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Wade R. Johnston

Wade Johnston image

Assistant Professor of Theology

Email

414.443.8865

  • Education

    B.A., Martin Luther College
    M.Div., Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary
    M.A., Central Michigan University
    M.A., Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam
    Ph.D., Joint, Central Michigan University and Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam

    Background

    I was born and raised in Metro Detroit and am forever a proud son of the Mitten. My parents worked hard to provide my brother and me not only with a roof over our head, but also a solid education. Raised Roman Catholic, I was confirmed in the Evangelical Lutheran Church December 31, 1995. Soon afterward I enrolled in Martin Luther College, where I met my lovely wife, Tricia. Tricia served as a Lutheran elementary school teacher in Milwaukee before our first child was born. Now, after going back to school, she is an accountant. Upon graduation from seminary I was assigned to Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church in Saginaw, Michigan, where I was privileged to serve as a parish pastor for ten years. Tricia and I have five children: Magdalen, Nicholas, Isaiah, Augustana, and Sophia. Our children attend St. John Lutheran School on 68th in Milwaukee, although Maggie, making us feel old, will begin high school at Wisconsin Lutheran in the fall. We live in Milwaukee and belong to Nain Evangelical Lutheran Church in West Allis, where I teach Sunday School and serve on the church council. I also serve as a pulpit assistant at St. John Evangelical Lutheran Church in Mukwonago. I enjoy commuting by bicycle as often as possible and am a member of the Wisconsin Bike Fed. I am an avid sports fan (Detroit sports especially) and enjoy both playing and coaching them. With four children in club baseball or softball, we spend most of our summers at ball diamonds and love just about every minute of it, especially when the count is in our favor. When time and finances permit, Tricia and I love to travel. 

    Teaching

    • THE 110 – Introduction to Theology
    • THE 130 – New Testament
    • PHI 201 – Ethics
    • HON 201 - Renaissance and Reformation
    • THE 308 – Pauline Epistles
    • THE 401 – Basic Teachings of the Bible 1
    • THE 441 – History of Christianity
    • THE 442 – History of the Reformation

    Research Interests

    My dissertation is a comparative work examining the writings of Matthias Flacius Illyricus in the Adiaphoristic Controversy in Germany and John Hooper in the Vestment Controversy in England. I am also very interested in the Lutheran Confessions (their historical context and their content, to which confessional Lutherans subscribe). I have presented and will be presenting at a variety of conferences on the continued vitality and relevance of the Book of Concord in the twenty-first century. My minor fields are the Ancient Mediterranean and Modern Europe and I read regularly and with great interest in both fields. I am especially interested in challenges to Christianity and the response of Christian churches in each of these periods of church history as well as the Reformation and post-Reformation understanding and utilization of early periods of church history. My general academic interests include:

    • Martin Luther
    • Reformations in Europe
    • Post-Reformation Lutheranism
    • Gnesio-Lutheranism
    • Confessionalization
    • Adiaphoristic Controversy
    • Formula of Concord
    • Hermann Sasse and Lutheranism under Nazism
    • Holocaust Studies
    • Late Antiquity
    • Monasticism and Asceticism
    • Greek and Roman Religion
    • Pauline Epistles
    • Lutheran Ethics

    Scholarly Works 

    Select Publications - Author

    Entries on Nicolaus von Amsdorf, the Saxon Visitations, and the Book of Concord
    Encyclopedia of Martin Luther and the Reformation
    (Rowman & Littlefield, Anticipated 2017)

    “Preface: Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness”
    Logia: A Journal of Lutheran Theology
    XXV, no. 3 (Holy Trinity 2016)

    “We Must Obey God Rather than Men: The Lutheran Legacy of Resistance”
    Logia: A Journal of Lutheran Theology
    XXV, no. 3 (Holy Trinity 2016)

    “Preface: Martyrdom and Suffering”
    Logia: A Journal of Lutheran Theology
    XXIV, no. 2 (Eastertide 2015)

    Pentecost Devotions, John 16:5-11
    Meditations 57 (2014), 6/8/2014-6/14-2014

    “Spare the Rod, Hate the Child: Augustine and Luther on Discipline and Corporal Punishment”
    Logia: A Journal of Lutheran Theology
    XX, no. 4 (Reformation 2011)

    “Article X of the Formula of Concord and Lutheranism Today”
    Lutheran Synod Quarterly
    50, no. 1 (March 2010)

    Select Publications - Translator

    Adiaphora and Tyranny, Matthias Flacius Illyricus
    Magdeburg Press, 2011

    How to Understand the Sacred Scriptures, Matthias Flacius Illyricus
    Magdeburg Press, 2011

