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Archive for January, 2013

Rev. Pastor C.F.W. Walther (first President of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod and first president of Concordia Lutheran Seminary, St. Louis) on  Acts 16:  25-34:

 “The Scriptural answer to the question: “What must I do to be saved?” is: “You must believe; hence you are not to do anything at all yourself.” In that sense the apostle answered the question when it was addressed to him. He practically told the jailer: “You are to do nothing but accept what God has done for you, and you have it and become a blessed person.” That is the precious teaching of the divine Word.

Having this doctrine, what exceedingly happy and blessed people we Lutherans are! This teaching takes us to Christ by a straight route. It opens heaven to us when we feel hell in our hearts. It enables us to obtain grace at any moment without losing time by following a wrong way, striving for grace by our own effort, as we sometimes do with a good intention. We can approach Christ directly and say: “Lord Jesus, I am a poor sinner; I know it; that has been my experience in the past, and when I reflect what is going on in my heart now, I must say, that is still my experience. But Thou hast called me by Thy Gospel. I come to Thee just as I am; for I could come no other way.” That is the saving doctrine which the Evangelical Lutheran Church has learned from Christ and the apostles. (emphasis added)

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Acts 20: 28-35

Psalm 71: 1-14

Titus 1: 1-9

St. Luke 10: 1-9

St. Titus, like Timothy with whom he is often  associated, was a friend and co-worker of St, Paul. Titus was a Gentile, perhaps a native of Antioch, who accompanied Paul and Barnabas to Jerusalem when they brought assistance to the Christians in Judea during a famine (Acts 11:29-30; Galatians 2:1). It is not known if he accompanied Paul on his first or second missionary journeys, but Titus was with him on the third one, when he helped reconcile the Corinthians to Paul (2 Corinthians 7:6-7) and assisted with the collection for the Church in Jerusalem (2 Corinthians 8:3-6). It was probably on the return to Jerusalem that Paul left Titus in Crete (Titus 1:4-5). Afterward he is found working in Dalmatia (2 Timothy 4:10). According to tradition, Titus returned to Crete, where he served as bishop until he died about AD 96. 

(From The Treasury of Daily Prayer, CPH)

Reflection:  In 1539, Father Martin Luther wrote, On the Councils and Church.   The most noted section in it is the Seven Marks of the Church.  Luther asked a good question, 

The Creed teaches us that a people of God must be on earth and remain until the end of the world. This is an article of faith, which cannot cease until that comes which it believes, as Christ promises, “I am with you even unto the end of the world.” But how can a poor, erring man know where this Christian, holy people in the world is?(emphasis my own)

Luther’s answer to his own question is the 7 marks of the Church. By these 7 marks a “poor, erring man” can publicly see the Church and know where the Church is true to the Word. These are quotes from his treatise:

  1. First , This Christian, holy people is to be known by this, that it has God’s Word,

  2. Second . God’s people, or the Christian holy people, is known by the holy Sacrament of Baptism, when it is rightly taught and believed and used according to Christ’s ordinance.

  3. Third . God’s people, or a Christian, holy Church is known by the holy Sacrament of the Altar, when it is rightly administered according to Christ’s institution and is believed and received

  4. Fourth . The people of God, or holy Christians, are known by the keys, which they publicly use. Christ decrees, in Matthew 18:15 that if a Christian sins, he shall be rebuked, and if he does not amend his ways, he shall be bound and cast out; but if he amends, he shall be set free. This is the power of the keys

  5. Fifth . The Church is known outwardly by the fact that it consecrates or calls ministers, or has offices which they occupy.

  6. Sixth . The holy, Christian people is known by prayer and public thanksgiving and praise to God.

  7. Seventh . The holy, Christian Church is outwardly known by the holy possession of the Holy Cross.

First, why seven?  We do not know from Luther’s writing but a guess is “seven” is a good solid Biblical number pointing us to the 7 days of the week, and the first day of the week, Domingo, the Lord’s Day to hear and eat and drink the Word of the Lord.

