July 26, 2008 - Saturday of the 9th Week after Trinity

Daily Lectionary: 1 Samuel 10:1-27; Acts 22:17-29

O God, save me, by your name, and vindicate me by your might. (From the Introit for Trinity 9)

The world rises up against us and we turn on the television to see all the sins we have learned in our Catechism. The very opposite of what the 10 Commandments teach has become acceptable before the eyes of men. People live together outside of marriage, forsaking God’s gift of Holy Marriage, they steal from their friends, family and government in the name of their desires and they say things about you that defile your character and soil your reputation. They’re out to get you.

In the introit for this Sunday we pray that the Lord would save us by His name. He does exactly what we pray for in Holy Baptism. He saves us from ourselves and our sinful nature. We are determined, it seems, to try it on our own. Time and time again we find ourselves binding our sins to our consciences rather than laying them on the Cross of Christ to receive Holy Absolution.

Yet, we are turned and come to God and beseech Him to save us by His name. When God saves us in Holy Baptism He seals His name upon us and no matter how many times we come back pleading this prayer the answer is still found in those waters.

The Lord delivers us from our affliction and from the sins of the world when He says, “Take, eat” and “Take, drink.” In these words He saves us from ourselves, giving us Holy Food. We become what we eat, vindicated by God and redeemed on the Cross. We become Holy because Jesus’s flesh and blood are Holy.

All of this is done in His name. His name is how He saves us. His name preserves us in an ark of salvation amidst a world flooded by sin. His name preserves us in our thirst and starvation and His name preserves us by hands that heal and words that forgive.

We are vindicated in this way—that God sent His Son into world. We are vindicated in this way—that Jesus Christ died on the Cross for the forgiveness of the world. We are vindicated in this way, by His name sealed upon us with an eternal promised. In this way we are vindicated. In the name of Jesus, Amen.

We deserve but grief and shame, Yet His words, rich grace revealing, Pardon, peace, and life proclaim; Here our ills have perfect healing. Firmly in these words believe: Jesus sinners doth receive. (LSB 609:2)