Lutheran Worship and Resources



Traditional Lutheran worship services, using The Lutheran Hymnal and the KJV.

Norma Boeckler, Artist-in-Residence

The Lutheran Library Publishing Ministry

Bethany Lutheran Worship on
Ustream - Sunday, 10 AM Central.


Thanksgiving Eve - 7 PM Central Time.

Saved worship files and Greek lessons are at the live worship link.

email: greg.jackson.edlp@gmail.com,
which works asgregjacksonedlp@gmail.com too.

Luther's Sermons, Lenker Series
Book of Concord Selections
Martin Chemnitz Press Books

Norma A. Boeckler Author's Page

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson's Author's Page

Sunday, December 26, 2010

The Sunday After Christmas


By Norma Boeckler


The Sunday after Christmas

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bethany-lutheran-worship


Bethany Lutheran Church, 10 AM Central Time


The Hymn # 85:1-8 From Heaven Above 4.55
The Confession of Sins
The Absolution
The Introit p. 16
The Gloria Patri
The Kyrie p. 17
The Gloria in Excelsis
The Salutation and Collect p. 19
The Epistle and Gradual
The Gospel
Glory be to Thee, O Lord!
Praise be to Thee, O Christ!
The Nicene Creed p. 22
The Sermon Hymn #85:9-15 From Heaven Above 4.55

Redemption, Atonement, Forgiveness

The Hymn #657 Beautiful Savior 4.24
The Preface p. 24
The Sanctus p. 26
The Lord's Prayer p. 27
The Words of Institution
The Agnus Dei p. 28
The Nunc Dimittis p. 29
The Benediction p. 31
The Hymn #83 Hark! What Mean Those Holy Voices 4:40

KJV Galatians 4:1 Now I say, That the heir, as long as he is a child, differeth nothing from a servant, though he be lord of all; 2 But is under tutors and governors until the time appointed of the father. 3 Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world: 4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, 5 To redeem them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons. 6 And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying, Abba, Father. 7 Wherefore thou art no more a servant, but a son; and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

KJV Luke 2:33 And Joseph and his mother marvelled at those things which were spoken of him. 34 And Simeon blessed them, and said unto Mary his mother, Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel; and for a sign which shall be spoken against; 35 (Yea, a sword shall pierce through thy own soul also,) that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed. 36 And there was one Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Aser: she was of a great age, and had lived with an husband seven years from her virginity; 37 And she was a widow of about fourscore and four years, which departed not from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day. 38 And she coming in that instant gave thanks likewise unto the Lord, and spake of him to all them that looked for redemption in Jerusalem. 39 And when they had performed all things according to the law of the Lord, they returned into Galilee, to their own city Nazareth. 40 And the child grew, and waxed strong in spirit, filled with wisdom: and the grace of God was upon him.

Sunday After Christmas
O almighty and everlasting God, mercifully direct our ways, that we may walk in Thy law, and be made to abound in good works: through Thy beloved Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one true God, world without end. Amen.

Redemption, Atonement, Forgiveness

Lenski:

All we are able to say is that God knew when the proper time had arrived. Judaism was bankrupt, and paganism had always been so. We can enumerate some of the providences which helped to open the way for the gospel such as the vast extent of the Roman Empire, the spread of the Greek language, the facility of travel throughout the empire, the extensive diaspora of the Jews, its many proselytes from Gentilism, etc. All of these aided the spread of the gospel. What God saw and regarded as the fulness of the time in the spiritual condition of men, barbarian as well as Greek, is too difficult for us to predicate because his thoughts and judgments are too unsearchable for us. Paul, too, refrains from stating details.
Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. Paul's Epistles to the Galatians, to the Ephesians and to the Philippians. Columbus, O. : Lutheran Book Concern, 1937, S. 197.


We have discussed in the Formula of Concord class the proper distinction between the Law and the Gospel. There are many ways to consider this issue, which is the only way to understand the Scriptures. If someone is blind to the difference between Law and Gospel, he will read the Bible and not understand it. He may know a wealth of facts about the Bible, but he will not have any spiritual wisdom.

Spiritual wisdom does not come from academic degrees. Many who have been trained as clergy have no knowledge of this at all. Some laity attend church all their lives, serve on committees, and still cannot get up to the first principle of this matter.

The way we learn about this is: first) from studying the Word of God, the Confessions, and reliable books. And secondly) from experience in applying what the Holy Spirit teaches us in the Word.

St. Paul’s illustration in this lesson is very good and easy to learn. We know there is a world of difference between being an heir and a servant on an estate. We had the good fortune to live on the estate of a wealthy young couple in Milwaukee. We lived there and enjoyed many benefits of the estate, but we never imagined that anything was ours, in the present or in the future. On the other hand, the children were heirs. They had to listen to us at first, but they would grow up in time and inherit what was around them in abundance. We were their tutors, but we had no authority on our own.

The Law confuses people, because people become too familiar with being servants under the Law and unwilling to be free with the Gospel. The Law is a tutor, leading us to Christ. This tutor teaches us individually that we have certain duties and responsibilities, that the Creator has given us a world in which certain laws must be obeyed at all times, not just when the mood strikes us.

The Law is good and useful, but limited. If we live under the Law alone, we are still servants. When family members take turns accusing each other, they are using the Law alone. We cannot help feeling like children when we only hear the Law and no Gospel, no forgiveness.

On this first Sunday after Christmas, it is important to remember that God sent His Son to be completely obedient to the Law. Jesus, true man, was born under the Law, circumcised as a Jew, raised as all children were at that time. He obeyed the 10 Commandments and taught them with the power and authority of the true Son of God. In other words, many people would like to say that they have not broken this or that commandment, but Jesus teaches in the Sermon on the Mount that even mental sins are the same as actual sins.

We cannot escape from the verdict of the Law. Many of our conflicts come from our ability to see the nature of sin in other people without seeing the sinfulness in our own behavior. All this was foreseen by God the Father, who sent His Son “in the fulness of time,” at the right time, born of a woman, to redeem us from the Law.

Jesus had to accept the verdict of the Law in order to save us from the ultimate penalty of the Law, which we all deserve, eternal death and punishment.

Gal 4:4 But when the fulness of the time was come, God sent forth his Son, made of a woman, made under the law, 5 To redeem [purchase] them that were under the law, that we might receive the adoption of sons.

This is another clear reference, like Romans 1:1ff to the Two Natures of Christ. The divine nature is described as “God sent forth His Son” and the human nature “made of a woman, made under the law.”

The phrase is very important – to redeem them that were under the law – because it says literally that Jesus paid the price for those under the law. A house has a price. A car has a price. Our sins have a price. The wages of sin is death.

Jesus paid that price, so we might receive adoption as sons. Some our latter day feminists are always discovering gender distinctions in the Bible, even when they don’t exist. Or they cover them up. (One notorious case is the feminist creed in the WELS hymnal. The phrase “and was made man” was perverted to read “fully human,” with the claim that the verb and root cannot mean man. However, in John 3:1 and many other cases, the root, anthrwpos, is used for man. W is used for the long o in Greek, the omega. There was an anthrwpos from the Phraisees by the name of Nicodemus. If that means “fully human,” then we should read, “There was a fully human from the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, who came to Jesus at night.)

In this case we have a specific word with a precise meaning. The word is “son” and not “child.” There is quite a difference. Child is not a bad word, but “son” is special. A son inherits. In this case, if the Holy Spirit had been more sensitive to current trends, He would have had St. Paul say “adoption as children.” But he does not. We know there is a difference.

A son inherits the estate and there is a special relationship between a father and son. Abraham was promised a son and commanded to sacrifice his only son. Explain that to your only son. The binding of Isaac is intended to teach all believers from a personal standpoint what it would mean in the future and what it did mean in the past for the Father to give His only-begotten Son.

The Father/Son relationship is especially emphasized in the Gospel of John, but also in the three passages where Abba is used of the Father. We are supposed to realize and to be thankful that we have received the same relationship with God that is enjoyed by the Son, so that we can call upon our heavenly Father and ask Him just as we ask our earthly fathers.

First we have the example of Jesus in His agony of prayer, when He called His Father, Abba. His greatest request, of all His prayers, was begun with this term, Abba.

Mark 14:36 And he said, Abba, Father, all things are possible unto thee; take away this cup from me: nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt.

The term Abba is familiar and not formal. Very few of us, except a few Episcopalians, would call our earthly fathers “father.” Instead we would use a familiar term. I heard on ethics professor from Texas consistently refer to his father as “mah daddy.” I have heard others say “dad” or “papa” or “pops” or “pa.” Familiar terms are loving terms, so Abba means we are given the same loving relationship to God as Jesus has.

That relationship is not based upon the Law but the Gospel. We are not redeemed by the Law but by the Gospel. Jesus did not die because we were worthy. He died on the cross to make us worthy. We receive His righteousness through faith. Gospel promises create and sustain faith. Trusting, believing hearts receive the promises of God: forgiveness, peace, love, and eternal life.

Paul also used the term Abba too in order to contrast it with the spirit of bondage, fear, and the Law.

Romans 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father. 16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: 17 And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.



In this passage from Romans, the language is all Gospel. While we as Lutherans do at times emphasize how sinful we are, and that is true, we also should grasp these comforting promises as well. The Gospel is freedom. We are adopted as sons and heirs. God Himself helps us in our prayers, because we are His children and heirs. We are joint-heirs with Christ, a supreme honor, and we have a promise to share in His suffering and His glory.

It is fun to watch parents with children. I remember one little girl working on her father for a certain request. Then she said, “But daddy, you always call me your princess.” He was tongue-tied.

One girl simply asked the same thing over and over, with a big smile on her face. Finally her father gave in. I praised his discipline. He laughed. The children were being so charming that he could not say no. He said no but it did not last.

Parents know that they often give in to requests because they love their children and not because the children have fulfilled their promises. In the same way, we should always think about God’s loving response to our requests. He has answered our prayers repeatedly, often before we can even ask. He has given us what we ask and far beyond that, not because we are perfect in the eyes of the Law, but because He loves us.

Ephesians 3:20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, 21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.

Isaiah 65:21 And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them. 22 They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands. 23 They shall not labour in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the LORD, and their offspring with them. 24 And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. 25 The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent's meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD.

These are not minor promises, because God Himself is speaking them. When people are troubled about what is happening around them, I remind them to dwell on the promises of God. It is true that the sins we can list are many. But a list will not comfort or heal. It will not bring forth the fruits of the Spirit. Only the Gospel can do that.

Quotations from the Apology (Defense) – Augsburg Confession





When people despair, they should think about a passage in Pilgrim’s Progress. Christian has been captured and is in the Castle of Despair. He is locked in a dungeon where he can hear the giant discuss how he will be tortured and killed. Eventually he realizes that he can escape the dungeon. The keys were in his pocket all along. They are the promises of God.



If you are worried to death, anxious about fears for the future, or riddle with pain over bad things that have happened, your mind can torment you just the way Christian was tormented in the Castle of Despair. Locked up and hearing the taunting words. But the promises of God will set you free, give you comfort, quiet your fears, and provide far more blessings than you can imagine.


Quotations from the Apology (Defense) of the Augsburg Confession

"In reference to original sin we therefore hold nothing differing either from Scripture or from the Church catholic, but cleanse from corruptions and re- store to light most important declarations of Scripture and of the Fathers, that had been covered over by the sophistical controversies of modern theologians."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article II, Original Sin, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 113.



"All Scripture ought to be distributed into these two principal topics, the Law and the promises."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IV, Justification, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 121.



"Their feigning a distinction between meritum congrui and meritum condigni [due merit and true, complete merit] is only an articifice in order not to appear to Pelagianize. For, if God necessarily gives grace for the meritum congrui [due merit], it is no longer meritum congrui, but meritum condigni [a true duty and complete merit]. But they do not know what they are saying. After this habit of love [is there], they imagine that man can acquire merit de condigno. And yet they bid us doubt whether there be a habit present. How therefore, do they know whether they acquire merit de congruo or de condigno [in full or in half]?"

Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IV, Justification, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 125.



"Now, that faith signifies, not only a knowledge of the history, but such faith as assents to the promise, Paul plainly testifies when says, Romans 4:16: 'Therefore it is of faith, to the end the promise might be sure.' For he judges that the promise cannot be received unless by faith. Wherefore he puts them together as things that belong to one another, and connects promise and faith."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IV, Justification, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 135. Romans 4:16.

"But Christ was given for this purpose, namely, that for His sake there might be bestowed on us the remission of sins, and the Holy Ghost to bring forth in us new and eternal life, and eternal righteousness [to manifest Christ in our hearts, as it is written John 16:15: 'He shall take of the things of Mine, and show them unto you.' Likewise, He works also other gifts, love, thanksgiving, charity, patience, etc.]. Wherefore the Law cannot be truly kept unless the Holy Ghost is given."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IV, Justification, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 159. Romans 3:31; John 16:15.

"James, therefore, did not believe that by good works we merit the remission of sins and grace. For he speaks of the works of those who have been justified, who have already been reconciled and accepted, and have obtained remission of sins. Wherefore the adversaries err when they infer that James teaches that we merit remission of sins and grace by good works, and that by our works we have access to God, without Christ as Propitiator."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IV, Justification, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 189. James 2:24.

"And since the Gospel is taught among us purely and diligently, by God's favor we receive also from it this fruit, that in our Churches no Anabaptists have arisen [have not gained ground in our Churches], because the people have been fortified by God's Word against the wicked and seditious faction of these robbers. And as we condemn quite a number of other errors of the Anabaptists, we condemn this also, that they dispute that the baptism of little children is unprofitable."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IX, Baptism, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 245. Matthew 28:19.

"But as the Confutation condemns us for having assigned these two parts to repentance, we must show that [not we, but] Scripture expresses these as the chief parts in repentance and conversion. For Christ says, Matthew 11:28: Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Here there are two members. The labor and the burden signify the contrition, anxiety, and terrors of sin and of death. To come to Christ is to believe that sins are remitted for Christ's sake; when we believe, our hearts are quickened by the Holy Ghost through the Word of Christ. Here, therefore, there are these two chief parts, contrition and faith."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XII (V), #44, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 263. Matthew 11:28.

"But if ordination be understood as applying to the ministry of the Word, we are not unwilling to call ordination a sacrament. For the ministry of the Word has God's command and glorious promises. Romans 1:16 The Gospel is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth. Likewise, Isaiah 55:11: So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My mouth; it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please...And it is of advantage, so far as can be done, to adorn the ministry of the Word with every kind of praise against fanatical men, who dream that the Holy Ghost is given not through the Word, but because of certain preparations of their own...."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XIII (VII), #11, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 311. Romans 1:16; Isaiah 55:11.

"Our adversaries have no testimonies and no command from Scripture for defending the application of the ceremony for liberating the souls of the dead, although from this they derive infinite revenue. Nor, indeed, is it a light sin to establish such services in the Church without the command of God and without the example of Scripture, and to apply to the dead the Lord's Supper, which was instituted for commemoration and preaching among the living [for the purpose of strengthening the faith of those who use the ceremony]. This is to violate the Second Commandment, by abusing God's name."
Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XXIV, The Mass, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 414f.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve - 5 PM Central



http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bethany-lutheran-worship


Christmas Readings and Hymns
Bethany Lutheran Church
Bella Vista, Arkansas
Pastor Gregory L. Jackson

Hymn 77:1-6 All My Heart This Night Rejoices 2.25

The First Gospel
Genesis 3:15 And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.

KJV Isaiah 40:1 Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. 2 Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the LORD'S hand double for all her sins. 3 The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God. 4 Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: 5 And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it. 6 The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field: 7 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass. 8 The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever. 9 O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!

The Place of Jesus’ Birth
KJV Micah 5:2 But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

#102 O Come All Ye Faithful 1:7

KJV Isaiah 9:2 The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined.

Virgin Birth
KJV Isaiah 7:10 Moreover the LORD spake again unto Ahaz, saying, 11 Ask thee a sign of the LORD thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above. 12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the LORD. 13 And he said, Hear ye now, O house of David; Is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also? 14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. 15 Butter and honey shall he eat, that he may know to refuse the evil, and choose the good. 16 For before the child shall know to refuse the evil, and choose the good, the land that thou abhorrest shall be forsaken of both her kings.

Incarnation
KJV Isaiah 9:6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

#109 While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks 1:35

KJV Matthew 1:18 Now the birth of Jesus Christ was on this wise: When as his mother Mary was espoused to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Ghost. 19 Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not willing to make her a publick example, was minded to put her away privily. 20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost. 21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. 22 Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, 23 Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. 24 Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: 25 And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son: and he called his name JESUS.


Sermon – The Virgin Birth of Christ

The Virgin Birth of Christ is the dividing line between believers and pretenders. There are many within the visible church who do not believe in the Virgin Birth, because they were carefully trained to reject the miraculous while staying around to collect a comfortable living.

But people think too easily, “That is the problem with those liberals.” We should look at the fundamental rejection and see how that affects everything in the Christian faith.

The more significant divide is between those who believe in the divine power of God’s Word and those who do not. That involves the Virgin Birth, Creation, justification, and how we look at all of life.

Today I was editing the 2005 edition of Jesus, Lord of Creation. There is no difference between doubting the Creation, doubting the Virgin Birth, and doubting justification by faith. All aspects of God’s work involve the direct use of His Word. If God cannot accomplish a unique birth, then He cannot create by His Word, heal the sick, turn water into wine, and raise the dead.

Those who like the parts of the Bible they like and reject the rest are those who eventually reject everything in the Bible. They may go through life imagining they are believers. They may even retain that same selective spirit, without giving up everything. But they pass on a legacy of picking and choosing, and that ends up with leaving everything behind.

Thus we have a situation today where the Bible provides a base for motivational speeches designed to whip people into doing more works. I just saw a list of them, from a “conservative” Lutheran. Each one was along the lines of “God works so you can do more for Him.” At the very best, the titles suggested that God does His part so man can do his part, a divine transaction called synergism.

But God gives so that we can receive – monergism. The best comfort in this message throughout the Bible is this – we know where to receive the power and benefits of the Gospel, because God has bound Himself to the Word.

God gave us His Son in this unique way so we always think of God performing the miraculous through His Word. This birth is a miracle far beyond the promise made to Abraham.
How many impossibilities are tied up in this one event? Mary hardly knew what to think, but it was announced to her that it would happen. Joseph was tempted to divorce Mary, but he did not. They had to travel a long distance under difficult circumstances, definitely a trial by itself. They thought they might stay with relatives or at the inn, but even that was too much. So we are inspired by the fact of the Virgin Birth and also by the way God did everything His way instead of our way. Luther confessed that he would have managed things quite differently. For example, he would have had the Savior born in a palace, in the splendor He deserved.

Whatever might be a stumbling stone (literally a fatal trigger in a trap) is something to consider as part of God’s lesson in His Word. Everything has happened for a reason and for our benefit.

God shows us how He works in this Christmas story, and that is a clear reflection of “My thoughts are not your thoughts, and My ways are not your ways.” Isaiah 55.

Our interpretation should be this – that all the peculiar turns in life, the difficulties, crosses to bear, are part of God’s plan to bless us in some way and to be a blessing to others.

Mary and Joseph accepted their unique roles, but their lives were not ones of saintly bliss because of it. We can see a glimmer with Jesus in the Temple, when He let them search for Him sorrowing – for days. They took on a great burden but they also provided a great blessing for the whole, and were blessed because of it.

Faith means not seeing the outcome but trusting in God’s good and gracious will.

That trust, created by the Gospel, receives God’s complete and free forgiveness. Christ did not condemn the world but to give life, hope, and forgiveness to all those who believe in Him.




Luke’s Account
KJV Luke 2:1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed. 2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:) 5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child. 6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn. 8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. 10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. 12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

#646 Silent Night 4:38

Heavenly Host
Luke 2:13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. 15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us. 16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.

The Prayers and Benediction


#87 Joy to the World 1:20

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Mid-Week Advent Service


Advent, December 22, 2010

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bethany-lutheran-worship

Mid-Week Advent, Thursday, 7 PM Central

The Hymn # 554 Now Rest Beneath 3:67
The Order of Vespers p. 41
The Psalmody Psalm 100 p. 144
The First Lection
The Second Lection
The Sermon Hymn #294 O Word of God 3:31

Jesus God and Man

The Prayers and Lord’s Prayer p. 44
The Collect for Peace p. 45
The Benediction p. 45
The Hymn #136 Angels 3:86


KJV Romans 1:1 Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God, 2 (Which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures,) 3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; 4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead: 5 By whom we have received grace and apostleship, for obedience to the faith among all nations, for his name: 6 Among whom are ye also the called of Jesus Christ:

Luke 1:26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, 27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary. 28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women. 29 And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be. 30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. 31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. 32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: 33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. 34 Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? 35 And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

Jesus God and Man

Romans 1:3 Concerning his Son Jesus Christ our Lord, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; 4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

As Luther said, the Christian faith is attacked on three fronts:
1. Justification by faith.
2. The divinity of Jesus.
3. The humanity of Jesus.

In our era, the Virgin Birth is denied, not so much by outsiders, but by those within the visible church. They have all kinds of problems with finding it in the Scriptures, even where the statements are so obvious.

That alone is strange, but the Apostolic Church had no problem with the Virgin Birth. The struggle came with those who had deep misgivings about the Savior being born of a woman. That is why Mary was elevated so far beyond any Scriptural truths that she took on divinity herself (Immaculate Conception) to allow for the Savior being born of a woman.

In this eloquent opening of Paul’s greatest epistle, the Two Natures of Christ are taught with clarity and simplicity.

One thing we should always keep in mind is the Word of God teaching the same unified doctrine using many expressions. That shows the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, in giving us such truths in so many ways, so we cannot possibly miss unless we are at war against the Word.

In adult education the experts stress that we all learn in different ways. Groups of adults need to understand the same lesson according to their basic learning style. Since God is a wise and efficient manager, as Luther observed, and has done a good job directing everything for a long time, He has already implemented this theory in His Word.

Sometimes we say “Son of God, and Son of Man,” as Beautiful Savior expresses the Two Natures of Christ.

Paul communicated the Two Natures this way:
1. made of the seed of David according to the flesh
2. And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness.

The concise expression suggests that this was common teaching among all the Christians, because he is not writing as if anything is contested. When there is a battle over certain points, much more is said in defense of the truth.

The humanity of Christ is expressed in his birth according to the flesh, descended from the House of David, as He was through Mary.

The divinity of Christ is clearly stated in calling Him the Son of God. It is simply impossible to put the two statements together and exclude the Virgin Birth from them. In that era, the miraculous was expected. That is why Jesus performed miracles, the healing miracles plus those miracles which no one could possibly have claimed. To say, Jesus healed the sick, would have been somewhat routine in the eyes of many. Their rabbis also healed the sick. But no one turned water into wine, walked on water, stilled the storm, multiplied the loaves and raised the dead in front of many witnesses.

Those miracles elevated Jesus far above anyone who claimed miracles, legitimately or not.

The humanity of Christ is often overlooked or under-stated because so much has been said in the last century against His divinity, His Virgin Birth, His resurrection.

The humanity of Christ is vitally important, because this is the source of comfort in His ministry to us. There is no sorrow or pain unknown to Him, because He shared our earthly pilgrimage and faced the ultimate temptations, from Satan’s wiles to the betrayal of His own chosen disciples.

Hebrews 4: 12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.

14 Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. 15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. 16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.

Catechism books teach about the Word of God in the first few verses and the compassion of Christ in the next. The author of Hebrews put them together, doubtless for a reason, a Holy Spirit inspired reason.

The Word of God is far more powerful than any weapon we can imagine, because God looks into our inner being and nothing is secret from Him. Knowing the power of the Word, we can look to Christ for comfort, because He was tempted in every way we are, yet He remained without sin. Because He understands our weaknesses and temptations, we can always to Him for grace in time of need.

Being born in a humble stable, revealed to the shepherds and Wise Men as a baby, Jesus draws us to Him.

When I asked a group of children why God revealed Himself in the form of a baby, one child’s voice rang out, “Because no one is afraid of a baby.”

That was the best single answer I could imagine. The humanity of Jesus teaches us:

Yes, He is the Son of God, but He was born like us. He had and still has the same humanity today – our emotions, temptations, our joys and sorrows. He is not distant from us but close to us, always able to understand us in our weakness.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Witness Stone Blog - Responding to the ELCA

Witness Stone Blog - Responding to the ELCA

Fourth Sunday in Advent

By Norma Boeckler, whose birthday is December 22nd, Thursday.



The Fourth Sunday in Advent

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bethany-lutheran-worship

Bethany Lutheran Church, 10 AM Central Time


The Hymn # 94 Hark, the Herald Angels 3.19
The Confession of Sins
The Absolution
The Introit p. 16
The Gloria Patri
The Kyrie p. 17
The Gloria in Excelsis
The Salutation and Collect p. 19
The Epistle and Gradual
The Gospel
Glory be to Thee, O Lord!
Praise be to Thee, O Christ!
The Nicene Creed p. 22
The Sermon Hymn #90 Come, Your Hearts 3.83

Confessing Truth in the Desert

The Hymn # 103 – Luther To Shepherds 3.82
The Preface p. 24
The Sanctus p. 26
The Lord's Prayer p. 27
The Words of Institution
The Agnus Dei p. 28
The Nunc Dimittis p. 29
The Benediction p. 31
The Hymn #95 Savior of the Nations 3.42

KJV Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. 5 Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. 6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

KJV John 1:19 And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? 20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ. 21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. 22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? 23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias. 24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet? 26 John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not; 27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe's latchet I am not worthy to unloose. 28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.

Fourth Sunday In Advent
Lord God, heavenly Father, it is meet and right that we should give thanks unto Thee, that Thou hast given us a more glorious baptism than that of John the Baptist, and hast therein promised us the remission of sins, the Holy Spirit, and everlasting life through Thy Son, Jesus Christ: Preserve us, we beseech Thee, in such faith in Thy grace and mercy, that we may never doubt Thy promise, but be comforted by the same in all temptations: and grant us Thy Holy Spirit that we may renounce sin, and ever continue in the righteousness bestowed upon us in baptism, until by Thy grace we obtain eternal salvation, through the same, Thy beloved Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one true God, world without end. Amen.

Confessing Truth in the Desert

John 1: 20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ. 21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. 22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? 23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.

Lenski:
23) Thus approached, the Baptist complies. He said, I am a voice shouting in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said Isaiah the prophet. The Baptist uses Isa. 40:3, and himself mentions the prophet whose words he uses when characterizing himself. Compare the author’s The Eisenach Old Testament Selections, 66, etc. The claim that the Baptist here merely appropriates Isaiah’s words and does not mean to say that he and his work are the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy would certainly be remarkable if true. Matt. 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4 interpret Isaiah’s word as actually being fulfilled in the Baptist and in his work. Even without this decisive evidence no other conclusion can be drawn from the Baptist’s answer to the committee of the Sanhedrin. He furnishes this committee with more than they had asked when they requested, “What dost thou say concerning thyself?” He supplies them with a divinely inspired statement from the greatest of their own prophets concerning his person and his work. Isaiah’s words do not merely happen to fit the Baptist’s thought, these words constitute the authority for his work.
The fact that the Baptist quotes in a free and an abbreviated way is entirely immaterial. This liberty is constantly used by those who quote. Isaiah writes, “Voice of a crier, In the wilderness prepare ye the way of the Lord, make straight in the desert a highway for our God!” The Baptist declares not that he is such a voice, not that this picture of a voice in some way fits him also; but that he himself is this voice. He even imitates the Hebrew when he says, literally, “I—voice of a crier.” While the parallelism of the Hebrew lines induces us to connect the phrase “in the wilderness” with the verb prepare instead of with “the voice” (A. V.), this makes little difference. The Baptist evidently understands Isaiah to mean that both the voice and the highway are “in the desert,” and, surely, the fact of the fulfillment shows that this is correct.
Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. John's Gospel. Minneapolis, MN : Augsburg Publishing House, 1961, S. 112.

End of Lenski quotation.

Confessing the truth is vital in the Scriptures. The term is used in the famous confession/hymn/poem of 1 Timothy 3:16.

KJV 1 Timothy 3:16 And without controversy [GJ – literally – confessionally] great is the mystery of godliness:
God was manifest in the flesh,
justified in the Spirit,
seen of angels,
preached unto the Gentiles,
believed on in the world,
received up into glory.

Beginning preachers will look at this text and ask, “Why not something about Jesus?” This text is all about Jesus, the turning point in Biblical history.

From the beginning of time the Savior of the world was predicted by God, starting with Genesis 3:15. Because He would come from Israel, Satan pursued that nation until there was nothing left but a stump, at the birth of Jesus. The rule over Judea passed over from the house of David. The spiritual leaders knew that meant the coming of the Messiah. Herod knew and feared that fact.

The new Isaiah would announce the coming of the Messiah, and John the Baptist fulfilled that expectation as well.

The religious opponents bore down on John to make him deny his role. But he confessed and did not deny, but confessed…In Greek class we thought it was funny that John’s Gospel was so repetitive. But the repetition is there for emphasis, to help us remember, and to create a contrast with the opposite.

How many people are asked to confess the truth, yet they make excuses, water down their response, and even deny what they said before?

That is especially true of witnessing the truth about the Christian faith. The religious opponents are in the visible organization, just as they were at the time of Jesus. We know that the religious leadership of the Jews contained followers of Jesus and opponents. That was revealed at his burial, when two of them helped with the funeral arrangements.

The temptation for John was to deny his role and ultimately to deny Christ, but he confessed the truth rather than deny Christ. That led to his death, because being faithful to the Word was not a matter of convenience.

23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.

As Lenski mentioned, the fussy scholars want the Bible to follow APA standards and use verbatim quotations and a correct citation. The Word of God can quote the Word of God without the APA. It is the mark of authority to condense and rephrase the words without changing the content.

False teachers use the correct words and change the meaning – saying – no it really means the opposite of what appears before your lying eyes. Insecure false teachers say, “I studied Greek, so I know what it says, and you don’t. In fact, you cannot question anything I say.” Thus the Word of God is set aside for the claims of a third-rate student at a fourth-rate school.

Verse 23 is a great announcement, but also one filled with danger. To confess Christ in the midst of opponents invites hatred, revenge, and suffering. Yet that is exactly what we are expected to do, because the Word of God works upon opponents in two ways. It always creates rebellion in the Old Adam, and no one is immune from that response.

When the Old Adam, our sinful nature, is disturbed, we think about the disturbance and the Holy Spirit works upon us. Those who sincerely listen to the Word are converted and persuaded by God Himself. This change happens when we first become believers, but also when we wander away from the Gospel and when we fall into confusion.