Second, note the sequence, Possession of God’s Word, Baptism, Holy Communion, Office of the Keys (public and private confession and absolution).  This is logically followed by someone to do numbers 1-4:  pastors and bishops.  The result is the public praise of God’s people and the possession of the holy cross, that is suffering.  I concentrate today, the Festival of St. Titus, Pastor and Confessor on number 5:  called and ordained Servants of the Word, pastors and bishops.

Third, Christianity is the only religion on earth who calls their ministers Pastors: Pastor literally means “Shepherd”.  For instance, a congregation called “Good Shepherd” is in Spanish, “El Buen Pastor”.  A shepherd leads his flock to “good pastures”, see Psalm 23:2;  St. Mark 6: 39;  St. John 6: 1-14, 33-35.  He calls pastors to feed His flock with the Word preached and taught, baptizing,administering His Body and Blood, and forgiving repentant brothers and sisters, who also are sinners. We need to  eat and drink every day and every week, so we need Him. This was the vocation of Paul and his brother pastors  Timothy and Titus.

The past 3 days are respectively the Festivals of St. Timothy, St. Paul and St. Titus:  all pastors. Luther said a called and ordained Servant of the Word, a pastor,  is a mark of the Church.  

In the TV show M*A*S*H, Fr. Mulcahy was always wondering was he really useful.  The Korean War era helicopters could only take two wounded soldiers at a time, one on each side of the helicopter.  When there was only one wounded, the pilot would use a dummy or a person who volunteered. In one episode, in order to feel useful, Fr. Mulcahy did so.  Colonel Potter was not pleased.  Hawkeye and the other surgeons tried to comfort Fr. Mulcahy that he was indeed useful.  In the  show, one barely sees him saying Mass on Sundays or even talking about it or preaching.  He does hear confessions but usually for the humor in it.  He never evangelizes the Korean villagers. He never baptizes.  It really is a sham portrayal of military chaplains. But many pastors who do all of the above will still feel the need to be “useful”.  As a pastor I think many of us suffer from the  Father Mulcahy Syndrome.  Pastor and something else:  therapist, CEO of church growth, social activist, community organizer and the like.  The pastor can assuage his conscience that he is “useful”.  In terms of this world, yes, I think pastors are useless:  the world of sin, death and the power of the devil of course has no use for Word and Sacraments, for Jesus Christ!  “It’s not practical”  will think our pastor feeling the need to be useful.  I think that conclusion is sheer unbelief and unbelief is  the world and the flesh and devil’s desired outcome. This is a sore temptation to want to feel “useful”.  The thing is that the devil knows the Enemy’s Word is quite practical, for the practice of faith and the fruit of faith, love, His light in the darkness. Numbers 1-4 of Luther’s 7 Marks of the Church is deemed not enough, but it is.  Paul, Titus and Timothy were not looking for adjuncts to heighten their need for usefulness in the Holy Ministry.  Your pastor needs prayer and encouragement to do the one thing needful, the good portion that will not be taken away:  preaching and teaching the Word written, spoken and incarnate (see St.Luke 10:41-42)

Almighty God, You called Titus to the work of pastor and teacher. Make all shepherds of Your flock diligent in preaching Your holy Word so that the whole world may know the immeasurable riches of our Savior, Jesus, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

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Acts 9:1-22  Galatians 1:11-24 Matthew 19:27-30

Prayer of the Day

Almighty God, You turned the heart of him who persecuted the Church and by his preaching caused the light of the Gospel to shine throughout the world. Grant us ever to rejoice in the saving light of Your Gospel and, following the example of the apostle Paul, to spread it to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

About the Day:  St. Paul’s life-changing experience on the road to Damascus is related three times in the Book of Acts (9:1-9; 22:6-11; 26:12-18). As an archenemy of Christians, Saul of Tarsus set out for Damascus to arrest and bring believers to Jerusalem for trial. While on the way, he saw a blinding light and heard the words: “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” Saul asked, “Who are You, Lord?” The reply came, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.” In Damascus, where Saul was brought after being blinded, a disciple named Ananias was directed by the Lord in a vision to go to Saul to restore his sight: “Go, for he is a chosen instrument of Mine to carry My name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel” (Acts 9:15). After receiving his sight, Saul was baptized and went on to become known as Paul, the great apostle.(Source for the above: The Treasury of Daily Prayer)

