The Weidner Institute is offering the following seminar on Thursday April 16th from 8:00-10:00pm EST through Zoom.
The cost is $12.00. To reserve a spot, you must both pay via PayPal below, and also register with your email on our Google Form here so that we can send you a link.
Aquinas and Gerhard on Our Natural Knowledge of God
Taught by Dr. Nathan Greeley (Fellow of Apologetics and Philosophical Theology)
Often Luther’s Reformation is pitted against the thought of the Middle Ages, and there is much truth to this characterization. But it is not the whole story. Many elements of medieval philosophy and theology were retained by the Lutheran Reformers, and this inheritance only came to be more appreciated and utilized as time went on. In this seminar we will look at the thought of two monumental figures who provide clear and substantial evidence of this relationship—the medieval theologian St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) and the Lutheran theologian Johann Gerhard (1582-1637). Specifically, we will be examining and comparing what they have to say about our natural knowledge of God. As such, this investigation will cover what these two great theologians teach us about the following topics:
-the difference between natural and revealed knowledge of God
-sources of our natural knowledge of God
-the consequences of the fall regarding our natural knowledge of God
-arguments or proofs for the existence of God
-the uses or applications of our natural knowledge of God
Anyone with an interest in Lutheran theology, historical theology, or apologetics is encouraged to participate.
I recently hosted a webinar for pastors in the AALC on the use of technology in the church during the Coronavirus pandemic. You can find the video of that meeting below:
All of the new editions of the American Lutheran Classics volumes are now available for purchase! They have received new typesetting and typos have been fixed.* They also have updated cover designs, and the Selected Sermons volume has additional content.
You can find all of the volumes below:.
* The Lutheran Doctrine of the Lord's Supper text has not been changed, as we lost the original text document. The cover has still been updated to match the other volumes.
We recently set up a merchandise store with TeeSpring. You can get mugs, t-shirts, and sweatshirts with the logos from Just and Sinner, the Weidner Institute, and Just and Sinner Publications! Thanks to Oliver Flores who designed our new Weidner Institute logo.
Go to the store here.
We have been working hard at reformatting our American Lutheran Classics volumes for a re-release of each book. The formatting and covers have been updated, and some spelling errors have been fixed throughout.
These volumes are currently available, and the others will be coming soon!
We have recently begun releasing newer editions of some of the books we publish. This includes giving them new cover designs, better typesetting, and correcting typographical errors. The first of these updated volumes in Matthias Loy's treatment of justification. Here is the description:
The doctrine of justification, the "chief article of the Christian faith," is of paramount importance in the Christian life. This teaching was at the heart of the sixteenth-century Reformation, and remains so in the contemporary church of the Augsburg Confession. When many today are seeking to downplay the importance of this teaching in the Pauline corpus and the proclamation of the church, traditional Lutheran evaluations of the great doctrine of justification are needed today more than ever. In this volume, Matthias Loy outlines the doctrine of justification in its classical Reformation formulation. Loy writes in the tradition of Lutheran scholasticism, though his work is not dry or purely academic, but immensely practical. Loy is concerned with the faith and assurance of the average Christian. He discusses the nature of justification, the means of justification, and the effects of justification in the Christian life.
You can purchase the paperback here, and the kindle edition here.
Just and Sinner is currently working on producing a series of videos studying each article of the Augsburg Confession, which is meant to be an introduction to Lutheran belief and practice for those wanting to learn more. The first two videos are now available!
The Lutheran Commentary Series is the first series of Lutheran commentaries written in English. These volumes were compiled by Henry Eyster Jacobs, who called upon the greatest Lutheran exegetes in America to write a series of commentaries on the New Testament. The first commentary was published in 1895, and the publications continues through the early twentieth century. These volumes cover the entirety of the New Testament.The volumes in this series are unabashedly Lutheran. Each author holds to a firm commitment to the Lutheran distinctives as outlined in the Book of Concord. Yet, the method of treatment is not that of imposing preexisting theological categories on the New Testament text. Rather, these are careful works of studied exegesis. Though over one hundred years old, these volumes continue to be a valuable resource to the church, both pastors and laity, in explaining God's Word from a Lutheran perspective.The Lutheran Commentary Series is the first series of Lutheran commentaries written in English. These volumes were compiled by Henry Eyster Jacobs, who called upon the greatest Lutheran exegetes in America to write a series of commentaries on the New Testament. The first commentary was published in 1895, and the publications continues through the early twentieth century. These volumes cover the entirety of the New Testament.The volumes in this series are unabashedly Lutheran. Each author holds to a firm commitment to the Lutheran distinctives as outlined in the Book of Concord. Yet, the method of treatment is not that of imposing preexisting theological categories on the New Testament text. Rather, these are careful works of studied exegesis. Though over one hundred years old, these volumes continue to be a valuable resource to the church, both pastors and laity, in explaining God's Word from a Lutheran perspective.
Order the books here!
In 2009, Time Magazine named “The New Calvinism” as one of the ten ideas changing the world. In a time when the church in the Western world was declining, millennials were getting interested in theology through Reformed churches and ministries. This happened largely through the use of modern technologies with podcasts, YouTube, social media, and online forums. As a result, there were (and continue to be) conferences that drew hundreds of young adults to come, listen to talks about theology, and engage in discussion about the truths of Scripture. This growth didn’t happen through youth programs or making changes to the worship service to be more in-line with what was popular with young people at that time; it came simply through exposing people to their theology.
When I became a Lutheran, I looked for websites, podcasts, and conferences as I had in the Reformed church, and I quickly found that they did not really exist. While Issues Etc. was a notable exception to this, there was generally a lack of available information for those searching. It was at that realization that I committed myself to changing this. As Lutherans, we have a life-changing theology. We understand the true peace and assurance that comes from God’s promises in Christ which he delivers to us through his Word and Sacraments. This is the message that the world is desperately in need of, and we need to find new ways of bringing others that message.
I established Just and Sinner in 2012 as a blog and podcast to do this. This is a one-hour weekly show which discusses Lutheran theology and practice, and also engages with challenges to the Christian faith in the world today. We have recently decided to do a lot more with Just and Sinner as an organization. We’ve set up a board of directors, established faculty positions for people who are experts in their fields, and are in the process of gaining 501(c)3 status as a non-profit organization. We have five primary areas that we are focusing on at this time: the podcast, YouTube videos, the publication of new materials in both print and ebook formats, the offering of online courses through the Weidner Institute which are taught by the faculty, and a yearly conference. You can find more information about all of these initiatives and more here on our website.
In order to do this, we need your help. There are a few ways you can do this. First, and foremost, we need your prayers. Second, we are in need of donors to fund these initiatives. Third, we would love for you to use our material and share it with others.
Rev. Dr. Jordan B Cooper
Our first Weidner Institute course begins March 30 on the topic of Lutheran scholasticism. The class discussions are live for five days from 8:00-10:00pm EST. If you are not able to make the discussions live, you can still sign up and will receive videos of each class. You can sign up on our page for the Weidner Institute here. The syllabus for the course is now available below:
The History and Theology of Lutheran Scholasticism
Instructor: Dr. Jordan B Cooper
Dates: Monday March 30 - Friday April 3, 2020
Time: 8:00-10:00pm EST
This course explores the seventeenth-century theological movement known as Protestant scholasticism. We begin with a history of scholastic thought in late medieval theology, as well as the Reformation appropriation of core themes in those writers. We then explore some of the major figures of both the Lutheran and Reformed traditions who formulated the scholastic approach, and discuss some of the theological commitments which distinguish this school of thought from others. Finally, the course will explore some of the objections to Protestant scholasticism in the modern era.