This year’s Advent devotion is now available for download in two formats:
- Booklet format for two-sided printing. Print this file duplex and staple the center to make a booklet.
- Single-page format for eReaders or to print a large-print edition. Print this files duplex with “print to fit” selected.
Printed copies of the booklet are available for purchase ($2.75) at Lulu.
Save 10% when you buy 15 or more printed books.
Use code: FTW18
Save 25% on printed book. Expires November 25
Use code: BLACKFRIDAY25
Lulu is constantly using different coupon codes (last year they had a really good one on the day after Thanksgiving).
Printed copies of the booklet are also available for purchase ($3.99) at Amazon. This option may be necessary if you want a printed copy in a hurry.
From the introduction to the devotion:
Ever New and Greater Light and Devotion
This advent devotion takes us as Lutherans back into very familiar ground, the Small Catechism. Here we find the foundations of our faith, the basics upon which the rest of our beliefs and practices are built. There is always a temptation to think these things are too basic or that we have mastered them already and can learn no more. This is actually a sin against the Third Commandment to think such things. Each of us have a sinful nature, an Old Adam, and he is a horrible theologian – and yet too often we listen to his teaching.
Dr. Luther spoke of pastors who treated the Small Catechism with contempt. These pastors were pastors after all – what need did they have of a basic instruction book for children? But to such an arrogant understanding Luther speaks thus:
“Therefore, for God’s sake I beg such lazy bellies or arrogant saints to be persuaded and believe that they are truly, truly not so learned or such great doctors as they imagine! They should never assume that they have finished learning the parts of the catechism or know it well enough in all points, even though they think that they know it ever so well. For even if they know and understand the catechism perfectly (which, however, is impossible in this life), there are still many benefits and fruits to be gained, if it is daily read and practiced in thought and speech. For example, the Holy Spirit is present in such reading, repetition, and meditation. He bestows ever new and more light and devoutness. In this way the catechism is daily loved and appreciated better, as Christ promises in Matthew 18:20, “For where two or three are gathered in My name, there am I among them.”” (Large Catechism, Preface, par 9)
So like Dr. Luther, we go back to the Small Catechism each day. The underlined section is the foundation to the theme of this series. The Holy Spirit works through the Word, and the Catechism is a pure confession of that Word. This Advent hopefully is just a continuation of this practice for your household, but in case it is not, let this be a fresh start. There is much blessing to be found in such practice, not the least of which is the passing on of the faith to the next generation. May God indeed do that for you and yours this Advent.
Rev. Joshua V. Scheer
Editor in Chief