(The Confessional Lutherans for Christ’s Commission is one of the many confessional groups that regularly posts on this website. Like BJS they seek to equip laymen to know and support Confessional Lutheranism. CLCC posts are archived on the Regular Columns page of this website.)
As Reformation Day is quickly approaching, I am reminded again that Martin Luther pounded the 95 Theses on the door of the church in Wittenberg 493 years ago. Sometimes I think it’s time for a new Reformation today.
I see the church today, being aided by many of her pastors, as attempting to dumb down the teaching of her lay people. They think the less we know the better, because then it is easier for us to be compliant to anything we’re told and accept any change there is in practice without questions or complaining. As lay people we can’t let that happen, as Scripture teaches us in Ephesians 4:14 “so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes.” It seems at times when laity begin to learn or are eager to learn something, it can be seen as an assault against some pastors today. It’s so much easier for them when we are not in the Word, and when we’re not reading the Lutheran Confessions. Many lay people have allowed themselves to be lulled into a lack of knowledge, because to our sinful flesh that way is much easier. That is somewhat similar to what it was like at the time of the Reformation. People only knew what was taught to them by the priests. They were being led astray. Yet, they had an excuse. There were no Bibles written in their language. We don’t have that excuse today. Bibles and the Book of Concord are readily available if we’d just open them.
I’d like to encourage all lay people to get into the Word daily, to search the Scriptures, to read their catechisms again, and start reading the Book of Concord, which contains all the Lutheran Confessions. We need to know what truth is. We need to know what we, as Lutherans, believe, teach, and confess. Check what you are taught against the Word of God. Are you still practicing in the way that will keep you Lutheran, which is the true Apostolic faith? Remember, the Lutheran Confessions have stood the test of time, because they teach us clearly what the Scriptures say. They also teach us what the Scriptures condemn. There are beliefs which have become accepted in our synod today which were not accepted in our grandfather’s church. For example: what is true worship in doctrine and practice. Did you know that there are practices among us that will ultimately change what we believe?
I’m thankful that Martin Luther discovered the full truth of the Word of God in 1517. I know he struggled and went through difficult times for standing for the truth so that Christ and Him crucified and risen could be clearly proclaimed. Remember, it’s grace alone, through faith alone in Christ alone! Thanks be to God for Luther and the Lutheran Reformation! Let’s return to the Word of God for true doctrine and practice!
Grant, we beseech Thee, Almighty God, unto Thy church Thy Holy Spirit and the wisdom which cometh down from above, that Thy Word, as becometh it, may not be bound, but have free course and be preached to the joy and edifying of Christ’s holy people, that in steadfast faith we may serve Thee and in the confession of Thy name abide unto the end; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with Thee and the Holy Ghost, ever one God, world without end. Amen. (The Collect for the Church, TLH pg 14)
Confessional Lutherans for Christ’s Commission
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