Introduction: After the Lord Jesus Christ reveals Himself to Saul of Tarsus, Saul could no longer see. The Lord tells him where to go and it is not hell.  Luther in his House Postil (Sermon) for this Feast Day has great insight on the importance of pastors.   Then I will comment on it, especially the bold-faced sections,  and the day:

“(Saul) was now ready to be taught. The man, who is called Jesus of Nazareth, is able to speak with such earnestness that it goes deeply to the heart. Paul would have despaired and died, had not Christ again pulled him to his feet and comforted him, as he now says:

Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do. (vs. 6)

Although he speaks with Paul directly from heaven above, God does not intend to put away the pastoral office or establish something extraordinary for him. Indeed, he might have spoken to him directly and revealed what he wanted him to do, but instead he directs him to go to the parish pastor in the city where he would hear and learn what he was supposed to do. Our Lord God does not purpose some special thing for each individual person, but gives to the whole world—one person like the next—his baptism and gospel. Through these means we are to learn how to be saved, and have no need to wait for God to reveal some new thing from heaven, or send angel.  For it is his will that we go to hear the Gospel preached by the pastor;  there we will find him, and in no other way.

Those who seek for some special revelation get what they deserve, namely, the devil. The enthusiasts—Carlstadt, Muentzer, and others like them—gather in a corner waiting there for the Lord God and the Holy Spirit. The devil dupes them into thinking that they can importune our Lord God to give them a special direct revelation. Our Lord God, thereupon, purposely sends them a delusion, according to which the devil comes to them in the form of an angel to punish them. Our Lord God did not mandate anything extraordinary for Paul to do, for he, after all, had heard the physical voice of Christ, the Lord, and he was to become a foremost preacher. Instead he is told to go into the city and to hear Ananias. So, get up and go! he says. Nothing special beyond this is done, no further instruction there along the road, no baptism, just the directive to go where his Word and baptism are to be had. And Paul willingly complies with the Lord’s directive, although he does not yet know where and by whom this will all happen.

At this juncture, then, our Lord God sends Ananias to meet Paul, to preach the Word to him and baptize him; he lays his hands upon him and says:

Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus that appeared unto thee in the way as thou tamest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost. (vs. 17)

Thus Paul came into the light of the Word, to baptism, to the Holy Spirit, through Ananias who was no more than a finger compared with Paul, like a little candle in comparison with the sun. From him, this little wooden match, Paul was to take his light; from this little doctor the famous Doctor Paul was to hear what he was to do!

That is something we must really note well, so that we esteem the preaching office as we ought.  Paul receives his sight, his insight and the Holy Spirit, through the ministry of Ananias, so that he knows who Christ is, understands the power of baptism, and forthwith emerges as a changed man. (emphasis added)

 My comments:  I would guess that if you asked a knowledgeable fellow Lutheran and Christian when was Paul converted, the answer would be, ‘On the road to Damascus”  But based upon the Text and from it, Luther’s sermonic insight,  Saul’s conversion does not take place on  the road to Damascus but in the Word and the Font, prayed and administered by the pastor, Ananias.  What happened to Saul on the road was not his conversion but the apocalypse by the Lord to Saul, noting that  our word “apocalypse” is from the New Testament Greek, “reveal”, and “reveal” is the word the Apostle Paul used in his letter to the Galatians: Galatians 1:16.  Similarly, when Peter confessed Jesus as the Christ, the Lord said the Father revealed, literally, “apocalypsed” this to Peter.  I think this day should be called the Apocalypse to Saul.

 Saul is blinded for 3 days (vs. 9). Saul was blinded by his own sin and the Lord’s judgment of his sin in consenting to the arrest and murder of Christians, such as the first martyr, Stephen, see Acts 7: 60-8:1.  Only by the Word of the Gospel that Ananias administered in prayer was Paul able to see and in Baptism be saved, receiving Christ Jesus’ forgiveness in His death and resurrection (see Romans 6: 1-11!!!). This is when Saul of Tarsus is converted.

