getting out the WORD - reformation sunday PDF Print E-mail

the PRAYER...
Almighty God, gracious Lord, we thank you that your Holy Spirit renews the church in every age. Pour out your Holy Spirit on your faithful people. Keep them steadfast in your word, protect and comfort them in times of trial, defend them against all enemies of the gospel, and bestow on the church your saving peace, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.

the READING...
Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, "If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free."

John 8:31-36

Four "gospels." Three look at Jesus, pretty much, from the same vantage point: Matthew, Mark, and Luke. And then, there's John! The gospel that marches to its own drummer! Reading through this week's passage, the word that jumps out is the word 'truth.' A word used once in Matthew, three times each in Mark and Luke, and twenty-one - count 'em - twenty-one times in John! Of course, our first instinct is to read it like it came from a Superman comic. "Truth, justice, and the American way!" Hard and fast. Chapter and verse. Written in stone. No compromise. No concessions.

But for John, truth is more human, more humane, than that. Truth for John has a warmth, a breath, a heartbeat. In fact, just five-and-a-half chapters from now, Jesus will say, "I am the truth!" Truth is Jesus! And the same goes for Reformation. Reform isn't formula or fact. Or philosophy or ideal. Reform - right from the start - has always been person! Jesus! Given! Shed! For all!

Bob Barndt, pastor

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