A Sermon for the Fifth Sunday of Easter

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“Is That the Way Your Mother Raised You?” – sermon audio for the Fifth Sunday of Easter preached at Grace Lutheran Church, Advance, NC, May 14, 2017:

Children’s sermon:

Sermon:

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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions

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  Check back later for a recording of today's Sola Devotion. 

Genesis 5:1-2

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Marriage of Priests 

Therefore, let us keep in mind what both Scripture teaches and the jurist wisely says: namely, that the union of male and female is a natural right. Furthermore, a natural right is actually a divine right, because it is a rule divinely imprinted on nature. Since this right cannot be changed without an extraordinary work of God, the right to contract marriage necessarily remains. Because the natural desire of one sex for the other is a rule of God in nature, it is a right. Why else would both sexes have been created?

Pulling It Together

In the wisdom of God, there are both male and female, the one for the other. He formed man from “the dust of the ground,” then breathing into him “the breath of life” (Heb 2:7). He formed the woman from the man’s side. They are, by divine design, to be each others companions, helpers, and lovers. In marriage, they become “one flesh” (Gen 2:24), meant to be so singular that even at creation, both male and female are named adam or man. This precious gift of God is a natural right because it is a birthright impressed by God upon human nature.

Prayer: As you draw us into oneness with another, draw your Church into unity with you. Amen.

Receive these daily Sola Devotions by email. Write mryman@solapublishing.com with "Subscribe" as your subject. To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with "Unsubscribe" as your subject.

Mark your calendars for the Sola Education Festival to be held on June 9th-10th at Abounding Joy Lutheran (LCMC/NALC), in St. Cloud Minnesota (6000 County Rd 120, St Cloud, MN 56303, 320-217-8784). The event is for pastors, lay leaders, teachers, and any people who work in education ministry.

This event will feature keynote presentations from two of Sola Publishing’s editors, Rev. Mark Ryman and Rev. Steve King, along with a number of workshops led by regional pastors and ministry leaders. There will be product sales tables from Sola Publishing and well as Concordia Publishing House, along with displays from other educational ministries. 

• Click for brochure.   • Registration

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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions

Original image  •  Index of Scripture Graphics and posts by Scripture reference

  Click for a recording of today's Sola Devotion. 

Matthew 24:36-39

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Marriage of Priests 

Therefore it is ridiculous for our opponents to prattle on about marriage being commanded in the beginning but not now. This is the same as saying that formerly, people were born with a sex but now they are not. Or, formerly, they were born with a natural right but now they do not have that right. No craftsman could fabricate anything more devious than these absurdities, which were devised to circumvent a right of nature.

Pulling It Together

Eating, drinking, marrying, and other such natural privileges and rights are good; God has blessed these things for our use. Yet a problem occurs when we enjoy (or over-enjoy) these rights without thanks to God. For then, these good things obscure our vision of God; we enjoy them to the extent that we no longer enjoy God. Nevertheless, God has given us these things so that we may be grateful to him and enjoy life. Marriage is a good gift of God and the natural right of all people. No one should rob another of this blessed prerogative, for it is a gift of God.

Prayer: As we await that blessed day, O Lord, give us thankful hearts. Amen.

Receive these daily Sola Devotions by email. Write mryman@solapublishing.com with "Subscribe" as your subject. To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with "Unsubscribe" as your subject.

This six-session Bible study focuses on the Godly vocations of marriage and family. Based on foundational texts from Scripture, the study also draws from the real-life experience of Martin and Katie Luther, husband and wife, and also the parents of several children. The Luther Household includes excerpts from Luther's personal writings to family and friends as they faced the good and bad that come in everyday living.

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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions

Original image  •  Index of Scripture Graphics and posts by Scripture reference

  Click for a recording of today's Sola Devotion. 

Ephesians 5:25-33

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Marriage of Priests 

Secondly, because this founding or divine ordinance in humanity is a natural right, jurists have wisely and correctly stated that the union of men and women is a natural right. Since natural right is immutable, the right to contract marriage must always continue. Where nature is changeless, that ordinance which God has constructed in nature must not not change, and cannot be removed by human laws.

Pulling It Together

God has built into nature—indeed, into our natures—the union of men and women (Gen 2:24). But this built-in right points to the glory of the regenerated nature that we have in Christ. This new nature’s union with God, or the divine marriage, is found throughout both Testaments. In the New Testament, the marriage of the Bridegroom to his Bride is picked up by the gospel evangelists as well as the writers of the letters. Marriage, that thing which is so natural and common to us, is proclaimed in Scripture as that rarest and most extraordinary relationship. It is not much of a stretch to imagine that the desire for marriage is built into us so that we might yearn for union with God, and so that we may begin to understand the mystery of union with the divine.

Prayer: Strengthen marriages in your Church, Lord, that your Church might ache for you. Amen.

