Tuesday, January 20, 2009

An Inherent Problem With Our Polity

Quoting Pastor Todd Peperkorn, from his paper "How Two Missouri Synod Leaders Handled False Doctrine and Dissent in the Twentieth Century: Francis Pieper and John Behnken," available at Consensus:

...I would also suggest to you that perhaps there is an inherent problem with our polity that makes it difficult, perhaps even impossible, to have real, substantive theological debate and supervision in our church. As long as every theological issue will be decided by voting, in either elections or resolutions, it will be nigh well impossible for us to approach them as a church.

1 comment:

Matt Jamison said...

I read Pr. Peperkorn's excellent paper.

I think his main point is that we have developed a precedent of sweeping our problems under the rug in a vain and counterproductive attempt to maintain unity in the Synod.

I don't think that the democratic structures that govern our church body are the heart of the problem. What would we replace them with? We have the example of the Roman church (most emphatically not democratic) and we see the errors and abuses that that system is subject to.

It is a bad system that we have but most of the alternatives seem worse to me. Divisions and strife in the church seems to be one of the most permanent fixtures of our sinful existance in this world.