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FROM MEGATRON

WELS TEACHES AGAINST

THE EFFICACY OF THE WORD ALONE

 

A WELS pastor asked for proof that the Wisconsin Synod teaches against the efficacy of the Word. Below are a few examples. WELS just closed down a mission and got rid of a minister who teaches the efficacy of the Word alone. But after WELS Pastor William D. Tabor murdered his wife when caught in adultery, WELS gave Tabor a divine call to Escanaba, Michigan. Imagine what the new congregation thought. “Where is your wife, Pastor Tabor?”  Tabor: “Oh, She stayed in Milwaukee.”

 

How to become a Seminary President

"Useful Ideas for My Ministry from the Church Growth Movement...The Church Growth Movement--Strengths and Weaknesses...The Church Growth Movement--An Evaluation...Church Growth Sounds Good, But...Dangers of the Church Growth Movement...Friendship Evangelism...Rationale for Friendship Evangelism..."

Prof. David J. Valleskey, Class Notes, The Theology and Practice of Evangelism, PT 358A

 

Olson’s False Doctrine IS a Barrier

"We cannot add anything to the Word, but we may be able to remove the human barriers which might be in the way of the Word."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "See How It Grows: Perspectives on Growth and the Church," EVANGELISM, February, 1991, Parish Consultant for the WELS Board of Parish Services and his district's Coordinator of Evangelism. p. 3.

 

Think What Fuller Seminary Could Have Done for Luther

"We can't do a thing to make his Word more effective. But surely we can detract from its effectiveness by careless errors and poor judgment. It just makes good sense to utilize all of our God-given talents, to scour the field for appropriate ideas, concepts, and material (sic), to implement programs, methods, and techniques so that we do not detract from the effectiveness of the gospel we proclaim. Church growth articles, books, seminars, and conferences can offer such ideas and programs."

Pastor James Huebner, Spiritual Renewal Consultant, Notebook, School of Outreach IV, Seventeen Ways to Keep Your Church from Growing, p. 178.

 

Kelm – Ashamed of the Gospel

"Don't let the world paint us into a corner of antiquarianism on subjects like a six-day creation or verbal inspiration."

Rev. Paul Kelm, "How to Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good to Mission Prospects," J-027,303 p. 13.

 

Kelm – Browbeat Them into the Kingdom

"Thesis Seven: Sound Apologetics Can Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good...Logic never converted anyone; but Christianity is logically defensible, once one makes reason ministerial to God and His Word...Read C.S. Lewis, Francis Schaeffer and Josh McDowell for practical apologetic tools. In fact, lend your copy to the prospect whose intelligence and education have become his curse. Once you've read Josh McDowell's 'Lord, Liar, or Lunatic' argument for the deity of Christ, you'll find yourself using it."

Rev. Paul Kelm, "How to Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good to Mission Prospects," p. 14.

 

Kelm – Sound Doctrine Has No Effect on What He Practices

"A last word on sound doctrine is in place. Sound doctrine must be distinguished from tradition, praxis and preference. The liturgy, translation of the Bible, vestments and organizational policies of the church are not equatable with sound doctrine."

Rev. Paul Kelm, "How to Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good to Mission Prospects," p. 3.

 

Kelm – Not the Word, But Felt Needs

"Non-Christians usually become good prospects for personal reasons or as I like to say: 'They come for sociological reasons and stay for theological reasons.'" [Note: this is the felt needs approach of Fuller, also endorsed by Pastor Forrest Bivens, now a professor at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary: "I went to Fuller Seminary and I happen to believe we can use sociological methods to bring people to church so we can apply the Means of Grace." Midland circuit get together, attended by Pastor - now DP - John Seifert.]

Rev. Paul Kelm, "How to Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good to Mission Prospects," J-438 p. 4.

 

Kelm – Think Big, Be Big…So Why Is WELS Shrinking with Such Big Thinkers?

"Small churches need not be small thinkers, but small-thinking churches will always remain small. Churches and people seldom go/grow beyond their expectations."

Rev. Paul Kelm, "How to Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good to Mission Prospects," See Waldo Werning and Robert Schuller for the same thought. Did the Apostles know this? p. 6.

 

Kelm – People Are Effective; the Word Is Not Efficacious

"Thesis One: Sound Doctrine Sounds Good When Good People Sound it. Normally, people respond to other people before they respond to doctrine."

