Sunday 30 June 2013 at 5:21 pm
On the Day of the Visitation of Mary
It so happened that as Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the child jumped in her womb. And Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and cried out and said: Blessed are you among all women, and blessed is the Fruit of your womb. And how is it that I am privileged to have the mother of my Lord come visit me? - - O blessed are you, you who have believed. Luke 1:41-45.
It seems as if Luke had a special joy in this story, in that he specifically and so beautifully describes the beloved virgin to us - but especially to the ladies - with a wreath that is especially beautifully decorated with lovely roses. For here he exalts three special virtues, which we also should endeavor to have. The first is faith, the second is a very a huge, great humility, the third is the fine and disciplined conduct/behavior/demeanor before people. Where there is such dress on a wife or virgin, it surpasses by far all queens and empresses with all their gold, noble precious diamonds, pearls, velvet and silk.
-- O faith, faith, with what difficulty you have to enter in, and yet what a blessed person is he who believes, -- How so? Because he is, says Christ, a dwelling and palace for divine majesty; on the other hand, he who does not believe is a hut/shack for the devil. O dear Lord, protect us from unbelief and strengthen our faith!
Thanks be to God for enabling me to complete another translation - Was blessed with the strengthening of my faith by receiving Word and Sacrament at Faith Lutheran Church this morning!!!
Saturday 29 June 2013 at 1:14 pm
On this rock I will build My church, and the gates of hell shall not overpower it. Matthew 16:18.
You descendants, diligently pray and promote God's Word, hold up God's poor storm lantern, be alert and armed like those who have to be on guard every hour, as the devil tries to break out a pane or window, rip open a door or tear of a roof, or extinguish the light. For the devil does not die before Judgment Day; you and I have to die, and when we are dead, he still lurks around, like he has always been doing, and he can't stop his raging. God help us. --- For we are not the ones who are able to sustain the church, our forefathers also were not the ones, our descendants will also not be the ones; instead He has been the One, still is the One and shall be the one who says: I am with you all the days until the end of the world, Jesus Christ yesterday and today, the One who was, the One who is and the One who shall be. --- Yes, that's what the Man is called, and no other man is called that and also no other man shall be called that.
Praise God - I almost accidently deleted this, after painfully translating it .
Saturday 29 June 2013 at 08:23 am
However he, the one who does not go about with works, but instead believes in Him Who declares the ungodly righteous, his faith is counted as righteousness. Romans 4:5.
Who are Peter and Paul? What is an angel from heaven, what are all creatures compared to this Article (the Justification of a sinner before God), which teaches how and through what means one gets freed from sin, how one becomes righteous and saved? If we understand this Article correctly, we then have the true heavenly Son. But if we lose Him, we then have nothing other than hellish darkness. That's why neither Peter nor Paul, indeed also no angel from heaven, rather resist them, for one can never ever uphold and proclaim it (this Article of the justification of a sinner before God) highly enough/too much.
Thus concludes another translation - the Lord be with you and me.
Friday 28 June 2013 at 5:08 pm
On the Day of the Apostle Peter and Paul
This is most certainly true and a precious worthy Word, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, among whom I am the foremost (i.e., the worst). But that's why I experienced mercy, in order that in me Jesus Christ especially show complete patience, as an example to those who are going to believe in Him and live forever. 1. Timothy 1:15-16.
My heart constantly says: I would gladly believe all of this if I were like St. Peter or St. Paul. That's how we always want to enter in by works; we don't want to have it given to us and say: I believe that Mary, St. Peter, and St. Paul are Christ's brothers[siblings]; however I haven't earned it, I also am not worthy of such an honor. That however is a completely foolish message. Didn't you hear that it's a gift? Peter is just as much a poor miserable sinner as you are. So the Word says to both of you, to you just like to St. Peter, that you are God's son and He is your Father, that God no longer wants to frighten you nor be your enemy. Now St. Peter seizes this Word and he has to. If you want to become like St. Peter, then do likewise and seize the Word, Dear Lord God, You mean there is nothing more to do than that one grab the Word and cling to it and let this be given to a person.[?!!]
I'm happy to announce that a great theologian has been added to this list of undisclosed recipients and this motivates me to keep on translating until the holy angels bear me home to 'Abraham's bosom'
Friday 28 June 2013 at 5:07 pm
Flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but rather My Father in heaven. Matthew 16:17.