Note:  there is no “decision of Christ” at all!  As Paul well knew this when he wrote:  “The letter (of the Law) kills, and the Spirit gives life.” (see 2 Corinthians 3:6) There is no intervention of the choosing self, the Old Adam.   It is all the Lord’s doing and it is marvelous in our eyes! Receive the Holy Ghost, says the Pastor on the street called straight. Paul had no choice for the Lord chose him, one “untimely  born”(see 1 Corinthians 15:7-9).   We look for God in all the wrong places.  We think it should be glorious, but it is not, it is the Cross. Jesus does not give Saul any instruction but to go the means He Himself has appointed for Saul to be washed and saved:  Water and the Word (cf. St. Matthew 28: 18)

Recently I re-watched Woody Allen’s  movie, Love and Death, which is  his funny take on 19th century Russian novels and his character continually asks for ‘vision’, a revelation, for the proof of the existence of God. Luther compared the “enthusiasts” to the way the Lord Himself has appointed the means of His salvation, His Word and Sacraments.   Those so  wanting a revelation will be disappointed, deluded and demonized. We have all sorts of people who consider themselves “spiritual” and even think the Lord has revealed Himself to them apart from His Word and Sacrament and then go on to  deny His means of grace.  But the Lord directed Saul to the Font, as Paul would also direct the Lord’s people, as did the Lord,  and as a  saint in your life also pointed the way to the Lord in His forgiveness for you:  not in the sky, but in the washing of regeneration. Cleansed to love and serve our neighbors.  Thank Him for His grace which causes the blind to see His love in the washing unto eternal life! (see 1 Corinthians 6:11)  

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Prayer of the Day

Lord Jesus Christ, You have always given to Your Church on earth faithful shepherds such as Timothy to guide and feed Your flock. Make all pastors diligent to preach Your holy Word and administer Your means of grace, and grant Your people wisdom to follow in the way that leads to life eternal; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

Psalm 71:15-24
Acts 16:1-5
1 Timothy 6:11-16
Matthew 24:42-47

Bio:  St. Timothy had Christian believers in his family. His mother, Eunice, was a Christian woman and was the daughter of a Christian woman named Lois (2 Timothy 1:5). Acts records that St. Paul met Timothy on his second missionary journey and wanted Timothy to continue on with him (16:1-3). Over time, Timothy became a dear friend and close associate of Paul to whom Paul entrusted mission work inGreeceandAsia Minor. Timothy was also with Paul inRome. According to tradition, after Paul’s death, Timothy went to Ephesus, where he served as bishop and was martyred around AD 97. Timothy is best remembered as a faithful companion of Paul, one who rendered great service among the Gentile churches.

Reflection by  Fr. Valerius Herberger (21 April 1562-18 May 1627,  German Lutheran preacher and theologian)

Dearly beloved, today we celebrate the commemoration of St. Timothy. He was born in Lystra (Acts 16:2); his father was a pagan, but his mother, Eunice, born an Israelite, had accepted the Christian faith and had committed her son, Timothy, to be raised by her mother, Lois, who was also a Christian. So Timothy learned the catechism from his grandmother. See, dear parents, what the diligent training of children can do! Now since he was a good, excellent thinker,St. Paulaccepted him as his colleague or chaplain, and since he improved himself daily, Paul eventually ordained him as bishop ofEphesus, where he was also killed by the raging pagans.S t. Pau lloved him dearly, which we can see from both epistles that he wrote to him. In 1 Timothy 1:2, he calls him his true son in the faith. From these two epistles, many passages shine forth like the stars of heaven:

  • 1 Timothy 1:5: “The aim of the commandment is love from a pure heart and from a good conscience and from a faith unfeigned.”
  • 1 Timothy 1:15: “The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners.”
  • 2 Timothy 3:12: “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted.”
  • 2 Timothy 3:16-17: “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”

Since St. Paul and St. Timothy were dear friends, they were put beside each other in the calendar, and also on the day of St. Timothy, the Gospel of John 15:9-16 is read, which speaks of pure love and friendship.

