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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning the Invocation of Saints – part 29

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1 Peter 2:9

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Invocation of Saints 

Still, the incredible stories of statues and pictures are surpassed by the fabulous tales about the saints that are publicly taught with great authority. Barbara, amidst her torments, asked for this reward: that no one who would invoke her should die without the Eucharist. Another, standing on one foot, recited the whole Psalter each day. Some wise fellow painted Christopher in a way that symbolizes those who would bear Christ, that is, those who would teach or confess the Gospel, must have strong souls because they must undergo the greatest dangers. Then the foolish monks taught people to invoke Christopher, as though such a Polyphemus had once existed.

Pulling It Together

God has done great things through his people, both in the Church and in the affairs of the world. There are so many examples in the lives of his peculiar people (1 Pet 2:9, KJV) that would be an advantage for all to hear, for inspiring and strengthening their faith, and for directing their attention and praise to God. So, why pass over those great stories, teaching tales—many of which are obviously contrived—that exalt the saints instead of their Lord? For the task of God’s people is to proclaim the excellencies of Christ, not the importance of departed saints.

Prayer: Give me strength, Lord, to imitate those who imitated you. Amen.

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