From the Washington Times (emphasis added)
America's largest Lutheran denomination has reached its crossroads on homosexuality and allowing openly gay clergy, with crucial votes slated at its biennial assembly this week in Minneapolis that participants say are too close to call.
"We recognize we're in for some long conversation this week," said Virginia Synod Bishop James F. Mauney, who oversees 42,000 members in 163 churches across the state. "I am hopeful that our worship will guide our conversation and we will be guided by the Holy Spirit."
The gathering of 65 synods representing the 4.6-million-member Evangelical Lutheran Church in America mirrors a denomination split over homosexuality.
Only celibate gay clergy can serve in ELCA churches. A small majority - 54 percent - of ELCA clergy support gay ordination, according to a Clergy Voices survey conducted in May and posted recently on the denomination's Web site.Let's look at that and notice what is missing from Mr. Mauney's quote: the Word of God. You can make a case for a lot of things by following your heart and arguing from anything and everything but the Word of God. See, I sort of think that the Word and the Spirit are meant to be used together. Spirit-less study of the Word leads to vain academics, seeking the Spirit apart from the Word leads to all manner of mischief, heresy and damnation.
I am all for seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit. What worries me is when we seek the guidance of the Spirit divorced from the Scriptures. That is a recipe for making a decision relying on your own wisdom and chalking it up to "the prompting of the Holy Spirit". About the last thing in the world I trust is my own heart, for I know all too well how deceitful my heart is (Jer 17:9) and how easily I can convince myself of things that are contrary to the Word of God. I hope someone has the courage to stand up during these meetings, open the Bible and declare the wisdom of God in contrast to the wisdom of man.