The Greatest Plague

So glad to see quite a few of our pastors and leaders pointing people to Luther’s writings on the plague that beset Wittenberg in 1527.  Luther gives us solid gold instruction on what to do in these situations.  For those of you who want to read it all in context, go to Luther’s Works Volume 43: pages 115-138.  It is incredible to read Martin Luther’s advice in the midst of the plague that killed 1 out of every 4 people in Europe.

And then there is the ever profound writings of Gene Edward Veith writing on the Greatest Plague . . .

Read about it below.

“The Greatest Plague”

Who is Your Messiah?

Messiah is coming to Netflix, but check out the featured review of our own beloved brother in Christ, a renowned expert on Islamic eschatology (and tons of other stuff!), Dr. Timothy Furnish.  Dr. Furnish is truly the closest thing possible to an LCMS Indiana Jones . . .

Warning!  This is your only shot to ignore the spoiler alert!  So, proceed by clicking below – with caution.

Netflix’s Messiah Reviewed: Who’s Your Messiah Now?

The Lutheran Church of Pakistan

Blessed New Year to each of you in the Epiphany of our Lord Jesus Christ!  The Kairos Network is pleased to announce to you that there will be a Mission Forum for the future work of the Lutheran Church of Pakistan on January 12-14, 2020.

The Purpose

A forum of the church to come together by LCMS missions and sister churches to bring God’s Word and Sacraments to Pakistan.

Presentations

PRESENTATION 1 – Can Orthodoxy Be Missional?

PRESENTATION 2 – Building A Sacramental Culture

PRESENTATION 3 – The Lutheran Church of Pakistan Project

PRESENTATION 4 – Missions To An Unbelieving World

Presenters

Dr. John Bombaro
Dr. John Bombaro

Rev. John J. Bombaro, Ph.D. (King’s College, University of London) is a missionary of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, serving as the Assistant Director of Theological Education at the Luther Academy, Rīga, Latvia. In this role, he works to plant an English-speaking congregation in Riga. He teaches Lutheran theology and mentors seminary students in a Bachelor of Divinity program at Riga Luther Academy (the Latvian Ev. Luth. Church’s seminary). He assists in the re-accreditation of the seminary, not only as a Latvian seminary but also as an English-speaking seminary accredited throughout the European Union. He builds confessional and strategic relations between regional partner churches and synods. With Melinda’s help, John also coordinates conferences around Eurasia for pastors and other church workers.

Rev. James Krikava
Rev. James Krikava

Rev. James Krikava serves the Lord as a missionary through The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS) in the Eurasia region, based in the Czech Republic. In this role, James serves as the regional director for the Eurasia region. He partners with local church leaders and current LCMS international mission leadership to strengthen and sustain existing congregations in this part of the world. He also is involved with theological teaching and with building relationships with other church bodies that are currently not in fellowship with the International Lutheran Council (ILC).

Jay dass
Vicar Jay Dass

Vicar Dass, along with his wife Julie (not pictured for her safety), are missionaries to all people, but mostly to adherents of the religion of Islam.  They both grew up as Christians in Pakistan, but now serve as dedicated servants of Christ in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.   Vicar Dass is studying to be a Lutheran pastor through the Ethnic Immigrant Institute of Theology at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis and will be ordained in 2021.  His passions are studying God’s Word, sharing Christ, and reading the writings of Martin Luther.  The Lord is preparing them to go to Pakistan to establish a Biblical, Lutheran Church there.  Jay and Julie are working with 9 young men in Pakistan who are eager to study at the Lutheran Seminary in Riga, Latvia in Fall of 2020.

Location

Living Faith Lutheran Church

1171 Atlanta Hwy

Cumming, GA 30040

LivingFaithLutheran.com

Lodging

Hampton Inn

915 Ronald Reagan Blvd

Cumming, GA 30041

Call and set up your reservation at 844-359-4652.  Mention the Mission Forum at Living Faith Lutheran Church to get the special rate.

