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, September 30, 2012

Decision on Anglican archbishop may be months away - Yahoo! News



Decision on Anglican archbishop may be months away - Yahoo! News:


LONDON (AP) — The Church of England says that a decision to select the new archbishop of Canterbury — the spiritual leader of the 80-million-strong global Anglican communion — could still be months away.
Attention had focused on a private meeting held last week by the Crown Nominations Commission, a group which will choose a successor to Rowan Williams, who is retiring from his post at the end of December.
But the meeting ended Friday with no announcement, leading to speculation that senior clergymen were at an impasse.
The commission said in a statement Friday that an announcement was expected "during the autumn," a period which stretches until late December.
Church of England spokesman Arun Arora said Sunday that there was no set timetable for an announcement.


'via Blog this'

Luther's Galatians Commentary, Chapter Two.
Do Lutheran Leaders Agree with This?



Rambach's false doctrine of universal justification
is hailed by many so-called Lutherans today.



























Trinity 17 - Ephesians 4:1-6




The Seventeenth Sunday after Trinity


Pastor Gregory L. Jackson


Bethany Lutheran Church, 10 AM Central Time


The Hymn #  44                    Ye Lands             2:41
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 #203            Morning Breaks            2:70     

Seven One’s of the Reformation

The Communion Hymn # 315            I Come O Savior             2:66
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 # 467     Built on a Rock                   2:83

KJV Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

KJV Luke 14:1 And it came to pass, as he went into the house of one of the chief Pharisees to eat bread on the sabbath day, that they watched him. 2 And, behold, there was a certain man before him which had the dropsy. 3 And Jesus answering spake unto the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath day? 4 And they held their peace. And he took him, and healed him, and let him go; 5 And answered them, saying, Which of you shall have an ass or an ox fallen into a pit, and will not straightway pull him out on the sabbath day? 6 And they could not answer him again to these things. 7 And he put forth a parable to those which were bidden, when he marked how they chose out the chief rooms; saying unto them, 8 When thou art bidden of any man to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more honourable man than thou be bidden of him; 9 And he that bade thee and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with shame to take the lowest room. 10 But when thou art bidden, go and sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in the presence of them that sit at meat with thee. 11 For whosoever exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

Seventeenth Sunday After Trinity

Lord God, heavenly Father: We beseech Thee so to guide and direct us by Thy Holy Spirit, that we may not exalt ourselves, but humbly fear Thee, with our whole hearts hear and keep Thy word, and hallow the Lord's day, that we also may be hallowed by Thy word; help us, first, to place our hope and confidence in Thy Son, Jesus Christ, who alone is our righteousness and Redeemer, and, then, so to amend and better our lives in accordance with Thy word, that we may avoid all offenses and finally obtain eternal salvation, through Thy grace in Christ, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, one true God. world without end. Amen.


The Seven One’s of the Reformation

Luther’s Sermon on Ephesians 4

KJV Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. 4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Lenski:
1) First, doctrine which consists of the clear statement of the divine facts on which alone faith rests. Next, admonition which presents the obligations involved in the faith that relies on the doctrine and thus deals with life and conduct in detail. The two stand in a vital connection, which fact also appears where the admonitions are supported by brief doctrinal additions.
After having set forth the great doctrine of the Una Sancta‚ Paul now tells his readers how their lives should be shaped in order to accord with the facts of this doctrine. This is very fitting after having shown that by faith in Christ they are all one in Christ in the Una Sancta although they were formerly Jews or Gentiles. Paul’s first admonition to the Ephesians is an exhortation that they keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace (v. 1–3). He elucidates and strengthens this first admonition by an explanation of the organism of the church which is so fitted together as to constitute a great unity in its members, their activity and work producing and conserving unity (4–16).
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. 504.

Lutherans tend to stir themselves a bit and remember the Reformation with a few formalities, now that October has arrived. This passage from Ephesians teaches the unity of the true Church, using a total of seven one’s to define this unity.

The lesson falls into two parts. The first one is an exhortation about the Christian life.

KJV Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

The second part defines the unity of  Christianity with seven one’s.

