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, March 17, 2013

Judica Sunday












Judica Sunday, The Fifth Sunday in Lent, 2013


Pastor Gregory L. Jackson


Bethany Lutheran Church, 10 AM Central Time


The Hymn #12                 This Day                                         4:80  
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 #40            The God of Abram Praise                         4:94 

The Great I AM

The Communion Hymn #305:1-5            Soul Adorn Thyself             4:23
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 #410               Jesus Lead Thou On                   4:27

KJV Hebrews 9:11 But Christ being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; 12 Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. 13 For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: 14 How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 15 And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

KJV John 8:46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? 47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God. 48 Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? 49 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me. 50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth. 51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. 52 Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. 53 Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself? 54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God: 55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. 57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? 58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am. 59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

Prayer
O Lord Jesus Christ, we thank Thee, that of Thine infinite mercy Thou hast instituted this Thy sacrament, in which we eat Thy body and drink Thy blood: Grant us, we beseech Thee, by Thy Holy Spirit, that we may not receive this gift unworthily, but that we may confess our sins, remember Thine agony and death, believe the forgiveness of sin, and day by day grow in faith and love, until we obtain eternal salvation through Thee, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Ghost, one true God, world without end. Amen.

The Great I AM


KJV John 8:46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? 47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

There are several keys to understanding the Bible as the Word of God. Many use that phrase, Word of God, but they do not grasp its meaning – or they reject its meaning.

Apart from inerrant and infallible, inspired by the Holy Spirit – all true – is an important characteristic of the Scriptures:
The Scriptures are consistent. People say, “The passages contain no contradictions,” which is entirely true, but do they carry that out in their explanations? No.

To be treated as consistent, each verse must be seen as linked with all the others, all having the same purpose. The Bible is not subject to man’s logic. The Bible judges all other books, because the Bible is the only book written by God.
It is not reasonable, as man judges reason, because it is the revelation of God and is far above man’s thinking, as Isaiah 55 says so clearly. This is also stated by Paul – who is God’s counselor? (Many are self-appointed counselors and they are the worst kind.)

KJV Romans 11:33 O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! 34 For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor?

The Bible has one consistent purpose, to teach us faith in Christ. No book of the Bible teaches that better than the Fourth Gospel, where the noun and verb for faith and believe (the same root in Greek) are found so often. In John’s Gospel we have the apostle whom Jesus loved, the one closest to Jesus, revealing His sermons and discussions. These are ideal because they show us so much more in addition to the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke.

The reason for teaching us faith in Christ is to give us forgiveness of sin.

KJV John 8:46 Which of you convinceth me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe Me?

This is the big question – what is sin and how can someone be forgiven? We could say either convince or convict or accuse. The Pharisaical understanding was opposed to the Old Testament Scriptures (and still is), which promised the Messiah and taught faith in Him. The wrong description of sin began with doing something wrong.

Jesus’ definition begins with faith or unfaith. Not believing in Him is a sin.

When sin begins as a work of man, then his actions are defined as sin or not sin, depending on what he does or does not do. That is the righteousness of the law, and it did not stop with the Pharisees. I have heard many people define their righteousness as being born in a given synod (wise choice!), being descended from people well known in their sect (but no other), or by never doing something terrible (like questioning the synod’s wisdom).

When righteousness is the righteousness of the law, there is always in impulse to prove it and to hide any possible manifestations of sin. That is why “dry” towns will have various ways to get liquor to people so no one officially notices. One little temperance town had taxis delivering paper bags to homes. They had no need for taxis, but they did not want to be spotted in the liquor store (a sin) while pretending was a virtue. Likewise, Benton County was “dry” for having no liquor sales at all, but every restaurant had a bar and promoted that profitable trade.

So Jesus and His disciples were sinners because He let them “work” on the Sabbath when they pulled grain from crops and ate them to ease their hunger.

There are massive regulations about the definition of work in Judaism, and when that happens, the idea of faith is displaced entirely.

Jesus defines sin as “not believing in Me.”

He said in John 6 that the “work of God” is

KJV John 6:28 Then said they unto him, What shall we do, that we might work the works of God? 29 Jesus answered and said unto them, This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent.

And

KJV John 16:8 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 [GJ – justification by faith], because I go to my Father, and ye see Me no more;

47 He that is of God heareth God's words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.

One verse clearly follows the other. Jesus divides according to faith or unfaith, because the Scriptures teach the righteousness of faith, not the righteousness of law.

If we apply the righteousness of the law to ourselves, we are condemned, because no one can live up to any law, whether Mosaic, or custom, or personal.

The righteousness of faith means that God declares those who believe in His Son forgiven of all their sin.

As long as anyone is an unbeliever, he cannot hear or grasp God’s Word. It is alien. The work of the Holy Spirit in the Word plants faith in the heart. And there are many approaches, many examples to find in the entire Bible. One will take root. That faith is God’s work.

48 Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? 49 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour Me. 50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth. 51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep My saying, he shall never see death.

Jesus’ words caused an instant antagonistic response, as they do today. Jesus was devilish and a Samaritan (not one of us).

The result was a clear definition of salvation. If a man keeps My saying, he will live forever.

Faith in Him is forgiveness of sin. Forgiveness is salvation and eternal life.

To promise forgiveness and salvation without faith in Jesus is utter blasphemy, but a certain group of false teachers in Synodical Conference glorify themselves for teaching this falsehood.

52 Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. 53 Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?

The Gospel Promises cause hatred and division. We can be sure that some among the leaders were converted, but we hear from the opponents first. Ministers are often told by denominational leaders that they should not upset anyone.

