The Glory Has Departed


Norma Boeckler, Artist in Residence

Bethany Lutheran Worship on
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NT Greek Lessons - Thursdays, 7 PM.

Saved worship files and Greek lessons are at the live worship link.

email: greg.jackson.edlp@gmail.com,
which works as gregjacksonedlp@gmail.com too.

Luther's Sermons, Lenker Series
Book of Concord Selections
Bente's Historical Introductions,
and Martin Chemnitz Press Books

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Receive with Meekness the Engrafted Word,Which Is Able To Save Your Souls. James 1:21 KJV


Jesus and the Apostles taught people who knew Creation and made their living by paying attention to that Creation.

Today people are not aware of the stars above or the soil below, and they can enjoy grafted plants without knowing what they are.

The illustration above shows how to graft roses, when a wild rose root base is grafted together with a showy rose above.

The first phrase from this part of James is a sermon by itself.

Receive is a synonym for believe, a concept never grasped by the Enthusiasts. Receiving the Word is another way of saying - Believe in the Word. Since the Word conveys Christ and all His benefits, believing the Word means placing our trust in Christ.

John 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not. 12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

This faith not a work, not a decision of the mind, but the divine effect of the Word.

Likewise, a graft comes to the rose. The rose, or olive tree, or apple tree does not seek the graft. The plant begins with one genetic code and takes on another.

with meekness - This assumes the work of the Holy Spirit in creating a contrite and grateful heart. When a great and everlasting treasure is given to someone, he knows it is not earned by him. That faith in the Gospel--generated by the Word--opens his eyes to the greatness of God's gracious forgiveness and his own lack of merit.

The Double Delight graft is impossible to ignore or deny.

The engrafted Word, which is able to save your souls.
When the Gospel is preached to us, since faith comes by hearing (Romans 10), we have a graft placed in our hearts. Christ is in us and we are in Christ, just as He is in the Father and the Father is in Him.

Can one graft a Double Delight rose onto a wild rose and still have a simple wild rose, endowed with only those wild characteristics? That is simply not possible, because God created certain plants to be able to grow into each other and thrive. The Double Delight graft must show its true nature, which is unlike any wild or old rose.

The entire Bible is based upon this grafting concept, because the Scriptures are a sermon about Christ, how we come to faith in Him, trust in Him, receive His righteousness in faith, become justified and saved through this faith.

Those who do not believe in Him clearly lack this graft and also those characteristics of Christ - His love, grace, and meekness. They are proud and haughty, bullying people, devouring estates, and binding people with man-made laws they choose to ignore.

Those who trust in Him for their salvation have that graft giving them spiritual energy from being entwined with Christ. We are no longer our own selves, but grafted onto Him. His Gospel Promises will always bear fruit.

Even the new easy-care roses need care. They need to be pruned or they look like weeds. They require water during dry spells or they die. God seeks us and grafts the Savior onto us through the Word, and we have the pleasant task, the easy yoke and light burden of bearing the yoke of the Gospel. Taking part in the Means of Grace, studying the Word, and learning from faithful books will nurture that faith. 

Easy care roses, like the KnockOut
are treated like weeds and look like weeds.
The Christian faith is a gift to be nurtured,
not to be taken for granted,
or sold to the highest bidder.