So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ. (Romans 10:17)

  • I Believe....i can't believe

    March 14, 2019

    I Believe…I CANNOT Believe.

    What? This does not make sense at all to my reason.

    This wording comes from the new Luther’s Small Catechism (p. 195). This book is an absolute delight, a treasury of sound teaching.

    You can look up many topics. Consider Question 77. “What is the Christian perspective on persons who are confused about their sexual identity?” Now, is not this book up to date on present day challenges?

    Back to “I believe…I cannot believe.”

    The Catechism teaches: “As fallen people, we are unable to find God on our own, let alone choose to entrust our lives to him,” (p. 195).

    Consider Question 187. “Why can I not come to faith in Jesus by my own reason or strength?” The Catechism lists two biblical arguments:

    1. Apart from the Holy Spirit, I am spiritually blind and dead and thus cannot trust in Christ…and,

    2. Apart from the Holy Spirit, I actively resist the Gospel’s call to faith in Christ.

    One of the biblical passages cited for “spiritually…dead” is Ephesians 2:1. “And you were dead in the trespasses and sins.”

    The word for dead is nekros, the root word for dead. The medical world uses this word to describe dead flesh, that is, necrotic flesh.

    Jesus uses this word in Matthew 8:22 to describe the unbeliever (spiritually dead) who is to bury their own dead, likely, family members. “Follow Me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead.”

    The Apostle Luke uses this word to describe the Prodigal Son (Luke 15:24, 32), as one who lost his relationship to his father. This teaches that those who are dead in sin have no relationship with the Heavenly Father through Jesus Christ.

    This deadness is far more than the complete lack of ability to accept Jesus as our Savior. It is a complete lack of power to move toward God; it’s a total alienation from God.

    The Catechism adds this note on page 197:

    “This is why Lutherans do not speak in terms like ‘making a decision to accept Jesus,’ instead emphasizing the Holy Spirit’s work of calling us and bringing us to faith through the Gospel When Jesus says, ‘Follow Me,’ His Word, by the Holy Spirit, has the power to turn us from our sin and to move us to trust in Him and follow after Him. See Matthew 9:9; John 10:27-28,” (emphasis in the original).

    What is the Biblically sound conclusion? I believe…that I cannot believe. 

    Pastor Golter is the Senior Pastor at Trinity Lutheran


    MARCH 21, 2019

    What is not Baptism? The Lord’s Supper.

    Both are a Means of Grace, whereby God distributes His gifts and blessings, namely, the forgiveness of sins. Both are commanded by God (Matthew 28:19; 1 Cor. 11:25).

    Only this is written by God when it comes to the Lord’s Supper. “Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty, concerning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a person examine himself…For anyone who eats and drinks without discerning the body eats and drinks judgment on himself. That is why many of you are weak and ill, and some have died,” (1 Cor. 11:27-29).

    Note the emboldened words: unworthy manner, guilty, body, blood, examine, judgment, weak, ill and died. At the very least, one must say this is a weighty matter. At least another matter is very obvious: St. Paul is not pleased with how the Christian church in the ancient city of Corinth practiced the Lord’s Supper. There must be a good and bad way of practicing this Holy Meal. It can be misused.

    Again, the Holy Spirit does not ever say this about Baptism.

    One key to understanding the gravity of the Meal is this: Those who misuse this Sacrament sin not against the bread and wine, but against the Body and Blood of Christ. This is no child’s play.

    Remember in 2 Samuel 6:5. when God brought the Ark of the covenant back to Jerusalem. God promised He would dwell there, where He chose to be “enthroned” (2 Sam. 6:2). God is really present, when and where He chooses.

    While traveling on the cart, an ox stumbled. A man, Uzzah, put his hand on the ark. “And the anger of the LORD was kindled against Uzzah, and God struck him down there because of his error, and he died beside the ark of God,” (2 Sam. 6:7).

    There’s a reason why the Holy Spirit requires a person to “examine himself,” (1 Cor. 11:28). God is really present, His Body and Blood is really there. These are divine realities which require spiritual discernment and examination, what is present, what is given, a proper way to approach, etc.

    I’ll take a deep dive into the word EXAMINE and JUDGMENT during this Sunday’s bible study.

    One final word: It’s not Baptism. 

    Pastor Golter is the Senior Pastor at Trinity Lutheran

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