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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning the Mass – part 52

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Luke 22:19

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Mass 

Now that we have explained the passages of Scripture cited against us, we should also talk about the Fathers. We are know that the Fathers call the Mass a sacrifice. They do not mean that the Mass confers grace ex opere operato, that it merits the forgiveness of sins, guilt, and punishment when transferred to others. Where do the Fathers say anything so monstrous? Instead, they openly testify that they are speaking of thanksgiving. Accordingly they call it a “eucharist.”

Pulling It Together

The disciples gathered around their Lord, bringing nothing to the table. Christ Jesus brought it all. The disciples did nothing but receive with thankful hearts. Jesus set the example for this Eucharist, or thanksgiving. He took the bread and gave thanks. Then, he gave it to his disciples, and they received his body. Nowhere do they make a sacrifice. If this is the institution of the Holy Supper—and it surely is—then Christ has instituted no sacrifice other than his own. We disciples still bring nothing to the table but thanks.

Prayer: Thank you, Jesus. Amen.

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