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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning the Invocation of Saints – part 37

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Ephesians 4:1–3

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Invocation of Saints 

Many signs indicate that they have little concern for the state of the Church. They take no pains to provide for people a summary of the Church’s teachings. They defend obvious abuses with new and unusual cruelty. They will not permit suitable teachers in the churches. Doing things in this way is not in their interest or the Church’s, and decent people may easily judge the outcome. For after the good teachers have been killed and sound doctrine suppressed, fanatical spirits will rise up, whom the adversaries will not be able to restrain. They will disturb the Church with godless teaching, and will overthrow the whole government of the church, which we greatly desire to maintain.

Pulling It Together

The unity of Christ’s Church depends upon the Holy Spirit—not our actions. However, individual congregations can be destroyed by both our deeds and an intolerance of biblical teaching. So we should be eager to keep the unity which the Spirit gives the Church, by maintaining conduct that is consistent with the Christian faith. Such concern for the well-being of the churches is an indication of godly, peaceable people being led by the Holy Spirit.

Prayer: Help me to love my sisters and brothers in Christ, with his love and forbearance. Amen.

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In the Luther Household is a six-session Bible study on the Lutheran understanding of marriage and family. Based on foundational texts from Scripture, the study also draws from the real-life experience of Martin and Katie Luther, who were not only husband and wife, but the parents of several children. It includes excerpts from Luther's personal writings to family and friends as they faced the good and bad that come in everyday living.

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