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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning Repentance part 40

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1 Samuel 2:2–6

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning Repentance 

“The LORD kills and brings to life; he brings down to Sheol and raises up” (1 Sam 2:6). One of these signifies contrition; by the other is meant faith.

Pulling It Together

The prayer of Hannah agrees with Moses’ teaching about the Almighty. God kills and makes alive; he wounds and he heals; and there is no one that can deliver out of his hand” (Deut 32:39). Life and death are in God’s hands. And there is nothing that we can do to deliver ourselves from the grave. The foolish harden their hearts to this fact of life. But the wise are contrite. They “talk no more so very proudly” (1 Sam 2:3) and are humble before the one who lays all people low in that grave place of rest, but also raises up to newness of life.

So again, we see that the first part of repentance is contrition before God but the second is faith. Christians put their whole trust in God, who not only ushers them to the grave but raises them up at the coming of the Lord (1 Thes 4:13–18).

Prayer: I confess that my life and death are in your hands, O God, as is my eternal life, through Jesus Christ the Lord in whom I have put my trust. Amen. 

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