Full Text for CTM Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 16-5 (Text)

Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 319 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference Ascension Day Luke 24:50-53 The doctrine of Christ's ascension is of primary importance. Only when this doctrine is believed, can Christ's work for and in His Church be properly understood; only then can believers suc­cessfully carryon their work. Mounting up the Glory Road 1. Its significance for Christ. The work of redemption had been completed. It was proved to be sufficient (resurrection). The Apostles had received further instruction. Acts 1: 3. To accomplish world-wide distribution of the Gospel, Matt. 28: 19, 20, Christ ascended into heaven. The ascension had an impressive prelude. Jesus directed His disciples from Jerusalem out toward Bethany, a place rich in mem­ories. John 11; Matt. 26: 6. Acting as the great High Priest, He blessed them. Cf. Lev. 9: 22. By raisbg His ah-nighty hands of grace He signified the actual conveying of divine blessing. The Savior's purpose in coming into the world was to gain for mankind the blessing of redemption. John 12:47. Fittingly, His final act was a benediction. In the midst of blessing His visible presence was withdrawn from the disciples. Christ needed no wii:­nesses to His resurrection; His disciples saw Him afterward; but the ascension was to be a visible parting from the disciples to establish this act as a historical fact for the Church of all time. Christ's ascension into heaven was not merely the entering into the abode of the blessed, Phil. 1: 23; but also to the right hand of God, 1 Pet. 3: 22. By His ascension far above all heavens He filled all things, Eph. 4: 10; and "being everywhere present, not only as God, but also as man," He "rules from sea to sea." Formula of Concord, Thor. Decl. VIII, 27. In ascending into heaven, Christ did not enter upon a period of inactivity, but actively, also as man, assumed the full reign over all creatures. Acts 2: 34-36; d. Ps. 8: 1, 6. Cf. F. C., Thor. Decl., VII, 119. In ascending, Christ truly mounted up the glory road. For Him it meant (1) that He might sit on the right hand of the Father, (2) that He forever reign over all creatures, (3) that He might sanctify the believers. Augsb. Com. III, 4 and 5. But it has a wonderful significance also for the believers. 2. Its significance for the believers. In regard to God. The disciples worshiped Jesus. This wor­ship was no longer connected with the hope of obtaining temporal 320 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference power, Matt. 20: 20, but given to the Lord of Glory, Acts 2: 36. It was connected not only with a better understanding but also with a firmer faith. In showing the significance of Christ's ascen­sion for the disciples, the text appropriately mentions their worship in the first place. John 5: 23. Our observance of Ascension Day is in vain unless it leads us first of all to worship the Savior. In regard to themselves. The grace bestowed upon the dis­ciples by the exalted Lord filled their life with great joy. Cf. Acts 8: 39. They were happy in their position (believers, witnesses) and in their hope (Pentecost, heaven). Christ's ascemsion in­fluences our whole life. Luke 12: 34. Faith in the ascended Lord gives our soul strength to rise above all temporal grief. We have the same Word and assurance given the Apostles. In regard to others. Publicly, regularly, they met in the Temple and bore testimony of their faith. In the Temple, where most Jews congregated, the disciples praised God, openly declared the wonderful things of their Savior. Faith in the ascended Christ causes us to bear witness by regular church attendance, personal mission work, and support of local and synodical church work. The blessing of Christ's ascension must be shared with others. Conclusion. -Ascension Day a day of thanksgiving. Christ mounted up the glory road -an exaltation for Him, a blessing for us. Lam. 3: 41. VICTOR MENNICKE Exaudi John 8:12-20 Between Ascension and Pentecost. As we think of the fact that Christ is not with us visibly since the Ascension, a complaint may arise in our hearts -wouldn't it have been much easier for us to believe in Him if He had continued with us visibly? Text, how­ever, indicates that many doubted even when they saw Him in the flesh. The Savior told His disciples that seeing was not the basis for accepting Him. John 20: 17, 29. Then How Can We Believe What Jesus Said About Himself? 