The Substance of our Faith

The devil, the world, and our sinful flesh are mighty foes indeed to faith. Truly, unbelief is an easy thing. It comes natural to all of us. As the Psalmist says, Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me (Psalm 51:5). From birth man is cursed with an unbelieving heart. Of ourselves and by ourselves, we do not know what it is to truly have faith in the Lord Jesus, for of ourselves and by ourselves, we are not able to receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to natural man, nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned, as God reveals through the hand of St. Paul in his first letter to the Corinthians (1 Corinthians 2:14).

It is a result of sin that natural man does not believe the promises of God or the Holy Word of God. To remedy this state which man is in naturally, help must come from the outside, not from within. Thus did God the Father send His Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:17).

Man must be born anew and not remain in his first birth of sin and death. Therefore does God give His Holy Word and Baptism, Word and water, by which your are washed of your sins and made clean, declared His child, and birthed anew of water and the Spirit (John 3:5)…

Jn20.19-31, Easter 2, 2011A.pdf

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