More than Forgiveness

From Luther's Epistle Sermon for the Third Sunday after Easter (1 Peter 2:11–20): We have heard above that the two parts are to be together in a Christian and emphasized in Christan teaching. The first part is faith, that we are redeemed from sin through the blood of Christ and have forgiveness. The second part,…

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Death as debtor to Christ

An interesting thought from Luther's sermon for New Year's Day in the Church Postil: For when death fell on Him and killed Him, and yet had no right or case against Him, and He willingly and innocently submitted and let Himself be killed, then death became liable to Him, did Him wrong and sinned against…

Anti-heresy anthem

Some months ago, and at the end of a longer article, Pr. David Petersen quoted a hymn by Luther that was still included in The Lutheran Hymnal (no. 260) but was left out of the Lutheran Service Book. Like a lot of TLH hymns that didn't make it into LSB, this one's a time-tested treasure…

Why do we sing?

Luther’s hymns were more than sung propaganda. They had a specific catechetical function in undergirding the principal teachings of the faith. They were sung during the narrow catechesis of teaching the main parts of the catechism in church and home. But there was a broader catechetical function when these same catechism hymns were sung on…

Hymn singing and multiculturalism

Multiculturalism, rightly understood, has chronological as well as geographical dimensions, and our worship is enriched when we sing such hymns of faith that originate in earlier times and under different conditions than our won. The faith does not change but expression of it does. In our frenetic world we need to sing such expressions of…

Comfort for women who have had a miscarriage

A brief passage written by Martin Luther, as translated and posted by Matthew Harrison. Pastor Harrison also explains the background to its writing, which is worth checking out. A final word—it often happens that devout parents, particularly the wives, have sought consolation from us because they have suffered such agony and heartbreak in child-bearing when,…

Let the little children…

There are certain topics of discussion / debate that tend never to go away among confessional Lutherans. One of them is the age of first communion. In almost all Lutheran churches, first communion is linked closely or inextricably to confirmation—for what can only be described as pragmatic rather than dogmatic reasons. After all, confirmation is…

New Volumes to Luther’s Works

Exciting news: Concordia Publishing House are about to roll out new volumes in the "American Edition" of Luther's Works. The first new volume will be coming out later this year. Anyone interested in Luther and not able or willing to work with the German/Latin originals should be cheering. Read more here. Those willing and able…