Full Text for CTM Theological Observer 16-5 (Text)

Theological Observer Theological Observer SUMMER SCHOOL FOR PASTORS AT SEWARD, JUNE 25 TO JULY 13 337 Concordia Teachers College of Seward, Nebraska, this summer will again conduct a summer school for pastors, patterned after its previous successful ventures in this field. This year the staff of regular instructors will be augmented by specialists in various fields from several areas of our Church, and the entire school for pastors will be operated under the auspices of the extension division of Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. The Courses of Instruction The Present Status of Union Endeavors. With the collaboration and participation of Synod's Committee on Doctrinal Unity, Concordia Teachers College this summer will conduct an intensive study in this problem so vital in the Lutheran Church of America. The syllabus and study outline is being prepared by Dr. Wm. Arndt, Chairman of the Committee. In addition, the staff will include: Dr. J. H. C. Fritz, member of the Committee, Pastor F. Brunn, member of the Committee, Pastor A. H. Grumm. of the North Dakota-Montana District. The seminar tech­nique will be employed, with President A. O. Fuerbringer acting as ar­biter. One credit hour. New Testament Word Pictures. A practical study in the Greek Testament. Words, word families, concepts, synonyms and antonyms will be studied. Examples: "justify," "grace," "faith," "God," "church," "prophet," "mercy seat," "ransom," "serve," and their cognates. The course is divided into three units, of which unit B, The New Te'stament Vocabulary Derived from Judaism, will be offered during the summer of 1945. One credit hour. Professor Wolbrecht. Readings in the Greek New Testament. Selected chapters, with at­tention to grammatical review and linguistic problems of the Koine. Review, with accelerating reading. One credit hour. President Fuer­bringer. Administration of ReUgious Education. This course is divided into three units. The first deals with the philosophy and theory of education and the relation of these to the educational work of the Church. The second section deals with the organizational and administrative aspects of various educational agencies in the average congregation. This section will be timed to coincide with the Pastors' Summer Session. The third part will be devoted to the development of objectives, cur­ricula, and teaching materials for the separate units. This work will be individualized to meet special interests and needs. Three credit hours (one for middle period). Dr. Bickel. Liturgics. The nature and purpose of public worship, the confessional aspect of liturgics, the historical development of the Common Service and the musical aesthetics on its execution. Practical emphasis. Two credit hours. Professor Reuter. 22 338 Theological Observer In addition, pastors may register for one credit hour in the full summer session courses entitled: Lutheran Church in America and Bib­lical Literature. The privilege is also extended, within practical time limits, of auditing other courses in progress. The normal load for the period is three credit hours. Credits earned are transferable as graduate credit to Concordia Seminary, St. Louis. The entire summer session runs from June 4 to August 3. Fees for the three weeks' session are $36.00 for board and fees; or $17.50 for fees only. Rates for the full session on request; part-time attendance reduces rates proportionately. Applications for admission should be in the hands of the registrar by June 10. For further information, a copy of the summer school catalog, or application for admission apply to: PRESIDENT A. O. FUERBRINGER Concordia Teachers College, Seward, Nebraska "The Constant Delays and Discussions of Missoul"i." -What is true in the charge contained in the above words found in a letter published in the Lutheran of February 28, 1945 (U. L. C. A.)? The church council of St. Paul's Lutheran Church (U. L. C. A.), Mount Vernon, N. Y., of which the Rev. Wilfried Tappert is the pastor, adopted a resolution de­claring that it "invites for selective altar and pulpit fellowship those Lutheran pastors and congregations, no matter to which Lutheran Synod they may belong, who are one with us in the confession of the same Lord and seek salvation according to the same faith; pledging at the same time to restrict our fellowship solely to such, to the best of our knowledge and ability." In a previous sentence the church council had affirmed its loyalty to the pure Word of God "as the Church confesses it in the Book of Concord." The pastor, in publishing these resolutions, states, "Since other congregations in the metropolitan area of New York have been practicing selective altar and pulpit fellowship, in protest against the constant delays and discussions of Missouri and as a prac­tical step toward church unity, it may be appropriate to publish the above." Missouri, we see, is charged with causing constant delays and dis­cussions. Perhaps we shall be permitted to look first at the second one of these two items. Yes, Missouri has insisted on discussions. Is there anything wrong with that? When ministers meet in their conferences, they have discussions. What do they discuss? If their conferences are to be fruitful, they have to discuss doctrine, the very things on which the life of the Church depends. When the congregation meets for worship, there is discussion by the pastor of the great truths that God has revealed to us. We are disgusted and grieved if sermons are preached in which there is no discussion of Christian doctrine. Cer­tainly, discussions by themselves are not an evil-they are necessary for the healthy development, yes, for the very existence of the Church. If there is not to be stagnation, God's revealed teachings have to be looked at, considered, unfolded, compared, and applied. It may be held that the nature of the discussions on which Missouri at present is insisting is reprehensible. What is that nature? A joint Theological Observer 339 committee of the A. L. C. and the Missouri Synod has drawn up the so-called Doctrinal Affirmation, which contains the truths that in the opinion of the framers should be given public and joint expression at the present time. Let these truths be examined! They will be found to be the great teachings contained in the Scriptures and the Lutheran Confessions. Mo~t of them are spoken of in the Augsburg Confession and Luther's Small Catechism. They are the very things a Lutheran rejoices in, they are the treasures of the Church, its pearls and diamonds. Are we tired of considering them? Such a thing should not be the case with respect to any Lutheran. We visit a friend. He shows us his garden adorned with roses and pansies. We have seen roses and pansies before. But how we are thrilled when we are shown these lovely creations of God's wisdom and kindness in a new setting. Shall we not rejoice when we again look at the great truths on which our salvation depends? It ought to be clear that discussions per se cannot be objected to. It may be that the discussions are not always carried on in the right way. Missourians, sad to say, are not angelic beings, they have their faults and weaknesses, and it may be that these become quite evident now and then when conferences on doctrine are held. On the other side of +ho fon ..... .c. UYQ.glrncOOAQ Q't"'Q observed, too. To recur to onr sirn.i1e of the s-and then very disturbing D.:nct obnoxious. We have to fight th,-,-,--,-.