Peace Lutheran Church Sussex, Wisconsin

Congregation at Prayer

Table of Duties—What the Hearers Owe Their Pastors (1st half)

March 17, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Psalm 24: Prayer of Thanksgiving for the Glorious Resurrection & Ascension of Our Lord

Psalm 24 is a psalm that proclaims the victory of Christ’s atonement.  By the shedding of His blood, we and all of creation were redeemed. “The earth is the Lord’s and all its fullness…”  We may ascend the holy hill of the Lord, because He has declared us to be righteous and has cleansed us from all our sin.  This victory is gloriously proclaimed in the resurrection and ascension of our Lord.  He has taken our place under the Law.  He has redeemed us from sin, having taken the sin of the world upon Himself.  We receive His righteousness as our very own and join the King of glory in His triumphal procession.  “Who is this King of Glory?  The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle!”  He defeated our enemy Satan upon the cross.  Forgiveness of sins, life, and salvation is ours.  Psalm 24 is a psalm of thanks and praise to the Lord Jesus because we rejoice in the victory of the cross that His glorious resurrection and ascension proclaim to us.CP190317

To Bishops, Pastors, and Preachers

March 10, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 23: The Prayer of Confidence in Our Good Shepherd—King David was a shepherd.  He knew how dependent the flock was upon its shepherd.  His voice protected them, called them, led them, and provided for them. In Psalm 23, David proclaims that the Lord is his Shepherd. This is the confident confession of all the baptized faithful.  Since the Lord Jesus is our Shepherd, who laid down His life for the sheep, we have no wants.  He has provided for all our needs so that we lack nothing.  The gifts of His Gospel and sacraments are set forth in the rich imagery of “green pastures, still waters.”  One cannot help but think of the Lord’s Supper and Baptism.  Our soul is restored and renewed by Christ’s righteousness.  This is the path of every Christian.  We follow Him because He is our righteousness.  Walking by faith in Christ, our righteousness, we will fear no evil even though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death. He comforts us with the rod and staff of His Word.  He is present with us in the Sacrament. The Table of the Lord has been prepared for us in the presence of the enemies of sin, death, and hell.  He anoints us with the oil of His Spirit in the words of absolution.  Our cup overflows with the joy of the Lord’s free gift of salvation.  In His Word and Sacraments goodness and mercy shall follow us all the days of our life.  For this reason we shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.CP190310

Sacrament of the Altar

March 3, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 22—Jesus’ Prayer from the Cross—Psalm 22 is Jesus’ prayer from the cross, written by David nearly 1,000 years before His crucifixion.  It is not a prayer of despair, but the confident prayer of faith.  Even though He was forsaken by God as He endured the horror of God’s condemnation upon the cross, He did not lose heart. “You are He who took Me out of the womb; You made Me trust when I was on My mother’s breasts. I was cast upon You from birth. From My mother’s womb You have been My God. Be not far from Me, for trouble is near; for there is none to help.”  Psalm 22 is the most intimate meditation upon the sufferings of Christ.  It prophesies in detail what He endured for us.  Through it all He remained steadfast in the faith. Psalm 22 is the corollary to Isaiah 53: “Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows.”  These great texts that catechize us in the atonement of Christ proclaim unmistakably the love that He has for us.  We who believe in Him who suffered for us are spoken of in the closing verses of the psalm: “A posterity shall serve Him… They will come and declare His righteousness to a people who will be born, that He has done this.”CP190303

Sacrament of the Altar

February 24, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 21—A Prayer of Rejoicing in the Lord’s Salvation—God the Father heard the prayers of His Son and did not deny the desires of His heart or the requests of His lips.  Why?  Because the heart of our Lord Jesus was perfectly united in faith and love for the Father and the work of salvation to which the Father had called Him.  The King, Christ Jesus, trusted in the Lord, and through the Lord’s mercy He was not moved.  God the Father hears our prayers, also, precisely because we are joined to His anointed Son who won salvation for us.  Eternal salvation and the absolute guarantee of our victory over sin, death, and the power of the devil is the reason for our joy.  In our prayers we join with Christ in rejoicing in the gift of salvation that we have in Christ: “His glory is great in Your salvation; honor and majesty You have placed upon Him. For You have made Him most blessed forever; You have made Him exceedingly glad with Your presence… Be exalted, O Lord, in Your own strength!  We will sing and praise Your power.”  CP190224

Sacrament of the Altar

February 17, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 20—Prayer to Seek the Lord’s Help from His Sanctuary—When we pray for God’s help, deliverance, and guidance we need to know where it is found.  Psalm 20 teaches us that the Lord’s help comes from His Divine Service, the sanctuary, out of Zion, where the congregation gathers around the Lord’s Word and Sacraments and, on the basis of His Word, offer their prayers and the sacrifices of a broken and contrite heart for His healing, comfort, strength, and guidance.  Because God the Father has accepted the offering of His Son and saved Him on account of His righteous sacrifice, the Lord will save us who are united to Christ by faith.  Those who trust in the wisdom and strength of this world will fall, but those who trust in the Lord and live from His Divine Service will live and stand with Him in the resurrection.CP190217