Rev. Paul Kelm, "How to Make Sound Doctrine Sound Good to Mission Prospects," p. 7.

 

Larry Oh! WELS Staff Infection –

I Only Have ONE Degree from Fuller, and It Isn’t Much

"Please stop exaggerating the amount of study that I have done at Fuller. After four years of study at Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, which involved sixty-two different courses and a year of vicarage, I graduated in 1983. From 1987 to 1989 I took four courses where I was in a classroom with a Fuller instructor. That is the extent of my Fuller coursework...In addition, I have taken two courses at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and one at the University of Wisconsin--Madison. Because of Fuller's liberal (would you expect anything else?) policy on transfer of credit, and because of two independent studies I undertook, I could complete the degree by simply writing a dissertation."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23

 

Olson – Methods Are Effective

"While only the Word is efficacious, the methods we use to minister to people with that Word may vary in their effectiveness."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "See How It Grows: Perspectives on Growth and the Church," EVANGELISM, February, 1991, Parish Consultant for the WELS Board of Parish Services and his district's Coordinator of Evangelism. p. 2.

 

Olson – the Word Needs Human Wisdom to Work

"Contemporary social and behavioral sciences are a working out of the reason which God has given to humanity. Granted, the assumptions of some sociologists or anthropologists may be inconsistent with the Christian faith. That calls for discernment, but it does not invalidate the proper use of the social sciences by the church; it is, however, essential that they be used in a 'ministerial' manner."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "See How It Grows: Perspectives on Growth and the Church," EVANGELISM, February, 1991, Professor, Martin Luther College, (WELS), p. 3.

 

Olson – See How WELS Has Shriveled with MY Ideas from Fuller

"It is appropriate to make use of educational research to improve the functioning of our small group Bible studies."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "See How It Grows: Perspectives on Growth and the Church," EVANGELISM, February, 1991, Parish Consultant for the WELS Board of Parish Services and his district's Coordinator of Evangelism. p. 3.

 

Wake Me Up When It’s Over

"Wouldn't it be terrible to sleep through the Second Reformation? Cell Group Churches. The New Lifestyle For New Wineskins. Cell Group Churches Are Really Different! A 'Cell Group' Church is built on the fact that all Christians are ministers, and that there is no 'professional clergy' hired to do the work of ministry. According to Ephesians 4, God has provided 'Gifted Men' to equip 'Believers Who Are Gifted' to do the work of ministry...The life of the church is in its Cells, not in a building. While it has weekly worship events, the focus of the church is in the home Cells."

Touch Outreach Ministries, P.O. Box 19888 Houston, TX 77079 1-800-735-5865 "Cell Groups For Reaching The Unchurched Are Called...SHARE GROUPS. Touch Outreach Ministries has spent many years experimenting with the best way to train Cell Group members to form 'Sub-Groups' called SHARE GROUPS which specifically target evangelizing the unchurched. SHARE GROUPS are 'pre-Bible study' Cells, which bond relationships between three Christians and six unbelievers. A series of three small books are used over a 27-week period of training. The first book, called 'BUILDING BRIDGES, OPENING HEARTS,' guides the SHARE GROUP Team through the first part of the strategy." Touch Outreach Ministries, P.O. Box 19888 Houston, TX 77079 1-800-735-5865 p. 7.

 

Cell Groups Make the Word Effective

"The point being made here is that the reason for having home Bible study in small groups seems to have shifted from the Pietists' or parachurch groups goal of creating cells of people who will reform the church to having small groups as an integral part of a congregation's work."

Prof. David Kuske, "Home Bible Study Groups in the 1990s," Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Spring, 1994. p. 127.

 

How To Become Seminary President

Theses very close to Valleskey's Quarterly article (Spring, 1991, p. 117). Questionnaire mentions CG "underemphasizing the Means of Grace as the power of the Holy Spirit." [That is like saying that Lutherans underemphasize the Assumption of Mary.]

David J. Valleskey, P.T. 418, The Church Growth Movement--An Evaluation, Summer Quarter, Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary, June 23-July 11, 1986

 

Valleskey – WELS Members Are Really Gullible

Bob: "..I'd like to share with you a book I came across the other day. It's interesting, easy to read, and may be the answer to our problem..." [Could this be the Bible, The Book of Concord, What Luther Says?] "Its title is Your Church Can Grow, and it's filled with all sorts of practical hints that could help us turn things around here." Author: "Bob didn't realize it at the time, but in his browsing he had stumbled upon one of many similar books written from the perspective of the church growth movement, books with such titles as How to Grow a Church, Ten Steps for Church Growth, Church Growth: Strategies that Work, and Leading Your Church to Growth."

