Isaiah 53:5–6, 11–12
From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession
For Tertullian writes: “He invites to salvation with an offer, and even an oath. In saying, ‘I live,’ he wants to be believed. Oh! blessed are we for whose sake God swears. Oh, most miserable are we if we do not believe the Lord—even though he swears.” Faith is to be confident that God freely forgives us for the sake of Christ, because of his own promise, not because of our works, contrition, confession, or satisfactions. For if faith relies upon these works, it immediately doubts, because the frightened conscience sees that these works are unworthy.
Pulling It Together: Because the guiltless and incarnate God died for our iniquities, bearing upon himself the sin of the world, he carried our sins to the grave. Because he lives, having been raised from the dead, those who have faith in him will also live (2 Tim 2:11). This is the promise of God. It is not dependent upon us—upon our devotion, good works, pietism, or any other atonement we might offer. For that is the point: we cannot make any satisfaction that merits God’s forgiveness. So we have faith in Christ alone, believing God’s promise that we are thereby justified to him. This faith brings righteousness, healing, peace, and eternal life for those who believe that Christ gave himself for us (Gal 2:20).
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for giving me your righteousness through the wounds of your only Son, Jesus Christ the Lord. Amen.
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Brave Queen Esther focuses on the story of a young Jewish girl named Esther, who was raised by her older cousin Mordecai after the death of her parents. Set in a time when people of faith were suspect in the eyes of the surrounding culture, the story illustrates the values of integrity and honesty. It shows how being faithful to God, caring for one another, and standing up for what we believe, can help us through times of fear and doubt.