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quod pro nobis traditum est

Friday, June 06, 2014

on purity

Not purity, which is the saving work of Christ in Word and Sacraments, God's free grace in Christ for sinners. Not purity which is the work of the Holy Spirit, through the same means, in His sanctifying work among sinners, to make a holy Bride, the Church.

The purity of God can be misplaced or absorbed into the cultural and political views of His people, on both the right and the left. Altar, font and pulpit are diminished in favor of public activity and, ironically, it somehow then seems unethical for the church to be involved in ministry.

Although there have been hints in "false divides" (as opposed to keeping the whole) suggested in theological discussions online in recent years, I confess that I am blindsided by this new purity. Something is indeed doing its work, narrowing down the chosen to but a few, dividing congregations and even Christian families, destroying pastors and scattering the sheep. Where is this "purity" coming from? This legalism apart from forgiveness, life and salvation? This departure from the Body and Blood of Christ?

In the liturgy we pray regularly for the whole church on earth and for the enemies of the church. Come Holy Spirit!