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Restore The Eucharistic Prayer

The Eucharistic Prayer is controversial among Lutherans. The suspicion goes back Luther and his liturgical reforms. Whether Luther was right or wrong I cannot say. But there are some things I can assert on the basis of 2,000 years of liturgical history and practice. First that the Eucharistic Prayer has been in use from the beginning. The four gospels give only the simple...

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The Lord Be With You

In Lutheran liturgy the "Greeting" (The Lord be with you / and also with you) is chanted 3 times: before the Collect, at the Preface, before the dismissal. But what does it mean? What is the logic behind it? Several explanations have been offered, and there is room for interpretation, but I think we would do well to consider the "greeting" specifically Eucharistic in natu...

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Commentary On Sunday's Old Testament Lesson - Isaiah 6:1-13

And he said to me, "Go and say to this people: 'Listen and Hear! But do not understand! Look and Observe! But do not see! Make the heart of this people impenetrable and their ears to droop! Blind their eyes lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and open their hearts; and relent, and be healed." And I said, "How long O Lord?" And he said, "Until th...

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More On The Early Dating Of The Gospels

In last week's gospel we read: "And reports about him went out into every place in the surrounding region." (Luke 4:37) How interesting. What we might think of as a throwaway line may be more than that. Of what exactly did said reports consist, and how were they made? The content seems obvious, and they were no doubt transmitted by word of mouth. But does Luke mean somet...

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A Date Which Will Live In Infamy - Part 2

Since the post I wrote earlier this week entitled: A Day Which Will Live On In Infamythe news has gotten even worse. On January 22, 2019, the 46th anniversary of legally sanctioned abortion in the United States, the state of New York passed a law allowing abortion up to the day of birth. The new legislation defines a person as, "a human being who has been born and is aliv...

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More On Abortion

Our LCMS president, Rev. Dr. Matthew Harrison, has madea statement condemning not only abortion, but the unspeakably wicked laws recently passed in New York and Illinois. I believe President Harrison covered all the important bases in his article except possibly for one. Namely that there are Christian women who have had abortions. What about them? While aborting a chil...

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The Perseverance Of Christian Liturgy

Christian liturgy is a study in steady. May all the Baptized be deeply impressed by its perseverance throughout time and place. In pondering such matters let us first remember that Holy Communion is Christian liturgy, and Christian liturgy is Holy Communion. Let us know, too, that all that the Baptized say and do within this sacred assemblage: the order of Service, the p...

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A Date Which Will Live In Infamy

December 7, 1941 was declared by President Franklin D. Roosevelt "A Date Which Will Live In Infamy". But may all Americans come to think of January 22, 1973 as one even more infamous: the date the U.S. Supreme court opened the floodgates for abortion. The day that America began to eat her young: with ever more ravenous appetite each passing day. America has lost her way! ...

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The Psalm For The Lord's Baptism

Just like there are three Scripture lessons assigned for each Sunday of the church year, so there is a Psalm assigned as well. Unfortunately western liturgy makes no provision for its reading in worship. But we should be aware it is there and make use of it at least for private devotions. The Psalm for this Sunday is Psalm 29 and it reads as follows: A Psalm of David. As...

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The Gospel For The Lord's Baptism

If we are open to the fact that the gospels are actual liturgy (as well as lectionary and catechism) we can see a piece of the church's most primitive liturgy in vss 16 and 17 of Sunday's gospel. Whenever something can easily be divided into versicle and response it is a strong indicator in my mind that that is exactly what it was / is. It is easy to imagine in the primit...

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