An Outsider Visits a Lutheran Church

Posted By on November 12, 2019

– Hey, I’m Matt, this is the 10-Minute Bible Hour. And when you picture
Christianity in the West there are basically two groups
that come to mind, right? You got the Catholics
associated with Rome, and you got the Protestants
associated with everywhere and nowhere all at once because it’s a very decentralized
expression of faith. And part of the reason
this dynamic is so curious between these two groups is that Protestantism kind of used to be Catholicism, but it split off in the 1500’s. There was this guy named Martin Luther, he was a Catholic German Monk. He gets to looking at the Bible, he gets to looking at his church, and he’s like eh I don’t know we need to change some stuff here. And so he posts a list of things that need to change, ideas and stuff to the door of his church in Wittenburg, Germany in 1517, and that seemingly innocuous act sets in motion this enormous series of events we now call The
Portestant Reformation. One of the biggest deals ever in history. It literally and
figuratively redrew the lines of the map or religion and history and philosophy and politics and everything. So if you wanna understand
Catholic theology and you wanna understand the Catholic take on the reformation, it’s pretty easy, you just
go talk with a Catholic. It’s a very old church, they’re super nice people, and you can get a lot
of answers about that. But if you wanna talk
about the Protestant side and what went on with the reformation and why not Catholic anymore, it’s a little bit trickier
to know where to start because Protestantism,
again, is so diverse. And so what I wanna do in this video is come in from the outer branches and leaves and twigs of
the Protestant family tree all the way back to the main trunk of the Protestant family tree, the first Protestants, or the first formal Protestants, and those are the Lutherans, named because they’re followers of Martin Luther. Luther, Lutheran, you
see what they did there. Obviously a big deal in Germany, but also a huge deal around the world, and in my country here in
the United States as well, so I hopped a flight to one of the heartlands of
Lutheranism in America, which is around St. Louis, Missouri, drove across the bridge, over to a little tiny church in Hamel, Illinois, where I
met a guy named Will Weedon, who was willing to walk me through all of these questions I
have about Lutheranism and the Reformation. Now look, I know that some of you might have assumptions
about Lutheranism, maybe you think it’s the best thing ever, the dumbest thing ever. Maybe you think it’s boring and stodgy, but if you think that, you have not met Will Weedon. This guy is nuts, in a good way. He’s brilliant, he’s interesting. I cannot wait to introduce you to him. What I did is I went on a Sunday and attended the church service, got all kinds of questions in my head, came back on a Monday, hung out with Will, and here’s what went down. (upbeat music) Okay, Will, so I had a gagillion questions when I was in here the other day, and I even have questions out here in, what do you call this, the lobby? – This is Narthex. – Narthex. – Which is just the funny church way of saying the lobby. – [Matt] What’s going on
with the stained glass here? – Why is it all backwards, right? – [Matt] Why is it all backwards? – The stained glass in these doors actually shows you the mystery of the Holy Trinity. There’s God the Father, there is the Holy Son,
the Lord Jesus Christ, and then the Holy Spirit. On the outside, outside of the church, the mystery of the Holy Trinity is opaque. You don’t get it. It’s like Father, Son and Holy Spirit, one God, three persons, what? But from inside the church it’s illumined, and you look and go ah, now I see clealry who this God is who we worship. – Okay so super honest question, did you guys just install
these backwards on accident, and then later you were
like eh that’s just say? (laughing) – No. – Or was that really the plan? – Almost always church stained
glass is designed to look from the inside of the building too. The thing that people
value about this parish is that it is, it follows the historic liturgy of the Lutheran church. And it does it with great
artistic excellence. So you know if you come here you’re going to hear the music of Buxtehude and Bach and Pachelbel. And that’s gonna be normal, ordinary stuff from the Lutheran heritage. And it’s also, we tend to almost exclusively, not quite exclusively, but almost exclusively use the old service that people that grew up Lutheran
are most familiar with. – Okay. – Yeah, it feels like home to people. – Okay, all right. Well I feel like I’m
lingering us in the Narthex, but I do have one more question. It looks like you were
headed the same way. – [Will] Yeah. – [Matt] Why Genesis 28:17 up there? – This is so amazing. How awesome is this place. Not only the house of God, this is the gate of heaven. This is the way that
Lutherans think about, our church is a place where the means of grace literally bring
heaven down to Earth for us to participate in. So Jacob, as he’s lying there, he thinks it’s the spot. He thinks that’s what makes it be the gate of heaven, right? He totally misses that dude you’re a wrung on the ladder, God is climbing down in the flesh. Where the flesh and blood of Jesus, there the church
worships and gathers. And we gather in the Lutheran church around these means of grace, where we see Christ touching down on Earth to give us gifts from heaven. And in a lot of old, old, old churches, this is also right where
the Baptistry will be because you literally enter into the mystery of the trinity and into Christ church, through Baptism in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. – Can we see inside? – Sure, please, let’s go. – I’ve already been in here once, ’cause like I said I came
to church here yesterday. That was my first time ever in a Missouri Synod Lutheran Church. – Hey, welcome. I’m glad you made it. – Thank you very much. To attend or to just look in the building. And here’s my impression from the get go, the theology seemed very familiar to me as I guess vaguely
Evangelical Prostestant. I said oh yeah all of this rings a bell. The style seemed way different. The flow of the service
seemed way different. We were up, it was a
very interactive service. There was not a lot of butt time in there. – Right. – And I assume that’s intentional that you’re going for
something that participatory. – Oh yeah, yeah, the Lutheran liturgy is highly participatory. So the people are always doing something. The building itself is designed to sort of confess. And the liturgy you experienced yesterday is designed to confess. To confess the faith of the church and to get us into that confession, also by actions that
