Someone asked if I would put up a short summary of the discussion at Bible study each week. If you were there, feel free to make additions to my summary in the comments!
For three or four weeks now, we’ve been using Pr. Matt Richard‘s helpful study, “How Do We View Christianity?” which sums up two ways of looking at the various aspects of human beings, sin, free will, salvation, and more.
This past week, we looked at page 5 of the study, discussing the will and conversion (does the will participate in conversion or is it the object of conversion?), the cause of our salvation (does God save us in light of our faith, or for the sake of Christ?), and whether the main force of the Law of God is to empower us for “victorious living” or to reveal original sin in us and its fruits.
Under the second question, one thing I wanted to emphasize was that our salvation and the Christian faith are tied completely and inseparably to the flesh of Jesus. As soon as we start talking about God’s love, goodness, or mercy apart from the concrete actions of Jesus in His life, death, and resurrection, we will start to drift away from the certain promises of Jesus and into the uncertainties of our own lives and experiences.
We also talked about election/predestination and how that teaching of the Scriptures (e.g., in Romans 8 and Ephesians 1) is meant as a doctrine of comfort and Gospel, not as a teaching to encourage speculation about who is saved and who is not. (You can read more on the Lutheran teaching of Election here and here.)
Our Bible study is every Sunday immediately following the Divine Service (we aim for 11:00 am). Please join us!