Reformation Day for attendees of the International Conference on Confessional Lutheranism, held in Peachtree City, Ga., ended with Evening Prayer at Faith Lutheran Church.

The Rev. Dr. Robert Bugbee, president of the Lutheran Church-Canada, read passages from Revelation and Romans. LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison preached on Rom. 3:19-28.

LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison preaches on Reformation Day.

So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in Him, “If you abide in My word, you are truly My disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” They answered Him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that You say, ‘You will become free’?” Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed” (Rom. 3:19-28).

Harrison recalled the story of a 16th century man from Spain who gouged a hole in Lucas Cranach’s famous altarpiece, which depicts Luther preaching. “Even in death,” the man is purported to have said angrily against Luther, “the beast rages on!”

LCMS President Rev. Dr. Matthew C. Harrison reads Rom. 3:19-28 during the service of Evening Prayer on the Festival of the Reformation.

“Hermann Sasse said, ‘The Lutheran Church has been sentenced to death by the world,'” recounted Harrison, “but in death, we rage on.”

 

“We are beggars. This is true,” said Harrison to the conference attendees. “This is Luther’s great legacy to all of us: pure beggars. Forgiven, redeemed, dead in repentance and alive in Jesus. Even in death, we rage on. God grant it for Jesus’ sake.”

Faith Lutheran Church’s chancel crucifix

Hymns included “Lord Jesus Christ, with Us Abide,” “Thy Strong Word,” “Dear Christians, One and All, Rejoice,” and “A Mighty Fortress.”