>." But no one of us is so foolish as to destroy the flowers because weeds insist on springing up about them. If weaknesses and among them at times a somewhat contentious spi " lanifest themselves in these dis­cussions, let us with a gentle hand restrain such manifestations, but let not the great objective itself be obscured to us on account of these unpleasant features. fu""1.d Missouri is accused of causing delays. The critics must bear in mind that Missouri is a conservative body. Its members have all been taught that one of the qualities a Christian, and every Christian, should exhibit is loyalty to God's Word. On that point great emphasis has always been placed. For that reason Missouri moves slowly in approaching other church bodies. It desires to travel a safe road, a road which will not commit it to the endorsement of anything that is contrary to the Holy Scriptures and the Lutheran Confessions. The aim that is striven for is good and noble. It may be that off and on delays enter in that are irkson~e to those who are eager to establish fellowship with us. Perhaps now and then the same ground is gone over too frequently, and the same truths are repeated again and again in a way that nerves become frayed. Here again we say, Let imperfections be borne with. We all have our weaknesses. If Missourians incline too much in one direction, then let it not be forgotten that on the other side there are many who il"""lcline too much in the opposite direction. When divine truths are invol-certainly cannot be too c ful. Bearing this in mind, it seems to us Missouri ought not to be chided. for moving slowly, but rather to be commended. A. 340 Theological Observer Free Conferences of the National Lutheran Council. -The Na­tional Lutheran Council held its reorganization meeting in New York Jan. 23-26. "The new constitution," says the report in The LutherlLn, "was adopted without dissent." We are especially interested in the section that has to do with "free conferences" which, when the re­organization of the Council was first talked about, loomed as a prom­ising factor. What is actually developing strikes us as rather futile. The report states, "Initial approval was given to detailed plans for the first of the triennial 'free conferences' of Lutherans for which provision is made in the new constitution. In the light of recent ODT directives regarding gatherings requiring transportation and hotel facilities, the executive director and the president were constituted a committee to confer with Government authorities regarding the feasibility of planning the gathering for next November. The free conference, if held, will meet in Columbus, Ohio, and will consist of 315 clerical and lay del­eeClt('~ elected on a proportionate basis from the Council bodies. Seminar studies will cover either 'Church and State' or 'The Lutheran Church and the Community.''' From the above it appears that these conferences will not be free conferences to which all Lutherans uf the UnIted States ,n.n be invited, but merely conferences for the membership of the National Lutheran CounciL ",\j\r:~v these meetings should be called "'free corLferences" is a my: disapI cother aspect which we fi -. ,"" "h~nQrl tl--tat these free conferences ·wQuld. hpf''-'1')"1p occasions where Lutherans of Arnerica would meet to discuss the LlLru­ing doctrinal and practical issues which now agitate the Lutheran Church or our country~ such as the inerrancy of the Scriptuyzs, con~ fessional loyalty, the lodge evil, and unionism. Instead of these topics, something lying outside the field of controversy, important, it is true, and requiring scholarly thought and research, but not pertaining to the unification of Lutheranism, will occupy that rather large body which will constitute the official membership of the conference. What a bless­ing it would be if these men, coming from various sections of the Lutheran Church, thoroughly considered the points of doctrine which today call for clarification and emphasis so that the divided house may become united. It seems that unity of doctrine is presupposed, though everybody knows that it is far from being a reality. A. Sarvicemen's Rights and Benefits. -This is the title of House Docu­ment No. 682 (78th Congress, 2d Session; Government Printing Office, Washington), "a handy guide for veterans of the armed forces and their dependents," the purpose of which is "to give the veterans a correct picture of the rights and benefits available to them and their dependents." As stated in the forewol'd, the document does not attempt to answer all the questions anyone could ask, but it gives the high spots and tells the reader where the answers can be found. We mention it here be-cause of the llTlportance of the issues which it treats. J. T. M. TI-~ ,",,---,~",~--British General.-Lieut.-G ',l~ Ham G. S. Dobbie, ·G. C. M. G.; J • C. B., D. S. 0., is the British officer 1.1I!ho was called upon to defend the island of Malta at a time when this im-Theological Observer 341 portant Mediterranean fortress was the hardest-hit spot in English pos­session and, in addition, the most desired by the German military. The fortress withstood all attacks, and General Dobbie, now delivering lec­tures in the United States before Christian audiences, tells them what enabled him and his men to hold out under the almost unbearable bombing. His personal trust in God, his daily study of Scripture, his ardent prayer life, these and other spiritual values of which he speaks, were the never-failing sources of his daily strength and refreshment. In the Sunday SchooL Times (February 24, March 3, and March 10, 1945) he relates his personal Christian convictions in three articles: The Unchanging God; Man's Unchanging Need; The Unchanging Founda­tion. The honest testimony of this sincere believer in Christ is worth noting at this time, when there is so much indifferentism, laxity, and surrender of fundamental moral principles. Is. 53: 12 is being won-drously fulfilled even today. J. T. M. Christianity in Japan. -The Living Church (March 18,1945) quotes from the Religious News Service "an inside view of Christianity in Japan," as it was given in Chungking by a Korean theological student who was forced to volunteer for the Japanese army last year, served a few months, and then escaped one night last July from a Central China camp, making his way to Chungking, seat of the Korean pro­visional government. As stated in the report, Christianity in Japan is a much weaker force today than it was in 1941. Christian membership has fallen off as much as two thirds, and church attendance is about a fifth of the prewar average. The 28-year-old student, who was in his third year in theology at the Nippon Theological College in Tokyo, named three reasons for the waning of Christian influence in Japan. For one thing, the new Japan Christian Association, which was inspired by the government to "unite" the churches, spends so much effort flattering the state and its wishes that it is no longer a spiritual force and many real Christians stay away from church to protest. Second, it is no longer popular to be a Christian. The Christian faith carries a stigma of being foreign, and the nationalist enthusiasm has weaned away persons of weak faith. Third, people