we do with our bodies. – [Matt] What do you mean by confess? – Well, to say back to God what he has said to us. He says I am the Lord your God. We say back to him in confession you are the Lord our God. Or he is the Lord our God. So confession is just to say back to him what he has said to us. – What in this building
repeats back to God what God has said to us? – Well first of all we
begin with the name, right? Holy Father, Holy Son, Holy Spirit, we are baptized into the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy spirit. There is nothing more sure than the name of God put on us. Where the name of God is there God himself is present. And all of the gifts that he gives us. So it’s sort of the center of our gathering, as you might notice. This baptismal font. And you’ll note that the baptismal font, as so many Christians have done, it’s made up of eight sides. Remember that in baptism we get put into the eighth day. This is the day beyond creation, the day of the resurrection, the day of the life that has no end. Oh and also calls to mind the eight that were saved in the Arc of Noah. But you’ll notice the
compass setting underneath it because Jesus said go and preach the gospel to all creation. Whoever believes and is
baptized will be saved. And we hear that as a
the very gospel itself. Whoever believes and is
baptized will be saved. In Acts, right, when Philip encounters the Ethiopian unit. – [Matt] Sure, Acts eight. – Acts eight. Great story. And he’s reading Isaiah
who’s trying to figure out what does this mean? He doesn’t have a clue. But we’re told that Philip, when he gets up in the chariot he begins to tell him, from that passage he began
to preach Jesus to him. But the very first thing that happens next is when the Ethiopian sees water he’s like stop. What’s to keep me from
getting baptized now? Which tells us that whatever Philip was proclaiming to him from Isaiah, he linked it to the fact of and all that can be yours in the water. This is one of those touchdown spots where heaven comes to earth. Where all the blessings that Christ won for us
by his suffering death and resurrection get to be made our own. He does that. So I mean when we think of
baptism in the Lutheran church, we don’t ever think of it as something we do. We think of this is God’s action whereby he reaches out and grabs hold of you and says you are my child. No matter what happens, you are mine. You can cling to this promise and count on it, and you can live in it for a lifetime now, and for an eternity. – [Matt] Does it mean something that you are sprinkling water instead of dunking people? – Yeah, no, that’s a
great, great question. Lutherans believe that the operative power isn’t in the water, it’s in the word that God
attaches to the water. So any amount of water does the job. However, there’s a strong preference that Luther expresses in one of our confessions called
the large Catechism, where he prefers to actually see people go all the way in and all the way out because of what that means for their life. That Baptism introduces us into a death and into a resurrection. We’re gonna be dying to sin every single day from now on, and we’re going to be rising in faith to live our lives with Christ. So he sees value in that. But when you came into
the frontier conditions of the situation here in America, most churches just went the easy route and we have small fonts. This is actually not as small as some. My first parish had a font that had a bowl about that big for baptism. But we’ll say it doesn’t
matter how much water, put the word of God with that water and it will deliver
what the word promises. – How does that work? I mean what do you guys do? I mean I assume missionaries
and things like that. And the expectation of being a Christian from the word go with you guys is go do something about
what’s going on out there? – Yeah, I mean the whole
idea of being a Christian and not sharing with people the great good news that
you have is impossible. And we don’t like to
try to lay a guilt trip on people about Evangelism. We believe it’s actually
simpler than that. If you enjoy something, you are going to praise
it to other people. For example, you go to see Downton Abby, you’re gonna say aw man it was like being back in the series again, you gotta go see it. You gotta. You’re gonna love it. – That would be exactly my response. (laughing) – You go to a restaurant that you really love the food for, you’re gonna say oh you gotta eat there. You gotta go there, right? I mean we do this all the time. We tell people, we praise to other people that which we ourselves enjoy and it’s a very natural thing. So when the Christian faith
goes out into the world, it goes out with a bunch of people saying you
have got to come with us to this place where
Jesus comes to meet us, to give to us all of his gifts. You’ve gotta come meet this man. This is what you see in John one, right? Come and see. Jesus said to the first disciples. And then they’re saying come and see. Same Philip, no different Philip encounters the skepticism of Nathaniel. He’s like just come and see. He wasn’t gonna try to convince him with arguments or anything like that. He just said you just need to cmoe and listen to this guy, be with this guy for a little bit. And we believe that’s literally
what happens in this room. Is that we come together in this place and Jesus himself comes into our midst through the means of grace. He’s going to speak to us, we’re gonna hear his voice, we’re gonna show that by
what we do in the room. And as we hear him speak and listen to him, we are literally transformed. And we walk away going man I have never been anyplace
like this in the world. This is unbelievable. And you’re gonna go out and you’re gonna grab hold of your neighbor and you’re gonna say
you gotta come with me. You gotta meet a man who told me everything I ever did. You know the same thing that
happened there in the gospels, ’cause that’s what the word of God does. It just opens up our heart, it exposes the secrets of our heart, and we’re like how did you
get into my head like that? Well he doesn’t have any trouble with that being true God and true man. – Okay, shifting gears just a little bit, the middle panel here, the middle doors have this symbol on the doors associated with the son. What does this symbol mean with the banner and the lamb? – Remember John, when he pointed to Jesus he said “he’s the lamb of God, “he takes away the sin of the world.” in Revelation chapter five, there’s this, the book
that nobody can open. Who can make sense of this thing? Nobody can make sense of this book, it’s sealed. And then when John’s weeping, we’re not gonna be able
