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This book contains the “Theses on the Article of Justification as Taught in Holy Scripture and the Confessions of Christ’s Holy Church with Special Attention to “Objective Justification” which were discussed during the 2013
Colloquium and Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Diocese of North America (ELDoNA) and which were later approved in the following form by the pastors of the diocese.
As noted in the conclusion of the “Theses,” this document was created for use within the diocese (thus it is clearly stated, in the conclusion: “Those inside our fellowship voluntarily agree with these theses and support them, but we also wish to have these theses function as a marker of agreement between Christians who are not yet necessarily in fellowship. Therefore, we invite all who agree with these theses to express their agreement without necessarily committing themselves to fellowship.”).
The diocese does not require other Lutheran synods to subscribe to the theses as a step necessary for retaining or establishing fellowship, nor is subscription to the theses sufficient for establishing fellowship. Fellowship is recognized only on the basis of agreement in the doctrine taught by Holy Scripture and rightly confessed in the Book of Concord of 1580. However, because some individuals outside of the diocese have objected to the clear statement of Lutheran teaching set forth in these theses, it was deemed best to publish the theses to make them available for others to read and assess for themselves the doctrine of the ELDoNA in light of God’s Word and the Lutheran Confessions.
As the “Theses on the Article of Justification” make reference to Pastor Paul Rydecki’s 2013 paper, “The Forensic Appeal to the Throne of Grace in the Theology of the Lutheran Age of Orthodoxy: A Reflection on Atonement and Its Relationship to Justification,” that paper is published by permission of it’s author in conjunction with the theses as a supplemental resource for understanding the doctrine of Justification.