“I came to my convictions through much confusion and doubt and struggle… I had to search and sift and dig before I found satisfaction and peace of mind and heart… I love all Christians of whom I am persuaded that they are sincere and in earnest.
“For the reasons given above I have found my spiritual home and my workshop in The Lutheran Church. The better I know her, the more I love her. I know and sadly lament her sad and largely sinful divisions. I deeply lament her colossal losses. They have largely been her own fault.
“As my books and my teaching show, no one can prize and love true, sound, Scriptural doctrine more than I do. But to my sorrow I know and have too often noted that it is possible to have the true doctrine in the head and to have, at the same time, a heart as cold as a hailstone.
“I fear those ministers among us who seem to be terribly afraid of Pietism. They do not explain the distinction between a false and a true Pietism. To have ever a greater and deeper measure of the latter is surely one of our greatest needs. It fits so beautifully into our Lutheran system that it ought to be a part of its warp and woof. Indeed it is the very essence, the heart and life of true Lutheranism. God give us more of it!
“Then too I fear those who are so wonderfully jealous of what they call their Christian liberty. It does not seem to occur to them that their liberty may become a stumbling block to some for whom Christ died. Real Christian love abdicates even rightful liberty when its exercises might cause offense. The insistence on and practice of a claimed liberty has discredited and brought much reproach on the name of our poor Church. – George Gerberding
George Henry Gerberding (1847-1927) studied under Charles Krauth and C. F. Schaeffer and assisted the Rev. Passavant. An indefatigable worker, he established and restored churches in Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Fargo, ND. His Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church was one of the most successful books ever published by the English Lutheran Church.
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