A Reading from the Book of Concord 1 year series March 27, 2011 - Oculi: Third Sunday in Lent
The following reading from the CONCORDIA edition of the Book of Concord is for the Gospel, Luke 11:14-28 for the Oculi: Third Sunday in Lent, March 27, 2011.
It is from The Power and Primacy of the Pope, The Marks of the Antichrist.
The pure Word and Sacraments of our Lord overcome the work of demons today, even as He cast them out during His earthly ministry. Any false doctrine is to be cast out of the Church as the work of the Antichrist.
39 It is clear that the Roman pontiffs, with their followers, defend godless doctrines and godless services. And the marks of Antichrist plainly agree with the kingdom of the pope and his followers. For Paul, in describing Antichrist to the Thessalonians, calls him an enemy of Christ, "Who opposes and exalts himself against every so-called god or object of worship, so that he takes his seat in the temple of God" (2 Thessalonians 2:4). He is not speaking about heathen kings, but about someone ruling in the Church. He calls him the enemy of Christ, because he will invent doctrine conflicting with the Gospel and will claim for himself divine authority. 40 … To be unwilling to be judged by the Church or by anyone else is to make oneself God.… 41 … Paul commands that godless teachers should be avoided and condemned as cursed [Galatians 1:8; Titus 3:10]. And he says, "Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers.… What fellowship has light with darkness?" (2 Corinthians 6:14). 42 … to be called schismatics is a serious matter. But divine authority commands everyone not to be allies and defenders of impiety… In this, our consciences are excused well enough, for the errors of the kingdom of the pope are clear. Scripture with its entire voice cries out that these errors are a teaching of demons [1 Timothy 4:1-3] and of Antichrist. . . . 44 The doctrine of repentance has been utterly corrupted by the pope and his followers. They teach that sins are forgiven because of the value of our works. Then they tell us to doubt whether the forgiveness takes place. They nowhere teach that sins are forgiven freely for Christ's sake, and that by this faith we obtain forgiveness of sins [Ephesians 2:8-9]. So they hide Christ's glory and rob consciences of firm consolation. They abolish true divine services (i.e., the exercises of faith struggling with ‹unbelief and› despair ‹concerning the promise of the Gospel›). 45 They have clouded over the doctrine about sin.
Condensed from CONCORDIA: THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS, copyright 2005,2006 by Concordia Publishing House. Used by permission. All rights reserved. To purchase a copy of CONCORDIA, call 800-325-3040.
Lord grant you faith in His grace alone for your salvation unto eternal life. Amen