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Sunday, May 20, 2018

Pieper sermons-3b: Christian Worldview

      This continues from Part 3a (Table of Contents in Part 1), a short series on the sermons of Franz Pieper.  — This part continues the second of 2 sermons, or “golden apples” published by Prof. Theodore Laetsch after Pieper's “going home” in 1931.
      We learn from this portion what the correct Christian Worldview is — you won't find the true Christian answer in the current Wikipedia article on this topic. Also we find out what the preaching of the Gospel does for a country… and the rather sad news for a country that loses it (like Germany, now America).
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Translation by BackToLutherhighlighting and bolding is mine; hyperlinks added for reference. Text extracted from Concordia Theological Monthly, October, 1931, pp. 761-771 (German text here)
Part 3b of 3

We must not forget the purpose for which God still allows the world and the state in the world to survive. Not for the purpose of showing people what great things they can do; not even for the purpose that the kingdoms of this world overthrow each other.  That is a very incorrect worldview.

Our Savior says very clearly what the world stands for: This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come”, namely the end of the world, the Last Day. [Matt. 24:14] We learn from this:

The whole world and all the governmental orders in the world exist only for the sake of the Gospel, and the Christians of a country with their preaching of the Gospel are the actual protective wall of the land.  Only for this sake does God let the order of nations stand.

Even in our land, which is so abundantly blessed with earthly goods, the Gospel is rare.  We have a truly appalling apostasy in mind, where Rome is active in its cursing of the Gospel. But also by those who call themselves Protestant Christians for the most part in the place of the Gospel of Christ which saves people from hell to heaven, the desire for the goods of this world, the so-called [Page 769]
social Gospel is set. In the eyes of God, that is a pollution of the land, which calls down God's wrath upon our land, and will sooner or later lead to its ruin. But if, by the grace of God, we faithfully and diligently proclaim and spread the Gospel of the sinner's Savior here in the land, we are for our country a wall of protection against the threatening wrath of God, a wall stronger than a strong army and a strong fleet.
= = = = = = = = = =  Concluded in Part 3c  = = = = = = = = = = =

Pieper corrects nearly all modern ideas of a "Christian Worldview" .  And even at the time of this sermon, in Pieper's lifetime, there was "a truly appalling apostasy".  Pieper pronounced to America then: "the Gospel is rare".  In Germany, long before World War II, long before World War I, the "Gospel was rare".  I would ask whether this was not even true for Concordia College Alabama, long before its closing of today.  Were they not promoting more of a social gospel, thereby polluting the land, instead of bringing the true Gospel?  Is it not true that the "Gospel is rare" even more now in America, because the LC-MS had turned away from it? — In the next Part 3c, Pieper brings us the writing of Martin Luther on... a Christian education.

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