to figure this out, along comes a lamb as
though it had been slain, but alive. Alive forever. So Christ on the other side of his sacrifice, the
banner shows victorious, triumphant over death. But he conquered death by dying. He conquers as the sacrifice, as the lamb. So he is the very center of everything we do. If you look around the room, you might not, you can’t help but
notice it’s a litlte bit about Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, right? – [Matt] Yeah. – And not, portrayed in, as in the incarnation, but wherever you see it, kind of the typical way he’s portrayed like the lamb on the altar, or the lamb here. The lamb on the door at the entrance. It’s a way of saying
what he did on that cross he did as the true lamb of God. He was the real final full sacrifice that paid for the sins of the entire world. In him they are wiped out, his blood makes them gone. So all creation joins in crying out. Worthy is the lamb. – None of this is on accident. – None. – Can we talk about what’s up front? – Sure. You know, before we go to up front, maybe we should talk about this here. – [Matt] Oh sure, yeah. I recognize these guys. I mean not by the face, but by the symbols. – [Will] There’s your Matthew, your namesake, right? – [Matt] That’s right. – Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. We tend to read the gospel reading from here in the center of the room, and when that- – Yeah, I saw that yesterday. – You saw it yesterday, right. As it’s being readz in the center, we actually believe we are having an encounter with Jesus. So when that takes place, and the people, when it’s
getting ready to happen, up they stand and they’re
crying out hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah, and then when pastor
anounces the holy gospel, the people all cry out
glory to you oh Lord. We sing it. But then at the end of the gospel he’ll say this
is the gospel of the Lord, and all the people sing
praise to you oh Christ. The one who is in our midst. And when we go out into the world and invite people to come in with us, we’re inviting them to come and hear him. And the challenging
and unbelievable things he says to us, particularly in that gospel reading. – How do people know what to do? I mean there’s all these, it’s like the fifth thing you’ve told me, it’s like and then all the people do this and then all the people do that. And I would think it would
be really overwhelming to walk in the door to your church and everyone knows what they’re doing, what do you do with somebody new? – Yeah, it’s really. It is a challenge, the best way to actually become familiar, because it deosnt change every week, it’s pretty much the same, the same sort of actions happen. What we invite them to do is
to live it with us for a while and don’t worry about doing the right thing, are you sitting or standing, whatever, just kind of do what
people are doing around you and be at peace. – If it weren’t for a bulletin and a guide, I wouldn’t have a first clue ’cause it’s so complex. But it seems like you’re cool with that complexity. – Yeah, it’s actually, for us the complexity is, it never strikes us as complex because it’s just something that we’re used to doing as we do it. And the service itself, this is what the majority of Christians across time have used, what Gregory Dix called
the shape of the liturgy. It’s this outline of this service is basically what Christians
from the beginning, we can read what they
were doing at the time of (mumbles), and you’re like so they gathered together and the readings, the writings of the apostles and the prophets are read, as long as time permits, and then the president stands up and invites us into the pattern of these good things, and then the bread and water and the wine are taken, and these are consecrated by a word of prayer from him and then a distribution is made. You’re like well yeah that’s
exactly what happened. So I mean from the second century all the way up into the 21st, that basic order is the same. And when Lutherans received that serivce in the 16th century, we did in such a way
that we kept the service and the only thing we’ve kind of deleted were things that in the service had crept in over time that we thought obscured
the grace of God in Christ. – I keep trying to inch us up front, but then I keep getting distracted ’cause there’s a billion cool things. Trinity, I know what that is, but I feel like that
means something different ’cause I don’t think of trinity being associated with a numner. – [Will] (laughing)
That’s a great comment. The feast of the Holy Trinity falls in the church year the week after the feast of Pentecost. Pentecost is the 50th day after Easter, so it’ll always be a Sunday, and after that Sunday, the Sunday after that is
the Sunday after Trinity. And then the Sundays in this next period of the church year are just
numbered after Trinity. So we’re on the 14th
Sunday after the feast of the Holy Trinity. So Trinity 14 just means we’re at that point in the church year. It’s called the Green Season. You see the green on the altar. – [Matt] And thus the vestments. – Yeah, the vestments, everything. – Do I say priest? – Hmm? – Do I say priest? – No, we usually say pastor. – That the pastor was wearing, okay. I see the word litany, I think this is a long list of stuff. Does it mean the same thing there? – Yeah, a litany is a, it just means, it doesn’t necessarily mean long. In this case it did. It’s a prayer that’s responsive. So the people have, the pastor will pray for something and the people always have
a response back to that, that’s a litany, it’s a back and forth way of praying. – Which makes sense ’cause the guy who founded this branch of Christianity was a monk. He say the value in that rhythm. Which respectfully, and I don’t say that I don’t, yeah I guess I am saying
I don’t see the value, but I’m not saying it’s bad, I’m saying I’ve never done it. That kind of lifestyle
has never been my rhythm so it’s something that, if I were to go off and create some new denomination or expression it would just never occur to
me to try to build that in. But it makes sense that Luther would experience the richness of that through his whole life, and wanna find a way to communicate that in a way that would be manageable for your normal person going
to church moving forward. – When the Lutherans began doing this, Luther was, he was so
much against legalism that he would say here’s a way to do this, and I’m not saying that everybody should do it the same way I’m doing it. God forbid we make a law out of this. He laid this out. But he laid down such clear
