Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Doctrine Doesn't Evolve

Quoting from an essay of C.F.W. Walther's discussed at the Eastern District Convention in 1867:

…In recent times people actually think one has to make additions, that church doctrine evolves gradually and grows in scope as the church grows older. [They maintain that] in apostolic days, so to speak, the church was in its infancy, but that now it is gradually maturing into full adulthood in Christ [cf. Eph. 4:13]. But it is not doctrine we are to develop, so that new doctrines are introduced, as among the newer theologians; rather we are diligently to use our reason, so that we truly know and understand the doctrines the church has always had. It is not our task to develop new doctrines, but to master our comprehension of the doctrines already revealed and always known to the church. God has by His grace enabled us here in America to realize that it is and can be neither man’s enlightened reason nor anything else, but only God’s Word, that is to be the source of all doctrine. As long as we cling to it, we will be unshaken, as on the rock [cf. Matt. 7:24-25]. Let us gratefully cling to it, refusing to let Satan drive us away. (brackets in original)

C.F.W. Walther, Essays for the Church, Vol. 1 (St. Louis: Concordia, 1992) 157.

photo credit: un_owen


Fallhiker said...


Rev. Thomas C. Messer, SSP said...

Great and timely quote, Scott!

Dennis Peskey said...

My dog"ma" has teeth sharper than a two-edged sword; what's your kar"ma" gonna do - hum me to death? Besides, we all know what dogs like to do to kars!