The High Calling of Fathers

God lays a heavy responsibility upon fathers:  “Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4).  Fathers who themselves do not live under the discipline of the Lord, do not seek to be nurtured by God’s Word, do not admit their faults and seek forgiveness from God, will provoke their children to anger.

“He (the father) who spares his rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines him early” (Proverbs 13:24).  “What son is there whom a father does not chasten?…Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but grievous, nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness in those who have been trained by it” (Hebrews 12:7,11).

Fathers are called to reflect God in caring and providing for their children, teaching them and punishing them when they sin, and when they repent of their wrong forgive them even as God for Christ’s sake forgives fathers.  Hear of this instruction and forgiveness at Peace Lutheran Church.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

Pentecost

On the day of Pentecost (Acts 2) the promise Jesus made to His disciples was fulfilled, “You will be baptized with the Holy Spirit….You shall receive power when the Holy Spirit is come upon you and you shall be witnesses to Me” (Acts 1:5,8).  He had said of the Holy Spirit, “He will testify of Me” (John15:26).  “He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment….He will glorify Me” (John 16:8,14).”

The evidence of the Holy Spirit the day of Pentecost was in the previously fearful disciples boldly confessing that God raised this Jesus from the dead whom the people had so recently crucified.  He is the promised Savior. The Holy Spirit enabled them to tell this good news in native tongues of foreign born Jews.  They exclaimed in delight, “We hear in our own tongues the wonderful works of God” (Acts 2:11).  Three thousand people were convicted of their sin and given the righteousness of Jesus as they repented and were baptized.

Sunday we celebrate Pentecost and know the Holy Spirit is active as the Good News of Jesus is boldly and clearly proclaimed.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

Is your Christianity strong enough to resist?

Fifty days after the resurrection of Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit was poured out in special measure upon the believers.  The Holy Spirit enabled them to speak in other languages so people from all nations could hear “the wonderful works of God” (Acts 2:11).  Three thousand were converted and were baptized into the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of their sins on that first Pentecost Day (2:38-41).  The number increase to 5000 (4:4), and soon they lost count (6:7).  This good news that God grants forgiveness of sins and eternal life through His Son’s death and resurrection was proclaimed and received with gladness throughout the Roman Empire, which included Israel, Egypt, and all of North Africa.  A large percentage of the people became Christian.  Today they are mostly Muslim.  Christianity had been “watered down” by Arianism and Gnosticism so that when Muslims came with the sword most had no will to resist.

Is your Christianity strong enough to resist?  The Word of God gives that strength.  Come to Peace Lutheran Church.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

What Happens When People Do Right In Their Own Eyes

When the commandments of God are no longer taken seriously– Honor your father and your mother; you shall not murder; you shall not commit adultery; you shall not steal; you shall not give false testimony—moral chaos will erupt.   With shows depicting children ridiculing parents, movies and music presenting casual sex, entertainment thriving on murder and violence, should we be surprised that news stories abound with sexual violence, bullying in our schools, organizations crying when the government ceases funding abortions, or even mass killings abroad and some here at home.  When people “do that which is right in their own eyes” (Judges 21:25), instead of learning and taking seriously God’s commandments, this or any nation will become a fearful place to live.  Furthermore, there will be no repentance.

Only those who know God’s commandments, take them seriously, and repent when they break them, will be able to hear that “God will abundantly pardon” (Isaiah 55:7).  Come to Peace Lutheran Church for this good news.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

Mother’s Day

Sunday is Mothers’ Day, a good day to emphasize how God ordered the family, a husband and wife in a life-long union, to whom children are given by God to “bring up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord’ (Ephesians 6:4)  The family, where the mother and father love each other, and their children grow up obedient and honoring them and loving one another, is the greatest joy, happiness, fulfillment that God gives people in their earthly journey.  Sadly, sin distorts and so often brings to grief this great joy intended by God.

This is why we do well to set our hearts with God’s eternal family, where we are all “the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3)  The Church is our eternal mother from whom “we desire the pure spiritual milk of the Word that we may grow up to salvation” (1 Peter 2:2).  In these times when many people choose to be independent of the church, they should take to heart these words: “The person who does not want the Church as his mother, does not have God as his Father.” Come to Peace Lutheran Church for this eternal family.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

MALE and FEMALE He created them

“God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; MALE and FEMALE He created them” (Genesis 1:27).  “God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good” (1:31).  The NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC (January, 2017) takes issue with God by insisting there are more than two genders.  That people cannot figure out if they are male or female, or being one, prefers to be the other, is simply a result of mankind’s fall into sin (Genesis 3).  Sin has in many ways distorted God’s wonderful creation.  According to an article in WORLD MAGAZINE (April 15,2017), of those who seek to live out a different gender than that with which they were born, 30 percent have attempted suicide and another 40 percent reported self-injury.