4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

Verses 4-6 could be a confession or hymn, perhaps one with a few words added. For example, Paul would first be urging the conduct of their lives as believers, then reminding them of their early catechism, something easily memorized or even sung as a hymn.

One body,
And one Spirit.
One Lord, one Faith, one Baptism.
One God the Father of all,
Above all, through all, and in all.



One Body

The Lutheran Reformation emphasized the Biblical view of the true Church, as the Body of Christ, invisible, made up of all sincere believers in the Gospel of Christ.
This view was emphasized in Augustine’s great classic – The City of God. In Civilization IV, Leonard Nimoy read Augustine’s summary –

There are two cities. The City of Man is built upon love of self. The City of God is built upon love of God.

“The Heavenly City outshines Rome beyond comparison. There, instead of victory, is truth; instead of high rank, holiness; instead of peace, felicity; instead of life, eternity,” 
― Augustine of Hippo, City of God

The Biblical view of the true Church is often distorted by the institutional churches. During the Middle Ages the papacy and priesthood filled in the power structure when the Western Roman Empire fell apart around 400 AD. The government officials abandoned their posts. The Christian Church had educated people who all spoke the same language – Latin. They filled in and did not like giving up their worldly power and luxuries, just like today.

The true Church is made up of people all over the world. They belong to various denominations or none at all.  One Roman Catholic member passed all the doctrinal questions for being a Lutheran. The institutional types say, either, Hurray, she is a Roman Catholic, so we don’t care what she believes. That is a papal attitude. Or – the institutional Lutherans – “She would have to join our church body to be recognized as one of us.” That is the Lutheran papacy.

I belong to Sam’s Club and the American Auto Association. Those organizations should not be the model of the true Church or mold our attitudes toward the Church.

This is significant for the Reformation because the Book of Concord is not a user’s manual for a brand name, but the confession of truth for all Christians, all eras. That is why Augustine, Jerome, and Ambrose are quoted in the Book of Concord, to show everyone that this confession is not new, not contrary to Christian orthodoxy.

It was Rome that merged the City of God concept into the City of Man. Therefore, everyone must agree with their latest findings, discoveries, and inventions – a common problem with the Lutheran synods of today. They say, “We alone voted on it, after lots of politicking, so this will be true and established doctrine, even if it is only a few years old.”

I have the old books that go with The Lutheran Hymnal. There the references are to loyalty to the “Evangelical Lutheran Church,” which was not a denomination then and is not one now (as far as I know). This is a telling detail because children being confirmed or pastors being ordained and installed were not sworn to visible church organization but to the true, invisible Church.

Today, when there is conflict, WELS leaders say, “But you have sworn loyalty to the synod.” I have that from many sources. Their swaggering interpretation of the Book of Concord has turned the Lutheran Symbols into Roman Catholic canon law – not that anyone needs to believe, teach, or confess its truths.



One Spirit

The Spirit is mentioned twice in these verses. The previous verse says – “endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

In many places in the Scriptures we can use Spirit or Word, one for the other, because the Spirit works only through the Word and the Word is never lacking in the Holy Spirit. To claim that God acts otherwise is Enthusiasm, which Luther and the Confessions condemn as the foundation of all error, in all religions.

Half-educated Lutheran leaders like to say that “Luther restored the Scriptures,” trying to use Luther for denominational one-upmanship. That is a smokescreen, because everyone saw the Bible as God’s Word at that time. There is definitely a great divide between those nominal Christians who see the Bible as just a book about God and those who teach that God’s Word is inerrant and infallible. However, that does not define the issues well and misses the point about Luther. We attended the Chicago Inerrancy conference, decades back, which included many denominations. “The only thing they agreed on was inerrancy.”

The real issue is the Word/Spirit unity, because all error comes from divorcing the two. When the Roman Catholic pope or the Lutheran District Pope claims authority for what he thinks, says, and writes – that person is an Enthusiast. The Pope is the lawgiver who makes something true, in his opinion, because he has said so. The District Pope is a lawgiver too, when he says his authority makes any declaration to be true, especially when he teaches about God and against God.

