Full Text for CTM Theological Observer 18-4 (Text)

(ttnurttroiu m4rningtrul flnntlJly Continuing LEHRE UNO WEHRE MAGAZIN FUER Ev.-LUTH. HOMILETIK THEOLOGICAL QUARTERLy-THEOLOGICAL MONTHLY Vol.xvm April, 1947 No.4 CONTENTS Pqe Why Should Our Pastors, Teachers, and Professors Subscribe Unconditionally to the Symbolical Wr itings of OUl' Church? C. F. W. Walther _ ------------ ------- -- --- _ _ 241 Natural Theology in David Hollaz . .Jarosiav Pelikan, Jr. ___ __________ _ W Timelog of Jesus' Last Days. W. Geo i __ . __ .. ___ .. .... __ ... _ __ Z63 Outlines on the Nitzsch Gospel Selections .. __ __ ____ .. _ 277 l!88 MisceUanea __ . ___ .. __ _ Theological Observer . ___ . _____ ._ .. .. __ ._ .. _ 2M Book Review _ .._ .. __ _ .... __ . __ . .. __ - . __ _______ ... ..._. . _ __ 314 ElD Predlger mUll nleht alleIn wei- clew. al80 class er die Scha1e unter- welae. wte sie rechte Chrlsten aollen ae1n. .andern auch daneben den Woel- ten eDell-ren. daII llie die Schafe nlcht anarelfen und mit fal5cher Lehre ver- fuebren und I:rrtum eintuehren. Luth~ PubUsh Zs iBt lteJn DIn£ du die IAate mehr bei der K1rche behae1t clenn d ie gute Predigt. - AJlOIoQie. At't. If It the trumpet give an UIlcvtain aound, who Ihall prepare hlIuelf t. the battle? - i erw. 14:8 by tile Ev. Lnth. S1D-od of MIssouri, Ohio, aud Other States CONCORDIA PUBLISHING BOUSE, St. Louis 18, Mo. 111 11. 5 • •• Theological Observer Difficulties for the Churches in the Russian Zone ill Germany. - After a recent visit in Germany, where he conferred with church leaders, Dr. W. A. Visser 't Hooft, general secretary of the World Council of Churches, stated that the lack of full freedom for Protestant churches in the Russian zone of Germany still causes anxiety. After saying that restrictions on the Church's social work, and especially on missionary efforts among youth, are dis- heartening, he asserted that there are encouraging reports of friendly understanding achieved in cases where church repre- sentatives "come into open contact with military authorities." As an illustration he cited one town where people were required to work on their farms on Sundays and were thus prevented from attending church services. The minister approached the local commandant and pointed out that the Ten Commandments require Christians to observe the Sabbath. The officer countered by asking what these commandments were. And when they had been recited to him, he replied: "This is indeed outstanding and should be preached everywhere." From that day on no more work was demanded on Sundays. (See R. N. S., December 23, 1946.) A. The Importance of Religious Training in the Warfare 011 Juvenile Delinquency. - A significant statement was issued in Des Moines, Iowa, by Lieutenant Ralph Brophy, head of the Police Juvenile Bureau. R. N. S. quotes him thus: "Boys and girls who attend Sunday school and church regularly are not likely to fall into the arms of the law as delinquent children. We cannot blame the children for their failure to attend. Practically none of the parents of the children contacted either attend or accompany their children to religious services. I consider religious or spiritual training the most important factor in the prevention of juvenile delinquency." He added that there are "five ways of making a child delinquent: 1. Do not give your child any religious or spiritual training; 2. Do not let him discuss his plans, problems, or pleasures, so he won't develop affection, security, or trust in you; 3. Do not open your home to his companions; they will muss up the place. Do not be concerned where he spends his free time; 4. Never praise your child for his worth-while effort, because he might take advantage of your effort and try harder to please you in the future; 5. In other words, just do not pay any attention to what your child does or says. He should be able to take care of himself in this day and age." As to the work of his department, he said that at least 83 per cent of the children with whom his Bureau had to deal during 1946 were not regular attendants at any church or Sunday school, and of the remaining 17 per cent only a few attended church or Sunday school with any degree of regularity. A. [296] THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 297 European Lutherans and Otherworldliness. - A dispatch from Geneva (via R. N. S.), speaking of the attitude of Lutherans in Europe toward social and political problems, contains statements which may be extremely significant. The dispatch says: The war has caused Lutheran churches in Europe, which historically have been considered "other-worldly," to recognize the role of Christianity in all phases of life, according to leading Protestant theologians meeting here under the auspices of the World Council of Churches. Attended by twenty-five Biblical scholars from eleven countries, including Karl Barth, Edm. Schlink, Theodore Bachmann (Maywood, ID.), the meeting was called by the World Council's Study Department in preparation for the Council's general assembly, which will take place at Amsterdam next year. Theme of the meeting, which lasted five days, was "The Authority and Relevance of the Social and Political Message of the Bible Today." The Rev. Nils Ehrenstrom, director of the Study Department and himself a Lutheran, declared the war has forced many Lu- therans to reconsider their beliefs and rediscover that the Church is concerned with life as a whole. "As a result," he said, "they have returned to the original position of Martin Luther and taken a new view of the relation between the Church and the state." Ehren- strom said the conference had rejected both Fundamentalism and Modernism as perverting the true meaning of Christianity. He de- clared that "in contrast to a generation which has long ignored the Bible, the major idea emerging here is that the Bible message as a whole is vital for the development of sound attitudes on social and political questions." Professor Anders Nygren, an out- standing Scandinavian Lutheran theologian, told the sessions that "the Church not only has a right, but a duty, to make demands upon the state concerning what it should do." Dr. Carl E. Schneider, of Eden Seminary, St. Louis, and an American repre- sentative in the World Council's Reconstruction Department, said he was "very much impressed" by the manner in which Europeans, after arguing about what American churchmen would consider abstractions remote from life, had come to a broad agreement of practical importance. He announced that a follow-up meeting will take place late in June for discussion of the Church's attitude toward the state, nationalism, capital, labor, and war. The comments of a conservative Lutheran on this dispatch must run somewhat like this: The Christian religion is an other- worldly religion; the Christian citizenship is in heaven (Phil. 3: 20) . "Here we have no continuing city, but we seek one to come" (Heb. 13: 14). At the same time it is an error to say that the Christian religion is exclusively otherworldly. It has much to say on our relations toward our fellow men while we are living here on earth, and this part of its teaching has to be observed and inculcated as well as that section which speaks of our home above. The 298 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER question of the relation existing between Church and State is eagerly discussed in Europe these days. Let us hope that the wrong extremes will be avoided. A. A New Heresy in the Christian Church.