Friday, December 09, 2005

Femspeak and Gay Marriages in the ELCA

The November 2005 issue of First Things is on-line and has an article by Robert Benne reporting on the 2005 Churchwide Assembly in Orlando, of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) in August. The status quo was confirmed, so both the traditionalists (i.e., those who trust God's word) and the revisionists are staying put and not bolting the synod. But you know who's going to get their way eventually, don't you? The revisionists. Progressive Protestantism is taking over all the main line denominations and it's gutting the churches of believers. Read the whole article here.

What they couldn't stop is damage to the language. The historical creeds, hymns and some psalms are getting the feminist hatchet job. Perhaps it will be the final death blow for real hymns--remove any words that have a male pronoun. Father and Son are on the ropes. Then we can all sing praise choruses and forget any theology that might hint at the Trinity.

"For instance, the leadership proposed—and the assembly affirmed—a process that will lead to a new hymnal, which will alter the words of the Nicene and Apostles’ Creeds so that hypersensitive feminists will not be offended by masculine language. In the Nicene Creed we will avoid confessing that Christ was “made man.” Rather, he “became human.” In the Apostles’ Creed we will evade a masculine pronoun for God in the second article. Instead of “We believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son,” we will now confess that “We believe in Jesus Christ, God’s only Son.” The ELCA is now willing to risk a heretical formulation of the Creed in favor of femspeak. (In a Trinitarian formula the Son is Son of the Father, not of the Triune God. The Son of the Triune God would be another God.)

Many of the Psalms are to be rewritten to circumvent masculine pronouns. A hymn, paraphrasing the twenty-third psalm, changed “The Lord is my shepherd” to “God is my shepherd.” The “Renewing Worship” materials used at the assembly shunned “Father,” “Lord,” and “Master,” all replaced by “God.” Not one ELCA official allowed a “his” or “he” to creep into a speech. The presiding bishop even used the horrific neologism “Godself” a number of times."


P. Softly said...

Ok, so there is revisionist changes in language and there is [possibly] a change to what was written in the original language. I want to hear someone comment on that.

I don't feel offended by the language choices I have grown up with.

Are those who are offended, or bothered or whatever, touchy people in general with their own issues,or is there some theological "truth" that I am not aware of?

Scott said...


Excellent thoughts. I'm not affiliated with the ELCA but was married in a Missouri Synod church so I know of the differences that you speak of.

The revisionist tone that you speak of is prevalent in many of the new church plants I visit. As a planter myself, I'm curious as to what others are doing to draw a crowd. I addressed this some time ago on my blog ( and that's how I found your blogs!

The tone of many mainline denominations is moving toward the side of which you write. It's unfortunate but many of today's generation don't want to believe the bible is accurate or that the traditional translation of its principles are still relevant today. Better to re-write and change things as you mention.

Blog on Sister. I'll be praying for you.