The lowliest sheep in the Kingdom, who trusts in the Word, has more knowledge about God than the most powerful leader in the visible church.

Baseball is a good analogy here, since some specialize in watch sports all through school. A baseball game is easy to watch, even though a lot of players are on the field every moment. Nothing happens without the baseball present: strikes, fouls, walks, base runs, outs, scores. Imagine the baseball being grabbed by the ref because it is worn and scruffed. He puts it away and gets another out of his supply. During that, someone says, “Two strikes, one ball, and four outs.” Impossible. There was no ball and therefore no action.

Yet people say, without the Word, everyone is forgiven, justified, and saved – without the Word. A Hindu is worshiping several of 300 million gods in his culture – he is forgiven, justified and saved, although he has never heard the Word of God in his life. A woman is lecturing on atheism at The Ethical Society in St. Louis. She is forgiven, justified, and saved, even though she makes a career out of repudiating the Word of God.

Meanwhile, the Pope in Rome says, “Five hundred years are taken off your punishment in Purgatory because you witnessed a papal mass in St. Louis. This is God’s word from the shrine of my heart.”

The division in the Christian Church has come from Enthusiasm, from people divorcing the Spirit from the Word. Therefore unity comes from viewing them together, treating them together, and repudiating any variation upon that truth.

In these two passages alone, along with many others, the power of the Holy Spirit is always present and active in the Word. Sadly, that is not taught among many Christian today.

KJV Isaiah 55:8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. 9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. 10 For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: 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 shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

KJV 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.

This Spirit/Word unity tells us why the Word is always effective, clear, powerful, and authoritative. That is also why one person armed with the Word is more of a teacher than an entire faculty armed with degrees but lacking this knowledge.

One Hope

Because there is one truth, there is also one hope – everlasting life. My wife and I were talking about that yesterday. Suddenly everything changes when death is a constant reminder of how frail we are.

This one hope teaches us about our purpose in life, to be faithful to the Word and enjoy the spiritual benefits of the faith. The one holy (justified by faith) Christian and apostolic Church is united by salvation through Christ alone, receiving God’s grace from the Means of Grace (the Spirit always at work with the Word).

One Lord

Although man divides and falls into factions and heresies, there is only one Lord, Jesus Christ. As Paul said to the Corinthians, Jesus is not divided.

The great heresy of today is saying that your truth is just as valid as my truth, deriving unity from a supposed tolerance that denigrates God’s Word. One journalism student said, “All truth is God’s truth and all paths lead to God.” But Luther said, “The Roman Empire worshiped every god but the One True God.”
The Pantheon in Rome is testimony to that. The architectural wonder venerates every religion on earth, but that same Empire persecuted the Christian faith and killed its adherents, including most of the apostles.

This one Lord, Jesus Christ, divides between believers and unbelievers. The unbelievers cannot abide this one truth and must persecute and silence it at all costs. This is the cross He bore, which He lets us bear in pale imitation of His life and death. Because falsehood hates this one truth of the Gospel, the cross we bear from teaching the Word is always at work purifying us from the dross of materialism and making the truths of the Scriptures more apparent.

But this one Lord, Jesus, is the source of all forgiveness and all blessings. He sent the Holy Spirit so the Word would convey Him and His blessings to us in the Gospel. When there is confusion, division, and dismay, the entire Book of the Holy Spirit is ours to study, to learn from, to divide truth from error. Nothing makes that study more interesting than an effort to take it away.

One Faith
There are only two approaches to “one faith.” The favored one is gathering everyone into the same organization and letting various opinions exist no matter what. Those people teach that it is a scandal that everyone is not gathered into the same visible organization or at least worshiping together. The Roman Catholic Church is not so much interested in agreement as submission to its ultimate authority.

The other approach is see unity only through teaching the same truth of the Scriptures, which are authoritative. Today, that assertion alone is radical and dangerous. If church leaders believed it, they would have the same message in all circumstances, but they do not. They contradict themselves at every turn, seeking to take advantage of each opportunity. They see themselves as managers of a business that needs to be kept calm and peaceful.

