Bayern, USA, Deutschland

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Matthew 6

Tomorrow's Gospel Reading has a lot to say about what currently gets broadcasted on the television in regards to Christianity. On the one hand, you have all sorts of channels and televised church services that focus on the things of this world, namely wealth. Such would be name it and claim it theology, prosperity gospel, and other similar false theologies. The underlying foundation is: Bigger is better, and more is a sign of God's blessings. On the other hand, you have vocal preachers who only talk about liberation theology that focuses on the things of this world, namely power. Such would be any message that makes Christ a political or social liberator instead of a spiritual liberator. The underlying foundation is: social gospel.

Christ promises neither prosperity nor temporal liberation. He does promise liberation from sin, death, and the devil. He does promise to provide for our needs. With just those two, we are richly blessed by God! Anything else He provides is sheer abundance.

The Holy Spirit has given His Church the Word and the Sacraments. With these simple means we find the Church, and when we find the Church we find Jesus, forgiveness, and the Spirit's help to believe and live our lives fully.

I recall in a seminary class taught by Dr. Nagel the following illustration. We come to God needing and wanting His grace. God gives us a cup and begins to fill it up with water. The cup becomes full, but God still pours the water. The water overflows onto the table, flows down to the floor, and runs out the door. God still hasn't stopped pouring the water! That is how Christ gives out His grace and forgiveness.

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