When we were still under the papacy, they used to tell this story. Once upon a time the devil attended Mass in a church where it was customary in either the Lord's Prayer or in the Creed to sing: Et homo factus est, that is, "God's Son became a human being." While they were singing … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: The Devil Attends Mass
Our God begins with angels and ends with shepherds. Why does he do such preposterous things? He puts a Babe in a crib. Our common sense revolts and says, “Could not God have saved the world some other way?” I would not have sent an angel. I would simply have called the devil and said, … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: God Puts a Babe in a Crib
Then our waiting and hoping is not like a piece of wishful thinking, or a fantasy, but life itself. Then we live only because we wait for God. Then there are none of those uncertainties or reservations such as beset those who wait foolish for foolish things. Then we step forward confidently. Much more, we … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: Waiting and Hoping
Now that Christ reigns, there is in fact no more sin, death, or curse—this we confess every day in the Apostles’ Creed when we say: “I believe in the holy church.” This is plainly nothing else than if we were to say: “I believe that there is no sin and no death in the church. … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: The Holy Church?
Christianity has far too many voices that would have us believe in a God who doesn’t wound us. But God himself declares otherwise: “See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god beside me; I kill and I make a live; I wound and I heal.” God knows that it is … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: The God Who Wounds
[Luther on our cries of lament during trials] This faint sigh of ours does not seem to penetrate the clouds in such a way that it is the only thing to be heard by God and the angels in heaven. In fact, we suppose, especially as long as the trial continues, that the devil is … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: The Ears of God
Luther would find the modern world irrelevant right away because it no longer makes any distinction between human judgment and God’s judgment. What is important is strictly human judgment – what others thing of us, or what we think of ourselves, what we call self-esteem. Self-esteem, Robert Schuller says, is the new “new Reformation.” Feeling … Continue reading A Jagged Contention: What Ever Happened to God?