The Preaching of Repentance and Forgiveness of Sins Makes Us Pure
The risen Lord Jesus taught His disciples “that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead” and “that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in His name to all nations” (Luke 24:46–47). Therefore, St. Peter preaches repentance and forgiveness to the people of Jerusalem. As he proclaims that Jesus fulfilled all that “God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets” (Acts 3:18), he also convicts the people of their sin, because they “delivered over and denied” this Lord Jesus and “killed the Author of life.” Yet God “glorified His servant Jesus” and raised Him from the dead (Acts 3:13–15). St. Peter calls the people to repent, so that their “sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (Acts 3:19–20). Through this forgiveness of sins, and by faith in this forgiveness, the Father shows His love for us, in order that “we should be called children of God, and so we are” (1 John 3:1). Thus we hope in Him and are made pure even “as He is pure,” because “He appeared to take away sins, and in Him there is no sin” (1 John 3:5).
Monday, 16 April 2012—
16:11b— In Psalm 30, David
exuberantly worships the Lord, who has
drawn him up, healed him, and brought up his soul from Sheol (the grave.) He calls upon all
saints—including us—to sing praises to
the Lord and give thanks to His holy
Name, for we, too have been delivered from sin death, and the power of the
devil by the atoning sacrifice of Jesus.
Tuesday, 17 April 2012—
Psalm 4—This psalm of David
is a cry for deliverance, with confidence that the Lord hears and answers
prayer. Because Christ Jesus has delivered us from our mortal enemy—sin and its
consequences—we can confidently say with David, In peace I will both lie
down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.
Wednesday, 18 April 2012—
people in the temple were astonished when Peter healed the crippled beggar ( Acts 3:1–10). Peter
told them that it was God, not he, who had healed the man. He then related the
details of Jesus’ death and resurrection—We
are witnesses—and proclaimed the Gospel to them, urging them to repent and
trust in Christ alone for the forgiveness of their sins.
Thursday, 19 April 2012—
1 John 3:1–7—St.
John contrasts those in the world, who do not know the Father because they have
rejected the Son, with believers, who put their trust in Christ, and, thus,
have been made the children of God.
Friday, 20 April 2012—
Luke 24:36–49—The early
Church Fathers had to deal with heretics called Docetists who denied the physical resurrection of Jesus, saying it
was only a spiritual resurrection, and that His appearances were that of a
phantasm, or else hallucinations by His followers. This heresy persists to this
day: the Jehovah’s Witnesses deny the bodily resurrection of Christ. But Jesus
dispels any sort of nonsensical ideas in Sunday’s Gospel. He appears in the
flesh—Why do doubts rise in your hearts?
Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself. Handle me and see, for a
spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have—and eats food. This eyewitness
account also gives us the assurance of the physical resurrection of Jesus, and
of all believers, as we confess in the Creed.
Saturday, 21 April 2012—The Hymn of the Day, With High Delight, Let Us Unite (LSB #483), is a song of jubilation and high praise to our risen Lord, who has vanquished death and the grave by His death: True God, He first From death has burst Forth into life, all subduing. His enemy Doth vanquished lie; His death has been death’s undoing. “And yours shall be Like victory O’er death and grave,” Saith He, who gave His life for us, life renewing.
Collect for Easter 3—O God, through the humiliation of Your Son You raised up the fallen world. Grant to Your faithful people, rescued from the peril of everlasting death, perpetual gladness and eternal joys; through Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.
This week’s Time in the Word was written by Pr. Jeffrey M. Keuning, who serves the Lutheran parishes of St. John Casey and Zion, Dexter IA