Those, who themselves are not divinely taught and have the Holy Spirit along with my preaching as a master, those can no longer be helped with any writings and teachings because for those God Himself and the entire Holy Scripture will not be enough. Indeed, with them no preaching, teaching, speaking, and writing will be able to help, even if all leaves and grass, trees, hills and valleys, and yes, all creation were to have tongues and were able to teach. Reason, flesh and blood cannot understand nor grasp what Scripture says, instead God through His Spirit has to reveal in hearts concerning that which gets proclaimed through words into the ears. There are too few books, all teachings are too insufficient, and all reason is too obtuse and apathetic to know Christ. Only the Father Himself is able to reveal Himself to us (Matthew 11:27).
Another day - another devotion; may God bless your day!
In the Name of Jesus,
Wednesday 26 June 2013 at 08:24 am
He did not doubt the promise of God through unbelief, instead he was strong in faith and gave God the glory. Romans 4:20.
One should not believe all appearances, unless they are similar to faith. I want to keep the Word of God and be content with it; I want to live with it, die with it. So then, if God were to send an angel who said, you should not believe this promise, I then would shove him away from me and say: Get away from me, you Satan! Or if God Himself were to appear before me in His majesty and say: You are not worthy of my grace; I'm going to change My mind and will not keep My promise, then I would not believe the appearance, but instead most strongly fight against God. As Job said: Even though He slay me, I still will place my hope in Him. That's why I will not look at nor listen to nothing other, instead I will live and die in the faith, even if God, angel and the devil be opposed to it.
Thank you Lord for enabling me to smoothly sail through this translation.
In the Name of Jesus,
Tuesday 25 June 2013 at 3:11 pm
Blessed/blissful are those who do not see and yet believe. John 20:29.
My dear Philipp (Melanchthon)! The end and the exit of the matter (The Reformation) torments you. However I'll say this much: If you were able to understand the matter, then I would be reluctant to participate in it, even much less would I want to be a head or initiator of it. God has set a place for you, which you with your rhetoric (talkativeness) are unable to find, also not with philosophy. That very place is called faith, in which all things that we can neither see nor comprehend stand. Whoever wants to make these visible and comprehensible, like you do, has heartache and wailing as a reward, like you - against our wishes - have done.
Melanchthon, an important asset to and key player in the Reformation, here seems to get a bit of a 'spiritual spanking' from 'Papa' Luther.
Tuesday 25 June 2013 at 10:42 am
Commemoration Day of the Augsburg Confession (1530)
I will make you into a solid, fortified city, with iron pillars and bronze walls throughout the entire country, against Judah's kings, against her princes, against her priests, against the entire people of the land, so that when they will fight against you, they nevertheless shall not be victorious. For I am with you, says the Lord Who saves you. Jeremiah 1:18-19.
Well now, all in one, as you now are united and belong together, devil, Papists, and Enthusiasts all in one pile, nothing but freshly-laid opponents against Luther, you papists from the front, you Enthusiasts from behind, you devils from every direction; you rush, chase after, confidently go forth, you truly have a tempestuous, furious battle ahead of you. It is actually not Luther whom you are pursuing, you must and will have to let Luther's teaching alone and let it remain, even if the likes of you were to stretch out over tenfold. Also look at the Lutheran song: A Mighty Fortress is our God, a good Shield and Weapon, He helps us free in every need, that has now encountered us; the old evil Foe, now seriously means it, great might and much guile are his gruesome weapons, upon earth there is no one like him. etc.
What a precious confession of the Christian faith we have in the Augsburg Confession - drawn up by laymen.
In the name of Jesus,
Elmer M. Hohle, pr. em.
Monday 24 June 2013 at 2:03 pm
The Birthday of John the Baptizer
Look, that is God's Lamb. John 1:36.
Other prophets of course also prophesied about Christ, about He was to come and free the world from sin. However neither Isaiah nor Jeremiah was able to say: This is the One you should accept. It is John alone who was the first person that was able to personally cry out with his voice and point with his finger where forgiveness of sins was actually to be found. Never has there been nor seen another person who had a finger like John's fingers, with which he was able to point out the Lamb of God. That's why when sin oppresses, devil and death frightens someone, let him just look at this preacher's mouth and finger - it will correctly teach and direct him, so that he receives forgiveness of sins and is at peace with God. That's now the joy the world should have - not just Zacharias and Elizabeth!
