Monthly Archives: January 2016

Sexagesima – Luke 8:4-15

Get out of the way! The nice way to say it is “Excuse me” or “Pardon me”, but in this case, “Get out of the way!” is fitting. Seed is being scattered by the sower. You’re standing in the way of letting the seed fall where it might. That’s about right for sinful human beings because THE SEED IS THE WORD OF GOD and none of us can stand it.

The sower, the Father, sows the seed. He sows His Son, the eternal Word of God. The sower doesn’t care where the seed lands. He sows. The sown seed goes where it goes. Sometimes it lands on hardpan and is taken away. Sometimes it grows, but lacks moisture and dies. Sometimes it grows, but is choked by weeds and eventually dies. Sometimes it grows and bears fruit, even up to a hundredfold. Isn’t that something!

That’s where Jesus leaves us when He tells the parable. He who has ears to hear, let him hear! He doesn’t say anything about you as the soil. He doesn’t say anything about improving the soil. He tells the parable, ends it with an exhortation to hear, if you can hear it, and stops. The best public speaking is when the speaker leaves you wanting more when he or she ends. That’s where Jesus leaves us today: wanting more. Even His disciples want to know what He said and what it means. He tells them, but if you know how the disciples operate through the Gospels, you wonder whether they understood the explanation.

Not only do we not get out of the way when the seed is sown, we also don’t understand that there are soils that are not receptive to the seed sown. The trouble happens when we start to think that the sower is to blame. If only he could have used better seed or even a different seed. Why would he not want to sow His Son, the promised Seed of the woman who comes to stomp the head of the serpent?

Maybe the sower sowed the seed in the wrong field? What if he would have been more discriminating in choosing where to sow? The seed of the Word is given to all. The sower can’t discriminate. He created all things good. He desires to let his creation receive His message of forgiveness and salvation. Our heavenly Father’s message of redemption in Christ is a catholic message, meaning “according to the whole”. That’s the proper definition of catholic. The word doesn’t merely describe a church fellowship. It describes the total gathering of those who are saved: the catholic church rightly understood. All are redeemed in Christ Jesus, if only they believe this message sown to them.

Not all believe it; otherwise all would be saved regardless of whether they believe it. The catholic proclamation of the Gospel is a universal salvation, but it is not universalism, meaning all are saved whether or not they believe in Christ or even care about Christ. There’s a big difference between those two words. All are saved, yet not all hold [the Word] fast in an honest and good heart or bear fruit in patience.

Not all are saved because they don’t, or won’t, get out of the way. Though the Father’s Word is cast like seed into the ground, we put up all sorts of impediments to stop the seed from taking root in the patch of ground that is our heart. We think there are better ways of doing it, and if God will only get out of our way then we will find that better way without Him. There is no better way, for the way man proposes is the way of death. There is only one Way: Jesus Christ. Jesus is sowed by the sower to take root in us, be nourished, put down roots, grow, and bear fruit in patience.

There are those whose hearts will never receive the seed sown. That’s their fault, not the seed’s fault or the sower’s fault. There’s not much we can do about that. “Oh, what of that, and what of that”, the sower says in the hymn “Preach You the Word”. Yet where it is sown, nurtured, and bears fruit, the sower says “Ah, what of that, and what of that!”

What of that? The seed is the Word of God. The Word dwells in you richly when it is implanted in hearing the Word. The seed is nourished in baptismal water, drenched in the life-giving washing of regeneration and renewal by God. As you continue to hear the Word in Christian preaching, as you continue to eat and drink the Word under bread and wine in the Lord’s Supper, as the seed continues by God’s grace to grow through holding the Word fast in an honest and good heart and bearing fruit in patience, it bears fruit. How much fruit is up to God. Whether it is ten-fold, fifty-fold, or up to a hundred-fold, “What of that, and what of that!”

Despite the obstacles we set up to stop the seed from having His way with us, despite the seeming reckless way the sower sows the seed, the seed remains the Word of God. Wherever the Word is sown, it will do what it does. Isaiah tells us so in the Old Testament reading: it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it. The Father will make sure of it for the sake of His Son Jesus, the Seed that is sown Who brings abundant fruit.

