Sermons

Quasimodo Geniti—Easter 2 (Jn 20:19–31)

Immanuel Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO
Bethlehem Lutheran Church—Bremen, KS || AUDIO

Alleluia! Jesus Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

INI + AMEN.

Jesus is an “in the midst” sort of God. The Father sent His Son into midst of our world: born in Bethlehem. He lived in the midst of the sick, the dead, the sinful healing, raising, and forgiving. He was crucified in the midst of two sinners. He was dead and buried in the midst of a cave. Risen from the dead He fulfills His promise to be “in the midst” of His disciples. Wherever any disciples are gathered in His name, there Jesus really is “in the midst of them.” It’s why we have the Gospel Procession: Jesus and His Word, His Gospel read, literally “in the midst” of us.

But why? Why is Jesus an “in the midst” sort of God. It’s not only to be born for us, to die and rise again for us. It really is for that, for you. But today’s Gospel text lets us know that why. It’s why Jesus shows up twice “in the midst of His disciples” the upper room. It’s why Jesus shows up week in and week out here in your midst, too.

So, why? Well, Jesus is an “in the midst” sort of God because

JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH.

((I. Jesus does it with His Word.))

JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH, unbelief. Faith needs to be created. Unbelief needs to be killed, snuffed out, obliterated. So, how does Jesus create this faith? Well, that’s pretty easy. Easy to confess. Hard to believe. “Lord, help my unbelief.”

JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH, and He uses His Word to do it. The Lord’s Word has creative power. He creates light out of darkness. He creates land out of the waters. He creates living people out of dead, dry bones like in our Old Testament lesson. In the same way, from the nothingness, death, and darkness of unfaith JESUS CREATES FAITH with His Word. Faith isn’t something we do. God really does create it within us. Without His action, His Word, there is only unfaith, death, hell.

So, He sends out His Apostles and Pastors. They have a Word: “I forgive you.” The Word they were sent to say. To bring the light of forgiveness to the darkness and death of sin. We trust that Word. That’s a Word that creates and sustains faith because it’s a Word that carries the Spirit.

So, Jesus has His Word written, too. “These are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God.” That Word also creates, sustains, and enlivens faith. That Word also carries the Spirit.

It’s not by sight. Even Thomas. All ears on Jesus. “Do not be unbelieving but believing,” and then Thomas was believing. Jesus’ Word has creative power. Just like Jesus created light from darkness, He created faith in Thomas by a Word. So, Thomas’ unfaith was gone. Faith was created within Him. “There burst from Thomas [a confession] far deep than what his eyes could tell him. ‘My Lord and my God!’” He saw and touched a man and confessed God.”

((II. This is why we cherish His Word.))

JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH. That’s why He comes in our midst. It’s why He brings His Word to us in many and various way. His Word is the tool. And because JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH we cherish His Word.

His Word has the creative power to create faith because it’s Jesus’ Word, and it has the Spirit. And if it has the power to create faith, it certainly has the power to sustain and strengthen faith, too. “Jesus’ Word has power” is certainly a good confession, even a right answer, biblically speaking. So, if you believe that, why don’t you use it? To cherish is to receive.

The FAITH that JESUS CREATES FROM UNFAITH cherishes His Word at home, at school, at church in all the various ways Jesus gives that Word. Which Word of Jesus creates faith, sustains faith, too? “I baptize you.” “I forgive you.” “Jesus is risen.” “Jesus died for you.” “Take, eat; this is my body, given for you. Drink of it all of you; this cup is My blood, shed for you.”

The FAITH that JESUS CREATES FROM UNFAITH knows that the simple message of Jesus’ cross and empty tomb will do the very same thing for those in our daily lives who are in the darkness, death, and nothingness of unfaith. By that message He comes “into their midst.”

((Conclusion.))

Jesus is an “in the midst” sort of God. “In our midst,” today. Gospel reading, literally in the midst of the congregation. Preaching. Body and blood. Why? He’s always “in the midst” to create faith. JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH. His Word does it. It’ll most certainly sustain and strengthen faith, too. Which Word? Too much to count! Sunday school Word. Bible Study Word. Liturgy Word. Hymn Word. Absolution Word. Read Word. Preached Word. “My body and My blood” Word. Not just here. Good Shepherd Word, too. Not just there! Written Word. Devotion Word. Forgiving one another Word. “Jesus died for you” Word.

The FAITH that JESUS CREATES FROM UNFAITH cherishes His Word, hears it, receives it, craves it. In Him and His Word is life. To not want it is unfaith. Without Jesus and His Word there is sin, unfaith, darkness, death, and hell. But with Jesus and His Word there is forgiveness, faith, light, life, and eternal life with Jesus in His Father’s kingdom because, I’ll say it again, “I forgive you all your sins.”

JESUS CREATES FAITH FROM UNFAITH. He’s doing it again today—like right now!—in your midst!

Alleluia! Jesus Christ is risen!
He is risen indeed! Alleluia!

INI + AMEN.

Advertisements
Standard

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s