Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for June, 2012

I saw this morning the following bumper sticker message:

“Liberals treat dogs like people while conservatives treat people like dogs.”

Need less to say, this is a nasty swipe at conservatives, but the real problem with the message is that both halves of the statement are plain WRONG:  God’s people are not to treat dogs like people nor people like dogs. This is true for both liberals and conservatives, because both statements are judged false in God’s Word, the Bible. People are to be treated as people, God’s highest creation, initially made in the image of God and redeemed in His beloved Son Jesus Christ.  When people are not so regarded then justification for murder increases, as in abortuaries, concentration camps, euthanasia, gulags, “killing fields” and like horrors. I  think that those who think dogs should be treated as people probably have no problem with, say, abortion. Dogs are treated as pets, not people, one of God’s lesser creatures and so worthy of humane treatment. 

Read Full Post »

Almighty God, You called Boniface to be a witness and martyr in Germany, and by his labor and suffering You raised up a people for Your own possession. Pour out Your Holy  Spirit upon Your Church in every land, that by the service and sacrifice of many Your holy name may be glorified and Your kingdom enlarged; through Christ, our Lord. Amen.

 Scripture Readings

Psalm 115:1-8 or 31:1-5
Acts 20:17-28
Luke 24:44-53

Introduction: As Patrick was a missionary bishop to Irish people, sent from the Catholic Church in England by the Bishop of Rome (the pope), so was Boniface sent from the same by the Bishop of Rome to the German peoples.  Boniface was martyred on this date in the Year of our Lord, 754. He had returned to Frisia (present-day Holland).   June 5th of 754 was Pentecost.  At sunrise, reading the Gospel to a group of the newly Baptized, Boniface and the neophytes were attacked by a band of pagan Frisians.  All were massacred.  InFulda,Germany, are the remains of Boniface along with the purported Gospel book he was holding with slash marks.  It is becoming increasingly clear that the Church is under such attacks again in our day, for instance see this article.

Boniface has been called “The Apostle to the Germans” but it is historically inaccurate to call him the apostle to Germany

Historical Backdrop: 

  • European Nation states did not come into existence until the 17th century and after (If memory serves).  There were lands, countries and tribes:  see map
  • The Schism between the Eastern and Western halves of the Catholic Church into the Roman Catholic Church and theEasternOrthodoxChurchesoccurred in 1054. 
  • The Reformation began with the posting of the 95 Theses on October 31, 1517.  Boniface lived and ministered the Gospel and Sacraments in the 8th century!

 I recounted to a colleague that my understanding from seminary of early Church history is basically, our Lord ascended into heaven in A.D. 33, the Church became all fouled up and Luther straightened it out in the 16th Century and here we are.  My colleague responded, “Yeah, that’s about right”.  The point is that a lot went on in between those dates!.  If it had not been for the work of the Holy Spirit through the preaching, teaching and administration of the Word of God by Boniface and the catholic Church, there would have been no Christians in the German lands.

Biographical Timeline: 