The other response, in rebellion, is to harden the heart against the Word. The deeper people are sunk into falsehood, the greater the antagonism will be. That is why people fear witnessing to the truth, because they know there will be consequences from hardened hearts. That does not mean we have to court opposition. In fact, that seldom needs to happen. Opposition comes knocking, as the religious opponents did. They came to John and asked.

People will ask, out of the blue, “Do you think Jesus is the only way of salvation?” I quote Jesus on that topic. “I am The Way, The Truth, and The Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” If they want to argue that, they are arguing against Jesus.

I got into a religious discussion in a hospital waiting room. I was not looking for it. The idea of the Law being required for salvation entered the discussion. I pointed out that it was like an x-ray, good for diagnosis, but useless for treatment. A broken bone is seen by an x-ray, but an x-ray cannot heal it. The Law diagnoses our sinful condition, but only the Gospel of forgiveness can heal it.

So many are raised on salvation by works of the Law that this needs to be said.

John 1: 24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?

John was the greatest of all – the Forerunner. As Lenski observed, the Pharisees did not quite realize they were talking to the Forerunner himself, the one immediately before the Christ. And today, many religious scholars have the same problem.

John’s answer emphasized his spiritual role in preparing people for the Messiah. The language used before is akin to the preparation before the visit of an Oriental Emperor. The people were to prepare themselves spiritually through the Word in a similar way.

Lenski:
The figure in Isaiah’s words is that of an oriental king with his retinue for whom the roads are prepared when they are making a royal passage in state. So Christ, now assuming his office, comes. “Such preparation is spiritual. It consists in deep conviction and confession that you are unfit, a sinner, poor, damned, and miserable with all the works you are able to do.” Neither the prophet nor the Baptist are to be understood as intending that men should by their own natural powers make straight the way of the Lord into their hearts, for this would demand the impossible. The power for this spiritual preparation the Baptist himself offered in his preaching and his Baptism, i.e., in these means of grace. Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. John's Gospel. Minneapolis, MN : Augsburg Publishing House, 1961, S. 114.

End of Lenski quotation.

The witness or confession is significant because it is testimony about God’s truth, not man’s opinion.

When people feel obliged to take care of themselves first, they readily compromise and water down God’s truth. That is always the safe bet in the short one, and it will be rewarded.

But where does it end? People imagine they can take one strand and discard that for the moment, because that is the popular thing to do. Where closed communion is the battle, they step away from the clear meaning of the term and invent a new variation. Many like that because it shows an open-mindedness. I remember Klemet Preus discussing it in class at Ft. Wayne. He was teaching. It was obvious from his comments that the issue was open for debate and decided both ways in the LCMS. And yet they said they supported the historic practice of closed communion. They gave lip service, but actual practice was 50/50.

The danger is not so much in the bad practice, but the attitude behind it. Once the attitude is wrong, anything after that can happen. Therefore, doctrinal indifference causes open communion and welcomes a host of other difficulties, until nothing is left.

That reminds me of the Methodist leader who defended a radical (about 80 years ago) by saying, “We can afford one person like that.” That was a clever evasion. It was meant to flatter the denomination – we are so big and strong, so powerful, that one self-destructing radical will not hurt us. We are rich in everything so he cannot hurt us. In a few years the conservative Methodists became the leaders in every radical cause, from Communism to gay ordination. The same author thought it was comical that some Methodists would not pray with a minister who denied the Virgin Birth. How narrow! I am not sure what he thought Christmas involved.

One WELS pastor said, “Everyone knows Larry Olson is a heretic, so he’s harmless.” And yet this harmless heretic has run a synod-wide program based on false doctrine – for decades.

We never know when that moment comes and a witness for the truth will make a significant change in a person’s life. That chance may come and go. Confidence in the truth allows us to speak, knowing that God works through His Word and accomplishes His purpose.

I annoyed a Jewish lady by saying most Reformed rabbis were atheists who believed in nothing. That prompted her to ask her rabbi, and he confirmed what I said. A period of distrust in me led to more trust. She asked a famous liberal theologian about heaven and he had nothing to say. He missed that moment because he had abandoned the Word of God while achieving fame. Now she is a Christian believer. I am not sure when that happened, but she welcomes orthodox Lutheran material.

Gifts can be important. One member gave me “What Luther Says,” and I used that to help with sermons and doctrine. Staying close to Luther made it relatively easy to leave the LCA and to fight Church Growth.

I gave my favorite set of Luther to a Catholic priest at Notre Dame, around 1980. He wrote to say he still reads it. I imagine he reads it more than most Lutheran pastors do.

One Catholic layman said, “Why don’t you join us?” I said, “Because of what you say about the crucifixion.” He wanted an explanation. I said, “According to Catholics, Jesus did not do enough. He died on the cross for forgiveness, but my sins are not paid for. Therefore, His work was incomplete. I have to finish it myself.”

The layman said, “I never thought of that.”

The Word conveys Christ to us and to others. We do not have to be memory experts or theologians to witness the truth God has given us. “Faith makes us bold,” as Luther said. Trusting in the Word lets us speak that truth without excuse or compromise. What people reject is Christ, not us. What people receive with joy is Christ, not us. Yet we have the privilege to share in what the Word does and to see its progress.

Quotations

Advent IV
"Melanchthon, the Hamlet of the Reformation, shrinking from action into contemplation, with a dangerous yearning for a peace which must have been hollow and transient, had become more and more entangled in the complications of a specious but miserable policy which he felt made him justly suspected by those whose confidence in him had once been unlimited."
Charles P. Krauth, The Conservative Reformation and Its Theology, Philadelphia: 1913 (1871), p. 85.
"If we would be Christians, therefore, we must surely expect and reckon upon having the devil with all his angels and the world as our enemies, who will bring every possible misfortune and grief upon us. For where the Word of God is preached, accepted, or believed, and produces fruit, there the holy cross cannot be wanting. And let no one think that he shall have peace; but he must risk whatever he has upon earth--possessions, honor, house and estate, wife and children, body and life. Now, this hurts our flesh and the old Adam; for the test is to be steadfast and to suffer with patience in whatever way we are assailed, and to let go whatever is taken from us."
Large Catechism, The Lord's Prayer, Third Petition, #65, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 715.
"That forbearance which is a fruit of the Spirit retains its characteristic kindness whether directed toward friend or enemy, toward rich or poor."
Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholaus Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VI, p. 103.
"Prayer is made vigorous by petitioning; urgent, by supplication; by thanksgiving, pleasing and acceptable. Strength and acceptability combine to prevail and secure the petition."
Sermons of Martin Luther, VI, p. 107.
"The Lord's Prayer opens with praise and thanksgiving and the acknowledgement of God as a Father; it earnestly presses toward Him through filial love and a recognition of fatherly tenderness. For supplication, this prayer is unequaled. Hence it is the sublimest and the noblest prayer ever uttered."
Sermons of Martin Luther, VI, p. 107.
"This, mark you, is the peace of the cross, the peace of God, peace of conscience, Christian peace, which gives us even external calm, which makes us satisfied with all men and unwilling to disturb any. Reason cannot understand how there can be pleasure in crosses, and peace in disquietude; it cannot find these. Such peace is the work of God, and none can understand it until it has been experienced."
Sermons of Martin Luther, VI, p. 111.
"The reference [the Votum] is simply to a disposition to trust and love God sincerely, and a willingness of heart and mind to serve God and man to the utmost. The devil seeks to prevent this state by terror, by revealing death and by every sort of misfortune; and by setting up human devices to induce the heart to seek comfort and help in its own counsels and in man. Thus led astray, the heart falls from trust in God to a dependence upon itself."
Sermons of Martin Luther, VI, p. 111.
"Thus we have two parts, preaching and believing. His coming to us is preaching; His standing in our hearts is faith. For it is not sufficient that He stand before our eyes and ears; He must stand in the midst of us in our hearts, and offer and impart to us peace."
Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., xd., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 355. John 20:19-31.
"For the devil will not allow a Christian to have peace; therefore Christ must bestow it in a manner different from that in which the world has and gives, in that he quiets the heart and removes from within fear and terror, although without there remain contention and misfortune."
Sermons of Martin Luther, II, p. 380.
"Joy is the natural fruit of faith. The apostle says elsewhere (Galatians 5:22-23): 'The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, meekness, self-control.' Until the heart believes in God, it is impossible for it to rejoice in Him. When faith is lacking, man is filled with fear and gloom and is disposed to flee at the very mention, the mere thought, of God. Indeed, the unbelieving heart is filled with enmity and hatred against God. Conscious of its own guilt, it has no confidence in His gracious mercy; it knows God is an enemy to sin and will terribly punish the same."
Sermons of Martin LutherVI, p. 93.
"To rejoice in the Lord--to trust, confide, glory and have pride in the Lord as in a gracious Father--this is a joy which rejects all else but the Lord, including that self-righteousness whereof Jeremiah speaks (9:23-24): 'Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches; but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he hath understanding, and knoweth Me.'"
Sermons of Martin Luther, VI, p. 95.
"Now, suppose some blind, capricious individual intrudes, demanding as necessary the omission of this thing and the observance of that, as did certain Jews, and insisting that all men follow him and he none--this would be to destroy equality; indeed, even to exterminate Christian liberty and faith. Like Paul, in the effort to maintain liberty and truth, everyone should refuse to yield to any such demand."
Sermons of Martin Luther, VI, p. 98.
"Christ's kingdom grows through tribulations and declines in times of peace, ease and luxury, as St. Paul says in 2 Cor. 12:9 'My power is made perfect in weakness, etc.' To this end help us God! Amen."
Sermons of Martin Luther, II, p. 99.
"The ultimate purpose of afflictions is the mortification of the flesh, the expulsion of sins, and the checking of that original evil which is embedded in our nature. And the more you are cleansed, the more you are blessed in the future life. For without a doubt glory will follow upon the calamities and vexations which we endure in this life. But the prime purpose of all these afflictions is the purification, which is extremely necessary and useful, lest we snore and become torpid and lazy because of the lethargy of our flesh. For when we enjoy peace and rest, we do not pray, we do not meditate on the Word but deal coldly with the Scriptures and everything that pertains to God or finally lapse into a shameful and ruinous security."
What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 18.
"The church is recognized, not by external peace but by the Word and the Sacraments. For wherever you see a small group that has the true Word and the Sacraments, there the church is if only the pulpit and the baptismal font are pure. The church does not stand on the holiness of any one person but solely on the holiness and righteousness of the Lord Christ, for He has sanctified her by Word and Sacrament."
Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 263. Matthew 24:4-7.
"When you preach or confess the Word, you will experience both without, among enemies, and also within, in yourself (where the devil himself will speak to you and prove how hostile he is to you), that he brings you into sadness, impatience, and depression, and that he torments you in all sorts of ways. Who does all this? Certainly not Christ or any good spirit, but the miserable, loathsome enemy...The devil will not bear to have you called a Christian and to cling to Christ or to speak or think a good word about Him. Rather he would gladly poison and permeate your heart with venom and gall, so that you would blaspheme: Why did He make me a Christian? Why do I not let Him go? Then I would at last have peace."
Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 928.
"We have no intention of yielding aught of the eternal, immutable truth of God for the sake of temporal peace, tranquility, and unity (which, moreover, is not in our power to do). Nor would such peace and unity, since it is devised against the truth and for its suppression, have any permanency. Still less are we inclined to adorn and conceal a corruption of the pure doctrine and manifest, condemned errors. But we entertain heartfelt pleasure and love for, and are on our part sincerely inclined and anxious to advance, that unity according to our utmost power, by which His glory remains to God uninjured, nothing of the divine truth of the Holy Gospel is surrendered, no room is given to the least error, poor sinners are brought to true, genuine repentance, raised up by faith, confirmed in new obedience, and thus justified and eternally saved alone through the sole merit of Christ." (Closing of Formula of Concord, Triglotta. p. 1095)
Francis Pieper, The Difference Between Orthodox And Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 65.
"When a theologian is asked to yield and make concessions in order that peace may at last be established in the Church, but refuses to do so even in a single point of doctrine, such an action looks to human reason like intolerable stubbornness, yea, like downright malice. That is the reason why such theologians are loved and praised by few men during their lifetime. Most men rather revile them as disturbers of the peace, yea, as destroyers of the kingdom of God. They are regarded as men worthy of contempt. But in the end it becomes manifest that this very determined, inexorable tenacity in clinging to the pure teaching of the divine Word by no means tears down the Church; on the contrary, it is just this which, in the midst of greatest dissension, builds up the Church and ultimately brings about genuine peace. Therefore, woe to the Church which has no men of this stripe, men who stand as watchmen on the walls of Zion, sound the alarm whenever a foe threatens to rush the walls, and rally to the banner of Jesus Christ for a holy war.”
C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 28.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Mid-Week Advent Service

By Norma Boeckler


Advent, December 15, 2010


Pastor Gregory L. Jackson


http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bethany-lutheran-worship


Mid-Week Advent, Thursday, 7 PM Central


The Hymn #81 Gerhardt Thy Manger Is 3.60

The Order of Vespers p. 41

The Psalmody Psalm 100 p. 144

The First Lection

The Second Lection

The Sermon Hymn #90 Gerhardt Come Your Hearts 3.83


Sanctification Follows Justification


The Prayers and Lord’s Prayer p. 44

The Collect for Peace p. 45

The Benediction p. 45

The Hymn # 93 O Lord We Welcome 3.40


KJV 2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth: 14 Whereunto he called you by our gospel, to the obtaining of the glory of our Lord Jesus Christ. 15 Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle. 16 Now our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God, even our Father, which hath loved us, and hath given us everlasting consolation and good hope through grace, 17 Comfort your hearts, and stablish you in every good word and work.


KJV Luke 1:1 Forasmuch as many have taken in hand to set forth in order a declaration of those things which are most surely believed among us, 2 Even as they delivered them unto us, which from the beginning were eyewitnesses, and ministers of the word; 3 It seemed good to me also, having had perfect understanding of all things from the very first, to write unto thee in order, most excellent Theophilus, 4 That thou mightest know the certainty of those things, wherein thou hast been instructed.


Sanctification


The whole clause expresses one thought: “God chose you from the beginning unto salvation in connection with sanctification of spirit and faith in truth.” There is no other choice or election save this one for salvation in connection with sanctification and faith. Some think only of final salvation (heaven), i.e., of the “glory” mentioned in v. 14; but sanctification and faith point to “salvation” both here and hereafter.

Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. Paul's Epistles to the Colossians, to the Thessalonians, to Timothy, to Titus and to Philemon. Columbus, O. : Lutheran Book Concern, 1937, S. 439.


Today I would like to emphasize the ongoing work of the Gospel Word in our lives, which is often called sanctification.


When people understand the Holy Spirit’s work in creating faith and justifying us, the continuous work of sanctification is also clear.


Sanctification is a long, Latin word for “making holy.” We do not make ourselves holy. The Gospel Word does that.


Lutherans often emphasize and talk about justification, even when they are abusing the term and twisting its meaning.


This is really simple and plain, easy to understand. The Gospel Promises create faith in our hearts and sustain that faith. Faith receives God’s declaration of forgiveness. That begins with conversion when we are first unbelievers, whether as babies or later in life. Receiving forgiveness in faith means trusting in God’s work in Christ on the cross. Both the creation of faith and the declaration of forgiveness are God’s work (monergism).


Obviously, many have rebelled against this simple message, building all manner of hedges, traps, sinkholes, and barriers. In a few words, they add works to faith.


This forgiveness is a continuous action for believers, but that is not all that happens. The Gospel Word is like good yeast, which continues to permeate our lives, slowly having more effect


Justification is God’s action through the Word, and sanctification is also His action through the Word.


Forgiveness is just the beginnings of God’s blessings through the Word. The New Testament uses the term “saints” for believers, which literally means “the holy.” Believers are holy because God has made them holy.


No one is a saint without faith. Giving someone the status of a saint, without faith, is absolute absurdity, but that is the official opinion of the Wisconsin Sect and the ELS. To make matters worse, they like to say that everyone in Hell is a saint. That only makes sense if one subscribes to their notion of grace without the Means of Grace, forgiveness without faith, without the Word of the Gospel.


Universalism pops up in many ways today because it is a symptom of rationalism, subjecting the Word of God to human reason, that is, subordinating God’s Word to man’s opinions.


Modern Roman Catholics have a version of this, which is called The Anonymous Christian. That little deviation is enormously popular among the moderns and is widely repeated by liberal Protestants. It came from the Jesuit Karl Rahner, who said that when missionaries come to pagan lands, they find people who are loving, kind, and generous. They have the attributes of Christians without knowing who Christ is. Hence they are anonymous Christians. Taken a little farther, it makes someone ask, “Why are we going there? We only bring our own sins there.”


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anonymous_Christian


The statement quoted in Wikipedia is almost identical to a passage in C. S. Lewis.


Ultimately, faith is the stumbling block, because faith means complete, child-like trust in God’s Word.


Our Old Adam rebels against faith. For instance, any time we object to bearing the cross, the pain and complaining mean that we do not trust it is for our own good.


Whenever we doubt the goodness of God and His gracious will for us, our faith is being submerged by the Old Adam, which will never go away while we are alive.


That is why it is comical when people pretend to be holy through their works when this inherent selfishness remains in us and must be fought against with the weapon of the Word.


The Holy Spirit in the Law slays our self-righteousness and convicts us of not believing on Jesus Christ.


Lenski likes “believing on” and I think I know why. The term is a bit foreign for me, but I think he takes it to mean “total trust in.”


WELS church lady mentioned “hating on” someone, and we know what that means. Everyone piles on and there is nothing but malice and revenge. That goes with shunning. Sometimes the hate is most eloquently expressed in silence and making someone invisible.


“Loving on” is a Southern expression I hear in Arkansas. One woman said, “I was just loving on my little niece…” I knew exactly what she meant. When we are with a small child who is a relative (like a grandchild, niece, or nephew) we give total love to that child and show it in many ways, with words and hugs and kisses.


So I would translate the famous passage in John 16 this way:

KJV John 16:7 Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. 8 And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment: 9 Of sin, because they believe not on me; 10 Of righteousness, because I go to my Father, and ye see me no more;


Jackson Living Bible – The Holy Spirit will convict the world of sin, because they do not trust completely in Me for their salvation.


KJV Romans 8:30 Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified. [GJ – This utterly destroys UOJ in one verse.]


Luther often exchanged justification and sanctification when he wrote, because the two go together. Justification brings sanctification, and sanctification presumes justification by faith.


Following justification is the life of the believer – sanctification. Whatever we do in faith glories God who created this faith through the Gospel. Works of faith follow salvation. The fuel for these works is the Gospel Word. Its effect moves us to be generous, patient, kindly, willing to speak about our faith.


If those attributes are lacking, we should look at whether we trust completely in Christ for our salvation.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Third Sunday in Advent

Norma Boeckler


The Third Sunday in Advent

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson

http://www.ustream.tv/channel/bethany-lutheran-worship

Bethany Lutheran Church, 10 AM Central Time


The Hymn # 8 Father Who the Light 2. 20
The Confession of Sins
The Absolution
The Introit p. 16
The Gloria Patri
The Kyrie p. 17
The Gloria in Excelsis
The Salutation and Collect p. 19
The Epistle and Gradual
The Gospel
Glory be to Thee, O Lord!
Praise be to Thee, O Christ!
The Nicene Creed p. 22
The Sermon Hymn #76 A Great and Mighty Wonder 2.2

Blessed Is He

The Hymn # 77:1-8 All My Heart 2.25
The Preface p. 24
The Sanctus p. 26
The Lord's Prayer p. 27
The Words of Institution
The Agnus Dei p. 28
The Nunc Dimittis p. 29
The Benediction p. 31
The Hymn # 77:9-15 All My Heart 2.25

KJV 1 Corinthians 4:1 Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God. 2 Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful. 3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man's judgment: yea, I judge not mine own self. 4 For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord. 5 Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

KJV Matthew 11:2 Now when John had heard in the prison the works of Christ, he sent two of his disciples, 3 And said unto him, Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another? 4 Jesus answered and said unto them, Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see: 5 The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them. 6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me. 7 And as they departed, Jesus began to say unto the multitudes concerning John, What went ye out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken with the wind? 8 But what went ye out for to see? A man clothed in soft raiment? behold, they that wear soft clothing are in kings' houses. 9 But what went ye out for to see? A prophet? yea, I say unto you, and more than a prophet. 10 For this is he, of whom it is written, Behold, I send my messenger before thy face, which shall prepare thy way before thee.

Third Sunday In Advent
Lord God, heavenly Father, who didst suffer Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to become man, and to come into the world, that He might destroy the works of the devil, deliver us poor offenders from sin and death, and give us everlasting life: We beseech Thee so to rule and govern our hearts by Thy Holy Spirit, that we may seek no other refuge than His word, and thus avoid all offense to which, by nature, we are inclined, in order that we may always be found among the faithful followers of Thy Son, Jesus Christ, and by faith in Him obtain eternal salvation, through the same, Thy beloved Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one true God, world without end. Amen.

Blessed Is He

2) Now when John heard in his prison the works of the Christ, having sent by his disciples, he said to him, Thou, art thou the One Coming, or shall we be expecting someone else? We know about John’s imprisonment from 4:12, and shall learn still more in 14:3. In his prison John heard all about the activity (the works) of Jesus, whom Matthew here calls “the Christ” in order at once to state what these “works” actually revealed about Jesus, namely that he was “the Christ,” the Messiah. The supposition that The Christ is here a personal name is answered when we read a few chapters and see how Matthew designates the Lord’s person. We may be sure that in his confinement the Baptist longed the more for news of Jesus. That confinement in the fortress Machærus (Josephus, Ant. 18, 5, 2) permitted free intercourse with the friends of the Baptist. After his execution they were allowed to bury the body of their master. The fact that the Baptist should continue to have disciples of his own implies no more than that he continued his work of preparing the way for Jesus, and the simplest way to do this would be to win devoted followers to whom he could convey all that God had revealed to him.
Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. Matthew's Gospel. Minneapolis, MN. : Augsburg Publishing House, 1961, S. 424.

Every blessing is Gospel, and we have a good example here.

Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see: 5 The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them. 6 And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.

The fact is, many are offended at Jesus and make an issue out of faith in Him. This lesson is one example. The skeptics point to it as example of John having disciples and being a rival of Jesus. I remember one professor saying that John may have had more disciples than Jesus after the crucifixion. That seems unlikely, given the enormous crowds following Jesus, especially after the raising of Lazarus, just before the crucifixion.

But that is the point of being offended. There is just one point of contention in the ministry of Christ. Many have called themselves the Savior. Many have had miracles attributed to them, whether true or not. The religious skeptics seem to like those other religious figures – the more, the better.

The offensive point is deeply troubling for the unbeliever. It is this – righteousness comes only from Him, only through faith in Him as God’s beloved Son. The reason for this offense comes from all non-believers trusting in their own righteousness or their own ability to please God. That takes on many strange symptoms, such as buying cloth bags for groceries, so salmonella can be stored in them – from leaking raw chicken packages. The excuse given is – to make planet earth happy with us.

The surest sign of false religion, including variations upon the Christian faith, is this – using works to please God. If certain works are not performed, God is angry. Often the modern Pharisee will use that motivation to get something from deceived followers, as in “We need more outreach!” But the same Pharisees do not trust the Gospel to accomplish that.

Last night I saw video of a camel being led into church. The handler had the camel kneel in the church aisle. When the came got up, he fell over into the pews, onto some of the people there. The news reported that the camel was unharmed (my biggest worry) and that people were not injured.

Someone said in that church, “More people will come if we have a circus, with animals coming down the church aisle.” The leaders agreed and doubtless many came, just to see the entertainment. Anyone opposed to this was probably accused of being against evangelism.

J. P. Meyer is never quoted in his Corinthians commentary for his best point there. We should never use entertainment to adulterate the Gospel. It proves we are offended by the Gospel when we have to attract people to it with gimmicks. That would have been a good doctrinal point for the entire synod (instead of Kokomo UOJ) to focus upon, for all its work. This point about adulterating the Word is based upon the efficacy of the Word. Of course, one must be consistent and always stay in harmony with the Biblical truths. If the Word is always efficacious, then the Word can be the only Means by which people are converted, justified and saved.

On the positive side, not being offended is judged worthy of blessing by Jesus. Believers are blessed in their trust of Him as the Savior.

1. The blind receive their sight,
2. and the lame walk,
3. the lepers are cleansed,
4. and the deaf hear,
5. the dead are raised up,
6. and the poor have the gospel preached to them.

Without counting, I guessed that the list included six actions. Whenever God is at work, groups of three can be found, because the One True God is Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. That too, offends the moderns. They have to modify and adulterate the terms, because Father and Son imply “male.” Shocking. Although “man” is generic, derived from the German, “and became man” had to be modified for the heretical “fully human,” which is ambiguous, indicating an offense at Jesus being the Son of God rather than just the Child of God, as the new translations will increasingly show.

When someone says, “a male,” the emphasis is upon gender. When someone says, “a man,” the gender is implied and clear enough but not emphasized. Greek is exactly the same. The “fully human” debacle came from the feminists being scandalized (blessed is he who takes no offense) at the Son of God, and the wording of the Creed and now the Bible was changed with the excuse that the Creed does not say “and became male.” That is a bait and switch argument. The real reason is hidden away and a false reason is offered for the adulteration.

Krauth said long ago that the opponents do not stop at undermining the Creeds. The next step is Scripture itself. The so-called conservative Lutherans (LCMS, WELS, ELS) bought the NIV paraphrase and earned big money with it. Publishing is a business, after all. Now they have painted themselves into a corner with the newest NIV being exactly what the WELS “fully human” Creeds implied – they are ashamed that Jesus was the Son of God rather than the ambiguous Child of God. To appreciate the brazen nature of this work, one must pick up a Bible and see: “Our Father [Mother] in heaven…” and the only-begotten Son being converted into the Child of God.

Ichabod shows how the next step is goddess worship, travel to pagan shrines, and use of pagan rituals – all in the name of the Gospel.
Jesus said in His list of six actions. These great miracles have been placed before your eyes, so I am indeed the promised Messiah. If you believe in Me (if you take no offense) you are blessed by God.

Blessings should be seen as primarily spiritual blessings. Too often these blessings are converted in our own minds into material rewards. The greatest blessing is one we can enjoy in prison, in the hospital, in the midst of difficulties. When people identify blessings with material benefits, they connect faith to those outward signs alone, and feel disappointed and bitter. The most famous false teachers do that for people and drive them full speed to their Father Below.

Some people offended by Creeds and said “The Bible alone,” which is not entirely wrong. However, translations introduce their own beliefs (feminist, anti-Sacrament) and mislead people. Creeds are not Scriptures, but they identify what we believe from Scriptures. The offense taken about Creeds is quickly turned into offense about the Word of God itself. Rationalism does not stop at Creeds but continues into the revealed Word of God. The same is true of emotionalism, so people will say (contradicting their supposed belief) – “I just don’t accept that passage.”

Error grows just as faith grows. If we have one aspect of the entire Christian faith correctly understood, the rest will be in harmony. For example, trust in the Feeding of the Five Thousand will inform the believer about Holy Communion. When Jesus silenced the storm with the Word, we can see how He can also absolve our sins with the Word and raise the dead with the Word.

The fundamental understanding of the entire Bible (and Lutheran Confessions) is this – everything happens through the Word and never apart from the Word. That is God’s promise and decree.

Quotations

"MYTH #3: MOST PEOPLE BECOME BELIEVERS THROUGH EVANGELISTIC PREACHING. Many think that if you can bring an unbeliever to church, the pastor can 'save' them. The reality is that they are much more likely to come to faith in Christ through friends or family. The survey reveals that only one of eight people came to faith because of a preaching presentation."

Rev. Michael Ruhl, "Here Are Five Evangelism Myths..." The Michigan Lutheran, January 1996 Board of Evangelism and Church Growth.



"George Barna is a Christian researcher/author/marketer/social analyst who tends to 'turn a lot of heads' when he speaks. He usually couches his provocative and interpretive comments to the church with honesty and reality. On occasion he has been retained by leaders of the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod to facilitate mission interpretation from an outside perspective."

Rev. Michael Ruhl, "Here Are Five Evangelism Myths..." The Michigan Lutheran, January 1996 Board of Evangelism and Church Growth. 1 Thessalonians 2:13



"Church. An assembly of professed believers under the discipline of the Word of God, organized to carry out the Great Commission, administer the ordinances, and minister with spiritual gifts."

C. Peter Wagner, ed., with Win Arn and Elmer Towns, Church Growth: The State of the Art, Wheaton: Tyndale House, 1986, p. 283f. Matthew 28



"The means of grace are thus limited for Barth. The preacher descending from the pulpit can never quote Luther and say with joyful assurance that he has preached the Word of God. Of course, he can hope and pray; but he can never know whether the Holy Spirit has accompanied the preached Word, and hence whether his words were the Word of God. To know this, or even to wish to know it, would be a presumptuous encroachment of man upon the sovereign freedom of God."

Hermann Sasse, Here We Stand, trans. Theodore G. Tappert, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1946, p. 161.



(1) "Almighty Father, bless the Word Which through your grace we now have heard Oh, may the precious seed take root, Spring up, and bear abundant fruit. (2) We praise you for the means of grace As homeward now our steps we trace. Grant, Lord, that we who worshiped here May all at last in heaven appear." Scandinavian, The Lutheran Hymnary, 1913, Lutheran Worship, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1982, Hymn #216. Mark 4.



"The atonement is graciously efficacious to the salvation of the irresponsible and to children in innocency but is efficacious to the salvation of those who reach the age of responsibility only when they repent and believe." Manual of the Church of the Nazarene, Kansas City: Nazarene Publishing House, 1932, p. 27.



"PREPARING FOR HOLY COMMUNION. BECAUSE...I am very sorry for my sins...I trust only in Jesus as my Savior from sin...I receive from the Sacrament the forgiveness and strength I need to amend my life...I believe the words of my Lord that His Body and Blood are REALLY PRESENT in Holy Communion. Therefore I announce my desire to partake of the Lord's Supper:...

Crossroads Community Church, Pastor Rick Miller (WELS),



"Hence, too, the lack of emphasis, even in the best of Reformed preaching, upon the divine Word as the vehicle of regenerating grace and on the Sacraments. The office of the Word, then, is merely to point to the way of life, without communicating that of which it conveys the idea. The Word and Sacraments are declared to be necessary; their office in the Church is a divine institution; but they are only symbols of what the Spirit does within; and the Spirit works immediately and irresistibly."

"Grace, Means of," The Concordia Cyclopedia, L. Fuerbringer, Th. Engelder, P. E. Kretzmann, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1927, p. 298.



"The doctrine of the means of grace is a peculiar glory of Lutheran theology. To this central teaching it owes its sanity and strong appeal, its freedom from sectarian tendencies and morbid fanaticism, its coherence and practicalness, and its adaptation to men of every race and every degree of culture. The Lutheran Confessions bring out with great clearness the thought of the Reformers upon this subject."