are too busy to go to church. Sunday is a workday, and while Christians in Japan may have time off for attending services, few take it. Pastors also must perform their national labor service. Christians also have been a nucleus of criticism against the state, as the Korean student reported. Kagawa, who had been doing social work since 1941, was thrown into jail in October, 1943, for his generally liberal social criticism and his opposition to the war. Eighty-three leaders of the Holiness Church are in jail, and. also many Seventh-Day Adventists. Both these sects remained highly critical of the government and refused to compromise an inch of their faith. Both refused to enter the union of all Christian bodies in Japan, and both have been disbanded. Their leaders have been jailed and their pub­lications confiscated. Their second-advent and millenarian tenets aroused government hostility because they defied the immortal traditions of the Mikado. Roman Catholics have shown the least decline of the Christian churches il,-Japan. According to the student, the celebrated plan of 342 Theological Observer union, which was set up for all Japanese Christian churches in 1940 and 1941, has proved itself a failure. It has weakened Christian in­fluence, and instead of unifying the churches, it has really served to atomize them. The picture today, according to his report, is one of individual churches and individual pastors running things for them­selves. But, after all, there is hope for a revival of Christianity in Japan and Korea after the war; only it is conditioned on the defeat of Japan and the independence of Korea. The report of the Korean student is highly interesting, and from all that one can judge it is true. The miracle is that after all that has happened in Japan, there still are Christians daring to profess their faith. J. T. M. Missions in the Polar North. -The Calvin Forum (March, 1945), under this title, calls attention to a difficult, yet promising and necessary mission field in Eskimo land, which includes East Greenland, West Greenland, the Northern rocky shores of Canada, the innumerable islands clustered near the North Pole, and Northern Alaska, a part of which is now being evangelized only by Roman Catholic missionaries. If Calvinists are asked to interest themselves in this mission, Lutherans have all the more reason to do so, since Lutheran Hans Egede ("the Apostle of Greenland"; d. 1758) was the first Christian minister to work successfully among the Eskimos. As the writer in the Calvin Forum IJoints out, the mission is difficult not only because of the bleak country of the Eskimos and their widely scattered tribes, but also because they usually show little concern for the future. Just because of the seriousness of their life and the many dangers of their existence they take a fatalistic attitude toward it, spending their days with a levity which causes them to take no thought for the soul. In addition, their view of God makes it extremely hard for them to understand the Christian emphasis on the doctrine of God. Their great, outstanding supernatural power is SHa, which means the universe, the weather, and wisdom or intelligence. In a religious sense, Sila denotes a power which can be invoked, a power personified in Silap Inua, the One Possessing Power. While the Eskimo has no specific doctrine of a creative God, Sila is to him the Sustainer, healing him and guarding him against the ill will of others. In his eschatology there is no such thing as a hell. The soul goes either to the underworld or the over­world, the underworld being the more desirable of the two, it being a land of sunshine, beautiful birds, and good things. His religious leaders are little more than magicians, who are in constant touch with the spirits and merely function as medicine men. Fear dominates his whole life -fear of the sea, of famine, of death, of the spirits. This fear exists in spite of the fact that the Eskimo, as said before, generally appears as a "rollicking, fun-loving boy." To rid himself of his fear, he grasps at the straws of charms, superstitions, taboos, and magic. Morally the Eskimo is a pathetic figure. Adultery is flagrant, it being practiced by all. Divorce is most common among the Eskimo tribes. The Eskimo simply cannot understand why Christians favor monogamy. And yet, living in the darkness of deepest heathendom and ignorance, the Eskimo is by nature hospitable and friendly and has a warm dis-Theological Observer 343 position, a guest being always welcome in his igloo. He is always willing to share with the stranger his little store of seal blubber, halibut, or reindeer. His language is difficult, for he has the puzzling custom of hanging word upon word with no break between noun, verb, ad­jective, or any other part of speech. But the language can be learned, and the other difficulties can be overcome, as the writer says, in closing his interesting article; and what is more: "The real encourage­ment for the missionary lies not in the temperament of the heathen nor in any natural or human condition, but in the assurance that the missionary is doing the will of God, and that His blessing will follow. God is not known to revoke His Word." J. T. M. The Church's Task in the Postwar World.-Among the almost countless discussions which occupy themselves with this theme, one has been published in the Christian Century which consists in a report of a meeting held by servicemen under the leadership of a chaplain in New Guinea. The report is well written, and because it reflects the opinions of many young people in America, we here reprint it: "The people in our Protestant churches are lined up automatically in their political decisions against the poor and the industrial workers. And one discovers very little searching of heart among them about this situation." This was the conclusion reached by a group of servicemen at this South Pacific base who had met with the post chaplain, L. W. Hawley, in the chapel. The men in the discussion group, called the Christian Service Fellowship, represented a cross section of American churches from villages, towns, and cities. Their views indicate one trend in the thought of the service men and women who will some day return to their homeland. In opening the discussion, the leader sug­gested that behind the question, What shall we expect of the churches in the postwar world? lies the assumption that the postwar world is going to be a different world. We have heard no one using the slogan "Back to normalcy," he said. People do not want to go back to 1933 or to 1939. It is good that the nation is looking ahead, because we live in a world that moves forward. To face a changing world is not new for the Church. Service men and women are going to expect the churches to meet the changing needs of people in this new world. It was agreed that as never before people are in need of something that will give meaning and purpose to their lives. Members of the Fellowship think that to meet this spiritual need the Church must find new ways to bring the life of Jesus close to the lives of people today. It was also said that people will want material security. The group felt that the Church has a responsibility to be a part of movements which will bring people a better life materially. It was stated that the Church should be concerned with the right of every man to have a job from which he can derive adequate support for his family. That people should live in poor housing was thought to be a matter of injustice. 