From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession
Concerning Human Traditions in the Church
They condemn us in article seven of their Confutation for saying that it is not necessary that rites instituted by men should be the same everywhere for true unity of the Church.
Pulling It Together
Since rituals invented by people—instead of those instituted by God—have no testimony in the Word of God and no demand on his people, how could they have anything to do with real unity in the Church? For it is God who maintains unity and order in the Church. It is then up to us to obey—to obey God, not people (Acts 5:29).
God has given us what is necessary for good order and unity. There is no need to invent something new or additional. Yet how these things are observed will necessarily be different from one congregation to another. Language will be different, as will some wording, the flavor of wine, the temperature of the water, and so forth. Let us not quibble over such things but find our unity in Christ and his Word. Such firmness of faith in “the mystery of God” will bring about good order.
Prayer: Thank you, Father, for revealing the mystery that has been kept hidden for ages. Amen.
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Learning About Confession teaches the meaning of Confession and Forgiveness according Luther's guidance in the Small Catechism. It is recommended for the Sixth Grade Level. Each week focuses on a specific Bible story that illustrates the theme, with additional references from Scripture and Luther's Small Catechism - Children's Version. With a healthy balance of Law and Gospel, lessons emphasize the connection between repentance and forgiveness, and how the promise of God’s forgiveness changes our lives.