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Funeral of Frances Haut – John 14:6

I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

There is only one way into eternal life. That way is through Jesus Christ, the Savior of both Jew and Gentile. He takes on flesh willingly to suffer the punishment you deserve because of sin. He is risen from the dead to trample down death and bring life and immortality to light. Because of Jesus we are able to laugh to scorn the gloomy grave, as the hymn puts it.

Frances placed all her hope for eternal life upon Jesus Christ. Though her body was ravaged with cancer, though her knees were bad, though her body was falling apart, she remained confident that Jesus Christ lived, died, and rose from the dead for her salvation. She rests in the sure and certain hope of the resurrection on Judgment Day. She rests in confidence that her body will be changed to a perfect body in the resurrection.

She rests because Jesus first rested for her. Jesus’ rest in the tomb that Saturday after His death and before His resurrection is her Sabbath rest. She prepared for this Sabbath rest every Sunday when she came to the Lord’s house to hear the Word of Christ proclaimed to her. This Word of life entered her ears and created faith in Jesus Christ as the way to eternal life. This Word of life drew her to the font, where her sin was washed away. Her baptism united her with the innocent life, suffering, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Everything that He did was for her. The day of her baptism was the day that the Way of Christ came upon her, drawing her into everlasting life as a child of God.

The Word of life was placed upon her tongue each Sunday when she received Christ’s true Body and true Blood in the Lord’s Supper. It was a joy for me to preach the Gospel and give her the Supper each week, even in those last days of her life when she was in the nursing home. Her Christian piety showed in Whom she trusted. Lutherans are welcome to make the sign of the cross to remember their Baptism. Frances did so quite often, one of the few in our congregation that did. Perhaps we Lutherans don’t want to be confused with Roman Catholics. Perhaps there are other reasons. That didn’t make any difference to Frances. Every time she traced the holy cross over her body, it was a reminder of her baptism. It was a reminder of the Savior that bled and died for her sin and was raised for her justification.

When her last hour came, she was prepared. Having received the Lord’s Supper, having heard her sins forgiven in Holy Absolution, and having heard the many pastors that served her through the years convict her of sin and proclaim Christ’s victory over sin and death; she was ready to fall asleep in Jesus’ wounds. What a wonderful way to die!

Her death serves as a good lesson to us all. When death meets us face-to-face, there is no other way out than the Jesus way. All of us, sometime soon, will be in this position: lying in a casket, waiting for our body to be laid in the grave. You can look at it as if everything is over and get on with your life. Or you can look at it as a life lived well in Jesus Christ. We will see her again, when she will be raised with all the dead in Christ. There will be no more cancer. There will be no more crippled legs. There will only be a perfect body, just as it was meant to be before the fall into sin. Thus Frances will live with her heavenly Father for all eternity.

This is the sure and certain hope into which she was baptized. This is the sure and certain hope for all those who believe in Jesus Christ as Lord. Perhaps this is her lasting legacy for us all: living in hope amid many earthly trials. Her confidence in Christ could not be shaken. She knew the Way, the Truth, and the Life was Jesus, for Jesus is the only Way into eternity.

The peace of the crucified and risen Lord be with you all.

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Septuagesima – Matthew 20:1-16

Grace is Jesus telling the Jews in Solomon’s Colonnade: I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. Note the subject and object of that sentence. I give them. There’s no wiggle room there for you doing something special to earn or even deserve eternal life. Jesus gives. You receive. In Christ you will never perish and no one will snatch you out of His hand.

The kingdom of heaven is a kingdom of grace. The cry of grace goes out from a reconciled God in Christ Jesus to receive eternal salvation. He sets the terms. He gives you a place to live in His grace. He gives you the various vocations to serve your neighbor, who is a little Christ in your midst. It’s all a gift.

Yet there are those who give the skunk eye to the whole thing. Daddy always said there’s no such thing as a free lunch. Worse yet there is standing around doing nothing, even up to the last possible moment. Those who stand around doing nothing figure just being there is good enough. They don’t need a gift and they certainly don’t want it. There’s got to be a better way than the way the master of the vineyard does things.

