ROUGHLY EDITED COPY LUTHERAN WORSHIP 2 53.LW2 Captioning provided By: Caption First, Inc. P.O. Box 1924 Lombard, IL 60148 ******** This text is being provided in a rough draft format. Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) is provided in order to facilitate communication accessibility and may not be a totally verbatim record of the proceedings. ******** >> PAUL: I guess I'm the last one to introduce myself. I'm Paul. My ministry is chiefly among Haitian immigrants and Miami Dade County Florida. In my former life, I worked with computer technology. I would like to ask you a question about the Lutheran confessions. What do they reject as tools of Holy Spirit? >> DR. JAMES BRAUER: Paul, our confessions work in a nifty way in that they give the positive, and then they give the negative. So you've asked the question what do they reject. And if you read on an Article 5 of the Augsburg Confession you will discover they say this, "Condemned are the Anabaptists." Now, they name names, hoping to agree here with the Roman Catholics obviously, the Anabaptists, those who reject the means of grace. "Condemned are the Anabaptists and the others," so they cover everybody, "Who teach that we obtain the Holy Spirit without the external word of the gospel." So they think the Spirit comes directly. It doesn�t need the word of God. "Through their own preparations, thoughts, and works." Now, we are surrounded in the United States by people who want God to come to them this way. Let me just meditate. If they do the Eastern meditation, it works this way: you empty your mind. Let me repeat that. You empty your mind, don't think of anything, and God is to come to you that way. This is rejected. Through your own thoughts. OK, so this would be your own teachings. You say, I'm looking for a God that will do this. Will you get God that way? No. That would be trying to approach him through heresy, your own thoughts, your own works. All right, so I'm going to be a good person. God's got to like me. That's rejected. So what they're saying by this, rejecting all these things is they're relying on the means, the promise of God that through faith in Christ, you can have God's mercy. And you can have enough mercy to cover all your sins to bring you everlasting life with him forever. That's our hope. That's right at the center, and there is no other way to get this.