Though many hymns have been attributed to Ambrose, “Savior of the Nations, Come” is one of a few hymns that is evidentially attributed to Ambrose. Martin Luther, also writing during a period of great adversity, provided a literal translation of this text into German from which many English translations have since been produced. Fred Precht rightly says of the hymn: “In the history of hymnody this hymn is the Advent hymn par excellence.”
Like Abraham, the Lord has made some extraordinary promises to you. Your sins are forgiven. You will be raised from the dead and given eternal life in God’s kingdom that has no end. You have been rescued from sin, death, and hell because Christ has died and Christ has risen. The Gospel preached to you declares it. The water and Word of your Baptism guarantees it. Believing and trusting in these promises of God is thus counted to you as righteousness.
As Christians today,we don’t think or talk about the return of Christ as much. Thankfully, the church year helps us to remember Jesus’ words about His Second Coming, and the need to be prepared for His return. In this masterful hymn, Nicolai reminds us that Christ, the heavenly Bridegroom, will return as He has promised, but He also comes to be with us each week in the Divine Service, where we rejoice in His presence.
Certain holy things mark the communion of saints. How many of these holy things there are can vary in the reformers’ discussion. Far from being some nebulous concept and invisible reality with little or no definite connection to the solid world of human experience, the Lutheran reformers pointed to an identifiable, locatable church, which was Christ’s own church as his words rattled ears, as his gifts met and hallowed embodied sinners, and as those so touched came to speak and sing of their incarnate Lord, and to suffer alongside him.
The Litany was in use during Luther’s early years of reform, though he desired it to be sung in the Mass and the daily offices of the congregations.
by Rev. Travis Berg Modern life is compartmentalized to the point of schizophrenia. The various areas of our lives like our jobs, our families, and even the faith seem to be discrete and disconnected from each other. Compartmentalization has many benefits, but one of its drawbacks is that we end up leading many different lives… Read More >
There’s not merely one way that God ensures the forgiveness of sins in Christ Jesus is delivered unto us. Instead, He provides it to us in plentiful ways, through abundant (even superabundant!) means.
Word and pray for the one being baptized. He mentions that some of the other “external things” were less important. In our day, some of these practices have come back. Other new ones have been added. “Each generation trims a little, adds a little (extolling is never finished); but always the actual Baptism itself remains the same: ‘one Lord, one faith, one baptism’ (Eph 4:5).”
A transformation in Luther’s thinking, which he describes as a personal rebirth, transpired when he came to understand God’s righteousness as a “passive righteousness with which merciful God justifies us by faith.”
While circumcision and the Old Testament laws and ceremonies differ greatly from the means of grace in the New Testament, one thing remains the same: faith alone saves.