07 February 2009

In the House Where Jesus Is

They brought to Christ Jesus the sick and the demon-possessed, and He healed many who were ill with various diseases.

So what are the frailties and failures, the weaknesses and infirmities of your mortal flesh and blood? Not only of your body, but of your heart and mind, of your spirit and emotion. For there is a connection between the fall into sin and the curse of death, between unbelief and the demonic: fightings and fears, within, without.

Do you know who Jesus is? According to His Law, or according to His mercy? Do you trust Him? Or fear Him?

What do you want Jesus to do for you? Where and how do you look for Him? Or do you?

Come to His house and enter by the door of your Baptism into Christ. Listen to His Word, and pray.

There is this transition that has taken place, from the synagogue to the house of the Apostles; from the Word of the Prophets to the apostolic Word of Christ in the flesh. Now, then, in the apostolic house of His Church on earth, the flesh of Christ heals your flesh and raises your body from death to life.

How can this be? Because, by His death and burial, He has borne your sins away in His own body. In the evening, He has taken all the deadly sickness of your sin upon Himself; He has put it to death and buried it, once and for all. Thus, He has shut up the spirits who know only the Law of God, but not His mercy. For that which is spiritual apart from Christ and His preaching of the Gospel is demonic and deadly. But Jesus the Christ, anointed by the Holy Spirit for your salvation, quiets your troubled spirit and grants peace to your heart and mind, your body and soul, by the forgiveness of all your sins.

By His Cross, He has dealt with your sins. In the morning, He rises for you with His unfailing love. For in His bodily Resurrection from the dead, He also raises you to new life; and in His Ascension, He opens the way to the Father for you. There, at the right hand of the Father, He ever lives to make intercession for you. He prays for you in the presence of God, that you may have a place with Him there.

Yet, that is not to say that He has left you behind. He has not. For He causes His Word to be preached in every place; in every town and city, and also in this place, in this apostolic house of His. Where His Word is preached, there He is. Not only that, but by His preaching He casts out demons, heals the sick, and raises the dead. All of this He does for you.

You, then, hear His preaching in His house, and pray, as He prays (for He joins your prayer to His own). And serve Him in His Body with your own body of flesh and blood.

For here in His Church, the preaching and catechesis of His Word calls you to repentance and faith by His forgiveness of your sins. And the flesh of Christ, crucified and risen, heals you in body and soul. He takes hold of your flesh with His own. He touches your lips and your tongue with His body and blood. He cools your fever, removes your infirmity, and raises you up to life with Himself in the presence of the Father.

And the Peace of Christ, which surpasses all human understanding, keeps your heart and mind in the same Lord Jesus Christ, unto life everlasting.

In the Name + of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit. Amen.

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