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Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. 11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. 12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Ephesians 6:10-13 KJV.

Sunday, October 28, 2018

Martin Luther's Large Catechism - A Great Theology Book for Pastors and Laity

 I had to make a graphic of this because the Quia Marias did not know their Large Catechism. They accused me of slander when I addressed their false doctrine. Their quia subscription to the Book of Concord did not include reading it!
For Reformation Sunday I talked a little about the Large Catechism, which I owned as a separate paperback (Augsburg Press, ALC). I read it all the time for years, because it also serves as another way to read Luther's Sermons, but using the Catechism as an outline.

Here is the Lutheran Library Large Catechism - free.

When I wanted to show how the efficacy of the Word was basic to the Bible, Luther, and Lutheran doctrine, I used the Large Catechism.

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What DPs, Pastors, and Lay Leaders Must Learn

Book of Concord, Large Catechism, Introduction

9] Therefore I beg such lazy paunches or presumptuous saints to be persuaded and believe for God's sake that they are verily, verily! not so learned or such great doctors as they imagine; and never to presume that they have finished learning this [the parts of the Catechism], or know it well enough in all points, even though they think that they know it ever so well. For though they should know and understand it perfectly (which, however, is impossible in this life), yet there are manifold benefits and fruits still to be obtained, if it be daily read and practised in thought and speech; namely, that the Holy Ghost is present in such reading and repetition and meditation, and bestows ever new and more light and devoutness, so that it is daily relished and appreciated better, as Christ promises, Matt. 18:20: Where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them.

10] Besides, it is an exceedingly effectual help against the devil, the world, and the flesh and all evil thoughts to be occupied with the Word of God, and to speak of it, and meditate upon it, so that the First Psalm declares those blessed who meditate upon the Law of God day and night. Undoubtedly, you will not start a stronger incense or other fumigation against the devil than by being engaged upon God's commandments and words, and speaking, singing, or thinking of them. For this is indeed the true holy water and holy sign from which he flees, and by which he may be driven away.

11] Now, for this reason alone you ought gladly to read, speak, think and treat of these things, if you had no other profit and fruit from them than that by doing so you can drive away the devil and evil thoughts. For he cannot hear or endure God's Word; and God's Word is not like some other silly prattle, as that about Dietrich of Berne, etc., but as St. Paul says, Rom. 1:16, the power of God. Yea, indeed, the power of God which gives the devil burning pain, and strengthens, comforts, and helps us beyond measure.

12] And what need is there of many words? If I were to recount all the profit and fruit which God's Word produces, whence would I get enough paper and time? The devil is called the master of a thousand arts. But what shall we call God's Word, which drives away and brings to naught this master of a thousand arts with all his arts and power? It must indeed be the master of more than a hundred thousand arts. 13] And shall we frivolously despise such power, profit, strength, and fruit-we, especially, who claim to be pastors and preachers? If so, we should not only have nothing given us to eat, but be driven out, being baited with dogs, and pelted with dung, because we not only need all this every day as we need our daily bread, but must also daily use it against the daily and unabated attacks and lurking of the devil, the master of a thousand arts.


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Third Commandment

100] For let me tell you this, even though you know it perfectly and be already master in all things, still you are daily in the dominion of the devil, who ceases neither day nor night to steal unawares upon you, to kindle in your heart unbelief and wicked thoughts against the foregoing and all the commandments. Therefore you must always have God's Word in your heart, upon your lips, and in your ears. But where the heart is idle, and the Word does not sound, he breaks in and has done the damage before we are aware. 101] On the other hand, such is the efficacy of the Word, whenever it is seriously contemplated, heard, and used, that it is bound never to be without fruit, but always awakens new understanding, pleasure, and devoutness, and produces a pure heart and pure thoughts. For these words are not inoperative or dead, but creative, living words. 102] And even though no other interest or necessity impel us, yet this ought to urge every one thereunto, because thereby the devil is put to right and driven away, and, besides, this commandment is fulfilled, and [this exercise in the Word] is more pleasing to God than any work of hypocrisy, however brilliant.

Spiderman Asks


 Let the reader understand. At least Spidey wore red.
I hope you can provide some insight into this question: What is the rationale that church-growthers use when they claim that we must water-down/dumb-down Christian doctrine and practice to attract new members? (Spidey)

Answer - The reason is just the opposite of why we use the traditional liturgy, great Christian hymns, the Creeds, and Holy Communion with a Biblical sermon based on the text. We believe in the efficacy of the Word - and also its power in faithful hymns, the historic liturgy, and the Creeds.

The Church Shrinkers and Attritionals carry out their program because they do not believe in the efficacy of God's Word. They are Enthusiasts who despise the Word but adore their own.

5] All this is the old devil and old serpent, who also converted Adam and Eve into Enthusiasts, and led them from the outward Word of God to spiritualizing and self-conceit, and nevertheless he accomplished this through other outward words. 6] Just as also our enthusiasts [at the present day] condemn the outward Word, and nevertheless they themselves are not silent, but they fill the world with their pratings and writings, as though, indeed, the Spirit could not come through the writings and spoken word of the apostles, but [first] through their writings and words he must come. Why [then] do not they also omit their own sermons and writings, until the Spirit Himself come to men, without their writings and before them, as they boast that He has come into them without the preaching of the Scriptures? But of these matters there is not time now to dispute at greater length; we have elsewhere sufficiently urged this subject. 
Smalcald Articles, Book of Concord

Their thinking is crippled by their pan-religious Universalism, called Objective Justification, which shreds all Biblical doctrine.

That is why our little congregation emphasizes education in the Scriptures, Greek, and Lutheran doctrine. The Gospel of John is a perfect antidote to all this WEL-ELS-ELCA-LCMS nonsense, but what use is the Fourth Gospel if no one reads it through and uses its clear content to refute error?

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