A portrait of Martin Luther
Bible Readings and Devotion for September 18, 2020
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Devotion for September 18, 2020
By Pastor David Tinker
Luther’s last words are central to our understanding of how the Good News of Jesus for our lives. Luther died of heart disease on February 18, 1546. These words were written down on a scrap of paper that Luther had in his pocket on his deathbed: “We are beggars; this is true.” These words summarize the truth that we are fully dependent upon the Lord for life and hope and salvation and all of our daily needs.
In light of this, remember, one of the great realizations of our faith lives is that God is God and we are not. Another realization which helps us is that our lives, our gifts and talents and abilities, are all from God. From this we move into the understanding that our callings in life are a beautiful and powerful work of God for us.
In our reading from 2 Corinthians 3 we hear from St. Paul about his ministry to and for the people of the church in Corinth. We read, “Not that we are competent of ourselves to claim anything as coming from us; our competence is from God, who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant…” Paul understood and taught that our gifts and abilities and calling for ministry and service are from the Lord himself.
As we realize all this, and join with Paul in pointing to the Lord, the source of all good things in our lives. A further realization is that is necessary is that we have the calling and the resources to make the best we can of what God has provided.
Almighty God, Father of all mercies, we humbly thank you for your goodness to us and to all that you have made. We praise you for your creation, for keeping us and all things in your care, and for all the blessings of life. Above all we bless you for your immeasurable love in redeeming the world by our Lord Jesus Christ, for the means of grace, and for the hope of glory. And, we pray, give us such an awareness of your mercies that with thankful hearts we praise you, not only with our lips but in our lives, by giving ourselves to your service and by living in your gifts of holiness and righteousness all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with you and the Holy Spirit, be all worship and praise, now and forever. Amen