There you have it. God grant you have a happy, blessed John the Baptizer BD!
In the Name of God's Lamb,
Monday 24 June 2013 at 09:32 am
You gladly put up with the fools, because you are wise. 2 Corinthians 11:19.
Bad preachers have the good fortune of one tolerating and putting up with all their foolishness, and even though one simultaneously realizes and feels they are grossly foolish, they nevertheless get by with it, and one puts the best construction on it for their good. However for the downright solidly correct preachers one is not able to regard anything bad as being good, but instead lures and lurks about their words and deeds to see if one can take them captive, and wherever one can find a speck or splinter, there one just for show makes a vain huge beam out of it, to the point where nobody will tolerate it, but instead judge it, condemn it, and despise it. That's why the office of preaching is a stressful office, so that whoever does not seek to give all glory to God and to seek the benefit of the neighbor, will not be able to persevere and stick to it. He has to labor and let others have the honor and the benefits, he has to have shame and mockery as his salary. Here it calls for one to love and not to benefit, and yet not allow oneself to become stressed out. God's Spirit has to do this, flesh and blood can't do it.
Sorry about my clumsy translation - let's keep our pastors in our prayers and truly regard them as God's spokesmen as they as called and ordained servants of His Word proclaim to us His gift of the forgiveness of sins, life and salvation through Jesus Christ. Grace alone, faith alone, Word alone.
Friday 21 June 2013 at 09:18 am
I will not let you go, unless you bless me. Genesis 32:26.
This example of Jacob teaches us that faith should not waver, but instead hold on/cling to, even when one feels the wrath of God and not just death and sin. And that is the power and strength of the Spirit. We should immediately at the first lash not let courage and hope collapse, instead one must hang in there, pray, seek and knock, and if He already wants to go away, then don't you quit, but instead ever more diligently keep on following after Him, just like also the Canaanite young lady did, before whom Christ could not hide Himself. And if He hides Himself in the closet of the house and does not desire that one should come to Him, then don't you yield, rather keep on following after Him; If He doesn't want to listen to you, then knock on the closet door and cry out. For the highest sacrificial offering that one can bring is not ceasing to pray, but instead continuously hang in there and seek until we overcome Him and win.
Yes, let us pray without ceasing. Hear us O Lord as we cry to you for mercy. And it's there for the taking 24 hours of every day.
Thursday 20 June 2013 at 09:49 am
Love also covers a large number of sins. 1 Peter 4:8.
According to egotism we alone always eagerly want to be beautiful, see nothing in the neighbor that is good, instead take it out of our eyes, and when we become aware of any kind of little leaflet, we fill up our eyes with it and blow it so much out of proportion that we see nothing good within it, even if we had eyes like a hawk and the face of an angel. It's just like as if I saw a golden garment, and it would be close enough so that I could spot a white thread pulled through it, and I would snub my eyes at it, as if it was to be despised and yet think that my gross overalls made out of golden rags were precious. So then we do not see our own vice, of which we are full of, yet we are unable to see anything good in other people. When then such natural bad habits/vices appear among true Christians, the judging then begins, in that I soon begin to despise and condemn another person, where he on the other hand does the same against me, also tries with the same measure to reprimand me, also for the most evil things he is able to find in me. Here then love is actually completely suppressed and there remains nothing but sheer biting and devouring of one another, until they completely destroy themselves and become non-Christian.
A tough one to translate - hope I did it fairly accurately ... let us forgive as we have been forgiven.
In the Name of Jesus,
Wednesday 19 June 2013 at 10:03 am
And they brought little children to Jesus, so that He would touch them. Mark :10:13
At Baptism there is present the divine Majesty and therein manifests its greatest work, that it gives itself to us and creates us born anew and saved. It also is no joke, to deal with opposing the devil and to support the poor little child from the bottom of one's heart with a strong faith, devoutly pray that God not only help it oppose the devil's power, but instead also strengthen the child, so that it will chivalrously and gallantly stand up against the devil in death. And I am concerned about the fact that after baptism people turn out so foul, because one has dealt with them in such a cold and nonchalant manner and even actually at their Baptism did not seriously pray for them. That's why it is also truly right and salutary that one does not let drunk and raw clerics (i.e., pastors) perform the baptism, also not choose raw people as godfathers (i.e., sponsors), instead fine, well-behaved, courteous, pious priests and godfathers, to whom one may count on that they will deal with the matter seriously and in true faith.