  • ca. 675.  Born in Crediton, Wessex, England. His name was originally Wynfrid.   Note: that at the time of his martyrdom, Boniface was in about 79 years old. 
  • His father took ill and he was sent to the Benedictine school atExeterand then to the Benedictine Monastery in Nursling.  The monastery was noted for it’s learning and it’s concern for missionary activity and there he was ordained at the age of 30.
  • ca. 715: Wynfrid was given permission from his Abbot for missionary work in Frisia (Holland) Wynfrid was about 40 years old.  Missionary work had been done by (St.) Willibrord  (+11 November 739). After a year, Wyndrid realized the time was not ripe for mission work.
  • 717:  Wynfrid’s Abbot died and Wynfrid was elected his successor.
  • 718: Wynfrid resigned as Abbot and a trip toRome (Note: the distance between Holland and Rome; he probably walked) for a missionary assignment.
  • 719:  Pope Gregory II gave Wynfrid a broad missionary assignment in the German lands.  In a Letter to Wynfrid, Gregory II called Wynfrid, “Boniface”, “one who does good” and it may have been nickname or a term of endearment. Boniface went to Thuringia to reform the partly pagan clergy.  Boniface was not the first missionary to the German lands for there was an immoral and hertical clergy ‘ministering’ to the people.  Boniface returned to Frisia to learn Willibrord’s missionary methods.
  • 721:  Boniface went back to the German lands toHesse and established a monastery there
  • 722: Boniface baptized thousands, on Pentecost, according to his biographer, Willibald.  The Pope heard of the success, and so Boniface made a 2nd trip to Rome. On November 30th, the Pope ordained Boniface a Bishop with no fixed diocese in the German lands.
  • 723:   He returned to the mission fields to Hesseand one of the most spectacular events in his mission work occurred when Boniface, “…was to fell the sacred oak tree of Thor (a Norse god), at Geisman in the region of Hesse.  When Boniface was not struck down by the ‘god’, many people were converted and Boniface built a chapel in honor of St. Peter with wood from the tree.” (Festivals and Commemorations by Rev. Phillip Pfatteicher)
  • 725-735: After he stayed for two years in Hesse,  Bishop (Bp.) Boniface spent a decade inThuringia where Frankish and Irish missionaries  had made a start. Bp. Boniface had a fruitful mission despite struggles with the pagan corruption of the clergy.
  • 731:  Pope Gregory II died
  • 732: Pope Gregory III made Boniface an archbishop in order to consecrate missionary bishops.
  • 737:  Boniface made his third and final journey to Rome, spent a year.  The Pope made him his legate to organize the Church.
  • 738: Boniface returned to the German lands, toBavaria,  establishing new bishoprics and abbeys. 
  • 741:   Pope Gregory III died, the new pope is Zachary (741-752)
  • 742-747:  Boniface reformed the Frankish Church
  • 744:  He established his most noted monastery in Fulda which became the center of spiritual and intellectual life in the German lands.
  • 1 April, 742:  Bp. Boniface convenes a church council
  • 1 March, 734: A second church council
  • 2 March, 744:  A third church council and again councils in 745 and 747
  • 745: Pope Zachary assigned Boniface the see (bishopric) of Colgne
  • 751:  Boniface is assigned the see ofMainz
  • 751: Pippin was consecrated King of the Frankish Empire. His son was none other than Charlemagne.  Pippin supported Boniface.  

Boniface wanted to return to active missionary work and it was on this date, as reported above, on a missionary tour of Frisia he became a martyr.

(Sources:  The Letters of St. Boniface, translated by Ephraim Emerton and Festivals and Commemoration by Philip Pfaitteicher)

 

Almighty God, who called Your faithful servant Boniface to be a witness and martyr in the lands of Germany and Friesland, and by his labor and suffering raised up a people for Your own possession, pour forth Your Holy Spirit upon your Church in every land, that by the service and sacrifice of many Your holy Name may be glorified and Your kingdom enlarged; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

 

Read Full Post »

God did not send just anyone,

He sent His only Son,

He did not send an angel,

He gave His Son to save from hell.

By God’s Son we know He so loved the world,

By His Son, He gave us His truthful Word.

We cannot ascend into heaven; we just do not have the wings for it.  However, He descended, the Son of Man. Peter preached David did not ascend into heaven, but David’s King and Lord did descend.  Salvation did not happen in the heavens, but here, right here on earth, the lowest place of human depravity:  lifted up upon a Cross.

Julius Caesar once crucified several hundred Mediterranean pirates who had kidnapped him.  Six thousand slaves under Spartacus’ revolt were crucified, their crosses lining the Appian Way.   We are all susceptible to death but how is this one Man’s death, His crucifixion different from all those others crucifixions?  The Athanasian Creed goes to great lengths, to make it clear that Jesus Christ is not 50% God and 50% man, but 100% God,  100% man, without dividing the substance. There is no time in which those two natures are separated.  

 How is His crucifixion different?  In the scale of justice, God’s Son outweighs sin, death and the devil, the weight of glory, the glory of heaven, concealed in human flesh.  The thief on the cross to Jesus’ right knew Jesus was innocent while he and the other thief were guilty as sin.  “For these men died for their own sins, but Christ for the sins of others.” (Pr. Murray)  Peter could only quote Isaiah that in Jesus “He committed no sin, neither was deceit found in His mouth.”  Isaiah knew he needed cleansing by the Lord.  Even the Roman Procurator Pilate said I cannot find this man guilty.  Nicodemus knew that by Jesus’ deeds, God was somehow working in Jesus and Nicodemus was seeking.  They were all standing in the presence of the thrice Holy God, or trying to. 