(Source for the above: The Treasury of Daily Prayer)

Further Reflection:  

Paul’s two letters to Timothy are pastoral correspondence, that is, from Apostle to fellow pastor.  The two letters are about pastoral formation in these areas:

  • Preaching Law and Promise and rightly distinguishing the two:  1 Timothy 1: 8-12, 2 Timothy 2: 15
  • Prayers of God’s people:  1 Timothy 2
  • Servants of Jesus Christ in His Church: overseers, deacons:  1 Timothy 3
  • Description of the called and ordained Servant of the Word:  1 Timothy 4
  • Servants of Jesus Christ:  widows, 1 Timothy 5
  • Pastors’ salaries:  1 Timothy 5: 17-18;  6: 6-10
  • Sound Doctrine and false teaching and teachers:  1 Timothy 6: 2b-21
  • Homeschooling in the Scriptures:  2 Timothy 1:  3-5
  • Unity of Purpose for the soldier of Christ Jesus in His militia Christi: 2 Timothy 2
  • The Centrality of the Lord’s Last Word in the last days:  the Scriptures:  1 Timothy 3
  • The Office of Preacher:  1 Timothy 4

As the old saying: what’s good the goose is good for the gander.  In other words, Paul’s counsel and exhortation to his dear brother and fellow pastor, is also for every brother and sister in Christ being formed in His school of the Holy Spirit.  Read the Apostle’s letters to Timothy as addressed to you personally and finally it is not Paul who is writing you!

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American flags fly at half staff on the National Mall in front of the U.S. Capitol in memory of the victims of Saturday's mass shooting in Arizona, January 10, 2011 in Washington, DC.  U.S. President Barack Obama called on the nation to observe a moment of silence today at 11:00am.

Since our nation’s flag flew at half-staff in mourning for Newtown, and other massacres, then it should fly half-staff today, the 40th anniversary of Roe vs. Wade, and for the remainder of the week.

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I have understood that 40 years is a generation in the Bible.  We now have a generation that can ask, Why was I born, but also: Why didn’t Mom abort me? After yesterdays’ inauguration of President Obama to a second term, after the Democratic Party in their convention in Charlotte, NC, where they touted abortion and contraception as “women’s health issues”, it is good to see once more the PSA from Catholic Vote that was banned by NBC during the President’s first inauguration.  Then this  link to a must-read, disturbing article in Cyberbrethren:   Dr. Martin Luther King’s Dream and the Nightmare of Black Genocide in America

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“The Wedding at Cana” Please note the couple are portrayed wearing crowns. I read recently that at the time of Christ’s earthly Ministry, husband and wife were considered king and queen the day of their Wedding, as Adam and Eve were commanded by the Lord to have dominion. The eastern Orthodox wedding rite uses crowns for husband and wife to signify this.

Joy describes the wedding at Cana and it should describe any wedding.  Nowadays, we probably do not understanding the joy that day in Cana.  In Jesus’ day, in Israel, after a man and a woman found each other, their fathers would come together for conversation to arrange the wedding and marriage.  They would write marriage covenant. The young man and woman would say to each other, Today, You are my husband, Today you are my wife.  Then the families then would have a betrothal dinner.  The couple were considered married. This is why as  Matthew’s Gospel begins, we read Joseph and Mary were betrothed and when Mary is found to be with child by the Holy Spirit, Joseph decided to quietly divorce her.  Betrothal only began a couple’s wedding journey.  She would then wear a veil to indicate in the town square that she was betrothed.  He would go back home to his family’s home and begin to add a room to their home for he and his bride.  This could take up to year to build.  When the room was built, the groom would send his groomsmen, complete with shofar, the ram’s horn, to go his bride’s home for her.  They would not know the hour when this would occur.  As the groomsmen approached the bride’s home, they might blow the ram’s horn.  With joy the bride and her party would go with the groomsmen to the groom’s home.  There in the privacy of their new room, husband and wife consummated their marriage, with the groomsmen standing guard outside.  Her veil was put aside.  The couple became one flesh.  Then began the wedding party which would last up to 7 days.

