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Lessons in the Lutheran Confessions
Concerning the Invocation of Saints part 25

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1 Peter 2:4–6

From the Confessions: The Defense of the Augsburg Confession

Concerning the Invocation of Saints 

The adversaries teach us to trust in the invocation of saints, though this has neither the Word of God nor an example in Scripture. They apply the merits of the saints to others just like the merits of Christ, transferring the honor belonging only to Christ to the saints. Therefore, we cannot receive either their opinions about the worship of the saints or their practice of praying to the saints. For we know that confidence is to be placed in the intercession of Christ, because this alone has God’s promise. We know that the merits of Christ alone are a propitiation for us. When we believe in Christ, we are accounted righteous because of his merits, as the text says, “He who believes in him will not be put to shame” (Rom 9:33). We are not accounted righteous by trusting in the merits of the blessed Virgin or of the other saints.

Pulling It Together

All Christians are priests before God. The Church, a “holy priesthood” of believers prays to God through Jesus Christ. God does not require other intercessors who are in his presence. We are already in his presence since he dwells in the midst of all believers, his “spiritual house,” the temple of his Spirit. Concerning the merits of the saints, Scripture only speaks of placing our trust in Christ. Those who do, will not be disappointed (1 Pet 2:6, NASB).

Prayer: I trust in you, Lord Jesus. Amen.

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