Thursday in the Third Week of Easter

Text: Colossians 2:8-23; Matthew 4:12-17

Prayer Pointers:

For the newly baptized

For those preparing for Confirmation

For those caught by earthly ways of thinking

There has been some controversy over Paul in the last thirty or so years, mainly of the academic type, that says that Luther and the other Reformers misread the famous Apostle to the Gentiles, and that Paul was more against mindless religious ritual rather than “good works” in a general sense, and that such generalized “good works”—being kind, loving, etc—would be weighed by God in a final judgement. The idea is that ancient ritual, philosophy or dogma was pointless, but becoming/being a good person is precisely the point.

The problem with such an idea of general good works is exactly as Luther saw: if we are going to point to our good works as the sign that we are “in the club,” so to speak, then we quickly get to the point of asking are these the right good works? Should I do more/better works? Can I get away with the bare minimum? Am I the type of good person God wants? These kind of questions, declares Luther, are the exact symptoms of sin, and lead us away from the only reason we can call Paul’s message Good News: God has come near, he will save, his favor is upon you! Turn around and believe this message!

Easter joy ~ Pr. Dave Brooks


Grace Evangelical Lutheran Church

824 N. Buchanan Blvd. 

Durham, NC 27701

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824 North Buchanan Blvd, Durham, NC 27701 | 919-682-6030  |

Mission Statement: We are called to Welcome Everyone to Walk the Way of GRACE, and walk in that way in our individual lives, in our shared life in our various communities, in our common life with our neighbors, and even to the world at large as God sends us. The Way of Grace is to: GROW with Jesus, REJOICE in God, ANSWER with hope, CARE for the neighbor, and EMBRACE community.

Vision Statement: God has a plan FOR OUR LIVES, and so we teach how to walk in the path of Jesus Christ; FOR OUR NEIGHBORHOODS, and so we work to build healthy and strong communities; FOR OUR CITY, and so we share life with our neighbors in Walltown, Trinity Park, Duke, and the Triangle; and FOR OUR WORLD, and so we go with Good News.

Core Values: Because God loves us first, we value worship rooted in Scripture and Sacraments, service to all people, and being a welcoming community that loves and forgives one another.