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Devotion

…and through God the Father, who raised Him from the dead.

Galatians 1:1

Does the Christian need to be afraid, trepid, fearful, or anxious about anything? Not really!

God the Father raised Jesus from the dead. What does this mean? It means that your faith in Christ is not futile. Christ has, indeed, been raised from the dead.

“And if Christ is not risen, then our preaching is empty and your faith is also empty. Yes, and we are found false witnesses of God, because we have testified of God that He raised up Christ, whom He did not raise up — if in fact the dead do not rise. For if the dead do not rise, then Christ is not risen. And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins! Then also those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men the most pitiable. But now Christ is risen from the dead, and has become the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive (1 Corinthians 15:14-22).

Your faith not being futile means that your hope is not a ‘what if’ or ‘possibility,’ but a certainty, for it’s grounded in none other than the risen Christ.

All who here speak in uncertain terms, saying that you can’t be sure of God’s favor and forgiveness (or going to heaven) or despise such hope in Christ alone are showing themselves for who they really are—false teachers and not of God.

Christ Jesus is your certainty, in life—and in death. He is your peace with God.

“Of Him (God) you are in Christ Jesus, who became for us wisdom from God — and righteousness and sanctification and redemption” (1 Corinthians 1:30).

Jesus, too, is your confidence, before God—Yes! And also before one another!

Luther

At the very outset Paul explodes with the entire issue he intends to set forth in this epistle. He refers to the resurrection of Christ, who rose again for our justification (Rom. 4:25). His victory is a victory over the Law, sin, our flesh, the world, the devil, death, hell, and all evils; and this victory of His He has given to us. Even though these tyrants, our enemies, accuse us and terrify us, they cannot drive us into despair or condemn us. For Christ, whom God the Father raised from the dead, is the Victor over them, and He is our righteousness. Therefore “thanks be to God, who has given us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 15:57). Amen (Luther’s Lectures on Galatians, LW 26, p22-22).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, you raised Your Son from the dead for our justification. Give us confidence in Your promises, that we boldly confess Your Name and rejoice in Your bountiful goodness, through Jesus Christ, Your Son our Lord, amen.

October 31

 

What comes to mind when you think of October 31? Halloween? Pumpkins? Costumes? Trick or treating? Scary movies? This is what

many might think about concerning the date of October 31.

However, the word ‘Halloween’ is short for “All Hallows Eve” the eve of All Saints’ Day, which is November 1 (Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary). Many of the various traditions practiced on the eve of October 31 are adapted from nonChristian (pagan) practices…

Halloween,TheReformation,TheChurch,Christ.pdf

A Sermon for All Saints’ Day

Mention The Apocalypse of St. John, also known as The Revelation of St. John, or simply, Revelation, and some eyes might perk up, as well as ears become more attentive. This work of the apostle produces fear in some, curiosity in others, and general confusion among many. It is a book that has sparked manifold end-time movies and books. Because of incorrect understandings of the text, many false teachings about Revelation abound, not least of which are the views called Millennialism, whether pre-millennialism or post-millennialism

The Revelation of St. John, needless to say, is a greatly misunderstood book. Many are simply scared by it, namely, because they don’t understand it.

Revelation is a highly figurative book, with a great use of symbolic language, which has led some to fanciful and sensational interpretations, many of which are simply contrary to the rest of Holy Scripture.

On the whole, in sum, readers generally react in one of two ways: either in fear or with comfort. In fear, because of the judgments of God, the plagues, wars, and death. With comfort, because of the hopeful words found throughout.

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