Psalm 61:3

Hear my cry, O God, listen to my prayer; for You have been my refuge, a strong tower against the enemy.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Christian Pizza?

I have heard the comparison made between the Christian faith and a pizza. It was said that with pizza, as long as you have crust, sauce, and cheese, you can put whatever you want on top and it remains a pizza. It doesn’t matter if you have sausage, onions, anchovies, or whatever. Pizza is pizza as long as it has crust, sauce, and cheese.

And so the Christian faith is still Christian as long as it has some essentials, like Jesus, the Gospel, and faith. You can add whatever you want on top of that to suit your own fancy as long as you have the essentials. My question for people who think this way is this: how much garbage do you want on your pizza?

Would you eat a pizza covered with mold, rotten tomatoes, dirty shoestrings, or used Kleenex? Of course not! Why then would you tolerate a Christian faith where there was clearly false teaching? Why would you want to listen to a false prophet? If something is untrue then it is a lie. If it is a lie then it is garbage. If it is garbage then it has no place being taught in the Church of Jesus Christ.

May God grant us His grace, through His Word and Sacraments, to see the false prophets for what they are, and to cling ever so tightly to Christ alone.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

An Extended Quote

"A generation ago it was customary in Lutheran circles for pastors to devote two years to teaching young people Luther's Small Catechism. I once heard of a pastor in St Louis, Missouri, whose practice it was to divide those two years of instruction as follows: 'The first year,' he said, 'I have the students memorize the Catechism. The second year I tell them what it means.'

"I first learned of this pastor when I was a young man, and like others my age I guffawed. How ridiculous! The whole point of catechism instruction is to help young people understand the meaning of the Lord's Prayer, the Ten Commandments, the Creed. What is the value of having youngsters memorize the words of the Catechism without telling them what they mean? Now years later I realize that this pastor was much wiser than I. He knew that Christian faith was a matter of words, and that what counted most in the Catechism were the words." (from Robert L.Wilken. "Introduction", Remembering the Christian Past, p vii. Eerdmans, 1995.)

Get back to memory work and get back the gospel carried for a lifetime (and an eternity).