He sets the terms. He offers the wage. He gives the gift. You want to stand around and do nothing, then that’s your business. You stand around too long looking for your own advantage at your own peril. The call remains to come and work, but one day that call won’t be there. Maybe your eleventh hour is now. Saint Paul is not kidding around in Second Corinthians chapter six when he says we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain…. Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation.

Your merit, your looking for your own advantage, your own bookkeeping, doesn’t mean a thing to God Almighty. Grace is everything in Christ’s kingdom. Remember what grace is: the favor of God for Christ’s sake. Grace is forgiveness offered in and made operative for the faithful in the Gifts Christ gives His Church. The starting point of grace is Christ’s reconciliation of sinners in His innocent suffering and death. No atonement of sin, no Gifts. No Gifts, no forgiveness of sins. You can’t separate God’s grace for you from the Gifts of Christ in Word, water, bread, and wine. Those who do have made grace into merit, and there’s no room for your personal merit in the kingdom of heaven.

Only a fool would mock a deathbed conversion. Yet there are plenty of fools today who refuse to believe that even the vilest of sinners receive Christ’s free grace when they repent of sin and believe the Gospel, the Good News of free forgiveness and life in Jesus. Worse yet is pushing grace aside to rely on your own goodness or kindness. When someone dies we have our stock lines for the family. “He was a good person.” “She was a hard worker.” There’s no doubt, earthly speaking, that a person is good or a hard worker. These have no truck in the kingdom of heaven. Everyone receives the same wage after laboring in the Master’s vineyard: forgiveness, life, and salvation. That’s fair because that’s Christ’s gift for you. He set the wage. He gives you the gift of receiving that wage.

You’re not alone in insisting that your hard work or your kind heart gets you eternal life. Even our Lord’s disciples have arguments over who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. That’s why Jesus places a child in the midst of them to show who is the greatest. A child isn’t thinking about what they do or how much they can do or how much they deserve something. They are told something, believe it, and do it. They don’t question it. They don’t play bookkeeper. They embody Saint Paul in Philippians chapter three: Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as excrement, in order that I may gain Christ.

So what will it be: the gift of Christ Jesus or the excrement of your merit, your works, your last name, or anything else that stands in the way of Jesus’ blood and righteousness for you? Clinging to grace is the easy choice, but continuing to cling to God’s grace is ever so hard this side of the new creation. Living as both saint and sinner means we love grace, but we also hate grace. We count all things outside of Jesus as filth, but cling to our filth because it’s as comfortable as old leather.

Every time we get comfortable with our filth, God uses His good and wise Law to show us exactly what clinging to merit and works gets us: eternal death. The Law works repentance in order to prepare us to receive grace once again. The Gospel shows the Father’s grace. The Good News of Jesus Christ as our sacrificial Lamb who takes away the sin of the world declares us innocent of all sin before our heavenly Father. The Holy Spirit, working through the preached Word, through water in your baptism, through the true Body and Blood of Christ, applies this forgiveness on you and in you.

Even when you cry, “Hey, what about me?” and want your books audited to be sure you’ve done your part, recall that you are wrapped in Jesus Christ. He is victorious over sin and death for you. He gives His forgiveness to you as a gift. There is no tit for tat. There is only grace; the one-way street of God’s love in Christ delivered to the chief of sinners…even you.

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The Evil Eye of Bookkeeping

It is the evil eye, you see – the ὀφθαλμός πονηρός, the eye that loves the darkness of its bookkeeper’s black ink, the eye that cannot stand the red ink of unsuccess as it appears in the purple light of grace – that is condemned here. Bookkeeping is the only punishable offense in the kingdom of heaven. For in that happy state, the books are ignored forever, and there is only the Book of life. And in that book, nothing stands against you. There are no debit entries that can keep you out of the clutches of the Love that will not let you go. There is no minimum balance below which the grace that finagles all accounts will cancel your credit. And there is, of course, no need for you to show large amounts of black ink, because the only Auditor before whom you must finally stand is the Lamb – and he has gone deaf, dumb, and blind on the cross. The last may be first and the first last, but that’s only for the fun of making the point: everybody is on the payout queue and everybody gets full pay. Nobody is kicked out who wasn’t already in; the only bruised backsides belong to those who insist on butting themselves into outer darkness.

