Forgiveness Comes from Christ NOT Contrition

Besides, they teach us to be confident that we obtain forgiveness of sins because of contrition and love. What else is this than to put confidence in our works, not in God’s Word and promise about Christ? But if the Law is enough for receiving the forgiveness of sins, what need is there of the Gospel? What need is there of Christ if we receive forgiveness of sins because of our own work? [76] We, on the other hand, call consciences away from the Law to the Gospel, and from confidence in their own works to confidence in the promise and Christ. We do so because the Gospel presents Christ to us and freely promises the forgiveness of sins for Christ’s sake. In this promise it asks us to trust, namely, that we are reconciled to the Father for Christ’s sake, not for the sake of our own contrition or love. For there is no other Mediator or Atoning Sacrifice than Christ.

– Apology of the Augsburg Confession, XIIa (V) 75–76

Devotions, Theology

Luther on Galatians 2:20

“I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.”

Read these words “me” and “for me” with great emphasis, and accustom yourself to accepting this “me” with a sure faith and applying it to yourself. Do not doubt that you belong to the number of those who speak this “me.” Continue reading

Devotions, Theology

Light on the Path 2: April 6

“‘For 5283372f-a821-4834-a7f5-4458fe2919f5the mountains will depart, the hills will totter, but My steadfast love will not depart from you, and the covenant of My peace will not totter,’ says Yahweh who has compassion on you.” (Is 54:10)

“For God is one, and one Mediator between God and men: the Man Christ Jesus, who gave Himself as a ransom for all, which is the mystery at this appointed season.” (1 Tim 2:5–6)

Yahweh’s covenant of peace will never go away, will never waver, fade, fall over, or topple. His compassion is rooted in His own Word and Promise, which He Himself kept. Jesus is Yahweh in the flesh, and His death stands forever and makes permanent peace. We’re in the season of love, peace, and compassion because of what He did for us.

Whenever you encounter Jesus in His Word and in His Gifts of Font, Office, and Altar, He wraps you in His love, mercy, and compassion. We may doubt, we may falter, we may even depart from Him, but He is there immovable, His promises unshakeable, His Gifts ever fruitful, His Word ever true.

A mystery indeed! “If we are unbelieving, He remains faithful, for He cannot deny Himself.” (2 Tim 2:13)