-Dr. William H. Chisholm, medical missionary and Fellow of the International Col- lege of Surgeons, and the Rev. Mr. H. Stigers have published an article in The Sunday School Times (Dec. 14, 1946), in which they call attention to "the subtle danger of Barthianism, which is now championed by Princeton Theological Seminary, in particular, in Theology Today, to which Princeton professors are diligent con- tributors. The editor of Theology Today, Princeton Seminary's president, Dr. John MacKay, has praised Barthianism in these words: "The so-called Barthian movement, it is no exaggeration to say, has been the greatest single influence in Christian thought in recent decades. This movement has done much to rehabilitate theology in the Christian Church" ("A Preface to Christian Theology," April, 1944, p. 22) . "But what are the teachings of Barthianism?" the article asks. Then, in reply to this question, it quotes from an article by John Newton Thomas the following: "The revealed truth of God is therefore not contained in the words of the Bible" (Theology Today, July, 1946, p.161). Thomas next quotes Barth as teaching: "In the one case Deus dixit, in the other Paulus dixit. These two are different things" (Ibid.). To show that Barthians do not identify the Word of God and Holy Scripture, the article next quotes a number of Barthian state- ments, of which we cite a few. Dr. E. Brunner thus says: "Hence the word of Scripture is not in itself the word of God, but of man" (Theology Today, July, 1946, p. 162). On October 10, 1946, Brunner, addressing three hundred students in Princeton Sem- inary, said: "The Bible contains a lot of statements of facts, of ethics, and of doctrine that are in contradiction to knowledge we have gained otherwise. . .. There can be no harmony of the Gos- pels. That is bunk, dishonesty." Again: "I read great portions of the Bible that do not speak to me, and they are not the Word of God." In his book "Nature and Destiny of Man," Dr. Niebuhr writes: "The problem of the relation of man's essential nature to his sinful state unfortunately has been confused in the history of Christian thought by ... the literalistic error of insisting upon the Fall as an historical event" (Vol. I, p. 276). Again: "The disavowal of the historico-literalistic illusion, which places the original perfection of man in a period before an historical fall, thus clarifies and corrects both Catholic and Protestant thought" (Vol. I, p. 276). Dr. Otto Piper, professor of New Testament in Princeton Theological Seminary, writes in "God in History": "The truth of God is contained in the Bible; but Jesus showed that the Jews were mistaken when for this reason they identified the Bible with the word of God" (p. 142). Again, in Theology Today, Dr. Piper says: "How little does it matter for our appre- ciation of the last twenty-seven chapters of the Book of Isaiah THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 299 that in all probability they were not written by the prophet who speaks in chapters 1-39, as long as we can be sure that God is speaking to us through them" (Theology Today, July, 1946, p. 204)? Dr. Homrighausen, professor of Christian Education in Princeton Seminary, writes in Christianity in America: "Few intelligent Protestants can still hold to the idea that the Bible is an infallible book" (p. 121). Dr. H. T. Kerr, Jr., one of the associate editors of Theology Today and professor at Princeton Seminary, says: "The crisis at this moment is evidenced by the transition from an older, traditional authority in terms of inerrancy and verbal infallibility to the current existential view (subjective) that the word of God is somehow within and yet apart from the words of the Bible" (Theology Today, July, 1946, p.151 ff.). The article continues in criticism of these and other remarks by Princeton Barthians: "The fallacy as well as the great wrong of the teaching at Princeton Seminary is at once evident to anyone who will search the Scriptures, as the Bereans did, to find whether these things are so. The Scriptures teach that its words are the words of the Holy Ghost: The Apostle Paul says: 'Which things also we speak, not in words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth' (1 Cor. 2: 13) . The words of the Scriptures are the Word of God whether or not they meet with response in the human heart .. " Surely, anyone who would say that only the words of Scripture which found a response in his heart were to him the Word of God is as the Apostle Paul puts it in 2 Corinthians 4:2, 'handling the Word of God deceitfully.' Whether the words of the Bible are the Word of God is not de- termined by any response they mayor may not produce in the minds and hearts of fallible men, for as the Psalmist declares: 'Forever, 0 Lord, Thy Word is settled in heaven' (Ps.119:89). Now this trifling with the words of the Bible, which are declared to be the words of the Holy Spirit, is something strange in this new Princeton. At the time of the reorganization of that sem- inary in 1929 we were assured that no doctrinal change was in- volved. Some of us remember the scholarly defense of the very words of Scripture by men of massive intellect, men of the highest scholarship Princeton Seminary has ever seen. The arguments of such men as Dr. Robert Dick Wilson, Dr. B. B. Warfield, and Dr. J. Gresham Machen still remain unanswered by the Modern- ists and the Barthians." The article closes with an earnest warn- ing against "the subtle danger of Barthianism" and an appeal to all earnest Christians to hold fast to the Holy Scriptures as the divine Word of truth. It is a long and well-written article, and one that is exceedingly timely just because of the many and fierce attacks on the inspiration and authority of the Holy Scriptures in all liberal areas of Christendom. J. T. M. What Becomes of Papal Infallihility When a Pope is Dropped? - The Protestant Voice raises the question which "Prot- estants are interested in having answered" with reference to the 300 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER news item that the Vatican has eliminated six popes from the offi- ciallist, inserted one, and called two doubtful. The RNS reports: "Correction based on two centuries of scientific research have re- sulted in the elimination of two 'nonexistent' Popes and the re- classification