For if the world could have been saved by bookkeeping, it would have been saved by Moses, not Jesus. The law was just fine. And God gave it a good thousand years or so to see if anyone could pass a test like that. But when nobody did – when it became perfectly clear that there was “no one who was righteous, not even one” (Romans 3:10; Psalm 14:1-3), that “both Jews and Gentiles alike were all under the power of sin” (Romans 3:9) – God gave up on salvation by the books. He cancelled everybody’s records in the death of Jesus and rewarded us all, equally and fully, with a new creation in the resurrection of the dead.

And therefore the only adverse judgment that falls on the world falls on those who take their stand on a life God cannot use rather than on the death he can. Only the winners lose, because only the losers can win: the reconciliation simply cannot work any other way. Evil cannot be gotten out of the world by reward and punishment: that just points up the shortage of sheep and turns God into one more score-evening goat. The only way to solve the problem of evil is for God to do what in fact he did: to take it out of the world by taking it into himself – down into the forgettery of Jesus’ dead human mind – and to close the books on it forever. That way, the kingdom of heaven is for everybody; hell is reserved only for the idiots who insist on keeping nonexistent records in their heads.

Robert Farrar Capon, “Kingdom, Grace, Judgment”, page 396

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How Christians Evangelize in the Future…and Even Today

Click here to read a presentation from the Episcopal Bishop of Springfield, Illinois. As you read, please remember Bp. Martins is Episcopalian, not Lutheran.

I do like his presentation, especially how Christians are given to live in society in this time of tectonic shift in how not only Christians are considered in society, but also how the Christian Church is considered in society.

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Transfiguration of Our Lord – Matthew 17:1-9

Listen to him. In order to learn something in school, you had to listen to your teacher. He or she was there to teach you. When you serve jury duty, you have to listen to your instructions carefully. You have duties at work or at home. You must listen to your employer or your spouse to know what you are to do today. When you don’t pay attention as a student, on jury duty, as an employee or as a spouse, you are in trouble.

Listen to him. When you come to church, you’re here to listen to the pastor. He opens up God’s Word and applies Jesus for you. Your faith in Jesus Christ is fed. You might even learn something along the way, but that’s beside the point of receiving the gifts of Jesus. When you lose focus even for a blink of an eye, you may not grasp what is said. What is more, if you don’t listen to anything concerning Jesus and His forgiveness for any number of reasons, then you don’t receive what your soul desires: eternal life.

Listen to him. Peter, James, and John were brought to a mountain top to see Jesus in His glory with Moses and Elijah on either side of Him. Saint Luke’s account of the Gospel says that they were speaking about Jesus’ exodus which He was about to accomplish at Jerusalem. Peter evidently did not hear the conversation. Or Peter heard what he wanted to hear. Whatever he heard, his response to what he sees and hears is the incorrect response.

Listen to him. Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, and one for Moses and one for Elijah. Peter doesn’t get it right now. He gets it later, when Jesus opens his minds, and the minds of the disciples, to the Scriptures. He writes about it much later when he reflects on what he saw and heard that day when Christ was transfigured before his eyes. Peter was an eyewitness. But Peter doesn’t seem to cling to his claim of being an eyewitness. He instead points his hearers to something more sure, the prophetic word, to which you will do well to pay attention as to a lamp shining in a dark place.

Listen to him. Pay attention to the lamp, for the lamp is the light of Christ, the Living Word. Jesus shines in a dark place, this world, your life. Peter calls it something more sure. So many people look for evidence so they could believe. If only I could see this or experience that. Yes, I know I have the Scriptures. Yes, I know they are inspired by the Holy Spirit. Yes, I know they are, as the hymn describes them, the golden casket where gems of truth are stored. But what good does that do me when there has to be something else, something more that Jesus left behind in order that I won’t have to doubt?

Listen to him. Be still. Be at peace. Stop your searching. Stop trying to hinder Jesus from doing what He has come to do for you. God gives you two ears and one mouth for a reason. Listen to him. Jesus shows Himself to be the very Son of God, Divinity wrapped up in humanity, and the content of the preaching of Moses and Elijah. That is why both men stand there alongside Jesus. Moses prepared the Israelites for the coming of their King as they walked to the Promised Land. Moses heard the voice from a bush that burned yet was never consumed. Moses taught the Israelites about Passover to remember not only their exodus from Egypt, but also the exodus of their coming Savior, the One Who walked with them by a pillar of cloud and a pillar of fire.

