The Glory Has Departed


Norma Boeckler, Artist-in-Residence

The Lutheran Library Publishing Ministry

Bethany Lutheran Worship on
Ustream - Sunday, 10 AM Central.


Thanksgiving Eve - 7 PM Central Time.

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
Martin Chemnitz Press Books

Norma A. Boeckler Author's Page

Pastor Gregory L. Jackson's Author's Page

Monday, May 9, 2016

Introduction to the Christian Faith: Jesus Priceless Treasure.
Serial Installments. #1


A reader suggesting posting this book in installments. Later I will move it over to Create Space-Amazon-Kindle. I am inserting some graphics for now, but it is likely the new edition will feature Norma Boeckler's own selections. I am turning the title into the sub-title, the major change.

Typo finders are welcome to send their finds to bethanylutheranworship@gmail.com. Try not to gloat, as my feelings are easily hurt.

Introduction



 For years people have asked for a basic introduction to the Christian faith. I thought it would be good to offer an outline of the public ministry of Jesus as the primary focus of the book. In addition, some of the basic doctrines of the Christian faith are presented in the ministry of Christ and expanded somewhat in the second section of the book. The central message of the Bible is forgiveness through faith in Jesus. His atoning death on the cross is the priceless treasure of the Christian Church. All the teachings of Christianity are related to the salvation won for us by the death and resurrection of our Savior, Christ Jesus, the Son of God. Every Christian book should have as its goal the conclusion of the Gospel of John:

John 20:31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

The orthodox Christian faith has existed from the beginning and will continue until history comes to an end with the return of Christ. When Martin Luther and the authors of the Book of Concord witnessed to their faith during the Reformation, they argued that they were teaching what the early Church taught until her doctrines were corrupted by various factors. This argument is still true today. Everything in the Christian faith can be established through the Scriptures alone. Mormon missionaries told me that there are “One hundred interpretations for every verse of the Bible.” I agreed, saying, “Ninety-nine wrong ones and one correct one.” When they sputtered and tried to recover, I asked, “Do you really think that God became man, died on the cross for our sins, rose from the dead, and then left a record so vague and contradictory that no one could understand it?”
No one should be alienated by the long history of conflict over what the Bible teaches. The Scriptures are extremely clear, teaching us all we need to know about our salvation and eternal life. The Word of God moves us to believe in Christ and to please God in our lives.
       
Philippians 2:13 For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure.

The best way to learn the truths of the Bible is to study the Scriptures patiently, using a few books as study aids. It is a blessing to have a congregation and pastor where the orthodox Christian faith is taught and practiced. Those who do not live near a faithful congregation can correspond and learn through the Internet.
 The most important way to begin a study is with a reliable Bible. The King James Version is still the most reliable and precise. It is ideal for public reading and memorization. Some people find the older forms of English in the KJV to be difficult. There are many updated versions of the KJV available. The most promising is the Third Millennium KJV. The New KJV has been used extensively, but I hope that updated translations more faithful to the original will displace the more creative versions.
 The authority, inspiration, and inerrancy of the Bible should be accepted without debate today. Unfortunately, clever attacks against the Scriptures have left many people with an odd stew of ideas about the Bible. The best way to test what a minister teaches about the Bible is to ask a simple question. “Are there any errors or contradictions in the Bible?” If he answers “Yes,” he has departed from the historic position of the Christian Church. He may be in the majority today, but he is still wrong, a blind guide. It is better to trust what Jesus says about the Bible:
John 10:35   …the scripture cannot be broken.




Or the apostle Paul:

2 Timothy 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

Or King David:

Psalm 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

The Word of God creates a new man who loves God and seeks to serve his neighbor.

1 Peter 1:22 Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: 23 Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever.

 Many people have helped in the creation of this book. The Gospel of forgiveness through Christ is eternal-life-giving. I hope that this little book will be another stone thrown in the pond.




The Stone in the Pond


“The preaching of this message may be likened to a stone thrown into the water, producing ripples which circle outward from it, the waves rolling always on and on, one driving the other, till they come to the shore. Although the center becomes quiet, the waves do not rest, but move forward. So it is with the preaching of the Word. It was begun by the apostles, and it constantly goes forward, is pushed on farther and farther by the preachers, driven hither and thither into the world, yet always being made known to those who never heard it before, although it be arrested in the midst of its course and is condemned as heresy.” [1]



[1] Sermons of Martin Luther, 8 vols., ed., John Nicholas Lenker, Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983, III, p. 202. Ascension Day. Mark 16:14-20. 


Dedication


Jesus, Priceless Treasure is dedicated to

Norman W. Woehrle
World War II Navy Veteran,

All those who have served 
in our Armed Forces,

And their families.