This one Faith is taught clearly in the Word of God. Every single point is offered so plainly and so simply that everyone can understand it. The Gospel transcends all cultures and classes because it teaches that Jesus Christ, the Son of God, died for our sins. Because all believers receive forgiveness through the Gospel, we are given the hope and promise of eternal life.


One Baptism
Our entry into the Kingdom is through Holy Baptism. Babies and adults are given this sacrament of unity. As a Means of Grace, the Word is united with the universal symbol of cleansing. The Word is never without the Spirit, so baptism gives us the Spirit. That is why a baptized child loves to hear the Gospel. That is also why adults long to hear, once again, the comforting message of Jesus’ love and forgiveness.

As Luther says, our imperfect faith receives the perfect righteousness of Christ.




One God the Father of all,
Above all, through all, and in all

The Holy Trinity is a mystery, revealed by the Holy Spirit. We can see how clearly the Spirit teaches this to us in these few verses. Each member of the Trinity is mentioned, unity is emphasized, and this triadic structure is used for God the Father – emphasizing the Trinity once again.

Or – the Threeness of the One God, the unity of the Three Persons. This cannot be reduced to human logic. It is God revealed as He is.

We can start at any passage in the Word of God and trace its message throughout the Bible, unified by the same concepts, the same doctrine, across the ages.

Justification by faith is the same in the Old Testament as the New Testament, except the promised Savior is completely realized and described in the New Testament.  Isaiah 53 is just as much the Gospel as Paul’s letter to the Galatians or the Gospel of John.




Quotations

“The ground of all doctrine, of all right living, the supreme and eternal treasure of him who is a Christian in the sight of God, is faith in Christ. It alone secures forgiveness o£ sins and makes us children of God.
Luther’s Trinity 17 sermon, Lenker edition.

“24. But they are not members of the true Church of Christ who, instead of preserving unity of doctrine and oneness of Christian faith, cause divisions and offenses — as Paul says ( Romans 16:17) — by the human doctrines and self-appointed works for which they contend, imposing them upon all Christians as necessary. They are perverters and destroyers of the Church, as we have elsewhere frequently shown. The consolation of the true doctrine is ours, and we hold it in opposition to Popedom, which accuses us of having withdrawn from them, and so condemns us as apostates from the Church. They are, however, themselves the real apostates, persecuting the truth and destroying the unity of the Spirit under the name and title of the Church and of Christ. Therefore, according to the command of God, all men are under obligation to shun them and withdraw from them.
Luther’s Trinity 17 Sermon, Lenker edition

"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 command-ment, 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, p. 607. Tappert, p. 378. Exodus 20:8‑11.                

"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.              

"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 ture 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. 
                       
 Law Causes Contrition          
"In like manner Moses must precede and teach people to feel their sins in order that grace may be sweet and welcome to them.  Therefore all is in vain, however friendly and lovely Christ may be pictured, if man is not first humbled by a knowledge of himself and he possesses no longing for Christ, as Mary's Song says, 'The hungry he hath filled with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away,' Luke 1:53."
            Sermons of Martin Luther, ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids:  Baker Book House, 1983, II, p. 149.

Gospel Only for Humble Sinners
"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."       
Sermons of Martin Luther II,  p. 149.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Sixteenth Sunday after Trinity

James Tissot, The Raising of the Widow's Son



The Sixteenth Sunday after Trinity, 2011


Pastor Gregory L. Jackson


Bethany Lutheran Church, 10 AM Central Time


The Hymn #  191                 Christ the Lord                      2:97
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 #188                Hallelujah                   2:20     

Effectiveness of the Word

The Communion Hymn #  206            Jesus Christ, My Sure Defense  2:81
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 #   212     A Hymn of Glory                                    2:93

KJV Ephesians 3:13 Wherefore I desire that ye faint not at my tribulations for you, which is your glory. 14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; 17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. 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.