'The existence of such conditions makes talk of equality a mockery.' The Church should help bring about legislation to raise living standards. Members of the group agreed that the educational standards of our nation should be raised and that the Church should take even more 344 Theological Observer interest in this problem than it has done in the past. It was recognized that the war has interfered with the educational plans of many young men. Considerable discussion centered around the problem of race rela­tions and the Church. One member said, "There are those among us who would spread ignorant prejudices and hatred for minority groups. Some of our people, unable to see the solution to many problems of the nation, turn upon those of Hebrew faith and upon the Negroes, per­secuting them." Some felt that the solution of racial problems will be found when individual church people become thoroughly Christian in their living. Others felt that individuals are powerless to act effectively in the face of the tremendous forces of hatred that have been let loose. They hold that organized steps should be taken by the churches to combat these forces and to bring about equality of opportunity for all peoples. The members of the Fellowship were concerned over the tendency of people between the ages of 18 and 30 to lose interest in the Church. It was agreed that the Church needs these young people. Note was made of the contrast between this statement on the need of the Church and the previous statements on the needs the Church should meet. Must young people come to the rescue of a decadent Church in its need? It was suggested that the Church will not keep the interest of young people until it gives them constructive work to do. Following the meeting (so the report continues) members stayed to talk it ovcr. During this informal period this question was asked of the discussion leader: "Why has it been that in the past the Church has often stood out against movements that would better the conditions of the common people?" The Church has taken sides with the well to do, the landowners, rather than supporting the demands of the common people for justice and equality. "Martin Luther's unwillingness to sup­port the peasants, who had eagerly followed his leadership in the hope that respect for the individual would mean more equal property rights," was cited as an instance. The questioner also pointed out that Christian forces opposed the revolutions of France and Russia. "The churches have either opposed the democratic forces in Spain or have simply remained aloof." May we expect that the attitude of the churches in the postwar world will be different? So ends the report written by Pfc. A. M. Karr. We have reprinted it because it clearly states the opinion held in wide circles that the Church will have to take an aggressive attitude in the political and social field and make one of its objectives the triumph of righteousness and fairness in the class struggles that are going on. As one reads reports like this one, one arrives at the conclusion that much loose talk is indulged i.. •. Do the people who tell the Church what to do realize who the Church is -that they themselves, if they are church members, belong to it? They often speak as if the Church were a corporation or organization which exists outside of human society and should be induced to take an interest in the latter. Besides, these critics do not realize that some of the things which they would like to see the Church introduce or Theological Observer 345 1 are highly controversial. Take suggestions looking to the of the race question, for instance. If the Church is to solve tty problem, what is it to advocate? Its members are them­vided on the best course to take. Some of its wise and con­men urge this, others of the membership, equally wise and ;ed, urge that. Such being the case, how can the Church effect [l? Again, critics forget that the Church's one great task is to· rod's revelation, especially the message which is at the center,. l of the Cross of Christ. Where matters are covered by divine 1, the Church can speak with authority. Let it do so. It has not laid enough stress on the principles of fair dealing :otherly love inculcated in the Scriptures. The Church's main. ion to the solution of social problems never will be the stressing l principles of conduct, but the changing of men from selfish loving, considerate, helpful neighbors; and that change can Ut ciLt"o"d only by the Gospel of Jesus Christ. In reading the report, one is struck by the absolutely this-worldly view which seems to lie at the basis of the utterances. That there is an eternity ahead of us and that our chief concern must be to be placed at the divine Judge's. right when the final verdict will be rendered, is not mentioned at all. In other words, the viewpoint is altogether that of the ~ocial gospel. One regrets to see that with ~11 the striving for fairness, good old. Martin Luther is treated very unfairly. That he did his very best to obtain justice for the oppressed peasants and sternly rebuked the feudal lords and that only at last, when the peasants had turned into bestial marauders, he urged the princes to take up arms against them, is simply ignored. Probably the person who was responsible for the reference to Luther had never heard any but a one-sided presentation of what actually took place. A. Baptists and Infant Baptism. -Under the heading When is a Baptist a Baptist? A. C. Archibald in The W atchman-Examiner (March 1, 1945) ventures a brief statement of the Baptist faith "in view of misinterpre­tations." This includes also a testimony against infant baptism, of which he writes: "The basic fundamental of all our fundamentals as. Baptists has never been better stated than by Dr. E. Y. Mullins, late pres­ident of Louisville Seminary, when he said: 'The fundamental principle of the Baptist faith, out of which all our other beliefs grow, is the com­petency of the soul of man in matters religious.' Every soul of man is competent of dealing directly with God in matters religious." As in­terfering with this principle, the writer condemns not only Romanism­with its saintly intermediaries, priesthood, ordinances, or ritual-but also all Protestant churches which adhere to infant baptism or the episcopacy, for they also come short of the New Testament principle of the competency of the soul. He writes: "One has well said: 'These­bodies in fact represent a dual Christianity.' They attempt to combine the Romish principle of incompetency with the opposite principle of competency. In insisting upon salvation by faith alone they recognize with us the principle of competency. But in retaining infant baptism or the episcopacy they introduce the opposite view. Infant baptism takes 346 Theological Observer away from the child its privilege of individual initiative in salvation and lodges in the hands of parents or sponsors the impossible task of performing an act of religious obedience, obedience for another.' No intelligible view of the status of baptized infants in the church can possibly be set forth which does not contradict the doctrine of salvation by faith only, which is also held by these same churches. The reason is that in