 The Creeds, the confession of faith in God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit is like a map. Maps are not the reality they portray but without a reliable map we would be lost trying to find our way to our destination.  The Creeds of the Church are not the reality they confess but they point us to the way of God for us and for our salvation, our eternal destination, not down, but up.  Now a lot of people think faith is all about pious feelings. “I feel God’s presence …from everywhere from the golf course to sky diving.”  I would think it’s true.  These folks have no use for dogmas and creeds…but a map is sure more helpful than a walks in the woods, or putting on the beautiful ninth hole if I want to get to New Mexico.  (Insight courtesy of C. S. Lewis)

Nicodemus had a map, the map inward:  his good deeds, spirituality, religiosity and piety but hearing Jesus maybe Nicodemus began to realize salvation is not in his hands. In town, a man is touting a spiritual journey:  literally “The Journey inward”. But this map, the map of the journey inward, was leading Nicodemus  down a dead end and maybe he sensed it, knew something was amiss,  but there must be something I have overlooked, one more thing I can do.  Nicodemus was lost though a ruler in the Sanhedrin.

 So, Nicodemus sought out Jesus and Jesus turns the tables  on Nicomedus with one thing he could not do:  be born again, born from above.  Incredulously Nicodemus asked, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” Up until that point, Nicodemus thought his salvation was in his own hands…but hearing Jesus, maybe he began to know it was not.  Now Jesus seals the deal:  your salvation is in the Lord’s hands, after all, the Psalm has it right of course:  The Lord is my salvation, of whom then shall I be afraid? 

 Nicodemus came in the cover of night maybe because he was fearful of his reputation and honor in Israel in speaking with the rabbi from Nazareth.  Now Jesus says he must be born from above. This is the one more spiritual thing Nicodemus could not do but the new birth is not just one more thing, it is the main thing of your life and mine in Christ Jesus:  our baptism, born from above in water and the Spirit. His forgiveness richly given to us each and every day as we repent and daily turn to Him.  Unless you are born from above in water and the Spirit, a person can not enter theKingdomofGod.  Nicodemus could not do that and that’s the point:  Jesus will effect Nicodemus’ rebirth.  Jesus is not interested in one more spiritual thing you can do, Jesus has bigger fish to fry.  Jesus is not interested in more spiritual thing you can do, He is involved, so involved because He loves you. It is as if Jesus were saying:

“It is My purpose to inform man that I will make him thoroughly pious, not externally by parading his sour face of his respectable conduct before the world.  No, not that, I want to instruct him in the new birth.  I wan to build from the bottom up and purify the heart.” (Luther)

 Baptism is utterly the work of the Holy Spirit so we may cling in faith to Jesus Christ:

By the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Ghostwhich He shed on us abundantly through Jesus Christour Saviorthatbeing justified by His gracewe should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life. This is a faithful saying. (Titus chapter 3)

 The Holy Spirit blows where He wills and He wills to so breath at one place in particular and every Word leading up to that place and every Word going from that place today and every day:  the Cross of Jesus Christ. The Cross-is like a mast of a ship and the sail is filled with the wind of the Holy Spirit.  The Father sends the Son and proceeding from the Father and the Son the Holy Spirit. 

 The Creedal map points to a dynamic doctrine of the work of the Lord in our lives through His Word.  Doctrine is life.  Nicodemus got a lot more than he or you or I could ever bargain for with the Lord.  Many people think John 3: 16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son…” is a verse apart and by itself. It is not, it is the   Lord’s own answer to Nicodemus’ incredulity.  The Trinitarian love of the Father for the Son, the Son for the Father and the love of the Holy Spirit poured into our hearts. He will be lifted up as the bronze serpent was in the map of theIsrael’s 40 years in the desert.   The Israelites were biting devouring each other and Moses, sick of manna, sick of the whole journey.  Therefore, the Lord appointed poisonous serpents to bite and devour them as they were doing the same to each other.  Men began to die.  Moses prayed and the Lord said lift up a bronze serpent in the middle of the camp and whoever looks upon it will live.  If you were so dying how would you feel?  Born again?   Israel knew their destination, the land of promise and yet they were lost…whole nations, denominations, families and individuals can be so lost. As Israel was judged, so the Lord saved Israel and has once and for all, and for all the whole world upon the cross, where no man dare ascend, but true Man and true God, Jesus Christ has once and for all and for you.  We are to announce the results.

