Posts Posted in June 2023View All Posts >>

The promise of forgiveness is bound to repentance. They are inseparable. “Repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in his name to all nations.” More
We should have no other gods before the Lord (Exod 20:3). He alone is God (Deut 6:4). We think that in the churches today, idols are a thing of the past. More
The rich man wanted to know what good deed he as yet lacked so that he could earn eternal life. Having boasted that he had kept all the commandments, he nonetheless felt that he still lacked some fine deed. More
The preaching of the law must have its rightful place among us. The law sets necessary boundaries in society so that we might enjoy a measure of order and civility in society. More
You may work all day and night, trying to prove yourself worthy to God, only to discover at the break of day that you do not believe he finds you worthy. More
Consider this teaching from the Lord’s Prayer: Forgive, and you will be forgiven. The first part in this doctrine demands amendment of life and good works, while the second part adds the promise. More
So let us reject the entire squabble as not only a misunderstanding of the text, but a mistranslation as well. May we understand the gospel instead, for there is nothing uncertain in Christ. More
Daniel does not simply demand certain kingly works such as alms giving. He demands faith by saying, “Break off your sins by righteousness.” More
Even the prophets of old required faith since they too conveyed the promises of God. Promises require faith because they involve trust in the one making the promise. More
The law is used by God to achieve certain results. It exhorts us to look out for “number two,” or to love our neighbor as ourselves (Mark 12:31). More
As the parable indicates, we are indebted to the King. Our sin-debt should cost us our lives (Rom 6:23) but God is merciful, forgiving us and making us into new persons. More
God commands us through the prophets to do good. Yet, through those same prophets, he makes it clear that our righteousness does not come from the works worked. More
The law must be preached. Yet, it must also be taught that the keeping of the law does not bring new birth. Only God can regenerate the dead, which we most certainly were. More
Those who have been justified through faith in Christ are expected to act righteously. They are not, however, forgiven of their sins because they act in accordance with God’s will. More
Any keeping of the law requires God’s help. Before we can ever keep the law in a way that God finds acceptable, we must have faith in Christ. More
Again, James is referring to those works that should follow faith. So, it is well said that the one who has faith and good works is righteous. Righteousness is not earned through the works... More
One cannot create faith by deciding to believe in the historical Jesus, but then, going on to live the same old, natural life. This is the sort of dead faith to which James refers. More
Every good gift comes from the Father—most notably, the gift of new birth in Christ. Salvation is a gift. Forgiveness of sins and justification are not things that can be earned. More
The old real estate expression, “Location, location, location,” might be modified when it comes to reading. “Context, context, context,” is crucial when interpreting a text. More
Propitiation means appeasement of God. The argument the Lutherans were making is simply this: Christ alone is the satisfaction for our sins. What God has worked into us, we are now to work out... More
James reinforces what kind of faith he has been referring to in this passage. Faith is not mere assent, such as you hear from people today when they say things like, “I believe in God,” or “I am a Christian,” or “I go to church.” More
Presidential pardons, bestowed by outgoing US presidents, are received with gratitude but also sometimes, with irritation by those who disagree with a president’s choices. More
Think of how often the smallest spark of some perceived offense in a congregation is fanned into flame by someone who chooses to make the matter personal. More
We must be careful not to build a doctrine of righteousness and salvation upon anything that we do. Such a house would surely fall, since it is founded on the limited and human instead of upon the infinite and divine. More
We should not worry ourselves over the actions of others toward us. Instead, we should be devoted to the gospel. This means that we will love those who hate and hurt us. More
God is able to do far more with the Church than we could possibly imagine (Eph 3:20). Knowing therefore, not only what God is capable of doing but is actually accomplishing in spite of us. More
During a committee meeting, a brother suddenly spoke strong words against his pastor. There was silence in the room. People did not know how to respond. More
Having understood that Christ alone is the satisfaction for our sins, we see love in a new light. “We love because he first loved us," not because we expect special favor from God. More
Paul consistently teaches that we are accepted on account of Christ and not on account of our love, or our works, or because we keep the law. For no one perfectly fulfills the law. More
The wisdom of the world concludes that effort makes the difference. So, some believe that human righteousness makes the difference with God. More

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