If you are in the area, attend as many events you are able.

Tentative Schedule

                      Sunday: January 12, 2020                       

9:00 AM – Bible Study 1

10:15 AM – Divine Service – Rev. Jim Krikava

12:00 PM  – Lunch and Fellowship

Afternoon – Open for Mission Meetings

                               Monday: January 13, 2020                             

8:00 AM – Coffee and Welcome

8:30 AM – Matins in the sanctuary

9:15 AM – Bible Study 2

10:15 AM – 1st Presentation – Dr. John Bombaro

11:30 AM – Table Discussion and Prayer

12:00 PM – Lunch at Living Faith Lutheran

1:00 PM – 2nd Presentation – Dr. John Bombaro

2:15 PM – Table Discussion and Prayer

2:30 PM – Break

2:45 PM – Lutheran Church of Pakistan Project

4:00 PM – Question and Answer

4:30 PM – Overview of Islam – Rev. Bruce Lieske

5:00 PM – Dinner at Living Faith Lutheran

6:00 PM – Evening Prayer in the sanctuary

7:00 PM – Reception at Living Faith Lutheran

                     Tuesday: January 14, 2020                      

8:00 AM – Coffee and Fellowship

8:30 AM – Matins in the sanctuary

9:15 AM – Bible Study 3

10:15 AM – 3rd Presentation – Rev. Jim Krikava

11:30 AM – Table Discussion and Prayer

12:00 PM – Midday Prayer and Departure

+VDMA+

 

 

Reformation Day Celebration

SOLA SCRIPTURA.  SOLA GRACIA.  SOLA FIDE.

All congregations in Georgia are invited to bring friends and join us for a festive Reformation Day Celebration at Living Faith Lutheran Church, 1171 Atlanta Hwy, in Cumming.  We gather to receive our Lord’s powerful Word and Sacraments in order to be refreshed and renewed by His astounding grace!  Praise our Lord for all He has said to us and for all He has done!

The REFORMATION CHOIR will have its rehearsal at 2:30 PM and ALL are welcome.  Living Faith’s director of parish music, Nancy Smith, will be directing and leading on the newly installed organ.  If you are not in the choir, gather early also at 2:30 PM to hear about how God is working in the our congregations.

The Divine Service begins at 4 PM with the Rev. Hiruy Gebremichael of St. Mark Lutheran Church preaching.  There is a complete German Dinner to follow.

A free will offering will go to support the Lutheran school ministry to our partner church in Africa through the direct support of some of their students.

For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.  For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.   ~ Ephesians 2:8-10

To the glory of God and the salvation of man!

 

Ordination of Myoung Eon Kang

Dearest brothers and sisters in Christ,

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!

On August 18, 2019, Living Faith Lutheran Church in Cumming, Georgia would like to invite you to the ordination of Myoung Eon Kang at 4 PM.  Myoung’s ordination will take place within the Order of the Divine Service with President Greg Walton preaching, and pastors Chang Soo Kim and Tim Droegemueller presiding.  A fellowship dinner will follow in the parish hall.   Pray for Myoung Eon and his wonderful family as he prepares to serve the Lord faithfully as a pastor in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod!

 

