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Showing posts from August, 2019

10th Sunday after Trinity + Luke 19:41-48

Grace and peace be unto you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
On Palm Sunday, as Jesus is riding to Jerusalem on the colt, the crowd of disciples shouts, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the LORD!' Peace in heaven and glory in the highest” (Luke 19:38). Some Pharisees beg Jesus to them to be quite. Their rejoicing is too much. But Christ responds by saying “I tell you that if these should keep silent, the stones would immediately cry out” (Luke 19:40). Jesus has indeed come to bring peace in heaven, peace between man and the God man has offended with his sins. This is such a joyous occasion that even if the crowd of disciples to put their hands over their mouths, the creation itself would cry out in joy. Yet in the midst of such joy and the hope of peace which Jesus brings, as He draws near the city He weeps over it. He weeps in pity at the sight of the city of David because He knows full well that the inhabitants of that city will reject Him. Four …

9th Sunday after Trinity + 1 Corinthians 10:6-13 and Luke 16:1-9

Grace and Peace be unto you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Today’s appointed readings present us with examples of carelessness and indifference and where those lead. In the epistle lesson, St. Paul sets the ancient Israelites before the Corinthian Christians. The Corinthians, like the ancient Israelites, had become overly confident in their status as sons of God. Like Israel, they imagined that nothing could disqualify them this special status that God had conferred upon them. So St. Paul has to burst this bubble. In the wilderness, in between their redemption from Egypt and their entrance into the Promised Land, some become idolaters. At the base of Mount Sinai, while Moses was delayed, the people “sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play,” the very words of Exodus 32 when Israel forsook the true God and made a counterfeit God in the form of a golden calf. Three thousand men died as a result of their idolatry. Later in the wilderness they were tempted by M…

8th Sunday after Trinity + Matthew 7:15-23

In the Name of the Father and of the Son + and of the Holy Ghost. Amen.
When Jesus teaches His disciples to pray, the first petition He gives them is “Hallowed be Thy name.” Dr. Luther explains this in the Small Catechism like this: “God's name is indeed holy in itself; but we pray in this petition that it may become holy among us also.” Then he asks how is God’s name kept holy among us? He answers, “When the Word of God is taught in its truth and purity, and we as the children of God also lead holy lives in accordance with it. To this end help us, dear Father in heaven. But he that teaches and lives otherwise than God's Word teaches profanes the name of God among us. From this preserve us, Heavenly Father.” These two parts of hallowing God’s name, that the Word of God is taught in truth and purity, and that we lead holy lives according to that Word purely taught, is the subject of the appointed gospel lesson for today.
Jesus commands us, “Beware false prophets.” It should be s…

7th Sunday after Trinity + Romans 6:19-23 & Mark 8:1-9

Grace and peace be unto you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
Sin makes a lot of promises. Riches and wealth offer the promise of a comfortable life. Lusts, whether sexual lusts or the lust for a full belly, promise personal fulfillment in the satisfaction of every bodily desire. The world offers a good reputation, sometimes fame, but always acceptance, to those who go along with its thinking and promote its doctrines, from evolution to the syncretic doctrine that all religions and lifestyles are equally valid. Go along with these, promote them, nod your head in assent to them and everyone will heartily accept you. Sin makes all sorts of promises. Look no further to the Devil’s temptation in Matthew 4. “The devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to Him, "All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me” (Matthew 4:8-9). Follow the devil. Serve your sinful …

6th Sunday after Trinity + Matthew 5:20-26

Grace and Peace be unto you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.
The fifth commandment is deceptively simple: Don’t murder. Most hear the commandment and say that they’ve done that, or rather that they haven’t done that, and so fulfilled the commandment. While most aren’t murderers, many in our day openly support and defend murder and even call it a right. Abortion, the murder of a child in its mother’s womb, is now acceptable and defended in the public square as a woman’s right. In recent months this selfishness has reached new heights as politicians publicly defended infanticide. Years ago it was euthanasia, the “right” to die, to kill oneself rather than trusting God to remove you from this life when and where it pleases Him, who is the author of life. Murder has been around since Cain slew his brother Abel in the field. As our society becomes increasingly paganized and more people reject the natural law that God has written into their hearts, it becomes all the mor…