"Grace, Means of," The Concordia Cyclopedia, L. Fuerbringer, Th. Engelder, P. E. Kretzmann, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1927, J-101 p. 299.



"The crudest extravagances of revivalism (Methodism, Pentecostalism, Holy Rollerism) have their root in this specifically Reformed doctrine of the immediate working of the Holy Spirit." [Fuller Seminary is known for its Pentecostal extremism, including C. Peter Wagner's "Signs and Wonders" course.]

"Grace, Means of," The Concordia Cyclopedia, L. Fuerbringer, Th. Engelder, P. E. Kretzmann, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1927, p. 299.



(2) "Come, Thou Incarnate Word, Gird on Thy mighty sword, Our prayer attend. Come and Thy people bless And give Thy Word success; Stablish Thy righteousness, Savior and Friend!" Author unknown, c. 1757, "Come, Thou Almighty King," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #239. Revelation 4:8.



(3) "God would not have the sinner die, His Son with saving grace is nigh, His Spirit in the Word doth teach How man the blessed goal may reach." Author unknown, 1719, "God Loved the World So That He Gave," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, J-109 Hymn #245. John 3:16.



(1) "Draw nigh and take the body of the Lord And drink the holy blood for you outpoured. Offered was He for greatest and for least, Himself the Victim and Himself the Priest." c. 680,"Draw Night and Take the Body of the Lord," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #307. Psalm 34:8.



"To the Lutheran the sermon, as the preached Word, is a means of grace. Through it the Holy Spirit calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian church on earth. It is a constant offer of pardon; a giving of life, as well as a nourishing and strengthening of life. In the Reformed churches the sermon is apt to be more hortatory and ethical. It partakes more of the sacrificial than of the sacramental character. The individuality of the preacher, the subjective choice of a text, the using of it merely for a motto, the discussion of secular subjects, the unrestrained platform style, lack of reverence, lack of dignity, and many other faults are common, and are not regarded as unbecoming the messenger of God in His temple. Where there is a properly trained Lutheran consciousness such things repel, shock, and are not tolerated."

G. H. Gerberding, The Lutheran Pastor, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1915, p. 278.



"First, our Lord does encourage us or even command us to believe that wherever there is the good character, the Christ-like character, there the Holy Spirit is at work. God works far beyond His own appointed channels. The principle of loyalty and obedience binds us who know His will to use His sacraments, His instituted ordinances; but God is not tied to His own ordinances. He can work wherever He sees the good disposition; and it is blasphemy against His Spirit to deny that He is at work anywhere where we witness the forming of the Christian character. The good fruit cannot come from anything else than the good tree."

Bishop Charles Gore, The Sermon on the Mount, A Practical Exposition, London: John Murray 1906, p. 179f.



"While the goal of the early Christian was, as Christ had commanded, to make disciples, there was a definite process by which the early church grew so explosively. The means of church growth was through the individual Christian's interlocking social system--the family, friends, and associates."

Win and Charles Arn, The Master's Plan for Making Disciples, How Every Christian Can Be an Effective Witness through an Enabling Church, Pasadena: Church Growth Press, 1982, J-63 p. 25f.



"Effective disciple-making combines intentional growth principles with an 'evangelistic mix' that fits the local church and its unique situation. Tremendous power results in a local church which intentionally focuses on specific growth goals."

Win and Charles Arn, The Master's Plan for Making Disciples, How Every Christian Can Be an Effective Witness through an Enabling Church, Pasadena: Church Growth Press, 1982, p. 59.



"Disciple-making is most effective when Biblical insights and church growth research are integrated."

Win and Charles Arn, The Master's Plan for Making Disciples, How Every Christian Can Be an Effective Witness through an Enabling Church, Pasadena: Church Growth Press, 1982, p. 75. Chapter Four.



"Spread, oh, spread, thou mighty Word, Spread the kingdom of the Lord, Wheresoever His breath has given Life to beings meant for heaven." Jonathan Bahnmaier, "Spread, Oh, Spread, Thou Mighty Word,"

The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #507. Romans 10:15.



"Melanchthon lacked the simple faith in, and the firm adherence and implicit submission to, the Word of God which made Luther the undaunted and invincible hero of the Reformation...Melanchthon, devoid of Luther's singled-minded and whole-hearted devotion to the Word of God, endeavored to satisfy his reason as well." [Note Krauth on Melanchthon, p. 291. Schmauk, p. 748.]

F. Bente, Concordia Triglotta, Historical Introductions to the Symbolical Books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-7 p. 105.



"Calvin and his adherents boldly rejected the universality of God's grace, of Christ's redemption, and of the Spirit's efficacious operation through the means of grace, and taught that, in the last analysis, also the eternal doom of the damned was solely due to an absolute decree of divine reprobation (in their estimation the logical complement of election), and this at the very time when they pretended adherence to the Augsburg Confession and were making heavy inroads into Lutheran territory with their doctrine concerning the Lord's Supper and the person of Christ,--which in itself was sufficient reason for a public discussion and determined resentment of their absolute predestinarianism."

F. Bente, Concordia Triglotta, Historical Introductions to the Symbolical Books of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 061 p. 195f.



(2) "Then hail, ye mighty legions, yea, All hail! Now save and blest for aye, And praise the Lord, who with His Word Sustained you on the way." Hans A. Brorson, c. 1760, "Behold a Host, Arrayed in White," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #656. Revelation 7:13-17.



(3) "Send them Thy mighty Word to speak Till faith shall dawn and doubt depart, To awe the bold, to stay the weak, And bind and heal the broken heart." William C. Bryant, "Look from Thy Sphere of Endless Day," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #499. Isaiah 35.



"I grant that doctrines ought to be tested by God's word; but unless the Spirit of wisdom (spiritus prudentiae) is present, to have God's word in our hands will avail little or nothing, for its meaning will not appear to us...." John Calvin, Commentaries, 1 Jn 4:1; CO LV, 347-48.

Benjamin Milner,Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 105.



"Though he withheld at that time the words of his mouth, yet he spoke within to the mind of the woman, and so this secret instinct (arcanum hunc instinctum) was a substitute for the outward preaching."

John Calvin, Commentaries, Mt 15:23; CO XLV, 457. Benjamin Milner,Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 108.



"He also convinced them without the word, for we know how powerful are the secret instincts of the Spirit (arcani spiritus instinctus)."

John Calvin, Commentaries, Amos 4:12; CO XLIII, 68. Benjamin Milner,Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 108n.



"...we are touched with some desire for strong doctrine, it evidently appears that there is some piety in us; we are not destitute of the Spirit of God, although destitute of the outward means." John Calvin, Commentaries, Amos 8:11-12; CO XLIII, 153.

Benjamin Milner, Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 109.



"If the Spirit be lacking, the sacraments can accomplish nothing more in our minds than the splendor of the sun shining upon blind eyes, or a voice sounding in deaf ears." John Calvin, Institutes, IV, xiv, 9, .

Benjamin Milner,Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 119.



"The word of God is not set before all men that they return to soundness of mind; but the external voice sounds in the ears of many, without the effectual working of the Spirit, only that they may be made inexcusable."

John Calvin, Commentaries, Acts 28:26; CO XLVIII, 571, Benjamin Milner,Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 93n.



"Let the threatenings of the gospel terrify us, and humble us in time..." John Calvin, Commentaries, Acts 5:5, CO XLVIII, 99.

Benjamin Milner, Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Heicko A.Oberman, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 93n.



(1) Almighty God, thy word is cast Like seed into the ground, Now let the dew of heaven descend And righteous fruits abound. (2) Let not the foe of Christ and man This holy seed remove, But give it root in every heart To bring forth fruits of love. (3) Let not the world's deceitful cares The rising plant destroy, But let it yield a hundredfold The fruits of peace and joy. (4) Oft as the precious seed is sown Thy quickening grace bestow, That all whose souls the truth receive Its saving power may know."

John Cawood, 1775-1852, "Almighty God, Thy Word Is Cast," Service Book and Hymnal, Philadephia: Board of Publication, 1958, Hymn #196. Mark 4:3-9.



Chrysostom: "If those who touched the hem of His garment were properly healed, how much more shall we be strengthened if we have Him in us whole? He will quiet in us the savage law of our members, He will quench the perturbations of the mind, drive out all sicknesses, raise us up from every fall, and, when the power of the enemy has been overcome, He will incite us to true piety and indeed will transform us into His own image."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 234.



"The body of Christ is to the sick a medicine, to pilgrims a way; it strengthens the weak, delights the strong, heals weariness, preserves health. Through it man becomes more gentle under reproof, more patient under labor, more ardent for love, wiser for caution, more ready to obey, more devoted to giving of thanks."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 234.



[Ignatius calls the Eucharist] "a medicine of immortality, an antidote, that we may not die but live in God through Jesus Christ, a cleansing remedy through warding off and driving out evils."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 234.



"How can there be any reason for the baptism of little children except according to this understanding: No one is free from defilement, even if he has lived but one day on earth. And because through the Sacrament of Baptism the filth of our birth is removed, therefore also little children are baptized." [Origen, Homily 14 on Luke]

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1971, I, p. 250. Luke.



"For this reason the catholic church preaches that little children ought to be baptized, because of original sin, concerning which that most holy man well exclaimed: 'I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.'" [Chrysostom, Homily on Adam and Eve]

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1971, I, p. 250f. Genesis.



"Transubstantiation is also one of the pillars that support the papalist kingdom...Rather, it is that they may retain and establish the sacrifice of the Mass, reservation, carrying about, adoration of the bread, and all the things which, outside of the divinely instituted use, have been joined to these things--for this reason they fight so persistently about transubstantiation."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 253.



"For Scripture never calls either Baptism or the Lord's Supper mysteries or sacraments. Therefore this is an unwritten (agraphos) appellation."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 29.



"They imagine that by means of these actions, motions, gestures, and ceremonies, with certain words added about sacrifice, oblation, and victim, they are sacrificing and offering the body and blood of Christ, yes, Christ, the Son of God Himself, anew to God the Father through such a theatrical representation (which is either a comedy or a tragedy) of Christ's passion."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 446.



"To institute a form of worship beside and without the Word of God, and indeed one to which is ascribed propitiation for sins, appeasement of the wrath of God, is a vain thing; it cannot please God; yes, it is idolatry. For 'in vain they worship Me with doctrines and commandments of men.' Likewise: 'Without faith it is impossible that a thing should please God.' Faith, however, 'comes by hearing, and hearing by the revealed Word of God.'"

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 493.



"That it lacks true, firm, and solid grounds in Scripture is, however, not the only thing we criticize in the papalist Mass; what we complain about most of all is that it is an abomination, conflicting with the doctrine of the Word, the sacraments, and faith--yes, that it is full of abuse against the unique sacrifice of Christ and against His perpetual priesthood, as this has been demonstrated at length by the men on our side in fair and honest writings."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 493.



"The papalist Mass, as we have described it in the beginning, militates against the one propitiatory sacrifice of Christ in many ways and is an affront to it. For there is only one propitiatory sacrifice that expiates and renders satisfaction for sins--the offering of Christ made on the cross (Hebrews 7:27; 9:12, 26; 10:12)."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 494.



"The papalist Mass, as we have described it in the beginning, militates against the one propitiatory sacrifice of Christ in many ways and is an affront to it. For there is only one propitiatory sacrifice that expiates and renders satisfaction for sins--the offering of Christ made on the cross (Hebrews 7:27; 9:12, 26; 10:12)."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 494.



"In addition there is this perversion, that whereas Christ instituted the use of His Supper for all who receive it, who take, eat, and drink, the papalist Mass transfers the use and benefit of the celebration of the Lord's Supper in our time to the onlookers, who do not communicate, yes, to those who are absent, and even to the dead."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 498.



"For a sacrifice, according to Augustine, Contra adversarium legis et prophetarum, Bk. 1, and De civitate Dei, Bk. 10, is a work which we offer, render, and dedicate to God in order that we may dwell in Him in holy fellowship. A sacrament, however, is a holy sign through which God freely offers, conveys, applies, and seals His gratuitous benefits to us. It is therefore an extraordinary perversion of the Lord's Supper to make a sacrifice out of a sacrament, in the way the papalists speak of the sacrifice of their Mass, namely, that the representatory action of the priest procures for us the application of the benefits of Christ and that anyone who causes a Mass to be celebrated in his behalf by this work procures grace and whatever other things are ascribed to the Mass."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 498.



"If anyone says that the canon of the Mass contains errors and should therefore be abrogated, let him be anathema." [Chapter IV, Canon VI] Chemnitz: "The power, yes, the substance and as it were the soul of the papalist sacrifice is the canon of the Mass. Therefore they labor much more for its retention than about the canon of Scripture itself, which they are not afraid to corrupt by mixing in other, noncanonical books."

Martin Chemnitz, Examination of the Council of Trent, trans., Fred Kramer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1986, II, p. 508.



"...Whereunto there has been added from Holy Scripture, that only Norm and Rule of Doctrine..."

Concordia preface, 1580, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 4.



(3) "Great the need in every nation, Dense the darkness of sin's night; Let Thy Spirit bring salvation, Love's pure flame, and wisdom's light, Give the Word, Thy preachers strengthen With the prophets' power of old, Help them Zion's cords to lengthen, All Thy wandering sheep to fold."

Arthur Coxe, W. G. Polack, "Savior, Sprinkle Many Nations," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #510.



"It remains a hope for this age that the power of the Spirit operating through the Word of Life may even draw spiritual opponents into union in the truth for the building of God's great temple."

Arthur H. Drevlow, "God the HS Acts to Build the Church," God The Holy Spirit Acts, ed., Eugene P. Kaulfield, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1972, p. 12.



"Erasmus was willing to ascribe as much as possible to the grace of God, but he insisted that the 'human factor' of making one's self worthy of God's saving grace ought not be overlooked. The spiritual heirs of Erasmus are still with us today."

Arthur H. Drevlow, "God the HS Acts to Build the Church," God The Holy Spirit Acts, ed., Eugene P. Kaulfield, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1972, p. 13.



"Emphatically does Scripture state that the action of the Spirit covers the whole life from first to the last. He is the Spirit of Life for regeneration (John 3:5, 8): the Spirit of Sonship for adoption (Romans 8:15): the Spirit of holiness for sanctification (Romans 8:5): the Spirit of Glory for transfiguration (2 Corinthians 3:18); the Spirit of Promise for the resurrection (Ephesians 1:13). Only through the Holy Spirit are men drawn to the Author and Finisher of their salvation."

Arthur H. Drevlow, "God the HS Acts to Build the Church," God The Holy Spirit Acts, ed., Eugene P. Kaulfield, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1972, p. 15. John 3: 5,8; Romans 8:5; Romans 8:15; 2 Corinthians 3:18; Ephesians 1:13



"The word 'came' or 'happened' to the prophets. It confronted them with irresistible force (Jeremiah 20:7-9). 'The Lord has sent a word against Jacob, and it will light upon Israel' (Isaiah 9:8) like a stone that has been thrown; today one would think of an atomic bomb. It can destroy, and it may bring rejoicing of heart (Jeremiah 15:16); in any case it is irresistible (Isaiah 55:10f.). It proceeds from eternity and will stand forever, when all earthly things have withered and faded away (Isaiah 40:8). By the power of this divine Word the heavens and the earth were created, and they are preserved to this day by the same Word. This fact gives a 'word-character' to all the universe. All things, all creatures are words of God (Luther)."

W. Echternach, "Word and Words," The Lutheran Encyclopedia, 3 vols., ed., Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, J-313 III, p. 2499. Jeremiah 20:7-9; Isaiah 9:8; Jeremiah 15:16; Isaiah 55:10f.; Isaiah 40:8



"The objection that absolution is God's prerogative (Mark 2:7) is beside the mark, since the minister forgives sins not in his own name, but in God's name."

Th. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 113.



"The character of the Lutheran Church is reflected in her cultus. She lives and moves and has her being in the grace of God, which comes to men in the Means of Grace. Accordingly, she calls her people together in public worship to implore the grace of God, to appropriate the grace of God, to glorify the grace of God, and has provided a liturgy which fully meets these requirements of Christian worship. Her one great concern is to have men thoroughly instructed in the Gospel and fully assured of the grace of God."

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 20.



"The specific Reformed cultus, due to the Reformed denial of the efficacy and objective nature of the Means of Grace, represents a quest after the grace of God revolving around human agency and subjective experience. The Lutheran cultus places the grace of God nigh unto the sinner in the Means of Grace."

Th. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 21.



"On the contrary, with the Anabaptists and the Reformed Church in general, the Mennonites are Enthusiasts, lay great stress on the immediate working of the Holy Ghost, who is said to 'guide the saints into all truth.' In his Geschichte der Mennonitengemeinden John Horsch, a prominent Mennonite, states that the Holy Spirit is the 'inner word,' who enables Christians to understand the Scriptures. Without the inner word, or the light, the Scripture is a dead letter and a dark lantern."

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 260.



"Naturally, Universalists deny that the Sacraments are Means of Grace. Some Universalists observe three sacraments--consecration, Baptism, and the Lord's Supper. The act of consecration of children consists in the parents' pledging themselves to rear their children in the admonition of the Lord."

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 409f.



"The doctrine of salvation through the Means of Grace is distinctive of Lutheranism. The Catholic churches have no use for means of grace, for a Gospel and for Sacraments which offer salvation as a free gift. And the Reformed churches, while they hold, in general, that salvation is by grace, repudiate the Gospel and the Sacraments as the means of grace. It is clear that matters of fundamental importance are involved. The chief article of the Christian religion, justification by faith, stands and falls with the article of the Means of Grace. Justification by faith means absolutely nothing without the Means of Grace, whereby the righteousness gained by Christ is bestowed and faith, which appropriates the gift, is created."

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 4f.



C. F. W. Walther: "The characteristic feature of our dear Evangelical Lutheran Church is her objectivity, which means that her entire teaching is designed to keep man from seeking salvation within himself, in the powers of his nature and will, in anything he does or is, and to bring him to seek salvation outside of himself. The teaching of all other churches is of a subjective character; it trains man to base his salvation upon himself." "And this applies in a most marked manner to their denial of the Scriptural doctrine of the Means of Grace." F. Pieper, Lehre und Wehre, 36, 119.

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 5.



"Faith lives on the offer of the forgiveness of sins, as it comes to us in the certain promise and absolute guarantee of the Gospel and the Sacraments. Here, again, Lutheranism fully meets the sinner's need."

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 5.



Luther: "True, the enthusiasts confess that Christ died on the cross and saved us; but they repudiate that by which we obtain Him; that is, the means, the way, the bridge, the approach to Him they destroy...They lock up the treasure which they should place before us and lead me a fool's chase; they refuse to admit me to it; they refuse to transmit it; they deny me its possession and use." (III, 1692)

The. Engelder, W. Arndt, Th. Graebner, F. E. Mayer, Popular Symbolics, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 5.



"Rise, Thou Light of Gentile nations, Jesus, bright and Morning Star; Let Thy Word, the gladsome tidings, Ring out loudly near and far, Bringing freedom to the captives, Peace and comfort to the slave, That the heathen, free from bondage, May proclaim Thy power to save."

Herman Fick, 1885, "Rise, Thou Light of Gentile Nations," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #498. Isaiah 60:1.



(6) "Human reason, though it ponder, Cannot fathom this great wonder That Christ's body ever remaineth Though it countless souls sustaineth And that He His blood is giving With the wine we are receiving. These great mysteries unsounded Are by God alone expounded." Johann Franck, 1649, "Soul, Adorn Thyself with Gladness" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #305. Revelation 19:8.



(1) "Preach you the Word and plant it home To men who like or like it not, The Word that shall endure and stand When flowers and men shall be forgot. (2) We know how hard, O Lord, the task Your servant bade us undertake: To preach your Word and never ask What prideful profit it may make. (3) The sower sows; his reckless love Scatters abroad the goodly seed, Intent alone that men may have The wholesome loaves that all men need. (4) Though some be snatched and some be scorched And some be chocked and matted flat, The sower sow; his heart cries out, 'Oh, what of that, and what of that?' (5) Preach you the Word and plant it home And never faint; the Harvest Lord Who gave the sower seed to sow Will watch and tend his planted Word." Martin H. Franzmann, 1907-76, "Preach You the Word," Lutheran Worship, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1982, J-208 Hymn #259. Mark 4:;





(2) "But your strong love, it sought us still And sent your only Son That we might hear his shepherd's voice And, hearing him, be one." Martin H. Franzmann, 1907-76, "In Adam We Have All Been One," Lutheran Worship, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1982, Hymn #292. John 10.



(1) "Thy strong word did cleave the darkness: At thy speaking it was done. For created light we thank thee, While thine ordered seasons run. Alleluia, alleluia! Praise to thee who light dost send! Alleluia, alleluia! Alleluia without end!" (v. 3) "Thy strong Word bespeaks us righteous; Bright with thine own holiness, Glorious now, we press toward glory, And our lives our hopes confess..."



Martin H. Franzmann, 1907-76, "Thy Strong Word," Lutheran Worship, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1982, J-311 Hymn #328.

(1) "Thy word, O Lord, like gentle dews, Falls soft on hearts that pine; Lord, to thy garden never refuse This heavenly balm of thine. Watered by thee, let every tree Then blossom to thy praise, By grace of thine bear fruit divine Through all the coming days. (2) Thy word is like a flaming sword, A wedge that cleaveth stone; Keen as a fire, so burns thy word, And pierceth flesh and bone. Let it go forth over all the earth To cleanse our hearts within, To show thy power in Satan's hour, And break the might of sin." (Garve, 1763-1841) Carl Bernhard Garve, "Thy Word, O Lord, Like Gentle Dews," Service Book and Hymnal, Philadephia: Board of Publication, 1958, J-202 Hymn #254. Isaiah 55:10; Hebrews 4:12.



(3) "Gird each one with the Spirit's Sword, The sword of Thine own death-less Word, And make them conquerors, conquering Lord, Where Thou Thyself wilt come." Mary C. Gates, 1888, "Send Thou, O Lord, To Every Place," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #506. Romans 8:37.



"The most important of all the pastor's acts is his public preaching...A minister may be ever so good as a liturgist, ever so gifted as a ruler of his congregation, or in private pastoral work, but all this can never take the place of right preaching." (Walther, Pastorale, p. 76)

G. H. Gerberding, The Lutheran Pastor, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1915, p. 275.



"To the Lutheran the sermon, as the preached Word, is a means of grace. Through it the Holy Spirit calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian church on earth. It is a constant offer of pardon; a giving of life, as well as a nourishing and strengthening of life. In the Reformed churches the sermon is apt to be more hortatory and ethical. It partakes more of the sacrificial than of the sacramental character. The individuality of the preacher, the subjective choice of a text, the using of it merely for a motto, the discussion of secular subjects, the unrestrained platform style, lack of reverence, lack of dignity, and many other faults are common, and are not regarded as unbecoming the messenger of God in His temple. Where there is a properly trained Lutheran consciousness such things repel, shock, and are not tolerated."

G. H. Gerberding, The Lutheran Pastor, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1915, p. 278.



"It is the Word of God, that still remits and retains, that binds and looses. The pastor can only declare that Word, but the Word itself does effectually work forgiveness to him that rightly receives it. Not only can the minister carry this Word of God, this key of the kingdom, this power of God unto salvation, and apply it, but any disciple of Christ can do so."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 126f.



"Every time a believer in Christ sits down beside a troubled and penitent one, and speaks to such an one Christ's precious promises and assurances of forgiveness, he carries out the Lutheran or scriptural idea of absolution."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 127.



"The whole Gospel is nothing but a proclamation of the forgiveness of sins, or a publication of the same Word to all men on earth, which God Himself confirms in heaven."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 127.



Dr. Krauth: "The whole pastoral work is indeed but an extension of the Lutheran idea of Confession and Absolution."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 127.



"Such evangelical Confession and Absolution establishes and maintains the true relationship that should exist between an evangelical pastor and the members of his flock. Instead of a mere preacher, a platform orator, he becomes a true spiritual guide, a curate for the cure of souls. [curate and cure in italics] He encourages his members to reveal to him their weaknesses, their besetting sins, their doubts and spiritual conflicts, in order that he may instruct, direct, comfort and strengthen them with the all-sufficient and powerful Word of God."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 128.



[The popular idea about the Word] "He sees that he must repent and believe, but by his own reason and strength he cannot. He learns further, that he needs the Holy Spirit to enable him to repent and believe, but, according to the current opinion, that Spirit is not in the Word, nor effective through it, but operates independently of it."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 131.



"It is indeed a precious truth, that this Word not only tells me what I must do to be saved, but it also enables me to do it. [enables me to do it in italics] It is the vehicle and instrument of the Holy Spirit. Through it the Holy Spirit works repentance and faith. Through it He regenerates, converts, and sanctifies."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 132.



"And thus we might go on, and show that what is ascribed in one place to the Spirit, is ascribed in another place to the Word--proving conclusively that the two always go together. Where one is, there the other is also. The Spirit operates through the Word, whether it be the written, the preached, the sacramental, or the Word in conversation or reflection."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 134.



"In the Acts of the Apostles also we read how again and again the Spirit was given through and in connection with the Word. The Apostles depended on nothing but Word and Sacrament."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 136.



"Hence, wherever the Lutheran Church is true to her name and faith, she preaches the whole counsel of God, and relies on that for ingathering and upbuilding."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 136f.



"A true Lutheran pulpit cannot be a sensational pulpit, for discoursing worldly wisdom, philosophy, poetry, or politics. It must expound the Word, and never gets done preaching repentance towards God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 137.



"It is God the Holy Ghost who must work this change in the soul. This He does through His own life-giving Word. It is the office of that Word, as the organ of the Holy Spirit, to bring about a knowledge of sin, to awaken sorrow and contrition, and to make the sinner hate and turn from his sin. That same Word then directs the sinner to Him who came to save him from sin. It takes him to the cross, it enables him to believe that his sins were all atoned for there, and that, therefore, he is not condemned. In other words, the Word of God awakens and constantly deepens true penitence. It also begets and constantly increases true faith. Or, in one word, it converts the sinner."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 145f.



"To the Word let the unconverted sinner go. Let him be careful to put no barrier in the way of its influence. Let him permit it to have free course, and it will do its own blessed work."

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 146.



"The same divine Saviour now works through means. He has founded a Church, ordained a ministry, and instituted the preaching of the Word and the administration of His own sacraments. Christ now works in and through His Church. Through her ministry, preaching the Word, and administering the sacraments, the Holy Spirit is given. (Augsburg Confession, Article 5.)

G. H. Gerberding, The Way of Salvation in the Lutheran Church, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1887, p. 30.



"Though all the powers of evil The will of God oppose, His purpose will not falter, His pleasure onward goes. Whatever God's will resolveth, Whatever He intends, Will always be accomplished True to His aims and ends."

Paul Gerhardt, 1656, "Commit Whatever Grieves Thee," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #520. Isaiah 55. Chapter Four.



Efficacious passages: Deuteronomy 8:3; Lamentations 2:17; Luke 8:11-15; John 6:63; Acts 6:7, 12:24, 19:20; Romans 10:17; 1 Corinthians 1:21, 2:4-5; 2 Corinthians 4:6; Philipians 2:16; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; James 1:21; 1 Peter 1:23, 2:2; 1 John 1:1-2. Good News, Issue 7 1 Thessalonians 2:13; James 1:21; Romans 10:17; Acts 6:7; 1 Peter 1:23



"The efficacy of the Bible is that property by which the Bible has indissolubly united [Romans 1:16; 1 Thessalonians 2:13] with the true and genuine sense [Ephesians 3:3-4; Acts 8:30, 31, 34] expressed in its words the power of the Holy Spirit, [Romans 1:16; 1 Thessalonians 1:5] who has made it for all times the ordinary means by which He operates [Psalm 19:8; Psalm 119:105, 130; 2 Peter 1:19; 2 Timothy 3:16, 17] on and in the hearts and minds of those who properly hear and read it [Revelation 1:3; Ephesians 3:3-4; John 7:17].

A. L. Graebner, Outlines of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1910, J-107 p. 12. Romans 1:16; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; Ephesians 3:3-4; Acts 8:30f; John 7:17.



(1)"Yea, as I live, Jehovah saith, I would not have the sinner's death, But that he turn from error's ways, Repent, and live through endless days. (2) To us therefore Christ gave command: 'Go forth and preach in every land; Bestow on all My pardoning grace Who will repent and mend their ways. (3) 'All those whose sins ye thus remit I truly pardon and acquit, And those whose sins ye do retain Condemned and guilty shall remain. (4) 'What ye shall bind, that bound shall be; What ye shall loose, that shall be free; Unto My Church the keys are given To ope and close the gates of heaven.' (5) The words which absolution give Are His who died that we might live; The minister whom Christ has sent Is but His humble instrument. (6) When ministers lay on their hands, Absolved by Christ the sinner stands; He who by grace the Word believes The purchase of His blood receives." Nicolaus Herman, 1560, "Yea, As I Live, Jehovah Saith," The Lutheran Hymnal, Trans. Matthias Loy, 1880, alt. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #331. Ezekiel 33:11.



"Der Geist wirkt nicht vor der Schrift, die Schrift nicht ver dem Geist, sondern beider Wirken faellt zusammen, sowohl der Aktion als dem Effeckt nach."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, IV, p. 20.



"Die Schrift nennt keine weitere, letzte wirkende Ursache der Wiedergeburt als Gott allein; aber sie sagt, dass der Heiliges Geist Mittelursachen gebraucht, naemlich die Gnadenmittel, die Taufe (John 3:5; Titus 3:5) und das Wort (1 Peter 1:23; James 1:18)."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, III, p. 265. John 3:5; Titus 3:5; James 1:18.



"Die Wiedergeburt wirkt einzig und allein Gott, aber auch nur durch die Gnadenmittel."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, III, p. 265.



"Das Mittel der Bekehrung ist nach der Schrift das Wort, einschliessend Gesetz und Evangelium, doch so, dass nicht das erstere mit, sondern das letztere allein die eigentliche bekehrende und seligmachende Kraft hat (1 Corinthians 1:21; Romans 1:16)."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, III, p. 281. 1 Corinthians 1:21; Romans 1:16.



"Der Heilige Geist wirkt die Heiligung in den Wiedergeborenen durch Wort und Sakrament, so aber, dass der Mensch vermoege der Kraefte, die ihm durch den Glauben verliehen werden, mitwirkt."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, III, p. 421.



