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Prayers for all 3 years of the lectionary cycle.

Year A  October 18, 2011
Year B  October 18, 2011
Year C  October 18, 2011
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2014 Theological Reading Challenge: The Augsburg Confession

by Sarah Wilson — October 20, 2014

If you are a Lutheran, you need to read the Augsburg Confession at least once in your life. If you are a Lutheran pastor, you need to read the Augsburg Confession way more than once in your life. For this document, along with the Small Catechism (which all Lutherans are supposed to get in confirmation, whether as students or teachers), are the confessional foundation of every Lutheran church in the world. To be a Lutheran church means, at a minimum, to commit to the teaching of the Augsburg Confession and the Small Catechism...

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2014 Theological Reading Challenge: Luther’s Letters

by Sarah Wilson — October 13, 2014

As with the Summa Theologica, there is no need to conquer the entire vast terrain of Luther’s letters! A remarkable number of them are collected in the German Weimarer Ausgabe. Three volumes of Luther’s Works in English are dedicated to a selection of them; a still more selective selection can be found in Theodore Tappert’s Luther: Letters of Spiritual Counsel; but the sum total of Luther letters that has survived is in the neighborhood of 2580! As he said already in 1516, “I nearly need two copyists or secretaries. All day long I do almost nothing else than write letters!”...

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Learning Luther: October

by Paul R. Hinlicky — October 06, 2014

The charm of this treatise is that in it Luther sets forth his theology in a series of engaging images and motifs without the polemical vitriol that characterizes his writings after his excommunication. By then he drew the dire conclusion that if the pope in Rome had condemned his theology, manifestly drawn from Paul and Augustine, the papacy had condemned Christian doctrine itself and must be the long-prophesied Antichrist taking its seat in the temple of God. Luther, unhappily, further concluded that one must fight fire with fire: verbal violence was permitted in apocalyptic warfare, following the examples of the Lord (Matthew 23, John 8:39-47) and of his apostle (Philippians 3:2). Neither conclusion served Luther, or Luther’s theology, well into the future. Luther’s resort to verbal violence, which he actually justified as the Christian alternative to physical violence, certainly stands today as an obstacle in the way of our appropriation of him as a teacher of the ecumenical church. Thankfully, then, this treatise on Christian freedom comes from a time before the turn to the rhetorical violence of apocalyptic warfare...

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2014 Theological Reading Challenge: Dante’s “Paradise”

by Sarah Wilson — September 29, 2014

Ardent participants in this year’s Theological Reading Challenge will have noticed that we have not zero, not even just one, but two poets included in our list this year. Despite the great quantities of poetry scattered all over the Bible—from Miriam’s early hymn of victory to the Psalms to the kenosis hymn of Philippians 2 to the eternal praises of Revelation—poetry is not considered respectable theology these days. In fact, if you were to read the vast majority of published theology today, you might reasonably come to the conclusion that poetic diction and stylistic eloquence were undesirable if not outright anathema. Poetry as inherent heresy: we’ve come a long way since the canon closed...

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Theological Reading Challenge 2014: Thomas Aquinas’s Summa Theologica

by Sarah Wilson — September 15, 2014

Don’t be daunted! The Reading Challenge does not expect you to read every word of the Summa Theologica. Chances are not many people ever have, aside from Thomas scholars (and maybe not even all of them—there’s an awful lot of Summa). The pleasure of the Summa is not in plowing straight through it but in dropping in for regular visits. Thomas’s goal was to cover everything under the sun related to God, creation, human nature, Jesus Christ, and the sacraments. He probably came as close as anyone in Christian ever has to doing so. “Comprehensive” is the best word to describe his magnum opus...

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Now in Print

Fall 2014

Fall 2014 cover

In this issue:

Teaching Redeemed
Sexuality to Youth

St. Hans Nielsen Hauge

The Past, Present, and
Future of American
Lutheran Bishops

The Numismatic Luther

Prosperity Identified,
Dissected, & Reconfigured

Debating the Lectionaries

...and much, much more!

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