Jesus “enveloped you in His merciful salvation…” Sasse

God’s holy people: that is the Church of Christ in the world. That was the Church in the days of the apostles. That was every chosen stranger in Asia Minor, the small congregations who lived amongst the distractions of the great Roman Empire. God’s holy people, that is the Church of Christ today. And we belong to this Church. Therefore we will remember the last exhortation of our Epistle: Forget not, that you have been redeemed? “Knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for the sake of you who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God” [1 Pet. 1:18-21]. You are redeemed. Soul, forget that not! God had foreknown that he, as the lamb without blemish or spot, would bear all the sin of the world. God had chosen you, faithful soul. As his beloved Son wandered about the earth, there he enveloped you in his merciful salvation, as he carried the arduous burdens of calling everyone to him. And then he also thought of you when he cried, “It is finished” [John 19:30]. And when you were baptized, the heavenly Father called you by your name and had given all of you everything that Jesus Christ had acquired for you, and these commitments remain to stay. And when you leave him, the door to the Father’s house is still open to you. Heaven and earth shall pass away, but the Word of his mercy never fades, and trusitng in this Word you may rejoice:

O wonder love, who chose me
Before the world began
And me to your children counted
For whom you the kingdom ordered
O father’s hand, o mercy’s desire
Who in the book of life did me write!*

Hermann Sasse “Witness: Erlanged Sermons and Essays for the Church 1933-1944
trans. Bror Erickson
Sermon for Oculi: Feb. 28, 1937 on 1 Peter 1:13-21
p. 97-99

* O Wunderliebe, die mich wähtle vor allem Anbeginn der Welt.


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