Immanuel Voices
October 31, 2019, 4:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Reformation Week: Luther Devotions 4


Devotions by Martin Luther

Thursday

 

Psalm 73:16-18

But when I thought how to understand this, it seemed to me a wearisome task,
until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I discerned their end.

Truly you set them in slippery places; you make them fall to ruin.

 

Thought for Today

Why does God give honor, health, fine children, a joyful life and pleasure to the wicked, and, on the contrary, allows the good and godly, who know the truth of God, to struggle with misfortune, danger and toil all the days of their lives? In this God acts like an honest and godly father, who brings up his son in the knowledge and fear of the true faith, in order that he might have joy in him when he grows up and might pass on to him all the wealth he has amassed. He disciplines and punishes him more and oftener than he does his servant. He allows the disobedient servant to go unpunished for a while, to use his willfulness, without seeming to regard it; but in the meantime he thinks, “Well, if you will not stop acting this way I will throw you out of the house.” Their wickedness will bring them to an evil end. But God allows the godly to be disciplined and punished when they are secure and unthankful to Him, that through it they should be moved and even forced to turn themselves to Him, to seek help and comfort from Him through Christ.

 

Prayer

Heavenly Father, when troubles and trials come, help me not to see them as Your rejection, but as a means of shaping me. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

You should not believe your conscience and your feelings more than the word which the Lord who receives sinners preaches to you. — Martin Luther

 

Quote of the Day

Let the wife make the husband glad to come home, and let him make her sorry to see him leave. — Martin Luther

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October 30, 2019, 4:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Reformation Week: Luther Devotions 3


Devotions by Martin Luther

Wednesday

 

1 Peter 3:15

In your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect. (ESV)

 

Luther’s Thought for Today

We must here acknowledge that St. Peter addressed these words to all Christians, clergy and laity, male and female, young and old, of whatever state or condition they may be. From there it will follow that every Christian should know the foundation and reason for his faith, and be able to maintain and defend it where it is necessary. “With gentleness and respect.” This means that if you are questioned about your faith you should not answer with arrogant words and proceed with contempt and anger, as if you would tear up a tree by the roots, but with such fear and humility as if you stood before God and were giving an answer to Him. You must stand with humility and not answer in your own strength, but on the Word and promise of Christ.

 

Prayer

Holy Spirit, help me to be prepared to defend the faith You have given me with respect to all who ask, even if they don’t treat me with respect in return. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

I cannot and will not recant anything, for to go against conscience is neither right nor safe. Here I stand, I can do no other, so help me God. Amen. — Martin Luther (“Will you recant” answered with gentleness and respect)

 

Quote of the Day

The Church must run the risk of dilution rather than leave the state to the cold light of reason, unwarmed by tenderness. ― Martin Luther

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October 29, 2019, 4:00 AM

Daily Inspiration: Reformation Week: Luther Devotions 2


Devotions by Martin Luther

Tuesday

Galatians 5:6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.

 

Thought for Today

“Faith working through love,” that is, faith which is not pretend or hypocritical, but a true and lively faith, which requires and preforms good works through love. Paul would say, “He who desires to be a true Christian or a member of Christ’s kingdom, must be a true believer. A person is not a true believer if works of charity do not follow his or her faith. Thus on both the right and left hand God shuts hypocrites out of Christ’s kingdom. On the left hand he shuts out all who desire to earn their own salvation by works. In our verse He is saying there is no work, no service, no worship, no life style in the world that can make a person a child of God. Only faith without any trust in personal works or merits wins God’s favor. On the right hand he shuts out the lazy and idle who say, “If faith justifies without works, then why bother to do any works? Let’s just believe and do what we like.” “Not so,” Says Paul. Although it is true that only faith justifies, he speaks here of faith in another respect: that is to say, after it has made us right with God, it is not idle, but busy in working through love. He points out that the true Christian life consists inwardly in faith towards God and outwardly in charity and good works toward our neighbor.

 

Prayer

Holy Spirit, work such faith in me that believes firmly in what is true and acts lovingly upon it. Amen.

 

Devotional Quote

Faith is permitting ourselves to be seized by the things we do not see. — Martin Luther

 

Quote of the Day

The story of Christian reformation, revival, and renaissance underscores that the darkest hour is often just before the dawn, so we should always be people of hope and prayer, not gloom and defeatism. God the Holy Spirit can turn the situation around in five minutes. — Os Guinness

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