Gospel For The Filthy

Sermon by the Rev. Steve Schave
Acts 15:6-11
The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter. And after there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “Brothers, you know that in the early days God made a choice among you, that by my mouth the Gentiles should
ear the word of the gospel and believe. And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, and he made no distinction between us and them, having cleansed their hearts by faith. 10 Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? 11 But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.”
You can’t deny that Jews and Gentiles were distinct. The covenant belonged to God’s people, and the lineage of the Messiah was theirs.  While those Gentiles worshipped all sorts of idols and chased after false gods. Yes, Israel had the commandments, the prophets, the purification rites, the holy temple…  and the Gentiles were unclean unholy pagans. So is it any wonder that the brothers were concerned about the Gentiles breaking rank to be numbered among God’s people?  Surely, they will never be at the same level of holiness!  And if those heathens wish to be saved they must follow the custom and Law of Moses perfectly, right?  That’ll show ‘em if they think they belong! 
But it has been a long time now, since our brother Peter was chosen by God to preach the Gospel to the Gentiles, it has been a long time now that they have been receiving the same Holy Spirit and cleansed hearts to show, there are no distinctions by heritage – and yet the resistance and debating continues.  Those Judaizers, am I right? They will always see us and them, second class citizens in the church, putting God to the test by placing the yoke of legalism on the neck of the disciples – that even their own fathers were unable to bear.  Tempting God to weigh so heavily upon the second-class disciple that they will not have the strength to reach their level of holiness, to be of the same Spirit.
But what of us? Will we put God to the test? As Lutherans we are not bewitched by a false gospel that requires works of the Law for salvation.  We were taught that we did not have to perform great deeds in order to become inheritors of the Kingdom.  We understand that we are branches grafted into the family tree of Abraham by grace through faith alone.  Surely, we would not fall for some false understanding of second-class citizens in the Christian church, with some of us on a higher spiritual plane than others.  Certainly, we would not show some distinction like the Judaizers in the early church, or like the very pillars of the church there in the holy city who question Peter and Paul for who they associate with and how to make disciples.  But do we really desire that by Peter’s mouth the Gentiles should hear the word of the Gospel and believe?  Guys like Peter and Paul have been spending their days in those God forsaken cities… gentile capitals… the worst of the worst centers for worshipping heathen gods among pagan people. To sit at table with the lowest of the lowdown filthiest sinners? Would we put God to the test, with prejudice against certain zip codes or certain people groups? Would it make your stomach queasy at the thought of sharing the table with someone really unclean, or unfit to be a member of the household of God because they are not of the right pedigree? Would you have God put a yoke on their neck to drive them to the ground?  What if God put His yoke on you to reach His level of holiness? I think we all know that we would be crushed under the weight of His perfect Law. We would soon see that there is no distinction in our heritage: pimps and prostitutes, heroin addicts and drug dealers, human traffickers and gang members… and us… we are all sons of Adam and daughters of Eve.  We all have unclean hearts filled with prejudice and disdain for our fellow man.  Not one of us can carry the weight of the Law or keep our heart clean from sin.
No, the only way we will be saved is if God will put His love to the test. Betrayal, trials, denials, scourging, lashing, piercing, suffocating… blood and sweat and tears… the love of God is put to the test. And His love alone will prevail, for us all. Christ stepped into our zip codes, reclined at table among sinners, spoke to us at the temple and at our wells, preached to us in the temple court and from our mountainsides… for all who had ears to hear.  Jesus died on the cross without distinctions, He suffered and died, and carried the yoke for the sins of Jews and Gentiles alike, unworthy sinners that we may be.  And now the Spirit has told us to go, making no distinctions – to go where the Spirit sends.  To the small towns and the big cities alike, to the rich and to the poor, making disciples of all ethnos – here at our doorsteps and to the ends of the earth.  To see in all people, fellow sinners that God desires to add to the family tree, to have a seat at His table.   Sent into every home to proclaim the message that saves, baptizing these whole households with the Holy Spirit.  As even those we would least expect are welcomed into the family of God.  To stand in awe of the grace of God as the same gift that was given to us when we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, is given to even the least and the lost among us. That we might have the joy of bringing these gifts, even if it is to the chagrin of those who are offended by whom we associate with. As we too have been on the receiving end of mercy that we could never deserve, and yet nothing would stand in the way of Christ’s love for us.  And so, as we bring Christ in these dark and latter days to a broken and dying world, we will simply say, “Who am I to put God to the test, as to who might be saved, when His love was tested for us all upon the cross?