Oh Luther, I hope I properly translated you... I gotta run and get married this afternoon ... oops! that was 58 years ago! I look forward to joining my sweet Norma and the rest of that 'host arrayed in white' in heaven.
Even so come quickly Lord Jesus!
Tuesday 18 June 2013 at 10:25 am
While we are in this tabernacle/cabin, we longingly sigh and are depressed. 2 Corinthians 5:4.
If you say you feel no sin, death, world and devil and have no battle and strife going on against them; that's also why the need of none of them forces you to go to the Sacrament (i.e. to the Holy Supper). Answer: I hope you are not serious, that you alone among all the saints and people on earth should be one who does not feel such things. And if I knew that you are serious about this, then I would want to truly order that, upon all the streets where you would be going, all the bells would have to ring out and shout out before you: Here enters in a new saint above all the rest of the saints who feels and has no sins. However I would without joking tell you: If you no longer feel any sin, then you most certainly are dead in sin, and this is already such an over the top huge sin, that you have no need or desire for the Sacrament, that you have no regard for God's Word, forget about Christ's suffering, that you are stuck fill of ingratitude and all sort of spiritual atrocities.
Wow! Luther you have me crying out: Kyrie Eleison! aka Lord have mercy! So with the repentant Publican I smite my chest and say: God, be merciful to me, a sinner!
In the name of Jesus,
Monday 17 June 2013 at 3:39 pm
Resist the devil, thus he will flee from you. James 4:7.
You will never prepare a stronger incense against the devil than when you go about with God's commands or Word, speak about them, sing or think about them; this obviously is the right incense and sign, from which he flees and by which he allows himself to be chased off. Thus you for this reason alone should gladly read, speak, think, and take action, whenever you otherwise have no other fruit or benefit from it, other than that you with it are able to drive away the devil and evil thoughts; for he cannot listen to or tolerate God's Word. It is a power of God, which ignites the devil's suffering and sorrow, however the Word exceptionally strengthens comforts, and helps us. And what furthermore shall I say? If I were to enumerate all the benefits and fruits of what God's Word accomplishes, where would I find enough paper and time to do so? One calls the devil a thousand-fold fake, but what shall one call God's Word, which chases away and brings to naught this thousand-fold fake with all of his skills? There obviously must exist more than a hundred-thousand clever fakes.
Ouch, ouch! I'll take my Rx pain pill tonight - thank the Lord I managed to translate another one!
Saturday 15 June 2013 at 5:00 pm
When you pray, you should not babble a lot like the heathen do, for they think they will be heard if they make up a lot of words. Matthew 6:7.
Prepare your heart before you pray, so that you do not tempt God. For what is it other than tempting God when the mouth babbles and the heart has strayed off somewhere else. There is no more laughable delusion that might crop up before someone, than when he might see the thoughts that chase each other around in a cold, non-devoted heart during prayer. If it otherwise is to be a good prayer, prayer wants to have the heart’s complete and total attention. Indeed, it is found that the true Master has presented and taught the Our Father. And it is misery beyond all misery that the prayer of such a Master should be babbled and chattered throughout the whole world. In a year's time, many perhaps pray the Our Father several thousand times, and were they to pray like that a thousand years, they still would not have tasted or prayed a single letter, jot or tittle of it. All in all: The Our Father [The Lord's Prayer] is the biggest Martyr on earth; for everyone plagues and misuses it.
Luther, you hit the nail on the head with this one. Oh Lord, teach us to pray!
In the Name of Jesus,
Elmer Martin Hohle
Saturday 15 June 2013 at 12:33 pm
He has established a remembrance of His wonders, the Lord is gracious and merciful. Psalm 111:4.
He establishes not just only the name God or Lord, but also the name gracious or merciful Lord. The name God and Lord have something frightening in them, since they are names of majesty. However the adjectives "gracious" and "merciful" contain only comfort and joy in themselves. And I don't know of anywhere in the Bible where God lets Himself be called more lovingly. Just so you don't give Him any other Name in your heart, nor perceive of Him differently in your conscience; for if you do, you will do Him an injustice and greatly grieve Him, and cause yourself the greatest harm. With wrath and threats He only counts to the fourth generation; with love however He shows His mercy not only to the fourth, fifth, tenth, or twentieth generation, but rather unto my thousands of generations. For His own work is to do well; raging however is called a foreign work.
