the Word: Reformation Sunday

God speaks this week through these scriptures:

Jeremiah 31:31-34I will write my law in their hearts, says the LORD
Psalm 46 The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our stronghold.
Romans 3:19-28 Justified by God’s grace as a gift
John 8:31-36 Jesus says, Continue in my word and you will know the truth

In Jeremiah, we hear the promise that God will continue a covenant of grace. Christians have seen that new covenant, and the forgiveness of sin and knowledge of God it brings, as embodied in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ and renewed at the Supper—”the new covenant in my blood.”

In Romans, we hear that it is faith in Christ that saves, not “law,” that is, religious practices stipulated in the Torah, nor by “boasting” in our church either. The church is called perpetually to renew its faith in God’s grace.

In John, Jesus delivers a poetic, almost philosophical statement about his identity, the word he embodies, and the life he offers believers. It is not the church, or any one church, that is truth; rather, Jesus Christ is truth. No church can claim ownership of the word; rather, Jesus Christ is the Word. The son is free, that is, free to remain in the house. We gather around that word to receive the truth and experience life in the Father’s house.

You are invited to worship with us on this Reformation Sunday, to celebrate and share God’s freeing and redefining love, to hear that through Christ God has freed us from the power of sin and gives us the Spirit to live the way of salvation, and to join in praise and prayer that the Holy Spirit would continue to unite the church today in its proclamation and witness to the world.

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