Friday, March 13, 2020

Friday of Lent 2

Friday of Lent 2 – March 13, 2020 – Mark 16:16
All who believe and are baptized
    Shall see the Lord’s salvation;
Baptized into the death of Christ,
    They are a new creation.
Through Christ’s redemption they shall stand
Among the glorious, heav’nly band
    Of ev’ry tribe and nation. [2]

These words, simple as they are, speak a profound truth. What benefit does baptism give? It works forgiveness of sins, rescues from death and the devil, and gives eternal salvation to all who believe this, as the words and promises of God declare. “Whoever believes and is baptized shall be saved.” [Mark 16]

How can water do such great things? Certainly not just water, but the word of God in and with the water does these things, along with the faith which trusts this word of God in the water. For without God’s word the water is plain water and no Baptism. But with the word of God, it is a Baptism, that is, a life-giving water, rich in grace, and a washing of the new birth in the Holy Spirit, as St. Paul says in Titus, chapter three: “He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by His grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.” (Titus 3:5–8) 

Baptism is that gracious washing of God. This truth is expressed in our hymn for today. 

Grant O Lord, that as Your Son Jesus Christ prayed for His enemies on the cross, so we may have grace to forgive those who wrongfully or scornfully use us, that we ourselves may be able to receive Your forgiveness; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen. [3] 

Lord Jesus, Bread of Life, in Your great compassion You fed the multitudes with a few loaves and a few fish. Feed us the holy food of Your Word broken open that hearts may burn and Your very body and blood that eyes may be opened to see You as the very Bread of heaven; for You live and reign with the Father and the Holy Spirit; one God, now and forever. [4]

1. Image: Baptism © Higher Things
2. All Who Believe and Are Baptized, Lutheran Service Book © Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis
3. Collect for Friday of Lent 2,  ,
4. Collect for Friday of Lent 2, Lutheran Service Book © 2006 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

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