Jesus, knowing his audience, deliberately antagonized them by teaching the truth that hurt them the most. As Luther observed, He was not crucified for His miracles or His life, but for teaching that righteousness came from the outside, from faith in Him, not from the inside, from the works of man.

So they brought up Abraham and the prophets, who were dead. This really assumes the very essence of the New Testament. The Torah and the Prophets taught faith in Jesus, which means eternal life for all those teachers. They taught the Gospel. The opponents said, knowing what He meant, and rejecting it – they are all dead! And how can You even imply it. You are not greater than they were. Who do you think you are?

This articulated what Jesus wanted to say. It set up one of the great sayings in the Bible.
 

First He added to their pain –

54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that He is your God: 55 Yet ye have not known Him; but I know Him: and if I should say, I know Him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know Him, and keep His saying. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day: and he saw it, and was glad.

This duality strengthens the concept of faith and unfaith: honor and dishonor. We honor what we trust. If we distrust, we dishonor. Jesus is sent from the Father, so the Father honors the Son and the Son honors the Father.

The opponents talk about God all the time, but they have not known Him because they do not believe His Word. Because of unbelief, they do not keep His Word.

But in contrast, Abraham saw the day of Christ coming – he rejoiced, he was glad. (He was justified by faith.)

John 8 and Romans 4 and Genesis 15 all teach the same thing. They are consistent. They teach justification by faith alone.

57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? 58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am. 59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

The I AM

Here is a reference to Moses and the Burning Bush, which had two natures, like Christ. It was burning and yet not consumed. The Angel of the Lord, speaking from the Burning Bush, is God. “I am the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.”

I AM does not mean- it’s me, but I AM God. What was God’s name, Moses asked. The Angel said, “Tell them I AM sent you.”

Naturally, when the opponents realized they were speaking to the Son of God, they all began to listen.

No?

They picked up stones to murder Him.

And here is the clear teaching of His two natures. He is a man speaking to them and yet He exists before Abraham. Then, when they sought to murder Him, He passed right through them. His divine nature was not limited by His human nature – which helps us see how it is that Holy Communion represents the same association – the earthly elements and the Body and Blood of Christ.


 Quotations

"These two every preacher should show:  first, an innocent life, with which he may boldly face the world, and no one may have cause to blaspheme his doctrine; secondly, irreproachable doctrine, so that he may mislead no one of those who follow him."
            What Luther Says, An Anthology, 3 vols., ed., Ewald Plass, St. Louis:  Concordia Publishing House, 1959, III,  p. 1111.  John 8: 46, 59.                  

"For if I perish, no great harm is done; but if I let God's Word perish, and I remain silent, then I do harm to God and to the whole world."
            Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids:  Baker Book House, 1983, II,  p. 176. Fifth Sunday in Lent John 8:46‑59.  

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

"Scripture therefore uses these words, 'We are justified by faith,' to teach both: 1) What the reason (or merit) for justification is, or what the blessings of Christ are; to wit, that through and for the sake of Christ alone we are granted forgiveness of sins, righteousness and eternal life; and 2. How
these should be applied or transferred to us; namely, by embracing the promise and relying on Christ by faith alone."
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith (1568), p. 107.

"What is the difference between Christianity and paganism? Paganism has no sure Word of God and no true faith in Christ. It is unsettled. In place of the one true God, pagans worship various factitious deities and countless idols with ceremonies, works and sacrifices selected according to human judgment. They imagine that they compensate for their sins with this worship, pacify their gods and make them gracious and purchase, as it were, blessings from them."
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith, (1568), p. 19.

"What is the reason for certainty in Christian doctrine?...7. the hatred of the devil over against this doctrine;
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith, (1568), p. 21.

"Creation is the external action of God by which God, seeing all other things, visible and invisible, fashioned them out of nothing with this plan of His that He might establish for Himself an eternal Church to acknowledge and praise Him and in which He might dwell forever."
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith, (1568), p. 45.

"The good angels are spiritual beings, created in the beginning after the image of God; that is, they are intelligent, truthful, just and free. They are not part of another species or the souls of people; and they are immortal, ordained by God to praise Him and to be servants of the Church and protectors of the devout, Hebrews 1, Psalm 34, Psalm 103, and Psalm 104."
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith, (1568), p. 47. Hebrews 1; Psalm 34; Psalm 103; Psalm 104

"There are eight sins which militate against faith: 1. Epicurean and Academic doubts about God, His providence and the certainty of the doctrine handed down through Christ and the Apostles. 2. A lack of faith toward God. 3. In regard to the forgiveness of sins, to entertain doubts as to whether we are in the grace of God or if we please God. 4. Despair. 5. Stubbornness of presumption. 6. Confidence in human aids. 7. Superstition. 8. Witchcraft."
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith, (1568), p. 65f.

"The sins which militate against the Third Commandment are the profanation of the Sabbath through neglect and contempt of the ministry, through Judaic and superstitious observance of the Sabbath, or through a shifting of the ministry into the kingdom of this world. The faithfulness of those who teach is the virtue by which the ministers of the Church, aware of their modest skill in Christian doctrine, carefully and zealousy discharge and steadfastly protect all the duties of the faithful dispenser of the mysteries of God in teaching, debating, comforting and setting their hearers an example of true devotion and of all the virtues. The other extreme are faithlessness, heedless teaching or negligence in office, or deserting the ministry because of excessive anxiety or concern over one's own weakness."
David Chytraeus, A Summary of the Christian Faith, (1568), p. 71f.

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