1. If we understand what He really claimed about Himself 2. If through His witness we come to more than a mere fleshly faith 1 A. Jesus says that when men know Him, they know the Father also. V.19. -1. In Christ God's truth and grace is revealed to the world. John 1: 14,18. -2. Christ revealed the Father by demonstrating His plan and love for the world through His redemp­tion; and by speaking of Him. -3. Hence when Christ speaks of Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 321 Himself and describes His own work in the world, He makes the Father plain to men. 1 John 3: 16 a. B. Jesus says His record is true; as the true Son of God, He is in a position to say the truth about God; He is One with God. V.14. C. Accordingly this witness of Jesus to Himself refutes human objections. -1. The Pharisees objected that Christ had no cor­roboration for His claims. Christ points out that according to their own rule of evidence, He had corroboration -the word of the Father. Vv.17,18. Through the prophecy of the Old Testa­ment, through direct statements, e. g., at Jesus' Baptism and Trans­figuration, through the correspondence between God's word and will and the Savior's, through Christ's resurrection, the Father's witness is evident. -2. The Savior points out furthermore that His detractors were in no position to criticize. Not only did He have r!;"iH~ witnr~~ +~ the trAt.. ~f His ~~~ ~t..:ng; brL -'. ,e that teaching was divine, they were, as human beings, not in a position to declQ.I..-c it false v.a. u..uSl~PP0:a. Lr~U.. '.T.14. 2 ,l\.o .... ~le Savior "'wants us to _ ~lieve on 1..l..irn for more than huma ;ons; 110re r uthly LHNbUl; "ye J uuge after the flesh" -that is not enough. V.1S. B. He Hims,M prov.iclf"S this gilt of understanding and trust which is faith in the highest deg:ee -"T ____ the Light of the world." -1. The illumination necessary to find in Christ the Son of God and Savior of the world is a superhuman gift, the work of God and His Spirit. "I am," v.12; Matt. 16: 17; 1 Cor. 2: 14-16.-2. Christ is the fact because of which this illumination comes to man. Without Him and His work, man is in darkness; he does not know the way to God or understand the Father. V.19. Christ's work of redemption restores the relation between God and man that had been severed by man's sin, it renews the true Life of God in man; "in Him was Life, and the Life was the Light of men." John 1: 4. -3. Therefore "he that followeth Me shall not walk in dark­ness, but shall have the light of life." V. 12. That is an invitation. Jesus wants us to follow Him, i. e., count on His work as the source of our life and the story of His work as the source of our light. Faith in the highest sense does not wait for rational proofs or re­gard them as the bolster of true faith at all: but it follows Christ and thereby lays hold on true life. By using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the fact of His redemption, man comes not merely to a rational belief in Jesus, but actually to the witness of God in his own heart. 1 John 5: 8-12; 4: 13-16. RICHARD R. CAEIVIIVIERER 21 322 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference Pentecost Sunday John 14:15-21 Jesus at one time asked Peter: "Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou Me?" (John 21: 15-17.) That question must be addressed to each of us. Before you answer, remember, love does not mean merely lack of hatred. No, love means intense devotion. If we love a person, that person is very dear to us. We enjoy his com­pany. We love to hear him praised. What about our love for the Lord Jesus? Do we love Him, not only in word, but also in deed and in truth? This is a very serious matter! The holy Apostle in one place hurls an intense curse against everyone who does not love the Lord Jesus (1 Cor. 16: 22). On the other hand, the one who loves Jesus is a truly blessed, rich, and fortunate person. Our text points this out to us. Blessed, Yea, Richly Blessed Is Every Lover of the Lord Jesus 1 Because this love, in its very nature, is a most preciot~s pos­.~e s.~i()n, a. The Lord Jesus is worthy of our love. Our text indicates that the heavenly Father, the holy and pure God, loves Jesus, v.21. The Father loves Jesus so much that He loves also those who love Jesus. God is so well pleased with Jesus that He has given Him a name' that is above every name. He has made Him King of Kings and Lord of Lords. The Father loves Jesus because Jesus is so lovable. He is without sin, He is perfect, holy, pure, and with­out blemish. To love such a pure and good person will make us happy in the thought that our affection is so well placed. b. Moreover, in loving Jesus we are loving One who loves us. 1 John 4: 19. He has taken from us our most painful and shameful burden and has given us an inheritance of priceless value and everlasting, imperishable quality. 2 Cor. 8: 9. -To recognize this is to love Him as the Giver of all this treasure -that itself is happiness. No wonder that they who love the Lord Jesus sing such beautiful hymns of Him, e. g., "Jesus Christ, my Pride and Glory;" "Beautiful Savior;" "Jesus, Lover of my soul," etc., etc. Yea, blessed are the lovers of Jesus. Their heart is full of joy, their lips overflow with praise of the heavenly Bridegroom. 