Posts from 2014

110 of 70 items

Lutheran Dogmatics – The End of the World (Part 13)

by mcurley

Studying the end times (the area of theology known as eschatology) persists as a popular subject among many Christians.  The Book of Revelation mystifies but enthralls many as do OT books like Daniel, Ezekiel and Zephaniah.  Trying to figure out when Jesus will come with the triumph of His Kingdom is central to that fascination […]

Lutheran Dogmatics – Election (Part 12)

by mcurley

The doctrine of election is sadly often neglected for its complexity.  However, though this biblical teaching can be difficult to manage only through human logic, it is at the same time a wonderfully comforting teaching of the faith.  Simply put, divine election holds that we who are saved have been chosen by God from eternity […]

Lutheran Dogmatics – Can Salvation be Lost? (Part 11)

by mcurley

In my sermon on Jesus’ Parable of the Ten Virgins (Matthew 25:1-13), I liken the oil in the virgin’s lamps to faith.  This is the usual interpretation of the metaphor.  Like oil in a lamp, faith in the heart can run dry.  Is this only a matter of strong versus weak faith.  No, for while […]

You’re Not So Big

by mcurley

“You’re not so big”.  That’s what I’d say finally to an atheist because in their militant denial of God they are in effect saying they are the biggest thing.  They know more than God.  They can explain the origins of life and the universe and can study the furthest reaches of the stars.  Morality has […]

Unexpected Benefits

by mcurley

For some time now I’ve been on a quest for a simpler, quieter life.  This means in part that I’ve been trying to reduce and reuse.  Be content with what I have and do with even less.  Get rid of the clutter.   It really is amazing the layers that come with each year of life […]

Lutheran Dogmatics (Part 10) – Sola Scriptura

by mcurley

Martin Luther’s quest for a merciful God who would receive him into His presence in spite of Luther’s (and all mankind’s) sin ended when in Scripture Luther found the blessed Gospel hope in these words from Romans 1:17 (said first by the prophet Habakkuk), “The righteous will live by faith”. Justification by grace through faith […]

Lutheran Dogmatics (Part 9) – Faith and Good Works

by mcurley

The relationship between faith and good works is important to understand for in our Lutheran emphasis on justification by grace through faith alone we don’t mean to say that there is no place for works in the believer’s life.   Sanctification is the life that follows a sinner being born again, being justified, as the Holy […]

Lutheran Dogmatics (Part 8) – The Pastoral Office

by mcurley

We’ve learned of the Church’s ministry of the Word and Sacraments, the Office of the Keys, worship, confession and absolution– just about all the fundamentals of the Church except for this one: pastors. The word pastor means “shepherd” as he is a spiritual guide under the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ (John 10:11).  There are other […]

Lutheran Dogmatics (Part 7) – The Office of the Keys

by mcurley

We had said earlier that the other mark of the Christian Church besides the Word and Sacraments being administered faithfully is where church discipline is practiced. If God’s truths are not practiced, they amount to mere talk.  Though Christians are saved freely by grace through faith, the Gospel is never to be treated as a […]

Lutheran Dogmatics (Part 6) – Worship

by mcurley

We have learned that the Church is where the Holy Spirit gathers His people around the Gospel which offers faith, the forgiveness of sins and the hope of everlasting life through the ministry of Word and Sacraments. Beyond place, though, is time.  The time the Holy Spirit so gathers is generally called “worship”.  And as […]