Old Testament Reading
“Whoever does not have this faith—that Christ is his with every good thing—does not yet believe correctly. He is not a Christian, and his heart is not cheerful and eager. Only faith makes Christians who are cheerful, eager, secure, saved, and God’s children, where the Holy Spirit must dwell. That is such beautiful, bright, and costly clothing, which has such exceedingly precious ornaments, jewels, and gems—all virtue, grace, wisdom, truth, righteousness, and whatever is in Christ—that St. Paul says, ‘I thank God for His inexpressible gift’ [2 Cor. 9:15]. St. Peter says that great and costly blessings are given to us through Christ (2 Peter 1 [:4])” (LW 76:21).
“From this command [John 20:21–23] we have the power to comfort distressed consciences and to absolve from sin, and we know that wherever we exercise this office not we but Christ Himself is doing these things. Therefore, each Christian, in this situation as well as from the pulpit, should listen to the pastor or preacher not as a man, but as God Himself. Then he can be certain and does not at all need to doubt that he has the forgiveness of sins. Christ has established through His resurrection that when a called minister—or whoever it is in time of need—speaks an absolution to his neighbor who is alarmed and desires comfort, it will avail just as much as if He Himself had done it, for it happens at His command and in His name” (LW 77:141).
“But it is the chief subject of all Holy Scripture to know and understand God when He makes a promise. For He helps and brings support even with the actual realization of His promise and when it is fulfilled; but before this He disciplines faith in the promise by means of a lack of the things of which we are in need. He does this in order that we may learn to trust Him and not to tempt Him” (LW 8:201).
Daniel 7:9–10, 13–14
The final volume covering the Gospel of Matthew in the acclaimed Concordia Commentary series is set to release in November 2018. Matthew 21:1–28:20 covers the last third of this book.
“Such is the life of the saints, and all the misfortunes with which they are afflicted are nothing else than a pleasant and agreeable game with which God plays with us as a father plays with his children. At times a father orders them to do something which, as he knows, exceeds their strength, He commands his little son to fetch a pot, to pull off his socks. When the child, without realizing how weak he is, makes energetic efforts to carry out the order, the father lends a hand and praises the zeal and strength of his son, in order that the boy may gradually be aroused and accustomed to obedience and reciprocal love” (LW 7:319).
1 Kings 17:8–16