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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning the Mass – part 60

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Hebrews 13:10–15

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Mass 

As there may be several purposes for a single act, thanksgiving is also added. After conscience has been encouraged by faith and perceives its freedom from terror, then it may fervently give thanks for the blessings of Christ’s suffering. It uses the ceremony itself to praise God, through this obedience showing its gratitude, and testifying to the high esteem it holds for the gifts of God. Thus the ceremony becomes a sacrifice of praise.

Pulling It Together

Faith is the very thing that determines the right to eat at the Lord’s table. A person must first examine himself to see whether he has faith to eat and drink (1 Cor 11:28). Dining without faith is not only useless, it is damnable. But when faith is present, so is peace, since one is liberated from the fear of sin, judgment, and death. Once a person is freed from such fears, praise and thanksgiving flow from the heart. Without faith, this sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving are impossible.

Prayer: Open my heart, Lord, to declare your praise. Amen.

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