 Baptism is our daily life in the Lord:

  Luther: What does such baptizing with water signify?—Answer: It signifies that the old Adam in us should, by daily contrition and repentance, be drowned and die with all sins and evil lusts, and, again, a new man daily come forth and arise; who shall live before God in righteousness and purity forever. Where is this written?—Answer: St. Paul says Romans, chapter 6We are buried with Christ by Baptism into deaththatlike as He was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

 The image  above of Nicodemus and Jesus speaking with the cross looming in the background surely speaks to our daily life and work in the Lord. You are work in progress and the sign of His work is His cross.  Roman Catholic G.K. Chesterton said it well:

As we have taken the circle as the symbol of reason and madness, we may very well take the cross as the symbol at once of mystery and of health. Buddhism is centripetal, but Christianity is centrifugal: it breaks out. … But the cross, though it has at its heart a collision and a contradiction, can extend its four arms forever without altering its shape. Because it has a paradox in its centre, it can grow without changing. The circle returns upon itself and is bound. The cross opens its arms to the four winds; it is a signpost for free travelers.

 The cross is our daily signpost when we are lost that the Lord finds us in the depth of His love and we love each other. When do we in particular make the sign of the cross? When we invoke the name of God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, for our life in prayer to the blessed and Holy Trinity.

  • In Baptism, all are baptized in the Name of Father, Son and Holy Ghost.
  • In Confession and absolution, we turn to the Lord as returning to our baptism for the remission of sins.
  • In Doxology:  Glory to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost.

And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Read Full Post »

This is the Old St. Louis Cathedral of the Roman Catholic Church, St. Louis, Missouri. When my wife first saw this photo she asked what synagogue is this! The Hebrew is the Tetragrammaton, or the Four Letters that spell out the word translated “LORD” throughout the Old Testament, transliterated “Yahweh”. Underneath is Latin “Uni et Trino”, One and Three, the Holy Trinity.

The Book of Concord:  the Confessions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church contains the recognized statements from the time of the Reformation confessing the evangelical, catholic and orthodox Faith of the universal Church.  The Book of Concord begins with the three universal Creeds (from the Latin, “Credo”, “I believe”):

  • The Apostles’ Creed
  • The Nicene Creed
  • The Athanasian Creed

The Book of Concord so begins this way in order to state unequivocally that the confessions are not a new invention or human theology. The Confession is in absolute continuity with the Universal, or catholic (Greek, kata holos, “according to the whole”) of the “…faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” that we may “contend” for it. (Jude 3)  Why?  We confess the doctrine is right and sound Biblically, free from error, so that many call upon the Name of the Lord and be saved by His grace!

Below is The Athanasian Creed in responsive Litany which we confessed today at Concordia Lutheran Mission:

P:   Whoever wants to be saved should above all cling to the catholic faith. Whoever does not guard it whole and inviolable will doubtless perish eternally.  Now this is the catholic faith:

C       WE WORSHIP ONE GOD IN TRINITY AND THE TRINITY IN UNITY, NEITHER CONFUSING THE PERSONS NOR DIVIDING THE DIVINE BEING.

P        For the Father is one person, the Son is another, and the Spirit is still another.

C       BUT THE DEITY OF THE FATHER, SON, AND HOLY SPIRIT IS ONE, EQUAL IN GLORY, COETERNAL IN MAJESTY.

P        What the Father is, the Son is, and so is the Spirit.

C       UNCREATED IS THE FATHER;
UNCREATED IS THE SON;
UNCREATED IS THE SPIRIT.

P        The Father is infinite;
The Son is infinite;
The Holy Spirit is infinite.

C       ETERNAL IS THE FATHER;
ETERNAL IS THE SON;
ETERNAL IS THE SPIRIT:

P        And yet there are not three eternal beings, but One who is eternal; as there are not three uncreated and unlimited beings, but One is who is uncreated and unlimited.