2 Because this love of Jest~s enters our heart from such a pure and holy Sot~rce. a. It is not created in us by some polluted lust, 'it does not originate from the low and shameful desires of the flesh which Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 323 drag men down into the mire of carnal self-indulgence, it does not come from the infatuation created by some deceitful person or by Satan himself. Adam and Eve were infatuated with the forbidden fruit. How miserable that deceitful lust made them. The Ismel­ites were made wretched by their longing for the fleshpots of Egypt. David was humiliated by the lust of the flesh, Judas was ruined by his love of the thirty pieces of silver. Thus there arc many whom an unworthy love holds captive. Poor souls whom the love of the world, the lust of the flesh, and the pride of life are holding in bondage! Such unholy love sets the heart aflame with the fire from hell. b. Our text points out to us the true Source of this precious love of Jesus. It comes from the Holy Spirit Himself. Text, vv.16,17. This Holy Spirit glorifies Jesus, John 16:14. He is the One who paints for us the picture of the Babe that was born for us, of the Savior who went about loving the uUlca::;l, the dejected, the sorrowful, the suffering, and helping them. The Holy Spirit for us thE ~ '~'!epherd VI' '.own His L~2 for the sheep. He it is who makes the Ll1vitation of Jesus effective: "Come unto Me, all ye t~::..~ ~_' ___ and are 11.,-_. ~ ~_.-"' __ 1, ana I w:':":' =ive you rest," and, ".HilTl that cometh to lVfe, I will in no wise cast out." Do not ;:;z :::~~';';.id. of this lv'v'::' ;:;;::Ldving you, L'" ~l:"" love of th" world deceives so many. Do not be afraid of too intense a love of the Lord Jesus. This love is created in our hearts by the holy God Himself, who by His Word creates faith in Jesus, and this faith "worketh by love." Therefore Peter testifies: 1 Pet. 1: 8. Is not the lover of the Lord Jesus a blessed person? In such a one the Holy Spirit is at work making the heart a temple of purity and bliss. Application: Be sure to give the Holy Spirit every oppor­tunity to create this pure love in your heart, so that you may rejoice in this lovp of ,Jpsus. The Holy Spirit works through the Gospel, Rom. 1: 16 and Gal. 3: 1-5. Hymn 351. ~ This love of Jesus leads us to obey the commandments of Jesus. Text, vv. 15 and 21. a. Besides those who are enslaved by shameful vices, like Ahab and Herod, there are others w'ho because of the threats of the Law or because they see the misery caused by gross vices, be­cause they fear the consequences, force themselves to lead an externally respectable life, they may even make sacrifices; but, oh, how miserable they are! Such people are in bondage, they feel their slavery, they groan under their miseries, some of them actually become tired of making sacrifices and of being "good," 324 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference and run into the vilest courses, like the Prodigal Son. Many of them never return, but perish with the swine. Their so-called goodness is nothing but hypocrisy and slavery. b. But all this is cured by the love of Jesus. When the Holy Spirit fills our heart with love for Jesus, then we recognize that Jesus' yoke is easy and His burden is light. Text, v.15. It is well known that whatever we delight to do becomes easier. Thus we hear of the disciples that they rejoiced because they were accounted worthy to suffer shame for Jesus' name, Acts 5:41. Do you think it was a hardship for Mary to sit at Jesus' feet and hear His word? Moses esteemed the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt. In spite of all that he suffered by preaching Christ, Paul rejoiced in the fruits which he saw of his labor in different places: in Philippi, in Ephesus, and in Thessalonica. He made requests "with joy." He remembered these souls with thanksgiving. Yea, blessed are they in whose hearts the Holy Spirit has created true, intense love of Jesus, to them the obeying of God's holy commandments becomes a joy. Even the burden and the cross of Christ are borne with patience. That beautiful hymn of praise "Oh, that I had a thousand voices" was composed by John Mentzer in the midst of tribulations. He declared that he wished to prove to the world that a lover of Jesus is happy even when bearing the cross. c. Our text impresses upon us that in such a lover of Jesus God Himself, the Father, the Holy Spirit, and the Son, come and dwell. Where God dwells, there goodness, love, and joy are at home. What a beautiful temple of God a human being thus be­comes. Instead of the poisonous vipers and the filthy, slimy ser­pents of wickedness, lust, envy, hatred, there lives in this temple the Father, who loves man more than Father and Mother love the child; the Holy Spirit, whose very presence insures purity; the Lord .Jesus, who is mighty to save and to guide. Such a heart is the most sacred place here on the face of the earth. There Jesus is glorified, man is purified, and the soul is lit up with the light of heaven. Such is the happiness of a lover of Jesus. Let us pray: Hymn 235, VV. 1 and 2. MARTIN S. SOMMER Pentecost Monday John 7:33-39 Upon the occasion of the Feast of the Tabernacles (v. 2) Jesus taught the people in the Temple, v.14, and many of them believed on Him, v. 31. But the enemies sought to take Him, v. 32. To enemies and friends alike Jesus spoke the words of our text­words of warning and invitation. Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 325 The Call to Become Vessels of the Holy Spirit 1. Many are hostile to this gracious call 2. Blessed are they who heed this call 1 Among the hearers of Christ during the Feast of Tabernacles were people who failed to make a salutary use of the presence of Jesus in their midst. The hostility of the Jews caused Jesus to exclaim: v. 33. The day of grace was fast drawing to a close for the Jews. Only a little while would Jesus be in their midst, offering them God's grace, forgiveness, eternal salvation. Many in these latter days fail to recognize the day of grace. They despise the Gospel and the Sacraments and therefore cannot become vessels of the Holy Spirit. What a warning to us! Luther, in referring to v. 33, says: "They are terrible words; I do not like to read them. And our best advice is not to think that the Gospel we now have will remain forever. . .. The Word cannot abide long, for ingratitude is too great, thus despising it and being satiated will cause it to disappear, for God cannot always look oUo" There­fore let us l"ememueI" the aumonition of the Apostle in 2 Cor. 6: 2. The Lord describes the pitiful spiritual confusion of those who railed to redeem their time of grace, v. 34. After the Lord would have withdrawn His visible presence from the earth, the Jews would yearn for the Messiah and seek His help and deliverance. But they would not find Him and thus experience the righteous retribution of God. John 13: 33. The Prophet foretold this spiritual famine for Israel. Amos 8: 11-14. Vv. 35, 36. Derisively the Jews refer to Jesus as "this fellow." Sneeringly they ridicule the Lord's statement about seeking Him where He could not be found. In spite of better knowledge they purposely misunderstood the warning of the Lord and stubbornly resisted its appeal. Today, as in the days of Noah, many in un­belief despise the Word and the Sacraments and reject the offer of salvation. May God preserve us from becoming hardened in our hearts! Heb. 3: 15. 2 V.37. This is the Lord's invitation to His hearers to become vessels of grace filled with the Spirit. In this call He alludes to the ceremonies of the Feast of the Tabernacles observed by the Jews in memory of their entrance into Canaan. "Daily during the festival, at the time of the morning sacrifice, a priest would fill a golden vessel with water at the Pool of Siloam and, together with the wine used for the sacrifice, pour it on the altar in commemora­tion of the water from the rock in the wilderness and their entry 326 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference into the land of springs and water." The Great Hallel was sung: Pss. 113-118. The rock in the wilderness, Ex. 17:6, out of which water came for the people to drink pointed forward to Christ as St. Paul as­serts 1 Cor. 10: 4. The Lord's call, v.37, refers to spiritual thirst, to be satisfied by the outpouring of the Holy Ghost in fulfillment of the prophecy. Is. 12: 3. They who experience real spiritual thirst are the weary and heavy laden who are invited to come to the Lord Jesus for spiritual rest and refreshment, pardon and forgiveness. Is. 55: 1-3; 58: 11; John 4: 14. Those who have thus been drawn to Jesus, are described by the Lord, v. 38, as believers, who by faith have become vessels of grace filled with the Spirit. Having been comforted, they are able to comfort others. 1 Cor. 1: 4. They are strengthened with might by the Lord's Spirit in the inner man, that He may dwell in their hearts by faith. Eph. 3: 16,17. As vessels of the Holy Spirit, the believer's life manifests itself by deeds of the Spirit for the benefit of others. While the Holy Spirit was active already in and through the r.hilrlrl?'n of God in the Old Testament, especially through the Prophets who foretold the coming of the Messiah, yet there would be a special manifestation of the work of the Spirit in the hearts of believers after the glorification of Christ through His return to the Father. This occurred on Pentecost, when the Spirit was poured out on the disciples. V. 39. Living water indeed has flowed from the lips of the believers of the Old Testament and in a greater measure from those of the