There are many others who regard not going to church as a great sin, but they do not attend services to hear God’s Word for the salvation of their souls, but only to perform what they think is a work for God. They imagine that if they have merely gone to Church they have completely kept the Sabbath.—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 753.
27 September 2021
Thy body, Thy blood, and all that Thou hadst, even Thine own self, Thou didst give for my salvation, and shall death then deprive me of that which was purchased with so costly a ransom? Thou art my righteousness, O Lord Jesus; my sins shall not avail against Thee. Thou art the Resurrection and the Life, death shall not prevail against Thee; Thou art God, Satan shall not prevail against Thee.—Johann Gerhard, Sacred Meditation V.
The Apostle praised one who had known the Scripture from infancy. He also instructed that children be reared “in the discipline and correction of the Lord.” So we consider every time of life, even the very earliest, suitable for receiving persons into the community of faith.—St. Basil the Great, The Long Rules 15.
26 September 2021
25 September 2021
…about our zero-carb (carnivorous) way of eating, is that we occasionally miss favorite foods that we associate with particular times of the year. An emotional tug, not really a tug of hunger, since we always enjoy our meals and eat to the full. Lauren shared a cookbook for the kids (Maria Emmrich “Sugar Free Kids”) that we found interesting. It’s actually Keto, but easily adapted. So we tried one that looked promising: porridge. This porridge (two servings) is basically 4 eggs whisked together with 2/3 cup of heavy cream, a pat of butter, and seasonings (salt, cinnamon, vanilla extract or maple extract). The original also called for a sweetener, but we have long since given up eating sweet things. Just throw it together over low heat and stir with wooden spoon until curds form throughout. It’s…AMAZING! We loved it so much that we made yesterday and again today. Its texture is indeed pure porridge; its flavor is delicious; and better than grain-based porridge, this thing really does fill you up!
Posted by William Weedon at 9:53 AM
24 September 2021
I have sinned, O Lord, and my sins are many and great beyond measure; and yet may I never voluntarily commit that most heinous sin of charging Thee with a lie, when Thou dost declare by words and by works and by an oath, that perfect satisfaction hath been rendered for mine iniquities.—Johann Gerhard, Sacred Meditation V
True, living faith is active through love. Therefore, as there is warmth and light in the presence of fire, there are love and good works in the person whose heart has been warmed by the sun of faith.—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 748.
The word satisfaction has been left from this rite of public repentance. The Holy Fathers were unwilling to welcome back the fallen or the notorious sinners unless, as far as it was possible, their repentance had been first examined and shown publicly. There seem to have been many causes for this. To discipline those who had fallen served as an example, as the gloss upon the decrees reminds us. Also, it was improper to admit notorious people immediately to Communion. These customs have long since grown obsolete. It is not necessary to restore them, because they are not necessary for the forgiveness of sins before God.—Ap XIIB:16.
23 September 2021
“What is more blessed and joyous than to believe God’s Word and cling to it in the face of all temptations, and to shut the eyes to all temptations of the devil, to lay aside sense and understanding, reason and cunning, and unceasingly to say in one’s heart: ‘God has spoken, he cannot lie!’ Nothing can be more joyful, I say, than such faith. For whatever we ask of God in such faith we receive more abundantly than we can ever imagine, and God is nearer to us than we can realize.”—Martin Luther, Church Postils, Second Sermon for Trinity 21.
Posted by William Weedon at 11:37 AM
Those who trust in their own righteousness and holiness seek salvation in themselves, but I, who find in me nothing worthy of eternal life, flee to Thee as my Saviour. Save me, for I am condemned; have mercy on me, for I am a sinner; justify me, for I am unrighteous; acquit me, for I am under accusation of sin.—Johann Gerhard, Sacred Meditation IV
If a person remains weak in the faith, his faith will finally be overcome and extinguished. Therefore, if he is to remain a Christian, his faith must grow and become firmer. His faith must be built on the Word alone so that he can comfort himself with that mere written Word even when he feels no joy in his heart. Then he will believe in the forgiveness of his sins even when he senses the presence of sin still dwelling in him.—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 746, 7.