C       ALMIGHTY IS THE FATHER;
ALMIGHTY IS THE SON;
ALMIGHTY IS THE SPIRIT:

P        And yet there are not three almighty beings, but One who is almighty.

C       THUS THE FATHER IS GOD
THE SON IS GOD;
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS GOD.

P        And yet there are not three gods, but one God.

C       THUS THE FATHER IS LORD;
THE SON IS LORD;
THE HOLY SPIRIT IS LORD:

P        And yet there are not three lords, but one Lord.  As Christian truth compels us to acknowledge each distinct person as God and Lord, so catholic religion forbids us to say there are three gods or lords.

C       THE FATHER WAS NEITHER MADE NOR CREATED NOR BEGOTTEN;

P        The Son was neither made nor created, but was alone begotten of the Father;

C       THE SPIRIT WAS NEITHER MADE NOR CREATED, BUT IS PROCEEDING FROM THE FATHER AND THE SON.

P        Thus there is one Father, not three fathers; one Son, not three sons; one Holy Spirit, not three spirits.  And in this Trinity, no one is before or after, greater or less than the other;

C       BUT ALL THREE PERSONS ARE IN THEMSELVES, COETERNAL AND COEQUAL; AND SO WE MUST WORSHIP THE TRINITY IN UNITY AND THE ONE GOD IN THREE PERSONS.

P        Whoever wants to be saved should think thus about the Trinity.  It is necessary for eternal salvation that one also faithfully believes that our Lord Jesus Christ became flesh.

C       FOR THIS IS THE TRUE FAITH THAT WE BELIEVE AND CONFESS:
THAT OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST,
GOD’S SON, IS BOTH GOD AND MAN.

P        He is God, begotten before all worlds from the being of the Father,

C       AND HE IS MAN, BORN IN THE WORLD FROM THE BEING OF HIS MOTHER-

P        existing fully as God, and fully as man with a rational soul and a human body;

C       EQUAL TO THE FATHER IN DIVINITY,
SUBORDINATE TO THE FATHER IN HUMANITY.

P        Although he is God and man, he is not divided,

C       BUT IS ONE CHRIST.

P        He is united because God has taken humanity into himself; he does not transform deity into humanity.

C       HE IS COMPLETELY ONE
IN THE UNITY OF HIS PERSON
WITHOUT CONFUSING HIS NATURES.

P        For as the rational soul and body are one person,

C       SO THE ONE CHRIST IS GOD AND MAN.

P        He suffered death for our salvation.

C       HE DESCENDED INTO HELL AND ROSE AGAIN FROM THE DEAD.

P        He ascended into heaven and is seated at the right of the Father.

C       HE WILL COME AGAIN TO JUDGE THE LIVING AND THE DEAD.

P        At his coming all people shall rise bodily to give an account of their own deeds.

C       THOSE WHO HAVE DONE GOOD WILL ENTER ETERNAL LIFE, THOSE WHO HAVE DONE EVIL WILL ENTER ETERNAL FIRE.

P        This is the catholic faith.

C       ONE CANNOT BE SAVED WITHOUT BELIEVING THIS FIRMLY AND FAITHFULLY.



Read Full Post »

Lessons:

Psalm 97: 6-12/Numbers 32: 1-6; 16-27                                 St. Luke 24: 1-17

The following meditation by Pr. Scott Murray is from his excellent devotional A Year with the Church Fathers:  Meditations for Each Day of the Church Year. Pr. Murray concentrates on the verses:  25And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself. Truly this was a Bible class to remember!

Meditation:

The irony is palpable. To the one whose life they doubt, they explained His death and breathlessly tell of the reports that He might yet live. In reply, we would have Him say to them, “Look at Me. Look into these glorified wounds. Don’t you recognize your friend, your Lord, your God?” His real presence mocked their unbelief and fear. But He doesn’t shove their faces in it. Why?

He used a more powerful tool. He began a Bible class for them (Luke 24:25-27). Even after His resurrection, the best testimony to His living gifts was still Scripture. What was spoken by Moses and the Prophets was always at the center of the life and teachings of Jesus. He opened Scripture to them. This is why the Church must be and remain the place where Scripture is taught, searched, studied, read, believed, and taken to heart. Then and only then will our hearts burn within us.