the one case the competency of the soul in matters religious is affirmed -that is, in salvation by faith only -and in the other com­petency is denied -that is, in infant baptism and parental sponsorship. Because they unqualifiedly accept the Scriptures as their authority, Baptists hold that the church of Christ consists of those, and those only, who have been baptized upon profession of faith. They find no warrant expressed or implied in the New Testament for the baptism of infants. There is confessedly no command to baptize infants, and no single -example in all Scripture. But more than this, Baptists hold that the baptism of any but believers is contrary to the whole spirit of Chris­tianity, and that it totally subverts the principle upon which the church was founded. They [that is, Pedobaptists] pronounce, on the one hand, -with an emphasis equal to our own, the doctrine of salvation by faith alone, and then they proceed to baptize infants who can exercise no faith, all the while knowing that it is a relic of Romanism. Of all religious bodies rising in days su.bsequent to the Reformation, the Baptists stood alone in shaking loose from this unscriptural and divisive practice." There is no need to point out here the writer's gross mis­interpretation of the Biblical doctrine of infant baptism, since all he has stated has been refuted time and again by Lutheran theologians. But let us bear in mind that if the doctrine of infant baptism is so severely attacked in periodicals intended for lay readers, it remains our duty to instruct our people thoroughly regarding the scripturalness of the Lutheran doctrine of infant baptism. Baptism is not Law, as the writer would have it, but Gospel, through which the Holy Ghost works the very faith in the infant by which it is regenerated and renewed. In passing, it may be said that the writer's whole way of speaking of the soul's competency to deal directly with God in matters religious is based upon Arminian premises, not to mention his utter rejection of the means of grace. J. T. M. U. S. Troops' Mental Age. -Under this caption The Watchman­Examiner of February 8, 1945, has the following item: "In seeking a reason for the senseless murder by an American soldier of Sir Eric Teickman, British diplomat, Army psychiatrists referred to the murderer as a 'mentally defective homicidal degenerate.' Their spokesman, Major L. Alexander, made an interesting disclosure at the trial. He stated that the average mental age of those who fought in World War I was twelve years. American soldiers in this war have a mental age of between thirteen and fourteen. There is something woefully lacking in such generalizations. It borders on the ridiculous. While psychiatry is rendering help in diagnosing some human problems, the trend is toward assuming too much. The man would have to be omnipresent as well as omniscient to estimate the mental age of this generation of soldiers. Theological Observer 347 We wonder what is the age of the psychiatrist group? Then, too, we think the classification is insulting to some twelve-and fourteen-year­old youngsters we have heard of. Samuel was called of God to be prophet in Israel when he was about twelve. The little maid in Naaman's household was the diplomat of heaven. Jesus at twelve con­founded the doctors in the Temple. Being twelve years of age is a proud achievement to a growing child. Reaching nine years is an infant's hopeful dream. Have the psychiatrists never heard of sin? Apologists for sin may think of the human spirit in mathematical age groups. They have not reached the vestibule of truth or wisdom, however, by doing so. It is sin which makes murderers, liars, thieves, and fools out of human beings, not their age." T. L. Episcopalian Interpretations. -In the Dec. 10, 1944, issue of The­Living Church, an influential organ of the Episcopal Chl.:rch, we read the following interpretations in the "Question Box," which clearly indicate the Romanistic and modernistic trend which is gaining the ascendancy in this Church. "What is meant by the words 'There shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. For many are called, but few chosen'?" "The invitation had been for everybody; only a few obtained their place among +1-..cr. .... 1-.~COY'll h~7 ,Q~cepting it. Even some of these shovl' +h.c:n·",_ sel-v-es later :Clanners, to be not vi Lh~ , ___ .' __ the King's friends. Yet, hm cast out of t..~e palace, they howl and gnasb their teeth over the joys they have thrown away. Probably, beine; an oriental, he had begun howling and gnashing as soon as the King began to find fault with him (the word translated 'speechless' really means 'muzzled'), and the King's words 'There (i. e., outside in the darkness) shall be the weeping and the gnashing of the teeth' are the equivalent of a modern host's saying, 'You'll have to do that sort of thing outside." "When, and how long has -"<"'yca 10r our beloved dead been used in, the (Episcopal) Church?" "Prayer for the dead has existed in the Christian Church from the' very beginning. We find, for example, St. Paul (2 Tim.1:10-1S) praying for' Onesimus [J] in language that can only be naturally interpreted as such. a prayer. In fact it was a recognized practice among the Jews to pray and offer sacrifice for the dead (2 Macc. 12: 42-45) . In the Anglican Church these prayers were clearly expressed in the First Prayer Book (1549). In the subsequent revisions they were retained in rather vague and indirect form until they were clearly and definitely restored in the American Prayer Book of 1928, our present use." T. L. Is Armi Gospel"? -The Presbyterian Guard.ian (January 25, 194.~), nnder this heading, discusses the charge of several commissioners at the last general asselnbly of the Orthodox Presbyterian Church, that Fundamentalists who are Arminian in their theology are preaching "another gospeL" The writer of the article admits that indeed many prominent theologians, such as D. L. Moody, R. A. Torrey, James M. Gray, am' ~ '-.--' -~ """-'--'--"---;--.:: preachers of the present d,". 'e' strains of Arminianism in their message. These, however, he declaresr are not preaching "another gospel," but only an "inconsistent expressiol1:1 348 Theological Observer of the true gospel," or an "inconsistent view of the cross." Of this also the Lutherans [he expressly mentions "Walter A. Maier and his fellow­pastors of the Missouri Synod"] are guilty; for he writes: "The Arminians and Lutherans affirm fervently the message of the cross. They beseech men most earnestly to trust in the atoning work of Christ. But they give the atonement a universal reference (italics our own). They preach that Christ paid the penalty for the sins of all men (italics our own). With haste they add that not all are saved, but only those who accept Him. What happens to the rest? They perish! Why? Because of the sin of unbelief." The writer then says: "Calvinists claim that this statement of the atonement is erroneous. If Christ paid the penalty for the sins of all men, then all must be saved. Since this is not true, the death of Christ, though sufficient for all, was designed only for His people" [i. e., the elect; italics our own]. It is clear that the writer, when speaking of Arminianism, has in mind, not man's cooperation in his conversion, a doctrine which we Lutherans usually think of when refer­ring to Arminianism, but