21st Sunday after Pentecost
499 years ago Martin Luther pounded 95 theses on a church door in Wittenberg Germany putting into motion the Reformation. In memory of the Reformation we are doing a special sermon series during October focusing on four central truths of God’s Word that were rediscovered during the Reformation: We are saved by God’s grace alone, through faith alone, found in Scripture alone and all by Christ alone. Today we welcome Pastor Bill Werth from our sister congregation, Christ Lutheran in Baxter, MN. Today we focus on the truth “sola scriptura” which means “scripture alone.” Founded squarely upon Christ’s Gospel/Holy Scripture the Church will remain secure. Pastors and churches that stray from this sure foundation will find themselves on held captive to the shifting spiritual sands of fallible human opinion.
Editor’s note: We generally do not receive a written transcript of sermons given by guest pastors. Please enjoy this sermon in it’s audio format, and consider the material below, taken from the corresponding Bible study.
Justification: Am I Good Enough for God?
Nothing in this article (on the justification through faith in Christ) can be given up or compromised. – Martin Luther, Smalcald Articles, Part II, Article 1
If the sins of the entire world are on that one man, Jesus Christ, then they are not on the world. But if they are not on Him, then they are still on the world. Again, if Christ Himself is made guilty of all the sins that we have all committed, then we are absolved from all sins, not through ourselves or through our own works or merits but through Him. – Martin Luther, Luther’s Works, American Edition, Vol. 26, p. 280
…that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. – 2 Corinthians 5:19
For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous. – 1 Peter 3:18
He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins for the whole world. – 1 John 2:2
In order that we may obtain this faith, the ministry of teaching the Gospel and administering the sacraments was instituted. For through the Word and sacraments, as through instruments, the Holy Spirit is given, and the Holy Spirit produces faith, where and when it pleases God, in those who hear the Gospel. – Martin Luther, Augsburg Confession, Part I article 2
We treat the forgiveness of sins in two ways. First, how it is achieved and won. Second, how it is distributed and given to us. Christ has achieved it on the cross. But the distribution takes place continuously. If I now seek the forgiveness of sins, I will find in the sacrament or gospel the Word which distributes, presents, offers, and gives to me that forgiveness which was won on the cross. – Martin Luther, Luther’s Works, American Edition, Vol. 40, p. 213-214
How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the oneof whom they have not heard> And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? – Romans 10:14
Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is hear through the word of Christ. – Romans 10:17