theological principles of how you appropriate the tradition that without even trying to, so picture Germany at the time of all these, you know there’s hundreds of these little principalities, one after the other, and each one had their own reformation. And there was no overarching authority saying this is how you, like in England they said here’s the book of common prayer, you use it or you go to jail. – Yeah, I mean that came after
what you’re talking about, but sure. – Right, right. But with Lutheranism, this Lutheran liturgy
evolved and developed without any central authority except for Luther’s suggestion of the principles on which to receive the previous tradition. And the result was a unified liturgy. So when they came to America, the goal was how can we sort of provide this. So they worked really hard in the 1880’s to provide all of this in English. It’s called the common service. And for the first time
it was all in English ’cause when the Germans kept it we kept as much Latin as we did German, so I mean the Lutheran service back in those days was a little bit of a bilingual affair. And that was mostly to keep the music. ’cause if the music was set to Latin, you didn’t wanna lose the music, they kept it that way. – Can I get the quick tour of what happens from here forward? – Sure. So the alter rail marks
the boundary, if you will, of the chancel. And the chancel is the place
where the Lord’s supper is administered and from
which the two readings from the word of God are read. And also a place from which
we generally lead services. You see again Jesus, Jesus, Jesus. Alpha and Omega (foreign language). The crucifix. So think of St. Paul
saying in First Corinthians I was determined (mumbles) accept Jesus Christ and him crucified. And in Galatians, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was publicly
portrayed as crucified. And above that, of
course, the risen Christ, standing in glory with his
hands raised in blessing the way that we are told
he ascended into heaven. – To me seeing the actual
crucifix with Jesus on it seems, I would expect that more in keeping with the Catholic idea of the Eucharist being almost a repetition of the sacrifice that is offered again. I think of the empty cross as being more what I would expect with the theology you were describing. So clearly those ideas
are not linked here. – No, no. And let’s, people that
really are into empty crosses tend to also not mind
having empty mangers. He’s not on the manger anymore, but they still put him in the manger. So I think there’s
something about the cross that’s kind of offensive to us. – That’s almost biblical. – I think it is. And if we walk up here and look at- – Is that all right
for me to come up here? – Yeah sure, please. Should have noted this too. Note the big arch. And this is a confession too, that when Jesus died and the veil in the
temple was torn in two, heaven itself is accessible
to us through Jesus. Total access. And you know on the altar itself, there are, again, the five crosses. And these are the five wounds, the two in the hands, two in the feet and one in the side. And another way of confessing that what is on the altar is
that which was on the cross. He gives us the very body and blood that were on Calgary’s cross to blot out the sins of the world. And he does it right here. – And what about all of this altar piece? What does this mean? Why is this here? – Well this is, it’s called a reredos. And the, again, in practical function, if you’re standing here and there’s no acoustic in the room that you have electronically amplified, but I speak here like this, the sound at the altar is going
to carry back into the room because it’s going to bounce off the structure in front of me. – There was a tremendous amount of church that involved the pastor with his back to the room. Why not just flip this thing around and have him be here, with the elements here? – Yeah, Luther asked that question too. And Luther was actually a proponent of having the altar be free from the wall. But the Lutheran church by and large did not follow him. We know pretty much now- – [Matt] The Lutheran
church didn’t follow Luther? – Oh yeah, no, not on that. Not on many things. On many things. I mean Luther’s private opinions are Luther’s private opinions. They’re not the opinion of our church. – [Matt] I can think of a few times where that is to your benefit. – Oh you better believe it. The opinions of Luther that are in the Book of Concord, those are the confession of the Lutheran church. The small catechism, the large catechism, (mumbles). It’s the only writings of Luther that a Lutheran is bound to. – So Luther is not the Lutheran pope. – No, he’s not the Lutheran pope. He certainly is not infallible. And he is not, we recognize him as being a great prophet from God in the sense that God has provided these great teachers across history. At moments of crisis, what St. Augustine did at
the Pelagian controversy. Or St. Athanasius when he had to deal with the Arian controversy. Luther was that for this
semi-Pelagian controversy that breaks out at the reformation. So, you know, he recognizes and thanks God for that aspect of him. But by no means do we
regard him as infallible. The only things that
Lutherans are bound to of Luther are to those documents. – I’ve seen now, at least twice, maybe three times when talking about the Book of Concord you do
the Wakamba forever gesture. – [Will] The what? – It’s (laughing), it looks like a gesture
from a recent Marvel movie. Is this intentional or is this just something that you do? – I’ve never been to a Marvel movie. – [Will] You’re missing out, they’re heroes (mumbles) amazing. – I have no idea why I’m
doing what I’m doing. (laughing) – [Matt] So I noticed that when people were taking communion, me in particular, I was instructed to- – Do that. – Yeah to adopt that posture to communicate that I’m a part of another tradition. – [Will] Right. – [Matt] Is there smoething to this? Or is it just a habit that you have? – Well it’s the opposite of this, which would be indicating I’m receiving. So when you do this you’re
saying don’t give that to me. Don’t go there. But you present yourself forward here to receive a blessing from the Lord. – [Matt] I got a ton more
questions about that for later on. – Sure. – But for you, that’s just- – I’m sorry, I’m not
even aware of doing it. – No, you know what happens is when everything in here has meaning I start being like oh why’s he doing that? What’s with that little ear tug thing? What did he mean by that? That’s good, that’s good. It means that you, however long we’ve been
