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A Reading from the Book of Concord
3 year series

January 27, 2013 - Epiphany 3, series C

The following reading from the CONCORDIA edition of the Book of Concord is for the Old Testament, Nehemiah 8:1-3,5-6,8-10 for the Epiphany 3, series C, January 27, 2013.

It is from Large Catechism, page 368.

It is by our our coming together to hear God's Word that we sanctify Sunday as a holy day for us. "The joy of the Lord is your strength."

Click here for the reading formatted for the back of a standard CPH bulletin.

Pastor Doug May
Socorro, New Mexico


Keeping of the Sabbath is not restricted to a certain time, as with the Jewish people. It does not have to be just on this or that day. For in itself no one day is better than another. Instead, this should be done daily. However, since the masses of people cannot attend every day, there must be at least one day in the week set apart. From ancient times Sunday ‹the Lord's Day› has been appointed for this purpose. So we also should continue to do the same, in order that everything may be done in an orderly way.

This is the simple meaning of the commandment: People must have holidays. Therefore, such observances should be devoted to hearing God's Word so that the special function of this day of rest should be the ministry of the Word for the young and the mass of poor people [Nehemiah 8:2-3, 8]. Yet the resting should not be strictly understood to forbid any work that comes up, which cannot be avoided.

When someone asks, "What is meant by the commandment: You shall sanctify the holy day?" Answer like this, "To sanctify the holy day is the same as to keep it holy." "But what is meant by keeping it holy?" "Nothing else than to be occupied with holy words, works, and life." For the day needs no sanctification of itself. It has been created holy in itself. But God desires the day to be holy to you. It becomes holy or unholy because of you, whether you are occupied with things that are holy or unholy. (pars. 85-87)

Condensed from CONCORDIA: THE LUTHERAN CONFESSIONS, copyright 2005,2006 by Concordia Publishing House. Used by permission. All rights reserved. To purchase a copy of CONCORDIA, call 800-325-3040.

These are excerpts from the Book of Concord.

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