Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Church Membership

The writer of Hebrews encourages us in Hebrews 10:25 that we are to not forsake "the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. 

Martin Luther said of this, “Membership in a confessing body is fundamental to the faithful Christian life. Failure to do so defies the explicit warning not to forsake "our assembling together." His understanding of this prompted Martin Luther to say, "Apart from the church, salvation is impossible." Not that the church provides salvation; God does. But because the "saved" one can't fulfill what it means to be a Christian apart from the church, membership becomes the indispensable mark of salvation.”

Brother Luther and I are in complete agreement.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

A Call to Humility

1 Peter 5:5-6 You younger men, likewise, be subject to your elders; and all of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, for GOD IS OPPOSED TO THE PROUD, BUT GIVES GRACE TO THE HUMBLE. (6) Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time,

This is a call to humility for all of us. We are all the younger to someone and older than someone else.

Illustration: In the House at Bonn occupied by Beethoven there still is preserved the piano upon which the great master played, and which he used in the composition of his great music. Years ago, an American girl visited the shrine. She waltzed airily to the instrument and began playing a careless tune; and then, turning to the custodian, said, "I suppose you have many visitors here every year?" "A great many," was the reply. "Many famous people, no doubt?" said she. "Yes, Paderewski came recently." "I suppose, of course, he played on the piano?" said the girl, her fingers still thrumming the keys. "No," said the custodian, "he did not consider himself worthy."

This is the reverence of the great in soul. The flippant enter the hallowed places, the sanctuaries of the world, with light laughter and careless jest; they feel nothing in their shallow souls, and reduce everything to the flippant and commonplace; but the high-souled enter with bared heads, they take the shoes off their feet, they stand awed and in silence. "They do not consider themselves worthy."

We live in a society that has forgotten humility.

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Luther on Bible Study

Martin Luther said, “I study my Bible like I gather apples. First, I shake the whole tree that the ripest may fall. Then I shake each limb, and when I have shaken each limb, I shake each branch and every twig. Then I look under every leaf. I search the Bible as a whole like shaking the whole tree. Then I shake every limb--study book after book. Then I shake every branch, giving attention to the chapters. Then I shake every twig, or a careful study of the paragraphs and sentences and words and their meanings.”