Prof. David Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement, Just Gathering People or Building the Church?" The Northwestern Lutheran, May 5, 1991, p. 184.

 

Valleskey – I Wrote This at Fuller But I Didn’t Go There, Honest

"So, what should the members of St. John evangelism committee do with [C. Peter Wagner's] Your Church Can Grow?...They can probably pick up a few helpful hints. They might, for example, appreciate research which provides an insight into the way unchurched people think."

Prof. David Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement, Just Gathering People or Building the Church?" The Northwestern Lutheran, May 5, 1991, p. 185. See Oct 15 NWL Jeb Schaefer editorial

 

Valleskey – How To Sell Doctrinal Books through Christian News, Part 1

"This downplaying of the importance of the means of grace on the part of many in the Church Growth Movement would seem to stem from several factors." [That is like saying that many Lutherans downplay the infallibility of the pope.]

David J. Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement: An Evaluation," Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Spring, 1991 88, p. 105. Holidaysburg, 10-15-90

 

Valleskey – How To Sell Doctrinal Books through Christian News, Part 2

"There is a fourth option, which is the choice of this writer. It is the same kind of approach Lawrence Crabb, a Christian counselor, advocates over against the use of secular counseling resources. He calls it 'spoiling the Egyptians' (Exodus 12:36, KJV), after the action of Israel at the time they left Egypt, when they took from the Egyptians what would stand them in good stead on their journey."

David J. Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement: An Evaluation," Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Spring, 1991 88, p. 115. Holidaysburg, Pa, 10-15-90. Exodus 12:36.

 

Valleskey – How To Sell Doctrinal Books through Christian News, Part 3

"Yet this writer is confident we won't go astray in adopting a 'spoiling the Egyptians' approach to the various Church Growth Movement sociological principles and the research that produced them."

David J. Valleskey, "The Church Growth Movement: An Evaluation," Wisconsin Lutheran Quarterly, Spring, 1991 88, p. 116. Exodus 12:36.

 

Valleskey – How To Sell Doctrinal Books through Christian News, Part 4

"It is true that only God the Holy Spirit can effect the end result of making a disciple out of an unbeliever; all we can do is sow the seed. But it is also true that our Lord, by speaking specifically of making disciples in his commission to his church, is encouraging it to keep that intended goal in mind when it does its seed sowing."

David J. Valleskey, We Believe--Therefore We Speak, The Theology and Practice of Evangelism, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1995, J-075 p. 135. Matthew 28:18-20


 

"3. Establish your goals. a. definition: goals are those things that are required for an organization to carry out its objectives ('How') 1) short-range targets 2) SMART, Specific...Measureable...Acceptable...Realistic...Timed...."

Prof. David J. Valleskey, Class Notes, The Theology and Practice of Evangelism, PT 358A p. 101.

 

Olson - Methods Are Effective

"Faithfulness is the standard by which God judges those he calls into the public ministry. That faithfulness may or may not be 'effective' in terms of visible results; results are up to God, not us. But part of faithfulness ought to include striving to be as 'effective' as we can be in the methods that we use to take the Means of Grace to people."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.

 

Olson Talks Down to Lutherans

"To believe, teach, and confess that truth is not inconsistent with being able to recognize that one approach to ministry may be more effective than another. It is more effective to hold worship services at 10:30 am on Sunday than at midnight on Tuesday; this is true, even though it is the same Gospel that is preached at either time." [another example, preaching in German to an American audience]

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.

 

Olson Slimes the Doctrine with Reformed Garbage

"Paul says that people can, in some way, 'adorn the doctrine' (KJV). Does that mean adding anything to the Gospel, thereby making the Means of Grace more 'effective'? Of course not. But it does mean that a Christian, a Christian slave in the original context, can discredit the Gospel--and thus erect a human barrier--through actions and words that contradict the profession of faith."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23. Titus 2:9-10

 

Olson Blows Smoke in Our Eyes, But We Still See Fuller Diplomas

"You may reply that by 'Fuller-trained' you mean anyone who has attended a workshop presented by the Charles E. Fuller Institute of Evangelism and Church Growth, an agency which is independent of the Seminary. If that is the case, your attribution of 'Fuller-trained' is still simply not true. It would surprise me if even half of the two dozen people on your 'WELS/ELS Who's Who' list have attended a Fuller workshop; I personally know of only five who have."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.

