Luther’s "Christian Guide for Each Day"

29 February 

However if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us all our sins and to wash us clean from all unrighteousness. I John 1:9

That’s why the good news of the forgiveness of sins belongs only for true Christians, who properly confess and feel their sin. The other raw people, who do not acknowledge and feel their sin, do not understand this Article about the forgiveness of sins. Even if they already heard sermons about this, it still remains covered up to them. However true Christians, when they feel their sin, have the comfort of believing in the forgiveness of sins: for they are baptized, hear the Gospel, have absolution and the holy sacrament; they believe the very same Word. For God has placed this treasure, namely the forgiveness of sins, into His Word and Sacraments and has ordered that a person should believe it. To that end the preaching of the Gospel, Baptism, Absolution and the Sacrament [of the Altar] all have been instituted so that our faith about the forgiveness of sins be ever more and more strengthened.

Thank you brother Martin for writing a GUIDE for this ‘leap year’ date that was easy to translate!  I, #1 chief-of-sinners, found it forgiving and faith strengthening! 

Praying you did too,

Elmer MARTIN Hohle 

P. S.  God gave me a good’ night of sleep last night!  Not so much pain today either.

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Luther’s "Christian Guide for Each Day"

28 February

The kingdom of God does not consist of words, but of power. 1 Corinthians 4:20.

It [the kingdom of God] should not remain in the words of [about] the resurrection and Christ therefore has nothing to do with it that one hear or speak about it, instead it should be perceived [to take place] in our [personal] lives. For what does it help a dead person whether one preaches a lot about life if he does not also become alive from it? Or to a sinner about righteousness, if still remains in sin? Or to one who errs from the truth if he does not let go of error and darkness? So then it is also not only in vain, but also harmful and damnable, to hear about the glorious and blessed comfort of the resurrection, if the heart never experiences such, but instead there only remains the sound in the ears and the foam on the tongue and nothing more comes of it than it does with those who never heard anything about it. 

Please Lord, grant that I with this ‘sloppy wire-untangling translation’ captured into English what Luther here wrote in German!  Above all else, May He grant that His Holy Spirit transfer the “foam on the tongue” and “the sound in the ears” into people’s hearts. The Gospel is God’s power (dynamis = Greek word from which we get ‘dynamite’) to save everyone who believes it! (cf. Rom 1:16).

Joining in being one of Jesus’ witnesses,

Elmer H.

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Luther’s "Christian Guide for Each Day"

27 February

Now that we have been declared righteous through faith, we thus have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Romans 5:1.

If I believe that the Lord Christ has overcome my hardship, sin, death and all evil, it is not possible that I could despair and be stupid, no matter how much also sin and death might pressure me. For faith is always there and says: If sin pressures you, if death frightens you, then cast your eyes upon Christ; He died and rose for your sake and has overcome every misfortune and disaster. What then can harm you? Of what then should you be afraid? So also if other misfortunes have been laid around your neck, such as illness or poverty, then cast your eyes away from them, lock up reason, and cast yourself upon Christ and cling to Him, thus you shall be strengthened and comforted. If you look to Christ and believe in Him, there then is no evil that you may encounter which is so big that it could harm you and cause you to despair. That’s why it is impossible for this fruit [peace] to remain outside anywhere there is faith, so that peace would not also follow.

After another rough, painful, semi-sleepless night, this daily GUIDE from Luther is most comforting to me.  May it also comfort you about anything the devil has tried to lay around your neck.  And may it also comfort us amidst the ‘thorns in the flesh’, i.e., my/your osteo-arthritic pains, that God has permitted to assail us. 

Peace to you through our Lord Jesus Christ,

Elmer H.

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