of four others as 'Anti-Popes' or illegitimate Popes in the 1947 edition of the Annuario Pontificio. This is the official Vatican record of the hierarchy in all countries. The 'non- existent' Popes, according to Msgr. Angelo Marcati, editor of the Annuario, were St. Anacletus, who was actually the same person as St. Cletus, second successor to St. Peter; and Donus II, here- tofore listed as Pope in 973. These errors were made, Msgr. Mar- cati declared, by the priest Giovanni Marangoni, who compiled the first scientific list of Popes, but whose list 'had many errors and defects which ruled out many of his conclusions.' Marangoni died in 1753. The four illegitimate Popes, Msgr. Marcati said, were St. Felice II, listed as Pope from 353 to 365; Alexander V, 1409 to 1410; Boniface VII; and John XXII, or XXIII, or XXIV. A copy of the new Annuario was formally presented to Pope Pius by Msgr. Giovanni Battista Montini, of the Papal Secretariat of State." In addition The Protestant Voice quotes a dispatch from the Vatican: "Boniface VI, who was not in the old list, is put down as the legitimate pontiff for a few days in April 896. Possibility was admitted that Dioscoro was pope for 22 days in September or October, 530, and that Leo VIII was pontiff from 963 to 965. Both were omitted from the list until now." Long ago, Luther em- barrassed his opponent in the Leipzig Debate, 1519, with these questions: What becomes of the primacy of the pope when a pope dies; when some time elapses before a new pope is elected- periods sometimes as long as two years; when there are two or three popes, all damning and anathematizing each other? The questions are not answered yet - by Catholics, because the only answer is: The primacy of the Roman Bishop is fiction, not fact. Luther proved then that it has neither Biblical nor historical foundation. Standard Roman Catholic historians today admit that for the very existence of the men cited as the earliest popes they have only the word of the "Church," no historic evidence whatever. Time and again speakers at the Vatican Council of 1869-70 stressed that in the light of such facts any claim of the pope's infallibility was ridiculous; care was taken that these men were eliminated from the council before the Infallibility Decree was passed "unanimously." T. H. Gideon Bible Offers Rejected. - The Presbyterian Guardian (February 10, 1947) reports the Gideons are meeting with con- siderable difficulty as they are trying to carry out their program of supplying public schools with copies of Holy Writ. We read: "The Gideons are an organization which seeks to distribute copies of the Bible wherever opportunity offers throughout the country. Their Bibles are to be found in almost all hotel rooms. But it is only recently that they have begun handing out New Testaments THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 301 in schools. When they offered to present copies of the New Tes- tament with the Psalms and Proverbs to a thousand students of a Boston high school, the offer was first accepted, but then re- jected after protests had been made. The protests claimed that such an action would be in violation of the State constitution, which forbids the dissemination of literature of 'any denomina- tion' in the schools. The presentation will be made, however, but it won't be in the school building. It will be in the head- quarters of a local Woman's Club. In Berlin, Connecticut, a sim- ilar offer was turned down by the Board of Education. The Board was eager to avoid any 'favoritism' toward any religious group. And a Jewish congregation in Davenport, Iowa, protested and was successful in stopping a similar distribution to pupils of that com- munity." While these reports no doubt are true, they manifestly represent exceptional cases. On the whole, we believe, the Bible is welcomed in the public schools of our country, and the Federal Constitution does not prohibit its use there. There is a great dif- ference between reading the Bible and teaching definite sectarian tenets in our State schools. The latter is objectionable; the former only if the definite Christian content of the divine Word or sec- tarian interpretation is inculcated. There should be no objection to teaching of ethical principles in public schools no matter whether these are in accord with the Bible or the universal divine Law im- planted in the human heart. J. T. M. Lutheran Foreign Missions in 1946. - According to a report given by Dr. A. S. Burgess, director of Foreign Mission Education for the Evangelical Lutheran Church to R. N. S., Lutheran church bodies of North America sent out 308 foreign missionaries in 1946. This number included 165 missionaries going out for the first time. The largest number of missionaries, 105, was sent to China. The number included 49 persons who went there for the first time. Other countries to which the missionaries were sent included: Africa, 42 new and 16 returned; New Guinea, 32 new and 31 re- turned; India, 20 new and 26 returned; Madagascar, eight new and five returned; Bolivia, five new and two returned; Japan, six returned; Columbia, four new and one returned; Argentina, four new, and British Guinea, one new. According to synods or societies the list runs as follows: American Lutheran, 36 new and 34 returned; Augustana Synod, 28 new and 19 returned; Evan- gelical Lutheran (former Norwegian Evangelical Lutheran Church), 28 new and 31 returned; Lutheran Brethren, six new and five returned; Lutheran Free Church, four new and seven returned; Missouri Synod, 38 new and 18 returned; Sudon Mission, 3 re- turned; United Evangelical Lutheran, four returned; United Lu- theran, 17 new and 20 returned; and World Mission Prayer League, eight new and two returned. F. E. M. A Letter of Dr. Sasse. - Owing to aspersions that have been cast on Dr. Sasse in Erlangen, a very conservative Lutheran theologian, we reprint here a letter of his that appeared in the 302 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER Lutheran of January 15. In a letter dated June 11, 1946, and printed in various papers in our country, Professor Strathmann had uttered the complaint that Professor Sasse had considered it proper to "besmear" Elert, Althaus, and Strathmann in a secret letter to the Americans. Dr. Sasse's letter pertains to this matter. "Sir: One of my former students, now in the United States, wrote to me as follows: "'Recently I read an article by Dr. Strathmann which was published in our church paper, The Lutheran. I would be happy if you would enlighten me on the real facts relative to what has gone on in the theological faculty in Erlangen.' "As one who has long read your paper - I received it up into the time of the war regularly through the friendliness of the deceased president of your church, Dr. F. H. Knubel- I request you to forward the arguments of Dr. Strathmann to me immediately, so that I can answer the