Once a week, when I’m able, I’m going to post a quote from one of Martin Luther’s sermons as it is found in “The Complete Sermons of Martin Luther” edited by John Nicholas Lenker, translated by John Nicholas Lenker and others, published by Baker Books.
“And this is the Gospel, as I said, that must be preached and heard before there can be faith. We must know that God is kindly disposed toward us and has sent His Son from heaven to help us. This the conscience must hear and believe; for if God were unfriendly and unmerciful toward us, it would avail little to know that all his creatures sympathize with us. If God is satisfied with us, no creature can do us harm, as St. Paul says in Rom. 8:31 ‘If God is for us, who is against us?’ Let death, devil, hell and all creation rage; we are safe. Therefore it is the Gospel that must present to us the God-man as merciful. This is the fountain from which our heart can draw faith and a friendly confidence toward God that He will help both the dying and the living in every distress.”
Seventeenth Sunday After Trinity
“But this also has a bearing on our firmly holding the conviction that there were really six days on which the Lord created everything, in contrast to the opinion of Augustine and Hilary, who believed that everything was created in a single moment. They, therefore, abandon the historical account, pursuing allegories and fabricating I don’t know what speculations. However, I am not saying this to vilify the holy fathers, whose works should be held in high regard, but nevertheless they were human beings who erred and who were subject to error. So we do not exalt them as do the monks, who worship all their opinions as if they were infallible. To me the great comfort seems to lie rather in this, that they are found to have erred and occasionally to have sinned. For this is my thought: If God forgave them their errors and sins, why should I despair of His pardon? The opposite brings on despair – if you should believe that they did not have the same shortcomings that you have. Moreover, it is certain that between the call of the apostles and that of the fathers there is a great difference. Why, then, should we regard the writings of the fathers as equal to those of the apostles?”
Luther’s Works vol. 1: Lectures on Genesis Chapters 1-5 page 121
Here’s what’s on my schedule for this morning:
Couch 2 5k (jogged for 90 sec. walked 90 sec. jogged 3 minutes, walked 3 minutes then repeated).
Shower and eat breakfast.
Dropped off van at the shop to get looked at.
Translate Matthew 27:1-10
Minister’s Prayer Book Devotion for today
Read Luther’s Works vol. 1 until lunch time.
Aside from dropping off the car at the shop this has become a standard morning. I can’t think of a better to start a day then with a run, translating, devotional & prayer time and reading Luther’s Works.
This afternoon I’m going to finish my sermon prep on Luke 14:1-14 and begin my sermon writing for Sunday. I might even go out and enjoy the weather with a nice walk.
“For us today it is amazing that there could be a physical life without death and without all the incidentals of death, such as diseases, smallpox, stinking accumulations of fluids in the body, etc. In the state of innocence no part of the body was filthy. There was no stench in excrement, nor where there execrable things. Everything was most beautiful, without any offense to the organs of sense; and yet there was physical life. Adam ate, he masticated, he digested; and if he had remained as he was, he would have done the other things physical life demands until at last he would have been translated to the spiritual and eternal life.”
Luther’s Works vol. 1; Lectures on Genesis Chapters 1-5, page 110
Today’s quotation is brought to you from “Theology is for Proclamation” by Gerhard O. Forde page 102. In this book Forde uses Martin Luther’s “Bondage of the Will” as a basis for a systematic thought between the God preached and the hidden God not preached. In short, proclamation is preaching the Word of God, both the in Law that condemns and in the Gospel that brings to life. This is why Forde is a good doctor and I am only a lowly minister.
“He partook of our nature ‘that through death he (Jesus Christ) might overcome him who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to life-long bondage.’ In the language of act, the divinity of Jesus does not consist in the fact that he successfully avoids death on our behalf, but it is hidden precisely in the fact that he dies for us and so conquers death. That is, we do not see though the humanity to an abstraction called divinity hidden somewhere behind the scenes. It is in and through humanity, the suffering and the dying, that we come up against what his divinity means. he does not come to protect us from death, he comes to do it to us. He brings death home to us. He does old beings to death. The suffering and dying Jesus is therefore the one in whom we meet our end, the eschatological end of our existence in bondage to sin and death. He is the end of the old being who vainly constructs death-denying projects, who thinks that abstractions such as divinity and immortality can save. He puts an end to our story negatively and positively. He is the end (finis) of the old, and the goal (telos) of the new. The old is put to death so that the new can be resurrected in faith and hope to look to the last day in confidence.”
For a 20 something’s point of view on contemporary ‘cool’ and ‘hip’ church. Click on the link below.
Trying to make Christianity cool | Cranach: The Blog of Veith
Someone posted this on Facebook. Tamara Lowe is rapping at Christ Fellowship Baptist Church in Palm Beach, Fl. Watching this video just made me angry. Why do so many people find this appealing? Maybe it’s because people no longer know or understand what church is and what happens in a church service. Maybe it’s because we want to be entertained like watching a movie or tv show. Maybe it’s the church’s fault for trying to appear ‘cool’ and ‘relevant’ at the sacrifice of the Word of God and correct Biblical Preaching and Teaching. I think it’s a combination of both. After the video is a short response on why this isn’t church and doesn’t belong in church. No wonder people in their 20’s are leaving Christianity at an alarming rate.
5. She mentions sin, but what is sin? Is is just some word or a real truth?
4. “You must choose.” Choose what? Should I choose to no longer be a sinner, because apparently I can. If this is true, then there’s no need for Christ or His atoning sacrifice on Calvary for my sins.
3. She’s making a mockery of church by being an entertainer first. Church is not entertainment, it’s where God comes to us and we receive His forgiveness from our sins of thought, word and deed, by what we have done and what we have left undone. He comes to us in His Word, in the liturgy and in the Sacraments correctly administered according to Christ’s command.
2. She mentions Christ on Calvary and that He hung on a hill… but why did He do it and why should I care? What does His death mean for me.
1. She says that your parents’ church is ‘irrelevant’. The Word of God and the Law and Gospel presented within are never irrelevant, but your ‘rap’ is.