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The fall of Finnish Evangelical Lutherans in the Israeli Messianic world

Reinvented faith: ‘If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him’

Evangelical Lutheran Church of Hanko (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Once upon a time, the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran Mission (FELM) was a great financial supporter of Messianic ministries in Israel, having shared biblical views and assigning importance to the unique role Jewish believers play in the Promised Land. 

FELM expressed a strong love for the Jewish people, exhibiting a deep desire to participate in a pivotal position of support for the nation of Israel, something they were able to facilitate financially. 

But that all changed.

It was sometime in late-2014, when it came to the attention of these ministries that the Finnish Evangelical Lutherans had taken a detour from the biblical precepts which have always been observed carefully by those who call themselves born-again believers in Yeshua the Messiah. Now, FELM was elevating homosexuals in their congregations as clergy; and openly accepting a number of other ungodly social mores, such as gender transitioning and same-sex marriage.  

Consequently, in spite of the very generous financial support FELM had lavished upon Israel’s Messianic organizations, these ministries found that disassociating themselves from this particular group of Finnish Evangelical Lutherans was their only option.  

During a scheduled meeting, five Messianic ministries in the Holy Land chose not only to distance themselves from these rogue believers but also to put out a press release in the local Finnish newspaper as to why the separation was occurring. 

It was, indeed, a sad choice, after many years of having worked together closely; but also a necessary resolution, no longer being able to coexist in a unified scriptural way.  The gap was just too wide.

Since that time, Finnish Evangelical Lutherans have continued to stray from the Word of God, having willingly embraced the changing world with its evolving social behaviors which are in complete contradiction to the scriptures – often plunging themselves into what is defined as “gross, moral sin,” which God describes as causing one to be ineligible for a secure place in eternity. 

It’s no wonder that the relationship between Israel’s ministries and FELM cannot survive, as the Finnish Evangelical Lutherans walk further and further away from the path of righteousness and in a direction of darkness, where new human standards have replaced those of the Almighty.

These standards have embraced more than just a redefinition of social standards or a manipulation of sexual identity. 

Today, the Finnish Evangelical Lutherans, through their Archbishop Tapio Luoma, have expressed their congregations’ enthusiastic commitment to the United Nations’ climate goals, which are being raised at its November conference in Egypt’s Mount Sinai. 

In a YouTube message, Luoma explains that we are obligated to pursue balance – we must strive towards moderation and frugality – as we make life choices which affect our planet.  

Presenting nothing about biblical faith or values, Luoma puts forth a message of urgency that prompts his listeners to focus on good energy goals, which he hopes to see enacted by 2030. His message conveys that these “green goals” will help each of us to become unselfish as we show a purposeful regard for our fellow sojourner who will benefit from the many sacrifices we are being asked to make.

This is a man on a mission, and the mission is not the once-important biblical injunction of God’s redemptive message of salvation to a lost and dying world.  

The endangered planet has replaced the hope of mankind – found in the blood atonement, which was made to restore us back to our Creator, through the sacrifice of His only Son, Yeshua the Messiah.

That message has been hijacked and pre-empted with what appears to be a more urgent pronouncement – one which has jumped in line, declaring itself to be of greater importance and priority. And this is what Archbishop Luoma is backing – the need to conduct our lives in a manner which is consistent with saving the earth as opposed to the souls of the earth’s inhabitants.

But this is not the only course change. It was recently reported that a prominent Finnish bishop who is set to retire is likely to be replaced by someone whose goal is to do whatever she can to welcome and embrace homosexuals and lesbians into the body of believers exactly as they are. No change by them will be required to live within the boundaries of God’s laws as laid out in the scriptures. 

This is not an anomaly, but what is particularly interesting is that many Finnish Evangelical Lutheran clergy are very pro-Israel. 

While they may offer a welcome relationship for some Israeli politicians and the secular Israeli public – those who are always happy to learn of others around the world who are still willing to befriend us – it presents a problem for many Jewish and non-Jewish ministries in the land. Because it is difficult to embrace and support those whose lifestyle and/or social choices are in direct opposition to the Bible.

This is the sad state of affairs which has developed over the last 10 years within the Finnish Evangelical Lutheran camp; and it is, unfortunately, a clear disqualifier for any kind of close, working relationship with their Israeli believing counterparts. 

There is, undoubtedly, a similar conflict within the Finnish body of believers, which is also in the position of having to choose whether they are able to continue to look upon this particular group as part of those who claim the identity but no longer walk the same path – a specific one which was laid out for them by the Book’s Author. 

To reject God’s very words and prescription for true followers of His ways is to take a decidedly different path, one for which there is a price – estrangement from those who once saw them as brothers and sisters in the faith, but who have seen them reinvent their faith to one no longer recognizable.  

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