Tuesday, September 19, 2017

The Bethany Bullet Sermon Message - Week of September 17, 2017

Sermon: “What Does This Mean?”

“What does this mean?” was the question that Luther asked 23 times in his Small Catechism.  So it is quite naturally a good question for Lutherans themselves to ask. This past Sunday many worshippers might have asked, “What does this mean?” as they entered the sanctuary to find the altar adorned with new red paraments, the pastors wearing new red stoles and a gorgeous new set of red Reformation banners hanging up front. “What does this mean?” might have popped into people’s minds as they wondered, “It’s Pentecost don’t you know?”  “Where did the green go?”  “Is it October 29th already?”  “What does this mean?”  

(A quick side note here might be helpful. Our million dollar word from last week as you’ll recall was Adiaphora; the definition of which is things neither commanded nor forbidden. The church season is neither commanded nor forbidden. The same is true for the seasons corresponding colors. They are a matter of Christian freedom; that we here at Bethany find quite helpful. Perhaps it would be equally helpful to remember that the Lord would say of them what He said of the Sabbath, the colors of the church season are made for us not the other way around.) 

Yet, the question still remains, “What does this mean?” We are now preparing to celebrate the quencentenial anniversary of the Reformation. Yet, this is not merely a celebration of something that took place a long time ago and is simply remembered in fondness today. The Reformation is a celebration of something that took place in the past, but is still (OR OUGHT TO BE) occurring today in, and to, by and through those who celebrate its anniversary. 

Think about that for a minute: The Reformation is a celebration of something in the past that is to be still occurring today in those who celebrate its anniversary. Thus as those who celebrate the Reformation we ought to be an ever Re-forming people; and to be an ever Re-Forming people we must be ever in the Word.  What does this mean? Over the next several weeks we will be looking at the core teachings of the Word, the very same teaching we have bound ourselves to as the core of our church, that we are saved by Grace Alone through Faith Alone and we trust in the Scriptures Alone as the source of what we shall believe and how we shall behave as the people of God.

-Pastor Kevin Kritzer


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