"Es liegt aber die Frage nahe, warum wohl Gott zwei verschiedene Gnadenmittel, welche doch wesentlich die gleiche Wirksamkeit haben, gegeben habe. Wir antworten mit Chemnitz, dass der Grund die Barmherzigkeit Gottes sei, welche nicht durches blosse Wort wollte die Gnade austeilen, sondern der Schwachheit zu Hilfe kommen durch die Sakramente, welche das Wort gleichsam sichtbar machen."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, IV, p. 55.



"Es ist im Alten wie im Neuen Testament derselbe Gott, derselbe Mittler, dieselbe Gnade, dieselbe Gerechtigkeit, dieselbe Erloesung."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelisch-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, IV, p. 70.



"Die Ansicht der Kalvinisten von dem nichts wirkenden Wort der Absolution ist ganz gemaess ihrer Grundansicht vom Wort ueberhaupt, nach welcher es nichts als blosse Darstellung und Lehre ist und an sich selbst unwirksam."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelische Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1909, IV, p. 199.



"Die reformierte Unterscheidung zwischen der aeusseren Sakramentshandlung und der unsichtbaren Handlung des Heiligen Geistes ist die alte Trennung von Geist und Gnadenmittel."

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelische Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1909, IV, p. 57.



"Wohl scheint auf den ersten Blick die ganze Differenz recht unbedeutend; aber in Wahrheit gibt sich hier die gefaehrliche Richtung der Pietisten zu erkennen, das Leben ueber die Lehre, die Heiligung ueber die Rechtfertigung und die Froemmigkeit nicht als Folge, sondern als Bedingung der Erleuchtung zu setzen also eine Art Synergismus und Pelagianismus einzufuehren. (At first glance, the total difference seems absolutely paltry, but in truth the dangerous direction of Pietism is made apparent: life over doctrine, sanctification over justification, and piety not as a consequence but declared as a stipulation of enlightenment, leading to a kind of synergism and Pelagianism.)"

Adolf Hoenecke, Evangelische-Lutherische Dogmatik, 4 vols., ed., Walter and Otto Hoenecke, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1912, III, p. 253.



"Christ compares the Word of God to a seed, to a grain of wheat sown in the ground. (Matthew 13:3-23) A seed possesses power and life in itself. Power and life belong to the properties of the seed. Power is not communicated to the seed only now and then, under certain circumstances, in peculiar cases. But the Word of God is an incorruptible seed, that is able to regenerate, a Word which liveth and abideth forever. (1 Peter 1:23)"

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, J-207 p. 27. Matthew 13:3-23; 1 Peter 1:23.



"Zwingli, Calvin, and their adherents denied that the Word of God always possesses the same efficacy, and that God always operates through the Word."

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, p. 27.



"The Word of God is efficacious not only when it is being read from the Bible, but also when it is being spoken or preached, and when it is recalled by memory. The Word of God, properly speaking, is really not the letters which we see or the sound which we hear, but the divine thoughts, the truths designated by these signs."

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, p. 27. Chapter Four.



"In the Word of God there is not only a speaking about God, but in and through His Word God Himself speaks to us, deals with us, acts upon us. Therefore the Word of God is also an efficacious means of grace through which God regenerates, converts, and sanctifies man. This efficacy the Word of God possesses always; it is always united with the Word, never separated from it. The effect which God intends through the Word is indeed not always attained, but this is owing to no lack of efficacy in the Word, but solely to the resistance of man; for man has the power to resist God and to prevent His Word from accomplishing the effect which He intends."

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, p. 27. Chapter Four.



"God has not only made known the truth to us in such a way that once upon a time in the distant past He inspired His prophets and apostles and brought about the writing of the Holy Scriptures. God did not then withdraw and leave it to us mortals to appropriate this truth as best we might. No, God continues to be active in and through His Word."

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, p. 27.



"For the very reason that Scripture is the Word of God, it is not a dead letter or an empty word, but a living and powerful Word that can bring about the most radical transformations in man himself."

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, p. 27.



"The Anabaptists, the mystics, and other fanatics spoke of Scripture only as the external word, a dead letter, and contemptuously pronounced those who adhered to Scripture as 'worshipers of the letter.' They separated the activity of the Spirit from Scripture, from the Word, and held that the Spirit operates immediately, producing an inner illumination, etc."

E. Hove, Christian Doctrine, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1930, p. 27f.



"O Word of God incarnate, O Wisdom from on high, O Truth unchanged, unchanging, O Light of our dark sky: We praise you for the radiance that from the hallowed page, A lantern to our footsteps, Shines on from age to age."

William W. How, 1823-97, "O Word of God Incarnate," Lutheran Worship, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1982, Hymn #335. Psalm 119:105.



Analysis of Valleskey's defense of CG in the WLQ.

Gregory L. Jackson, "Figs From Thistles," Rev. Steve Spencer, Orthodox Lutheran Forum, September 27, 1991.



"Is it not a limitation of God's sovreignty and power to affirm that these acts are accomplished only through means? Theology does not deal with divine possibilities, but with what God has revealed concerning Himself and His various forms of activity. Not only have we no promise of His intervention otherwise, but He constantly turns us away from any expectation of such aid to the simple means, in and through which He promises to be always found with His entire efficacy."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 265.



"But in extraordinary cases, does He not dispense with means? Even there, means are employed; but in an extraordinary way. At Pentecost the multitudes were converted through the Word, although this Word was given under extraordinary conditions and circumstances, just as the multitudes in the wilderness were sustained not without bread, but with bread furnished in an extraordinary manner."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 266.



"Spirit and Word, or Word and Spirit are never separated."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 271.



"Is it the office of the Word simply to afford directions that are to be followed in order to obtain salvation? It is more than a directory and guide to Christ. It does more than 'give directions how to live.' It brings and communicates the grace concerning which it instructs. It has an inherent and objective efficacy, derived from its divine institution and promise, and explained by the constant presence and activity of the Holy Spirit in and with it. Romans 1:16; John 6:63; 1 Peter 1:23; Matthew 4:4; Ephesians 6:17; Hebrews 4:12; Romans 10:5-10; Isaiah 55:10."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 288. Chapter Four.



"What testimony is given to the presence of the Holy Spirit in and with the Word? The words of Scripture are repeatedly cited as the words of the Holy Spirit. Acts 1:16, 28:25; Hebrew 3:7; Psalm 10:15."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 288f.



"'When the Word is read at home it is not as fruitful or as forcible as in public preaching and through the mouth of the preacher whom God has called for this purpose.' (Luther, Erlangen edition, 3:401)."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 290.



"'The Word is in itself the living seed of regeneration; the hand which does the sowing can add to it no further efficacy.' (Philippi, V, 2:15)."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 291.



"Is the success of preaching as a means of grace conditioned by the observance of similar principles by the preacher? Undoubtedly. For it is not preaching itself, but the Word as preached which is a means of grace. This demands not only that nothing be preached but what comes directly or indirectly from Holy Scripture, but also that the contents of Holy Scripture be preached in due proportion and in the proper order."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 293.



"The New Testament is the inerrant record of the revelation of Jesus Christ in word and deed, and of the truths and principles proceeding, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, from that revelation. The Old Testament is in like manner an inerrant record, having the express and often repeated testimony and authority of Christ, of the preparatory and partial revelations made concerning Him before His coming. Hebrews 1:1."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, J-29 p. 3. Hebrews 1:1.



"For it is not the sacramental action, but the Word that accompanies the action, which communicates saving grace; and this Word received, not by the body, but by the heart and mind, so as to awaken faith. Without faith, 'sine bono motu utentis,' no benefit is received from the Sacraments." Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 319. "When the efficacy of Word and Sacraments encounters man's unbelief and persistent resistance, their efficacy is not destroyed; but it is transformed from an efficacy of grace to one of judgment (2 Corinthians 2:16; 1 Corinthians 11:29)."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 320.



"'The more purely the Word of God is preached in a Church, and the nearer the preaching and doctrine comes to the norm of the Holy Scripture, the purer will be the Church; the further it recedes from the rule of the Word, the more impure and corrupt will be the Church.' (Gerhard)"

Henry Eyster Jacobs, A Summary of the Christian Faith, Philadelphia: General Council Publication House, 1913, p. 383f.



"Nor even does the efficacy of the Word depend upon man's faith. Faith is always necessary to the reception of the efficacy, but not to its presence. There is no lack of efficacy in the medicine which is not taken by the patient. If his symptoms grow worse, he could not tell his physician that there was no efficacy in the prescription."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, Elements of Religion, Philadelphia, Board of Publication, General Council 1919 p. 154. 1 Thessalonians 2:13



"The efficacy of the Word, unlike that of the seed, always has a result. The man to whom the Word of God comes, and who repels it, is not as he was before. Where long and persistently refused, hardening at last comes, Exodus 8:15; 9:12; John 12:40; Hebrews 4:1, and the Word becomes a 'savor of death unto death,' 2 Corinthians 2:16. Every word heard or read, every privilege and opportunity enjoyed, leaves its impress either for good or for evil. It is not so properly the Word, as man's abuse of the Word; not so much the efficacy of the Word, as the sin taking occasion of the efficacy that produces this result, Romans 7:8."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, Elements of Religion, Philadelphia, Board of Publication, General Council 1919 J-220 p. 155. Exodus 8:15; 9:12; John 12:40; Hebrews 4:1; 2 Corinthians 2:16; Romans 7:8. Chapter Four.



"Thus the Holy Spirit works only through the Word. But the Word of the Gospel comes to man in two different modes."

Henry Eyster Jacobs, Elements of Religion, Philadelphia, Board of Publication, General Council 1919 p. 161.



"There is no efficacy or value in a sacrament, except as it is an organ for applying the Word...The Word outside of and the Word within the Sacrament, are equally precious and efficacious. Nor can any contrast be made concerning different forms of efficacy, as though the Word without an element had a different effect to accomplish within the economy of grace from the Word when joined with the element." [Note Apology - "The effect of the Word and of the rite is the same, as it has been well said by Augustine that a Sacrament is 'a visible Word.'" p. 276]

Henry Eyster Jacobs, Elements of Religion, Philadelphia, Board of Publication, General Council 1919 p. 162.



(1) "Lord Jesus Christ, we humbly pray That we may feed on Thee today; Beneath these forms of bread and wine Enrich us with Thy grace divine. (2) The chastened peace of sin forgiven, The filial joy of hears of heaven, Grant as we share this wondrous food, Thy body broken and Thy blood. (3) Our trembling hearts cleave to Thy Word; All Thou hast said Thou dost afford, All that Thou art we here receive, And all we are to Thee we give." Henry E. Jacobs, 1910, "Lord Jesus Christ, We Humbly Pray," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #314. 1 Corinthians 10:17.



(1) "How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord, Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word! What more can He say than to you He hath said Who unto the Savior for refuge have fled?" "Keen," 1787, "How Firm a Foundation," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #427. Isaiah 43:1-7. (6) "For the joy Thine advent gave me, For Thy holy, precious Word; For Thy Baptism, which doth save me, For Thy blest Communion board; For Thy death, the bitter scorn, For Thy resurrection morn, Lord, I thank Thee and extol Thee, And in heaven I shall behold Thee." Thomas Kingo, 1689, cento, "Like the Golden Sun Ascending," The Lutheran Hymnal, trans., George T. Rygh, 1908 St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #207. Acts 2:32.



(1) "He that believes and is baptized Shall see the Lord's salvation; Baptized into the death of Christ, He is a new creation. Through Christ's redemption he shall stand Among the glorious heavenly band Of every tribe and nation. (2) "With one accord, O God, we pray: Grant us Thy Holy Spirit; Look Thou on our infirmity Through Jesus' blood and merit. Grant us to grow in grace each day That by this Sacrament we may Eternal life inherit." Thomas Kingo, 1689, "He That Believes and Is Baptized" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #301. Mark 16:16.



(4) "We eat this bread and drink this cup, Thy precious Word believing That Thy true body and Thy blood Our lips are here receiving. This word remains forever true, And there is naught Thou canst not do; For Thou, Lord, art almighty." Samuel Kinner, 1638, "Lord Jesus Christ, Thou Hast Prepared," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #306. 1 Corinthians 11:26.



Evergeia , energia found in pre-Socratic period in the sense of "activity" or "energy." Derived from "to be at work."(p. 652) "In the OT and NT energeia, and in the NT the ver energein, are used almost exclusively for the work of divine or demonic powers, so that we almost have a technical use." (p. 652) Only in Philippians 2:13 does the activ energein refer to human activity. (p. 653) In the NT the med. energeisthai is found only in Paul and James 5:16 and it is always in the intr (p. 654) "In the NT, then, the word group is used of irrational operations, whether divine or demonic." (p. 654) Gerhard Kittel, Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, Grand Rapids: Eerdman's, 1964, II, p.



(3) "O Triune God, we humbly pray That all Thy blessings be conferred Upon this child here cleansed today By means of water and the Word." Albert Knapp, 1841, "Dear Father, Who Hast Made Us All" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #299. Galatians 3:27.



"As distinguished from the Gospel, Sacraments are acts, we apply water in Baptism, and we eat and drink in the Lord's Supper. They are sacred acts, and must, as such, be distinguished from ordinary washing, eating and drinking...A Sacrament which offers God's blessings cannot be instituted by man or the Church, but by God alone."

Edward W. A. Koehler, A Short Explanation of Dr. Martin Luther's Small Catechism, Fort Wayne: Concordia Theological Seminary Press, 1946, p. 254.



[Cites A. L. Graebner, Doctrinal Theology] "The Word of God is efficacious; it has the power to produce an effect, to make an impression on the heart. The effect is not produced by the mere external contact with the Word, but the Word must be learned and its true sense and meaning must be apperceived by the mind."

Edward W. A. Koehler, A Summary of Christian Doctrine, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1952, p. 11.



"The effect of a message is determined by the content of the message. Not every teaching of the Word of God will produce the same effect. Because of its peculiar content, the Law produces knowledge of sin and contrition of heart (Romans 3:20); the Gospel, being the glad tidings of the grace of God, produces faith and hope (Romans 10:17). Thus the Scriptures are really able to make men wise unto salvation through faith in Christ (2 Timothy 3:15)."

Formula of Concord, Epitome, Article II, 5, Triglotta, p. 787:



"With this Word of God the Holy Ghost is present, and opens hearts, so that they, as Lydia in Acts 16:14, are attentive to it and are thus converted."

Edward W. A. Koehler, A Summary of Christian Doctrine, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1952, p. 12. Acts 16:14; Romans 3:20; 10:17; 2 Timothy 3:15.



"The Bible is efficacious not only because to the consciousness of the hearer the authority of God stands behind its every statement, but chiefly because the Holy Ghost operates through and by the Word. 'The words that I speak to you, they are spirit and they are life' (John 6:63). The Word of God, therefore, is not a dead letter, but it is powerful...(Hebrews 4:12; Jeremiah 23:29; 1 Thessalonians 1:5; 1 Corinthians 2:4)."

Edward W. A. Koehler, A Summary of Christian Doctrine, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1952, p. 12. Hebrews 4:12; Jeremiah 23:29; 1 Thessalonians 1:5; 1 Corinthians 2:4.



"Since it is God's gracious purpose to remove every hindrance to conversion by the means of grace, and it is still possible for a man at every point to continue in his opposition to God, a man is never without responsibility over towards the grace of God, although he may mock and say that, since God is the one who does everything for our salvation, then a man has no responsibility himself, as we see in Romans 9:19. Cf. Theses 17 and 18."

U. V. Koren, 1884, "An Accounting," Grace for Grace: Brief History of the Norwegian Synod, ed., Sigurd C. Ylvisaker, Mankato: Lutheran Synod Book Company, 1943, p. Romans 9:19.



"When a man does not repent, he cannot rightly excuse himself with this that he was incapable of doing so. For it is God's gracious will to remove this hindrance, as well as everything which hinders a man's conversion. The cause is only that the man himself would not. Matthew 21:32; 22:4; Psalm 95:8; Isaiah 55:6-7; Acts 7:51; Isaiah 65:2." [Section II, Thesis 18]

U. V. Koren, 1884, "An Accounting," Grace for Grace: Brief History of the Norwegian Synod, ed., Sigurd C. Ylvisaker, Mankato: Lutheran Synod Book Company, 1943, p. Isaiah 55:6-7, 65:2; Matthew 21:32; 22:4; Psalm 95:8; Acts 7:51.



"The Holy Spirit works through the Word and the Sacraments, which only, in the proper sense, are means of grace. Both the Word and the Sacraments bring a positive grace, which is offered to all who receive them outwardly, and which is actually imparted to all who have faith to embrace it."

Charles P. Krauth, The Conservative Reformation and Its Theology, Philadelphia: The United Lutheran Publication House, 1871, p. 127.



"...it is exceedingly difficult to prevent this low view from running out into Socinianism, as, indeed, it actually has run in Calvinistic lands, so that it became a proverb, often met with in the older theological writers--'A young Calvinist, an old Socinian.' This peril is confessed and mourned over by great Calvinistic divines. New England is an illustration of it on an immense scale, in our own land."

Charles P. Krauth, The Conservative Reformation and Its Theology, Philadelphia: The United Lutheran Publication House, 1871, p. 489.



"Since the Word of God is this weapon [sword], it behooves us to make use of it at all times and to this end become acquainted with it both by means of public preaching and by earnest Bible study at home. Cursory reading must be supplemented by careful memorizing of proof-texts and strong passages. Only in this way shall we be able to make the proper use of the Word of God as a true weapon of offense at all times."

Paul E. Kretzmann, Popular Commentary of the New Testament, 2 vols., St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, II, p. 292. Ephesians 6:17



"If the Word of the Gospel had not gotten such an effective hold on the Thessalonian Christians, if they had not had the firm conviction that the Gospel was the Word of God, they would hardly have been willing to bear its burdens."

Paul E. Kretzmann, Popular Commentary of the New Testament, 2 vols., St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, II, p. 346. 1 Thessalonians 2:13



"If the message of salvation were a dead, ineffective sound, an unbeliever might have the excuse that he had gotten no value out of his hearing the Word. But we are told that the Word of God is living, instinct with the wonderful life of its source, full of quickening power, John 6:63; 1 Peter 1:23. It is in itself active, effective, energetic, able to carry out the work which it was intended to do, Jeremiah 23:29; Romans 1:16. It is keener, sharper than any two-edged sword, Revelation 1:16; 2:12; Ephesians 6:17."

Paul E. Kretzmann, Popular Commentary of the New Testament, 2 vols., St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, II, p. 451. Hebrews 4:12; John 6:63; 1 Peter 1:23; Jeremiah 23:29; Ephesians 6:17



"Just why the fact of our regeneration should prove such a strong motive to us to give evidence of our faith in love is shown in the description of regeneration, when the apostle states that this new birth in our hearts is not the result of perishable, corruptible seed, as the growth of earthly plants would be, but of an incorruptible imperishable seed, the Word of God, the Gospel of the Savior Jesus Christ. This Word of God is in itself living, full of life and of life-giving power. And it abides in eternity; even after the form of the Word, in Scripture and in preaching, has passed away, the content of the Gospel will remain in eternity."

Paul E. Kretzmann, Popular Commentary of the New Testament, 2 vols., St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, J-214 II, p. 523. 1 Peter 1:23



"Where the Gospel of Jesus Christ is proclaimed, one may well expect faith to be kindled; for this preaching is the prerequisite of faith, faith depends on the preaching of the Gospel. And preaching, in turn, is through the Word of Christ."

Paul E. Kretzmann, Popular Commentary of the New Testament, 2 vols., St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, II, p. 56. Romans 10:17



"Finally our congregations everywhere must learn thoroughly that they are built upon God and God's Word only, and not upon men and human ability and work. Though thousands fall and err, God and His Word remain unchanged to all eternity. The world ever seeks something new. What is praised as progress today, it casts aside as old-fashioned tomorrow. But the foundation of our faith, the rule and norm of our life as Christians and children of God remains the same for all ages and all time."

R. C. H. Lenski, 1909 R. C. H. Lenski, cited by his nephew or great-nephew, Trinity Seminary Library, unpublished essay. J-33



"Energes = full of living energy to carry out the will of God by either blessing or cursing as the case may be. What folly to treat the Word of God as though it is subject to our minds, our 'views,' our opinions! It is electric and smites him who tampers with it; it is electric to light him who bows beneath it. Who can escape its blasting power when he scorns its threats? Read, for example, Psalm 95:11 and look at the Jews of the Exodus. Read Matthew 23:38 and look at the 'desolate house,' desolate for almost 2,000 years. But the blessings of the Word are equally 'effective' and energetic. Eternity rings with their praise."

R. C. H. Lenski, Interpretation of Hebrews, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1966, J-115 p. 141. Hebrews 4:12



"When the sun bathes the rose, its peals open; so conscience should respond the the truth. A lack of their own full conviction weakens their effort to aid the truth with other means."

R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of St. Paul's First and Second Letter to the Corinthians, Columbus: Wartburg Press, 1957, p. 958. 2 Corinthians 4:2.



"The Old Testament dealt with the promises of God to the chosen people. Thereby God placed Himself in 'covenant' relation to Israel (berith). This relation, like the promises and the gifts of God to Israel, is always onesided. It is always God's covenant, not Israel's, and not a mutual agreement, not a suntheke. This promise and covenant indeed obligates Israel, and Israel assumes these obligations, but the covenant emanates entirely from God."

R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of the Epistle to the Hebrews, Columbus: Lutheran Book Concern, 1938, p. 235. Hebrews 7:22;



"So much, we see, depends on the kind of men who preach the gospel. Let all preachers keep this in mind! In the last analysis, however, the decisive assurance for all believer is the Word itself with its divine effects. See Galatians 1:8. In Thessalonians, too, the ultimate ground of assurance is the Word."

R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of Thessalonians, Columbus: The Wartburg Press, 1937, p. 259. 1 Thessalonians 2:13; Galatians 1:8



"Akoe is much like a technical term which is used, not to indicate the actus audiendi, but to designate the kerygma, the proclamation as it is actually heard."

R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of Thessalonians, Columbus: The Wartburg Press, 1937, p. 260. 1 Thessalonians 2:13



"It is the assurance of the writers (1:1) that this is truly 'God's Word,' but the relative clause: 'which is also effective in you, the believers,' adds the evidence in support of the fact that this is truly God's Word, namely its divine effectiveness in the Thessalonians believers."

R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of Thessalonians, Columbus: The Wartburg Press, 1937, J-113 p. 261. 1 Thessalonians 2:13



"This Word works in the Thessalonians what Paul states in 1:3; it came to them with the power of the Holy Spirit and much assurance (1:5); it turned them from the idols to the living God, to Him who raised up Jesus from the dead, the Savior from the wrath to ccome (1: 9, 10). This effect, wrought by the Word, convinces all believers, all who experience this blessed effect, that this is, indeed, God's Word."

R. C. H. Lenski, The Interpretation of Thessalonians, Columbus: The Wartburg Press, 1937, J-111 p. 261. 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Thessalonians 1:5, 9, 10



"The Christian's faith trusts in the ordinary means. Prayer is not a means of grace. Means of grace are divine appointments through which God uniformly offers blessings to all who use them. Faith is the means by which the blessings are received and appropriated. God gives us bread, when we ask it, not through the channel of prayer, but through the ordinary channels of His providence. He gives us grace when we ask it, not through prayer, but through the ordinary means appointed for this end, namely the Word and Sacraments. He who despises these will as little have grace as he who refuses to accept bread produced in the ordinary way of nature. Faith asks with confidence, and trusts in the ordinary means of God's appointment for the blessings asked."

Matthias Loy, Sermons on the Gospels, Columbus: Lutheran Book Concern, 1888, p. 387.



"The Law of God is good and wise And sets His will before our eyes, Shows us the way of righteousness, And dooms to death when we transgress. (2) Its light of holiness imparts The knowledge of our sinful hearts That we may see our lost estate And seek deliverance ere too late."

Matthias Loy, 1863, "The Law of God Is Good and Wise," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, J-136 Hymn #295. Psalm 19:8.



"The Gospel shows the Father's grace, Who sent His Son to save our race, Proclaims how Jesus lived and died That man might thus be justified. (2) It sets the Lamb before our eyes, Who made the atoning sacrifice, And calls the souls with guilt opprest To come and find eternal rest. (3) It brings the Savior's righteousness Our souls to robe in royal dress; From all our guilt it brings release And gives the troubled conscience peace. (4) It is the power of God to save From sin and Satan and the grace; It works the faith, which firmly clings To all the treasures which it brings. (5) It bears to all the tidings glad And bids their hearts no more be sad; The heavy laden souls it cheers And banishes their guilty fears."

Matthias Loy, 1863, "The Gospel Shows the Father's Grace" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #297. John 3:16.



(1) "An aweful mystery is here To challenge faith and waken fear: The Savior comes as food divine, Concealed in earthly bread and wine. (2) This world is loveless--but above, What wondrous boundlessness of love! The King of Glory stoops to me My spirit's life and strength to be. (3) In consecrated wine and bread No eye perceives the mystery dread; But Jesus' words are strong and clear: 'My body and My blood are here.' (4) How dull are all the powers of sense Employed on proofs of love immense! The richest food remains unseen, And highest gifts appear--how mean! (5) But here we have no boon on earth, And faith alone discerns its worth. The Word, not sense, must be our guide, And faith assure since sight's denied."

Matthias Loy, 1880, "An Aweful Mystery Is Here" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #304. 1 Corinthians 11:23.



"So confident now should every preacher be, and not doubt, that possesses and preaches God's Word, that he could even die for it, since it is worth life to us. Now there is no man so holy that he needs to die for the doctrine he has taught concerning himself. Therefore one concludes from this that the apostles had assurance from God that their Gospel was God's Word. And here is is also proved that the Gospel is nothing else than the preaching of Christ."

Martin Luther, Commentary on Peter and Jude, ed. John N. Lenker, Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, 1990, p. 245. 2 Peter 1:16-18.



"Besides, it is an exceedingly effectual help against the devil, the world, and the flesh and all evil thoughts to be occupied with the Word of God, and to speak of it, and meditate upon it, so that the First Psalm declares those blessed who meditate upon the Law of God day and night. Undoubtedly, you will not start a stronger incense or other fumigation against the devil than by being engaged upon God's commandments and words, and speaking, singing, or thinking of them. For this is indeed the true holy water and holy sign from which he flees, and by which he may be driven away."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #10, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-110 p. 570f.



"Now, for this reason alone you ought gladly to read, speak, think and treat of these things, if you had no other profit and fruit from them than that by doing so you can drive away the devil and evil thoughts. For he cannot hear or endure God's Word; and God's Word is not like some other silly prattle, as that about Dietrich of Berne, etc., but as St. Paul says, Romans 1:16, the power of God which gives the devil burning pain, and strengthens, comforts, and helps us beyond measure."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #11, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 002 p. 571 Romans 1:16.



"And what need is there of many words? If I were to recount all the profit and fruit which God's Word produces, whence would I get enough paper and time? The devil is called the master of a thousand arts. But what shall we call God's Word, which drives away and brings to naught this master of a thousand arts with all his arts and power? It must indeed be the master of more than a hundred thousand arts. And shall we frivolously despise such power, profit, strength, and fruit--we, especially, who claim to be pastors and preachers? If so, we should not only have nothing given us to eat, but be driven out, being baited with dogs, and pelted with dung, because we not only need all this every day as we need our daily bread, but must also daily use it against the daily and unabated attacks and lurking of the devil, the master of a thousand arts."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #12, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 003 p. 571. Chapter 4.



"Since, therefore, so much depends upon God's Word that without it no holy day can be sanctified, we must know that God insists upon a strict observance of this commandment, and will punish all who despise His Word and are not willing to hear and learn it, especially at the time appointed for the purpose."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #95, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 007 p. 607. Exodus 20:8-11.



"Note, therefore, that the force and power of this commandment lies not in the resting, but in the sanctifying, so that to this day belongs a special holy exercise. For other works and occupations are not properly called holy exercises, unless the man himself be first holy. But here a work is to be done by which man is himself made holy, which is done (as we have heard) alone through God's Word. For this, then, fixed places, times, persons, and the entire external order of worship have been created and appointed, so that it may be publicly in operation."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #94, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 006 p. 607. Exodus 20:8-11.



"On the contrary, any observance or work that is practised without God's Word is unholy before God, no matter how brilliantly it may shine, even though it be covered with relics, such as the fictitious spiritual orders, which know nothing of God's Word and seek holiness in their own works."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #93, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 005 p. 607. Exodus 20:8-11.



"For the Word of God is the sanctuary above all sanctuaries, yea, the only one which we Christians know and have. For though we had the bones of all the saints or all holy and consecrated garments upon a heap, still that would help us nothing; for all that is a dead thing which can sanctify nobody. But God's Word is the treasure which sanctifies everything, and by which even all the saints themselves were sanctified. At whatever hour, then, God's Word is taught, preached, heard, read or meditated upon, there the person, day, and work are sanctified thereby, not because of the external work, but because of the Word, which makes saints of us all. Therefore I constantly say that all our life and work must be ordered according to God's Word, if it is to be God-pleasing or holy. Where this is done, this commandment is in force and being fulfilled."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #91-2, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 004 p. 607. Exodus 20:8-11.



"For these words are not inoperative or dead, but creative, living words. And even though no other interest or necessity impel us, yet this ought to urge every one thereunto, because thereby the devil is put to flight and driven away, and, besides, this commandment is fulfilled, and [this exercise in the Word] is more pleasing to God than any work of hypocrisy, however brilliant."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #102, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 012 p. 609. Exodus 20:8-11.



"For let me tell you this, even though you know it perfectly and be already master in all things, still you are daily in the dominion of the devil, who ceases neither day nor night to steal unawares upon you, to kindle in your heart unbelief and wicked thoughts against the foregoing and all the commandments. Therefore you must always have God's Word in your heart, upon your lips, and in your ears. But where the heart is idle, and the Word does not sound, he breaks in and has done the damage before we are aware. On the other hand, such is the efficacy of the Word, whenever it is seriously contemplated, heard, and used, that it is bound never to be without fruit, but always awakens new understanding, pleasure, and devoutness, and produces a pure heart and pure thoughts."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #100-1, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 011 p. 609. Exodus 20:8-11.



"Likewise those fastidious spirits are to be reproved who, when they have heard a sermon or two, find it tedious and dull, thinking that they know all that well enough, and need no more instruction. For just that is the sin which has been hitherto reckoned among mortal sins, and is called akedia, i. e., torpor or satiety, a malignant, dangerous plague with which the devil bewitches and deceives the hearts of many, that he may surprise us and secretly withdraw God's Word from us."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #99, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 010 p. 609. Exodus 20:8-11.



"Know, therefore, that you must be concerned not only about hearing, but also about learning and retaining it in memory, and do not think that it is optional with you of no great importance, but that it is God's commandment, who will require of you how you have heard, learned, and honored His Word."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #98, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 009 p. 609. Exodus 20:8-11.



