When is Lying not a Sin? The House Church Phenomena - Excuse my rant

A few months ago, some acquaintances who are Missouri Synod Lutherans bore false witness when they claimed to belong to a new breakaway storefront House church that went rogue from the Missouri Synod Lutherans (LCMS). Apparently, there was a clear disagreement, hence the split. Given my lack of trust in Christians, after all they have the 10 commandments so they can break them, I did a little research. Turns out the pastor of this breakaway house church is still a pastor in good-standing with the Missouri Synod Lutheran church. The church created and authorized this "house church" as part of a plot to get more people to that denomination (which by the way has been losing members & actual churches).

A little background, for those of you not in the know, there are several Lutheran churches with as many differences between them as Presbyterianism and Methodism. Missouri Synod (LCMS) is one of the most rigidly doctrinal Lutheran Churches. Yet, they've been described as fundies who party (BYOB). In any case, lucky for them this isn't the Reformation Era because the quiet streets of the Upper Midwest and elsewhere would be paved in blood. The modern situation is tragic, but hardly lethal.

Back to my rant.

The purpose of the house church is to get back to the original Church (which predated Luther, ahem) and not get into the deep church theology. Once they rope those "seekers" in with seemingly benign "God is Love" fluff, they will eventually have to put up with Missouri Synod Lutheran theology. Fortunately for the rest of us, most of the people in this house church are other "ex" Missouri Synod Lutherans.

So, how is claiming that a House church is not a part of your denomination not lying? Also, anyone have any more experiences and insights into these phony house churches (of any denomination)?

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Tags: Churches, House, LCMS, Lutheranism

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