 

Olson – Adding Up the Fuller Boys

"To the best of my knowledge, only three WELS pastors have ever taken classes at Fuller Seminary: Reuel Schulz in the 1970s, and Robert Koester and I in the 1980s."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.

 

Valleskey – Baptists and Lutheran Pietists Are Better Christians

"But a cold heart can beat close to a correct mind. There are too many churches with impeccable credentials for orthodox theology whose outreach is almost nil. They are 'sound,' but they are sound asleep." Leighton Ford, The Christian Persuader. Valleskey asks: "true to a certain degree of us?"

Prof. David J. Valleskey, Class Notes, The Theology and Practice of Evangelism, PT 358A p. 24.

 

Finding the Receptive: People in Transition, by WELS Pastor James Witt –

"The Bible illustrates the people-in-transition receptivity principle very well. Converts such as Naaman, a leper; Ruth, a widow; the woman at the well, a five-time divorcee; the thief on the cross, a convict near death; were all people who in a period of transition were receptive to hearing the Gospel. The Receptivity-Rating Scale shown at left...

Paul Kelm, editor, The Evangelism Handbook, WELS Evangelism Appendix III,

 

Valleskey Explains Why No One Is Receptive to WELS

"a receptivity rating scale (adapted by Win and Charles Arn in 'The Master's Plan for Making Disciples,' p. 91...."

Prof. David J. Valleskey, Class Notes, The Theology and Practice of Evangelism, PT 358A p. 58.

 

Peterson Leaves the Ministry on a Low Note

"In my opinion, therefore, Church Growth receptivity and 'soil testing' techniques are often unfairly criticized as if they were by definition synergistic. It is a fact that some fields are, for various historical and sociological reasons, more receptive to the preaching of the gospel and church planting than others. Our home and world mission boards make these judgments all the time in deciding where to begin churches or send missionaries."

Rev. Curtis Peterson, former WELS World Mission Board, "A Second and Third Look at Church Growth Principles," Metro South Pastors Conference Mishicot, Wisconsin, February 3, 1993 J-222 p. 12 Mark 4:

 

Kelm – How  To Adulterate the Gospel with a Hook

"Evangelism upside-down is starting with the subjective issues of perceived reality and working back to God's objective truths of ultimate reality - sin and grace. It's offering the attendant blessings of salvation as the 'hook' to gain an audience for God's plan of salvation." [felt needs used to sell the Gospel]

Paul Kelm The Evangelism Life Line (WELS), Fall, 1985 p. 4.

 

Valleskey – More Junk from Fuller

"The instructor may find it best not to distribute the Spiritual Gifts Analysis (pp. 33-49) until the end of the course, when the time has come for class members to work through it."

David J. Valleskey, Gifted to Serve, Parish Services, WELS.

 

Luther – Remember Him from Church History Class?

"Likewise, in the matter of preaching, we must make selection that order may be preserved. But since all who are Christians have authority to preach, what will be the outcome? for women will also want to preach. No so. St. Paul forbids women to put themselves forward as preachers in a congregation of men and says: They should be subject to their husbands." [WELS has women in authority over men, contrary to the efficacious Word.]

Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 375. Pentecost Tuesday 1 Timothy 2:11-12.

 

A Contrast – The Book of Concord and the Word of God

"And this call of God, which is made through the preaching of the Word, we should not regard as jugglery, but know that thereby God reveals His will, that in those whom He thus calls He will work through the Word, that they may be enlightened, converted, and saved. For the Word, whereby we are called, is a ministration of the Spirit, that gives the Spirit, or whereby the Spirit is given, 2 Corinthians 3:8, and a power of God unto salvation, Romans 1:16. And since the Holy Ghost wishes to be efficacious through the Word, and to strengthen and give power and ability, it is God's will that we should receive the Word, believe and obey it."

Formula of Concord, SD XI. #29. Election. Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 1073. Tappert, p. 621. Heiser, p. 289. 2 Corinthians 3:8; Romans 1:16.