Eucharistic Meditation

If, then, the mass is a testament and sacrament in which the forgiveness of sins and every grace of God are promised and sealed with a sign, it follows self-evidently what is the best preparation for it. Without doubt the mass is given to them that need it and desire it. But who needs forgiveness…

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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,…

What Is the Christian Life?

These two are the first elements of Christian life: Repentance or contrition and grief, and faith through which we receive the forgiveness of sins and are righteous before God. Both should grow and increase in us. The third element of Christian life is the doing of good works: To be chaste, to love and help…

Chants for the Reformation Lessons

After the lecture on Music and the Reformation last Friday, we celebrated choral vespers. To get a sense of an earlier time in the Lutheran church, the readings (Epistle & Gospel for Reformation Day) were chanted according to Luther's directions in Die Deutsche Messe. Here's the music (text from ESV®). The Epistle:   The Gospel:…

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…

The entire Gospel embodied and presented to us

Therefore also it is vain talk when they say that the body and blood of Christ are not given and shed for us in the Lord's Supper, hence we could not have forgiveness of sins in the Sacrament. For although the work is accomplished and the forgiveness of sins acquired on the cross, yet it…

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…

Per Fidem Solam: Romans 3:24 in the Würzburg Glosses

It would seem that Luther's decision to add the word 'allein' (alone) to Rom. 3:28, for which Roman Catholic apologists have pilloried him and his followers ever since, wasn't quite such an innovation after all: A N G L A N D I C U S: Per Fidem Solam: Romans 3:24 in the Würzburg Glosses…

Sanctification—joining the fray

Since the world and its dog is writing about this just now… Recently, I have been heartened to read several blog posts each on sanctification, by Pr. Mark Surburg and Pr. Jordan Cooper, respectively. You can read them here and here. That means, amongst other things, that Pr. Paul McCain is no longer alone beating…

War and Peace

In the next episode of Sunday Cantata, we will hear BWV 126, Erhalt uns, Herr, bei deinem Wort, a chorale cantata on the hymn by Luther, known in English as 'Lord, Keep Us Steadfast in Your Word'. I won't say much here—listen to the episode on Lutheran Radio UK!—except this: The peculiar combination, usual in…