There is no glory of God greater than to have the Scriptures taught among us. We are no different than the Emmaus disciples. These things are written for our learning. They were suffering under their fear and weakness even though Jesus was risen, hell had been harried, and death defeated. Yet He taught them that His suffering must be so, through the Scriptures. How is that different than the situation now? Is it not Christ who still teaches us through His Scriptures?

Merciful Lord, through the angels You called the women at the tomb to remember that the Christ must be delivered into the hands of the sinful and be crucified and on the third day be raised from the dead. Help us to remember that it is only through suffering that we enter into glory and that in our sufferings we participate in the sufferings of Your Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Read Full Post »

THE NICENE CREED ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE

The following is from the website Letter of Marque, put together by Mr. Richard Gilbert and cited on Brothers of John the Steadfast. This past Sunday was Pentecost and we are in the Octave of Pentecost and the 8th Day after Pentecost is this Sunday:  Holy Trinity Sunday.  

Many misinformed Christians think that the Ecumenical or universal Creeds of the Church are a man-made invention.  They are not but are thoroughly grounded in the inerrant Word of God written for a our learning, reproof and correction in the Bible.

The Father

I Believe
Rom. 10:9Jas 2:19John 14:1

In one God,
Deut. 6:4Is. 44:6
The Father
Is. 63:162 Pet 1:17Matt. 6:9

Almighty,
Gen. 17:1Ps. 91:1Rev. 4:8

Maker
Job 4:1735:10Is. 17:754:5

of heaven
Gen 1:18

and earth
Ps. 104:5Jer. 51:15

and of all things
Gen 1:31

visible and invisible.
Ps. 89:11-12Amos 4:13Rev. 3:5Col. 1:16

The Son

And in one Lord
Eph. 4:5

Jesus Christ,
Acts 10:3611:17Rom. 1:75:11 Cor 1:26:112 Cor. 1:28:9
Gal. 1:36:14Eph. 1:23:11Phil. 1:23:20Col. 1:32:61 Thes. 1:15:9,
2 Thes. 1:12:141 Tim. 6:3142 Tim. 1:2Philemon 1:325Heb. 13:20,
Jas. 1:12:11 Pet. 1:33:152 Pet. 1:814Jude 1721Rev. 22:20-21