"Therefore not only those sin against this commandment who grossly misuse and desecrate the holy day, as those who on account of their greed or frivolity neglect to hear God's Word or lie in taverns and are dead drunk like swine; but also that other crowd, who listen to God's Word as to any other trifle, and only from custom come to preaching, and go away again, and at the end of the year know as little of it as at the beginning. For hitherto the opinion prevailed that you had properly hallowed Sunday when you had heard a mass or the Gospel read; but no one cared for God's Word, as also no one taught it. Now, while we have God's Word, we nevertheless do not correct the abuse; we suffer ourselves to be preached to and admonished, but we listen without seriousness and care."

The Large Catechism, Preface, #96-7, The Third Commandment, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, 008 p. 609. Exodus 20:8-11.



"For let me tell you this, even though you know it perfectly and be already master in all things, still you are daily in the dominion of the devil, who ceases neither day nor night to steal unawares upon you, to kindle in your heart unbelief and wicked thoughts against the foregoing and all the commandments. Therefore you must always have God's Word in your heart, upon your lips, and in your ears. But where the heart is idle, and the Word does not sound, he breaks in and has done the damage before we are aware. On the other hand, such is the efficacy of the Word, whenever it is seriously contemplated, heard, and used, that it is bound never to be without fruit, but always awakens new understanding, pleasure, and devoutness, and produces a pure heart and pure thoughts. For these words are not inoperative or dead, but creative, living words."

The Large Catechism, #100, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 609.



"Therefore it is not a Christian Church either; for where Christ is not preached, there is no Holy Ghost who creates, calls, and gathers the Christian Church, without which no one can come to Christ our Lord. Let this suffice concerning the sum of this article."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #45, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 689.



"For where He does not cause it to be preached and made alive in the heart, so that it is understood, it is lost, as was the case under the Papacy, where faith was entirely put under the bench, and no one recognized Christ as his Lord or the Holy Ghost as his Sanctifier, that is, no one believed that Christ is our Lord in the sense that He has acquired this treasure for us, without our works and merit, and made us acceptable to the Father. What, then, was lacking? This, that the Holy Ghost was not there to reveal it and cause it to be preached; but men and evil spirits were there, who taught us to obtain grace and be saved by our works."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #43-44, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 689.



"For, in the first place, He [the Holy Ghost] has a peculiar congregation in the world, which is the mother that begets and bears every Christian through the Word of God, which He reveals and preaches, [and through which] He illumines and enkindles hearts, that they understand, accept it, cling to it, and persevere in it."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #42, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 689.



"For neither you nor I could ever know anything of Christ, or believe on Him, and obtain Him for our Lord, unless it were offered to us and granted to our hearts by the Holy Ghost through the preaching of the Gospel. The work is done and accomplished; for Christ has acquired and gained the treasure for us by His suffering, death, resurrection, etc. But if the work remained concealed so that no one knew of it, then it would be in vain and lost. That this treasure, therefore, might not lie buried, but be appropriated and enjoyed, God has caused the Word to go forth and be proclaimed, in which He gives the Holy Ghost to bring this treasure home and appropriate it to us. Therefore sanctifying is nothing else than bringing us to Christ to receive this good, to which could not attain ourselves."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #38, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 689.



"For now we are only half pure and holy, so that the Holy Ghost has ever [some reason why] to continue His work in us through the Word, and daily to dispense forgiveness, until we attain to that life where there will be no more forgiveness, but only perfectly pure and holy people, full of godliness and righteousness, removed and free from sin, death, and all evil, in a new, immortal, and glorified body."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #58, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 693.



"But outside of this Christian Church, where the Gospel is not, there is no forgiveness, as also there can be no holiness [sanctification]. Therefore all who seek and wish to merit holiness [sanctification], not through the Gospel and forgiveness of sin, but by their works, have expelled and severed themselves [from this Church]."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #56, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 693.



"Everything, therefore, in the Christian Church is offered to the end that we shall daily obtain there nothing but the forgiveness of sin through the Word and signs, to comfort and encourage our consciences as long as we live here. Thus, although we have sins, the [grace of the] Holy Ghost does not allow them to injure us, because we are in the Christian Church, where there is nothing but [continuous, uninterrupted] forgiveness of sin, both in that God forgives us, and in that we forgive, bear with, and help each other."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #55, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 693.



"We further believe that in this Christian Church we have forgiveness of sin, which is wrought through the holy Sacraments and Absolution, moreover, through all manner of consolatory promises of the entire Gospel. Therefore, whatever is to be preached, concerning the Sacraments belongs here, and in short, the whole Gospel and all the offices of Christianity, which also must be preached and taught without ceasing. For although the grace of God is secured through Christ, and sanctification is wrought by the Holy Ghost through the Word of God in the unity of the Christian Church, yet on account of our flesh which we bear about with us we are never without sin."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #54, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 693.



"I am also a part and member of the same, a sharer and joint owner of all the goods it possesses, brought to it and incorporated into it by the Holy Ghost by having heard and continuing to hear the Word of God, which is the beginning of entering it. For formerly, before we had attained to this, we were altogether of the devil, knowing nothing of God and of Christ. Thus, until the last day, the Holy Ghost abides with the holy congregation or Christendom, by means of which He fetches us to Christ and which He employs to teach and preach to us the Word, whereby He works and promotes sanctification, causing it [this community] daily to grow and become strong in the faith and its fruits which He produces."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #53, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 693.



"Behold, all this is to be the office and work of the Holy Ghost, that He begin and daily increase holiness upon earth by means of these two things, the Christian Church and the forgiveness of sin. But in our dissolution He will accomplish it altogether in an instant, and will forever preserve us therein by the last two parts."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #59, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 693f.



"Therefore we believe in Him who through the Word daily brings us into the fellowship of this Christian Church, and through the same Word and the forgiveness of sins bestows, increases, and strengthens faith, in order that when He has accomplished it all, and we abide therein, and die to the world and to all evil, He may finally make us perfectly and forever holy; which now we expect in faith through the Word."

The Large Catechism, The Creed, Article III, #62, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 695.



"If we would be Christians, therefore, we must surely expect and reckon upon having the devil with all his angels and the world as our enemies, who will bring every possible misfortune and grief upon us. For where the Word of God is preached, accepted, or believed, and produces fruit, there the holy cross cannot be wanting. And let no one think that he shall have peace; but he must risk whatever he has upon earth--possessions, honor, house and estate, wife and children, body and life. Now, this hurts our flesh and the old Adam; for the test is to be steadfast and to suffer with patience in whatever way we are assailed, and to let go whatever is taken from us."

Large Catechism, The Lord's Prayer, Third Petition, #65, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 715.



"All this is spoken and written for the comfort of the distressed, the poor, the needy, the sinful, the despised, so that they may know in all times of need to whom to flee and where to seek comfort and help."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 149. Matthew 15:21-28;



"In this Gospel we see how God distinguishes Christians from heathen. For the Lord does not deliver these teachings to the heathen, for they could not receive them, but to His Christians...Satan also hears the Gospel and the Word of God, yea, he knows it far better than we do, and he could preach it as well as we, if he only wanted to; but the Gospel is a doctrine that should become a living power and be put into practice; it should strengthen and comfort people, and make them courageous and aggressive."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, V, p. 103f. Matthew 6:24-34



"The first class of disciples are those who hear the Word but neither understand nor esteem it. And these are not the mean people of the world, but the greatest, wisest and the most saintly, in short they are the greatest part of mankind; for Christ does not speak here of those who persecute the Word nor of those who fail to give their ear to it, but of those who hear it and are students of it, who also wish to be called true Christian and to live in Christian fellowship with Christians and are partakers of baptism and the Lord's Supper. But they are of a carnal heart, and remain so, failing to appropriate the Word of God to themselves, it goes in one ear and out the other, just like the seed along the wayside did not fall into the earth, but remained lying on the ground..."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 J-209 II, p. 114. Luke 8:4-15 (par. Mark 4: Matthew 13:)



"The second class of hearers are those who receive the Word with joy, but they do not persevere. These are also a large multitude who understand the Word correctly and lay hold of it in its purity without any spirit of sect, division or fanaticism, they rejoice also in that they know the real truth, and are able to know how they may be saved without works through faith...But when the sun shines hot it withers, because it has no soil and moisture, and only rock is there. So these do; in times of persecution they deny or keep silence about the Word and work, speak and suffer all that their persecutors mention or wish, who formerly went forth and spoke, and confessed with a fresh and joyful spirit the same, while there was peace and no heat, so that there was hope they would bear much fruit and serve the people."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 J-211 II, p. 116. Luke 8:4-15 (par. Mark 4: Matthew 13:)



"Therefore they [fallen among thorns] do not earnestly give themselves to the Word, but become indifferent and sink in the cares, riches and pleasures of this life, so that they are of no benefit to anyone. Therefore they are like the seed that fell among the thorns...They know their duty but do it not, they teach but do not practice what they teach, and are this year as they were last."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 J-212 II, p. 117. Luke 8:4-15 (par. Mark 4: Matthew 13:)



"What business is it of mine that many do not esteem it? It must be that many are called but few are chosen. For the sake of the good ground that brings forth fruit with patience, the seed must also fall fruitless by the wayside, on the rock and among the thorns; inasmuch as we are assured that the Word of God does not go forth without bearing some fruit, but it always finds also good ground; as Christ says here, some seed of the sower falls also into good ground, and not only by the wayside, among the thorns and on stony ground. For wherever the Gospel goes you will find find Christians. 'My Word shall not return unto me void.' Is. 55:11"

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, J-206 II, p. 118. Luke 8:4-15. Isaiah 55:11.



"But now, since the prince of this world and the Holy Spirit, the kingdom of Christ and the kingdom of the devil, are directly opposed to one another, and the Holy Spirit is not willing that anyone should parade his own deeds and praise himself on account of them, the holy cross must soon follow. The world will not consent to be reprimanded for its blindness. Therefore one must willingly submit and suffer persecution. If we have the right kind of faith in our hearts, we must also open our mouths and confess righteousness and make known sin. Likewise we must condemn and punish the doings of this world and make it known that everything it undertakes, is damned."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 120. John 16:5-15.



"Not that they shall preach that we shall not understand them; but it naturally follows that wherever the Spirit does not reveal them, no one understands them."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 123. Luke 8:4-15



"However, here the Lord speaks quite differently, and says: 'The Holy Spirit will convict the world in respect of sin, because they believe not on me.' Unbelief only is mentioned here as sin, and faith is praised as suppressing and extinguishing the other sins, even the sins in the saints. Faith is so strong and overpowering that no sin dare put it under any obligation. Although sins are present in pious and believing persons, they are not imputed to them, nor shall their sins condemn them."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 127. John 16:5-15.



"Godly and believing persons know their sins; they bear all their punishment patiently, and are resigned to God's judgment without the least murmur; therefore, they are punished only bodily, and here in time, and their pain and suffering have an end. Unbelievers, however, since they are not conscious of their sins and transgressions, cannot bear God's punishment patiently, but they resent it and wish their life and works to go unpunished, yea, uncensured. Hence, their punishment and suffering are in body and soul, here in time, and last forever beyond this life."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 131. John 16:5-15.



"The apostle's purpose in praising his co-laborers is to prevent them from despising the external Word as something inessential to them, or well enough known. For though God is able to effect everything without the instrumentality of the outward Word, working inwardly by his Spirit, this is by no means his purpose. He uses preachers as fellow-workers, or co-laborers, to accomplish his purpose his purpose through the Word when and where he pleases. Now, since preachers have the office, name and honor of the fellow-workers with God, no one may be considered learned enough or holy enough to ignore or despise the most inferior preaching; especially since he knows not when the hour may come wherein God will, through preachers, perform his work in him."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VII, p. 134. 1 Corinthians 13. Isaiah 55.



"It breaks in not piecemeal on certain works and actions, but reduces to nothing and condemns everything that reason and worldly wisdom propose. In short, He convicts and censures them in and for the very things they do not wish to be convicted in, but rather praised and lauded, as teaching and doing well and right."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 138. John 16:5-15.



"For the heart is ever hostile to the law and resists it with inward disobedience."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 140. John 16:5-15.



"Therefore the Holy Spirit rightly and justly convicts, as sinful and condemned, all who have not faith in Christ. For where this is wanting, other sins in abundance must follow: God is despised and hated, and the entire first table is treated with disobedience."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 141. John 16:5-15.



"Lo, how the dragon's-tail of the devil and all hell must follow unbelief! The reason is, that he who does not believe in Christ, has already turned away from God and quite separated himself from Him."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 142. John 16:5-15.



"Take heed, then, to embrace the message of these words presenting the love and kindness of God to all men. Daily exercise your faith therein, entertaining no doubt of God's love and kindness toward you, and you shall realize His blessings. Then you may with perfect confidence ask what you will, what your heart desires, and whatever is necessary for the good of yourself and your fellow-men. But if you do not so believe, it were far better you had never heard the message. For by unbelief you make false these precious, comforting, gracious words. You conduct yourself as if you regarded them untrue, which attitude is extreme dishonor to God; no more enormous sin could be committed."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholaus Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VI, p. 146. Titus 3:4-8



"Hence in every such life the heart always remains uncertain and in doubt." [long passage on subjective uncertainty; foundation can only be Christ]

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 149. John 16:5-15.



"All this, however, is written for our comfort and instruction, that we may know how deeply God conceals His grace before our face, and that we may not estimate Him according to our feelings and thinking, but strictly according to His Word."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 152. Matthew 15:21-28.



"So it goes in the spiritual government of the Church, as specially indicated in the narrative now before us. Where I have preached and taught during the past ten or twenty years, there another could perhaps, have done more in one year; and one sermon may bring forth more fruit than many others. Here, also, it is true that our labor, diligence and effort can accomplish nothing These two things must go together, namely, that each one does his duty, and that he, nevertheless, acknowledges with Peter: 'My labor cannot bring forth anything, if thou dost not give the increase.'"

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, IV, p. 153. Luke 5:1-11.



"How beautifully the apostle in these strong words extols the grace of God bestowed in baptism! He refers to baptism as a washing, whereby not our feet only, not our hands, but our whole bodies are cleansed. Baptism perfectly and instantaneously cleanses and saves. For the vital part of salvation and its inheritance, nothing more is necessary than this faith in the grace of God. Truly, then, are we saved by grace alone, without works or other merit."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholaus Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, VI, p. 154. Titus 3:5



"A hardened heart will not be instructed, no matter how plainly and clearly the truth is presented; but the faith of the righteous is strengthened when they see that the ground of their faith is right and good."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 157. Luke 11:14-23.



"All preaching of sin and God's wrath is a preaching of the Law, no matter how or when it may be done. On the other hand, the Gospel is such preaching as sets forth and bestows nothing but grace and forgiveness in Christ. And yet it is true that the Apostles and preachers of the Gospel sanctioned the preaching of the Law, as Christ Himself did, and began with this in the case of those who had not yet acknowledged their sins and had felt no fear of God's anger."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, J-229 IV, p. 158. Luke 5:1-11.



"The unavoidable conclusion then is that, as long as the Holy Spirit does not enter our hearts, we are not only incapable of any good, but are of necessity in the kingdom of Satan."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 159. Luke 11:14-23.



[The office of preaching]...cannot produce profitable or fruitful results in all men; yet great power and much fruit are found in those who remain steadfast and are kept to the end."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, IV, p. 165. Luke 5:1-11.



"Christ is speaking here not of the word of the law, but of the Gospel, which is a discourse about Christ, who died for our sins, etc. For God did not wish to impart Christ to the world in any other way; he had to embody him in the Word and thus distributed him, and present him to everybody; otherwise Christ would have existed for himself alone and remained unknown to us; he would have thus died for himself. But since the Word places before us Christ, it thus places us before Him who has triumphed over death, sin, and Satan. Therefore, he who grasps and retains Christ, has thus also eternal deliverance from death. Consequently it is a Word of life, and it is true, that whoever keeps the Word shall never see death."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 177. John 8:46-59.



"For in Confession as in the Lord's Supper you have the additional advantage, that the Word is applied to your person alone. For in preaching it flies out into the whole congregation, and although it strikes you also, yet you are not so sure of it; but here it does not apply to anyone except you. Ought it not to fill your heart with joy to know a place where God is ready to speak to you personally? Yea, if we had a chance to hear an angel speak we would surely run to the ends of the earth."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 II, p. 199.



"To this incline your ears, and be persuaded that God speaks through men and forgives you your sins; this, of course, requires faith."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 II, p. 200.



"The preaching of this message may be likened to a stone thrown into the water, producing ripples which circle outward from it, the waves rolling always on and on, one driving the other, till they come to the shore. Although the center becomes quiet, the waves do not rest, but move forward. So it is with the preaching of the Word. It was begun by the apostles, and it constantly goes forward, is pushed on farther and farther by the preachers, driven hither and thither into the world, yet always being made known to those who never heard it before, although it be arrested in the midst of its course and is condemned as heresy."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 202. Mark 16:14-20.



"However, you will be sure as to whether the sacrament is efficacious in your heart, if you watch your conduct toward your neighbor. If you discover that the words and he symbol soften and move you to be friendly to your enemy, to take an interest in your neighbor's welfare, and to help him bear his suffering and affliction, then all is well. On the other hand, if you do not find it so, you continue uncertain even if you were to commune a hundred times a day with devotions so great as to move you to tears for very joy; for wonderful devotions like this, very sweet to experience, yet as dangerous as sweet, amount to nothing before God. Therefore we must above all be certain for ourselves, as Peter writes in 2 Peter 1:10: 'Give the more diligence to make your calling and election sure.'"

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 II, p. 211. 2 Peter 1:10.



"Such a divine kingdom con be governed, built up, protected, extended and maintained only by means of the external office of the Word and Sacraments, through which the Holy Spirit is powerful and works in the hearts etc., as I have often said in speaking on this theme."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholaus Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, V, p. 238. Matthew 22:1-14



"You may tie a hog ever so well, but you cannot prevent it from grunting, until it is strangled and killed. Thus it is with the sins of the flesh." Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 247. Mark 16:1-8. "Therefore the Holy Spirit must come to our rescue, not only to preach the Word to us, but also to enlarge and impel us from within, yea, even to employ the devil, the world and all kinds of afflictions and persecutions to this end. Just as a pig's bladder must be rubbed with salt and thoroughly worked to distend it, so this old hide of ours must be well salted and plagued until we call for help and cry aloud, and so stretch and expand ourselves, both through internal and through external suffering,that we may finally succeed and attain this heart and cheer, joy and consolation, from Christ's resurrection."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 253. Mark 16:1-8.



"If I do not believe it, I will not receive its benefits; but that neither renders it false nor proves that anything is lacking in Christ."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 258. Mark 16:1-8.



"Learn then from this Gospel what takes place when God begins to make us godly, and what the first step is in becoming godly. There is no other beginning than that your king comes to you and begins to work in you. It is done in this way: The Gospel must be the first, this must be preached and heard. In it you hear and learn how all your works count for nothing before God and that everything is sinful that you work and do. Your king must first be in you and rule you. Behold, here is the beginning of your salvation; you relinquish your works and despair of yourself, because you hear and see that all you do is sin and amounts to nothing, as the Gospel tells you, and you receive your king in faith, cling to him, implore his grace and find consolation in his mercy alone."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, I, p. 26. Matthew 21:1-9.



"It is a faithful saying that Christ has accomplished everything, has removed sin and overcome every enemy, so that through Him we are lords over all things. But the treasure lies yet in one pile; it is not yet distributed nor invested. Consequently, if we are to possess it, the Holy Spirit must come and teach our hearts to believe and say: I, too, am one of those who are to have this treasure. When we feel that God has thus helped us and given the treasure to us, everything goes well, and it cannot be otherwise than that man's heart rejoices in God and lifts itself up, saying: Dear Father, if it is Thy will to show toward me such great love and faithfulness, which I cannot fully fathom, then will I also love Thee with all my heart and be joyful, and cheerfully do what pleases Thee. Thus, the heart does not now look at God with evil eyes, does not imagine He will cast us into hell, as it did before the HS came...."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 279. John 14:23-31.



"The Holy Spirit teaches man better than all the books; He teaches him to understand the Scriptures better than he can understand them from the teaching of any other; and of his own accord he does everything God wills he should, so the Law dare make no demands upon him."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 280. John 14:23-31.



"The Holy Spirit is given to none except to those who are in sorrow and fear; in them it produces good fruit. This gift is so precious and worthy that God does not cast it before dogs. Though the unrepentant discover it themselves, hearing it preached, they devour it and know not what they devour."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 281f. John 14:23-31.



"He permits it to happen that many great saints err and stumble, in order that we may not trust in men, though they be many, great, and holy. We must be led to rely upon the Word that is sure and cannot deceive, as here these two men, and all the others afterward, were directed to the Scriptures."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 290. Luke 24:13-35.



"Thus, we know how and where the Holy Spirit is to be found, and we need not be in doubt nor waver, gazing here and there for special revelations or illuminations. Each one should hold to the Word, and should know that through it alone, and through no other means, does the Spirit enlighten hearts and is He ready to dwell in them and to give true knowledge and comfort through faith in Christ."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 300. John 14:23-31.



"Be not worried because of this! for even though a man preach and continue in the Gospel for many years, he must still lament and say: Aye, no one will come, and all continue in their former state. Therefore you must not let that grieve or terrify you."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 305. Luke 24:36-47.



"But when St. Peter stood up and preached, they made a mockery of it and considered the apostles drunken fools. When they had urged the Gospel a long time, they gathered together three thousand men and women. But what were they among so many? Yea, no one could discern that the Gospel had accomplished anything, for all things continued in the same state as before. No change was seen, and scarcely anyone knew that there were Christians there. And so it will be at all times."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 306. Luke 24:36-47.



"It seems to me that the Holy Ghost led the apostles and evangelists to abbreviate passages of the Scripture for the purpose that we might be kept close to the Holy Scriptures, and not set a bad example to future exegetes, who make many words outside the Scriptures and thereby draw us secretly from the Scriptures to human doctrines."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, I, p. 31. Matthew 21:1-9.



"The Word and the gifts of the Holy Spirit are materials with which He builds. Though the dwelling is not altogether completed, yet through His grace and love it is accepted of God." Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 322. John 14:23-31.



"Secondly, it is shown here that this Word precedes, or must be spoken beforehand, and that afterwards the Holy Spirit works through the Word. One must not reverse the order and dream of a Holy Spirit who works without the Word and before the Word, but one who comes with and through the Word and goes no farther than the Word goes."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 329. John 14:23-31.



"We hear God's Word, which is in fact the preaching of the Holy Spirit, who is at all times present with it, but it does not always at once reach the heart and be accepted by faith; yea, in the case of those who are moved by the Holy Spirit and gladly receive the Word, it does not at once bear fruit."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 330. John 14:23-31.



"This is going through closed doors, when He comes into the heart through the Word, not breaking nor displacing anything. For when the Word of God comes, it neither injures the conscience, nor deranges the understanding of the heart and the external senses; as the false teachers do who break all the doors and windows, breaking through like thieves, leaving nothing whole and undamaged, and perverting, falsifying and injuring all life, conscience, reason, and the senses. Christ does not do thus."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 355. John 20:19-31.



"Thus we have two parts, preaching and believing. His coming to us is preaching; His standing in our hearts is faith. For it is not sufficient that He stand before our eyes and ears; He must stand in the midst of us in our hearts, and offer and impart to us peace."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., xd., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 355. John 20:19-31.



"The first and highest work of love a Christian ought to do when he has become a believer, is to bring others also to believe in the way he himself came to believe. And here you notice Christ begins and institutes the office of the ministry of the external Word in every Christian; for He Himself came with this office and the external Word."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 359. John 20:19-31.



"But ye have not the power to create faith. For there is a great difference between planting and giving the growth; as Paul says to the Corinthians: 'I planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.' 1 Corinthians 3:6"

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, J-232 II, p. 362. John 20:19-31; 1 Corinthians 3:6.



"Now God drives us to this by holding the law before us, in order that through the law we may come to a knowledge of ourselves. For where there is not this knowledge, one can never be saved. He that is well needs no physician; but if a man is sick and desires to become well, he must know that he is weak and sick, otherwise he cannot be helped."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 370. John 20:19-31.



"There are the infants, bare and naked in body and soul, having neither faith nor works. Then the Christian Church comes forward and prays, that God would pour faith into the child; not that our faith should help the child, but that it may obtain a faith of its own. If it has faith, then after that whatever it does is well done, whether it suckle its mother's breast, or whether it soil itself, or whatever it may please to do."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, IV, p. 378. Mark 7:31-37.



"If God does not take me alone to a separate place, and give me the Holy Spirit, so that I cling to the Word which I have heard, then all preaching is in vain."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, IV, p. 380. Mark 7:31-37.



"In a word; He will not permit himself to be found either among friends and acquaintances, nor in anything outside of His Word."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 43. Luke 2:41-52.



"Observe from this text how Christ in plain words ascribes to baptism, which He calls water, such glory and power as to say that the Holy Spirit is present in it, and that by its means a person is born anew. By this statement all false doctrines and errors against the doctrine of faith and baptism are overthrown."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 434. John 3:1-15.



"Nor does He send such trial upon you in order to cast you off, but that you may the better learn to know and the more closely cling to His Word, to punish your lack of understanding and that you may experience how earnestly and faithfully He cares for you."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 44. Luke 2:41-52.



"But the Lord refutes this and says: Go ye there and preach what does it matter if it is against you? You will find there what I say. We should now do likewise. Although the masses storm against the Gospel and there is no hope that they will be better, yet we must preach, there will yet be found those who listen and become converted."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, I, p. 48. Matthew 21:1-9.



"But here you come to the Word of God which is sure and infallible, where you shall certainly find Christ and the Holy Spirit, and can be and remain firmly fortified against sin, death, and the devil."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, J-44 II, p. 51. Luke 2:41-52.



"Indeed, because its course is contrary to reason, sense and thought, the world regards the doctrine as pure folly and delusion, and condemns and persecutes all who adhere to it and are unwilling to follow the world's own opinion."

qMartin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 67. John 10:11-16.



"Now this confidence of faith or knowledge of the goodness of Christ would never have originated in this leper by virtue of his own reason, if he had not first heard a good report about Christ, namely, how kind, gracious and merciful he is, ready to help and befriend, comfort and counsel every one that comes to him. Such a report must undoubtedly have come to his ears, and from this fame he derived courage, and turned and interpreted the report to his own advantage...His faith therefore did not grow out of his reason, but out of the report he heard of Christ, as St. Paul says: 'Belief cometh of hearing, and hearing by the Word (or report) of Christ.' Romans 10:17"

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John N. Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 II, p. 72 Matthew 8:1-13; Romans 10:17



"For that is living faith, which does not doubt that God is also good to us and is graciously willing to do what we ask. But it is to be understood in this way: faith does not doubt the good will, God has toward a person, by which he wishes him every good; but it is not known to us, whether what faith asks and presents, is good and useful for us; God alone knows this."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John N. Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 II, p. 75 Matthew 8:1-13;



"And although we do at times depart from the Word, we should not therefore remain altogether away from it,but return again, for He makes good His Word. Even though man cannot believe it, God will nevertheless help him to believe it, and this He does without man's reason or free will and without man adding anything thereto."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 76. John 16:16-23



"So very little does the free will and understanding of man know of the things pertaining to the salvation of the soul. These temporal things the free will can perceive and know, such as the cock crowing, which he can hear and his reason can also understand it; but when it is a question of understanding the work and Word of God, then human reason must give it up; it cannot make head or tail of it, although it pretends to understand a great deal about it. The glory thereof is too bright, the longer he beholds it the blinder he becomes."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed. John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 76f. John 16:16-23



"The worse of all is, that we must not only suffer shame, persecution and death; but that the world rejoices because of our great loss and misfortunes. This is indeed very hard and bitter. Sure it shall thus come to pass, for the world will rejoice when it goes ill with us; but this comfort we have that their joy shall not last long, and our sorrow shall be turned into eternal joy."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 80. John 16:16-23.



"Hence everything here depends only upon this, that you rightly learn to look upon Christ according to the Word, and not according to your own thoughts and feelings, for human thoughts are frauds and lies, but His Word is true and cannot lie."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, IV, p. 92. Luke 15:1-10.



"Now it is the consolation of Christians, and especially of preachers, to be sure and ponder well that when they present and preach Christ, that they must suffer persecution, and nothing can prevent it; and that it is a very good sign of the preaching being truly Christian, when they are thus persecuted, especially by the great, the saintly, the learned and the wise."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 97. Matthew 8:23-27.



"Lord, I am not worthy." "Herein is the great faith of this heathen, that he knows salvation does not depend upon the bodily presence of Christ, for this does not avail, but upon the Word and faith. But the apostles did not yet know this, neither perhaps did his mother, but they clung to his bodily presence and were not willing to let it go, John 16:6. They did not cling to his Word alone. But this heathen is so fully satisfied with his Word, that he does not even desire his presence nor does he deem himself worthy of it."

Martin Luther, Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John N. Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983 II, p. p. 79. Matthew 8:1-13; John 16:6



(2) "Thou holy Light, Guide Divine, Oh, cause the Word of Life to shine! Teach us to know our God aright And call Him Father with delight. From every error keep us free; Let none but Christ our Master be That we in living faith abide, In Him, our Lord, with all our might confide. Hallelujah! Hallelujah!"

Martin Luther, 1524, "Come, Holy Ghost, God and Lord!" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, J-108 Hymn #224. Acts 2:4.



(1) "Flung to the heedless winds Or on the waters cast, The martyrs' ashes, watched, Shall gathered be at last. And from that scattered dust, Around us and abroad, Shall spring a plenteous seed Of witnesses for God." Martin Luther, 1523, "Flung to the Heedless Winds," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #259. Acts 7:59.





"O Lord, look down from heaven, behold And let Thy pity waken; How few are we within Thy fold, Thy saints by men forsaken! True faith seems quenched on every hand, Men suffer not Thy Word to stand; Dark times have us overtaken. (2) With fraud which they themselves invent Thy truth they have confounded; Their hearts are not with one consent On Thy pure doctrine grounded. While they parade with outward show, They lead the people to and fro, In error's maze astounded. (3) May God root out all heresy And of false teachers rid us Who proudly say: 'Now, where is he That shall our speech forbid us? By right or might we shall prevail; What we determine cannot fail; We own no lord and master. (5) As silver tried by fire is pure From all adulteration So through God's Word shall men endure Each trial and temptation. Its light beams brighter through the cross, And purified from human dross, It shines thru every nation."

Martin Luther, 1523, "O Lord, Look Down from Heaven, Behold," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #260. Psalm 12.



(3) "Though devils all the world should fill, All eager to devour us, We tremble not, we fear no ill, They shall not overpower us. This world's prince may still Scowl fierce as he will, He can harm us none, He's judged; the deed is done; One little word can fell him."