Listen to him. Elijah bore the burden of the Lord to call God’s people away from idolatry. Elijah performed miraculous signs as well, just as Moses did. All of Elijah’s preaching and signs pointed toward the One Who comes to save His people from their sins. Elijah feared he was the only one left. God strengthened him to keep preaching.

Listen to him today declare His only-begotten Son as His own. The voice from heaven, as it sounded at Christ’s baptism, also sounds today to remind you to fix your eyes on Jesus. Jesus comes to bear your sin, every one of them, upon Himself to make satisfaction for them. There is no sin too small or too large for Him to bear for you. He bears them willingly, for your sake, in order to give you His righteousness, His innocence, and His blessings.

Listen to him. Just as soon as we welcome the Savior according to the flesh, He prepares to do what He came to do. It’s easy to get lost in the preparation and focus on the end while missing all of what happens in the middle. Now is the time to rejoice in the grace of God, given even to those who heed His call to labor in the vineyard at the eleventh hour. Now is the time to rejoice in the Word of Christ that is the seed sown on many types of soils. Many seeds will not bear fruit, but those that do abundantly bear fruit. Now is the time to have your eyes opened to see Jesus only, setting His face to Jerusalem for His Passion.

Listen to him. Everything leads to Golgotha, where Jesus suffers all, even being forsaken by His Father, to bleed and die for your sin. Everything also leads to that empty tomb, where God’s chosen One exits the grave triumphant over death. No longer do you fear death, for Jesus goes before you trampling down the enemy and winning the battle for life for you.

It all begins with a simple request: Listen to him. Listen to Jesus. Watch what He does, for He does all things necessary for your salvation.

 

 

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First Sunday after Epiphany – Luke 2:41-52

Jesus was in His Father’s house, doing His Father’s business. The house is in Jerusalem, not Nazareth. He would do His foster father’s business up in Nazareth, perhaps helping out in the carpentry shop. The main business He did at home with Mary and Joseph is that He increased in wisdom and in stature and in favor with God and man. He lives an ordinary, average childhood, doing whatever His mom and dad asks Him, for He was submissive to them.

Right now, at age twelve, He seems to get lost. It’s Passover. There are lots of people in Jerusalem to celebrate the highest feast of the Jewish calendar. Their whole identity is wrapped up in Passover, where God spares His children from the angel of death with the blood of a lamb and draws them out of Egypt to begin their pilgrimage to the Promised Land.

It wasn’t Jesus that was lost. Mary and Joseph, mom and dad, were lost. They left Jerusalem supposing Jesus was among those traveling with them. They went up the road twenty miles or so and discovered Jesus wasn’t in the group. They made the trip back to Jerusalem and spent the better part of a day looking for Him. Three days had passed when He was found in the temple, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.

Jesus is the center of attention, as He should be. Perhaps that’s what startles Mary and Joseph the most. A twelve-year-old boy, obedient to His parents, having already gone through much to keep Him alive, and now seems to ditch them and go His own way. Jesus isn’t beginning His rebellious phase in life. Jesus reminds His mother and father, and you and me that He takes on flesh to do His Father’s business. His Father’s business is to proclaim the coming of the kingdom of heaven in His own death and resurrection.

Why have you treated us so? Mary asks the right question here. If you’ve ever lost track of a child, you know it can be a major inconvenience. When I was a boy I used to stray from my dad or my sister in a store. Once my dad did his shopping and simply left me behind, making me walk the short distance from Wal-Mart to our house. Another time I had my sister paged over the public address system, saying I was “lost” and was at the service desk. Needless to say my sister was embarrassed. But at least she knew where I was. At least my dad knew that I could walk out of the store and find my own way home.

There were no such things as Amber Alerts when our Lord walked this earth. He had to be sought. When He was found, He had His parents exactly where they should be, in the temple, hearing Him teach, asking questions, and giving answers. Jesus was front and center, where He belongs, proclaiming the favorable season of the Lord. Yet Mom and Dad aren’t happy about it. Neither are you, to be frank. It’s much easier for Jesus to come to you, where you are, rather than you having to seek Him and find Him.