Receive these daily Sola Devotions by email. Write mryman@solapublishing.com with "Subscribe" as your subject. To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with "Unsubscribe" as your subject.

Getting to Know Martin Luther is a five-lesson Conformation workbook about Martin Luther's life that will help confirmands get a better glimpse into what faith means for their own lives by searching and understanding the Word of God, trusting in Christ alone for our salvation, standing up for what they believe in, and helping others to learn the truth about God.

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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions

Original image  •  Index of Scripture Graphics and posts by Scripture reference

  Click for a recording of today's Sola Devotion. 

Genesis 2:18

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Marriage of Priests 

Our opponents’ frivolous arguments say that originally, the commandment was given to replenish the earth, but now that the earth has been replenished, marriage is no longer commanded. See how wise they are! The word of God made the nature of humanity to be fruitful, not only at the beginning of the creation, but as long as our physical nature exists, just as his word makes the earth fruitful. “And God said, “Let the earth put forth vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, upon the earth.” And it was so” (Gen 1:11). Because of this ordinance, the earth did not begin to bring forth plants only in the beginning. The fields are clothed every year as long as this natural order exists. Humans cannot legislate that the nature of the earth be changed, so without a special work of God, the nature of a human being cannot be changed either—by vows or by human law.

Pulling It Together

This is human reason at work again. Scripture says one thing, but we come up with our reasons for not believing what the Word says. Men and women are made for one another; it has been so from the beginning, as God saw fit. He has not changed his mind. We have. No matter how much we argue, no matter how finely we reason, no matter how outraged we become at the word of God, it is still his word. Their argument is with God—not another part of his Church. So we must confess that legislating celibacy is contrary to the word of God—in the beginning and in the present. One either believes the word of God, or not. The Lord will sort out the rest. 

Prayer: Keep me steadfast in your word, Lord. Amen.

Receive these daily Sola Devotions by email. Write mryman@solapublishing.com with "Subscribe" as your subject. To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with "Unsubscribe" as your subject.

Mark your calendars for the Sola Education Festival to be held on June 9th-10th at Abounding Joy Lutheran (LCMC/NALC), in St. Cloud Minnesota (6000 County Rd 120, St Cloud, MN 56303, 320-217-8784). The event is for pastors, lay leaders, teachers, and any people who work in education ministry.

This event will feature keynote presentations from two of Sola Publishing’s editors, Rev. Mark Ryman and Rev. Steve King, along with a number of workshops led by regional pastors and ministry leaders. There will be product sales tables from Sola Publishing and well as Concordia Publishing House, along with displays from other educational ministries. 

• Click for brochure.   • Registration

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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions

Original image  •  Index of Scripture Graphics and posts by Scripture reference

  Click for a recording of today's Sola Devotion. 

Genesis 1:27–28

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Marriage of Priests 

First, Genesis 1:28 teaches that people were created to be fruitful, and that one sex should should properly desire the other. We are not speaking of lust, which is sin, but of what is called physical love, that desire which was to have been uncorrupted in nature. This love of one sex for the other is truly a divine ordinance. Since this is an ordinance of God, it cannot be removed without an extraordinary work of God. So, it follows that the right to contract marriage cannot be removed by statutes or vows.

Pulling It Together

“Reason cannot establish anything sure about God” (Luther’s Works, vol. 1, Saint Louis: Concordia Publishing House, 1999, 70). But if we rely upon what is written, if we look to Scripture for our answers, we see quite clearly that God created men and women for the purposes of partnership and filling the earth with people. Neither reason nor religion nullifies the rule of God. One person or group may not legislate over another, at any point in life, whether or not he or she may marry. 

Prayer: Make me fruitful for your kingdom, Lord, and faithful to whom I am given. Amen.

Receive these daily Sola Devotions by email. Write mryman@solapublishing.com with "Subscribe" as your subject. To unsubscribe, send an email to the same address with "Unsubscribe" as your subject.

Holy Families! is an initiative of the North American Lutheran Church provided through a generous grant from the Thrivent Foundation, in honor of the 500th anniversary of the Lutheran Reformation (1517 AD to 2017 AD). Produced by Sola Publishing, this special initiative includes a number of Lutheran discipleship resources for families and congregations, including Daily Family Prayer Resources, Parent Pages, Faith Formation downloadable pages for children/families, Educational Videos, Parents' Video/Discussion Series on Faith Formation, Reformation Bible Study: In the Luther Household

Holy Families! is also on the free Sola App for Android and Apple

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A Sermon for the Third Sunday of Easter

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Acts 2:14a, 36–41; Psalm 116:1–14; 1 Peter 1:17–25; Luke 24:13–35

“Help in Our Unbelief” – sermon audio for the Third Sunday of Easter preached at Grace Lutheran Church, Advance, NC, April 30, 2017:

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