sitting here talking, you’ve conditioned me with your church and your communication that it’s so thoughtful and it’s so loaded with meaning that I just assumed that everything is of intent. And that’s awesome. – Yeah. Everything definitely is not with intent. But there’s a lot of
things that really are, and that all cohere together. And all, let me stress this, all in the service of the word of God. All so that the word of God can be heard, believed and do
it’s work in people’s lives. That’s the goal. – I think that anybody from the tradition I’ve been a part of would enthusiastically high five you over that. Yeah that’s exactly what we think. That’s exactly how we’d say it. And their church and how they actually execute that would be so different. – [Will] So different. Mm-hmm. – So for me this has been already just incredibly eye
opening because of that. Almost identical theology. And we’ll talk a couple
other points there. These groups might see
it a little different. And just a history and an execution that looks and feels so different, but it’s kind of fun to walk in here and to, to use your language, confess a theology I’m familiar with in such a different way. And so this has been fascinating. You mind if we sit down and I just (mumbles) you
with a bunch more questions? – [Will] Not at all. – Cool, thank you. Okay, wow, I learned a ton. Now here’s the deal. These videos, you’ve
probably figured this out, are usually two parts. In video number one I go to a place and I point at things and I ask questions. Why does the sheep have a flag? Why does your candle get a date? And then I get quick answers to that, it raises some questions, and then in video number two, we sit down and we do like the legit history, theology, interview kind of thing. We really get into the deep water. So the tour is supposed
to be sort of quickish, it took us almost two hours to tour that little church because Will is a stinking genius. Everything in the church
is loaded with meaning, or almost everything in the church is packed with theology and history, and he was absolutely
ready to go into depth on every last bit of it. I kind of had to try and pull back on the reigns a little bit so we could save something
for the interview. Well in the end everything he said just raised more questions. My experience in actually
attending that church the day before raised a lot of questions, one of which is how come you
wouldn’t let me take communion? How come you guys made me do this instead of this when it
was time to take communion? I’m definitely a Christian. And we even receite the same creeds and say the same stuff. In fact, my version of Christianity is just a gentle, not
even conflict oriented outgrowth of their
version of Christianity. So there’s an exclusivity
that really made me scratch my head about the
Missouri Synod Lutheran thing, but Will was totally game
for talking about that. And we get into that in the next video, where we sit down and do the
in-depth interview thing. So, if you think I’ve earned it, if this stuff is interesting to you, if this is the kind of thing you wanna see
happening on the internet, I would be so grateful if you would consider clicking
that subscribe button, if you haven’t already, clicking that little
gray notification bell so you actually find out when I publish videos, that would be awesome as well. If not, no big deal. Either way, I hope that
no matter where you land on the spectrum of faith, Catholic, not Catholic, orthodox, something completely different, reject faith in God altogether, wherever you’re coming from, I hope you will come
back for this next video because I think you’re gonna find it enormously interesting, and it will give you stuff to think about wherever you’re coming from. For me, I’ve had, whatever it is, like a month now to sit and think about my experience there, which was just fantastic. And one of the things that I keep coming back to is that the Catholic roots of the Anglican church that I went to looked very different than
the Catholic overtones in this Lutheran church. I expected it at the Anglican church ’cause I know the history, I know it’s kind of a
hybrid church historically. But the Protestant church, this was different to me. But then you get to thinking about it, you’re like you know what Martin Luther was a monk. He was a committed Catholic and he was a really good Catholic, a brilliant theologian. And he never did wanna blow up Rome or burn it down or make it go away. When people tried to do that, he tried to stop them. And it’s clearly documented that what Luther wanted to accomplish was a reformation, not a division. And I know that people are mad at Luther, and they’ll be like well
but he said and did this. Oh yeah, don’t get me wrong, like Will said there’s plenty to point at with Luther that’s weird and screwy too, but the reality is this split did happen. It happened for legitimate
theological reasons that we’re still not in agreement on amongst Catholics and Protestants. But there’s a whole
lot of beautiful things that Luther cleary saw the value in and he did not want to move from. And so when talking with Will
I got a really good sense of this church looks and
functions like it looks because it is kind of the completion of Luther’s dream. Luther wanted a reformed Catholic church. That looked like a
reformed Catholic church. And it was very interesting to go there and to worship and to be a part of it. And to almost feel like I’m
in an atemporal expression of Christianity there. I expected something very 16th century, I got something that felt much more all 2,000 years of
church happening at once. I have a lot more to think about here. I’m gonna hve more to say once we’ve gotten through
the interview with Will. Again, I really hope you’ll come back and check that out. I think it’s gonna be really fun. Hey, I’m doing a thing right now where anybdoy who supports this channel on, or my new daily Bible podcast, The Ten Minute Bible Hour podcast, anybody who’s supporting
that on patreon in any way, I’m sending these cool little enamel pens to say thank you for making this stuff go, ’cause I really wanna talk about this big picture theology history stuff like I’ve been doing, but I also really just wanna talk about the Bible itself every single day. So I started a podcast
where I can do that. You can grab The Ten
Minute Bible Hour podcast anywhere you get podcasts. And thank you to anyone who supports this YouTube channel, that podcast that I just started, and thank you to everybody who doesn’t support, but is just here because
you’re up for doing this kind of conversation. You’re making it go well. I appreciate you enormously. I appreciate Will and the
Missouri Synod Lutheran folks and I can’t wait to get to the next one. And that is The Ten Minute Bible Hour. Let’s do this again soon.