the Scriptural doctrine, held by the Arminians against the strict Calvinists, that the atonement is not confined to the €lect, but is universal. In other words, against the Calvinistic gratia particularis the Arminians defend the gratia universalis. But this is not an "inconsistent expression of the true gospel," but the plain Scrip­tural trl_lth1 as every Christian knovls "'..,ho has studied t...t"c Scripture passages under Question 183 of our former synodical Catechism (cf. Ezek. 33:11; 1 Tim. 2:4; 1Pet.3:9; Ivlatt.23:37; Acts 7:51; Hos.13:9). On the other hand, strict Calvinism teaches an "inconsistent view of the cross" when it denies the universality of the atonement on the rationalistic premise: "If Christ paid the penalty for the sins of all men, then all must be saved. Christ, though sufficient for all, was designed only for His people." But really this is more than an "inconsistent view of the cross." It is "another gospel," in so far as it deprives the majority of men of the comfort offered them in the universal Gospel promises and so destroys the Scriptural basis of their personal assurance of salvation. Since, moreover, alarmed sinners cannot trust in the universal Gospel promises for salvation, they are compelled to rest their certitudo salutis on the Holy Spirit's operation within them or their illuminatio interior. Ultimately, Reformed believers must base their salvation on good works, since in this life they cannot know whether they are elect or not and they dare not apply to themselves the precious consolations of the Gospel. Those who deny the gratia unive,'salis must therefore in the end also deny the sola gratia. Let Calvinists give up the rationalistic axiom: "If Christ paid the penalty for the sins of all men, then all must be saved." That certainly is not the doctrine of Holy Scripture. J.T.M. Should the Pastor Go into Politics? -Referring to a letter of Dr. John Bennett published in the Christian Century, another correspondent wrote as follows: "For twenty years I have been the pastor of poor people in this rural parish. These poor people all voted against Roosevelt. I voted for the Social ticket, and everyone in the parish knew it. I do not believe there is such a thing as a Protestant Church Theological Observer 349 where the people do not know how the minister votes. But what John Bennet was really against was, to quote him: 'I do not want to see t,,,e Church in politics.' I feel he is wrong here. Politics is social action or what we used to call application of Christian ideals to life. In the old days we had prohibition sermons. Prohibition was a political issue. If the Church does not take a stand on such issues when they are clear cut, then the Church will not lead the people in Christian ways. The most difficult thing in life is to decide how to apply the Christian principles. Those of us who want peace and racial or industrial justice must work for it by choosing sides in the field of politics. I know that the people of a parish want a minister who is not afraid to open himself to attack. It seems to me that John Bennett's stand that the Church should not enter politics is confusing and inconsistent in one who de­plores the secularization of society as he has in the past. Religion and life di.'c; one. They are not separate COrr.i.ptll~L.J.1,z:l1tS. Preachers and theologians who felt that we should not preach social action came out openly for war the moment war loomed up. They did not consider themselves secular on entering this fidd of applied ethics_ They called themselves realists. I honor those who openly advocate war if they belie"" it i_s God's will. But I will do my best to show my p"nple why they are wrong. In such conflict a way will be found. Individually we make such chmces, and no'" .. l.~ .. -", are organized into chur~l.~-_ must still 11 ing it politics." , . ~ t:Il_~ __ ,_ • . ~Ue CcUlll0t b~ ~ide-stepped Is the argumentation convincing? We think not. The Church as such has no business in politics because its guide, the Bible, does not inform it -.. , 'ing political questions and issues unless a moral aspect should be distinctly involved. The minister should be so busy preaching Christ, and Him crucified, that he has no time for politics as a profession. Where moral issues arise on which the Bible pronounces, naturally the teaching of the Bible has to be com­municated to the congregation. The Church's and the pastor's authority end where the Bible teachings end. A. The Reformation: The Age of Faith. -The Theologische Quartal­schrift (January, 1945) offers a very timely and instructive article under this heading, written by Dr. H. A. Koch. The essay may be summed up in the statement: The age of faith is not to be sought in the Middle Ages, but faith, in the Christian sense, characterizes the Reformation. The article is a confutation of the assertions of Father Walsh, one-time pro­fessor of the Roman Catholic Fordham University in New York, in his book (1907) The ThiTteenth, the Greatest of Centuries and in his con­tributions to the latest edition of the Encyclopedia Americana. vv aI8h believes that the Refonr'!ation was a religious revolt and as such the source of agnosticism, unbelief, and atheism. This is not a new thought, yet one which requires constant refutation. Dr. Koch writes: "Let us not be misled by glib statements made by Romanists. Let us rathe'!­cling to the h~re facts These facts do not reveal the thirteenth century as a century of faith, but rather as one of gross superstition, still havir_ the form but lacking the essence of true religion. By superstition we 350 Theological Observer mean every form of religion that is not based on the Word of God. Rome's religion is essentially based on the word of man, the Pope and human tradition; the truths of the Word of God are distorted to fit into the Papal world-view." Step by step the writer proceeds to prove his thesis. Describing the Reformation as an act of faith, he says: "Through the force of the Scriptures and the living faith in him Luther was driven on from conclusion to conclusion until he finally came to the inescapable conclusion that the Pope is the Antichrist, revealed in the prophecy of 2 Thess. 2. If the doctrine of justification is the key to the correct understanding of the Scriptures, which it truly is, and justifica­tion through faith in Christ is the only way to salvation, then the Pope, who denies this basic truth, must be the Antichrist, the man who seats himself in the Temple of God and claims he is God by pretending to know and to offer t.h.e only way of salvation. The Church of Rome has fixed its doctrinal tenets in the Council of Trent. . .. The Papists at Trent were agreed on one point: all errors of Luther resolve into the one point, justification through faith alone. That doctrine is damnable heresy. Must not he who denies the Scriptural way of salvation and propounds another through faith and good works be the Antichrist? We shall quote an arch-Catholic to prove that Roman theologians see clearly in this matter and give astounding utterance to that inescapable conclusion: Kieft, a dean of t.'le Cathedral of Regensburg in Germany, 'VlTitcs: 'If the: dOg1natical fUlldalflenial idea of Luther was correct that God alone is efficacious in spiritual matters and every co-operation of man is a blasphemy, then a church with the demands such as the Catholic Church