Conversion: Trusting God’s Word for Your Regeneration and Resurrection

We must trust Christ to raise us from death to life. We must trust him for this twice: regarding our resurrection, and regarding our regeneration. These two cases are alike. In both cases, we are dead, and because we are … Continue reading

Who Are These Candidates, Really?

This is a presidential election year. There have been so many candidates. People wanted to know, who are these people, really? Who are these promise makers? One of the parties started with four candidates. One candidate is a political veteran … Continue reading

“O, Lazarus, Come Out” — A Hymn for the Church

This hymn is offered here freely for you to use in holy worship. If you do choose to use it, please be kind enough to let Pastor Thoma know. He would appreciate it.   … Continue reading

Satan, the World’s First Feminist

Adam did battle with Satan in the Garden Paradise and lost. It was a no-contest, really. By the time round two came around, Eden had been a distant memory and Satan had home-field advantage. The desert wilderness couldn’t have been … Continue reading

The Blessed Begats

In Junior Confirmation, we read through the Old Testament. We didn’t get very far before I was having trouble. In Genesis 5, we hit “the begats.” “The begats” is a listing of the generations from Adam to Noah. They were … Continue reading

The Gospel According to Elsa

Jesus never said, “Let go and let God”, He said, “Repent and believe in the Gospel.” There’s a big difference. Both “let go and let God” and “repent and believe” acknowledge that we have trouble, but they locate the source … Continue reading

That Can’t Be Here. It’s in Chicago.

Marilyn and I were walking in Nice, Provence. While passing a gallery, something on a wall inside caught me. I stopped, stepped back, took a second look, and said, “That can’t be here. It’s in Chicago.” Marilyn humored me as … Continue reading

The Most Dangerous Situation You’ll Ever Encounter: A Sermon for Wednesday of Judica on Psalm 130

Click here for a free, downloadable Bible study of Psalm 130 from Around the Word. Out | of the depths*      I cry to you, | O LORD! O Lord, | hear my voice!*      Let your ears be attentive … Continue reading

False Christs and Wrong Answers: A Sermon for the Confession of St. Peter on St. Mark 8:27-35

From the very beginning of St. Mark’s Gospel, things hadn’t been going particularly well for our Lord. In chapter 1 He’s tempted by Satan, opposed by demons, and disobeyed by even those He had healed. In chapter 2, the scribes … Continue reading

Keeping Mercy & Life Together Together

  I recently had the privilege of attending “In the World for Good”, a conference on Urban Ministry at Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, IN. The keynote speaker was Dr. John Nunes, the recently appointed Emil and Elfriede Jochum … Continue reading

The Kyrie: Simple Words, Profound Comfort

(Luther, “The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector”) Sometimes the most simple and obvious things are also the most profound.  We often go to great lengths to find comfort, to improve our situation in life, to find peace.  … Continue reading

The Inconvenient Truth of Easter

If you’re lucky this time of the year you might be able to find – tucked away in the farthest corner of the clearance section – a greeting card that actually mentions a few words about the true meaning of … Continue reading

Jesus’ Resurrection is History

There is no tale ever told that men would rather find was true, and none which so many skeptical men have accepted as true on its own merits. – J.R.R. Tolkien, On Fairy Stories Divisions of historical knowledge are useful … Continue reading