Posted by Lewis Heart

This article has 100 comments

  1. Hey, Matt! Thank you SO MUCH for the opportunity to do this with you. I had a blast and you were awesome in your questions and comebacks. And I hope don’t mind that I’ll add that if folks enjoyed the discussion here, they might enjoy also my new podcast, The Word of the Lord Endures Forever. Right here:

  2. The thing about the liturgy is that it's not only a conversation, as Pastor Weedon put it, but it's also a meditation. Once you have it memorized, it becomes second nature, and each week you can contemplate it more and more deeply. It's a fantastic memorization tool for essential points of Christianity, and it keeps us connected to the tradition practiced by the Roman Catholic church and the Eastern Orthodox church. Jesus prayed for us all to be one, and while we work through our differences theologically, this is one thing that keeps us unified <3

  3. Thank you so much for these videos! I am a Roman Catholic, and love being one. But I also love to see how we all, as Christians/Protestant/Catholics, have the same goals. We are commanded by the same Lord. We return to the same Father. We are guided by the same Spirit. Love God, love each other. It's simple, but complex too. Thank you, Matt. God bless you.

  4. Hey Matt love what your doing visiting the different kinds of churches. Have you or are you going to visit a Calvinist church? Was just curious thanks love you bro

  5. Lutheran Pastor Chris Roseborough has, like, the exact same hair! For a second I thought it was him, lol
    Pastor Will was great though! I really enjoy this peek into what our high church brethren are up to.

  6. As a Lutheran it made me super excited to watch this video. I think Pastor Weedon did a great job describing the church. If you like the open conversation that Matt has with other people, and his interest in bible stuff you should check out his podcast ‘The Ten Minute Bible Hour’

  7. How come The 10 Minute Bible Hour video is 33 minutes long? 10/60/33, no wonder we can't all agree about how to be Jesus followers!

  8. How counterintuitive that the lutherans Don't Follow all of Luthers teachings but they consider him almost a prophet. This raises the question was he right in the first place.

  9. Great video! I'm from the same Synod, but in Brazil. The theology it's the same, and the pastor did very great in his explanation of the Church and the Liturgical aspects. It's very great joy to be representaded by him.

  10. Never been to a Lutheran Church. If I were to find myself inside that church I would assume it was Catholic! I wonder if in the future, you'll go out of the Christianity branch and check out the other two Abrahamic Religions, or even the Quasi-Christian ones down the line?

  11. You should visit an ELCA Lutheran church next, just like you visited an ACNA Anglican Church and then an Episcopal church.

  12. I strongly appreciate that they put thought into everything you see, hear or do. I'm not Lutheran, as my views align best with a Baptist kind of confession, but that is one thing I deff like about this. Also whooo man that guy is fired up! Too much coffee? 😉

  13. Right at the top by the roof was written Holy, Holy, Holy and Heilig, Heilig, Heilig. I wonder what the influence was? Heilig is Afrikaans for holy.

  14. Confessional Lutherans have far more in common with Catholicism and Orthodoxy than they do with much of their fellow Protestants.

  15. You said on IssuesEtc. you had already uploaded the second part of LCMS visit. Unfortunately I checked both your website and this YT channel yesterday and today and couldn´t find anything like a Volume II of that.

  16. Martin Luther was not just a Catholic monk – He was highly educated and had the equivalent of multiple doctorates. He knew the theology he was trained in inside and out and also knew it didn’t line up with many of the teachings of the church.

  17. Matt, I just started watching your vids because of this interview with Pastor Weeden. Thank you. Your questions were so respective…I can't quit watching all of your YouTube videos!! I'm a lifelong LCMS member, and (in my opinion) my heart swells with joy with your interview. Thank you, Matt.

  18. Fabulous! I am an LCMS Lutheran. Pastor Wheedon rocked it! This was well done and extremely informative (even for Lutherans! 🙂

  19. Wow it's so nice to see solid liturgy, props to the LCMS!

    If I may ask, would you consider visiting a Russian Orthodox Church? The reason I ask is not only is the worship style different, I feel that the Greek Orthodox priest, no disrespect to him and while he definitely seem well-versed in church history, did not properly express the authority of Scripture in the same manner that Orthodoxy proclaims.

    Anyways, just thought u might like a different experience as well as seeing another perspective from another trunk of one of the biggest trunks in the tree of Christianity. OCA and ROCOR churches are Russian Orthodox

  20. First loved hearing you on my Lutheran sites and love the project you are doing…very cool. Second…on crucial conversations…most of those guys…like me…are former Merican Evanjellys in many various flavors then Lutheraned(not sure a word) as adults. As a former M.E. I was being crushed by God's perfect law. Why could I…in spite of my best efforts, follow Jesus's example…life long Christian and preachers kid, but, lacked the moxy to comply to my precious saviors example. The confessional Lutherans through Youtube and other social medias…heard the Gospel…not the Gospel that was taught me as a child that remained in rear view mirror as I got older and more sinful sadly. Rather, they taught the Gospel and like Paul to the Romans (already Christians in Rome) to share the Gospel with you. They are wierd, their pastors wear dresses…but, each week they bring a balanced law and gospel message based on Gods Word…literally Old Testament, Epistle, and Gospel readings from pulpit plus Psalms in Liturgy. Not my worthiness, but Christs perfect obedience, and the weekly I love you, from the Bridegroom Christ to His bride the church.

  21. Look up the book The Pilgrim Church. There were a lot of smaller Christian groups before and after the Reformation that had no roots in Rome, and are not Protestants in the classical sense

  22. Have you never been to a Catholic Mass or Episcopal service? They are all essentially the same. They follow the same church year mostly have the same scripture readings and same prayers etc. As a Catholic I can easily go to a Lutheran or Episcopal Liturgy and know 90% of the prayers and the same order etc. Peace.