question asked of me. For The Lutheran is not obtainable in Germany up to the present time. I make this request the more urgently because I must fear that Professor Strathmann holds me or some other one of his colleagues responsible that he was retired by the military government. Regardless of what'l would answer if I had the wording of the article before me, I would like to make the following remarks: The retirement of Dr. Strathmann, now in the 65th year of his life, was not caused directly or indirectly by a colleague of his faculty. It was based upon a decision of the military government on which none of us had any influence. The military governor at that time, Mr. Elden H. Dye, as well as the university officer at that time, Mr. Ben Kimpel, can confirm that fact at any time. I would regret very much if the arguments of Dr. Strathmann, who has been em- bittered by much suffering, would arouse the false impression that one of us were guilty for his retirement. (Signed) Herman Sasse." - In a letter to Christian Century, published February 12, 1947, Prof. F. E. Mayer defended Dr. Sasse on the basis of firsthand information against the charges contained in the Correspondence of this journal under date of September 25, 1946. A. New Development in German Theological Training. - The movement to divorce the theological training from the state- supported universities seems to be gaining momentum in Germany. At Neuendettelsau, under the direction of Dr. G. Merz, the begin- ning of an independent seminary is under way. Dr. Merz had been professor at the Bethel-Bielefeld seminary for a number of years, and he is hopeful that the theological training can be carried on by private initiative. Dr. E. Schlink, now of Heidelberg, but formerly also at Bethel, has a plan whereby the Church will exert greater influence on the training of the theologians. According to the Christian Century of February 5, 1947, the Bavarian Lutheran Church plans to open a church-supported seminary at Kloster Heilsbronn in central Bavaria. For the present this seminary is designed to serve students during the first two years of th~r THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 808 ministerial preparation. It will also offer extension courses for pastors, a plan similar to that of Neuendettelsau under Dr. Merz. The movement for private or church-related seminaries was started originally by Bodelschwingh and received considerable impetus when the Confessional Church established its own semi- naries in opposition to Hitler. The question of separation of Church and State is receiving considerable attention in Germany today, and the establishment of church-related ministerial training schools may be a factor in helping to crystallize the German churchman's thinking on this question. - Heretofore the church-related theo- logical schools, such as our Free Church Zehlendorf "theological high school" and the Bethel Seminary, were viewed as being out of step with German practice. We hope that the new trend of thought will increase the usefulness of the proposed theological school of our Free Churches and that a relatively large number of students also beyond the borders of the Free Churches will enroll. According to the most recent reports, the unification pro- gram between the Saxon and the Breslau groups is going forward splendidly, and the two groups plan to join hands in building their own "free" seminary. F. E. M. The Proposed Conference of American Churches on Closer Unity. - In response to overtures from the General Council of the Congregational Christian Churches and the International Con- vention of Disciples of Christ, both of which proposed that the Federal Council convene "a plenary session of representatives of American Churches to study the possibility of closer unity," the following action was taken at the October meeting of the Executive Committee: That the General Secretary be instructed to send a communication to the officials of all the Churches related to the Council, inquiring whether they desire to participate in such a conference and, in case the answer is affirmative, whether they will be prepared to designate a representative, or representatives, to serve with similar representatives of other Churches on a Joint Committee on Arrangements and Agenda; that after the replies have been received, and in the light of the extent of interest mani- fested, the Executive Committee decide what relation, if any, the Federal Council should sustain to such a Conference and what measure of assistance, in the form of study or of administrative responsibility, it should provide. It will now be for the Churches to determine to what extent they are interested in exploring some next step in closer relation- ships. - Christendom, Vol. XII, No.1. F. E. M. The "Spectator" Does Not Like Lutheran Provincialism. The "Spectator" is a lively and usually very interesting page in the Lutheran Companion, noting and interpreting present-day trends and events. In the issue of February 12, 1947, the "Spectator" suggests that Lutherans "work for Lutheran unity, not as an end in itself, but as a step toward one, ideal Church." He says (quoted in part) : "We [Lutherans] ... believe in a 'Holy Catholic (uni- 304 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER versal) Church' - as an ideal. The ecumenical Church is far more difficult to attain than a united Lutheran Church, which hitherto has been hard enough, not to say impossible, to achieve. Many have forsaken the quest for the 'ecumenical Church' in favor of 'Lutheran world unity.' This is also a splendid goal, but by its very nature, secondary. The Spectator declares himself to be a Christian in the first place and a Lutheran in the second place. This may be only an academic statement and alternative. However, it does make some difference in one's life if the prime aim in his church work is -'the Holy Christian Church' or if it is 'the Holy Lutheran Church.' The Spectator fears that Lutheran ecumenicity at best is like Roman Catholicism, a misnomer .... To put 'Lutheran' before 'ecumenicity' is to put 'partial' before 'unity.' The Spectator sees only one solution: Consider the ideal to be 'one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church,' and work for Lutheran unity, not as an end in itself, but as a step toward that one ideal Church. Even before that ideal is attained there can be much practical co-operation in many fields with like-minded persons in all denominations. In other words, the Spectator protests against Lutheran provincialism, even when it is given a loftier name." There is no doubt that most Protestant Chris- tians, when confessing: Credo in unam, sanctam catholicam et apostolicam ecclesiam, are thinking of the sanctorum communio, or the ecdesia invisibilis, and not of any visible denomination, small or large, provincial or ecumenical. But most assuredly all Christians are oriented