must raise, must be the work of the devil and the Pope as Vicar of Christ, the Antichrist.' The Papists at Trent saw the essential difference; the Papists of today do, too, but not all Lutherans. . . . Rome rejects the doctrine of salvation through faith alone and curses the Scriptural doctrine. How, then, can t.h.e thirteenth century,. with its scholastic theology, be the age of faith, or even more so, the whole period of the Middle Ages? On the other hand, it becomes evident to all who want to see and accept the truth that the sixteenth century with its inauguration of the Reformation is an age of faith, because it returned to the faith of the apostles." The article is well worth studying, just as are others which the issue offers. J. T. M. The Present Position of Unitarianism. -Writing to the Christian Century, Dr. Frederick May Eliot, president of the American Unitarian Association, residing in Boston, Mass., makes a statement on the present­day doctrinal position of his denomination. "The editorial 'A Regrettable Action' in the Christian Century for Dec. 13, contains several statements about contemporary Unitarianism that are far from accurate. It is simply not true to say that 'there is a strong trend away from old-fashioned Unitarianism toward a profounder appreciation of the truth in the Trinitarian conception of God as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.' What­ever else Unitarians may be doing, they are not moving in the direction of an acceptance of the doctrine of the Trinity, no maiter how skillfully modern apologists may interpret that doctrine as 'an inestimable ex­planation of actual Christian experience.' Neither 'theistic Unitarianism' Theological Observer 351 nor any other variety is 'in the process of abandoning' the traditional monotheism of Channing and Martineau for the sake of adopting 'the Christian conception of God as a trinity in unity.' Many Unitarians are indeed interested in '8. radical advance,' but not in reverse gear," These are definite words. Whoever desires to honor the Triune God cannot fellowship Unitarians. A. "DirectiJi" of Religious Educatilln." -In an interesting article pub­lished in the Presbyterian of Jan.n, 1945, attention is drawn to a special endeavor in the Church which can be assigned to women. We quote: "Within the last fifteen years or so a great new profession for girls has been growing up, 'Director of Religious Education.' This pro­fession requires a college education, plus two years of Bible education, leading to an A. M. in Religious Education. These girls are not just the old 'pastor's s2ci'd:ary' type of uffice gids. They are the equal in train­ing of the pastor himself. "They are 'commissioned' by the presbytery, though not ordained. They command salaries of $1,500 to $2,000 -and earn thew. Oue such girl in a lar6e church had full charge of the Sabbath school and training of its workers and all other educational 8cti"jties. She rn _ .. --. ,1 LL ree Christi 'or societies; )y Scouts and Cubs; 'H~ ~HL Guides, and summer 'retreats' for all of tn She had ( all daily vacatieoll Bible schools, shared. as church fe-p. ;::::,(Clll""tive in all Di:sl:::icc '~onventions or conferences, and took her turn leading (?) v/cekday meetings. She d iel all the visiut­tion work among youth and all dealing with young people as to their souls. She superintended all the social events of the church, the special programs where youth were involved, She 'pinched hit' at the pipe organ on occasion and at the piano at any time. The pastor was set free to do his own special job. If we had one thousand such girls today, we could place them, 500 in our churches, 300 on the foreign field, and 200 in national missions. They would more than double the impact of the Church upon the communities. Yet few of our girls ever heard of this opportunity." This describes to some extent the work our Christian day-school teachers are doing. It is interesting to see that in circles outside of our own the importance of work of this nature is beginning to be realized more and more. A. ___ lIic Money _________ or Catholic Schools. -In spite of a half cen-tury of effort to stop Roman Catholic infiltration into public funds avail­able for Indian education, that Church still receives substantial sums from the United States Treasury through the Bureau of Indian Affairs of the Department of the Interior. This was revealed at the recent meeting of the Home Missions Council, which is reported on page 116. The history of this long struggle, viihich is so far largely unsuccessful, provides yet another illustration of the meaning in practice of the Catholic theory that the state is obligated to support the church and to open its resources for the maintenance of the church's schools. As long ago as 1897, Congress declared-it to be the policy of the govermnent to make no appropriation for the education of Indian children in any school maintained by a re­ligious sect. Again in 1917 another law was passed which stated that 352 Theological Observer "no appropriation of the treasury of the United States should be used for the education of Indian children in any sectarian school." Never­theless, the flow of funds has continued. In 1943 the substantial sum of $146,500 was appropriated for this purpose. In that year the Senate Indian Committee on appropriations ordered an investigation of "all mis­sion school contracts." As a result, the Indian Bureau recommended a decrease of $52,250 in the appropriation for 1944 for mission contracts. But the final report of the bill contained the full amount. What had happened? Four "off-the-record" hearings were held. Congressmen Case and Mundt of South Dakota, where several of the schools are located, appeared to plead for the retention of the appropriations. It is not difficult to guess the source of the pressure that was brought to bear on them. Editorial in Christian Century of Jan. 24, 1945 Roman Catholicism in Countries South of Us. -The following cor­respondence of the Christian Century (Jan. 31, 1945) coming from Lima, Peru, is significant. The correspondent writes under date of Jan. 8: "A government decree given Jan.4 and published in newspapers here two days later restricts the freedom granted Protestant groups by a con­stitutional amendment in 1916, The decree provides that all worship except that of Roman Catholics, 'which the State protects according to the Constitution,' shall take place only in 'already existing temples, and expressly forbids non-Catholic Yrleetings 01' uLher ~J.:opaganda in parks, plazas, or other public places. Anyone violating the decree is to be denounced as offending Article 393 of the penal code and prosecuted by the political authorities and the police. Peru was the last country in America to reform its legislation in favor of liberty of worship. Since 1916 the constitution had provided in Article 232: 'Respecting the sentiments of the majority, the State protects the Roman Catholic apostolic religion. Other religions enjoy liberty of the exercise of their worship.' The present decree sets aside this liberty. In most towns and in many villages of Peru there are now organized Protestant congrega­tions, and it has been known for some time that the hierarchy is alarmed; last year they publicly called on Catholics to fight the Protestants. In a recent speech the papal nuncio stated that Peru is in danger not only of Protestantism, but also of being overrun by the Greek Orthodox Church, which he somehow linked with Columbia. Several Senators denounced the speech in the Senate, regarding it as an unjustified attack on a friendly neighbor." An editorial of the Christian Century of the same date submits ad­ditional information. "At the same time there comes from Mexico the full text of a pastoral letter sent by the Archbishop of Durango and the four bishops of his province. The four closely printed pages of this pronunciamiento are entirely devoted to blasting Protestantism as 'the peak of heresy ... a North American heresy [which] necessarily forms an appropriate atmosphere for ulterior incursions, mercantile, social, etc. . . . poisoned fountains' promoted by 'false missionaries, who come to preach lies.' 