  23. When I was 9 years old my Uncle led me to Christ, soon after my parents divorced. My Mom was 1/2 Irish and was raised by her Irish Catholic Mother to be Roman Catholic and her Dad, English Yankee and PA Dutch was a congregationalist would never dare enter a catholic church unless someone died or was getting married. I My Dad who is actually 1/2 Jewish (His mother was an English Yankee and Adopted Father was German) but was adopted by my Grandmother's husband a German guy was raised a congregationalist became a Roman Catholic when he married my mother. Since I stayed with my Dad on the weekends I asked him if we could go to a nice evangelical Church because I felt that Christ was not being preached as he should be in the Roman Catholic Church. My dad told me it was the RC church or nothing. I told him I was good with Nothing. So at 9 years old, I officially split with the RC Church. (My Mom did too, she joined a Presbyterian Church) So I guess I"m a lot like Luther. I did get to join a nice Evangelical Church when I was 17 years old and was baptized publically and my Dad, Mother, Maternal Grandparents came too and they were all so happy that I had decided to join an actual church. I guess they all figured I was a heathen for esqueing church all those years but actually God had led me to a good church in his good timing. I am the only one in the family who was never confirmed in the RC church either, even though Luther was…

  24. He seems pretty cool but Baptize means to be fully immersed. It's a Greek word that comes from dying clothes. When you die clothes like Leather jackets you don't kind of sprinkle them. You take the cloth and you dip it right in and get it all wet. Even my Ashkenazi Cousins who would imbibe in tevilah would go down into the Mikvah and dunk themselves in. Sprinkling is not baptizing but then therefore just another reason I left the RC church. I guess I was sprinkled but I have no recollection and the certificate that was given to my parents has been long lost. I guess I could go back to that church where it happened and have them issue another sprinkling certificate but why? It would mean nothing to me. We stopped going to that church when I was 4 years old and I have no memory of that church. The next one that I did "First Communion" I do remember that one, that's the one I self excommunicated myself from….

  25. The only pastor I have known who was this excited and clear about the Gospel was an Orthodox priest. Glad to see this man has such vigor for our Lord.

  26. So I didn't bother to check to see if anyone else posted something like this so forgive me if this is redundant. But to correct your theology on the catholic eucharist, the catholic celebration of the eucharist is not a repetition of the one event happening again and again. Rather the last supper and crucifixion is a one time event that is entered into again.
    "The Holy Sacrifice, because it makes present the one sacrifice of Christ the Savior and includes the Church's offering…" CCC 1330
    I hope this helps. And if you have any further questions, please don't ask me, please contact someone who is a Priest or a Director of Religious Education in the Catholic Church. They have the answers, where I have to dig more for them.

    But overall, I honestly love what you are doing and how God works through you to help erode the misconceptions and lies we have grown to know about all the differences in each of the denominations of Christianity. Thank you!

  27. I am enjoying the journey through various faiths and churches. I am curious why some people are saying ELCA isn’t even Christian. Where has it gone wrong in their opinions?

  28. This series is so engaging and respectful; a wonderful opportunity to experience a taste of the beliefs and practices of other Christians. It would be great to see a tour of your own church, and to get an overview of Protestant theology.

  29. Catholics don’t think the last supper is happening again, Catholics believe that we are being part of the last supper together with Jesus Christ.

  30. Beware of false prophets. Martin Luther the father of the protestant heresy. One of the greatest false prophets in all the history of the Church. A poor man who claimed to speak the truth but whose teachings are opposed to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Luther had to struggle a lot against temptation of drunkenness and impurity. However instead of fighting the enemy he decided to compromise and to feel better he preferred to think that, in fact he could not overcome the temptations, that it was impossible to resist. But for him in the end it didn't really matter because if we are saved by faith alone as he would say, the works do not count. They do not have value. Therefore for him what we do is not important at all. We can sin as much as we want as long as we believe. That's Luther. He spoke so much about the Holy Scriptures and yet he rejected the inspired word of God which states, " Faith without works is dead" It means that I can believe in God but if I do not lead a life which is pleasing to God my faith alone will not bring me to salvation.

  31. Love Lutheran brothers & sisters and their fantastic church coming
    from an Orthodox Christian. However still can't understand the point of
    using the Masoretic text instead of the Septuagint especially
    considering that when the Greeks undertook the effort of translating the
    Hebrew scriptures into Greek centuries before Jesus, it was at the
    request of a Jewish community that no longer spoke Hebrew and wanted to
    read it for themselves in Greek. So why suddenly use a Hebrew
    translation from a Jewish community in the 1500s?

  32. Love Lutheran brothers & sisters and their fantastic church coming
    from an Orthodox Christian. However still can't understand the point of
    using the Masoretic text instead of the Septuagint especially
    considering that when the Greeks undertook the effort of translating the
    Hebrew scriptures into Greek centuries before Jesus, it was at the
    request of a Jewish community that no longer spoke Hebrew and wanted to
    read it for themselves in Greek. So why suddenly use a Hebrew
    translation from a Jewish community in the 1500s?

  33. Its not 2000 year old church, if he wanted to reform the church he would have done what San Francis did. The church is one because Jesus body its one. Seems like a copy 😓

  34. You should consider looking into the Old Catholic churches and Independent Catholic churches (e.g. Polish National Catholic Church, Synodal Catholic Church). There's more to Western Christianity than Roman Catholic and Protestant.