Martin Luther, 1529, "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #262. Psalm 46.



(2) "Therefore my hope is in the Lord And not in mine own merit; It rests upon His faithful Word To them of contrite spirit That He is merciful and just; This is my comfort and my trust. His help I wait with patience." Martin Luther, 1523, "From Depths of Woe I Cry to Thee," The Lutheran Hymnal, Trans., Catherine Winkworth, 1863 alt. St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #329. Psalm 130.



(10) "What I have done and taught, teach thou, My ways forsake thou never; So shall My kingdom flourish now And God be praised forever. Take heed lest men with base alloy The heavenly treasure should destroy; This counsel I bequeath thee."

Martin Luther, 1523, "Dear Christians, One and All, Rejoice," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #387. Romans 3:28.



"To me He spake: Hold fast to Me, I am thy Rock and Castle; Thy Ransom I Myself will be, For thee I strive and wrestle; For I am with thee, I am thine, And evermore thou shalt be Mine: The Foe shall not divide us. (v. 7) The Foe shall shed My precious blood, Me of My life bereaving. All this I suffer for thy good; Be steadfast and believing. Life shall from death the victory win, My innocence shall bear thy sin; So art thou blest forever. (v. 8)

Martin Luther, The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, J-114 Hymn #387. Romans 3:28



"The Word seems to be a trifling matter. But it proved to be a thunderbolt so powerful that its impact turned the whole Roman Empire with its wisdom, might, and sanctity into a pile of rubbish. There lay Minerva and the Pantheon with all its idols. So Christ the Hero beat everything down among Jews and Gentiles through the marvelous power of His Word in the apostles."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p.



"If only the preachers remain orthodox and the doctrine is preserved, God will grant grace that among the multitude there will always be some who will accept the Word; for where the Word is pure and unadulterated, it cannot be without fruit."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1125. 1 Corinthians 15.



"Therefore, I hold that the German proverb is true, that more souls go to heaven from the gallows than from the cemetery; for criminals have not so greatly practiced lack of confidence in the goodness of Christ."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1275. Isaiah 28:19. "



If you want to engage profitably in the study of theology and Holy Scripture and do not want to run head-on into a Scripture closed and sealed then learn, above all things, to understand sin aright."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1293. Genesis 42:29-34.



"Today nothing is so common as turning right into wrong and wrong into right by employing all sorts of clever expedients and strange tricks."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1294. Matthew 5:38-41.



"One Christian who has been tried is worth a hundred who have not been tried for the blessing of God grows in trials. He who has experienced them can teach, comfort, and advise many in bodily and spiritual matters."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1381. Genesis 27:28-29.



"You must always have the Word of God in your heart, on your lips, and in your ears. Where the heart is idle and the Word does not ring out, the devil breaks in and has done damage before we are aware of it. On the other hand, such is the power of the Word if it is seriously contemplated, heard, and used that it is never without fruit. It always awakens new understanding, pleasure, and devotion and purifies the heart and thoughts. For these are not inert or dead but active and living words.

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1467. Exodus 20:8. Chapter Four.



"We must, after all, confess that in certain other articles the enthusiasts hold views which accord with Scripture and God's Word and that although they are impious heretics and blasphemers of Christ, he who hears and believes them on these points shall be saved. That God proclaims His Word even through the wicked and the godless is not an insignificant blessing (Gnad). In fact, in some respects it is more dangerous for Him to proclaim it through holy than through unholy people, for then those who lack understanding fall into the error of attaching more importance to the holiness of men than to the Word of God. In this way more honor is ascribed to men than to God and His Word. The danger of doing this does not exist if Judas, Caiaphas, and Herod preach. At the same time, no one is excused for his evil life, even though God is able to use it for a good purpose."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1467f.



"A Christian should know that nothing on earth is more sacred than God's Word; for even the Sacrament itself is made, blessed, and sanctified by God's Word, and all of us, too, are thereby spiritually born and consecrated Christians."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1469.



"The 'rod of His mouth' signifies the spoken Word or the Gospel, which proceeds from the mouth of all whose teaching is pure. It is not inefficacious; it bears fruit; it justifies the godly and destroys the ungodly." [Footnote F. Pieper, Dogmatics, Word of God has twofold effect. It illumines and blinds. I, p. 125.]

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1469. Isaiah 11:4



"It is most scandalous for us to attempt to defend God's Word with our reason, whereas we are to defend ourselves against all enemies with the Word of God, as St. Paul teaches (Eph. 6:7). Would he not be a great fool who in battle would seek to protect his helmet and sword with bare hand or head? But that is the situation when we try, with our reason, to defend God's Law, which is our weapon."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, J-48 III, p. 1475. Ephesians 6:7.



"Thereby I behead no one, scourge no one with a rod; but with my mouth I whip, punish, flog, and judge. Thus Christ wields an oral sword, not a fisted one. The Word of God is the sword with which He punishes the whole world."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1478. Isaiah 11:4



"People who have been in quest of nothing but money and possessions in their last moments cannot avoid the usual thoughts. When you try to comfort them with God's Word, it does not enter their mind. Meanwhile they stroll into the office, to the market, into the store with their thoughts; they think of this, of that debt, etc. In short, the thorns have taken possession of them to such an extent that they cannot escape; or their consciences are so burdened that they cannot accept any comfort."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed. Ewald M. Plass St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III, p. 1528. Matthew 27:1-10. Chapter Four.



"The ultimate purpose of afflictions is the mortification of the flesh, the expulsion of sins, and the checking of that original evil which is embedded in our nature. And the more you are cleansed, the more you are blessed in the future life. For without a doubt glory will follow upon the calamities and vexations which we endure in this life. But the prime purpose of all these afflictions is the purification, which is extremely necessary and useful, lest we snore and become torpid and lazy because of the lethargy of our flesh. For when we enjoy peace and rest, we do not pray, we do not meditate on the Word but deal coldly with the Scriptures and everything that pertains to God or finally lapse into a shameful and ruinous security."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 18. Genesis 45:3.



"The church is recognized, not by external peace but by the Word and the Sacraments. For wherever you see a small group that has the true Word and the Sacraments, there the church is if only the pulpit and the baptismal font are pure. The church does not stand on the holiness of any one person but solely on the holiness and righteousness of the Lord Christ, for He has sanctified her by Word and Sacrament."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 263. Matthew 24:4-7.



"Wherever this Gospel is truthfully and purely preached, there is the kingdom of Christ; and this mark of the church or the kingdom of Christ cannot deceive you. For wherever the Word is, there the Holy Spirit is, either in the hearer or in the teacher. External works can deceive, since after all they are found even among the heathen."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 264.



"To be sure, we are all called Christians. We are baptized and regenerated through Baptism. But all of us do not remain with our Baptism. Many fall away from Christ and become false Christians. But the honest Christians are thinly sown."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 280.



"No more splendid work exists than receiving and hearing the Word of God."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 302. Luke 10:38.



"To be converted to God means to believe in Christ, to believe that He is our Mediator and that we have eternal life through Him."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 343. Acts 26:20.



"Man's own merit or holiness can contribute nothing toward getting out of the old birth of flesh and blood or achieving the new birth. Man is not born again of his own choice and idea; but a new birth must take place through Holy Baptism, without man's contributing anything. The Holy Spirit is bestowed through the divine will and grace by means of the externally preached Word and the water."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 344. John 3:3.



"For you do not find Him; He finds you. For the preachers come from Him, not from you. Your faith comes from Him, not from you. And everything that works faith within you comes from Him, not from you."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 345. Matthew 21:1-9.



"It is ridiculous to want to deduce from passages such as this that power exists in us to convert ourselves to God without grace. For God gives to those to whom He communicates this Word of His the ability to believe the Word. The Word of God is not taught in vain and without bearing fruit, but the Holy Spirit is with the Word, and through the Word He moves hearts to believe."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 346. Isaiah 44:22.



"Christ here says: Only he comes to Me and only he receives faith whom the Father draws to Me. This drawing is not done as the hangman draws a thief. It is rather a friendly inviting and drawing, as a gracious man attracts people to himself by being so friendly and pleasant that everybody is glad to go to him. In this way God also gently invites and brings people to Himself so that they willingly and gladly are with Him and near Him."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 347. John 6:43-44.



"As Paul was converted, so others are; for all of us resist the Word. But the Holy Spirit draws us through the ministry of the Word when He pleases. Therefore the spoken Word is always to be held in high esteem, for those who despise the spoken Word are presently made heretics."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 347.



"The will does nothing. It is rather the substance (causa materialis) in which the Holy Spirit works also in those who resist, as in Paul. But working on the will of him who resists He moves the will to consent."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 347.



"I believe that I cannot by my own reason or strength believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord, or come to Him; but the Holy Ghost has called me by the Gospel, enlightened me with His gifts, sanctified and kept me in the true faith; even as He calls, gathers, enlightens, and sanctifies the whole Christian Church on earth and keeps it with Jesus Christ in the one true faith...."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 353.



"If we would be Christians, we must surely expect and count on having the devil, together with all his angels and the world, as our enemies. They all will bring misfortune and sorrow on us For where the Word of God is preached, accepted, or believed, and where it produces fruit, the dear, holy cross cannot be wanting."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 357.



[comparison to a fruit tree] "When the Gospel begins to assert its influence, everybody wants to become a Christian. All seems well, and everybody is pleased. But when a wind or rainstorm of temptation comes on, people fall away in droves Then sectaries arrive, as worms and bugs, gnawing and polluting the fruits of the Gospel, and so much false doctrine arises that few stay with the Gospel."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 37. John 4:46-54.



"The world is now full of sects which exclaim that Baptism is merely an external matter and that external matters are of no use. However, let it be ever so much an external matter; here stand God's Word and command which institute, establish, and confirm Baptism. However, whatever God institutes and commands cannot be useless but must be an altogether precious matter, even if it were worth less than a straw."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 43. Matthew 28:19.



"We should be on our guard against the Anabaptists and sectarian spirits, who speak contemptuously of Baptism and say that it is nothing but ordinary water, which helps no one. They look at the sacred act as a cow looks at a new door; for they see a poor preacher standing there or some woman who baptizes in an emergency, are offended at the sight, and say: Indeed! What might Baptism be? Moreover, they state: Whoever does not believe is really not baptized. In this way they dishonor and blaspheme the most worthy Sacrament, not seeing any farther than a horse or a cow sees...."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 45. John 1:30-32.



"But here it is written that when Christ was baptized, all three Persons of the Trinity were present--God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit...and that the heavens stood open, too. In fact, God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit daily stand about and at the side of our own Baptism....For this reason we should highly esteem and honor Baptism and say: Baptism was not devised by any human being, but God instituted it; and it is not simple water, but God's Word is in it and with it, which makes of its water a washing of the soul and a washing of regeneration."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 45. John 1:30-32.



"One must not make the sweeping assertion: God is not worshiped by anything external. Therefore we should not ridicule all things that are external in the worship of God. For when God speaks about a splinter, His Word makes the splinter as important as the sun. It is, therefore, profane language to say that the water of Baptism is only water; for the water of Baptism has the Word added to it. Therefore it is like a glowing or fiery iron, which is as truly fire as it is iron and does all that fire usually does. But only the pious see and appreciate the Word in the water; a cow or a dog sees only water."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 45. Psalm 122:3.



"Whoever is baptized in Christ is baptized through His suffering and blood or, to state it more clearly, through Baptism he is bathed in the blood of Christ and is cleansed from sins. For this reason St. Paul calls Baptism a "washing of regeneration" (Titus 3:5); and according to what Christians say and picture, the Sacraments flow from the wounds of Christ. And what they say and picture is right." [Plass footnote: "Thus Jerome (d. 420) sees the Sacrament symbolized by the blood and water that flowed from the side of the dead Christ (John 19:34). Similarly St. Augustine (d. 430). In Luther's days pictures and woodcuts presented the same view. See W 30, II, 527, note; SL 13a, 491f.]

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 46. John 19:34; Titus 3:5.



"No work is so evil that it can damn a man, and no work is so good that it can save a man; but faith alone saves us, and unbelief damns us. The fact that someone falls into adultery does not damn him. Rather the adultery indicates that he has fallen from faith. This damns him; otherwise adultery would be impossible for him. So, then, nothing makes a good tree except faith."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 475. Matthew 7:15-23.



[endangered infant not baptized in womb] "But the women who are present at the birth should kneel down and with a prayer of faith commit the endangered infant to God who is mighty and able to do more than we ask. Without a doubt He will accept the infant for the sake of the prayer of the believers."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 49.



"I still maintain, as I have maintained in the Postil (SL 11, 496f.) that the surest Baptism is infant Baptism. For an old person may deceive, may come to Christ as a Judas and permit himself to be baptized. But a child cannot deceive. It comes to Christ in Baptism as John came to Him and as the little children were brought to Him, that His Word and work may come over them, touch them, and thus make them holy. For His Word and work cannot pass by without effect; and in Baptism they are directed at the child alone. If they were to fail of success here, they would have to be entire failures and useless means, which is impossible."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 50.



"To be sure, Baptism is so great that if you turn from sins and appeal to the covenant of Baptism, your sins are forgiven. Only see to it--if you sin in this wicked and wanton manner by presuming on God's grace--that the judgment does not lay hold of you and forestall your turning back. And even if you then wanted to believe and trust in your Baptism, your trial might by God's decree, be so great that faith could not stand the strain. If they scarcely remain in the faith who do no sin or who fall because of sheer weakness, where will your brazen wickedness remain, which has challenged and mocked God's grace? Let us, therefore, walk with care and fear that we may hold fast the riches of God's grace with a firm faith and joyfully give thanks to His mercy forever and ever. Amen."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 57. [advocates infant immersion or something similar] Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 58.



"Thus we see what a very splendid thing Baptism is. It snatches us from the jaws of the devil, makes us God's own, restrains and removes sin, and then daily strengthens the new man within us. It is and remains ever efficacious until we pass from this state of misery to eternal glory. For this reason everyone should consider his Baptism as his daily dress, to be worn constantly. Every day he should be found in the faith and its fruits, suppressing the old man, and growing up in the new; for if we want to be Christians, we must practice the work whereby we are Christians. But if anyone falls from baptismal grace, let him return to it. For as Christ, the Mercy Seat, does not withdraw from us or forbid us to come to Him again even though we sin, so all His treasures and gifts also remain with us."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 61.



“There is on earth no greater comfort than Baptism."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, I, p. 61.



"That the Holy Spirit works in the heart is true; nevertheless He intends ordinarily and usually to do so in no other way than through the spoken Word. St. Paul says that a man cannot believe unless he has previously heard (Romans 10:14)."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 664. Romans 10:14.



"They [the Zwinglians] divorced the Word and the Spirit, separated the person who preaches and teaches the Word from God, who works through the Word, and separated the servant who baptizes from God, who has commanded the Sacrament. They fancied that the Holy Spirit is given and works without the Word, that the Word merely gives assent to the Spirit, whom it already finds in the heart. If, then, this Word does not find the Spirit but a godless person, then it is not the Word of God. In this way they falsely judge and define the Word, not according to God, who speaks it, but according to the man who receives it. They want only that to be the Word of God which is fruitful and brings peace and life..."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 664f.



"Whoever comes to faith can only say that the Holy Spirit comes when and where and to whom He pleases at the time He pleases. He comes when and where He pleases, and also gives a person as many gifts as He pleases."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 665.



"But the sinners who confess their sins, and are repentant, who wish they had not so angered God, who find all their concern and sorrow in the fact that they have offended God and have not kept His Commandments and, therefore, pray for grace--these sinners shall find grace."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 694. Matthew 18:21-35.



"The devil is always plaguing the world by keeping people from distinguishing between the work of God and the work of men....But you should know that though no human being believed Baptism and the Gospel, the Gospel and Baptism would still be right; for both are not mine but God's Word and work."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 705. John 1:30-34.



But Cain's excuse is much more foolish; for truly when sin is disclaimed, sin is doubled, while a free confession of sin obtains mercy and overcomes wrath."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 872. Genesis 4:9.



"For we can definitely assert that where the Lord's Supper, Baptism, and the Word are found, Christ, the remission of sins, and life eternal are found. On the other hand, where these signs of grace are not found, or where they are despised by men, not only grace is lacking but also foul errors will follow. Then men will set up other forms of worship and other signs for themselves."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 914. Genesis 4:3.



"From this it follows that they act foolishly, yea, against God's order and institution, who despise and reject the external Word, thinking that the Holy Spirit and faith should come to them without means. It will indeed be a long time before that happens."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 915.



"In short, enthusiasm clings to Adam and his children from the beginning to the end of the world. It has been implanted and infused (gegiftet) into them by the Old Dragon and is the source, strength, and power of all heresy, also of the heresy of the papacy and Mohammedanism."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 915.



"He wants to teach you, not how the Spirit is to come to you but how you are to come to the Spirit, so that you learn how to float on the clouds and ride on the wind." [Enthusiasm]

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 916.



"When you preach or confess the Word, you will experience both without, among enemies, and also within, in yourself (where the devil himself will speak to you and prove how hostile he is to you), that he brings you into sadness, impatience, and depression, and that he torments you in all sorts of ways. Who does all this? Certainly not Christ or any good spirit, but the miserable, loathsome enemy...The devil will not bear to have you called a Christian and to cling to Christ or to speak or think a good word about Him. Rather he would gladly poison and permeate your heart with venom and gall, so that you would blaspheme: Why did He make me a Christian? Why do I not let Him go? Then I would at last have peace."

Martin Luther, What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1959, II, p. 928.



"Both Baptism and the Lord's Supper qualify as Means of Grace because of the simple fact that they are visible forms of the essential Gospel message announcing the forgiveness of sins." Martin W. Lutz, "God the HS Acts Through the Lord's Supper,"

God The Holy Spirit Acts, ed., Eugene P. Kaulfield, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1972, p. 117.



(3) Glory and praise, still onward reaching, Be Thine, O Spirit of all grace, Whose holy power and faithful teaching Give me among Thy saints a place. Whatever of good by me is done Is wrought by grace divine alone." Johann Mentzer, cento, "Oh, That I Had a Thousand Voices," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #243. Psalm 148:1.



"Wherever we see the Word of God purely preached and heard, and the sacraments administered according to Christ's institution, there, it is not to be doubted, a church of God exists."

Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 100.





"Therefore, a part of revelation consists in baptism, that is, so far as it is intended to confirm our faith." Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 116. Titus 3:5. "Baptism seals to us the salvation obtained by Christ."

Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 116. Titus 3:5.



"But the sacraments properly fulfill their office only when the Spirit, that inward teacher, comes to them, by whose power alone hearts are penetrated and affections moved and our souls opened for the sacraments to enter in. If the Spirit be lacking, the sacraments can accomplish nothing more in our minds than the splendor of the sun shining upon blind eyes, or a voice sounding in deaf ears."

Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 119.



"The nature of baptism or the Supper must not be tied down to an instant of time. God, whenever He sees fit, fulfills and exhibits in immediate effect that which he figures in the sacrament. But no necessity must be imagined so as to prevent His grace from sometimes preceding, sometimes following, the use of the sign."

Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 121.



"The offspring of believers are born holy, because their children, while yet in the womb, before they breathe the vital air, have been adopted into the covenant of eternal life."

Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 123.



"We must establish such a presence of Christ in the supper as may neither fasten Him to the element of bread, not enclose Him in bread, not circumscribe Him in any way (all of which clearly derogate from His heavenly glory)...."

Benjamin Charles Milner, Jr., Calvin's Doctrine of the Church, Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1970, p. 128.

(3) "Give tongues of fire and hearts of love To preach the reconciling Word; Give power and unction from above Wherever the joyful sound is heard." James Montgomery, 1823, "O Spirit of the Living God," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #504. Acts 2:3.



"The Word of God does not merely teach man the way of salvation and show him the means by which he may obtain it; but by its truly divine power (vis vere divina) it actually converts, regenerates, and renews him. This unique efficacy is possessed by no other book in the world nor by any discourse of man unless these repeat God's Word as set forth in the Bible; for the divine efficacy of Scripture is nothing else than God's power in the Word, Romans 1:16."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 133. Romans 1:16.



"Because Holy Scripture is the inspired Word of God, it possesses not only divine authority, but also divine efficacy, that is to say, the creative power to work in man, who by nature is spiritually dead, both saving faith and true sanctification, Romans 10:17: faith; 1 Peter 1:23: regeneration; John 17:20: faith and sanctification."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 133. Romans 10:17; John 17:20; 1 Peter 1:23.



"The divine power which inheres in the Word is not irresistible, but resisistible (efficacia resistibilis); that is to say, the saving effects of the Word may be withstood though in itself the Word is omnipotent, Matthew 23:37; 2 Corinthians 4:3-4."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 134. Matthew 23:37; 2 Cor 4:3-4.



"The divine power must never be separated from the Word of Scripture; that is to say, the Holy Ghost does not operate beside or outside the Word (enthusiasm, Calvinism, Rathmannism in the Lutheran Church), but always in and through the Word, Romans 10:17; 1 Peter 1:23; John 6:23."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 134f. Romans 10:17; John 6:23; 1 Peter 1:23.



"On the other hand, the practical result of the acceptance of the Scriptural doctrine that the Holy Spirit is inseparably united with the Word is the absolute subjection of every thought to the Word of God, as this is set forth in the Bible, 2 Corinthians 10:5. In this case every doctrine which is opposed to Scripture is rejected as false, no matter to what source it may be attributed, whether it be the 'spirit,' the 'inner word,' the 'inner light,' 'reason,' 'science,' 'the Church,' 'the Pope,' and the like. Unless we fully accept the Scriptural doctrine that the Holy Spirit is indissolubly united with the Word of Scripture, we cannot regard this precious Book of God as the only source and standard of faith. It was for this reason that our Lutheran theologians so strenuously defended the inseparable unity of the Word and the Spirit."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 135. 2 Corinthians 10:5. Chapter Four.







"The practical result of the separation of the divine power from the divine Word of Scripture is the rejection of the Bible as the only source and norm of faith (norma normans). This is proved by the very fact that the enthusiasts have invariably placed the 'inner word' (verbum internum), or the 'spirit,' above Holy Scripture (verbum externum), assigning to the latter an inferior place in the realm of divine revelation. To the enthusiasts the Bible is only a norma normata, or a rule of faith subject to the 'inner word,' that is, to their own notions and figments of reason."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 135. Chapter Four.



"Although the Holy Ghost is always active through the Word, we must not judge His activity from feeling (ex sensu)...Concordia Triglotta, FC, SD, II, 56, p. 903."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 136. 2 Corinthians 2:14ff; 3:5.



"In their controversy with the enthusiasts (Reformed) the Lutheran theologians averred that Holy Scripture is efficacious also extra usum. By this phrase they meant to say that the Holy Spirit is perpetually connected with the Word, so that it retains its power even when not in use."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 136. Romans 1:16.



"In order to offer and convey to men the merits which Christ has secured for the world by His death on the cross, 2 Corinthians 5:21; Romans 5:18, God employs certain external, visible means through which the Holy Spirit works and preserves faith and thus accomplishes the sinner's salvation."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 441. 2 Corinthians 5:21; Rom 5:18.



"The doctrine of the means of grace is understood properly only when it is considered in the light of Christ's redemptive work (satisfactio vicaria) and the objective justification, or reconciliation, 2 Corinthians 5:19-20, which He secured by His substitutionary obedience (satisfactio vicaria). If these two doctrines are corrupted (Calvinism: denial of the gratia universalis; synergism: denial of sola gratia), then also the Scripture doctrine of the means of grace will become perverted."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 442. 2 Corinthians 5:19-20.



"Moreover, the Gospel is a true means of grace in every form in which it is presented to the sinner..."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 443.



"Since God has connected His most gracious promise of forgiveness with Baptism and the Lord's Supper, these also are true and efficacious means of grace, namely, by virtue of the divine promises that are attached to them."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 444.



"Christ commands us not only to hear the Gospel, but also to 'search the Scriptures,' John 5:29, 46, thus asserting the efficacy of the Word also when it is being read."

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 444. John 5:29, 46.



"If the question is put, 'Why did God ordain so many means of grace when one suffices to confer upon the sinner His grace and forgiveness?' we quote the reply of Luther who writes (Smalcald Articles, IV: 'The Gospel not merely in one way gives us counsel and aid against sin, for God is superabundantly rich in His grace. First through the spoken Word, by which the forgiveness of sins is preached in the whole world, which is the peculiar office of the Gospel. Secondly through Baptism. Thirdly through the holy Sacrament of the Altar. Fourthly through the power of the keys and also through the mutual conversation and consolation of brethren, Matthew 18:20.'"

John Theodore Mueller, Christian Dogmatics, A Handbook of Doctrinal Theology, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1934, p. 447. Matthew 18:20.



"God bestows His saving grace 'only through the Word and with the external and preceding Word' (nisi per verbum et cum verbo externo et praecedente, SA-III VIII, 3; John 8:31-32; Rom 10:14-17). Therefore the Bible inculcates faithful adherence to the Gospel and the Sacraments administered according to Christ's institution (Mt 28:19-20; Jn 8:31-32; Acts 17:11; Titus 1:9). Because of the strong emphasis on the Word in the Lutheran Confessions, Holy Scripture has rightly been called the Formal Principle of the Reformation."

John T. Mueller, "Grace, Means of," Lutheran Cyclopedia, Erwin L. Lueker, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1975, p. 343. John 8:31; Romans 10:14-17; Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 17:11; Titus 1:9.



"The means of grace are necessary because of Christ's command and because they offer God's grace. God has not bound Himself to the means of grace (Lk 1:15, 41), but He has bound His church to them. Christians dare not regard as unnecessary the Sacraments and the preaching of the Word (Mt 28:19-20; Lk 22:19; 1 Co 11:23-28), as some 'enthusiasts' do."

John T. Mueller, "Grace, Means of," Lutheran Cyclopedia, Erwin L. Lueker, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1975, p. 344.



"Calvinism rejects the means of grace as unnecessary; it holds that the Holy Spirit requires no escort or vehicle by which to enter human hearts." John T. Mueller, "Grace, Means of," Lutheran Cyclopedia, Erwin L. Lueker, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1975, p. 344. "The Lutheran Confessions take a decisive stand against 'enthusiasts,' who teach that the Holy Spirit works in the hearts of men without the Word and Sacraments (SA-III VIII 3-13; LC II 34-62; FC Ep II 13)."

John T. Mueller, "Grace, Means of," Lutheran Cyclopedia, Erwin L. Lueker, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1975, p. 344.



Lutheran Confessions passages: Apology VII-VIII 36; SA-III VIII 10; FC SD II 48; AC V

John T. Mueller, "Grace, Means of," Lutheran Cyclopedia, Erwin L. Lueker, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1975, p. 344.



"I know my faith is founded On Jesus Christ, my God and Lord; And this my faith confessing, Unmoved I stand upon His Word. Man's reason cannot fathom The truth of God profound; Who trusts her subtle wisdom Relies on shifting ground. God's Word is all sufficient, It makes divinely sure, And trusting in its wisdom, My faith shall rest secure."

Erdmann Neumeister, 1713, "I Know My Faith Is Founded," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #381. 2 Timothy 1:12.



(1) "On what has now been sown Thy blessing, Lord, bestow; The power is Thine alone To make it spring and grow. Do Thou in grace the harvest raise, And Thou alone shalt have the praise." John Newton, 1779, cento, alt., "On What Has Now Been Sown," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, J-230 Hymn #46. 1 Corinthians 3:6.



"Pietist preachers were anxious to discover and in a certain sense to separate the invisible congregation from the visible congregation. They had to meet demands different than those of the preceding period: they were expected to witness, not in the objective sense, as Luther did, to God's saving acts toward all men, but in a subjective sense of faith, as they themselves had experienced it. In this way Pietism introduced a tendency toward the dissolution of the concept of the ministry in the Lutheran Church."

Helge Nyman, "Preaching (Lutheran): History," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1943.



"All those doctrinal questions which were not immediately connected with the personal life of faith were avoided. The standard for the interpretation of Scripture thus became the need of the individual for awakening, consolation, and exhortation. The congregation as a totality was lost from view; in fact, pietistic preaching was (and is) more apt to divide the congregation than to hold it together."

Helge Nyman, "Preaching (Lutheran): History," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1943.



"One who had experienced the wonder of faith in his inner life is the true witness, even if he had not been called in an external sense according to the order of the church. It now was relatively easy to introduce lay preaching, though it remained somewhat incompatible with the Lutheran Confessions."

Helge Nyman, "Preaching (Lutheran): History," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1944.



"Pietism greatly weakened the confessional consciousness which was characteristic of orthodox Lutheranism." Helge Nyman, "Preaching (Lutheran): History," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1945. (1) "Lord, open Thou my heart to hear And through Thy Word to me draw near; Let me Thy Word ever pure retain, Let me Thy child and heir remain. (2) Thy Word doth deeply move the heart, Thy Word doth perfect health impart, Thy Word my soul with joy doth bless, Thy Word brings peace and happiness."

Johannes Olearius, 1671, "Lord, Open Thou My Heart to Hear," The Lutheran Hymnal, trans., Matthias Loy, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #5. Psalm 119:140.



"To the best of my knowledge, only three WELS pastors have ever taken classes at Fuller Seminary: Reuel Schulz in the 1970s, and Robert Koester and I in the 1980s." Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.



"You may reply that by 'Fuller-trained' you mean anyone who has attended a worshop presented by the Charles E. Fuller Institute of Evangelism and Church Growth, an agency which is independent of the Seminary. If that is the case, your attribution of 'Fuller-trained' is still simply not true. It would surprise me if even half of the two dozen people on your 'WELS/ELS Who's Who' list have attended a Fuller workshop; I personally know of only five who have."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.



"Paul says that people can, in some way, 'adorn the doctrine' (KJV). Does that mean adding anything to the Gsopel, thereby making the Means of Grace more 'effective'? Of course not. But it does mean that a Christian, a Christian slave in the original context, can discredit the Gospel--and thus erect a human barrier--through actions and words that contradict the profession of faith."

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23. Titus 2:9-10



"To believe, teach, and confess that truth is not inconsistent with being able to recognize that one approach to ministry may be more effective than another. It is more effective to hold worship services at 10:30 am on Sunday than at midnight on Tuesday; this is true, even though it is the same Gospel that is preached at either time." [another example, preaching in German to an American audience]

Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.



"Faithfulness is the standard by which God judges those he calls into the public ministry. That faithfulness may or may not be 'effective' in terms of visible results; results are up to God, not us. But part of faithfulness ought to include striving to be as 'effective' as we can be in the methods that we use to take the Means of Grace to people." Lawrence Otto Olson, D. Min., Fuller Seminary, "A Response to Gregory L. Jackson, Ph.D.," Christian News, 3-28-94, p. 23.



