Poems on the Cross: Devil, the World, and Sinful Flesh

While I am finishing up my STM thesis on the topic of the cross in Lutheran dogmatics, I thought I would attempt to begin a series of poems outlining the dogmatic arrangement of this topic. Today I am posting a poem describing the instrumental causes of the cross, namely, the devil, the world, and our sinful flesh. I should first post a poem on the definition of the cross, but I haven’t written that one yet. So this will have to do for now. I hope I can keep this up, especially during this Lenten season.

The devil tempts; the world belies;
The flesh persists with moans and cries.
They seek to take what God did claim
When calling each of us by name.

This is Your judgment, God most true,
That devils wander as they do,
And flesh is dead because of sin
While all the world is cursed within.

Behind such strife Your mighty hand
Pressed hard on us, we cannot stand
Before Your right and holy throne.
Your law condemns what man has sown.

Yet, Lord, in faith we see the joy
That though the demons still annoy,
And world and flesh deceive and lure,
They only serve to make us pure.

For You have taken sin away
Through Christ who did our ransom pay.
So though the foes still rant and rave,
They drive us to the words that save.

Thus by Your Word, increase our faith,
That fertilized through toil and death
We cling to Christ our only Lord,
Our armor and our great reward. Amen.

About Pastor Andrew Preus

Pastor Andrew Preus is the pastor of Trinity Lutheran/St. Paul Lutheran, Guttenberg/McGregor, IA. He is the eighth of eleven sons, with one sister. He received his seminary training at Concordia Lutheran Theological Seminary, St. Catharines, ON (MDiv) from 2009 to 2013, and Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, IN (STM) from 2013 to 2014. His main theological interests include Justification and Church and Ministry. He is married to Leah Preus (nee Fehr), and they have four children: Jacob, Solveig, Kristiana, and Robert.


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