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The Magazine of The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America

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Love and open arms

Reader's viewpoint seen from different eyes

Readers respond to our April issue.

I’m responding to the April “My View” (page 11). In the author’s dream, God tells her that her duty is to just love, not judge. Yes, we are to love. But love doesn’t mean permission to sin. Today the church is asking us to accept sin as being OK. Even though the Bible calls homosexuality a sin, we are to consider it a sin no more and simply accept it as a Christian alternative to heterosexuality. Jeremiah writes: “Let the prophet who has a dream tell his dream, but let the one who has my word speak it faithfully” (23:28). I think I will stay with the authority of the Bible. Dreams will come and go, but the word of God remains forever.

James S. Lindgren
Comfrey, Minn.

The false dichotomy that love and making judgments are mutually exclusive has been one of the major arguments put forth in the long discussion we’ve had over the past 10 years about homosexual behavior. Some who read this will think I’m being judgmental. Yet one of the truths we hold is that God has spoken and speaks through law and gospel. Without the law that convicts me and others of sin, there’s absolutely no need for the gospel. I’m not in the place of God, yet I’m called to be faithful to what has been revealed in God’s word.
Stephen Seibel
Curtis, Ohio

Author Traci Anthony repeats the well-worn confusion of love with niceness, or kindness. As any parent knows, setting standards for your children is neither kind nor nice, but it is loving. As Christians we trust in a God who gave the rules and who then gave his own dear Son to forgive us for breaking the rules. In Lutheran lingo, this is law and gospel.
Steve Ramsey
Arlington, Ohio


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November issue

NOVEMBER issue:

The ELCA's aging clergy wave

More...