In case you are one of the 13 people who hasn't seen it yet I thought I would encourage you to view one of the recent editions of Pastor Jonathan Fisk's Worldview Everlasting videos. I have been privileged to listen to the best theologians of this and the last century – Korby, Preus, Hummel, Nagel, Scaer, etc. but this video is the best fifteen minutes of theology I have ever read, heard or seen, excepting maybe Article IV of the Augsburg Confession.
The kid is on a roll. He has received numerous invites to speak, chief of which is the upcoming BJS conference, has spent the last few months fitting into a house and a call to a committed confessional and liturgical parish (here at Bethany – Naperville, Illinois) and now has a video teaching that has over 40,000 hits on "the source of all truth," the internet.
Even though this thing has been all the rage for the last week and a half, I just viewed it last night. We always like to begin our Confessions Reading Group with some tidbit of LCMS or worldwide religious news so we took the time to view the anti-religion guy's video (which has somewhere around 10 million hits) and then viewed Fisk's critique of it.
I finally got interested in viewing the video after an interesting email from a Catholic friend. I don't spend a lot of time on the internet. I really don't have the time – who does? Worldview Everlasting is one of the first places I do go to when I decide to surf – the internet kind, not the Cwirla kind. I have told the kid that if he would cut his videos down to ten minutes from fifteen I might watch more of them. Then there is the whole notion of the title: "Worldview…" I don't have a weltanshauung (worldview). I just have a world, a sinful world, redeemed by Christ. (I suppose you could say, in keeping with the theme of this post, "I'm not philosophical, I just love the Lord.") The modern/post-modern delight in viewing things from a safe distance like in hermeneutics and worldviews is one step too detached for me from the real, common-sense, Incarnational world at my fingertips. It leads too lots of trouble, injecting man, the viewer, the reader, into an otherwise much less complicated deal of living. But I digress and I must say if the kid keeps pumping out theology like the stuff in this video he can call his website anything he wants. He could call it "mangled baby ducks" for all I care.
Here's one last thing about the kid. In light of all this "success," he daily practices confession and absolution and asks anyone within reach to help him keep the focus on Christ. And he does. May God bless Worldview Everlasting, Issues Etc, BJS and the entire confessional new Lutheran media.
You thought I forgot about the story from my Catholic friend. The kid and I were at the symposium last week in Fort Wayne and late one night I got an email from my favorite Popish interlocutor, the husband of one of our members and the council president of the largest Catholic church in the area. He told me how his pastor was getting all sorts of questions about the video from the anti-religion guy. He then went on to say that a dozen or so members had given him rave reviews about some Fisk guy who had critiqued it. Bear in mind that Worldview Everlasting is done in typical Youtube fashion without any reference to time or place. These local Catholics had no idea that Worldview Everlasting is a Lutheran guy down the street from them. My friend recognized the name, asked his wife about it, and then realized it was Bethany's Fisk. Ahh, the wonders of the internet. Hearing about it from a Catholic friend was enough to finally get me to view the video.
One last personal note. I listened to the song that started this whole thing, over thirty five years ago as a teenager,"I'm not Religious, I just Love the Lord" by Scott Wesley Brown and I listened to all sorts of other heterodox music that led me and countless other future LCMS pastors down the dangerous path of methabaptocostalism. I thank God that a few orthodox men got me back on the orthodox path of the Lutheran Confessions some years ago and pray for more of those conversions. We can thank God that the new generation of young bucks has several men who recognize the errors of methabaptocostalism at a young age and are being used by our Lord to teach the next generation to be Confessional. Praise be to God for people and things in our synod like liturgical renewal, the election of President Harrison, the Fort Wayne symposium and even the mature worldview of a kid theologian in Chicago.