I actually posted on the ELCA BLOG and then also sent an e-mail to the residing ELCA Bishop and head of the ELCA. Here was his response back to me. As you can see the ELCA is clearly redefining scripture based on, in my opinion, not science, but social agreement and consensus.
Dear Fellow Servant of Christ,
Thank you for your letter. It is evident that you care deeply about the integrity of the church’s witness and its faithfulness to God. I am grateful that you have taken time to share your concerns and convictions with me.
You are not alone in your conviction that homosexual sexual relations are always described as sinful by the Scriptures. The newly adopted social statement, Human Sexuality: Gift and Trust, states that this conviction is widely held in the ELCA. At the same time, it recognizes that other interpretations of the Scriptures are also deeply held as faith convictions in the ELCA.
In recognition of these differences, the social statement and other actions of the assembly call the members of the ELCA to love our neighbors, respect their convictions and passions, and speak well of one another, even where there is no agreement.
In your letter I hear a strong disapproval of these actions taken by the recent churchwide assembly and, even more, a deep sense of alienation from the church body you have considered your home. I also sense you feel the loss of a shared life and witness that has nurtured your faith.
If I may offer a word in response, I want to begin with a promise, one that is from God. In the pain and disappointment you feel in this current moment, and amid the very real differences present in the ELCA, God’s promise for you in Jesus Christ remains sure, and I am confident that the Spirit will sustain you in faith, hope and love.
I also have a strong conviction that we have more work to do together in the body of Christ, work that is critical for the life of the world. I believe that we will do it most faithfully and effectively by continuing to join in humility and mutual respect for the witness and service to which God has called us.
My deep hope is that we will hear, respect and continue to learn from the wisdom, experience, and witness that you and others who share your convictions bring. For the work and witness before us, we need one another. We need the voices of those who lament and those who rejoice over the assembly’s actions, for together we have been called to proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ and to be engaged in God’s mission for the life of the world.
In the weeks to come, I ask you to continue in conversation with others in your congregation and beyond. I also ask you to continue to dwell in God’s Word and be in prayer for the unity and faithfulness of the Church. At the close of the assembly in Minneapolis, I said to those who were present or watching the broadcast, “We finally meet one another not in our agreements, but at the foot of the cross, where God is faithful, where Christ is present with us, and where, by the power of the Holy Spirit, we are one in Christ.”
Thank you for writing. My prayer for you is that God continue to keep your heart and mind in Christ Jesus.
In God’s grace,
Mark S. Hanson
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
President, Lutheran World Federation
8765 W. Higgins Road
Chicago, IL 60631
800.638.3522 x 2600
>>> <firstname.lastname@example.org> 8/23/2009 2:05 PM >>>
As one that considers myself very Lutheresque since I miss the mercy narrative in how we live and in worship life, I still dont understand what you actually passed at the convention.
Is homosexuality a sin according to the Lutheran Church. I want a Church that shows mercy and grace to sinners and not one that just says its not sin. This is cheap grace at its best but the cost of calvary is free but still identifies sin.
In our weaknesses we see the strength of calvary love.. in calling a weakness a strength then we just find weakness again.
So …. is homosexuality a sin according to sola scriptura?