Some say the growing rush to label children “transgender” promotes physician-approved child abuse.  It is comparable to agreeing with an anorexic child that he or she is fat.  Sensible parents, teachers, physicians, psychologists will seek to help a girl to “thank God for making me a female,” and a boy to “thank God for making me male.”   Come to Peace Lutheran Church to rejoice in the God who does not make mistakes.   Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

Life After Death

Except for a few atheists, every person and every culture believes in life after death, be it the “Happy hunting grounds,” “The Grand Lodge Above,” “nirvana,” “heaven,” or the indescribable “better place.” The belief that there is life after death is not uniquely Christian.

What is uniquely Christian is the teaching that the dead will rise again.  In the Book of Daniel we read, “Those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting contempt” (Daniel 12:2).  Jesus said, “The hour is coming in which all who are in the graves shall hear His voice and come forth—those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of condemnation” (John 5:28,29).  There is also 1 Corinthians 15 and 1 Thessalonians 4:13f.

For the unbeliever and unrepentant sinner, the resurrection is not a happy thought, but for those who are covered over with the righteousness of Jesus Christ, it stirs a joyful anticipation.  Come to Peace Lutheran Church.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.

Casting Doubt on the Resurrection?

Near Easter news articles in the major magazines have delighted in casting doubt on the resurrection account of Jesus Christ.  Why this attack on the very foundation of Christianity?   “If Christ has not been raised, your FAITH is futile; you are still in your sins,” (1 Cor. 15:17).  This of course is nothing new.  Already on Easter morning when the guards of the tomb reported the events of Easter, the enemies of Christ paid them to say, “The disciples came by night and stole His body” (Matthew 28); those who called for His crucifixion were “grieved” when the Apostles preached “in Jesus the resurrection of the dead” (Acts 4:2); even the Apostles did not at first believe the witnesses to the empty tomb and risen Lord, “Their words seemed to them like idle tales, and they did not believe them” (Luke 24:11); and Thomas would not believe unless he could see and touch the One who was crucified (John 20).

Why would anyone not want to believe the witness of the Apostles who died proclaiming the risen Christ?  Why would anyone reject the testimony of 3000 people who 50 days after the resurrection were convinced that the One crucified lives?  For the unbeliever and the unrepentant it means that they will have to stand before Him the final Judge on the Last Day.

While the resurrection of Jesus Christ is a terror to unbelievers, it is comfort and strength to those who believe.  Jesus assures them, “Because I live, you shall live also” (John 14:19).  Come to Peace Lutheran Church for this comfort and strength, and join us in believing and telling Easter Sunday, 9:00 a.m.

By One Man

“I delivered to you AS OF FIRST IMPORTANCE what I also received; that Christ died for our sin in accordance with the Scriptures, that He was buried, that He was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures….And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins.  Then those who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished.  If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.  But in fact Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.  For as by one man came death, by a Man has come the resurrection of the dead.  For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:3-5,17-32).

The events of this coming week, Holy Week, recognize what is of first importance to the Christian faith.  In fact without these events there would be no Christianity!  Come, join with us in praise to God for our Savior’s death and resurrection.  Sunday service time is 9:00 a.m.   Good Friday is at 7:00 p.m.

FREEDOM!

Ordinarily freedom is thought of as BEING ABLE TO DO WHAT I WANT TO DO.  Jesus reminds us, “He who commits sin is the slave of sin” (John 8:34).  Bondage, not freedom, results in doing what my sinful nature wants to do.  Christ came to free us from this bondage.  He paid a ransom price.  “You were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver and gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your father, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18,19).  That ransom price, His death upon the cross, gives true freedom—a freedom from the fear of God’s curse, a freedom from the bondage of sin, a freedom that consists in serving Him who redeemed us, forgives us, and provides us a sure hope of eternal life.

Come learn of this basis for all true freedom at Peace Lutheran Church.  Divine Service is at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday.