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Showing posts from May, 2011

Always Being Prepared to Make a Defense

The text for today is our Epistle, 1 Peter 3:15: “But in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect.”Here ends the text. Grace, mercy, and peace to you from God the Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Pastor Terry Jones drew worldwide attention when his small congregation (about thirty members) staged a “trial” of the Koran on March 20th in Gainesville, Florida.News of that event incited riots in Afghanistan and provoked an attack on a United Nations facility that killed seven people. Jones then planned a Good Friday rally outside the largest American mosque in Dearborn, Michigan.Jones stated, “We have made it very clear that we are coming there with very, very peaceful intentions,” but added, “We will be armed.We do have concealed weapons permits.” Though banned in court from holding the protest outside the mosque, Jones finally staged a …

For the Sake of the Weaker Brother

Recently, I attended worshp at the congregation where I grew up.  It is a small rural congregation, so it wasn't surprising to me that even though it has been nearly thirty years since I regularly attended there, the vast majority present were the same people who were there while I was growing up.  There was the same hymnal and song book tucked under the pews.  It was all very familiar. 

One of the familiar faces is "Harold."  I'm not sure what the proper terminology is now, but "Harold" is developmentally disabled, though not severely, and he has been able to live on his own for the most part since his parents passed away.  I remember how "Harold" would come to worship every week with his parents.  They never missed a Sunday.  I also recall how "Harold" would sing along with the liturgy, recite the Creed, and pray the Lord's Prayer, often providing an ill-timed echo to the rest of the congregation, but always singing and responding…

The 4th Commandment and the Famine of the Word

Martin Luther's explanation of the Fourth Commandment in the Large Catechism sums up well the theme and title of this blog: God sends men to preach His Word.  Those who listen to that Word are blessed.  Those who continuously despise that Word will ultimately get what they want: that Word will be taken away from them; false teachers will bring them words that tickle their itching ears and entertain them.  If this continues long enough the famine of the Word will lead to spiritual starvation. 

161 Yet there is need that this truth about spiritual fatherhood also be taught to the people. For those who want to be Christians are obliged in God’s sight to think them worthy of double honor who minister to their souls [1 Timothy 5:17–18]. They are obligated to deal well with them and provide for them. For that reason, God is willing to bless you enough and will not let you run out. 162 But in this matter everyone refuses to be generous and resists. All are afraid that they will perish fr…