Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Church and man's ego

I think one of the most profound gems that Luther gave us was the notion that it is quite simple to identify the Church - that a mere child could do so -- it is where the Gospel is rightly preached and the Sacraments are rightly administered.

Something has happened, though, to us sinful men who dwell both in the Church and here on earth. We rightly understand that one must see to it that the Gospel is "rightly" preached, that the Sacraments are "rightly" administered. And that is good - we must mark out those who would cause division and teach others to choose error. But yet, we move beyond this.

In our ego, in our desire to categorize those beneath us and to have ourselves stand upon mounds of errorists we have defeated (ah, what an elevation that is!), we have let Ego come in. We will snipe and pick at others. . . and we loose all humility. We become more studious and diligent in finding the wrongs of others than of studying the Word and being diligent in our own preaching.

Let one preach rightly, let one administer rightly. Show what is wrong and why it is wrong. Be people focused upon the Word - be the Church, and let the light of Christ shine so that even those in error might see it and repent.

Repentance - that is what the Word proclaimed desires - not victory over a heretical foe. Repentance. And in our ego and pride in our own rightness, we forget righteousness, the righteousness of God which seeks the lost. Lord have mercy upon us, and restore us, that we might continue to grow ever more in the faith into which You have placed us1

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