Dr. Matthew Becker was a controversial theologian in the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod until his departure. His controversial doctrines all arise because of his view of Scripture. Through a series of stages, some of which are orthodox and others of which are not, Dr. Becker gradually shrinks the Word of God until the remnant that is left has nothing to say against his other doctrinal errors.
The article, “Dr. Becker’s Ever-Shrinking Word of God,” was written ahead of the 2015 convention of the Montana District of the LCMS in preparation for discussions about remedies for his erroneous teachings. The Montana District, along with other districts that year, adopted overtures to the 2016 synodical convention taking a variety of approaches.
The article originally was published on Brothers of John the Steadfast as a series of three parts: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3. In the part 1 we saw Dr. Becker pit Jesus against Scripture and his dismissal of certain biblical books (Hebrews, James, 2 Peter, 2 John, 3 John, Jude, and Revelation), saying that they cannot serve as principal sources or norms for Christian teaching. In part 2 we saw Dr. Becker continue to denigrate the Word of God by saying the Bible is only God’s Word “in a qualified way” and employing Gospel reductionist principles. In Part 3 we saw Dr. Becker claim that Scripture is untrustworthy because it is both filled with scientific error and is culturally conditioned.
Dr. Becker’s writings are extensive, and the article provided an overview of his use of:
- Jesus as the Word versus Scripture as the Word
- Canonical disagreement:
- Pseudepigrapha (false writing)
- Apocrypha (hidden writing)
- Antilegomena (spoken against writing)
- Homologoumena (agreed upon writing)
- Contains the Word; A witness to the Word
- Canon within the canon
- Gospel reductionism
- Provisionalist concept of truth
The three parts have been assembled into a single PDF document which is accessible from this site a the following link: Dr. Becker’s Ever-Shrinking Word of God.