Who is a Christian… and who is not?

Just because someone does not understand the Sacraments as Lutherans understand them, does that mean that they are not saved?

No, it doesn’t mean that at all. All it means is that the assurance that God’s so dearly wants us to have, is compromised. It also means their Christian freedom, that God wants them to enjoy, is compromised. It means (quite often) that they will be engaging in “religious activities” to prove to themselves and others that they really do have the faith that they claim to have.

We don’t know who the true believers are. “The wheat and tares grow together.” Only God knows the hearts of people and He will separate those whom He knows from those He doesn’t know, at the Day of judgement.

Anyone who professes Christ Jesus, I call brother, or sister. After that, we can have some good discussions about just what that means.

I just wanted to make this clear to anyone who thought I was being judgemental in the last post. As St. Paul said, “I judge no one. I don’t even judge myself.” Only Christ is qualified to fill that job description.

Thanks.

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6 Responses

  1. I wish others would use the “if you profess Jesus then we’re brothers” and after that we can talk about the differences.

  2. Charlie,

    Yeah…I think we ought give the benefit of any doubt to those who say they believe. And, as Lutherans, we also speak of the Baptized. For all the reasons in the last post.

    I can say this much, if someone were to follow me around for a few days, and if they could read my thoughts as well as see what I did…then the verdict might very well fall against me.

    Thanks, my friend.

    I’ll have to get back over to your site and check out what’s going on at:

    http://charlieschurchofchrist.wordpress.com/

  3. “What happens in the supper is that when the promise is spoken, the veil that hangs over creation is drawn back and you get a glimpse of what was always really there – of the really real…the new creation that waits for us. The veil is open and you see the truth – the ultimate unity of the earthly and the heavenly, Christ’s presence in bread and wine”. Gerhard Forde. That is deep and rich and sacramental is the most precious sense, because it brings us to Christ, to the Cross, to the foretaste of the new creation… what a table to share!

  4. Wht a great quote from Forde, Howard.

    “A foretaste of the new creation”. Awesome.

    Thanks, very much.

  5. Steve,
    This is one of the reasons I appreciate you so much and am glad to call you brother.

    Shalom.

  6. Thanks, Jeff!

    That goes for me, as well, brother!

    Slalom (that’s skier talk). 😀

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