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10/18/2020

The Church honors governing authorities.

Wisdom from God helps us to see the relationship between the Church and the government and the respect we owe to all who govern.

Prayer:

O Lord, our God, govern the nations on earth and direct the affairs of this world so that your Church may worship you in peace and joy; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

10/16/2020

God gives us government as a gift and as his servant.  Even when we can’t see it so clearly, God is working his plans and purposes for us and for all people through government.  Church and state have different tools, different roles, and different goals.  We would do well to keep these differences in mind. When we expect the government to accomplish what the Church has been called to do or vice versa, we will be left disappointed.  Whether we have a government that is good, fair and equitable to us or not, we can rejoice that God is in control.  Christ is King of both kingdoms and nothing can take from him his throne in either realm.  Join us for a discussion on chapters 3-4 or Civil Government.   

10/11/2020

The Church is composed of those who believe the Gospel.

The Church is not made up of the good and the great, but only of those who
put their faith in Jesus’ blood and righteousness.

Prayer:

Almighty God, you invite us to trust in you for our salvation. Deal with us not in the severity of your judgment but by the greatness of your mercy; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

02/12/2020

Pastors Hackmann and Huebner sit down to discuss chapter 3 of Grace Abounds and 4 characteristics of  the Bible – that it is Inerrant, efficacious, sufficient, and clear.  Ironically the podcast will be almost none of those things (hopefully still efficacious), because a setting was not properly enabled and the laptop microphone took over again! (Argh!!)   We’ve tried our best to make it the best that we can.  As you listen, you can ponder how much wildly better God is than Pastor Hackmann.   He’ll get it right one of these weeks!  Sorry for the inconvenience and thanks for listening!!

02/09/2020

Be salt and light.

How do we live our lives among the people we know and love? Jesus’ answer is critical for the happiness and contentment of others.

Prayer:

Almighty God, you sent your one and only Son as the Word of life for our eyes to see and our ears to hear. Help us believe what the Scriptures proclaim about him and do the things that are pleasing in your sight; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

02/06/2020

The B-I-B-L-E is the topic of Chapter 2 of Grace Abounds.   Pastors Hackmann and Strong chat about the importance of the Bible and how it is God’s revealing to us who he is, who we are, and how much he loves us.  The doctrine of inspiration is discussed and how it is a guarantee for us that what we have before us in our home Bibles is clearly and truly the Word of God.

02/02/2020

We are blessed as we live humbly with God.

How do we find genuine and lasting happiness and contentment? Jesus’ answers may surprise us.

Prayer:

Almighty and everlasting God, look with mercy on us in all our dangers and needs and stretch out the right hand of your majesty to help and defend us; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever. Amen.

01/29/2020

By nature we ask questions that have supernatural or religious significance.  We yearn to know: Why am I here? Where have I come from? Where has everything around me come from and why does it exist? Where am I going?  What is the point and purpose of life, of joy, of suffering, of death?  What happens after death? Is there a God out there? Am I acocuntable to him?...Religions exist to deal with and provide answers to these questions (page 4).

Why Doctrine?  Why study doctrine?  Why should we read a 560 page book on doctrine and then spend time talking about what we read?  In his Word to us we can know his love for us!

God unveils his existence to us through what we might call "the natural knowledge of God."   In the beauty, complexity and wonder of nature we can know that there is a God.  In the fact that we have a conscience (and that every other has a conscience and it speaks to the same set of moral laws) we can know that there is something higher than us.  And in the coming chapters we see God reveal himself to us in his Word.           

01/29/2020

By nature we ask questions that have supernatural or religious significance.  We yearn to know: Why am I here? Where have I come from? Where has everything around me come from and why does it exist? Where am I going?  What is the point and purpose of life, of joy, of suffering, of death?  What happens after death? Is there a God out there? Am I acocuntable to him?...Religions exist to deal with and provide answers to these questions (page 4).

Why Doctrine?  Why study doctrine?  Why should we read a 560 page book on doctrine and then spend time talking about what we read?  In his Word to us we can know his love for us!

God unveils his existence to us through what we might call "the natural knowledge of God."   In the beauty, complexity and wonder of nature we can know that there is a God.  In the fact that we have a conscience (and that every other has a conscience and it speaks to the same set of moral laws) we can know that there is something higher than us.  And in the coming chapters we see God reveal himself to us in his Word.           

01/26/2020

Jesus is the Light amid the darkness.

The sensations of light and darkness are not as acute in our world as they were in a world which knew only torches and candles. We must imagine night without light. But the darkness of confusion, doubt, and sadness are real enough for us, and we rejoice with the ancients who saw Jesus as the Light of the world.

Sermon on Matthew 4:12-23 preached at Grace Ev. Lutheran Church by Pastor Aaron Strong.

Prayer:

Almighty God, you sent your Son to proclaim your kingdom and to teach with authority. Anoint us with the power of your Spirit that we, too, may bring good news to the afflicted, bind up the brokenhearted, and proclaim liberty to the captive; through Jesus Christ, your Son, our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.  

01/24/2020

Join us in a reading challenge as we behold the Splendor of Christian Doctrine.  We as a church are beginning a journey through a doctrine book called Grace Abounds and we encourage you to join us on the journey.  We'll see what God's Word says to us and how we can apply those truths to our lives.   Find the reading schedule at:

http://www.gracedowntown.org/media/1881/grace-abounds-reading-plan-january-may.pdf

Or in the 'Learn and Grow' section of this website at the link for "Grace Abounds: Reading Challenge" 

We plan to discuss the weekly topic of the readings and chat about how that topic finds meaning and purpose in our lives today!  It's sure to be a fun journey filled with opportunity for spiritual growth.  We hope and pray that you join us and find benefit.   There's also a Facebook page for discussion and an e-mail list to receive reminders and encouragements about the reading challenge.  You can also e-mail questions that will be answered personally and may make their way anonymously into the podcast recording.   We are all very excited to watch God's Grace Abound in the lives and hearts of our participants.       

01/19/2020

Jesus Is the Lamb of God

In today’s world, spiritual advice comes from a variety of sources. But because the Son of God came as a Lamb of sacrifice for our sins, we look to him alone as the source of every spiritual blessing.

Sermon on Colossians 2:6-15 preached at Grace Ev. Lutheran Church by Pastor Jim Huebner.

Prayer:

Almighty God, you gave your one and only Son to be the light of the world. Grant that your people, illumined by your Word and sacraments, may shine with the radiance of Christ’s glory, that he may be known, worshiped, and believed to the ends of the earth; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.

01/12/2020

Jesus is the Anointed One

At his baptism Jesus bowed to the will of his heavenly Father and took up the task of freeing the world from the horror of sin.

Sermon on Acts 10:34-38 preached at Grace Ev. Lutheran Church by Pastor Brian Hackmann.

Prayer:

Father in heaven, at the baptism of Jesus in the River Jordan you proclaimed him your beloved Son and anointed him with the Holy Spirit. Keep us who are baptized into Christ faithful in our calling as your children and make us heirs with him of everlasting life; through your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and forever.  Amen.