by Pastor Lehmann
Posted on September 21, 2017 4:13 AM
One of our favorite Reformation hymns is by Martin Luther and begins, "Lord, keep us steadfast in your Word." "Steadfast" is a word you will find in numerous places in Scripture, and it gives us an appropriate theme for this 2017-2018 Ministry Year not only because we begin it celebrating the steadfastness of Luther and the Reformers in this 500th Anniversary year, but also because we want steadfastness as a foundation to build on for the next 5, 50, or 500 years.
One of the things you will find when searching the text of the Bible and comparing translations is that "steadfast" is used in many different contexts (and the concept is often there even when a different word is used), but it is always something positive that is good for us. Most importantly, it is used to describe the Lord himself, who is "resolutely or dutifully firm and unwavering" in his love and mercy toward us, as well as his determination to protect and prosper his people. Jesus, similarly, was steadfast in fulfilling his mission here on earth - to seek and to save the lost - all the way to the point of suffering and dying on the cross, even though he had every earthly reason to save himself instead.
God calls on us, his children, to be like him, and that includes steadfastness, but we are only able to be resolute and firm because he is, and because of what Christ did for us. So as Christians and as church members, and as a congregation and synod standing together, we work and pray to be steadfast in many ways: in faith, in our use of the Word and Sacraments, in loving each other and loving our neighbor, in stewardship, in keeping our commitments, in humility, in standing firm against error and in the face of opposition, and so much more.
This year, then, we will be exploring this theme, both in seeing how the Lord is steadfast to and for us, and how we seek to be steadfast in faith and obedience, and steadfast for others in our lives. Please join us all the way through the year as we explore this theme together!
We start with these
Our Lord Is Steadfast So We May Stand - September 10, 2017
Steadfast on the Way of the Cross - September 17, 2017
Steadfast for Stumbling Sinners - September 24, 2017
Steadfast in Forgiveness - October 1, 2017
Steadfast in Mercy - October 8, 2017
Steadfast in True Obedience - October 15, 2017
Steadfast in Faithful Service - October 22, 2017
Reformation Sunday - October 29, 2017