And he died for all, that those who live would no longer live for themselves but for him who died in their place and was raised again. 2 Corinthians 5:15 (EHV)
If you buy something—whether it’s a shirt, a phone, a car, or something else it becomes your possession—it belongs to you because you bought it. And if something belongs to you, you can do whatever you want with it; it's yours you can do as you please! But if something is not yours can you do whatever you want with it? No, of course not; you have to take care of it and follow the rules of the person who gave it to you.
In the sixth chapter of his fist letter to the Corinthians Paul wrote, You are not your own, for you were bought at a price. Jesus, of course, bought us; and his blood is the price he paid for us, as we confess in Luther’s explanation of 2nd Article of the Apostles’ Creed: He has redeemed me, a lost and condemned creature, purchased and won me from all sins, from death and from the power of the devil, not with gold or silver, but with his holy, precious blood and with his innocent suffering and death.
As our passage above tells us, it wasn’t just me whom Jesus redeemed, but all—he died for all. Through Jesus’ death on the cross, he has paid the penalty for our sins, he suffered the death that we deserve. And if Jesus died for all, then he also rose for all. His resurrection means that we will live even though we die. On the Last Day all people, believers and unbelievers alike will be raised from the dead—believers will be taken into eternal glory, while unbelievers will suffer forever.
If Jesus shed his blood for us on the cross to pay for our sins and if he rose from the dead to give us eternal life, then our life isn’t really our own. We belong to Christ—ours is a borrowed life. And if we belong to Christ, then we must do what he wants us to do; our lives aren’t our own to do as we please, they belong to Christ and he tells us what are we told to do: to no longer live for ourselves, but for Christ who died for us.
But that’s the problem. We often live for ourselves—we are selfish and self-centered. We care about what we want—what makes us happy, what we enjoy; doing what we want to do. How many times have we thought to ourselves, “It’s my life, I can do what I want. No one can tell me what I have to do!”
And that’s why Jesus suffered and died on the cross; that’s why he shed his blood—to forgive all our sins. His sacrifice on the cross was a self-less act; Jesus didn’t live for himself, or seek what was best for his personal self; rather he obeyed the will of his Father and did what was best for us.
And as a result, we live not for ourselves, but we live for Christ. That means we live to give him honor and glory. How do we give him glory? By singing his praises and worshiping him—putting him first in our lives, by telling others about him, by studying his Word. We live for Christ by obeying his commands—doing what he wants us to do, even when it’s not what we want to do. We do this by treating others as we want to be treated, by showing love to all people—we could go on and on.
Will you always do that perfectly? Of course not, not even for one hour of every day. And that is why Jesus died for all people—to forgive us. Motivated by his love for you, we then strive to live our lives for him, just as he lived a perfect life for us!
Paul Gerhart shared these thoughts in the final stanza of his classic hymn, “O Sacred Head, Now Wounded” (CW 113).
Your cords of love, my Savior, Bind me to you forever;
I am no longer mine.
To you I gladly tender All that my life can render
And all I have to you resign.
— Pastor Frey
This Sunday will be the last Sunday for Pastor Frey's Sunday morning Bible Class on Genesis 1 – 11.
Pastor Gartner will conclude his Monday/Tuesday Bible class, "What Must I Do To Be Saved -- A Study of God's Gospel and the Words The Holy Spirit Uses To Proclaim It" on this coming Monday and Tuesday.,
Sunday School Singing
Sunday May 19 will be the last Sunday for this Sunday School year. The children will be singing "The First Song of Isaiah". Any member of the congregation is invited and encouraged to sing along with them. It is a wonderful opportunity for our younger members and our "older" members to join together in praising God. Even if you couldn’t attend a practice but would still like to sing, plan on joining us.
Summer Worship Schedule
Please note that starting Sunday May 26 our worship services will be at 8:00 and 10:00 am. Our Monday service time will remain at 6:30 pm.
Summer Sunday Bible Study
New this Summer we will be offering a family type Bible Study on all non-Communion Sundays beginning Sunday June 9th. The study is entitled, “The ABC’s of Worship — Lutheran Customs and Practices.” It is our prayer that through this study God will lead us to grow in our appreciation of the Gospel as it is reflected in the way we worship. This class is intended for members of all ages so everyone can join us. There is a booklet that accompanies this study which you may purchase to guide you in your study. (A sample copy is on the back counter to look at — Please don’t take this copy!) Please sign up on the back counter if you would like one of these booklets. The cost will be around $3.00.
Pine Car Derby/Hot Wheels Race
Our pine car derby is today, Sunday, May 19. We will begin with a pot-luck lunch at 11:45 followed by the race. Everyone is welcome to come cheer on our racers. Racers, please check-in your car with a race leader in the church basement between 10:00 and 10:45 this morning.
Also, back by popular demand, we will also have a Hot Wheels race following the pine car race. Bring a hot wheels size car to race down the track and see whose car is the fastest! Please contact Sarah Ziesemer with any questions.
Updates From April Voter’s Meeting
1. Our pipe organ is in need of repairs. We currently have a quote for $20,000 and are currently exploring all our options. 2. The council is suggesting a number of changes to our current by-laws, including removing and adding certain council positions. A copy of the by-laws with the proposed changes (highlighted in red) is available in the back of Church. If you have comments, questions or input for either of these items, please talk to one of the pastors or the council members.
The entire Bible of the Evangelical Heritage Version (EHV) translation of the Bible which is a translation produced by the Wartburg Project, a group of WELS and ELS pastors and professors., is now complete and will be published this summer. You now have an opportunity to preorder this Bible at a discounted bulk-rate price (around $17.00). There is no need to pay right away. once we receive the Bibles we will inform those who have signed-up and how to pay for their order. There is a sign-up sheet on the back counter if you wish to order a new EHV. There are also pamphlets on the back for more information on this new translation. The deadline to sign up will be May 31. For more information, please talk to Pastor Frey or Pastor Gartner.