believers of the New Testament. We think of Moses, David, and Isaiah of the Old Testament and then of the four Evangelists, Stephen, Peter, and Paul of the New Testament -all vessels of the Holy Spirit. We think also of Luther and Walther and many other consecrated pastors and teachers who faithfully preached and taught the Word, the vehicle of the Spirit. Nor will we forget the confessions, prayers, and hymns of the Church -all products of the vessels of the Spirit. Are we such vessels of grace filled with the Spirit? We still have the fullness of the Gospel, the doctrines of the Scriptures in their entirety and purity. What golden opportunities for pious fathers and mothers to lead their children to the Savior, to teach them to pray, opportunities for all Christians to confess their faith, to warn and comfort their fellow men and to support all endeavors to increase the number of vessels of the Spirit in this world. Jesus says: John 15: 26,27, and we pray: Hymn 224: 3. Amen. H. C. HARTING Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 327 Trinity Sunday Matt. 3:13-17 Introduction: John the Baptist and his mission, vv.I-6. Astounding Occurrences at the Jordan Where John was Baptizing 1. A unique Baptism 2. A unique revelation 1 V.13. Jesus came to John to be baptized. Strange. John preached the Baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, Luke 3: 3. It was a Baptism for sinners. And the people who were bap­tized by John confessed their sins. But to this Baptism comes the incarnate Son of God, who knew no sin, 2 Cor. 5: 21, who was holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, Heb. 7: 26. Strange, is it not? V.14. John considered it strange, even astounding. Among them that were born of women there had not risen a greater than John the Baptist, and yet he was a sinner who confessed: John 1: 27. And now this Jesus comes to John to receive the Baptism of repentance! But how could John be so sure that he was not mis­taken in the person to whom he denied Baptism? Did he not say, "I knew Him not"? John 1: 31. H must have had a strong in­timation that this was the Christ, the Son of the living God. Is it possible that his mother should never have told him about what had happened? Luke 1. Besides, his mother and the mother of Jesus were kinswomen, Luke 1:36. Is it possible that they should never have visited, as Luke 1: 39, with their sons? And then there was that impressive majesty of Jesus' appearance. But John had not yet received the God-appointed sign which would unmistakably and absolutely assure him, John 1: 33. V.15. Jesus lets John's statement stand as correct, but replies, v. 15, "It becometh us to fulfill all righteousness" -you to do what you have been sent to do, Me to do the will of Him that sent Me, to submit to all ordinances of My Father, including Baptism. All righteousness -all requirements of God's holy Law given to men, which they have not kept and cannot keep. Jesus here publicly declared Himself to be our Substitute to fulfill all our obligations to God, not only on this occasion, but throughout His whole life upon earth, in order to provide for us the righteousness with which we can stand before the searching eyes of our God. Unique? Astounding! Jesus, the spotless Son of God, takes our place, submits to Baptism for the remission of sins, sins which He had not committed, but which were charged to Him, 2 Cor. 5: 21, our sins. Now we who are baptized in His name and trust in His merits enjoy the free and full pardon for our iniquities. The 328 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference heavens, closed to us because of our sins, are now opened to us, v. 16, and the Holy Ghost makes us His temple, 1 Cor. 3: 16. Have we heard and read this so often that it leaves no deep impression on us? Even the angels stand in amazement before this miracle of godliness, 1 Pet. 1: 12. How can it leave us so cold? 2 Vv.16,17. This is Trinity Sunday, when we consider the doc­trine of the Holy Trinity. The doctrine of the three persons in the Godhead is clearly set forth in many passages of the Bible. Just to mention a few: Matt. 28: 19; John 16: 7 b; 2 Cor. 13: 14. Also in the Old Testament. Some Jewish rabbis of long ago felt that there must be a singular and deep mystery indicated by the threefold repetitions such as are to be found Num. 6: 24-26 and Is. 6: 3. We know what this mystery is: the three persons in the Godhead. But here in our text we have the astoundin;; revelation of the three Persons. Whose is the voice coming from heaven? The Father's. The Son is standing nt tJ'e been baptized and receiving the acclaim of His Father. The Holy Ghost descend­ing in u:i lighting on Him. Th: ilK[ persom standin .sing .