ecumenically, that is to say, they desire to see all professing believers in the world united into one orthodox Christian body, "perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment" (1 Cor. 1: 10). But there remains the great gulf of different religious belief not only between Lutherans and Calvinists, but also between orthodox believers and liberals in general, and all Bible-minded Christians heed Matt. 10: 32-33, to- gether with all the other passages in Scripture that demand the frank and fearless confession of truth against error. It is this fixed gulf of differing religious opinion that prevents true Christian ecumenicity, and not Lutheran provincialism, or any other kind of provincialism. If Lutherans are first trying to accomplish real unity in faith among themselves, it is, because there is a common bond among them which after all might make it possible for them to get together. But if (as the "Spectator" remarks) it is hard enough, not to say impossible, to achieve a united Lutheran Church, then surely it is all the harder to bring about the "one Holy Cath- olic and Apostolic Church," considered as a visible organization. If Mr. Average Citizen has not yet got together his first $1,000, he will hardly dream in terms of $1,000,000. It is this step-by-step endeavor which realistic Lutherans have in mind when thinking first, not indeed of a "Holy Lutheran Church," but of a truly united Lutheran church, which certainly will be a great gain. J. T. M. THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 305 Rome Marching. - Some significant signs that he who runs may read. "The Vatican plans to set up in China a Roman Catholic ecclesiastical hierarchy under the auspices of the Sacred Congrega- tion for Propagating the Faith. China will be divided into 20 ecclesiastical provinces. Its hierarchy will consist of 20 arch- bishops and 79 bishops. There will be 38 apostolic prefects."- Watchman-Examiner. "The newly published Catholic Directory reports that the total Catholic population now in England numbers 2,443,600 persons. Conversions in 1945 totaled 9,767, a gain of 1,045 over 1944. There were 36,553 Catholic marriages in 1945. By that is meant mar- riages in which the parents contract to bring up their children in the Catholic faith." - Watchman-Examiner. "In this tercentenary year of the Jesuit Martyrs of North America, the largest contingent of American Jesuits (107) ever sent to the foreign missions in a single year has departed for Alaska, Baghdad, British Honduras, the Caroline and Marshall Islands, Ceylon, China, India, Jamaica, B. W. 1., Japan, the Philip- pine Islands and Yoro." -America. "To its Sunday morning "Hour of Faith" (ABC) and its Sun- day evening "Catholic Hour" (NBC), the National Council of Catholic Men added a third radio program on October 3. Called "Faith in Our Time," it will be heard on Thursday morning at 10:15 over the Mutual Broadcasting System." -America. T.H. Changing Emphases in the Social Gospel. In the Calvin Forum (January and February, 1947) the Rev. A. A. Hoekema of Grand Rapids, Mich., contributes under the given heading two very readable articles on certain changes in Modernism that have occurred in recent years. In the first contribution he points out that Modernism as derived from Ritschl and represented prin- cipally by such men as Samuel Batten and Walter Rauschenbusch (to mention only a few) taught a social optimism which was both superficial and unrealistic. Sin was not regarded essentially as a violation of the divine Law. God was almost identified with human society, the conception of God coming close to mere im- manence, or the pantheistic conception of the divine. The king- dom of God, perhaps the articulus fundamentalissimus of the so- cial gospel, was humanity organized according to the will of God. The heart was cut out of the substitutionary atonement by teach- ing that it was no more than that Christ set in motion a new beginning of spiritual life within the organized total of the race, and this henceforth pervaded the common life" (whatever that may mean). Basically, the theology of the social gospel was no more than an "optimistic, evolutionary anthropology." But a change has come about, and that largely through the Barthian movement, and especially through the work of Reinhold Niebuhr. Of course, the fundamental assumptions of the defenders of the social gospel were not altered appreciably by the new orthodoxy. 20 306 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER They merely became "chastened liberals," as Georgia Harkness has called herself ("still a liberal, but now considerably chastened and deepened"). E. F. Tittle confesses that the kingdom of God is "not to be identified with any human social programs." Even liberal John C. Bennett, while not forsaking his fundamental liberal assumptions, has come to see things in a different perspective. The writer summarizes the main changes in emphasis which the social gospel has undergone in the last two decades as follows: "1. There has come a new realism about man and his possibilities. 2. Along with this has come a new conception of social change. The stubbornness of social evil has been more clearly recognized, as well as the importance for social change of sub-Christian social and political forces, and the inevitability of social conflict. 3. Even liberal theologians today have a new conception of the kingdom of God as a transcendent ideal which can never be completely realized within human history. 4. There is a growing emphasis on the transcendence of God (although for many this is merely a matter .of emphasis which does not alter their basic commitment to the theology of immanentism). 5. God is recognized as the Judge of society as well as its Redeemer. 6. Need is felt for a gospel for periods of social frustration. 7. Finally, there has come a fresh emphasis on the importance of the Church in an increas- ingly secularized world." The analysis shows that the social gospel is still social gospel, but, as the writer says, there has been a shift in emphases. The pendulum of liberal, negative theology has swung so far to the left that at last it landed in a vacuum of atheism, hopelessness, effectlessness. Conceited human reason, repudiating the divine Word, is unable to find a practical, effectual ethic for the improvement of human society. It is a theology of mere negation. In other words, there is only one power of God unto salvation - the Gospel of Christ - and that will not only save souls unto eternal life, but also wield a most powerful influence toward making this a better world. J.T.M. Roman Catholic Reaction to the Defeat of the Wisconsin "Bus- Amendment." - America, the Jesuit weekly says: "Don't misread Wisconsin bus defeat. The defeat of the Wisconsin amendment, which would have opened school-bus transportation to children attending private and parochial schools, may be built up