Issue: August 2002

Volume 2 Number 8

The Two Governments and the Two Kingdoms in Luther’s Thought

Copyright © Scottish Journal of Theology, Vol. 34, pp. 321-337. Used with permission. [1] The facet of his thought commonly referred to as the doctrine of the two kingdoms has provoked some of the most intractable confusion and bitter controversy in post-war continental Luther scholarship, and the ripples of this debate which reached these shores […]

Luther’s Doctrine of the Two Kingdoms

An Ecumenical Problem [1] The question of the two kingdoms is one of the most pressing and delicate in contemporary religious and theological thought. No other aspect of Luther’s theology has been so fiercely attacked as this doctrine. Where Luther drew a clear line between spiritual and temporal authority, and expressly emphasised that under no […]

Mentoring For Neighborhood Ministry

[1] More than twenty years have gone by since I was paired with the first seminarian who arrived at New Hope Lutheran Church in Jamaica, New York, to begin a year of internship under my supervision. The year was 1985. Not so clear to either of us at the time was the fact that the […]

Should We Invade Iraq?

[1] In recent months, the President and other members of his administration have openly declared their desire and intent to achieve “regime change” in Iraq. And since previous methods of ousting Saddam Hussein-economic sanctions and coup d’etat-have obviously failed, the President is seriously considering even more dramatic options, including full-scale military invasion (Shanker). How should […]

The Benefits of Globalization: An Economic Perspective

[1] Introduction. The process of globalization of the world economies has recently generated severe protests from many quarters, including on the pages of this journal (Moe-Lobeda, 2001; Yutzis, 2001). Among these critics, almost every social ill from poverty to pollution to pestilence seems to be caused by globalization and the evils of capitalism. In this […]

The Bible and Black Families: A Theological Challenge

[1] The perception that families are in crisis has increased greatly in recent years…. On the one hand, today we find a yearning to return to pristine biblical teachings and “traditional family values,” but on the other hand, too many either see the Bible as irrelevant to the modern family crisis or, worse still, refuse […]

Schroeder on The Promise of Lutheran Ethics

Postings to hosted by The Crossings Community, Inc. ( by Ed Schroeder. Used with permission of the author. Unless otherwise noted, the brackets are the author’s. I. “The Promise of Lutheran Ethics – The First Part of a Review” (October 22, 1998) [1] There could be more promise in The Promise of Lutheran Ethics. […]

Tuttle on The Promise of Lutheran Ethics

[1] Lutheran theological ethics has often seemed more impoverished than full of promise. Core concepts of the Lutheran tradition – justification by faith, the law-gospel distinction, the so-called “two kingdoms” doctrine, and the concept of vocation – have been read in ways that bifurcate Christian faith from social and personal ethics. Justification is an act […]

The Twofold Rule of God

[1] Perhaps the most difficult element in Lutheran social ethics, yet one of the most important, is the doctrine of the twofold rule of God, sometimes called the “two kingdoms” doctrine. This doctrine has also been the most vulnerable to distortion. Karl Barth was the first to call this Lutheran teaching “the two kingdoms doctrine,” […]

The “We” is Greater than the “I”

[1] We are living in historic times. Two African Americans, Secretary of State Colin Powell and National Security Adviser Condoleezza Rice are serving in high profile political positions within the Bush administration. I’m glad their expertise is being called upon to resolve conflicts around the world. Powell and Rice, through their highly developed skills, pry […]

Excerpt from Critical Social Theory

Setting the Table: The Retrieval of Civil Society [1] It is no accident that Habermas revised his sociological theory in the early 1990s by attending more closely to civil society. Already before the 1989 collapse of the Soviet Union, Central and Eastern European dissidents were focusing on the renewal of civil society, even in the […]

A Review of Honoring African American Elders: A Ministry in the Soul Community by Anne Streaty

onoring African American Elders: A Ministry in the Soul Community. Anne Streaty Wimberly, editor. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1997, 185 pages, a Preface, References, and Index. [1] Honoring African American Elders: A Ministry in the Soul Community, I found to be an interesting book. The title in essence captures the editor’s intent to cause the […]

Malcolm on The Promise of Lutheran Ethics

[1] Fifty years ago, the United Lutheran church commissioned some theologians, including Joseph Sittler, William Lazareth, and George Forell, to contribute to a three volume set entitled Christian Social Responsibility. Like them, the authors of this new collection of essays have been commissioned by the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America – through its Church Council […]

Sherman on The Promise of Lutheran Ethics

[1] To judge by the current volume, the enterprise of “Lutheran ethics” is alive and well. Indeed, it’s a growth industry. The exhaustive bibliography provided by co-editor John Stumme lists some 45 books and articles on the subject by recognizably Lutheran scholars in the first 50 years of the present century (1900-1949), 115 in the […]

Solberg on The Promise of Lutheran Ethics

[1] Whoever is worried that Lutheranism as a living tradition is at risk should take heart from the publication of The Promise of Lutheran Ethics. Even before one assays its substance, the book is remarkable. It is a collection of seven thoughtfully drawn essays by eight disparate writers, introduced by two short reflections by the […]