__ _ __lree articles of the Cre _ _ .. _ _ __ Yet there are not three Gods, but one God, Deut. 6: 4; 1 Cor. 8: 4; Mark 12: ::\2. ThllQ t'h"'re is Trinity in Unity. "In the one Godhead there are three distinct Persons; the Father, the arld the Holy Ghost, indissolubly one in the same divine essen " and equal in power and divine glory and majesty." This is a doctrine which surpasses all understanding, which has no analogy, and which permits of no adequate illustration. It is a doctrine which is clearly revealed in the Bible and therefore a doc­trine that must be accepted by faith, a faith of the heart, which we so clearly and emphatically confess in the Athanasian Creed. (At least parts of it might be read to the congregation from the Con­cordia Triglotta.) We thank God for the astounding revelation at the Jordan of the thr':'e: persons ill the Godhead, and we sing with conviction, faith, and devotion such hymns as No. 251 or 252. R. NEITZEL First 81 lay after Trinity :t.19:16-25 The number of individuals and organizations that -~" ",em­selves religious are legion. Being religious is not enough_ God demands more. He demands discipleship in Christ. Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference 321} Who Is a Disciple of Jesus Christ? 1. Not the self-righteous man nor the servant of sin 2. But He only who in true faith follows Jesus 1 A. a. The young man was religious, honorable, earnest, a ruler of the synagog (Luke 18: 18), and interested in his soul, v.16. Yet his questoin revealed a wrong attitude. He thought the perform­ing of some good thing in addition to what he had already heaped up to his credit would insure his salvation. Jesus' answer posits all goodness in God, denies goodness to man, v.17, and therefore the ability to gain eternal life by his own effort, Ps. 51: 5; Rom. 3: 10,12; 9: 31-33; Trigt 785 f., 881£. b. Since the days of Jesus, millions of hermits, monks, and adherents of all shades of religious beliefs have tried to save themselves by their own efforts. But discipleship in Jesus Christ does not lie in that direction. The voice of Jesus is too insistent, "One thing thou lackest," Mark 10: 21. B. a. Thor _1_ soul and th LL _ j7"'-«~' ._--ll. showed a vital interest in his ~ out some good thing to ins"":~ his salvation, 1 n,--:l J __ "i_ ~ his nemesis, '.nl. 20 b-2~ commandments of the ~2cond Table seemed easy. But the disposi­tion of his heart became evident when confronted with the First Commandment. Money was his real god and the barrier separating him from the true God, vv. 22; 1 Tim. 6: 10; Eccl. 4: 7; 5: 10; Luke 12: 15. b. Whether rich or poor, too many today within the pale ot the Church have a desire to increase their possessions. Money in their eyes means power, prestige, influence, ease, health insurance, security, guarantee against want in old age. Ostensibly religious, their real worship centers around the altar of the Golden Calf and prevents that worshiper from drawing near to God, vv.23-26; Prov.14: 28; Matt. 13: 22; Luke 12: 15~21; Discipleship in Jesus: cannot be found on this path either. 2 A. Discipleship in Jesus is found only through faith in the atoning blood of thp rhrist" cT esus tells the ruler, "Come and follow Me!" Hithb; .LV Me! That is a plea to come to Jesus, to accept Him as His personal Savior, to become His disciple, Rom. 10: 4,9; PhiL 3: 9; 2 peL 1: 1. That which is impossible with men is pOSf'ihlp 'with God. God laid the iniquity of the world on Jesus who Hl His own bore our sins on the Cross, Is. 53: 6:' 1 Cor. 15: 3; 2 Cor. 5: 18-21; Rom. 3: 24-26. Discipleship in Jesus 330 Outlines on Gospels Adopted by Synodical Conference is found by everyone who follows the invitation of Jesus, Matt. 11: 28; who believes with Peter, John 6: 69; Matt. 16: 16; who kneels down with Thomas and says, John 10: 28; who worships with Mark, Luke 10: 42; who professes with Paul, Rom. 8: 38, 39; 2 Tim. 4: 7,8; who testifies with the writer of Hebrews, Heb.13: 8; who exults with John Bowring, Hymn 354, v.1 (The Lutheran Hymnal). B. Such faith will cause the Christian to follow Jesus in a sanctified life, to follow the example of Him whom we have accepted as our Savior; not in order to boast, v. 20, but to show one's gratitude to Him who died for us, 2 Cor. 5: 15; Eph. 5: 1-4; Phil 2: 1-15. Therefore a believer will use his earthly gifts in spreading the Lord's kingdom. The harvest is plenteous, Matt. 9: 37,38; the disciple of Jesus is ready, Is. 6: 8. All over the world God is showing us open doors where we can proclaim the Gospel of the Kingdom and make more disciples of Jesus. Our chaplains and many of our service men and women are proving themselves to be real disciples of Christ. We at home have determined on a $5,000,000 Thankoffering for expansion of the Kingdom at home and abroad. Neither are we unmindful of the obligations of dis­cipleship we owe one another, Col. 3: 10-24. Discipleship in Jesus rests alone on faith in Jesus, Eph. 2: 19-22. Blessed is every disciple of Jesus! ALEX W. GUEBERT