“One of the areas in which the Reformer has been repeatedly misrepresented has to do with the relationship of the Church with the Jewish people, frequent attempts being made to link him with modern anti-Semitism. Such attempts call for clarification by the Church of the Reformer’s actual position.
“[Luther] reflects his true heart attitude toward the Jews with this prayer: ‘O God, heavenly Father, turn and let thy wrath over them be brought to an end, for the sake of thy dear Son.
“We have had occasion several times, in self-defense, to declare our conscientious difference from the brethren of the Missouri as well as from those of the Buffalo Synod, on the doctrine of the Ministerial office; by some whom we think a little sensitive in the matter, we have been soundly berated, both privately and publicly, for having done so. We feel it, therefore, due to ourselves, and to the cause of truth, to present a calm expression of truth as we believe it to be found in the Holy Scriptures.
“There is a strait gait of knowledge through which [everyone] must pass on entering the kingdom, and many of the results of his reasonings must be abandoned at that entrance, while he confesses himself a mere disciple all the way in his progress.”
“The man of the mightiest genius or the most accomplished intellect, must become a docile child, as well as the most uncultivated sinner and the rudest savage — or never be spiritually renovated.
“In the primitive church there was a private and public catechization. The private was practiced by parents according to Eph. 6:4… The public was held in schools, churches, and other places, and the pupils were called catechumens, from κατγχουμενοι, learners, the word that is used in the New Testament passages before quoted.
“In the course of ages, as the church became more corrupt, the practice fell into disuse, or sadly degenerated.
“The body without the spirit is dead, but it retains for a while the form; and while the form is there, hope may sometimes lie cherished that life will yet revisit it; but when even the form is gone, and the body fallen to ashes, unless God shall speak, hope is extinct forever.
“It is a sad thing to see the form robbed of the power; but there is one stage of misery below this.
“…Even after the Seminary was established at Gettysburg, systematic and sustained, but covert, attack upon the Symbolical Books was made. The result was that the books were not regarded with favor by many of the ministers and students, and very many did not accept the doctrine of the sacraments as taught in the Lutheran Church.
“This continued to be the state of affairs for many years. There were some that were true Lutherans despite these adverse circumstances.
His life was devoted to the acquisition of knowledge.
The church has always associated with Dr. Lochman’s name that of Dr. Endress. They were not only contemporary, but they were nearly of the same age. They commenced their career together and pursued their studies in company. They were graduated at the University of Pennsylvania and both for a season, gave instruction. They studied theology under the direction of Drs.
In 1893 an attempt was made by liberal elements in the General Synod to remove Dr. Luther Gotwald from Wittenberg Seminary. He was said to be guilty of teaching the Augsburg Confession as, “a correct expression or exhibition of fundamental divine truth”.
The record of the attacks against this conservative Lutheran makes riveting reading and speaks directly to the battles faithful Christians face from within the church.
Book Contents Preface.
“What are ‘fundamental doctrines,’ or ‘fundamental Articles of Faith’?… Every intelligent Christian feels competent to state the general basis of his belief, or the doctrinal foundation of his Christian character and life… When he, however, proceeds to specify in detail the doctrines which essentially constitute that ‘foundation,’ he will no longer be surprised by the embarrassment that even distinguished divines, on attempting to furnish an answer, have candidly confessed.” – Charles F.
“Dr. Lochman, so widely and favorably known in the Lutheran church, was born in the city of Philadelphia, December 2, 1773. His parents had immigrated into this country at an early period and, although in humble circumstances, were distinguished for their probity and piety. Their son George, when yet a boy, seemed to promise much, and awakened high expectations. He developed, in his childhood, a remarkable fondness for reading. Whilst his companions were engaged with their sports, he was interested in his books, over whose pages he poured with fixed attention and the greatest delight.