Formula of Concord Study: Article XI

by Rev. Mark Bestul The last single-issue article of the Formula of Concord, Article XI is unique in that it was largely preemptive. While acknowledging that no major struggle had yet erupted over this article of faith, the writers of the Formula were aware of small skirmishes and penned the article wisely foreseeing that poor… Read More >

Luther’s Early Life

by Dr. Jack Kilcrease Martin Luther was born in Eisleben on November 10, 1483 to Hans and Margarethe Luder.  Martin himself later modified the family name “Luder” to “Luther” in the mid-1510s possibly because of its similarity to Eleutherius, meaning the “free one” (i.e., one who possesses Christian freedom). Whereas Luther’s mother was from an… Read More >

Bible Study with Luther: Genesis 1

by Rev. Jesse Burns Each week, as we gather before our Lord’s altar to receive His Word and Sacraments, we confess our Christian faith in the words of one of the historic creeds. In both the Nicene and Apostles’ Creeds we confess that we believe in God, the Creator of heaven and earth. This is… Read More >

Luther and Melanchthon

by Rev. Christopher Maronde “God has always preserved a proportion of His servants upon the earth, and now, through Martin Luther, a more splendid period of light and truth has appeared.” (On the death of Luther, 1) “If it please Christ, Melanchthon will make many Martins and a most powerful enemy of scholastic theology; for… Read More >

Issues of Life and Death

by Deac. Betsy Karkan “But the serpent said to the woman, ‘You will not surely die.’” (Genesis 3:4) All lies about death started with this simple statement. It is not however, just the first lie among many about death; it is also every lie about life, because at its core it says that God, who is… Read More >

Formula of Concord Study: Article IX

by Rev. Aaron Moldenhauer Arguably the most opaque passage of the Creed is that Christ descended into hell. The passage is based on Scripture, but these scriptural passages (e.g., 1 Peter 3) lend themselves to multiple interpretations about what the descent into hell was, leading to centuries of debate on this article. Which part of… Read More >

Help your church and community celebrate the Reformation

The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod has created new, free materials for you to help promote the celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation this year in your congregation and community. With it being a popular and current news story, the 500th anniversary of the Reformation is a unique opportunity for congregations to proclaim Christ in… Read More >

Interacting with the Scriptures

by Rev. Dr. Jonathan Mumme With Gutenberg’s invention of movable type printing and waxing literacy especially among the urban population, Christian interaction with the Bible entered a new phase in the Reformation era. In this, Martin Luther played a direct hand, not only with his translation of the Bible, but also with his introductions to… Read More >

“O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright”

by Mr. Jonathan Swett Philipp Nicolai’s two most famous hymns–for which he was both author and composer–are “Wake, Awake, for Night Is Flying” (Wachet auf, ruft uns die Stimme) and “O Morning Star, How Fair and Bright” (Wie schön leuchtet der Morgenstern).  The fact that these have been commonly referred to as the “King and… Read More >