LESSON TWENTY-TWO 2009-2010

LAW, GOSPEL & THE MEANS OF GRACE
  1. "Sacraments as Means of Grace" (S. 116; continued)
    1. "The Gospel of John and the Sacraments" (S. 136)
      1. Gospel of John
        1. Provided Lutherans support re: Baptism.
        2. Traditionally, not re: Lord's Supper.
        3. Zwingli depended on John to support his position re: Supper.
        4. Luther:
          1. Main reason for separation from Reformed was Lord's Supper.
          2. Found no reference to Supper in John's Gospel, his favorite. (S. 136)
          3. Refused to admit John 6 into debate at Marburg with Zwingli in October, 1529.
          4. Zwingli based argument on John 6:63.
        5. Calvin, et al agreed with Zwingli:
          1. That baptism did not regenerate.
          2. That Supper's elements not to be identified with His actual body and blood.
        6. S.D. VII, 61 [-66] (Tappert, pp. 580, 581; Kolb & Wengert, pp. 604, 605).
      2. John 6
        1. Determining place in bread discourse on Supper, requires asking two questions:
          1. "Did Luther intend this debate to be hermeneutically determinative forever for Lutherans"?
          2. Is "Zwingli's exclusively spiritual interpretation of John 6 correct"? (S. 136f)
        2. Luther never claimed to have "established a once-and-for-all exegesis". (S. 137)
        3. Zwingli's "neoplatonic view of the Spirit overcoming the chasm between spirit and the physical has no place in biblical interpretation." (S. 137)
        4. Spirit
          1. Given with and by Son from Father.
          2. Jn 15:26.
          3. Spirit's participation in means of grace must be understood in trinitarian sense.
          4. Jn 6:52-63.
            1. Through Jesus, "Bread of Life".
            2. Comes Father to believer.
            3. To whom Spirit gives life.
          5. Arguments against John 6 reference to Supper.
            1. Supper not yet instituted.
            2. But then John 3 [:3-8] not usable re: baptism.
            3. John 6 uses "flesh" while synoptic gospels use "body".
            4. But John does not use "baptism" or "baptize".
            5. Nicodemus' ignorance re: baptism and regeneration reveals his unbelief.
            6. Crowd responsible for their unbelief in John 6 (Jn 6:52, 53).
            7. In both, necessity connected to necessity of faith.
        5. Refusing means of grace is act of unbelief.
        6. Early church fathers divided re: John 6.
        7. Argument re: John 6 continues today.
    2. "Word and Sacraments as Distinct Means of Grace" (S.139)
      1. Both work forgiveness.
      2. Each distinct from other.
      3. Preaching
        1. Concerns hearing.
        2. Even though Word can be read.
        3. Ro. 10:17.
        4. Spirit heard but not seen.
        5. Addressed to mind through ear.
        6. Therefore, must be intelligible to hearers.
        7. 1Co [14]: 2-19.
        8. Speaking in tongues not a means of grace.
      4. Sacraments
        1. Concern what is "touched and handled" (S. 139)
        2. Spirit "clothed in earthly elements" (S. 139)
      5. All means of grace (not just ones specifically commanded).
        1. Derive meaning from Gospel.
        2. Have forgiveness as final purpose.
      6. Commanded rites.
        1. Distinct in workings.
        2. Not interchangeable.
        3. Preached Word: "the ear".
        4. Sacraments: "ear, eye, and body". (S. 139)
        5. Must be administered in proper order.
        6. Word:
          1. Creates faith: intended for all.
          2. Anticipates baptism.
        7. Baptism: look back to Word by which came to faith.
        8. Baptized receive Christ in Supper.
      7. Each means of grace is action of Trinity.
      8. Through all:
        1. Christ creates and confirms faith.
        2. Continues to invite believers to Him.
        3. Mt. 11:28.
        4. Invited them to where He may be found.
      9. Word
        1. Prior to Sacraments.
        2. Gives them "their salvific character and efficacy." (S. 141)
        3. Sacraments not to be administered apart from proclamation of Gospel.
      10. Life of believer
        1. Hearing Word.
        2. Baptism remains "safe haven" returned to daily.
      11. Each means has its particular glory. (S. 142)

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