Lutheran Spokesman

"…the Scriptures cannot be broken." John 10:35

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God Called Me by the Gospel

COVER STORY – CONVERSION

I certainly believe that the Lord works conversions, I just don’t think my actions always show it. If you’re like me, you find it comfortable—even exciting—to share God’s Word with those you find agreeable. If they look like me, share similar interests, and carry a friendly demeanor, the light bulb goes off: “I should encourage this person to come to church! I think he’d be receptive.” But if a person doesn’t meet those standards, the conclusion is, “I think I’d be wasting my time.” This mindset is a shameful denial of the converting power of the Holy Spirit. To be converted means to be changed from one state to another entirely. It’s not a side-shimmy into faith as my subconscious prerequisites imply.
Consider the Apostle Paul’s trip to Athens (Acts 17:16-34). Exploring the marketplace and likely marveling at the wide range of exotic goods, he was soon overwhelmed by the presence of rampant idolatry—statues and shrines dedicated to every god that man could invent. He even found an altar dedicated “To the Unknown God.” I’m quite certain if I had been there that day, I would have kept a low profile. “I’m clearly an outsider here. They won’t believe anyway.”
Paul didn’t think that. He went to the local synagogue and reasoned with the Jews and believing Greeks concerning Jesus and the resurrection. A group of philosophers was present and, hearing these new ideas, invited Paul to share his teachings at the Aereopagus, the hill outside the city that served as a debate floor. “Thanks for the invitation, but I’d actually better get going.” That might have been my response to the unbelieving Athenians, but Paul leapt at the opportunity. Read More…

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“BREAD OF LIFE” READINGS august 2020

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TLH = The Lutheran Hymnal, 1941; WS = Worship Supplement 2000; LSB = Lutheran Service Book, 2006

Date Hymns Reading Comments
Aug 1 WS 795 Daniel 12:1-13 What comfort we have in the promise of our resurrections! “You will rest, and then at the end of days you will rise to receive your allotted inheritance.”
Aug 3 TLH 508 Acts 16:6-15 The Holy Spirit takes an active role in the spreading of the Gospel.
Aug 4 TLH 382 2 Samuel 20:1-13 Although Joab was loyal to King David, he was also ruthless and vindictive toward his enemies (or those he perceived as his enemies), as seen here in the murder of Amasa. David would not forget. Read More…

The Christian’s Professional Development

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DEVOTION—CHRISTIAN WORSHIP

Teachers get a great deal of mail for professional development opportunities. I’m sure other professions do, too. Books, seminars, and subscription services all make their case for offering essential knowledge. Continued learning opportunities are an important part of doing a job well, but the decision must be made whether each opportunity is worth the time and money that it costs. Thankfully, we don’t have to make any financial decisions or calculate the return on investmen when it comes to the worship of our Savior. Read More…