KJV Luke 7:11 And it came to pass the day after, that he went into a city called Nain; and many of his disciples went with him, and much people. 12 Now when he came nigh to the gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow: and much people of the city was with her. 13 And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not. 14 And he came and touched the bier: and they that bare him stood still. And he said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise. 15 And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And he delivered him to his mother. 16 And there came a fear on all: and they glorified God, saying, That a great prophet is risen up among us; and, That God hath visited his people. 17 And this rumour of him went forth throughout all Judaea, and throughout all the region round about.

SIXTEENTH SUNDAY AFTER TRINITY

Lord God, heavenly Father, who didst send Thy Son to be made flesh, that by His death He might atone for our sins and deliver us from eternal death: We pray Thee, confirm in our hearts the hope that our Lord Jesus Christ, who with but a word raised the widow's son, in like manner will raise us on the last day, and grant us eternal life: 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.

Effectiveness of the Word

Luke 7:11 And it came to pass the day after, that he went into a city called Nain; and many of his disciples went with him, and much people. 12 Now when he came nigh to the gate of the city, behold, there was a dead man carried out, the only son of his mother, and she was a widow: and much people of the city was with her.

Lenski:
Nain probably lay south-west of Capernaum, about two miles west of Endor, on the slope of Little Hermon and south of Mt. Tabor. Luke tells us who went with him.[1]
Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. Luke's Gospel. Minneapolis, MN : Augsburg Publishing House, 1961, S. 396.

The miracles are revealed to us in such a way that we can learn several lessons from the healing itself. This one took place with the disciples and a large crowd, so the witnesses were many. That reminds us why Jesus had such large crowds following, and also why the religious leaders hated and feared Him. The multitude knew Jesus had to power to do great things, and there were either curious or needy. Besides that, He taught them so they were filled with wonder and faith. He was so far above the other teachers of His time that the crowds said, “He speaks with authority, not like the Scribes and Pharisees.”

More people were gathered for the funeral of a young man. The plight of his mother can be seen in just a few words – the only son of a widow. Before, her husband was the bread-winner, but she could count on her only-begotten son to take over and provide food and shelter in her old age. But now that was gone.

The details are significant. He was not just her only son left alive, but he was the only one she ever had. The Greek word is the same used for Jesus, “the only-begotten” Son.

In this case, the crowd following Jesus met the crowd following the young man’s widow. The crowd in mourning would be great, to show their mutual sorrow, knowing the widow’s grief was especially heavy and sharp.

13 And when the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her, and said unto her, Weep not.

Lenski:
It is to be noted that Luke uses ὁ Κύριος, “the Lord,” to designate Jesus. He will do so again frequently. This designation had its beginnings during the earthly life of Jesus and developed rapidly into a fixed usage after his resurrection. It is this usage that we see in Luke. It designates Jesus as the divine Lord and Ruler who is over all and in a special sense, namely as the divine Messiah, over all believers. It is not intended as the personal name of God, the equivalent of Yahweh, for it designates Jesus in his office of Ruler; but it always designates him in his deity as our Messiah-Ruler in whom we trust, whom we obey, who is the source of our salvation, and whom we worship. It may be that Luke begins this use of “the Lord” because of the greatness of this miracle.[2]
Lenski, R. C. H.: The Interpretation of St. Luke's Gospel. Minneapolis, MN : Augsburg Publishing House, 1961, S. 398.

Lord is not a personal name, but the title of Jesus’ majesty. He is the Lord of Creation, the King of Kings, the Lord of Lords. There are many earthly lords today, as there were then, but there is only one Lord, Who is Jesus the Son of God.



He never stops being the Lord, compassionate and powerful to help, especially those who believe in Him.

Jesus knew from His divine wisdom who the mother was, but it would have been apparent to the crowd following Him as well. She would have been walking directly before or behind the body (not in a coffin but wrapped for burial). Lenski saw  a funeral himself in Israel, where the body was wrapped and carried by two men, with poles supporting the body.

Funerals were immediate, so the grief was mixed with shock.

Jesus spoke with the widowed mother immediately, because He felt for her sorrow. The expression for compassion relates to the organs of the body, which we feel reacting when we are enduring sorrow and grief. God knows our sorrows. Because the Human Nature of Jesus is united with the Divine Nature, Jesus knows exactly how we feel as humans, as He did then.

