Reflections: Wednesday of the Seventh Week after Trinity

Today’s Reading: Small Catechism: Third Petition of the Lord’ s Prayer

Daily Lectionary: 1 Samuel 17:48-18:9; Acts 27:9-26

Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. (Small Catechism: Third Petition of the Lord’ s Prayer)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. God’s will is done when He breaks and hinders every evil plan and purpose of the devil, the world, and our sinful flesh. God gave His Word to Adam and Eve—His good command not to eat of the fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The devil hated God and enacted his evil purpose and plan for the downfall of the man and woman whom God had created in love. He tempted them to disobey God’s Word of life, bringing sin and death into the world. 

Since then, Satan’s evil purpose and plan have continued to be the downfall of man. And ever since the Fall, the sin-corrupted world and our sin-corrupted flesh have been his allies. Luther called the devil, the world, and our sinful flesh the “unholy trinity,” a united terrible force bent on our eternal destruction. 

Only one man stood in their way—the God-man, Jesus Christ. Here the Creator of the world, who had taken on uncorrupted human flesh, stood stronger than the devil. Only He could oppose the “unholy trinity” and have a prayer of winning. Imagine the devil’s sinister glee when his greatest enemy was crucified, dead, and buried. Little did he know that the Cross was his undoing. For there at the Cross, God offered Himself in the place of sinners. Jesus “overcame the assaults of the devil and gave His life as a ransom for many.” He “was sacrificed for us and bore the sins of the world. By His dying He has destroyed death, and by His rising again He has restored to us everlasting life.”

This is God’ s will—to save you, to defeat the “unholy trinity” in His Cross and resurrection, to baptismally unite you to Jesus in His dying and rising, to give you faith so that you hallow God’ s holy Name, live as a citizen of His kingdom, and be strengthened and kept firm in His Word and faith until you die and are raised to live with Him forever. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

Christ the Lord of hosts, unshaken By the devil’s seething rage, Thwarts the plan of Satan’ s minions; Wins the strife from age to age; Conquers sin and death forever; Slams them in their steely cage. 

Jesus came, this word fulfilling, Trampled Satan, death defied; Bore the brunt of our temptation, On the wretched tree He died. Yet to life was raised victorious; By His life our life supplied. (“Christ, the Lord of Hosts, Unshaken” LSB 521, st.1, 4)

-Rev. Jeffrey Ware is pastor of All Saints Lutheran Church in Charlotte, NC.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch

Christians need to aspire to being people of THE faith. Not just any will do. In Faith Misused, Dr. Alvin Schmidt shares his case for a Christian reclaiming of the word “faith” from its ambiguous modern uses. Now available from Concordia Publishing House.