Confession and the Office of the Keys

February 10, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 19—Praise of God for the Perfect Revelation of His Glory—David links together the preaching of the Gospel with the ordering of the cosmos.  “The heavens declare the glory of God and the firmament shows His handiwork” precisely because they are signs whose ordered design and placement in the cosmos perfectly reflect the ordering of the Gospel of God’s love and sacrifice in Christ.  The creation of the sun, the moon, and the stars are for signs and seasons, and for all the patterns of life that find their fulfillment in the week of our redemption in the suffering, death, and resurrection of Christ.  As the earth orbits around the sun, which sustains the life of all living things, so Christ and His Gospel is the source of eternal life and salvation. The pattern of a day (“evening and morning”) points us to the darkness of death and the light of the resurrection of Christ by which the creation is redeemed and made new.  The statutes of the Lord testify to the truth of the Gospel which is imbedded in all of creation.  The Law of the Lord—His commandments and promises—convert our hearts from unbelief to repentant faith. We rejoice in His salvation and desire His Word to be proclaimed in all of creation.  By the Word of the Lord we are turned from our sin, cleansed from unknown errors, and lead a life that is innocent of all transgressions by the gift of Christ’s righteousness. “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in Your sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer!”CP190210

Confession and the Office of the Keys

February 3, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 18—A Prayer of Thanksgiving for the Lord’s Deliverance—This psalm was prayed by David in response to the Lord’s deliverance of him from the hand of Saul and, indeed, from all his enemies on every side. He compares this mighty deliverance of the Lord to His many acts of salvation for His people since the world began, especially His redemption of the children of Israel from bondage and His sustaining grace to them throughout their history. He gives all glory to the Lord, his Rock, Fortress, Deliverer, Strength, Shield, Salvation, and Stronghold.  When David says that he is “rewarded for his righteousness” he is referring to the righteousness of Christ which is the source of our salvation.  At the conclusion of the psalm, David gives glory to Christ, the Lord’s anointed, who is the source of abiding strength and deliverance for David and all the descendants of faith in Christ that have followed David.CP190203

The Sacrament of Holy Baptism — Part IV

January 27, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 17—Prayer for Faithfulness to the Lord’s Word and Salvation—Psalm 17 is an example of praying according to the First Petition, “Hallowed be Thy Name.”  God’s Word and those who trust in it, pray according to it, and cling to the righteousness of Christ above all else will endure assaults from false teachers, slanderers of the truth, the arrogant and self-righteous.  All of these enemies of God’s Word and of the faithful Christian are in league with Satan, the arch-enemy of the Gospel of Christ.  David teaches us to cry out to the Lord for the strength He promises to give against the malevolent deceit of those who would assault the faith of Christians.  He bids us to pray, not for the things of this world which will pass away, but for the righteousness of Christ and the gift of salvation that will never pass away. CP190127

The Sacrament of Holy Baptism — Part III

January 20, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 16—The Messiah’s Prayer for Strength—All the psalms are prayed through faith in Jesus Christ and His victory for us.  Psalm 16 is no exception.  The words of this psalm belong in the mouth of Jesus.  Peter makes this clear in his Pentecost sermon.  This psalm was Jesus’ prayer as He faced the horror of the cross and death: “Preserve me, O God, for in You I put my trust…You are my Lord, My goodness is nothing apart from You!”  For Jesus’ sake, this becomes our prayer as well.  Even in the agony of His death upon the cross, Jesus confessed confidence in His Father who would raise Him from the dead and not allow Him to see corruption: “I have set the Lord always before me; because He is at My right hand I shall not be moved. Therefore My heart is glad, and My glory rejoices; My flesh also will rest in hope. For You will not leave My soul in Sheol, nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.”  Because of Jesus’ atoning sacrifice upon the cross which the Father accepted, Jesus’ body did not undergo decay and it was impossible for death to hold Him.  The Father raised His faithful Son from the dead and for Jesus’ sake the Father will raise us to life immortal.  This is our hope and confidence in Christ: “In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” CP190120

The Sacrament of Holy Baptism—Part I and II

January 13, 2019

Download (Adobe PDF)

Catechesis Notes for the Week — Praying the Psalms: Psalm 15—Prayer to Walk Uprightly in Faith—Throughout the Old Testament men like Enoch, Noah, and Abraham are said to “walk with God” and are, therefore, described as righteous and just.  This is a description of what it means to follow Christ by faith.  By faith we are justified, declared righteous; and by faith we live the Christian life.  We enter into God’s house by the merits of Christ alone.  The life of faith speaks the truth before God and the neighbor, confesses sin, lives in love for the neighbor, and seeks only the neighbor’s welfare.  This is what we pray for because we believe in Him whose righteousness and salvation enables us to abide in the tabernacle of the Lord forever.CP190113