A Reading from the Book of Concord 1 year series July 17, 2011 - Fourth Sunday after Trinity
The following reading from the CONCORDIA edition of the Book of Concord is for the Gospel, Luke 6:36-42 for the Fourth Sunday after Trinity, July 17, 2011.
It is from Large Catechism, Part III. The Lord's Prayer.
Forgiveness begets forgiveness. Only the forgiven child of God can truly forgive those who sin against him. And the forgiven child of God who knows and believes he has been forgiven even his greatest sin will certainly forgive the sins committed against him.
And forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us.
93 There is here attached a necessary, yet comforting addition: "As we forgive." He has promised that we shall be sure that everything is forgiven and pardoned, in the way that we also forgive our neighbor. 94 Just as we daily sin much against God, and yet He forgives everything through grace, so we, too, must ever forgive our neighbor who does us injury, violence, and wrong, shows malice toward us, and so on. 95 If, therefore, you do not forgive, then do not think that God forgives you [Matthew 18:23-25]. But if you forgive, you have this comfort and assurance, that you are forgiven in heaven. 96 This is not because of your forgiving. For God forgives freely and without condition, out of pure grace, because He has so promised, as the Gospel teaches. But God says this in order that He may establish forgiveness as our confirmation and assurance, as a sign alongside of the promise, which agrees with this prayer in Luke 6:37, "Forgive, and you will be forgiven." Therefore, Christ also repeats it soon after the Lord's Prayer, and says in Matthew 6:14, "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you," and so on. 97 This sign is therefore attached to this petition. When we pray, we remember the promise and think, "Dear Father, for this reason I come and pray for You to forgive me, not so that I can make satisfaction or can merit anything by my works. I pray because You have promised and attached the seal to this prayer that I should be as sure about it as though I had Absolution pronounced by You Yourself." 98 For Baptism and the Lord's Supperóappointed as outward signsówork as seals [Ephesians 1:13]. In the same way also, this sign can serve to confirm our consciences and cause them to rejoice. It is especially given for this purpose, so that we may use and practice forgiveness every hour, as a thing that we have with us at all times.
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