to an utterly false conclusion. It may be thought, for instance, that the people of Wisc.onsin voted down the proposal to let parochial-school children ride on public school buses. True enough, that was the original proposal. But before the day came for voting, the people had been distracted almost completely from that clear proposal by a stratagem of the Protestant churches. The real and really horrendous issue, the Protestants claimed, was whether Wisconsin was to sanction union of Church and State. Were the people willing to sit idly by and let the Catholic Church drive a wedge into the principle of separation of Church and State? The propa- THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 307 ganda campaign to substitute this specious issue for the real pro- posal was carried on with a fury that reminded one, at times, of the AP A days. And it was a successful campaign. Two facts stand out as clear as crystal: 1) the people of Wisconsin did not reject the proposal to grant bus transportation to private and parochial school children; they didn't even vote on that proposal; 2)there is crying need to educate our American people, including our Catholic people, on what separation of Church and State does not mean and what it does mean." There may be difference of opinion on the matter of free transportation for school children; but of this there can be no doubt: Catholic propaganda - "education of the American people" they call it - will not cease. In other States they have been successful; they will try again where they have lost. And - this is far more serious - when they are successful in this matter, they will go on working for other advantages. The education of the American people should include a greater measure of history study, particularly of medieval and early modern Church history. The note of warning raised by the Chri.stian Century should be heeded: "By a vote of 530,000 to 463,000 the people of Wisconsin defeated the proposal to amend the constitution of that State to permit transportation at public expense of pupils of parochial schools. This wise action should dispose for some time to come of the attempts of Roman Catholics to secure from tax funds assistance in their program of sectarian education. But it will not do so permanently, as those who know the history of the Roman Church's persistent efforts in this direction realize. In Wisconsin the issue may be expected to come up under some other guise when opportunity offers. In nearly half the States of the Union it has been raised in one form or another by that Church in recent years. The Wisconsin decision represents a major reverse, but a church policy which is fundamentally hostile to the principle of separation of Church and State will find other means of ex- pression. Henceforth, however, it will encounter in Wisconsin the determined opposition of a majority of the citizens, to whom the discussion over this proposal proved an arousing and enlightening event." T. H. Radio Trash. - The King's Business calls attention to an evil that attacks every one of our homes: vicious radio programs. "We often wonder if radio entertainers remember that through the miracle of broadcasting they are allowed to enter the sanctity of private homes - homes where the parents are respectable, high- thinking people and where the children are impressionable. Does it seem right that such programs should include suggestive and questionable material? Is it right for a guest to enter a decent home with 'off-color' jokes? Is it right to treat drunkenness and brutality and murder in a casual way? Surely there is some reason why both broadcasters and sponsors countenance such a travesty on courtesy and right living. 308 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER "The other evening simultaneously on three or four major networks there was a murder story. Grotesque scenes were de- scribed, but the treatment of them was most matter-of-fact. If one from another world were suddenly plunged into our sphere, by listening to these air shows, he would immediately conclude that murder was the most common everyday occurrence in the United States. "It is not necessary to resort to filth or horror for success on the air. The program which heads the radio parade for popularity has one cardinal rule: that every show must be clean. It is regrettable that so tremendous a force as radio seems to have made a misstep here. There is one hopeful sign, however, and that is the attitude of the Federal Communications Commission on this point. We believe, too, that the broadcasting chains have taken cognizance of this abuse and are planning steps to eliminate it. As eternal vigilance is ever the price for anything worth while, the right-thinking citizens in our land must stand together to protect the American home and to safeguard its sanctity." There is much talk of prohibiting by law strikes which affect the general public, even the State itself, strikes in basic, essential industries, because the evil effect of such strikes are almost in- calculable. It would seem that regulation of radio programs is even more necessary; the effects of such vicious broadcasting may reach over into eternity. T. H. Advice to Preachers. - In one of his lectures at the Princeton Institute of Theology last summer, Dr. Robert E. Speer presented "Rules on Preaching," which were printed in The Presbyterian in answer to many requests. One or the other of us may profit thereby: "1. Preaching without emotion is not preaching, but beware of the cheap substitute. Synthetic emotion may impress simple souls, but it corrupts the preacher. "2. Remember Peniel, and wrestle with the great themes, even if they throw you. Jacob was not Israel till he shrank a sinew. "3. Be loyal to your texts. Beware of context; if you leave it, be courteous, and ask permission. Possibly the writer had bigger thoughts than your own. "4. There is always water if you bore deep enough. "5. Motorists and preachers should remember that the aim is not to cover the ground, but to see the country and, seeing, love. "6. Illustrate, but don't illustrate obvious. One good illustra- tion is worth ten bad. "7. The well is deep, and you must have something to draw with, but there is no need to make people drink out of the bucket, still less to chew on the rope. "8. In preaching - no demand without the gift; no diagnosis without the cure, one word about sin, ten for the Savior. THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 309 "9. Emotion arises out of the truth. Emotionalism is poured onto it. "10. Irrelevance is sometimes an infinnity; usually it is a sin. "11. Listen before you speak. See before you say. "12. Aim at being independent of the concordance, but do not disdain it when you are. "13. Love simple speech as much as you hate shallow thinking. "14. Polysyllables are not the sign of profundity. Often they are the cloak of poverty bought