Message From RevDr Randy Wagoner,DD.,Executive Vice President of The Lutheran Orthodox Church and Bishop of New England Diocese.
Do you have “itching ears”?
We’re told in 2 Timothy 4: 2-5;
“Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry”
Anyone can see by watching the news that we are living in the time foretold in 2 Timothy. Many churches have abandoned teaching from the inspired Word of God and replaced it with feel good sermons that are politically correct, carefully worded so as not to offend anyone or make them feel uncomfortable.
The unfortunate side effect of these modern ministries is that they have abandoned their parishioners spiritually and left them vulnerable and at risk of eternal peril.
As a parent I think of my children. What sort of parent would I be if I only told them what they wanted to hear and never taught them the values and morals needed to grow up and be healthy, productive, responsible citizens?
Likewise as a minister how can we twist or stretch or rewrite God’s word and instructions to fit what is now socially accepted? Are we truly fulfilling our duty and “shepherding” our flock if we are not preparing them to walk the narrow path? We MUST teach that there are consequences for turning our backs to God’s laws, even if it is unpleasant or inconvenient to hear.
Strict parents are not popular with rebellious children. A church that takes a strict traditional approach to God’s teachings is likewise not popular with the masses and is often attacked in the media. I remind you of the words of Luke 6:26; “Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for that is how their fathers treated the false prophets.”
My grandfather always told me that if I had enemies it meant that at some point I must have stood up for something. Joshua 24:15 comes to mind; “But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”
So I ask again, do you have “itching ears”?
I know that there are many faithful followers who are looking for a church that has not lost its way. I encourage you to consider the LOC and am confident that you will find a faithful, welcoming family here with us.