the only-begotton,
John 1:18

Son of God,
Matt 3:17John 3:16

Begotten of His Father,
Heb. 1:5

Before all worlds,

John 1:1Col. 1:171 John 1:1

begotten,
John 1:1Heb. 1:5

Not Made,
Mic. 5:2John 1:1817:5

Being of one substance with the Father,
John 10:3014:9

By whom all things were made;
1 Cor. 8:6Col 1:16

Who for us men
Matt 20:28John 10:10

and for our salvation
Matt 1:21Luke 19:10

came down from heaven
Rom. 10:6Eph. 4:10

and was incarnate
Col. 2:9

by the Holy Spirit
Matt 1:18

of the Virgin Mary
Luke 1:34-35

and was made man;
John 1:14

and was crucified
Matt. 20:19John 19:18Rom. 5:682 Cor. 13:4

also for us
Rom. 5:82 Cor. 5:15

under Pontius Pilate.
Matt. 27:2261 Tim 6:13

He suffered
1 Pet. 2:21Heb. 2:10

and was buried.
Mark 15:461 Cor. 15:4

And the third day
Matt. 27:6328:11 Cor. 15:4

He rose again
Mark 16:62 Tim. 2:8

according to the Scriptures
Ps. 16:10Luke 24:25-271 Cor. 15:4

and ascended
Luke 24:51Acts 1:9

Into heaven
Mark 16:19Acts 1:11

and sits at the right hand of the Father.
Ps. 110:1Matt. 26:64Acts 7:56Heb. 1:3

And He will come again
Jn. 14:31 Thes. 4:16

with glory
Matt. 16:2724:3025:3126:64Mark. 8:38Col. 3:4

to judge
Matt. 25:31-46Acts 17:31

both the living and the dead,
Acts 10:421 Pet. 4:5

whose kingdom
John 18:362 Tim. 4:118

will have no end.
Luke 1:33Rev. 11:15Ps. 145:13 

The Holy Spirit

And I believe in the Holy Spirit,
Matt. 28:19Acts 13:2

The Lord
2 Cor. 3:17

And giver of life,
John 6:63Rom. 7:68:22 Cor. 3:6

who proceeds from the father

John 14:16-17

and the Son,
John 15:26Rom. 8:9Gal. 4:6

Who with the Father and the Son together is worshiped
Luke 4:8John 4:24

and glorified
John 4:241 Tim. 1:17

Who spoke by the prophets.
1 Pet. 1:10-112 Pet 1:21

And I believe in one
1 Cor. 10:16-1712:12-13

Holy
Eph. 3:16-175:271 Pet. 2:9

Catholic
1 Cor. 1:2

and Apostolic
Eph. 2:20Rev. 21:14

Church,
Acts 20:28Eph. 1:22-23Col. 1:24Heb. 12:231 Pet. 2:9

I acknowledge one Baptism
John 3:5Rom. 6:3Eph. 4:5

For the remission of sins,

Acts 2:381 Pet. 3:21Tit. 3:5

And I look for the resurrection of the dead

1 Thes. 4:161 Cor. 15:12-131652

And the life of the world to come.
1 Cor 15:54-57Rev. 22:5

Amen.
Ps. 41:132 Cor. 1:20

Read Full Post »

The Gospel Reading in the Daily Lectionary for the Friday After Pentecost (ELCA): St. Matthew 10:24-33

“A disciple is not above his teacher, nor a servant above his master; it is enough for the disciple to be like his teacher, and the servant like his master. If they have called the master of the house Be-el’zebul, how much more will they malign those of his household.

“So have no fear of them; for nothing is covered that will not be revealed, or hidden that will not be known. What I tell you in the dark, utter in the light; and what you hear whispered, proclaim upon the housetops. And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father’s will. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So every one who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven; but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven.’!’

A Reflection by Fulton J. Sheen (1895 –1979)

Deny not your Master even under opposition. “But he that shall deny me before men, I will also deny him before my Father Who is in heaven.” So long as we are hated, we are worth troubling about. The church that would give only a moral tone to secular movements can die of its own inanition. If the pagan forces of the world left us untouched, if they did not calumniate us, seek to destroy us, set up rival claim.

The Church can still make the evil forces of the world angry. It can still inspire persecution. Therefore Christ is with us. The exhilaration of being counted a foe of evil is the joy of honor. Our heart is warmed by the tribute of enmity from those areas of life, where to be counted friends, or not to be counted at all, would be to stand condemned as salt without savour, and as feeble candles whose light had gone out.ants to the soul, it would mean that we would have lost our influence, that our touch was gone, our stars did no longer shine. Do men shake fists over the tomb of Napoleon? Do armies storm and rage against the grave of Mohammed? Do forces assault the tomb of Lenin? These men are dead. But they do storm the citadel of Christ; they do rage against His Spouse; they do kill the members of His Body; they do try to stifle the young hearts that would breathe His name in school. Therefore Christ must be alive today in His Body which is the Church.   From Characters of the Passion by Bp. Sheen

Closing Prayer:

O God, Who hast taught the hearts of believers by the illumination of the Holy Ghost, and gathered together a Christian Church by Him, grant us also that Thy good Spirit cleanse our hearts, lead us into all truth, sanctify us, give us zealous minds, and comfort us in every time of need, that Thy Church may realize the promise of Thy beloved Son, Jesus Christ, our Lord, to conquer over all the gates of hell. Amen.

J. K. Wilhelm Loehe, Lutheran Pastor and Missionary, (1808-1872)

About Bp. Sheen:  Here is a trivia type question and answer:  Who was the first televangelist?  Answer:  Roman Catholic Bishop Fulton J. Sheen.  Maybe there were others ‘way back then’ but Bp. Sheen was quite popular during the fifties on TV.   He said and wrote some pretty good things…even though he was not a Lutheran.  The quotation above is from  the excellent 4 volume series For All the Saints:  A Prayer Book for and by the Church which is basically a Lutheran breviary or daily prayer book, as is Treasury of Daily Prayer from The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts

%d bloggers like this: