Concerning the Church

Scripture Text: Ephesians 5:25–27

Building on the confession of “the communion of saints” in the creed, and that God imputes righteousness through faith, Melancthon is emboldened to state that the Church is a “congregation of saints.”

Of New Obedience

Scripture Text: Galatians 5:18–25

The Lutherans also wished it to be known that justification by faith did not negate the command of God for his people to do good works. However, these acts of charity and obedience are a result of faith—not a requirement of justification.

Concerning the Ministry

Scripture Text: Romans 10:5–17

Real faith does not happen because one decides to believe, because one disciplines herself to be a holy person, or as the result of any other personal or religious preparation.

Concerning the Mass – part 74

Scripture Text: Colossians 2:13–14

Using the Sacrament in a way that Christ did not intend, abuses and profanes his Holy Supper. Offering his blessed promises to the dead and to those who do not believe makes it an occasion for sin and judgment.

The Small Catechism – part 204

Scripture Text: 1 John 3:2–3

Our hope is in Christ alone. His resurrection from the dead is the basis of that hope. Because we were baptized into his death, we will be resurrected like him too. The details of what comes next are a mystery but our hope is unwavering.

A Preface Toward Unity

Scripture Text: 1 Peter 3:13-17

Christians ought to hope for unity, beginning to do so by considering how they agree on matters of the faith. After all, they are called to fellowship together in Jesus Christ our Lord (1Cor 1:9-10). Christians are also to be ready to defend the faith (1Per 3:15), even if it is in confessing it to one another.

Concerning the Mass – part 69

Scripture Text: Matthew 21:21–22

There are many fine collections of prayers available. If a person reads those prayers but does not believe in God, are they effective prayers?

“Likewise”

Scripture Text: 1 Timothy 2:1–6

The Small Catechism also, even though teaching from the Apostles' Creed that does not deal explicitly with the dual nature, teaches us that the ascended Christ is “true God, begotten of the Father from eternity, and also true man, born of the Virgin Mary.”

The Small Catechism – part 203

Scripture Text: John 9:7

The blind man in John 9 went to a pool called “Sent,” and was blessed with sight. We have been dispatched to a fount called Christ, and have been given new life, lived forever before God in the righteousness and purity of Christ Jesus.

The Small Catechism – part 202

Scripture Text: Romans 12:1–2

Every day we must slay the old nature in us. By offering our doubts, temptations, and sins to God, we crucify the flesh. This is not a physical act like sacrificing an animal.

The Small Catechism – part 201

Scripture Text: Genesis 26:18

Jesus confirms that we are all sinners (John 8:7). Who of us does not sin daily? Day after day, our sins can pile up in our memories. If we are not careful to seek the Father’s forgiveness and remember the promises of Baptism daily, the devil may slowly stop up the well.

The Small Catechism – part 200

Scripture Text: John 7:38–39

In Christian Baptism, water does more than touch the outside of us, as though washing the skin. Because God’s Word is bound with the water, it cleanses and renews the whole person.

The Small Catechism – part 199

Scripture Text: Hebrews 12:11

God’s discipline is a difficult thing, but the Father does not discipline us so severely that we die. His Son, however, was disciplined to the point of death for the sins the world.

The Small Catechism – part 198

Scripture Text: Hebrews 12:1–2

Remember Jesus. Keep him in mind as the one who ran before you and is now waiting for you to cross the finish line. Now, if you believe and are baptized, you are in the race, but finishing the race requires the endurance of faith.

The Small Catechism – part 197

Scripture Text: Genesis 22:12

Obedient to God’s command, Abraham took his son up the mountain to sacrifice him to the Lord. But God spared the child’s life, and his parents untold grief.

The Small Catechism – part 196

Scripture Text: Genesis 21:17–19

Our lives are in the Lord’s hands. He has prepared a better place for us, a heavenly city, an excelling country. It was so for Abraham who with Sarah was made to wait in faith on God’s promise.

The Small Catechism – part 195

Scripture Text: Hebrews 11:5–6

There is one thing that pleases God: faith in him—faith in his existence and faith in his grace. Abel brought an offering to the Lord, having faith in God instead of a confidence in his offering, and so, his offering was acceptable or pleasing.


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