What husband but our Lord ever died for his wife, and what bride ever chose a crucified man as her husband? Who ever gave his blood as a gift to his wife except the one who died on the cross and sealed the marriage bond with his wounds? Who was ever seen lying dead at his own wedding banquet with his wife at his side seeking to console herself by embracing him? At what other celebration, at what other feast is the bridegroom’s body distributed to the guests in the form of bread? Death separates wives from their husbands, but in this case it is death that unites the bride to her beloved.—Jacob of Serug, Homilies
Absolution is God’s Word which, by divine authority, the Power of the Keys pronounces over individuals. Therefore, it would be wicked to remove private Absolution from the Church. If anyone despises private Absolution, he does not understand what the forgiveness of sins or the Power of the Keys is.—Ap XIIb (2-4)
22 September 2021
Christ died that sin might die in us; and can we willingly let it live and reign in our hearts, since the Son of God Himself gave His life to destroy its power in us?—Johann Gerhard, Sacred Meditations III.
What is this evil life but bitter poverty in which we must daily come before God as naked beggars? And what is heaven but immense riches? What is this evil life but misery, trouble, sickness, and death? And what is heaven but constant joy, eternal health, and blessed life?—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 745.
According to levitical law, every gift, unless it be seasoned with salt, is forbidden to offered as an oblation to the Lord God. Now the whole spiritual meditation of the Scriptures is given to us as salt which stings in order to benefit. Without this disinfection, it is impossible for a soul by means of reason, to be brought to the Almighty.—Bishop Methodius, The Banquet of the Ten Virgins
Here we must know that faith should be confident that God freely forgives us for Christ’s sake, for the sake of His own promise, not for the sake of our works, contrition, confession, or satisfactions. For if faith relies upon these works, it immediately becomes uncertain, because the terrified conscience sees that these works are unworthy.—Ap XIIA:96.
21 September 2021
Therefore sin is spiritual death to the soul. Through mortal sin man loses God.—Johann Gerhard, Sacred Meditations I.
There is only one way a person can die gently, confidently, and blessed. He must learn to go to God as a poor sinner and to call upon Him for grace for Christ’s, His Savior’s, sake. He must learn to seize Christ and His promises of grace in faith. He must taste and see how friendly, how good, how gracious, and how merciful the Lord is.—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 739.
This is no trivial subject of inquiry that we propose, but rather it concerns things most urgent, and about which many inquire: namely, whether hell fire has any end. For that it has no end Christ indeed declared when he said, “Their fire shall not be quenched, and their worm shall not die.” Yes, I know a chill comes over you on hearing these things. But what I am to do? This is God’s own command… Ordained as we have been to the ministry of the Word, we must cause our hearers discomfort when it is necessary for them to hear. This we do not arbitrarily but under command.—St. John Chrysostom, Homily 9 on 1 Corinthians.
This means that all are under sin, neither can they be freed except by grasping the promise of the forgiveness of sins through faith. Therefore, we must accept the forgiveness of sins through faith before we do the works of the Law. Although, as has been said before, love follows faith, because the reborn person receives the Holy Spirit and so begins to do the works of the Law.—Ap XIIA:81, 82.
20 September 2021
God has promised grace to the penitent soul, but He does not promise a tomorrow.—Johann Gerhard, Sacred Meditations I.
Whoever can raise the dead by His own strength must be the true God and Life itself.—C. F. W. Walther, God Grant It!, p. 735.
There may be something catholic outside the Church catholic. The name of Christ could exist outside the congregation of Christ, as in the case of the man casting out devils in Christ’s name. There may by contrast exist pretenses within the church catholic, as is unquestionably the case of those “who renounce the world in words and not in deeds,” and yet the pretense is not catholic. So as there may be found in the church catholic something which is not catholic, so there may be found something that is catholic outside the church catholic.—St. Augustine, On Baptism, Against the Donatists, 7:39.
The sum of the preaching of the Gospel is this: to convict of sin; to offer for Christ’s sake the forgiveness of sins and righteousness, the Holy Spirit, and eternal life; and that as reborn people we should do good works.—Ap XIIA:29