Monday, April 6, 2009


The great Mike Stavlund serves up an intriguing post about the "Orthodoxy of Orthopraxy". It's intellectually heavy for a Monday morning, but I gobbled it up nonetheless. Here's an excerpt:

My fear is that-- for me and my friends-- orthopraxy has become the new orthodoxy. That in our strong (and correct!) affirmation of the importance of doing stuff, we have become like the anti-fundamentalist fundamentalists that we smirk at so frequently. The dangerous thing about my elevation of orthopraxy is that the very act of doing so exempts me from needing to do anything about my orthopraxy. It is enough to affirm the theoretical value of orthopraxy, and to then find a comfortable spot in my cozy home where I can be right. Orthopraxy, then, is the new orthodoxy, which requires little from me other than my stalwart intellectual ascent toward the tennets of orthopraxy. Handy, huh?


  1. As with anything and all things, we must keep distinguishing the two sides of life, faith, holiness, work etc. (i.e. law/gospel, orthodoxy/orthopraxy, passion/contemplation, contemporary/traditional, sabbath/work, etc. etc.) to embrace the both/and nature of faith. I find that we must somehow embrace the pendulum and swing gratefully from praxis to doxi, from law to gospel only to return to law, to be slaves and free and slaves and free, to be born again but not yet. It is good to be cautious of orthopraxy as the article contends and also to need and desire a praxis that reflects the life of faith. I think we are finding that it is not either/or but both/and, but of course you know this and it is not my intention to share any new or original thought, only to reflect. Blessings!

  2. Great reflections, Anon. That's the great thing about being Lutheran, in my opinion. We are embracers of tension and dichotomy. I appreciate you weighing in!

  3. Erik the Great--

    Thanks for the link love. I realized too late that part of the inspiration for that post came from Nate Millheim-- "Sometimes we think we are caring for the needs of the poor because we now read about issues of justice".

  4. I like the Millheim quote, Mike. You always make me think! Must be your Iowa heritage.


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