"In reconciling the world unto Himself by Christ's substitutionary satisfaction, God asked no one's advice concerning His singular method of reconciliation. In like manner, without asking any man's advice, He ordained the means by which He gives men the infallible assurance of His gracious will toward them; in other words, He both confers on men the remission of sins merited by Christ and works faith in the proffered remission or, where faith already exists, strengthens it. The Church has appropriately called these divine ordinances the means of grace, media gratiae, instrumenta gratiae; Formula of Concord: 'Instrumenta sive media Spiritus Sancti' (Triglotta, p. 903, Solid Declaration, II, 58). They are the Word of the Gospel, Baptism, and the Lord's Supper, as will be shown more fully on the following pages."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 103.



"In other words, Zwingli and his numerous adherents declare that the means God has ordained are unnecessary and hinder true piety." Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 104. "The Law of God, which is also contained in Scripture, must be excluded from the concept 'means of grace,' because the Law does not assure those who have transgressed it--and all men have transgressed it--of the remission of their sins, or God's grace, but on the contrary proclaims God's wrath and condemnation. For this reason the Law is expressly called...'the ministry of condemnation,' whereas the Gospel is...'the ministry of righteousness' (2 Corinthians 3:9)."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 105. 2 Corinthians 3:9.



"The starting point in presenting the doctrine of the means of grace must be the universal objective reconciliation or justification. This is the procedure of Scripture."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 105.



"We saw before that Scripture ascribes the forgiveness of sins without reservation to the Word of the Gospel, to Baptism, and to the Lord's Supper. Therefore all means of grace have the vis effectiva, the power to work and to strengthen faith." [Note: Augsburg Confession, V, XIII]

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 108f.



"Also the objection that there is no need of offering and confirming to Christians one and the same forgiveness of sins in several ways betrays an astonishing ignorance. Both Scripture and experience teach that men who feel the weight of their sins find nothing harder to believe than the forgiveness of their sins. Hence repetition of the assurance of the forgiveness of sins in various ways through the means of grace meets a practical need of Christians."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 114.



"Because saving grace is particular, according to the teaching of the Calvinists, there are no means of grace for that part of mankind to which the grace of God and the merit of Christ do not extend. On the contrary, for these people the means of grace are intended as means of condemnation. Calvin teaches expressly: 'For there is a universal call, through which, by the external preaching of the Word, God invites all, indiscriminately, to come to Him, even those for whom He intends it as a savor of death and an occasion of heavier condemnation' (Institutes, III, 24, 8)."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 118f.



"But according to the teaching of Calvinism this 'inner illumination' is not brought about through the means of grace; it is worked immediately by the Holy Ghost. Modern Reformed, too, teach this very emphatically. Hodge, for example, says: 'In the work of regeneration all second causes are excluded....Nothing intervenes between the volition of the Spirit and the regeneration of the soul....The infusion of a new life into the soul is the immediate work of the Spirit....The truth (in the case of adults)[that is, the setting forth of the truth of the Gospel through the external Word] attends the work of regeneration, but is not the means by which it is effected." [Hodge, Systematic Theology, II, 634f.]

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 120.



"In short, for synergists of all shades the means of grace are not merely channels of the grace merited by Christ's satisfactio vicaria, but generators of the human activities, variously named, by which man really can and should come to possess God's grace."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 122.



"Behind the synergists' teaching regarding the means of grace, which makes room for assistance by man, lurks the denial of the perfection of the reconciliation effected by Christ's work of redemption."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 125.



"Zwingli is a good example of those who separate grace from the means of grace. His assertion that the Holy Ghost needs no vehicle (vehiculum) is well known. And this rule he applies not only to the Sacraments [Fidei Ratio, ed. Niemeyer, p. 24], but to the Word of the Gospel as well. Zwingli asserts emphatically that faith does not come through the outward Word, but through the immediate operation of the Holy Spirit: ipse tractus internus (through which we are converted to God) immediate operantis est Spiritus. [Zwingli, Opp., ed. Schulthess, IV, 125]"

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 127.



"The Christian doctrine of the means of grace is abolished by all 'enthusiasts,' all who assume a revealing and effective operation of the Holy Spirit without and alongside the divinely ordained means of grace."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 127.



"Zwingli is a good example of those who separate grace from the means of grace. His assertion that the Holy Ghost needs no vehicle (vehiculum) is well known. And this rule he applies not only to the Sacraments but to the Word of the Gospel as well." Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, III, p. 127.

"Reformed theologians, in order to support their denial of the illocalis modus subsistendi of Christ's human nature, have sought, in their exposition of John 20, an opening in the closed doors, or a window, or an aperture in the roof or in the walls, in order to explain the possibility of Christ's appearance in the room where the disciples were assembled." Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, J-6 II, p. 127. John 20:19.



"Native to us is the opinio legis, the religion of the Law. When we observe virtue in ourselves, we regard God as gracious. When we discover sin in us and our conscience condemns us because of it, we fear that God is minded to reject us."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 131.



"To remain properly humble while firmly rejecting all erroneous teachings regarding the means of grace, we should remind ourselves how even Christians who teach and, as a rule, also believe, the correct doctrine of the means of grace, in their personal practice very often lose sight of the means of grace. This is done whenever they base the certainty of grace, or of the forgiveness of sin, on their feeling of grace or the gratia infusa, instead of on God's promise in the objective means of grace. All of us are by nature 'enthusiasts.'"

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 131.



"Zwingli said, 'I believe, yea I know, that all the Sacraments are so far from conferring grace that they do not even convey or distribute it. In this, most powerful Emperor, I may perhaps appear too bold to thee. But I am firmly convinced that I am right. For as grace is produced or given by the divine Spirit (I am using the term 'grace' in its Latin meaning of pardon, indulgence, gracious favor), so this gift reaches only the spirit. The Spirit, however, needs no guide or vehicle, for He Himself is the Power and Energy by which all things are borne and has no need of being borne. Nor have we ever read in the Holy Scriptures that perceptible things like the Sacraments certainly bring with them the Spirit.' (Fidei Ratio, ed. Niemeyer p. 24; Jacobs, Book of Concord, II, 68)"

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 132f.



"I believe, yea, I know, that all the Sacraments are so far from conferring grace that they do not even convey or distribute it. In this, most powerful Emperor, I may perhaps appear too bold to thee. But I am firmly convinced that I am right." [Zwingli]

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, III, p. 132f.



"Scripture binds all knowledge of Christian truth to the Word of Christ, who says: ean humeis meinete ev tw logw tw emw...gnwsesthe ten aletheian (John 8:31-32). Faith and regeneration is effected by the Holy Ghost through the Word (1 Corinthians 2:4-5; 1 Peter 1:23). The Spirit is received through the hearing of faith (Galatians 3:2, 5). The Word of the Cross (ho logos ho tou staurou) is the power of God to those who are saved (1 Corinthians 1:18). Hence actually everything that is regarded as brought about by the Holy Ghost without the Word is factious, 'illusory,' 'self-produced.' The experience one has, or imagines, without the means of grace is not the product of the Holy Ghost, but is 'man-made.'"

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 136.



Charles Marsh Mead: "The most ardent champion of the doctrine of free will may be found supplicating the Lord to give him those graces which, according to his theory, he ought to obtain and cultivate for himself." (Irenic Theology, 1905, p. 161.)

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 137.



"No other human writer has so forcefully as Luther set forth the nature of the divinely ordained means of grace, their importance for faith and life, and the destructive effect of severing grace from the means of grace. For Luther was trained in the school of the terrors of conscience for the work of reforming the Church, while Zwingli's reformation and theology sprang largely from the soil of Humanism and bears a speculative stamp throughout. Calvinistic theology from Calvin down to our day teaches not so much the God who has revealed and given Himself to us in His Word, but at the critical points substitutes speculations regarding the absolute God for what the divine Word teaches."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 137f.



"Furthermore, it must be admitted that the Reformed teaching of the means of grace filtered, particularly through Pietism, also into the Lutheran Church." Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 143. "There is no Scripture proof for the Reformed teaching of the means of grace."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 144.



"Thus Calvin, as we saw, cautions against seeking to discern one's election from the universal call, that is, from the Word of the Gospel (Institutes, III, 24, 8). Likewise the Consensus Tigurinus (c. 20) warns against the thought that the 'visible sign [the Sacraments], in the same moment when it is being offered, brings with it the grace of God' (Niemeyer, p. 195). The Geneva Catechism, too, enjoins ['De Sacramentis'], that salvation must not be sought in the visible signs."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 145.



"Behind the Reformed teaching of the means of grace looms the rationalistic thought, foreign to Scripture, that divine omnipotence, which is needed to bring about faith and regeneration, cannot be exercised through means."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 147.



"The Reformed are simply deluding themselves in claiming Scripture support for their teaching regarding the means of grace. Their teaching is not derived from the Bible."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 150.



"In describing the Lutheran doctrine as binding the activity of the Holy Ghost to the Word of God, Charles Hodge ventures to remark: 'This theory cuts us off from all intercourse with the Spirit and all dependence upon Him as a personal voluntary agent.'" (Hodge, Systematic Theology, III, p. 482; also II, p. 656f.)

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 152.



"Our opponents hold that saving faith must be founded on Christ Himself, not on the means of grace. This reasoning, common to the Reformed, the 'enthusiasts' of all shades, and modern 'experience' theologians, assumes that faith can and should be based on Christ to the exclusion of the means of grace."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 152.



"Another species of self-deception needs to be pointed out in this connection. We meet it in the Reformed theologians of every era and also in their confessions. We are thinking of their endeavor to assign to the means of grace the function of externally expressing, confirming, and sealing what the Holy Ghost works immediately and internally."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 156.



"Some may regard as a 'hard saying' our verdict that the Reformed doctrine of an immediate operation of the Spirit reduces personal Christianity to human subjectivism and what amounts to self-deception."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 159.



"Furthermore, the reminder is in place that the Reformed teachers are not even consistent in what they teach regarding the means of grace...But inasmuch as this inconsistency makes room for the divine truth, the Holy Spirit is given the opportunity to perform His work of kindling faith in the Gospel. This circumstance should, of course, not induce us to become indifferent to the Reformed errors in the doctrine of the means of grace. We are confident that we have amply shown their unscripturalness and the complete revolution they cause in the relation God has ordained between Himself and men, because they do not place man on the Word of grace and thus on Christ and God Himself, but direct man to take his stand on himself and his own product. Hence indifferentism here is surely not in place."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 161f.



"Hence indifferentism here is surely not in place. On the contrary, we must challenge the teaching of any operation of the Spirit independently of the Word within the Christian Church, and combat it as a foreign element that has penetrated into the Christian doctrine and as a deadly enemy of living personal faith."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, III, p. 161f.



"Another very repulsive concomitant of the Reformed false teaching is spiritual pride. Because those who harbor the conception of an activity of the Holy Ghost apart from the means of grace are dealing in an illusory, man-made quality, they regard themselves, as experience amply proves, as the truly spiritual people and first-class Christians, while they consider those who in simple faith abide by the divinely appointed means of grace, 'intellectualists,' having a mere Christianity of the head; at best, second-rate Christians."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 162.



"Moreover, the advocates of this error [Reformed advocates, against the Means of Grace] are by no means always irenic people. Rather, they go on the warpath and malign the Biblical truth in many ways."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 162.



"In fact, there is no basis for a real disagreement between Zwingli and Calvin. The situation here is analogous to the one that obtains in the doctrine of Christ's Person and Word and the doctrine of the Lord's Supper. In these doctrines Zwingli and Calvin and all Reformed will agree as long as they all teach that Christ's body can possess only a local and visible mode of subsistence or presence. Similarly, Zwingli and Calvin cannot differ materially in their teaching on the means of grace because they agree, first, that Christ's merit and saving grace do not apply to all who use the means of grace; secondly, that saving grace is not bound to the means of grace."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, III, p. 163.



"In so far as Pietism did not point poor sinners directly to the means of grace, but led them to reflect on their own inward state to determine whether their contrition was profound enough and their faith of the right caliber, it actually denied the complete reconciliation by Christ (the satisfactio vicaria), robbed justifying faith of its true object, and thus injured personal Christianity in its foundation and Christian piety in its very essence."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 175.



"Luther holds that all who deny that the Word and the Sacraments dispense the forgiveness of sins, who therefore find it particularly offensive if men remit sins, do not actually take God's Word to be God's Word, but regard it as merely the word of men. See St. L. XIX:945; XIII:2441, etc."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1953, III, p. 207.



"The Church has no word of its own. Whatever is not taken from Scripture is not the 'Word of the Church,' but what Luther bluntly calls 'prattle.' Also other books can exert a divine power and efficacy, but always only inasmuch as they have absorbed God's Word. Of Scripture Luther says: 'No book teaches anything concerning eternal life except this one alone' (St. Louis edition XIV:434)."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans. Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 315.



"But as a matter of fact, since the Scriptures alone among all books of the world are God's Word out and out, they alone have the vis vere divina outright. What the Church proclaims (the 'Word of the Church') also has divine power and efficacy, but always only in so far as the Church remains true to its commission and proclaims only God's Word (Matthew 28:19; Romans 3:2; 1 Timothy 6:3ff.; 2 John 9-10)."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans. Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 315. Matthew 28:19; Romans 3:2; 1 Timothy 6:3ff.; 2 John 9-10.



"The Word of the Law (nomos pneumatikos), as it is revealed in Holy Scripture, has the inherent power to work such a knowledge of sin that man realizes his eternal damnation and despairs of all self-help (contritio, terrores conscientiae). Romans 3:20: 'By the Law is the knowledge of sin.' True, man may arrive at a partial knowledge of his sinfulness by virtue of the divine Law as it is written in the heart of natural man also after the Fall. But while this knowledge suffices to give man an evil conscience, it is not sufficient to effect a complete collapse of man before God and to cause him to despair of all self-help. Natural man rather turns from one form of self-help to another, even to suicide."

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans. Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 315f.



"The Word of the Gospel, presented in Scripture, has the inherent power to write God's Law into the heart of man, that is, so to change man inwardly that he gladly subjects himself to God's Law and willingly and with delight walks in the ways of God according to the new man, which is created in him through faith in the Gospel. Human strength and human training cannot accomplish this change. Romans 8:7: 'The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the Law of God, neither indeed can be.' 'Lex praescribit, evangelium inscribit.' (Jeremiah 31:31ff.)"

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans. Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 316. Jeremiah 31:31ff.; Romans 8:7.



"The Word of the Gospel has the inherent power to work faith in the Gospel. Romans 10:17: 'Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.' Thus it creates in man the assurance that his sins are forgiven. Romans 5:1: 'Therefore, being justified by faith, we have peace with God thorugh our Lord Jesus Christ.' Human strength and human learning, even at their best, do not suffice to work faith in the Gospel, as Scripture teaches clearly when it says that the crucified Christ is 'unto the Jews a stumbling block and unto the Greeks foolishness' (1 Corinthians 1:23) and that the natural man, the psychikos anthrwpos, 'receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him, neither can he know them' (1 Corinthians 2:14). All the children of God in the Old and New Testament have experienced this truth." Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans. Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 316. [separating Law and Gospel] "If this is lacking, one cannot tell a Christian from a pagan or a Jew." Luther

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 77.



"The lawmonger compels by threats and punishments; the preacher of grace persuades and incites men by setting forth the goodness and mercy of God." Luther

Francis Pieper, Christian Dogmatics, 3 vols., trans., Walter W. F. Albrecht, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1950, I, p. 79.



"The Reformed, and all Reformed sects, deny the Real Presence of the body and blood of Christ in the Lord's Supper. Through this they detract from God's honor." Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 36. "Thus in heterodox churches, in order to defend false doctrine, God's Word must continually be denied. It is rightly said: 'It cost nine lies to maintain one lie.' Whoever allows himself such liberties with the Word of God, let him beware, lest the devil also make this clear Word doubtful for him in the hour of death: 'The blood of Jesus Christ, His Son, cleanseth us from all sin.' 1 John 1:7"

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 40. 1 John 1:7.



"Whoever does not make conversion and salvation dependent solely on the grace of God, but also on the conduct of man, he must actually cross out hundreds of Bible passages."

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 40. 1 Peter 1:5.



"Whoever denies the Real Presence of the body and blood of Christ in the Lord's Supper must pervert the words of Institution where Christ the Lord, speaking of that which He gives His Christians to eat, says: 'This is My body,' and, speaking of that which He gives them to drink, says: 'This is My blood.' [Also 1 Corinthians 10:16]

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 40. 1 Corinthians 10:16.



"Those who claim that Baptism is not a Means of Grace, no washing of regeneration, must continually deny these words of Scripture, Galatians 3:27: 'For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ, have put on Christ." [Also Acts 2:38; Titus 3:5]

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 40. Galatians 3:27; Acts 2:38; Titus 3:5.



"Furthermore, consider this: All doctrines of the Bible are connected with one another; they form a unit. One error draws others in after it. Zwingli's first error was the denial of the presence of Christ's body and blood in the Lord's Supper. In order to support this error, he had to invent a false doctrine of Christ's Person, of heaven, of the right hand of God, etc."

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 41.



"It is, for example, very terrible that the Lutheran Church, because it has the true doctrine of Baptism and the Lord's Supper, is decried as 'Catholic.' This attack against the true Church is no small matter."

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 44.



"Some time ago, a respected Presbyterian preacher in St. Louis confessed that if he in his congregation would try to have God's Word rule as it does with us, in four weeks his whole congregation would scatter. The sects owe their outward size mostly to this, that they play church instead of actually conducting themselves as God's Church. Neither do they rightly bear witness of the Law of God to man, nor do they act as true witnesses of God's grace. But, this is what the Lutheran Church does."

Francis Pieper, The Difference between Orthodox and Heterodox Churches, and Supplement, Coos Bay, Oregon: St. Paul's Lutheran Church, 1981, p. 46.



"The Lutheran Church Faces the World by Clinging to the Means of Grace. The doctrine of the means of grace is truly a most timely subject. For just in these last times, according to divine revelation, there will be at work many spiritual brigands who will perpetrate the grossest kind of deception."

Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, II, p. 322.



"Wherever the means of grace are present, there the Lord Himself is present, and where the Lord rules there is victory. The true doctrine of justification is intimately bound up with the true doctrine of the means of grace. In order to keep the doctrine of justification in all its purity, one must ever maintain that the forgiveness of sins which Christ earned for mankind can never be appropriated by man through any other means than the Word and the Sacrament. Therefore, Walther said, the correct doctrine on justification stands or falls with the correct doctrine concerning the means of grace."

Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, II, p. 327.



"In its teaching on the immutability, unchangeableness, and permanency of the means of grace, the Lutheran Church gives all glory to God alone because it teaches that no one, not even a minister of the Word, can change the means of grace from that which God instituted."

Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, II, p. 333.



"It is God alone who may speak the word of pardon, who can produce faith, but it is God who is speaking in the Gospel and the Sacraments (Luke 24:47: 'in His name') and creating faith through them (Acts 16:14--Lydia; James 1:18; 1 Thessalonians 2:13). The word of the Gospel is therefore not a dead letter, nor are the Sacraments empty symbols, but they are the power of God. The power of God is inseparably connected with, is inherent in, the means of grace."

Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, J-106 II, p. 335. Luke 24:47; Acts 16:14; James 1:18; 1 Thessalonians 2:13.



"A denial of the efficacy and sufficiency of the means of grace is contained in the theological systems of all religious enthusiasts." Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, II, p. 343. "The correct understanding of the doctrine of the Means of Grace will have a salutary influence on pastors and hearers; without the proper use of the Means of Grace no sinner can expect to be saved and no Church can hope to grow."

Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, II, p. 344.



"'The hearers of the Word of God who understand the doctrine of the means of grace will be diligent hearers of it. While God has commanded the pastor to preach the Gospel, He has commanded the congregation to hear it. The Gospel is the means not only of converting the sinner, but also of strengthening the faith of those who already are converted. Christians having this knowledge will be faithful and diligent in the use of the means of grace.'"

Edwin E. Pieplow, "The Means of Grace," The Abiding Word, ed., Theodore Laetsch, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1946, II, p. 346.

(4) "The seas shall waste, the skies in smoke decay, Rocks fall to dust, and mountains melt away; But fixed this Word, this saving power, remains; Thy realms shall last, thine own Messiah reigns." A. Pope, "Rise, Crowned with Light, Imperial Salem, Rise," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #503. Isaiah 60:1ff. V. Mueller Catechism: "Although the work of redemption was accomplished on the cross and forgiveness of sin acquired, yet it cannot come to us in any other way than through the Word. For what would we otherwise know about it that such a thing was accomplished or was to be given to us if it were not presented by preaching, or the oral Word?" Eduard Preuss, "The Means of Grace," The Justification of the Sinner before God, trans., Julius A. Friedrich, Chicago: F. Allerman, 1934, p. 59.



"But just as the Word of God is the means of Grace, it is also the means of judgment. 'He that rejected Me,' says Christ, John 12:48, 'and receiveth not My words, hath one that judgeth him: the Word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the Last Day.'"

Eduard Preuss, "The Means of Grace," The Justification of the Sinner before God, trans., Julius A. Friedrich, Chicago: F. Allerman, 1934, p. 63. John 12:48.



"Thus it is evident that we receive forgiveness in the Word. Whoever does not lay hold of it there may open his mouth as wide as he pleases, he will nevertheless not receive it, just as little as a wanderer will cross a stream if he does not use the bridge spanning it."

Eduard Preuss, "The Means of Grace," The Justification of the Sinner before God, trans., Julius A. Friedrich, Chicago: F. Allerman, 1934, p. 64.



"Baptized into Thy name most holy, O Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, I claim a place, though weak and lowly, Among Thy seed, Thy chosen host. Buried with Christ and dead to sin, Thy Spirit now shall live within." Johann J. Rambach, 1734, "Baptized into Thy Name Most Holy" The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #298. Matthew 28:19.



"In Thee, Lord, have I put my trust; Leave me not helpless in the dust, Let me not be confounded. Let in Thy Word My faith, O Lord, Be always firmly grounded." Adam Reusner, 1533, "In Thee, Lord, Have I Put My Trust," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #524. Psalm 31:1-5.



(1) "O living Bread from heaven, How richly hast Thou fed Thy guest! The gifts Thou now hast given Have filled my heart with joy and rest. O wondrous food of blessing, O cup that heals our woes! My heart, this gift professing, In thankful songs overflows; For while the faith within me Was quickened by this food, My soul hath gazed upon Thee, My highest, only Good." Johann Rist, 1651, "O Living Bread from Heaven," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #316. Matthew 26:26-29.



(1) "O Holy Spirit, enter in And in our hearts Thy work begin, Thy temple deign to make us; Sun of the soul, Thou Light Divine, Around and in us brightly shine, To joy and gladness wake us That we, In Thee Truly living, To Thee giving Prayer unceasing, May in love be still increasing. (2) Give to Thy Word impressive power That in our hearts, from this good hour, As fire it may be glowing; That we confess the Father, Son, And Thee, the Spirit, Three in One, Thy glory ever showing. Stay Thou, Guide now Our souls ever That they never May forsake Thee, But by faith their Refuge make Thee." Michael Schirmer, 1640, alt., "O Holy Spirit, Enter In," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #235. Isaiah 11:2.



"Is the Lord's Supper the place to display my toleration, my Christian sympathy, or my fellowship with another Christian, when that is the very point in which most of all we differ; and in which the difference means for me everything--means for me, the reception of the Savior's atonement? Is this the point to be selected for the display of Christian union, when in fact it is the very point in which Christian union does not exist?"

Theodore E. Schmauk and C. Theodore Benze, The Confessional Principle and the Confessions, as Embodying the Evangelical Confession of the Christian Church, Philadelphia: 1911, p. 905f.



"Baier (124): 'Truly that same infinite virtue which is essentially per se and independently in God, and by which He enlightens and converts men, is communicated to the Word, and, although it is communicated to the Word, yet it must be considered as divine'...But it by no means follows from this that there is a commingling of God and the Word in regard to this divine power; hence Baier (128) says: 'They frequently and diligently impress it upon us that the same virtue belongs to God and the Scriptures, but not in the same way; for that of God is essential, fundamental, original, and independent, while that of the Scriptures is dependent and participative or derived.'...Hence it is said of the Word that it exhibits its power and efficacy organikos, or instrumentally....'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 505.



"Quenstedt (I, 183): 'We are to assume here not only a certain conjunction or union of distinct actions, or even a unity of aims or effects, but also a unity of energy and operation. For the Holy Spirit does not by Himself do something, and the Word of God by itself something else, in the conversion of men; but they produce the one effect by one and the same action. For such is the peculiar nature of the principal and subordinate causes, intrinsically united together, that they produce an effect by one and the same action. Thus the soul and the eye see by a single action, and not by distinct actions.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 505. Chapter Four.



"(3) Hollazius (ib.): 'The Word of God, as such, cannot be conceived of without the divine virtue, or the Holy Spirit, who is inseparable from His Word. For if the Holy Spirit could be separated from the Word of God, it would not be the Word of God or of the Spirit, but a word of man. Nor is there any other Word of God, which is in God, or with which the men of God have been inspired, than that which is given in the Scriptures or is preached or is treasured up in the human mind. But, as it cannot be denied that that is the divine will, counsel, mind, and the wisdom of God, so it cannot be destitute of the divine virtue or efficacy.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 505. Chapter Four.



"Hollazius (993): 'A divine power is communicated to the Word by the Holy Spirit joined with it indissolubly.' Hence, there is a native or intrinsic power and efficacy belonging to the Word, deeply inherent in it. The Dogmaticians draw proofs of this, (1) From the qualities which the divine Word ascribes to itself, John 6:63; Romans 1:16; Hebrews 4:12-13; 1 Thessalonians 2:13; 1 Peter 1:23; James 1:21. (2) From the similar supernatural and divine operations which are ascribed to the Word of God and the Holy Spirit, ex. gr., calling, 2 Timothy 2:14; illumination, 2 Peter 1:19; conversion, Jeremiah 23:29; regeneration, 1 Peter 1:23; justification, 2 Corinthians 3:9; sanctification, John 17:17."

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 505. Chapter Four.



"Quenstedt (I. 172): 'The divine Word is not the principal in the work of conversion, regeneration, and salvation, but it is only a suitable means or organ which God ordinarily uses in producing spiritual effects, not indeed by necessity or indigence, as if He so bound His efficacy in the conversion of men to His Word that He could not convert men without any means, or by any other means or organ than His Word if He wished, but of His own free will, because thus it pleased Him. 1 Corinthians 1:21.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 505f. 1 Corinthians 1:21.



"'In order to avoid misapprehension, it is expressly observed that the Word does not operate physically (by the contact of an agent, as opium, poison, fire, etc.), but morally (by enlightening the mind, moving the will, etc.); and a distinction is made between the efficacy of the Word considered in the first act and in the second act, or between efficacy and efficiency. When it is said that the Word operates extra usum, when not used, it is only meant that the power is constantly inherent in the Word, just as the power to give light always exists in the sun; so that, when the Word is to produce a certain effect, the power must not first come to it, but that the Word exercises its legitimate influence only where it is properly used.'" (Hollazius, 993)

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 506.



"Hollazius (993) uses the following figures: 'It possesses and retains its internal power and efficacy even when not used, just as the illuminating power of the sun continues, although, when the shadow of the moon intervenes, no person may see it; and just as an internal efficacy belongs to the seed, although it may not be sown in the field.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 506. Chapter Four.



"Quenstedt (I, 170): 'Whether the Word be read or not, whether it be heard and believed or not, yet the efficacy of its spiritual effects is always intrinsically inherent in it by the divine arrangement and communication, nor does this divine efficacy only come to it when it is used. For the Word of God, as such, cannot even be conceived of apart from the divine virtue and gracious working of the Holy Spirit, because this is inseparable from the Word of God.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 506.



"Hollazius (992) thus sums up the doctrine: 'The Word of God is the most efficacious means of salvation, for its power and efficacy are not only objective, but also effective; not consisting in moral suasion, but in supernatural operation, not external and coming to it when used by men, but intrinsic in the Word; not accidental, but necessary, by a divinely ordained necessity, and therefore not separable, but perpetual, inherent in the Word itself extra usum, as the first act. This efficacy is truly divine, producing the same effect as the Holy Spirit, who is perpetually united with the Word, which (effect) the Spirit influences together with the Word, by the divine power which belongs to the Holy Spirit originally and independently, but to the divine Word communicatively and dependently, on account of its mysterious, intimate, and individual union with the Spirit.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 507.



"Hulsem. (in Quenstedt, I, 186) says: 'That elevation of the sense of the Word, as they call it, is by no means an accessory and separate power of the Holy Spirit, which may sometimes be absent from the Word; but the Word of God embraces in itself, by its own natural constitution, wonderful and inexplicable divine energy, and power of penetration, far better adapted than the sentences of Seneca and Cato to arouse the minds of readers.'"

Heinrich Schmid, Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay and Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Publication House, 1899, p. 508.



"We are not, then, in any way to represent to ourselves the relation of the Word and the Spirit as though the Word were merely the lifeless instrument which the Holy Ghost employed, or as thought the Spirit, when he wished to operate through the Word, must always first unite himself with it, as if he were ordinaryily separated from it."

Heinrich Schmid, The Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay, Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1889, p. 505.



"The Lutheran theologians, in general, had reason to illustrate very particularly the doctrine of the operation of the Word of God, in order to oppose the Enthusiasts and Mystics, who held that the Holy Spirit operated rather irrespectively of the Word than through it; and to oppose also the Calvinists, who, led by their doctrine of predestination, would not grant that the Word possessed this power per se, but only in such cases where God chose...."

Heinrich Schmid, The Doctrinal Theology of the Evangelical Lutheran Church, trans., Charles A. Hay, Henry E. Jacobs, Philadelphia: Lutheran Publication Society, 1889, p. 511.



"Only little weight is attached to the ministry of the Word, to worship services, the Sacraments, to confession and absolution, and to the observance of Christian customs; a thoroughly regenerated person does not need these crutches at all. Pietism stressed the personal element over against the institutional; voluntariness versus compulsion; the present versus tradition, and the rights of the laity over against the pastors."

Martin Schmidt, "Pietism," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1899.



"The church is no longer the community of those who have been called by the Word and the Sacraments, but association of the reborn, of those who 'earnestly desire to be Christians'...The church in the true sense consists of the small circles of pietists, the 'conventicles,' where everyone knows everyone else and where experiences are freely exchanged."

Martin Schmidt, "Pietism," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1899.



"Conversion was seen as a one-time act, consisting of God's offer of grace and man's decision to accept it, as 'the breakthrough of grace.' Perhaps it was not said in so many words; at any rate it was a tacit assumption."