Physical pain kept me awake most of last night ... I'm going to try and see if I can sleep some this forenoon ... a blessed Lord's Day to all of you tomorrow.
Friday 14 June 2013 at 09:05 am
Shouldn't God rescue His chosen ones, who cry out to Him day and night? I tell you He will quickly rescue them. Luke 18:7-8.
An earnest and heated prayer, which doesn't cease and become tired but instead waits and waits to the very last blink of an eye, that prayer finally breaks through heaven and earth, and it's impossible for it not to be heard; for that's a well-pleasing offering before God, when we pray thusly, that the prayer surpasses our mind and understanding, like Paul says in Eph. 3: God can do far more than we can ask or imagine. If the matter goes completely lost and all counsel and diligence is in vain, there guard yourself that you do not fall away from God. For He calls all things out from death and out from nothing; where there no longer is any help and any hope, this is where God first begins to help. Were you to pray like that and not receive any help, then let my lies punish me. Even if He doesn't immediately in the blink of an eye give it to you, He still will give you much, which you find in the comfort and strength of your heart, until the time arrives where He will give you far more richly than you had hoped for.
This does it- ouch, ouch I say physically; but spiritually I say Hallelujah!
Thursday 13 June 2013 at 11:00 am
[Luther uses two verses from the Apocrypha for this day's Guide:]
Even all this is the Book of the Covenant, made by the Most High God. There never has been (i.e. there never has been anyone), who has learned it all, and there shall never be anyone who will be able to fathom it all. Sirach 24:32 and 38.
This is most certainly true; for as an insignificant Christian I have also tried to do a little bit of this, and when I highly brought it about, I became highly aware that I therein barely was an ABC-scholar. And verily/indeed, my dear Christian, you can never read too much of the Scriptures, and what you do read, you can never understand it too well, and what you do understand you can never teach too well, and what you teach well, you can never live too well. Therefore dear lord and brother, lord pastors and preachers, pray, read, study, be diligent. Verily, during these times is not the time to be lazy, snoring and sleeping. Use your gifts that have been entrusted to you, and reveal/make known the mystery of Christ; anyone who doesn’t want to know it, remains unknowing.
The first sermon I preached as an ordained pastor in 1957 - Zion Lutheran Church, Latimer, KS - was on the text from Eph. 6:19, and I asked my first congregation to pray for me that I be told what to say and boldly make known the hidden truth of good news. God enables us Christians to share the Gospel of the forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation Christ has won for us sinful human beings on the cross. This Sunday the church I attend will celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the ordination of our senior pastor, the Rev. Walt Pohland. He faithfully preaches Spirit inspired Law/Gospel sermons as he proclaims Christ crucified. What a 'dynamite of God' we have in God's Word!
I'm, screaming in physical pain I have stop typing.
Elmer Hohle, Pr. em.
Wednesday 12 June 2013 at 11:07 am
Now that you have come to know God, how is that you once again turn back to the weak and skimpy/meager statues/regulations, which you want to serve anew as slaves? Galatians 4:9.
It is a dangerous matter when errors, divisions and sects arise among true Christians, which shift the conscience and lead astray and secretly through external things and deeds rip away the grace from one's spirit. Here it is highly necessary to be on guard. - So then my faithful counsel and warning is that you look out for yourselves and persist in a single question: What then makes one a Christian? And most certainly don't allow any other question nor method be as worthy as this one. If someone brings up something, then begin and say Beloved: Does that make one a Christian or not? If not, then of course don't let it be a chief part, nor fall on it with total seriousness. If however someone is too weak to do such a thing, let him of course back off and wait, until he sees what we or others say about it. I of course - praise God - have up to now done well in correctly presenting the chief parts, and anyone who says otherwise, must not be of a good spirit; I hope also that I will not perish over outward parts (where only such prophets make a big thing out of it).
With an aching body, I pray that my translation isn't too sloppy. So, let us look to Jesus, Who gives us our faith from start to finish (cf. Hebrews 12:2.).