  35. This is a great idea for a Netflix series. Spend three episodes highlighting a particular christian denomination visiting congregations and delving into their beliefs and practices and demonstrating at the end of each episode what all Christians share in common.

  36. At the Lutheran churches I’ve been a member of, anyone who is a believer and has been baptized can take communion. Yet, for me as a Lutheran to be able to take communion, I had to go through Catechism. Even though I’ve been through Catechism, I cannot take communion at a Catholic Church, by Catholics can take communion at a Lutheran church. It’s interesting to see the similarities and differences among the different Lutheran churches.

  37. I had NO idea how Catholic Lutherans connected to the Missouri Synod were. I really needed this information. My son (grown) has become a member of one of these churches and I thought it was a regular Protestant church! Ha on me! Thank you for going to the trouble, as I have no way to get to a church, let alone my son's, to see what's going on.

  38. Luther was taught by Nominalists who disliked (were probably jealous of) Thomas Aquinas and faulted him for a lack of focus on the scriptures and an all powerful God. It has been a gradual slide to western agnosticism: from 14th century nominalists who rejected universals, to the Reformation rejecting universal truths, to modernism rejecting universal truth. Luther begot Nones.

  39. Be careful not to lump all lutherans in the same pot too. There are many different flavors from uber conservative and very exclusive to more liberal and very inclusive.

  40. Hey Matt! It's really a great video, but as an European Lutheran I cannot understand why you chose a church from the Missouri Synod instead of a ELCA one. ELCA churches are in communion with more Lutheran bodies around the world and thus represent the major part of nowadays Lutherans, and it is as well the heir of the "original" Lutheran church in Germany. Thank you for your great videos!

  41. I'm catholic and I'm beginning to study theology. Even I'm attaching to Catholic theology, I curious and interested about other way of the Christianity.
    I enjoy your videos of visit.
    Good job.

  42. You are fortunate to have met a Missouri Synod pastor and church. There are many dozens of Lutheran offshoots, and they are not in agreement with traditional Lutheran liturgy or practice. Had you entered a ELCA facility you've had a different education of what Lutheranism is all about. We Presbyterians have a similar dilemma. Catholicism also has this issue, whereas liberal theology has been a corrupter the churches. But the church expands and grows despite the headlong affront. Point I am making is this: not all Lutheran churches are "Lutheran," much more they are not even Christian.

  43. Matt I love what you are doing in these Visiting and Sit Down Talks with Videos thare Very informative. I love church history and all its branches. Good Work Matt!

  44. Praise GOD you went to a Missouri Synod Lutheran Church! Many people tend to forget about the Missouri Synod, but it is the most important Synod of the American Lutheranism!

  45. Great guy, so much passion for God. Haha, but even he knows that the biblical term used for baptize, baptizo, literally means "to immerse," yet the man made tradtion of sprinkling water is kept instead. Why? Even he admitted the act of full immersion is far more meaningful because of the symbolic nature of what is taking place by going under and being raised back up. It just bewilders me.

  46. First time I've ever seen inside of Lutheran church. I've always heard that Lutherism is very close to Catholicism. Thanks for the opportunity to see it and hear one of their pastors talk about why they have chosen to be Lutheran instead of one of the other hundreds of Christian denominations. My evangelical neighbors would take one step inside that church and turnaround quickly saying it's heretical because of: the crucifixion instead of just a cross; small baptismal font which precludes entire body from being immersed; and images of idols on the walls that Lutherans must be worshipping. They would also say it's not biblical for infants to be baptized. The flock has been scattered throughout the world via hundreds of Christian denominations all preaching something a little different than the Christian church next door, and deciding which Christians are worthy enough to receive communion in their respective church…and whether or not the communion that Jesus said was verily ,verily his body and blood is truly, truly his body and blood and not just symbolic wafers and wine. This is where the chaos all started. I wonder if "Luther" would do it all over again seeing what has happened to Christianity throughout the world. I think he would!

  47. Beautiful sanctuary, just the perfect size and it great to see Protestant still seeing the importance of traditional worship (hymns,processionals etc.), reminds me so much of the Methodist church, my new favourite project ❤️.

  48. Rule number 1 in a Lutheran church… never turn your back to the Altar while within the Altar area. Who else was feeling weird while they had their last conversation with the guy with his back to the altar?

  49. Does the Pastor have any teaching videos or books? He is amazing!!! I'm so excited I saw this video!!! Cant wait for more!!! BE SAFE,GOD BLESS!!!

  50. Hi Matt. A Catholic here from Northeast India. I have nothing much to say, just that i admire your humility and your patience to sit and listen so graciously to what others have to say about their faith. May God bless you. Doesn't matter which faith you're in i consider you as my brother in Christ and may the Holy Spirit guide you in this enedeavour of yours. Well, i guess i said more than i thought i would.😊😁

  51. This sent pangs through my heart as it recalled to my mind the joy I felt on first entering a Lutheran church. It changed my life forever. I’ve moved onto Catholicism, but I will dearly miss the LCMS congregation I’ve worshipped with for three years. I hope beyond hope that one day there will be a Lutheran ordinariate I can take my children to.

  52. This video was really awesome. I'm a big fan of these; getting a new perspective on other denominations is always very interesting. I was raised Lutheran (Evangelical Lutheran, not Missouri-synod), and at my church growing up, they explicitly stated that anyone who is baptized and believes in god is welcome to receive communion. It's interesting to see specific churches that do not allow this. Personally, when I've visited other churches, I tend to always opt-in to receive it; it never occurred to me that people would be against that.


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