Posts Posted in January 2016View All Posts >>

Confession and absolution provide persons of faith with the regular assurance that their sins are forgiven because of what Christ has accomplished for them. More
People recoil at the idea of fearing God because they believe that God loves them. “Why should I fear someone who loves me?” they might ask. More
Holy Communion is not something that we do; it is something that God does for us. It is not an act or ritual that we perform; it is an activity of God that we receive. More
We have been talking about Holy Communion, Baptism, the Church, justification, and other matters but in all of these topics, we are actually considering faith. More
Jesus called the bread that he broke and gave to his disciples to eat, “my body.” He said of the cup, “This is my blood.” This is what we believe. More
This participation, as the Revised and English Standard versions translate the word, is a fellowship or, as the King James Version phrases it, a communion. More
God gives authority to people to speak and act in his name through Holy Baptism. The pastor seems to be the one using the water, and if that were all the pastor did then that would be all there was to see. More
The universal grace and promise of the gospel is just that: universal. It is not applied to everyone except some persons. More
The divine promises of grace and of the Holy Spirit do not belong to the old alone, as if Jesus, who loved little ones, would have them wait for his promises. More
When a child, or anyone else in a household or family, is baptized, the will of God, the promise of God’s salvation is realized. The work of salvation continues through faith. More
It is important for us to distinguish between the two kingdoms—the kingdom of God and worldly kingdoms. Both Church and State are under God’s authority but they serve different ends. More
Scripture and the Lutheran Confessions urge us to be not only wary of false teachers and ministers, but to have nothing to do with them. More
The words of Christ spoken over the bread and wine insure the promise of grace to those who believe. When we speak his word over the elements, he is truly present in them. More
I like to sing the “Kyrie” in worship. For that matter, I love to sing the entire liturgy, including the intonation of the Psalm. Some of our churches do not sing the liturgy; they speak the words. More
The truth of the gospel is that righteousness and salvation come through faith in Christ. This is the word that sets us free. More
We may well suppose that if two Lutheran churches in the same county celebrated Easter on different Sundays that people would have something to say. More
There is nothing wrong with celibacy or fasting or many other disciplines. Even in marriage, abstinence can be a good thing, if the couple agrees together to abstain for some spiritual purpose. More
If others wish to abstain from certain foods on certain days, that is between those people and the Lord. Do not let them convince you that abstinence is a matter of righteousness. More
“It is written.” This was a favorite saying of the prophets, the evangelists, the apostles, and Jesus. Sometimes it is phrased as a questions: “What is written?” More
External is not eternal. These outward things will never secure everlasting life. Furthermore, they will never give us peace. The heart must be changed by God for these things to be ours. More
How heartbreaking it would be to run in a race, and to run so swiftly that you won the race, only to find out that you had been disqualified because of a false start or a lane violation. More
I have convictions but if I dare to make those things qualifications for your righteousness and salvation, please take me to task. More
The Church is that gathering of saints where the Gospel is correctly taught and the Sacraments are rightly administered. More
We are not big on excommunication these days. But we still do a pretty fair job of driving people out of our churches. More
If you believe these things, we agree that there is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism, and one God”—no matter the particular manner of our ceremonies. More
The effectiveness of the sacraments depends upon Christ. Were you baptized in a stream or at a font, at the hands of a priest or a pastor, by a saint or a sinner? More
Every pastor who presides over Holy Communion is a sinner. Some are worse sinners than others. Some do not even believe in Christ or the Word of God. More
It is the duty of pastors to preach the gospel. It is each church’s obligation to make sure that they do. Yet, it is more than a duty; it is a joyful compulsion. More
The prophet Daniel presented the Antichrist along similar lines as this sarcastic paragraph from the Confessions. There is no ruler of rulers but Christ. More
We should not expect everyone in a collar or alb to represent the kingdom of God. Every preacher in a pulpit does not necessarily proclaim the Word of God. More
We must not replace Christ with works, offices, masses, or anything else. These things do not save; Christ alone saves and justifies. More

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