Reflections: Thursday of the 19th Week after Trinity

Today’s Reading: Ephesians 4:22-28

Daily Lectionary: Deuteronomy 29:1-29; Matthew 18:21-35

Therefore, having put away falsehood, let each one of you speak the truth with his neighbor, for we are members of one another. (Ephesians 4:25)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. 

Have you ever told a lie? The thing with telling a lie is that you have to remember who you told it to and what you said. But as a lie is not the truth of what should have been spoken, in order not to be found out you have lied, most likely another lie is going to have to be made up. Is this starting to seem a bit complicated? Would it not have been all the easier to speak the truth in the first place?

St. Paul in writing his letter to the Ephesians speaks of what sits behind a lie. Your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires (Ephesians 4:22). This is talk of what life is like before the renewal of your minds, the renewal that takes place through putting your baptism into practice by confessing your thoughts, words, and actions that are at odds with living a God pleasing life. Having confessed your sins, you are forgiven in Christ’s death on the cross, and through his resurrection, you get to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness (v 24)

Through practicing your Baptismal life, confessing your sins, and being forgiven, the last thing on your mind is to lie. You prefer to speak the truth, because you do not need to hide your wrongdoing as it has been removed in the waters of baptism, and Christ’s forgiveness saturates you. This gives you the confidence to speak the truth with your neighbor. You will want to serve your neighbor in love, doing what is best for them. Let them not continue to live in falsehood but move towards bringing them to the awareness they are not living a God-pleasing life. Encourage them to put off their old self and put away falsehood and receive forgiveness so they may live in true righteousness and holiness. For they too can live in the forgiveness of Christ and in turn, have something to share with anyone in need. 

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Let us daily die to sin; Let us daily rise with Him, Walk in the love of Christ our Lord, Live in the peace of God. (“Father Welcomes” LSB 605 st. 3)

-Rev. Carl Thiele is the Parish Pastor in Rosewood, Queensland, Australia

Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch

Study Christ’s words on the cross to see how you can show more Christlike grace in your life. Perfect for group or individual study, each chapter has a Q&A at the end, and the back of the book includes a leader guide. Available now from Concordia Publishing House.