God saved us when He sent His Son Jesus to die and rise for our sins. He applies that salvation to us – each and all – through the washing of Holy Baptism. In Holy Baptism, our sins were washed away. Our old evil nature, called the Old Adam, was drowned and died, and we received the gift of the Holy Spirit.
The chosen one would be a sign of God’s good will toward mankind, His desire to love and forgive. This chosen one would open the eyes of the blind and bring the prisoners out of the dark dungeons. At Jesus’ Baptism, God the Father speaks and shows us that His chosen one is Jesus.
The Scriptures were the lamp to the Magi’s feet, it’s what made them wise men. The star brought them to Jerusalem, but the Word first showed them Jesus. The Word is what points us to Jesus, too.
This is how our Lord’s return will be. He will come at an hour we do not expect. Therefore, lest we be found unwise and unprepared, He encourages us to keep watch and ready to enter His wedding feast.
Our Lord’s judgment will not be some long drawn-out procedure, but an immediate pronouncement and separation of the righteous from the wicked. And this is the judgment, Jesus said, “whoever hears My Word and believes Him who sent Me has eternal life. He does not come into judgement, but has passed from death to life.” (Jn. 5:24)
As we approach the end of the Church Year, we hear our Lord’s teaching about the destruction of Jerusalem and His return. One will come with a warning; the other, not.
Text: Matthew 22:34-46 In our Christian Book of Concord, the Lutheran confessors write, The distinction between the Law and the Gospel is a particularly brilliant light. It serves the purpose of rightly dividing God’s Word and properly explaining and understanding the Scriptures of the holy prophets and apostles. We must guard this distinction with specialContinue reading “The Law and the Gospel”
Texts: Philippians 4:10-13; Matthew 6:25-34 A. “Not that I am speaking of being in need,” St. Paul said, “for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facingContinue reading “The Secret to Being Content”
Text: Matthew 7:15-23 In today’s Epistle, we heard part of St. Paul’s farewell address to the pastors of the Church in Ephesus. Shortly after, he would be leaving them to go to Jerusalem and they would never again see him face-to-face. In his final words to them, Paul said, I did not shrink from declaringContinue reading “Beware of False Prophets”
Text: Matthew 8:23-27 There’s an old Christian spiritual song that goes like this: “He’s got the whole world in His hands; He’s got the whole world in His hands; He’s got the whole world in His hands; the whole world’s in His hands.” I would bet that most of us have probably sung it atContinue reading “What Sort of Man is This?”