matter what the cost.

“Make sure your life partner is kind to others: (And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God in Christ also forgave you.’ (Ephesians 4:32, NKJV) If you don’t see your partner treat others with kindness and grace, in time he or she will be treating you the same” (21).

“Make sure to note the way your life partner dresses.
“Make sure your life partner is respected by others.
“Make sure your life partner is not flirtatious.
“Make sure you understand the true priorities of your life partner’s life.
“Make sure you know whom your life partner’s close friends are.
“Make sure your life partner is not contentious or violent.
“Make sure you ask the Lord for discernment. (21).

Many of the books and DVD listed in Dr. Moehler’s “Resource on Creation” or from Ken Ham and Answer’s in Genesis. CN sells some of them. Some of the DVD may be watched in the Resource Center at Camp Trinity.

Creationism at Camp Trinity
Dr. David Menton who taught at Washington University for more than thirty years received many awards, including “Teacher of the Year” has lectured at Camp Trinity. Dr. Walter Lammerts, founder of the Creation Research Society; Dr. Walter Lang, founder of the Bible-science Association; Dr. John Mackey, who debated evolutionist John Polkinghorne, in Liverpool Cathedral. Dr. Kurt Marquart, Dr. William Beck, Dr. Menton and other Christian creationist have spoken at Trinity Lutheran Church in New Haven. Change in LCMS Today the books at such evolutionist as John Polkinghorne are recommended at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis while books or DVD’s from Answers in Genesis which Dr. Moelh recommended at Camp Trinity are given the silent treatment. A pastor who files charges of false doctrine against any evolutionist on the LCMS clergy roster is considered an impenitent sinner on the road to hell. Under the LCMS Koinonia project there is plenty of room for evolutionists.

The LCMS’s CPH no longer sells any books by Lutheran Hour Speaker Walter Maier but sells and heavily promotes books by Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who promoted evolution and regarded Adam and Eve and the Resurrection of Christ as myths.