What do Lutherans Think of Roman Catholicism? Saturday Theovideo

Not that I am Lutheran, but I love hearing their perspective on theology (old Martin Luther was sort of the shining star of the Reformation).

Pastor Jonathan Fisk is a zealous young Lutheran pastor who uses his video blog Worldview Everlasting to impart loads of doctrinal wisdom, and to share his theological gold from his deep pockets of learning. Here he answers a Roman Catholic’s question about Romanism, and he sheds fresh light on the history, doctrine, and critical problems of that false religion.

The religion of Rome is the enemy of Christ Jesus and His gospel – and the Pope is an antichrist. Pastor Fisk explains it well:

What do you think? I think he did a great job making clear distinctions here, exposing some of the most heinous heresies of the Roman religion. I hope you’ve been helped by this.

Thanks for watching,


4 thoughts on “What do Lutherans Think of Roman Catholicism? Saturday Theovideo

  1. Oh my… speaking as a Lutheran (but a different Lutheran than Pastor Fisk), this video irks me, and not only for taking cues from popular YouTube videos by interspersing random, idiotic video clips between messages.

    First, Pastor Fisk does not take into account the Joint Declaration on the Doctrine of Justification (because his church didn’t sign it). In that document, the Roman Catholic Church and the Lutheran World Federation agreed that Roman Catholics and Lutherans share the same basic understanding of justification, by grace alone through faith. Therefore, the condemnations in the Council of Trent based on the issue of justification do not apply to Lutherans, and the condemnations of the Lutheran Confessions relating to justification do not apply to Roman Catholics. There is the issue, though, of whether or not the LWF actually has the authority to speak on theological matters for its members. But to say that Lutherans and Roman Catholics don’t agree on justification is not true. Some Lutherans and Roman Catholics don’t, but some do. The division here is among Lutherans, not among Roman Catholics.

    Secondly, he oversimplifies the Roman problem. He relies on stereotypes and rhetoric against the Roman Catholic church that is not necessarily accurate. For having originally been part of the Roman Catholic church, there are branches of Lutheranism that are extremely anti-Roman Catholic, which is a shame. We have so much in common, and while we have a lot to teach, we also have a lot to learn.

    • This comment sounds very much like what an ELCA congregant would make. And lets call it like it is, the ELCA is not Lutheran. But that aside…

      I would be interested to hear what these stereotypes are, that you claim he is using to describe the RCC.

  2. I think if one reads the Catholic side of the Joint Declaration carefully it becomes clear that they have not changed their view of justification since Trent. Also notice their statement about the LWF. The word choices are extremely important. “The teaching of the Lutheran churches presented in this Declaration does not fall under the condemnations from the Council of Trent.” In other words, the Lutherans who signed this either a) are not saying everything they believe; or b) no longer believe the things we condemned. In my reading, the JD is yet another instance of pietist churches dumbing down doctrinal language (i.e. neglecting the qualifier “alone” after faith) in order to reach some superficial union. It’s the exact approach that created the EKD in the first place.

    The question is not whether the LCMS is “anti-Roman” or not. The question is whether we respect them enough to take their position and ours seriously.

  3. Precisely my thoughts (from a Reformed perspective), in agreement with OO: Rome is defined by her creeds, councils, and catechisms, and no one has the authority to change those dogmas. Lutherans also are defined by confessional standards, and cease to be Lutheran if those tenets are changed or abandoned. There is a simple, historical difference between the two that cannot be bridged by the well-meaning Joint Declaration of a group of representatives from either side.

    If some Lutherans signed such a document, they are no longer Lutheran – which is fine, but the problem is them still speaking for real Lutherans. We ought to have the respect for each other whatever our beliefs, to deal with things as they are, and not how we wish or imagine they should be.

    Concerning Pastor Fisk’s use of “stereotypes” of Roman Catholicism, I would also be interested in the examples of this you indicate, Ken. I’m not catching where that happened.

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