'Luther ... stole from a convent the nu.11 Catherine Borer [sic], gave himself to drink, professed ... the impossibility of fighting victoriously against licentiousness.' Mexican Protestant workers, of Theological Observer 353 whom it is admitted that there have come to be a good many, are 'apostates moved by a mercenary interest and deluded by a fat salary.' The satanically inspired North American Protestant sects, in their effort to 'tear the Catholic faith from the hearts of the Mexicans and drag them to Protestant heresy, craftily establish 'schools, academies, nursel'ies, dispensaries, athletic societies, clinics, all with apparent great philan­throphy.' In view of all this, 'we [the bishops] renew our prohibitions: No Catholic can attend Protestant churches or religious services organ­ized by Protestants. No Catholic can attend schools ... or other in­stitutions which are Protestant dependencies.' It is further commanded that the 'campaign of books and pamphlets against Protestantism be intensified' and that 'all the rosaries said for one year be offered asking that Protestantism shall not prosper in this country.''' The editorial properly remarks, "Well, these documents should help, Protestants and others to understand R01llClll CaU10lidsm, which prides' itself on being the same everywhere and always." A. Brief Items. -The announcement is made in the religious press that this fall the revision of the American Standard Version of the New Test8.m.ent will be published. Prof. Ll;t11t'" A.. Weigle, '.,:he' ·chairman of the committee entrusted with making the revision, is responsible for this piece of IlE--rso The pul: 1~ --.Han is awaited with very live !. ~5t~ Congrega~io£lalists have 173 missionaries in the foreign field who are at liber".y~ H~""";"~'-"""--'--'-'-................. ""-..L.L_n ... u., ..iH.d 4 ~.n;: in u.nifo .. rIneu Go, ..l...I..J..l..U'C.LlL service. The statement is made by Fred F. Goodsell, Vice-President or the American Board, that this Board needs 191 recruits for the various fields in foreign lands. "Today (February 6) the Archbishop of York and the 8 bishops forming the Royal Commission, in session in the crypt of St. Paul's, confirmed the appointment of Dr. Geoffrey F. Fisher to succeed Dr. Temple as Archbishop of Canterbury. It had been their task to in­vestigate and approve each step taken in that appointment. They determined that the king had nominated Dr. Fisher, that no valid objec­tion to his election had been raised, and that his election was duly made according to law by the dean and chapter of Canterbury Cathedral. The historic proceedings in the crypt were carried out with the dignity and reverence which became them. They gave opportunity for anyone who wished to raise an objection. Only one was heard; an elderly layman from the Isle of Wight rose to declare that 'God cannot and wilI not approve of the pi'eferHlent of those who believe merely in policies of compromise.' What precis ply was in his mind was not explained, It may be some tLme before the solemn ceremony of enthronement can take place." -London COl in the Christian Century. "The U. L. C .. ' . has 70 per cent of its membership in centers of over 2,500 population and only 30 per cent in so-called rural areas. The Synodical Conference is 58 per cent urban and only 42 • rural. But we of the American Lutheran Conference still have 56 per cent of our people in rural areas and only 44 per cent in centers which. 23 354 Theological Observer have a population of over 2,500. -Dr. L. M. Stavig in the Lutheran Outlook. An editorial in the Watchman-Examiner, whose editor belongs to the Northern Baptist Convention, says: "We have already lost Rochester University, Brown University, and now Chicago University. The process is understandable, because Northern Baptists have set up their schools on an autonomous basis. Their boards of trustees being self-perpetuat­ing, the Convention has nothing to say about possible trends. Southern Baptists have sustained a vital relationship to their schools; consequently, so far as we know, they have riot lost any of them. If the trend in Northern Baptist higher education continues, it is easy to foresee that it is only a question of time when they will have no institutions of higher learning at all." Dr. Purves [Professor of New Testament Literature and Exegesis at Princeton Seminary and later on pastor in New York] always wrote out his sermons in full. He took them to church with him, but kept them in his coat pocket and preached extemporaneously from his memory of the sermon. His main reason for writing out the sermon was so as to think it through carefully before delivering it. -Presbyterian of Jan. 4, 1945. The Christian University Association of America has purchased the P. A. B. Wideller e:;LaLe uf thirLy-three acres in Elkins Park, Philadelphia. The prospectus says that probably in the first year "Courses will be restricted to the college of arts, with graduate work offered in such subjects as history and philosophy. As soon as possible, other courses such as Education, Business, Law, will be added. The university will probably be co-educational. The basis of the Association is the Bible." The Association also adopts as standards, subordinate to the Word of God, the Helvetic Confession, the Heidelberg Catechism, and the Canons of Dort, approved or formulated by the Synod of Dort, and the Confession of Faith, the Large Catechism and the Shorter Catechism, formulated by the Westminster Assembly, as setting forth the system of truth taught in the Holy Scriptures. In other words, the theology repre­sented by the Association is definitely Reformed. Of the population of Boston, 74.3 per cent are Roman Catholics, according to figures relayed by Time from the Pilot, official publication of the Boston archdiocese. Percentages in other cities are also given by the news magazine as compiled by Catholic Bishop John F. Noll of Fort Wayne, Ind.: New Orleans, 54; Providence,57; Detroit, 46; St. Louis, 43; Chicago, 41; Philadelphia, 29; New York, 22. -Christian Century. "The women of Memphis want the right to serve on juries. A pro­posed bill which Memphis clubwomen and bar association leaders say will clear the legal path to the jury box has been submitted to the com­mittee on legislation of the local bar association. Similar bills have been presented to the general assembly in the past without success." This report is found in the Christian Century. Thinking of these women trying to put a political burden on themselves, we cannot help ejaculating, o sancta simplicitas! A.