    “Sermon for the Fourteenth Sunday after Trinity, Gal. 5:16-24,” Martin Luther
    Luther’s Works, vol. 58, Concordia Publishing House, 2010

    “Sermon for the Twenty-second Sunday after Trinity, Phil. 1:3-11,” Martin Luther
    Luther’s Works, vol. 58, Concordia Publishing House, 2010

    “Sermon for the Twenty-third Sunday after Trinity, Phil. 3:17-21,” Martin Luther
    Luther’s Works, vol. 58, Concordia Publishing House, 2010

    “Household Sermon for the First Sunday after Easter,” Martin Luther
    Luther’s Works, vol. 69, Concordia Publishing House, 2009

    “Sermon for the First Sunday after Easter, April 23, 1536,” Martin Luther
    Luther’s Works, vol. 69, Concordia Publishing House, 2009

    “Funeral Sermon on Psalm 86:11,” Paul Gerhardt
    Lutheran Synod Quarterly
    48, no. 1 (March 2008)

    Sacred Meditations, Johann Gerhard
    Magdeburg Press, 2008

    Select Publications - Editorial Work

    Witness, Hermann Sasse, Translated by Bror Erickson
    Magdeburg Press, 2013

    Then Fell the Lord’s Fire, Bo Giertz, Translated by Bror Erickson
    Magdeburg Press, 2012

    Select Publications - Book Review

    Review of Matija Vlačić Ilirik [III]: Proceedings of the Third Internaltional Conference on Matthias Flacius Illyricus,, Labin/Croatia, 2010
    Reformation and Renaissance Review 17.3 (2015)

    Conference Presentations and Teaching Service for the Church

    “Our Dual Citizenship: Luther’s Doctrine of the Two Kingdoms Today”
    Evangelical Lutheran Synod Youth Rally, Dallas, Texas, July 28-31, 2016

    “Equipping God’s People to Stand Firm on the Word of God in the 21st Century”
    Nebraska District Convention, Wisconsin Synod, Waco, NE, June 2016

    “Luther’s Ethics: Foundations and Implications”
    True North Campus Ministry, Minneapolis, MN, February 9, 2016

    “The Church Confesses, Still”
    California-Nevada Pastors Conference, Wisconsin Synod, Belmont, CA, January 2016

    “Matthias Flacius Illyricus: The Magdeburg Exile”
    IV. Internationale Tagung zu Matthias Flacius Illyricus 2015, Labin, Croatia, September 2015

    “The Lutheran Confessions in the Lutheran Parish
    Milwaukee Urban Conference of the Southeast Wisconsin District of the Wisconsin Synod, Milwaukee, WI, May 2015

    “Luther and the Earthy Christ”
    Reformation Lecture, Gulf Coast Circuit of the South Central District of the Wisconsin Synod, The Woodlands, TX, November 2014

    “American Ideals in German Print”
    Lutheran Historical Conference, Wisconsin Lutheran College, Milwaukee, WI, October 2014

    “‘Holy History’: Matthias Flacius’ Argument against the Interims from the Church’s Past”
    Lutheranism and the Classics, Concordia Theological Seminary, Ft. Wayne, IN, October 2014

    “Human, All Too Human: Original Sin, Matthias Flacius, and the Nature of Man”
    Northern Conference of the Michigan District of the Wisconsin Synod, North Branch, MI, September 2013

    “Original Sin, the ‘Culture of Controversy,’ and Lessons for Today”
    Pastors Institute, Omaha, NE, July 2013

    “Spare the Rod, Hate the Child: Luther and Augustine on the Discipline of Children”
    Lutheranism and the Classics, Concordia Theological Seminary, Ft. Wayne, IN, September 2012

    “The Adiaphoristic Controversery, Formula of Concord X, and Lutheranism Today”
    Pastors Institute, Nebraska District, WELS, Omaha, NE, July 2012

    “American Ideals in German Print: The Opposition of the Evangelical Lutheran Synodical Conference to the 1889 Bennett Law in Wisconsin”
    Borders, Boundaries, and Beyond, Central Michigan University, Mount Pleasant, MI, April 2012

    “Moses the Lutheran: Matthias Flacius and the Old Testament”
    Matthias Flacius and the Lost Lutheran Hermeneutic, Northfield, MN, November 2011

    “The Christian and Political Parties: Martin Luther on the Christian as Citizen”
    Northern Conference of the Michigan District of the Wisconsin Synod, Traverse City, MI, September 2008

    Select Publications - Works in Progress

    Translation of Magdeburg Confession (German and Latin)

    Professional Memberships

    • Sixteenth Century Society & Conference
    • Lutheran Historical Conference