ASCENSION – WEEK 1 – TUESDAY
LESSON: MATTHEW 10:24-33
I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. My eye wastes away because of grief, it grows weak because of all my foes. Psalm 6:6-7
The chief requisite for a consistent confession of faith is a firm faith, and it is almost certain that the cross will follow upon a consistent confession of faith. Another experience that we will have, whether in life or in death, is that all that we have done can be represented in such a light that it seems to be opposed to God and Scripture.
It would be better for us to learn this from men here in this life rather than from the devil in death. For men can never push a matter beyond our ears. But the devil has a very sharp tongue and can push something right into our heart, making it tremble, and filling us with such fear that we imagine ourselves to be lost and ruined and that heaven and earth, God and all His angels, are opposed to us. This is what the prophet is speaking about in the words quoted above from the psalm. It is hard to stand fast in such a situation.
From all this, you also see why so few actually confess their faith in a thoroughly consistent manner. One man is afraid of his wife; another man is afraid of his children. There is also concern for property. There are also those, and they are perhaps a majority, who are afraid of themselves.
SL 11:994 (5)
PRAYER: Remove from us all fear of men and other earthly considerations, heavenly Father, and let our confession at all times ring out loud and clear, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
Editor’s note: No American Edition (AE) equivalent for today’s sermon excerpt exists at the time of this publication. For an alternate English translation of this sermon, see Lenker, Church Postil—Gospels, 3:244-254.