“Do not weep” is a message of hope. As Luther observed, he used to see death in the midst of life. He said, “But now I see life in the midst of death.”

The power of the Word is revealed next, because the young man was not in a coma, or sick, in a feint, but dead. He could not hear Jesus, but the Divine Word commanded what no one on earth could say.

14 And He came and touched the bier: and they that bare him stood still. And He said, Young man, I say unto thee, Arise.

The procession came to a halt when Jesus touched the wrapped body. People knew and experienced the power of Jesus before anything was completely revealed. The divine power was always present, as the women with flow knew and believed, when she touched the hem of His robe and was healed instantly.

Jesus, as the Son of God, the Creating Word, can command the dead to rise. This takes place through the effective Word. In the same way, Jesus spoke to the young girl and to Lazarus. He confirmed His power before three different groups of people, building up faith in Him before He entered Jerusalem. Lazarus came with Jesus into Jerusalem, the crowds following from Bethany and coming out from Jerusalem to meet Him outside the city.

How can this be? The children always answer, “Because He is God.” And why is that? “Because God can do anything.”

The young man did not need to hear the Word to rise up from the dead. The Word of God commanded life, just as it did in Genesis 1, and “nothing came about without Him.”
KJV John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. 4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

In Him was life. Just as He commanded life in the beginning, as the Word of God, He commanded life in the young man.

15 And he that was dead sat up, and began to speak. And He delivered him to his mother.

“He began to speak” suggests to me that the young man did more than talk, which is another verb. This verb is used when Jesus declared a truth to His audience. God does not give us all the details in His Word, because a new denomination would form around the words used by the young man and the color of his garments.

Jesus gave the young man back to his mother, which by itself is a touching moment. Death took the young man away, but Jesus, who is Life and Light, gave her son back.

People say, If I could have one day again with that person… - a parent, a child, a spouse. But we do have that, because the future of all believers in Christ is the same – eternal life from being forgiven through faith in Him.

That declaration, justification by faith, gives the lost person back to us through the promise of eternal life. Therefore the past is no longer one of sorrow but one of joy.

That also means the present is just as sacred, since God gives us that life and preserves it. Each moment and experience is from the goodness of God, and He fills them with blessings.

16 And there came a fear on all: and they glorified God, saying, That a great prophet is risen up among us; and, That God hath visited his people. 17 And this rumour of him went forth throughout all Judaea, and throughout all the region round about.

The crowds knew that a great religious leader had come among them.  Grasping the entire truth took time, so Jesus instructed His disciples during His three years with them. The disciples, as much as they knew and experienced, had to go through the trial, death, and resurrection of Jesus to know the complete truth, with instruction for them after His resurrection, and the sending of the Holy Spirit.

Sometimes people express regret that they did not know and appreciate the truth of Lutheran doctrine until late in life. The same can be true of Luther, who was shocked out of his devotion to Holy Mother Rome by actually seeing the corruption there.

He could not attend an Evangelical university because they did not exist at that time. The only way to serve the Church was to be a monk or a priest. He was both.

He did not receive ordination and post the 95 Theses the next day. Nor did he immediately realize all the errors he was taught by the Church of Rome. God gave him the experiences and the opposition to develop a massive literature against the errors of Rome.

One of the primary lessons in this miracle is almost lost today and taught against – the effective Word.

This was not only a miracle, but a miracle of the Word. The Son of God commanded life with His Word, and death was defeated at once.

How do we become believers? It is the power of the Holy Spirit in the Gospel. The Gospel takes unbelievers, unforgiven, dead in Christ, and moves them to faith in Him.

Justification by faith is the great miracle of God’s Word.  Jesus does not take away minor sins, but great and terrible sins. He does not forgive a few sins but many sins. He does not absolve us from sins we have conquered because no individual can conquer a single sin.

Knowing this, we realize and believe that death is conquered by the Word of God, because death is the result of our sinful, mortal nature. 

The Effective Word Quotations
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;