Festival of The Baptism of Our Lord

Sermon Starter

Luther for Armchair Theologians” is a little book of about 200 pages which is a summary of Luther’s life and doctrine. In this book, author Steven Paulson gives a concise formula for the birth of sin as it relates to how we are inclined to react toward the threats and promises of God’s Word. 

He says, “First, we receive a word from God: ‘Eat from all the trees except one’ (God says). Having heard His word we then act mystified, or, perhaps offended by it: ‘Why did God say…?’

“Second, we imagine that God is hiding the best from us, and we try finding better words; ‘God can’t really mean you’ll die …’

“Third, we accomplish the great feat of believing in our own power to believe, as if that power were more trustworthy than the Holy Spirit’s words given by the preacher.

“Fourth, behold! We have become our own God, determining for ourselves what is ‘good and evil.’”

Collect of the Day

Father in heaven, at the Baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River You proclaimed Him Your beloved Son and anointed Him with the Holy Spirit. Make all who are baptized in His name faithful in their calling as Your children and inheritors with Him of everlasting life; through the same Jesus Christ, our Lord, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.