In His Name,
Tuesday 11 June 2013 at 5:18 pm
Philip, whoever sees Me, he sees the Father. John 14:9.
God says to you: See, you have My Son, listen to Him and accept Him. If you do that, you then are certain of your faith and your salvation. Yes, you say, but I don't know whether I also will be able to abide in the faith. Well then, immediately take up the present promise and reconciliation, and guard yourself so that you don't too cheeky or too precisely search for the hidden secret council of God. If you believe in the revealed God and receive His Word, then the hidden God will simultaneously be revealed. For whoever sees Me, he also sees the Father. However, whoever casts aside the Son, he loses with the revealed God also the hidden God, Who has not revealed Himself. However, if you with a strong faith cling to the revealed God, so that you also are likeminded in your heart, you will not lose Christ, thus you are most certainly taken care of and shall learn to know about the hidden God.
Thanks be to God for enabling me to do another one!
In the name of Jesus,
Monday 10 June 2013 at 4:48 pm
We know that all things serve for the best to those who love God. Romans 8:28
God's work and style is such that He is able turn evil matters into good when we have neglected or corrupted them. I have truly frequently carried out many things unwisely and foolishly, over which I later was intensely alarmed, and I could not see how I again might be able to get rid of and come away from such a matter, which through my foolishness had been corrupted and spoiled. However the Lord hit upon such a method and way, so that what I had foolishly corrupted and spoiled was made better again. And so that's how God reigns over his saints, that while they indeed may err and fail, it at the same time has to have a good ending or it has to go away without causing them great harm. God saw to it to create everything out of nothing; therefore He can also bring forth good out of what is evil.
Over the week-end I comforted someone with Rom. 8:28 about their concern for the future and to take the concerns to God in prayer. Then I received a call yesterday evening -shortly after I had prayed for that person - and was told "God has answered my prayers..." Imagine my surprise as I opened up my June 10 WEGWEISER this morning to find the above verse!
Sola Deo Gloria,
Sunday 09 June 2013 at 6:43 pm
Whoever gives up homes or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for the sake of My Name, he will receive a hundredfold and inherit everlasting life. Matthew 19:29.
If God is our gracious God, the Pledge, namely His Son, that we have extended to us through Baptism, Sacrament and Gospel, we then can and should not have any doubts about His grace; also concerning this it proceeds as God wants it to. What does it matter whether we lose body and life, father and mother, brothers, kingdoms and princedoms, glory and power, and everything else that one may mention or that may unfold in this world, just so that grace alone remains, that God remains our Father, His Son remains our brother, His heaven and creation remains our inheritance, and all His angels and saints are our brothers and sisters? We here still have hardly lost a cent, even if we lose everything and do not keep royal riches nor heaven upon earth, but instead receive God Himself and eternal life.
For me this translation was another 'barb wire to untangle'. I'm suddenly singing with Havergal: "Take my life and let it be Consecrated Lord to Thee" (TLH # 400)
Sunday 09 June 2013 at 6:15 pm
This is His order, that we believe in the Name of His Son Jesus Christ and to love one another, as He has ordered us to do. 1 John 3:23.
I believe in Jesus Christ, my Lord, Who suffered, died and rose for me ...To Him both Moses' and Caesar's law and God's Law should submit, and everything that wants to dispute with me about sin, right and wrong, and anything else I may have done should simply and spritely be brushed aside and shrugged off. Thus, then a person is able to arm himself and withstand the devil's impulse and temptation, be it from past or current sins; also so that one is able to separate both of these far away from each other, Moses and Christ, deed and faith, conscience and external life, so that when the Law wants to terrify me and my heart, there is time for me to give the beloved Law a vacation, and if it doesn't want to take it, confidently brush it aside and shrug it off and say: I gladly want to perform and promote good works, where I am able to in due time, as we come amidst the people; however here, as my conscience stands before God, I don't want to hear anything about it, here now leave me at liberty and just don't say anything about my action or neglect; here I listen neither to Moses nor to Pharisees, but rather Christ alone should reign here and be all in all, and just like Mary sat at His feet and listened to His Word; Martha should stay out of it and go about in the kitchen and do her house work and leave the conscience alone.
What a nightmare; translating these couple of sentences from Luther was like trying to entangle some crumbled up barb wire! Lord, I pray that I fairly well captured Luther's thoughts.
