Gerberding: Models of Faithful Pastors

The Lutheran Gerberding sought to advance the restoration of the ordinary means of Grace in an era where the “new measures” of revivalism were shattering the faith of the church in her scriptures and sacraments. 

He told people (especially pastors) to seek faithfulness instead of quick fixes. Like Nevin he advocated the restoration of the catechized and disciplined church with catechizing homes and pastors:

We believe that where there is a sound, faithful and earnest pastor, and a docile, sincere, earnest, united and active people, many will grow up in their baptismal covenant; and among those who wander more or less therefrom, there will be frequent conversions, under the faithful use of the ordinary services and ordinances of the Church. Such, we believe, were the pastorates of Richard Baxter, at Kidderminster; of Ludwig Harms, at Hermansburg; of Oberlin, at Steinthal; and of our late lamented Dr. Greenwald, at Easton and Lancaster. None of these churches, after their pastors were fairly established in them, needed revivals. And such, doubtless, have been thousands of quiet, faithful pastorates, some known to the world, and others known only to God. Blessed are those churches in which the work of Grace is constantly and effectively going on, according to God’s Way of Salvation.

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