at a jumble sale. "15. Never talk down to your audience; they are not there. "16. Beware of the abstract noun. The abstract pufteth up, the concrete buildeth up. "17. By your consonants people will know what you say; by your vowels where you come from. "18. Be audible, but don't shout. Clearness carries farther than clamor. "19. Be sparing of gestures, but do not be a post or robot. If your hands can talk, let them; if not, give them a rest. "20. Be not like the brook; pause sometimes. "21. One cannot always finish, but one can always stop. If the flow ceases, do not dribble. "22. A preacher's damnation: 'He spoke of great things and made them small; of holy things and made them common; of God and made Him of no account.' " T. H. Shall the Presbyterian Church Ordain Women? - Under this heading Dr. C. E. Macartney in the Presbyterian (February 8, 1947) writes against the overture in favor of ordaining women, which the 158th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church U. S. A. sent down to the Prebyteries· for adoption or rejection. Dr. Macartney denies that there is authority in the Scriptures for the proposed ordination of women; on the contrary, it is pro- hibited both in 1 Cor. 14: 33-39 and 1 Tim. 2: 11 ft. He, moreover, contends that the proposed ordination of women is not expedient, and he adduces under this head six clear and weighty arguments, one of which is that it might prevent union with the Presbyterian Church U. S. He writes in conclusion: "The overture to ordain women is in the general line of popular movements in other fields of life, the social and the political. Just as there seems to be a movement for union regardless of traditions, and sometimes of profound doctrinal difference, so there are currents moving in the Church, which, if yielded to, would remove the Presbyterian Church from its New Testament foundation. The Presbyterian Church is a New Testament Church. Through the ages we have been proud of that fact. Grand has been its witness before God and man. Let us not pull down our New Testament flag. All honor to our women! The one who pleaded for Christ at His trial 310 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER was a woman-Pilate's wife. Women were 'last at the Cross and earliest at the grave.' No door of influence and of blessing is closed to them because we do not ordain them to the office of the min- istry." A very commendable article indeed! J. T. M. Brief Items. - According to an article in the Lutheran, written by a German pastor, the Rev. Walter Lotz (see issue of January 8), there are circles in Germany where Holy Communion is celebrated every Sunday and people have made it a rule for themselves to attend the Lord's Table once a week. The movement is called the Berneuchen Movement, Berneuchen being a town near Berlin where, after the first World War, some German youth leaders held a round-table conference. The article states that the objectives of the movement, when it got under way, were the renewal of the Christian worship service, of sacramental life, and of church discipline. A special order was founded, the Order of St. Michael. It is said now to have convents not only in all German provinces, but in Austria, Czechoslovakia, Roumania, and Switzerland. At Assenheim near Frankfurt a house has been acquired for the work of this brotherhood which accommodates about 80 people at a time and where retreats will be held, in which daily services are con- ducted, including daily morning prayer, mid-day prayer, evensong, and the Holy Eucharist is celebrated daily. The Christmas issue of the Chicago Tribune carried as a special feature the story of the village of Frankenmuth, Mich., where 95 per cent of the population of 1,300 are members of the local Lutheran church. The community has never in the 102 years of its history had a crime of violence. For the past 25 years no one has been put in jail. During the depression no one in the community was on relief. The town has always been the first in the State to report all its taxes paid in full and has always assumed more than its share of responsibility in philanthropic financial drives. According to the Christian Century (February 12, 1947), Prof. Buell G. Gallagher, professor of Christian Ethics in the Pacific School of Religion, Berkeley, Calif., in the course of his Alden- Tuthill lectures characterizes the social gospel as follows: "As a permanent resource for the religious quest, it was neither guide nor decoy. It was a sitting duck, because it lacked wings. It was therefore an easy mark for the sharpshooters of neo-orthodoxy." On neo-orthodoxy he commented: "As Niebuhr moves rapidly to the right in theology and to the left in ethics, he does not demonstrate any functional connection between the two positions. Instead, he demonstrates the brilliance of a sinuous mind . . . swinging deftly and surely on the high trapeze of Hegelian dialectic from thesis to antithesis, by each impressively easy and dizzy swing maintaining contact between the ever more widely separated theological and ethical positions." Answering the long-felt need of an organization for the pur- pose of encouraging and promoting research, the American Society THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 311 for Reformation Research was organized at Valparaiso University last summer. Since then the necessary steps have been taken to have the Society in full working order by the time of the Chicago convention. The chief purpose of the Society is to encourage the study of Reformation literature, to act as a clearinghouse for the translation of primary and secondary works relevant to Reforma- tion history, and to prepare and publish English editions of Luther's writings for scholastic and lay use. Special mention was made of Luther's Commentaries on Romans and the Psalms and his sermons prior to 1521. Consideration also was given to the publication of an adequate lexicon of the German language in Reformation times. Officers of the Society are Dr. E. G. Schwiebert of Northwestern University, president, and Dr. Jaroslav Pelikan of Valparaiso University, secretary. Trygve Lie, secretary general of the United Nations, has ac- cepted an invitation from the Minneapolis Round Table of the National Conference of Christians and Jews to address an Amer- ican Brotherhood Week dinner here February 17. Included with the invitation were seconding letters from 19 State, city, civic, educational, religious, and community leaders. Among the re- ligious leaders who sent the letters were Dr. J. A. Aasgaard, presi- dent of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (formerly the Norwegian Lutheran Church of America); Dr. J. Arthur Rinkel, president of the Minneapolis Church Federation, and Rabbi Albert G. Minda of Temple Israel, Minneapolis. After reading the report of a sim- ilar meeting held in London last summer, we cannot understand how Lutherans