In the Name of Jesus,
Pr. em. Elmer H.
Friday 07 June 2013 at 09:37 am
However the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, Whom My Father will send in My Name, He will teach you everything. John 14:26.
All gangs want to have the Holy Spirit, in order that they thereby will be believed. However when we take a good look at this and similar passages, we then are able to correctly judge and strike back at everything that is opposed to it; because they bring what they desire; yet I now know very well what my Lord Christ says and know what I should believe. So then if someone approaches me and says something to me as if it were revealed and taught by the Holy Spirit, I will cling to this Word and compare that person's teaching to this verse like to a 'genuine rock of testing'. If I then see that it coincides/agrees with what Christ says, I then regard it as right and good. Where it however at times differs and wants to change things, I then say: You are not the Holy Spirit, but rather the pernicious devil; the true Spirit comes in no other name than in the Name of Christ, and teaches nothing other than what Christ has taught.
Thank you Lord for this 'rock of testing' (as I translated Luther's Prüfstein).
O thank you Holy Spirit for calling me by the Gospel, enlightening me with Your gifts, sanctifying me and keeping me in the one true faith.
In the name of Jesus,
Thursday 06 June 2013 at 10:00 am
Christ gave Himself up for our sins in order to save us from this present wicked world according to the will of our God and Father. Galatians 1:4.
Should the devil now unexpectedly come sneaking up and rip these words out of your eyes and give you a message that you should be concerned about whether or not you are foreordained by God for eternal life, holding before you the terrifying examples of God's wrath and judgment and also that the number of the elect is small, the number of the condemned however is huge; be smart then and don't allow yourself to be led into such dangerous thinking and disputation, otherwise you most certainly will trip and break your neck, instead arm yourself and say: I have not been ordered to be concerned about such a matter, which is incomprehensible and beyond understanding. I abide with the words of St. Paul, who says, that Christ gave Himself up for our sins in order to save us, and did such according to the will of our God and Father.
Thank God that this one from Luther was very easy for me to translate. I'm currently reading vol. #26 of Luther's Works, which is titled:
Lectures on Galatians
Chapters 1 - 4
The last time I read it was in 1967. On the top of page 64 I had underlined in pencil the first 4 lines, where Luther wrote about losing sight of the rays of the Gospel and of grace. In pencil I also scribbled the following notation of something I remembered my favorite Professor at the Seminary, Dr. Martin Franzman, told me in the mid 1950s: "nothing more sure than grace"[I scribbled it in Greek]"nothing more fragile than our grasp of it"
Ouch, my forearm is bleeding - need to get away from my computer keyboard now.
Wednesday 05 June 2013 at 10:30 am
I am the Way and the Truth and the Life; no one comes to the Father except through Me. John 14:6.
First off learn to know well the Son of the Virgin Mary in Bethlehem. But if you first turn around and begin to learn about God, about how He rules the world, about how He burned up and destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah with hellish fire or how He oversaw this or that or did not oversee it, if you begin with the works of the High Majesty, then you will soon break your neck and will be cast down from heaven, like Satan was in his Fall. For that is called beginning from the top and building the roof, before you have even laid the foundation. That's why, if you want to proceed correctly, you have to start at the bottom and let God make what He wants to make. Say: I will not know Him, unless I have first come to know this Son of the Virgin. When you thus have seized Him through His human nature, then also furthermore immediately believe that He was born from a virgin, as well as begotten of God from eternity, you then indeed will be secure under the little 'hut' of the flesh and blood of this Man.
Pain pill and sleeping pill were unable to make me sleep last night ... now I' m - amidst osteoarthritic pain - about to doze off at the keyboard.
The peace of the Lord be with you and me now and forever,
Elmer H., pr. em.
Tuesday 04 June 2013 at 09:39 am
Jesus said to him: If You can! All things are possible for him who believes. Mark 9:23.
Such a powerful thing is this matter of faith. Be a thing as huge as it may be, if you can believe it and look to Christ to provide it for you, then it shall be so, and neither devil nor death are strong enough to be able to prevent it from happening. That's why, even though we appear to be poor and stuck in sins, lying down with a pestilence or illness, we should nevertheless still believe; for before God I have a much different appearance, and can joyfully say: Even though poverty, pestilence and death are present, yet as a Christian I still know of no poverty, death or pestilence. For before my Lord Christ there are sheer riches, good health, sanctity, and life. However, even though I still don't see it, for Him it's just a matter of saying a word, thus I will also see with my physical eyes that it is true, and it will most certainly happen.
