Lutheran Confessions: A Great Reformation Blessing
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Minnesota CLC Reformation Service
Sunday, October 30, 2016 (4:00 p.m.)
PreService music: “A Mighty Fortress” by J.S. Bach, Horn: Cathy Augustin
Opening Male Chorus: “Christ Is Our Cornerstone”
The Invocation & Our Reformation Litany
P: “Unless I am convinced by Holy Scriptures, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I cannot do otherwise, God help me. Amen.” Here, 500 years later, in a hostile world that increasingly ridicules and persecutes those who stand up for Jesus and who stand upon His Word – Here we still stand by faith, upon the sacred and eternal truths of God’s Word.
C: Here we still stand, God help us. Amen.
P: The Truth is: All of us have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. All of us deserve God’s anger and punishment for our sins. None of us is worthy of the least of all the mercies and truth that God has granted us.
C: This we confess and plead for God’s mercy in Christ Jesus, our Savior.
P: The Truth is: It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. God loved us and sent His Son into the world as the atoning sacrifice for our sins. Christ lived for us, Christ died for us, Christ rose again for us. Whoever believes on Him will not perish, but have everlasting life. Be of good cheer, your sins are forgiven you. You are righteous and at peace with God.
C: In this we believe and rejoice as redeemed children of God.
♫ I know my faith is founded On Jesus Christ, my God and Lord;
And this my faith confessing, Unmoved I stand on His sure Word.
Our reason cannot fathom The Truth of God profound;
Who trusts in human wisdom Relies on shifting ground.
God’s Word is all-sufficient, It makes divinely sure;
And trusting in its wisdom, My faith shall rest secure.
P: The Truth is: By grace we are saved through faith and that not of ourselves; it is the gift of God, not by works, so that no one can boast. Our works cannot add any merit to the completed and complete saving work of Christ.
C: For this we give all honor and glory to the Lamb for sinners slain.
P: The Truth is: We still struggle against the “roaring lion seeking to devour us”, the forces of darkness that envelop us and the rebellious enemy within us. It is a battle which we ourselves cannot win. Yet the power of the Gospel and the weapons of the Word are still ours in Christ and we shall overcome. The very gates of hell shall not prevail against His Church.
C: Here we stand, we cannot do otherwise. God help us! Amen.
Our Reformation Creed
I believe that God in love, desired, planned, promised and carried out my salvation through His Son, Jesus Christ. I believe that this gift of eternal life comes to me only by Spirit-worked faith in the Gospel. I believe that God has revealed all spiritual truth by His Spirit through His holy, inspired and infallible Word. This is most certainly true.
God promises that His Word is eternal, powerful and effective and that He will preserve and protect His Word and His Church through all time. As Satan seeks to destroy what God has created, God raises up faithful servants and leaders in His Church. These “gifts” of prophets, apostles, evangelists, pastors and teachers he has used to strengthen and renew the foundation and faith of His Church. Jesus promises that the very gates of hell will not prevail against it. For these and all other legacies and blessings of the Reformation, we lift our hearts in praise and thanksgiving. Here we stand – upon God’s Word; We cannot do otherwise. God help us. Amen.
THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS :
I.THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS :
Stories Of Personal Faith And Conviction
2 Corinthians 4:13 – “But since we have the same spirit of faith, according to what is written: ‘I believed therefore I have spoken,’ we also believe and therefore speak.”
Pastor Paul D Nolting – Immanuel Lutheran Church, Mankato, MN
Song by Children – “From Age to Age” (Director: Heidi Ludvigson ; Accompanist: Steve Kuehne)
II.THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS:
Why They Were Written
Titus 1:9 – “Holding fast to the faithful Word, as he has been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine, both to exhort and to convict those who contradict.”
Pastor Emeritus Paul G. Fleischer – Red Wing, MN
Song By Joint Choir – “By Faith”
(Director: Cathy Augustin ; Accompanist: Steph Mueller)
III.THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS:
The Great Need Today For Faithful Confessors
Romans 10:10 – “For with the heart man believes to righteousness and with the mouth confession is made to salvation.”
Pastor Nathanael Mayhew – Grace, Sleepy Eye, MN
Congregational Hymn: “For God’s Great Grace”
(Based On Psalm 44: 4-8)
(Written By Judith Snell ; Melody: “For All The Saints”)
♫ C: For God’s great grace to us has never failed;
All over evil, sin and death prevailed;
“Glory to God! Forever, then regale! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Along life’s road our souls need fear no ill,
For Christ, the Victor, marches with us still;
Defends His Kingdom, and He always will! Alleluia! Alleluia!
As we go forth, then be our arms in fight.
Make this our motto: “Walk by faith, NOT sight;”
Relying fully on Your hand and might. Alleuia! Alleluia!
In heat of battle, may we never yield;
With Christ our Refuge, our Right Hand, and Shield;
Sustain our hearts to stand and hold the field. Alleluia! Alleluia!
Christ’s faithfulness forever is the same;
Fully assured rest in the Savior’s name.
The foe is vanquished; Vic’try now acclaim! Alleluia! Alleluia!
Our Reformation Offering (Piano/Organ duet: “Faith of our Fathers”)
(All Undesignated Offerings Will Go To The ILC Student Aid Fund)
The Lord’s Prayer (Inside Back Cover Of Hymnal)
Our Father, Who art in heaven. Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation. But deliver us from evil. For Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen.
Our Lord’s Benediction ♫ Amen, Amen, Amen
The Closing Hymn WS 774 : A Mighty Fortress Is Our God (WS) – “A Mighty Fortress”
♫ All: A mighty Fortress is our God, A trusty Shield and Weapon;
He helps us free from ev’ry need That hath us now o’ertaken.
The old evil foe Now means deadly woe;
Deep guile and great might Are his dread arms in fight;
On earth is not his equal.
♫ Women & Girls: With might of ours can naught be done,
Soon were our loss effected;
But for us fights the Valiant One, Whom God Himself elected.
Ask ye, Who is this? Jesus Christ it is.
Of Sabaoth Lord, And there’s none other God;
He holds the field forever.
♫ Men & Boys:
Though devils all the world should fill, All eager to devour us.
We tremble not, we fear no ill, They shall not overpow’r us.
This world’s prince may still Scowl fierce as he will,
He can harm us none, He’s judged; the deed is done;
One little word can fell him.
♫ All: The Word they still shall let remain Nor any thanks have for it;
He’s by our side upon the plain With His good gifts and Spirit.
And take they our life, Goods, fame, child, and wife,
Let these all be gone, They yet have nothing won;
The Kingdom ours remaineth.