Why has He treated us so? He does everything the way He wants to do it rather than asking me or others what would be the best way for Him to do what I think He ought to do. Being submissive and obedient is a good thing, especially for children, but who does Jesus think He is by making me go on a long, drawn out search just to hear Him say the same old thing over and over again.

Why were you looking for Me? Jesus is always where He promises to be. That’s what Mary and Joseph learned in their three-day search for their Son in Jerusalem on Passover. Could it be that the timing, the location, and the occasion all work together with Jesus finding them in the temple? Consider that Jesus was missing three days. That’s the length our Lord remained in the tomb after His death. His death and resurrection takes place just outside Jerusalem. The festival around which His death, burial, and resurrection happens to be the Passover. Coincidence?

No, not coincidence. Nothing that our Lord does is mere coincidence. Passover is the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Jesus is the Living Bread that comes down from heaven. You eat of Him and are satisfied. The bread He gives satisfies your greatest desire: justice before God. Jesus gives that justice when He gives His life for you, in your place, shedding blood for your sake. His blood covers all your sin. You are justified, reckoned righteousness, before the Father. Your debt is paid in full.

Everything that happens in the temple prepares God’s people for their Messiah. Messiah has come to His temple to teach, listening and asking. That’s the pattern of how you learn the Christian faith. That’s the pattern for all learning. Every answer begins with a question. One question leads to another question. Another question begs another question. Questions and answers teach your mind and heart to think through what you learn.

What you learned either as a child or as an adult is the foundation of your salvation. You learned in questions and answers that you are a sinner who cannot fulfill the demands of the Law. You can’t even make a start to finish keeping the Law. Someone must do it for you. That someone is Jesus Christ, who not only kept the Law, but suffered the punishment you deserve for breaking the Law. His resurrection from the dead seals the victory He wins for the sins of the world. He teaches you what to ask your Father when you pray. He washes you in baptismal water, uniting you with His life, death, and resurrection. He absolves your sins. He gives you His true Body and true Blood for forgiveness, life, and salvation.

Jesus found you, just as He found His parents by drawing them to His Father’s house so they could see what He has taken on flesh to do for them and for you. The Father’s business is to give His Son for your sin, so He can give you to His Father as His bride, His holy Church.

It is He Who made us, and we are His; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture. Blessed are you who are found by the One Who finds His parents when they are drawn to Him in the temple to receive the good and precious gift of salvation.

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The Law as Appetite Builder for Gospel

What does effective ministry of the Law do for the new creation in Christ? Nothing in any direct way but it does create a powerful hunger and thirst for our Lord’s bread of life and living water of the Gospel. The Law itself imparts no spiritual nutrition or power for Christian living, even when its exhortations are softened and joined with words of inspirational encouragement. Rather it is intended to be God’s great appetite builder that sends us running for the Word of Life. Only through the ministry of the Gospel does our Lord nourish the new creation to sustain and mature our faith and life in Him. Full-strength Gospel can often by the simple Gospel – you are forgiven; God loves you and accepts you just as you are for the sake of Christ. It can even be as simple as, Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible tells me so. For our little ones in Christ, we must take care to continually feed them with the pure milk of the Gospel. And often the simple Gospel is what we need – just the plain but full-strength words that absolve: I forgive you all your sins. Yet it is also true that the Gospel is not simple. There is more to it in its implications and applications than we will ever grasp in a lifetime.

As we grow and mature in Christ, the Lord also intends for us to feed on the “meat and potatoes,” indeed the whole nine courses of the Gospel, not simply the milk and pabulum. The Spirit is working through Word and Sacrament to renew our minds and hearts to the full stature of the mind of Christ Himself. We need a mature understanding and trust of faith to handle the front lines of Christ’s warfare with the powers of darkness in our lives and in the world – maturity for battle and service at the tough outposts of life. The milk and pabulum of the Gospel alone will not provide that kind of growth and equipping. With a full-orbed Gospel the new creation becomes progressively built up for a fuller and deeper flow of the love and ministry of Christ through us to those He gives us opportunity to serve.

Dr. Steven A. Hein, “The Christian Life” pages 51-52

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