 This is exactly the time of the wedding at Cana.  The Lord knew what was going on…besides, He created it so.  He brought His joy to the wedding of the man and the woman and added to their joy.  It takes time to make a couple.  One flesh is not an overnight or a hook-up.  Never was. In Luther’s day the church gave it’s approval to being a monk or nun as the holiest way of living. No, preached Luther, we find nothing in the Bible about monks or nun but right away in Genesis, we read of husband and wife.  Mary and her Son went to the wedding in Cana and He added more joy with the best wine.  Marriage is the estate ordained by God and is the basis of all authority.  Government, at it’s best is to protect  marriage not add to it by redefining it.  But government is only doing what so many churches have done:  redefine marriage or approve living together.  What Luther preached in his day is the same in our day:  “All heretics have denigrated matrimony and have sought for and begun some newfangled and bizarre way of life.” No kidding, Fr. Martin! I would guess that about 9 months after the wedding in Cana, the joyful couple had their first child.  Jesus would not have attended the move-in of a woman to live with her guy or  given consent to hooking-up or my biological clock is ticking, single-parenthood on purpose.  Churches, or Christians,  have said this is not so bad, and even God pleasing.  It is not. He does not want a child to fear abandonment because of different living arrangements.  He does not want a child aborted to fit a life-style.  The Old Adam likes, no, lusts after new ‘life-styles’. Once I was talking with my father-in-law about hooking-up and like and he quipped, I guess I was born at the wrong time.  Back in the ’60s, the  “new morality” was touted but as one conservative put it, it is actually the old immorality.  Christ was baptized for this…to save us from ourselves and sin, death and the power of the devil.  Our Lord protects husbands and wives with two commandments:  Honor your father and your mother and You shall not commit adultery. He protects, we wreck. The Lord loves the life He created, each and everyone of us, and wants it to continue and when fallen into disrepair He has sent His Son. He went to a wedding.

 Yes, a cross is laid on marriage, as it is written, there will be troubles in marriage. Yes.  If all the money of a  lifetime were put before a worker, like winning the lotto, it would not be considered to be enough.  But the Lord gives us money, our salary, we wonder will we make ends meet. He will change water into wine as we manage and serve in our households.  This is God pleasing. If we are but godly and pious and let Him do the caring (Luther).  There will be enough so that faith is engendered, hope renewed and love quickened. When the wine ran out, they had enough by our Lord’s quiet sign of changing water into wine. The Christian home is faithful.

His Cross, His forgiveness in the home is the sign bar none of His forgiveness.  Husband and wife need His forgiveness day by day along with their children.  Forgiveness is bread on the table.  It is bread here today to be eaten, His body.  He commands all who would be His children to be washed in Holy Baptism and for the Christian household to walk wet in the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit engenders His gifts bar none, more important gifts and fruits than any received this past Christmas. His gifts are:  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.   The Christian home is crucified and it’s member walk in the newness of life.  This newness is fostered and nurtured in confession and absolution. The Christian home is a confessional of sin, confesses Christ and confesses His praise by their service.

 Even His Mother cannot prescribe the time in which the Lord will help. Neither can we.  We come to the end of our rope, and cry out, Lord, help…in a situation like a wedding in which the wine has run out!  Jesus clearly teaches here for our sake, He will provide at the right time.  He did at the wedding at Cana.  He served the best wine. Mary said, Do whatever He says.  This is a good reminder to us all in all walks of life and especially in our homes.  Do whatever He tells you as in when you prayer, say, Our Father Who art in heaven.  Take and eat, take and drink.  Meditate on My Word.  The Christian home is a house of prayer.

 You have saved the best wine to the last. This could be a lesson for husband and wife.  When we first start seeing someone, we put our best foot forward, dress nice, best manners and personality…then marriage and my wife gets to know me. And one’s less charming aspects come to the fore quite quickly.  But of the Lord it can always be said, you have saved the best wine till now. His blood shed for repentant  sinners joyful in His forgiveness. We are told the master of feast knew could taste this was the best wine.  He probably did not know the first and original Master of the Feast was present with His disciples.  Jesus is the Master of the feast, this feast He founded.    My hour has not yet come, He told His Mother.  Jesus repeats this phrase, “my hour” a few times in the Gospel.  He changed water into wine, but this was not the glory.  His presence, message and person pointed to another glory, the glory of the only-begotten Son who died on the Cross for sinners in His love which conquers death.   He changes wine into His blood for us all. Taste and see that the Lord is good and His mercy endures forever. The taste for sin is all too real and the taste of His joy in the family knows no bounds and He has overcome the world.  So the Christian home serves Jesus Christ. 

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

 

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