The Pendulum’s Natural Swing

If you follow synodical politics, they shadow US politics.  The country is in an uproar over the liberal president, so the polling data for pro-life and other conservative causes is up.  Rev. Matt Harrison’s “numbers” reflect this same sentiment.

This is a political sea change not a theological.  While I don’t share the incumbents view that since only 30% of the congregations sent in ballots it means the vast majority of Synod is happy with his leadership, I don’t think it means anything more than that the pendulum of politics has swung as it naturally does over time. What indicates that this is the same old Missouri is that only one percent of congregations sent in resolutions.

Brothers in the ministry have preached to me the virtues of sanctified politics, churchmanship, and battling for the faith for decades now.  However, they don’t use the agreed on weapons.  The swords and clubs the synodical battle is waged with are resolutions at the District and Synodical conventions.  It’s true I didn’t send in any this time, but I have in the past.  Check and see how many resolutions have come over the past 30 years from the conservatives being nominated for offices.  There will be very, very few.  Why?  Because they know it’s politically incorrect to do so.  Instead they bide their time, till the pendulum naturally swings back to conservatism.  It will be heralded as a victory for conservatism but really is only the swing of the pendulum.

This is not to say I wouldn’t vote for Matt Harrison.  If hell suddenly froze over and I was a delegate, I would vote the party line.  I would jump on that swinging pendulum too.  However, I am not oblivious to the fact that more than one pendulum is swinging.  This came to mind when I watched a video about Seminex sent to me by another pastor. He introduced it this way, “This is a promotional video for Christ Seminary in Exile from 1978. It is fascinating how many of the buzzwords and concepts they use in the video are employed in Missouri circles  today.” (It’s 25 minutes long.)

I watched it, and I emailed him that I had lived this history, and what I had learned from the liberal Lutherans is that when you’re theology is divisive or not compelling, lead with works of mercy.  That’s always popular.  The pastor who sent me the video immediately saw the other pendulum in motion.  If you don’t, you’ll probably be hit by it.

About Paul Harris

Pastor Harris retired from congregational ministry after 40 years in office on 31 December 2023. He is now devoting himself to being a husband, father, and grandfather. He still thinks cenobitic monasticism is overrated and cave dwelling under.
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One Response to The Pendulum’s Natural Swing

  1. Scott says:

    Wow! That was their definition of promotional. It was interesting that every pendulum including the one in the video seems to have a justifying theology of suffering (which just so happens to overshadow the Word of God) to go right along with it.

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