can participate in a conference where the essentials of Christianity will be circumvented. Or is the purpose of the meeting no more than a "brotherhood" conference to establish friendly relations on a broad humanitarian basis? To help satisfy the acute need for religious literature in Ger- many, the American Lutheran Church each week is sending to that country 100 copies of its German-language periodical, Kirchen- blatt. - The Christian Century. Brief Items from Religious News Service. - The Society of the Sons of the Sacred Heart of Jesus will open a seminary near Cin- cinnati, Ohio. The motherhouse of this Catholic order is in Verona, Italy. Dr. James Henry Rushbrooke, president of the Baptist World Alliance, died in Bristol, England, February 1. Dr. Rushbrooke was one of the outstanding Baptists of the world. The Seventh-Day Adventists of the Pacific Union Conference report that more than $24,000,000 have been collected by them within the past five years in tithes and mission offerings. The American Bible Society has sent more than two million Bibles and New Testaments to Germany and more than one mil- lion to Japan. The expense entailed in the action affecting Ger- many was $450,000. 312 THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER A new organization patterned after Alcoholics Anonymous, but with a greater emphasis on the Christian religion as an antidote for continued drunkenness, has been formed in Washington, with a nucleus of 20 members. Contributions made by the American public to religion in 1945 scored a new high by passing the $1,000,000,000 mark, but they amounted to only one third o£ the nation's bill for tobacco and one eighth of its outlay for alcoholic beverages. From Washington comes the news that a number of Roman Catholic scholars are at work producing what they term an "Ameri- can" translation o£ the Bible. The basis is not the Vulgate, but the Hebrew and Greek text. The work on the Pentateuch has been completed. In West Helena, Ark., the local Baptist church operates a kindergarten. The pastor says that twice the number could be enrolled if a sufficient teaching staff were available. A charge of $5.00 a month is made for each child. The church itself allocates $50.00 monthly to the project. Until now Jews had only one ecclesiastical court, which is located in New York City and which legislates in matters of marriage, divorce, conversion, ritual, and other religious aspects of Judaism. Now another Jewish court of this kind has been established at Chicago. A bill to provide bus transportation for parochial school pupils was introduced in the Indiana Legislature by Representatives Elmer Weller and Mrs. Ida Wilson. It would require township trustees to provide an appropriation for transportation of children attending non-profit or parochial schools. The Rev. Joseph R. Sizoo, who recently resigned as pastor of St. Nicholas Church in New York, after a long controversy over the sale of his downtown church, accepted the presidency of the New Brunswick Theological Seminary. This seminary, organized in 1784, is one of the oldest theological seminaries in the United States. The minister of ecclesiastical affairs in Denmark announced that he was in favor of permitting women to act as ministers in the State Lutheran Church. The action of Parliament is required to introduce such a measure. The minister stated that "most con- gregations are unwilling to approve this innovation." The matter is pushed by certain women's organizations. In Paris, France, are located the headquarters of a Roman Catholic order called "The Congregation of Our Lady of Sion," whose aim is the conversion of the Jews to Christianity. It num- bers 2,000 religious members in 15 countries. A branch will now be established in Montreal. The founders were two Italian brothers who were converted to Catholicism from Judaism. Steubenville's crusading clergymen have announced that by forming a State-chartered organization they now have police THEOLOGICAL OBSERVER 313 powers and will arrest persons accused of felonies or misdemeanors in Ohio. The pastors said they have legally obtained power to make arrests anywhere in the State. The ministers of Steuben- ville, Ohio, have for the past few months been campaigning against gambling and prostitution. The Rt. Rev. Henry Knox Sherrill, Presiding Bishop of the Protestant Episcopal Church, expressed hope for a union of the Methodist and Episcopal Churches in America. Bishop Sherrill stated: "It is tragic that those of us who are living in the present continue to think of those old arguments as if they were pressing today. It would be a tremendous step forward if our churches which have so much in common could be one." The rift between the Russian Orthodox Church in America and the Patriarchal Church in Russia may soon be healed. The decree of suspension pronounced by the Patriarch of Moscow on the Metropolitan Council of the American Church will be raised, and the Moscow Patriarch has agreed to recognize the complete autonomy of the Russian Church in America. The American Church is now working on a new constitution, which allegedly will be along more democratic lines. At a meeting in the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary at Louisville, Ky., Prof. William W. Barnes, D. D., of Fort Worth, Texas, stated that the present theological curriculum needs a re- vamping with a new intellectual emphasis. In three vital problems Baptist ministers must exert leadership, he stated - Southern labor movement, race relations, and mental and nervous illness. He added: "Our seminary curriculum does not necessarily need new courses of study. It needs new interpretation on the courses we now teach." A movement is on foot in Europe to "rediscover" the local church as a community of people in which each person can find opportunity for service, Professor Hans Hoekendijk, former general secretary of the Dutch Student Christian Movement, said recently. He spoke at the opening of the second session of the Ecumenical Institute established last year by the World Council of Churches. The new courses at the Institute will be based on the general theme "The Renewal of the Church" and will be conducted by twenty professors from ten countries. One of the lecturers will be Dr. Rein- hold Niebuhr, professor at Union Theological Seminary, New York, who will arrive in March to teach a course on "The Prophetic Ministry of the Church." Other scheduled lecturers include Dr. Steward Herman of the World Council of Churches, who will discuss "An American View of the European Churches"; Dr. W. A. Visser 't Hooft, general secretary of the World Council; Dr. Adolph Keller, Swiss theologian, whose subject will be "A European View of the American Churches"; Dr. G. Florovsky of the Russian Orthodox Institute in Paris; and Dr. Eric Wolf, professor of law at the University of Freiburg and a leading layman in the German church.