The Smalcald Articles – part 113

Scripture Text: 1 Corinthians 11:23–25

“What did I tell you?” How many times have we heard that while growing up? Listening carefully, then doing what you were told is a staple of becoming a responsible adult.

The Smalcald Articles - part 112

Scripture Text: John 6:48-51

It all falls on faith, not tradition, or in the case of these two sentences in the Smalcald Articles, not on piety, personal holiness, or the faithfulness of the minister.

The Smalcald Articles - part 111

Scripture Text: Matthew 19:13-15

Jesus said the kingdom of God belongs to children. Are they part of his kingdom because of their own goodness or efforts? No more than anyone is because of personal merit.

The Smalcald Articles - part 110

Scripture Text: Ephesians 5:25-27

The Church is made holy — completely so and without a single stain � because God says so in his Word. This is what we believe through faith in Christ. This washing is done without mystery or human explanation, by the simple agency of water and what God has spoken.

The Smalcald Articles - part 109

Scripture Text: Exodus 34:6-7

Again, we see why repentance is so important. God is rich in mercy, forgiving sin but not absolving the "guilty." The guilty are those who will not own their sin, those who will not admit and confess all their sin.

The Smalcald Articles – part 108

Scripture Text: 1 John 1:5–10

You now see why repentance is so necessary in the Christian life. In order for faith to remain, the Spirit must be within us. The Spirit does not continue where sin is present, where unrighteousness is permitted to remain and dwell.

The Smalcald Articles – part 106

Scripture Text: Jonah 3:10–4:3

Human reason simply does not comprehend the great love of God. It cannot. Natural thought goes along this line: I must have to do something. So startling is the doctrine of God’s love so freely given, that it can even make us angry.

The Smalcald Articles – part 105

Scripture Text: Romans 7:21–25

How often have you wished to do what is right, but find yourself unable? Within yourself, in your “inmost self” (RSV) or soul, you want to do right, but discover you cannot do so in your outward parts.

The Smalcald Articles – part 104

Scripture Text: John 1:16–17

The law was given us to show how corrupt we really are. Therefore, it shows us our need for Christ’s gospel. We should then, receive the fullness of his grace, which he freely gives...

The Smalcald Articles – part 103

Scripture Text: 1 Corinthians 15:57

Over the years, I have become even more certain of one thing: I am forgiven of all my sins for Christ’s sake. If I am left to the resources of my behavior, I am altogether ruined and hopeless.

The Smalcald Articles – part 100

Scripture Text: Luke 18:10–14

This is a matter of justification, a matter upon which we must not give way even an inch. For faith in Christ is the only thing that justifies. If it were otherwise, Christ’s death is meaningless.

The Smalcald Articles – part 99

Scripture Text: 1 Peter 3:18

We cannot give our good works to other sinners. Who would want such filthy rags, in any case? Nor may we sell them; that would be trading in counterfeit goods

The Smalcald Articles – part 98

Scripture Text: Titus 1:1–3

The hope of eternal life does not come through religious actions, the promises of pastors, priests, and popes, or payment plans. All of these will disappoint sooner or later. Your good deeds will always be suspect.

The Smalcald Articles – part 97

Scripture Text: 1 Timothy 2:3b–6

The highest price was paid for souls because, in fact, they are not cheap. The ransom price for sinners is life. Either we pay for our sin, or God does. Either he dies or we die.

The Smalcald Articles – part 95

Scripture Text: Acts 8:20–22

No one can earn the forgiveness of sin, either in whole or in part. Nor may it be bought—or sold. Further, it is not within the purview of the Church to grant partial forgiveness of sin...

The Smalcald Articles – part 94

Scripture Text: 1 John 1:9

There is only one way to know you are forgiven. Believe the word of God. Has he promised to forgive us? Yes. Has he assured us that he will cleanse us from all unrighteousness? Yes.

The Smalcald Articles – part 93

Scripture Text: 1 Corinthians 15:54–57

Imagine the distress of a woman who longs to be with her husband but who has been told she will not see him again for another 50 years. Reunion is a lifetime away!

The Smalcald Articles – part 92

Scripture Text: 1 John 2:1–2

We know exactly how much is to be rendered for a single sin and for all sin. Christ Jesus is the sum. He is the only means by which we may be reconciled to God.

The Smalcald Articles – part 91

Scripture Text: Psalm 25:6–7

God does not base his forgiveness of our sin on human effort or religious devotion. Rather, God has forgiven all our sin from the earliest day until the present.

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