By the grace of God I managed to type out with 3 fingers another one of Luther's Christian GUIDE for today.
Monday 03 June 2013 at 3:43 pm
I know he will order his children and his family after him, so that they will keep the ways of the Lord, and do what is right and good, so that the Lord allows to happen to Abraham what He promised to him. Genesis 18:19.
This is what married people should know, that they can accomplish no better deed and beneficence for God, Christianity, the whole world, themselves and for their children than to raise their children well. For that is the straightest street to heaven for them; also they could not better arrive more closer to heaven than with this deed. On the other hand, hell is merited no more easily than on the backs of one's own children; also the parents may do no greater harm than to neglect their children, allow them to curse, swear, learn slanderous words and songs and live according to their own will. Like some of them lure themselves to the world with excessive jewelry and promotion in order to please the world, rise high and become rich, at all times more concerned about how to look after the body than how to take care of the soul. There also is no greater harm to Christendom than to neglect the children; for if one is to once more help Christendom, the one above all else has to begin with the children, as happened in former times. The false love of nature blinds parents so that they regard the flesh of their children more highly than their souls. Children are a precious, eternal treasure whom God has ordered their parents to protect, so that the devil, the world and the flesh do not steal them and destroy them, and on Judgment Day will be required to give an account with sharp reckoning.
Ouch! Ouch! thank You Lord for seeing my weak hurting body through another translation. Forgive me Lord for the many times I've failed as a father to my children. "But with You there is forgiveness, so that You may be feared..." the Psalmist reminds me.
Pr. em. E M H
P. S. I don't know how much longer I'll be able to do these translations - let me know if you no longer wish to receive them.
Sunday 02 June 2013 at 3:00 pm
Far be it from me to ever boast of anything but the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through Whom the world is crucified to me and I to the world. Galatians 6:14.
Here a Christian shuts his eyes and ears, and says with St. Paul: World, death, sin, you have died to me, and I have died to you and nothing lives on the earth other than me and God. The world has been crucified to me, and I have died to it, that is: The world actually pays no attention to me, and what I proclaim or praise, is a mockery to her; however with what measure you measure out to me, with such measure I will measure out to you; if you despise me, I in turn will measure out despising to you; you don't have much respect for me; what does it matter to me whether I am held in high regard by the world, just so I am well pleasing to the One above. So then let sin rage, wash and plunder the world until it gets worn out; I go forward as if I haven't heard it. This will give quiet rest to every believing heart.
Slept very little last night because of osteoarthritic pains ... got in a nap after lunch today.., God has now enabled me to finish another of Luther's "Christian GUIDE for every Day."
E M H
Saturday 01 June 2013 at 09:26 am
Baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit. Matthew 28:19.
In Baptism there is not just only water, rather also God's Word and power, as one sees at the Baptism of Christ that God the Father and Holy Spirit and all the holy angels are there. Consequently it is not plain ordinary water, rather it is such water in which God's Son bathes, over which the Holy Spirit hovers and God the Father preaches; it’s a grace enriched water, dedicated and sanctified by God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, - an aromatic and a pharmaceutical prescription, into which God has blended Himself. God however is a God of life and can make alive; since He then is in the water, He thus must be the true aqua vitae (water of life), which drives away death and hell and eternally saves. Nowadays those blasphemous slandering Anabaptists say that Baptism is nothing other than plain water. The devil get those blasphemers! A dog, sow, cow, which has nothing but the taste of water, should judge like that. A Christian however should judge not according to taste, but rather according the Word; for here there is not just only water rather also God's Word and power. Therefore also nowadays, when a child is baptized, there is present in such a Baptism the Son of God, Who with His body, the Holy Spirit, Who with His presence, and God the Father, Who with His voice, sanctify the Baptism. That's why we should not regard Baptism as a work of man.
This one was a good reminder for me to daily renew my Baptismal covenant - drowning that old Adam and letting the new man in Christ come forth. "Baptized into Thy name most holy,..." May God bless your worship tomorrow.
Elmer Hohle, Pr. em.