Martin Schmidt, "Pietism," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., ed. Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, III, p. 1899.



(1) "Dearest Jesus, we are here, Gladly Thy command obeying; With this child we now draw near In accord with Thin own saying That to Thee it shall be given As a child and heir of heaven. (2) Yea, Thy word is clear and plain,And we would obey it duly: 'He who is not born again, Heart and life renewing truly, Born of water and the Spirit, Can My kingdom not inherit.' (3) Therefore hasten we to Thee, In our arms this infant bearing; Let us here Thy glory see, Let this child, Thy mercy sharing In Thine arms be shielded ever, Thine on earth and Thine forever. (4) Gracious Head, Thy member own; Shepherd, take Thy lamb and feed it; Prince of Peace, make here Thy throne; Way of Life, to heaven lead it; Precious Vine, let nothing sever From Thy side this branch forever." Benjamin Schmolck, 1704, "Dearest Jesus, We Are Here" The Lutheran Hymnal, trans., Catherine Winkworth St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #300. Mark 10:13-16.



"Lord Jesus Christ, with us abide, For round us falls the eventide; Nor let Thy Word, that heavenly light, For us be ever veiled in night. (2) In these last days of sore distress Grant us, dear Lord, true steadfastness That pure we keep, till life is spent, Thy holy Word and Sacrament. (3) Lord Jesus, help, Thy Church uphold, For we are sluggish, thoughtless, cold. Oh, prosper well Thy Word of grace And spread its truth in every place. (6) The haughty spirits, Lord, restrain Who over Thy Church with might would reign And always set forth something new, Devised to change Thy doctrine true. (8) A trusty weapon is Thy Word, Thy Church's buckler, shield, and sword. Oh, let us in its power confide That we may seek no other guide!"

Nikolaus Selnecker et al.,"Lord Jesus Christ, with Us Abide," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #292. Luke 24:29.



(4) "Give us Thy Spirit, peace afford Now and forever, gracious Lord. Preserve to us till life is spent Thy holy Word and Sacrament." Nikolaus Selnecker, 1572, "O Faithful God, Thanks Be to Thee," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #321. Psalm 6:1.



"Another defect of Reformed preaching is its contempt for the Means of Grace. They will tell you that the Holy Spirit needs no vehicle, neither ox-cart nor aeroplane, to enter the heart of man; and by this rationalistic argument they think to have done away with the Means of Grace. But notice how they set about immediately to construct their own Means of Grace. Luther told them in his day:'If the Holy Spirit needs no vehicle, no preaching, then why are you here? And why are you so earnest in spreading your errors? It seems that what you really meant to say was that the Holy Spirit does not need true prophets, but He is very much in need of false prophets.' If the Holy Spirit needs no Means of Grace, who do these Reformed churches undertake their campaigns of revivalism?"

Martin S. Sommer, Concordia Pulpit for 1932, Martin S. Sommer, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1931, p. iv.



"Speak, O Lord, Thy servant heareth, To Thy Word I now give heed; Life and spirit Thy Word beareth, All Thy Word is true indeed, Death's dread power in me is rife; Jesus, may Thy Word of Life Fill my soul with love's strong fervor That I cling to Thee forever."

Anna Sophia, 1658, "Speak, O Lord, Thy Servant Heareth," The Lutheran Hymnal, trans., George T. Rygh, 1909 St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #296. 1 Samuel 3:10.



"So the Law finds all guilty, none righteous, no not one; it stops every mouth, and holds the whole world accountable (Romans 3)."

George Tiefel, Jr., "God the HS Acts in Both Law and Gospel," God The Holy Spirit Acts, ed., Eugene P. Kaulfield, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1972, p. 47. Romans 3.



"The Holy Spirit thus uses the Law to bring us to despair; it is a despair of ourselves and our own righteousness before God; and then through the Gospel He shows us Christ."

George Tiefel, Jr., "God the HS Acts in Both Law and Gospel," God The Holy Spirit Acts, ed., Eugene P. Kaulfield, Milwaukee: Northwestern Publishing House, 1972, p. 50.



"Since the age of Rationalism and Lutheran Pietism a new spirit has crept into the life of the church which is un-Lutheran, un-Evangelical, and un-biblical. The Sacraments have been neglected at the expense of the Word."

Walter G. Tillmanns, "Means of Grace: Use of," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, II, p. 1505.



"These means are the true treasure of the church through which salvation in Christ is offered. They are the objective proclamation of faith which alone makes man's subjective faith possible (Augsburg Confession, Article V). The Formula of Concord (Solid Declaration, Article XI, 76) states expressly that God alone draws man to Christ and that he does this only through the means of grace."

Walter G. Tillmanns, "Means of Grace: Use of," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, II, p. 1505.



"The Sacraments are not mere symbolic expressions by which faith is strengthened (Calvin), nor are they mere acts of confession of faith (notae professionis, Zwingli), but are effective means by which God sows faith in the hearts of men."

Walter G. Tillmanns, "Means of Grace: Use of," The Encyclopedia of the Lutheran Church, 3 vols., Julius Bodensieck, Minneapolis: Augsburg Publishing House, 1965, II, p. 1506.



"This faith, encouraging and consoling in these fears, receives remission of sins, justifies and quickens. For this consolation is a new and spiritual life [a new birth and a new life]. These things are plain and clear, and can be understood by the pious, and have testimonies of the Church [as is to be seen in the conversion of Paul and Augustine]. The adversaries nowhere can say how the Holy Ghost is given. They imagine that the Sacraments confer the Holy Ghost ex opere operato, without a good emotion in the recipient, as though, indeed, the gift of the Holy Ghost were an idle matter."

Article IV., Justification, Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 139.



"Truly, it is amazing that the adversaries are in no way moved by so many passages of Scripture, which clearly ascribe justification to faith, and, indeed, deny it to works. Do they think that the same is repeated so often for no purpose? Do they think that these words fell inconsiderately from the Holy Ghost? But they have also devised sophistry whereby they elude them."

Article IV., Justification, Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 153.



"If we call Sacraments rites which have the command of God, and to which the promise of grace has been added, it is easy to decide what are properly Sacraments...Therefore Baptism, the Lord's Supper, and Absolution, which is the Sacrament of Repentance, are truly Sacraments. For these rites have God's command and the promise of grace, which is peculiar to the New Testament. For when we are baptized, when we eat the Lord's body, when we are absolved, our hearts must be firmly assured that God truly forgives us for Christ's sake. And God, at the same time, by the Word and by the rite, moves hearts to believe and conceive faith, just as Paul says, Romans 10:17: 'Faith cometh by hearing.' But just as the Word enters the ear in order to strike our heart, so the rite itself strikes the eye, in order to move the heart. The effect of the Word and of the rite is the same..." [Luther, Bab Captivity, 3 sacraments]

Article XIII, Number/Use Sacraments, Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 309.



"And it is of advantage, so far as can be done, to adorn the ministry of the Word with every kind of praise against fanatical men, who dream that the Holy Ghost is given not through the Word, but because of certain preparations of their own, if they sit unoccupied and silent in obscure places, waiting for illumination, as the Enthusiasts formerly taught, and the Anabaptists now teach."

Article XIII, The Sacraments, 13, Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-234 p. 311.



"For Christ wishes to assure us, as was necessary, that we should know that the Word delivered by men is efficacious, and that no other word from heaven ought to be sought. 'He that heareth you heareth Me,' cannot be understood of traditions. For Christ requires that they teach in such a way that [by their mouth] He Himself be heard, because He says: 'He heareth Me.' Therefore He wishes His own voice, His own Word, to be heard, not human traditions."

Article XXVIII, Eccles. Power, Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 449.



"2. That such merit and benefits of Christ shall be presented, offered and distributed to us through His Word and Sacraments. "3. That by His Holy Ghost, through the Word, when it is preached, heard, and pondered, He will be efficacious and active in us, convert hearts to true repentance, and preserve them in the true faith."

Formula of Concord, SD, XI, Of God's Eternal Election, #17, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 1069.



"And this call of God, which is made through the preaching of the Word, we should not regard as jugglery, but know that thereby God reveals His will, that in those whom He thus calls He will work through the Word, that they may be enlightened, converted, and saved. For the Word, whereby we are called, is a ministration of the Spirit, that gives the Spirit, or whereby the Spirit is given, 2 Corinthians 3:8, and a power of God unto salvation, Romans 1:16. And since the Holy Ghost wishes to be efficacious through the Word, and to strengthen and give power and ability, it is God's will that we should receive the Word, believe and obey it."

Formula of Concord, Solid Declaration, Article XI., Election, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 1073. 2 Corinthians 3:8; Romans 1:16.



"Moreover, the declaration, John 6:44, that 'no one can come to Christ except the Father draw him,' is right and true. However, the Father will not do this without means, but has ordained for this purpose His Word and Sacraments as ordinary means and instruments; and it is the will neither of the Father nor of the Son that a man should not hear or should despise the preaching of His Word, and wait for the drawing of the Father without the Word and Sacraments." Solid Declaration, Article XI, Election, #76, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 1087. John 6:44. concerning God, etc. For these facts it is apparent that the Law cannot be kept without Christ and the Holy Ghost."

Augsburg Confession, Article III, #11, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 159.



"But Christ was given for this purpose, namely, that for His sake there might be bestowed on us the remission of sins, and the Holy Ghost to bring forth in us new and eternal life, and eternal righteousness [to manifest Christ in our hearts, as it is written John 16:15: He shall take of the things of Mine, and show them unto you. Likewise, He works also other gifts, love, thanksgiving, charity, patience, etc.]. Wherefore the Law cannot be truly kept unless the Holy Ghost is received through faith...Then we learn to know how flesh, in security and indifference, does not fear God, and is not fully certain that we are regarded by God, but imagines that men are born and die by chance. Then we experience that we do not believe that God forgives and hears us. But when, on hearing the Gospel and the remission of sins, we are consoled by faith, we receive the Holy Ghost, so that now we are able to think aright."

Augsburg Confession, Article III, #11, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 159.



"And since the Gospel is taught among us purely and diligently, by God's favor we receive also from it this fruit, that in our Churches no Anabaptists have arisen [have not gained ground in our Churches], because the people have been fortified by God's Word against the wicked and seditious faction of these robbers. And as we condemn quite a number of other errors of the Anabaptists, we condemn this also, that they dispute that the baptism of little children is unprofitable."

Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article IX, Baptism, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 245. Matthew 28:19.



"But as the Confutation condemns us for having assigned these two parts to repentance, we must show that [not we, but] Scripture expresses these as the chief parts in repentance and conversion. For Christ says, Matthew 11:28: Come unto Me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Here there are two members. The labor and the burden signify the contrition, anxiety, and terrors of sin and of death. To come to Christ is to believe that sins are remitted for Christ's sake; when we believe, our hearts are quickened by the Holy Ghost through the Word of Christ. Here, therefore, there are these two chief parts, contrition and faith."

Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XII (V), #44, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 263. Matthew 11:28.



"But if ordination be understood as applying to the ministry of the Word, we are not unwilling to call ordination a sacrament. For the ministry of the Word has God's command and glorious promises. Romans 1:16 The Gospel is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth. Likewise, Isaiah 55:11: So shall My Word be that goeth forth out of My mouth; it shall not return unto Me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please...And it is of advantage, so far as can be done, to adorn the ministry of the Word with every kind of praise against fanatical men, who dream that the Holy Ghost is given not through the Word, but because of certain preparations of their own...."

Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XIII (VII), #11, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-205 p. 311. Romans 1:16; Isaiah 55:11.



"And just as the Word has been given in order to excite this faith, so the Sacrament has been instituted in order that the outward appearance meeting the eyes might move the heart to believe [and strengthen faith]. For through these, namely, through Word and Sacrament, the Holy Ghost works."

Augsburg Confession, Article XXIV (XII), #70, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 409.



"Our adversaries have no testimonies and no command from Scripture for defending the application of the ceremony for liberating the souls of the dead, although from this they derive infinite revenue. Nor, indeed, is it a light sin to establish such services in the Church without the command of God and without the example of Scripture, and to apply to the dead the Lord's Supper, which was instituted for commemoration and preaching among the living [for the purpose of strengthening the faith of those who use the ceremony]. This is to violate the Second Commandment, by abusing God's name."

Apology of the Augsburg Confession, Article XXIV, The Mass, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 414f.



"That we may obtain this faith, the Ministry of Teaching the Gospel and administering the Sacraments was instituted. For through the Word and Sacraments, as through instruments, the Holy Ghost is given, who works faith, where and when it pleases God, in them that hear the Gospel, to wit, that God, not for our own merits, but for Christ's sake, justifies those who believe that they are received into grace for Christ's sake. They condemn the Anabaptists and others who think that the Holy Ghost comes to men without the external Word, through their own preparation and works."

Augsburg Confession, Article V, The Office of the Ministry, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 45.



"Of Confession they teach that Private Absolution ought to be retained in the churches, although in confession an enumeration of all sins is not necessary. For it is impossible according to the Psalm: 'Who can understand his errors?' Psalm 19:12."

Augsburg Confession, Article XI, Confession, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 47. Psalm 19:12.



"Of Baptism they teach that it is necessary to salvation, and that through Baptism is offered the grace of God; and that children are to be baptized, who, being offered to God through Baptism, are received into God's grace. They condemn the Anabaptists, who reject the baptism of children, and say that children are saved without Baptism."

Augsburg Confession, Article IX, Baptism, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 47.



"Although the Church properly is the congregation of saints and true believers, nevertheless, since in this life many hypocrites and evil persons are mingled therewith, it is lawful to use Sacraments administered by evil men, according to the saying of Christ: 'The Scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses' seat, etc.' Matthew 23:2. Both the Sacraments and Word are effectual by reason of the institution and commandment of Christ, notwithstanding they be administered by evil men."

Augsburg Confession, Article VIII, What the Church Is, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 47. Matthew 23:2.



"Of Free Will they teach that man's will has some liberty to choose civil righteousness, and to work things subject to reason. But it has no power, without the Holy Ghost, to work the righteousness of God, that is, spiritual righteousness; since the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, 1 Corinthians 2:14; but this righteousness is wrought through the Word."

Augsburg Confession, Article XVIII, Freedom of the Will, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 51. 1 Corinthians 2:14.



"Other writings, however, of ancient or modern teachers, whatever name they bear, must not be regarded as equal to the Holy Scriptures, but all of them together be subjected to them, and should not be received otherwise or further than as witnesses, [which are to show] in what manner after the time of the apostles, and at what places, this [pure] doctrine of the prophets and apostles was preserved."

Formula of Concord, Epitome, Part I, 2, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-55 p. 777.



"We believe, teach, and confess that the sole rule and standard according to which all dogmas together with [all] teachers should be estimated and judged are the prophetic and apostolic Scriptures of the Old and the New Testament alone, as it is written in Psalm 119:105: 'Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.' And St. Paul: 'Though an angel from heaven preach any other gospel unto you, let him be accursed,' Galatians 1:8."

Formula of Concord, Epitome, Part I, 1, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-56 p. 777. Psalm 119:105; Galatians 1:8.



"Therefore, before the conversion of man there are only two efficient causes, namely, the Holy Ghost and the Word of God, as the instrument of the Holy Ghost, by which He works conversion. This Word man is [indeed] to hear; however, it is not by his own powers, but only through the grace and working of the Holy Ghost that he can yield faith to it and accept it."

Formula of Concord, Epitome, II, Of the Free Will, #19, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 791.



"This power {the Keys} is exercised only by teaching or preaching the Gospel and administering the Sacraments, according to their calling, either to many or to individuals. For thereby are granted, not bodily, but eternal things, as eternal righteousness, the Holy Ghost, eternal life. These things cannot come but by the ministry of the Word and the Sacraments, as Paul says, Romans 1:16: The Gospel is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth. Therefore, since the power of the Church grants eternal things, and is exercised only by the ministry of the Word, it does not interfere with civil government; no more than the art of singing interferes with civil government."

Augsburg Confession, Article XXVIII, #8, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 85. Romans 1:16



"Moreover [On the other side], both the ancient and modern enthusiasts have taught that God converts men, and leads them to the saving knowledge of Christ through His Spirit, without any created means and instrument, that is, without the external preaching and hearing of God's Word."

Formula of Concord, Thorough Declaration, II. 4. Free Will Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 881.



"Against both these parties the pure teachers of the Augsburg Confession have taught and contended that by the fall of our first parents man was so corrupted that in divine things pertaining to our conversion and the salvation of our souls he is by nature blind, that, when the Word of God is preached, he neither does nor can understand it, but regards it as foolishness; also, that he does not of himself draw nigh to God, but is and remains an enemy of God, until he is converted, becomes a believer [is endowed with faith], is regenerated and renewed, by the power of the Holy Ghost through the Word when preached and heard, out of pure grace, without any cooperation of his own."

Formula of Concord, Thorough Declaration, II. 5. Free Will Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 881.



"Thirdly, in this manner, too, the Holy Scriptures ascribe conversion, faith in Christ, regeneration, renewal, and all that belongs to their efficacious beginning and completion, not to the human powers of the natural free will, neither entirely, nor half, nor in any, even the least or most inconsiderable part, but in solidum, that is, entirely, solely to the divine working and the Holy Ghost, as also the Apology teaches."

Formula of Concord, Thorough Declaration, II. 25. Free Will Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 891.



"These treasures are offered us by the Holy Ghost in the promise of the holy Gospel; and faith alone is the only means by which we lay hold upon, accept, and apply, and appropriate them to ourselves. This faith is a gift of God, by which we truly learn to know Christ, our Redeemer, in the Word of the Gospel, and trust in Him, that for the sake of His obedience alone we have the forgiveness of sins by grace, are regarded as godly and righteous by God the Father, and are eternally saved."

Formula of Concord, Thorough Declaration, III 10 Righteousness Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 919.



"...and He has revealed it in His Word, as much as is needful for us to know of it in this life. Now, everything for which we have in this instance clear, certain testimonies in the Scriptures, we must simply believe, and in no way argue against it, as though the human nature in Christ could not be capable of the same."

Solid Declaration, Article VIII., Person of Christ, Formula of Concord, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-57 p. 1033.



"For few receive the Word and follow it; the greatest number despise the Word, and will not come to the wedding, Matthew 22:3ff. The cause for this contempt for the Word is not God's foreknowledge [or predestination], but the perverse will of man, which rejects or perverts the means and instrument of the Holy Ghost, which God offers him through the call, and resists the Holy Ghost, who wishes to be efficacious, and works through the Word, as Christ says, 'How often would I have gathered you together, and ye would not!' Matthew 23:37."

Solid Declaration, Article XI, Election, 41, Formula of Concord, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, J-127 p. 1077. Matthew 22:3ff.; 23:37.



"Moreover, the declaration, John 6:44, that no one can come to Christ except the Father draw him, is right and true. However, the Father will not do this without means, but has ordained for this purpose His Word and Sacraments as ordinary means and instruments; and it is the will neither of the Father nor of the Son that a man should not hear or should despise the preaching of His Word, and wait for the drawing of the Father without the Word and Sacraments. For the Father draws indeed by the power of His Holy Ghost, however, according to His usual order [the order decreed and instituted by Himself], by the hearing of His holy, divine Word, as with a net, by which the elect are plucked from the jaws of the devil. Every poor sinner should therefore repair thereto [to holy preaching], hear it attentively, and not doubt the drawing of the Father. For the Holy Ghost will be with His Word in His power, and work by it...."

Solid Declaration, Article XI., Election, #76-77, Formula of Concord, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 1089. John 6:44.



"For this reason we shall now relate, furthermore, from God's Word how man is converted to God, how and through what means [namely, through the oral Word and the holy Sacraments] the Holy Ghost wants to be efficacious in us, and to work and bestow in our hearts true repentance, faith, and new spiritual power and ability for good, and how we should conduct ourselves towards these means, and [how we should] use them."

Solid Declaration, Article II, Free Will, 48, Formula of Concord, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 901.



"Therefore God, out of His immense goodness and mercy, has His divine eternal Law and His wonderful plan concerning our redemption, namely, the holy, alone-saving Gospel of His eternal Son, our only Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, publicly preached; and by this [preaching] collects an eternal Church for Himself from the human race, and works in the hearts of men true repentance and knowledge of sins, and true faith in the Son of God, Jesus Christ. And by this means, and in no other way, namely, through His holy Word, when men hear it preached or read it, and the holy Sacraments when they are used according to His Word, God desires to call men to eternal salvation, draw them to Himself, and convert, regenerate, and sanctify them. 1 Corinthians 1:21: 'For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.' Acts 10:5-6..."

Solid Declaration, Article II, Free Will, #50, Formula of Concord, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 901. 1 Corinthians 1:21; Acts 10:5-6.



"Now, although both, the planting and watering of the preacher, and the running and willing of the hearer, would be in vain, and no conversion would follow it if the power and efficacy of the Holy Ghost were not added thereto, who enlightens and converts the hearts through the Word preached and heard, so that men believe this Word and assent thereto, still, neither preacher nor hearer is to doubt this grace and efficacy of the Holy Ghost, but should be certain that when the Word of God is preached purely and truly, according to the command and will of God, and men listen attentively and earnestly and meditate upon it, God is certainly present with His grace, and grants, as has been said, what otherwise man can neither accept nor give from his own powers."

Solid Declaration, Article II, Free Will, 55-56, Formula of Concord, Concordia Triglotta, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1921, p. 903. USE



Thesis VIII In the fourth place, the Word of God is not rightly divided when the Law is preached to those who are already in terror on account of their sins or the Gospel to those who live securely in their sins." C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 101.



"Unless the rocky subsoil in their hearts has been pulverized by the Law, the sweet Gospel is of no benefit to them."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 119.



"If remission of sins without repentance is preached, the people imagine that they have already forgiveness of sins, and thereby they are made secure and unconcerned. This is a greater error and sin than all error of former times, and it is verily to be feared that we are in that danger which Christ points out when He says, Matthew 12:45: 'The last state of that man shall be worse than the first.'"

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 123. Matthew 12:45.



[Fresenius and levels of Christianity.] "(As if an unconverted person could seriously pray for conversion! He should have said: He must hear the Word of God. But that he has put into his third rule. His whole scheme makes conversion dependent on man's own effort to obtain grace.)"

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 144.



"As a matter of fact, any one who has been quickened, that is, raised from spiritual death, is converted. After his conversion he must, indeed, pray and wrestle. His faith at the beginning is like an infant that can easily die if it is not given nourishment. Praying and wrestling is not an exercise for unconverted, however, but for converted persons."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 144.



"Observe, then, the depreciative, contemptuous, and scorning ring in the words of the Reformed when they speak of the sacred Means of Grace, the Word and the Sacraments, and the grand majestic ring in the words of the Lord and the apostles when they speak of these matters...The true reason for the Reformed view is this: They do not know how a person is to come into possession of the divine grace, the forgiveness of sin, righteousness in the sight of God, and eternal salvation. Spurning the way which God has appointed, they are pointing another way, in accordance with new devices which they have invented."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 152f.



"For the confounding of Law and Gospel that is common among the sects consists in nothing else than this, that they instruct alarmed sinners by prayer and inward wrestling to fight their way into a state of grace until they feel grace indwelling in them, instead of pointing them to the Word and the Sacraments."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 153.



"In what vulgar terms does Zwingli here speak of these sacred matters! When the Holy Spirit wants to approach man, He does not need the Word of God, the Gospel, Baptism, the Lord's Supper, for a conveyance; He can come without them! It must be a queer Bible which Zwingli read."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 156.



"They separate grace from Baptism and leave us a mere external sign, in which there is not a grain of mercy; all grace has been cut away. Now, if the grace of Christ has been removed from Baptism, there remains nothing but a mere work. Likewise, in the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper the fanatics remove the promise offered us in this Sacrament; they tell us that what we eat and drink is nothing but bread and wine. Here, too, the proffered grace is cut away and renounced. For they teach us that the only good work that we do by communing is professing Christ; as to the rest, we merely eat and drink bread and wine in the Supper, and there is no grace in it for us. That is the result of falling away from the First Commandment: a person promptly sets up an idol in the form of some meritorious work, in which he trusts." (Luther, on Deuteronomy 4:28; St. L. III, 1691 ff.)

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 160. Deuteronomy 4:28.



"For the devil at all times assaults the grace of God; no heresy can bear the teaching of divine grace." Martin Luther (on Deut 4:24; St. L. III, 1691 ff.) C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 160. "Luther's remark about the enmity of all heretics against the grace of God is an important axiomatic statement. Every heresy that has sprung up was caused by the heretic's inability to believe that man becomes righteous in the sight of God, and is saved, by grace alone. That is the real rock of offense against which all heretics, all false teachers, dash their head."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 163.



"Calvin was dissatisfied with Zwingli's interpretation of the Lord's Supper, but his own interpretation was also wrong. He said that a person desiring to receive the body and blood of Christ could not get it under the bread and wine, but must by his faith mount up to heaven, where the Holy Spirit would negotiate a way for feeding him with the body and blood of Christ. These are mere vagaries, which originated in Calvin's fancy. But an incident like this shows that men will not believe that God bears us poor sinners such great love that He is willing to come to us."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 185.



"What may be the reason why the Pietists, who were really well-intentioned people, hit upon the doctrine that no one could be a Christian unless he had ascertained the exact day and hour of his conversion? The reason is that they imagined a person must suddenly experience a heavenly joy and hear an inner voice telling him that he had been received into grace and had become a child of God. Having conceived this notion of the mode and manner of conversion, they were forced to declare that a person must be able to name the day and hour when he was converted, became a new creature, received forgiveness of sins, and was robed in the righteousness of Christ. However, we have already come to understand in part what a great, dangerous, and fatal error this is."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 194f.



"Here you hear a verdict condemning all fanatical sects. No matter what other false doctrines they may teach, they all have this grievous error in common, that they do not rely solely on Christ and His Word, but chiefly on something that takes place in themselves. As a rule, they imagine that all is well with them because they have turned from their former ways As if that were a guarantee of reaching heaven! No; we are not to look back to our conversion for assurance, but we must go to our Savior again and again, every day, as though we never had been converted. My former conversion will be of no benefit to me if I become secure. I must return to the mercy-seat every day, otherwise I shall make my former conversion my savior, by relying on it. That would be awful; for in the last analysis it would mean that I make myself my savior."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 207.



"You may regard all the doctrines that are preached in the Lutheran Church as true, but if your heart is still in its old condition, filled with the love of sin, if you still act contrary to the conscience, your whole faith is mere sham. Yours is not the faith of which the Holy Spirit speaks when He uses the word 'faith' in the Scriptures; for that faith--the genuine article--purifies the heart."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 211.



"Likewise, when David had slept with the wife of Uriah and had caused her godly husband to be slain, etc., he was under the wrath of God and had lost his holiness and the Holy Spirit until he was converted again. Many similar instances might be rehearsed."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 218.



"On the ground of these and many other testimonies the Church has always taught with unanimity that, when a saint knowingly and purposely acts contrary to God's command, he is no longer a saint, but has lost the true faith and cast away the Holy Spirit. But if he turns again, God will keep the gracious oath which He has sworn, saying: 'As I live, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live.'"

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 219. Ezekiel 18:23.



"Accordingly, for Christ's sake God takes those people who turn to Him back into His grace and rekindles in their hearts the true faith through the Gospel and His Holy Spirit. He has not commanded us to inquire first whether we have been predestinated, but it is sufficient for us to know that whosoever perseveres unto the end in repentance and faith is certainly elect and will be saved, as Christ says: 'He that persevereth unto the end, the same shall be saved.'"

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 219. Matthew 10:22. [Francke, Breithaupt, Fresenius]



"These men were guilty of that more refined way of confounding Law and Gospel. They did this by making a false distinction between spiritual awakening and conversion; for they declared that, as regards the way of obtaining salvation, all men must be divided into three classes: 1. those still unconverted; 2. those who have been awakened, but are not yet converted; 3. those who have been converted."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 363.



"After a long season of sluggishness and lukewarmness, during which you begin to hate yourself because you saw no way to change your condition, you happen to hear a real Gospel sermon, and you leave the church a changed man and rejoice in the fact that you may believe and are a child of God. You suddenly become aware of the fact that it is not difficult to walk in the way of God's commandments; you seem to walk in it of your own accord. How foolish, then, is a preacher who thinks that conditions in his congregation will improve if he thunders at his people with the Law and paints hell and damnation for them. That will not at all improve the people."

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 384.



"However, while the historico-grammatical meaning of Scripture can readily be opened up by any one who understands its language, it is impossible without the Holy Spirit for any one to understand the Holy Scriptures unto his salvation, no matter how great a linguist, how famous a philologist, how keen a logician he may be. The Apostle Paul declares, 1 Corinthians 2:14: 'The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.' Again, the same apostle says, 1 Corinthians 1:23: 'We preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling-block and unto the Greeks foolishness.'"

C. F. W. Walther, The Proper Distinction Between Law and Gospel, trans., W. H. T. Dau, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1928, p. 60. 1 Corinthians 2:14; 1:23.



"The Law commands and makes us know What duties to our God we owe; But 'tis the Gospel must reveal Where lies our strength to do His will. (2) My soul, no more attempt to draw Thy life and comfort from the Law. Fly to the hope the Gospel gives; The man that trusts the promise lives."

Isaac Watts, 1709, "The Law Commands and Makes Us Know," The Lutheran Hymnal, St. Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1941, Hymn #289. Psalm 19:9.



"Mrs. Barnhill looked at me and said, with such a loving look in her gray eyes, 'Oh, Grace, Christ said, 'No man cometh unto the Father but by Me,' and, my dear, you have no way of approach to a holy God unless you come through Christ, His Son, as your Saviour.' "The Scripture which she quoted," Mrs. Fuller continues, "was the Sword of the Spirit, and at that moment Unitarianism was killed forever in my heart. I saw the light like a flash and believed at that moment, though I said nothing. She had quoted God's Word, the Spirit had used it, and, believing, I instantly became a new creation in Christ Jesus. She might have talked and even argued with me about it, but instead she just used the Word." [conversion of Mrs. Grace Fuller, wife of Charles Fuller, Old Fashioned Revival Hour broadcast, founder of Fuller Seminary]

J. Elwin Wright, The Old Fashioned Revival Hour and the Broadcasters, Boston: The Fellowship Press, 1940, J-112 p. 54.



"The church depends upon the faithful use of this Word both for gathering people into its fold, and for edifying them in the Gospel of Christ. Other means for the accomplishing of these purposes may seem more popular. But nothing can take the place of the Bible, inasmuch as it alone presents the Lord Jesus and is empowered by the Holy Spirit. It is the only effective instrument in reaching and regenerating human souls."

A. A. Zinck, D.D. What a Church Member Should Know, Philadelphia: United Lutheran Pubication House, 1937, p. 20.