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Unprofitable Servants…

Augsburg Confession

Article VI: Of New Obedience

1] Also they teach that this faith is bound to bring forth good fruits, and that it is necessary to do good works commanded by God, because of God’s will, but that we should not rely on those works to merit justification 2] before God. For remission of sins and justification is apprehended by faith, as also the voice of Christ attests: When ye shall have done all these things, say: We are unprofitable servants. Luke 17:10. The same is also taught by 3] the Fathers. For Ambrose says: It is ordained of God that he who believes in Christ is saved, freely receiving remission of sins, without works, by faith alone. (http://bookofconcord.org/augsburgconfession.php#article6)

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In the Midst of Temptation

St. James, in his epistle, writes, Blessed is the man who endures temptation; for when he has been approved, he will receive the crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him (James 1:12)

The life of the Christian is a life lived under the cross, under the cross in faith to Christ, and under the cross bearing what we are given to bear as Christians, as God’s people who are baptized into God’s Holy Name, and God’s people who look to Christ’s Second Coming and our eternal home, for we know that while here on earth, we’re on a pilgrimage, our final destination being heaven, the place which awaits all who endure to the end in the true faith of our Lord Jesus Christ.

The faith of which we speak is not a blind faith or a faith which simply says that things will get better. The Christian faith is not faith which looks for peace on earth or hopes to change the world. Neither is the Christian faith a faith which seeks to escape all kinds of sufferings in the world.

The Christian faith is that faith which places trust in the Lord Jesus alone for help and salvation. God does not promise that the world will get better. All that we see around us and even the Scriptures say that the world will not get better, but will grow worse as the day of our Lord’s return draws closer and closer, as St. Paul the apostle says, Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons (1 Timothy 4:1)…

Mt04.1-11, Lent 1, 2011A.pdf

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